June 2019 – Sunday Lunch Club by Juliet Ashton

Photo Jun 26, 5 39 14 PMGood Morning World!  What a lovely meeting last night!!

We met at my house La Petite Maison de Joie for Historic College Park Book Club’s June meeting.  Our book was Sunday Lunch Club by Juliet Ashton.   I listened to this on Audible which was quite delightful considering the narrator had an English accent which completely made the book come alive for me!  I’m a sucker for an English accent.

The Beanster aka Judy Bean was the first to arrive at my house.  I was fearful we were the only ones attending then everyone began spilling in!!! We had a very good group for the evening!  There was one other instance when Judy and I were the ‘only’ ones in attendance – remember that Judy ? it was years ago……  we were having book club at one of the local eateries – luckily we had the best wee book club meeting with just the two of us!  Ha! So many cherished memories with our book club which began in 2007 with just a handful of neighbors.  Our first book was Loving Frank.   

I could not find book club questions for this book – sorry girls! There is a list of generic book club questions I recently stumbled upon but could not find them.   Anywho…..  we managed quite nicely I think.   We enjoyed the book for the most part.  It was completely a beach read – with a slow beginning but we were drawn in after we got started.   The theme of the book is about family.  All the craziness that involves each of us and how it’s important to stick with the group which they did nicely through Sunday Lunch Club hence the name.   There were secrets, regrets, loathing and a lot of love swirled in this book.   I really liked the menus at the beginning of each chapter.

For author bio click HERE 

The author writes under several different names including her real name of Bernadette Strachan.

Thank you everyone for bringing delightful nibbles (and the Bischoff from Judy considering you’re a Delta gal!) but especially to Laura Lee for actually using my oven which never EVER gets used!  Because I do not COOK! Those shrimp were divine!

Of course with our local Mayoral race heating up we HAD to go there and get political talk going (my bad actually… he he he).  I hope all the candidates ears are burning! We talked about the good bad and the ugly.    Thanks everyone for putting their two cents in on all the candidates.  Should be an interesting election indeed.  Just hopeful the most ethical, honest, and bright (we know who that is now don’t we – giggling) gets elected!

Thanks again everyone for coming to our meeting last night.   I just love book club…. don’t you?

Special thanks to my sweet wee Scottish Terriers for being so good!! Pip, Cricket and Bumble are the cutest.

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Dec 2018 – First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen

Photo Dec 17, 7 05 49 PM*Make sure you follow our ladies of Historic College Park Book Club blog! Don’t miss a book! 

I have to apologize to the book club gals!! I put the incorrect address on the evite for book club last night! Yikes!  I inadvertently put Amy’s address instead of Angie’s! There’s a first for everything.  Thankfully they both live on the same street!

Thanks to Angie for hosting our end of year book club meeting!  It’s also a  white elephant gift exchange (or Dirty Santa gifts some call it).   Our December book is by Sarah Addison Allen called First Frost.  I try to choose a holiday themed book for December.  Sarah also wrote Garden Spell which Angie said is delightful.  First Frost reminded me of the movie Practical Magic just a wee bit.  I love the aspect of people creating magical affects through cooking, or organizing or… cutting hair?  Thanks to Angie for our special cookie cake reading “Merry Chirstmas HCPBC!’ so sweet!  And to our dear Kelly who actually baked the recipe for the special bread – it was divine!!

For author bio click HERE 

We enjoyed the book very much.  It was in the vein of women and communities coming together – their relationships and the magical world Sarah Addison Allen creates is wonderful as it unfolds before you as you read.

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We nibbled and sipped hard cider as we went through book club discussion questions.   We gathered for our white elephant gift exchange – with a few gifts being stolen as laughter ensued.  We’ve been doing this meeting once a month since 2007 when we began our book club.  There were just a few of us when I decided to begin our adventures.   Many of us are in multiple book clubs – because yes we love to read.   Some are definitely more strict than ours – some even are an excuse to get together and just drink and talk!  Ours is somewhere in between those two extremes.   Many have come and gone through the years.   One thing remains – a small group of gals who love to read, discuss, giggle, be serious, drink (a given) and gather as friends in our quaint historic district just SW of Atlanta.   Some meetings are more intense than others.  Most are just enjoyable as we discuss and go along the paths of discussion where the subject matter takes us.

See you in 2019!!!  Cheers!!!

 

Sept 2018 – Beneath A Scarlet Sky by Mark Sullivan

Photo Sep 18, 6 17 08 PMReading brings to light people places events and things we would never cross paths with in our lives.  We were completely delighted with Beneath A Scarlet Sky by Mark Sullivan.   I’ve never associated WWII and Hitler with Italy – our eyes have been opened!

Mark Sullivan brings to light Pino Lella’s experiences and choices during WWII.   It’s completely captivating through and through.   Highly recommend reading.  I have found several photos of Pino being that this is based on a true story – there are wonderful photographs out there!

We gathered in my home for September, La Petite Maison de Joie (the Little House of Joy lovingly named by dear friend Sherry Gaines).   Delightful evening ladies. Truly.  I look forward to book club every month and what it brings out in discussions.  We each bring our own unique perspective to every meeting.  And that my friends…. is the entire point! If we were all the same how very boring it would be!!!

For author bio click MARK SULLIVAN 

I came across a video from Wagner College and a group called High Society – Very interesting…  Click HERE to view

*For those reading our book club blog, make sure you follow us so that you don’t miss a book! Cheers!

 

April 2018 – Hidden Light of Northern Fires – Daren Wang

Photo Apr 23, 8 26 20 PMA massive thank you to author Daren Wang for joining our meeting to discuss his first novel The Hidden Light of Northern Fires!  A very special thanks to Laura Lee Gentry for opening her lovely home (you are like super girl – truly) and to Jake Rothschild (of Jakes Ice Cream fame) for catering our event through Jakes Good Foods.  Delish! A few of my favorite nibbles from the evening were the Devlish Eggs, chicken salad, and the pimento cheese! Completely yummy!

We opened up the meeting to others thus invited neighborhood peeps to join us as well.   We wanted to share Daren Wang and his book with as many as possible!

Daren Wang lives n Decatur Ga.   He grew up in Town Line NY – where the inspiration for this book began!  For a peek into this town click HERE  Daren explains how his childhood home, being a barn in Town Line NY is how he ended up with this incredible slice of history and first novel – click HERE for informative video with Daren Wang 

I think I can completely speak on everyone’s behalf – what a magical evening as we sat listening, asking questions with Daren Wang! A huge shout out to Wendy for trying to get Tyler Perry’s attention to produce a movie of the book! Come on Mr. Perry!  A great project for you! #TylerPerryMakeThisAMovie

Question for all our readers — if you were in this time pre-civil war – and posed with hiding a runaway slave — would you?  I can say I would do ‘whatever’ it took to get someone to safety!  #TylerPerryMakeThisAMovie

And YES! I of course videotaped most of the discussion —  please forgive the giggles on my end and wavering of the iphone —  I was trying to have a sip of wine every now and then.  Guilty am I.  Ahem.  For the video that you can see on YOUTUBE CLICK HERE! Turn it up!

**Make sure you follow the women of HCP by following our blog! Don’t miss a book! 

 

 

March 2018- The Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly

Photo Mar 27, 6 12 59 PMThanks Angela for making a tasty dinner for us (so THATS what an oven is used for…… ah ha! ) You are too kind!   Your home is lovely – as are your kids and kitties! Welcome new member Susan Gatehouse!

Our March read was The Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly.  Click HERE for author bio and click HERE for Book summary.  

We were super happy to have our Sherry join us from Chattanooga! Sherry and I started early to chat at our very own ‘secret’ speakeasy The Duck Club for pre-book club cocktails and catch up! Miss you soooo much Sherry -sooooo good to see you!

We completely loved The Lilac Girls.  Each chapter intertwines the lives of these very different women living through Hitler’s horrific madness.  As events happen the knot tightens pulling these women together in a loop you’ll never forget.  This is Martha Hall Kelly’s first book which landed on the NY Times best seller list!   Ms Kelly writes in historic fiction based on real people living through the growing panic in WWII.  Ms. Kelly researched for years finally producing a wonderful story that captured our hearts and minds.

See you next month as we begin The Hidden Light of Northern Fires by Daren Wang

Happy reading ladies! See you next month if not before! Cheers! #HCPBookClub

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Feb 2018 -The Suitcases by Anne Hall Whitt

Photo Feb 22, 6 40 01 PMA wonderful evening indeed girls!  For those who could not attend you were missed! Thank you SO MUCH Amy for hosting this eclectic group of ladies! I’m COMPLETELY smitten with Finn the wonder-pug-piggie-!  Your home is lovely!

Let me fill you in on how the book came to our attention.  Jenny’s Auntie retrieved it in her Little Free Library that sits in front of her home.  She gave it to Jenny to read and Jen said we must read this for book club!  And so it began.

True life account of Anne Hall Whitt and her two sisters during the Great Depression being moved through orphanages and foster care system after her mother passes away.  Many questions indeed being that other family members could have taken in the three siblings.  An easy read although the story is not easy to handle.  Major pulls to heart strings fyi.   Anne’s path is changed when directed to Crossnore School which is still in existence today.   A boarding school set in the lovely Winston Salem NC.    *Plot twist here!  Dr & Dr Sloop who began Crossnore —  I have a friend who I met whose name is Julie Sloop (Rhodenizer now) —  Sloop is such an unusual name! I PM’d her on FB and asked if any relation and holy mackerel it’s her great uncle Dr Sloop who indeed started Crossnore!  What a small world we live in!  FYI – Julie is one of the loveliest people I’ve ever met – both inside and out.  An enchanting human being!

In talking about The Suicases — Georgia Baptist Children’s home and The Childrens Village at Christian city came to mind.  Georgia Baptist begin in the late l800’s moved from Hapeville and now sits in Palmetto Ga near Serenbe.   We all have known siblings who lived at Georgia Baptist when their parents died.   What a great testimony to both organizations – to care and love children when in strife.   THEN came the idea someone remembers hearing from Atlanta’s very own Clark Howard (we all adore Clark!) about providing suitcases with blankets and things a child would need toiletries toys etc to give to foster care for these children in need.  I’m on it!!!  Great idea girls!!

For author bio click HERE – Anne Hall Whitt 

I look forward to next month’s selection The Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly.  Thanks for offering to host our newest member Angela!  Will get date to you soon!

*** If you love books and following the wackadoodle gals in Historic College Park make sure you follow our website! To books!!! Cheers!

 

Nov 2017 – A Certain Age by Beatriz Williams

Photo Nov 27, 6 43 15 PM*Make sure you follow our blog so that you don’t miss the ladies of Historic College Park’s Book Club meetings! Even though you aren’t present you can be there in spirit by reading our blog! To books and the discussion of such (among other things!) – Cheers! 

Thanks so much Laura Lee Gentry for hosting our November meeting! LOVE the renovations!

On a chilly wintry night in Georgia (Historic College Park to be exact…..) we gathered to discuss A Certain Age – by Beatriz Williams.    A novel set in the roaring 1920’s amid the privileged upper class of New York, flappers, lots of sex (no drugs or rock at roll at this point) and a GREAT plot twist mid way.

The bestselling author of A Hundred Summers brings the Roaring Twenties brilliantly to life in this enchanting and compulsively readable tale of intrigue, romance, and scandal in New York Society, brimming with lush atmosphere, striking characters, and irresistible charm.

As the freedom of the Jazz Age transforms New York City, the iridescent Mrs. Theresa Marshall of Fifth Avenue and Southampton, Long Island, has done the unthinkable: she’s fallen in love with her young paramour, Captain Octavian Rofrano, a handsome aviator and hero of the Great War. An intense and deeply honorable man, Octavian is devoted to the beautiful socialite of a certain age and wants to marry her. While times are changing and she does adore the Boy, divorce for a woman of Theresa’s wealth and social standing is out of the question, and there is no need; she has an understanding with Sylvo, her generous and well-respected philanderer husband.

But their relationship subtly shifts when her bachelor brother, Ox, decides to tie the knot with the sweet younger daughter of a newly wealthy inventor. Engaging a longstanding family tradition, Theresa enlists the Boy to act as her brother’s cavalier, presenting the family’s diamond rose ring to Ox’s intended, Miss Sophie Fortescue—and to check into the background of the little-known Fortescue family. When Octavian meets Sophie, he falls under the spell of the pretty ingénue, even as he uncovers a shocking family secret. As the love triangle of Theresa, Octavian, and Sophie progresses, it transforms into a saga of divided loyalties, dangerous revelations, and surprising twists that will lead to a shocking transgression . . . and eventually force Theresa to make a bittersweet choice.

Full of the glamour, wit and delicious twists that are the hallmarks of Beatriz Williams’ fiction and alternating between Sophie’s spirited voice and Theresa’s vibrant timbre, A Certain Age is a beguiling reinterpretation of Richard Strauss’s comic opera Der Rosenkavalier, set against the sweeping decadence of Gatsby’s New York.

For author bio click HERE 

We discussed the freedom many women were experience at this time in the roaring 1920’s —  the open marriage arrangement Teresa had with her husband and the love she felt for Boyo in letting him go.  The plot twist of the murder house that both Octavian and Sophie lived in and what brought them together was a fabulous act!

Hope you enjoyed the book as much as we did.

To books! And discussing them at book club!