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The Connect Book Club
  Forthcoming books
Book for July 03, 2019
Group 3
Meeting at Emily's place
Memories of the Future
Memories of the Future

was first published in 2019. In this portrait of the artist as a young woman Narrator "SH" tells the story of her younger self, 23 year old Minnesota who has set up house in seventies New York City, writing her first novel. Fighting off a would be rapist she is saved and befriended by neighbour Lucy Brite and her coven of self-declared witches. Minnesota, trying to work on her book, gets sidetracked by Lucy's story, or rather Lucy's rambling that might hide a story. SH, holding on to a rediscovered old notebook of her's, tries to piece together the past or rather the future that was made from that past: the present, reality.


Author: Siri Hustvedt

Siri Hustvedt (born February 19, 1955) is an American novelist, essayist, poet and scholar. Her books include: The Blindfold (1992), The Enchantment of Lily Dahl (1996), What I Loved (2003), A Plea for Eros (2006), The Sorrows of an American (2008), The Shaking Woman or A History of My Nerves (2010), The Summer Without Men (2011), Living, Thinking, Looking (2012), The Blazing World (2014) and Memories of the Future (2019). Her work has been translated into over thirty languages.

Book for July 10, 2019
Group 2
The Overstory
The Overstory
The Overstory is a novel by Richard Powers published in 2018 by W.W. Norton. It is Powers's twelfth novel. The novel is about nine Americans whose unique life experiences with trees bring them together to address the destruction of forests. Powers was inspired to write the work while teaching at Stanford University after he encountered giant redwood trees for the first time. On September 20 2018, The Overstory was shortlisted for the 2018 Man Booker Prize.

Author: Richard Powers
Richard Powers (born June 18, 1957) is an American novelist whose works explore the effects of modern science and technology. His novel The Echo Maker won the 2006 National Book Award for Fiction.
Book for July 17, 2019
Group 4
A Widow's Story
A Widow's Story
Unlike anything Joyce Carol Oates has written before, A Widow’s Story is the universally acclaimed author’s poignant, intimate memoir about the unexpected death of Raymond Smith, her husband of forty-six years, and its wrenching, surprising aftermath. A recent recipient of National Book Critics Circle Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award, Oates, whose novels (Blonde, The Gravedigger’s Daughter, Little Bird of Heaven, etc.) rank among the very finest in contemporary American fiction, offers an achingly personal story of love and loss. A Widow’s Story is a literary memoir on a par with The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion and Calvin Trillin’s About Alice.

Author: Joyce Carol Oates
Born on June 16, 1938, in Lockport, New York, Joyce Carol Oates developed a love for writing as a child and went on to become an acclaimed, bestselling scribe known for her novels, stories, poetry and essays, winning the National Book Award for 1969's them. Her other notable works include A Garden of Earthly Delights, We Were the Mulvaneys, Blonde, The Gravedigger's Daughter and The Accursed.
Book for August 21, 2019
Group 4
Nothing To Be frightened Of
Nothing To Be frightened Of
Two years after the best-selling Arthur & George, Julian Barnes gives us a memoir on mortality that touches on faith and science and family as well as a rich array of exemplary figures who over the centuries have confronted the same questions he now poses about the most basic fact of life: its inevitable extinction. If the fear of death is “the most rational thing in the world,” how does one contend with it? An atheist at twenty, an agnostic at sixty, Barnes looks into the various arguments for and against and with God, and at the bloodline whose archivist, following his parents’ death, he has become—another realm of mystery, wherein a drawer of mementos and his own memories (not to mention those of his philosopher brother) often fail to connect. There are other ancestors, too: the writers—“most of them dead, and quite a few of them French"—who are his daily companions, supplemented by composers and theologians and scientists whose similar explorations are woven into this account with an exhilarating breadth of intellect and felicity of spirit. Deadly serious, masterfully playful, and surprisingly hilarious, Nothing to Be Frightened Of is a riveting display of how this supremely gifted writer goes about his business and a highly personal tour of the human condition and what might follow the final diagnosis.

Author: Julian Barnes
(born 19 January 1946 in Leicester, England) is a contemporary English writer, and winner of the 2011 Man Booker Prize, for his book The Sense of an Ending. Three of his earlier books had been shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize: Flaubert's Parrot (1984), England, England (1998), and Arthur & George (2005).

Barnes has written crime fiction under the pseudonym Dan Kavanagh. Barnes is one of the best-loved English writers in France, where he has won several literary prizes, including the Prix Médicis for Flaubert’s Parrot and the Prix Femina for Talking It Over. He is an officer of L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.
Book for September 11, 2019
Group 2
Milkman
Milkman
Milkman is a novel written by Anna Burns. It won the 2018 Man Booker Prize for Fiction, the first time a Northern Irish writer has been awarded the prize.

Set during The Troubles in Northern Ireland, the story follows an 18-year-old girl who is harassed by an older married man known as the "milkman". The novel received positive reviews from The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph and The Irish Times.

‘The language of Anna Burns’ Milkman is simply marvellous; beginning with the distinctive and consistently realised voice of the funny, resilient, astute, plain-spoken, first-person protagonist. From the opening page her words pull us into the daily violence of her world — threats of murder, people killed by state hit squads — while responding to the everyday realities of her life as a young woman, negotiating a way between the demands of family, friends and lovers in an unsettled time. The novel delineates brilliantly the power of gossip and social pressure in a tight-knit community, and shows how both rumour and political loyalties can be put in the service of a relentless campaign of individual sexual harassment. Burns draws on the experience of Northern Ireland during the Troubles to portray a world that allows individuals to abuse the power granted by a community to those who resist the state on their behalf. Yet this is never a novel about just one place or time. The local is in service to an exploration of the universal experience of societies in crisis.’

Author: Anna Burns
Anna Burns (born 1962) is a Northern Irish Booker Prize winning author.

Her first novel, No Bones, is an account of a girl's life growing up in Belfast during the Troubles. Among the novels that depict the Troubles within the Literature of Northern Ireland, No Bones is considered an important work, and has been compared to Dubliners by James Joyce for its capture of the everyday language of the people of Belfast. Dysfunctional family in the novel symbolizes the Northern Ireland political situation. No Bones won the 2001 Winifred Holtby Memorial Prize presented by the Royal Society of Literature for the best regional novel of the year in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Her second novel, Little Constructions, was published in 2007 by Fourth Estate (an imprint of HarperCollins). It is a darkly comic and ironic tale centered on a woman from a tightly-knit family of criminals on a mission of retribution.

In 2018, Burns won the Man Booker Prize for her novel Milkman making her the first Northern Irish writer to win the award. After the ceremony, Graywolf Press announced that it will publish "Milkman" in the U.S. on December 11, 2018. Milkman is an experimental novel in which the narrator is an unnamed 18 year old girl known as “middle sister”, who is being stalked by a much older paramilitary figure, the Milkman.
Book for September 13, 2019
Group 1
Pachinko
Pachinko
A saga about four generations of a poor Korean immigrant family fight to control their destiny in 20th-century Japan, exiled from their home. Pachinko follows one Korean family through the generations, beginning in early 1900s Korea with Sunja, the prized daughter of a poor yet proud family, whose unplanned pregnancy threatens to shame them all. Deserted by her lover, Sunja is saved when a young tubercular minister offers to marry and bring her to Japan.

So begins a sweeping saga of an exceptional family in exile from its homeland and caught in the indifferent arc of history. Through desperate struggles and hard-won triumphs, its members are bound together by deep roots as they face enduring questions of faith, family, and identity.

Author: Min Jin Lee
Min Jin Lee is a recipient of fellowships in Fiction from the Guggenheim Foundation (2018) and the Radcliffe Institute of Advanced Study at Harvard (2018-2019). Her novel Pachinko (2017) was a finalist for the National Book Award for Fiction, a runner-up for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, and a New York Times 10 Best Books of 2017.
Book for September 18, 2019
Group 4
The Rules Do Not Apply
The Rules Do Not Apply
When thirty-eight-year-old New Yorker writer Ariel Levy left for a reporting trip to Mongolia in 2012, she was pregnant, married, financially secure, and successful on her own terms. A month later, none of that was true. Levy picks you up and hurls you through the story of how she built an unconventional life and then watched it fall apart with astonishing speed. Like much of her generation, she was raised to resist traditional rules--about work, about love, and about womanhood. "I wanted what we all want: everything. We want a mate who feels like family and a lover who is exotic, surprising. We want to be youthful adventurers and middle-aged mothers. We want intimacy and autonomy, safety and stimulation, reassurance and novelty, coziness and thrills. But we can't have it all." In this memoir, Levy chronicles the adventure and heartbreak of being "a woman who is free to do whatever she chooses." Her own story of resilience becomes an unforgettable portrait of the shifting forces in our culture, of what has changed--and of what is eternal.

Author: Ariel Levy
Ariel Levy (born 1974) is an American staff writer at The New Yorker magazine and the author of the books The Rules do Not Apply and Female Chauvinist Pigs: Women and the Rise of Raunch Culture. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post, The New Yorker, Vogue, Slate, and The New York Times. Levy was named one of the "Forty Under 40" most influential out individuals in the June/July 2009 issue of The Advocate. Levy was raised in a Jewish family in Larchmont, New York, and attended Wesleyan University in the 1990s, graduating in 1996. She says that her experiences at Wesleyan, which had "coed showers, on principle," strongly influenced her views regarding modern sexuality. After graduating from Wesleyan, she was briefly employed by Planned Parenthood, but claims that she was fired because she is "an extremely poor typist." She was hired by New York magazine shortly thereafter.
Book for October 11, 2019
Group 1
A Ladder to the Sky
A Ladder to the Sky
Maurice Swift is handsome, charming, and hungry for fame. The one thing he doesn’t have is talent – but he’s not about to let a detail like that stand in his way. After all, a would-be writer can find stories anywhere. They don’t need to be his own.

Working as a waiter in a West Berlin hotel in 1988, Maurice engineers the perfect opportunity: a chance encounter with celebrated novelist Erich Ackermann. He quickly ingratiates himself with the powerful – but desperately lonely – older man, teasing out of Erich a terrible, long-held secret about his activities during the war. Perfect material for Maurice’s first novel.

Once Maurice has had a taste of literary fame, he knows he can stop at nothing in pursuit of that high. Moving from the Amalfi Coast, where he matches wits with Gore Vidal, to Manhattan and London, Maurice hones his talent for deceit and manipulation, preying on the talented and vulnerable in his cold-blooded climb to the top. But the higher he climbs, the further he has to fall…

Sweeping across the late twentieth century, A Ladder to the Sky is a fascinating portrait of a relentlessly immoral man, a tour de force of storytelling, and the next great novel from an acclaimed literary virtuoso.

Author: John Boyne
John Boyne, born in Ireland in 1971, is the author of seven novels for adults and three for children. The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas won two Irish Book Awards, was shortlisted for the British Book Award, reached no.1 on the New York Times Bestseller List and was made into an award-winning film. His novels are published in over 45 languages. He lives in Dublin.