Jenny & Sandy's Fall Book Review: Champagne & Maple Leaves

Jenny & Sandy's Fall Book Review: Champagne & Maple Leaves

Join Sandy and Jenny and our PPB readers to learn about the best new books to fall into with this Autumn!  

$5/person

Call the store and let us know you can come, (630) 765-7455.

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Living Room Conversations

Living Room Conversations

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Mondays, 6:30–8:00 p.m., September 23, October 28 and November 25
September 23: The America We Want to Be
October 28: Relationships and Talking about Politics
November 25: To Vote or Not to Vote
Please note there will be no meeting in December.

Prairie Path Books is proud to welcome as hosts for this series, the Wheaton League of Women's Voters, who are committed to  civic engagement and education (all genders welcome!).  For more information, contact Barbara Laimans, (630) 231-0833.

Founded in 2010, the non-profit organization “Living Room Conversations” with one goal: bringing back civil discourse on current topics so as to increase understanding, reveal common ground and allow for discussion for possible solutions. LRC provides training for facilitators, topics and talking points, and maybe most important a structure, or “conversation agreement” all participants need to follow. One participant described her LRC experience this way: “For once I wasn't standing on my soapbox trying to win someone to my side or defend my stance with strong words.  The ground rules threw that all out the window and put in its place a curious mind and an attitude of respect for my neighbors.”

The first conversation topic will be The America We Want to Be.  This topic is warm, welcoming and a perfect format for hearing different perspectives on America, our fears about it, and our hopes and dreams for it.  All community members are invited to participate.

For more information about this program, including a copy of the LRC Conversation Agreement and a summary of the first topic, visit:  www.livingroomconversations.org and www.livingroomconversations.org/topics/america_we_want_to_be_founding_aspirations/

To register, visit: www.eventbrite.com/e/living-room-conversation-tickets-65269897019


Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

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Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

Be Irresistible through the  Power of Strategic Storytelling with professional storyteller Jenny Riddle

Be Irresistible through the Power of Strategic Storytelling with professional storyteller Jenny Riddle

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There’s something within all of us, something that has the power to make us irresistible—our stories. In today's noisy and competitive world, storytelling is the best way to engage with others in a memorable and compelling way and to inspire people to act. It’s your secret advantage, the thing that will make you and your organization irresistible.

Join Jenny Riddle to find out why stories are so effective, what’s holding your stories back,
and how to find and tell your stories. 

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn the science behind why people are attracted to and respond to stories

  • Understand how stories speak to us in ways that numbers, data, and powerpoint presentations cannot

  • Capitalize on the fact that stories are remembered far longer than facts

  • Leverage stories to provide context–a more relatable and life-like framework

  • Learn to pivot traditional marketing strategies with stories

  • Discover the 3-part formula for effective storytelling

  • Avoid these common storytelling mistakes

  • Recognize that everyone has stories to tell and how to mine your life for yours

    $10/person  Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!






Cookbook Demonstration: The New Midwestern Table

Cookbook Demonstration: The New Midwestern Table

Best Tastes from Nearby States 

Cooking Demonstration Series

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Last year Cathy and I explored the great food of Italy in our cookbook demonstrations. This year our focus is closer to home - in fact it IS home!  Join us as we celebrate the best tastes of Illinois and our surrounding states. — Sandy

The New Midwestern Table
by Amy Thielen
Amy Thielen grew up in rural northern Minnesota, waiting in lines for potluck buffets amid loops of smoked sausages from her uncle’s meat market and in the company of women who could put up jelly without a recipe. She spent years cooking in some of New York City’s best restaurants, but it took moving home in 2008 for her to rediscover the wealth and diversity of the Midwestern table, and to witness its reinvention.

$35/demo ($15 shopping credit included!) 

Space is limited at all of our cooking demonstrations, call today to tell us you can come, (630) 765-7455!

The Universal Comfort of Home Cooking: PPB Multi-Cultural Potluck

The Universal Comfort of Home Cooking: PPB Multi-Cultural Potluck

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I read newspapers every day—I know, so old-fashioned. I wake up around 6 and start the coffee. Feed Bad Dog. Then I fetch our three papers from the curb (slippers optional unless it has snowed) and lay them full-out on my counter. It helps me eyeball several perspectives quickly—who has what as a top story, how did the editors headline what happened, what photos did they chose to illustrate the topic? The house is quiet. I start to read and think. I should probably start a morning moisturizing regimen but there's only so much a girl can manage at that hour.

In the last few days I've seen the word "otherness" in my papers quite a bit. I intuited what it meant, but I thought I'd better look it up. I found "discomfort with difference." Hmm, for better or worse I'm a natural solution-seeker so when I read that definition I thought okay, solution: we need to relieve the discomfort. And if differences feel uncomfortable why not shift our focus to similarities?  

My next thought of course, me being me—was FOOD. You know that soulful feeling when after a long day you open your door and a favorite cooking smell greets you? Coming home to wafts of my Nana's sour cream coffee cake or Mom’s pot roast was so central to my childhood that when I told my mother I'd be going back to work full-time after my eldest Hannah was born, she said, "but your house won't smell like love when she comes home from school!" I digested that for awhile and then bought a bread maker with a timer and I set it to finish at 3:30 p.m. Ha! Anyway (again)—every person on the earth lucky enough to have a home and a kitchen of sorts knows the happy first sniff of yummy familiar foods cooking. Around the world that is something we share. Doesn't just thinking about that moment make you feel connected and soothed? 

So, next I moved to something I myself can do—celebrate sameness with a multi-cultural potluck in my event space. It's not a solution, but it's a start. I need your help though—do you or someone you know have a favorite family dish they'd like to bring, one that reflects your or their roots and culture, and then tell us a bit about it while we take a taste or two or ten? If you leave it all to me, I mean I could boil some oatmeal for you and whip up some sauerkraut (I'm Scottish and Bohemian) but I don't think anyone would come. No offense, Grandmas MacGregor and Pasternock. 

What do you think—want to come to a shared meal featuring many families' favorite dishes that make your neighbors happy, hungry and proud? A focus on similarities can help us put any sense of "otherness" aside, methinks. Can't hurt. 

I'd love to have as many continents and cultures represented as possible. Please click the link below and let me know what you'll bring and why your heart sings when you come home and sniff it cooking. If your family doesn't warm to a particular dish, email me because the cookbook "Share: The Cookbook That Celebrates Our Common Humanity" has lots and lots of recipes. Talk to you soon.

"Almost every culture has its own variation on chicken soup, 
and rightly so - it's one of the most gratifying dishes on the face of the Earth.”

—Yotam Ottolenghi

Free event, September 29 (Sunday), 1-2:30 p.m.

Please bring a plate, fork, napkin and a beverage.
No single-use plastic or styrofoam please.

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I’ll bring Gugelhupf from this cookbook and my Scottish-side family recipe for Cullen Skink (potato and leek soup).

Name *
Name
Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

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Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

Skinny Books, Fat Content Club: The Fifth Child

Skinny Books, Fat Content Club: The Fifth Child

The Fifth Child by Doris Lessing

Wednesday,  October 2, 6:30–7:30 p.m.

Harriet and David Lovatt, parents of four children, have created an idyll of domestic bliss in defiance of the social trends of late 1960s England. While around them crime and unrest surge, the Lovatts are certain that their old-fashioned contentment can protect them from the world outside—until the birth of their fifth baby. Gruesomely goblin-like in appearance, insatiably hungry, abnormally strong and violent, Ben has nothing innocent or infant-like about him. As he grows older and more terrifying, Harriet finds she cannot love him, David cannot bring himself to touch him, and their four older children are afraid of him. Understanding that he will never be accepted anywhere, Harriet and David are torn between their instincts as parents and their shocked reaction to this fierce and unlovable child whose existence shatters their belief in a benign world.

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This book club will reads and discusses fiction books under 200 pages that present some great moral dilemmas, plot twists, memorable characters and ideas that just beg for discussion.  Though they look deceptively short and simple, they will WOW you with the depth of their meaning and the precision of their language.  Even if you are already in a book club, you could squeeze this one in.  Meetings will last just one hour, so discussion will be as intense as the reading. 

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!

 

 

 


Nonfiction Bookclub: The Great Chicago Fire

Nonfiction Bookclub: The Great Chicago Fire

A new monthly nonfiction book club will meet at PPB 261 on the first Thursdays of the month.  

Ann and Steph will lead discussions on a variety of reads within the genre, including history, biography, current events, memoirs and science and nature. We are excited to offer this new series.

Free! Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455.


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The Great Chicago Fire and The Peshtigo Fire and The Great Chicago Fire of 1871:  The Story of the Blaze that Destroyed the Midwest's Largest City by Charles River Editors

The Deadly Night of October 8, 1871 chronicles the story of two of America’s deadliest fires. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about the Great Chicago Fire and the Peshtigo fire like never before, in no time at all. 

It had taken about 40 years for Chicago to grow from a small settlement of about 300 people into a thriving metropolis with a population of 300,000, but in just two days in 1871, much of that progress was burned to the ground. In arguably the most famous fire in American history, a blaze in the southwestern section of Chicago began to burn out of control on the night of October 8, 1871. Thanks to The Chicago Tribune, the fire has been apocryphally credited to a cow kicking over a lantern in Mrs. Catherine O’Leary’s barn, and though that was not true, the rumor dogged Mrs. O’Leary to the grave.

These two books chronicle one of the largest natural disasters of the 19th century in America. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 like never before, in no time at all.

A Good Yarn Bookclub: The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

A Good Yarn Bookclub: The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Prairie Path Books (map)

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All are invited to join this book club. We meet from 1:30-3:00 the first Sunday of every month!

Free!

An ardent young woman, her cowardly lover, and her aging vengeful husband—these are the central characters in this stark drama of the conflict between passion and convention in the harsh world of seventeenth-century Boston. Tremendously moving and rich in psychological insight, this dramatic depiction of the struggle between mind and heart illuminates Hawthorne's concern with our Puritan past and its influence on American life.

An ardent young woman, her cowardly lover, and her aging vengeful husband—these are the central characters in this stark drama of the conflict between passion and convention in the harsh world of seventeenth-century Boston. Tremendously moving and rich in psychological insight, this dramatic depiction of the struggle between mind and heart illuminates Hawthorne's concern with our Puritan past and its influence on American life.


Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

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Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts

Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts

The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts
by Maxine Hong Kingston
Whenever Jenny and I hear folks saying "I cannot even imagine that ..." we as readers know that actually you can begin to understand almost anything, especially if an amazing storyteller takes you by the hand along her way. Last winter I began to sort of understand cannabalism after reading Nathanial Philbrick's "In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex."  You guys, I'm not kidding—Philbrick is so good he took me there. So, the New York Times published their 50 Best Memoirs of the Past 50 Years,* and that got me and Jen noodling:  Should we do a Morning Memoir book club, but only with Manageable-in-Length Memoirs (meaning with one exception only 200-ish pages), all by women from diverse backgrounds written over the last five decades?  

We said "OK!" to each other and now we can't wait to imagine lives different from our own in some ways, but looking for connection and common ground at every turn.  Come on along and imagine with us.

*The New York Times’s book critics select the most outstanding memoirs published since 1969.


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In her award-winning book The Woman Warrior, Maxine Hong Kingston created an entirely new form—an exhilarating blend of autobiography and mythology, of world and self, of hot rage and cool analysis. First published in 1976, it has become a classic in its innovative portrayal of multiple and intersecting identities—immigrant, female, Chinese, American.

As a girl, Kingston lives in two confounding worlds: the California to which her parents have immigrated and the China of her mother’s “talk stories.” The fierce and wily women warriors of her mother’s tales clash jarringly with the harsh reality of female oppression out of which they come. Kingston’s sense of self emerges in the mystifying gaps in these stories, which she learns to fill with stories of her own. A warrior of words, she forges fractured myths and memories into an incandescent whole, achieving a new understanding of her family’s past and her own present.


Please RSVP as we will make treats, and please call to order these paperbook books from your old buddy, Prairie Path Books!

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!




Cookbook Demonstration: Real. Good. Food. with Dr. Jamie Thomure

Cookbook Demonstration: Real. Good. Food. with Dr. Jamie Thomure

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PPB welcomes Dr. Jamie Thomure to demonstrate yummy + healthy food in a series of cookbook demonstrations.  Jamie has led events with us before; she is an avid home-chef, parent and chiropractor at DuPage Family Wellness in Warrenville.  Dr. Jamie learned personally about the benefits of eating an anti-inflammatory diet in 2012.  This inspired her passion for helping people to eat real food that is good—meaning yummy and easy preparations for fresh vegetables and fruits plus the right meats and fats. Call and sign up to learn about, or more about—what keto or paleo or gluten-free (that is: simple nutritious meals) can mean for you and your family.  See you soon! 

$35/demo + $15 shopping credit included!
Space is limited, tell us you can come, (630) 765-7455!


Dr. Thomure will cook from Cook Once Eat All Week by Cassie Joy Garcia

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Have you ever tried a meal prep plan before and gotten so excited about having your cooking for the week done ahead of time, only to find yourself totally exhausted after a full day in the kitchen, shocked by your grocery bill, and tired of the same leftovers by Tuesday? Cassy Joy Garcia had been there, too. As a mom, business owner, and Nutrition Consultant, she needed to get a healthy, affordable, and tasty dinner on the table fast every night, and she knew there had to be a better way to do it.

She finally cracked the code when she discovered that by batch-cooking a protein, starch, and vegetable each week she could easily assemble three fresh, diverse meals in minimal time. After years of her readers asking her for better meal prep strategies and easy recipes, she released 4 weeks of recipes on her blog, Fed and Fit. Since then, tens of thousands of people have made and raved about the series and begged for more!

In this book you’ll find 26 weeks of affordable, healthy, delicious meals that your family will love eating, and a chapter full of bonus 20-minute meals. Optional Instant Pot and slow cooker instructions are included to get you even more time back in your week. With a Real Food foundation, the weeks in this book aim to support dietary approaches that range from: gluten-free, dairy-free, Paleo, low carb, egg-free, kid-friendly and more.




Author visit: Patricia Toht

Author visit: Patricia Toht

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Come hear Patricia read from and sign her new book, Pick a Pumpkin. Pairing a wonderfully rhythmic read-aloud text with expressive retro illustrations, author Patricia Toht and illustrator Jarvis capture all the excitement and familial feeling of a favorite holiday tradition. Readers will be happy to follow along with each step, from picking out the perfect specimen at the pumpkin patch (be sure to stop for cider and toffee apples) to carting it home, scooping out the insides, carving a scary face, and finally lighting a candle inside — savoring the familiar ritual of transforming an ordinary pumpkin into a one-of-a-kind glowing jack-o’-lantern.

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Free event! Call to say you can come, (630) 765-7455.

Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

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Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

New Book Party! Martha Stewart's Cookie Perfection

New Book Party! Martha Stewart's Cookie Perfection

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Come celebrate the inimitable Martha’s latest offering, and try a few tastes of yummies like
Giant White-Chocolate-Pecan Cookies, Peanut-Butter Sandwich Cookies, Sparkly Lemon Cookies and Triple Chocolate Brownie Cups. 

Tell us you can come, (630) 765-7455! $5/person

Jenny Riddle as Julie Andrews

Jenny Riddle as Julie Andrews

As a dramatic book reviewer, Jenny motivates, educates, and entertains audiences with her  unique interpretations of best-selling books in which she becomes the characters telling their real-life stories. For more than fifteen years, Jenny has been delighting audiences with her captivating style of storytelling. At the end of each review, Jenny also shares her current “favorite reads.”

Everyone remembers Julie Andrews as Mary Poppins and Maria Von Trapp, but who was she before that? The voice that Julie Andrews thought of as a “gimmick” at age 10 became one of the most recognizable voices in the world. Join Jenny as she dramatizes the life of Julie Andrews, before she was Mary or Maria, telling her story and singing her songs in her presentation of Julie Andrews’ memoir, Home: The Early Years with updates from Andrews’ recent memoir Homework: A Memoir of My Hollywood Years—with piano accompaniment!


$15/person
Call the store to say you can come,
(630) 765-7455!



Learn more about Jenny

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Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

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Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

Cookbook Demonstration: Love & Lemon Every Day

Cookbook Demonstration: Love & Lemon Every Day

Best Tastes from Nearby States 

Cooking Demonstration Series

Last year Cathy and I explored the great food of Italy in our cookbook demonstrations. This year our focus is closer to home - in fact it IS home!  Join us as we celebrate the best tastes of Illinois and our surrounding states. — Sandy

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Love & Lemon Every Day

by Jeanine Donofrio 

Known for her insanely flavorful vegetable recipes and stunning photography, Jeanine Donofrio celebrates plants at the center of the plate with more than 100 new vegetarian recipes. In this book, Jeanine shows you how to make any meal, from breakfast to dessert, where produce is the star. These exciting and approachable recipes will become instant additions to your family's regular meal rotation.


$35/demo ($15 shopping credit included!) 

Space is limited at all of our cooking demonstrations, call today to tell us you can come, (630) 765-7455!

We Have A Story To Tell: When I Was a Kid

We Have A Story To Tell: When I Was a Kid

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Okay, so I asked my PPB pal Tom Paulsen to come over to talk about maybe featuring him as the next "Elder" in our Wisdom series. PPB and me have been stunned at the response to that offering; in fact within 90 minutes, for both of the first two events, we have sold out. I confess that my own mother, who apparently is in no hurry to read my emails or gather and organize her friends - has weaseled her way in after we closed them. I mean, really.

So I want to continue the Elder Wisdom series for sure and I called Tom. Really he's too young but he's such a fascinating person and great listener that he came to mind. He came over and we ended up sharing so many stories we never really got around to that Elder business. In fact, Tom and I barely met because fun PPB friends (Mary! Carol!) came in and after I introduced everyone we got to telling tale after tale. One great tangent we traveled was our group recall of "Storms We Have Known." It was so dang fun.

Our first topic is: When I Was A Kid. Tom, Mary, Carol and I really got going on that one and we were laughing and relating for about an hour! I shared that once of my clearest memories is my brother saying "that didn't hurt!" to me. See we had a neighborhood gang and some were 8 or so years older than me. I really wanted to keep up because of the fun and even thrilling adventures made possible because my mom was—WHERE? Where were our parents? Anyway, it made for some interesting outings—I bet you can relate. So this one time, Don down the street, who was way older than me—had a rusty old trampoline AND a pool and the gang tried to double-bounce me from the tramp INTO the pool because I was littlest. Mom? Mom?? Anyway, I remember the kids being disappointed I wasn't "staying in a ball!" so I tried real hard lock my arms around my knees - I remember it like yesterday. Anyway, I remember adrenaline and terror, but I can't remember if I ever made the big splash. Some of we four had more serious things to share, so at this event we will follow the live, organic energy of the group.

Call the store to sign up, (630) 765-7455, it will be so fun!

Free event

Living Room Conversations

Living Room Conversations

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Mondays, 6:30–8:00 p.m., October 28 and November 25
October 28: Relationships and Talking about Politics
November 25: To Vote or Not to Vote
Please note there will be no meeting in December.

Prairie Path Books is proud to welcome as hosts for this series, the Wheaton League of Women's Voters, who are committed to  civic engagement and education (all genders welcome!).  For more information, contact Barbara Laimans, (630) 231-0833.

Founded in 2010, the non-profit organization “Living Room Conversations” with one goal: bringing back civil discourse on current topics so as to increase understanding, reveal common ground and allow for discussion for possible solutions. LRC provides training for facilitators, topics and talking points, and maybe most important a structure, or “conversation agreement” all participants need to follow. One participant described her LRC experience this way: “For once I wasn't standing on my soapbox trying to win someone to my side or defend my stance with strong words.  The ground rules threw that all out the window and put in its place a curious mind and an attitude of respect for my neighbors.”

The first conversation topic will be The America We Want to Be.  This topic is warm, welcoming and a perfect format for hearing different perspectives on America, our fears about it, and our hopes and dreams for it.  All community members are invited to participate.

For more information about this program, including a copy of the LRC Conversation Agreement and a summary of the first topic, visit:  www.livingroomconversations.org and www.livingroomconversations.org/topics/america_we_want_to_be_founding_aspirations/

To register, visit: www.livingroomcomversation.eventbrite.com



Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

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Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

A Good Yarn Bookclub: The Story of Arthur Truluv

A Good Yarn Bookclub: The Story of Arthur Truluv

Prairie Path Books (map)

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All are invited to join this book club. We meet from 1:30-3:00 the first Sunday of every month!

Free!

Sunday, November 3  “I dare you to read this novel and not fall in love with Arthur Truluv. His story will make you laugh and cry, and will show you a love that never ends, and what it means to be truly human.”—Fannie Flagg  For the past six months, Arthur Moses’s days have looked the same: He tends to his rose garden and to Gordon, his cat, then rides the bus to the cemetery to visit his beloved late wife for lunch. The last thing Arthur would imagine is for one unlikely encounter to utterly transform his life.  Eighteen-year-old Maddy Harris is an introspective girl who visits the cemetery to escape the other kids at school. One afternoon she joins Arthur—a gesture that begins a surprising friendship between two lonely souls. Moved by Arthur’s kindness and devotion, Maddy gives him the nickname “Truluv.” As Arthur’s neighbor Lucille moves into their orbit, the unlikely trio band together and, through heartache and hardships, help one another rediscover their own potential to start anew.  Wonderfully written and full of profound observations about life, The Story of Arthur Truluv is a beautiful and moving novel of compassion in the face of loss, of the small acts that turn friends into family, and of the possibilities to achieve happiness at any age.

Sunday, November 3
“I dare you to read this novel and not fall in love with Arthur Truluv. His story will make you laugh and cry, and will show you a love that never ends, and what it means to be truly human.”—Fannie Flagg

For the past six months, Arthur Moses’s days have looked the same: He tends to his rose garden and to Gordon, his cat, then rides the bus to the cemetery to visit his beloved late wife for lunch. The last thing Arthur would imagine is for one unlikely encounter to utterly transform his life.

Eighteen-year-old Maddy Harris is an introspective girl who visits the cemetery to escape the other kids at school. One afternoon she joins Arthur—a gesture that begins a surprising friendship between two lonely souls. Moved by Arthur’s kindness and devotion, Maddy gives him the nickname “Truluv.” As Arthur’s neighbor Lucille moves into their orbit, the unlikely trio band together and, through heartache and hardships, help one another rediscover their own potential to start anew.

Wonderfully written and full of profound observations about life, The Story of Arthur Truluv is a beautiful and moving novel of compassion in the face of loss, of the small acts that turn friends into family, and of the possibilities to achieve happiness at any age.


The GardenWorks Project Food Readers Club: Animal, Vegetable, Miracle

The GardenWorks Project Food Readers Club: Animal, Vegetable, Miracle

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The mission of The GardenWorks Project is to promote organic suburban agriculture to improve the well-being of our community, the environment, and those facing food insecurity. They empower, educate, and support all food growers in their efforts to nourish their families and neighbors in need.

All are invited to our GardenWorks Project Book Club. In November, they will consider “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life” by Barbara Kingsolver.

To learn more about GardenWorks Project, visit www.gardenworksproject.org.




Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

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Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

Skinny Books, Fat Content Club: White Houses

Skinny Books, Fat Content Club: White Houses

The Fifth Child by Doris Lessing

Wednesday,  October 2, 6:30–7:30 p.m.

For readers of The Paris Wife and The Swans of Fifth Avenue comes a “sensuous, captivating account of a forbidden affair between two women” (People)—Eleanor Roosevelt and “first friend” Lorena Hickok.

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This book club will reads and discusses fiction books under 200 pages that present some great moral dilemmas, plot twists, memorable characters and ideas that just beg for discussion.  Though they look deceptively short and simple, they will WOW you with the depth of their meaning and the precision of their language.  Even if you are already in a book club, you could squeeze this one in.  Meetings will last just one hour, so discussion will be as intense as the reading. 

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!

 

 

 


Nonfiction Bookclub: Dearest Friend: A Life of Abigail Adams

Nonfiction Bookclub: Dearest Friend: A Life of Abigail Adams

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A monthly nonfiction bookclub meets at PPB 261 on the first Thursdays of the month.  

Ann and Steph will lead discussions on a variety of reads within the genre, including history, biography, current events, memoirs and science and nature. We are excited to offer this new series.

Free! Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455.



This is the life of Abigail Adams, wife of patriot John Adams, who became the most influential woman in Revolutionary America. Rich with excerpts from her personal letters, Dearest Friend captures the public and private sides of this fascinating woman, who was both an advocate of slave emancipation and a burgeoning feminist, urging her husband to “Remember the Ladies” as he framed the laws of their new country.

John and Abigail Adams married for love. While John traveled in America and abroad to help forge a new nation, Abigail remained at home, raising four children, managing their estate, and writing letters to her beloved husband. Chronicling their remarkable fifty-four-year marriage, her blossoming feminism, her battles with loneliness, and her friendships with Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, Dearest Friend paints a portrait of Abigail Adams as an intelligent, resourceful, and outspoken woman.


Cookbook Demonstration: Real. Good. Food. with Dr. Jamie Thomure

Cookbook Demonstration: Real. Good. Food. with Dr. Jamie Thomure

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PPB welcomes Dr. Jamie Thomure to demonstrate yummy + healthy food in a series of cookbook demonstrations.  Jamie has led events with us before; she is an avid home-chef, parent and chiropractor at DuPage Family Wellness in Warrenville.  Dr. Jamie learned personally about the benefits of eating an anti-inflammatory diet in 2012.  This inspired her passion for helping people to eat real food that is good—meaning yummy and easy preparations for fresh vegetables and fruits plus the right meats and fats. Call and sign up to learn about, or more about—what keto or paleo or gluten-free (that is: simple nutritious meals) can mean for you and your family.  See you soon! 

$35/demo + $15 shopping credit included!
Space is limited, tell us you can come, (630) 765-7455!


Dr. Thomure will cook from Against All Grain Celebrations by Danielle Walker

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When people adopt a new diet for health or personal reasons, they worry most about the parties, holidays, and events with strong food traditions, fearing their fond memories will be lost along with the newly eliminated food groups. After suffering for years with a debilitating autoimmune disease and missing many of these special occasions herself, Danielle Walker has revived the joy that cooking for holidays can bring in Danielle Walker's Against All Grain Celebrations, a collection of recipes and menus for twelve special occasions throughout the year.

Featuring a variety of birthday cakes, finger foods to serve at a baby or bridal shower, and re-creations of backyard barbecue standards like peach cobbler and corn bread, Danielle includes all of the classics. There’s a full Thanksgiving spread—complete with turkey and stuffing, creamy green bean casserole, and pies—and menus for Christmas dinner; a New Year's Eve cocktail party and Easter brunch are covered, along with suggestions for beverages and cocktails and the all-important desserts. Recipes can be mixed and matched among the various occasions, and many of the dishes are simple enough for everyday cooking. Stunning full-color photographs of every dish make browsing the pages as delightful as cooking the recipes, and beautiful party images provide approachable and creative entertaining ideas.

Making recipes using unfamiliar ingredients can cause anxiety, and while trying a new menu on a regular weeknight leaves some room for error, the meal simply cannot fail when you have a table full of guests celebrating a special occasion. Danielle has transformed her most cherished family traditions into trustworthy recipes you can feel confident serving, whether you’re hosting a special guest with food allergies, or cooking for a crowd of regular grain-eaters.



Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

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Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: Conundrum: From James to Jan—An Extraordinary Personal Narrative of Transsexualism

Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: Conundrum: From James to Jan—An Extraordinary Personal Narrative of Transsexualism

Conundrum: From James to Jan—An Extraordinary Personal Narrative of Transsexualism
by Jan Morris
Whenever Jenny and I hear folks saying "I cannot even imagine that ..." we as readers know that actually you can begin to understand almost anything, especially if an amazing storyteller takes you by the hand along her way. Last winter I began to sort of understand cannabalism after reading Nathanial Philbrick's "In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex."  You guys, I'm not kidding—Philbrick is so good he took me there. So, the New York Times published their 50 Best Memoirs of the Past 50 Years,* and that got me and Jen noodling:  Should we do a Morning Memoir book club, but only with Manageable-in-Length Memoirs (meaning with one exception only 200-ish pages), all by women from diverse backgrounds written over the last five decades?  

We said "OK!" to each other and now we can't wait to imagine lives different from our own in some ways, but looking for connection and common ground at every turn.  Come on along and imagine with us.

*The New York Times’s book critics select the most outstanding memoirs published since 1969.


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The great travel writer Jan Morris was born James Morris. James Morris distinguished himself in the British military, became a successful and physically daring reporter, climbed mountains, crossed deserts, and established a reputation as a historian of the British empire. He was happily married, with several children. To all appearances, he was not only a man, but a man’s man.

Please RSVP as we will make treats, and please call to order these paperbook books from your old buddy, Prairie Path Books!

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!




Cookbook Demonstration: Ruffage: A Practical Guide to Vegetables

Cookbook Demonstration: Ruffage: A Practical Guide to Vegetables

Best Tastes from Nearby States 

Cooking Demonstration Series

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Last year Cathy and I explored the great food of Italy in our cookbook demonstrations. This year our focus is closer to home - in fact it IS home!  Join us as we celebrate the best tastes of Illinois and our surrounding states. — Sandy

Ruffage by Abra Berens

Ruffage: A Practical Guide to Vegetables is not your typical cookbook—it is a how-to-cook book of a variety of vegetables. Author Abra Berens—chef, farmer, Midwesterner—shares a collection of techniques that result in new flavors, textures, and ways to enjoy all the vegetables you want to eat. From confit to caramelized and everything in between—braised, blistered, roasted and raw—the cooking methods covered here make this cookbook a go-to reference.

$35/demo ($15 shopping credit included!) 

Space is limited at all of our cooking demonstrations, call today to tell us you can come, (630) 765-7455!

Jenny & Sandy's Holiday Book Review: Champagne & Sleigh Bells

Jenny & Sandy's Holiday Book Review: Champagne & Sleigh Bells

Join Sandy and Jenny and our PPB readers to learn about the best new books to curl up with on snowy evenings!  

$5/person

Call the store and let us know you can come, (630) 765-7455.

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Katie McElligott author visit and book signing!

Katie McElligott author visit and book signing!

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The snuggle is real…

Nothing Is Scary With Harry tells the story about a little girl, her blanket, and the value of comfort to provide strength in childhood and beyond.

Katie McElligott is a first-time author and a full-time Creative Director at a Chicago advertising agency. She lives in Oak Park, Illinois with her husband, two small children and a cat named Ramona Quimby. 

Jennifer Bell is an illustrator whose work can be found on greeting cards, in magazines and more than a dozen children’s books. She lives in Minnesota with her husband and cranky cat.

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Join us for this author event/book signing plus snacks and bevs. Call today to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!




Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk&Cookies.jpg

Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

Santa is coming!

Santa is coming!

santaemail.jpg

With just the same old smiling face

And for the same old reason

St. Nick will be in our new place

This Merry Christmas Season


When Prairie Path Books opened five years ago, we were lucky to connect with Santa, who understood immediately that private time with children and families was a win/win. Can you imagine? You and your wee ones get a 10 minute private visit with Santa–you can count on it.* So dress up or down, bring your camera and grandma/pa if you wish. The PPB elves will have twinkle-trees and merry wreaths for your photo opportunities. And of course we will host all families with a Christmas party with jolly snacks and beverages.  

Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-745!

$50/family (including jolly snacks and bevs)

*Gosh in the past five years we’ve learned that: 

• we will do all we can to accommodate sick children, but Santa RSVPs are non-refundable

• no reservation is accepted over digital media or phone message, and payment is required upon reservation

• often, if your children are having a “moment” your understanding families before and after your reservation will make a shift.  Everyone wants for you your best Santa experience

• a portion of every paid reservation will go to funding Santa visits for local children that need assistance

Santa is coming!

Santa is coming!

santaemail.jpg

With just the same old smiling face

And for the same old reason

St. Nick will be in our new place

This Merry Christmas Season


When Prairie Path Books opened five years ago, we were lucky to connect with Santa, who understood immediately that private time with children and families was a win/win. Can you imagine? You and your wee ones get a 10 minute private visit with Santa–you can count on it.* So dress up or down, bring your camera and grandma/pa if you wish. The PPB elves will have twinkle-trees and merry wreaths for your photo opportunities. And of course we will host all families with a Christmas party with jolly snacks and beverages.  

Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-745!

$50/family (including jolly snacks and bevs)

*Gosh in the past five years we’ve learned that: 

• we will do all we can to accommodate sick children, but Santa RSVPs are non-refundable

• no reservation is accepted over digital media or phone message, and payment is required upon reservation

• often, if your children are having a “moment” your understanding families before and after your reservation will make a shift.  Everyone wants for you your best Santa experience

• a portion of every paid reservation will go to funding Santa visits for local children that need assistance

Living Room Conversations

Living Room Conversations

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Mondays, 6:30–8:00 p.m., September 23, October 28 and November 25
November 25: To Vote or Not to Vote
Please note there will be no meeting in December.

Prairie Path Books is proud to welcome as hosts for this series, the Wheaton League of Women's Voters, who are committed to  civic engagement and education (all genders welcome!).  For more information, contact Barbara Laimans, (630) 231-0833.

Founded in 2010, the non-profit organization “Living Room Conversations” with one goal: bringing back civil discourse on current topics so as to increase understanding, reveal common ground and allow for discussion for possible solutions. LRC provides training for facilitators, topics and talking points, and maybe most important a structure, or “conversation agreement” all participants need to follow. One participant described her LRC experience this way: “For once I wasn't standing on my soapbox trying to win someone to my side or defend my stance with strong words.  The ground rules threw that all out the window and put in its place a curious mind and an attitude of respect for my neighbors.”

The first conversation topic will be The America We Want to Be.  This topic is warm, welcoming and a perfect format for hearing different perspectives on America, our fears about it, and our hopes and dreams for it.  All community members are invited to participate.

For more information about this program, including a copy of the LRC Conversation Agreement and a summary of the first topic, visit:  www.livingroomconversations.org and www.livingroomconversations.org/topics/america_we_want_to_be_founding_aspirations/

To register, visit: www.livingroomcomversation.eventbrite.com



Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

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Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

A Good Yarn Bookclub: The Gown

A Good Yarn Bookclub: The Gown

Prairie Path Books (map)

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All are invited to join this book club. We meet from 1:30-3:00 the first Sunday of every month!

Free!

Sunday, December 1  “For fans of “The Crown,” looking for history served up as intimate drama, and those seeking another angle on royal lives, “The Gown” seems likely to dazzle and delight." – The Washington Post  With  The Gown , Jennifer Robson takes us inside the workrooms where one of the most famous wedding gowns in history was created. Balancing behind-the-scenes details with a sweeping portrait of a society left reeling by the calamitous costs of victory, she introduces readers to three unforgettable heroines, their points of view alternating and intersecting throughout its pages, whose lives are woven together by the pain of survival, the bonds of friendship, and the redemptive power of love.

Sunday, December 1
“For fans of “The Crown,” looking for history served up as intimate drama, and those seeking another angle on royal lives, “The Gown” seems likely to dazzle and delight." – The Washington Post

With The Gown, Jennifer Robson takes us inside the workrooms where one of the most famous wedding gowns in history was created. Balancing behind-the-scenes details with a sweeping portrait of a society left reeling by the calamitous costs of victory, she introduces readers to three unforgettable heroines, their points of view alternating and intersecting throughout its pages, whose lives are woven together by the pain of survival, the bonds of friendship, and the redemptive power of love.



Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

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Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

Nonfiction Bookclub: America's Reluctant Prince

Nonfiction Bookclub: America's Reluctant Prince

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"Non Fiction Fans!! 
A new monthly non fiction book club will meet at PPB 261 on the first Thursdays of the month.  

Ann and Steph will lead discussions on a variety of reads within the genre, including history, biography, current events, memoirs and science and nature. We are excited to offer this new series.

Free! Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455.



A major biography of John F. Kennedy Jr. from a leading historian who was also a close friend, America's Reluctant Prince is a deeply researched, personal, surprising, and revealing portrait of the Kennedy heir the world lost too soon. Through the lens of their decades-long friendship and including exclusive interviews and details from previously classified documents, noted historian and New York Times bestselling author Steven M. Gillon examines John F. Kennedy Jr.'s life and legacy from before his birth to the day he died. Gillon covers the highs, the lows, and the surprising incidents, viewpoints, and relationships that John never discussed publicly, revealing the full story behind JFK Jr.'s complicated and rich life. In the end, Gillon proves that John's life was far more than another tragedy—rather, it's the true key to understanding both the Kennedy legacy and how America's First Family continues to shape the world we live in today.



Santa is coming!

Santa is coming!

santaemail.jpg

With just the same old smiling face

And for the same old reason

St. Nick will be in our new place

This Merry Christmas Season


When Prairie Path Books opened five years ago, we were lucky to connect with Santa, who understood immediately that private time with children and families was a win/win. Can you imagine? You and your wee ones get a 10 minute private visit with Santa–you can count on it.* So dress up or down, bring your camera and grandma/pa if you wish. The PPB elves will have twinkle-trees and merry wreaths for your photo opportunities. And of course we will host all families with a Christmas party with jolly snacks and beverages.  

Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-745!

$50/family (including jolly snacks and bevs)

*Gosh in the past five years we’ve learned that: 

• we will do all we can to accommodate sick children, but Santa RSVPs are non-refundable

• no reservation is accepted over digital media or phone message, and payment is required upon reservation

• often, if your children are having a “moment” your understanding families before and after your reservation will make a shift.  Everyone wants for you your best Santa experience

• a portion of every paid reservation will go to funding Santa visits for local children that need assistance

Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk&Cookies.jpg

Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

Cookbook Demonstration: "Zingerman's Bakehouse" Cooking Demonstration

Cookbook Demonstration: "Zingerman's Bakehouse" Cooking Demonstration

Best Tastes from Nearby States 

Cooking Demonstration Series

Last year Cathy and I explored the great food of Italy in our cookbook demonstrations. This year our focus is closer to home - in fact it IS home!  Join us as we celebrate the best tastes of Illinois and our surrounding states. — Sandy

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Zingerman's Bakehouse
by Amy Emberling  

This is the must-have baking book for bakers of all skill levels. Since 1992, Michigan's renowned artisanal bakery, Zingerman's Bakehouse in Ann Arbor, has fed a fan base across the United States and beyond with their chewy-sweet brownies and gingersnaps, famous sour cream coffee cake, and fragrant loaves of Jewish rye, challah, and sourdough. It's no wonder Zingerman's is a cultural and culinary institution. 



$35/demo ($15 shopping credit included!) 

Space is limited at all of our cooking demonstrations, call today to tell us you can come, (630) 765-7455!

Santa is coming!

Santa is coming!

santaemail.jpg

With just the same old smiling face

And for the same old reason

St. Nick will be in our new place

This Merry Christmas Season


When Prairie Path Books opened five years ago, we were lucky to connect with Santa, who understood immediately that private time with children and families was a win/win. Can you imagine? You and your wee ones get a 10 minute private visit with Santa–you can count on it.* So dress up or down, bring your camera and grandma/pa if you wish. The PPB elves will have twinkle-trees and merry wreaths for your photo opportunities. And of course we will host all families with a Christmas party with jolly snacks and beverages.  

Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-745!

$50/family (including jolly snacks and bevs)

*Gosh in the past five years we’ve learned that: 

• we will do all we can to accommodate sick children, but Santa RSVPs are non-refundable

• no reservation is accepted over digital media or phone message, and payment is required upon reservation

• often, if your children are having a “moment” your understanding families before and after your reservation will make a shift.  Everyone wants for you your best Santa experience

• a portion of every paid reservation will go to funding Santa visits for local children that need assistance

Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk & Cookies Storytime

Milk&Cookies.jpg

Free! Milk & Cookies store time. Bring a friend!

A Good Yarn Bookclub: Cooking for Picasso

A Good Yarn Bookclub: Cooking for Picasso

Prairie Path Books (map)

AGoodYarnLogo.jpg

All are invited to join this book club. We meet from 1:30-3:00 the first Sunday of every month!

Free!

The French Riviera, spring 1936:  It’s off-season in the lovely seaside village of Juan-les-Pins, where seventeen-year-old Ondine cooks with her mother in the kitchen of their family-owned Café Paradis. A mysterious new patron who’s slipped out of Paris and is traveling under a different name has made an unusual request—to have his lunch served to him at the nearby villa he’s secretly rented, where he wishes to remain incognito.  Pablo Picasso is at a momentous crossroads in his personal and professional life—and for him, art and women are always entwined. The spirited Ondine, chafing under her family’s authority and nursing a broken heart, is just beginning to discover her own talents and appetites. Her encounter with Picasso will continue to affect her life for many decades onward, as the great artist and the talented young chef each pursue their own passions and destiny.   New York, present day:  Céline, a Hollywood makeup artist who’s come home for the holidays, learns from her mother, Julie, that Grandmother Ondine once cooked for Picasso. Prompted by her mother’s enigmatic stories and the hint of more family secrets yet to be uncovered, Céline carries out Julie’s wishes and embarks on a voyage to the very town where Ondine and Picasso first met. In the lush, heady atmosphere of the Côte d’Azur, and with the help of several eccentric fellow guests attending a rigorous cooking class at her hotel, Céline discovers truths about art, culture, cuisine, and love that enable her to embrace her own future.  Featuring an array of both fictional characters and the French Riviera’s most famous historical residents, set against the breathtaking scenery of the South of France, Cooking for Picasso is a touching, delectable, and wise story, illuminating the powers of trust, money, art, and creativity in the choices that men and women make as they seek a path toward love, success, and joie de vivre.

The French Riviera, spring 1936: It’s off-season in the lovely seaside village of Juan-les-Pins, where seventeen-year-old Ondine cooks with her mother in the kitchen of their family-owned Café Paradis. A mysterious new patron who’s slipped out of Paris and is traveling under a different name has made an unusual request—to have his lunch served to him at the nearby villa he’s secretly rented, where he wishes to remain incognito.

Pablo Picasso is at a momentous crossroads in his personal and professional life—and for him, art and women are always entwined. The spirited Ondine, chafing under her family’s authority and nursing a broken heart, is just beginning to discover her own talents and appetites. Her encounter with Picasso will continue to affect her life for many decades onward, as the great artist and the talented young chef each pursue their own passions and destiny.

New York, present day: Céline, a Hollywood makeup artist who’s come home for the holidays, learns from her mother, Julie, that Grandmother Ondine once cooked for Picasso. Prompted by her mother’s enigmatic stories and the hint of more family secrets yet to be uncovered, Céline carries out Julie’s wishes and embarks on a voyage to the very town where Ondine and Picasso first met. In the lush, heady atmosphere of the Côte d’Azur, and with the help of several eccentric fellow guests attending a rigorous cooking class at her hotel, Céline discovers truths about art, culture, cuisine, and love that enable her to embrace her own future.

Featuring an array of both fictional characters and the French Riviera’s most famous historical residents, set against the breathtaking scenery of the South of France, Cooking for Picasso is a touching, delectable, and wise story, illuminating the powers of trust, money, art, and creativity in the choices that men and women make as they seek a path toward love, success, and joie de vivre.




Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: Men We Reaped

Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: Men We Reaped

Men We Reaped by Jesmyn Ward
Whenever Jenny and I hear folks saying "I cannot even imagine that ..." we as readers know that actually you can begin to understand almost anything, especially if an amazing storyteller takes you by the hand along her way. Last winter I began to sort of understand cannabalism after reading Nathanial Philbrick's "In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex."  You guys, I'm not kidding—Philbrick is so good he took me there. So, the New York Times published their 50 Best Memoirs of the Past 50 Years,* and that got me and Jen noodling:  Should we do a Morning Memoir book club, but only with Manageable-in-Length Memoirs (meaning with one exception only 200-ish pages), all by women from diverse backgrounds written over the last five decades?  

We said "OK!" to each other and now we can't wait to imagine lives different from our own in some ways, but looking for connection and common ground at every turn.  Come on along and imagine with us.

*The New York Times’s book critics select the most outstanding memoirs published since 1969.


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In five years, Jesmyn Ward lost five young men in her life―to drugs, accidents, suicide, and the bad luck that can follow people who live in poverty, particularly black men. Dealing with these losses, one after another, made Jesmyn ask the question: Why? And as she began to write about the experience of living through all the dying, she realized the truth―and it took her breath away. Her brother and her friends all died because of who they were and where they were from, because they lived with a history of racism and economic struggle that fostered drug addiction and the dissolution of family and relationships. Jesmyn says the answer was so obvious she felt stupid for not seeing it. But it nagged at her until she knew she had to write about her community, to write their stories and her own. 

Jesmyn grew up in poverty in rural Mississippi. She writes powerfully about the pressures this brings, on the men who can do no right and the women who stand in for family in a society where the men are often absent. She bravely tells her story, revisiting the agonizing losses of her only brother and her friends. As the sole member of her family to leave home and pursue higher education, she writes about this parallel American universe with the objectivity distance provides and the intimacy of utter familiarity. A brutal world rendered beautifully, Jesmyn Ward’s memoir will sit comfortably alongside Edwidge Danticat’s Brother, I'm Dying, Tobias Wolff's This Boy’s Life, and Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.


Please RSVP as we will make treats, and please call to order these paperbook books from your old buddy, Prairie Path Books!

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!




Skinny Books, Fat Content Bookclub: A Whole Life

Skinny Books, Fat Content Bookclub: A Whole Life

The President's Hat by Antoine Laurain 

Wednesday,  September 4, 6:30–7:30 p.m.

Dining alone in an elegant Parisian brasserie, accountant Daniel Mercier can hardly believe his eyes when President François Mitterrand sits down to eat at the table next to him. Daniel’s thrill at being in such close proximity to the most powerful man in the land persists even after the presidential party has gone, which is when he discovers that Mitterrand’s black felt hat has been left behind. After a few moments’ soul-searching, Daniel decides to keep the hat as a souvenir of an extraordinary evening. It’s a perfect fit, and as he leaves the restaurant Daniel begins to feel somehow … different.

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This bookclub will reads and discusses fiction books under 200 pages that present some great moral dilemmas, plot twists, memorable characters and ideas that just beg for discussion.  Though they look deceptively short and simple, they will WOW you with the depth of their meaning and the precision of their language.  Even if you are already in a book club, you could squeeze this one in.  Meetings will last just one hour, so discussion will be as intense as the reading. 

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!

 

 

 


A Good Yarn Bookclub: The Atomic City Girls

A Good Yarn Bookclub: The Atomic City Girls

Prairie Path Books (map)

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All are invited to join this book club. We meet from 1:30-3:00 the first Sunday of every month!

Free!

In the bestselling tradition of  Hidden Figures  and  The Wives of Los Alamos,  comes this riveting novel of the everyday people who worked on the Manhattan Project during World War II.  “What you see here, what you hear here, what you do here, let it stay here.”  In November 1944, eighteen-year-old June Walker boards an unmarked bus, destined for a city that doesn’t officially exist. Oak Ridge, Tennessee has sprung up in a matter of months—a town of trailers and segregated houses, 24-hour cafeterias, and constant security checks. There, June joins hundreds of other young girls operating massive machines whose purpose is never explained. They know they are helping to win the war, but must ask no questions and reveal nothing to outsiders.  When the bombing of Hiroshima brings the truth about Oak Ridge into devastating focus, June must confront her ideals about loyalty, patriotism, and war itself.  " The Atomic City Girls  is a fascinating and compelling novel about a little-known piece of WWII history."—Maggie Leffler, international bestselling author  (Globe and Mail) of The Secrets of Flight

In the bestselling tradition of Hidden Figures and The Wives of Los Alamos, comes this riveting novel of the everyday people who worked on the Manhattan Project during World War II.

“What you see here, what you hear here, what you do here, let it stay here.”

In November 1944, eighteen-year-old June Walker boards an unmarked bus, destined for a city that doesn’t officially exist. Oak Ridge, Tennessee has sprung up in a matter of months—a town of trailers and segregated houses, 24-hour cafeterias, and constant security checks. There, June joins hundreds of other young girls operating massive machines whose purpose is never explained. They know they are helping to win the war, but must ask no questions and reveal nothing to outsiders.

When the bombing of Hiroshima brings the truth about Oak Ridge into devastating focus, June must confront her ideals about loyalty, patriotism, and war itself.

"The Atomic City Girls is a fascinating and compelling novel about a little-known piece of WWII history."—Maggie Leffler, international bestselling author (Globe and Mail) of The Secrets of Flight





Skinny books, Fat Content Bookclub: Chemistry

Skinny books, Fat Content Bookclub: Chemistry

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Chemistry by Weike Wang

Wednesday,  February 5, 6:30–7:30 p.m.

A luminous coming-of-age novel about a young female scientist who must recalibrate her life when her academic career goes off track; perfect for readers of Lab Girl and Celeste Ng's Everything I Never Told You

This book club will reads and discusses fiction books under 200 pages that present some great moral dilemmas, plot twists, memorable characters and ideas that just beg for discussion.  Though they look deceptively short and simple, they will WOW you with the depth of their meaning and the precision of their language.  Even if you are already in a book club, you could squeeze this one in.  Meetings will last just one hour, so discussion will be as intense as the reading. 

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!

 

 

 




Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: Autobiography of a Face

Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: Autobiography of a Face

Autobiography of a Face by Lucy Grealy
Whenever Jenny and I hear folks saying "I cannot even imagine that ..." we as readers know that actually you can begin to understand almost anything, especially if an amazing storyteller takes you by the hand along her way. Last winter I began to sort of understand cannabalism after reading Nathanial Philbrick's "In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex."  You guys, I'm not kidding—Philbrick is so good he took me there. So, the New York Times published their 50 Best Memoirs of the Past 50 Years,* and that got me and Jen noodling:  Should we do a Morning Memoir book club, but only with Manageable-in-Length Memoirs (meaning with one exception only 200-ish pages), all by women from diverse backgrounds written over the last five decades?  

We said "OK!" to each other and now we can't wait to imagine lives different from our own in some ways, but looking for connection and common ground at every turn.  Come on along and imagine with us.

*The New York Times’s book critics select the most outstanding memoirs published since 1969.


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This powerful memoir is about the premium we put on beauty and on a woman's face in particular. It took Lucy Grealy twenty years of living with a distorted self-image and more than thirty reconstructive procedures before she could come to terms with her appearance after childhood cancer and surgery that left her jaw disfigured. As a young girl, she absorbed the searing pain of peer rejection and the paralyzing fear of never being loved.


Please RSVP as we will make treats, and please call to order these paperbook books from your old buddy, Prairie Path Books!

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!




"Abraham Lincoln in the Kitchen" event hosted by PPB and Culinary Historians of Illinois

"Abraham Lincoln in the Kitchen" event hosted by PPB and Culinary Historians of Illinois

Abraham Lincoln in the Kitchen: A Culinary View of Lincoln's Life and Times
by Rae Katherine Eighmey

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Abraham Lincoln in the Kitchen is a culinary biography unlike any before. The very assertion of the title—that Abraham Lincoln cooked—is fascinating and true. It's an insight into the everyday life of one of our nation's favorite and most esteemed presidents and a way to experience flavors and textures of the past. Eighmey solves riddles such as what type of barbecue could be served to thousands at political rallies when paper plates and napkins didn't exist, and what gingerbread recipe could have been Lincoln's childhood favorite when few families owned cookie cutters and he could carry the cookies in his pocket. Through Eighmey's eyes and culinary research and experiments--including sleuthing for Lincoln's grocery bills in Springfield ledgers and turning a backyard grill into a cast-iron stove--the foods that Lincoln enjoyed, cooked, or served are translated into modern recipes so that authentic meals and foods of 1820-1865 are possible for home cooks. Feel free to pull up a chair to Lincoln's table.

A Good Yarn Bookclub: Educated by Tara Westover

A Good Yarn Bookclub: Educated by Tara Westover

Prairie Path Books (map)

AGoodYarnLogo.jpg

All are invited to join this book club. We meet from 1:30-3:00 the first Sunday of every month!

Free!

Born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, Tara Westover was seventeen the first time she set foot in a classroom. Her family was so isolated from mainstream society that there was no one to ensure the children received an education, and no one to intervene when one of Tara's older brothers became violent. When another brother got himself into college, Tara decided to try a new kind of life. Her quest for knowledge transformed her, taking her over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge University. Only then would she wonder if she'd traveled too far, if there was still a way home.  "A coming-of-age memoir reminiscent of The Glass Castle."-O: The Oprah Magazine  "Beautiful and propulsive . . . Despite the singularity of [Westover's] childhood, the questions her book poses are universal: How much of ourselves should we give to those we love? And how much must we betray them to grow up?"-Vogue

Born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, Tara Westover was seventeen the first time she set foot in a classroom. Her family was so isolated from mainstream society that there was no one to ensure the children received an education, and no one to intervene when one of Tara's older brothers became violent. When another brother got himself into college, Tara decided to try a new kind of life. Her quest for knowledge transformed her, taking her over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge University. Only then would she wonder if she'd traveled too far, if there was still a way home.

"A coming-of-age memoir reminiscent of The Glass Castle."-O: The Oprah Magazine

"Beautiful and propulsive . . . Despite the singularity of [Westover's] childhood, the questions her book poses are universal: How much of ourselves should we give to those we love? And how much must we betray them to grow up?"-Vogue





Skinny Books, Fat Content Bookclub: We The Animals

Skinny Books, Fat Content Bookclub: We The Animals

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We The Animals by Justin Torres

Wednesday,  March 4, 6:30–7:30 p.m.

In this groundbreaking debut, Justin Torres plunges us into the chaotic heart of one family, the intense bonds of three brothers, and the mythic effects of this fierce love on the people we must become.

"A tremendously gifted writer whose highly personal voice should excite us in much the same way that Raymond Carver’s or Jeffrey Eugenides’s voice did when we first heard it." —Washington Post

"A novel so honest, poetic, and tough that it makes you reexamine what it means to love and to hurt." —O, The Oprah Magazine

"The communal howl of three young brothers sustains this sprint of a novel . . . A kind of incantation." —The New Yorker

This book club will reads and discusses fiction books under 200 pages that present some great moral dilemmas, plot twists, memorable characters and ideas that just beg for discussion.  Though they look deceptively short and simple, they will WOW you with the depth of their meaning and the precision of their language.  Even if you are already in a book club, you could squeeze this one in.  Meetings will last just one hour, so discussion will be as intense as the reading. 

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!

 

 

 




The GardenWorks Project Food Readers Club: We Fed an Island

The GardenWorks Project Food Readers Club: We Fed an Island

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The mission of The GardenWorks Project is to promote organic suburban agriculture to improve the well-being of our community, the environment, and those facing food insecurity. They empower, educate, and support all food growers in their efforts to nourish their families and neighbors in need.

All are invited to our GardenWorks Project Book Club. In March, they will consider “We Fed an Island” by José Andés.

To learn more about GardenWorks Project, visit www.gardenworksproject.org.




Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: Fierce Attachments

Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: Fierce Attachments

Fierce Attachments by Vivian Gornick
Whenever Jenny and I hear folks saying "I cannot even imagine that ..." we as readers know that actually you can begin to understand almost anything, especially if an amazing storyteller takes you by the hand along her way. Last winter I began to sort of understand cannabalism after reading Nathanial Philbrick's "In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex."  You guys, I'm not kidding—Philbrick is so good he took me there. So, the New York Times published their 50 Best Memoirs of the Past 50 Years,* and that got me and Jen noodling:  Should we do a Morning Memoir book club, but only with Manageable-in-Length Memoirs (meaning with one exception only 200-ish pages), all by women from diverse backgrounds written over the last five decades?  

We said "OK!" to each other and now we can't wait to imagine lives different from our own in some ways, but looking for connection and common ground at every turn.  Come on along and imagine with us.

*The New York Times’s book critics select the most outstanding memoirs published since 1969.


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In this deeply etched and haunting memoir, Vivian Gornick tells the story of her lifelong battle with her mother for independence. There have been numerous books about mother and daughter, but none has dealt with this closest of filial relations as directly or as ruthlessly. Gornick’s groundbreaking book confronts what Edna O’Brien has called “the prinicpal crux of female despair”: the unacknowledged Oedipal nature of the mother-daughter bond.


Please RSVP as we will make treats, and please call to order these paperbook books from your old buddy, Prairie Path Books!

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!




A Good Yarn Bookclub: Once Upon A River

A Good Yarn Bookclub: Once Upon A River

Prairie Path Books (map)

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All are invited to join this book club. We meet from 1:30-3:00 the first Sunday of every month!

Free!

On a dark midwinter’s night in an ancient inn on the river Thames, an extraordinary event takes place. The regulars are telling stories to while away the dark hours, when the door bursts open on a grievously wounded stranger. In his arms is the lifeless body of a small child. Hours later, the girl stirs, takes a breath and returns to life. Is it a miracle? Is it magic? Or can science provide an explanation? These questions have many answers, some of them quite dark indeed.  Once Upon a River is a glorious tapestry of a book that combines folklore and science, magic and myth. Suspenseful, romantic, and richly atmospheric, this is “a beguiling tale, full of twists and turns like the river at its heart, and just as rich and intriguing” (M.L. Stedman, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Light Between Oceans).

On a dark midwinter’s night in an ancient inn on the river Thames, an extraordinary event takes place. The regulars are telling stories to while away the dark hours, when the door bursts open on a grievously wounded stranger. In his arms is the lifeless body of a small child. Hours later, the girl stirs, takes a breath and returns to life. Is it a miracle? Is it magic? Or can science provide an explanation? These questions have many answers, some of them quite dark indeed.

Once Upon a River is a glorious tapestry of a book that combines folklore and science, magic and myth. Suspenseful, romantic, and richly atmospheric, this is “a beguiling tale, full of twists and turns like the river at its heart, and just as rich and intriguing” (M.L. Stedman, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Light Between Oceans).






Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: The Liar's Club

Manageable Memoirs Bookclub: The Liar's Club

The Liars’ Club by Mary Karr
Whenever Jenny and I hear folks saying "I cannot even imagine that ..." we as readers know that actually you can begin to understand almost anything, especially if an amazing storyteller takes you by the hand along her way. Last winter I began to sort of understand cannabalism after reading Nathanial Philbrick's "In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex."  You guys, I'm not kidding—Philbrick is so good he took me there. So, the New York Times published their 50 Best Memoirs of the Past 50 Years,* and that got me and Jen noodling:  Should we do a Morning Memoir book club, but only with Manageable-in-Length Memoirs (meaning with one exception only 200-ish pages), all by women from diverse backgrounds written over the last five decades?  

We said "OK!" to each other and now we can't wait to imagine lives different from our own in some ways, but looking for connection and common ground at every turn.  Come on along and imagine with us.

*The New York Times’s book critics select the most outstanding memoirs published since 1969.


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The Liars’ Club took the world by storm and raised the art of the memoir to an entirely new level, bringing about a dramatic revival of the form. Karr’s comic childhood in an east Texas oil town brings us characters as darkly hilarious as any of J. D. Salinger’s—a hard-drinking daddy, a sister who can talk down the sheriff at age twelve, and an oft-married mother whose accumulated secrets threaten to destroy them all. This unsentimental and profoundly moving account of an apocalyptic childhood is as “funny, lively, and un-put-downable” (USA Today) today as it ever was.


Please RSVP as we will make treats, and please call to order these paperbook books from your old buddy, Prairie Path Books!

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!




Skinny Books, Fat Content Bookclub: Dear Committee Members

Skinny Books, Fat Content Bookclub: Dear Committee Members

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Dear Committee Members
by Julie Schumacher

Wednesday,  May 6, 6:30–7:30 p.m.

Jason Fitger is a beleaguered professor of creative writing and literature at Payne University, a small and not very distinguished liberal arts college in the midwest. His department is facing draconian cuts and squalid quarters, while one floor above them the Economics Department is getting lavishly remodeled offices. His once-promising writing career is in the doldrums, as is his romantic life, in part as the result of his unwise use of his private affairs for his novels. His star (he thinks) student can't catch a break with his brilliant (he thinks) work Accountant in a Bordello, based on Melville's Bartleby. In short, his life is a tale of woe, and the vehicle this droll and inventive novel uses to tell that tale is a series of hilarious letters of recommendation that Fitger is endlessly called upon by his students and colleagues to produce, each one of which is a small masterpiece of high dudgeon, low spirits, and passive-aggressive strategies. We recommend Dear Committee Members to you in the strongest possible terms.

This book club will reads and discusses fiction books under 200 pages that present some great moral dilemmas, plot twists, memorable characters and ideas that just beg for discussion.  Though they look deceptively short and simple, they will WOW you with the depth of their meaning and the precision of their language.  Even if you are already in a book club, you could squeeze this one in.  Meetings will last just one hour, so discussion will be as intense as the reading. 

Free!
Call the store to say you can come, (630) 765-7455!

 

 

 




The GardenWorks Project Food Readers Club: Pressure Cooker

The GardenWorks Project Food Readers Club: Pressure Cooker

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The mission of The GardenWorks Project is to promote organic suburban agriculture to improve the well-being of our community, the environment, and those facing food insecurity. They empower, educate, and support all food growers in their efforts to nourish their families and neighbors in need.

All are invited to our GardenWorks Project Book Club. In August, they will consider “Pressure Cooker” by Sarah Bowen.

To learn more about GardenWorks Project, visit www.gardenworksproject.org.