The Online Book Club for 2018 is going to try a variety of ways to discuss books, including Facebook groups, an online forum and videos. Feel free to give me feedback on what method you like best for discussing books!
I have made all the choices for the year so you can plan and decide what books you want to read and discuss. These have all been sitting on my to-read shelf for a while and I think they should all be interesting to discuss!
After 13-year-old Charlie Hall’s mother dies and his father retreats into the silence of grief, Charlie finds himself drifting lost and alone through the brutal halls of junior high school. But Charlie Hall is not entirely friendless. In the woods behind his house, Charlie is saved from a mountain lion by a grizzly bear, thought to be extinct in northern Idaho.
When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, the town of Pagford is left in shock. Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war.
In this much-anticipated third volume of the Wicked Years, we return to Oz, seen now through the eyes of the Cowardly Lion – the once tiny cub defended by Elphaba in Wicked. While civil war looms, a tetchy oracle named Yackle prepares for death. Before her final hour, an enigmatic figure known as Brrr – the Cowardly Lion – arrives searching for information about Elphaba Thropp, the Wicked Witch of the West.
Whatever happened to Calico Joe? In the summer of 1973 Joe Castle was the boy wonder of baseball, the greatest rookie anyone had ever seen. The kid from Calico Rock, Arkansas dazzled Cub fans as he hit home run after home run, politely tipping his hat to the crowd as he shattered all rookie records.
Elliot Rosenzweig, a respected civic leader and wealthy philanthropist, is attending a fundraiser when he is suddenly accosted and accused of being a former Nazi SS officer named Otto Piatek, the Butcher of Zamosc. Although the charges are denounced as preposterous, his accuser is convinced he is right and engages attorney Catherine Lockhart to bring Rosenzweig to justice.
It’s almost Christmas, but there is no joy in the house of terminally ill Jack and his family. With only a short time left to live, he spends his last days preparing to say goodbye to his devoted wife, Lizzie, and their three children. Then, unthinkably, tragedy strikes again: Lizzie is killed in a car accident. With no one able to care for them, the children are separated from each other and sent to live with family members around the country.
Four friends gathered in a cold, dusty attic on Christmas day to make a solemn pact. “Our dreams for the future,” they whispered, placing tiny pieces of paper into a shimmering blue bottle. But that event happened in 1929, and it is decades later when local news reporter Brenna Delaney stumbles upon that bottle . . . and into the most meaningful story of her career.
Atlit is a holding camp for illegal immigrants in Israel in 1945. There about 270 men and women await their future and try to recover from their past. Diamant with infinite compassion and understanding tells the stories of the women gathered in this place.
For much of her life, Anne Morrow, the shy daughter of the U.S. ambassador to Mexico, has stood in the shadows of those around her, including her millionaire father and vibrant older sister, who often steals the spotlight. Then Anne, a college senior with hidden literary aspirations, travels to Mexico City to spend Christmas with her family. There she meets Colonel Charles Lindbergh, fresh off his celebrated 1927 solo flight across the Atlantic. Enthralled by Charles’s assurance and fame, Anne is certain the celebrated aviator has scarcely noticed her. But she is wrong.
After embarrassing themselves at the social event of the year in high society Philadelphia on New Year’s Eve of 1942, Maddie and Ellis Hyde are cut off financially by Ellis’s father, a former army Colonel who is already embarrassed by his son’s inability to serve in WWII due to his being colorblind.
Imagine that your husband wrote you a letter, to be opened after his death. Imagine, too, that the letter contains his deepest, darkest secret—something with the potential to destroy not just the life you built together, but the lives of others as well. Imagine, then, that you stumble across that letter while your husband is still very much alive. . . .
Katie has lofty career aspirations that seem to change almost hourly: writer, film director, teacher, educational psychiatrist. In the meantime, she’s waiting tables and waiting for “Mr. Right” to arrive out of the blue — which seems unlikely, considering her romantic track record is as pitiful as her job history.
I hope you’ll join us on the last Wednesday of every month for an Online Book Club discussion!