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April 2011

ReadingGroupGuides.com Newsletter April 2011
 
Quick Links to Features on ReadingGroupGuides.com
 
 

Spring Break with Books!

I got tired of waiting for spring to arrive in New York (the snow on April 1st put me over the edge), so I flew down to Coral Gables last week for “Spring Break” to kick back with a week of reading and hanging out by the pool. And oh, I swam some laps, too, trying to get back in shape after a winter of cocooning in the house. Swimming is a lot more fun than walking on the treadmill, and it immediately got me out of the winter blues as did some days of just reading, which is quite a treat! If you want to know some of the books I read, check out the latest edition of the Bookreporter.com newsletter here.

April and May tend to be two of the busier months of the year for book releases, so we are bringing you lots of new titles to consider for your group. At the top of that list is The Help by Kathryn Stockett, which finally is available in paperback. It’s been nearly two years since one of the biggest --- and, in my opinion, best --- books of the past few years was released. Many of you already read this book in hardcover, and we know others will be picking it up now that it’s in paperback. I for one am happy they kept the cover the same when they moved to paperback. We’re celebrating the paperback release on Bookreporter.com, another site in TheBookReportNetwork.com, with a special tribute site that you can visit here. We hope this becomes your one-stop resource for all things The Help. We would love to hear your comments about this book, which you can make here!

This month, your group can also win 20 copies of The Help just for being signed up for our monthly newsletter. Each month we randomly select one reader to win our featured title. Pass on our newsletter sign-up form here to other group members and have them sign up to increase your group’s chance of winning! The Help also inspires our monthly poll question, asking, "If your group has not read and discussed The Help by Kathryn Stockett already, do you plan to read the paperback that released on April 5th?" Answer here.

Also, if you’re interested in knowing when the latest books will be out --- in hardcover and paperback --- please sign up here for Bookreporter.com’s new “On Sale This Week” newsletter. This special newsletter will mail every other Tuesday in April and May, with a plan to go out weekly in June. Over the years, readers have been asking for this timely information and thus we are happy to share it with you! We got so many notes from grateful readers when our first mailing went out last week that I am wishing we started doing this sooner!

This month we’re hosting three special contests on ReadingGroupGuides.com. Fifteen readers can win a paperback copy of Brunonia Barry’s The Map of True Places, about a therapist who returns home to care for her ailing father while confronting a childhood filled with half-truths and the traumatic death of her mother. Brunonia is also the author of The Lace Reader, a popular book group pick from a few years ago. Enter here by Wednesday, May 4th at noon ET for your chance to win.

We have 50 paperbacks of As Husbands Go by Susan Isaacs, which deals with the aftermath of a seemingly model father, husband and surgeon’s death in the company of an adult escort. Newly widowed Susie Gersten embarks on a mission to uncover the conspiracy behind her husband’s death while desperately trying to prove he truly was a doting dad and devoted husband. I read this one when it came out in hardcover last year and it was quite amusing. Enter here by Wednesday, May 4th at noon ET for your chance to win.

Our third contest this month is for Sonya Sones’s adult fiction debut, The Hunchback of Neiman Marcus: A Novel About Marriage, Motherhood, and Mayhem. This funny, relatable book bills itself as a “coming-of-middle-age” story about a woman trying to juggle her demanding husband, teenage daughter, 80-year-old mother and a strict deadline. Sonya is a celebrated Young Adult author who’s known for her honest portrayal of life and its many ups and downs. I had the pleasure of meeting her last year when she brilliantly moderated a YA panel at a literary festival, thus it’s nice to see her tackling adult fiction. Enter here by Wednesday, May 4th at noon ET for your chance to win.

For our registered book groups, we have four great contests you can enter. Registered groups can win author chats with Sarah Blake, author of the bestselling book group favorite The Postmistress; Lauraine Snelling, author of On Hummingbird Wings, a novel of sisterhood; Kevin Alan Milne, author of the musically-themed The Final Note; and Randy Singer, author of the legal thriller False Witness. If your group is not yet registered with us, be sure to do so here by Tuesday, April 19th.

The Great Apes (great name!) of Fort Collins, Colorado, is the latest group to be featured in our Book Group Spotlight. Great Ape Jeff Potter discusses the group’s formation as a “Boys Only!” club and its mission to read solely titles from male authors. They got started back in the mid-1990s when Jeff and some fellow teaching colleagues were tired of overhearing their female counterparts talk about their book clubs, so they went and started their own. I often am asked about “men only” book clubs, and this one will give readers some great insight about why this group works. Click here to read the interview and learn how your group can be featured! Click here to read our past interviews.

Last month we shared information from three groups seeking suggestions in our What to Read Next? Suggest a Book for This Group feature. We listed the groups and the last six books that they discussed, and now we are pleased to share eight suggestions that we are passing along from those received from our readers here. It was interesting to see what books those who responded selected for these groups and why they made their selections. This month we are featuring three more groups who are looking for suggestions. Click here to see what they have read and make your suggestions. Note that we are looking for selections specifically for these groups based upon what they read in the past, thus we ask you to note why you think your selection will work for the group!

Another place to get some good ideas for your group is our ReadingGroupGuides.com Blog, where we’ve been featuring some terrific interviews with authors as well as original pieces. We recently featured a two-part interview with Sarita Mandanna, whose debut novel Tiger Hills is an emotional story of a love triangle that unfolds across three decades on a coffee plantation in India. This interview originally appeared on Bookreporter.com, but it was so informative and interesting we had to share it on ReadingGroupGuides.com. I loved this book and would love to hear what our readers think about it. Click here for Part I and here for Part II.

We also recently featured interviews with Sarah Addison Allen about her latest, The Peach Keeper, here, and suspense/thriller writer Steve Berry, who talks about his History Matters program and his latest, The Emperor’s Tomb, here.

Last month I mentioned that BookExpo America, the industry's premier book trade show, is being held from May 23-26 in New York at the Javits Center. While this show is not open to the public, book club facilitators and group leaders are invited to register to attend. To be eligible, you must lead an official book group of at least 10 members and meet at least 10 times a year. Proof of your book club, its location and meeting schedule will be required. You can read more about the conference here and see pricing here. I am going to be moderating two panels --- one about upcoming fall titles and a second where book group facilitators and leaders will share how they work with their groups. If you will be attending, please let me know as I still have some panel slots open for the latter presentation. If you're curious about attending, read a guest blog post here from contributor Denise Neary about her experience.

Here’s to a great month of reading!

Carol Fitzgerald (Carol@bookreporter.com)
 

Click here to learn more about BookExpo America 2011.

 
Special Contest: Win a Copy of THE MAP OF TRUE PLACES by Brunonia Barry for Your Group

We are celebrating the paperback release of The Map of True Places by Brunonia Barry --- an emotionally compelling novel about finding your true place in the world from the New York Times bestselling author of The Lace Reader --- with a special contest. 15 readers will have the opportunity to each win one paperback copy of the book, which is in stores now, for their group. The deadline for entries is Wednesday, May 4th at noon ET.

More about The Map of True Places:
A respected Boston psychotherapist, Zee Finch has come a long way from a motherless childhood spent stealing boats. But the actions of a patient throw Zee into emotional chaos and take her back to places she thought she'd left behind. What starts as a brief visit home to Salem begins a larger journey. Suddenly having to care for her ailing father after his longtime companion moves out, Zee must come to terms with a strained and awkward relationship that has always been marked by half-truths and haunted by the untimely death of her mother. Overwhelmed by her new role, Zee must destroy the existing map of her life and chart a new course --- one that will guide her not only into her future but into her past as well.

-Click here for the reading group guide.
 

Click here to read all the contest details.

 
Special Contest: Win a Copy of AS HUSBANDS GO by Susan Isaacs for Your Group

We are celebrating the paperback release of As Husbands Go --- in which Susan Isaacs draws on tony Long Island, gritty New York City, and a tabloid-friendly murder for this smart-alecky whodunit yet surprisingly sweet love story --- with a special contest. 50 readers will have the opportunity to each win one paperback copy of the book, which is in stores now, for their group. The deadline for entries is Wednesday, May 4th at noon ET.

More about As Husbands Go:
Call her superficial, but Susie B Anthony Rabinowitz Gersten assumed her marriage was great --- and why not? Jonah Gersten, MD, a Park Avenue plastic surgeon, clearly adored her. He was handsome, successful, and a doting dad to their four-year-old triplets. But when Jonah is found dead in the Upper East Side apartment of second-rate "escort" Dorinda Dillon, Susie is overwhelmed with questions left unanswered. It's bad enough to know your husband's been murdered, but even worse when you're universally pitied (and quietly mocked) because of the sleaze factor. None of it makes sense to Susie --- not a sexual liaison with someone like Dorinda, not the "better not to discuss it" response from Jonah's partners. With help from her tough-talking, high-style grandma Ethel, who flies in from Miami, she takes on her snooty in-laws, her husband's partners, the NYPD, and the DA as she tries to prove that her wonderful life with Jonah was no lie.

-Click here for the reading group guide.
 

Click here to read all the contest details.

 
Special Contest: Win a Copy of THE HUNCHBACK OF NEIMAN MARCUS by Sonya Sones for Your Group

We are celebrating the release of The Hunchback of Neiman Marcus: A Novel About Marriage, Motherhood, and Mayhem by Sonya Sones --- a funny, fresh and heartbreakingly poignant novel about the tricky balancing act of motherhood and career --- with a special contest. 15 readers will have the opportunity to each win one copy of the book, which is in stores now, for their group. The deadline for entries is Wednesday, May 4th at noon ET.

More about The Hunchback of Neiman Marcus: A Novel About Marriage, Motherhood, and Mayhem:
Celebrated YA novelist Sonya Sones makes a HUGE splash with her first adult novel, The Hunchback of Neiman Marcus, spinning a funny, fierce and piercingly honest coming-of-middle-age story about falling apart and putting yourself back together. Nora Ephron’s I Feel Bad About My Neck meets Elizabeth Berg --- boldly original and endlessly enthralling --- The Hunchback of Neiman Marcus is a luminous, brilliantly told story of life, marriage and parenthood that you will not soon forget.

-Click here for the reading group guide.
 

Click here to read all the contest details.

 
SAVE ME by Lisa Scottoline

From the New York Times bestselling author of Think Twice and Look Again comes an emotionally powerful novel about a split-second choice, agonizing consequences, and the need for justice. Rose McKenna volunteers as a lunch mom in her daughter Melly’s school in order to keep an eye on Amanda, a mean girl who’s been bullying her daughter. Her fears come true when the bullying begins, sending Melly to the bathroom in tears. Just as Rose is about to follow after her daughter, a massive explosion goes off in the kitchen, sending the room into chaos. Rose finds herself faced with the horrifying decision of whether or not to run to the bathroom to rescue her daughter or usher Amanda to safety.
 

Click here to read the guide for Save Me.

 
Now Available in Paperback: HEART OF THE MATTER by Emily Giffin

Tessa Russo is a stay-at-home mother of two young children and the wife of a renowned pediatric surgeon. Valerie Anderson is an attorney and single mother to six-year-old Charlie --- a boy who has never known his father. Although both women live in the same Boston suburb, they are strangers to one another and have little in common, aside from a fierce love for their children. But one night, a tragic accident causes their lives to converge in ways no one could have imagined. This is the moving, luminous story of good people caught in untenable circumstances. Each being tested in ways they never thought possible. Each questioning everything they once believed. And each ultimately discovering what truly matters most.
 

Click here to read the guide for Heart of the Matter.

 
THE SATURDAY BIG TENT WEDDING PARTY by Alexander McCall Smith

The latest installment in the beloved, bestselling series is once again a beautiful blend of wit and wisdom, and a profoundly touching tale of the human heart. At a remote cattle post south of Gaborone two cows have been killed, and Precious Ramotswe, Botswana’s No. 1 Lady Detective, is asked to investigate by a rather frightened and furtive gentleman. It is an intriguing problem with plenty of suspects --- including, surprisingly, her own client.
 

Click here to read the guide for The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party.

 
ONE WAS A SOLDIER: A Clare Fergusson/Russ Van Alstyne Mystery, by Julia Spencer-Fleming

On a warm September evening in the Millers Kill community center, five veterans sit down in rickety chairs to try to make sense of their experiences in Iraq. What they will find is murder, conspiracy, and the unbreakable ties that bind them to one another and their small Adirondack town. The Rev. Clare Fergusson wants to forget the things she saw as a combat helicopter pilot and concentrate on her relationship with Chief of Police Russ Van Alstyne. MP Eric McCrea needs to control the explosive anger threatening his job as a police officer. Will Ellis, high school track star, faces the reality of life as a double amputee. Orthopedist Trip Stillman is denying the extent of his traumatic brain injury. And bookkeeper Tally McNabb wrestles with guilt over the in-country affair that may derail her marriage.

-Click here to see our Romantic Suspense feature for Julia Spencer-Fleming and One Was a Soldier on Bookreporter.com.

 

Click here to read the guide for One Was a Soldier.

 

THE LOVE OF MY YOUTH by Mary Gordon

From the acclaimed author of Pearl and Final Payments comes a beautifully choreographed novel about first lovers meeting again after more than 35 years and rekindling their shared past. Miranda and Adam, high-school sweethearts now in their late 50s, arrive by chance at the same time in Rome, a city where they once spent a summer deeply in love, living together blissfully. At an awkward reunion, the two --- who parted in an atmosphere of passionate betrayal in the 1960s and haven’t seen each other since --- are surprised to discover that they may have something to talk about.
 

Click here to read the guide for The Love of My Youth.

 
PLEASE LOOK AFTER MOM by Kyung-Sook Shin

A million-plus-copy bestseller in Korea --- a magnificent English-language debut poised to become an international sensation --- this is the stunning, deeply moving story of a family’s search for their mother, who goes missing one afternoon amid the crowds of the Seoul Station subway. Told through the piercing voices and urgent perspectives of a daughter, son, husband and mother, Please Look After Mom is at once an authentic picture of contemporary life in Korea and a universal story of family love. You will never think of your mother the same way again after you read this book.

Click here to read the guide for Please Look After Mom.

 
ALREADY HOME by Susan Mallery

New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery has captivated millions of readers with her heartwarming stories of the ties that bind. Now she introduces Jenna Stevens, who’s about to discover that sometimes the only way to move forward is to go back home again. After nearly a decade as a sous chef in a trendy eatery, Jenna is desperate for a change. She’s supported her ex-husband’s dreams for so long that she can’t even remember her own. Until she sees a for-lease sign near her parents’ home and envisions her very own cooking store. Her crash course in business is aided by a street-wise store manager and Jenna’s adoptive mother. But just as she’s gaining a foothold in her new life, in walk her birth parents --- aging hippies on a quest to reconnect with their firstborn.
 

Click here to read the guide for Already Home.

 
THE DRESSMAKER OF KHAIR KHANA: Five Sisters, One Remarkable Family, and the Woman Who Risked Everything to Keep Them Safe, by Gayle Tzemach Lemmon

The life Kamila Sidiqi had known changed overnight when the Taliban seized control of the city of Kabul. After receiving a teaching degree during the civil war --- a rare achievement for any Afghan woman --- Kamila was subsequently banned from school and confined to her home. When her father and brother were forced to flee the city, Kamila became the sole breadwinner for her five siblings. Armed only with grit and determination, she picked up a needle and thread and created a thriving business of her own. The Dressmaker of Khair Khana tells the incredible true story of this unlikely entrepreneur who mobilized her community under the Taliban.
 

Click here to read the guide for The Dressmaker of Khair Khana.

 
April's Registered Book Club Contests

For April we have four very special opportunities for Registered Book Groups. Our featured titles this month are The Postmistress by Sarah Blake, The Final Note by Kevin Alan Milne, On Hummingbird Wings by Lauraine Snelling and False Witness by Randy Singer. Groups who have registered with us by Tuesday, April 19th have the chance to win an author chat and/or free books. If your group is not registered, click here to register.

The Postmistress by Sarah Blake --- Author Chat and Book Giveaway: Three groups will have the opportunity to chat with Sarah Blake and receive up to 10 copies of the book.

More about The Postmistress:
In 1940, Iris James is the postmistress in coastal Franklin, Massachusetts. Iris knows more about the townspeople than she will ever say, and believes her job is to deliver secrets. Yet one day she does the unthinkable: slips a letter into her pocket, reads it, and doesn't deliver it. Meanwhile, Frankie Bard broadcasts from overseas with Edward R. Murrow. Her dispatches beg listeners to pay heed as the Nazis bomb London nightly. Most of the townspeople of Franklin think the war can't touch them. But both Iris and Frankie know better. The Postmistress is a tale of two worlds --- one shattered by violence, the other willfully naïve --- and of two women whose job is to deliver the news, yet who find themselves unable to do so. Through their eyes, and the eyes of everyday people caught in history's tide, it examines how stories are told, and how the fact of war is borne even through everyday life.


The Final Note by Kevin Alan Milne --- Author Chat and Book Giveaway: Five groups will have the opportunity to chat with Kevin Alan Milne and receive up to 10 copies of the book.

More about The Final Note:
In this brand-new novel from bestselling author Kevin Alan Milne, readers will be inspired yet again by the themes of love, loss and renewal. Ethan met and fell in love with Anna while studying music abroad in college. He married her, and fully expected to grow old with her. After all, they were young, life was good, and faith in each other came easily, as evidenced by the love notes Anna periodically left between the strings of his guitar. On their wedding day, Ethan promised to love, honor and cherish his wife...and to write a song for her. Fast forward to the present day. Despite his grand promises, reality has proven to be much harder than he anticipated. Instead of composing hit songs, he's working long hours to provide for his family and still promising to finish Anna's song. His formerly hopeful spirit is almost too heavy to carry, weighed down as it is by regret. Can he still muster that one song?

On Hummingbird Wings by Lauraine Snelling --- Author Chat and Book Giveaway: Ten groups will have the opportunity to chat with Lauraine Snelling and receive up to 10 copies of the book.

More about On Hummingbird Wings:
"But Mother is always dying" is Gillian Ormsby's sarcastic response when her younger, favored sister tells her that she has to go take care of their hypochondriac mother. Much against her will, since she and her mother never have gotten along, Gillian arrives in California to find the garden and yard dead, the blinds all drawn, and her mother indeed in bed --- waiting to die. But when Gillian talks with the doctor, he assures her there's no medical reason behind her mother's state. Now on a mission to restore her mother to health, Gillian insists Mother get out of bed, eat, exercise, and hopefully choose to live. She also sets about reviving the garden to its former glory, enlisting the help of Adam, a handsome man who owns a family gardening business with his father. Gillian is delighted when a pair of hummingbirds appear, and her friendship with Adam grows.

False Witness by Randy Singer --- Author Chat and Book Giveaway: One group will have the opportunity to chat with Randy Singer and receive up to 10 copies of the book.

More about False Witness:
Clark Shealy is a bail bondsman with the ultimate bounty on the line: his wife’s life. He has 48 hours to find an Indian professor in possession of the Abacus Algorithm --- an equation so powerful it could crack all Internet encryption. Four years later, law student Jamie Brock is working in legal aid when a routine case takes a vicious twist: she and two colleagues learn that their clients, members of the witness protection program, are accused of defrauding the government and have the encrypted algorithm in their possession. After a life-changing trip to the professor’s church in India, the couple also has the key to decode it. Now they’re on the run from federal agents and the Chinese mafia, who will do anything to get the algorithm. Caught in the middle, Jamie and her friends must protect their clients if they want to survive long enough to graduate.

 

Click here to register your group.

 
What's New on the ReadingGroupGuides.com Blog

Our ReadingGroupGuides.com Blog continues to be a big hit among our readers. Throughout the month we are sharing postings from regular contributors --- including authors, librarians, book club facilitators, booksellers and experts in the publishing industry --- as well as special guests. The latest blog can be found here, and here are quick links to some recent posts:

-
THE HELP is now in paperback!
-An Interview with Sarita Mandanna, Author of TIGER HILLS -- Part I
-An Interview with Sarita Mandanna, Author of TIGER HILLS -- Part II
-Lisa Scottoline: THINK TWICE
-Make Your Way to BEA!
-An Interview with Sarah Blake, Author of THE POSTMISTRESS -- Part I
-An Interview with Sarah Blake, Author of THE POSTMISTRESS -- Part II
-Sarah Addison Allen: THE PEACH KEEPER
-An Interview with Steve Berry, Author of THE EMPEROR'S TOMB

For those of you who use RSS feeds to keep track of your favorite blogs, you can now add the ReadingGroupGuides.com blog to your list by clicking the link on the blog page. Also, receive updates by email here. The blog is also shared on the ReadingGroupGuides.com Facebook page.
 

Click here to read the ReadingGroupGuides.com Blog.

 
New Guides Now Available

31 Bond Street by Ellen Horan: Scandal, social climbing and corruption in Manhattan during the 1850s come alive in Ellen Horan’s historical mystery about a murdered dentist.
Already Home by Susan Mallery: A former chef takes on a new business venture only to have her progress interrupted by the sudden arrival of the parents who gave her up for adoption.
As Husbands Go by Susan Isaacs: Susan Isaacs has written an unconventional detective story about a woman who must solve her husband's murder, and prove that his loyalty to her was alive and well.

Devotion: A Memoir by Dani Shapiro: One mother’s quest for religious and spiritual understanding is prompted by her son’s difficult questions on the subjects.
The Dressmaker of Khair Khana: Five Sisters, One Remarkable Family, and the Woman Who Risked Everything to Keep Them Safe by Gayle Tzemach Lemmon: A former reporter stumbles across the inspiring story of a woman business owner in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.

False Witness by Randy Singer: Two harrowing cases separated by four years are linked by the same prominent engineer and his code that can change the way the Internet operates.
A Fierce Radiance by Lauren Belfer: Penicillin operates as the source of romance, murder and melodrama in Lauren Belfer's evocative WWII–era novel, her second after City of Light.
The Final Note by Kevin Alan Milne: A musician struggles to support his family, including the devoted wife whose faith in his musical gifts has never wavered.
Heart of Deception by M.L. Malcolm: A spy navigates World War II-era tensions while searching for his lost daughter in this sequel to Heart of Lies.
The Hunchback of Neiman Marcus: A Novel About Marriage, Motherhood, and Mayhem by Sonya Sones: A writer desperately struggles with the demands of being a wife, mother and professional while under a strict deadline from her publisher.
I’m Not Dead, I’m Different: Kids in Spirit Teach Us About Living a Better Life on Earth by Hollister Rand: A renowned medium discusses the unique experience of communicating with the spirits of children.
The Long Way Home: An American Journey from Ellis Island to the Great War by David Laskin: An engrossing and moving story of 12 men, all of them immigrants to the U.S., who were transformed by their brief but intense experiences as soldiers in WWI, and the fates that awaited them in America.
The Love of My Youth by Mary Gordon: A teenage romance ends in a harsh betrayal only to be rekindled many years later as the adults find their relationship is still not entirely finished.
The Map of True Places by Brunonia Barry: Psychotherapist Zee Finch is dealt a blow when one of her patients, a troubled bipolar housewife named Lilly, leaps off a bridge to her death.
Mothers and Daughters by Rae Meadows: A young woman uncovers her family’s secret history, learning much about her grandmother’s immigration to America.
On Hummingbird Wings by Lauraine Snelling: Estranged sisters reunite to help care for their ailing mother, reconciling their troubled pasts while tending the family’s wilted garden.
One Was a Soldier: A Clare Fergusson/Russ Van Alstyne Mystery by Julia Spencer-Fleming: Adjusting to civilian life after a tour in Iraq proves difficult for Rev. Clare Fergusson in Julia Spencer-Fleming's resonant and timely seventh mystery featuring Clare and her not-so-secret lover, police chief Russ Van Alstyne.
Other People’s Money by Justin Cartwright: An heir assumes control of the family bank during the world financial crisis that began in 2008.
Pao by Kerry Young: A Chinese immigrant rises to prominence in the seedy crime world of Jamaica, employing his heritage’s maxims and teachings in his new tropical home.
The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen: The bestselling author of Garden Spells welcomes readers to Walls of Water, North Carolina, where the secrets are thicker than the fog from the town’s famous waterfalls, and the stuff of superstition is just as real as you want it to be.
Please Look After Mom by Kyung-Sook Shin: Park So-nyo, mother of four now-adult children, has gone missing in a Seoul train station with her story being told through alternating narrators.
The Rebellion of Jane Clarke by Sally Gunning: On the eve of the Revolutionary War, a young woman is caught between tradition and independence, family and conscience, loyalty and love, in this spellbinding novel from the author of The Widow's War and Bound.
The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party: The New No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency Novel
by Alexander McCall Smith: At a remote cattle post south of Gaborone, two cows have been killed, and Precious Ramotswe, Botswana’s No. 1 Lady Detective, is asked to investigate by a rather frightened and furtive gentleman.
Save Me by Lisa Scottoline: A mother faces the tough decision of whether or not to rescue the girl bullying her daughter during a freak accident at a local school.
Swim Back to Me by Ann Packer: This collection of short stories and novellas follows the complicated relationships between people of all ages, backgrounds and social status.
A Thread of Sky by Deanna Fei: A widow tries to reconnect with her three grown daughters by booking them a tour of China.

Please note that these titles, for which we already had the guides when they appeared in hardcover, are now available in paperback:

Have a Little Faith by Mitch Albom: In Have a Little Faith, Mitch Albom offers a beautifully written story of a remarkable eight-year journey between two worlds --- two men, two faiths, two communities --- that will inspire readers everywhere.
The Help by Kathryn Stockett: The blockbuster novel of a young white woman who befriends two African-American maids in the 1960s segregated South.
Imperfect Birds by Anne Lamott: A mother begins to learn that her teenaged daughter is not the model child she thought after a pattern of secretive, destructive behavior has its consequences.
Men and Dogs by Katie Crouch: A woman escapes her unraveling life in San Francisco to uncover her family's mysteries, including the strange and sudden disappearance of her father more than 20 years ago.
Pearl of China by Anchee Min: A fictional biography of legendary writer Pearl S. Buck unfolds in an improverished Chinese town as Mao's Communist party prepares to take over the nation.
Russian Winter by Daphne Kalotay: A former dancer in the Bolshoi Ballet recounts her life, career, loves and losses in this sweeping historical novel spanning decades and continents.
The Season of Second Chances by Diane Meier: A professor reinvents herself when she accepts a position at a school in rural New England and decides to renovate her Victorian house all by herself.
A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan: An aging rocker and music business veteran finds he shares a troubled past similar to his much younger assistant.

The following guides are now available for Christian book groups:

Abigail’s New Hope: The Wayne County Series, Book 1 by Mary Ellis: The faith of a midwife in an Amish community is shaken after a difficult delivery.
The Caregiver: Families of Honor, Book One by Shelley Shepard Gray: The lives of two strangers intersect during a fateful train ride, leaving them to wonder if they will ever meet again.
The Dawn of a Dream: At Home in Beldon Grove, Book 3 by Ann Shorey: A woman pursues her life’s dream of becoming a teacher after her wedding suddenly ends under strange circumstances.
The Deepest Waters by Dan Walsh: Newlyweds face tough decisions of faith, family and fortune when their steamship cruises into a violent hurricane.
A Heart Most Worthy by Siri Mitchell: Three young Italian-American seamstresses gossip about the upper crust society they strive to be a part of.
Tea for Two: Tea with Millicent, Book 2 by Trish Perry: Two single parents bond over their parenting duties at the local café they frequent.
Tomorrow’s Garden: Texas Dreams, Book 3 by Amanda Cabot: A schoolteacher helps her siblings adjust to their new life while welcoming the charms of a Texas Ranger.
 


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Happy reading. We'll see you next month.

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Carol Fitzgerald (Carol@bookreporter.com)

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