Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Big Book Challenge

Zora Neale Hurston: Novels and Stories ~ ed. by Cheryl A. Wall, 1995, fiction (Florida)
When she died in obscurity in 1960, all of Zora Neale Hurston's books were out of print.  Now she is recognized as one of the most important and influential modern American writers.  This book features Their Eyes Were Watching God, the acclaimed 1937 novel about a woman's struggle for love and independence.  Jonah's Gourd Vine, Hurston's 1934 novel based on the story of her parents, details the rise and fall of a preacher torn between spirit and flesh.  Moses, Man of the Mountain is her 1939 retelling of the Exodus story in black vernacular.  Seraph on the Suwanee (1948) portrays the passionate clash between a poor southern "cracker" and her willful husband.  A selection of short stories is also included in this volume.
  May 25 ~ Kickoff Party and Keynote Speech by Dr. Rafia Zafar
  June 16 ~ Stories of the Harlem Renaissance with Bobby Norfolk
  June 22-24 ~ discussion of Jonah's Gourd Vine
  June 23 ~ Marquise Knox Blues Performance
July 27-29 ~ discussion of Moses, Man of the Mountain
August 18 ~ Film Screening of "Their Eyes Were Watching God"
August 24-26 ~ discussion of Their Eyes Were Watching God

Every summer, the University City Public Library features the Big Book Challenge for adults.  This year's "big book" is really several smaller books in a single volume.  We'll discuss three of the novels, as shown above, but I plan to read the rest of the book if time permits.  And I'll come back here to check off those events and discussions I'm able to attend.

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