Thursday Evening Reading Group
Meets the third Thursday of the month (usually) at 7:30 pm
|Jan. 13, 2015||The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty
Imagine that your husband wrote you a letter, to be opened after his death. Imagine, too, that the letter contains his deepest, darkest secret—something with the potential to destroy not just the life you built together, but the lives of others as well. Imagine, then, that you stumble across that letter while your husband is still very much alive.
|Feb. 19, 2015||The Bone Setter’s Daughter by Amy TanRuth Young and her widowed mother, LuLing, have always had a tumultuous relationship. Now, before she succumbs to forgetfulness, LuLing gives Ruth some of her writings, which reveal a side of LuLing that Ruth has never known. . . .|
|Mar. 19, 2015||Gentlemen and Players by Joanne HarrisFor generations, privileged young men have attended St. Oswald’s Grammar School for Boys, groomed for success by the likes of Roy Straitley, the eccentric Classics teacher who has been a fixture there for more than thirty years.. He is joined this term by five new faculty members, including one who — unbeknownst to Straitley and everyone else — holds intimate and dangerous knowledge of St. Oswald’s ways and secrets. Harboring dark ties to the school’s past, this young teacher has arrived with one terrible goal: to destroy St. Oswald’s.|
|Apr. 16, 2015||The Heretic’s Daughter by Kathleen KentMartha Carrier was one of the first women to be accused, tried and hanged as a witch in Salem, Massachusetts. Like her mother, young Sarah Carrier is bright and willful, openly challenging the small, brutal world in which they live. Often at odds with one another, mother and daughter are forced to stand together against the escalating hysteria of the trials and the superstitious tyranny that led to the torture and imprisonment of more than 200 people accused of witchcraft. This is the story of Martha’s courageous defiance and ultimate death, as told by the daughter who survived.|
|May 21, 2015||Cutting for Stone by Abraham VergheseA sweeping, emotionally riveting first novel — an enthralling family saga of Africa and America, doctors and patients, exile and home.
Marion and Shiva Stone are twin brothers born of a secret union between a beautiful Indian nun and a brash British surgeon at a mission hospital in Addis Ababa. Orphaned by their mother’s death in childbirth and their father’s disappearance, bound together by a preternatural connection and a shared fascination with medicine, the twins come of age as Ethiopia hovers on the brink of revolution.
|June 18, 2015||The Outlander by Gil Adamson”It was night, and the dogs came through the trees, unleashed and howling.”Mary Boulton, 19, is newly widowed, a result of having murdered her husband. The men with the dogs are her twin brothers-in-law, gunslingers bent on avenging their dead sibling. It is 1903, and the only place for Mary to run is west, into the wilderness.|
|July 16, 2015||Snow Falling on Cedars by David GutermanSan Piedro Island, north of Puget Sound, is a place so isolated that no one who lives there can afford to make enemies. But in 1954 a local fisherman is found suspiciously drowned, and a Japanese American named Kabuo Miyamoto is charged with his murder. In the course of the ensuing trial, it becomes clear that what is at stake is more than a man’s guilt.|
|No August Meeting|
|Sept. 17, 2015||Sea of Poppies by Amitav GhoshAt the heart of this vibrant saga is a vast ship, the Ibis. Its destiny is a tumultuous voyage across the Indian Ocean; its purpose, to fight China’s vicious nineteenth-century Opium Wars. As for the crew, they are a motley array of sailors and stowaways, coolies and convicts.|
|Oct. 15, 2015||Year of Wonders by Geraldine BrooksWhen an infected bolt of cloth carries plague from London to an isolated village, a housemaid named Anna Frith emerges as an unlikely heroine and healer. Through Anna’s eyes we follow the story of the fateful year of 1666, as she and her fellow villagers confront the spread of disease and superstition.|
|Nov. 19, 2015||Sixpence House: Lost in a Town of Books by Paul CollinsPaul Collins and his family abandoned the hills of San Francisco to move to the Welsh countryside-to move, in fact, to the village of Hay-on-Wye, the “Town of Books” that boasts fifteen hundred inhabitants-and forty bookstores.|
|Dec. 17, 2015||Ladder of Years by Ann TylerMarried with three almost-grown children, Delia Grinstead has vanished without trace or reason. But for Delia, walking away from it all is an impulse that will lead her into a new, exciting, and unimagined life. Chosen by “Time” magazine as One of the Ten Best Novels of the Year.|
Daytime Book Discussion 2015 Schedule
The group meets the second Monday of the month at 1 pm
|January 12, 2015||Harvard Yard by William MartinPeter Fallon, the hero of William Martin’s bestselling novel Back Bay, has found evidence that a priceless treasure-an undiscovered Shakespeare play-is hidden somewhere in the venerable halls of Harvard University. An antiquarian who knows many of the school’s carefully guarded secrets, Fallon understands the powerful implications of the discovery.|
|February 9, 2015||The Art Thief by Noah CharneyThree thefts are simultaneously investigated in three cities, but these apparently isolated crimes have much more in common than anyone imagines.|
|March 9, 2015||Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker by Jennifer ChiaveriniNew York Times bestselling author Jennifer Chiaverini’s compelling historical novel unveils the private lives of Abraham and Mary Lincoln through the perspective of the First Lady’s most trusted confidante and friend, her dressmaker, Elizabeth Keckley.|
|April 13, 2015||In the Woods by Tana FrenchAs dusk approaches a small Dublin suburb in the summer of 1984, mothers begin to call their children home. But on this warm evening, three children do not return from the dark and silent woods. When the police arrive, they find only one of the children gripping a tree trunk in terror, wearing blood-filled sneakers, and unable to recall a single detail of the previous hours.|
|May 11, 2015||Orange is the New Black by Piper KermanWith a career, a boyfriend, and a loving family, Piper Kerman barely resembles the reckless young woman who delivered a suitcase of drug money ten years before. But that past has caught up with her. Convicted and sentenced to fifteen months at the infamous federal correctional facility in Danbury, Connecticut, the well-heeled Smith College alumna is now inmate #11187–424—one of the millions of people who disappear “down the rabbit hole” of the American penal system.|
|June 8, 2015||Dancing at the Rascal Fair by Ivan Doig
The central volume in Ivan Doig’s acclaimed Montana trilogy, Dancing at the Rascal Fair is an authentic saga of the American experience at the turn of this century and a passionate, portrayal of the immigrants who dared to try new lives in the imposing Rocky Mountains.
|July 13, 2015||Stones of Contention by Todd Cleveland
Africa supplies the majority of the world’s diamonds, yet consumers generally know little about the origins and history of these precious stones beyond sensationalized media accounts of so-called blood diamonds.
|August 10, 2015||Orphan Train by Christine Kline
Penobscot Indian Molly Ayer is close to “aging out” out of the foster care system. A community service position helping an elderly woman clean out her home is the only thing keeping Molly out of juvie and worse…As she helps Vivian sort through her possessions and memories, Molly learns that she and Vivian aren’t as different as they seem to be.
|September 14,2015||A Mountain of Crumbs by Elena GorokhoraElena Gorokhova’s A Mountain of Crumbs is the moving story of a Soviet girl who discovers the truths adults are hiding from her and the lies her homeland lives by. Her country is no longer the majestic Russia of literature or the tsars, but a nation struggling to retain its power and its pride. Born with a desire to explore the world beyond her borders, Elena finds her passion in the complexity of the English language—but in the Soviet Union of the 1960s such a passion verges on the subversive.|
|October 5, 2015||Crossing to Safety by Wallace StegnerCalled a “magnificently crafted story . . . brimming with wisdom,” Crossing to Safety has, since its publication in 1987, established itself as one of the greatest and most cherished American novels of the twentieth century. Tracing the lives, loves, and aspirations of two couples who move between Vermont and Wisconsin, it is a work of quiet majesty, deep compassion, and powerful insight into the alchemy of friendship and marriage.|
|November 9, 2015||Brooklyn by Colm Toibin“One of the most unforgettable characters in contemporary literature” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette), Eilis Lacey has come of age in small-town Ireland in the hard years following World War Two. When an Irish priest from Brooklyn offers to sponsor Eilis in America, she decides she must go, leaving her fragile mother and her charismatic sister behind.|
|December 14,2015||Walking on Water by Richard Evans
In this fifth New York Times bestseller in the Walk series, Richard Paul Evans’s hero Alan Christoffersen must say some painful goodbyes and learn some important lessons as he comes to the end of his cross-country walk to Key West.
Non-Fiction Book Club 2015 Schedule
Meets the first Tuesday of the month (usually) at 1 pm in the Antiques Room
|January 5, 2015||Copernicus’ Secret by Jack Repcheck (2007)Nicolaus Copernicus gave the world perhaps the most important scientific insight of the modern age, the theory that the earth and the other planets revolve around the sun. He was also the first to proclaim that the earth rotates on its axis once every twenty-four hours. His theory was truly radical: during his lifetime nearly everyone believed that a perfectly still earth rested in the middle of the cosmos, where all the heavenly bodies revolved around it.|
|February 3, 21015||Traveling With Pomegranates by Sue Monk Kidd and Ann Kidd Taylor (2009)Sue Monk Kidd has touched the hearts of millions of readers with her beloved novels and acclaimed nonfiction. Now, in this wise and engrossing dual memoir, she and her daughter, Ann, chronicle their travels together through Greece and France at a time when each was on a quest to redefine herself and rediscover each other.|
|March 10, 2015||Citizens of London by Lynne Olson (2010)The acclaimed author of Troublesome Young Men reveals the behind-the-scenes story of how the United States forged its wartime alliance with Britain, told from the perspective of three key American players in London: Edward R. Murrow, the handsome, chain-smoking head of CBS News in Europe; Averell Harriman, the hard-driving millionaire who ran FDR’s Lend-Lease program in London; and John Gilbert Winant, the shy, idealistic U.S. ambassador to Britain. Each man formed close ties with Winston Churchill—so much so that all became romantically involved with members of the prime minister’s family.|
|April 7, 2015||George Washington’s Secret Six: the Spy Ring That Saved the American Revolution by Brian Kilmeade (2013)When George Washington beat a hasty retreat from New York City in August 1776, many thought the American Revolution might soon be over. Instead, Washington rallied—thanks in large part to a little-known, top-secret group called the Culper Spy Ring. He realized that he couldn’t defeat the British with military might, so he recruited a sophisticated and deeply secretive intelligence network to infiltrate New York.|
|May 5, 2015||There will be no May meeting|
|June 2, 2015||The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris by David McCullough (2011)The #1 bestseller that tells the remarkable story of the generations of American artists, writers, and doctors who traveled to Paris, the intellectual, scientific, and artistic capital of the western world, fell in love with the city and its people, and changed America through what they learned.|
|July & August||No meetings|
|September 8, 2015||The Bin Ladens by Steve Coll (2008)Rising from a famine-stricken desert into luxury, private compounds, and even business deals with Hollywood celebrities, the Bin Ladens have benefited from the tensions and contradictions in a country founded on extreme religious purity, suddenly thrust into a world awash in oil, money, and the temptations of the West. But what do these incongruities mean for globalization, the War on Terror, and America’s place in the Middle East?|
|October 6, 2015||The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown (2013)Out of the depths of the Depression comes an irresistible story about beating the odds and finding hope in the most desperate of times—the improbable, intimate account of how nine working-class boys from the American West showed the world at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin what true grit really meant.|
|November 3, 2015||Eat Vegan Before 6 by Mark Bittman (2013)Six years ago, an overweight, pre-diabetic Mark Bittman faced a medical directive: adopt a vegan diet or go on medication. He was no fan of a lifelong regimen of pills, but as a food writer he lived—and worked—to eat. So neither choice was appealing.His solution was a deal with himself. He would become a “flexitarian.” He adopted a diet heavy in vegetables, fruits, and grains by following a healthy vegan diet (no meat, dairy, or processed foods) all day. After 6:00 p.m. he’d eat however he wanted, though mostly in moderation.|
|December 1, 2015||Factory Man by Beth Macy (2014)The Bassett Furniture Company was once the world’s biggest wood furniture manufacturer. Run by the same powerful Virginia family for generations, it was also the center of life in Bassett, Virginia. But beginning in the 1980s, the first waves of Asian competition hit, and ultimately Bassett was forced to send its production overseas.One man fought back: John Bassett III, a shrewd and determined third-generation factory man. Beth Macy brings to life Bassett’s deeply personal furniture and family story.|