Books n' Banter

Picks and suggestions from the Library's Book Club

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Baking cakes in Kigali : a novel

Baking cakes in Kigali : a novel

Parkin, Gaile
2009

"Baking Cakes in Kigali" is a novel about the real meaning of reconciliation - about how, in the aftermath of tragedy, life goes on and people still manage to find reasons to celebrate.

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The bear

The bear

Krivák, Andrew, author
2020

In an Edenic future, a girl and her father live close to the land in the shadow of a lone mountain. They possess a few remnants of civilization: some books, a pane of glass, a set of flint and steel, a comb. The father teaches the girl how to fish and hunt, the secrets of the seasons and the stars. He is preparing her for an adulthood in harmony with nature, for they are the last two left. But when the girl suddenly finds herself alone in an unknown landscape, it is a bear that will lead her back home through a vast wilderness, which offers the greatest lessons of all, if she can only learn to listen.

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Braiding sweetgrass

Braiding sweetgrass

Kimmerer, Robin Wall, author
2013


Everything I never told you

Everything I never told you

Ng, Celeste, author
2014


Five little Indians

Five little Indians

Good, Michelle, author
2020

Taken from their families when they are very small and sent to a remote, church-run residential school, Kenny, Lucy, Clara, Howie and Maisie are barely out of childhood when they are finally released after years of detention. Alone and without any skills, support or families, the teens find their way to the seedy and foreign world of Downtown Eastside Vancouver, where they cling together, striving to find a place of safety and belonging in a world that doesn't want them. The paths of the five friends cross and crisscross over the decades as they struggle to overcome, or at least forget, the trauma they endured during their years at the Mission. With compassion and insight, Five Little Indians chronicles the desperate quest of these residential school survivors to come to terms with their past and, ultimately, find a way forward.

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Fleishman is in trouble

Fleishman is in trouble

Brodesser-Akner, Taffy, author
2019

Divorcing his hostile wife when he concludes he could find genuine happiness elsewhere, Dr. Toby Fleishman is astonished when his ex abruptly disappears, leaving him unable to move on without acknowledging painful truths about his marriage.

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The four winds

The four winds

Hannah, Kristin, author
2021

Texas, 1934. Millions are out of work and a drought has broken the Great Plains. Farmers are fighting to keep their land and their livelihoods as the crops are failing, the water is drying up, and dust threatens to bury them all. One of the darkest periods of the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl era, has arrived with a vengeance. In this uncertain and dangerous time, Elsa Martinelli-like so many of her neighbors-must make an agonizing choice: fight for the land she loves or go west, to California, in search of a better life.

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Girl A : a novel

Girl A : a novel

Dean, Abigail, author
2021

For readers of Room and Dear Edward, a propulsive and psychologically immersive novel about a young girl who escapes captivity--but not the secrets that shadow the rest of her life.

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Moon of the crusted snow

Moon of the crusted snow

Rice, Waubgeshig, 1979- author
2018

With winter looming, a small northern Anishinaabe community goes dark. Panic builds as the food supply dwindles. While the band council and a pocket of community members struggle to maintain order, an unexpected visitor arrives, escaping the crumbling society to the south. Soon after, others follow. The community leadearship loses its grip on power as the visitors manipulate the tired and hungry to take control of the reserve. Tensions rise and, as the months pass, so does the death toll due to sickness and despair. Frustrated by the building chaos, a group of young friends and their families turn to the land and Anishinaabe tradition in hopes of helping their community thrive again.

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Of women and salt

Of women and salt

Garcia, Gabriela, 1984- author
2021

From 19th-century cigar factories to present-day detention centres, from Cuba to Mexico, this novel is a kaleidoscopic portrait of betrayals - personal and political, self-inflicted and those done by others - that have shaped the lives of three extraordinary women. A haunting meditation on the choices of mothers, the legacy of the memories they carry, and the tenacity of women who choose to tell their stories despite those who wish to silence them.

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A slow fire burning

A slow fire burning

Hawkins, Paula, author
2021

When a young man is found gruesomely murdered in a London houseboat, it triggers questions about three women who knew him. Laura is the troubled one-night-stand last seen in the victim's home. Carla is his grief-stricken aunt, already mourning the recent death of yet another family member. And Miriam is the nosy neighbor clearly keeping secrets from the police. Three women with separate connections to the victim. Three women who are, for different reasons, simmering with resentment. Who are, whether they know it or not, burning to right the wrongs done to them. When it comes to revenge, even good people might be capable of terrible deeds. How far might any one of them go to find peace? How long can secrets smolder before they explode into flame?

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Starlight

Starlight

Wagamese, Richard.
2018

-- Indian Horse Frank Starlight has long settled into a quiet life working his remote farm, but his contemplative existence comes to an abrupt end with the arrival of Emmy, who has committed a desperate act so she and her child can escape a harrowing life of violence. Starlight takes in Emmy and her daughter to help them get back on their feet, and this accidental family eventually grows into a real one. But Emmy's abusive ex isn't content to just let her go. He wants revenge and is determined to hunt her down.      Starlight is a last gift to readers from a writer who believed in the power of stories to save us.

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