November 2, 2009

Now Hosting "The Best Books Club"

Welcome to the new and tentative home of the Best Books Club, a book club taking up where Cody 3rd Ward Enrichment book club left off.
If you read October's selection, The Help, by Kathryn Stockett, please feel free to leave a comment or email me your comments and I will post them here. I know not many of you were able to get your hands on a copy.
Be prepared to meet three unforgettable women: Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone. Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken. Minny, Aibileen’s best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody’s business, but she can’t mind her tongue, so she’s lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own. Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed. In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women—mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends—view one another. A deeply moving novel filled with poignancy, humor, and hope, The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don’t.

Click HERE for study questions about The Help.

November's Selection Choices are:
These Is My Words, by Nancy F. Turner: Based on the real-life exploits of the author's great-grandmother, this fictionalized diary vividly details one woman's struggles with life and love in frontier Arizona at the end of the last century. When she begins recording her life, Sarah Prine is an intelligent, headstrong 18-year-old capable of holding her own on her family's settlement near Tucson. Her skill with a rifle fends off a constant barrage of Indian attacks and outlaw assaults. It also attracts a handsome Army captain named Jack Elliot. By the time she's 21, Sarah has recorded her loveless marriage to a family friend, the establishment of a profitable ranch, the birth of her first child?and the death of her husband. The love between Jack and Sarah, which dominates the rest of the tale, has begun to blossom. Fragmented and disjointed in its early chapters, with poor spelling and grammar, Sarah's journal gradually gains in clarity and eloquence as she matures. While this device may frustrate some readers at first, Taylor's deft progression produces the intended reward: she not only tells of her heroine's growth, but she shows it through Sarah's writing and insights. The result is a compelling portrait of an enduring love, the rough old West and a memorable pioneer. First serial to Good Housekeeping; author tour; Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club selections. (Feb.) FYI: Selected as the March 1998 Good Housekeeping "Novel of the Month."
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

The Wednesday Letters, by Jason F. Wright, is the story of Jack and Laurel. Married 39 years, the Coopers lived a good life and appear to have had a near-perfect relationship. Then one night, with his wife cradled in his arms, and before Jack takes his last breath, he scribbles his final "Wednesday Letter."
When their three adult children arrive to arrange the funeral, they discover boxes and boxes full of love letters that their father wrote to their mother on every single Wednesday. As they begin to open and read the letters, the children uncover unimaginable adventures and the shocking truth about their past.
The Wednesday Letters has a powerful message about redemption and forgiveness. And it just might inspire you to begin writing your own Wednesday Letters. A New York Times Bestseller. Jason F. Wright is the LDS author of Christmas Jars.

Google either of these titles for more information on the stories and authors. Enjoy, and I look forward to hearing from you!


M. Gray said...

You know, that's a great idea, to have your Ward's book club's books and comments on your blog. Maybe I should do that... although I don't actually run the book club--I'm more of an enthusiastic participant. ;)

Krista said...

I am hoping this works! I really enjoyed The Help, in a way that it was eye-opening. I have never understood racism, but it was clarifying to read as the voice of someone, intelligent, opinionated, feeling and understanding, who was treated as one only slightly above the animals. I loved the wit, the way these women figured their way through things, exposing their "oppressors" as merely sheep, stuck in a way of thinking, blind to progress and forward thinking. This book was another education to me, just adding to what I already believed, enforcing it.

Krista said...

The Wednesday Letters: I like the characters, the unfolding of the mysteries in the letters, the emotion of the main character. It was sweet and inspiring, to write journal entries or letters honestly, to make the most of time here.
I thought the end was lacking in something... not sure, but I wanted a little more resolution, though I did like the jump to a few years later. Also, the detailed description of A&P in the beginning made me think she would play a much bigger role, but her character only faded through the story.
I really enjoyed this touching story, though. It was an enjoyable escape during a busy time.

Jessica Taggart said...

I cannot express how much I enjoyed The Help. I loved the point of view, the humor and the stark look at racism that was portrayed in this book. I like to think of myself as someone that is accepting of all people, but I couldn't help but wonder how my thoughts would have differed (if at all) had I been born in a different time. This book does a great job of making the tension during that era palpable while allowing the reader to become endeared to so many characters.

Quilting Bug said...

Wednesday's Letters is a reminder that in spite of trials, love still remains strong and lasting. We love others for who they are and love them for who they can become.
Truly an enjoyable and teaching book.
Glad I have it in my home library.
Arlene Brimhall

angelaokada said...

The Help: This book does a great job at showing the courage and risk it takes to stand up against prejudices for a brighter future. The author reminds us to take a look at what is happening right under our own noses. The characters are enjoyable and well worth getting to know. It's hard for me to believe these things were actually going on in my life time!

Cathy Okada

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