Cool Reads from the CPL Email Book Club
Recommended by Marcia, program coordinator for the Canton Public Library.
Check our other Fave Five lists, too!
Howard is a brain-damaged Vietnam vet who is unable to speak, write or read. He agrees to look after his ex-girlfriends nine-year-old son, Ryan, while she is in rehab. Ryan profoundly changes the lives of Howard and his three housemates. King writes a gritty, honest, far from syrupy story of the strong relationship forged between Howard and Ryan... a remarkable, believable story, and very well-crafted by King.
This book joins three generations of Bass women and their quest for the truth in their New Mexican heritage. Hannah Bass wrote her journals from 1891 through 1921. Her daughter, Dr. Claudia Bass, made her career lecturing and teaching about Hannahs pioneer life. And now, Dr. Bass granddaughter, Meg, is confronting Hannahs journals and her mean, spiteful grandmother, Dr. Bass. Crooks book is a lesson in history, human nature and lovea well-told story.
Otto Ringling is a typical, upper class, happily married father of two with a decent job. His North Dakota parents are killed in a horrific car accident and Otto must drive cross-country to the family farm to settle their affairs with his slightly wacky sister. Only his sister insists her New Age guru make the trip in her stead. The guru, Rinpoche, and Otto set off through small town mid America on a trip that changes Otto forever. Merullo takes us on a hilarious, tender, engaging trip.
Dr. Amin Jaafari, an Israeli/Arab, is a successful surgeon with a loving wife when a suicide bomber kills 19 people in a busy Tel Aviv restaurant. Shockingly, his secular, loving spouse turns out to be the bomber. Amin must find answers by dealing with the fanatical extremists who recruited his wife. This book recognizes the humanity and struggles faced daily in the Middle East and was a real eye-opener and page-turner.
I never would have tried this book, set in a depression-era traveling circus, were it not for the Email Book Club, but Im sure glad I did. Jacobs life with the circus was sad, lovely and tragic at the same time. His recollections, from his nursing home at age 90, are accurate and heartfelt. Gruen has done her research well and humanizes the characters with lyrical prose. The chapters flow effortlessly from the circus to the present-day nursing home. This is a must read and the best I read in 2007.