Here are the books my book club read in 2015. Check them out. You might find a few to be of interest. At the bottom of the article, you’ll find links to the books we read in 2010, 2013 and 2014.
January – The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown. The story of how the University of Washington rowing team overcame numerous obstacles to win the gold medal at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. Great writing and strong characters make this book worth your time.
February – An Officer and a Spy by Robert Harris. Historical fiction that tells the story of the Dreyfus Affair in France, in which a soldier is unfairly accused of treason, convicted and imprisoned while his superiors cover up their knowledge of his innocence.
March – Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare. You know about this one, right?
April – Einstein’s Dreams by Alan Lightman. A surreal read and
a fictional collage of stories dreamed by Albert Einstein in 1905, when he worked in a patent office in Switzerland. Each story provides an insight into Einstein’s Theory of Relativity.
May – The Death of Caesar by Barry Strauss. A detailed examination of the plot against Julius Caesar and what happened to those who carried out the execution. Hint: The friends, allies and relatives of Caesar fared better than his enemies.
June – The Nigger of the Narcissus by Joseph Conrad. Excellent tale of a group of sailors on a voyage from Bombay (yes, now Mumbai) to London. A short novella, but it requires intense concentration!
July – Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania by Erik Larson. Great telling of the attack by the Germans on a British luxury passenger ship during World War I.
August –The Wright Brothers by David McCullough. Up until the very second they achieved controlled flight, most of the world proclaimed it to be impossible. This is the fascinating story of the men who proved the world wrong.
September – Billy Bathgate by E.L. Doctorow. Fictionalized story of New York gangster Dutch Schultz as seen through the eyes of teenager Billy Bathgate, who was recruited for a brief time to be part of the Schultz gang. We read this in honor of Doctorow, who died during the summer of 2015. A brilliant writer!
October – The Map Thief by Michael Blanding. Edward Forbes Smiley III parlayed his considerable knowledge of maps into a profitable business. His margins improved exponentially when he cut costs by stealing valuable maps from libraries throughout the world. This book provides an insightful look into who he was and how he achieved his thefts.
November – Fortune Smiles by Adam Johnson. A collection of imaginative short stories. We previously had read Johnson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book, The Orphan Master’s Son, which provided a look inside life in North Korea. Great writing!
December – Euphoria by Lily King. This novel explores a love triangle of three young anthropologists working in New Guinea in the 1930s. It is loosely based on events in the life of Margaret Mead.
Let me know what you’ve read this year and what you’d recommend. I’m interested!