Book Club Corner – July

book club

Welcome to our Book Club Corner, where each month we highlight books new to paperback we think would make perfect picks for your next book club discussion. If you’re looking to join a book club, we host a wide variety of free, bookseller-run book clubs right here at BookPeople. Join us! We love to talk books.


FEATURED BOOKS OF THE MONTH


Among the Ten Thousand Things by Julia Pierpont

9780812985344A gripping family drama set in New York’s upper west side. Jack is a sculptor whose work is controversial and getting some attention. Deb is a retired ballet dancer now raising their two children. One day an anonymous package arrives, addressed to Deb but opened by her eleven-year-old daughter. Inside are months worth of intimate emails between Jack and an emotionally troubled young woman.

Pierpont has been praised both for the honesty and maturity of the story, as well as the sharpness and beauty of her prose. It’s a family drama that is also a page turner. A perfect summer read. Fans of Jennifer Egan, Jonathan Franzen and Curtis Sittenfeld.

“This book is one of the funniest, and most emotionally honest, I’ve read in a long time.”—Jonathan Safran Foer

JULIA PIERPONT is a graduate of the NYU Creative Writing Program, where she received the Rona Jaffe Foundation Graduate Fellowship, as well as the Stein Fellowship.

Among the Ten Thousand Things was released in paperback on June 14th, and is available on our shelves now.


The Natural Way Of Things by Charlotte Wood

9781609453626This is a must read for fans of Margaret Atwood or Lucia Berlin, as well as anyone interested in the portrayal of women in contemporary society.

The Natural Way of Things depicts a world where a woman’s sexuality has become a weapon turned against her. The characters, each marked by their own public scandal, are silenced and shackled by a cruel system of corporate control and misogyny. In a Kafkaesque drag of days marked only by the increasing strangeness of their predicament, the fraught, surreal, and fierce reality of inhabiting a female body becomes frighteningly vivid.

“A modern-day fable of rural gothic dystopia. Think Margaret Atwood, Angela Carter and chuck in a dose of Mad Max’s avenging angel Furiosa and you get the idea.”—Caroline Baum, Anne Summers Reports

Charlotte Wood is the author of five novels and one book of non-fiction. She has been described as one of Australia’s “most original and provocative writers.”

The Natural Way Of Things was released in paperback on June 28th, and is available on our shelves now.


Portable Curiosities by Julie Koh

9780702254048This one is a bit of a strange one, but we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention something out of the ordinary every once in awhile. Portable Curiosities is a collection of short stories from a bold new voice out of Australia. A young girl sees ghosts from her third eye, located where her belly button should be. A corporate lawyer feels increasingly disconnected from his job in a soulless 1200-storey skyscraper. And a one-dimensional yellow man steps out from a cinema screen in the hope of leading a three-dimensional life, but everyone around him is fixated only on the color of his skin.

These stories tend toward the dark and the surreal, always with a biting social commentary mixed in. These stories grab you with their unusual hooks, then drag you in with their unexpected twists and turns.

Julie Koh was born in Sydney to Chinese-Malaysian parents. Her short stories have appeared in The Best Australian Stories 2014 and 2015, The Sleepers Almanac, The Lifted Brow and Seizure Online.

Portable Curiosities comes out in paperback on July 1st and is available for pre-order now!


The Japanese Lover by Isabel Allende

9781501116995In 1939, as Poland falls under the shadow of the Nazis, young Alma Belasco’s parents send her away to live in safety with an aunt and uncle in their opulent mansion in San Francisco. There, as the rest of the world goes to war, she encounters Ichimei Fukuda, the quiet and gentle son of the family’s Japanese gardener. Unnoticed by those around them, a tender love affair begins to blossom. Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the two are cruelly pulled apart as Ichimei and his family—like thousands of other Japanese Americans—are declared enemies and forcibly relocated to internment camps run by the United States government. Throughout their lifetimes, Alma and Ichimei reunite again and again, but theirs is a love that they are forever forced to hide from the world.

“Allende is a dazzling storyteller, with a wry, sometimes dark wit and a great eye for society’s changing fashions. She may be writing a fairy tale for adults, but like the best of the genre, it’s almost irresistible.” – Associated Press

Born in Peru and raised in Chile, Isabel Allende is the author of a number of bestselling and critically acclaimed books, including The House of the Spirits, Eva Luna, Stories of Eva Luna, Of Love and Shadows, and Paula. Her books have been translated into more than thirty-five languages and have sold more than 65 million copies worldwide.

The Japanese Lover comes out in paperback on July 5th and is available for pre-order now!


Two Years Eight Months and Twenty Eight Nights by Salman Rushdie

9780812988208One of the greatest writers currently living, and definitely one of the most famous in the world, Rushdie’s new novel is a lush modern fairytale with tremendous philosophical depths. It’s about worlds colliding, reality and imagination, love and betrayal. At only 320 pages it is a perfect entry point for anyone new to Rushdie’s writing. And it’s a must read for those who are already fans.

“Rushdie is our Scheherazade, inexhaustibly enfolding story within story and unfolding tale after tale with such irrepressible delight that it comes as a shock to remember that, like her, he has lived the life of a storyteller in immediate peril…. This book is a fantasy, a fairytale—and a brilliant reflection of and serious meditation on the choices and agonies of our life in this world…. I like to think how many readers are going to admire the courage of this book, revel in its fierce colors, its boisterousness, humor and tremendous pizzazz, and take delight in its generosity of spirit.”—Ursula K. Le Guin, The Guardian

Salman Rushdie has written eleven previous novels, one of which, Midnight’s Children, won both the Booker Prize and the Best-Of Booker. Born in Mumbai, India, he now splits his time between New York and London.

Two Years Eight Months and Twenty Eight Nights come out in paperback on July 12th and is available for pre-order now!


Vintage by David Baker 

9781501112539Ex-food journalist and nearly destitute wine connoisseur Bruno Tannenbaum has hit rock bottom. So when he stumbles on a clue hinting at a lost wine vintage, the 1943 Trevallier—stolen from France during WWII and now worth a fortune—Bruno is convinced that finding this wine could be the key to restoring his journalism career, and perhaps even his failing marriage.

“Baker gets his spellbinding debut off to a rousing start with a great setup and an endearing protagonist, a bon vivant who rambles from Chicago to France, Germany, eastern Europe, and Moscow, enjoying fantastic meals and drinks along the way, as he searches for the lost wine—and, just maybe, for himself.” – The Library Journal

David Baker holds an MFA from Columbia College, Chicago and is the director of American Wine Story. He currently lives in Oregon’s Willamette Valley with his wife and daughter.

Vintage comes out in paperback on July 19th and is available for pre-order now!


FEATURED EVENT OF THE MONTH


Award-winning journalist, Andrew Nagorski

Speaking and signing Friday, July 15th 7pm

Andrew Nagorski served at Newsweek’s bureau chief in Hong Kong, Moscow, Rome, Bonn, Warsaw and Berlin. The Nazi Hunters is a fascinating book about the small band of individuals who searched for, and prosecuted, Nazi war criminals post-WWII.


FEATURED DRINK OF THE MONTH


pni0618travisnasscocktailcolumnIn honor of Wimbledon 2016 (June 27-July 10th), July’s drink of the month is: The Pimm’s Cup!

In my research about the history of The Pimm’s Cup, I discovered it is the unofficial cocktail of the famous British Grand-slam tournament. Being a tennis fan & player since I was a wee child, I was surprised I didn’t already know this. But having only recently learned to love gin-based cocktails, I ignored this delightful treat my entire over-21 life. To my great detriment, I must add.

Pimms is a gin-based liquor, named after James Pimm, a British oyster bar owner who developed the concoction in the mid-1800s. The traditional Pimm’s Cup is very simple:

2 oz Pimm’s No. 1

4 oz English Lemonade

Pour over ice in a collins glass, and garnish with mint sprig, cucumber slice and strawberry or apple slice.

Truly you can use any lemonade you like. Top off with some Topo or club soda to add bubbles. Or substitute ginger ale if you’re feeling adventurous. Enjoy with a copy of Open: An Autobiography by tennis legend, Andre Agassi, or The Inner Game of Tennis by W. Timothy Gallwey.

image

The courts at Wimbledon

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