Trains, rains, gods and elephants

Seanchai Library

It’s time to highlight another week of storytelling in Voice by the staff and volunteers at the Seanchai Library. As always, all times SLT, and events are held at the Library’s home at Holly Kai Park, unless otherwise indicated.

Sunday, July 15th

13:30: Tea-Time on the Orient Express

Join Seanchai Library and friends aboard one of the most luxurious means of rail travel, the Orient Express, as they continue their investigations into the most disagreeable events that have occurred en route to Paris.

Having been required to return to London from Istanbul post-haste, Hercule Poirot sought passage aboard the most famous train, gaining seat initially in second class, only to be “upgraded” to first class by  his friend – and member of the board of directors for Compagnie Internationale des Wagons-Lits, the operators of the service – M Bouc. Prior to his “upgrade”, Poirot is accosted by one Samuel Ratchett, an American also travelling on the train, who demands the detective’s aide as he believes his life is in danger. However, Poirot refuses, on account of finding the American a distasteful individual.

The locomotive trapped in a snow bank; a passenger murdered; a mystery for Poirot! Murder on the Orient Express

Then, on the night after his upgrade to the sleeping berth next to Ratchett’s, he is woken by two events: the first is that the train has become stranded in snow not far from the city of Vinkovci in Yugoslavia. The second is the discovery that Ratchett’s fears about his safety were correct: his has been murdered in his cabin. But who is responsible?

With nowhere to go until assistance for the stricken locomotive arrives, Poirot sets out to discover – did someone board the train in secret to put an end to Ratchett, or was one of his fellow passengers in fact the murderer? And what of Ratchett himself? Was he really all he seemed?

Offered in a special setting, Murder on the Orient Express, one of Agatha Christie’s most popular stories, continues into its second weekend reading!

18:00: Magicland Storytime

When a fortune-teller’s tent appears in the market square of Baltese city, orphan Peter Augustus Duchene knows the questions that he needs to ask: Does his sister still live? If so, how can he find her?

The fortune-teller’s mysterious answer that an elephant – an elephant! – will lead him to his sister, sets off a chain of events so remarkable, so impossible, that you will hardly dare to believe it’s true. And thus we’re off on a wondrous adventure of the kind only Newbery Medalist Kate DiCamillo could tell.

In this timeless fable, she evokes the largest of themes — hope and belonging, desire and compassion — with the lightness of a magician’s touch, and we are joined in a world of What if? Why not? Could it be?

Join Calaedonia Skytower at the Golden Horseshoe for this most enchanting of stories.

Monday, July 16th 19:00: The Drowning World

They call it the Drowning World; Fluva, a planet on the fringes of the Commonwealth where the rain is – but for one month in the year – maddeningly torrential. For Chief Administrator Lauren Matthias, it is a new posting; one which comes with a major requirement: keeping the indigenous and warlike Sakuntala and immigrant and hard-working Deyzara, from annihilating one another.

But when the vessel used by bio-prospector Shadrach Hasselemoga crashes in Viisiiviisii, an immense, mostly unexplored jungle, and the wettest place on the planet, Matthias must dispatch a team made up of one Sakuntala and one Deyzara on a rescue mission. Can the two form an alliance long enough to both rescue Hasselemoga and survive the deadly jungle?

But as the mission unfolds, Matthias realises something much bigger and darker is occurring on Fluva. A mysterious presence is at work, manipulating events, one which not only puts the lives of the rescue mission at risk, but also her own – and which could ultimately threaten the Commonwealth itself!

Join Gyro Muggins as he reads story #21 in Alan Dean Foster’s Humanx Commonwealth series.

Tuesday, July 17th 1900: Brief Cases

Corwyn Allen dives into Jim Butcher’s 2018 collection of several of his excellent short stories and novellas from the universe of Harry Dresden.

The tales presented here not only offer excellent short narratives that dabble between the scenes of the other novels in the Dresden Universe series, they even encompass what might be Dresden’s greatest challenge…

….Becoming a father.

Wednesday, July 18th 19:00: Mythos

The Greek myths are the greatest stories ever told, passed down through millennia and inspiring writers and artists as varied as Shakespeare, Michelangelo, James Joyce and Walt Disney.

They are embedded deeply in the traditions, tales and cultural DNA of the West. In Stephen Fry’s hands the stories of the titans and gods become a brilliantly entertaining account of ribaldry and revelry, warfare and worship, debauchery, love affairs and life lessons, slayings and suicides, triumphs and tragedies.

Through them, you’ll once again fall in love with Zeus, marvel at the birth of Athena, wince at Cronus and Gaia’s revenge on Ouranos, weep with King Midas and hunt with the beautiful and ferocious Artemis.

Thursday, July 19th

14:00: Fireside Tales

Caledonia Skytower reads selections from Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett’s Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch.

According to this tome of very specific and very accurate prophecies – written in 1655, shortly before Agnes exploded (which tends to happen when you pack 80 pounds of gunpowder into your petticoats ahead of a mob of self-righteous twits burning you at the stake for being a witch) – the world will end on a Saturday.

Next Saturday, in fact. Just before dinner. Which some might see as being a bit of a nuisance, really; particularly an angel, a demon and an 11-year-old boy (himself the subject of a hospital mix-up at birth), all of whom have other plans for the weekend …

21:00: Salome Jane

A tale of the Wilder West with Shandon Loring, also presented in Kitely (hop://grid.kitely.com:8002/Seanchai/144/129/29).

 


Please check with the Seanchai Library’s blog for updates and for additions or changes to the week’s schedule.

The current charity is Feed a Smile.

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