Road trip anyone? Give a listen to Travels With Charley: In Search of America by John Steinbeck, read by Gary Sinise. Steinbeck sets out to find the truth about our country and he finds it accompanied by his noble steed Charley, a French poodle with personality. The prose of Steinbeck and the styling of Sinise are a perfect pairing.
Check It Out Category: Nonfiction
Season Two of Netflix series The Crown drops today, and you may be inspired to choose your next read based on the drama played out through these fascinating characters and their situations:
Becoming Elizabeth II
Fiction about Women of Influence
Spotlight on Major Players
Joanne from Community Services suggests This is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare by Gabourey Sidibe
Academy Award-nominated Gabourey Sidibe became a household name shortly after the release of the movie Precious. Focusing more on her early life as a child of a proud, cab-driving, African father and a free-spirited, teacher-turned-subway-singing mother, this deeply honest memoir will make it seem like you are out to dinner with Gabourey and a couple of girlfriends trying to outdo each other with crazy family stories.
Gabby was constantly getting in trouble for being disruptive and disrespectful due to her laugh. She describes it as more like a shrill scream followed by a loud snort. Everything she did was intense and that sometimes left her lonely. Being different on the outside when everyone else is the same can make you doubt what you are on the inside. She says, “I was Gabourey in a school of Jennifers.”
After a few false starts in college and intense therapy to treat her deep depression, she found steady work using her voice-over talent. Gabourey first read the novel Push five years before auditioning for the role as Precious for the film. It was an act of fate which got her to the audition, but she had the job two days later. The rest is history.
The truth that “good books bring people together” is one of the founding principles of National Reading Group Month. Whether you have been involved with a book club for years or have been thinking of trying your first, there is no better time to explore the possibilities of a story ripe for discussion. Find your category below and celebrate with a new title that entertains, challenges, and inspires!
Fabulous for First Discussions
Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows
Never Tried Nonfiction?
Looking for a Lighter Option
Not Afraid of Next-Level Reads
Emily St. John Mandel
UPDATE: Find more suggestions in Part Two of this series!
Interested in more suggestions? Stop by Fiction/AV/Teen Services on the second floor or ask online to visit our virtual desk. Also, check out titles in our book discussion collection, shop those available as Books-to-Go discussion kits, and help yourself to original questions and resources available through our website.
Dale from Research Services suggests Greeting from Utopia Park by Claire Hoffman
Greetings from Utopia Park chronicles author Claire Hoffman’s personal experiences living and participating in the Transcendental Meditation movement. At age 5, Claire moves with her mother and brother to Fairfield, Iowa to join the followers of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. This book is both the story of Claire’s childhood spent living in this community and a history of what Maharishi called the Global Headquarters of World Peace. Claire eventually rebels, moving away from the teachings of Transcendental Meditation, only to return later in life to examine and attempt to reconnect with her spiritual upbringing. If you have ever been curious about Transcendental Meditation and wanted to learn more about both the positive and negative aspects of this practice, you will find this book fascinating and enlightening.
Looking for something similar? Try one of these books!
Free Spirit: Growing Up on the Road and Off the Grid
by Joshua Safran
A mother and son head for the road to find a utopia they could call home
A memoir detailing the unusual childhood of a boy sent to live with his mother’s eccentric psychiatrist.
by Amos Oz
Chronicles the author’s childhood in 40’s and 50’s Jerusalem.
by Norman E. Rosenthal
This book discusses the benefits of Transcendental Meditation through stories of both ordinary people and well-known artists.
by Haven Kimmel
A memoir about growing up in small town Indiana.