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Book Discussion Groups

Join us for Hoover Public Library's book discussion groups. Sessions are monthly. One book is discussed each session. Snacks and drinks will be provided. Feel welcome to join us! Skip Links: What We're Currently Reading, Book Club Kits.

Upcoming First Thursday Discussions

Upcoming Second Thursday Discussions

Upcoming True Crime Books

Upcoming Insatiable Readers Discussions

Upcoming Nonfiction Discussions

New books coming soon.

Book Club Kits

Check it out! Everything you need for your book club is in this kit (just add readers).

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  • 8 or more copies of the title
  • Author biography
  • Reviews of the book
  • Discussion questions
  • An annotated list of other Instant Book Club Kits
Guidelines
  • Each kit checks out to one group member for a period of six weeks.
  • Kits may not be renewed.
  • Overdue fines are $1 per day.
  • Kits may be reserved up to one year in advance by calling:
    • 444-7820 for Fiction

    Please return kits in a timely manner so others who have reserved kits may have access to them when needed.

Currently Reading

Below you will see a list of what we are reading. Use the links provided to get a copy and join us for a lively discussion. Sessions are the monthly. Snacks and drinks will be provided.

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American Predator

Maureen Callahan

Ted Bundy. John Wayne Gacy. Jeffrey Dahmer. The names of notorious serial killers are usually well-known; they echo in the news and in public consciousness. But most people have never heard of Israel Keyes, one of the most ambitious and terrifying serial killers in modern history. The FBI considered his behavior unprecedented. Described by a prosecutor as "a force of pure evil," Keyes was a predator who struck all over the United States. He buried "kill kits"—cash, weapons, and body-disposal tools—in remote locations across the country.

Over the course of fourteen years, Keyes would fly to a city, rent a car, and drive thousands of miles in order to use his kits. He would break into a stranger's house, abduct his victims in broad daylight, and kill and dispose of them in mere hours. And then he would return home to Alaska, resuming life as a quiet, reliable construction worker devoted to his only daughter.

Find American Predator in the catalog.

Book Group: 
True Crime Book Club
Tuesday, January 28, 2020 • 6:30pm - 8:00pm

The Huntress

Kate Quinn

On the icy edge of Soviet Russia, bold and reckless Nina Markova joins the infamous Night Witches – an all-female bomber regiment. But when she is downed behind enemy lines, Nina must use all her wits to survive her encounter with a lethal Nazi murderess known as the Huntress. British war correspondent Ian Graham abandons journalism to become a Nazi hunter, yet one target eludes him: the Huntress. And Nina Markova is the only witness to escape her alive.

In post-war Boston, seventeen-year-old Jordan McBride is increasingly disquieted by the soft-spoken German widow who becomes her new stepmother. Delving into her past, Jordan slowly realizes that a Nazi killer may be hiding in plain sight. Shining a light on a shadowy corner of history, The Huntress is an epic, sweeping Second World War novel from the New York Times bestselling author of The Alice Network.

Find The Huntress in the catalog.

Book Group: 
Sunday NovelTea Book Discussion Group
Sunday, Febuary 2, 2020 • 3:00pm - 4:00pm

Mistress of the Ritz

Melanie Benjamin

Nothing bad can happen at the Ritz; inside its gilded walls every woman looks beautiful, every man appears witty. Favored guests like Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Coco Chanel, and the Duke and Duchess of Windsor walk through its famous doors to be welcomed and pampered by Blanche Auzello and her husband, Claude, the hotel's director. The Auzellos are the mistress and master of the Ritz, allowing the glamour and glitz to take their minds off their troubled marriage, and off the secrets that they keep from their guests—and each other.
Until June 1940, when the German army sweeps into Paris, setting up headquarters at the Ritz. Suddenly, with the likes of Hermann Goëring moving into suites once occupied by royalty, Blanche and Claude must navigate a terrifying new reality. One that entails even more secrets and lies. One that may destroy the tempestuous marriage between this beautiful, reckless American and her very proper Frenchman. For in order to survive—and strike a blow against their Nazi "guests"—Blanche and Claude must spin a web of deceit that ensnares everything and everyone they cherish. But one secret is shared between Blanche and Claude alone—the secret that, in the end, threatens to imperil both of their lives, and to bring down the legendary Ritz itself. Based on true events, Mistress of the Ritz is a taut tale of suspense wrapped up in a love story for the ages, the inspiring story of a woman and a man who discover the best in each other amid the turbulence of war.

Find Mistress of the Ritz in the catalog.

Book Group: 
First Thursday Book Discussion Group
Thursday, February 6, 2020 at 10:00 am

Art and Artists

Book Group: 
Insatiable Readers Book Discussion Group
Saturday, February, 2020 • 10:30am

The Reckoning

John Grisham

October 1946, Clanton, Mississippi
Pete Banning was Clanton, Mississippi's favorite son—a decorated World War II hero, the patriarch of a prominent family, a farmer, father, neighbor, and a faithful member of the Methodist church. Then one cool October morning he rose early, drove into town, and committed a shocking crime. Pete's only statement about it—to the sheriff, to his lawyers, to the judge, to the jury, and to his family—was: "I have nothing to say." He was not afraid of death and was willing to take his motive to the grave.

In a major novel unlike anything he has written before, John Grisham takes us on an incredible journey, from the Jim Crow South to the jungles of the Philippines during World War II; from an insane asylum filled with secrets to the Clanton courtroom where Pete's defense attorney tries desperately to save him. Reminiscent of the finest tradition of Southern Gothic storytelling, The Reckoning would not be complete without Grisham's signature layers of legal suspense, and he delivers on every page.

Find The Reckoning in the catalog.

Book Group: 
Second Thursday Book Discussion Group
Thursday, February 13, 2019 at 10:00 am

Black Klansman

Ron Stallworth

When detective Ron Stallworth, the first black detective in the history of the Colorado Springs Police Department, comes across a classified ad in the local paper asking for all those interested in joining the Ku Klux Klan to contact a P.O. box, Detective Stallworth does his job and responds with interest, using his real name while posing as a white man. He figures he'll receive a few brochures in the mail, maybe even a magazine, and learn more about a growing terrorist threat in his community.

A few weeks later the office phone rings, and the caller asks Ron a question he thought he'd never have to answer, "Would you like to join our cause?" This is 1978, and the KKK is on the rise in the United States. Its Grand Wizard, David Duke, has made a name for himself, appearing on talk shows, and major magazine interviews preaching a "kinder" Klan that wants nothing more than to preserve a heritage, and to restore a nation to its former glory.

Find Black Klansman in the catalog.

Book Group: 
True Crime Book Club
Tuesday, February 25, 2020 • 6:30pm - 8:30pm

The Japanese Lover

Isabel Allende

In 1939, as Poland falls under the shadow of the Nazis and the world goes to war, young Alma Belasco's parents send her overseas to live with an aunt and uncle in their opulent San Francisco mansion. There she meets Ichimei Fukuda, the son of the family's Japanese gardener, and between them a tender love blossoms, but following Pearl Harbor the two are cruelly pulled apart. Throughout their lifetimes, Alma and Ichimei reunite again and again, but theirs is a love they are forever forced to hide from the world. Decades later, Alma is nearing the end of her long and eventful life. Irina Bazili, a care worker struggling to reconcile her own troubled past, meets the older woman and her grandson, Seth, at Lark House nursing home. As Irina and Seth forge a friendship, they become intrigued by a series of mysterious gifts and letters sent to Alma, and learn about Ichimei and this extraordinary secret passion that has endured for nearly seventy years.

Find The Japanese Lover in the catalog.

Book Group: 
First Thursday Book Discussion Group
Thursday, March 5, 2020 at 10:00 am

Where the Crawdads Sing

Delia Owens

For years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life—until the unthinkable happens.

Perfect for fans of Barbara Kingsolver and Karen Russell, Where the Crawdads Sing is at once an exquisite ode to the natural world, a heartbreaking coming-of-age story, and a surprising tale of possible murder. Owens reminds us that we are forever shaped by the children we once were, and that we are all subject to the beautiful and violent secrets that nature keeps.

Find Where the Crawdads Sing in the catalog.

Book Group: 
Sunday NovelTea Book Discussion Group
Sunday, March 8, 2020 • 3:00pm - 4:00pm

Mistress of the Ritz

Melanie Benjamin

Nothing bad can happen at the Ritz; inside its gilded walls every woman looks beautiful, every man appears witty. Favored guests like Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Coco Chanel, and the Duke and Duchess of Windsor walk through its famous doors to be welcomed and pampered by Blanche Auzello and her husband, Claude, the hotel's director. The Auzellos are the mistress and master of the Ritz, allowing the glamour and glitz to take their minds off their troubled marriage, and off the secrets that they keep from their guests—and each other.

Until June 1940, when the German army sweeps into Paris, setting up headquarters at the Ritz. Suddenly, with the likes of Hermann Goëring moving into suites once occupied by royalty, Blanche and Claude must navigate a terrifying new reality. One that entails even more secrets and lies. One that may destroy the tempestuous marriage between this beautiful, reckless American and her very proper Frenchman. For in order to survive—and strike a blow against their Nazi "guests"—Blanche and Claude must spin a web of deceit that ensnares everything and everyone they cherish. But one secret is shared between Blanche and Claude alone—the secret that, in the end, threatens to imperil both of their lives, and to bring down the legendary Ritz itself. Based on true events, Mistress of the Ritz is a taut tale of suspense wrapped up in a love story for the ages, the inspiring story of a woman and a man who discover the best in each other amid the turbulence of war.

Find Mistress of the Ritz in the catalog.

Book Group: 
Second Thursday Book Discussion Group
Thursday, March 12, 2020 at 10:00 am

War

Book Group: 
Insatiable Readers Book Discussion Group
Saturday, March 14, 2020 • 10:30am

Furious Hours

Casey Cep

Reverend Willie Maxwell was a rural preacher accused of murdering five of his family members for insurance money in the 1970s. With the help of a savvy lawyer, he escaped justice for years until a relative shot him dead at the funeral of his last victim. Despite hundreds of witnesses, Maxwell's murderer was acquitted – thanks to the same attorney who had previously defended the Reverend.

As Alabama is consumed by these gripping events, it's not long until news of the case reaches Alabama's – and America's – most famous writer. Intrigued by the story, Harper Lee makes a journey back to her home state to witness the Reverend's killer face trial. Harper had the idea of writing her own In Cold Blood, the true-crime classic she had helped her friend Truman Capote research. Lee spent a year in town reporting on the Maxwell case and many more years trying to finish the book she called The Reverend.

Find Furious Hours in the catalog.

Book Group: 
True Crime Book Club
Tuesday, March 31, 2020 • 6:30pm - 8:30pm

The Editor

Steven Rowley

After years of trying to make it as a writer in 1990s New York City, James Smale finally sells his novel to an editor at a major publishing house: none other than Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Jackie–or Mrs. Onassis, as she’s known in the office–has fallen in love with James’s candidly autobiographical novel, one that exposes his own dysfunctional family. But when the book’s forthcoming publication threatens to unravel already fragile relationships, both within his family and with his partner, James finds that he can’t bring himself to finish the manuscript.

Jackie and James develop an unexpected friendship, and she pushes him to write an authentic ending, encouraging him to head home to confront the truth about his relationship with his mother. Then a long-held family secret is revealed, and he realizes his editor may have had a larger plan that goes beyond the page…

Find The Editor in the catalog.

Book Group: 
First Thursday Book Discussion Group
Thursday, April 2, 2020 at 10:00 am

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