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Name : Pam J.

My Reviews

Dramatic, Interesting, Beautiful
Story of a pre-war young Japanese girl sold to a geisha house. She learns the requirements of a geisha, finding success, love.

I loved learning about the Japanese culture. Fascinating!

Insightful, Informative, Interesting
The writing was fascinating, the book educational.

This book lets the reader see into the mind of an austistic boy. We feel his frustrations and gain an understanding about a condition that few of us know much about. The writing was excellent.

A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J. Gaines

We felt this book reminded us of "To Kill A Mockingbird" - a far, far better book. As it is, this book, was boring and unmemorable.

Ahab's Wife (P.S.) by Sena Jeter Naslund
Epic, Dramatic, Difficult
Wonderful Discussions!

Although a bit long, we all enjoyed this read. It spawned great interesting discussions. Good writing. Interesting topic.

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Persuasive, Inspiring, Insightful
Everyone Enjoyed This One

This is definitely a classic worth reading for book club. It is not too long, not difficult to get through. The topic is still timely, though we discussed how things have changed since then. Discussion was very good.

Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Interesting, Beautiful
Beautifully Written Story!

The thing that persuaded our book club to give this book such a high rating (4.5 stars - that's high for our club), was, chiefly, the excellent writing. The main character had a self awareness at a level seldom seen - in books or in life. We loved the philosophical discussions, the way the main character was discovering himself at the same time we were discovering him. We all want to go to California and see this land Stegner lived in and described so well. The story was perfect. This made for a better-than-average book club discussion. Highly recommended.

Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Beautiful, Interesting
Amazing Writing!

The Joy Luck Club provides wonderful insight into Chinese American immigrants. This book told the stories of Chinese and Chinese American women - both in China and in America. Amy Tan's writing is beautiful.

It was a little hard to follow from chapter to chapter to keep track of who each chapter was about, but don't let that stop you from reading this great book.

Book Club Recommended
Adventurous, Informative, Brilliant
Best Type of Historical Fiction!

Wonderfully written, this is the BEST type of historical fiction - fiction and made-up characters interspersed with real characters and events. Our book club gave it an average rating of 4.5 stars. Everyone liked it. We decided this book would make a wonderful movie - starring Johnny Depp as Capt Ethan Saunders.

Labor Day: A Novel (P.S.) by Joyce Maynard
Book Club Recommended
A Literary Light Read

This book held our interest from the beginning. Sometimes we couldn't read fast enough to find out what would happen next. Very well written Women's Fiction, with suspense cleverly incorporated in. Our book club gave this 4 out of 5 stars.

Book Club Recommended
Informative, Adventurous, Interesting
A Nature-Lover's Book

Our book club had a wonderful discussion about this book. We learned a lot about redwoods (who knew there was an entire forest in and of itself in the canopies of redwood trees?!). We learned a lot about trees. A lively discussion.

But, part of our discussion centered on how this book could have been improved with the main consensus being: it should have been shorter. Billed as "an adventure book", there was just too much technical information about the tree climbing apparatuses, too much detail about the lichen that lives in the trees, etc. We would have given this book higher marks had it been shorter.

Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
Book Club Recommended
Informative, Dramatic, Interesting
Brilliant Writing; Excellent Story

Our book club, CHATTER, found this book to be a quick and easy read, despite the 600+ pages. We loved learning about the history, culture, and landscape of Ethiopia. We found the story to be interesting and even liked the medical specifics. Verghese is a brilliant writer! We ended up having side conversations about twins, especially identical twins, and how they may be special. We definitely recommend this book for other clubs, though you may want to allow a little extra time for reading to make sure everyone gets through it.

Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
Fun, Interesting, Insightful
Very Funny - But Not a Good Book Club Discussion Book

I rated this book "2 stars" to make it clear that this book should NOT be chosen as a book for club discussion. David Sedaris is a brilliant humorous writer. Is essays were often laugh-out-loud funny. However, my book club tends to want something a little meatier for discussion. There just wasn't that much to discuss. Our recommendation is to read a few of his essays on your own for the pleasure of it but pick something else for your club.

Room: A Novel by Emma Donoghue
Book Club Recommended
Dramatic, Interesting, Insightful
A Beautiful Story

Ingenious premise. From the point of view of a 5-year old. Like the movie "Life Is Beautiful", the optimism and protectiveness of the parent - in the face of a horrible situation - make this story beautiful.

Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Informative, Interesting
Every Parent Should Read - A Great Book Club Book

As a parent, the fact that this book was written from a parent's point of view, made it infinitely more interesting, relatable...and scary. Our book club used this book to learn about and discuss all the various addictive substances and what we might do if faced with the nightmarish idea of having one of our children addicted to drugs. A lively discussion and a topic we all learned more about.

The Paris Wife: A Novel by Paula Mclain
Interesting, Informative, Insightful
Educational, but too long. Just "okay".

This book wasn't terrible. Most of us thought it was "okay". The plus: Educational benefits (it made us research Ernest Hemingway - details were presented in the book that we did not know). However, it was a little hard to get through - especially the middle. Did we really need all the details about what they did day-to-day: get up in the morning, have a drink, go meet friends, have a drink, go out to dinner, have a drink, etc. This book would have been much better had it been shorter.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Book Club Recommended
Adventurous, Dramatic, Interesting
Finally...A Literary Page-Turner

Aside for the fact that some parts were written for a younger audience, and were therefore decidedly too simplistic, I thoroughly enjoyed it!

I intend to read the next in the series.

Silver Sparrow by Tayari Jones
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Dark, Boring
A Thought-Provoking Book About A Situation That is Probably More Common Than We'd Think

We all know that many married men have affairs. Is it so crazy to think those affairs might result in children? Is it possible that the fathers might feel drawn to take care of his new family, as a second secret family, while also feeling an obligation to stay with and maintain his first family?

This is the premise for Silver Sparrow. Throughout the book, you continually ask yourself, what else could they have done? The answers to that question - and the inevitable discussion - makes for a great book club book.

Informative, Beautiful, Interesting
It Makes You Want to Visit St. Petersburg

Our book club found this book to be too long, too boring. We thought there simply wasn't enough action and the characters were flat. BUT we were very intrigued by the Hermitage Museum and St. Petersburg. We all want to visit it. Unfortunately, that is not enough to get us to recommend the book. We just recommend you do some reading about St. Petersburg and the Heritage Museum!

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