Nebraska Bookworms

Stacks and Bookworms

The Plattsmouth Book Club loves books, and we invite you to join us in savoring them.

We meet the first Saturday of each month, 10 a.m. at the Plattsmouth Public Library, Plattsmouth, Nebraska. Everyone is welcome to attend, whether you've read the current selection or not.

Come join us!

 

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March 3
The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt's New World by Andrea Wulf, reveals the forgotten life of Alexander von Humboldt, the visionary German naturalist born in 1769 whose ideas changed the way we see the natural world—and in the process created modern environmentalism. Originally published in 2015, the paperback is 576 pp, but the actual text, an easy read, is less than 400 pp (rest references).  The library has a copy; Pat has a loaner available. My copy is currently on loan to a book club member. It is also available on Amazon.  / A Tree Grows in Brooklyn Betty Smith. This novel, considered a modern classic, is a a poignant and deeply understanding story of childhood and family relationships. The Nolans lived in the Williamsburg slums of Brooklyn from 1902 until 1919 as the author Betty Smith did. The Nolan's daughter Francie and their son Neely knew more than their fair share of the privations and sufferings that are the lot of a great city's poor. Primarily this is Francie's book. She is a superb feat of characterization, an imaginative, alert, resourceful child. In addition to the print copies above, there is an audiobook, and this book is available on Overdrive. 


Please send title suggestions to Susanne or Carol.

Please check our revised listing of upcoming selections for future reads. Don't forget to send your suggestions to the webmaster to add to our list.

Looking Ahead

 

April 7
Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World by Jack Weatherford. The name Genghis Khan often conjures the image of a relentless, bloodthirsty barbarian on horseback leading a ruthless band of nomadic warriors in the looting of the civilized world. Another view is he was a visionary leader whose conquests joined backward Europe with the flourishing cultures of Asia to trigger a global awakening, an unprecedented explosion of technologies, trade, and ideas. Genghis Khan was an innovative leader, the first ruler in many conquered countries to put the power of law above his own power, encourage religious freedom, create public schools, grant diplomatic immunity, abolish torture, and institute free trade. / The Handmaid's Tale Margaret Atwood. Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. Offred and the other Handmaids are valued only if their ovaries are viable. Offred can remember the days before, when she lived and made love with her husband Luke; when she played with and protected her daughter; when she had a job, money of her own, and access to knowledge. But all of that is gone now.... Funny, unexpected, horrifying, and altogether convincing. The Handmaid's Tale is at once scathing satire and dire warning.

May 5
Book of Ages — Jane Franklin by Jill Lepore. Benjamin Franklin and his youngest sister were so close they were called Benny and Jenny. Renowned, world-traveling brother and obscure, homebound sister exchanged loving, newsy, bantering letters for more than 60 years. Most of his were preserved, while three decades’ of hers disappeared. Differences in the siblings’ education, opportunities, and experiences, are a focus as is Jane herself. The most poignant artifact unearthed was Jane’s handmade “Book of Ages,” recording the birth of her 12 children and, excruciatingly, the eventual death of all but one.  Jane’s surviving letters show her a witty, hardworking woman who “loved best books about ideas,” and shared piquant observations of the struggle for American independence. / Miramont's Ghost by Elizabeth Hall. Miramont Castle, built in 1897 and mysteriously abandoned three years later, is home to many secrets. Only one person knows the truth: Adrienne Beauvier, granddaughter of the Comte de Challembelles and cousin to the man who built the castle.  Clairvoyant from the time she could talk, Adrienne’s visions show her the secrets of those around her.  Her visions begin to reveal dark mysteries of her own aristocratic French family.