Ursula Madden's Book Club for February

"At Canaan's Edge" is the last book in "America in the King Years," a three-volume history of Martin Luther King, Jr. and his role in the civil rights movement.

The book begins with the violent voting-rights march in Alabama March 7, 1965 and follows Dr. King through his journeys to Chicago, Mississippi and finally Memphis.

According to the publisher "At Canaan's Edge" portrays King at the height of his moral power even as his worldly power is waning. It shows why his fidelity to freedom and nonviolence makes him a defining figure long beyond his brilliant life and violent end.

Pulitzer Prize winner Taylor Branch authored "At Canaan's Edge." He is scheduled to speak at the National Civil Rights Museum February 16.

The memoir "The Ditchdigger's Daughters: A Black Family's Astonishing Success Story" is the selected book for the African American Read-in Monday, February 6.

The story is written by Dr. Yvonne Thornton. Her father was a ditchdigger, her mother was a cleaning lady. Thornton's parents inspired her and her sisters to work hard and learn to look after themselves.

The publisher writes: "The Ditchdigger's Daughters" is an inspiring portrait by a loving daughter of a father whose pervasive common sense, folk wisdom, and untutored but right-on insights gave his children their road map to a better life. It is the story of a man who dared to dream that his black daughters would someday become doctors -- and who guided them to achieve the seemingly impossible goals he set for them.

"Invisible Man" from Ralph Ellison is the third book chosen for February. It's considered a milestone in American literature. The nameless narrator of the novel describes growing up in a black community in the South, attending a Negro college from which he is expelled, moving to New York and becoming the chief spokesman of the Harlem branch of "the Brotherhood", and retreating amid violence and confusion to the basement lair of the Invisible Man he imagines himself to be.