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Reading Lists

Book Lovers Circle February

All Gone: A Memoir of My Mother's Dementia with Refreshments

All Gone: A Memoir of My Mother's Dementia with Refreshments
Alex Witchel is a writer for the New York Times, and this is more a memoir of her growing up in Passaic, New Jersey and Scarsdale, New York, than a story of her mother's dementia. Alex talks about her parents' marriage, her mother's independence and spunk-as well as her mother's reliance on processed foods and lots of canned items. If you grew up during that era, you know exactly what she is talking about. It is a sad and beautiful book, discussing how we deal with the past and present, and Alex adds recipes as well. After all, we are connected through experience, love and food. We can lose our loved ones in many ways, but we can maintain our connection to them as well. Check Our Catalog

The End of the Point

The End of the Point
A generational sage, this begins in 1942, when the Porter family goes to their summer home near Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts, where the usual quiet is pierced by the noise from a base established on the tiny strip of land. The first story deals with the choices that the Scottish nursemaid has to make-choosing between the love of the family she works for and her chance at personal love. The next generation is revealed in the story of one of the older Porter daughters, Helen, whose has to choose between raising a family and a career. Helen's son, Charlie, is the third generation and he has to deal with the Vietnam era struggles-and his own struggle with drugs and a career. The last part of the book takes us up to 1999, where the author ties together all the many pieces of what has happened to this family. Check Our Catalog

Gods and Beasts

Gods and Beasts
This is the third in a series which has Detective Sergeant Alex Morrow, Glasgow police detective, as its major character. Alex is a good detective as well as being the mother of baby twins, and her job keeps her busier than she would like. She has to investigate a robbery in a post office that turned into the murder of a customer-but the twist is, the customer seemed to set himself up to be murdered. There are lots and lots of characters and lots of puzzle pieces. The author puts the pieces together nicely and realistically in the end. One thing you can count on, there is sure to be lots more crime in Glasgow for DS Morrow to investigate. We can look forward to her cases. Check Our Catalog

Heart Like Mine

Heart Like Mine
Grace McAllister is in love with a restauranteur, who is divorced with two children. Grace finds more than she bargained for when the children's mother dies, and Grace has to step up to be a mother before she hasn't even figured out how to be a wife. And of course, there is some concern about just how and why the mother has died. In addition to the usual problems of blending a family, there is the mystery of mom-so there are surprises as the story works its way to closure. Check Our Catalog

I Can't Complain

I Can't Complain
Elinor Lipman has written ten novels, but this is a collection about her personal life which also provides insight into how she writes. She is intelligent, funny and a gentle soul. She can be serious and clever, and has endured her share of changes, some of which show up in her writing. She was widowed in 2009 and her latest novel, The View from Penthouse B, is about a widow. You can get some insights into her process of writing, and then look forward to enjoying what she has to say. Check Our Catalog

Secret Daughter

Secret Daughter
This debut novel was written by a woman who was raised in Toronto by parents who emigrated from Mumbai, and who spent time in an orphanage in India. The novel begins in 1984, when a woman in India gives birth to a daughter, whom she takes to an orphanage to escape her husband's disposing of another girl child. In America, a young pediatrician and her Asian Indian husband find out that she cannot bear a child, so they adopt an Asian Indian baby. The book is told through alternating chapters between the biological mother, birth mother and adopted child. It covers such themes as cultural identity, adoption and the roles of women in different societies. Check Our Catalog

Stitches: A Handbook on Meaning, Hope and Repair

Stitches: A Handbook on Meaning, Hope and Repair
Anne Lamott talks about her life, in poetic and practical terms. She talks about how most of us have been " in pieces," and we need someone to keep us stitched up. She talks a lot about how we are always somebody unique and special. It is always nice to have someone tell us that, especially when they are as good a writer a Lamott. Check Our Catalog

Tale for the Time Being

Tale for the Time Being
Ruth, a novelist with writer's block, discovers a diary washed ashore in her isolated village in British Columbia. It is the diary of an unhappy Japanese-American teenager, Nao. Nao is suffering from "life block," and is contemplating suicide-but first she wants to chronicle the life of her great grandmother, who became a Buddhist nun, and her great uncle, a kamikaze pilot in World War II. The novel tells Ruth's story and Nao's story in alternating chapters. Check Our Catalog

Trapeze

Trapeze
This is historical fiction, based on the brave women who were part of the French Section of the Special Operations Executive that were sent into the field between May 1941 and September 1944. The fictionalized heroine here is Marian Sutro, a 19 year old English girl who speaks French, and is recruited to work in war torn France. She is also given a special assignment-convince an old lover, now a renowned research physicist, to join the Allied war effort. The novel is a window into a little known group of people who risked everything. Check Our Catalog

Under the Wide and Starry Sky

Under the Wide and Starry Sky
The author of Loving Frank has written a fictionalized account of the love affair between Robert Louis Stevenson and Fanny Van de Grift Osbourne, a woman 10 years older than him, married, with three children, whom he meets in rural France in the late 19th century and falls madly in love with. Stevenson follows her to California, where she attempts to reconcile with her husband. Stevenson stays, and after a rough start, Fanny and Stevenson begin a life together. Fanny, an aspiring writer herself, takes on the role of protector for Stevenson, who is in frail health. She is headstrong and independent and the conflict between her keeping her own identity and having to sublimate much of her own self for Stevenson adds drama to the novel. Check Our Catalog



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