Tag Archives: book discussion

APLreads – Frankenstein

frankensteinSeveral of us are reading Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein this month – join us over in our GoodReads group to talk about the book or leave your thoughts in a comment here or on Twitter (use #APLreads).

Need a copy of the book? You can place a hold here or download an ebook copy or an audiobook copy.


Twilight: what’s the appeal?

Twilight’s appeal has bloomed beyond young adult readers to their moms and beyond. What is it about Stephenie Meyer’s book that resonates so strongly with readers? How might the appeal factors differ among teenagers and adults? Men and women?

Water for Elephants: about the author

If you’ve ever wondered about the process of researching and writing a book, Sara Gruen talked with Dave Weich of Powell’s Books about how she came to writing fiction, the challenges of finishing the book, and how a woman who’d never been to the circus before starting Water for Elephants comes to write a novel about the Big Top.

How convincing is the narrative to you? Is it easy to suspend the disbelief that is isn’t really Jacob Jankowski telling the tale? Why or why not?

Read with me in August: Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

It’s a bit of a late start, I know, but I hope you’ll join me this month for Sara Gruen’s Water for Elephants. This well-received book focuses on elderly Jacob Jankowski, who joins a traveling circus after the death of his parents, using his veterinary skills to care for the animals, and becomes smitten with the animal trainer’s wife.

“For pure story, this colorful, headlong tale of a Depression-era circus simply can’t be beat. Heroes, villains, romance, a wild-animal stampede! Big fun from page 1.”—Stephen King, Entertainment Weekly: “Best & Worst 2007” (Entertainment Weekly )

“You’ll get lost in the tatty glamour of Gruen’s meticulously researched world, from spangled equestrian pageantry and the sleazy side show to an ill-fated night at a Chicago speak-easy.”
Washington Post (The Washington Post )

Pick up your copy at the Main Library’s circulation desk or click here to reserve your copy.

Wrapping up The Monsters of Templeton

How does Willie fit into her family tree? What similarities do you see between  Willie and her female ancestors? Her male ancestors?

Why does Vi choose this time to partially spill her secret about Willie’s paternity to her? Do you think that Vi would have told her eventually, regardless of Willie’s unexpected homecoming?

How does Willie’s opinion about her family and her hometown change? Could this change have happened without Willie knowing her paternity?

Is this a book you’d recommend to a friend? Why or why not?

Read with me in May: Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress

Join me during the month of May for Dai Sijie’s Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress. I can tell you I started this book on my 15-minute break today and raced through the first 20 pages — I’m hooked.

The teenaged narrator and his best friend Luo,  sons of doctors, have been sent from their city homes to a rural mountain-top village for “re-education” during China’s Cultural Revolution, where they become utterly enchanted by a well-known tailor’s daughter…

Click here to read an excerpt from the first chapter or reserve your copy for pick-up today.

The Doctor’s Wife: wrap up

Thanks for reading The Doctor’s Wife with me. While I thought the premise was interesting, I found the writing style upstaged the plot in many places. Is this a book you’d recommend to a friend?

If you enjoyed The Doctor’s Wife, you may like Elizabeth Brundage’s other books, Somebody Else’s Daughter and her newest title, A Stranger Like You (it’s soon to be published but you can reserve your copy now).