Realy Ann's Book Club Favorites

Realy Ann's Book Club Favorites

Looking for a book for the avid reader? Realy Ann has chosen some of her favorite recommendations for book clubs this year. There is sure to be a winner among these books for the reader on your list.




Whiskey When We're Dry

by John Larson

This story left me speechless. I love so many things about it that I don't even know how to describe it. It's a Western but also a story about personal identity, loneliness, sexual identity, and family. - Realy Ann

In the spring of 1885, seventeen-year old Jessilyn Harney find herself orphaned and alone on her family's homestead. Desperate to fend off starvation and predatory neighbors, she cuts off her hair, binds her chest, saddles her beloved mare, and sets off across the moun tains to find her outlaw brother Noah and bring him home. A talented sharpshooter herself, Jess's quest lands her in the employ of the territory's violent, capricous Governor, whose militia is also hunting Noah-- dead or alive. 



The Mars Room: A Novel

by Rachel Kushner

Romy Hall is serving two life sentences for murder. We first meet her during her van ride to Stanville Women's Prison and we meet the cast of characters she'll be locked up with. Romy has lived a tough life- she recounts her drug-fueled adolescence and her stint as a stripper at the Mars Room. I couldn't find any common ground with her character, at first, but I grew to empathize with her situation and her anguish over losing her son. The justice system had failed Romy, her mother had failed her, and so had every man in her life. I found this to be a very uncomfortable book, and kept putting it down, but I was glad I finished it, in the end. I have a feeling there are lots of women like Romy, just trying to survive as best they know how. - Realy Ann



I Was Anastasia

by Ariel Lawhon

"Lawhon's third historical novel thoroughly imagines the events leading up to the execution of Russia's royal family in 1918. "

I've always been fascinated by the mythology of Anastasia and the Romanov family. This book did not disappoint. Lawhon's use of dual narrative and a countdown sort of timeline were unusual but crucial to the story. - Realy Ann

Russia, July 17, 1918  Under direct orders from Vladimir Lenin, Bolshevik secret police force Anastasia Romanov, along with the entire imperial family, into a damp basement in Siberia where they face a merciless firing squad. Non survive. At leat that is what the executioners have always claimed. 

Germany, February 17, 1920   A young woman bearing an uncanny resemblance to Anastasia Romanov is pulled shivering and senseless from a canal in Berlin. Refusing to explain her presence in the freezing water, she is taken to the hospital where an examination reveals that her body is riddled with countless, horrific scars. When she finally does speak, this frightened, mysterious woman claims to be the Russian Grand Duchess Anastasia.




There There

by Tommy Orange

There, There by Tommy Orange was Rediscovered’s pick for the Guaranteed Read for July 2018.  It’s one of the best books out right now, and Tommy Orange is coming to Storyfort in March so you cannot go wrong choosing this book.

"Jacquie Red Feather is newly sober and trying to make it back to the family she left behind in shame in Oakland. Dene Oxedrene is pulling his life together after his uncle's death and has come to work the powwow and to honor his uncle's memory. Edwin Frank has come to find his true father ... Opal Viola Victoria Bear Shield has come to watch her newphew Orvil Red Feather; Orvil taught himself Indian dance through YouTube videos, and he has come to the Big Oakland Powwow to dance in public for the very first time... [This] is a multi-generational ... story about violence and recovery, hope and loss, identity and power, dislocation and communion, and the beauty and despair woven into the history of a nation and its people. "




The Widows of Malabar Hill

by Sujata Massey

Just released from Soho Crime Fiction, The Widows of Malabar Hill is making a mark on the publishing scene with incredible reviews everywhere. I loved that the main character is a woman lawyer in India during the 1920’s and it’s based on a true story.

Perveen Mistry, the daughter of a respected Zoroastrian family, has just joined her father's law firm, becoming one of the first female lawyers in India. Armed with a legal education from Oxford, Perveen also has a tragic personal history that makes women's legal rights especially important to her.