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3rd Wednesday Book Discussion

Black and White: A stack of vintage books with a pair of glasses set on top.

Join our (long running) book discussion group the 3rd Wednesday of the month, September to July.

All titles are available through West Chester Public Library/CCLS in a variety of formats. Meeting in-person at the library. Book list for Sept. 2024 to January 2025 selected in July.

Please check the events calendar for any changes.

Book list for February through July 2024:

February 21, 2024 – The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, Muriel Spark"The girls formed the Brodie set. That was what they had been called by the headmistress when they arrived at the Marcia Blaine School for Girls at the age of 12. At that time they had been instantly recognisable as Miss Brodie's pupils, being well informed on Mussolini and Renaissance art, but unaware of the rudiments of the curriculum.”

March 20, 2024 – The Last Garden in England, Julia Kelly

2024 Longwood Gardens Community Read

Present day: Emma Lovett has dedicated her career to breathing new life into long-neglected gardens. Given the chance to restore the gardens of the famed Highbury House estate, designed in 1907 by her hero Venetia Smith, she begins to uncover secrets that have long lain hidden. 1907: A talented artist with a growing reputation for her ambitious work, Venetia Smith is determined to make the gardens of Highbury House a triumph; but the gardens-- and the people she meets-- promise to change her life forever. 1944: Beth Pedley arrives at a farm on the outskirts of the village of Highbury wanting to find a place she can call home. -- adapted from jacket

April 17, 2024 – Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh

Captain Charles Ryder returns to the country estate of Brideshead. There he indulges in a sentimental journey that takes him back twenty years to his schoolmates at Oxford and to his seduction by the Marchmains.

May 15, 2024 – Angle of Repose, Wallace Stegner

Lyman Ward is a retired professor of history, recently confined to a wheelchair by a crippling bone disease and dependent on others for his every need. Amid the chaos of 1970s counterculture he retreats to his ancestral home of Grass Valley, California, to write the biography of his grandmother: an elegant and headstrong artist and pioneer who, together with her engineer husband, made her own journey through the hardscrabble West nearly a hundred years before. In discovering her story he excavates his own, probing the shadows of his experience and the America that has come of age around him.

June 19, 2024 – The Book of Form and Emptiness, Ruth OzekiA brilliantly inventive new novel about loss, growing up, and our relationship with things, by the Booker Prize-finalist author of A Tale for the Time Being. After the tragic death [of] his beloved musician father, fourteen-year-old Benny Oh begins to hear voices. The voices belong to the things in his house … [as] the voices grow more clamorous … [they drive] him at last to seek refuge in the silence of a large public library, where objects are well-behaved and know to speak in whispers… With its blend of sympathetic characters, riveting plot, and vibrant engagement with everything from jazz, to climate change, to our attachment to material possessions, The Book of Form and Emptiness is classic Ruth Ozeki-bold, wise, poignant, playful, humane and heartbreaking

July 17, 2024 – West with Giraffes, Lynda RutledgeFew true friends have I known and two were giraffes . . . ' Woodrow Wilson Nickel, age 105, feels his life ebbing away. But when he learns giraffes are going extinct, he finds himself recalling an unforgettable experience he cannot take to his grave. It's 1938. The Great Depression lingers. Hitler is threatening Europe, and world-weary Americans long for wonder. They find it in two giraffes who miraculously survive a hurricane while crossing the Atlantic. What follows is a twelve-day road trip in a custom truck to deliver Southern California's first giraffes to the San Diego Zoo. Behind the wheel is the young Dust Bowl rowdy Woodrow. Inspired by true events, the tale weaves real-life figures with fictional ones.


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