This summer, we are having three exciting, culturally diverse book discussions. June 6 is Same Kind of Different as Me, a nonfiction piece about two disparate men who come together through the spiritual encouragement of the wife of the aloof art dealer. This book has created world-wide discussion about faith and change and compassion.
On July 11, the book Snow Flower and the Secret Fan brings together two young Chinese girls in the 19th century and their strong, yet turbulent, relationship over the years as they share their secrets on fans and handkerchiefs.
August 1 brings us to the novel, Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian. This book traces the life of Junior in a funny, yet crisis filled manner.
All three books look at different cultures and the impact that those cultures have on the main characters. The take-away for us as readers will be an appreciation for the Chinese culture of match-making and foot binding; the coming together of the disparate men; and right before our very eyes the world of young people on an Indian reservation.
The pattern of the chapters alternates between Renee and Paloma; this pattern is at first confusing. But don’t quit reading. The early chapters from Renee are quite philosphical, but her chapters and those of Paloma become more conversational as you read. Please keep reading for the miraculous ending.
I look forward to seeing you on January 4, 2012. If you can bring a bloom from your favorite flower.
We are launching an exciting series for 2011-2012 as books are disappearing for the special cart dedicated to this discussion series! I look forward to seeing you on November 2!
On January 4, 2012, the novel, THE ELEGANCE OF THE HEDGEHOG, will be the focus of our discussion. This French novel was a best seller in that country and is creating much discussion in its translation. The novel begins with quite a philosophical base, but evolves into a two character revelation and relationship as Renee and Paloma, in alternating chapters, track their experiences and reflect on the importance of relationships.
Our September discussion with Squire Babcock appears to have been a success as we gained insight into his writing process and the themes, characters, locations, and significance of his first novel, The King of Gaheena. Google gaheena, and you will discover the Hebrew definition, “evil,” and that no such place exists in Arkansas.
I look forward to our November discussion of Erik Larson’s newest book, In the Garden of Beasts, about America’s early diplomacy with Hilter’s rising Germany prior to WWII.