As much a book review as a book club assessment.
Author: Martin W. Sandler
Genre: History / True Adventure
Length: 320 pages
Put a seafaring image on the front cover, talk of adventure and exploration, make reference to ghosts… I’m sold.
We read Sandler’s “epic search for the Northwest Passage” for the Half Price Books Humble Book Club and discussed it the first Monday of December.
It’s an exciting read, I enjoyed it quite a bit, and I’ll be holding onto my hardback copy for years to come. I’d love to see this made into a film, as it was I found myself re-watching National Treasure: Book of Secrets just for the Resolute references I was craving post reading.
Although this is largely about the Arctic and the British, a good chunk of our discussion at book club revolved around arrogance and fictional characters we’ve read through out this year:
One comparison would be the personal pride exhibited by the people across all 3 books [A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, A Question of Upbringing, and Resolute].
For example in ‘A Tree Grows in Brooklyn’, on the 3rd page of chapter 38 Evy says: “Well, there’s always the Catholic Charities”. To which Katie replied “When the time comes that we have to take charity baskets, I’ll plug up the doors and windows and wait until the children are sound asleep and then turn on every gas jet in the house.”
In Resolute, the British Naval captains were too arrogant to ask the Inuits how to survive in a place they have never been.
And the title ‘A Question of Upbringing’ speaks for itself.
– Glenn Ray
We carry much of our discussions over into later months and often end up talking about books we love repeatedly. There aren’t many of us. Two in person on the regular, one by phone on the regular, and various stragglers that pop in periodically (3 recurring stragglers, to be exact). But we enjoy our talks thoroughly and are always hopeful of new members.
Like the worldwide search for John Franklin, our little club keeps on keeping on.
Here’s our dated roster, what we’ve read and what we plan to read:
Mon 12/3/2012 ‘Old Curiosity Shop’ by Charles Dickens
Mon 1/7/2013 ‘A Homemade Life’ by Wizenberg; and ‘Julie and Julia’ by Julie Powell
Mon 2/4/2013 ‘March’ by Geraldine Brooks
Mon 3/4/2013 ‘The Lords of Finance’ by Liaquat Ahamed
Mon 4/1/2013 ‘Atonement’ by Ian McEwan
Mon 5/6/2013 ‘The Heart is a Lonely Hunter’ by Carson McCullers
Mon 6/3/2013 ‘Princess Bride’ by William Goldman
Mon 7/1/2013 ‘John Adams’ by McCullough; some also read Abigail Adams by Woody Holton
Mon 8/5/2013 ‘The Color Purple’ by Alice Walker; alternate ‘A Passage to India’ by Forster
Mon 9/2/2013 ‘My Antonia’ by Willa Cather
Mon 10/7/2013 ‘Thomas Jefferson, the Art of Power’ by Jon Meacham
Mon 11/4/2013 ‘Player Piano’ by Kurt Vonnegut
Mon 12/2/2013 ‘The Sparrow’ by Mary Doria Russell
Mon 1/6/2014 ‘The Lacuna’ by Barbara Kingsolver
Mon 2/3/2014 ‘The Bridge Of San Luis Rey’ by Thornton Wilder
Mon 3/3/2014 ‘The Histories’ by Herodotus
Mon 4/7/2014 ‘A Tree Grows in Brooklyn’ by Betty Smith
Mon 5/5/2014 ‘Wings of the Dove’ by Henry James
Mon 6/2/2014 ‘Shadow of the Wind’ by Ruiz
Mon 7/7/2014 ‘Benjamin Franklin’ bio by David Freeman Hawke
Mon 8/4/2014 ‘The 13th Tale’ by Diane Setterfield
Mon 9/1/2014 ‘One Hundred Years of Solitude’ by Gabriel García Márquez
Mon 10/6/2014 ‘Professor and the Madman’ by Simon Winchester
Mon 11/3/2014 ‘A Question of Upbringing’ by Anthony Powell
Mon 12/1/2014 ‘Resolute’ by Martin W. Sandler
Mon 1/5/2015 ‘The Beekeeper’s Apprentice’ by Laurie R. King
Mon 2/2/2015 ‘The World is Flat’ by Thomas L. Friedman
Mon 3/2/2015 ‘Conspiracy of Paper’ by David Liss
Mon 4/?/2015 ‘Hunger Games’ by Suzanne Collins
I think we’re a pretty well rounded, well read group. If you’d like to join us, we meet at Half Price Books Humble the first Monday of every month at 7:30 pm. Year round. If you want to discuss something we’ve already read, something we’re currently reading, or something else altogether – that’s fine, we’ll chat.