Our book club, 38th Ave. Diva Readers read, and discussed Flowers in the Blood, by Gay Courter. You can read my review on my other blog, at http://bagelsbooksandschmooze.blogspot.com .
Originally, I wrote my review on this blog. But, after thinking this through, the book review actually belongs on the Jewish book blog. I removed the review, and posted it there.
After several years of having our book hosted by different ladies. We finally have a home again, in a new coffee shop, that is in our friend's art gallery. It is a unique gallery, because it is all types of art, not just painting.
Rita was so gracious, and welcoming to our book club, as well as her staff. They were so professional, and friendly. It is so nice when you are acquainted with the proprietor. This makes it personable. She was so sweet, she gave us savories to try, how yummy.
You can check out the art gallery at http://www.artandsoulmyrtlebeach.com/
Flowers in the Blood
Flowers in the Blood, the first paragraph grabs you, Murder. It is the story of a wealthy, Jewish Indian family, during the 1800's. This is the time of the Opium Wars, the industrial age.
Her mother is murdered by her lover. Dinah is scarred for years because of her mother's indiscretion. How she goes through life, with her family and their opium business.
Most everyone agreed they did not have much knowledge of the Jews in India, and the Opium business. The book was very informative that way, it did not bog down in dates, and times, like some historical fiction does.
It was interesting facts: What movies and music was the mention of Poppy. Do you know? It will shock you to know, Wizard Of Oz. In the movie when they are walking in the fields of Poppies, they fall asleep. Also, the music from Puff the Magic Dragon.
It was discussed the use of Opium in England, The United States, other places during the 1800's. Jewish people made their money, like the ordinary citizens, would make money. Where there was profit to be made.
It must have been terrible conflict to her. Her family became wealthy because of Poppy. Her mother's murderer was a Opium lord. What a conflict for her.
We did get into why is it right for alcohol to be legal, but addictive. But, Heroine, and Cocaine is not. To me, it doesn't make sense, it is conflicting. Because it is just as dangerous, and addictive.
I loved the historical back ground, and most of us did. But, toward the end, it was just getting drawn out, and lost it's spark. Where the brother swindles the family, and talks about auctioning of the Opium, and what every thing is worth, that lost me.
The book club is for us to read all kinds of books that we would not read. I will say, I would not have picked up this book. It was ok, I did not love it, or hate it. It just was not my kind of book. I would call this romance, I have not read romance in many years. If you need discussion questions you can contact the author. On the author's website, there is resource information about the Indian Jewish Community.
These are the books we have selected for the next few months:
September- Little Bee by Chris Cleave
October- Paris Wife by Paula McLain
November-Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton
We discussed reading, Unorthodox by Deborah Feldman. It is a controversial memoir. It is about a young girl, she speaks out on the Satmar Jews of New York. We will eventually read it. But, our library in town, told me they would not order it because of the controversy. Not sure, if that is totally the reason.
One thing, I have to give a hand to Amazon.com. I had bought a book used, from the seller. It stated it was a penny, and in good condition. When the book arrived it fell apart. No biggie, what do you want for a penny. I was not going to say anything. But, I was going to say, my say.
Not thinking anything will come out of it. I posted my feedback. Do you know they refunded my money. I did not even ask for a refund. How terrific is that. See, they do read your feedback....