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LAKEWOOD WOMEN’S BOOK CLUB PICKS
A Gentleman in Moscow
In 1922, Count Alexander Rostov is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, and is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. Rostov, an indomitable man of erudition and wit, has never worked a day in his life, and must now live in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history are unfolding outside the hotel’s doors. Unexpectedly, his reduced circumstances provide him entry into a much larger world of emotional discovery.
Brimming with humor, a glittering cast of characters, and one beautifully rendered scene after another, this singular novel casts a spell as it relates the count’s endeavor to gain a deeper understanding of what it means to be a man of purpose.
March – The Forest Lover, by Susan Vreeland
April – The Museum of Extraordinary Things, by Alice Hoffman
May – My Grandmother Asked me to Tell you She’s Sorry, by Fredrik Backman
LAKEWOOD LIBRARY BOOK CLUB
The Remains of the Day
This is Kazuo Ishiguro’s profoundly compelling portrait of Stevens, the perfect butler, and of his fading, insular world in post-World War II England. Stevens, at the end of three decades of service at Darlington Hall, spending a day on a country drive, embarks as well on a journey through the past in an effort to reassure himself that he has served humanity by serving the “great gentleman,” Lord Darlington. But lurking in his memory are doubts about the true nature of Lord Darlington’s “greatness,” and much graver doubts about the nature of his own life.
March — Fates and Furies, by Lauren Groff
April — The Omnivore’s Dilemma, by Michael Pollard
May — Salt to the Sea, by Ruta Septys
June — The Last Days of Night, by Graham Moore
July — News of the World, by Paulette Jiles
August — In the Kingdom of Ice, by Hampton Sides
September — Endurance: A Year in Space, a Lifetime of Discovery, by Scott Kelly
October — Killers of the Flower Moon, by David Grann
November — Hillbilly Elegy, by J. D. Vance
December — Little Fires Everywhere, by Celeste Ng
PATH TREADERS BOOK CLUB
The Ministry of Utmost Happiness
The Ministry of Utmost Happiness takes us on an intimate journey of many years across the Indian subcontinent—from the cramped neighborhoods of Old Delhi and the roads of the new city to the mountains and valleys of Kashmir and beyond, where war is peace and peace is war.
It is an aching love story and a decisive remonstration, a story told in a whisper, in a shout, through unsentimental tears and sometimes with a bitter laugh. Each of its characters is indelibly, tenderly rendered. Its heroes are people who have been broken by the world they live in and then rescued, patched together by acts of love—and by hope.
The tale begins with Anjum—who used to be Aftab—unrolling a threadbare Persian carpet in a city graveyard she calls home. We encounter the odd, unforgettable Tilo and the men who loved her—including Musa, sweetheart and ex-sweetheart, lover and ex-lover; their fates are as entwined as their arms used to be and always will be. We meet Tilo’s landlord, a former suitor, now an intelligence officer posted to Kabul. And then we meet the two Miss Jebeens: the first a child born in Srinagar and buried in its overcrowded Martyrs’ Graveyard; the second found at midnight, abandoned on a concrete sidewalk in the heart of New Delhi.
As this ravishing, deeply humane novel braids these lives together, it reinvents what a novel can do and can be. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness demonstrates on every page the miracle of Arundhati Roy’s storytelling gifts.
March — Beartown by Fredrik Backman
April — The Book of Joy by the Dalai Lama and Desmund Tutu
May — The Book of Polly by Kathy Hepinstall
June — The Shell Collector by Anthony Doerr
July — Faithful Place by Tana French
August — The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney