Best Book I Have Not Read

Writing, Reading, Teaching, Life, Attempting to Balance it All

Book Club for Grown-Ups October 11, 2010

Filed under: book clubs — bestbookihavenotread @ 4:51 pm
The Magicians Lev Grossman
Telex from Cuba Rachel Kuschner
Great Expectations Charles Dickens
The Children’s Book A. S. Byatt
Prisoner of Tehran: Marina Nemat
One Woman’s Story
of Survival Inside
an Iranian Prison
Those that Save Us Jenna Blum
Hotel on the Corner Jamie Ford
of Bitter and Sweet
Marcelo in the Real Francisco Stark
A Reliable Wife Robert Goolick
Olive Kittredge Elizabeth Strout
Let the Great World Spin Colum McCamm

Here’s what my “grown-up” book club is reading this year. Each September we all bring a couple of suggestions, make a master list, and then get vote. Books with most votes get on calendar for year. We also try to always include one non-fiction, one children’s, and one “classic” Live in G-ville and want a book club? Shoot me a comment and I’ll get you the info ūüôā


“Grown-Up” Book Club 2009-2010 September 15, 2009

Filed under: book clubs — bestbookihavenotread @ 8:38 pm

The winners of last night’s planning meeting for “grown-up” book club are as follows:

Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society Mary Ann Schaffer
and Annie Barrows
The Elegance of the Hedgehog Muriel Barberry
Alison Anderson
My Life in France Julia Child
The Maytrees Annie Dillard
Mrs. Dalloway Virginia Woolf
The Space Between Us Thirty Umriger
Hunger Games Suzanne Collins
The Black Book of Secrets FE Higggins
Distant Land of My Father Bo Caldwell
(and for over achievers or fast readers)
Last Chinese Chef Nicole Mones
The Help Kathryn Stockett
The Middle Place Kelly Corrigan
My Stroke of Insight Jill Bolte Taylor
Last Town on Earth Thomas Mullen
pick from recommended
Peony in Love Lisa See
Anti-Intellectualism in American Life Richard Hofstadter

I had been looking forward to this evening for quite a while and started doing by “research” for suggestions this past July. Everyone in the group brings a suggestion (or two or three) and then we hash it out. Some books are clear ‘winners’ if more than one person brought the book as a suggestion. We also get recommendations from the owner and the manager of the local book store for consideration. ¬†We try to always have one classic, one non-fiction, and one young adult book, in addition to fiction titles. There are a few members who can always be counted on to bring non-fiction recommendations as well as a few who love the classics. ¬†I’m one of two who inhale young adult, so it’s always fun to compare notes as well as getting our friends to read some of our YA favorites. Hunger Games was an easy pick for both of us.

I had brought the three titles in bold and have been holding off on reading Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society in hopes that it would make this year’s list (sometimes if too many people have already read a title, it can eliminate a book from ‘the running’.

The classic is always the hardest for me with non-fiction coming in a close second. I still haven’t made it through a classic in three years. It doesn’t help that the non-fiction month usually overlaps when I am reading YA books like a fiend before Newbery announcements. ¬†I’m not making any bets that I will make it to Virginia Woolf, but maybe if I can buy it on I-tunes and listen to it in the car.

The group expanded as many brought a friend and we were able to make decisions in record time this year. ¬†Big thanks to Susan for hosting and organizing. We wouldn’t all be the varied readers we are without your organization.


The Best Ideas are Often Those Borrowed April 23, 2009

Filed under: book clubs — bestbookihavenotread @ 10:11 am
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My sixth grade colleagues saw Bill’s (Literate Lives) Grand Conversation signs and information on display at the Dublin Literacy Conference. Travis had already been intrigued by the idea of starting a parent child book club, and Bill’s format helped them launch their own. They had their first Grand Coversation over The Lottery Rose and it was quite the success. There were so many positive comments from parents and the students loved being the “experts” on school. The group started with parents and children together, then split into an adult group with one teacher and a student group with the other teacher. The teachers do a book


¬†introduction for each group, and the parents had an opportunity to experience being a “sixth grader”, while learning about reading strategies. About a month later, the group reconvened for a book conversation. During part of the second evening, parents were randomly mixed with other students. The parents were

¬†overwhelming amazed by how much their child was able to take away from the book, as well as how much deeper their child’s comprehension was through¬†conversation. ¬†¬†

Their next club event is The Mysterious Benedict Society in May! I know I’m looking forward to reading it, as I haven’t had a chance to do so yet and book 3 (The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Prisoner’s Dilemma) in the series comes out in October! I’m thinking this one might be a good audiobook for the car.


Mother-Daughter Book Club April 20, 2009

Filed under: book clubs — bestbookihavenotread @ 6:41 am
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We had a darn good time at the first Mother-Daughter Book Club. Here are four of the seven girls who are participating (plus a little sister). We had a great time discussing Scat by Carl Hiaasen. It was the first Hiaasen book for all moms and daughters. I just now thought of this, but all three families represented today, have a mother who was/is a teacher:) Here is a link to Maggie’s review (She’d love a comment if you have time?)

Maggie wanted to have a door prize, so she picked a little magnetic bookmark that she gave out through a drawing of names.  Next month Little House in the Big Woods was picked by the next member and I am really excited to re-read one of my favorite childhood books!


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“Child of a Blogger” January 5, 2009

Filed under: blogs,book clubs,books,KidLit,kidlitosphere — bestbookihavenotread @ 9:46 pm
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I just arrived home from Book Club and received the update about bedtime from my husband. We both had to laugh about the following story that took place while I was gone.

My son (age 6) was trying to decide what to read at bedtime tonight. My daughter (age 9) overheard her brother and said the following,

“Mabye I can help. I’m the child of a blogger. It’s just who you want picking out your literature.”

So we are not quite sure what is most amusing, the fact that she referred to herself in third person or that she used the word “literature”. Either way it is classic and I take it as a huge compliment.

The same daughter did not want me to go to Book Club tonight and was pretty sure that I should let her come so she could hear grown-ups talk about books. She has also decided that she should be allowed to have her own blog to review books. She declared that if I am going to read 100 books for a challenge, that she certainly will as well.

Amusing, but also endearing. This same child is the one I’ve written about in the past. The struggle to get her hooked reading a book in the past has been a sore spot for me. Fortunately we seem to have moved past that hurdle.

It’s certainly the nicest thing I’ve heard so far this week.


First “Grown-Up” book of the year: Mr. Pip

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Mister Pip Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones

My review

I really enjoyed this book. Now I need to go back and read Great Expectations-there is a lot I don’t remember from freshman year in high school

View all my reviews.