Each other month the Book Club Chairman makes her Book Selections and shares them on this page. Check this page bi-monthly for her message and book selections.
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Book Club Selections for this month –
Main Selection | The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin
What a unique and compelling premise: if a person knew the date of his death, how would that knowledge change the way he lived? In 1969 in New York City’s Lower East Side, a psychic claims to be able to predict the date any person will die. The four Gold children, Varya, Daniel, Klara and Simon, go to see her. As they cope with this heavy information, their attitudes and actions are very different. The knowledge they affects their choices and lives. How they handle this information is told through each one’s story, with settings from San Francisco in the 1980’s, to Las Vegas, to upstate New York, and finally, to a research facility in California.
About the Author
Chloe Benjamin is the author of the novels THE IMMORTALISTS–a #1 Indie Next Pick, #1 LibraryReads Pick and Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Selection–and THE ANATOMY OF DREAMS, which received the Edna Ferber Fiction Book Award and was longlisted for the 2014 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize. A San Francisco native, Benjamin is a graduate of Vassar College and of the University of Wisconsin, where she received her MFA in fiction. She lives with her husband in Madison, Wisconsin.
Discussion Questions: The Immortalists
Greek Selection | Blue Skies and Black Olives by John Humphrys
This book has been labelled “A Survivor’s Tale of Housebuilding and Peacock Chasing in Greece”. BBC radio presenter and television personality, John Humphrys, with his son Christopher, has written a very funny and engaging memoir of his experience building a house in Greece. What could possibly go wrong? Quite a lot actually…
About the Author
John Humphrys has reported from all over the world for the BBC and presented its frontline news programmes on both radio and television, in a broadcasting career spanning forty years. He has won a string of national awards and been described as a ‘national treasure’. He owned a dairy farm for ten years and has homes in Greece and London. Christopher Humphrys is John Humphrys’ eldest son. He has lived in Greece for the past sixteen years and is a cellist with the hugely popular Camerata Orchestra based in Athens.
Discussion Questions: Blue Skies and Black Olives
Just for Fun Selection | The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
The Joy Luck Club, a popular novel written by Amy Tan, is a good read for a book club. It focuses on four Chinese American immigrant families in San Francisco who start a club known as The Joy Luck Club, playing the Chinese game of mahjong for money while feasting on a variety of foods. The book is structured somewhat like a mahjong game, with four parts divided into four sections to create sixteen chapters. The three mothers and four daughters (one mother, Suyuan Woo, dies before the novel opens) share stories about their lives in the form of vignettes. Each part is preceded by a parable relating to the game.
About the Author
Amy Tan is the author of The Joy Luck Club, The Kitchen God’s Wife, The Hundred Secret Senses, The Bonesetter’s Daughter, The Opposite of Fate, Saving Fish from Drowning, and two children’s books, The Moon Lady and The Chinese Siamese Cat, which has been adapted as Sagwa, a PBS series for children. Tan was also the co-producer and co-screenwriter of the film version of The Joy Luck Club, and her essays and stories have appeared in numerous magazines and anthologies. Her work has been translated into more than twenty-five languages. Tan, who has a master’s degree in linguistics from San Jose University, has worked as a language specialist to programs serving children with developmental disabilities. She lives with her husband in San Francisco and New York.
Children’s Selection | I Am Jack by Anna Myatt
Kids really like dogs and so every child will enjoy Jack’s story. This heartwarming new book is all about a pet dog’s love for his family. A beautiful story you will want to read to your little one over and over again. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of I am Jack will be donated to the Daughters of Penelope Foundation.
A Humble Gift by Danielle Lazarakis
A heartwarming tale of two friends celebrating what makes them unique as they explore the beautiful world around them.
About the Author
Danielle Lazarakis is a Greek-American author and illustrator of Children’s Books and Adult Contemporary Fiction. She was born in the San Francisco Bay Area during a time when smart phones didn’t exist, and you had to use the encyclopedia to find out the answers to the fifty-thousand questions that pop into your mind on a daily basis. Despite these struggles, she had an amazing childhood with an amazingly whimsical single mother, who always encouraged imagination and creativity in her two children. Danielle is also an actress, small business owner, and professional living-room fort builder.
Foundation Book Club Chairman
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