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A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers

4953  Loved It
1 Liked It a Lot
3 Liked It
1 Neutral
2 Disliked It
Hated It

Comments:
• The writing style was too muh like A Million Little Pieces to really get into it. – Sarah
• I really enjoyed this book. Would have said “Loved It” but got sick of the long monologues. Paragraghs and sentences are not meant to be 2 pages long. – Carrie
• I have only read the 1st few chapters. What else is new? So far, it’s good. – Tami
• The relationship between the brothers was very touching. I loved the silly games that were described and how they were so rude to each other, yet there was so much love between them. I enjoyed the first half of the book much more than the second. – Marlo
• I didn’t really like the stream of consciousness narrative. I was kind of worn out by A Million Little Pieces and for this to be only a month after, I was burnt out. Nonetheless, I did read it and finish it almost as a challenge although I was annoyed most of the way through. – danica
• Didn’t quite finish but… got sick of the MTV interview part, otherwise enjoyed the story. I’ll finish it eventually. – Brandi
• The best part of the book was the title. I read the whole thing, but never got into it. Found it boring. – Steph

Conclusion: Not an overwhelming success. I think the comments pretty much cover how we all felt.

Reading Group Guide

Bee Season by Myla Goldberg

bee-season11 Loved It
1 Liked It
1 Neutral
1 Disliked It
Hated It

Comments:
• It was an interesting story, but only got really good at the end. – Sarah
• Didn’t read it : ( – Steph
• Recommended it – I really enjoyed this story. I especially enjoyed the perspective of the little girl. It was well written and truly conveyed an eight year old experience. – Marlo
• Started it today : ( First 40 pages look good. Hope to finish it next week. – Tami
• Quick, easy read. Enjoyed it through the read, but towards the end changed my mind. – Carrie
• Neither loved it nor hated it, it was just kind of there. It took me longer to read than it should have. There were elements that I did enjoy but on a whole, it was OK. – danica

Conclusion: We ended up having a fairly small book club meeting. We spoke about the book briefly and ended up mostly socializing and talking about movies.

Reading Group Guide

A Million Little Pieces by James Frey

A_Million_Little_Pieces  Loved It
3 Liked It
2 Neutral
1 Disliked It
Hated It

Comments:
• Wild ride. Interesting even if not true. What do you expect a drug addict, criminal to tell the truth??? – Sarah
• Fun to get in his head. But never really believed certain details. – Carrie
• I enjoyed reading this, although I did find some parts questionable. I’m looking forward to reading the sequel. – Marlo
• This book was enjoyable BECAUSE I knew it wasn’t all true… It was a novel, to me. – Brandi
• Enjoyed the book. Some of it is not believable. Enjoyed it as a story. – Tami
• I don’t feel any better for having read it and because of its inauthenticity, the message of triumph does not shine through as it must have once done. – danica

Conclusion: While the debate raged on about truth and lies, we did have a good discussion. If not about the subject matter, than about what the term “Memoir” means.

Reading Group Guide

Three Junes by Julia Glass

41eVpiRCc8L._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_  Loved It
2 Liked It
1 Neutral
1 Disliked It
1 Hated It

Comments:
• I read this a couple of years ago and don’t remember being impressed. – Marlo
• Hard to get into, but got better. I didn’t really like the main character – kind of irritating. – Carrie
• Stupid from the start. Waste of your time. – Sarah
• I didn’t get a chance to read it. : ( – Steph
• Liked what I read, but didn’t finish it… wanted to, though. -Brandi
• It took me forever to read it. I was only interested in the characters and the story in the middle section – the rest was just a time suck. – danica

Conclusion: It seemed like most of us didn’t get to finish it – whether we lost interest or everyday life stuff just got in the way. The few of us that did make it to the end, were not wholly impressed. Book club ended up being mostly about business and socializing this time – we did have a lot to figure out and discuss other than the book.

Reading Group Guide

A Man without a Country by Kurt Vonnegut

220px-AManWithoutACountry1 Loved It
4 Liked It
1 Neutral
1 Disliked It
1 Hated It

Comments:
• If you’re a socialist, you would like it. – Sarah
• Liked some parts of it. But overall, I didn’t enjoy it! – Sonia
• Read it twice in a row! Good sound bites still ring in my head. – Kerry
• I can’t get enough of Kurt Vonnegut – he’s one of my favorite writers of all time. – Steph
• A surprisingly fun read. I enjoyed his wry humor and shots at the administration. – Marlo

Conclusion: Most liked it and we discussed it a bit, but we didn’t have an AMAZING discussion. I think a lot of us didn’t feel like getting into a strong political debate so we just discussed a few different passages.

My Life in Orange: Growing Up with the Guru by Tim Guest

Because it was our 4th birthday, we decided to have gift exchange and decorate Kerry’s tree. It must be mentioned, Brandi left early and Lilac couldn’t move, therefore both are not in this picture.

11088631 Loved It
2 Liked It
1 Neutral
1 Disliked It
1 Hated It

Comments:
• Was interested in this cult before, good insight into what it was like living it. – Lilac
• A complete waste of tim. Reading the mundane details of someone’s childhood who you couldn’t care less about. – Stephanie
• The subject matter held my interest, but the writing style was rather dry. I would have liked to see some sort of evolution of character or mindset. – Marlo
• Was an interesting look at this boy’s life. – Sarah
• More a glimpse into the author’s life than an in-depth loook at the cult, but it was still an enjoyable read. – Brandi
• I wanted something more, but not sure what that “more” would be. I was left unsatisfied. – danica

Conclusion: Wow, we could not agree on this one at all. We also didn’t have much to say about it and didn’t even want to do the reading group questions.

Reading Group Guide

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

Kite_runner4 Loved It
1 Liked It
Neutral
1 Disliked It
Hated It

Comments:
• Was a lot better than expected from reading the back of the book. – Sarah
• Reads like a non-fiction book, very insightful to how severe the situation in Afghanistan was. – Lilac
• Such a good book. Loved the themes – guilt, courage and redemption. – Kerry
• A great book on many levels. Excellent story and imagery – I couldn’t put it down. – Stephanie
• Very hard to become excited about the main character. – Julie Ann

Conclusion: Recommended for book clubs. We had a lively discussion and most really enjoyed the book.

Reading Group Guide

Khaled Hosseini on NPR

My Sister’s Keeper: A Novel by Jodi Picoult

Sisterskeeper6 Loved It
3 Liked It
Neutral
Hated It

Comments:
• Very thought provoking. – Brandi
• Good discussion for that book! – Lilac
• Very easy read. – Lilac
• Good story, interestingly written, brought up good discussion. – Stephanie

Conclusion: We all really liked it and actually all finished it. We also had a really good diiscussion on ethics. Definitely recommended for book clubs.

Reading Group Guide

The Wind Done Gone: A Novel by Alice Randall

tumblr_m9hi38Qpyh1qgy74uo1_400  Loved It
1 Liked It
1 Neutral
2 Disliked
1 Hated It

Comments:
• A bit far-fetched, although I liked the premise. – Brandi
• I enjoyed watching Gone With the Wind again with everyone better than reading this book. – danica
• I didn’t understand the references to the movie and found it tedious and annoying. – Stephanie

Conclusion: Pretty luke warm response.

Reading Group Guide

Cannery Row by John Steinbeck

7110365 Loved It
1 Liked It
1 Neutral
Hated It

Comments:
• I am a sucker for Steinbeck, I love everything by him. – Lilac
• Chapter 2 is just an unbelievable piece of poetry. I could have put the book down then and been completely satisfied. – danica
• One of my favs. – Julie Ann
• One of my favorite books!!! – Stephanie

Conclusion: Most people like Steinbeck. We liked Steinbeck. We still like Steinbeck.

Reading Group Guide

A Lesson Before Dying: A Novel by Ernest J. Gaines

A_Lesson_Before_Dying_novel2 Loved It
3 Liked It
Neutral
1 Hated It

Conclusion: We seemed to mostly like this one. Unfortunately it is really hard to please everyone : )

Reading Group Guide

On another note…
For those of you who missed it, the wee ones just about out-numbered the adults! Next Gen of Babe(ies) with Brains. I think they were discussing “The Very Hungry Catepiller” this month. Next month’s selection… “Goodnight Moon.”
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