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Kara’s Book Club Quarterly Review

We are wrapping up our first quarter year of Kara’s Book Club! We’ve had some interesting titles, and I thought it would be a great idea to summarize and discuss each book in a quarterly post. That way if you are interested in any of the titles and haven’t had the time to read along with us, you can still pick around and see which titles interest you!

July was The Art of Leaving by Ayelet Tsabari

“An intimate memoir in essays by an award-winning Israeli writer who travels the world, from New York to India, searching for love, belonging, and an escape from grief following the death of her father when she was a young girl. With fierce, emotional prose, Ayelet Tsabari crafts a beautiful meditation about the lengths we will travel to try to escape our grief, the universal search to find a place where we belong, and the sense of home we eventually find within ourselves.” 

 

Discussion Questions for The Art of Leaving

 

  1. Are you a homebody? Or prone to wander?

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2. Do you feel constrained by a partner relationship or parenthood? Or as she describes, free within them?

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3. Cleaning and cooking were Ayelet’s mother’s way of dealing with her grief. Traveling was Ayelet’s. What are some ways you’ve coped with grief in actionable terms?

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4. Ayelet’s journey to motherhood came later in her life than most womens’. Yet I sensed she still wasn’t ready. Is anyone ever really ready?

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5. Do you connect your culture’s signature dishes with comfort? If so, what’s your favorite family “heirloom” recipe?

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6. Ayelet describes her childhood grief as turning from self-pity and sorrow to anger and the need to leave. Do you think her travels were her way of coping with her grief? Or escaping from it?⠀⠀⠀

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I gave The Art of Leaving 4 Stars. It really picked up toward the end of the book, and I really enjoyed this book!

August was Daring Greatly by Brene Brown

I chose this next book because of the main message that Brene Brown intends for this book, which is that vulnerability can transform the way we live, love, parent and lead.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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I’ve read a couple of her other books and I find her work fascinating. I’ve learned over the last 5 years or so that by me being vulnerable, it has made me more approachable. People seek me out to discuss many varying topics, from adoption, to health and nutrition, to infertility and fertility treatments, to mentoring young pregnant women. My openness about these topics had given me opportunities to connect with so many people and help them in their journeys.

 

Discussion Questions for Daring Greatly

 

  1. Did you grow up seeing vulnerability modeled?
 

2. How have you allowed vulnerability to positively impact your world?

 

3. What areas of your life could you improve by using some of her key strategies and ways of thinking?

 

I gave this book a 4 star rating. I loved what she had to say about parenting and how openness, vulnerability and honesty lead to moments of great connection and understanding with our children. I also love that she studies abstract concepts and the interactions between humans. Great book!

September was The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls by Anissa Gray

This was our first fiction novel to read together, and this story line is so interesting! Open the door to someone else’s family drama! This is a story about a family torn apart by a crime and its’ subsequent imprisonments. Watch as the daughters of the prisoners grapple with their new reality, and how they all come to terms with the roles they played in the great turn of events. What a story! This book was interesting to me, and my favorite parts were when each character found the ways their character flaws played into the outcome. A great book about discovering how your nature affects those around you, and how the way we were raised trickles down into the generations below us. 

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“A fast-paced, intriguing story…the novel’s real achievement is its uncommon perceptiveness on the origins and variations of addiction.”—The New York Times Book Review⠀⠀

 

 

Discussion Questions for The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls

 

 

  1. Have you ever had to pick up the pieces of someone else’s mess? How did that make you feel?
 

2. How does the way you were raised affect how you run your household now?

 

3. Are there historical patterns within your family that you’re trying hard to break?

 

4. If you were left in charge of someone else’s children indefinitely, how would that impact your life?

 

I gave this book 4 stars, and truly enjoyed it!

Which titles did you read with us? Which book interests you now? And tell me your recent favorite reads in the comments! I’m always looking for new ideas.

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