Tuesday, June 13, 6:00 p.m.
A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman (2014).
Ove, a grumpy, isolated retiree who spends his days enforcing block association rules and visiting his wife’s grave, decides to give up on life until an unlikely friendship develops with a boisterous young family that moves in next door.
Tuesday, May 9, 6:00 p.m.
A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson (1998).
Following his return to America after twenty years in Great Britain, the author decided to reacquaint himself with his native country by walking the 2,100-mile Appalachian Trail, which provided him with the opportunity to test his own powers of ineptitude while witnessing the majestic silliness of his fellow human beings.
Tuesday, February 14, 6:00 p.m.
Imperial Woman by Pearl S. Buck.
Imperial Woman is the fictionalized biography of the last Empress in China, Ci-xi, who began as a concu-bine of the Xianfeng Emperor and on his death be-came the de facto head of the Qing Dynasty until her death in 1908. Buck recreates the life of one of the most intriguing rulers during a time of intense turbulence.
Tuesday, December 13, 6:00 p.m.
Lab Girl by Hope Jahren (2016).
Jahren has studied flowers, seeds, and soil since she was a girl. She tells of the sanctuary she found in science, and the disappointments, triumphs and exhilarating discoveries of scientific work. She also tells of a relationship she forged with Bill, her lab partner and best friend. Their sometimes rogue adventures in science take them over the Atlantic to the ever-light skies of the North Pole and to tropical Hawaii.
Tuesday, November 8, 6:00 p.m.
Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin (2010).
The last thing to disturb the town of Chabot, and its lone lawman, Silas Jones, was the disappearance of a teen girl nearly twenty years ago. However, when somebody tries to kill the town recluse, another young woman vanishes, and a drug dealer is found murdered all in a short amount of time, the quaint Mississippi town is shaken to the core.
We’ll be discussing the book A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini (2007) on Tuesday, September 13 at 6:00 p.m. Everyone is welcome to attend and join in our lively discussion and snacks. A Thousand Splendid Suns tells of two women born a generation apart witness the destruction of their home and family in war torn Kabul and the losses incurred over the course of thirty years that test the limits of their strength and courage.
Everyone is welcome to attend as we discuss The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu: and Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts by Joshua Hammer (2016) on Tuesday, August 9 at 6:00 p.m. This book describes how a group of Timbuktu librarians enacted a daring plan to smuggle the city’s great collection of rare Islamic manuscripts away from the threat of destruction at the hands of Al Qaeda militants to the safety of southern Mali.
Tuesday, June 14, 6:00 p.m.
The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II by Denise Kiernan (2013).
The incredible story of the young women of Oak Ridge, Tennessee, who unwittingly played a crucial role in one of the most significant moments in U.S. history.
The Tennessee town of Oak Ridge was created from scratch in 1942. One of the Manhattan Project’s secret cities, it didn’t appear on any maps until 1949, and yet at the height of World War II it was using more electricity than New York City and was home to more than 75,000 people, many of them young women recruited from small towns across the South. Their jobs were shrouded in mystery, but they were buoyed by a sense of shared purpose, close friendships—and a surplus of handsome scientists and Army men!
But against this vibrant wartime backdrop, a darker story was unfolding. The penalty for talking about their work—even the most innocuous details—was job loss and eviction. One woman was recruited to spy on her coworkers. They all knew something big was happening at Oak Ridge, but few could piece together the true nature of their work until the bomb “Little Boy” was dropped over Hiroshima, Japan, and the secret was out. The shocking revelation: the residents of Oak Ridge were enriching uranium for the atomic bomb.
Though the young women originally believed they would leave Oak Ridge after the war, many met husbands there, made lifelong friends, and still call the seventy-year-old town home. The reverberations from their work there—work they didn’t fully understand at the time—are still being felt today. In The Girls of Atomic City, Denise Kiernan traces the astonishing story of these unsung WWII workers through interviews with dozens of surviving women and other Oak Ridge residents. Like The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, this is history and science made fresh and vibrant—a beautifully told, deeply researched story that unfolds in a suspenseful and exciting way.
Join us this summer for some romance based reads that are sweet & sassy to hot & spicy. This new summer book group will meet the first Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. in June, July, and August. Due to some subject matter, this book group may not be suitable for anyone under 18.
Come Set Your Summer on Fire!
Tuesday, May 10, 6:00 p.m.
Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter (2012).
The story begins in 1962. On a rocky patch of the sun-drenched Italian coastline, a young innkeeper, chest-deep in daydreams, looks out over the incandescent waters of the Ligurian Sea and spies an apparition: a tall, thin woman, a vision in white, approaching him on a boat. She is an actress, he soon learns, an American starlet, and she is dying.
And the story begins again today, half a world away, when an elderly Italian man shows up on a movie studio’s back lot—searching for the mysterious woman he last saw at his hotel decades earlier.
What unfolds is a dazzling, yet deeply human, roller coaster of a novel, spanning fifty years and nearly as many lives. From the lavish set of Cleopatra to the shabby revelry of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Walter introduces us to the tangled lives of a dozen unforgettable characters: the starstruck Italian innkeeper and his long-lost love; the heroically preserved producer who once brought them together and his idealistic young assistant; the army veteran turned fledgling novelist and the rakish Richard Burton himself, whose appetites set the whole story in motion—along with the husbands and wives, lovers and dreamers, superstars and losers, who populate their world in the decades that follow.
Gloriously inventive, constantly surprising, Beautiful Ruins is a story of flawed yet fascinating people, navigating the rocky shores of their lives while clinging to their improbable dreams.