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Book Group Selections 2017-2018

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Bookjacket for The  Underground Railroad : a novel Bookjacket for  A Gentleman in Moscow Bookjacket for  Aristotle and Dante discover the secrets of the universe Bookjacket for  Bettyville : a memoir Bookjacket for  Cold Sassy tree Bookjacket for  Crossing to safety Bookjacket for  Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close Bookjacket for  Foreign Gods, Inc Bookjacket for  Kindred Bookjacket for  Last bus to wisdom Bookjacket for The Sparrow Bookjacket for  The Good Earth

Bookjacket for The  Underground Railroad : a novel

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The Underground Railroad : a novel The Underground Railroad : a novel / Colson Whitehead

"Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. When Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape. Matters do not go as planned and though they manage to find a station and head north, they are being hunted..." (Book jacket).

Discussion: April 16, 2018, 7-8:30 pm, Council Tree Library.


Bookjacket for  A Gentleman in Moscow

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A Gentleman in Moscow A Gentleman in Moscow / Amor Towles
"Deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, Count Alexander Rostov is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. Rostov, an indomitable man of erudition and wit, has never worked a day in his life, and must now live in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history unfold. Brimming with humor, a glittering cast of characters, and one beautifully rendered scene after another, this singular novel casts a spell as it relates the count's endeavor to gain a deeper understanding of what it means to be a man of purpose"-- Provided by publisher. Discussion: April 2, 2018, 6:30-8:00pm, Old Town Library

Bookjacket for  Aristotle and Dante discover the secrets of the universe

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Aristotle and Dante discover the secrets of the universe Aristotle and Dante discover the secrets of the universe / Benjamin Alire Sáenz

Fifteen-year-old Ari Mendoza is an angry loner with a brother in prison, but when he meets Dante and they become friends, Ari starts to ask questions about himself, his parents, and his family that he has never asked before.

Discussion: May 21, 2018, 7-8:30 pm, Council Tree Library.


Bookjacket for  Bettyville : a memoir

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Bettyville : a memoir Bettyville : a memoir / George Hodgman

A veteran magazine and book editor returns to his hometown of Paris, Missouri, to take care of his aging mother, Betty, a strong-willed woman who speaks her mind and has never really accepted the fact that her son is gay.

Discussion: January 22, 2018, 7-8:30 pm, Council Tree Library.


Bookjacket for  Cold Sassy tree

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Cold Sassy tree Cold Sassy tree / Olive Ann Burns

Young Will Tweedy becomes chaperon, conspirator, and confidant to his renegade grandpa, E. Rucker Blakeslee, and the old man's young new wife, Miss Love Simpson. Olive Ann Burns has given us a timeless, funny, resplendent novel - about a romance that rocks an entire town, about a boy's passage through the momentous but elusive year when childhood melts into adolescence, and about just how people lived and died in a small Southern town at the beginning of the twentieth century. Inhabited by characters who are wise and loony, unimpeachably pious and deliciously irreverent, Cold Sassy, Georgia, is the perfect setting for the debut of a storyteller of rare brio, exuberance, and style.

Discussion: December 4, 2017, 7-8:30 pm, Council Tree Library.


Bookjacket for  Crossing to safety

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Crossing to safety Crossing to safety / Wallace Stegner
Two young couples, Sid and Charity and Larry and Sally, from different backgrounds--East and West, rich and poor--befriend each other in 1937 Madison, Wisconsin. Discussion: October 2, 2017, 6:30-8:00pm, Old Town Library

Bookjacket for  Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

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Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close / Jonathan Safran Foer
Oskar Schell, the nine-year-old son of a man killed in the World Trade Center attacks, searches the five boroughs of New York City for a lock that fits a black key his father left behind. Discussion: February 19, 2018, 6:30-8:00pm, Old Town Library

Bookjacket for  Foreign Gods, Inc

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Foreign Gods, Inc Foreign Gods, Inc / Ndibe, Okey

Foreign Gods, Inc., tells the story of Ike, a New York-based Nigerian cab driver who sets out to steal the statue of an ancient war deity from his home village and sell it to a New York gallery. Ike's plan is fueled by desperation. Despite a degree in economics from a major American college, his strong accent has barred him from the corporate world. Forced to eke out a living as a cab driver, he is unable to manage the emotional and material needs of a temperamental African American bride and a widowed mother demanding financial support. When he turns to gambling, his mounting losses compound his woes. And so he travels back to Nigeria to steal the statue, where he has to deal with old friends, family, and a mounting conflict between those in the village who worship the deity, and those who practice Christianity.

Discussion: March 5, 2018, 7-8:30 pm, Council Tree Library.


Bookjacket for  Kindred

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Kindred Kindred / Octavia E. Butler
Dana, a black woman, finds herself repeatedly transported to the antebellum South, where she must make sure that Rufus, the plantation owner's son, survives to father Dana's ancestor. Discussion: November 20, 2017, 6:30-8:00pm, Old Town Library

Bookjacket for  Last bus to wisdom

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Last bus to wisdom Last bus to wisdom / Ivan Doig

Donal Cameron is being raised by his grandmother, the cook at the legendary Double W ranch in Doig's beloved Two Medicine Country of the Montana Rockies, a landscape that gives full rein to an eleven-year-old's imagination. But when Gram has to have surgery for "female trouble" in the summer of 1951, all she can think to do is to ship Donal off to her sister in faraway Manitowoc, Wisconsin. There Donal is in for a rude surprise: Aunt Kate-bossy, opinionated, argumentative, and tyrannical--is nothing like her sister. She henpecks her good-natured husband, Herman the German (as Donal discovers him to be), and Donal can't seem to get on her good side either. After one contretemps too many, Kate decides to pack him back to the authorities in Montana on the next Greyhound. But to Donal's surprise, he's not traveling solo: Herman the German has decided to fly the coop with him.

Discussion: October 9, 2017, 7-8:30 pm, Council Tree Library.


Bookjacket for The Sparrow

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The Sparrow The Sparrow / Mary Doria Russell
Emilio Sandoz, a life-long celibate and Jesuit priest, is part of a crew sent to explore a new planet. Upon arrival they encounter intelligent extraterrestrial life and a small mistake leads to a horrible catastrophe. Emilio, his faith in God utterly destroyed, is the only survivor and he faces a public inquistion when he returns to Earth. Father John Candotti is charged with discovering the truth. Discussion: January 8, 2018, 6:30-8:00, Old Town Library

Bookjacket for  The Good Earth

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The Good Earth The Good Earth / Pearl S. Buck
Though more than seventy years have passed since this remarkable novel won the Pulitzer Prize, it has retained its popularity and become one of the great modern classics. In The Good Earth Pearl S. Buck paints an indelible portrait of China in the 1920s, when the last emperor reigned and the vast political and social upheavals of the twentieth century were but distant rumblings. This moving, classic story of the honest farmer Wang Lung and his selfless wife O-Lan is must reading for those who would fully appreciate the sweeping changes that have occurred in the lives of the Chinese people during the last century. Discussion: May 18, 2018, 6:30-8:00pm, Old Town Library
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