This has nothing to do with our program

but I just needed to share it with book people.  I started a new author for me – Jason Matthews with a thriller called Red Sparrow.  And it begins with a tense chase scene when the CIA agent (and the author was a CIA agent) meets with an important Russian they have turned to spy for the US.  Russian agents nearly catch them and he has to lead them away from the spy.  He manages to escape being not only captured but killed and goes into a small cafe and eats some beet soup —and includes the recipe for the soup.  REALLY?

MARCH MEETING DATE CHANGE

Because March 1 is the primary election and because the Maynard Library is a polling place we have moved our March meeting – when we will be discussing books about Africa and African topics – to March 8.  Same time 2:30 – same tea and cookies – well, the cookies will be fresh.

Books with an African focus

We often think of Africa as a single entity but it is of course a continent of widely varied countries with different histories and different present day realities.  This month we have an opportunity to explore some of those differences.  Here are just a few suggestions but there are dozens and dozens of books in this category to choose from.

Chinua Achebe – Things Fall Apart (#1) – Things Fall Apart tells two intertwining stories, both centering on Okonkwo, a “strong man” of an Ibo village in Nigeria. The first, a powerful fable of the immemorial conflict between the individual and society, traces Okonkwo’s fall from grace with the tribal world. The second, as modern as the first is ancient, concerns the clash of cultures and the destruction of Okonkwo’s world with the arrival of aggressive European missionaries. These perfectly harmonized twin dramas are informed by an awareness capable of encompassing at once the life of nature, human history, and the mysterious compulsions of the soul.; No Longer at Ease (The African Trilogy #2) -The story of a man whose foreign education has separated him from his African roots and made him parts of a ruling elite whose corruption he finds repugnant.  More than thirty years after it was first written, this novel remains a brilliant statement on the challenges still facing African society.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie – Americanah – Ifemelu and Obinze are young and in love when they depart military-ruled Nigeria for the West. Beautiful, self-assured Ifemelu heads for America, where despite her academic success, she is forced to grapple with what it means to be black for the first time. Quiet, thoughtful Obinze had hoped to join her, but with post-9/11 America closed to him, he instead plunges into a dangerous, undocumented life in London. Fifteen years later, they reunite in a newly democratic Nigeria, and reignite their passion—for each other and for their homeland.

Alan Paton – Cry, the Beloved Country Cry, the Beloved Country, the most famous and important novel in South Africa’s history, was an immediate worldwide bestseller in 1948. Alan Paton’s impassioned novel about a black man’s country under white man’s law is a work of searing beauty.

Abraham Verghese – Cutting for Stone – Marion and Shiva Stone are twin brothers born of a secret union between a beautiful Indian nun and a brash British surgeon. Orphaned by their mother’s death and their father’s disappearance, bound together by a preternatural connection and a shared fascination with medicine, the twins come of age as Ethiopia hovers on the brink of revolution.

Nelson Mandela – Long Walk to Freedom – The famously taciturn South African president reveals much of himself in Long Walk to Freedom. A good deal of this autobiography was written secretly while Mandela was imprisoned for 27 years on Robben Island by South Africa’s apartheid regime. Among the book’s interesting revelations is Mandela’s ambivalence toward his lifetime of devotion to public works. It cost him two marriages and kept him distant from a family life he might otherwise have cherished. Long Walk to Freedom also discloses a strong and generous spirit that refused to be broken under the most trying circumstances–a spirit in which just about everybody can find something to admire.

Sofi Atta – Everything Good Will Come – It is 1971, and Nigeria is under military rule – though the politics of the state matter less than those of her home to Enitan Taiwo, an eleven-year-old girl tired of waiting for school to start. Will her mother, who has become deeply religious since the death of Enitan’s brother, allow her friendship with the new girl next door Sheri Bakare? This novel charts the fate of these two Nigerian girls, one who is prepared to manipulate the traditional system and one who attempts to defy it.”

Mazza Mengiste – Beneath the Lion’s Gaze – This story opens in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 1974, on the eve of a revolution, Yonas kneels in his mother’s prayer room, pleading to his god for an end to the violence that has wracked his family and country. His father, Hailu, a prominent doctor, has been ordered to report to jail after helping a victim of state-sanctioned torture die. And Dawit, Hailu’s youngest son, has joined an underground resistance movement – a choice that will lead to more upheaval and bloodshed across a ravaged Ethiopia.” Beneath the Lion’s Gaze tells a gripping story of family, of the bonds of love and friendship set in a time and place that has not been explored in fiction before. It is a story about the lengths human beings will go in pursuit of freedom and the human price of a national revolution.

Elnathan John – Born on a Tuesday – From two-time Caine Prize finalist Elnathan John, a dynamic young voice from Nigeria, Born on a Tuesday is a stirring, starkly rendered first novel about a young boy struggling to find his place in a society that is fracturing along religious and political lines.

Benjamin Ajak – They Poured Fire on Us from the Sky: The True Story of Three Lost Boys from Sudan – A stunning literary survival story of three young Sudanese boys, two brothers and a cousin—hailed by the Los Angeles Times as a “moving, beautifully written account, by turns warm and tender.” Between 1987 and 1989, Alepho, Benjamin, and Benson, like tens of thousands of young boys, took flight from the massacres of Sudan’s civil war. They became known as the Lost Boys. With little more than the clothes on their backs, sometimes not even that, they streamed out over Sudan in search of refuge. Their journey led them first to Ethiopia and then, driven back into Sudan, toward Kenya. They walked nearly one thousand miles, sustained only by the sheer will to live.

Alexandra Fuller – Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight – In Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight, Alexandra Fuller remembers her African childhood with visceral authenticity. Though it is a diary of an unruly life in an often inhospitable place, it is suffused with Fuller’s endearing ability to find laughter, even when there is little to celebrate. Fuller’s debut is unsentimental and unflinching but always captivating. In wry and sometimes hilarious prose, she stares down disaster and looks back with rage and love at the life of an extraordinary family in an extraordinary time.

Doris Lessing – The Grass is Singing – Set in Southern Rhodesia under white rule, Doris Lessing’s first novel is at once a riveting chronicle of human disintegration, a beautifully understated social critique, and a brilliant depiction of the quiet horror of one woman’s struggle against a ruthless fate. Mary Turner is a self-confident, independent young woman who becomes the depressed, frustrated wife of an ineffectual, unsuccessful farmer. Little by little the ennui of years on the farm works its slow poison. Mary’s despair progresses until the fateful arrival of Moses, an enigmatic, virile black servant. Locked in anguish, Mary and Moses—master and slave—are trapped in a web of mounting attraction and repulsion, until their psychic tension explodes with devastating consequences.

Wilbur Smith – When the Lion Feeds – He began life at his twin brother’s side, soon running wild on his father’s ranch on the edge of Africa. But violence, desire, and fate sent Sean Courtney into exile–where he would fight and love his way to extraordinary success and heartbreaking failure…In a place called The Ridge of White Waters, Sean made a life-long friendship, mined a fortune of gold, and met his own demons. Then an act of cunning betrayal struck–and ignited a new adventure to a new frontier.From facing the murderous charge of a towering bull elephant to watching men die unspeakable deaths, Sean fought new enemies, forged new allies–and dreamed of establishing a family on a farm of his own. But in Wilbur Smith’s When the Lion Feeds, the young man who had lived by his courage, sweat, and blood was about to discover that the past still had its claws in him.

Tracy Kidder – Strength in What Remains the story of one man’s inspiring American journey and of the ordinary people who helped him, providing brilliant testament to the power of second chances. Deo arrives in the United States from Burundi in search of a new life. Having survived a civil war and genocide, he lands at JFK airport with two hundred dollars, no English, and no contacts. He ekes out a precarious existence delivering groceries, living in Central Park, and learning English by reading dictionaries in bookstores. Then Deo begins to meet the strangers who will change his life, pointing him eventually in the direction of Columbia University, medical school, and a life devoted to healing. Kidder breaks new ground in telling this unforgettable story as he travels with Deo back over a turbulent life and shows us what it means to be fully human.

 

Just because we have moved on

you don’t have to stop reading the books from an earlier session.  Lynette sent along this recommendation from an author from India

I wanted to share a book on India  that I have been reading.  I’m about 80 % done and it really is a wonderful story.  It talks a lot about family values, culture., etc.

The Golden Son   Shilpi Somaya Gowda.   I look forward to seeing more from this author.
 book
The New York Times and #1 internationally bestselling author of Secret Daughter returns with an unforgettable story of love, honor, tradition, and identity.
The first of his family to go to college, Anil Patel, the golden son, leaves his tiny Indian village to begin a medical residency at one of the best hospitals in America. When his father dies, Anil becomes the head of the Patel household and inherits the mantle of arbiter for all of the village’s disputes. But he is uncertain that he has the wisdom and courage required to take on the role.
Back home in India, Anil’s childhood friend, Leena, struggles to adapt to her demanding new husband. Arranged by her parents, the marriage shatters Leena’s romantic hopes, and forces her to make choices that will hold drastic repercussions for her family.
Tender and bittersweet, The Golden Son illuminates the decisions we must make to find our true selves.

Turns out Scandinavia was a popular location

We have a long list of books that we have read – I have added a short description along with some recommendation comments.  Grab a cup of coffee and join us in our exploration of Scandinavian and Icelandic literature.  And if you have been there before you know that much of the writing – especially the mysteries – is a bit dark – OK – really dark, many of the mysteries focusing more on why than who done it.  We did wonder if being in a cold dark place for so much of the year influences this.

A few books at the end of the list aren’t Scandinavian but book talk does wander.

Hour of the Wolf – Ian Nesser – Inspector Van Veeteren Series #7 – Two appalling crimes call retired Inspector Van Veeteren back to work to solve and avenge a death.

The Treacherous Net – Helene Turnsten – In Tursten’s assured eighth novel featuring Det. Insp. Irene Huss (after The Beige Man), two teenage girls without any history of trouble go missing and later turn up as mutilated corpses. As gruesome as the murders are, what rattles Huss and her Gothenburg police colleagues is the realization that the girls are wearing two parts of the same bikini set. If these crimes are linked, could there be a serial killer stalking other girls?

Purge –  Sofi Okasanen – suspenseful tale of two women dogged by their own shameful pasts and the dark, unspoken history that binds them.

The Hypnotist – lars Kepler – In the frigid clime of Tumba, Sweden, a gruesome triple homicide attracts the interest of Detective Inspector Joona Linna, who demands to investigate the murders. The killer is still at large, and there’s only one surviving witness—the boy whose family was killed before his eyes. Whoever committed the crimes wanted this boy to die: he’s suffered more than one hundred knife wounds and lapsed into a state of shock. Desperate for information, Linna sees only one option: hypnotism. He enlists Dr. Erik Maria Bark to mesmerize the boy, hoping to discover the killer through his eyes.

Boy on the Edge – Fridrik Eurlings (YA) – Henry has a clubfoot and he is the target of relentless bullying. One day, in a violent fit of anger, Henry lashes out at the only family he has — his mother. Sent to live with other troubled boys at the Home of Lesser Brethren, an isolated farm perched in the craggy lava fields along the unforgiving Icelandic coast, Henry finds a precarious contentment among the cows. But it is the people, including the manic preacher who runs the home, who fuel Henry’s frustration and sometimes rage as he yearns for a life and a home. Author Fridrik Erlings offers a young adult novel that explores cruelty and desperation, tenderness and remorse, but most importantly, kindness and friendship.

Riding with Reindeer: A bicycle odyssey through Finland, Lapland and Arctic Norway – Robert M. Goldstein – title says it all

The 100 year old man who climbed out the window and disappeared  – Jonas Jonasson – saga of Allan Karlsson begins when he escapes his retirement home on his 100th birthday by climbing out his bedroom window. After stealing a young punk’s money-filled suitcase, he embarks on a wild adventure, and through a combination of wits, luck, and circumstance, ends up on the lam from both a smalltime criminal syndicate and the police. Jonasson moves deftly through Karlsson’s life—from present to past and back again—recounting the fugitive centenarian’s career as a demolitions expert and the myriad critical junctures of history, including the Spanish Civil War and the Manhattan Project, wherein Karlsson found himself an unwitting (and often influential) participant. Historical figures like Mao’s third wife, Vice President Truman, and Stalin appear, to great comic effect. Other characters—most notably Albert Einstein’s hapless half-brother—are cleverly spun into the raucous yarn, and all help drive this gentle lampoon of procedurals and thrillers.

Walking into the Night – Olaf Olafsson – As butler to William Randolph Hearst at San Simeon castle, Christian Benediktsson lives quietly, almost invisibly. He completes his tasks efficiently and with aplomb, catering to the whims of the volatile Chief and overseeing the running of the hectic household. Privy to the goings-on of the celebrity guests who visit as well as to Hearst’s intimate relationship with his mistress, the actress Marion Davies, he is the picture of discretion. An extremely private man, those around him know nothing of him or his life. And so it is in his thoughts and in unsent letters to his wife back in Iceland that we witness the unraveling of his former life, which began when he abandoned her and their children for an actress in New York City. Once a successful businessman, he erases his past and himself after a sudden tragic death and his financial ruin, the result of a jilted lover’s vengeance. Walking into the Night is a stunning portrait of a man wrestling with guilt and secret passions.

The Howling Miller – Arto Phosilinna -Arriving in Northern Finland after the Second World War, Gunnar Huttunen buys a dilapidated mill on the Suukoski rapids of the Kemijoki River. An Ignatius Reilly of the Finnish 1940s, Gunnar is an eccentric outsider swimming against society’s current. Prone to rapid mood swings and a general lack of decorum, he is feared and reviled by village notables for his wayward manner—most noticeably his indulgent nighttime howling, which he gets up to when he “feels the need to do something special,” and to which he is joined in delirious chorus by the local dogs.

The Keeper of Lost Causes and The Absent One – Jussi Adler-Olsen – 1 and 2 in the Department Q series – really fun characters in this police procedural about a police officer everyone wants to get rid of so they assign him to a cold cases new department assuming that he’ll just go away.  His assistant and – by the second book – secretary have a terrific and amusing relationship with him which kind of softens the awfulness of some of the cases.

The Norseman Chronicles – James L. Nelson  (Fin Gall – first in the series) For centuries, the Vikings have swept out of the Norse countries and fallen on England, Ireland, whatever lands they could reach aboard their longships, and few could resist the power of their violent onslaught. They came at first to plunder, and then to settle, an encroachment fiercely resisted where ever they went. Such was the case in the southern lands of Ireland. En route to the Viking longphort there, known as Dubh-Linn, Thorgrim Night Wolf and Ornolf the Restless stumble across an Irish ship that carries aboard it a single item – a crown. The Vikings eagerly snatch the prize, unaware of its significance to the people of Ireland and the power granted to the king who wears it

The Burial Rites – Hannah Kent – Set against Iceland’s stark landscape, Hannah Kent brings to vivid life the story of Agnes, who, charged with the brutal murder of her former master, is sent to an isolated farm to await execution.Horrified at the prospect of housing a convicted murderer, the family at first avoids Agnes. Only Tóti, a priest Agnes has mysteriously chosen to be her spiritual guardian, seeks to understand her. But as Agnes’s death looms, the farmer’s wife and their daughters learn there is another side to the sensational story they’ve heard.

The Boy in the Suitcase – Lene Kaaberbol (three in the series) – Nina Borg, a Red Cross nurse, wife, and mother of two, is a compulsive do-gooder who can’t say no when someone asks for help—even when she knows better. When her estranged friend Karin leaves her a key to a public locker in the Copenhagen train station, Nina gets suckered into her most dangerous project yet. Inside the locker is a suitcase, and inside the suitcase is a three-year-old boy: naked and drugged, but alive.

The Dinosaur Feather – S. J. Gazan – S.J. Gazan’s debut novel The Dinosaur Feather is a classic of Scandinavian noir. With keenly observed and deeply flawed characters, this scintillating thriller uniquely employs one of the most controversial and fascinating areas of contemporary dinosaur and avian research in its diabolical twists.

Red Breast (and others in the series) – Jo Nesbo – The Redbreast – first in his Harry Hole police procedurals.  Very dark but quite good.

Out of Africa – Karen Blixen (Isak Dinesen) – In this book, the author of Seven Gothic Tales gives a true account of her life on her plantation in Kenya. She tells with classic simplicity of the ways of the country and the natives: of the beauty of the Ngong Hills and coffee trees in blossom: of her guests, from the Prince of Wales to Knudsen, the old charcoal burner, who visited her: of primitive festivals: of big game that were her near neighbors – lions, rhinos, elephants, zebras, buffaloes – and of Lulu, the little gazelle who came to live with her, unbelievably ladylike and beautiful.

A Man called Ove by Fredrik Backman  – Meet Ove. He’s a curmudgeon—the kind of man who points at people he dislikes as if they were burglars caught outside his bedroom window. He has staunch principles, strict routines, and a short fuse. People call him “the bitter neighbor from hell.” But must Ove be bitter just because he doesn’t walk around with a smile plastered to his face all the time?   Loved this one.   My Grandmother asked me to tell you she’s sorry – Elsa is seven years old and different. Her grandmother is seventy-seven years old and crazy—as in standing-on-the-balcony-firing-paintball-guns-at-strangers crazy. She is also Elsa’s best, and only, friend. At night Elsa takes refuge in her grandmother’s stories, in the Land-of-Almost-Awake and the Kingdom of Miamas, where everybody is different and nobody needs to be normal.

The Summer Book – Tove Jansson – In The Summer Book Tove Jansson distills the essence of the summer—its sunlight and storms—into twenty-two crystalline vignettes. This brief novel tells the story of Sophia, a six-year-old girl awakening to existence, and Sophia’s grandmother, nearing the end of hers, as they spend the summer on a tiny unspoiled island in the Gulf of Finland. The grandmother is unsentimental and wise, if a little cranky; Sophia is impetuous and volatile, but she tends to her grandmother with the care of a new parent. Together they amble over coastline and forest in easy companionship, build boats from bark, create a miniature Venice, write a fanciful study of local bugs. They discuss things that matter to young and old alike: life, death, the nature of God and of love. “On an island,” thinks the grandmother, “everything is complete.”  Recommended as beautifully written.

The Girl in the Spider’s Web – David Lagercrantz – picks up Stieg Larsson’s series about Lisbeth Salander – recommended as pretty good – but this is a dark series so be prepared.

Smila’s Sense of Snow – Peter Hoeg – Smilla’s Sense of Snow presents one of the toughest heroines in modern fiction. Smilla Qaavigaaq Jaspersen is part Inuit, but she lives in Copenhagen. She is thirty-seven, single, childless, moody, and she refuses to fit in. Smilla’s six-year-old Inuit neighbor, Isaiah, manages only with a stubbornness that matches her own to befriend her. When Isaiah falls off a roof and is killed, Smilla doesn’t believe it’s an accident. She has seen his tracks in the snow, and she knows about snow. She decides to investigate and discovers that even the police don’t want her to get involved.  Also made into an interesting film.

Independent People  – Halldor Laxness – This magnificent novel—which secured for its author the 1955 Nobel Prize in Literature—is at least available to contemporary American readers. Although it is set in the early twentieth century, it recalls both Iceland’s medieval epics and such classics as Sigrid Undset’s Kristin Lavransdatter. And if Bjartur of Summerhouses, the book’s protagonist, is an ordinary sheep farmer, his flinty determination to achieve independence is genuinely heroic and, at the same time, terrifying and bleakly comic.  (and tragic)

Kristin Lavransdatter – Sigrid Undset – 3 volumes – In her great historical epic Kristin Lavransdatter, set in fourteenth-century Norway, Nobel laureate Sigrid Undset tells the life story of one passionate and headstrong woman. Painting a richly detailed backdrop, Undset immerses readers in the day-to-day life, social conventions, and political and religious undercurrents of the period. Now in one volume, Tiina Nunnally’s award-winning definitive translation brings this remarkable work to life with clarity and lyrical beauty.

My Struggle – Carl Ove Knausgaard – a multi volume autobiographical series of six novels written in the late 2000s.  Books cover his private life and thoughts (3600 pages all together) – categorized as fiction but his name and those of his relatives are not changed.

The Story of San Michele – Axel Menthe – A bestseller in a dozen languages and a favorite of readers for decades, The Story of San Michele is one of a remarkable life filled with fabulous experiences and ambitions. Axel Munthe was a fashionable physician in Paris who built one of the best-loved houses in the world, San Michele, on the Isle of Capri, on the site of the villa of the emperor Tiberius. Written with intelligence and verve, this autobiography tells tales of buried treasure in Italy, legendary creatures in Lapland, and the cold countesses and kindly whores of Naples—enough material, as one critic put it, “to furnish writers of short stories with plots for the rest of their lives.” “A frank and absorbing autobiography…packed with good stories, vivid scenes, and memorable portraits

Yes Chef – Marcus Samuelson, Veronica Chambers – It begins with a simple ritual: Every Saturday afternoon, a boy who loves to cook walks to his grandmother’s house and helps her prepare a roast chicken for dinner. The grandmother is Swedish, a retired domestic. The boy is Ethiopian and adopted, and he will grow up to become the world-renowned chef Marcus Samuelsson. This book is his love letter to food and family in all its manifestations.

The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend  – Katarina Bivald – Broken Wheel, Iowa, has never seen anyone like Sara, who traveled all the way from Sweden just to meet her book-loving pen pal, Amy. When she arrives, however, she finds Amy’s funeral guests just leaving. The residents of Broken Wheel are happy to look after their bewildered visitor—there’s not much else to do in a dying small town that’s almost beyond repair. OK this one doesn’t have a surprising ending and the plot may require a bit of belief suspension but it’s charming,  it’s set in a bookstore and the end of the book has a list of all the titles it mentions.

The Man Who Watched the World End – Chris Diesel  The end of man was not signaled by marauding gangs or explosions, but with silence. People simply grew older knowing a younger generation would not be there to replace them. The final two residents in the neighborhood of Camelot, an old man and his invalid brother, are trapped in their house by forests full of cats and dogs battling with the bears and wolves to eat anything they can find. As the man struggles to survive, he recounts all the ways society changed as the human population continued to shrink-the last movie Hollywood ever made, the last World Series that was played, how governments around the world slowly disbanded. THE MAN WHO WATCHED THE WORLD END is the haunting account of a man who has witnessed the world fade away. It is also a story about the power of family.

Your Heart is a Muscle the Size of a Fist – Sunil Yapa – Yapa’s chilling debut is set amid the real-life protests that disrupted the 1999 World Trade Organization Ministerial Conference in Seattle, which resulted in hundreds of arrests, police resignations, and an increased media spotlight on the WTO. The novel follows a fictional group of police officers, dissidents, and a diplomat as they struggle through the summit’s first chaotic day, full of tear gas, epiphany, and violence. On one side are the activists and their hangers-on: Victor, a nomadic 19-year-old trying to sell weed to protesters; King and John Henry, veteran nonviolent advocates who arrive at the protests to act as medics; and Charles, a political representative from Sri Lanka who quickly finds himself a target of both protesters and police. Representing the law are Chief Bill Bishop, Victor’s estranged stepfather, bent on protecting his city; and officers Tim and Julia, whose past run-ins with terrorism and riots influence their fierce approach to peace.

Where My Heart Used to Beat – Sebastian Faulks – London, 1980. Robert Hendricks, an established psychiatrist and author, has so bottled up memories of his own wartime past that he is nearly sunk into a life of aloneness and depression. Out of the blue, a baffling letter arrives from one Dr. Alexander Pereira, a neurologist and a World War I veteran who claims to be an admirer of Robert’s published work. The letter brings Robert to the older man’s home on a rocky, secluded island off the south of France, and into tempests of memories–his childhood as a fatherless English boy, the carnage he witnessed and the wound he can’t remember receiving as a young officer in World War II, and, above all, the great, devastating love of his life, an Italian woman, “L,” whom he met during the war.

Orphan X – Gary Hurwitz – Evan Smoak is a man with skills, resources, and a personal mission to help those with nowhere else to turn. He’s also a man with a dangerous past. Chosen as a child, he was raised and trained as part of the off-the-books black box Orphan program, designed to create the perfect deniable intelligence assets—i.e. assassins. He was Orphan X. Evan broke with the program, using everything he learned to disappear.

Burnt Shadows – Kamila Shamsie – In the devastating aftermath of the atomic bomb, Hiroko Tanaka who lost her lover in the bombing leaves Japan in search of new beginnings. From Delhi, amid India’s cry for independence from British colonial rule, to New York City in the immediate wake of 9/11, to the novel’s astonishing climax in Afghanistan, a violent history casts its shadow the entire world over. Sweeping in its scope and mesmerizing in its evocation of time and place, this is a tale of love and war, of three generations, and three world-changing historic events. Burnt Shadows is a story for our time by “a writer of immense ambition and strength

 

Reminder – Tuesday is meeting day

and we’ll be talking about books from Scandinavia and Iceland (and pretty much anything anyone else wants to talk about)

and we’ll be using our new library tea set with the cookies.  Hope you can join us at the Library at 2:30 on Tuesday (2/2)  groundhog

I’ll be spending the weekend with a couple of Swedish mystery/thriller authors – hilarity will NOT ensue.

I have found the most delightful book

Translated from the Swedish it is The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald.  Was recommended for people who enjoyed The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry and while I have been badly burned by “books like”, this one seems very promising.  Here is one of the chapter headings

“It is a Truth Universally Acknowledged that a Swedish Tourist in Iowa Must be in Want of a Man”

How could you not like that?  It will be available for borrowing at our next meeting.