The WaaYYY Behind Book Club – September 2022

Welcome to the September 2022 edition of the Waayyy Behind Book Club! Here’s what I’ve been reading this month. Let me know if any of these books appeal to you and I can tell you more. If you’ve already read one of them, let me know your opinion. I’d love to hear it. And if you’re currently reading a book that you just can’t put down, I want to know about it! I’m always looking for my next great read.

The first book I read this month is called Empire of Things by Frank Trentmann. To be honest, I didn’t finish it. I couldn’t finish it. I thought I would like to read a history of the world, as viewed through the things we owned and purchased. But I didn’t. The book became a chore, and I just didn’t care. So, I dropped it. To be clear, I don’t think it’s a bad book. I just couldn’t interest myself in the subject matter long enough to complete it.

The second book I read this month is called Group by Christie Tate. This book was fascinating and I couldn’t put it down. I pretty much swallowed it whole, finishing it in just two days. It’s about a woman who attends group therapy to heal her emotional issues. She is very open about her struggles with an eating disorder, and discloses all in her quest to find a stable and fulfilling relationship with a man. The crux of group therapy is to learn to open up to others and share all of your inner feelings, and Tate is honest about her difficulty in doing this at first. By the end of the book, she is a pro and conquers many of her inner demons. We get to watch along the way, and it makes for an incredible read.

The third book I read this month is called Anxious People by Fredrik Backman. He is a Swedish author with a string of popular books, among them are Bear Town and A Man Called Ove,. In Anxious People, the focus is on a small group of people who happen to be viewing an apartment when a bank robbery takes place nearby. The robber holds them hostage in his attempt to get away. The set-up may sound tense, but there’s plenty of humour, and as the hours tick by everyone learns the value of compassion and kindness, in true Fredrik Backman style.

The third book I read this month is really short, and is called The Silence by Don DeLillo. It was written before the pandemic, but it is eerily similar to what we all just went through, which is why it piqued my interest. In this story, all electronic devices suddenly no longer work, so there is no TV, no cell phone service, no radio, and even planes can’t fly. Everyone is grounded, with nothing to do but talk, and the book explores each character’s discomfort with this lack of distraction. Having just been through a similar situation during the last two years, where we’ve been forced to stay in our homes for an indefinite period of time, it’s incredible how much the author gets right.

I also read The Bluest Eye this month, by Toni Morrison. It is a book that has been on my reading list for a long time, and it’s brilliantly written. A poor black girl from a dysfunctional family fervently wishes she had blue eyes. It’s a sad story about a girl who loses herself to others’ expectations. All but the most well-balanced teen-aged girls will understand her feelings keenly, so it really resonates.

Finally, I read The Invisible Girl by Lisa Jewell. This was a page turner about a young, teen-aged girl who has gone missing in a neighbourhood where there has been a string of sexual assaults. Cate Fours and her family just moved into the area, and she has her suspicions, but is she right? The plot twists and turns as the police follow all the clues, but their investigation hampered by a rush to judgment. And then there are all the secrets.

So, there you have it! All the books I happened to read this month. I welcome any questions or comments. And if you’ve been reading a book that you just love and want to talk about it, leave me a message. I love to talk about books. 🙂

About the author: Rebecca Wong has an honours degree in English Literature from the University of Waterloo, and has been working in the herbal business since 2000. She has received her training in acupuncture and herbalism from respected authorities Paul Des Rosiers and Vu Le at the Ontario College of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Toronto, and Michael Tierra at the East West Herb School in California.

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