The Beach House by Jane Green is about an unconventional woman who is at risk of losing her beautiful Nantucket home so she opens it to summer renters. Slowly people start moving in to the house, filling it with noise, laughter, and with tears. As the house comes alive again, Nan finds her family and friends expanding. Her son comes home for the summer, and then an unexpected visitor turns all their lives upside down.
Only a few years before becoming a famous silent-film star and an icon of her generation, a fifteen-year-old Louise Brooks leaves Wichita, Kansas, to study with the prestigious Denishawn School of Dancing in New York. Much to her annoyance, she is accompanied by a thirty-six-year-old chaperone, who is neither mother nor friend. Cora Carlisle, a complicated but traditional woman with her own reasons for making the trip, has no idea what she’s in for. Young Louise, already stunningly beautiful and sporting her famous black bob with blunt bangs, is known for her arrogance and her lack of respect for convention. Ultimately, the five weeks they spend together will transform their lives forever.
Nearly two thousand years ago, nine hundred Jews held out for months against armies of Romans on Masada, a mountain in the Judean desert. According to the ancient historian Josephus, two women and five children survived. Based on this tragic and iconic event, Hoffman’s novel is a spellbinding tale of four extraordinarily bold, resourceful, and sensuous women, each of whom has come to Masada by a different path.
We are in the center of Paris, in an elegant apartment building inhabited by bourgeois families. Renée, the concierge, is witness to the lavish but vacuous lives of her numerous employers. Outwardly she conforms to every stereotype of the concierge: fat, cantankerous, addicted to television. Yet, unbeknownst to her employers, Renée is a cultured autodidact who adores art, philosophy, music, and Japanese culture. With humor and intelligence she scrutinizes the lives of the building’s tenants, who for their part are barely aware of her existence.
he Emperor of All Maladies is a magnificent, profoundly humane “biography” of cancer—from its first documented appearances thousands of years ago through the epic battles in the twentieth century to cure, control, and conquer it to a radical new understanding of its essence. Physician, researcher, and award-winning science writer, Siddhartha Mukherjee examines cancer with a cellular biologist’s precision, a historian’s perspective, and a biographer’s passion.
A 4 year old arrives alone on a dock in Australia with only a few belongings in a small white suitcase. When the man who found and cared for her dies, an older Nell is given the suitcase. Within it is a book of fairy tales written by the woman who put her on the boat. Join Nell, and then her granddaughter Cassandra, on a journey to England and a cottage on a cliff to unravel the mystery of her past.
The third book in the Millennium series begins with Lisbeth Salander in the hospital recovering from a gunshot wound to the head as she prepares for her upcoming trial with the help of her computer-savvy friends and the oversexed journalist Blomkvist. In The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, Lisbeth again nails it to those who have done her wrong, particularly the men who hate women.
Pour yourself some Glogg as you read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, a story about a misfit girl with a photographic memory and a promiscuous journalist who eventually team up to solve the mystery of a murder that occurred almost 40 years ago. In this first installment of the Millenium series, you get an introduction to Lisbeth Salander, one of the most intriguing characters I have ever read about.
The Glass Castle is a moving and often shocking memoir about former MSNBC.com writer, Jeannette Walls, who grew up in poverty (an understatement) in an unstable home (a major understatement). This book draws you in right from the beginning when, after she sees her mom digging in the dumpster, she asks the taxi driver to take her back to her Park Avenue apartment. She then tells the story of her upbringing.
Deep into the night, an infant is thrust through the small swinging door cut into the wooden entry gate of Saint Anthony’s Orphanage for Boys. The infant is missing a hand and the only clue to his identity is three letters, REN, sewn in the collar of his soiled baby clothes.
Narrator Nick Caraway tells the story of Jay Gatsby’s pursuit of wealth, and of his long lost love Daisy during the Jazz Age. Everybody who is anybody is seen at Jay Gatsby’s glittering parties. Day and night his mansion on West Egg buzzes with bright young things drinking, dancing and debating his mysterious character. For Gatsby – young, handsome, fabulously rich – always seems alone in the crowd, watching and waiting, although no one knows what for. Beneath the shimmering surface of his life he is hiding a secret: a silent longing that can never be fulfilled. And soon this destructive obsession will force his world to unravel.
This book was chosen for our very first book club party. It brought family and friends together for one night of strengthening our minds, renewing our bounds and nourishing our bellys. This party went on way past any of our bedtimes but it was worth every yawn. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did.
Aibileen is a black maid in 1962 Jackson, Mississippi, who’s always taken orders quietly, but lately she’s unable to hold her bitterness back. Her friend Minny has never held her tongue but now must somehow keep secrets about her employer that leave her speechless. White socialite Skeeter just graduated college. She’s full of ambition, but without a husband, she’s considered a failure. Together, these seemingly different women join together to write a tell-all book about work as a black maid in the South, that could forever alter their destinies and the life of a small town
The Heretic’s Daughter by Kathleen Kent is set in the 17th century and deals that period of mass hysteria and religious extremism which resulted in accusations of witchcraft, the resulting imprisonment of about 150 people, including children, and the hanging deaths of fourteen women and five men. The Heretic’s Daughter is told through the knowing eyes of ten year old Sarah, daughter of accused witch, Martha Carrier.
The Historian is driven by the quests of four major characters during three separate time periods: in the 1930’s Dr. Bartholomew Rossi; in the 1950’s Paul and Helen, Dr. Rossi’s graduate student, and his daughter, respectively; and in the 1970’s Paul’s teenage daughter. They each seek the truth behind the legendary Vlad Tepes (Dracula) and his hidden tomb.
“The result was Panem, a shining Capitol ringed by thirteen districts, which brought peace and prosperity to its citizens. Then came the Dark Days, the uprising of the districts against the Captiol. Twelve were defeated, the thirteenth obliterated. The Treaty of Treason gave us the new laws to guarantee peace and, as our yearly reminder that the Dark Days must never be repeated, it gave us the Hunger Games”.
Kidd’s sweeping novel is set in motion on Sarah’s eleventh birthday, when she is given ownership of ten year old Handful, who is to be her handmaid. We follow their remarkable journeys over the next thirty five years, as both strive for a life of their own, dramatically shaping each other’s destinies and forming a complex relationship marked by guilt, defiance, estrangement and the uneasy ways of love.
When her parents die on the ship from Ireland, young Lavinia is taken in as an indentured servant at the plantation of the captain. The slaves become her family. When she is taken to the city, she wants nothing more than to return to the plantation and her family. However, when she does, everything has changed.
The unforgettable, heartbreaking story of the unlikely friendship between a wealthy boy and the son of his father’s servant, The Kite Runner is a beautifully crafted novel set in a country that is in the process of being destroyed. It is about the power of reading, the price of betrayal, and the possibility of redemption, and it is also about the power of fathers over sons—their love, their sacrifices, their lies.
A mesmerizing, moving, and elegantly written debut novel, The Language of Flowers beautifully weaves past and present, creating a vivid portrait of an unforgettable woman whose gift for flowers helps her change the lives of others even as she struggles to overcome her own troubled past.
In 1918, after serving in WWI, Tom Sherbourne welcomes his quiet job as lighthouse keeper on Australia’s remote Janus Rock, as does his loving new wife. But three years later, a childless Isabel is bereft after suffering her third miscarriage. Tending the new grave, Isabel hears the cry of a baby; a boat has washed ashore with a dead man—and a living infant….
Meet Truly Plaice – part behemoth, part witch, part Cinderella. Born larger than life into a small-minded town, Truly breaks her family into smithereens. Her mother dies during Truly’s birth, and when her father follows shortly afterward, Truly and her dainty sister, Serena Jane, are destined for very different fates.
Quentin Coldwater, a well-to-do high school senior, goes to a college interview where his interviewer turns up dead. As the the body is being removed, Quentin is offered an envelope with his name written on it by one of the paramedics . This envelope leads Quentin to a secret academy of magic and to a world that Quentin has long fantasized about.
The Moses Expedition by Juan Gómez-Jurado is an action-packed thriller loaded with intrigue, retribution and fanaticism, as a secret is uncovered that points to the location of The Ark of the Covenant. Father Fowler, a CIA operative and Catholic priest, is a fascinating character and he alone makes this novel worth the read!