Ladies and Gentlemen! Step right up for the amazing, the unbelievable, the marvelous wonders we have gathered for this book club party inspired by Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen. The main character, Jacob Jankowski, jumps on the circus train after suffering a tragedy in his life. He encounters “the most dazzling collection” of people and animals “gathered from all four corners of the earth”.Tags: general fiction,
book club party ideas
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.Tags: historical fiction,
This book by Elizabeth Strout is a series of short stories primarily set in Maine with a common character, Olive Kitteridge, a retired schoolteacher. As the townspeople grapple with their problems, mild and dire, Olive is brought to a deeper understanding of herself and her life–sometimes painfully, but always with ruthless honesty. Olive Kitteridge offers profound insights into the human condition–its conflicts, its tragedies and joys, and the endurance it requires.Tags: general fiction,
This is a story of an elaborate birthday party gone wrong. The host is an unappreciated Vice President of a poor South American country. The birthday boy is a powerful businessman from Japan. The entertainment is a mesmerizing soprano that wins the heart of all who hear her sing.
When terrorists crash this party, the evening and the lives of everyone present will forever change.
This is the story of Wang Lung’s life through feast and famine in his small Chinese village of Anhwei. He reaped the riches the land brought him during times of feast and he suffered devastating poverty during times of famine but he would never sell his land.Tags: historical fiction,
She is an overweight reporter who is looking for love and recognition in life. Jemima J is secretly in love with her handsome co-worker but is sure he would never give her the time of day. Persuaded by a friend to try online dating, Jemima J starts a journey to finding out what is truly important to her and what true love is.Tags: general fiction,
The Awful Grandmother, the Little Grandfather, Aunty Light-Skin, Uncle Baby, and Uncle Fat-Face are just a few of the colorful family members we meet as Lala’s story unwinds.Tags: general fiction,
Elizabeth Gilbert was in her 30s when she realized the life she had made for herself was not the life she wanted. Dealing with divorce, depression and an unhealthy love affair, she plans a year long voyage to find those things that were missing in her life. She heads to Rome to experience the pleasures in life, India to learn about meditation and devotion and Bali to experience balance.Tags: non-fiction,
A mesmerizing young Irish seanchaí (storyteller) on a red 1950 Vincent Comet motorcycle pulls into town and into the lives of young school teacher, Fiona Walsh, her twin sisters, Aiofe and Róisín, and Aunt Moira. With riveting tales of long ago kingdoms, mighty battles, princes, princesses and wolves, Jim charms and seduces his listeners. But let the games begin when a jealousy-driven Fiona follows Jim and discovers a very dark secret.Tags: general fiction,
At Westish College, a small school on the shore of Lake Michigan, baseball star Henry Skrimshander seems destined for big league stardom. But when a routine throw goes disastrously off course, the fates of five people are upended.Tags: general fiction,
Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood is the stunning fictionalized account of the real-life 1843 double murder of Thomas Kinnear and his mistress, Nancy Montgomery. Accused in the murders are two of Kinnear’s servants, James McDermott, a stable hand, and sixteen year old Grace Marks, a maid.Tags: historical fiction,
Jane Eyre is the story of a young woman’s struggles to uphold her convictions despite her painful upbringing and the strictures of society and religion. Jane does not compromise, even at risk to her own happiness and health, that which she holds as truths. She is an ageless heroine for all young girls today.
Penned by Charlotte Brontë under a pseudonym in 1847, Jane Eyre, at the time, was criticized as having an anti-Christian slant. Today this semi-autobiographical novel is considered one of the top literary classics of all-time.Tags: classics, general fiction, top ranked books,
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.Tags: historical fiction,
On July 16-17, 1942, thousands of French police, in collaboration with the Nazis, gathered up 12,884 Parisian Jews, including children, in one of the most brutal and overt deportation operations orchestrated by the Nazi regime.
The police come for ten year old Sarah Starzynsksi and her parents in the middle of the night during what has come to be known as the Vel’ d’Hiv Roundup. Sarah, in her panic to protect her younger brother, makes a fateful decision.
“Those who forget the past are condemned to repeat it.” ~ George Santayana
The Andreas family is one of readers. Their father, a renowned Shakespeare professor who speaks almost entirely in verse, has named his three daughters after famous Shakespearean women. When the sisters return to their childhood home, ostensibly to care for their ailing mother, but really to lick their wounds and bury their secrets, they are horrified to find the others there.Tags: general fiction,