Our next meeting is Tuesday, June 12 (note: this is the second Tuesday of the month), at 6:30 p.m. at the Crossings clubhouse (the Walnut Country HOA Clubhouse, 44965 S Larwin Ave, Concord, CA 94521). We’ll be discussing The Kill Artist, by Daniel Silva. A former Israeli-intelligence operative turned restorer of priceless works of art is being called back into the game to catch a terrorist bent on one last killing spree. What begins as a manhunt turns into a globe-spanning duel fueled by political intrigue and deep personal passions (from the publisher’s blurb).
July’s book is When the Floods Came by Clare Morrall. Set in a future Britain, ravaged by floods and a deadly virus, this novel is equal parts near-future dystopia, a tale of suspense, and a coming-of-age story. Roza’s family lives in a Birmingham tower block, relatively safe and comfortable, if isolated. Then a stranger arrives… The meeting to discuss the book will be on Tuesday, July 24 (note date change from the 3rd to the 4th Tuesday of the month).
In August we’ll be reading The Dictionary of Mutual Understanding by Jackie Copleton. When Amaterasu Takahashi opens the door of her Philadelphia home to a badly scarred man claiming to be the grandson she believed had died in the bombing of Nagasaki, she is forced to confront painful memories of the years in Japan before the war. Will Ama allow herself to believe in a miracle? (From the publisher’s blurb.) The meeting to discuss the book will be on Tuesday, August 21.
Our next meeting is Tuesday, April 17 at 6:30 p.m. at the Crossings clubhouse (the Walnut Country HOA Clubhouse, 44965 S Larwin Ave, Concord, CA 94521). We’ll be discussing The Oregon Trail: A New American Journey, by Rinker Buck. Buck, with his brother Nick and a Jack Russell terrier named Olive Oyl, traveled the length of the Oregon Trail in a covered wagon with a team of mules. The book is part travelogue of “a majestic journey across the West, a significant work of history, and a moving personal saga” (from the publisher’s blurb).
In May we’ll be reading Artemis, by Andy Weir, author of the popular science fiction novel and film The Martian. His new book is a fast-paced science fiction heist story. The novel takes place in the “late 2080s and is set in Artemis, the first and only city on the moon. It follows the life of porter and smuggler Jasmine ‘Jazz’ Bashara as she gets caught up in a conspiracy for control of the city” (Wikipedia). The meeting to discuss the book will be on Tuesday, May 15.
Our next meeting is Tuesday, January 16 at 6:30 p.m. at the Crossings clubhouse (the Walnut Country HOA Clubhouse, 44965 S Larwin Ave, Concord, CA 94521). We’ll be discussing Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking: A Memoir of Food and Longing by Anya von Bremzen. Part family memoir, part social history, von Bremzen and her mother cook their way through three generations of family and historical dishes, beginning with the fabulous excess of Tsarist Russia on through the Revolution, World War II, famines, food shortages, black marketeering and punishing socialist rules against the “decadent” enjoyment of food. Anya von Bremzen is a three-time James Beard Award-winning food writer. She was born in 1963 in Soviet Russia.
February’s book is Georgia: A Novel of Georgia O’Keeffe by Dawn Tripp, a novel that “brings to life Georgia O’Keeffe, her love affair with photographer Alfred Stieglitz, and her quest to become an independent artist.” (From the publisher’s blurb.) The meeting to discuss the book will be on Tuesday, February 20.
CHANGE IN MARCH BOOK: The book choice for March will be The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler. We were originally planning to read Chandler’s The Little Sister, but members are having trouble finding copies. The Big Sleep, a classic hardboiled mystery, features the private detective Phillip Marlowe and was made into the famous Bogart and Bacall movie. Extra credit points to anyone who reads both Chandler books! March’s meeting will be on Tuesday, March 20.
What is NaNoWriMo? Short answer, from their website:
National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to creative writing. On November 1, participants begin working towards the goal of writing a 50,000-word novel by 11:59 PM on November 30.
Valuing enthusiasm, determination, and a deadline, NaNoWriMo is for anyone who has ever thought fleetingly about writing a novel.
Sound good to you? Then come join us — Berkshire Books co-owner Cheryl will once again be participating, and Berkshire Books will once again be hosting NaNoWriMo write-ins. The write-ins will be held on Saturday afternoons.
Every Saturday afternoon in November
4:00 pm – 7:00 pm
3480 Clayton Road, Concord
Call (925) 685-9999 if you have questions
(Yes, we have a place to plug in your laptop. No, we don’t have WiFi)
Coffee, chocolate and cookies on the house.
But wait! There’s More:
You can also drop in any time to write! There’s a small table and Lynn will dig out the snacks for you. We’re open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. (Closed Sundays and Mondays). Be warned that on Saturday mornings until about noon there’s a meeting of the Concord Curmudgeons (who discuss local politics) but otherwise the space is free.
For more information on this crazy program, go to nanowrimo.org
Image courtesy of National Novel Writing Month
Our next meeting is Tuesday, October 10 at 6:30 p.m. at the Crossings clubhouse (the Walnut Country HOA Clubhouse, 44965 S Larwin Ave, Concord, CA 94521). We’ll be discussing Death at La Fenice by Donna Leon, the first book in the Commissario Brunetti mystery series. The world-Renown and much-hated conductor Maestro Helmut Wellauer has been poisoned during an intermission at La Fenice, the premiere opera house in Venice, and Brunetti’s task is not to find a suspect, but to narrow the choices down to one. Donna Leon is an opera expert and the crime reviewer for the London Sunday Times. (Note: the meeting is on the second Tuesday of the month.)
In November, we’ll be reading the novel Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger. “In New Bremen, Minnesota, 1961. The Twins were playing their debut season, ice-cold root beers were selling out at the soda counter of Halderson’s Drugstore, and Hot Stuff comic books were a mainstay on every barbershop magazine rack. It was a time of innocence and hope for a country with a new, young president. But for thirteen-year-old Frank Drum it was a grim summer in which death visited frequently and assumed many forms. Accident. Nature. Suicide. Murder… Told from Frank’s perspective forty years after that fateful summer, Ordinary Grace is a brilliantly moving account of a boy standing at the door of his young manhood, trying to understand a world that seems to be falling apart around him.” (From the publisher’s blurb.) November’s meeting will be on Tuesday, November 14. (Note: the meeting is on the second Tuesday of the month.)
December’s book is The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George. “Monsieur Perdu calls himself a literary apothecary. From his floating bookstore in a barge on the Seine, he prescribes novels for the hardships of life. Using his intuitive feel for the exact book a reader needs, Perdu mends broken hearts and souls. The only person he can’t seem to heal through literature is himself; he’s still haunted by heartbreak after his great love disappeared. She left him with only a letter, which he has never opened.” (From the publisher’s blurb.) The meeting to discuss the book will be on Tuesday, December 19.
Berkshire Books and Umpqua Bank are hosting a book signing for the seventh anniversary of the publication of
Mount Diablo: The Extraordinary Life and Landscapes of a California Treasure
By Stephen Joseph, photographer and Linda Rimac Colberg, writer
Also on hand will be Mount Diablo Interpretive Society authors
Rich McDrew & Rachel Haislet, authors of Mountain Lore: History and Place Names of Mount Diablo
Ruth Ann Kishi, author of Hiker’s Guide to Mount Diablo State Park
Linda Rimac Colberg is also the author of The Mount Diablo Guide (3rd Edition).
Light refreshments, wine and soft drinks will be served.
Come mingle, meet local entrepreneurs, and get your books signed!
Our next meeting is Tuesday, June 13 at 6:30 p.m. at the Crossings clubhouse (the Walnut Country HOA Clubhouse, 44965 S Larwin Ave, Concord, CA 94521). We’ll be discussing Girl Waits with Gun by Amy Stewart, a mystery novel based on the true story of one of America’s first female deputy sheriffs. This is the first book in a series based on Constance Kopp and her sisters.
July’s book is the Swedish bestselling novel A Man Called Ove by Frederik Backman. Ove is a curmudgeon, who people call “the bitter neighbor from hell.” When a chatty young couple with two chatty young daughters move in next door and accidentally flatten Ove’s mailbox with their U-Haul truck, it is the lead-in to a comical and heartwarming tale of unexpected friendship. (From the publisher’s blurb.) The meeting to discuss the book will be on Tuesday, July 18.
In August, we’ll be reading a nonfiction book, Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann. In the 1920s, after oil was discovered beneath their land, the richest people per capita in the world were members of the Osage Indian nation in Oklahoma. When the Osage began to be murdered one by one, the FBI took up the case. It was one of the organization’s first major homicide investigations and the bureau badly bungled the case. In desperation, the young director, J. Edgar Hoover, turned to a former Texas Ranger named Tom White. White put together an undercover team, including one of the only American Indian agents in the bureau. The agents infiltrated the region, struggling to adopt the latest techniques of detection. Together with the Osage they began to expose one of the most chilling conspiracies in American history. (From the publisher’s blurb.) August’s meeting will be on Tuesday, August 15.
In September, we’ll be reading Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand, a novel by Helen Simonson. When Major Pettigrew, a retired British army major in a small English village, embarks on an unexpected friendship with the widowed Mrs. Ali, who runs the local shop, they must struggle to understand what it means to belong and how far the obligations of family and tradition can be set aside for personal freedom. (From publisher’s blurb.) The meeting to discuss the book will be on Tuesday, September 19.
Our next meeting is Tuesday, May 16 at 6:30 p.m. at the Crossings clubhouse (the Walnut Country HOA Clubhouse, 44965 S Larwin Ave, Concord, CA 94521). We’ll be discussing the legal thriller Rogue Lawyer by John Grisham.
Sebastian Rudd an unconventional lawyer — “one of John Grisham’s most colorful, outrageous, and vividly drawn characters yet” — who drives a customized bulletproof van, lives in a “small but extremely safe penthouse apartment,” and has one employee, “his driver, who’s also his bodyguard, law clerk, confidant, and golf caddy.” Rudd takes on clients nobody else will touch, “because he believes everyone is entitled to a fair trial, even if he, Sebastian, has to cheat to secure one.” The blurb calls the book “gritty, witty and impossible to put down.” (All quotes from Grisham’s website.)