New Month, New Book – September

Our next selection is A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman.

September/October 2015

September/October 2015

Meet Ove. He’s a curmudgeon, the kind of man who points at people he dislikes as if they were burglars caught outside his bedroom window. He has staunch principles, strict routines, and a short fuse. People call him the bitter neighbor from hell, but must Ove be bitter just because he doesn’t walk around with a smile plastered to his face all the time?

Behind the cranky exterior there is a story and a sadness. So when one November morning a chatty young couple with two chatty young daughters move in next door and accidentally flatten Ove’s mailbox, it is the lead-in to a comical and heartwarming tale of unkempt cats, unexpected friendship, and the ancient art of backing up a U-Haul. All of which will change one cranky old man and a local residents’ association to their very foundations.(source: book jacket)

Our Next Selection

invisible cityThis time around I thought I would try a mystery, so our next selection is Invisible City by Julia Dahl.

Just months after Rebekah Roberts was born, her mother, an Hasidic Jew from Brooklyn, abandoned her Christian boyfriend and newborn baby to return to her religion. Neither Rebekah nor her father have heard from her since. Now a recent college graduate, Rebekah has moved to New York City to follow her dream of becoming a big-city reporter. But she’s also drawn to the idea of being closer to her mother, who might still be living in the Hasidic community in Brooklyn.

Then Rebekah is called to cover the story of a murdered Hasidic woman. Rebekah’s shocked to learn that, because of the NYPD’s habit of kowtowing to the powerful ultra-Orthodox community, not only will the woman be buried without an autopsy, her killer may get away with murder. Rebekah can’t let the story end there. But getting to the truth won’t be easy—even as she immerses herself in the cloistered world where her mother grew up, it’s clear that she’s not welcome, and everyone she meets has a secret to keep from an outsider. (Source:http://www.juliadahl.com/books/invisible-city)

Pick up a copy at the circulation desk or download a copy from Overdrive and stop back for the discussion.

Our Next Selection

We’re moving on from Lean In I do hope that you have gotten some things to ponder.  I do know that I have.

I thought I would move from the non-fiction set in the very real corporate world to fiction based upon a Russian folk tale set in 1920’s Alaska.

snow childOur March discussion title is

The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey.

“Alaska, 1920: a brutal place to homestead, and especially tough for recent arrivals Jack and Mabel. Childless, they are drifting apart–he breaking under the weight of the work of the farm; she crumbling from loneliness and despair. In a moment of levity during the season’s first snowfall, they build a child out of snow. The next morning the snow child is gone–but they glimpse a young, blonde-haired girl running through the trees.

This little girl, who calls herself Faina, seems to be a child of the woods. She hunts with a red fox at her side, skims lightly across the snow, and somehow survives alone in the Alaskan wilderness. As Jack and Mabel struggle to understand this child who could have stepped from the pages of a fairy tale, they come to love her as their own daughter. But in this beautiful, violent place things are rarely as they appear, and what they eventually learn about Faina will transform all of them.(from the book jacket)”

Pick up your copy at the circulation desk and stop back with your thoughts.

Happy New Year – Happy Birthday to JPL’s Book-In-A-Blog!

birthday_cake[1]I cannot believe that it’s 2015, and JPLs Book-In-A-Blog is almost a year old!  Things started off January 28, 2014 with just a little about how this endeavor was going to work.  Quickly followed by our first pick Burial Rites by Hannah Kent.  For those dying for information about the possible movie being made with Jennifer Lawrence there isn’t much news IMDB still is listing it as “in development.”  I loved the book and feel as though there is potentially a really great movie in there.  Let’s start a movement and tell them that they need to get a move on.

im_watching_you[1]

I thought he might be funny, but he’s actually pretty creepy – no?


I do hope that you have been enjoying the book club as much as I have enjoyed facilitating.  I’d love to hear from some of you – I know you’re out there I can see when you stop in.  NO big brother isn’t watching!  I don’t know who you are but I do see when you stop in.

I truly would like to get some feedback or suggestions as to what you might want to read.  I’m a facilitator not a dictator. Tweet me, comment on the blog, send me a message on Facebook, comment on a pin – I’m here for you.

OK enough begging.

Elmer_fudd[1]For all of my faithful followers you get a sneak peak at our next selection (shhh the next newsletter isn’t out yet.)

I’ve decided to step away from fiction this month and delve into non-fiction.  Don’t panic I’m not asking you to read Herodotus.  For January stop in and pick up a copy of Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg.  I’ll post more information this week about the book.

 

 

 

 

Our Next Selection

illusionThe Illusion of Separateness by Simon Van Booy.

From the cover:

The characters discover at their darkest moments of fear and isolation that they are not alone, that they were never alone, that every human being is a link in a chain we cannot see. .  This gripping novel – inspired by true events-tells the interwoven stories  of a deformed German infantryman; a lonely British film director; a young, blind museum curator;two Jewish American newlyweds separated by war; and a caretaker at a retirement home for actors in Santa Monica.  They move through the same world but fail to perceive their connections until, through swimmingly random acts of selflessness, a veil is lifted to reveal parts they have played in one anther’s lives, and the illusion of their separateness.

Copies are available at the library.

Please come back and join the discussion.

Our Next Selection – The Cellist of Sarajevo by Steven Galloway

CellistWe’ve moved on from The Last Brother and are now switching gears from the Island of Mauritius  in 1945 to the Sarajevo during the siege.

From the book jacket:

In a city under siege, four people whose lives have been upended are ultimately reminded of what it is to be human. From his window, a musician sees twenty-two of his friends and neighbors waiting in a bread line. Then, in a flash, they are killed by a mortar attack. In an act of defiance, the man picks up his cello and decides to play at the site of the shelling for twenty-two days, honoring their memory. Elsewhere, a young man leaves home to collect drinking water for his family and, in the face of danger, must weigh the value of generosity against selfish survivalism. A third man, older, sets off in search of bread and distraction and instead runs into a long-ago friend who reminds him of the city he thought he had lost, and the man he once was. As both men are drawn into the orbit of cello music, a fourth character—a young woman, a sniper—holds the fate of the cellist in her hands. As she protects him with her life, her own army prepares to challenge the kind of person she has become.

Please visit the Jericho Public Library and pick up your copy.

Our Next Book Discussion Book

OK I lied/fibbed I’m going to introduce the next book and while you’re on your way to the library to pick it up we’ll continue to discuss The End of the Point. Be warned there will be two posts today.  I know – Shocking!

With the intent of making the time for each discussion more brief I’ve chosen f two smaller/shorter books.  Don’t be fooled though they may be concise but I assure you the authors packed them full of wonderful content.

last brotherOur selection for September is The Last Brother by Nathacha Appanah.

“As 1944 comes to a close, nine-year old Raj is unaware of the war devastating the rest of the world.  He lives in Mauritius, a remote island in the Indian ocean, where survival is a daily struggle for his family. After a brutal beating lands Raj in the hospital of a prison camp, he meets David, a boy his own age.  David is a refugee, one of a group of Jewish exiles now indefinitely detained in Mauritius. When a massive storm on the island brings chaos and confusion to the camp, Raj is determined to help David escape.

Stop into the library and pick-up a copy.

Our Summer Selection

The End of the Point - July 2014

The End of the Point – July 2014

What better way to begin the summer, but with a great summer book!  Our next selection is The End of the Point by Elizabeth Graver.

Long Listed for the 2013 National Book Award this novel brings us to Ashaunt Point, a tiny (fictional) finger of land jutting into Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts.

New York Times review of the novel.

Come into the library and pick up a copy.

Visit Elizabeth Graver’s website for more about the book.

 

Where’d You Go, Bernadette? To the End of the Earth!

Ok, if you've read the book you understand the symbol for this last section.  Think wisdom teeth - funny that Bernadette had to have hers out just as she's gaining perspective. No?

Ok, if you’ve read the book you understand the symbol for this last section. Think wisdom teeth – funny that Bernadette had to have hers out just as she’s gaining perspective. No?

Well it’s July 1st and a hot and humid day here on Long Island.  How appropriate that we end at the South Pole.

I have so many thoughts and a few questions for you.

Discussing the book with a friend we talked about Bernadette and Elgie and what the future holds for their marriage.  The book ends with a letter to Bee from Bernadette telling her that she’s going to stay at the Pole for a bit but then is coming home to lead a more normal life as a family.  Do you think that’s possible? My friend was left to wonder how Bernadette will react to the pregnancy of Soo-Lin.  I think that Bernadette is in such a much better place and is more powerful and clear that she’ll take it in stride.  What do you think?  Given her struggles to have a child how do you think Bernadette will react?

What about Elgie – does he truly love Bernadette for who she is?  Has he taken off his Microsoft glasses and reviewed why he loved her in the first place?

We were also discussing the fact that Elgie wanted to put Bernadette away for treatment. Oddly enough, and in true Bernadette extreme fashion, she ends up putting herself away. Why do you think her excursion to the South Pole was so therapeutic?

Some of the discussion questions provided by the publisher mention that people have commented that this is really Bee’s story.  What do you think?

Lastly, I hope that you enjoyed the book.  I did.  I also loved that a book so silly and seemingly uncomplicated offered so much to discuss.

Please let me know what you thought, and join me for our next novel – The End of the Point by Elizabeth Graver.

A Question for You.

book questionMy last post was an answer to a question posed about how I go about choosing the books for our discussion.  Now I have a question for all of you.  What would you like to see as a future selection?

I am open to all types of books: novels, mystery, non-fiction, biography.  I have even read some really terrific young adult books that would make for a good discussion.

I’ll be announcing our next selection within a few days, but I would love to hear from all of you regarding our future books. Have you read a “wow” book that you want to discuss?  Please share. It needn’t be a newer book – actually an older book would make it easier to accumulate enough copies for everyone.