Oliver Wolcott Library
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About OWL

Non-Fiction Book Discussion Group


When:  Second Thursday of each month from 2:00 - 3:15 p.m. New members welcome! Come to one or all meetings. Books are available at the front desk.
Where:  The Jamie Gagarin Community Room & Gallery
Facilitated by: Patricia Moore

2019  Selections


March 14
Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond

The author is a sociologist and ethnographer, and his book shows the world that many poor occupy, as close to hell as you are likely to find in 21st century America. The poor are exploited when trying to rent a place to live; some make wealth off their misery. We ignore how people are hurt by illegal and unethical practices and the lack of any outside control on the actions of landlords. Moderated by Dick




April 11 
Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson

Bryan Stevenson as a young lawyer founded the Equal Justice Initiative, a legal practice defending those most in need: the poor, the wrongly condemned, and women and children trapped in the farthest reaches of our criminal justice system. One of his first cases was that of a young man who was sentenced to die for a murder. The case transformed Bryan’s understanding of mercy and justice forever and led to an inspiring argument for compassion in the pursuit of true justice. Moderated by Morgan



May 9
The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizabeth Kolbert

This is an account of the looming catastrophe caused by ecology's neighbors from hell: mankind. Over the last half-billion years, there have been five mass extinctions. Scientists are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. Kolbert tells us why and how human beings have altered life on the planet in a way no species has before. The sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy. Moderated by Alan


June 13
2019- 20 Book Selection , and When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

At the age of 36, completing medical training, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, and the next he was a patient struggling to live. This book chronicles Kalanithi’s transformation from a medical student into a neurosurgeon at Stanford working in the brain, and finally into a patient and father confronting his own mortality. Moderated by Jocelyn



July 11
Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah

This book provides a harrowing look at life in South Africa under apartheid. Trevor Noah’s unlikely path from apartheid South Africa to The Daily Show began with a criminal act: his birth. He was born to a white Swiss father and a black Xhosa mother when such a union was punishable by five years in prison. This is a love letter to the author’s remarkable mother. Moderated by Mary



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