Bright and Distant Shores by Dominic Smith

From the author of The Mercury Visions of Louis Daguerre and The Beautiful Miscellaneous comes a sweeping historical novel set amid the skyscrapers of 1890s Chicago and the far-flung islands of the South Pacific.In the waning years of the nineteenth century there was a hunger for tribal artifacts, spawning collecting voyages from museums and collectors around the globe. In 1897, one such collector, a Chicago insurance magnate, sponsors an expedition into the South Seas to commemorate the completion of his company's new skyscraper--the world's tallest building. The ship is to bring back an array of Melanesian weaponry and handicrafts, but also several natives related by blood.

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  • A former member
    A former member

    Received this email today:
    Arrgh.

    As you probably know, tomorrow--Wednesday, September 19--is International Talk Like a Pirate Day.

    It's a chance to head to the local watering hole and consume lots of grog, while using words like Avast and Lubber, calling other folks Bilge Rats, and threatening them with the Yardarm or the Plank.

    But it's not all grog and silliness (well, maybe it really is). But pirates, first and foremost are always looking for treasure.

    And where better to find treasure than in a used bookstore?

    If you stop by Blue Awning Books tomorrow, September 19, and use pirate lingo--or just mention that it's Talk Like a Pirate Day--you can buy a treasure (or any used book in our inventory) at a discount of 10% off our already low price.

    Just don't bury your treasure...books and dirt don't mix very well.

    Smartly now. It's just for one day. Come by the store and say Ahoy!

    -- Marshall Hamilton Blue Awning Books

    September 18, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    A very fun discussion and enjoyable read by a writer living right here in Austin. It tied in very nicely with the late 1800's fiction and non-fiction we've been reading. Kara...sorry you didn't make it today. Gee, your photo looks like Nicole Kidman. We look forward to meeting you at our next session.

    September 13, 2012

  • Clay W.

    I really enjoyed this book -- colorful characters, engaging settings, and clever plot twists.

    September 13, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    A great new bookstore has just opened up in the Allandale-Brentwood neighborhoods:

    http://www.blueawningbooks.com/

    I have no affiliation with this store, but would recommend it to anyone in the group. They were recently quoted in the New York Times for an acquisition they made from Larry McMurtry's collection:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/13/books/larry-mcmurtrys-book-auction-in-texas.html

    August 27, 2012

  • Clay W.

    All of those sound good to me. And speaking of Pulitzer winners, Tinkers, which won for fiction in 2009, might be one we keep in mind for future sessions.

    Here's how it's described on GoodReads.com: An old man lies dying. As time collapses into memory, he travels deep into his past where he is reunited with his father and relives the wonder and pain of his impoverished New England youth. At once heartbreaking and life affirming, Tinkers is an elegiac meditation on love, loss, and the fierce beauty of nature.

    August 14, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Here's another non-fiction. 'The Devil's Highway' is about the suffering and deaths in a group of twenty-six Mexicans who tried to sneak into America through the Arizona desert in May 2001. One reviewer says: "This tragic incident is deeply and palpaply researched and fully imagined." I saw the author, Luis Urrea, interviewed on Bill Moyers The book was a 2005 Pulitzer finalist.

    August 11, 2012

  • Betsey

    There's also Salvage the Bones which won the national book award and is about hurrican katrina in mississippi. It was the mayor's book club choice this year so there are lots of copies.

    August 11, 2012

  • E.D.

    Maybe we can read the non-fiction book Zeitoun in October by Dave Eggars. It is about New Orleans during Katrina. The library has 12 available copies. I can honestly say it was the last book that I read that I could not put down. Can anyone think of a work of fiction about Katrina? It also concerns Muslims in America so that would also be a relevant theme for a work of fiction. Perhaps the Reluctant Fundamentalist?

    August 10, 2012

  • Clay W.

    Dominic, BTW, is a local author.

    August 9, 2012

7 went

  • E.D.
    Co-Organizer, Organizer
    Event Host
  • Clay W.
    Co-Organizer
    Event Host
  • A former member
  • A former member
  • A former member
  • A former member

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