Event Date:
Wednesday, November 15, 2017 – 7:00pm
Event End Date:
Wednesday, November 15, 2017 – 8:30pm
Event Location:
India Community Center, 525 Los Coches St, Milpitas, CA 95035

We had a very good turnout last week for the  September book discussion on “Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress”.  Almost all of us really enjoyed the book and  gave the book a high rating (#8).
The group was unanimous in feeling that the book was very successful in compressing a lot within its  200  pages. We got a good sense of the oppressive conditions during the Chinese Cultural Revolution, and the narrative  was communicated concisely, vividly, and with great humor. The two boys and the little seamstress were very likeable, street smart, and quite conniving in their own ways.   The potency of  classical literature and music  was the major theme,  and it  balanced out nicely at the end when the seamstress, now  filled with thoughts of Balzac and freedom , escapes from the village to experience the wonders of the world outside.
The next book club meeting will take place on Wednesday, November 15.   The book selected is “A Man called Ove”  by Fredrik Backman.   
This book was originally recommended by Chitra and more recently by Archana. I think many of you have already read the book – it has been on the bestseller lists for a long time –  so we can  look forward to a really high-energy discussion.
Mark your calendars for November 15 at 7 PM.

For questions or more details, contact Sheila Mohan (Cell phone:408-839-5405; email:sheilamohan1616@gmail.com)


Event Date:
Wednesday, July 26, 2017 – 7:00pm
Event End Date:
Wednesday, July 26, 2017 – 8:30pm
Event Location:
India Community Center, 525 Los Coches St, Milpitas, CA 95035

The next meeting of the ICC Book Club will be held on Wednesday, July 26 at 7 PM. The book selected for discussion is V.S. Naipaul’s “The Mystic Masseur”. When it was first published, it got rave reviews as an original human comedy.

The May meeting of the book club was enjoyable, as always. Two of the members gave Akhil Sharma’s “Family Life” high marks for its unsentimental approach to a family tragedy. All others gave it ratings in the 4-7 range which is high for our group!

Some felt that the book lacked artistic merit, that the story line was not of great interest, and the narrator seemed shallow. Most of us liked the author’s matter-of-fact approach to a catastrophic family tragedy, and all of us liked the mother’s strength and character. Just about everyone had a problem with the ending! Some wondered if the son too had become an alcoholic like his father! In the end we all agreed that the family had gotten so accustomed to tragedy that they didn’t know how to deal with happiness when they encountered it.

For questions or more details, contact Sheila Mohan (Cell phone:408-839-5405; email:sheilamohan1616@gmail.com)


PAST BOOK CLUBS

The book selected is Akhil Sharma’s “Family Life: A Novel”. The New York Times listed it as among the top 5 works of fiction in 2014.

The March book club meeting was very well-attended, and discussions, as always, were lively and high-spirited. Who knew that Randa Jarrar, a little-known Arab-American author who held nothing back in the language she used and the situations she threw her characters into, could generate so much passion among the members? Most of us came in with somewhat negative views of the author, and 90 minutes later, left feeling that she was maybe more imaginative, funny and complex than we had originally thought. On a scale of 1 to 10 (with 10 being the highest), the lowest score was 4 and the highest was 8.

Two books, with connections to two of our members, were briefly discussed. Archana Asthana gave a plug for “With Love for God” written by her friend, Sohini Rajpal. Karen Vasudev brought a copy of “Vibrant India”, a cook book compiled by her niece Chita Agrawal with illustrations by Karen herself.

We are looking forward to another fun meeting on May 31.

For questions or more details, contact Sheila Mohan (cell phone: 408-839-5405; email: sheilamohan1616@gmail.com)


HIM, ME, MUHAMMAD ALI

BY RANDA JARRAR

Wednesday, March 22, 2017 at 6 PM
The next meeting of the ICC Book Club will take place on Wednesday, March 22, 2017 at 6 PM, and the book selected for discussion is Randa Jarrar’s “Him, Me, Muhammad Ali”. It is a short story collection, only the second one we have discussed so far. (Bharati Mukherjee’s “The Middleman and Other Stories” was our first).

The exciting feature in March will be the participation of the author Randa Jarrar via SKYPE or Face Time.

It should be fun to see how the discussion goes. One suggestion is for each of us to talk about our favorite story in the collection, and see if and how it connects with the other stories. Other suggestions to steer the discussion are welcome.

For those of you who did not attend the January meeting, I have to tell you it was quite a challenge to wrap up the meeting on time! As expected, the politics of the day kept intruding on the discussion. While some of you said that Kwan’s narrative felt intrusive and contrived, there were others who appreciated Amy Tan’s good humor, as well as the unique characterization of Kwan. Still, whatever the reason, all of us had a lot to say. Ratings ranged from a low of 2.5 to 7.

THE HUNDRED SECRET SENSES

BY AMY TAN

The November book club meeting was, as usual, filled with high energyand laughter. Very strong opinions and a thorough dislike for the book selected, Karan Mahajan’s “Family Planning”. All of us, with no exceptions, felt the book was silly and absurd, with no interesting characters or situations. The only redeeming features were a few lines of humorous narrative sprinkled here and there, and the relative brevity of the novel.

The first book club meeting of 2017 takes place on Wednesday, January 25 at 6 PM. Please note the change in start time – this is to accommodate those of you who have been experiencing traffic problems.


FAMILY PlANNING: A NOVEL

BY KARAN MAHAJAN

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Our next book club meeting is on Wednesday, November 16, 2016 from 7 PM to 8:30 PM. Because of the Thanksgiving holidays, we will be meeting one week earlier than usual. The book selected for the November meeting is Karan Mahajan’s “Family Planning: A Novel“.

Mr. Mahajan has been making the literary news lately because his latest book was long-listed for the Booker Prize and in one of the finalists for the National Book Award. The book selected for our book club is an earlier work, and has been commended for its humor.

ISLAND OF THOUSAND MIRRORS

September 28th, 2016

The ICC Book Club will meet next on September 28, 2016 at 7 pm. The book selected for discussion is : Island of a Thousand Mirrors by Nayomi Munaweera. We are expecting the author to attend the book club meeting in person or via Facetime

The questions will be submitted to Ms Munaweera two weeks before the meeting, so that the discussion can be centered on the book and on her comments. It would be helpful if you could send us any questions that you think are relevant and interesting. The draft of the questions/discussion points will be sent to you in advance before sending it to the author.
The July 2016 book selection, Kamila Shamsie’s “Kartography” was rated in the middle range (5/6) by members. Most felt that while the book did shed new light on how the Bangaladesh war affected the lives of ordinary Pakistanis at many different levels, we didn’t really get to know the characters or understand why they did what they did.

Looking forward to another good debate in September!

For further information call: 408-839-5405.


“Such A Long Journey” by Rohinton Mistry

Are you a bookworm? Do you want to be part of a group that has like-minded people who love to read and discuss your kind of books. Do you want to launch into enthralling plotline debates, argue about your favorite authors and use the book club forum to tell other readers which parts made you laugh and cry, which parts made you angry, and why the book is a must-read?

Come join ICC’s book club – we will meet once every 2 months, talk about a variety of books, both fiction and non-fiction, and maybe flavor the evening with spicy snacks and pungent arguments.

The book club will be having their reading on January 22nd. The book selected is “Such A Long Journey” by Rohinton Mistry

If you have any questions or need further information please email us at sheilamohan1616@gmail.com

Free Event but please Register here! All are welcome.


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