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This book discussion group meets the first Tuesday of the month at 1:30 p.m. at the Peoria Public Library Lakeview Branch. For more information, call Carol May at (309) 692-1020 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
December 6: Disgraced by Ayad Akhtar
No January meeting
February 7 Fences. August Wilson
In this 1987 Tony Award winner for Best Play and the Pulitzer Prize, protagonist Troy Maxson is a strong and proud black man. He has had to be to survive in the 1950s. But then in the 1960s, a new spirit of liberation appears that is changing the world. Now he finds himself reluctant to recognize and accept those social changes.
March 7 What We Talk About When We Talk About Love Raymond Carver
In his second collection, Raymond Carver establishes his reputation as one of the most celebrated short-story writers in American literature. These stories are a haunting meditation on love, loss, and companionship, and finding one’s way through the dark.
April 4 Silver Sparrow Tayari Jones
Set in a middle-class neighborhood in Atlanta in the 1980s, this novel revolves around James Witherspoon’s two families—the public one and the secret one. When the daughters from each family meet and form a friendship, only one of them knows they are sisters. It is a relationship destined to explode.
May 2 All Quiet on the Western Front Erich Maria Remarque
Paul Baumer enlists with his classmates in the German army in World War I. Youthful, enthusiastic, they become soldiers. But despite what they have learned, they break into pieces under the first bombardment in the trenches. And as the war plods on year after year, Paul holds fast to a single vow: to fight against the principles of hate that pit young men of the same generation but different uniforms against each other.
June 6 The Grass Is Singing Doris Lessing
Set in Southern Rhodesia under white rule, Doris Lessing's first novel tells the story of Mary Turner, a self-confident, independent young woman who becomes the depressed, frustrated wife of an ineffectual, unsuccessful farmer. Little by little the ennui of years on the farm works its slow poison. Mary's despair progresses until the fateful arrival of Moses, an enigmatic, virile black servant.
July 11 Sisters in Law: How Sandra Day O'Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsberg Went to the Supreme Court and Changed the World Linda Hirshman
This is the story of the intertwined lives of Sandra Day O’Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the first and second women to serve as Supreme Court justices. The relationship between Sandra Day O’Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg—Republican and Democrat, Christian and Jew, western rancher’s daughter and Brooklyn girl transcends party, religion, region, and culture.
August 1 Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania Erik Larson.
On May 1, 1915, with WWI entering its tenth month, a luxury ocean liner sailed out of New York, bound for Liverpool. For months, German U-boats had brought terror to the North Atlantic. But the Lusitania was one of the era’s great transatlantic “Greyhounds”—the fastest liner then in service and supposedly safe from attack. Germany, however, was determined to change the rules of the game. The result was one of the greatest disasters in maritime history.
September 5 Delights and Shadows Ted Kooser
Ted Kooser, who served as United States Poet Laureate (2004–2006), is a poet who works toward clarity and accessibility, so that each distinctive poem appears to be as fresh and bright and spontaneous as a good watercolor painting. Delights and Shadows raises the voice of the poet above everything else. Each short, vivid poem on the page reads as if it were being spoken aloud. Details about cemeteries, dictionaries, a doctor's waiting room, and a jar of buttons bristle with sound and awareness.
October 3 The Light Between Oceans M. L.Stedman
After four years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia and takes a job as the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock. To this isolated island, where the supply boat comes once a season, Tom brings a young, bold, and loving wife, Isabel. Years later, after two miscarriages and one stillbirth, the grieving Isabel hears a baby’s cries on the wind. A boat has washed up onshore carrying a dead man and a living baby. Tom wants to report the man and infant immediately. But Isabel insists the baby is a “gift from God,” and against Tom’s judgment, they claim her as their own and name her Lucy.
November 7 Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis. J.D. Vance
Hillbilly Elegy is a powerful account of growing up in a poor Rust Belt town in which white working class families struggle to survive. Hillbilly Elegy is a personal analysis of a subculture in crisis. The decline of this group, a demographic of our country that has been slowly disintegrating over forty years, has been reported on with growing frequency and alarm, but has never before been written about as searingly from the inside.
December 5 The Force of Things: A Marriage in War and Peace Alexander Stille
Set in 1948, this is the story of the passionate and stormy union of Mikhail Kamenetzki, aka Ugo Stille, one of Italy's most celebrated journalists, and Elizabeth Bogert, a beautiful and charming young woman from the Midwest. Their immediate attraction and tumultuous marriage is part of a much larger story: the mass migration of Jews from fascist-dominated Europe in the 1930s and in the shadow of World War II. .
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