News

AN AFTERNOON WITH ANDRE DUBUS III and JOSHUA BODWELL

ANDRE DUBUS III and JOSHUA BODWELL

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 9 AT 2:00 PM

The Graves Library is thrilled to welcome back New York Times bestselling author Andre Dubus III on Sunday, December 9 at 2:00 pm to present Gone So Long, his first novel in more than a decade. 

Dubus III will appear in conversation with Joshua Bodwell, executive director of the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance and editor of a new three volume series of the collected short stories and novellas of Dubus III’s revered father, Andre Dubus. The pair will discuss Dubus III’s new novel as well as the influence and vitality of his father’s fiction.

In Gone So Long, a father, estranged for the worst of reasons, is driven to seek out the daughter he has not seen in decades. Daniel Ahearn lives a quiet, solitary existence in a seaside New England town. Forty years ago, following a shocking act of impulsive violence on his part, his daughter, Susan, was ripped from his arms by police. Now in her forties, Susan still suffers from the trauma of a night she doesn’t remember, as she struggles to feel settled, to love a man and create something that lasts. Lois, her maternal grandmother who raised her, tries to find peace in her antique shop in a quaint Florida town but cannot escape her own anger, bitterness, and fear. (from publisher W.W. Norton)

Pulitzer Prize-winner Elizabeth Strout calls Gone So Long “an astonishment” and writes “I love this book so much, the humanity in it. I love every single person in it, they are so real, these people—I know them and love them all. I wept for them, I did.”

Dubus III’s father, Andre Dubus (1936–1999), is one of the most revered American short story writers of his generation. Dubus’s work earned him, among others, the MacArthur “Genius Grant,” the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in the Short Story, the Rea Award for the Short Story, and nominations for a National Book Critics Circle Award and Pulitzer Prize.

This year, Dubus’s longtime publisher, Boston-based David R. Godine, re-launched Dubus’s work in a three-volume series edited by former Graves Library board president Joshua Bodwell. The new volumes—We Don’t Live Here Anymore, The Winter Father, The Cross Country Runner—include introductions by literary legends Ann Beattie, Richard Russo, and Tobias Wolff, respectively. The Paris Review says the three new volumes “reaffirm Dubus’s status as a master, as an unparalleled excavator of the heart and its pains, its longings, its errors, its thumping against the constant threat of grief, despair, and loneliness.”

TICKETS

Tickets ($20.00) will be sold at Graves Library starting November 1st.  Price includes the talk, a wine and cheese reception, and intimate discussion with the author.  All proceeds benefit the Capital Campaign for the new Mothers Wing.  Limited seating available. Graves Library is located at 18 Maine Street, Kennebunkport, Maine.  Please call  (207) 967-2778 for information on this event or other upcoming programs.  Copies of all books will be available for sale and signing.

GEORGE C. DAUGHAN at Graves Library (Two-Time Winner of the Samuel Eliot Morison Award)

GEORGE C. DAUGHAN

LEXINGTON AND CONCORD : THE BATTLE HEARD ROUND THE WORLD

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 13 AT 2:00 PM

A Fundraiser for the Graves Memorial Library – New Mothers Wing

Twice Winner of the Samuel Eliot Morrison Award  George C. Daughan will join us on Saturday, October 13th at 2:00 pm to discuss his new book, Lexington and Concord published by W.W. Norton on April 3, 2018.  Mr. Daughan has received the Samuel Eliot Morrison Award from two different organizations:  one from the USS Constitution Museum in Charlestown, Massachusetts and the other in New York from the Naval Order of the United States New York Commandary. He is the only person to receive both Morison awards.

This magnificently detailed account of the Battle of Lexington and Concord challenges the prevailing narrative of the American War of Independence. It was, Daughan argues, based as much in economic concerns as political ones. When Massachusetts militiamen turned out in overwhelming numbers to fight the British, they believed they were fighting for their farms and livelihoods, as well as for liberty.

Benjamin Franklin was not surprised by this widespread belief. In the years prior to the Revolution, Franklin had toured Great Britain and witnessed the wretched living conditions of the king’s subjects. They wore rags for clothes, went barefoot, and had little to eat. They were not citizens, but serfs. Franklin described the appalling situation in a number of letters home. In the eyes of many American colonists, Britain’s repressive measures were not seen simply as an effort to reestablish political control of the colonies, but also as a means to reduce the prosperous colonists themselves to the serfdom described in the Franklin letters.

Another key factor in the outcome of this historic battle, according to Daughan, was the scorn British officers had for colonial fighters. Although the British officers had fought alongside colonial Americans in the ferocious French and Indian War, they failed to anticipate the skill, organization, and sheer numbers of the colonial militias. Daughan explains how British arrogance led them to defeat at the hands of motivated, experienced patriot fighters determined to protect their way of life.

Authoritative and immersive, Lexington and Concord gives us a new understanding of a battle that became a template for colonial uprisings in later centuries.  [Amazon.com]

Tickets ($20.00) will be sold at the Library starting September 13, 2018.  Price includes the talk, a wine and cheese reception, and intimate discussion with the author.  All proceeds benefit the Capital Campaign for the new Mothers Wing.  Limited seating available.  Please call for further information. (967-2778).

KENNEBUNKPORT LAUNCH OF BOUND FOR GOLD – SUNDAY AUGUST 19 AT 2:00 PM

A Fundraiser for the Graves Memorial Library – New Mothers Wing

BOUND FOR GOLD – Written by National Book Award Winner – William Martin 

Sunday, August 19th at 2:00 pm.

 

New York Times best-selling author, William Martin will join us on Sunday, August 19th at 2:00 pm to launch his new book, Bound for Gold published by Forge Books, July 3, 2018.

 

Bound for Gold continues New York Times bestselling author William Martin’s epic of American history with the further adventures of Boston rare-book dealer Peter Fallon and his girlfriend, Evangeline Carrington. They are headed to California, where their search for a lost journal takes them into the history of Gold Rush. The journal follows young James Spencer, of the Sagamore Mining Company, on a spectacular journey from staid Boston, up the Sacramento River to the Mother Lode. During his search for a “lost river of gold,” Spencer confronts vengeance, greed, and racism in himself and others, and builds one of California’s first mercantile empires.  In the present, Peter Fallon’s son asks his father for help appraising the rare books in the Spencer estate and reconstructing Spencer’s seven-part journal, which has been stolen from the California Historical Society. Peter and Evangeline head for modern San Francisco and quickly discover that there’s something much bigger and more dangerous going on, and Peter’s son is in the middle of it. Turns out, that lost river of gold may be more than a myth (Amazon.com).  Mr. Martin has numerous literary accomplishments in the realm of historical novels including, The Lost Constitution, Citizen Washington, Back Bay, and The Lincoln Letter.   In 2015, the USS CONSTITUTION Museum gave him the Samuel Eliot Morison Award for “patriotic pride, artful scholarship, and an eclectic interest in the sea and things maritime.”  Mr. Martin will present his research and writing of the “lost river of gold.”

 

Tickets ($20.00) will be sold at the Library starting August 1st.  Price includes the talk, a wine and cheese reception, and intimate discussion with the author.  All proceeds benefit the Capital Campaign for the new Mothers Wing.  Limited seating available.  Please call for further information. (967-2778).

 

 

Former First Lady Laura Bush helps re-open historic door

Kennebunkport, August 19, 2016 — Former First Lady Laura Bush joined with Mary-Lou Boucouvalas, executive director of the Louis T. Graves Memorial Public Library in Kennebunkport, and George Emery, chair of the Library’s Mothers Wing Capital Campaign, to formally re-open the historic front door of the Library on Friday, August 19.

IMG_7949_smallThe door was closed in 1988 when renovations to the existing Library were completed and a new side entrance was introduced.

The ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrated the June launch of the $1 million capital campaign to raise funds to expand and update the Library. The front door will become the primary entrance to the Library when the building project begins.

The Mothers Wing Capital Campaign, named in honor of all mothers who have utilized the Library’s services over the past century to encourage children to read, is raising funds to add a new wing to the existing Library to provide much needed space for collections and programs, install an elevator for enhanced handicapped access, and update the Library’s aged infrastructure.

“I’m a former librarian so you might guess that libraries have a very special place in my heart,” said Mrs. Bush in her remarks at the opening. “Libraries are the souls of communities. We meet here to socialize, discover new adventures, learn and relax, and to teach our children and grandchildren the value and joy of learning.

“In this digital age, some may feel that libraries are losing their place in our community; but I believe that we need public libraries now more than ever. And I’m happy that the Graves Library is serving more patrons now than ever. Libraries are vital resources; one of the few public places available to interact with your neighbors and to enjoy the very best of your community and the world of reading.”

GravesLibraryRendering-web“The Graves Library has served as an educational, social, and cultural center of our town for over a century; yet it has been over 30 years since the Library has sought community support for a Capital Campaign,” added Emery. “Increased use has brought challenges in finding space to meet our growing needs. In addition, the Library is a 19th century building that requires major updating. The Mothers Wing Capital Campaign addresses these needs, including adding an elevator and replacing the Library’s aging heating and air conditioning systems.

“We have worked closely with an architect who specializes in historic structures to ensure that we preserve the character of this classic building while providing Library users with an expanded and fully updated facility.”

The Library, which is listed on the National Historic Register, recently celebrated its 100th anniversary in its current location. If you would like to donate to the Mothers Wing Capital Campaign, click here.

Graves Library Launches $1 Million Capital Campaign

The Board of Trustees of the Louis T. Graves Memorial Public Library has launched a $1 million Capital Campaign to raise funds to expand and update the existing Library, according to an announcement from George W. Emery, chair of the Library’s fundraising committee.

The Mothers Wing Capital Campaign, named in honor of all mothers who have utilized the Library’s services over the past century to encourage their children to read, will raise $1 million to add a new wing to the existing Library to provide much needed space for collections and programs, install an elevator for enhanced handicapped access, and update the Library’s aged infrastructure.

“The Graves Library has served as an educational, social, and cultural center of our town for over a century; yet it has been over 30 years since the Library has sought community support for a Capital Campaign,” notes Emery. “In a digital era when traditional organizations are struggling to find relevance, the use of the Graves Library has grown, especially over the last six years. In addition to a dynamic and up-to-date lending Library, there are programs for children, instructional programs for adults, computer and Wi-Fi services, and e-book and audiobook lending services. In total we offer more than 400 programs for individuals of all ages. We also serve as a meeting place for many civic groups and non-profit organizations.

“We are pleased that the Library is growing, but increased use has brought challenges in finding space to meet that growth. In addition, the Library is a 19th century building in need of major updating. Key objectives of the Capital Campaign, in addition to the Mothers Wing and an elevator, include replacement of the Library’s aging heating and air conditioning systems.”

According to Emery, the Library Board is focused on maintaining the quality and integrity of the historic building. The design of the Mothers Wing, and the materials used to build the structure, will be compatible with the original building.

“We recognize that the Library is a signature structure in the towns of Kennebunk and Kennebunkport,” adds Emery. “As a result, we have worked closely with architects who specialize in historic structures to ensure that we preserve the character of this classic building while providing Library users with an expanded and fully updated facility.”

The Louis T. Graves Memorial Public Library, which is listed on the National Historic Register, recently celebrated its 100th anniversary in its current location.