Book Club Books

The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan

2 Loved It
2 Liked It
0 Neutral
0 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• This book is so full of information, I feel like my head is spinning. Really provocative in how I think about my own food and consumption choices. – Chelsea
• I really enjoyed the thinking that I have done since finishing this book. I learned a lot in each of the meals but by far the one that has stuck with me is the grass section. Specifically how evolutionarily, the plants and animals are all designed to support their individual needs as long as you work at maintaining their delicate balances. I see this on a micro level in my own edible garden but never considered this in animal food production. I have never lived on a farm or outside of a city, like most of our country, so it is not something we think about on the regular. – Danica
• I learned so much and it was well written. I liked the way he examined food from so many perspectives and it is quite scary how money and profit dictate what we eat. All that and I only got to 42%! I do plan on finishing. – Steph
• Great read to keep you thinking about what we consume. The part that stuck with me the most was  that we need a journalist to find out where our food is from! – Kerry
• I enjoyed this book much more that I thought I would. I thought the author would try to forward a certain agenda but was happy to see that it was mostly a look at food systems without making judgement calls. – Sarah

Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood

0 Loved It
1 Liked It
1 Neutral
0 Disliked It
1 Hated It

Comments:
• Don’t waste your time. Just read The Tempest directly. – Sarah
• It was great, not perfect, but I enjoyed it. I love theater, so the play within a play element was great for me. I loved the concept more than the execution. – Chelsea
• There were parts were I was super engaged, especially in the beginning but by the time the whole plot was coming to an apex, I just didn’t care anymore. I like the concept of this series, this one was just a little too obvious and beating you over the head with The Tempest story. – Danica

Jacqueline Kennedy: Historic Conversations on Life with John F. Kennedy by Jacqueline Kennedy

0 Loved It
3 Liked It
0 Neutral
0 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• It was an interesting look at that time of history from a very specific point of view. – Sarah
• I understand why the structure was how it was, but it didn’t have great flow. Glad of certain stories, but didn’t need some of them. – Chelsea
• I have always been fascinated by Jackie. I was very engaged and interested in the conversations about the events and people that I had previously known and had context, others where I had no reference, I wasn’t. I wish there was more about her feelings and events in her life, not just her trying to remember bits about Jack. It really shined a light on women’s roles and how they have changed since the 60’s. -Danica

The Association of Small Bombs by Karan Mahajan

0 Loved It
4 Liked It
1 Neutral
0 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• This book was a window into a different world. It was a devastating story but I’m glad I read it. – Steph
• I enjoyed this book for the things it made me contemplate although it was hard emotionally to go back to it daily. – Danica
• I was slow to set into it, but I really am glad that I waited it out and got to see how it ended. Ot ultimately left me sad at the outcome and how inevitable the tragedy of life seems. – Chelsea
• It was a difficult book to read at the beginning because of the subject matter. – Sarah
• It was an interesting view into how terrorism affects a non-western culture. Interesting to watch the evolution of a “terrorist.” – Carrie

The Spy by Paulo Coelho

0 Loved It
1 Liked It
4 Neutral
0 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• It was OK. It was a fast read and an interesting look at her life. – Sarah
• I thought this book was interesting, and touched on lots of interesting topics and issues like women’s roles and war, etc. – Steph
• There were parts I was super engaged and parts that I could care less about. I was very interested in her story but I feel like I didn’t really get the full picture of Mata Hari’s life. – Danica
• It was an interesting perspective and an easy read. Felt like parts were well developed and parts were rushed. – Carrie
• I was surprised at her story and vulnerabilities but ultimately I thought she was subject to the efforts to stifle women’s power in a patriarchal society. – Kerry

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

0 Loved It
5 Liked It
2 Neutral
0 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• Cute story. A nice reminder that it’s worth it to dig a little deeper to get to know someone. –
• I am not finished. Picked it up again today and read a lot. Plan to finish it. Definitely enjoying it. – Tami
• Sweet feel good story. Love ornery old men! – Carrie
• I was slow to set into it, but I ended up feeling warm and sweet at the ending and enjoyed the writing. – Chelsea
• I enjoyed the story and characters. I am glad I read this book and would recommend it. – Steph
• I didn’t dislike the story but I kept comparing it to Out of Sorts by Aurelie Valognes, I enjoyed the satire and humor in that one much more. If I hadn’t so recently read Out of Sorts, I think I would have come to this fresher and probably would have been more excited about it. The writing is great, the story structure is well done and the characters are well formed and distinct. – Danica

All the Single Ladies by Rebecca Traister

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

Comments:
• I couldn’t get through it, so I don’t know if it got better, but I found the author annoyingly opinionated and biased and unorganized. I felt like I kept re-reading the same thing. – Steph
• While the subject matter is very interesting and important to be written about, I found her tone very militant. I feel like the evolution of feminism has been freeing up the ability for women to chose many paths. It’s this ability to chose that is the prize of the all the hard fought battles of our predecessors, allowing many choices instead of one militant counter. The tone felt exclusive instead of inclusive and that really upset me. – Danica
• Very comprehensive, covers history, sociology, all classes and situations. I thought she presented a good description of changing demographics in today’s society. – Kerry
• The book was self indulgent and was clearly not written to forward a feminist agenda or seriously discuss single women. This book, can only appeal to people who think the same way as her. – Sarah
• I enjoyed the overview of history and current events and some of the points. For me, personally I really enjoyed the idea of studying and exploring this concept of women without the shaping of men. – Chelsea

December’s Book Club

15 years!!! As has been the tradition, we had our annual holiday/birthday party in lieu of an actual book club discussion, complete with gift exchange and our annual photo, this time at Chi’s Chinese. Thanks ladies for making it another great year!

The Martian by Andy Weir

3 Loved It
3 Liked It
1 Neutral
0 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• Still reading the book, half way through and enjoying it. – Vicki
• I started the book and plan to finish it. I saw the movie and really enjoyed it. – Tami
• I couldn’t get into it. I didn’t really like Mark’s voice. – Steph
• Love it and love the voice on Mark, just the right amount of science, pop culture and heat. – Chelsea
• Enjoyed the book, glossed over some of the science. Very quick read. – Carrie
• I really liked the book. The only part that is a far reach was the ending. The science part of the book is really fun. – Sarah
• I loved this book. My suspension of disbelief was there throughout because of the wins and losses in getting off the planet. I liked the character and his coping mechanisms. It made me think about exploration, isolation and the spirit of humanity in a crisis situation. – Danica

The Boston Girl: A Novel by Anita Diamant

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

Comments:
• The book was very easy to read, finished it in 2 days. However, not sure how I felt about it. Didn’t really stay with me. – Carrie
• I enjoyed the story and characters. I especially enjoyed how women lived in the time period. – Kerry
• I enjoyed the time period, as Kerry said. I learned some things about the historical time that it takes place in & I liked the tone that she sets. That being said, not special. – Chelsea
• It was boring and I just did not care. – Sarah
• I really liked the main character and her story and all of the issues that the book touched on like history, religion, women’s rights, challenges and health. I was sad when it ended. – Steph
• With my expectations being really high because I loved The Red Tent so much, I was greatly disappointed. I felt like we were  hitting the highlights of the 20th century, going from one historical event to another without really caring about or engaged in the characters lives. Because of this it felt disingenuous. – Danica

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot

0 Loved It
4 Liked It
0 Neutral
0 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• I was very intrigued by this book. Both by the science (though often over my head) and by the human story. – Carrie
• I read it a couple of years ago. I though it was very interesting and thought provoking. – Kerry
• I have really enjoyed reading this book – and I intend to finish it. It is very upsetting though and this is a whole world that I really didn’t know about before. The “cell culture” is new to me. – Steph
• I enjoyed the science and that it asked the moral question of what happens to your medical samples once their original intended direct personal testing is done. – Danica

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

51be6sbnrol-_sx318_bo1204203200_3 Loved It
1 Liked It
0 Neutral
0 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• I have loved this book since the 1st time I read it and the 4th time was great. – Chelsea
• I liked this book more than I thought I would. It was action packed and really fun. – Sarah
• I loved this book and can’t stop talking about it to anyone who loves 80’s or nerd culture. – Danica
• I liked this book. I found the characters relatable and the book fast paced. Loved all the 80’s references. Sometimes the tech was a little hard to follow. – Carrie

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

jane_eyre-10 Loved It
3 Liked It
1 Neutral
0 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• I didn’t like it as much as I did after reading it the first time. The first and last third of the book was really slow, but the middle was great. – Sarah
• I liked everything about this book! It was beautifully written and the story and characters were so compelling and thoughtful. I think it will lead to a great book club conversation about women, society, life, etc. – Steph
• I agree with both Steph & Sarah. I didn’t like it as much as I did the first time when I was 13. Bt the middle part was so compelling as a 21st century adult woman, it’s a little surreal – Chelsea
• I somehow never read this and completely don’t remember the movie, even though I know I’ve seen it. The story was fresh for me and I liked it. The religious restraint and societal constriction on women was not unknown to me but still surprising and unnerving nontheless. – Danica

Out of Sorts by Aurelie Valognes

278426860 Loved It
6 Liked It
1 Neutral
0 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• I was surprised how much I enjoyed this book. It is a really cute grumpy old man story and was funny. – Sarah
• I enjoyed this book. It was sweet and kept my interest – a little unbelievable – but still OK with me. – Steph
• Fast and easy read. Feel good story. Predictable but fun. – Carrie
• I found some of the characters interesting but didn’t love the overall story. – Shannon
• Very fast enjoyable read. I found the characters fun. – Vicki
• Very fast. Finished it. Woohoo! Enjoyed it! – Tami
• This book held my interest and I thought it was very cute and fun. I found myself telling people it was so French and cute which intrigued them. – Danica

Welcome to Night Vale by Joseph Fink & Jeffrey Cranor

static1.squarespace0 Loved It
0 Liked It
1 Neutral
4 Disliked It
0 Hated It

Comments:
• This is it? That was what this all built up to? I was so disappointed. – Danica
• I didn’t like anything about this book. I think the contradictions were meant to be clever or funny  but I didn’t find them so. – Steph
• I usually like odd books like this, but I found that I just did not care. None of the characters were relatable. – Sarah
• Really hard to get into and follow. First half was slow and boring. I finally got interested toward the end, but overall not impressed. – Carrie
• I agree with Carrie, the first half just plodded along and I didn’t think the payoff was worth it. I think it is probably more successful as a podcast. – Chelsea

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