February book club selections

  • "Hamilton: The Revolution"

  • "Killers of the Flower Moon"

  • The Books & Brew Book Club meets at True Brew Barista and Cafe on the first Wednesday of the month. Elizabeth Frantz / Monitor file

Monitor staff
Published: 1/25/2019 3:21:21 PM

Here’s a look at what area book clubs are reading in February.

‘Hamilton: The Revolution’

Feb. 4 at Gibson’s Bookstore, Concord

Hamilton, the Broadway show, quickly became a fan-favorite with sold-out shows and increasing ticket prices.

It won a Pulitzer Prize for Drama and 11 Tony Awards.

Hamilton: The Revolution, a book by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Jeremy McCarter, is a backstage pass to the show. It includes behind-the-scenes photos, interviews and footnotes by Miranda who starred in the libretto he composed.

The book gives readers an unprecedented view of both revolutions, from the only two writers able to provide it. Miranda, along with McCarter, a cultural critic and theater artist who was involved in the project from its earliest stages – “since before this was even a show,” according to Miranda – traces its development from an improbable performance at the White House to its landmark opening night on Broadway six years later. In addition, Miranda has written more than 200 funny, revealing footnotes for his award-winning libretto, the full text of which is published.

Their account features photos by the renowned Frank Ockenfels and veteran Broadway photographer, Joan Marcus; interviews with Questlove, Stephen Sondheim, leading political commentators, and more than 50 people involved with the production; and multiple appearances by former president Barack Obama himself.

(Book club titles are in paperback, or should be by the time the group reads them, and they will all be discounted 25 percent from the publisher’s price for the following year, whether you join meetings or not.)

‘Killers of the Flower Moon’

Feb. 3 at 4 p.m. at MainStreet BookEnds, Warner

David Grann revisits a series of crimes, with dozens of murders, through his research. It reveals the callousness and prejudice toward American Indians that allowed the murders to continue for a long time.

It is the 1920s in the Osage Indian nation in Oklahoma. Oil has made people rich, and others greedy. The Osage people began to be killed off. The “Phantom Terror” roamed and those who investigated were often killed themselves.

Once the death toll reached 24, the FBI got involved and young J. Edgar Hoover had former Texas Ranger Tom White put together an undercover team.

(Book group participants get 20 percent off prior to the gathering.)

‘A Cold Day for Murder’

Feb. 5 at 6 p.m. at Gilford Public Library

The Mystery Book Group in Gilford will be discussing Dana Stabenow’s cozy murder mystery set in Alaska. 

In the first book of her series, Kate Shugak returns to her roots in the far north, after leaving the Anchorage D.A.’s office. Her deductive powers are definitely needed when a ranger disappears. Looking for clues among the Aleutian pipeliners, she begins to realize the fine line between lies and loyalties – between justice served and cold murder.

(Copies are available at the front desk.)

 ‘The Warmth of Other Suns’

Feb. 14 at 1 p.m. at Belmont Public Library

The Nonfiction Book Group will read Isabel Wilkerson’s epic on the migration of black Americans from the South heading to northern and western cities from 1915 to 1970. 

Wilkerson tells this story through the lives of three unique individuals: Ida Mae Gladney, who in 1937 left sharecropping and prejudice in Mississippi for Chicago, where she achieved quiet blue-collar success; sharp and quick-tempered George Starling, who in 1945 fled Florida for Harlem, where he endangered his job fighting for civil rights, saw his family fall, and finally found peace in God; and Robert Foster, who left Louisiana in 1953 to pursue a medical career, the personal physician to Ray Charles as part of a glitteringly successful medical career.

(Copies available at the front desk.)


Feb. 15 at 10:30 a.m. at Belmont Public Library

The Morning Book Club will read Fredrik Backman’s latest. (Backman is the author of A Man Called Ove).

People say Beartown is finished. A tiny community nestled deep in the forest, it is slowly losing ground to the ever-encroaching trees. But down by the lake stands an old ice rink, built generations ago by the working men who founded this town. And in that ice rink is the reason people in Beartown believe tomorrow will be better than today. 

(Copies available at the front desk.)

‘Spinning Silver’

Feb. 19 at 10:30 a.m. at the Belmont Senior Center

In Naomi Novik’s novel, Miryem is the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders ... but her father isn't a very good one. Free to lend and reluctant to collect, he has loaned out most of his wife's dowry and left the family on the edge of poverty – until Miryem steps in. 

(Copies available at the senior center.)

Other Clubs

Books and Brew meets the first Wednesday of the month at True Brew Barista, Bicentenial Square, Concord. There’s no assigned reading. Just come to discuss your latest book. The sessions are hosted by the Concord Public Library.

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