Thomas Ford Memorial Library

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See what our book Western Springs Book Discussion Group has been reading here.

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Our Favorites

The Library is often asked to suggest books for discussion groups. The following list are some of our favorites. Please don’t hesitate to ask us at the Reference Desk for further suggestions.

Contemporary Fiction

  • The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom
  • For One More Day by Mitch Albom
  • Little Bee by Chris Cleave
  • The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
  • The Hours by Michael Cunningham
  • Room by Emma Donoghue
  • Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
  • The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon
  • Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah
  • Plainsong by Kent Haruf
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
  • Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones
  • Mudbound by Hillary Jordan
  • The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
  • The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
  • The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
  • Crow Lake by Mary Lawson
  • Life of Pi by Yann Martel
  • Atonement by Ian McEwan
  • The Rest of Her Life by Laura Moriarty
  • Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger
  • The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
  • Strange As This Weather Has Been by Ann Pancake
  • A Long Long Time Ago and Essentially True by Brigid Pasulka
  • Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
  • My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult
  • Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult
  • Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
  • Bridge of Sighs by Richard Russo
  • Empire Falls by Richard Russo
  • The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
  • The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
  • The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer
  • American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld
  • The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein
  • The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  • Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
  • Big Stone Gap by Adriana Trigiani
  • Home to Big Stone Gap by Adriana Trigiani
  • Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
  • The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski
  • The Shack by William P. Young

Classics

  • Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  • My Antonia by Willa Cather
  • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  • A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
  • East of Eden by John Steinbeck

Domestic Fiction

  • Hannah Coulter by Wendell Berry
  • March by Gwendolyn Brooks
  • The Memory Keeper’s Daughter by Kim Edwards
  • The Whistling Season by Ivan Doig
  • Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
  • Oxygen by Andrew Miller

Fantasy

  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  • The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell

Farm Life

  • Hannah Coulter by Wendell Berry
  • My Antonia by Willa Cather
  • The Whistling Season by Ivan Doig
  • Mudbound by Hillary Jordan

Foreign Countries

  • Little Bee by Chris Cleave
  • Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Sijie Dai
  • Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
  • World without End by Ken Follett
  • Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
  • The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
  • The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
  • A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini
  • The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
  • No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith
  • A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry
  • The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
  • Peony in Love by Lisa See
  • Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See
  • The Space Between Us by Thrity N. Umrigar

Historical Fiction

  • Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood
  • Year of Wonders: A Novel of the Plague by Geraldine Brooks
  • People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks
  • March by Geraldine Brooks
  • Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier
  • The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
  • The March by E. L. Doctorow
  • Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
  • World without End by Ken Follett
  • Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
  • Those Who Save Us by Jenna Blum
  • Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier
  • Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
  • White Ghost Girls by Alice Greenway
  • The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
  • Loving Frank by Nancy Horan
  • Mudbound by Hillary Jordan
  • The Paris Wife by Paula McLain
  • Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls
  • The Book Thief** by Markus Zusak

Immigrants

  • The Tortilla Curtain by T. C. Boyle
  • The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz
  • Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
  • Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
  • My Antonia by Willa Cather
  • The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri

Medical

  • Moloka’i by Alan Brennert
  • Year of Wonders: A Novel of the Plague by Gwendolyn Brooks
  • World without End by Ken Follett
  • Still Alice by Lisa Genova
  • The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon

Mysteries

  • The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
  • The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
  • No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith

Women

  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs
  • Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons by Lorna Landvik

Non-Fiction

  • Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom (155.937 Alb)
  • I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou (B Angelou)
  • A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmael Beah (966.4 Bea)
  • The Middle Place by Kelly Corrigan (616.994 Cor)
  • The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion (B Didion)
  • Zeitoun by Dave Eggers (976.335 Egg)
  • The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank (B Frank)
  • Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia by Elizabeth Gilbert (910.4 Gil)
  • The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson (364.1523 Lar)
  • Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission to Promote Peace – One School at a Time by Greg Mortenson (371.822 Mor)
  • Leap of Faith: Memoirs of an Unexpected Life by Queen Noor (B Noor)
  • Population – 485: Meeting Your Neighbors One Siren at a Time by Michael Perry (B Perry, M.)
  • Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table by Ruth Reichl (B Reichl)
  • The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot (616.02774 Skl)
  • The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls (B Walls)
  • Night by Elie Wiesel (940.5315 Wie)