Thursday, December 11, 2008

December 2008 Book Club Meeting and January Selection

Summary: In 1946, Hollywood’s most famous swashbuckler, Errol Flynn, arrived in Jamaica in a storm-ravaged boat. After a long and celebrated career on the silver screen, Flynn spent the last years of his life on a small island off the Jamaican coast, where he fell in love with the people, the paradisiacal setting, and the privacy, and brought a touch of Tinseltown glamour to the West Indian community.

Based on those years, The Pirate’s Daughter imagines an affair between the aging matinee star and Ida, a beautiful local girl. Flynn’s affections are unpredictable but that doesn’t stop Ida from dreaming of a life with him, especially after the birth of their daughter, May.

Margaret Cezair-Thompson weaves stories of mothers and daughters, fathers and lovers, country and kin, into this compelling, dual-generational coming-of-age tale of two women struggling to find their way in a nation wrestling with its own independence. -- Random House

We had a wonderful time at our December book club meeting. We were extremely talkative and didn't actually get around to talking about THE PIRATE'S DAUGHTER by Margaret Cezair-Thompson until an hour and a half after we got there. It wasn't that we didn't all enjoy the novel, but I think we were all in desperate need of a night out. This meeting was also our annual "book swap." We each brought a wrapped, used book to exchange. It was a lot of fun, especially the stealing part; and I think we all went home with some really good books. I got ONE THOUSAND WHITE WOMEN: THE JOURNAL OF MAY DODD by Jim Fergus.

There were just so many things to talk about in this novel that we found ourselves jumping around a lot. In addition, we realized when we started discussing the book that there were also many characters. However, I do think that our discussion was pretty interesting despite these this. We spent some time talking about the women -- both their similarities and their differences. Some of my favorite parts of the meeting were when we discussed the racial issues and the class issues that occurred in Jamaica. All of us agreed that we thought the historical parts of the novel were very interesting (none of us really knew Jamaica's background.)

Next month, we will be reading IMMORTAL by Traci Slatton. It's kind of a long book for us, but we've known about this selection for awhile and a few of the women have already started it. It's another historical fiction novel, but it's a totally different type of book than THE PIRATE'S DAUGHTER and it takes place in a very different time period.

Summary: In an age of wonderous beauty and terrible secrets,one man searches for his destiny...

In the majestic heart of Florence, a beautiful golden-haired boy is abandoned and subjected to cruelty beyond words. But Luca Bastardo is anything but an ordinary boy. Across two centuries of passion and intrigue, Luca will discover an astonishing gift—one that will lead him to embrace the ancient mysteries of alchemy and healing and to become a trusted confidant to the powerful Medicis…even as he faces persecution from a sadistic cabal determined to wrest his secrets for themselves.

But as the Black Death and the Inquisition wreak havoc on his beloved city, Luca’s survival lies in the quest to solve two riddles. One is the enigma of his parents and his ageless beauty. The other is a choice between immortality and the only chance to find his one true love. As Luca journeys through the heights of the Renaissance, befriends Giotto and Leonardo Da Vinci—140 years apart—and pursues the most closely guarded secrets of religious faith and science for the answers to his own burning questions, his remarkable search will not only change him…but will change the course of history. -- Delta


Anonymous said...

You did end up getting a book yesterday, it just didn't come in the mail.

Ti said...

At my book club holiday meeting last week, I ended up with In The Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez. It's something I have been wanting to read for a long time so I am glad I ended up with a "keeper".

Marissa said...

I really enjoyed One Thousand White Women. I don't always love when men write from women's perspectives, but Jim Fergus did a great job with it here. And the premise is very creative. I hope you enjoy it!