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2009 Selections

Appassionata by Eva Hoffman
The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist
The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Brontë by Syrie James
The House on Fortune Street by Margot Livesey
Perfection: A Memoir of Betrayal and Renewal by Julie Metz
While I'm Falling by Laura Moriarty
Out Stealing Horses by Per Petterson
Cost by Roxana Robinson
Burnt Shadows by Kamila Shamsie


Appassionata by Eva Hoffman
(Other Press, 978-1-59051-319-4)
Isabel, a concert pianist, has an affair with a mysterious Chechnyan who is either a freedom fighter or a terrorist, forcing her to re-examine her beliefs about passion, politics, and art. In gorgeous prose, Hoffman contemplates the violence of our age and issues of guilt and responsibility.

More about: Other Press, Appassionata, Booklist Citation and Review, Reading Group Choices, Reading Group Guides

Bonus resources: Barnes&Noble, IndieBound, NoveList·NoveListPlus (available soon, library subscription)


The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist
(Other Press, 978-1-59051-313-2)
Set in a dystopian world where childless men and women over a certain age are considered dispensable and used for organ harvesting, Holmqvist's unusual story forces us to think about some complex ethical and moral questions.

More about: Other Press, The Unit, Booklist Citation and Review, Reading Group Choices, Reading Group Guides

Bonus resources: Barnes&Noble, IndieBound, NoveList·NoveListPlus (available soon, library subscription)


The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Brontë by Syrie James
(Avon A, 978-0-06-164837-3)
James captures Brontë's voice in her retelling of the tumultuous years when Charlotte found her literary vocation, wrote and published Jane Eyre to acclaim, lost her siblings to illness, but found true love. Fans will recognize the seeds of the Brontë sisters' novels.

More about: Avon A, The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Brontë, Syrie James, Book Group Buzz, Reading Group Choices

Bonus resources: Barnes&Noble, IndieBound, NoveList·NoveListPlus (available soon, library subscription)


The House on Fortune Street by Margot Livesey
(Harper Perennial, 978-0-06-145154-6)
Four distinct points of view join in this absorbing story about the suicide of a young woman in London: a neighbor, a friend, her father, and Dara herself. References to Jane Eyre, Lewis Carroll, John Keats, and Charles Dickens give the plot and characters an unusual resonance.

More about: Harper Perennial, The House on Fortune Street, Margot Livesey, Booklist Citation and Review, Reading Group Choices, Reading Group Guides

Bonus resources: Barnes&Noble, IndieBound, NoveList·NoveListPlus (available soon, library subscription)


Perfection: A Memoir of Betrayal and Renewal by Julie Metz
(Voice, 978-1-4013-2255-7)
When Metz's husband dies unexpectedly, she uncovers a trail of infidelities, exposing years of manipulation and self-deception. Her anger and obsession to uncover the truth make this an unusually candid and courageous memoir.

More about: Voice, Perfection, Julie Metz, Book Group Buzz, Reading Group Choices, Reading Group Guides

Bonus resources: Barnes&Noble, IndieBound, NoveList·NoveListPlus (available soon, library subscription)


While I'm Falling by Laura Moriarty
(Hyperion, 978-1-4013-0272-6)
A compelling coming of age story told from the point of view of Veronica, a junior in college, and her recently divorced mother, with insights about endings, beginnings, and the choices women make at different times in their lives.

More about: Hyperion, While I'm Falling, Laura Moriarty, Booklist Citation and Review, Reading Group Choices

Bonus resources: Barnes&Noble, IndieBound, NoveList·NoveListPlus (available soon, library subscription)


Out Stealing Horses by Per Petterson
(Picador, 978-0-312-42708-5)
Things aren't always what they seem in this dark, riveting story set in Norway about a man whose encounter with a childhood friend brings back the traumatic events of 1948, when his relationship with his father came to a mysterious end.

More about: Picador, Out Stealing Horses, Booklist Citation and Review, Reading Group Choices, Reading Group Guides

Bonus resources: Barnes&Noble, IndieBound, NoveList·NoveListPlus (available, library subscription)


Cost by Roxana Robinson
(Picador, 978-0-312-42846-4)
A family gathered at their Maine vacation home is torn apart by the news of one son's heroin addiction. Robinson is a master at using shifting viewpoints to reveal old resentments and hostilities as family members cope with Jack's destructive behavior.

More about: Picador, Cost, Roxana Robinson, Booklist Citation and Review, Reading Group Choices, Reading Group Guides

Bonus resources: Barnes&Noble, IndieBound, NoveList·NoveListPlus (available soon, library subscription)


Burnt Shadows by Kamila Shamsie
(Picador, 978-0-312-55187-2)
An absorbing three-generation saga of two families, forever intertwined in fateful ways as the politics of India, Pakistan, and the U.S. play havoc with their lives and beliefs from the day the atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki to 9/11.

More about: Picador, Burnt Shadows, Booklist Citation and Review, Reading Group Choices

Bonus resources: Barnes&Noble, IndieBound, NoveList·NoveListPlus (available soon, library subscription)



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Archive:
Great Group Reads Selections — 2010
Great Group Reads Selections — 2011


NRGM Featured Books — 2013




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