Book Group Books

Secrets and Science in Popular Fiction

cover of  A Reliable Wife
cover of The Husband’s Secret
cover of Forty signs of rain
cover of The Martian
A Reliable Wife - Robert Goolrick
A gothic novel set in turn of the twentieth century Wisconsin
The Husband’s Secret - Liane Moriarty
Intertwined lives and secrets in Australia
Forty Signs of Rain - Kim Stanley Robinson
A near-future experience of science and politics
The Martian - Andy Weir
Stranded on the red planet, can a lone astronaut survive?

Exploring Nonfiction

cover of Cleopatra: a Life
cover of The Sixth Extinction: an unnatural history
Behind the Beautiful Forevers
cover of Being Mortal
Cleopatra: a Life - Stacy Schiff
Biography takes us back over the millennia
The Sixth Extinction: an unnatural history - Elizabeth Kolbert
The world in crisis--science writing
Behind the Beautiful Forevers - Katherine Boo
The stories of a Mumbai slum
Being Mortal - Atul Gawande
Psychology and medicine raise important questions

Families and Sagas: the power of stories

cover of Land of Love and Drowning
cover of The Storied Life of A. J. Fickry
cover of The Tiger's Wife
cover of The Round House
Land of Love and Drowning - Tiphanie Yanique
The Virgin Islands is home to three generations of the Bradshaw family, where legends, history under colonial rule, and individuals’ stories shape two sisters, Eeona and Anette.
The Storied Life of A. J. Fickry - Gabrielle Zevin
An independent bookstore owner, a foundling child, a traveling sales rep on a small island off the coast of Massachusetts—ingredients for a literary love story?
The Tiger's Wife - Téa Obreht
Legends and superstitions, the history of the Balkans, and her beloved physician grandfather’s untold secrets shape a young doctor, returning to her family’s roots.
The Round House - Louise Erdrich
A 13 year old boy tries to win justice for his mother, from the courts and community in North Dakota’s complex of cultures, on and off the reservation.

Far-Flung Places

cover of   Shadow of the Silk Road
cover of A Thousand Days in Venice: an unexpected romance
cover of The Longest Road: Overland in search of America, from Key West to the                      Arctic Ocean
cover of  A Sense of the World: How a blind man became history’s greatest traveler
Shadow of the Silk Road - Colin Thubron
A journey of thousands of years, thousands of miles
A Thousand Days in Venice: an unexpected romance - Marlena di Blasi
In love with a place and a person
The Longest Road: Overland in search of America, from Key West to the Arctic Ocean - Philip Caputo
Driving with an Airstream, a wife and a dog.
A Sense of the World: How a blind man became history’s greatest traveler - Jason Roberts
Logging more than 250,000 miles in mid-19th century

Back and Forth: Fiction with Shared Themes

cover of To Kill a Mockingbird
cover of Americanah
cover of The Best Revenge
cover of Blackbird House
To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
Is it the classic we remember from the film and from high school?
Americanah - Chiminanda Nogzi Adiche
A Nigerian in the US encounters race issues for the first time.
The Best Revenge - Rebecca Rule
Short stories about New Hampshire
Blackbird House - Alice Hoffman
A web of tales in 200 years in a salt water farm on Cape Cod

Extraordinary Women: Biographies and memoirs

cover of Desert Queen: The extraordinary life of Gertrude Bell
cover of The art of scandal: the life and times of Isabella Stewart Gardner
cover of King Peggy: An American Secretary, Her Royal Destiny, and the Inspiring Story of How She Changed An African Village
cover of  My Beloved World
Desert Queen: The extraordinary life of Gertrude Bell - Janet Wallach
The woman who invented the Middle East as we know it.
The art of scandal: the life and times of Isabella Stewart Gardner - Douglas Shand-Tucci
The woman whose home and collection is a jewel in Boston’s crown
King Peggy: An American Secretary, Her Royal Destiny, and the Inspiring Story of How She Changed An African Village - Peggielene Bartels & Eleanor Herman
A DC secretary becomes an African king
My Beloved World - Sonia Sotomayor
The Supreme Court justice’s journey.

Across America in Historical Fiction

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cover of  The Orchardist
cover  of Snow Child
cover of Mudbound
Doc - Mary Doria Russell
This novel re-imagines the life of Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday and the denizens of Dodge City.
The Orchardist - Amanda Coplin
William Talmadge and his lovingly cultivated orchards of apples and apricots set against the rugged beauty of Washington State at the turn of the twentieth century.
Snow Child - Eowyn Ivey
Alaska, 1920: a brutal place to homestead, and especially tough for recent arrivals Jack and Mabel. Childless, they are drifting apart--until they build a child out of snow.
Mudbound - Hillary Jordan
In 1946, a family is struggling on the Mississippi Delta, when two young men arrive.

Granite State Reads: New Hampshire in Novels

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cover of The Old American
cover of Aunt Sarah Woman of the Dawnland
cover of The Dearly Departed
Look to the Mountain - LeGrand Cannon
NH in the Revolutionary War times
The Old American - Ernest Hebert
The experience of the “other side” of the French and Indian War
Aunt Sarah Woman of the Dawnland - Trudy Ann Parker
An Abenaki healer and basket-maker
The Dearly Departed - Elinor Lipman
Death brings two young adults together in a New Hampshire small town.

“Touched by the Arts”: Biographies and memoirs about painters, actors, dancers, & musicians

cover of The Private Lives of the Impressionists
cover of Hamlet’s Dresser
cover of Mao’s Last Dancer
cover of The Soloist
The Private Lives of the Impressionists - Sue Roe
How do artists influence and support each other?
Hamlet’s Dresser - Bob Smith
Could Shakespeare save your life?
Mao’s Last Dancer - Cunxin Li
Ballet is the ticket out of dire poverty in Communist China.
The Soloist - Steve Lopez
Music and friendship vs. homelessness and mental illness.

Families in the Melting Pot: Novels of Immigration & Assimilation

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cover of Away
cover of The House on Mango Street
cover of  The Buddha in the Attic
Crescent - Diana-Abu Jaber
Sirine, a half-Iraqi chef in California falls in love with a Middle Eastern studies professor and through stories, food, and relationships discovers her roots and her destiny.
Away - Amy Bloom
Lilian Leyb’s quest for a better life takes her from Russia to New York to Alaska in this historical novel.
The House on Mango Street - Sandra Cisneros
Esperanza Cordero, a young Latina comes of age in Chicago, as did the author, who was born in 1954.
The Buddha in the Attic - Julie Otsuka
The story of the lives of “picture brides” brought to San Francisco from Japan in the 1920s until World War II upends their world is told in lyrical succinct writing.