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Eat Cake by Jeanne Ray
 
Book Club Recommended
Optimistic, Fun
Made me want to eat cake

Loved the idea of being inside a bundt cake as a "happy place" for the main character.

 
Book Club Recommended
Inspiring, Informative, Optimistic
Unbelievable but amazing

Obviously the events told in this story were meant to happen. There is no reason he should have lived to get off the mountain, find funding, and survive so many set-backs to build these schools. I found it inspiring.
Definitely gave me new insight into the war in Afghanistan.

Detractor opinion: Some people find the events too hard to believe and feel the main character is annoying and just fumbling along.

Whistling In the Dark by Lesley Kagen
 
Book Club Recommended
Fun, Optimistic, Interesting
you won't be disappointed

This was a fun, engaging read. At only 336 pages, it's a easy length to finish quickly, which you'll want to do!
Set in 1959 in Milwaukee and told from the viewpoint of a 10 year-old girl, it's an interesting glimpse into a time before anyone in our club was born set in a location familiar to our book club.
Even with all the tragedies that befall the family and her sense of impending doom, Sally still strikes me as an optimist - she is always looking to the future... if she isn't "murdered and molested" before then. (Her constant repetition of this phrase was comical.)
Some might think the ending is predictable, but I didn't see it coming which made the book all the more enjoyable for me.

freedom by Jonathan Franzen
 
Pointless, Boring, Slow
I couldn't finish it, but the group discussion was lively

I didn't like the characters. I thought the plot was slow and unrealistic. The writing was not engaging. The sex stuff was gratuitous at best. (Apparently the redeeming things happen very near the end, which I gave up and didn't read.)
That being said, we had a GREAT 2.5 hour discussion about freedom, being free, expectations of relationships, and how people deal with trying to get the love they didn't receive from their family growing up.

 
Book Club Recommended
Insightful, Inspiring, Optimistic
the story of your life

Easy to read, mostly believable characters

Harold\\\'s journey is the story of our lives: we start with only a vague idea of a purpose, commit ourselves to something, some people come along to help us, others distract us from our goal, and in the end remaining true to ourselves is what life is about.

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