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View Poll Results: What will we discuss in July, 2020?
At the Water's Edge by Sara Gruen 1 14.29%
Sand (omnibus edition) by Hugh Howey 2 28.57%
The Lightning Thief (aka Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief) by Rick Riordon 4 57.14%
The Johnstown Flood by David McCullough 2 28.57%
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne 1 14.29%
We Keep a Light by Evelyn M. Richardson 3 42.86%
The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Steadman 3 42.86%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 7. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-07-2020, 11:33 AM   #1
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Vote for July • Life's a Beach: Water, Water, Everywhere


It's time to select the book that the New Leaf Book Club will read in July, 2020. The theme is Life's a Beach: Water, Water, Everywhere

We love new participants. We're happy for you to vote, but in the interest of a vibrant conversation, we'd like to request that you please not vote unless you plan to join the discussion whatever the selection. So if you haven't posted in a book club thread yet, do please say a quick hello here or in the Welcome thread.


This is a poll. Vote for as many books as you'd like. Questions? FAQs | Guidelines Or just ask!

Choices:
  • At the Water's Edge by Sara Gruen
    Spoiler:
    Quote:
    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • In this thrilling new novel from the author of Water for Elephants, Sara Gruen again demonstrates her talent for creating spellbinding period pieces. At the Water’s Edge is a gripping and poignant love story about a privileged young woman’s awakening as she experiences the devastation of World War II in a tiny village in the Scottish Highlands.

    After disgracing themselves at a high society New Year’s Eve party in Philadelphia in 1944, Madeline Hyde and her husband, Ellis, are cut off financially by his father, a former army colonel who is already ashamed of his son’s inability to serve in the war. When Ellis and his best friend, Hank, decide that the only way to regain the Colonel’s favor is to succeed where the Colonel very publicly failed—by hunting down the famous Loch Ness monster—Maddie reluctantly follows them across the Atlantic, leaving her sheltered world behind.

    The trio find themselves in a remote village in the Scottish Highlands, where the locals have nothing but contempt for the privileged interlopers. Maddie is left on her own at the isolated inn, where food is rationed, fuel is scarce, and a knock from the postman can bring tragic news. Yet she finds herself falling in love with the stark beauty and subtle magic of the Scottish countryside. Gradually she comes to know the villagers, and the friendships she forms with two young women open her up to a larger world than she knew existed. Maddie begins to see that nothing is as it first appears: the values she holds dear prove unsustainable, and monsters lurk where they are least expected.

    As she embraces a fuller sense of who she might be, Maddie becomes aware not only of the dark forces around her, but of life’s beauty and surprising possibilities.
    362 pp.
  • Sand (omnibus edition) by Hugh Howey
    Spoiler:
    Quote:
    The old world is buried. A new one has been forged atop the shifting dunes. Here in this land of howling wind and infernal sand, four siblings find themselves scattered and lost. Their father was a sand diver, one of the elite few who could travel deep beneath the desert floor and bring up the relics and scraps that keep their people alive. But their father is gone. And the world he left behind might be next.
    336 pp.
  • The Lightning Thief (aka Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief) by Rick Riordan
    Spoiler:
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by goodreads
    Percy Jackson is a good kid, but he can't seem to focus on his schoolwork or control his temper. And lately, being away at boarding school is only getting worse - Percy could have sworn his pre-algebra teacher turned into a monster and tried to kill him. When Percy's mom finds out, she knows it's time that he knew the truth about where he came from, and that he go to the one place he'll be safe. She sends Percy to Camp Half Blood, a summer camp for demigods (on Long Island), where he learns that the father he never knew is Poseidon, God of the Sea. Soon a mystery unfolds and together with his friends—one a satyr and the other the demigod daughter of Athena - Percy sets out on a quest across the United States to reach the gates of the Underworld (located in a recording studio in Hollywood) and prevent a catastrophic war between the gods.
    375 pp.
  • The Johnstown Flood by David McCullough
    Spoiler:
    Quote:
    The stunning story of one of America’s great disasters, a preventable tragedy of Gilded Age America, brilliantly told by master historian David McCullough.

    At the end of the nineteenth century, Johnstown, Pennsylvania, was a booming coal-and-steel town filled with hardworking families striving for a piece of the nation’s burgeoning industrial prosperity. In the mountains above Johnstown, an old earth dam had been hastily rebuilt to create a lake for an exclusive summer resort patronized by the tycoons of that same industrial prosperity, among them Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick, and Andrew Mellon. Despite repeated warnings of possible danger, nothing was done about the dam. Then came May 31, 1889, when the dam burst, sending a wall of water thundering down the mountain, smashing through Johnstown, and killing more than 2,000 people. It was a tragedy that became a national scandal.

    Graced by David McCullough’s remarkable gift for writing richly textured, sympathetic social history, The Johnstown Flood is an absorbing, classic portrait of life in nineteenth-century America, of overweening confidence, of energy, and of tragedy. It also offers a powerful historical lesson for our century and all times: the danger of assuming that because people are in positions of responsibility they are necessarily behaving responsibly.
    386 pp.
  • 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne
    Spoiler:
    Quote:
    When an unidentified “monster” threatens international shipping, French oceanographer Pierre Aronnax and his unflappable assistant Conseil join an expedition organized by the US Navy to hunt down and destroy the menace. After months of fruitless searching, they finally grapple with their quarry, but Aronnax, Conseil, and the brash Canadian harpooner Ned Land are thrown overboard in the attack, only to find that the “monster” is actually a futuristic submarine, the Nautilus, commanded by a shadowy, mystical, preternaturally imposing man who calls himself Captain Nemo. Thus begins a journey of 20,000 leagues—nearly 50,000 miles—that will take Captain Nemo, his crew, and these three adventurers on a journey of discovery through undersea forests, coral graveyards, miles-deep trenches, and even the sunken ruins of Atlantis. Jules Verne’s novel of undersea exploration has been captivating readers ever since its first publication in 1870, and Frederick Paul Walter’s reader-friendly, scientifically meticulous translation of this visionary science fiction classic is complete and unabridged down to the smallest substantive detail.
    394 pp.
  • We Keep a Light by Evelyn M. Richardson
    Spoiler:
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kobo
    We Keep A Light is the inspiring story of how the author and her husband bought tiny Bon Portage Island and built a happy life for themselves and their three children on the isolated lighthouse station off the southern tip of Nova Scotia. But it is much more than the story of a unique personal experience. We Keep A Light is a freshly written and engrossing record of family life set against the ever-changing background of the sea, the vagaries of the weather, the enduring shores, and the great beacon light, all of which become important characters in this fascinating and isolated world. As Evelyn Richardson remarked in the original edition, she wrote the book "partly to answer the polite incredulity I face when I say 'No, we aren't lonely, we like the island.'" We Keep A Light transports readers back to a simpler era when lighthouses were very much a part of the Maritime way of life. As fresh today as when it first appeared, this classic preserves the past in both remembrance and written word.
    169 pp.
  • The Light Between Oceans, by M. L. Steadman
    Spoiler:
    Quote:
    The years-long New York Times bestseller and Goodreads Best Historical Novel that is “irresistible…seductive…with a high concept plot that keeps you riveted from the first page” (O, The Oprah Magazine)—soon to be a major motion picture from Spielberg’s Dreamworks starring Michael Fassbender, Rachel Weisz, and Alicia Vikander, and directed by Derek Cianfrance.

    After four harrowing years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia and takes a job as the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock, nearly half a day’s journey from the coast. To this isolated island, where the supply boat comes once a season, Tom brings a young, bold, and loving wife, Isabel. Years later, after two miscarriages and one stillbirth, the grieving Isabel hears a baby’s cries on the wind. A boat has washed up onshore carrying a dead man and a living baby.

    Tom, who keeps meticulous records and whose moral principles have withstood a horrific war, wants to report the man and infant immediately. But Isabel insists the baby is a “gift from God,” and against Tom’s judgment, they claim her as their own and name her Lucy. When she is two, Tom and Isabel return to the mainland and are reminded that there are other people in the world. Their choice has devastated one of them.

    “Elegantly rendered…heart-wrenching…beautifully drawn” (USA TODAY), The Light Between Oceans is a gorgeous debut novel, not soon to be forgotten.
    417 pp.

Last edited by CRussel; 06-10-2020 at 01:37 PM.
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Old 06-07-2020, 02:28 PM   #2
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Well, that's probably the most diverse vote I've done recently!
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Old 06-08-2020, 03:38 PM   #3
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Well, that's probably the most diverse vote I've done recently!
Agreed! It spans 150 years and most genres.
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Old 06-08-2020, 05:06 PM   #4
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I'm still deciding what to vote for.
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Old 06-10-2020, 10:48 AM   #5
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I'm seeing a drive by vote from someone who has never participated, and hasn't introduced themselves. That vote will not be counted. So right now, we're looking at a runoff, though there is still some time.

Charlie.
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Old 06-10-2020, 10:54 AM   #6
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I'm seeing a drive by vote from someone who has never participated, and hasn't introduced themselves. That vote will not be counted. So right now, we're looking at a runoff, though there is still some time.

Charlie.
I’ve adjusted the vote totals.
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Old 06-10-2020, 12:37 PM   #7
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Thank you, issybird. In the end it didn't matter, and it looks like we'll be discussing The Lightening Thief next month. Should be fun, though I admit, I thought the McCullough would do better than it did.
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Old 06-10-2020, 12:55 PM   #8
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As may be apparent from my nominations over the last few months, I've been mostly looking for lighter reads lately, hence McCullough didn't get a vote from me. It's not that I'm not interested, just that I'd rather not right now.

BTW I have led you astray on the spelling of Riordan (I got it wrong in the original post which I have now corrected). Apologies for that.
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Old 06-10-2020, 01:43 PM   #9
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Well, the McCullough and the Evelyn M. Richardson books are both going on my short term TBR. My DW informs me that The Johnstown Flood is a powerful book that she much enjoyed, and at the other end of the spectrum, I expect a book about Nova Scotia lighthouse keepers to be both interesting and informative. Which isn't to say that I won't enjoy the Riordan, because I expect I likely will. IAC, it's the one that I should be able to get from the library first, given that they have many copies and what looks like about a week wait.
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Old 06-10-2020, 02:19 PM   #10
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Well, the McCullough and the Evelyn M. Richardson books are both going on my short term TBR. My DW informs me that The Johnstown Flood is a powerful book that she much enjoyed, and at the other end of the spectrum, I expect a book about Nova Scotia lighthouse keepers to be both interesting and informative. Which isn't to say that I won't enjoy the Riordan, because I expect I likely will. IAC, it's the one that I should be able to get from the library first, given that they have many copies and what looks like about a week wait.
I was thinking that The Light Between Oceans would have won. It's an excellent 5-star (GR rating) book. While the movie was good, the book was even better.
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Old 06-10-2020, 03:59 PM   #11
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As may be apparent from my nominations over the last few months, I've been mostly looking for lighter reads lately, hence McCullough didn't get a vote from me. It's not that I'm not interested, just that I'd rather not right now.
.
I have as well.
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Old 06-10-2020, 06:58 PM   #12
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I've been in that mode since the first of the year, but I think I'm finally coming out of it. Especially after a guilty binge read of something truly embarrassing. Which I didn't even enjoy, but seemed unable to stop.
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Old 06-11-2020, 06:33 AM   #13
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As may be apparent from my nominations over the last few months, I've been mostly looking for lighter reads lately, hence McCullough didn't get a vote from me. It's not that I'm not interested, just that I'd rather not right now.
I too am not looking for reading a large heavy book. Not that it's not a good book, just not wanting to read it now.

Passing Strange is a nice light read and enjoyable.
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Old 06-11-2020, 11:25 AM   #14
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All I'm looking for is a book that's not science fiction/fantasy.
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Old 06-11-2020, 12:14 PM   #15
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Well, had you voted, that would likely have been the outcome. We'd have had a runoff, at the very least. But it's your choice, though I think you're missing out on many good books that you just might enjoy.

At least for me, the club is often about stretching my reading. Yes, there are months where I'm just not up for it. And, as I think we've heard above, that's true for others as well, wanting something light to read in this time of pandemic and stress.
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