Help Me Pitch Titles to My Book Club

********* updated after book club vote to let you all know that we chose EVERYTHING BEAUTIFUL BEGAN AFTER!!!    ***********

 

I will be pitching the following titles to my club on Thursday.   Which would YOU vote for?  The blurbs are from goodreads.com and I am including the Kindle pricing because almost all of my friends have that eReader.   Clicking on the book cover will take you to goodreads.

Everything Beautiful Began After    by Simon Van Booy.   A huge favorite of those bloggers who adore Mr. Van Booy.   I have read a short story collection and I must say, his writing IS beautiful.   I purchased a copy at the first day of the Borders-Is-Going-Out-Of-Biz sale.  #sob   Paperback 416 pages, Kindle $9.99

Simon Van Booy brings to the page his unique talent for poetic dialogue and sumptuous imagery in this his remarkable debut novel of love and loss, dependence and independence. Rebecca has come to Athens to paint. Born and raised in the south of France, Rebecca’s mother abandoned her and her sister when they were very young, left to be raised by her loving yet distant grandfather. Young and lost, she seeks solace in the heat of Athens. George has come to Athens to translate language. Dropped off at a New England boarding school when he was a child, he has close to no relationships with anyone, except the study of ancient language and alcohol. Henry has come to Athens to dig. An archaeologist, Henry is on-site at Athens during the day, and roams the Agora on the weekend. Three lost and lonely souls whose worlds become inexorable enmeshed with consequences that ripple far among the ruins of ancient Athens.

Two Rivers    by T. Greenwood.   I know absolutely nothing about this (and will TRY to not even even read the blurb I’m about to cut and paste!)   My friend just loaned this to me and it was included in the Reading Group Choices 2010 edition.     Paperback 367 pages, Kindle $9.60

“Two Rivers is a convergence of tales, a reminder that the past never washes away, and yet, in T. Greenwood’s delicate handling of time gone and time to come, love and forgiveness wait on the other side of what life does to us and what we do to it. This novel is a sensitive and suspenseful portrayal of family and the ties that bind.” –Lee Martin, author of The Bright Forever and River of Heaven

How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe     by Charles Yu.    I read a review of this at Ti’s BOOK CHATTER blog and knew that I must read.  I also think the idea of a book club is to read something one might never ever pick up without a nudge.   Hardcover 234 pages, Kindle $11.99

National Book Foundation 5 Under 35 Award winner Charles Yu delivers his debut novel, a razor-sharp, ridiculously funny, and utterly touching story of a son searching for his father . . . through quantum space & time. 

and finally, NOT that I have a favorite but this one excites me:   The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb   by Melanie Benjamin.    The subject of this historical fiction novel grew up in the town I now live in.   WICKED COOL!   And the reviews so far are GUSHING-good.   Hardcover 448 pages $15.44, Kindle $12.99

She was only two-foot eight-inches tall, but her legend reaches out to us more than a century later. As a child, Mercy Lavinia “Vinnie” Bump was encouraged to live a life hidden away from the public. Instead, she reached out to the immortal impresario P. T. Barnum, married the tiny superstar General Tom Thumb in the wedding of the century, and transformed into the world’s most unexpected celebrity.

A barnstorming novel of the Gilded Age, and of a woman’s public triumphs and personal tragedies, The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb is the irresistible epic of a heroine who conquered the country with a heart as big as her dreams—and whose story will surely win over yours.

OK!  Time to vote!   I will be sending my club the link to this so they can vote as well.   I have the power to dictate WHICH book to read but not yet sure which one I would pick.   Thank you. And have a nice day.

HIdeinWhitetoSkipLine

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24 thoughts on “Help Me Pitch Titles to My Book Club

    1. Kathy! too funny. For the past two weeks, I’ve been leaving comments to reviews that I would pitch the title to club (but failed to keep track.) And then I was going to force the Van Booy book – I know I will read it. In fact, I’m planning on going to see him in Sept when he comes to Boston. Which reminds me… Anyway. THEN today I see the Mrs.TomThumb book and I.WANT.NOW.
      🙂

  1. I have such a hard time narrowing my pitches down to just a few. We pick our books for the year so the pitch has to be just right.

    I ended up not pitching How to Live Safely because I worried that it would get shot down. I have to say though, on the surface it may not look as if there would be a lot to discuss, but there is. The whole…”what would you do different if you could” question comes up as well as what it means to be a dad…the heartache and the disapppointment when things don’t go as planned. Not to mention the intrusion of technology upon our everyday lives.

    Check out Yu’s interview over at Bookworm: http://www.kcrw.com/etc/programs/bw/bw101014charles_yu_how_to_li

    1. Thanks Ti! We rotate whose turn it is to pick; I am very sure we would not do good with picking a years worth at once! But who knows…

      I am ready to read some scifi again. I’m always surprised.

  2. I have a hard time picking my reads too. I only get to pick once or twice a year and there are SO many books I would love to have my book club read. I need to read Mrs. Tom Thumb – it sounds great!

  3. I read Two Rivers but totally forgot it so had to go back and read my review to remember what I thought! Ah, so first we could say, not especially memorable! ha ha. (But actually, I did remember it when my memory was jogged by the review.) I guess I found it sort of irritating, and advised reading it if one got it for free, but otherwise, it could be skipped! :–) I gave it a 3/5

  4. I voted for Mrs. Tom Thumb, mainly because I just listened to an episode of The Dinner Party Download which included a bit about the Thumbs. In each episode they find a little piece of history to talk about and then have a bartender create a drink to go along with it. So, you could talk about the book and have a theme-relevant cocktail to go along with it! Episode link and recipe here: http://www.publicradio.org/columns/dinnerpartydownload/2011/02/episode-83-chris-burden-small-weddings-and-sushi-burritos.html

  5. Hmmph. Blew that. You already know what I would have said. SIMON!!! But I’ve got How to Live Safely, etc., on my wish list and I’m curious about the Tom Thumb book. It’s rather omnipresent, at the mometn.

    1. I am both excited and scared that we picked the SVB. I am placing bets that at least one person doesn’t read the whole thing. (judging on past performance)

  6. I hope y’all enjoy Simon von B. My friend at work went to see him give a talk and she said it was really interesting and she loved the story he read aloud. Have y’all done short story collections before? My book club did one short story collection and had sort of a hard time keeping an on-topic discussion going. Because they’re all so short!

    1. Ha! Jenny, we have a hard time keeping any discussion “on-topic”, it seems. We have a ton of fun. For having a few English teachers in the group, we are remarkably unstructured and ‘low’ on analysis. I think you could count The Imperfectionists as a story collection and we had good discussion on that one.

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