Join us for a new kind of book club! This book club is no-pressure; meaning, you read what YOU want! Participants can share what they’ve been reading and get recommendations from our librarians and other book lovers. Chat about annoying pixie dream girl tropes, the latest movie adaptations, and how there is just not enough time to read all the books! The club meets every third Wednesday of the month at 6:30 PM at Subculture Coffee, 509 Clematis St., West Palm Beach. For more information, please call 561-868-7701.
Friday with the Friends
Join the FRIENDS every month for a lively discussion of selected books. The Second Friday Book Club welcomes everyone and no registration is required! This is a brown-bag book club sponsored by the FRIENDS of the Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach. Please feel free to bring your lunch! Book chatter begins at 11:30 AM followed by a moderated book discussion at Noon with Mandel Public Library Reference Librarians. For more information, please call 561-868-7701.
Friday, May 10, 2019 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – The Friend by Sigrid Nunez. A moving story of love, friendship, grief, healing, and the magical bond between a woman and her dog. When a woman unexpectedly loses her lifelong best friend and mentor, she finds herself burdened with the unwanted dog he has left behind. Her own battle against grief is intensified by the mute suffering of the dog, a huge Great Dane traumatized by the inexplicable disappearance of its master, and by the threat of eviction: dogs are prohibited in her apartment building. While others worry that grief has made her a victim of magical thinking, the woman refuses to be separated from the dog except for brief periods of time. Isolated from the rest of the world, increasingly obsessed with the dog's care, determined to read its mind and fathom its heart, she comes dangerously close to unraveling. But while troubles abound, rich and surprising rewards lie in store for both of them. Elegiac and searching, The Friend is both a meditation on loss and a celebration of human-canine devotion. Winner of the 2018 National Book Award for fiction.
Friday, June 14, 2019 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – The Woman Who Smashed Codes by Jason Fagone. Joining the ranks of Hidden Figures and In the Garden of Beasts, the incredible true story of the greatest codebreaking duo that ever lived, an American woman and her husband who invented the modern science of cryptology together and used it to confront the evils of their time, solving puzzles that unmasked Nazi spies and helped win World War II. An NPR Best Book of 2017.
Friday, July 12, 2019 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – In the Midst of Winter by Isabel Allende. In the Midst of Winter begins with a minor traffic accident—which becomes the catalyst for an unexpected and moving love story between two people who thought they were deep into the winter of their lives. Richard Bowmaster—a 60-year-old human rights scholar—hits the car of Evelyn Ortega—a young, undocumented immigrant from Guatemala—in the middle of a snowstorm in Brooklyn. What at first seems just a small inconvenience takes an unforeseen and far more serious turn when Evelyn turns up at the professor’s house seeking help. At a loss, the professor asks his tenant Lucia Maraz—a 62-year-old lecturer from Chile—for her advice. These three very different people are brought together in a mesmerizing story that moves from present-day Brooklyn to Guatemala in the recent past to 1970s Chile and Brazil, sparking the beginning of a long overdue love story between Richard and Lucia.
Friday, August 9, 2019 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – At the Existentialist Café by Sarah Bakewell. Paris, 1933. Three contemporaries meet over apricot cocktails at the Bec-de-Gaz bar on the rue Montparnasse-- and ignite a movement, creating an entirely new philosophical approach inspired by themes of radical freedom, authentic being, and political activism: Existentialism. Interweaving biography and philosophy, Bakewell provides an investigation into what the existentialists have to offer us today, at a moment when we are once again confronting the major questions of freedom, global responsibility, and human authenticity in a fractious and technology-driven world.
Friday, September 13, 2019 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – Warlight by Michael Ondaatje. In a narrative as beguiling and mysterious as memory itself--shadowed and luminous at once--we read the story of fourteen-year-old Nathaniel, and his older sister, Rachel. In 1945, just after World War II, they stay behind in London when their parents move to Singapore, leaving them in the care of a mysterious figure named The Moth. They suspect he might be a criminal, and they grow both more convinced and less concerned as they come to know his eccentric crew of friends: men and women joined by a shared history of unspecified service during the war, all of whom seem, in some way, determined now to protect, and educate (in rather unusual ways) Rachel and Nathaniel. But are they really what and who they claim to be? And what does it mean when the siblings' mother returns after months of silence without their father, explaining nothing, excusing nothing? A dozen years later, Nathaniel begins to uncover all that he didn't know and understand in that time, and it is this journey--through facts, recollection, and imagination--that he narrates in this masterwork from one of the great writers of our time.