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The Reading Room | 31 May

May 31 @ 10:30 am - 12:00 pm

The Reading Room (2pm in the Library for a start @ 10.30am – 12noon)

This volunteer run reading and discussion group meets monthly. It is anticipated that members will read the selected book prior to attendance.
If you would like to be a part of this group (free to BMI members) please complete the Expression of Interest. We welcome your feedback through this form as we progress this great new initiative. 
Expression of Interest to participate >


For more information go to

Caleb's Crossing | Geraldine Brooks


Caleb’s Crossing | Geraldine Brooks

In 1665, a young man from Martha’s Vineyard became the first Native American to graduate from Harvard College. From the few facts that survive of his extraordinary life, Geraldine Brooks creates a luminous tale of love and faith, magic and adventure.

When Bethia Mayfield, a spirited twelve-year-old living in the rigid confines of an English Puritan settlement – and the daughter of a Calvinist minister – meets Caleb, the young son of a Wampanoag chieftain, the two forge a secret friendship that draws each into the alien world of the other.

As Bethia’s father feels called to convert the Wampanoag to his own strict faith, he awakens the wrath of the medicine men. Caleb becomes a prize in a contest between old ways and new, eventually taking his place at Harvard, studying Latin and Greek alongside the sons of the colonial elite.

Fighting for a voice in a society that requires her silence, Bethia becomes entangled in Caleb’s struggle to navigate the intellectual and cultural shoals that divide their two cultures.

Once again, Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Geraldine Brooks brings to vivid life a shard of little-known history, and through Bethia and Caleb explores the intimate spaces of the human heart.

released and reunited with his daughter in England. There the lives of two very different men, Charles Darnay, an exiled French aristocrat, and Sydney Carton, a disreputable but brilliant English lawyer, become enmeshed through their love for Lucie Manette. From the tranquil lanes of London, they are drawn against their will to the vengeful, bloodstained streets of Paris at the height of the Reign of Terror, and they soon fall under the lethal shadow of La Guillotine.

Review a title

Why not review a book for the benefit of our members. We will publish these reviews in our social media and website from time to time.

This event is a BMI Community Art Project – Ballarat’s Oldest Cultural Institution

Rosemary’s Book of the Week | 23 May 22

The Murder Rule by Dervla McTiernan Professor Rob Parekh who runs The Innocence Project at the University is working to free Michael Dandridge, a man convicted of the brutal rape and murder of Sarah Fitzhugh. Hannah cannot let that happen. You see, Hannah’s mother, Laura has been running from this man for over 20 years-

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News | Nellie in her own Write | Member discount

Member News Update – Membership Discount Monday 16 May 2022 The Ballaarat Mechanics’ Institute in partnership with the Melba Opera Trust will be presenting three young artists who have been awarded a scholarship to help develop their artistic skills to enable them to become well rounded operatic artists. The program Nellie in her own Write fits

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Oasis in the Desert | The Grand Chrysanthemum Show

On the back of the success of our Twilight Talk Series on the Yarrowee River and what it means to our community, our flora and fauna, members may be interested in this event presented by the Ballarat East Town Hall Gardens Revitalisation Group on the weekend 21 & 22 May as part of the Ballarat

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Rosemary’s Book of the Week | 16 May 22

French Braid by Anne Tyler When the kids are grown and Mercy Garrett gradually moves herself out of the family home, everyone is determined not to notice. Over at her studio, she wants space and silence. She won’t allow any family clutter. Not even their cat Desmond. Yet it is a clutter of untidy moments

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Rosemary’s Book of the Week | 9 May 22

Mary Ann & Captain Piper by Jessica North Born on Norfolk Island to First Fleet convicts, Mary Ann was destined to become a farmer’s wife. Instead, at the age of fourteen she entranced the Island’s Commandant, the charming and flirtatious Captain Piper. Mary Ann became mistress of the colony’s grandest home when Sydney was just

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Rosemary’s Book of the Week | 2 May 22

One for Sorrow by Helen Fields Edinburgh is gripped by the greatest terror it has ever known a lone bomber is targeting victims across the city, and no one is safe. In their jobs, DCI Ava Turner and DI Luc Callanach deal with death every day. But when it becomes clear that every bomb is

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May 31
10:30 am - 12:00 pm
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BMI – Library and Heritage Room
117-119 Sturt Street
Ballarat Central, VIC 3350 Australia
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(03) 5331 3042
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