WE LOVE READING! Book groups are a great way to engage with others and to make new friends while bonding over your favorite stories and through learning together.
MONDAYS New Time 3:15pm: Young Adult Book Group
The Books of Angie Thomas The Hate U Give On the Come Up Concrete RoseDetails: Great for teens and adults! We will read all 3 books by Angie Thomas, "The Hate U Give", "On the Come Up", and "Concrete Rose". Register for this series at Eventbrite for links and reminders.
Reading schedule: The Hate U Give: 03/15- read chapters 1-13 03/22-read chapters 14-end
The Hate U Give (THUG): Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.
Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr. But what Starr does—or does not—say could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.
Past Young Adult reads include: The Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer Dorothy Must Die series by Danielle Paige I'm Thinking of Ending Things by Iain Reid The Thief series by Megan Whalen Turner The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo
Second MONDAYS 7pm: Family Fun Book Club Ms. Susan from the East Columbia Library will join us on the Second Monday of each month to talk about the assigned chapter book and do fun activities related to the story. This club is just right for children 5-9 and their adult(s).
TUESDAYS 5pm: Ongoing Fantasy Book Group Join Ms. Alanna each Tuesday to read and/or act out fantasy fiction, from Harry Potter to Fractured Fairy Tales.
Past reads: Harry Potter series, including a live reading of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
WEDNESDAYS 7pm: Bestseller Book Group
The Sum of Usby Heather McGhee hosted by Kevin Shindel Details:NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • One of today’s most insightful and influential thinkers offers a powerful exploration of inequality and the lesson that generations of Americans have failed to learn: Racism has a cost for everyone—not just for people of color. “This is the book I’ve been waiting for.”—Ibram X. Kendi, #1 New York Times bestselling author of How to Be an Antiracist
Heather McGhee’s specialty is the American economy—and the mystery of why it so often fails the American public. From the financial crisis to rising student debt to collapsing public infrastructure, she found a common root problem: racism. But not just in the most obvious indignities for people of color. Racism has costs for white people, too. It is the common denominator of our most vexing public problems, the core dysfunction of our democracy and constitutive of the spiritual and moral crises that grip us all. But how did this happen? And is there a way out?
McGhee embarks on a deeply personal journey across the country from Maine to Mississippi to California, tallying what we lose when we buy into the zero-sum paradigm—the idea that progress for some of us must come at the expense of others. Along the way, she meets white people who confide in her about losing their homes, their dreams, and their shot at better jobs to the toxic mix of American racism and greed. This is the story of how public goods in this country—from parks and pools to functioning schools—have become private luxuries; of how unions collapsed, wages stagnated, and inequality increased; and of how this country, unique among the world’s advanced economies, has thwarted universal healthcare.But in unlikely places of worship and work, McGhee finds proof of what she calls the Solidarity Dividend: gains that come when people come together across race, to accomplish what we simply can’t do on our own.
The Sum of Us is a brilliant analysis of how we arrived here: divided and self-destructing, materially rich but spiritually starved and vastly unequal. McGhee marshals economic and sociological research to paint an irrefutable story of racism’s costs, but at the heart of the book are the humble stories of people yearning to be part of a better America, including white supremacy’s collateral victims: white people themselves. With startling empathy, this heartfelt message from a Black woman to a multiracial America leaves us with a new vision for a future in which we finally realize that life can be more than a zero-sum game.
As you read, Kevin encourages you to think of these questions, and to write down your own.
1. Thinking about the social contract—what is it, why does it seem to be in such peril, and how do we rewrite it? 2. How much have beliefs and attitudes on race changed over the last five decades? How much have policies and outcomes changed? 3. Is our economy a zero-sum game? What’s your relationship to the zero-sum game? How do your actions support or dismantle zero-sum thinking? 4. Does racism really hurt white people? Is it possible that the psychological benefits and social rewards outweigh the material deprivation of many?
Past Bestseller reads include: Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson (January-March 2021, more info on our Caste Study Group page) Poetry of Rupi Kaur: Milk and Honey, Homebody, The Sun and Her Flowers An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States for Young People by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz There There by Tommy Orange The Color of Law by Richard Rothstein Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi White Fragility: Why It's So Hard For White People to Talk About Racism by Robin Diangelo The Art of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo Untamed by Glennon Doyle
THURSDAYS 7pm: New Book Group! Work Won't Love You Back: How Devotion to Our Jobs Keeps Us Exploited, Exhausted, and Aloneby Sarah Jaffe hosted by Rae Sumihara and Amy Brooks Details:A deeply-reported examination of why "doing what you love" is a recipe for exploitation, creating a new tyranny of work in which we cheerily acquiesce to doing jobs that take over our lives. You're told that if you "do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life." Whether it's working for "exposure" and "experience," or enduring poor treatment in the name of "being part of the family," all employees are pushed to make sacrifices for the privilege of being able to do what we love.
In Work Won't Love You Back, Sarah Jaffe, a preeminent voice on labor, inequality, and social movements, examines this "labor of love" myth—the idea that certain work is not really work, and therefore should be done out of passion instead of pay. Told through the lives and experiences of workers in various industries—from the unpaid intern, to the overworked teacher, to the nonprofit worker and even the professional athlete—Jaffe reveals how all of us have been tricked into buying into a new tyranny of work.
As Jaffe argues, understanding the trap of the labor of love will empower us to work less and demand what our work is worth. And once freed from those binds, we can finally figure out what actually gives us joy, pleasure, and satisfaction. About the Author:
Sarah Jaffe is a Type Media Center Fellow and an independent journalist covering the politics of power, from the workplace to the streets. She is the author of Necessary Trouble: Americans in Revolt, and her work has appeared in the New York Times, the Nation, the Guardian, the Washington Post, the New Republic, the American Prospect, and many other publications. She is the cohost, with Michelle Chen, of Dissent magazine's Belabored podcast, as well as a columnist at The Progressive and New Labor Forum. Visit this link to register at Eventbrite for links and reminders.
April 29, May 6, May 20
Family Book Group UPDATE!: MOVED TO MONDAYS at 7pm
NEW! We will now be doing once a month Family Book Club for younger readers with Ms. Susan of HCLS.
Our series of Family Book Group and Diverse Voices reads are chosen to highlight the writings and life experiences of people in cultures and communities that are often underrepresented. Past reads include: Akata Witchby Nnedi Okorafor Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi The Crossover by Kwame Alexander The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros More to the Story by Hena Khan
Check back for upcoming Family Book Group picks or contact us if you have a book in mind!
FRIDAYS 5pm: Kid Book Group Periodically, one of the OMO kids will choose a book they think others will enjoy. Past reads include: Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo
Though we typically do not record Book Group, you can watch previous sessions and some special occasion ones here (like when Hena Khan joined us for the last More to the Story Book Group Discussion: