Book Club

Senior Planet Book Club: Vote For Our Next Book!

Thank you to everyone who participated in our discussion earlier last week both in the comments section of SeniorPlanet.org and at our meeting over Zoom about “Born a Crime” by Trevor Noah.

Now it is time to select our next reading!

Each Tuesday, we’ll post a thread on SeniorPlanet.org inviting your comments on the next section of the book and then we’ll host a discussion over Zoom the final week of reading the book together.

But first! We’ve put together a shortlist engaging books suggested by our members and staff. Now it’s up to you pick which one we’ll read together next. Read on for details about each book, then take the poll at the end and tell us: What should the Senior Planet Book Club read next?

We’ll announce the result of the poll in addition to how you can access a copy of the chosen book next Tuesday!

Have any feedback on book club? Tell us what you think in the comments or email [email protected]!

The Books:

Deacon King Kong by James McBride

“In September 1969, a fumbling, cranky old church deacon known as Sportcoat shuffles into the courtyard of the Cause Houses housing project in south Brooklyn, pulls a .38 from his pocket, and in front of everybody shoots the project’s drug dealer at point-blank range. In Deacon King Kong, McBride brings to vivid life the people affected by the shooting: the victim, the African-American and Latinx residents who witnessed it, the white neighbors, the local cops assigned to investigate, the members of the Five Ends Baptist Church where Sportcoat was deacon, the neighborhood’s Italian mobsters, and Sportcoat himself.

As the story deepens, it becomes clear that the lives of the characters–caught in the tumultuous swirl of 1960s New York–overlap in unexpected ways. When the truth does emerge, McBride shows us that not all secrets are meant to be hidden, that the best way to grow is to face change without fear, and that the seeds of love lie in hope and compassion.” – GoodReads.com

The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates

“Young Hiram Walker was born into bondage. When his mother was sold away, Hiram was robbed of all memory of her — but was gifted with a mysterious power. Years later, when Hiram almost drowns in a river, that same power saves his life. This brush with death births an urgency in Hiram and a daring scheme: to escape from the only home he’s ever known.

So begins an unexpected journey that takes Hiram from the corrupt grandeur of Virginia’s proud plantations to desperate guerrilla cells in the wilderness, from the coffin of the deep South to dangerously utopic movements in the North. Even as he’s enlisted in the underground war between slavers and the enslaved, Hiram’s resolve to rescue the family he left behind endures.” – GoodReads.com

The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead

“When Elwood Curtis, a black boy growing up in 1960s Tallahassee, is unfairly sentenced to a juvenile reformatory called the Nickel Academy, he finds himself trapped in a grotesque chamber of horrors. Elwood’s only salvation is his friendship with fellow “delinquent” Turner, which deepens despite Turner’s conviction that Elwood is hopelessly naive, that the world is crooked, and that the only way to survive is to scheme and avoid trouble. As life at the Academy becomes ever more perilous, the tension between Elwood’s ideals and Turner’s skepticism leads to a decision whose repercussions will echo down the decades.

Based on the real story of a reform school that operated for 111 years and warped the lives of thousands of children, The Nickel Boys is a devastating, driven narrative that showcases a great American novelist writing at the height of his powers.” – Amazon.com

 

“Set within a contemporary black community in Southern California, Brit Bennett’s mesmerizing first novel is an emotionally perceptive story about community, love, and ambition. It begins with a secret.

‘All good secrets have a taste before you tell them, and if we’d taken a moment to swish this one around our mouths, we might have noticed the sourness of an unripe secret, plucked too soon, stolen and passed around before its season.'” – GoodReads.com

Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson

“Moving forward and backward in time, Jacqueline Woodson’s taut and powerful new novel uncovers the role that history and community have played in the experiences, decisions, and relationships of these families, and in the life of the new child.

As the book opens in 2001, it is the evening of sixteen-year-old Melody’s coming of age ceremony in her grandparents’ Brooklyn brownstone. Watched lovingly by her relatives and friends, making her entrance to the music of Prince, she wears a special custom-made dress. But the event is not without poignancy. Sixteen years earlier, that very dress was measured and sewn for a different wearer: Melody’s mother, for her own ceremony– a celebration that ultimately never took place.” – GoodReads.com

Take the poll!

What book should the Senior Planet Book Club read next?

Photo by Paul Schafer on Unsplash

COMMENTS

3 responses to “Senior Planet Book Club: Vote For Our Next Book!

  1. Suggestion: please choose books that are already in paperback. It’s costly to buy hardcovers and new books even for Kindle are more expensive. With the limited library service the demands for current books precludes getting one in time for the readings.

    There are plenty of worthy older books.

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