We are looking forward to a fun discussion about Tom Rachman's highly acclaimed debut novel, The Imperfectionists. It was selected as an Amazon.com "Best Book of the Month" (April 2010), and praised by the New York Times as being "so good I had to read it twice simply to figure out how he (Tom Rachman) pulled it off."
Please join us Wednesday, June 15, at 7 pm in our Main branch.
Synopsis on Amazon.com:
Printing presses whirr, ashtrays smolder, and the endearing complexity of humanity plays out in Tom Rachman's debut novel, The Imperfectionists. Set against the backdrop of a fictional English-language newspaper based in Rome, it begins as a celebration of the beloved and endangered role of newspapers and the original 24/7 news cycle. Yet Rachman pushes beyond nostalgia by crafting an apologue that better resembles a modern-day Dubliners than a Mad Men exploration of the halcyon past. The chaos of the newsroom becomes a stage for characters unified by a common thread of circumstance, with each chapter presenting an affecting look into the life of a different player. From the comically overmatched greenhorn to the forsaken foreign correspondent, we suffer through the painful heartbreaks of unexpected tragedy and struggle to stifle our laughter in the face of well-intentioned blunders. This cacophony of emotion blends into a single voice, as the depiction of a paper deemed a "daily report on the idiocy and the brilliance of the species" becomes more about the disillusion in everyday life than the dissolution of an industry. Read more about Young Professionals Book Club: The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman
Join us for what is sure to be a dynamic and stimulating conversation about our club's first nonfiction book , Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner.
Please note: The Young Professionals Book Club which normally meets on the third Wednesday of the month will be meeting on the fourth Wednesday of May, (May 25) for this month only.
We will meet at 7 pm on Wednesday, May 25, in meeting room C of the Main branch.
Book description from Freakonomics.com:
Freakonomics establishes this unconventional premise: If morality represents how we would like the world to work, then economics represents how it actually does work. It is true that readers of this book will be armed with enough riddles and stories to last a thousand cocktail parties. But Freakonomics can provide more than that. It will literally redefine the way we view the modern world.
Join us on Wednesday, April 20th for a fun conversation about this critically acclaimed book by Pulitzer Prize winning author, Michael Chabon.
Booklist summary of Wonder Boys:
"This is a genuinely funny, laugh-out-loud novel, a sort of Fear and Loathing in Academia if you will, but infused with tenderness and a bracing skepticism about our worship of literature. Chabon is known for his glisteningly precise and graceful prose, but he is also blessed with a wickedly imaginative and energetic sense of humor. His second novel takes place during the course of one extraordinarily hectic weekend during which his crazy hero, Professor Grady Tripp, manages to ruin two marriages, cause the death of a boa constrictor and a dog, save a student's life, attend a disastrous seder and a chaotic writers' conference, and lose the only copy of his manuscript. Now don't groan when I tell you that Wonder Boys is also the title of the novel Tripp has wasted seven years of his disorderly life on, because this is not your typical, bloodless novel-within-a-novel. It is, instead, a simultaneously hilarious and insightful tale about the Faustian bargains writers make, the fissures the act of writing rends in the wall between fact and fantasy, and, for good measure, the basic absurdity of human endeavors. It's also an uproarious portrait of the artist as self-indulgent fool. Tripp's "wonder boys" are, like Chabon, young writers who achieve instant success. The trick, then, is to maintain it. Whereas his endearingly addled and irresistible hero fails, Chabon, for all his musing on the dark side of the writer's life, is succeeding brilliantly." Read more about Young Professionals Book Club: Wonder Boys
Booklist review of The Hangman's Daughter by Oliver Pötzsch:
"This novel has been popular in Germany since its 2008 publication there, and it’s easy to see why. Set in the mid-1600s in the Bavarian town of Schongau, it features a hangman, Jakob Kuisl, who is asked to find out whether an ominous tattoo found on a dying boy means that witchcraft has come to town. This is no idle fiction. The German rulers were, at the time, heavily involved in the detection, prosecution, and execution of suspect witches. Pötzsch, who is descended from the real-life Kuisl family, does an excellent job of telling the story and supplying the historical backdrop. And his characters—Jakob, the hangman; his daughter, Magdalena; and Simon, the physician’s son—are extremely well drawn and believable. Kudos, too, to translator Chadeayne, who retains the story’s German flavor while rendering the text in smooth and highly readable English. Readers of historical fiction should find this very much to their liking." Read more about Young Professionals Book Club
"In this tuneful coming-of-age memoir, the glamorous New Wave band Duran Duran presides spiritually over the all-consuming teenage male efforts to comprehend the opposite sex," they say. "The result is a funny, poignant browse from a wonderful pop-culture evocateur."
The Young Professionals Book Club meets on the third Wednesday of every month in the Main branch.
Please join us for a candid and lively discussion about this controversial classic.
Now hailed as an American classic, "Tropic of Cancer," Henry Miller's masterpiece, was banned as obscene in this country for twenty-seven years after its first publication in Paris in 1934. Only a historic court ruling that changed American censorship standards, ushering in a new era of freedom and frankness in modern literature, permitted the publication of this first volume of Miller's famed mixture of memoir and fiction, which chronicles with unapologetic gusto the bawdy adventures of a young expatriate writer, his friends, and the characters they meet in Paris in the 1930s. "Tropic of Cancer" is now considered, as Norman Mailer said, "one of the ten or twenty great novels of our century."
This meeting is a reschedule of our December 15 meeting, which was canceled due to inclement weather.
Now hailed as an American classic, "Tropic of Cancer," Henry Miller's masterpiece, was banned as obscene in this country for twenty-seven years after its first publication in Paris in 1934. Only a historic court ruling that changed American censorship standards, ushering in a new era of freedom and frankness in modern literature, permitted the publication of this first volume of Miller's famed mixture of memoir and fiction, which chronicles with unapologetic gusto the bawdy adventures of a young expatriate writer, his friends, and the characters they meet in Paris in the 1930s. "Tropic of Cancer" is now considered, as Norman Mailer said, "one of the ten or twenty great novels of our century." Read more about Young Professionals Book Club: Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller
This month the Young Professionals Book Club is going in a slightly different direction, as we read and discuss this new, bestselling, and highly acclaimed novel by Kathryn Stockett. Please join us for what is sure to be a passionate and fascinating conversation about race, class, and social constructions in the South.
Summary: Set in Stockett's native Jackson, MS, in the early 1960s, this first novel adopts the complicated theme of blacks and whites living in a segregated South. A century after the Emancipation Proclamation, black maids raised white children and ran households but were paid poorly, often had to use separate toilets from the family, and watched the children they cared for commit bigotry. In Stockett's narrative, Miss Skeeter, a young white woman, is a naive, aspiring writer who wants to create a series of interviews with local black maids. Even if they're published anonymously, the risk is great; still, Aibileen and Minny agree to participate. Tension pervades the novel as its events are told by these three memorable women. Read more about Young Professionals Book Club: The Help
Join us for a lively discussion about the entertaining and thought-provoking novel Flight, by Sherman Alexie. The New York Times calls Alexie an author with "an impressive literary reputation as a bold writer who goes straight for the aorta. He is in the business of making his readers laugh and cry. And his most recent novel [Flight] is no exception."