The annual membership meeting, at which Ms. Gable was the principal speaker, was inside the community room at the library. It is an event open to the public as “Friends” begins its annual membership drive to continue efforts to provide book-purchasing funds for the local library.
Meanwhile, “The Confederate General Rides North” has become a well-recognized publication, which has earned its author numerous awards, including the 2010 Georgia Author of the Year Award for First Novel, along with selection by the Georgia Center for the Book as one of 25 Books all Georgians Should Read.
The plot of the book unfolds as follows:
Growing up in Georgia in the 1960s, 11-year old Katherine McConnell, a precocious Civil War buff, is so fascinated by stories of the war’s generals that she often imagines herself a general, leading troops to war.
The novel takes Kat to such Civil War sites as Kennesaw Mountain, to the Cyclorama and to Appomattox, Manassas and Gettysburg, sites that leave her awestruck and wanting more. Ms. Gable weaves her way through such travels and adventures in an interesting, creative manner, using the fictitious Kat as the narrator and Marietta as her home base. She admits much of the book is based on her own childhood growing up in the Atlanta suburb.
The novel required the author 20 years to complete, and her story of how the book was plotted, constructed and, finally, written is a fascinating one such to delight the Friends of the Library audience.
Amanda has had short stories published in The North American Review, The Crescent Review, Quarry West, North Dakota Quarterly and Other Voices, among other publications. She has received fellowships at grants at numerous institutions and has taught at Denison University and the Georgia Institute of Technology. She is currently working on her second novel and a non-fiction book about independent bookstores.
She is a native of Marietta. The annual membership meeting is an important one to Friends of the Library as it attempts to increase its roster of readers and library supporters. Using membership dues, special gifts – including memorial donations – and proceeds from the FOL-operated Book Depot, the organization has achieved the following:
• Donated $1,500 to the library’s 2011 summer reading program
• Purchased new books at a cost of $5,874 for library collections, including books for children’s, teens and adult sections; adult fiction and non-fiction audio books, and materials for the reference section.
Additionally, memorials totaling $550 in honor of board member Mrs. Winifred Van Every was used to purchase a special health book collection and included topics such as cancer, eye disease and others.
Friends of the Library have conducted used book sales since 1998, collecting almost $31,000, the entire sum used for the benefit of the Calhoun-Gordon County Library. The organization also operates The Book Depot at 309 Court St., in downtown Calhoun, where a wide array of books is on sale at bargain prices.