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Reading Selections for June 2020 – January 2021

June – The Lost City of the Monkey God by Douglas Preston. Discussion led by Angela

July – The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Discussion led by Martha Lou

August – The Giver of Stars by Jo Jo Moyes. Discussion led by Melinda

September – The Dragonfly by Leila Meacham. Discussion led by Jo

October – The Day the World Came to Town by Jim DeFede. Discussion led by Judy

November – Becoming Mrs Lewis by Patti Callahan. Discussion led by Jean

December – The All of It by Jeannette Haien. Discussion led by Susan

January – The Lonely Polygamist by Brady Udall. Discussion led by Angela

Selections for November 2019-May 2020

November: The Ghosts of Eden Park by Karen Abbott–Discussion Leader Celise

December: City of Thieves by David Benioff–Discussion Leader Jo

January: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith–Discussion Leader Jean

February: Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen by Sarah Bird–Discussion Leader Susan

March: The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See–Discussion Leader Lynn

April: Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver–Discussion Leader Kelly

May: The Lost City of the Monkey God by Douglas Preston–Discussion Leader Angela

Selections for May-October 2019

The following titles were selected by the Beauregard Parish Reader’s Group during their meeting on Tuesday, March 5, 2019.

May: Educated by Tara Westover, discussion will be led by Lynn

June: Stardust by Neil Gaiman, discussion will be led by Lauren

July: Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens, discussion will be led by Celise

August: Code Girls by Liza Mundy, discussion will be led by Martha Lou

September: The Library Book by Susan Orlean, discussion will be led by Stacey

October: Pachinko by Min Jin Lee, discussion will be led by Jo

 

 

Upcoming Reads

The following listed titles will be discussed during the monthly Reader’s Group at the Beauregard Parish Library. This event is normally held on the first Tuesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. Reviews of the books may be accessed by clicking the title links.

November 2018: The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah. (Discussion will be led by Lynn)

December 2018: Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI by David Grann. (Discussion led by Jo)

January 2019: Varina by Charles Frazar (Discussion led by Martha Lou)

February 2019: Watership Down by Richard Adams (Discussion led by Angela)

March 2019: Serena by Ron Rash (Discussion led by Judy)

April 2019: Enduring Love by Ian McEwan (Discussion led by Jean)

Selections for April 2018-October 2018

April 2018:

The Ninth Hour * by Alice McDermott, (Fiction, 256 pages,) In anger and desperation, a young Irish immigrant commits suicide in the early 1900s. The nuns of his local Catholic parish take in his pregnant widow. This novel recounts the journeys of wife and child over the course of the twentieth century. Finalist for the 2017 Kirkus prize.

May 2018:

Desperation Road * by Michael Farris Smith (Fiction, 320 pgs) Set in Mississippi, delivered in powerful and lyrical prose, Desperation Road is a story of troubled souls twisted with regret and bound by secrets that stretch over the years and across the land. One of Southern Living‘s Best Southern Books of 2017. One of the speakers at this year’s book festival.

June 2018:

Strangers in their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right by Arlie Russell Hochschild. (Non-fiction, 288 pgs). I really didn’t want to read this book about the division in politics! But someone in Lynne’s group recommended it and she read it to see what a liberal from California would say about the folks in Louisiana. I did read it and I think it would certainly have a lot to discuss. I’m wanting someone to fact check her. All of the story is set in south Louisiana and a great part in southwest Louisiana and some in DeRidder. It’s not a long read and would be quite discussable. Hochschild decided she wanted to better understand the political and cultural divides in the United States by immersing herself in the anti-government tea party culture so foreign to her own beliefs. Traveling regularly from her Berkeley, California home to Lake Charles, Louisiana, the author arranged to spend large amounts of time with tea party members and additional self-identified conservatives to figure out how they came to their beliefs. Hochschild felt especially puzzled by the paradox of Louisiana residents residing in dangerously polluted areas yet opposing environmental regulations proposed by both the state and federal governments. Though upset by seemingly racist, sexist, ageist, and economic class hatreds among the men and women she came to know, Hochschild says her determination to observe empathetically rarely flagged. She quickly realized that many of the stated views held of the tea party members were often not fact-based but rather grounded in what life feels like to them.

July 2018:

The Story of Edgar Sawtelle * by David Wroblewski. (Fiction, 608 pgs) A stately, wonderfully written debut novel that incorporates a few of the great archetypes: a disabled but resourceful young man, a potential Clytemnestra of a mom and a faithful dog. Born mute, speaking only in sign, Edgar Sawtelle leads an idyllic life with his parents on their farm in remote northern Wisconsin. For generations, the Sawtelles have raised and trained a fictional breed of dog whose remarkable gift for companionship is epitomized by Almondine, Edgar’s lifelong friend and ally. Edgar seems poised to carry on his family’s traditions, but when catastrophe strikes, he finds his once-peaceful home engulfed in turmoil.

August 2018:

Leonardo DaVinci * by Walter Isaacson. (Non-fiction, 576 pgs). Isaacson takes on another complex, giant figure and transforms him into someone we can recognize. The author believes the term “genius” is too easily bandied about, but Leonardo (1452-1519), from the tiny village of Vinci, near Florence, was “one of the few people in history who indisputably deserved—or, to be more precise, earned—that appellation.” He was self-taught and “willed his way to his genius.” With joyous zest, Isaacson crafts a marvelously told story “of a misfit: illegitimate, gay, vegetarian, left-handed, easily distracted, and at times heretical.” Like a child in a candy store, Isaacson often stops to exclaim; he shares his enthusiasm, and it’s contagious. (Isaacson is native of NO, professor of History at Tulane, Chairman of the Aspen Institute, past chairman of CNN and editor of Time magazine).

September 2018:

Manhattan Beach * by Jennifer Egan. (Fiction, 448 pgs). The author spins a classic historical novel in the sense that it’s virtually impossible to put down. Classic in its sepia toned portrait of New York: set on the Brooklyn docks during World War II, when mobsters ruled, the war loomed, and a young girl dove her way into becoming the first female diver on the squad. Classic in its quintessentially satisfying characters: crooked gangsters, disappearing fathers, gritty sailors and an intrepid young woman equally at home in a 200 pound diving suit and a green silk dress who unites them all. Classic in its revelation of the dangerous, altruistic and nefarious choices people make to support their family, their country and themselves.

October 2018:

The Patron Saint of Liars by Ann Patchett. (Fiction, 400 pgs). Patchett’s first novel, set in rural Kentucky in a castle-like home for unwed mothers–where a good woman finds she cannot lie her way beyond love–has a quiet summer-morning sensibility that reminds one of the early work of Anne Tyler. Within the security of everydayness, minds and hearts take grievous risks. Unanticipated pregnancy makes liars out of young women, this thoughtful first novel shows, as they try to rationalize, explain, and accept what is happening to them. When she arrives at St. Elizabeth’s, a home for pregnant girls in Habit, Kentucky, Rose Clinton seems as evasive and deceptive as the other unwed mothers. But Rose is different: she has a husband whom she has deserted. Unlike most St. Elizabeth’s visitors, she neither gives up her baby nor leaves the home, staying on as cook while her daughter grows up among expectant mothers fantasizing that they, too, might keep their infants. The reader learns from Rose how she came to St. Elizabeth’s, but it is her doting husband and rebellious daughter who reveal her motives and helpless need for freedom. Together, the three create a complex character study of a woman driven by forces she can neither understand nor control.

October 2017-March 2018

Here are the upcoming titles we will be discussing. The discussion leader is listed immediately after the month. Please note that the group will meet on the first THURSDAY of October due to the fair parade.

October        Celise             The Cottingly Secret by Hazel Gaynor

November    Kelly               Katharina and Martin Luther: The Radical Mariage of a Runaway Nun and a Renegade Monk by Michelle DeRusha

Dec                 Brenda          A Separation by Katie Kitamura

Jan                 Jean                Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult

Feb                 Susan             Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate

March            Martha Lou  A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

Past Reads 2010- Fall 2017

This is a listing in reverse chronological order of discussion of all titles the Reader’s Group has read from January 2010 until September 2017.

 

Sep Silent Spring by Rachel Carson (Angela)

Aug Loving Eleanor by Susan Witting Albert (Celise)

Jul The Light Between Oceans by N. L. Stewart (Kelly)

Jun Girl Waits with Gun by Amy Stewart (Jo)

May The Last Bus to Wisdom by Ivan Doig (Jean)

Apr Commonwealth by Ann Patchett (Lynne)

Mar Everybody Behaves Badly by Lesley Blume

and The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemmingway (Angela)

Feb The Clearing by Tim Gautreaux (Susan)

Jan The Marriage of Opposites by Alice Hoffman (Lynne)

2016

Dec A Deadly Wandering by Matt Richtel (Jo)

Nov The Golden Son by Shilipi Gowada (Stacey)

Oct Prayers the Devil Answers by Sharyn McCrumb (Celise)

Sep The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah (Judy)

Aug Inside the O’Briens by Lisa Genova(Susan)

Jul Stoner by John Williams (Angela)

Jun A Death in the Family by James Agee (Martha Lou)

May Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin (Lynne)

Apr How I shed my Skin by Jim Grimsley (Jean)

Mar The Birth of the Pill by Jonathan Eig (Jo) author call in

Feb The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde (Angela)

Jan The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh (Jean)

2015

Dec To Dance with the White Dog by Terry Kay (Jo)

Nov The Ice Garden by Moria Crone (Jean)

Oct The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson (Kelly)

Sep The All Girl’s Filling Station’s Last Reunion by Fannie Flag (Lynne)

Aug Before I go to Sleep by S. J. Watson (Jean)

July The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd (Martha Lou)

Jun Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger (Judy)

May Housekeeping by Marilynne Robinson (Susan)

Apr The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins (Carol

Mar Bless Me Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya (Angela)

Feb The Silence of Bonaventure Arrow by Rita Leganski (Lynne)

Jan Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra (Kelly)

2014

Dec Wayfaring Stranger by James Lee Burke (Angela)

Nov The Dollmaker by Harriette Arrow (Jo)

Oct Five Days at Memorial by Shari Fink (Jean)

Sep We Were all Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler (Martha Lou)

Aug My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayer (Angela)

July Book of Ages: The Life and Opinion of Jane Franklin by Jill Lepore (Martha Lou)

June Call the Midwife by Jennifer Worth (Kelly)

May Escape from Camp 14 by Blaine Harden (Jean)

Apr A House in the Sky: A Memoir by Amanda Lindhout (Susan)

Mar Conscience: Two Soldiers, Two Pacifists, One Family by Louisa Thomas (Carol)

Feb End of Your Life Book club by Will Schwalbe (Jo)

Jan Defending Jacob by William Landay (Carrie)

2013

Dec All the King’s Men by Robert Penn Warren (Jean)

Nov To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee (Jo)

Oct The Dinner by Herman Koch (Martha Lou)

Sep People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks (Carol)

Aug The Bookman’s Tale: A Novel of Obsession by Charlie Lovett (Angela)

July A Tale of two cities by Charles Dickens (Jean)

June The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom (Susan)

May The Tiger’s Wife by Tea Obreht (Angela)

Apr Behind the Beautiful forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity by Katherine Boo (Carol)

Mar A Case for Solomon: Bobby Dunbar and the kidnapping that hunted a nation by Tal McThenia and Margaret Dunbar Cutright (Kelly)

Feb A Land More Kind that Home by Wiley Cash (Jo) (With author)

Jan Becoming Dr. Q: From Migrant Worker to Brain Surgeon by Alfred Quyinones-Hinojosa (Martha Lou)

2012

Dec The Faithful Place by Tanna French (Brenda)

Nov My Father’s Paradise: A Son’s Search for His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq by Ariel Sabar (Carol)

Oct In the Sanctuary of Outcasts by Neal White (Kelly)

Sep A Beautiful Place to Die: A Novel by Malla Nunn (Susan)

Aug Shucked: Life on a New England Oyster Farm by Ern Byers Murray (Angela)(with author?)

July The River by Rumer Godden (Michelle)

June The Paris Wife by Paula McLain (Jean)

May Tess of the D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy (Angela)

Apr Elizabeth Street by Laurie Fabiano (Jo)

Mar The Good Earth by Pearl Buck (Michelle)

Feb Wine and War: The French, the Nazis, and the Battle for France’s Greatest Treasure by Donald and Petie Kladstrup (Carol)

Jan My Reading Life by Pat Conroy (Martha Lou)

2011

Dec The Painted Veil by Somerset Maughm (Susan)

Nov 109 East Palace: Robert Oppenheimer…by Jennet Conant (Jo)

Oct Room by Emma Donogue (Martha Lou)

Sep Partners of the Heart: Vivien Thomas… by Vivien Thomas (Carol)

Aug The Tree of Red Stars by Tessa Bridal (Angela)

July Cry the Beloved Country by Alan Patton (Jean & Catherine)

June: Shanghai Girls by Lisa See (Jean)

May: The Pale Blue Eye by Louis Bayard (Angela)

April: Travels with Charley: In Search of America by John Steinbeck (Carol)

March: Intimate Enemies by Christina Vella (Michelle)

Feb: Belle Canto by Ann Patchett (Kelly)

Jan: The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman (Jo)

2010

Dec Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte (Sharron)

Nov When a Crocodile Eats the Sun by Peter Godwin (Jean)

Oct Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford (Angela)

Sep West with the Night by Beryl Markum (Carol)

Aug Rebecca by Daphne de Maurier (Susan)

July Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese (Robin)

June Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight by Alexandra Fuller (Michelle)

May 2010 Olive Kitteridge by Strout (Judy)

April 2010 Sarah’s Key by DeRosnay (Sharron)

Mar 2010 Mao’s Last Dancer by Cunxin (Carol)

Feb 2010 The Plague of Doves by Louise Erdrich (Kelly)

Jan 2010 Still Alice by Lisa Genova (Jo)