Subject: Subject: Books loaned or given to you by friends 

The Last Thing He Told Meby Laura Dave
This book was received from our reader’s daughter. A husband disappears, but leaves a note for his wife to take care of her stepdaughter. The teenager does not like her step mom, but they set out to find Dad.  In searching they find that he is not who he said he was, so who is he?  The two become friends and continue the search. We won’t disclose the ending.

This book is available at the Grover Beach Community Library.

Atomic Habitsby James Clear
Each Chapter starts with a story and gives practical ideas to implement the chapter’s subject. The author suggests you lean toward what you are good at, but each of us has limits of how far to go. There is also advice on how to stop a bad habit, in short, make it harder to do. How many habits are ones we learned as children

Not actually a loaned book, but led to a discussion of how many habits we actually have that started as children.

A Cake And The Rain: By Jimmy Webb
Recommended by a sister-in-law this book is by a songwriter and lyricist who was very prolific and well known. Though not a singer, he had many friends and wrote many hits. The book jumps around time wise, but is otherwise well written and interesting. You will recognize many names. The title pertains to a birthday party that was thrown in MacArthur Park, and got rained on.

The author was known by several members of our group, and we were treated to a small selection of his music.

Second Wind and Under Orders: by Dick Francis
These books were a gift from a fellow worker who warned that you might not think steeple chasing as interesting, but you WILL like the books. Our reader then read every book he wrote. Dick Francis was a steeplechase jockey, very successful and even rode some of the Queen’s horses. He took to writing when recovering from the many accidents jockey’s have. Under Orders was written in England about racing and Second Wind was written when he retired and moved to Florida. It involves weather-reporting as it pertains to racing and hurricanes.  He has won many writing awards in addition to his jockey awards.

The Grover Beach Community Library has many of Dick Francis’ books.  All recommended.

Agha Ali Asaar: by Syeda Mikza
This book was a gift from a cousin in India who wrote the book about her great grandfather. He then gave the book to his brother who asked to keep it. It pertains to a 16-year-old boy living in Iran who travels to the coast, and while in a tea house meets a group of horse traders and is fascinated by them. He returns home and tells his father he wants to become a horse trader and talks him into financing his first bunch of horses. He then takes the horses to India by sailing ship (there were no mechanized ships at that time) and how he succeeded at horse trading and stayed in India. Our reader knows the area of India where this took place and saw many of the places mentioned in the books. It brought the book alive.

Unfortunately this book evidently was not printed in the U.S.  We discussed the adventure of leaving home at 16 and starting out, totally on your own.

The Founding Fish: by John McPhee
A gift from a daughter, it is a definitive study of Shad fishing. Shad are a fish on the East Coast that live in schools. This book gives information from different sizes of lures to sizes of fish and how fishing evolved. Evidently they are good eating and known for their roe or eggs.

Since the fish don’t exist in California we discussed fishing around the world.

Tule Lake: by Edward Miyakawa
This book was found in the Cayucos Library in their reading area, which is very hospitable and comfy. It is told from the eye of a 7-year-old that was sent to an internment camp during the Second World War with his family. The sending of the Japanese, US citizen or not, to an internment camp is a blight on the history of the US.  It was done from ignorance of anyone who was “different.” Life was very hard.

This book must be read with a sense of ‘how could we have done this?’
Discussion of treatment of the Japanese, why and what were you taught as a child. Some were welcomed home after the war, but many were not.

Next Meeting: Sept. 13, 2022 at the Grover Beach Community Library, 240 No. 9th St, Grover Beach at 10:30 a.m.
Subject: Historical Fiction: Fact or Fiction.

– Fran Strauser