An initiative of the American Library Association

SJP Picks

Award-winning actor, producer, designer, library supporter and avid reader Sarah Jessica Parker is the honorary chair for Book Club Central. In this role, Ms. Parker will select books throughout the year to share her joy of reading and discussing good books with readers everywhere.

Sarah Jessica Parker and author Stephanie Powell Watts pose with the first Book Club Central selection, No One Is Coming to Save Us.
Screenshot from HBO series The Deuce

Nonfiction Starter Pack: THE DEUCE

September 19, 2017

The Deuce premiered on HBO two weeks ahead of schedule. In its first episode, David Simon’s series-length paean to Times Square recreated 70s New York in all its grimy glory, with an ensemble of prostitutes, pimps, gamblers, cops, and James Franco, who plays twins. The show has done nothing to change my opinion that the 70s were…

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Confessions of a Book Club Addict

June 16, 2017

I’ve run three book clubs at one time. Sound like a foolish thing to do? Well, I’ve done it twice. And, trust me, you don’t do something that harebrained (twice) without help. The Book Clubs The first time I was in over my head, I was running my Romance Lovers Book Club, genteXt, a book…

Find Books for a Book Club

There’s a question I always ask whenever I visit a book club: “What’s the best book you’ve ever discussed?” This is a surefire way to start a lively discussion, one that always begins with the books the group has enjoyed and inevitably transitions to those they haven’t. Eventually, the group will conclude that the best…

Screenshot from HBO series The Deuce

Nonfiction Starter Pack: THE DEUCE

September 19, 2017

The Deuce premiered on HBO two weeks ahead of schedule. In its first episode, David Simon’s series-length paean to Times Square recreated 70s New York in all its grimy glory, with an ensemble of prostitutes, pimps, gamblers, cops, and James Franco, who plays twins. The show has done nothing to change my opinion that the 70s were…

Book covers: A Man Called Ove, Evicted, The Nest, To the Bright Edge of the World, Hidden Figures

Good Books for Book Groups: Bring Your Own Book

August 17, 2017

Every year, area clubs invariably ask us to suggest short books for holiday reading. There are many such titles, of course, but it can be hard, at this time of year, for members to get copies of holiday titles when they need them. But there are ways to work around the holiday crush. Some book clubs in our area have each…

Book cover: Stars Are Fire

Book Club Choices: The Stars Are Fire

June 21, 2017

Based on a true story of a fire on the coast of Maine in 1947, this novel is about Grace, whose town was one of many that burned to the ground. As the fire rushes toward her home, Grace and her best friend grab their young children and head to the ocean, where they are…

Book cover: Swing Time

Book Club Choices: Swing Time

June 21, 2017

Through sweeping themes of race, friendship, family, and feminist politics, we enter the lives of Tracey, an accomplished dancer; Aimee, a superstar (think Madonna); a mother and wife, an ardent feminist; and others who make up the world of our unnamed narrator. Tracey and “unnamed narrator” meet in London as young girls taking dance. They…

Stephanie Powell and book cover: No One is Coming to Save UsWatts

SJP Pick Author Interview: Stephanie Powell Watts

August 11, 2017

In the wake of the exciting announcement of the first title selected for Book Club Central by Honorary Chair Sarah Jessica Parker, an avid reader and library supporter as well as an award-winning television and film actor, producer, and designer––No One is Coming to Save Us by Stephanie Powell Watts––Booklist Adult Books Editor Donna Seaman…

Author Rachel Khong and book cover: Goodbye, Vitamin

Hello, Rachel Khong: Talking with the Former Lucky Peach Editor about Her Debut Novel, GOODBYE, VITAMIN

July 26, 2017

Rachel Khong’s first novel, Goodbye, Vitamin, is a story of regular people dealing with irregular things. It dials down the looming menace of that which we fear the most for ourselves and our loved ones, while underlining just how extraordinary it is to be a person surrounded by other people. Vitamin‘s narrator, Ruth, moves home…

Screenshot: Travis Kalanick

Further Reading: Troublesome CEOs

June 22, 2017

After a 2013 memo about sexual harassment was leaked to the press, newspapers at home and abroad have been speculating on whether or not Uber CEO Travis Kalanik—no stranger to controversy—might lose his job. Kalanik has been accused of poisoning company culture with laddish (some might say horribly sexist) behavior. Fictional CEOs are no strangers to trouble.…

Screenshot from A Hanmaid's Tale television show

Aunt Lydia’s Forbidden Bookshelf: Three Books to Read After The Handmaid’s Tale

June 22, 2017

The first season of The Handmaid’s Tale wrapped up last night. If you’re already missing the object of your obsession, you can always read (or reread) Margaret Atwood’s book of the same name, since this dystopian nightmare fuel for feminists and anyone who appreciates not living in a totalitarian faith-based state has been keeping people up at night…

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