Book Groups @Shaker Library

Lively discussions! Engaging book selections! Interesting people! These are just some of the benefits of joining one of the library’s book discussion groups that meet once a month.

We make it easy. All you have to do is pick up your copy of each monthly read and join in!

Contact us to reserve your place or stop by the Library Information Desk to pick up your copy of the book.

Join us as we discuss a variety of award winning titles, including those from the Pulitzer, Booker, and National Book Award Lists.

Award Winners Book Discussion is led by Lynne Miller. The group meets from 2-3:30pm at the Bertram Woods Branch. Please register and pick up books at the Bertram Woods Information Desk one month before the discussion.

The Jazz Palace by Mary Morris

The winner of the 2016 Anisfield-Wolf Award for fiction, Morris’s book is set in 1920’s Chicago. Benny, a young Jewish hatmaker – and piano prodigy – seeks excitement in the clubs on the South Side. He finds his passion playing jazz with black trumpeter, Napoleon, in a speakeasy, caught up in the glamour and the corruption of the prohibition era.

2pm Saturday, September 16

In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex by Nathaniel Philbrick

Winner of the 2000 National Book Award for nonfiction, this true-life adventure served as the inspiration for Melville’s Moby Dick.

2pm Saturday, October 21

The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy

This richly textured and artfully written first novel chronicles the tragic decline of a family whose members suffer the consequences of forbidden love. Winner of the 1997 Booker Prize.

2pm Saturday, November 18

The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down: A Hmong Child, Her American Doctors, and the Collision of Two Cultures by Anne Fadiman

Winner of the 1997 National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction, this beautifully crafted book explores the clash between a medical center in California and a Laotian refugee family over its care of a child.

2pm Saturday, December 16

Book Buzz is led by Stacie Anderson. The group meets from 10-11:30am at the Main Library. Please register and pick up books at the Main Library Information Desk one month before the discussion.

Go Tell It on the Mountain by James Baldwin

First published in 1953, this American classic is a haunting coming-of-age novel set in Harlem in the 1930s, based in part on Baldwin’s own childhood. Simultaneously brutal and compassionate, it chronicles a fourteen-year-old boy’s discovery of the terms of his identity.

10am Tuesday, August 8

The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen  

Lines of loyalty and commitment blur for the half-Vietnamese double agent at the center of this compelling and profoundly unsettling winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction set in the aftermath of the Vietnam War.

10am Tuesday, September 12

Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

A literary fusion of memoir and science writing, this book is a thoughtful look at the struggles of a female research scientist, her adventures with her sarcastic lab partner and best friend blended with her joyful homage to the natural world.

10am Tuesday, October 10

Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt

This tender coming-of-age novel about an unlikely friendship in the midst of the 1980s AIDS epidemic, is a moving story of love lost and found that demonstrates how hope can make a difference.

10am Tuesday, November 14

News of the World by Paulette Jiles

Set in post-Civil War Texas, this lyrical work of historical fiction details the odyssey of 70-year-old Captain Kidd who escorts a young girl to her aunt and uncle’s home after Kiowa warriors killed her parents.

10am Tuesday, December 12

Do you like to cook or bake? Love experimenting in the kitchen and trying new cuisines? If so, join “Cook the Book,” Shaker Library’s new cookbooks Club! Each month, we’ll select a cookbook and each member will make a dish from that book. Discussion will be about the recipe, the cookbook, what worked (or didn’t), why you chose the recipe, etc.

Cook the Book! is led by Lynne Miller and Jim Bagwell. The group meets from 7-8:30pm. Please register and pick up books at the Bertram Woods Branch Information Desk one month before the discussion.

In the Kitchen with Cleveland’s Favorite Chefs: 35 Fabulous Meals in About an Hour
by Maria Isabella

Author Isabella asked local chefs what they’d prepare in their own kitchens if they were pressed for time. In the Kitchen shares the biographies of 35 area food celebrities, including Zach Bruell and Michael Symon, who reveal their trusted recipes – from starters to desserts.

7pm Wednesday, September 6

Everyone is Italian on Sunday by Rachael Ray

The award-winning author divulges some her best Italian recipes—from lasagnas to calzones and everything in between—that will surely be a hit with the entire family.

7pm Wednesday, October 4

Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust By Ina Garten

The author shares her wealth of cooking knowledge to help all chefs–from newbie to “seasoned”—make simple and elegant dishes in their own kitchens.

7pm Wednesday, November 1

Duff Bakes: Think and Bake Like a Pro at Home by Duff Goldman

The TV host and New York Times best-selling author teaches how to recreate delectable childhood favorites such as Twinkies and Pop-Tarts, along with giving his vibrant and unique spin on delicious breads, pies, cakes, and fondant.

7pm Wednesday, December 6

The Fourth Tuesday Book Group is led by Janis Williams. the group meets from 2-3:30pm at the Main Library. Please register and pick up books at the Main Library Information Desk one month before the discussion.


13 hours: the inside account of what really happened in Benghazi by Mitchell Zuckoff

A suspenseful account of the September 2012 attack on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya as told by the contract security operators who defended it.

 2pm Tuesday, September 26

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

Two Ghanian sisters, one who marries and lives in luxury while the other is sold into slavery, never meet though their lives and those of their descendants are inextricably joined. This modern masterpiece, winner of numerous awards, covers centuries and continents in telling a story that captures the troubled spirit of our nation.

2pm Tuesday, October 24

Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult

This is the gripping courtroom drama of a black delivery room nurse sued by the white supremacist parents whose child’s life she was unable to save. The author delivers another page-turner with characters and conflicts true to life with no simple answers.

2pm Tuesday, November 28


Mystery Book Discussions are led by Pam Tidwell. The group meets from 7:30-8:30pm at the Main Library.

Please register and pick up books at the Main Library Information Desk one month before the discussion.

The Beekeeper’s Apprentice by Laurie R. King

In his retirement, the great detective Sherlock Holmes grooms a young woman to follow in his footsteps.  Fifteen year-old Mary and the elderly beekeeper Holmes are let into a series of adventures which escalate in gravity until Holmes is in peril of his life.  At the frightening climax, the maturing Mary proves herself a worthy partner and successor.

7:30pm Tuesday, September 12
Bone Dust White by Karin Salvalaggio

Detective Macy Greeley is sent to Collier, Montana to solve an 11-year old murder, but the townspeople keep their secrets and their feuds to themselves challenging her investigation.

7:30pm Tuesday, October 10
Jade Dragon Mountain by Elsa Hart

Li Du, once the imperial librarian, is on his way to exile when he stops in the town of Dayan along the Tibetan border. He finds the town full of tourists who have come to see the eclipse of the sun commanded by the Emperor. A Jesuit astronomer is found dead at the local magistrate’s home and local Tibetan bandits are quickly accused of the murder. Li Du must decide whether to investigate the murder or move on to his life in exile.

7:30pm Tuesday, November 14
Snowblind by Ragnar Jonasson

Ari Thor Arason takes on his first post as a rookie policeman in a quiet village. However, soon after he arrives, a woman is found bleeding and unconscious in the snow and a prominent writer, Hrolfur Kristjansson, falls to his death at a local theater. Tensions mount when snow cuts off the village from the rest of Iceland and Ari continues to pursue the Hrolfur case defying orders to leave it alone.

7:30pm Tuesday, December 12

Enjoy a burger and beer with your biography? A martini with your mystery? Then please join us for some “savory” stories and a “spirited” discussion of a good book.

Pub Reads is led by Rachel Wilhoyte. The group meets from 7-8:30pm at The Academy Tavern. Copies will be available at the Main Library Reference desk for loan one month before the discussion and at Loganberry Books for sale.

The Academy Tavern is at 12800 Larchmere Blvd. Loganberry Books is at 13015 Larchmere.

Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff

This story of a marriage is told from the couple’s two different points of view and provides a complex look into the joys and tragedies of a relationship.

7pm Monday, August 14
  The Boston Girl by Anita Diamant

85 year old Addie Baum relays her life story to her granddaughter, beginning as the 16 year old daughter of Jewish immigrants, growing up in Boston. A fascinating look at a woman trying to find her place in the world at the turn of the 20th century.

7pm Monday, September 11
The Cutting Season by Attica Locke.

Past and present collide as Caren Gray, the manager of an antebellum plantation turned tourist attraction, gets drawn into the investigation of a migrant worker found dead on the property. The death has similarities to the disappearance of a former slave decades before. As Caren digs into the truth of both incidents, she puts herself in the path of a killer desperate to keep these secrets buried.

7pm Monday, October 9
The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney.

The Plumb family is individually and collectively dysfunctional. They are gathering to confront their brother Leo, fresh out of rehab, about a car accident that has suddenly put their joint trust fund at risk. In doing so, they must finally grapple with the consequences of the accident and their own actions in life.

7pm Monday, November 13