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June 24 , 2010

The Teller of Burnham Bank


Every building has a story to tell. All it needs is someone to tell it. In The Teller of Burnham Bank, that someone is Hal Ogdens, the editor of a nearly bankrupt weekly newspaper constantly at battle with the town’s contentious mayor – who happens also to be his ex-wife – over how best to preserve the historic fabric of downtown New Brooklyn, Alabama. But when Hal teams up with the mayor’s estranged daughter, Nell, to rescue a landmark building from the mayor and her urban renewal plans, more than the life of an old building will be at stake. EXCERPT FROM BOOK: “Hey, look at this one,” said James, holding up one of the photographs. “I wonder what’s up with her?” The photo he held was a picture of the Burnham Bank building from 1939, as evidenced by the tax assessment sign in the still documenting the year. No longer a bank but the location for a five-and-dime store, the building itself appeared to be in good repair, with an ornate, wooden door at the building’s corner and perhaps fifteen arched windows, each topped with a marble lintel. An elegant spire, a feature missing from the present structure, crowned the roof. But what instantly drew our attention was not the building – it was, rather, a woman who stood in the foreground. With arms drawn high to shield her face, one thing seemed apparent: she did not want to be photographed.
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