Monday Evening Book Club February Selection

Rosie ProjectThe Monday Evening Book Club will meet February 10th at 7:00 pm in Forsyth Hall to discuss The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion.

About the book:

THE ART OF LOVE IS NEVER A SCIENCE.  Meet Don Tillman, a brilliant yet socially challenged professor of genetics, who’s decided it’s time he found a wife. And so, in the orderly, evidence-based manner with which Don approaches all things, he designs the Wife Project to find his perfect partner: a sixteen-page, scientifically valid survey to filter out the drinkers, the smokers, the late arrivers.

Rosie Jarman is all these things. She also is strangely beguiling, fiery, and intelligent. And while Don quickly disqualifies her as a candidate for the Wife Project, as a DNA expert Don is particularly suited to help Rosie on her own quest: identifying her biological father. When an unlikely relationship develops as they collaborate on the Father Project, Don is forced to confront the spontaneous whirlwind that is Rosie—and the realization that, despite your best scientific efforts, you don’t find love, it finds you.

Arrestingly endearing and entirely unconventional, Graeme Simsion’s distinctive debut will resonate with anyone who has ever tenaciously gone after life or love in the face of great challenges. The Rosie Project is a rare find: a book that restores our optimism in the power of human connection.

(simonandschuster.com)

Graeme Simsion’s website

A Youtube Interview with Graeme Simsion

Book Review of The Rosie Project

Discussion Questions for The Rosie Project

Facts on Asperger’s Syndrome

Seniors Book Club February Selection

ImageThe Seniors Book Club will meet February 12th at 2:00 pm in the Training Room to discuss Pilgrimage by Edmonton author Diana Davidson.

About the book:

Pilgrimage opens in the deep of winter of 1891 on the Metis and missionary settlement of Lac St. Anne, Canada. A young woman of mixed-blood named Mahkesis is carrying the child of the married Englishman who manages the Hudson Bay Company trading post. She is forced to reveal her devastating secret to her Cree grandmother. As an unmarried Catholic girl, Mahkesis waits for a miracle in the very place others come for redemption. Set in a northern landscape, Pilgrimage is a brilliant debut novel about love and loss and women and men trying to survive the violent intimacy of a small place in a changing colonial empire.

Visit author Diana Davidson’s website

An Edmonton Journal review of the book

Discussion questions for Pilgrimage

History of Lac Ste Anne and the pilgrimage

Monday Evening Book Club January Selection

The DinnerThe Monday Evening Book Club will meet January 13th at 7 pm in Forsyth Hall. We will discuss the international bestseller The Dinner by Dutch author Herman Koch.

About the book:

An internationally bestselling phenomenon: the darkly suspenseful, highly controversial tale of two families struggling to make the hardest decision of their lives—all over the course of one meal.

It’s a summer’s evening in Amsterdam, and two couples meet at a fashionable restaurant for dinner. Between mouthfuls of food and over the scrapings of cutlery, the conversation remains a gentle hum of polite discourse. But behind the empty words, terrible things need to be said, and with every forced smile and every new course, the knives are being sharpened.
Each couple has a fifteen-year-old son. The two boys are united by their accountability for a single horrific act; an act that has triggered a police investigation and shattered the comfortable, insulated worlds of their families. As the dinner reaches its culinary climax, the conversation finally touches on their children. As civility and friendship disintegrate, each couple show just how far they are prepared to go to protect those they love.
Skewering everything from parenting values to pretentious menus to political convictions, this novel reveals the dark side of genteel society and asks what each of us would do in the face of unimaginable tragedy.

About Herman Koch

An Interview with Herman Koch

Discussion questions

A New York Times review of The Dinner

An Interview with Sam Garrett, translator of The Dinner

A trailer of the Dutch movie version – with English subtitles 

Information about an upcoming movie adaptation of The Dinner

Seniors Book Club January Selection

100 Year Old ManThe Seniors Book Club will meet January 8th at 2 pm in the Training Room. We will discuss the international bestseller The 100-year old man who climbed out the window and disappeared by Swedish author Jonas Jonasson.

About the book:
A reluctant centenarian much like Forrest Gump (if Gump were an explosives expert with a fondness for vodka) decides it’s not too late to start over. After a long and eventful life, Allan Karlsson ends up in a nursing home, believing it to be his last stop. The only problem is that he’s still in good health, and in one day, he turns 100. A big celebration is in the works, but Allan really isn’t interested (and he’d like a bit more control over his vodka consumption). So he decides to escape. He climbs out the window in his slippers and embarks on a hilarious and entirely unexpected journey, involving, among other surprises, a suitcase stuffed with cash, some unpleasant criminals, a friendly hot-dog stand operator, and an elephant (not to mention a death by elephant). It would be the adventure of a lifetime for anyone else, but Allan has a larger-than-life back story: Not only has he witnessed some of the most important events of the twentieth century, but he has actually played a key role in them. Starting out in munitions as a boy, he somehow finds himself involved in many of the key explosions of the twentieth century and travels the world, sharing meals and more with everyone from Stalin, Churchill, and Truman to Mao, Franco, and de Gaulle. Quirky and utterly unique, The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared has charmed readers across the world.

Monday Evening Book Club Christmas Party Book Talks

Our book talks generated an interesting  list of  favorite reads this year, both fiction and nonfiction. There are some great suggestions for holiday reading, and all titles are available from the library.

Maddaddam by Margaret Atwood – (Kathy)

Food for the Gods by Karen Dudley – (Michelle)

The Demonologist by Andrew Pyper – (Michelle)

Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern – (Erin P)

Road Ends by Mary Lawson – (Luise)

The Postmistress by Sarah Blake – (Stena)

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn – (Lynn)

Heaven is for Real; a little boy’s astounding story of his trip to heaven and back by Todd Burpo – (Lynn)

The Lost Child of Philomena Lee by Martin Sixsmith – (Lynn)

Private Altars by Katherine Mosby – (Erin V)

Wild Swans; three daughters of China by Jung Chang – (Madeleine)

Madness Vase; a collection of poetry by Andrea Gibson – (Ewa)

And the Mountains Echoed by Khalid Hosseini – (Linda R)

Angela’s Ashes; a memoir of a childhood by Frank McCourt – (Linda-Marie)

Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole – (Iris)

The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker – (Julie)

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened; a mostly true memoir by Jenny Lawson – (Julie)

Bring Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel – (Sandra)