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My Reviews

Winter Garden by Kristin Hannah
 
Book Club Recommended
Dramatic, Insightful, Informative
Winter Garden

Winter Garden was a good selection for discussion in our book club. It offers several themes that are great for discussion including mother-daughter relationships as well as sibling rivalry. The fact that the father in the story did not share information with his 40 year old daughters was attributed to the way families kept secrets to themselves and often did not share information with children. Most found the ending unrealistic in that after years of neglect they were one big happy family.

 
Book Club Recommended
Informative, Interesting, Dramatic
Great book club selection

The Devil in the White City not only provides an interesting read but leads to a quest for more information on the World's Fair of 1893, the Guilded Age, inventions from that era as well as the city of Chicago. Our group had a good discussion on the opposing forces of the main characters and enjoyed watching a DVD on the World Fair as well. The book was fascinating and we all enjoyed the authors writing style.

 
Book Club Recommended
Informative, Interesting, Fun
Sin In The Second City

The members in our book club all enjoy Chicago and found it interesting to learn more about the history of Chicago. We all agreed that the "creative non-fiction" approach provided a more interesting read and were able to relate this book to past books we have read(The Devil In The White City and Arc of Justice) at a similiar time. Several members felt it was a slow read-perhaps because it was summer. Most would recommend the book, especially if people were interested in Chicago and it's early days of corruption, politics and prostitution.The book provided a good discussion between then and now as well as the role of women in society.

Defending Jacob by William Landay
 
Book Club Recommended
Dramatic, Interesting, Insightful
Defending Jacob

We enjoyed a great discussion after reading this book. Parenting, genetics and it's role as a guilty or innocent predetermination in the court was a major theme. Numerous wonderful topics arose from the book for discussion. All agreed they loved the writers style and look forward to another book from this author.

 
Fun, Pointless, Poorly Written
Let's Pretend This Never Happened

This was the worst book our club has ever chosen and the only one that was not finished by any member.Most gave up at about 25-30 pages in. It just wasn't even funny! The author uses sarcasm and foul language in an attempt at humor. Her writing is a flight of ideas depicting her abusive childhood. Her favorite word is the F word. There are just too many great books to choose from to waste your time on this one. We were all puzzled at the great reviews.

 
Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Inspiring, Optimistic
A life of quiet desperation

Our group loved the book and found it rich in material for discussion. Marital relationships, mid life crisis and looking back on a life time of missed opportunities. We found it interesting to discuss the characters motives and behavior. Great for discussion.

Calling Me Home: A Novel by Julie Kibler
 
Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Beautiful, Inspiring
Good discussion material with surprise twists

Our book club won copies of this book on book movement and found it to be an interesting read with some surprise twists. It is a romantic and tragic interracial love story and the strife it caused to a southern family in the late 1930\\\'s and early 40\\\'s.It is written from two points of view-a white women in her late 80\\\'s and her younger black hairdresser with family troubles of her own. This was a debut book for the author and we really enjoyed her writing style despite what we consider a few holes in character development of some of the minor characters. Several members also listened to the audiobook and enjoyed the authentic sounding readers. The book lends itself to good discussion on a variety of topics of family dynamics, racism, love, friendship and forgiveness. Well worth a read!!.

The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd
 
Book Club Recommended
Informative, Insightful, Inspiring
Beautiful language, informative & interesting

Our group loved this book! Lots of great issues for discussion including women\\\\\\\'s role in the south, mother\\\\\\\'s roles toward daughters and political issues of change.One of our favorites! Sue Monk has wonderful language and quotes we will remember.

 
Book Club Recommended
Beautiful, Insightful, Dramatic
Beautiful writing, interesting story line

The storyline of two young people provided an interesting insight into the plight of young people during WWII. Their story brought to life how people dealt with the war and their circumstances. Great book club read and lots of themes to discuss. We loved it!

Looking for Me: A Novel by Beth Hoffman
 
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Informative, Insightful
Good, but not the same as \\

Our club enjoyed the book and found several topics for discussion including parental conflict with career choice, mother daughter relationships, and romantic relationships with older women. The first half of the book seemed slow and without much of a plot but the second half picked up and was more fulfilling. We all were hoping for some of the humor of \\\"Cee Cee Honeycut\\\" but found that lacking but did enjoy the writer\\\'s style and descriptive writings of Kentucky and Charleston.A ood choice for book clubs....

The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty
 
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Dramatic, Addictive
To open or not to open????

An enjoyable read with lots of good topics to discuss.

 
Book Club Recommended
Fun, Interesting, Adventurous
Books vs Technology

Our club enjoyed the book and found several interesting topics to discuss including books vs technology. Also why do people write books? Most everyone enjoyed the book and the author\\\'s obvious love of books.

 
Book Club Recommended
Informative, Insightful, Dramatic
Interesting, but biased

Sheri Fink\\\'s book was filled with an enormous amount of interesting facts but the bottom line appeared to slant toward the guilt of Dr. Anna Poe and the 2 nurses who were brave enough to stay and deal with the patients that were abandoned by everyone else. The numerous people presented and the minute details of their lives made the book very long and redundant. The book lends itself to discussions of many end of life issues which was an interesting topic for book club, but the book itself was tedious and biased, despite Fink\\\'s claim to be non-biased. Clubs should read memorialhospitaltruth.com for interesting comments from Dr. Poe.

 
Book Club Recommended
Fun, Insightful, Interesting
Fun and Optimistic Read

Our book club loved the book and found it very insightful into the thought process of the asperger mind.Most of our group has worked with children who have asperger syndrome and found the situations that the main character struggled with to be realistic. We also enjoyed the optimistic outlook that people can change and compromise. We did question how Don and Rosie would do long term!

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
 
Book Club Recommended
Dramatic, Addictive, Interesting
A quick beach read

Our club enjoyed the book but found the characters somewhat underdeveloped. We all enjoyed the ending and agreed about half way through we were wanting to read quickly to see who actually committed the crime.

 
Book Club Recommended
Epic, Interesting, Slow

The Water Knife: A novel by Paolo Bacigalupi
 
Gloomy, Graphic, Dark
Graphic torture, foul language and violence toward women

I listened to about 7 hours of the audiobook and gave up. The foul language and gory details of torture were not what I look for in a book club choice. The concept of water shortage is what some members found of interest.

 
Book Club Recommended
Informative, Insightful, Interesting
Sad story of a family's search for a cure

Rosemarys' story is a sad commentary on a parents search for a cure for a child with a disability. Our book club enjoyed discussing the various issues that her story presented. With little known about how to diagnosis and treat children with disabilities, coupled with the families position in society and the political arena, the book allowed for an interesting discussion. I felt the author presented the dilemma well. At times she seemed in sympathy with Rose and the family for their dogged pursuit of treatment and a "cure". Other times she seemed to criticize Rose for her poor choices for Rosemary's care. When they couldn't cure her, they decided to hide her. I found the lack of sibling interaction for so many years to be very sad for the whole family.

 
Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Dramatic, Informative

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