This month's book club book was chosen by the book club after we realized that our original choice isn't out in paperback until August. So, after a quick discussion, we came up with Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and other Pagans in America by Margot Adler.
Originally published in 1979 by Viking Press, this book has seen several reprintings. Margot Adler was a reporter for NPR, a Neo-pagan, and "recognized witch." After three years of intense research, she published her book to critical and public success. The New York Times has said that the book "is credited with both documenting new religious impulses and being a catalyst for the panoply of practices now in existence" and "helped popularize earth-based religions." As the only detailed history of the Neo-Pagan subculture, this book has been hugely important in helping pagans achieve and maintain an understanding of their religious and spiritual practices within the American mainstream.
Adler spent three years conducting interviews, doing research, attending festivals and rituals, and much more to obtain the information she passes along to her readers in this book. She attempts to paint a compassionate picture of the diverse, colorful array of practicing pagans in the United States with information about the way they believe and how they practice their religion.
We know that knowledge of religions outside the mainstream isn't widespread and we are so excited to undergo this journey of discovery together. We hope to open minds and share experiences with this book club choice. We welcome anyone, regardless of religion, to our book clubs but are particularly interested in hearing the thoughts and opinions of any pagans within our community who would be interested in joining in our discussion.
Books are currently available at the bookstore for $22.00 but you always get a 15% discount on book club titles. You can also purchase it from us online in the following formats:
We will meet at Foggy Pine Books on Saturday, May 26 at 7:30pm. We'll have free wine and snacks available for our book club members. Bring a friend and come discuss the book with us, even if you weren't able to completely finish it or if you didn't like it. You can see the Facebook event & RSVP here.
Relevant Book Reviews
This month we're meeting to discuss a bestselling nonfiction title, The City of the Lost Monkey God by Douglas Preston. I'm very excited about this book because it sounds like a real life Indiana Jones story.
Here's the summary:
Since the days of conquistador Hernán Cortés, rumors have circulated about a lost city of immense wealth hidden somewhere in the Honduran interior, called the White City or the Lost City of the Monkey God. Indigenous tribes speak of ancestors who fled there to escape the Spanish invaders, and they warn that anyone who enters this sacred city will fall ill and die. In 1940, swashbuckling journalist Theodore Morde returned from the rainforest with hundreds of artifacts and an electrifying story of having found the Lost City of the Monkey God-but then committed suicide without revealing its location.
Three quarters of a century later, bestselling author Doug Preston joined a team of scientists on a groundbreaking new quest. In 2012 he climbed aboard a rickety, single-engine plane carrying the machine that would change everything: lidar, a highly advanced, classified technology that could map the terrain under the densest rainforest canopy. In an unexplored valley ringed by steep mountains, that flight revealed the unmistakable image of a sprawling metropolis, tantalizing evidence of not just an undiscovered city but an enigmatic, lost civilization.
Venturing into this raw, treacherous, but breathtakingly beautiful wilderness to confirm the discovery, Preston and the team battled torrential rains, quickmud, disease-carrying insects, jaguars, and deadly snakes. But it wasn't until they returned that tragedy struck: Preston and others found they had contracted in the ruins a horrifying, sometimes lethal-and incurable-disease.
Suspenseful and shocking, filled with colorful history, hair-raising adventure, and dramatic twists of fortune, this novel is the absolutely true, eyewitness account of one of the great discoveries of the twenty-first century.
This is sure to be an interesting book and a fun book club. I look forward to discussing this book and I hope you'll join us on Saturday, March 31st at 7:30pm at the bookstore. Until then, you can purchase the book at our store in paperback for 15% off the list price of $15.99. You can also purchase it from us online in various formats and have it shipped to your home for free or available to download immediately. See below for links and prices.
Audiobook: $29.88 (or just $0.99 with your first month of membership on Libro.fm!)
Audio CD: $20.00
It's been a while and I do apologize for the lack of upkeep in the book club blog. However, I've been working on a website improvement for everyone--you can now check out what's happening in the Hatchet Coffee Book Club and the new Young Adult Book Club at their digital homes on this site! You can see them in the drop down Programs menu.
The June meeting will take place on Saturday, June 24th at the bookstore at 7:30pm. Drinks and snacks will be provided. This month, we will be discussing The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. If you plan on attending, please RSVP on our Facebook event so we can prepare properly for our guests.
Book Summary: Henrietta Lacks, as HeLa, is known to present-day scientists for her cells from cervical cancer. She was a poor Southern tobacco farmer who worked the same land as her slave ancestors, yet her cells were taken without her knowledge and still live decades after her death. Cells descended from her may weigh more than 50M metric tons.
HeLa cells were vital for developing the polio vaccine; uncovered secrets of cancer, viruses, and the atom bomb’s effects; helped lead to important advances like in vitro fertilization, cloning, and gene mapping; and have been bought and sold by the billions. Yet Henrietta Lacks was buried in an unmarked grave.
The journey starts in the “colored” ward of Johns Hopkins Hospital in the 1950s, her small, dying hometown of Clover, Virginia — wooden slave quarters, faith healings, and voodoo. Today are stark white laboratories with freezers full of HeLa cells, East Baltimore children and grandchildren live in obscurity, see no profits, and feel violated. The dark history of experimentation on African Americans helped lead to the birth of bioethics, and legal battles over whether we control the stuff we are made of.
You can pick up a copy at the bookstore for $16.00 & receive a 15% off discount.
You can get the ebook here for $10.60.
You can get the audiobook here for $20.00--if you sign up for a membership, you'll get your first audiobook for just $0.99!
Foggy Pine Books
Literary Gifts & Events for Boone's Bibliophiles