Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Books We'll Be Reading Next Year

At the last Reader's Roundtable meeting we selected the books we'll be reading for the February to May 2008 meetings. It's quite a diverse list this time around, but it seems to strike a nice balance between serious and light reading. Anyway, it's always an adventure to discover new books. The chosen titles are listed below along with a brief description.

Philadelphia Fire: A Novel by John Edgar Wideman

In 1985 the police bombing of a West Philadelphia row house owned by the back-to-nature, Afrocentric cult known as Move killed eleven people and started a fire that destroyed sixty other houses. Inspired by this incident, this novel follows Cudjoe, a writer and exile who returns to the neighborhood a decade later to search for the lone survivor of the fire, a young boy who was seen running from the flames.
Saturday, February 2

The Thirteenth Tale: A Novel by Diane Setterfield
Author Vida Winter is old, ailing and ready to reveal the truth about the violent and tragic past she has kept secret. Calling on Margaret Lea, a young biographer troubled by her own painful history, Vida mesmerizes her with a life of gothic strangeness, and together, they learn to confront the ghosts that have haunted them.
Saturday, March 1

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Half of a Yellow Sun re-creates Biafra’s struggle to establish an independent republic in Nigeria in the 1960s, by following the lives of three characters swept up in the turbulence. Thirteen-year-old Ugwu is employed as a houseboy for a university professor full of revolutionary zeal. Olanna is the professor’s beautiful mistress. And Richard is a shy young Englishman captivated by Olanna’s twin sister. As Nigerian troops advance and the three run for their lives, their ideals and loyalties are severely tested.
Saturday, April 5

Timothy, or Notes of an Abject Reptile by Verlyn Klinkenborg
Timothy, the world’s most famous, most studied tortoise, once lived in the garden of eighteenth-century curate Gilbert White. Here, he speaks out on his life in the garden, his nine-day adventure outside the gate, his observations of the curious habits and habitations of humans, and the natural world around him. Wry and wise, unexpectedly moving and enchanting at every–careful–turn, Timothy surprises and delights.
Saturday, May 3

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