Salvage the Bones (fiction), Jesmyn Ward – “A pitch–perfect account of struggle and community in the rural South . . . Though the characters in Salvage the Bones face down Hurricane Katrina, the story isn’t really about the storm. It’s about people facing challenges, and how they band together to overcome adversity.” (2011)

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Sarah’s Key (fiction), Tatiana DeRosnay – “DeRosnay has captured the insane world of the Holocaust and the efforts of the few good people who stood up against it in this work of fiction more effectively than has been done in many scholarly studies.” (2006)

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The Second Mrs. Hockaday (fiction), Susan Rivers - Initially slow paced, this work that takes on the legacy of slavery in the United States, the struggles specific to women, and the possibilities for empathy and forgiveness. (2017)

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Secret Daughter (fiction), Shilpi Somaya Gowda –A child born in India is adopted by an American couple. In alternating chapters, the author traces both the girl’s life and her birth parents’ hardships, including several years spent in Bombay’s (now Mumbai’s) infamous slum. (2010) *

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A Secret Kept (fiction), Tatiana de Rosnay – This new novel from the author of Sarah’s Key deals with complex family relationships and the power of a past secret to change everything in the present. It begins with a simple seaside vacation which is followed by a car crash, a hospital stay and the disclosure of the family secret. (2009)

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The Secret Wisdom of the Earth (fiction), Christopher Scotton – When a teenager witnesses a brutal hate crime in a small Appalachian town, it forever alters his perception of humanity. A dramatic and deeply moving novel that portrays the lingering effects of violence. (2015) *

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The Sense of an Ending (fiction), Julian Barnes – Winner of the Man Booker Prize for 2011, Barnes’ novel explores memory: how fuzzy it can be, and how we change the past to suit our own needs. (2011)

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Shutter Island (fiction), Dennis LeHane – “In 1954, U.S. Marshall Teddy Daniels and his partner, Chuck Aule, are sent to Shutter Island to find a mass murderer who has escaped from Ashcliffe Hospital. As an intense hurricane bears down on the island, the marshals are forced to piece together clues to a shocking puzzle hidden within Shutter Island.” (2003)

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Since We Fell (fiction), Dennis LeHane - LeHane’s novel follows Rachel Childs, a former journalist who, after an on-air mental breakdown, now lives as a virtual shut-in. A novel of psychological insight and tension. (2017)

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Sleeping Beauties (fiction), Stephen King/Owen King – Eve Black is the only woman who has escaped the ‘sleeping disease’ that leaves women cocooned in a matrix like state. Her life is in danger as chaos erupts and the suddenly all-male world divides between killing Eve, and saving her. Allegorical fantasy described by the New York Times as “wildly provocative and gloriously dramatic”. (2018)

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The Sparrow, (fiction), Mary Doria Russell  -   If you have to send a group of people to a newly discovered planet to contact a totally unknown species, whom would you choose? How about four Jesuit priests, a young astronomer, a physician, her engineer husband, and a child prostitute-turned-computer-expert? This motley combination of agnostics, true believers, and misfits becomes the first to explore the Alpha Centuri world of Rakhat with both enlightening and disastrous results. Challenging and thought-provoking. (1996) *

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State of Wonder (fiction), Ann Patchett – Dr. Marina Singh, a research scientist with a pharmaceutical company, is sent to Brazil to track down her former mentor, Dr. Annick Swenson, who seems to have all but disappeared in the Amazon. In a narrative replete with poison arrows, devouring snakes, and a neighboring tribe of cannibals, State of Wonder is a world unto itself, where unlikely beauty stands beside unimaginable loss. (2011)

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Station Eleven (fiction), Emily St. John Mandel   -   When the world collapses, a wandering group of survivors perform Shakespeare for wasteland communities. The story shifts between the post-apocalyptic world and twenty years earlier when the death of a famous actor had a rippling effect across the decades. (2014)

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Stay with Me (fiction), Ayobami Adebayo – When Yejide and Akin marry, they agree the Nigerian custom of polygamy is not for them. After four years of struggling with personal loss and political turmoil, earth- shattering secrets threaten their marriage. (2017)

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Still Alice (fiction), Lisa Genova – Follow the life of Alice Howland and her family after she becomes aware of her early–onset Alzheimer’s disease. A Harvard professor, wife and mother, she works at maintaining her personal and professional life, while adjusting to her new one. As she does, her family learns to live with the ever changing Alice. (2007)

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The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry (fiction), Gabrielle Zevin–A. J. Fikry’s life is not at all what he expected it to be. He lives alone, his bookstore is experiencing the worst sales in its history, and now his prized possession, a rare collection of Poe poems, has been stolen. But when a mysterious package appears at the bookstore, its unexpected arrival gives Fikry the chance to make his life over – and see everything anew. (2014) *

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The Story of Beautiful Girl (fiction), Rachel Simon – This is a story of love, loss, faith, and growth. The novel explores our compassion and intolerance toward people different from ourselves. In this case a pair of lovers: a deaf man and a developmentally disabled woman. (2011)

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Summer of ‘69 (fiction), Elin Hilderbrand   –  In the author’s first historical novel, a family in Nantucket experiences their own dramatic upheavals along with the rest of the country during a tumultuous summer. (2019)

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The Supremes at Earl’s All-You-Can-Eat (fiction), Edward Kelsey Moore   -   Odette, Barbara Jean, and Clarice, the "Supremes", are lifelong friends, now age 55. Odette has been seeing a lot of her mother, who happens to be dead. Clarice has decided her philandering husband no longer gets a pass. And the greatest love of Barbara Jean’s past has returned, dredging up a loss she numbs with vodka. This is a charming tribute to the bonds of female friendship.  (2013)

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The Tattooist of Auschwitz (fiction), Heather Morris   –  Based on interviews with Holocaust survivor Lale Sokolov, a Slovakian Jew imprisoned for almost three years at Auschwitz-Birkenau, where he served as the tattooist marking prisoners. Fictional account of romance between two concentration camp survivors. (2019)

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The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane (fiction), Lisa See - The author’s newest novel explores the lives of a Chinese mother and her daughter who has been adopted by an American couple. (2017)

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Tell the Wolves I’m Home (fiction), Carol Rifka Brunt – A teen loses her beloved uncle to AIDS and finds herself by befriending his grieving boyfriend. A novel of love, loss and unlikely friendship in the midst of the 1980s’ epidemic. (2012)

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Thank You for Your Service (nonfiction), David Finkel– Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Finkel involves himself in the lives of infantrymen who have returned home from Iraq. He creates an indelible portrait of what life after war is like for these soldiers and for all others who are truly trying to undo the damage that has been done. When we ask young men and women to go to war, what are we asking of them? And when they return, what are we thanking them for? (2013)

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Their Eyes Were Watching God (fiction), Zora Neale Hurston – The story of Janie Crawford, her strength and gentleness, and survival as a Black woman in early 20th century rural America. (1937)

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The Tiger’s Wife (fiction), Tea Obrecht Part mystery, part folktale, part fable, this novel is a complex read. Set in the Balkans, the plot follows a young doctor who works in an orphanage and has just lost her grandfather. (2011)

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A Time to Kill (fiction), John Grisham–The life of a ten-year-old girl is shattered by two drunken and remorseless young men. The mostly white town of Clanton in Ford County, Mississippi, reacts with shock and horror at the inhuman crime, until her African American father acquires an assault rifle and takes justice into his own outraged hands. Grisham’s first and perhaps his best. (1989)

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To Kill a Mockingbird (fiction,) Harper Lee – "Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit 'em, but remember it's a sin to kill a mockingbird." This is a lawyer's advice to his children as he defends the real mockingbird of Harper Lee's classic novel—a black man charged with the rape of a white girl. Through the young eyes of Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores the irrationality of adult attitudes toward race and class in the Deep South of the 1930s. (1960)

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Too Many Cooks & Champagne For One (mystery), Rex Stout   –  In this pair of classic Detective Nero Wolfe mysteries, Stout serves up deception, blackmail, and a killer who may have pulled off the perfect crime. (2009)

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A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (fiction), Betty Smith An American classic. “Francie Nolan, avid reader, penny–candy connoisseur, and adroit observer of human nature, has much to ponder in colorful, turn–of–the–century Brooklyn. She grows up with a sweet, tragic father, a severely realistic mother, and an aunt who gives her love too freely – to men, and to a brother who will always be the favored child.” (1943)

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The Truth According to Us (fiction), Annie Barrows   -   Fans of Barrows’ novel The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society will enjoy this sly charmer of a story about a small town in Depression-era West Virginia whose history is rewritten by a debutante on the run. Family histories are unraveled, but mended by the fierce, strong women who dominate this delightful page-turner. (2015)

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The Turner House (fiction), Angela Flourney - The Turners are a big, complicated, loving, feuding, vibrant American family living in contemporary Detroit. With flashbacks to the 1940s, this is a tale of aging, parenthood and the lifelong union of siblings. (2015)

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The Twelve Tribes of Hattie (fiction), Ayana Mathis – In 1923 Hattie Shepard, a young African American woman, moved from racist Georgia to Philadelphia looking for a better life. Although she married the wrong man and lost her first born twins to illness, she carried on, mothering nine more children. All of these children, plus a grandchild, are the twelve tribes whose lives are chronicled here. (2012)

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Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption (biography), Laura Hillenbrand – On a May afternoon in 1943, an Army Air Force bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean. Then, on the ocean surface, a face appeared.It was that of the plane’s bombardier, Louis Zamperini, who struggled to a life raft. Ahead of Zamperini lay thousands of miles of open ocean, leaping sharks, a foundering raft, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. (2010)

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The Underside of Joy (fiction), Sere Prince Halverson –The story of two women bound together by loss and hope for the future. Each claim to be the mother of the same two children. (2012)

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Undress Me in the Temple of Heaven (nonfiction), Susan Jane Gilman – “What happens when two recent female college graduates decide to circumnavigate the world on a shoestring in 1986, starting in the tourism–challenged People's Republic of China? ‘Innocents Abroad’ doesn't begin to describe it.” (2009)

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An Unquiet Mind(nonfiction), Kay Redfield Jamison – Jamison's memoir springs from her dual perspective as both a clinical psychologist whose work centers on bipolar disorder and one who has the illness herself. (1997) *

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Warlight (fiction), Michael Ondaatje – Fourteen-year old Nathaniel and his sister Rachel are left in the care of unusual characters when their parents suddenly leave the country for work. Only one parent returns and the siblings are offered no explanation. A dozen years later, Nathaniel begins to piece together the mysterious story that has shaped his life. (2018)

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Water for Elephants (fiction), Sara Gruen – “For pure story, this colorful, headlong tale of a Depression–era circus simply can't be beat. Heroes, villains, romance and a wild–animal stampede!” (2006)

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We Were the Lucky Ones (fiction), Georgia Hunter - A vast novel that follows three generations of a Polish- Jewish family’s efforts to survive during World War II. The strength of family, love and determination to live is explored. Inspired by the author’s family experience, a first novel. (2017)

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When Breath Becomes Air (nonfiction), Paul Kalanithi   -   About to complete training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, and the next he was a patient struggling to live. The author chronicles his growth from medical student to neurosurgeon at Stanford treating the brain, the site of human identity, and finally to a patient and new father confronting his own mortality. (2016)

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Where The Crawdads Sing (fiction), Delia Owens   –  A young girl abandoned by her family struggles to survive along the coast of North Carolina. Kya, who is known as The Marsh Girl in town, keeps to herself but becomes tangled in a murder investigation. (2018)

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White Houses (fiction), Amy Bloom – Fictional account of the affair between reporter Lorena “Hick” Hickok and former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt. An unforgettable story infused with world-changing history that ultimately breaks up their hidden love. (2017)

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The Wicked Girls (fiction), Alex Marwood–On a fateful summer morning in 1986, two eleven-year-old girls meet for the first time. By the end of the day, they will both be charged with murder. Twenty-five years later, journalist Kirsty Lindsay is reporting on a series of attacks on young female tourists in a seaside vacation town when her investigation leads her to interview carnival cleaner Amber Gordon. For Kirsty and Amber, it’s the first time they’ve seen each other since childhood. A gritty psychological thriller. (2012)

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Wide Sargasso Sea (fiction), Jean Rhys – Wide Sargasso Sea is the story of Antoinette Cosway, a Creole heiress who grew up in the West Indies on a decaying plantation. When she comes of age, she is married off to an Englishman, and he takes her away from the only place she has known––a house with a garden where "the paths were overgrown and a smell of dead flowers mixed with the fresh living smell. Underneath the tree ferns, tall as forest tree ferns, the light was green. Orchids flourished out of reach or for some reason not to be touched." (1966)

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The Widower’s Tale (fiction), Julia Glass – “Seventy–year–old Percy Darling is settling happily into retirement. But his routines are disrupted when he is persuaded to let a locally beloved preschool take over his barn. As Percy sees his rural refuge overrun by children, parents, and teachers, he must reexamine the solitary life he has made in the three decades since the sudden death of his wife.” (2010)

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The Wife, the Maid, and the Mistress (fiction), Ariel Lawhon–On an August night in 1930 Manhattan, Judge Joseph Force Crater steps into a cab and is never seen again. This entertaining historical mystery transports readers to a bygone era with spins through jazz clubs and backstage dressing rooms. But beneath the Art Deco skyline and amid the intoxicating smell of smoke and whiskey, the mystery of his disappearance lingers seductively until a twist in the very last pages. (2014)

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The Wright Brothers (nonfiction), David McCullough– In this thrilling book, master historian David McCullough draws on the immense riches of the Wright Papers, including private diaries, notebooks, scrapbooks, and more than a thousand letters from private family correspondence, to tell the human side of the Wright Brothers’ story, including the little–known contributions of their sister, Katharine, without whom things might well have gone differently for them. (2015)

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* Book Kits with asterisks are gifts from St Lucie County Book Clubs or individuals.

Annotations in quotation marks have been summarized from reviews found on

For more information or to book your kit, please call 772–462–2190.

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