The Bookmark: February Literary Events in and around Coweta County

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By NANCY CAROL SANKER, Special to The Paper

Fudge Kahlua Cake? That was the plan, but I misread a label. The box was for brownies, not a fudge cake mix and no, a trip to the grocery was not an option. Next up- Irish cream cake. Denied again – not quite enough of the potent main star. Ultimately a little creativity (and that refusal to hop in the car) yielded a delicious rum cake. Okay, okay … so it wasn’t baked in the traditional Bundt pan which seems to have run away with the fudge cake mix. The point is that flexibility yielded success.

The same thing frequently happens in the literary world. Readers who are poised to enjoy their favorite authors in a specific genre are tempted by a glowing review, a book club choice or the recommendation of a friend.  And gloriosky – it’s the beginning of a magical reader- author relationship. Flexibility for the win!

February is the month of heartfelt feelings and my wish for you is that you discover a new book crush.  I hope that the new authors, books, local events and library activities listed below lure you into fresh literary love.

Coweta Public Library System (CPLS)

All libraries will be closed on Monday, February 21 for Presidents Day.

Central (770-683-2052), Powell (770-253-3625) Branches
Monday-Friday – 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Saturday – 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Sunday – closed.

Senoia Branch (770-599-3537)
Monday, Wednesday, Friday – 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Tuesday and Thursday – 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday – closed.

Grantville Branch (770-683-0535)
Monday – Friday- 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday – closed.

Free Wi-Fi in all library parking lots – 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Password: Bookworm.

The Newnan Carnegie Library (NCL)

1 Lagrange Street, downtown Newnan (www.newnancarnegie.com) – 770-683-1347.

Register for events on Eventbrite. Space is limited.

Monday-Friday – 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday – 9 a.m. – noon
Sunday – closed.

• Friday, February 11, 10 a.m.  – February Homeschool Hangout – Tickets available.

• Saturday, February 12, 10 a.m. – Zoom Writer’s Workshop – Marketing and Promotion Tips of Aspiring Authors – The guest speakers are Hometown Novel Nights founder and Southern Author, T. M. “Mike” Brown and Georgia author and publisher of Blue Room Books in Decatur, Angela Durden. Register for this informative virtual program at Eventbrite.

• Friday, February 25, noon-1 p.m. – Carnegie Foundation sponsors Lunch and Learn: What You Can Do for Wildlife. Our cold weather makes this information vital. 

• Monday, February 28, 10-11 a.m. – The Carnegie Library Literary Circle will discuss Hidden Valley Road by Robert Kolker. Learn about this family, the Glavins, who have 12 children – 6 of whom are diagnosed with schizophrenia. At first glance this story sounds like a daunting read, but they are unlocking a challenging disease as one of the first families to be studied by the National Institute of Mental Health. Reservations at Eventbrite are required.

Write On – News from Hometown Novel Nights

You will benefit from hearing about their challenges, successes and lessons learned so you don’t have to repeat them. T.M. “Mike” Brown is always willing to help – http://www.TMBrownAuthor.com/

Mike is currently working on a Southern historical novel, The Last Laird of Sapelo Island: The Randolph Spalding Story. The projected release day is 2023. We’ll look forward to diving into a great story and brushing up on history at the same time. Who knows? Maybe we’ll celebrate the release with a rum cake. Now … to find that Bundt pan …

Road Trips and Restaurants

Indie bookstores are endangered, but the good news is – you can help. When you visit independent bookstores just note it on https://www.22in22.net. The creators of this site are encouraging us to visit 22 book stores this year. Your new book crush could be waiting in one of them!

• Thursday, February 10, 1-3 p.m. – Peachtree City Library – Book Talk and Signing featuring celebrated author Heather Webb, author of The Next Ship Home. Books sales will be available courtesy of Book Miser. No reservations needed. 

• Thursday, March 3, 5-6 p.m.  – Pretty Good Books, 118 Church St. LaGrange – Welcome Anne Berry, photographer/author * Please note the date. Due to the publication/distribution dates of The Paper, and the date of this event, it is being featured in this February edition.

Anne Berry’s photographs reveal a wondrous world of animals, childhood, and the Southern wilderness. Her work is featured in National Geographic Proof, Feature Shoot, Huffington Post, Lens Culture and many permanent collections, including the National Gallery of Art. What an amazing opportunity to meet her! And … you could follow this excellent event with dinner at Venucci’s, 129 Main St, LaGrange.

Book Club News

Arielle Doheny and her SummerGrove book club are reading Reckless Girls by Rachel Hawkins. They’ll be diving into a “deliciously wicked gothic suspense, set on an isolated Pacific Island with a dark history.” That sounds like escapism at its finest!

Jaime Vitiritti, founder of Newnan Bookends, reports they will be discussing Anxious People by Fredrik Backman on February 16. This book is both heart-wrenching and heart- warming – a perfect choice for this month! The location is TBA. Follow the group on FB.

A logical February selection is from Dr. Brené Brown, Atlas of the Heart. She is encouraging us to find our way back to ourselves by telling our stories and becoming compassionate stewards of the stories we hear. 

Book clubs come in all flavors, just like those Bundt cakes mentioned at the beginning. Recently a major retailer even focused on an avocado-toasted Breakfast Book club. Other clubs are comprised of mothers and daughters – that’s family bonding at a new level. Another variety of clubs share their latest individual reads, rather than focusing on one book. Whatever the flavor, the main focus is the absolute joy of reading.

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Here’s hoping that the month of February unveils new literary longings for you!

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About Nancy: A love of reading which began as a child continues. Nancy collects children’s books that have messages for readers of all ages. Mel Fell by Corey R. Tabor and The Rabbit Listened by Cori Doerrfeld are two of her favorite tales of faith and friendship. She looks forward to hearing about your literary news, writing workshops, Little Free Libraries and book clubs at [email protected].

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