You'll love this one...!! A book club & more discussion

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Closed Discussion Topic > September book nominations - American Deep South

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message 1: by Jenny (last edited Aug 14, 2009 01:39AM) (new)

Jenny (notestothemoon) | 846 comments Our theme for September is American Deep South.

If you lead last month then it is up to you whether or not you choose to nominate this month.

Please can you give me all of the following:

The title, the author

Brief description of the book

**If you nominate a book I assume that you are willing to lead the discussion. It's not hard to do I promise!**


IF YOU DON'T GIVE ME A DESCRIPTION OF THE BOOK I WON'T ACCEPT YOUR NOMINATION

One nomination per person please. Thank you!

You have 3 days to nominate!



message 2: by Ally (new)

Ally (goodreadscomuser_allhug) I'd like to nominate:

'The Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood' by Rebecca Wells.

Themes: Spirituality/Catholicism, childhood, friendship, mother-daughter relationships, madness & sticking together when times are good/bad/indifferent.


When Siddalee Walker, is interviewed about a hit play she has directed, she unguardedly describes her mother as a 'tap-dancing child abuser'. Enraged, her mother Vivi Abbot Walker disowns Sidda, devastated she postpones her wedding and puts her life on hold until she is granted forgiveness.

The Ya-Yas, Vivi's intrepid tribe of Louisiana girlfriends, are horrified and sashay in insisting Sidda is sent 'The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood', a scrapbook of their lives together from their childhood in 1932.

Sidda submerges herself in the wild, wondrous and wicked world of the Ya-Yas as she reads through half-a-century's worth of letters and clippings contained in the Ya-Ya Sisterhood's parcel of "Divine Secrets".

Middle-class Louisiana quakes as the quartet makes its way through adolescence. From being disqualified from the Shirley Temple look-a-like competition for unladylike behaviour because Teensy did a "poot"; to attending the premiere of Gone with the Wind in Atlanta, only for Vivi's hoop skirt, "much to her confusion, to go entirely over the head of the person sitting in the seat in front of her"; to spending a night in jail after floating naked on a hot southern evening in the town's water cooler.

Expected to raise babies, not Cain, the Ya-Yas are bonded for life in an unforgettable exploration of the complexities of mother-daughter relationships and the power of female friendship. This is a beautifully crafted, penetrating insight into society, friendship, the mother/daughter divide and religion. No subject is taboo as you dip in and out of the lives of Vivi, Teensy, Caro and Necie, the Ya Yas.

Ally


message 3: by Cecily (new)

Cecily | 576 comments Clock Without Hands by Carson McCullers.

Published in 1961, this story is set in a small town in southern USA. The overt story concerns race, justice and to some extent mortality, though there are plenty of other threads. However, it's the examination of the protagonists' views on race that are most interesting and, to some extent troubling, especially to the modern reader as the N word and variants are used quite often, albeit as a noun/statement, rather than necessarily as an insult.

It plays with one's sympathies very effectively. For instance, the old judge is a very traditional white southern patriarch. He is keen to retain segregation, yet strives to be generous to the black people who work for him. Is he bad, a product of his time, or both?

I expect there are some that would like such a book to be buried and forgotten, but I think the fact that it would be hard to write it now is all the more reason to keep and read it. McCullers' is clearly on the side of equality for the black community, but she makes it plain that it is not a straightforward issue of right and wrong or good and bad - and that message is at least as relevant now as it was when segregation was the norm.


message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

I would like to nominate 'To kill a Mockingbird' by Harper Lee.

The story is set in Maycomb County, Alabama and involves two children and their father, a lawyer. while the children's, and their friend Dill's, summer involves a game of making 'Boo Radley' appear, the father is involved in a more serious incident in his role as a defence lawyer.


message 5: by John (new)

John I would like to nominate "Cold Sassy Tree" by Olive Ann Burns.

Here is the dust cover synopsis. "If the preacher's wife's petticoat showed, the ladies would make the talk last a week. But on July 5, 1906, things took a scandalous turn. That was the day E.Rucker Blakeslee, proprietor of the general store and barely three weeks a widower, eloped with Miss Love Simpson - a woman half his age and, worse yet, a Yankee! On that day, fourteen-year-old Will Tweedy's adventures began and an unimpeachably pious, deliciously irreverent town came to life."

It is "fun, touching and full of joy". A goodness knows, these days we need more of that!


message 6: by Molly (new)

Molly | 270 comments I will honestly be happy with any book that wins this topic as I have read and loved several of those already suggested and the others sound good as well. But here is one on my To Read list that has been getting stellar reviews from the book blog community and here on GR:

THE HELP by Kathryn Stockett:
Be prepared to meet three unforgettable women:

Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone.

Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken.

Minny, Aibileen’s best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody’s business, but she can’t mind her tongue, so she’s lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own.

Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed.

In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women—mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends—view one another. A deeply moving novel filled with poignancy, humor, and hope, The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don’t.



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