Adult Education - Reader's Circle - Monthly Jewish Themed Book Club

The Reader's Circle Book Club continues to meet with a solid core of committed participants who have enthusiasm for sharing wonderful books, many with Jewish themes. We are pleased that in the past several years, we have grown from a handful of people to a formidable membership. 

We hope you will find the time to read with us -- you will be glad you did! We meet on the first Thursday of each month at 7:30PM in Room 8 of the Andrew Friedland Preschool. For more information, please contact Diane Gess.

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COMING UP ON NOVEMBER 7th - Diane Bedrin will review INHERITANCE: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity and Love by Dani Shapiro

Inheritance is a book about secrets–secrets within families, kept out of shame or self-protectiveness; secrets we keep from one another in the name of love. It is the story of a woman’s urgent quest to unlock the story of her own identity, a story that has been scrupulously hidden from her for more than fifty years, years she had spent writing brilliantly, and compulsively, on themes of identity and family history. It is a book about the extraordinary moment we live in–a moment in which science and technology have outpaced not only medical ethics but also the capacities of the human heart to contend with the consequences of what we discover.

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Our December 5 meeting will offer a review by Tamar Joffe of Song of the Jade Lily by Kirsten Manning.

Song of the Jade Lily is a multi-period, inter-generational novel set in the World War Two era and the present day. The earlier subplot depicts a Jewish family fleeing Hitler’s Europe to find themselves trapped in Japanese-occupied Shanghai. In addition to the descriptions of war-induced cruelty and persecution, it’s also a coming-of-age story about daughter, Romy, as she navigates an increasingly complex and hazardous environment.
In the contemporary subplot, Romy is an elderly woman in Melbourne, nursing her dying husband, Wilhelm. Their granddaughter, Alexandra, a successful stockbroker, arrives from London to share Wilhelm’s last days. Alexandra was raised by Romy and Wilhelm, as her parents died in a car crash when she was a child. Mystery surrounds her mother’s origins, an Asian orphan adopted by Romy and Wilhelm. After Wilhelm’s death, Alexandra goes to Shanghai with new determination to discover her Asian roots. She unveils a web of secrets, tragedy and unexpected outcomes.

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A change of pace to a film will be highlighted for our January 9 meeting. Sharon Glassman will preside over a meeting to discuss the film: Who Will Write Our History?

About this Film:

In November 1940, days after the Nazis sealed 450,000 Jews in the Warsaw ghetto, a secret band of journalists, scholars and community leaders decides to fight back. Led by historian Emanuel Ringelblum and known by the code name Oyneg Shabes, this clandestine group vows to defeat Nazi lies and propaganda, not with guns or fists but with pen and paper.
Now, for the first time, their story is told as a feature documentary. Written, produced and directed by Roberta Grossman and executive produced by Nancy Spielberg, Who Will Write Our History? mixes the writings of the Oyneg Shabes archive with new interviews, rarely seen footage and stunning dramatizations to transport us inside the Ghetto and the lives of these courageous resistance fighters.