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Books & Brews: Hidden Figures at Flight Deck Brewing – Wednesday December 6, 6 PM

Posted by Michael Gorzka on November 17th, 2017

The December discussion will focus on Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly. Books are available for check out at the Library and for free at Flight Deck Brewing (while supplies last).

Before John Glenn orbited Earth or Neil Armstrong walked on the Moon, a group of dedicated female mathematicians known as “human computers” used pencils, slide rules, and adding machines to calculate the numbers that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space.

Among these problem-solvers were a group of exceptionally talented African American women, some of the brightest minds of their generation. Originally relegated to teaching math in the South’s segregated public schools, they were called into service during the labor shortages of World War II, when America’s aeronautics industry was in dire need of anyone who had the right stuff. Suddenly, these overlooked math whizzes had a shot at jobs worthy of their skills, and they answered Uncle Sam’s call, moving to Hampton, Virginia, and entering the fascinating, high-energy world of the Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory.

Even as Virginia’s Jim Crow laws required them to be segregated from their white counterparts, the women of Langley’s all-black “West Computing” group helped America achieve one of the things it desired most: a decisive victory over the Soviet Union in the Cold War, and complete domination of the heavens.

flight-deck-brewingStarting in World War II and moving through to the Cold War, the Civil Rights Movement, and the Space Race, Hidden Figures follows the interwoven accounts of Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson, and Christine Darden, four African American women who participated in some of NASA’s greatest successes. It chronicles their careers over nearly three decades as they faced challenges, forged alliances, and used their intellect to change their own lives and their country’s future.

Day & Time: Wednesday, December 6 at 6 PM – 7 PM

Location: Flight Deck Brewing 11 Atlantic Ave (Brunswick Landing)

Contact: Sarah Brown 207-725-5242 X229

Author Talk: June Vail – Sunday, December 3, 1:30 PM

Posted by Michael Gorzka on November 17th, 2017

Author June Vail will talk about her book, The Passion of Perfection: Gertrude Hitz Burton’s Modern Victorian Life.

Gertrude promoted sex education, marriage equality, and voluntary motherhood—much ahead of her time.

Plus, Gertrude’s interactions with friends and colleagues Alexander Graham Bell, Robert E. Peary, and Clara Barton, gave context to her accomplishments.

Copies of Vail’s book will be available for purchase and signing.


Vail is Gertrude’s great-granddaughter. She will describe her process of bringing an ancestor to life on the page using extensive family archives, library collections, and web resources.

Day & Time: Sunday, December 3, 1:30 PM

Location: Morrell Meeting Room

Contact: Sarah Brown

Bestseller Express

Posted by Pamela Bobker on November 14th, 2017

These titles just added to the Bestseller Express:


Unbelievable: My Front-Row Seat to the Craziest Campaign in American History by Katy Tur


Cuban Affair by Nelson DeMille

Don’t Let Go by Harlan Coben

End Game by David Baldacci

Future Home of the Living God by Louise Erdrich

Hardcore Twenty-four by Janet Evanovich

House of the Unexpected Sisters by Alexander McCall Smith

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan

Origin by Dan Brown



Sponsored by Curtis Friends, Bestseller Express titles are available on a first-come, first-served basis and can be checked out for 7 days. Exclusively for Curtis cardholders, they cannot be reserved or renewed so you’ll have the best access to new titles, but you will have to read fast. The Bestseller Express books are located in the New Books Room, across from Lending Services.