For the month of November, our book club pick is The Diary of Frida Kahlo: An Intimate Self-Portrait by Carlos Fuentes. The book is, indeed, an intimate self-portrait. The journal is filled with illustrations, poems, and thoughts that allow readers a peek into her mind and the inspiration behind her art. This "free-form arrangement of the diary," writes Kathryn Hughes of The Telegraph, "allowed Kahlo to play and comment on ideas in a way that was not possible in her finished pictures. In these pages nothing is at stake as the images are for her eyes only."Read More
For the month of October, our book club pick is The Round House by Louise Erdrich. Erdrich was born in Little Falls, Minnesota to parents who taught at a boarding school set up by the Bureau of Indian Affairs in Wahpeton, North Dakota. She is of Chippewa descent and is a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians; her background and childhood have been hugely influential in her writing. Erdrich was one of the first women admitted to Dartmouth College, where she earned an English degree. After Dartmouth, she pursued and graduated with a Masters of Arts in Writing from John Hopkins University in 1979. Erdrich is the owner of the independent bookstore Birchbark Books in Minnesota, which specializes in Native American literature and arts.Read More
For the month of September, our book club pick is Shrill by Lindy West. West is a writer and performer based in Seattle. She is currently a columnist at The Guardian and has written for the New York Times, Cosmopolitan, GQ, Vulture, Jezebel, The Stranger, among many other publications. Her first book, Shrill, is a laugh-out-loud funny memoir that makes us want to "gush at anyone who will listen about how accomplished it is, about how West further demonstrates her unparalleled intelligence, humour and empathy throughout."Read More
For the month of June, we are reading not one, but two books: Teaching My Mother How To Give Birth by Warsan Shire and milk and honey by Rupi Kaur. Both are poetry collections that touch on the traumas of love, loss, and family. The poems are raw and intimate; they provide readers a glimpse into the hardships that women often have no choice but to face.Read More
For the month of May, we are reading Whipping Girl by Julia Serano, a writer, poet, performance artist, activist, and biologist. From 2003 to 2012, she was a research specialist at the University of California Berkeley. Whipping Girl is a collection of essays detailing "Serano's own experiences as a trans dyke in the first decade of the new millennium," many involving trans-misogyny, a term she coined to describe what happens when transphobia and misogyny meet. Serano writes, "When a trans person is ridiculed or dismissed not merely for failing to live up to gender norms, but for their expression of femaleness or femininity, they become the victim of of a specific form of discrimination: trans-misogny."Read More
Our pick for April is The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros. The book won the Before Columbus Foundation's American Book Award in 1985 and has sold over five million copies to date. Cisneros is a Chicago-born writer who is a dual citizen of the United States and Mexico. She has received numerous literary and cultural honours and grants, including the American Book Award.Read More
Here, in one volume: Marjane Satrapi's best-selling, internationally acclaimed memoir-in-comic-strips.
Persepolis is the story of Satrapi's unforgettable childhood and coming of age within a large and loving family in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution; of the contradictions between private life and public life in a country plagued by political upheaval; of her high school years in Vienna facing the trials of adolescence far from her family; of her homecoming--both sweet and terrible; and, finally, of her self-imposed exile from her beloved homeland. It is the chronicle of a girlhood and adolescence at once outrageous and familiar, a young life entwined with the history of her country yet filled with the universal trials and joys of growing up.
For the month of November, we are kicking off the book club with Feminism is for Everybody by bell hooks. Whether you are new to or familiar with feminist theory, Feminism is for Everybody is a great starting point to gender, sexuality, and the patriarchy. hooks' sharp critical analysis provides readers with "an excellent introduction to the idea of interlocking systems of oppression... such as racism, classicism, imperialism, homophobia-systems in which one group dominates over and seeks to control another."Read More