Simply Books! June Meeting

We were a small but lively bunch last Saturday.  It was book sale day, and threatening rain, so the library was a busy place.   Because of the book sale we had to hold our meeting at one of the tables in the juvenile section, but that was okay–it gave us more visibility!

Yet again we had one of those meetings where the conversation veered off in many fascinating directions.  And yet again we failed to get our meeting time under an hour!  The long meeting was worth it, though–ninety minutes really flew, and we all had a wonderful time.

Get this month’s reading list after the jump!

 I Am Not a Serial Killer by Dan Wells
The first in a trilogy about John Cleaver, a 17-year-old sociopath who has many rules he forces himself to adhere to so that he doesn’t hurt anyone.  But then there’s an actual serial killer on the loose in his town, and so John takes it upon himself to catch him–using his personal insights.  Very interesting to read about a main character who has no empathy, a sociopath with a heart of gold.  Good pacing, good characters, just gory enough.

Power Versus Force: The Hidden Determinants of Human Behavior by David R. Hawkins
This book’s ideas prompted our longest discussion of the day!  It is primarily a study of consciousness–the online summary says:

The fundamental limitation of the human mind is that it’s unable to tell the difference between truth and falsehood, positives from negatives, and that which is beneficial from the harmful. Thus, we have problems in our lives and in the world. Power vs. Force provides a solution to this; a means to tap into pure all-knowing consciousness so that we can drop negatives from our life, adopt positives, and solve the world’s problems.

Unless by Carol Shields
Reta Winters, 44-year-old successful author of light summertime fiction, has always considered herself happy, even blessed. That is, until her oldest daughter Norah mysteriously drops out of college to become a panhandler on a Toronto street corner — silent, with a sign around her neck bearing the word “goodness.” It’s a nuanced, profound story with many layers, told in an authentic tone full of wit and wonderful characters.

Mudbound by Hillary Jordan
A family-centered novel set in Mississippi just after WWII.  Great characters, very readable, and timely in the way that part of the story revolves around two war veterans both dealing in their own ways.

The Beginner’s Goodbye by Anne Tyler
A novel about a widower coping with the death of his wife by imagining her everywhere.  It has a light, conversational tone, but there is wisdom beneath the surface.

The Distant Hours by Kate Morton
A Gothic-inspired story that goes back and forth between the present day and WWII era England.  It’s all about uncovering family mysteries.  Rich and detailed, evocative and suspenseful.

I’m especially glad that this month’s meeting was so lively, smart, and fun, because it’s the last one I’ll be attending until September.  June marks the beginning of our summer break, so there won’t be any official Simply Books! meetings until September  1st (back-to-school and all that!).   However, some of our members still like to get together if enough of them are free, so I’ll still send out reminder emails.  If you’d like to be put on the email list for informal summer book group meetings, please just send me an email at mmerrifield@librarycamden.org.

Enjoy your summers, all!

–Marie

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