Early in July my summer book group convenes. A great deal of thought is devoted to selecting the six months of thought! Usually the     person who has volunteered to lead the discussion will choose a book with maybe some input from the group. 

We don't do light summer reads...on the contrary, we do volumptuous, brilliant and insightful books.  What more can I add except to say...the food is always good but it's not the focal point (maybe for me) and the book discussion is honest and exhilarating and is the focal point. 

Confused about a book? You won't be by the end of the evening!

                        SUMMER BOOKGROUP CHOICES 2012

HOUSE of STONE by Anthony Shadid

This is our first memoir and it is a book about war, unbelievable loss, a region in trouble, and a family history. The author was one of four New York Times reporters captured in Libya, brutally beaten and mistreated as the country was in the midst of a revolution. After his release he remained to rebuild his family home in Lebanon.  Shadid creates a mosaic of past and present told with humor and understanding.

 Anthony Shadid died in 2012 unexpectedly of an apparent asthma attack while he was on assignment in Syria.

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 Author Anthony Shadid 1968-2012

TO the LIGHTHOUSE by Virginia Woolf

This book was written by Virginia Woolf, one of the major literary figures of the twentieth century. It was labeled a groundbreaking novel about a vacationing family and the relationship with their guests and each other.

 A reviewer said "This book is about beauty, about the incredible tragedy of time passing, about art and the world, about love and marriage, about people."
Book Cover:  To the Lighthouse
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TO the LIGHTHOUSE was published in 1927 and was written in one of the  more peaceful times in Woolf's life. It was considered one of her best novels.

Virginia Woolf   1882-1941


This is a memoir, beautifully written about people who defined themselves by the objects they owned. I had trouble getting into this book but overall it's a well researched family memoir.

Edmund de Waal is a ceramicist and describes the experiences of his family and their collection of Japanese netsuki, which are tiny hand carved figures including a hare with amber eyes.

The story combines art history, detective story and memoir as De Waal discovers the history of the netsuke and explores five generations of his family.
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THE RUINS of US by Keija Parssinen

A blog reader on the Cape leads a year round co-ed book club. 
One of the books she recommended is THE RUINS of US by Keija Parssinen.

This debut novel explores the life of an American expatriate who after living in Saudi Arabia, discovers that her husband, a Saudi billionaire has taken a second bride.

The discovery plunges the family into chaos at the expense of their sixteen year old son, Faisel who soon becomes involved with a controversial sheikh.
When Faisel makes a choice that could destroy everything, all must confront difficult truths.

 This is a powerful story of family and country written by an author born in Saudi Arabia.

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  1. Hi. I'm a new follower. I found you through Book Blogs. It's nice to meet you. I hope you'll check out my blog and consider following.

  2. Great selections, you've inspired me to pick up To The Lighthouse once again, have intended to re-read it since first time in college. Great blog, Joyce.

  3. Thankyou Stuart.. I'm looking forward to reading it...It'll be a first for me. My book group on the island is a great mix of one is afraid to speak up!!