Spring Book Buzz

Posted by SusanM on Wednesday, May 11, 2011 - 1:03 PM

Book BuzzThe publishing industry is always happy to share their new releases and latest best choices for book clubs with library professionals. Last week, at the Connecticut Library Association’s annual conference, I was able to attend a publisher’s “book buzz” session and left with some great suggestions for book groups.  Many favorite authors are back with new titles this spring.

Lisa See, best known for Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, is back with a new release entitled Dreams of Joy.This novel, a continuation of Shanghai Girls, the story of sisters Pearl and May, follows Pearl’s daughter Joy as she returns to Communist China in search of her birth father.  Known for her storytelling and well-drawn characters, Ms. See’s latest book will not disappoint her fans.

Geraldine Brooks is widely recognized for her historical fiction novels. Her latest effort, Caleb’s Crossing, should be a popular book club choice. The Caleb referred to in the title was, in 1655, the first Native American to graduate from Harvard.  Pulitzer Prize winner Ms. Brooks has fashioned a story around this character told through the eyes of his best friend Bethia Mayfield, a minister’s daughter.  17th century Harvard and Cambridge Massachusetts are vividly depicted and brought to life through Bethia’s narration.

Stones from the River, by Ursula Hegi, is a longtime favorite of book clubs.  Now Ms. Hegi has written another novel set in Burgdorf Germany during the same time period, just after Hitler came to power.  Children and Fire  takes place over the course of a single day as a young teacher struggles to understand what is happening to the world around her.  This book will provide much discussion for book clubs trying to comprehend how good people came to accept, if not actually embrace the evil taking place around them.

One of the books raved about at this year’s book buzz was Tolstoy and the Purple Chair, written by Westport resident Nina Sankovitch. This memoir, about the year she spent reading a book a day, has captured both the attention of the publishing world and fans of her blog, Readallday, alike.  We are so fortunate to have Nina participate in our monthly Book Chat at the library and she will be appearing here on Wednesday, June 8th at 12 PM to share with us her passion for reading and books.Make sure to mark it on your calendar.

Keep in mind these new titles as you add to your book club’s ‘to read’ list in the coming year. 


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