Throwback Thursday Titles

This column is dedicated to books that are "oldies but goodies" still is the collections at the Marion Public Library.  The purpose is to promote some of the titles and authors we often forget but have become classics and should not be forgotten.

Each week we will post a new book to find on Facebook and give a longer description of the book here.  The titles will remain on this page for one month, but then will be deleted to make room for different titles.  We look forward to sharing this page with you and look forward to adding a member sharing page in the future.

December 10

A Separate Peace by John Knowles

Set at the beginning of WWII in New Hampshire boarding school, A Separate Peace tells the story of two friends, Gene and Phineas, known as Finny. Gene is the brooding and studious intellectual, while Finny is the adventurous athlete. Despite being complete opposites, the two are best friends and roommates. The story is set against the backdrop of the suffocating certainty of military recruitment and subsequent war fervor, which Gene is caught up. While the novel is a slow moving buildup, the story evolves into a climatic test of friendship and portrays what the life-changing consequences of envy can bring.

 A Separate Peace was written in 1959 and is the first published and most well known book by John Knowles. This Bildungsroman was the inaugural winner of the 1961 William Faulkner Foundation Award and was a National Book Award finalist that same year. A Separate Peace is available at the Marion Public Library as an audiobook digital download. For information on downloading, please visit the Digital Library FAQ page.

Submitted by Haley Hepp

  December 3

The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers

The book, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, is set in rural Georgia in the 1930s and depicts interweaving stories of a cast of characters. There is a diner owner, an older doctor, a young teenage girl and a vagabond who all revolve around a deaf mute named John Singer, who is physically unable to interact with anyone. Yet at the same time, each of these characters sees something different in John Singer, who is there to listen and ultimately have a deep impact on each one of them. In all of the characters, there is something broken, causing a longing for escape from the lonely small town life and a quest for clarity and hope.

The Heart is a Lonely Hunter was the debut novel of Carson McCullers in 1940 and was written when she was only 23. She became one of the most well known writers of the twentieth century with The Heart is a Lonely Hunter her lasting masterpiece. Most of Carson McCullers work is written in the Southern Gothic genre, as the author uses her childhood background from having grown up in Georgia. The Heart is a Lonely Hunter can be found in the fiction section of the Marion Public Library.

Submitted by Haley Hepp

November 19

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg

Claudia Kincaid decides to run away and takes her brother Jaime with her. Opting to run away not just to any old place, the two embark upon the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. There they dodge security guards, sleep in an antique bed and take baths in the fountain. During their secret stay, Claudia and Jaime uncover a mystery about an angel statue. This search for the truth leads them to the quirky, and the original owner of the statues, Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. Will they solve the mystery before they have to return home?

To find out, read From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg, available at the Marion Public Library in the Juvenile fiction section. E.L. Konigsburg, won the Newbery Medal in 1968, which was the same year she won a Newbery Honor for Jennifer, Hecate, Macbeth, William McKinley, and Me, Elizabeth, which led her to become the only author to ever win both awards in the same year.

Submitted by Haley Hepp

  November 12

We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

We Have Always Lived in the Castle was published in 1962 and is Shirley Jackson's final book before her death in 1965. Shirley Jackson is a well known Gothic horror author, most notably for The Lottery and The Haunting of Hill House.

In We Have Always Lived in the Castle, Mary Katherine Blackwood, known as "Merricat", her sister Constance and their ailing Uncle Julian are the only survivors after the rest of the family is mysteriously poisoned at the dinner table. Merricat narrates this eerie story that takes place several years after the unsolved scandal, leaving the characters to live reclusively after being shunned by the village people. An estranged cousin of the family, Charles, comes to visit, but may only be after the family's fortune which adds to the complexity of this creepy but intriguing tale.

What really happened to the family and just who poisoned them? To find out, read We Have Always Lived in the Castle, available at the Marion Public Library as digital download, both as an ebook and audiobook. For information on downloading, please visit the Digital Library FAQ page

Submitted by Haley Hepp

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