October's Discussion: Man in the Woods & The Night Circus

  • November 6, 2012 · 6:30 PM
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Man in the Woods by Scott Spencer

One of the most acclaimed modern American novelists, Scott Spencer captures the intensity of human passion—and its capacity to both destroy and redeem—with unparalleled precision and insight. Now, in his most stunning novel yet, this wry, witty, and deeply sensitive writer returns to the territory of his New York Times bestseller A Ship Made of Paper, in a gripping and provocative psychological thriller of morality and manhood, choice and fate.

Paul has been on his own since he was a teenager, leading a life of freedom and independence, beholden to no one and nothing. Fearless, resolute, and guided by his own private moral code, he has hunted for food in Alaska, fought forest fires, and been deputized in a manhunt for a kidnapper in South Dakota. Once he thought his life would have no particular rhyme or reason, touched only by transient strangers. Then he meets the beautiful, intelligent, loving Kate Ellis and her daughter, Ruby, who offer order and constancy. But Paul is a man of deep convictions, and the compromises we all make to get along in the world elude him.

On his way home after rejecting a job remodeling a luxurious Manhattan apartment, Paul stops to gather his thoughts at a state park just off the highway. Instead of peace, he finds a man savagely beating a dog, and in a few fateful moments Paul is plunged into a world of violence and onto a tumultuous journey of self-knowledge, guilt, and redemption.

With the psychological acuity and razor-sharp prose for which he has been celebrated, award-winning, bestselling novelist Scott Spencer once again takes us on an unforgettable journey of manhood lost and found.

Chosen by: Steve

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus performers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart.

Chosen by: Cathy

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  • Abdul

    Hi All,

    A majority want this postponed. I'm moving it to next week. Hope you can make it.

    October 30, 2012

  • Gina P.

    Hi all. Yes I'd prefer another. I am way behind on everything this past week, including the book!

    October 30, 2012

  • Abdul

    Hi Everyone, I hope everyone made it through the storm ok.

    Any interest in postponing this due to the storm? Please let me know by responding to this post if you can by 3:00pm.

    October 30, 2012

    • Sara

      Oh I just saw this...re-scheduling would be fine with me, just seems a bit late in the game. But either way, keep me posted:)

      October 30, 2012

  • Sara

    That would be great Mary-I posted some questions for both the Night Circus and Man in the Woods on the discussion board, but use whatever you want. Have fun everyone; wish I could make it!

    October 30, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    If we do keep the meeting tonight, I can lead the discussion for The Night Circus. I found questions online and finished the book.

    October 30, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    I can come tonight. We didn't really get anything here in Agawam. I am good with a reschedule but not for tomorrow. It's Halloween.

    October 30, 2012

  • Sara

    I think it's a little late to cancel unless the restaurant is closed, which I doubt.

    October 29, 2012

  • Cathy

    Hi all - my flight back to CT from the Midwest was cancelled due to the storm, and my new flight isn't until Wednesday, so I'm hoping this will either be rescheduled or someone else can lead the discussion of The Night Circus. (I really liked the book!)

    October 29, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Just wondering if this is still a go with Frankenstorm.

    October 29, 2012

  • Steve

    I've has a super busy month and I can't make the event. Would someone else be able to host the "Man in the Woods" discussion?

    October 23, 2012

  • Sara

    Some (very ambitious) people read both, but most people pick one and come to talk about that one.

    October 10, 2012

  • Terry

    This is my first time doing this. I noticed there are 2 books listed for October. Do we read both or pick one?

    October 9, 2012

  • Elizabeth S.

    Has a book been chosen for this month (Oct.)?

    September 11, 2012

  • Alice

    It's my first time doing this and am not sure what to expect

    September 3, 2012

13 went

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