Full booklist

This is a full booklist of all titles read by Eleanor Murphy Book Club. You can also view only their upcoming meetings or, if you really like their taste in books, a printable list of authors and titles to use as a reading list.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck

Nobel Laureate Pearl S. Buck’s epic Pulitzer Prize-winning novel and Oprah Book Club selection about a vanished China and one family’s shifting fortunes.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Visitation Street by Ivy Pochoda

It’s summertime in Red Hook, Brooklyn, a blue-collar dockside neighborhood. June and Val, two fifteen-year-olds, take a raft out onto the bay at night to see what they can see.

And then they disappear. Only Val will survive, washed ashore; semi-conscious in the weeds.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

Three sisters have returned to their childhood home, reuniting the eccentric Andreas family. Here, books are a passion (there is no problem a library card can't solve) and TV is something other people watch. Their father-a professor of Shakespeare who speaks almost exclusively in verse-named them after the Bard's heroines. It's a lot to live up to.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: A Killing in the Hills by Julia Keller

What's happening in Acker's Gap, West Virginia? Three elderly men are gunned down over their coffee at a local diner, and seemingly half the town is there to witness the act. Still, it happened so fast, and no one seems to have gotten a good look at the shooter.  Was it random? Was it connected to the spate of drug violence plaguing poor areas of the country just like Acker's Gap? Or were Dean Streeter, Shorty McClurg, and Lee Rader targeted somehow?

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Heartsick by Chelsea Cain

Portland detective Archie Sheridan spent years tracking Gretchen Lowell, a beautiful and brutal serial killer. In the end, she was the one who caught him…and tortured him…and then let him go. Why did Gretchen spare Archie’s life and then turn herself in? This is the question that keeps him up all night—and the reason why he has visited Gretchen in prison every week since.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The Secret History by Donna Tartt

Under the influence of their charismatic classics professor, a group of clever, eccentric misfits at an elite New England college discover a way of thinking and living that is a world away from the humdrum existence of their contemporaries. But when they go beyond the boundaries of normal morality their lives are changed profoundly and forever, and they discover how hard it can be to truly live and how easy it is to kill.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman

A novel set on a remote Australian island, where a childless couple live quietly running a lighthouse, until a boat carrying a baby washes ashore.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 13, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs... for now.

Two years post-miracle, sixteen-year-old Hazel is post-everything else, too; post-high school, post-friends and post-normalcy. And even though she could live for a long time (whatever that means), Hazel lives tethered to an oxygen tank, the tumours tenuously kept at bay with a constant chemical assault.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The Zookeeper's Wife by Diane Ackerman

Documents the true story of Warsaw Zoo keepers and resistance activists Jan and Antonina Zabinski, who in the aftermath of Germany's invasion of Poland saved the lives of hundreds of Jewish citizens by smuggling them into empty cages and their home villa.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Rules of Civility by Amor Towles

A chance encounter with a handsome banker in a jazz bar on New Year's Eve 1938 catapults Wall Street secretary Katey Kontent into the upper echelons of New York society, where she befriends a shy multi-millionaire, an Upper East Side ne'er-do-well, and a single-minded widow.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Before I Go to Sleep by S.J. Watson

'As I sleep, my mind will erase everything I did today. I will wake up tomorrow as I did this morning. Thinking I'm still a child. Thinking I have a whole lifetime of choice ahead of me ...' Memories define us. So what if you lost yours every time you went to sleep? Your name, your identity, your past, even the people you love—all forgotten overnight. And the one person you trust may only be telling you half the story. Welcome to Christine's life.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple

When her notorious, hilarious, volatile, talented, troubled, and agoraphobic mother goes missing, teenage Bee begins a trip that takes her to the ends of the earth to find her.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

When a woman goes missing on her fifth wedding anniversary, her diary reveals hidden turmoil in her marriage, while her husband, desperate to clear himself of suspicion, realizes that something more disturbing than murder may have occurred.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe

Recounts how the author and his mother read and discussed books during her chemotherapy treatments, describing how the activity involved a wide range of literary genres, furthered their appreciation for literature, and strengthened their bond.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

A collection of some of the finest Sherlock Holmes mysteries, as described and told by his assistant, Dr. Watson.

 Enjoy Sherlock-themed teas during this discussion of the  2013 Community Read book.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh

When Victoria Jones starts working for a florist, she realizes her talent with flowers helps her change the lives of the people who buy her creations. But when she must confront her painful past, she has to decide how much she is willing to change.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Bury Your Dead by Louise Penny

Chief Inspector Armand Gamache is facing one of its most strange cases: a man has been brutally murdered in a library where the English citizens of Quebec safeguard their history. The death opens a door into the past, exposing a mystery that has lain dormant for centuries.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

A fierce competition is underway, a contest between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood to compete in "a game," in which each must use their powers of illusion to best the other. Unbeknownst to them, this game is a duel to the death, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

Margaret Lea works in her father’s antiquarian bookshop where her fascination for the biographies of the long-dead has led her to write them herself. She gets a letter from one of the most famous authors of the day, the mysterious Vida Winter, whose popularity as a writer has been in no way diminished by her reclusiveness. Until now, Vida has toyed with journalists who interview her, creating outlandish life histories for herself --- ;all of them invention.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: The Saturday Big Tent Wedding by Alexander McCall Smith

In this book from the No. 1  Ladies' Detective Agency, Precious Ramotswe faces two confounding cases: the mysterious fate of some cows, and the ghost-like reappearance of her dear old white van.
 

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Next to Love by Ellen Feldman

Join the Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club as we read  Next to Love by Ellen Feldman, a tltle recommended for fans of The Guernsey Literary Society , The Postmistress, and The Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet. 

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Explosive Eighteen by Janet Evanovich

Join the Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club as we read a Stephanie Plum mystery, Explosive Eighteen by Janet Evanovich

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Sullivan's Island by Dorothea Benton Frank

Join the Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club as we read a Lowcountry Tale, Sullivan's Island by Dorothea Benton Frank.

**We will be meeting the 2nd Tuesday in July instead of the 1st Tuesday**

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Naughty in Nice by Rhys Bowen

Join the Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club as we read a Royal Spyness mystery, Naughty in Nice by Rhys Bowen. 

In 1933, Georgie, the mystery world’s favorite penniless heiress, escapes to the French Riviera after Her Majesty the Queen sends her there on a mission to recover her stolen snuff box.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: A Gathering of Old Men by Earnest Gaines

Join the Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club as we read the 2012 Community Read Book, A Gathering of Old Men by Earnest Gaines.

Crunch Time by Diane Mott Davidson

Join the Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club as we read Crunch Time by Diane Mott Davidson.

Colorado caterer Goldy Schulz cooks up big trouble as she tries to help her longtime friend and fellow chef Yolanda Garcia. When the rental house shared by Yolanda and her irrepressible aunt Ferdinanda is destroyed by arson, the pair move in with cop-turned-PI Ernest McLeod. But then Ernest is shot dead and his house is set on fire, nearly killing Goldy, Yolanda, Ferdinanda, and nine beagle puppies that Ernest had recently rescued from a puppy mill.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: One for the Money by Janet Evanovich

Join the Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club as we read a title from the Stephanie Plum mystery series by Janet Evanovich.

Read the book before you see the movie. The movie by the same title will be in theaters on January 27, 2012.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Apple Turnover Murder by Joanne Fluke

Join the Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club as we read a title from the Hannah Swenson mystery series by Joanne Fluke.

Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club: Stork Raving Mad by Donna Andrews

Join the Eleanor E. Murphy Book Club as we read a title from the Meg Lanslow mystery series by Donna Andrews.

Meg is eight and a half months pregnant with twins when Michael asks if she wouldn’t mind another houseguest. One of his doctoral students is directing his new translation of a play by a minor Spanish playwright, and the playwright has agreed to come to town for the production.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

It is the summer of 1950–and at the once-grand mansion of Buckshaw, young Flavia de Luce, an aspiring chemist with a passion for poison, is intrigued by a series of inexplicable events: A dead bird is found on the doorstep, a postage stamp bizarrely pinned to its beak. Then, hours later, Flavia finds a man lying in the cucumber patch and watches him as he takes his dying breath. For Flavia, who is both appalled and delighted, life begins in earnest when murder comes to Buckshaw.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: U is for Undertow

It's April 1988, a month before Kinsey Millhone's thirty-eighth birthday, and she's alone in her office catching up on paperwork when a young man arrives unannounced. Michael Sutton is twenty-seven, an unemployed college dropout. More than two decades ago, a four-year-old girl disappeared, and a recent newspaper story about her kidnapping has triggered a flood of memories. Sutton now believes he stumbled on her lonely burial and could identify the killers if he saw them again. He wants Kinsey's help in locating the grave and finding the men.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Same Kind of Different as Me

****Please Note: Book Club is rescheduled from Tues, May 3rd. ****

Meet Denver, a man raised under plantation-style slavery in Louisiana in the 1960s; a man who escaped, hopping a train to wander, homeless, for eighteen years on the streets of Dallas, Texas. No longer a slave, Denver's life was still hopeless-until God moved. First came a godly woman who prayed, listened, and obeyed. And then came her husband, Ron, an international arts dealer at home in a world of Armani-suited millionaires. And then they all came together.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Wicked City

Phenix City, Alabama, from its founding during the Civil War, has been the dirty, not-so-little secret of the South. It is a riverside no-man's land, a place where a blind eye has historically been turned to vice of every sort, including prostitution, gambling, and even murder. Atkins shows us Phenix City in its 1950s hey-day, where a battle is building between a handful of decent citizens and the underworld willing to do anything to maintain their control.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Julie and Julia

Nearing 30 and trapped in a dead-end secretarial job, Julie Powell reclaims her life by cooking every single recipe in Julia Child's legendary Mastering the Art of French Cooking in the span of one year.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Plum Spooky

Stephanie Plum is back in town, along with her sidekick Lula, her Grandma Mazur, and an ever-widening cast of freaks, criminals, deranged felons, and lunatics looking for love. And just when she thinks her life can't get any more complicated, in walks the mysterious Diesel.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: In the Sanctuary of Outcasts

Neil White, a journalist and magazine publisher, wanted the best for those he loved-nice cars, beautiful homes, luxurious clothes. He loaned money to family and friends, gave generously to his church, and invested in his community-but his bank account couldn't keep up. Soon White began moving money from one account to another to avoid bouncing checks. His world fell apart when the FBI discovered his scheme and a judge sentenced him to serve eighteen months in a federal prison. But it was no ordinary prison.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Lace Reader

When her great-aunt dies, Towner Whitney returns to Salem, Massachusetts, to deal with ghosts, real and imagined, historical and current. With the first sentence, Towner announces herself as an unreliable narrator, and just how unreliable she is remains a mystery through most of the novel. Towner is mourning the death of her beloved twin sister, recovering from surgery, and recovering from shock treatments administered to help her cope with her depression. She belongs to a family of lace readers and is a reluctant seer who also has the ability to read other people's thoughts.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Cape Ann

The Cape Ann is the name on the plans of the house that Lark Ann Ehrhart and her mother plan to build some day. It is the place to which six-year-old Lark escapes in daydreams when her parents begin to argue, the home that her mother dreams offar from the rooms in the train depot where they live and Lark's father works. Ultimately it symbolizes escape from Harvester, Minn., and independence from the husband and father whose gambling repeatedly sabotages their dream. Lark narrates the adult events of Harvester's Catholic culture without always understanding them.

Murphy Book Club: The Help

In Jackson, Mississippi, in 1962, there are lines that are not crossed. With the civil rights movement exploding all around them, three women start a movement of their own, forever changing a town and the way women--black and white, mothers and daughters--view one another.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Help

In Kathryn Stockett's stunning fiction debut, The Help, 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.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Cold Sassy Tree

When Grandpa E. Rucker Blakeslee announces one July morning in 1906 that he's aiming to marry the young and freckledy milliner, Miss Love Simpson - a bare three weeks after Granny Blakeslee has gone to her reward - the news is served up all over town with that afternoon's dinner. Boggled by the sheer audacity of it all, and not a little jealous of his grandpa's new wife, Will nevertheless approves of this May-December match and follows its progress with just a smidgen of youthful prurience.

Murphy Book Club: The Art of Racing in the Rain

Nearing the end of his life, Enzo, a dog with a philosopher's soul, tries to bring together the family, pulled apart by a three year custody battle between daughter Zoe's maternal grandparents and her father Denny, a race car driver.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

1946: London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she's never met. As Juliet and her new correspondent exchange letters, Juliet is drawn into his world, his island, his friends' taste in books, and the impact the recent German occupation has had on their lives.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group - Cedar Cove Christmas

After a comedy of errors on Christmas Eve, a very pregnant woman traveling to Cedar Cove to search for her child's father--who doesn't know she's pregnant--finds herself lodging in an apartment above a barn. The residents of Cedar Grove come to her rescue as an early labor begins.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group - Ghost Riders

Tough, resilient Malinda Blalock is dismayed when her husband, Keith, leaves their Appalachian mountain farmstead to join up with the Confederate Army in hopes of earning money. Not content to wait out the war at home, spitfire Malinda cuts her hair and enlists herself as "Sam," Keith's younger brother. Their tour of duty is cut short by a deliberate scheme to get themselves discharged, and they move on to become do-gooder outlaws, known throughout the Appalachians.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Body In the Attic

Faith packs up the kids and her catering business for a semester's stint in Cambridge, where her minister husband, Tom, will teach at Harvard and serve the homeless. In the rambling old house the family inhabits in Cambridge, Faith's children find an old wardrobe that contains . . . not Narnia but a diary from 1946.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Body Farm

In rural North Carolina, the brutal murder of eleven-year-old Emily Steiner has shaken a small town. But more disturbing are the details of the crimes, chillingly reminiscent of the handiwork of a serial killer who has eluded the unit for years. Into this volatile atmosphere comes Scarpetta's ingenious, rebellious niece Lucy, an FBI intern with a promising future in Quantico's computer engineering facility--until she is accused of a shocking security violation.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group - Big Stone Gap

Ave Maria Mulligan is the daughter of the late pharmacist of Bit Stone Gap, Va., and an immigrant Italian seamstress. She inherited the pharmacy when her father died, but it's only her mother's recent death that made Ave realize that, at 35, she's the town spinster.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group - Murder on the Orient Express

While en route from Syria to Paris, in the middle of a freezing winter's night, the Orient Express is stopped dead in its tracks by a snowdrift. Passengers awake to find the train still stranded and to discover that a wealthy American has been brutally stabbed to death in his private compartment. Incredibly, that compartment is locked from the inside... 

Eleanor Murphy Book Group - Three Cups of Tea

One day in 1993, high up in the world's most inhospitable mountains, Greg Mortenson wandered lost and alone, broken in body and spirit, after a failed attempt to climb K2, the world's deadliest peak. When the people of an impoverished village in Pakistan took him in and nursed him back to health, Mortenson made an impulsive promise: He would return one day and build them a school.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: The Thief and the Dogs

After four years in prison, the skilled young thief Said Mahran emerges bent on revenge in a changed world. His wife has married a trusted friend; his native Egypt has undergone a revolution; and his mentor, who encouraged his Robin Hood-style crimes, has abandoned him. As Said's wild attempts to achieve his idea of justice badly misfire, he becomes a hunted man so driven by hatred that he can only recognize too late his last chance at redemption.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group - Double Shot

The governor of Colorado has commuted the prison sentence of Goldy Schulz's ultra-handsome, ultra-charming, ultra-wealthy, ultra-venal ex-husband, Dr. John Richard Korman, otherwise known to Goldy as the Jerk. He's released, and soon afterward Goldy becomes the victim of threats, rumors, and violence. Then there's a murder and suspicion centers on Goldy.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: the books of Fannie Flagg

Alabama-born writer Fannie Flagg got her start on Candid Camera and performed in movies and plays before returning to her first love: writing. Those new to her writing will know her best for "Fried Green Tomatoes," set in the slightly off-kilter South she clearly loves.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: All Over But the Shoutin'

Bragg relates his own segregation-era Alabama rags-to-riches tale. Abandoned by her husband, Bragg's mother was left to raise three sons on her own. They were dirt poor, but Bragg remembers childhood as being "sweet and warm," thanks largely to his mother. Bragg never forgets what he owes her, and the book's climax is the Pulitzer Prize award ceremony, which his mother attended, having taken her first ride on an airplane and her first ride on an elevator to get there.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: Holly, Jolly Murder

Bookstore owner Claire Malloy finds that her desire to be helpful (propelled by an insatiable nosiness) gets her deeply involved in a puzzling midwinter murder. Wealthy physician and landlord Nicholas Chunder has been shot, and evidence points to several of his tenants who are members of his very own cult, The Druids of the Sacred Grove of Keltria.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: On Agate Hill

Molly Petree, orphaned by the Civil War, is by her own definition "a spitfire and a burden. I do not care. My family is a dead family, and this is not my home, for I am a refugee girl." When a mysterious benefactor appears out of her father's past to rescue her, teenaged Molly Petree never looks back. Taking what she is offered, she saves herself and then risks everything to hold true to her nature and to true love. 

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: The Five People You Meet in Heaven

Eddie's job is fixing rides at a seaside amusement park. On his 83rd birthday, a tragic accident kills him as he tries to save a little girl from a falling cart. He awakes in the afterlife, where he learns that heaven is not a destination, but where your life is explained to you by five people, some of whom you knew, others who may have been strangers. One by one, from childhood to soldier to old age, Eddie's five people revisit his life and reveal the haunting secret behind the eternal question: Why was I here? 

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: Blessed are the Cheesemakers

Lynch's debut novel is a tender love story told through cheese. Corrie and Fee are the aging Irish manufacturers of world-renowned Coolarney Blue. Their chief worry is a conspicuous lack of successors, and the narrative chronicles the solution to their quest in the unlikely but fated convergence of two characters.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: Malpractice in Maggody

Maggody, Arkansas has been so quiet that even police chief Arly Hanks has found time for a vacation. But she returns to find trouble brewing. The local old-folks' home has been sold to a mysterious outsider, and overnight the place has been transformed into the Stonebridge Foundation, an exclusive rehab center complete with a stone-faced guard who doesn't speak English and an even nastier dog. Everyone is dying to know what goes on behind those inhospitable gates, with the exception of Arly, who has enough rural business to keep her satisfied.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: Water for Elephants

Life is good for Jacob Jankowski. He's about to graduate from veterinary school and about to bed the girl of his dreams. Then his parents are killed in a car crash, leaving him in the middle of the Great Depression with no home, no family, and no career. Almost by accident, Jacob joins the circus. There he falls in love with the beautiful performer Marlena, who is married to the circus' psychotic animal trainer. He also meets the other love of his life, Rosie the elephant.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: The Maltese Falcon

Sam Spade is a partner in a private-eye firm who finds himself hounded by police when his partner is killed while tailing a man. The woman who asked his partner to follow the man turns out to be someone who is not what she says she is, and is really involved in something to do with the 'Maltese Falcon', a gold-encrusted life-sized statue of a falcon, the only one of its kind. This event is part of The Big Read 2008.

Eleanor Murphy Book Group: The Cherry Cheesecake Murder

A film crew in search of a quaint Minnesota location has landed in Hannah's 'hood, and filming goes smoothly until the director, a womanizing tyrant, accidentally shoots himself on the set. But was his death really an accident? Of course not. Someone nabbed the unloaded prop gun and left another revolver in its place. Between baking batches of Double Flake Cookies and Angel Kisses, Hannah figures out whodunit. This event is part of The Big Read 2008.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Memory Keeper's Daughter

On a winter night in 1964, Dr. David Henry is forced by a blizzard to deliver his own twins. His son, born first, is perfectly healthy. Yet when his daughter is born, he sees immediately that she has Down's Syndrome. Rationalizing it as a need to protect Norah, his wife, he makes a split-second decision that will alter all of their lives forever. He asks his nurse to take the baby away to an institution and never to reveal the secret.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Miss Julia Speaks Her Mind

When Miss Julia's husband passed away, he left his proper Southern wife two legacies. The first: his estate. The second: a bastard son. Suddenly, this longtime church member and pillar of her small community finds herself in the center of an unseemly scandal.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

The story of the delightfully cunning and enormously engaging Precious Ramotswe, who is drawn to her profession to "help people with problems in their lives." Immediately upon setting up shop in a small storefront in Gaborone, she is hired to track down a missing husband, uncover a con man, and follow a wayward daughter. But the case that tugs at her heart, and lands her in danger, is a missing eleven-year-old boy, who may have been snatched by witchdoctors.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Track of the Cat

Anna Pigeon has fled New York City after the accidental death of her husband, and she now works as a law enforcement ranger at Guadaloupe Mountains National Park. There she finds the remains of fellow ranger Sheila Drury, who apparently was clawed to death by a mountain lion. Although an autopsy confirms this judgment, Anna becomes convinced that the claw marks have been faked. Her superiors discourage her from probing further, but another supposedly accidental death goads her into investigating Sheila's activities before her death.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Life of Pi

In his 16th year, Pi sets sail with his family and some of their menagerie to start a new life in Canada. Halfway to Midway Island, the ship sinks into the Pacific, leaving Pi stranded on a life raft with a hyena, an orangutan, an injured zebra and a 450-pound Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. After the beast dispatches the others, Pi is left to survive for 227 days with his large feline companion on the 26-foot-long raft, using all his knowledge, wits and faith to keep himself alive.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Tenth Circle

Trixie Stone is fourteen years old and in love for the first time. She's also the light of her father's life - a straight-A student; a freshman in high school who is pretty and popular; a girl who's always looked up to Daniel Stone as a hero. Until, that is, her world is turned upside down with a single act of violence ... and suddenly everything Trixie has believed about her family - and herself - seems to be a lie.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: A Quiche Before Dying

With the kids packed off on their summer road trips, it's an ideal time for Jane Jeffry to pursue other interests, so the harried suburban mom enrolls in a writing course at the community college. But when an obnoxious aged classmate keels over dead after sampling a tasty treat from a pot luck student buffet, Jane realizes there's a culinary killer among the local would-be literati. 

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Uniform Justice

Neither Commissario Brunetti nor his wife Paola have ever had much sympathy for the Italian armed forces, so when a young cadet is found hanged, a presumed suicide, in Venice's elite military academy, Brunetti's emotions are complex: pity and sorrow for the death of a boy, close in age to his own son, and contempt and irritation for the arrogance and high-handedness of the boy's teachers and fellow-students.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: To Kill A Mockingbird

Set in the small Southern town of Maycomb, Alabama, during the Depression, To Kill a Mockingbird follows three years in the life of 8-year-old Scout Finch, her brother, Jem, and their father, Atticus--three years punctuated by the arrest and eventual trial of a young black man accused of raping a white woman. Though her story explores big themes, Harper Lee chooses to tell it through the eyes of a child. The result is a tough and tender novel of race, class, justice, and the pain of growing up. 

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Celebrations at Thrush Green

One hundred years have passed in Thrush Green since its village school was founded, so the residents are keen to celebrate. Then local author Harold Shoosmith discovers that also in 1892 a mission school was founded in Africa by Nathaniel Patten from Thrush Green.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Old Wine Shades

With time on his hands, Richard Jury is ensnared by the intriguing tale spun by Harry Johnson, a man who, apparently, just happens upon him in a London pub. Despite himself, Jury is drawn in by Johnson's account of the baffling disappearance of a mother, her autistic son and their dog and the more baffling reappearance of the pet nine months later. The detective diligently follows every lead to determine the fate of the missing people, even as Johnson's digressions into the paradoxes of quantum physics lead Jury to question the truth of the man's narrative. 

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Eleven On Top

Trouble seems to find Stephanie Plum no matter where she goes, and once again she's struggling with her tangled love life, her chaotic family, and her God-given gift for destroying every car she drives. This time, Stephanie Plum has decided to quit her job as a bounty hunter. She wants something safe. She wants something normal. She's tired of creeps, weirdos, and stalkers. But just when she thinks she's out, they pull her back in! This latest novel is packed full of Janet Evanovich's trademark wit, adventure, and sly comedy. So fasten your seatbelt and hang on-Stephanie's back in town!

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Virgin's Lover

In the autumn of 1558, church bells across England ring out the joyous news that Elizabeth I is the new queen. One woman hears the tidings with utter dread. She is Amy Dudley, wife of Sir Robert, and she knows that Elizabeth's ambitious leap to the throne will pull her husband back to the very center of the glamorous Tudor court and to power, intrigue, and a passionate love affair with the young queen. Can Amy's steadfast faith in him, her constant love, and the home she wants to make for them in the heart of the English countryside compete with the allure of the new queen?

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: My Sister's Keeper

Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate -- a life and a role that she has never challenged...until now.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Circle of Friends

Best friends since childhood in a small Irish village, first-year college students Benny and Eve are thrilled by the excitement of university life in Dublin. Befriended by Nan, a beautiful classmate with secret ambitions, the three form the nucleus of an ever-widening circle of friends that provides them with a happy sense of belonging and introduces them to a world of carefree activity. However, this light-hearted existence is brought to an abrupt halt when Nan's selfish, callous plans backfire, victimizing Benny and creating within Eve an obsessive desire to avenge Benny. 

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: the Mrs. Pollifax novels

Pick from any Dorothy Gilman's delightful "Mrs. Pollifax" books, which feature Emily Pollifax, a grandmother-turned-spy, an array of exotic locales and unlikely heroines.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Lighthouse

A subtle and powerful work of contemporary fiction. Combe Island off the Cornish coast has a bloodstained history of piracy and cruelty but now, privately owned, it offers respite to over-stressed men and women in positions of high authority who require privacy and guaranteed security. But the peace of Combe is violated when one of the distinguished visitors is bizarrely murdered. Commander Adam Dalgliesh is called in to solve the mystery quickly and discreetly, but at a difficult time for him and his depleted team.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Educating Alice

Steinbach had so much fun running off to Europe to find herself, as recounted in her first book, she decided to quit her job writing for the Baltimore Sun and devote herself to similar educational adventures. Following the advice of Japanese poet Basho ("To learn of the pine, go to the pine"), Steinbach takes off again and recounts eight endeavors, including studying French cooking in Paris, attending a Jane Austen convention in England and meeting geishas in Kyoto.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Leap of Faith

Leap of Faith is the dramatic and inspiring story of an American woman's remarkable journey into the heart of a man and his nation. Born into a distinguished Arab-American family and raised amid privilege, Lisa Halaby joined the first freshman class at Princeton to accept women, graduating in 1974 with a degree in architecture and urban planning. Two years later, while visiting her father in Jordan, she was casually introduced on the airport runway to King Hussein.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Kite Runner

"Taking us from Afghanistan in the final days of the monarchy to the present, The Kite Runner is the unforgettable, beautifully told story of the friendship between two boys growing up in Kabul. Raised in the same household and sharing the same wet nurse, Amir and Hassan nonetheless grow up in different worlds; Amir is the son of a prominent and wealthy man, while Hassan, the son of Amir's father's servant, is a Hazara, member of a shunned ethnic minority. Their intertwined lives, and their fates, reflect the eventual tragedy of the world around them.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: At Home In Mitford

Father Tim, a cherished small-town rector, is the steadfast soldier in this beloved slice of life story set in an American village where the grass is still green, the pickets are still white, and the air still smells sweet. The rector's forthright secretary, Emma Garret, worries about her employer, as she sees past his Christian cheerfulness into his aching loneliness. Slowly but surely, the empty places in Father Tim's heart do get filled.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Namesake

Ashoke Ganguli, a doctoral candidate at MIT, chose Gogol as a pet name for his and his wife's first-born because a volume of the Russian writer's work literally saved his life, but, in one of many confusions endured by the immigrant Bengali couple, Gogol ends up on the boy's birth certificate. Unaware of the dramatic story behind his unusual and, eventually, much hated name, Gogol refuses to read his namesake's work, and just before he leaves for Yale, he goes to court to change his name to Nikhil.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Hunting Season

Park Ranger Anna Pigeon returns to face her most duplicitous foe-human nature-in Nevada Barr's New York Times bestseller, Hunting Season. The quiet beauty of autumn on Mississippi's Natchez Trace is swiftly shattered when Anna answers a call to Mt. Locust, once a working plantation and inn, now a tourist spot.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Secret Life of Bees

Lily Owen is raised by the elderly African American Rosaleen after the accidental death of Lily's mother. Following a racial brawl in 1960s Tiburon, SC, Lily and Rosaleen find shelter in a distant town with three black bee-keeping sisters. The sisters and their close-knit community of women live within the confines of racial and gender bondage and yet have an unmistakable strength and serenity associated with the worship of a black Madonna and the healing power of honey.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Absolute Power

A cat burglar gets trapped inside the bedroom closet of one of the world's richest men, only to witness, through a one-way mirror, two Secret Service agents kill the billionaire's trampy young wife as she tries to fight off the drunken sexual advances of the nation's chief executive. Running for his life, but not before he picks up a bloodstained letter opener that puts the president at the scene of the crime, the burglar becomes the target of a clandestine manhunt orchestrated by leading members of the executive branch.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Murder Runs In The Family

Mary Alice has spared nothing for her only daughter's wedding. Practical Patricia Anne has put away her aunt-of-the-bride blue chiffon and settled back into domesticity when fun-loving Mary Alice calls to say they have a post-wedding date with a genealogist from the groom's side of the family. Lunch is a fascinating lesson on the hazards of finding dirty linens in ancestral boudoirs that ends abruptly when their guest scurries off with the local judge, leaving the sisters with their mouths open -- and finishing their luncheon companion's cheesecake -- when the police arrive.

Read this, or any other Howard Weeden book, and we'll discuss the books this month.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Pope Joan

One of the most controversial women of history is brought to brilliant life in Donn Woolfolk Cross's tale of Pope Joan, a girl whose origins should have kept her in squalid domesticity. Instead, through her intelligence, indomitability and courage, she ascended to the throne of Rome as Pope John Anglicus.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Father Melancholy's Daughter

A bittersweet and ultimately transcendent story of a young girl's devotion to her father, the rector of a small Virginia church, and of the hope, dreams, and love that sustain them both in the wake of the betrayal and tragedy that diminished their family. 

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Salvation On Sand Mountain

After Dennis Covington covered the trial of a preacher convicted of attempting to murder his wife with rattlesnakes, he was invited to attend a snake-handling service in Scottsville, Alabama. He found the service exhilarating and unsettling; he felt a kinship with the people, for he was only two generations removed from the hill country of Appalachia. Of Scottish-Irish descent, the handlers are religious mystics who believe in demons, drink strychnine and drape rattlesnakes around their bodies. A captivating glimpse of an exotic religious sect.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Rebecca

Rebecca is a novel of mystery and passion, a dark psychological tale of secrets and betrayal, dead loves and an estate called Manderley that is as much a presence as the humans who inhabit it. Manderley is filled with memories of the elegant and flamboyant Rebecca, the first Mrs. DeWinter; with the obsessive love of her housekeeper, Mrs. Danvers, who observes the young, timid second Mrs. DeWinter with sullen hostility; and with the oppressive silences of a secretive husband, Maxim.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The novels of Sue Grafton

Try any of Sue Grafton's crime-related 'alphabet' novels (like 'A' Is For Alibi) and we'll discuss them as a set. 

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: To The Nines

Stephanie Plum is a Jersey girl, a bounty hunter, and a resident of a part of Trenton where you can still go to Mom's for dinner and your cop boyfriend Morelli's grandmother has visions that include you in a coffin. Stephanie is on the trail of an Indian contract worker named Singh who disappeared when his visa was up. When she interviews a McDonald's employee who knew him, he's shot as she stands there. Then sinister notes start appearing in Stephanie's apartment, a few more bodies turn up with bullet holes, and mayhem ensues.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Under The Tuscan Sun

Frances Mayes entered a wondrous new world when she began restoring an abandoned villa in the spectacular Tuscan countryside. There were unexpected treasures at every turn: faded frescos beneath the whitewash in her dining room, a vineyard under wildly overgrown brambles in the garden, and, in the nearby hill towns, vibrant markets and delightful people. She brings the lyrical voice of a poet, the eye of a seasoned traveler, and the discerning palate of a cook and food writer to invite readers to explore the pleasures of Italian life and to feast at her table.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Mrs. Dalloway

As Clarissa Dalloway walks through London on a fine June morning, a sky-writing plane captures her attention. Crowds stare upwards to decipher the message while the plane turns and loops, leaving off one letter, picking up another. Like the airplane's swooping path, Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway follows Clarissa and those whose lives brush hers--from Peter Walsh, whom she spurned years ago, to her daughter Elizabeth, the girl's angry teacher, Doris Kilman, and war-shocked Septimus Warren Smith, who is sinking into madness.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Jane Austen Book Club

Read this book with the Austen classic of your choice! The plot here is deceptively slim: five women and one enigmatic man meet on a monthly basis to discuss the novels of Jane Austen, one at a time. As they debate Marianne's marriage to Brandon and whether or not Charlotte Lucas is gay, they reveal nothing so much as their own "private Austen(s)." Like Austen, Fowler is a subversive wit and a wise observer of human interaction of all stripes. 

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Murder Carries A Torch

Petite Patricia Anne and hefty Mary Alice, series sister-sleuths in their sixties, hasten to the aid of their cousin Luke, whose wife has apparently run off with a painter. They search for the woman and discover a dead body in a "snake-handling" church; much-married Mary Alice meets and flirts with the investigating sheriff; police find the painter dead; and someone "hides" a rattlesnake in Mary Alice's car. Set in Alabama.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: Pretending The Bed Is A Raft

This finely tuned collection of stories features steamy nights and women dressed up in alluring garb who are on the lookout for men who'll make their dreams come true. In folksy Southern dialog, Kincaid's characters reflect on life and love in eight exquisite examples of great short story writing.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Kitchen God's Wife

Pressured to reveal to the young woman her secret past in war-torn China in the 1940s, Winnie weaves an unbelievable account of a childhood of loneliness and abandonment and a young adulthood marred by a nightmarish arranged marriage. Winnie survives because of the friendship and strength of her female friends, the love of her second husband, and her own steadfast courage and endurance.

Eleanor Murphy Book Club: The Accidental Tourist

Scarred by grief after their 12-year-old son's senseless murder, Macon and Sarah Leary are losing their marriage too. Macon is unable to cope when she leaves him, so he settles down "safe among the people he'd started out with," moving back home with two divorced brothers and spinster sister Rose.