Friday with the Friends
Join the FRIENDS every month for a lively discussion of selected books. The Second Friday Book Club welcomes everyone and no registration is required! This is a brown-bag book club sponsored by the FRIENDS of the Mandel Public Library of West Palm Beach. Please feel free to bring your lunch! Book chatter begins at 11:30 AM followed by a moderated book discussion at Noon with Mandel Public Library Reference Librarians. For more information, please call 561-868-7701.
Friday, November 9, 2018 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – Best. State. Ever.: A Florida Man Defends His Homeland by Dave Barry. We all know that Florida is wonderful – and, let's admit it, pretty wacky at times. Dave Barry loves Florida! And in Best. State. Ever., he takes us on a hilarious and affectionate tour of some of Florida's most unique destinations – classic tourist attractions, venues of high life from night clubs to shooting ranges, and places as disparate as psychic town Cassadaga and retirement mega-community The Villages. Whether you were born here (yes, some of us were!) or you are a new Floridian, you will learn something new about our state, you will definitely laugh, and you will love Florida more than ever. Do not miss this one-of-a-kind tribute to the Sunshine State! This is the 2018 "Read Together Palm Beach County" book selection.
Friday, December 14, 2018 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – Lilli de Jong by Janet Benton. Philadelphia, 1883. Twenty-three-year-old Lilli de Jong is pregnant and alone—abandoned by her lover and banished from her Quaker home. She gives birth at a charity for wronged women, planning to give up the baby. But the power of their bond sets her on a completely unexpected path. Unwed mothers in 1883 face staggering prejudice, yet Lilli refuses to give up her baby girl. Instead, she braves moral condemnation and financial ruin in a quest to keep the two of them alive.
Friday, January 11, 2019 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton. In 1959 rural England, 16-year-old Laurel Nicholson sees a stranger walking up to her house. The stranger encounters Laurel's mother, Dorothy, and dies after Dorothy stabs him. Although in shock that her warm, imaginative, loving parent is capable of such violence, Laurel keeps the family secret. Many years later, as Laurel and her siblings gather to be with their mother in her final days, a photograph of Dorothy and another young woman in the early days of World War II triggers Laurel's curiosity about her mother’s youth in London during the Blitz, and Laurel gradually uncovers her mother's secret.
Friday, February 8, 2019 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – Glass Houses by Louise Penny. "You won't want Louise Penny's latest to end…. Any plot summary of Penny's novels inevitably falls short of conveying the dark magic of this series.... It takes nerve and skill — as well as heart — to write mysteries like this. Glass Houses, along with many of the other Gamache books, is so compelling that, for the space of reading it, you may well feel that much of what's going on in the world outside the novel is 'just noise.'" —Maureen Corrigan, The Washington Post
Friday, March 8, 2019 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – The Weight of Ink by Rachel Kadish. Inviting comparisons to A.S. Byatt's Possession, Kadish's third novel (after Tolstoy Lied) features two modern scholars investigating a literary historical mystery centered on a female Jewish scribe in 17th-century London. Immersive period detail about Jewish life in 1660s London combines with a riveting plot that touches on the pressures women have faced throughout time, balancing intellectual pursuits with devotion to family.
Friday, April 12, 2019 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Third floor, Hibiscus Room – The Leavers by Lisa Ko. One morning, Deming Guo's mother, Polly, an undocumented Chinese immigrant, goes to her job at a nail salon—and never comes home. No one can find any trace of her. With his mother gone, 11-year-old Deming is left mystified and bereft. Eventually adopted by a pair of well-meaning white professors, Deming is moved from the Bronx to a small town upstate and renamed Daniel Wilkinson.
Told from the perspective of both Daniel—as he grows into a directionless young man—and Polly, Ko's novel gives us one of fiction's most singular mothers. Loving and selfish, determined and frightened, Polly is forced to make one heart-wrenching choice after another.
Set in New York and China, The Leavers is a vivid examination of borders and belonging.