Posted by: lauradebacle | April 3, 2014

The Monuments Men by Robert M. Edsel

MonumentsMenAt the same time Adolf Hitler was attempting to take over the western world, his armies were methodically seeking and hoarding the finest art treasures in Europe. The Fuhrer had begun cataloging the art he planned to collect as well as the art he would destroy: ‘degenerate’ works he despised.

In a race against time, behind enemy lines, often unarmed, a special force of American and British museum directors, curators, art historians, and others, called the Momuments Men, risked their lives scouring Europe to prevent the destruction of thousands of years of culture.

Focusing on the eleven-month period between D-Day and V-E Day, this fascinating account follows six Monuments Men and their impossible mission to save the world’s great art from the Nazis.

Place a hold on this non-fiction kit here.

Find discussion questions for your book club here.


Posted by: lauradebacle | April 3, 2014

Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline

OrphanTrainPenobscot Indian Molly Ayer is close to ‘aging out’ of the foster care system. A community service position helping an elderly woman clean out her home is the only thing keeping Molly out of juvie and worse…. As she helps Vivian sort through her possessions and memories, Molly learns that she and Vivian aren’t as different as they seem to be. A young Irish immigrant orphaned in New York City, Vivian was put on a train to the Midwest with hundreds of other children whose destinies would be determined by luck and chance. Molly discovers that she has the power to help Vivian find answers to mysteries that have haunted her for her entire life–answers that will ultimately free them both. Rich in detail and epic in scope, Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline is a powerful novel of upheaval and resilience, of unexpected friendship, and of the secrets we carry that keep us from finding out who we are.

Place a hold on the kit here.

Find discussion questions for this title here.

Posted by: lauradebacle | September 28, 2013

The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson

Orphan Master's SonPak Jun Do is the haunted son of a lost mother–a singer “stolen” to Pyongyang–and an influential father who runs a work camp for orphans. Superiors in the state soon recognize the boy’s loyalty and keen instincts. Considering himself “a humble citizen of the greatest nation in the world,” Jun Do rises in the ranks. He becomes a professional kidnapper who must navigate the shifting rules, arbitrary violence, and baffling demands of his Korean overlords in order to stay alive. Driven to the absolute limit of what any human being could endure, he boldly takes on the treacherous role of rival to Kim Jong Il in an attempt to save the woman he loves, Sun Moon, a legendary actress “so pure, she didn’t know what starving people looked like.”

Place a hold on the kit here.

View sample discussion questions for your group here.

Posted by: lauradebacle | September 28, 2013

Comet’s Tale by Steven D. Wolf

Comet's TaleForced into early retirement by a spinal condition, Steven Wolf reluctantly left his family for Arizona’s warm winter climate. A lifelong dog lover, the former hard-driving attorney is drawn to a group that rescues retired greyhounds. When Comet, a once-abused racer, chooses to “adopt” Wolf, a life-altering relationship begins. After Wolf shows the mistrustful dog how to thrive in the real world, the tables turn and Comet helps Wolf with the most basic skills.

Place a hold on this non-fiction kit here.

See sample discussion questions here.

Posted by: lauradebacle | June 6, 2013

Last Child in the Woods by Richard Louv

Last Child in the WoodsLouv illustrates how the alienation of today’s children from nature can lead to a host of childhood disorders–and he offers effective methods for healing this rift.  He talks with parents, children, teachers, scientists, religious leaders, child-development researchers, and environmentalists to find ways for children to experience the natural world more deeply. 

Place a hold on this non-fiction kit here.

Find ideas for reconnecting with the natural world on the author’s website.

WildIn the wake of her mother’s death, Cheryl Strayed’s family scattered and her marriage was destroyed. Four years later, twenty-six years old with nothing to lose, Cheryl made the decision to hike the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert to Washington State – alone. She had no experience as a long-distance hiker and the trail was little more than an idea. But it was a promise of piecing back together a life that had come undone.

Place a hold on this non-fiction kit here.

See discussion questions for your club here.

Posted by: lauradebacle | May 4, 2013

Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter

Beautiful RuinsA novel that spans fifty years. The Italian housekeeper and his long-lost American starlet; the producer who once brought them together, and his assistant. A glittering world filled with unforgettable characters.

Place a hold on the kit here.

Find discussion questions about the novel here.

Posted by: lauradebacle | February 1, 2013

Rules of Civility by Amor Towles

Rules of CivilityOn the last night of 1937, twenty-five-year-old Katey Kontent is in a second-rate Greenwich Village jazz bar when Tinker Grey, a handsome banker, happens to sit at the neighboring table. This chance encounter and its startling consequences propel her on a yearlong journey toward the upper echelons of New York society–where she will have little to rely upon other than a bracing with and her own brand of cool nerve.

Place your hold on the kit here.

Find discussion questions for your group here.

Posted by: lauradebacle | February 1, 2013

The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom

Kitchen HouseAt the turn of the nineteenth century on a tobacco plantation in Virginia, young, white Lavinia, who was orphaned on her passage from Ireland, arrives on the steps of the kitchen house and is placed under the care of Belle, the master’s illegitimate, black daughter. Lavinia learns to cook, clean, serve food, and cherish the quiet strength and love of her new family. In time, Lavinia is accepted into the world of the big house, caring for the master’s opium-addled wife and befriending his dangerous yet protective son. She attempts to straddle the worlds of the kitchen and big house, but her skin color will forever set her apart from Belle and the other slaves. Through the unique eyes of Lavinia and Belle, Kathleen Grissom’s debut novel unfolds in a heartbreaking and ultimately hopeful story of class, race, dignity, deep-buried secrets, and familial bonds.   

Place a hold on this kit here.

Find discussion questions here.

Posted by: lauradebacle | May 25, 2012

The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman

In 70 CE, 900 Jews held out against armies of Romans on a mountain in Masada. According to an ancient historian, two women and five children survived. Based on this tragic event, Hoffman weaves a tale of four bold, resourceful, and sensuous women, each of whom has come to Masada by a different path. Place a hold on the kit here.

See discussion questions for the novel here.

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