Book Chat

Gathering informally at members’ homes, book-loving HLA members casually discuss titles and authors they are reading. Recommended books are then listed in the HLA newsletter. Meetings are held monthly March – October.

August 2019 Book Chatters

April 2023 Books -- Kate
Amina DQuiet: The Power of Introverts..Susan CainNonfiction4
Abby DMistborn: The Final EmpireBranon Sanderson Fiction4
Margie PTaste: My Life through FoodStanley TucciNonfiction4
Beth TLessons in ChemistryBonnie GarmusFiction4
Anna LBig MagicElizabeth GilbertNonfiction2
Debbie WA Place Called WiregrassMichael MorrisFiction5
Barbara TThe Poisoned CityAnna ClarkNonfiction5
Carol CMemoirs of General William T. ShermanWm ShermanMemoir5
Kate LThe Optimist's DaughterEudora WeltyFiction5
March 2023 Books -- Debbie & Larry
Larry WThe Streets of Rocket CityHarold “Hutch” HutchensonNonfiction5
Barbara TNothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North KoreaBarbara DernickNonfiction1
Beth TTongues of FlameMary Ward BrownFiction4
Carol CThe Power of Gold: the History of ObsessionPeter BernsteinNonfiction5
Abby DWatergate: A New HistoryGarrett GraffNonfiction5
Elaine FThe Dictionary of Lost WordsPip WilliamsFiction4
Anna LTongues of FlameMary Ward BrownFiction2
Walter TThe Brothers KaramazovFyodor DostoevskiFiction5
Debbie WThe Devil in the Junior LeagueLinda FrancesFiction5
Carol WDo No Harm: Stories of Life, Death, & Brain SurgeryDr. Henry Marsh, MDNonfiction5
Margie PThe Paris SeamstressNatasha LesterFiction4
April 2022 Books -- via Zoom
Elaine FThe Bondwoman's NarrativeHannah CroftsNonfiction5
Beth TThe SentenceLouise ErdrichFiction5
Georgina CAll Dressed UpJilly GagnonFiction5
Abby DRun Towards the DangerSarah PolleyNonfiction5
Monita SThe Red-Haired Woman Orhan PamukFiction5
Margie PThe HumansMatt HaigFiction5
Debbie WAt HomeBill BrysonNonfiction5
October 2021 Books -- via Zoom
Abby DWhisper NetworkChandler BakerNonfiction4
Kate LMy Brilliant FriendElena FerranteFiction5
Monita SA Trick of the LightLouise PennyFiction5
Margaret VThe Word is MurderAnthony HorowitzFiction5
Elaine FThe Orphan CollectorEllen Marie WisemanFiction5
Margie PHamnetMaggie O'FarrellFiction4
Debbie WAfghanistanStephen TennerNonfiction5
August 2021 Books -- via Zoom
Abby DSweet DreamsDylan JonesNonfiction5
Carol BCode Name HeleneAriel LawhornHistorical Fiction5
Kate LThe Year of Magical ThinkingJoan DidionNonfiction5
Linda FThe Puma YearsLaura ColemanNonfiction3
Bob FAubrey and Maturin SeriesPatrick O'BrianHistorical Fiction5
Liz SThe President's DaughterBill Clinton and James PattersonFiction4
Bob SEpidemics and SocietyFrank SnowdonNonfiction4
Debbie WVarious Chinese History booksNonfiction
July 2021 Books -- Liz & Bob
Liz SHamnetMaggie O'FarrellFiction4
Bob SDust Tracks on a RoadZora Neal HurstonNonfiction4
Monita SThe Secret Keeper of JalpourAlka JoshlFiction4
Barbara TThen the Fish Swallowed HimAmir Ahmadi ArianFiction5
Linda FThe Chelsea GirlsFiona DavisFiction3
Bob FThe PremonitionMichael LewisNonfiction4
Pamela BThe Midnight LibraryMatt HaigFiction4
Anna LSpark JoyMarie KondoNonfiction-
Walter TIn Search of Lost TimeMarcel ProustFiction5
Beth TA Woman of No ImportanceSonia PurnellNonfiction4
Abby DSaint XAlexis SchaitkinFiction5
May 2021 Books -- Kate's in Five Points
Dinah GA Time for MercyJohn GrishamFiction5
Debbie WA Season of Splendor: The Court of Mrs Astor in the Gilded AgeGreg KnightHistorical5
Kate LThe Short Reign of Pippen IVJohn SteinbeckFiction4
Anna LNo Time to Clean!Don AslettHow To4
April 2021 Books -- via Zoom
Monita SFragile MonstersCatherine MenonFiction5
Bob FMaster & CommanderPatrick O'BrianFiction5
Linda FTransient DesiresDonna LeonFiction5
Carol BThe Night PortraitLaura MorelliFiction5
Diane WThe Woman Who Smashed CodesJason FagoneFiction5
Liz S & Elaine FThe Rose CodeKate QuinnFiction5
Bob SCasteIsabelle WilkersonNonfiction3
Abby DThe LuminariesEleanor CattonFiction5
March 2021 Books -- via Zoom
Peggy EOur Souls at NightKent HarufFiction5
Monita SThe Death of Ivan IlyichLeo TolstoyFiction-
Abby DNinth HouseLeigh BardugoFiction5
Debbie WThe Expanding DiscourseBroude & Garrard (ed.)Nonfiction5
Claire MHurricane CreekNancy CallahanNonfiction/Lore5
Beth TIsabelle Dalhausie SeriesAlexander McCall SmithFiction5
February 2021 Books -- via Zoom
Margie PThe Vanishing HalfBrit BennettFiction5
Carol BThe Paris SeamstressNatasha LesterFiction5
Bob FTinker Tailor Soldier SpyJohn le CarreFiction4
Linda FBehind Closed DoorsJ.J. MorrisFiction4
Diane WA Week in WinterMaeve BinchyFiction 4
Elaine FHow to be an Anti-RacistIbram KendiNonfiction5
Abby DThe Fran Lebowitz ReaderFran LebowitzNonfiction5
Judy VThe Great AloneKristin HannahFiction4
Peggy EHave you seen Louis Velez?Catherine Ryan HydeFiction5
Monia SEleanor Oliphant is Completely FineGail HoneymanFiction5
January 2021 Books -- via Zoom
Margie PLost Children ArchiveValeria LuiselliFiction3
Liz SMiss Benson's BeetleRachel JoyceFiction5
Debbie WSong of AchillesMadeline MillerFiction/Myth5
Diane WThe Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie (audio)Alan BradleyFiction5
Elaine FGods of the Upper AirCharles KingNonfiction5
Bob SThe Vanishing HalfBrit BennettFiction5
Abby DInterior ChinatownCharles YuFiction5
Beth TThe Hidden BrainShankar VedantamNonfiction -
December 2020 Books -- via Zoom
Debbie WLate Winter PoemsBill BrownPoetry5
Linda FThe Rhyme of the MagpieMarty WingateFiction3
Bob FShakespeare in a Divided AmericaJames ShapiroNonfiction4
Carey LA Prayer for Owen MeanyJohn IrvingFiction5
Elaine FThe Buddha in the AtticJulie OtsukaFiction5
Abby DBlood in the WaterHeather Ann ThompsonNonfiction5
Monita SThere is No Me without YouMelissa Fay GreeneNonfiction5
Margie PThe Song of AchillesMadeline MillerFiction5
Bob SThe Moral Equivalent of WarWilliam JamesEssay5
Liz S News of the WorldPaulette JilesFiction5
Beth TOn Earth We're Briefly GorgeousOcean VuongFiction5
Bob & Linda FCitizens of London
companion to The Splendid and the Vile
Lynne OlsonNonfiction5
November 2020 Books -- via Zoom
Tom PA Confederacy of DuncesJohn Kennedy TooleFiction5
Bob FThe Sweetness at the Bottom of the PieAlan BradleyFiction5
Linda FThe Golden Tresses of the DeadAlan BradleyFiction4
Abby DA Field Guide to the North American FamilyGarth Risk HallbergFiction5
Margie PThe Magpie MurdersAnthony HorowitzFiction5
Liz SThe Guest ListLucy FoleyFiction5
Diane WThe Underground RailroadColson WhiteheadFiction5
Amina DDead AidDambisa MoyoNonfiction4
Debbie WStraplessDeborah DavisNonfiction5
October 2020 Books -- via Zoom
Debbie WCirceMadeline MillerFiction5
Margie PA Woman of No ImportanceSonia PernellNonfiction5
Linda FAll the Devils are HereLouise PennyMystery Fiction5
Bob FLate MigrationsMargaret RenklNonfiction Essays5
Elaine F1Q84Haruki MurakamiFiction5
Tom PRageBob WoodwardNonfiction4
Abby DMilkmanAnna BurnsFiction5
Beth TLab GirlHope JahrenNonfiction Biography5
Pamela BTroubled BloodRobert GailbraithMystery Fiction5
Carol BThis Tender LandWilliam KrugerFiction5
Diane WThe Bone ThiefJefferson/BassFiction5
Walter TSwann's WayMarcel ProustClassic Fiction5
September 2020 Books -- via Zoom
Margie PThe Good TerroristDoris LessingFiction5
Monita SMurder in Old BombayNeve MarchFiction5
Abby DGould's Book of FishRichard Flanagan Fiction5
Liz SBliss RememberedFrank DefordFiction5
Bob SBetween the World and MeTa-Nehisi Coates Nonfiction Essay5
Linda FThe Turn of the KeyRuth WareFiction4
Bob FAlexander HamiltonRon ChernowNonfiction History5
Carol BHidden Valley RoadRobert KolkerNonfiction5
Pamela BCirceMadeline MillerFiction5
Elaine FThe Diary of a Good NeighborDoris LessingFiction5
Debbie WSuck Your Stomach In and Put Some Color OnShellie Rushing TomlinsonNonfiction5
August 2020 Books -- via Zoom
Bob FThe End of Everything (Astrophysically Speaking)Katie MackNonfiction4
Linda FThe Library BookSusan OrleanNonfiction4
Amina DThe EnchanterVladimir NabokovFiction4
Margie PEducatedTara WestoverMemoir5
Diane WDissolutionC.J. SansomHistorical Fiction5
Liz SNews of the WorldPaulette JilesHistorical Fiction5
Bob SBruno, Chief of Police SeriesMartin WalkerFiction4
Pamela BNothing to See HereKevin WilsonFiction5
Elaine FA Woman is No ManEtaf RumHistorical Fiction5
Abby DThe Opposite of LonelinessMarina KeeganEssays5
Debbie WBending Toward JusticeDoug JonesNonfiction5
July 2020 Books -- via Zoom
Tom PThe Red Platoon: A True Story of American ValorClinton Romesha Nonfiction5
Abby DThe Glass HotelEmily St. John MandelFiction5
Walter TTom JonesHenry FieldingClassic Fiction5
Linda FThe Body in the Kelp: A MysteryKatherine Hall PageMystery3
Bob FA Wilderness So ImmenseJon KuklaNonfiction5
Liz SThe Splendid and the VileErik LarsonNonfiction4
Beth TThe Library BookSusan OrleanNonfiction5
Margie PEducated: A MemoirTara WestoverNonfiction5
Debbie WThe Diary of Samuel Pepys: The Great Plague of London and The Great Fire of London, 1665-1666Samuel PepysNonfiction5
June 2020 Books -- via Zoom
Monita SSilver SparrowTayari JonesFiction
Liz SWithout Reservations: The Travels of an Independent WomanAlice SteinbachNonfiction
Bob SBook Woman of Troublesome CreekKim Michele RichardsonFiction
Margie PCrossing to SafetyWallace StegnerFiction
Linda FThe Splendid and the VileErik LarsonNonfiction
Bob FCitizens of London: Americans Who Stood...Lynne OlsonNonfiction
Kate LThe Girl in Room 105Chetan BhagatFiction
Debbie WA Distant Mirror: The Calamitous 14th CenturyBarbara TuchmanNonfiction
Larry WThe Presidents Fact BookRoger Matuz, et alNonfiction
October 2019 Books -- Debbie & Larry
Joseph MThe Daughter of TimeJosephine TeyMystery5
Debbie WAlabama CreatesElliott A. KnightArt History5
Monita SAmerican MoonshotDouglas BrinkleyNonfiction5
Abby DA Gambler's AnatomyJonathan LethemFiction4
Larry WImmoderate Greatness: Why Civilizations FailWilliam OphulsPhilosophy1
Margie PWaking LionsAyelet Gundar-GoshenFiction5
September 2019 Books -- Pamela & Ted
Kate LThe Paris WifePaula McLainHistorical Fiction5
Pamela BTranscriptionKate AtkinsonFiction5
Amina DThe Lover & The North China LoverMarguerite DurasNovels4
Abby DFurious Hours: Murder, Fraud and the Last Trial of Harper LeeCasey CepNonfiction5
August 2019 Books -- Kate & Joseph
Anna LThey Too Call Alabama HomeRichard BaileyNonfiction4
Kate LOscar Wilde and the Death of No ImportanceGyles BrandrethMystery4
Joseph MThe Ragnarok ConspiracyEric StebbinsMystery3
Jacob DThe Weed Agency: A Comic Tale of Federal BureaucracyJim GeraghtyPolitical Comedy4
Amina DThree WomenLisa TaddeoNonfiction4
Beth TLast Bus OutBeck McDowellFiction5
Walter TCollected PoemsWilliam Butler YeatsPoetry5
Barbara TFallenDavid BaldaciFiction4
Margie PBrooklynCalm ToibinFiction4
Abby DSay Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern IrelandPatrick Radden KeefeNonfiction5
July 2019 Books -- Barbara
Anna LAmericanah Chimamanda Ngozi AdichieFiction1
Abby DGrand HotelVicki BaumFiction5
Bob FIn the Sanctuary of OutcastsNeil WhiteMemoir4
Linda FGift from the SeaAnne Morrow LindberghEssays4
Amina DThe Painted BirdJerzy KosinskiFiction1
Jacob DCall it SleepHenry RothFiction2
Barbara TOne Day in the Life of Ivan DenisovichAleksandr SolzhenitsynHistorical Fiction4
Joseph MBridge of SighsRichard RussoFiction5
June 2019 Books -- Pamela and Ted
Barbara TThe Scarlet PimpernelBaroness Emma OrczyFiction5
Debbie WThe Mueller Report: Part IIRobert MuellerNonfiction5
Abby DSlow HorsesMick HerronFiction4
Dinah GNo Safe PlaceRichard North PattersonFiction3
Beth TThe OverstayRichard PowersFiction4
Walter TThis Side of ParadiseF. Scott FitzgeraldFiction5
Kate LThe DollhouseFiona DavisFiction4
Monita SThe Unfinished PalazzoJudith MackrellNonfiction4
Amina DThe Writing LifeAnnie DillardNonfiction3
Margie PThe Narrow Road to the Deep NorthRichard FlanaganFiction5
Elaine FThe Invention of WingsSue Monk KiddHistorical Fiction5
Joseph MThe Adventures of Miles and IsabelTom GrillingHistorical Fiction3
Linda FAll the Missing GirlsMegan MarandeFiction4
Bob FMaisie Dobbs (Series)Jacqueline WinspearMystery4
Pamela BA Discovery of WitchesDeborah HarknessFiction4
Ted BThe Book of Joy14th Dalai Lama & Desmond TutuSpiritual5
May 2019 Books -- Margie P
Debbie WWhite PeopleAllan GurganusShort Stories5
Margie PCranford and Other StoriesElizabeth GaskellShort Stories4.5
Monita SShadow PrincessIndu SundaresanHistorical Fiction4.5
Anna LLab GirlHope JahrenNonfiction3
Dottie LThe BeneficiaryJanny ScottNonfiction4
Barbara TThe Books that MatteredFrye GalliardMemoir5
Kate LThe Italian SecretaryCaleb CarrMystery4
Dinah GTwo Old WomenVelma WallisFiction4
Linda FThe Boy Who Harnessed the WindWilliam KamkwambaNonfiction4
April 2019 Books -- Liz and Bob
Barbara TLincoln's Last TrialDan AbramsBiography5
Monita SWhat She knewGilly MacmillanThriller3
Dinah GBeach MusicPat ConroyFiction5
Kate LThe Snake StoneJason GoodwinMystery4
Abby DThe ImmortalistsChloe BenjaminFiction4
Bob SWhere the Crawdads SingDelia OwensFiction4
Beth THenry the BoyMolly FelderChildren's5
March 2019 Books -- Beth and Walter
Monita SThe Enchantress of FlorenceSamon RushdieRomance5
Abby DSling TimeZadie SmithFiction5
Beth TThe Great AloneKristen HannahMemior4
Dinah GThe Final SolutionMichael ChabonFiction4.5
Nannette SSalt: A World HistoryMark KurlanskyHistory4
Anna LForest BathingQing LiNonfiction5
Barbara TThe Perfect StormSebastian JungerNonfiction5
Joseph MThe Closing of the American MindAllan BloomNonfiction5
Margie PThe CapturesScott ZeschNonfiction5
Walter TThe TempestWm. ShakespeareComedy5
Kate LAtomic City GirlsJanet BeardNovel3
Debbie WAlabama, The Making of an American StateEdwin C. BridgesHistory5
October 2018 Books -- Debbie and Larry
Barbara TWinter Dance: The Fine Madness of Running the IdiderodGary PaulsenNonfiction5
Anna LGone Baby GoneDennis LehaneSuspense3
Rebecca MStandard DeviationKatherine Heiny Fiction5
Larry WA Higher LoyaltyJames ComeyNonfiction5
Linda FAnne of Green GablesLucy Maud MontgomeryFiction5
Bob FBad BloodJohn CarreyrouNonfiction5
Monita SToba, Tek Singh and Other StoriesSaadat Hasan MantoFiction5
Joseph M Barney's VersionMortecai RichlerFiction5
KateLMissing, PresumedSusie SteinerMystery4
Margie FSalvage the BonesJesmyn WardFiction5
Debbie WWomen who Read are DangerousStefan BollmanArt5
Dottie L21 Lessons for the 21st CenturyYuval Noah HarariNonfiction4
September 2018 Books -- Pamela
Abby DThe Mars RoomRachel KushnerFiction5
Bonnie SMrs. OsmondJohn BanvilleFiction4
Bob FEarning the RockiesRobert D. KaplanNonfiction3
Linda FThe Girl with Seven NamesHyeonseo Lee & David JohnNonfiction5
Barbara TBeneath a Scarlett SkyMark SullivanHistorical Fiction5
Pamela BThe Secret Lives of ColorKassia St. ClairNonfiction5
Monita SDeception PointDan BrownFiction4
August 2018 Books -- Kate and Joseph
Elaine HThe Charm SchoolNelson DeMilleFiction4
Beth TEducatedTara WestoverMemior3
Anna LBetween BreathsElizabeth Vargas Biography1
Dinah GExit WestMohsin HamidFiction4
Abby DNixonlandRick PerlsteinHistorical4
Bonnie SSapiens: A Brief History of HumankindYuval Noah HarariNonfiction4
Joseph MSomething RottenJasper FfordeMystery4
Bob FThe Soul of AmericaJon MeachamNonfiction3
Linda FThe Killers of the Flower MoonDavid GrannHistorical3
Barbara TDefending JacobWilliam LandayFiction4
Mary LA Manual for Cleaning WomenLucia BerlinShort Stories5
Mary CAstrophysics for People in a Hurry Neil de Grasse TysonScience5
Kate LInspector Ghote Hunts the PeacockH.R. F. KeatingMystery4
Margie PThe House at the Edge of NightCatherine BannerFiction4
Monita SSea of PoppiesAmitav GhoshFiction4
July 2018 Books -- Linda and Bob
Joseph MHadesCandace FoxMystery5
Monita SThe Secrets Between UsThrity UmrigarNovel4
Abby DI'll be Gone in the Dark: One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State KillerMichelle McNamaraTrue Crime5
Bonnie SLessAndrew Sean GreerFiction4
Barbara TA Gentlemen in MoscowAmor TowlesNovel5
Debbie WTipperaryFrank DelaneyNovel4
Linda FEducated, A MemoirLara WestoverMemoir5
Bob FWord by Word; The Secret Life of DictionariesKory StamperNonfiction4
June 2018 Books -- Bonnie
Abby DThe Big ClockKenneth FearingNoir5
Linda FBefore We Were YoursLisa WingateThriller5
Bob FEducatedTara WestoverMemoir5
Deb WElegy for a Southern DrawlRodney JonesPoetry5
Bonnie SFranklin and WinstonJon MeachemHistory5
Monita SHow I Taught my Grandmother to Read the StonesSudha MurthyShort Stories5
Pamela BThe Dud AvocadoElaine DundyComic Novel5
Kate LThe Perfect MurderH. R. F. KeatingMystery4
May 2018 Books -- Sally & Bob
Bob NThe Soul of AmericaJon MeachamHistory5
Sally NThe Woman in the WindowA. J. FinnThriller4
Sally NLittle Fires EverywhereCeleste NgFiction2
Joseph MDark Ages America: the Final Phase of An EmpireMorris BermanHistory4
Kate L.Dime Store: A Writer's LifeLee SmithBio -Short Stories4
April 2018 Books -- Liz & Bob
Kate LEverything I Never Told YouCeleste NGThriller5
Joseph MBlue LatitudesTony HorwitzNonfiction4
Liz SLoving EleanorSusan Wittig AlbertNovel4
Bob SGolden HillFrancis SpuffordNovel4
Donna BStrippedBrian FreemanThriller4
Sarah CChronicles of AvonleaLucy Maude MontgomeryShort Stories4
Abby DTrainwreck: The Women we Love to Hate…Sady DoyleNonfiction4
Margie PThe Summer Before the WarHelen SimonsonHistorical Fiction4
Beth TMy Venice and Other EssaysDonna Leon Essays4
October 2017 Books -- Debbie & Larry
Barbara T The Badass Librarians of Timbuktu Joshua Hammer Nonfiction 5
Anna L Espresso Tales Alexander McCall Smith Fiction 4
Margie P Great Expectations Charles Dickens Fiction 5
Dinah G Glass Houses Louise Penny Mystery 5
Kate L The Tiger in the House Jacqueline Sheehan Fiction 4
Abby D Lincoln in the Bardo George Sanders Fiction 5
Monita S Never Let me Go Kazao Ishiguro Fiction 5
Joseph M China Lake Anthony Hyde Historical Fiction 4
Debbie W The Judgement of Paris Ross King Historical Fiction 5
Mona P The North Water Ian McGuire Fiction 5
Larry W Fantasyland - How America Went Haywire in a 500 year History Kurt Andersen Revisionist History 4
September 2017 Books -- Evie
Barbara T The Widow Fiona Barton Fiction 3
Abby D Dark Sparkler Amder Tamblyn Poetry 4
Kate L Seventh Plaque James Rollins Fiction 3
Evie S The Christ-Haunted Landscape Susan Ketchin Anthology 5
Joseph M A World Lit by Fire Willian Manchester Nonfiction 4
Anna L The Hour of the Star Clarice Lispector Fiction 1
August 2017 Books -- Kate & Joseph
Elaine Gut Bucket Blues Anita August Fiction 5
Bonnie The Rules of Civility Amor Towles Fiction 3.5
Barb The Girls Emma Cline Fiction 5
Bob Thank You for Being Late Thomas Friedman Nonfiction 3
Linda I Will Always Write Back Caitlin Alifirenka & Martin Ganda Nonfiction 5
Essie Find Her Lisa Gardner Fiction 3
Joseph The Defense D. W. Buffa Fiction 3.5
Monita The Sense of an Ending Julian Barnes Fiction 4
Kate The Rent Collector Cameron Wright Fiction 5
Dottie The Genius of Birds Jennifer Ackerman Nature 5
Kay Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar Thomas Cathcart and Daniel Klein Philosophy 3
Abby Priestdaddy Patricia Lockwood Memoir 5