Thursday, February 05, 2015

The Brown Bag Book Club is reading in February...

The Brown Bag Book Club's selection for February is Caleb's Crossing, by Geraldine Brooks.

Book List Review

*Starred Review* Brooks, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for her Civil War novel, March (2006), here imagines the life of Caleb Cheeshahteaumauk, the first Native American to graduate from Harvard. The story is told by Bethia Mayfield, the daughter of a preacher who traveled from England to Martha's Vineyard to try and bring Christ to the Indians. In 1660, when Bethia is 12, the family takes Caleb, a Wampanoag Indian, into their home to prepare him for boarding school. Bethia is a bright scholar herself, and though education for women is discouraged, she absorbs the lessons taught to Caleb and her brother Makepeace like a sponge. She struggles through the deaths of her mother, a younger sister, another brother, and her father. When Caleb and Makepeace are sent to Cambridge, Bethia accompanies them as an indentured servant to a professor. She marries a Harvard scholar, journeys with him to Padua, and finally returns to her beloved island. In flashbacks, Brooks relates the woes of the Indian Wars, the smallpox epidemic, and Caleb's untimely death shortly after his graduation with honors. Brooks has an uncanny ability to reconstruct each moment of the history she so thoroughly researched in stunningly lyrical prose, and her characters are to be cherished

--Donovan, Deborah Copyright 2010 Booklist

The Brown Bag Book Club meets the 3rd Tuesday of the month at 12 noon at the Central Library.  Good books and good discussion may be had by all members of the public, but the good food is up to you!

The next meeting is on February 20th.

Visit Geraldine Brooks's website here.

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