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Honors + PELP Book Club

Welcome to the Honors + PELP Book Club! We will meet in the Honors Commons lounge at the end of every month to discuss the monthly book club pick. If you have any questions, please email Zoe Huffman, Book Club Head, at zhuffman@my.apsu.edu! 


September - 2023:

For the September book club pick, we have chosen The Princess Bride by William Goldman! We will meet on September 26th in the Honors Commons at 5:00 p.m. 

The Princess Bride Book Cover

What happens when the most beautiful girl in the world marries the handsomest prince of all time and he turns out to be...well...a lot less than the man of her dreams? As a boy, William Goldman claims, he loved to hear his father read the S. Morgenstern classic, The Princess Bride. But as a grown-up he discovered that the boring parts were left out of good old Dad's recitation, and only the "good parts" reached his ears. Now Goldman does Dad one better. He's reconstructed the "Good Parts Version" to delight wise kids and wide-eyed grownups everywhere. What's it about? Fencing. Fighting. True Love. Strong Hate. Harsh Revenge. A Few Giants. Lots of Bad Men. Lots of Good Men. Five or Six Beautiful Women. Beasts Monstrous and Gentle. Some Swell Escapes and Captures. Death, Lies, Truth, Miracles, and a Little Sex. In short, it's about everything.

Trigger Warnings: Forced Marriage, Physical Verbal & Emotional Abuse, Alcoholism, Suicide (accidental), Murder & Attempted Murder, Torture, Knife Violence, Kidnapping, Loss of Autonomy, Hunting. 

Where to Find: Amazon ($9.89), Libby (Free), Montgomery County Library (Free), Thrift Books ($11.49), Woodward Library (Free)

October - 2023:

For the October book club pick, we have chosen Frankenstein by Mary Shelley! We will meet on October 24th in the Honors Commons at 5:00 p.m. 

Frankenstein Book Cover

Obsessed with creating life itself, Victor Frankenstein plunders graveyards for the material to fashion a new being, which he shocks into life with electricity. But his botched creature, rejected by Frankenstein and denied human companionship, sets out to destroy his maker and all that he holds dear. Mary Shelley’s chilling Gothic tale was conceived when she was only eighteen, living with her lover Percy Shelley near Byron’s villa on Lake Geneva. It would become the world’s most famous work of horror fiction, and remains a devastating exploration of the limits of human creativity.

Trigger Warnings: Medical Experimentation, Death of Parents, Murder.

Where to Find: Amazon ($5.99), Kindle Unlimited (Subscription), Libby (Free), Montgomery County Library (Free), Thrift Books ($5.09), Woodward Library (Free)


November - 2023: 

For the November book club pick, we have chosen I'm Glad My Mom Dies by Jennette McCurdy! We will meet on November 28th in the Honors Commons at 5:00 p.m. 

I'm Glad My Mom Died Book Cover

Jennette McCurdy was six years old when she had her first acting audition. Her mother’s dream was for her only daughter to become a star, and Jennette would do anything to make her mother happy. So she went along with what Mom called “calorie restriction,” eating little and weighing herself five times a day. She endured extensive at-home makeovers while Mom chided, “Your eyelashes are invisible, okay? You think Dakota Fanning doesn’t tint hers?” She was even showered by Mom until age sixteen while sharing her diaries, email, and all her income.

In I’m Glad My Mom Died , Jennette recounts all this in unflinching detail—just as she chronicles what happens when the dream finally comes true. Cast in a new Nickelodeon series called iCarly , she is thrust into fame. Though Mom is ecstatic, emailing fan club moderators and getting on a first-name basis with the paparazzi (“Hi Gale!”), Jennette is riddled with anxiety, shame, and self-loathing, which manifest into eating disorders, addiction, and a series of unhealthy relationships. These issues only get worse when, soon after taking the lead in the iCarly spinoff Sam & Cat alongside Ariana Grande, her mother dies of cancer. Finally, after discovering therapy and quitting acting, Jennette embarks on recovery and decides for the first time in her life what she really wants.

Trigger Warnings: Ableism, Body-shaming, Child Physical Verbal & Emotional Abuse (including gaslighting)< Groooming discussed, Hoarding, OCD, Eating Disorder (Bulimia), Graffic Disordered Eating, Alcohol Consumption, Emesis, Death of a Mother (Terminal Breast Cancer). 

Where to Find: Amazon ($19.58), Libby (Free), Montgomery County Library (Free), Thrift Books ($21.89), Woodward Library (Free)


December - 2024: 

For the December book club pick, we have chosen Book Lovers by Emily Henry! We will meet on January 30th in the Honors Commons at 5:00 p.m. 

Book Lovers Book Cover

Nora Stephens’ life is books—she’s read them all—and she is not that type of heroine. Not the plucky one, not the laidback dream girl, and especially not the sweetheart. In fact, the only people Nora is a heroine for are her clients, for whom she lands enormous deals as a cutthroat literary agent, and her beloved little sister Libby.

Which is why she agrees to go to Sunshine Falls, North Carolina for the month of August when Libby begs her for a sisters’ trip away—with visions of a small-town transformation for Nora, who she’s convinced needs to become the heroine in her own story. But instead of picnics in meadows, or run-ins with a handsome country doctor or bulging-forearmed bartender, Nora keeps bumping into Charlie Lastra, a bookish brooding editor from back in the city. It would be a meet-cute if not for the fact that they’ve met many times and it’s never been cute.

Trigger Warnings: Anxiety & Panic Attacks, Depression (mentioned), Stroke (parent), Grief & Loss Depiction, Death of a Mother Recounted. 

Where to Find: Amazon ($17.00), Libby (Free), Montgomery County Library (Free), Thrift Books ($7.49), Woodward Library (Free)


Book Recommendations 

Have a favorite book you want to share with the book club? Recommend it below and we will consider adding it as a future book club pick!

If this is a book you have read, what would you rank it out of 5 stars?
Please provide a brief description of your favorite aspects of this book and why you think it would be a good choice for Honors and PELP


Former Book Club Picks:

August 2023
song of achilles cover

The Song of Achilles
3.82 ★★★★

July 2023
american gods cover

American Gods
2.92 ★★★

June 2023
seven husbands of evelyn hugo cover

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
3.69 ★★★

May 2023
daisey jones and the six

Daisy Jones & The Six
1.57 ★

August 2023
ballad of songbirds and snakes cover

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes
4.00 ★★★★

July 2023
mockingjay cover

4.58 ★★★★

June 2023
catching fire cover

Catching Fire
4.83 ★★★★

May 2023
hunger games cover

The Hunger Games
4.42 ★★★★

April 2023
the inheritance games cover

The Inheritance Games
2.92 ★★★

March 2023
the bluest eye

The Bluest Eye
2.95 ★★★

February 2023
lonely castle in the mirror cover

Lonely Castle in the Mirror
3.89 ★★★★

January 2023
before the coffee gets cold cover

 Before the Coffee Gets Cold
2.21 ★★

November 2022
nothing to see here

Nothing to See Here
3.33 ★★★

October 2022
the shining

The Shining
2.20 ★★