Join our book club! All book club meetings are on Tuesdays, every other month, and you may participate either 1:30-2:30 PM or 6:30-7:30 PM by phone.
To join the discussion, call the toll free Uberconference number at (855) 753-0200. If you are the first person to call, you will hear music. As soon as a second person calls, each caller will be added to the conversation. You are free to join us late or leave early if you are only available part of the afternoon or evening session of the book club.
If you would like to mute your phone when listening to the conversation, most cell phones or landline phones have a mute button. Using the mute button will eliminate some background noise or distortion that we have experienced in past calls.
When you make a comment, please identify yourself. Then we can talk one at a time. Hopefully we will hear from everyone during the calls. If you would prefer only to give your opinion on the book at the beginning, that is fine as well.
To receive email reminders a week before and the day before or day of the book club, please send your email address to the library at WTBBL@milwaukee.gov. If you would like to receive phone reminders, please call the library at (414) 286-3045 and provide your phone number.
The six books for this year are available for checkout on one cartridge. You will need to use the Bookshelf feature to jump from book to book. Review the instructions on on how to use Bookshelf. Instructions are also available in PDF and Word.
2023 WTBBL Book Club Titles and Dates
Tuesday, February 7, 2023
- The shadow of the wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón (15 hours, 57 minutes) DB58940 / Available on BARD
- Barcelona, 1945. Young Daniel Sempere selects Julián Carax's The Shadow of the Wind when his father takes him to the Cemetery of Forgotten Books. Daniel loves the novel, investigates the author's life and death, and meets a cast of characters hiding deadly secrets. Some descriptions of sex. Bestseller. 2001.
Tuesday, April 4, 2023
- The last thing he told me by Laura Dave (8 hours, 52 minutes) DB103326 / Available on BARD
- Before he disappears, Hannah's husband of one year, Owen, smuggles a note to her, asking her to protect his sixteen-year-old daughter, Bailey, who refuses to have anything to do with Hannah. They soon realize that Owen is not who he says he is and Bailey holds the key. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2021.
Tuesday, June 6, 2023
- Fox and I: an uncommon friendship by Catherine Raven (10 hours, 24 minutes) DB99795 / Available on BARD
- Biologist and former national park ranger recounts her time spent in an isolated cottage in Montana, where she bonded with a fox. Raven examines the relationship between wildlife and humans, and reflects on what can be learned from the natural world and the meaning behind loss. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2021.
Tuesday, August 1, 2023
- Horse by Geraldine Brooks (14 hours, 9 minutes) DB108556 / Available on BARD
- "Kentucky, 1850. An enslaved groom named Jarret and a bay foal forge a bond of understanding that will carry the horse to record-setting victories across the South. When the nation erupts in civil war, an itinerant young artist who has made his name on paintings of the racehorse takes up arms for the Union. On a perilous night, he reunites with the stallion and his groom, very far from the glamor of any racetrack. New York City, 1954. Martha Jackson, a gallery owner celebrated for taking risks on edgy contemporary painters, becomes obsessed with a nineteenth-century equestrian oil painting of mysterious provenance. Washington, DC, 2019. Jess, a Smithsonian scientist from Australia, and Theo, a Nigerian-American art historian, find themselves unexpectedly connected through their shared interest in the horse--one studying the stallion's bones for clues to his power and endurance, the other uncovering the lost history of the unsung Black horsemen who were critical to his racing success. Based on the remarkable true story of the record-breaking thoroughbred Lexington, Horse is a novel of art and science, love and obsession, and our unfinished reckoning with racism." -- Provided by publisher. -- Unrated. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2022.
Tuesday, October 3, 2023
- The overstory by Richard Powers (22 hours, 51 minutes) DB91490 / Available on BARD
- A group of nine strangers are tied together by their shared desire to protect one of the last virgin forests in America. They include a wounded Vietnam vet, a student who dies and is revived, and a scientist who learns that trees can communicate. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2018.
Tuesday, December 5, 2023
- We are not like them by Jo Piazza (11 hours, 47 minutes) DB105333 / Available on BARD
- Jen and Riley have been best friends since kindergarten. As adults, they remain as close as sisters, though their lives have taken different directions. The deep bond they share is severely tested when Jen's husband, a city police officer, is involved in the shooting of an unarmed Black teenager. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2021.
2022 WTBBL Book Club Titles and Dates
Tuesday, February 8, 2022
- The midnight library by Matt Haig (8 hours, 53 minutes) DB100906 / Available on BARD
- After she attempts suicide, Nora wakes up in a mysterious library. The shelves are full of books, each the story of another reality. One tells the story of your life as it is, along with other books for the other lives you could have lived. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2020.
Tuesday, April 5, 2022
- The vanishing half by Brit Bennett (11 hours, 36 minutes) DB99791 / Available on BARD
- Desiree Vignes and her daughter return home to Louisiana in 1968, fourteen years after Desiree and her identical twin sister Stella ran away. The sisters ended up on different paths, and as Desiree struggles with the racial tensions of her hometown, Stella lives her life passing as white. Violence, strong language, and some descriptions of sex. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2020.
Tuesday, June 14, 2022
- The last trial by Scott Turow (15 hours, 58 minutes) DB99795 / Available on BARD
- Eighty-five-year-old, Alejandro "Sandy" Stern--a brilliant defense lawyer with his health failing but spirit intact--is on the brink of retirement. But when his old friend Dr. Kiril Pafko--a former Nobel Prize winner--is faced with charges of insider trading, fraud, and murder, Stern decides to take on one last trial. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2020.
Tuesday, August 2, 2022
- The light in hidden places: a novel based on the true story of Stefania Podgorska by Sharon Cameron (16 hours, 15 minutes) DB101605 / Available on BARD
- Stefania, a Catholic teen, embarks on a dangerous course. She must protect thirteen Jews in her attic, care for her younger sister, Helena, and keep everything secret from the two Nazi officers who are living in her house. Violence and some strong language. Commercial audiobook. For senior high and older readers. 2020.
Tuesday, October 4, 2022
- Hello darkness, my old friend how daring dreams and unyielding friendship turned one man's blindness into an extraordinary vision for life by Sanford D. Greenberg (8 hours, 54 minutes) DB100264 / Available on BARD
- Author describes how losing his eyesight as a Columbia junior affected his life trajectory. He went on to Harvard and Oxford and--among many other accomplishments--he invented a compressed speech machine which speeds up the reproduction of words from recordings without distorting any sound. The title reflects his long friendship with Art Garfunkel. 2020.
Tuesday, December 6, 2022
- The other wife by Michael Robotham (10 hours, 52 minutes) DB93349 / Available on BARD
- Psychologist Joe O'Loughlin is startled to learn that his father is comatose in a London hospital after a head injury--and that the woman sitting with him, claiming to be his wife, isn't Joe's mother. Some violence, some strong language, and some explicit descriptions of sex. 2018.
2021 WTBBL Book Club Titles and Dates
Tuesday, February 9, 2021
- Nine perfect strangers by Liane Moriarty (19 hours, 3 minutes) DB92901 / Available on BARD
- Nine people gather at a remote health resort called Tranquillum House, each for their own reasons. Among them is Frances, a romance novelist who is intrigued by both her fellow guests and the charismatic owner, while fighting the feeling she should run while she still can. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2018.
Tuesday, April 6, 2021
- Reach for more: a journey from loss to love and fulfillment by David Szumowski (4 hours, 22 minutes) DB99056 / Available on BARD
- The author recounts his experiences after being blinded during military service in Vietnam. He discusses the difficulties he has overcome in the intervening years, and the importance of his faith, family, and friendships in overcoming the obstacles he has faced. 2019.
Tuesday, June 8, 2021
- The mountains sing by Nguyen Phan Que Mai (10 hours, 46 minutes) DB102007 / Available on BARD
- The trials and joys of the Trà̂n family in Việt Nam unfold through the decades. Family matriarch Trà̂n Diệu Lan flees with her six children as the communist government rises in the north. Years later, she cares for granddaughter Hương as family members engage in war. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2020.
Tuesday, August 3, 2021
- The Lincoln lawyer by Michael Connelly (11 hours, 37 minutes) DB61492 / Available on BARD
- L.A. criminal defense lawyer Mickey Haller defends lowlife clients out of his Lincoln Town Car. He eagerly takes the case of Louis Roulet, a wealthy Beverly Hills man arrested for beating a prostitute but soon becomes suspicious of his client's behavior. Violence and strong language. Bestseller. 2005.
Tuesday, October 5, 2021
- The giver of stars by Jojo Moyes (13 hours, 54 minutes) DB96907 / Available on BARD
- 1937. Alice Van Cleve is still trying to adjust to married life and living in Kentucky after being raised in England. When offered the chance to join a group of women to deliver Eleanor Roosevelt's new traveling library, she jumps at it. But they face dangers. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2019.
Tuesday, December 7, 2021
- Maybe you should talk to someone: a therapist, HER therapist, and our lives revealed by Lori Gottlieb (14 hours, 23 minutes) DB94667 / Available on BARD
- A psychotherapist and advice columnist gives a behind-the-scenes look at the therapeutic process. Shares details of her work at her Los Angeles practice and discusses the emotional crisis that led her to begin therapy herself. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2019.
2020 WTBBL Book Club Titles and Dates
Tuesday, February 4, 2020
- Where the crawdads sing by Delia Owens (12 hours, 14 minutes) DB92245 / Available on BARD
- In late 1969, when Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals of Barkley Cove, North Carolina, immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2018.
Tuesday, April 7, 2020
- The immortalists by Chloe Benjamin (11 hours, 32 minutes) DB86961 / Available on BARD
- In 1969 New York City, the four Gold children meet a psychic who tells them each the date they will die. They each grow up and live their lives, but always with the knowledge of the psychic's prophecy hanging over them. Strong language and some explicit descriptions of sex. Commercial audiobook. 2018.
Tuesday, May 5, 2020 at 1:30pm
Open Book Club Meeting
There will be an unofficial book club meeting on Tuesday, May 5th at 1:30 pm for anyone who would like to join. Our May meeting will be a little bit different from our regular meetings since we will not have an official book to discuss. Instead everyone can suggest a book to the group. We each will take turns telling the group about the book that we chose and why. A list will be sent with all the books that were suggested afterwards. Please share this invitation with others who you think would enjoy our group. They are welcome to join even if they are not current book club members!
Tuesday, June 9, 2020
- Haben: the deafblind woman who conquered Harvard Law by Haben Girma (7 hours, 32 minutes) DB96188 / Available on BARD
- The autobiography of the first deaf-blind graduate of Harvard Law School. Girma describes her childhood, world travels, development of a text-to-braille communication system, and time at Harvard Law, as well as the ways she uses her talents to advocate for those with disabilities. Commercial audiobook. 2019.
Tuesday, August 4, 2020
- Where'd you go, Bernadette: a novel by Maria Semple (10 hours, 49 minutes) DB75351 / Available on BARD
- Seattle. Eighth-grader Bee's request for a family trip to Antarctica is the last straw for her mother Bernadette, who has become so socially inept that she hired a virtual assistant in India to handle her life. Just before the trip, Bernadette vanishes. Heartbroken Bee investigates. Some strong language. Bestseller. 2012.
Tuesday, October 13, 2020
- In a moment by Theresa Gilliland (4 hours, 40 minutes) DBW01526
- In a very short span of time, Terri experienced three traumatic events. She lost her sight. Her husband's life was dramatically altered after a near-fatal motorcycle accident, and their 15-year-old son was diagnosed with brain cancer. In a Moment is a contemporary autobiography of one woman's roller coaster life filled with pain, struggle, love and triumph.
Tuesday, December 1, 2020
- A wolf called Romeo by Nick Jans (4 hours, 40 minutes) DB94157 / Available on BARD
- Photographer recounts the interactions of residents of Juneau, Alaska, with a black wolf--who is eventually dubbed Romeo--that he encountered for the first time in 2003. Explores the mystique, lore, science, and history of the wolf. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2014.
2019 WTBBL Book Club Titles and Dates
Tuesday, February 5, 2019
- Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng (11 hours, 30 minutes) DB89018 / Available on BARD
- Elena Richardson and her family lead an orderly existence in Shaker Heights, Ohio, until Mia and her daughters rent a house from them. When a neighbor tries to adopt a baby, Elena and Mia end up on opposing sides of the custody battle. 2017.
Tuesday, April 9, 2019
- The Last Bus to Wisdom by Ivan Doig (15 hours, 9 minutes) DB83412 / Available on BARD
- When eleven-year-old Donny’s grandmother goes into the hospital for surgery, she sends him to her sister Kate in Wisconsin. Donny and Kate do not get along, so he decides to run home to Montana. Kate’s husband, Herman the German joins him. 2015.
Tuesday, June 11, 2019
- Occupying Aging: Delights, Disabilities and Daily Life by Katherine Schneider (8 hours, 39 minutes) DB85915 / Available on BARD
- Retired psychologist and avid reader provides a year’s worth of daily –and often humorous musings. Illustrates how she has personally approached life now that the circumstances of being blind from birth and struggling with fibromyalgia for two decades have been combined with the issues that accompany aging. Includes a recommended reading list. 2013.
Tuesday, August 6, 2019
- The Elephant Whisperer: My Life with the Herd in the African Wild by Lawrence Anthony (13 hours, 9 minutes) DB85906 / Available on BARD
- Conservationist relates his experiences caring for a rogue herd of elephants on his South African game reserve. Describes his misgivings in accepting them, challenges faced with both the herd and the local communities, lessons learn from individuals elephants and the joys and sorrows he encountered. 2009.
Tuesday, October 8, 2019
- Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate (14 hours, 31 minutes) DB88202 / Available on BARD
- The five Foss children are left alone at home in 1930s Mississippi and subsequently kidnapped by notorious child dealer Georgia Tann. In the present day, Avery Stafford meets the elderly May- who used to be Rill Foss and is the sister of Avery’s Grandma Judy. Avery investigates her Family’s history. Unrated commercial audiobook. 2017
Tuesday, December 3, 2019
- The Girl Who Wrote in Silk by Kelli Estes (12 hours, 46 minutes) DB83170 / Available on BARD
- Inara Erickson travels to the Puget Sound to clear out her dead aunt’s house. There she discovers an intricately embroidered sleeve. As she delved into its history, she finds the story of Mei Lien, who lived in 1886 and was chased from the area. 2015.
2018 WTBBL Book Club Titles and Dates
Tuesday, February 20th, 2018
- Camino Island by John Grisham (8 hours 47 minutes) DB88138 / Available on BARD
- Thieves stage a daring heist from a secure vault below Princeton University's Firestone Library. Bruce Cable owns a bookstore in a sleepy resort town on Florida's Camino Island and dabbles in stolen books and manuscripts. Young novelist Mercer Mann is commissioned by a mysterious woman to learn Cable's secrets. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2017.
Tuesday, April 10th, 2018
- Saving Simon: How a Rescue Donkey Taught me the Meaning of Compassion by Jon Katz (7 hours 11 minutes) DB081438 / Available on BARD
- Bestselling author Katz owns a farm in upstate New York, and when an abandoned donkey was rescued near his home, animal control asked if he would take the abused animal. Katz nursed the donkey, named Simon, back to health, learning lessons of compassion along the way. 2014.
Tuesday, June 12th, 2018
- Mrs. Poe by Lynn Cullen (12 hours 52 minutes) DB83743 / Available on BARD
- 1845. Frances Osgood meets Edgar Allan Poe at a literary event. A relationship blossoms between them despite their marriages. In fact, Poe's wife Virginia encourages it and befriends Frances. As the connections deepen, Frances becomes unsure of what path she should follow. 2013.
Tuesday, August 7th, 2018
- The Rainbow Comes and Goes: A Mother and Son on Life, Love, and Loss by Anderson Cooper and Gloria Vanderbilt (6 hours 4 minutes) DB084848 / Available on BARD
- Conversation between Gloria Vanderbilt (born 1924) and her son, journalist Anderson Cooper (born 1967), concerning the lessons she has learned throughout her life dealing with such tribulations as the custody battle she was the subject of, the sudden death of her fourth husband, and the suicide of Cooper's brother. Bestseller. 2016.
Tuesday, October 9th, 2018
- Into the Water by Paula Hawkins (11 hours 34 minutes) DB087699 / Available on BARD
- A single mother turns up dead at the bottom of the river that runs through town. Earlier, a vulnerable teenage girl met the same fate. Now the woman's lonely fifteen-year-old girl is left with her mother's fearful sister--who has been dragged back to this place she ran away from. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2017.
Tuesday, December 4th, 2018
- Binoculars: Masquerading as a Sighted Person by Philip F. DiMeo (7 hours 15 minutes) DBC04702 / Available on BARD
- For over 14 years, Philip DiMeo, a talented cartoonist and social worker, led a double life, masquerading as a fully sighted person, while becoming blind. He concealed his vision loss, a secret that he believed could potentially ruin his life, discovering that it actually opened doors. Philip denied having retinitis pigmentosa, an inherited degenerative eye disease that causes severe vision impairment and often blindness, despite multiple diagnoses. Binoculars is a revealing first-hand account of a man who achieves incredible feats with his courage and talent, while coming to terms with his blindness. Autobiography. 2015.
2017 WTBBL Book Club Titles and Dates
Tuesday, February 21st, 2017
Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane (9 hours 42 minutes) DB56046 / Available on BARD
In late summer 1954, two U.S. marshals arrive on tiny Shutter Island in search of an escaped female patient from the asylum for the criminally insane. Mysterious patient treatments propel them to the brink of insanity. Some strong language. Suspense fiction. Historical fiction. 2003.
Tuesday, April 4th, 2017
Rosemary: The Hidden Kennedy Daughter by Kate Clifford Larson (10 hours 3 minutes) DB83946 / Available on BARD
Historian profiles the little-known older sister of President John F. Kennedy, whose intellectual disabilities were kept secret. Using diaries and correspondence, school and doctors' letters, and family interviews, details the care Rosemary received and the decision to lobotomize her at age twenty-three. Bestseller. Biography. 2015.
Tuesday, June 20th, 2017
A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman (9 hours 7 minutes) DB84392 / Available on BARD
Ove has always been a grumpy man, and when he loses his wife and his job, he decides to commit suicide. But a lively family of new neighbors and a stray cat might give Ove a reason to keep living. First published in Swedish in 2012. Human Relationships – Fiction. Bestseller.
Tuesday, August 15th, 2017
My Lucky Life In and Out of Show Business by Dick van Dyke (7 hours 40 minutes) DB74349 / Available on BARD
Eighty-four-year-old Van Dyke examines his successful acting career, which included movies Mary Poppins and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and his sitcom The Dick Van Dyke Show. The father of four also recounts dealing with his alcoholism and leaving his childhood sweetheart for his agent's secretary. Autobiography. 2011.
Tuesday, October 10th, 2017
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes (12 hours 58 minutes) DB76161 / Available on BARD
Working-class English girl Louisa "Lou" Clark is hired as an aide to wealthy Will Traynor, a former mogul who has been paralyzed since a road accident. Lou tries to keep the embittered Will engaged with the world, while Will encourages Lou to expand her horizons. Some strong language. Romance. Bestseller. 2012.
Tuesday, December 5th, 2017
Come, Let Me Guide You: A Life Shared with a Guide Dog by Susan Krieger (12 hours 5 minutes) DB82649 / Available on BARD
After relating her first years with guide dog Teela in Traveling Blind: Adventures in Vision with a Guide Dog by My Side (DB 71184), Stanford professor Krieger returns with another book about her now aging companion. She discusses her blindness and the many ways her relationship with Teela has enriched her life. Biography. Disability Interest. 2015.
2016 WTBBL Book Club Titles and Dates
Tuesday, February 9, 2016
Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee (7 hours 42 minutes) DB81896 / Available on BARD
Twenty years after the events of To Kill a Mockingbird (DB 77672 / Available on BARD), Jean Louise Finch (once known as Scout) returns home to Maycomb, Alabama. She confronts the racism of her hometown in the 1950s, including the views of Atticus, the father she idolizes. Some strong language. 2015.
Tuesday, April 12, 2016
The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson (13 hours 15 minutes) DB75820 / Available on BARD
Sweden. On his one-hundredth birthday, former demolitions expert Allan Karlsson escapes from an old folks' home, steals a suitcase filled with money, and begins a madcap adventure running from criminals and the police. Originally published in Swedish in 2009. Some strong language. 2012.
Tuesday, June 21, 2016
My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor (12 hours 32 minutes) DB76059 / Available on BARD
Memoir of United States Supreme Court justice Sonia Sotomayor (born 1954). Recalls growing up with her Puerto Rican family in the Bronx and being diagnosed with juvenile diabetes. Discusses her family life, education at Princeton and Yale, and becoming a district court judge in 1992. Bestseller. 2013.
Tuesday, August 23, 2016
Dear John by Nicholas Sparks (9 hours 20 minutes) DB65315 / Available on BARD
North Carolina. After years of drifting, John Tyree, who was raised by a father with Asperger's syndrome, joins the army. While on leave he meets Savannah Curtis, a special-education major. The two fall in love, but their relationship changes when John reenlists after 9/11. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2006.
Tuesday, October 25, 2016
Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline (8 hours 23 minutes) DB76746 / Available on BARD
Foster teen Molly is sent to ninety-one-year-old Vivian Daly's house on coastal Maine to perform community service. As Molly cleans the attic, Vivian reminisces about emigrating from Ireland, losing her family, and being sent to Minnesota on an orphan train--and the two connect. Violence, strong language, and some explicit descriptions of sex. Commercial audiobook. 2013.
Tuesday, December 13, 2016
Still Alice by Lisa Genova (8 hours 6 minutes) DB68429 / Available on BARD
As she turns fifty and begins experiencing odd lapses of memory, Harvard psychology professor Alice Howland gets the life-altering diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer's disease. Her lecturing and traveling for work, and her relationships with her scientist husband and grown children, morph along with the disease. Some strong language. Bestseller. 2007.
2015 WTBBL Book Club Titles and Dates
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr DB79182
Gray Mountain by John Grisham DB79768
Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand DB72129
Tuesday, December 1, 2015
The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Stedman (11 hours 51 minutes) DB75192 / Available on BARD
- Go to "bookshelf".
- Insert cartridge in player.
- Press and hold Play/Stop to enter bookshelf mode.
- Press RW/FF to select book.
- Press Play/Stop to listen to book.
If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, please call the library at (414) 286-3045 or send an email to WTBBL@milwaukee.gov.