While they never saw combat, they paved the way for women in the Airforce and female pilots everywhere. I’m lucky enough to live near the National WASP museum and have visited and studied these courageous women.
Their story is fascinating and in Noelle Salazar’s debut, The Flight Girls, we get a picture of all they endured and accomplished. The novel follows one fictional WASP, Audrey Coltrane, as she experiences Pearl Harbor, signs up for service, and flies (literally) through the years of the war.
*If you are new here, WELCOME! For The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, I provide your book club with a brief summary, food ideas, activity idea, and discussion questions in that order!
Are you a fan of indie bookstores? Do you love short story collections? How about novels about found families? If so, then Gabrielle Zevin’s hit, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, should be on your list.
The novel’s central character, A.J. Fikry, is an independent book store owner and widower living on remote Alice Island. When a young girl shows up in his bookstore with no family left to claim her, A.J.’s life takes an unexpected turn.
Rife with literary references, especially short story ties, the novel will delight readers who can’t resist a good book about books.
*If you are new here, WELCOME! For Klara and the Sun, I provide your book club with a brief summary, food ideas, and discussion questions in that order!
If you haven’t heard of Kazuo Ishiguro, he is a Nobel Prize winner whose works, such as Never Let Me Go and The Remains of the Day, captivate readers. In his latest work, Klara and the Sun, Ishiguro tackles an A.I. infiltrated future society where Artificial Friends become the norm.
Unlike many A.I. centered tales, here the A.I. is friend not foe. In fact, the novel is told by an Artificial Friend, Klara, who longs for and is finally chosen by a child.
Klara is an unforgettable narrator who operates on reason and data, but prides herself in being more emotionally astute than her peers. In the novel, Ishiguro explores the depth of Klara’s emotional intelligence and its limits in a moving story of grief and hope.
You can definitely tell that you are in the hands of a master and, unlike many literary winners, the reading was anything but a slog. I was captivated from the moment I opened the book until the end.
*If you are new here, WELCOME! For The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, I provide your book club with a brief summary, food ideas, and discussion questions in that order!
Have you ever read an epistolary novel? Epistolary novels are stories told entirely through a series of letters. The form originated in 1740 when Samuel Richardson revolutionized story telling with Pamela.
Considered to be one of the first novel-type works, Pamela led a long trend of epistolary novels. But today the form is rare. You might recall that The Color Purple was an epistolary novel.
Other novels follow a similar format and use journal entries or other forms of correspondence to tell the story, but the use of letters alone is unusual these days.
I’m amazed that Shaffer and Barrows were able to include so many voices and still create a seamless story. The cast of characters is what really makes the novel an unforgettable and thoroughly enjoyable work.
The novel’s central character is a young writer, Juliet Ashton, who is searching for her next story in post-WWII England. When she receives a letter from the isolated island of Guernsey asking her to send a book, that simple request changes the course of her life and ultimately brings her to the island. There she finds a group of diverse literary lovers and the community she’s always longed for.
*If you are new here, WELCOME! For The Jane Austen Society, I provide your book club with a brief summary, food ideas, and discussion questions in that order!
If you love British novels, especially feel-good ones, then The Jane Austen Society is just your type of book. Set in post WWII England, the book takes place in the small village of Chawton.
You might recognize Chawton as it was one of the places Jane Austen lived during her lifetime.
The book fictionalizes the attempt to secure Jane Austen’s cottage in Chawton along with some of her things for historical purposes. Which by the way, is a real place. You can check it out HERE!
If you are a fan of Jane Austen, you’ll love that the characters in this novel are too and her works are referenced throughout the novel. In fact, you might catch a few similarities between the characters in this novel and those of Miss Austen.