Tuesday, June 3, 2014

What have you been reading this month ?

This is what we have been reading this month, please feel free to add or comment below.

Book of Ages by Jill Lepore
Secret History by Donna Tartt
Defending Jacob by William Landay
Transatlantic by Colum McCann
Signature of all things by Elizabeth Gilbert
The circle by Dave Eggers
Hard Boiled wonderland and the end of the world by  HarukiMurakami
The Selection by Kiera Cass
The Bone Collector by Jeffery Deaver
The Talented Mr Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
Seeds of Hope by Jane Godall
City of thieves by David Benioff
Reginald Hill

Laurie Colwin: Passion and Affect








Monday, March 10, 2014


Hi everyone,

I feel like this year has gotten off to a bumpy start, what with snow days and cancelations for boro meetings and just general running around for the libraries 100th anniversary. just a quick reminder that we will be meeting tonight to talk about Travels with my Aunt, and possibly the next book if you all have read it.

Looking forward to seeing you tonight at 7pm

Happy reading,

Ellie

Book Titles for 2014


March: the Imperfectionists by Tom Rachmaninov
April: poetry month, Please bring your favorite poem, collection poet to share : with Carol  
May: when women were birds by terry tempest Williams : with lori Saporito  
June: my secret history by donna Tartt : with Connie mcindoe 
July: the lighthouse between oceans by m l Stedman  
August: the stone diaries by carol shields 
September: the sense of an ending by Julian Barnes : with Liza morehouse 
October: pope Joan by donna Woolfolk cross. 
November:the devil in the white city by Eric Larson 
December: the children's blizzard by David Laskin

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Buddha in the Attic

Hi Everyone,

What a great suggestion from Lori to read this book, I am only sorry that she was on vacation for the meeting! Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuke is an intriguing tale of the Japanese mail order bride, from the ordeal in the boat over to America, the disappointment at what they see when they arrive, how they deal with the hardships of living, becoming mothers and what happened when the war began . I think what we all found particularly interesting was the use of the collective we through out the story instead of I. The descriptions of there ordeals were both fascinating and horrifying at the same time.

Here is a link to the NY Times review Click here and also to the authors website for more information about her writings Click here

If you liked this books and wanted to read something else in a similar theme, kimberly has suggested these,

The hotel on the corner of bitter and sweet
Color Sea by John Hamamura.

Just a quick reminder that the library is closed next Monday, so book club will be the following Monday at 7pm. We will be reading the Heretic Daughter.

Happy reading,
Ellie

Monday, June 3, 2013

Last Minute review catchups

Hello Everyone,

So sorry for the complete lack of reviews, the months just seem to have flown by ! So without dalliance here are some brief reviews from March thru May.

In March we had the pleasure of reading Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. This novel is a wonderful mix of magical illusions vs love story. Check out her website for more information about this story of two illusionists and a beautiful circus that only appears after dark !

In April we slogged our way thru Eleanor of Aquitaine by Alison Weir. What a fascinating and strong woman Eleanor was, although I think we all agreed that it was a little too word heavy it was also filled with wonderful descriptions of the life and times. Check out the authors website here for more information on her other books.

In May we turned to a much more lighthearted novel, reading Dancing for Degas by Kathryn Wagner. I have to admit I loved this book, whilst some of the group felt it was a little sophomoric. The story follows a young girl from rural poverty to the center of Paris and her rise with in the national ballet corps. If you have time click on the link and check out this beautiful website with all of Degas paintings.

Tonight we are going to talk about Lightning by Jean Echenoz, looking forward to seeing you there,
Happy reading,
Ellie

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

The Year of Magical Thinking

Hello,

Thank you all for coming last night, what a great discussion. For those of you who missed the group, this month we read The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion. I think what I love most about our group is just how honest everyone is about there feelings for the books that we read. At the beginning of every meeting I always ask, did everyone read and finish, what normally follows is a chorus of yes, no, halfway through. My favorite comments this month were Connie, when asked if she liked the book she replied URGGGGGGG the pain was relentless ... for me to read ! Followed by Lori saying how much she loved the book and the way it dealt with the topic of loss. Its so interesting to hear what everyone's view point is, especially on such a dark topic. For those of you who have not read the book here is a link to a very complimentary review from the NYC. The premise of the book is about how Didion deals with the sudden death of her husband just before their 40th anniversary. Didion fills the book with a unique way of describing how she takes the next year searching for answers and relief for the loss of her partner. Even the book jacket is used to highlight her loss, the letters JOHN are spelt out within her name in another color.

Didion talks about loss and being a widow, making the situation feel very real for many of the readers, Rose felt many similarities in her life that parallel Didion, from the places they had been to the the medical issues that arose within their families. We all felt some sort of connection with the topic of death and the way that we approach it, all commenting on how it always seems that when your not paying attention or have just walked away that it happens like they are waiting for you to leave.

Carol quoted this poem by Jane Kenyon about the feeling of waiting for loss to happen. How we go through life's routine and then one day it will not be the same any more.

We did find the book a little relentless and were left wondering if she was wallowing in self pity. She came across as quite a cold character showing no emotional break downs or pure feelings of sorrow, but perhaps this is just the way that she dealt with her loss ? The book is full of quotes and references to non-fiction titles, she even references Emily Post and the appropriate etiquette of Mourning. Perhaps she is just a very analytical person and the regimented structure helps ?

In the back of my book were a list of book club questions, one of which mentioned that she was planning on making this a broad way play, I have to admit the idea of watching this on stage sounds terrible and depressing. It made it onto the stage, and Vanessa Redgrave played Didion ! Here is the link to the performance review let me know what you think !

I'm looking forward to a brighter lighter topic next month, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.

Happy Reading,
Ellie

What every one has been reading:

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold fry by Rachel Joyce
Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
Grace Notes by Brian Doyle (author of Mink River)
The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman (author of Lexus and the olive tree)
Sleeping with the Enemy by Hal Vaughn
Other Voices Other Rooms by Truman Capote
To Have and Have Not by Hemmingway
Crooked letter Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin
Bring up the Bodies by Hillary Mantel (author of Wolf Hall)
The Push Cart Prize - Short stoories collection
Elsewhere by Richard Russo
A Beautiful Blue Death by Charles Finch
The Round House by Loiuse Erdich
Light Behavior by Barbara Kinsolver
Galileo's Daughter by Dava Sobel
Cleopatra's Daughter by Michelle Moran
Fall of the Giants by Ken Follett
1491 by Charles Mann





2013 list of book club reads :


February : The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion
March : The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
April : Elanor of Aquitaine by Alison Weir
May : Dancing for Degas by Kathryn Wagner
June : Lightning by Jean Echenoz
July : The Language of Flowers by Lauren Diffenburg
August : Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka
September : The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent
October : A Mountain of Crumbs by Elena Gorokhova
November : Down the Nile by Rosemary Mahoney
December : The Ghost Map by Steve Johnson
Happy Reading
Ellie