New Book Discussion Kits July 2014

July 2, 2014

This completes the last order of book discussion kits, which was larger than normal thanks to a plethora of great suggestions.  This batch includes Bill Bryson’s One Summer and two kits of Daniel Brown’s The Boys in the Boat, finally out in paperback. Thanks as always to the Foundation for funding this great program, and to Hillary for expeditious processing. 

Zailckas, Koren. Mother, Mother. 

Josephine Hurst has her family under control: two beautiful daughters, a brilliantly intelligent son, a tech-guru of a husband and a historical landmark home. But living in this matriarch’s determinedly cheerful, yet subtly controlling domain hasn’t been easy for her family. When her oldest daughter, Rose, runs off with a mysterious boyfriend, Josephine tightens her grip, gradually turning her flawless home into a darker sort of prison.

Mother, mother : a novel

Mujmadar, Amit. The Abundance. 

“Mala and Ronak are surprisingly less comfortable with their dual Indian and American roots than their parents, part of an immigrant community that has happily embraced the New World. Told that their mother is about to die, they return home to the Midwest, where Mala persuades Ronak that they should immerse themselves in Indian culture by learning to cook their mother’s favorite recipes. Then Ronak hits upon the idea of capturing their experience in book and film, and all hell breaks loose.”–Library Journal.

The abundance : a novel

Egan, Timothy.  Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher. 

“Edward Curtis was dashing, charismatic, a passionate mountaineer, a famous photographer–the Annie Liebowitz of his time. And he was thirty-two years old in 1900 when he gave it all up to pursue his great idea: He would try to capture on film the Native American nation before it disappeared. At once an incredible adventure narrative and a penetrating biographical portrait,Egan‘s book tells the remarkable untold story behind Curtis’s iconic photographs, following him throughout Indian country from desert to rainforest as he struggled to document the stories and rituals of more than eighty tribes. Even with the backing of Theodore Roosevelt and J.P. Morgan, it took tremendous perseverance–six years alone to convince the Hopi to allow him into their Snake Dance ceremony. The undertaking changed him profoundly, from detached observer to outraged advocate. He would die penniless and unknown in Hollywood just a few years after publishing the last of his twenty volumes. But the charming rogue with the grade-school education had fulfilled his promise–his great adventure succeeded in creating one of America’s most stunning cultural achievements.”– Provided by publisher.

Short nights of the Shadow Catcher : the epic life and immortal photographs of Edward Curtis

Extence, Gavin.  The Universe Versus Alex Woods. 

Alex Woods was struck by a meteorite when he was ten years old, leaving scars that marked him for an extraordinary life. The son of a fortune teller, bookish, and an easy target for bullies, he hasn’t had the most conventional childhood. When he meets curmudgeonly widower Mr. Peterson, he finds an unlikely friend. Someone who teaches him that you only get one shot at life. That you have to make it count. So when, aged seventeen, Alex is stopped at Dover customs with 113 grams of marijuana, an urn full of ashes on the passenger seat, and an entire nation in uproar, he’s fairly sure he’s done the right thing …”–From publisher description.

The universe versus Alex Woods

Slouka, Mark. Brewster. 

Still reeling from the death of his older brother, a sixteen-year-old track star befriends a street-fighting rebel and together they search for redemption amidst the social changes of 1968.

Brewster : a novel

Brown, Daniel.  The Boys in the Boat.  (2 Kits)

Daniel James Brown‘s robust book tells the story of the University of Washington’s 1936 eight-oar crew and their epic quest for an Olympic gold medal, a team that transformed the sport and grabbed the attention of millions of Americans.

The boys in the boat : nine Americans and their epic quest for gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics

Bryson, Bill.  One Summer. 

Bryson examines closely the events and personalities of the summer of 1927 when America’s story was one of brawling adventure, reckless optimism and delirious energy.

One summer : America, 1927

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