We know how difficult it is to choose a book for your next book group meeting, and to find enough copies for all the members of your group. We've made it easier for you by collecting donated and withdrawn copies of discussible books and putting all the copies in a canvas bag. We've included discussion questions and information about each author in a folder for each collection.
There are at least 8 copies of the book in each kit. At this time we have over 400 kits for you to choose from.
Printable lists of titles are also available, without cover art, sorted by title and by author.
How can we get a kit?
Call us at 608-266-6300 and we will help you check out a kit. The kit will be checked out on the library card of the person picking them up. The person checking out the kit may choose a due date for the kit, up to 3 months from the day they pick it up. Due to high demand, please take only one or two kits at a time. Kits can be shipped to any library in Madison as well as any public library in the South Central Library System.
What if a book is lost?
If your group happens to lose a book, we ask that you replace it with another copy of the book, new or second hand, that is clean and readable.
Search our collection of kits
A deliciously funny, sharply observed novel of family, wealth, love and tennis, this zeitgeisty debut follows three women in an old Brooklyn Heights clan: one who was born with money, one who married into it, and one, the millennial conscience of the family, who wants to give it all away.
It was one of the most searing images of the twentieth century: two young boys, two princes, walking behind their mother's coffin as the world watched in sorrow--and horror. As Princess Diana was laid to rest, billions wondered what Prince William and Prince Harry must be thinking and feeling--and how their lives would play out from that point on.
For Harry, this is that story at last.
A story of a couple from two very different restaurant families in rustic Minnesota, and the legacy of love and tragedy, of hardship and hope, that unites and divides them.
In the years before the Civil War, Annis, sold south by the white enslaver who fathered her, struggles through the miles-long march, seeks comfort from memories of her mother and stories of her African warrior grandmother, opening herself to a world beyond this world.
A status-driven New York City wedding planner grapples with her social ambitions, absent mother, and Puerto Rican roots--all in the wake of Hurricane Maria.
In this lively journey through human psychology, bestselling author and creator of the You Are Not So Smart podcast David McRaney investigates how minds change-and how to change minds. The 2023-24 UW Madison Go Big Read selection.
Five summers to fall in love. One moment to fall apart. A weekend to get it right. A magazine writer has to make a choice when she returns to the lake she grew up on, and to the man she thought she'd never have to live without.
A young Native American boy in a splintering family grasps for stability and love, making all the wrong choices until he finds a space of his own.
Kiki Banjo has just made a huge mistake: she kissed Malakai Korede, the guy she just publicly denounced. They're soon embroiled in a fake relationship to try and salvage their reputations and save their futures.
True biz? The students at the River Valley School for the Deaf just want to hook up, pass their history final, and have doctors, politicians, and their parents stop telling them what to do with their bodies. This revelatory novel plunges readers into the halls of a residential school for the deaf in a story of sign language and lip-reading, cochlear implants and civil rights, isolation and injustice, first love and loss, and, above all, great persistence, daring, and joy.
A novel of art, time travel, love, and plague that takes the reader from Vancouver Island in 1912 to a dark colony on the moon five hundred years later, unfurling a story of humanity across centuries and space.
Olivia McAfee left her husband and moved with her son, Asher, to a small town. When tragedy occurs and Asher becomes a suspect, Olivia must face whether he is revealing the same dark side as his father.
Ray McMillian is a Black classical musician on the rise--undeterred by the pressure and prejudice of the classical music world--when a shocking theft sends him on a desperate quest to recover his great-great-grandfather's heirloom violin on the eve of the most prestigious musical competition in the world.
A New York Times bestselling author, National Book Award finalist, and "one of our greatest living writers" (Shondaland) reimagines the love story in this fresh and seductive novel about a young woman seeking joy while healing from loss.
Wisconsin state judge Jason Erickson finds himself embroiled in several high-stakes ethical dilemmas involving powerful political figures, groundwater polluters, a corrupt developer, and his feelings for Tara, a married environmental journalist, in this thrilling mystery set against the rich beauty of black spruces, white pines, and austere Upper Midwest lakes.
Set in 1960s California, this blockbuster debut is the hilarious, idiosyncratic and uplifting story of a female scientist whose career is constantly derailed by the idea that a woman's place is in the home, only to find herself starring as the host of America's most beloved TV cooking show.
A luminous debut novel about a widow's unlikely friendship with a giant Pacific octopus reluctantly residing at the local aquarium-and the truths she finally uncovers about her son's disappearance 30 years ago.
After John Neville, the man convicted of killing her best friend April ten years earlier, dies in prison, expectant mother Hannah Jones, after new evidence surfaces proving his innocence, reconnects with old friends to solve the mystery of April's death and realizes they all have something to hide--including a murder.
Two estranged siblings must set aside their differences to deal with their mother's death and her hidden past--a journey of discovery that takes them from the Caribbean to London to California and ends with her famous black cake.
Inspired by true events that rocked the nation, a searing and compassionate novel about a Black nurse in post-segregation Alabama who blows the whistle on a terrible injustice done to her patients.
In 2027, August Helm is working as a biochemist at the University of Chicago. After he finds out about a liaison between the director of his lab and a much younger student, his position is eliminated. With his world in shambles, August goes to visit his parents in Wisconsin, where he reconnects with old friends, takes a job in a gated community, and falls madly in love with a woman whose revelations will change everything.
A discarded painting in a junk pile, a skeleton in an attic, and the greatest racehorse in American history: from these strands, a Pulitzer Prize winner braids a sweeping story of spirit, obsession, and injustice across American history.
A charmingly eccentric hotel maid discovers a guest murdered in his bed, turning her once orderly world upside down--and inspiring a motley crew of unexpected allies to band together to solve the mystery.
Twelve-year-old Bird Gardner lives a quiet existence with his loving father, a former linguist who now shelves books in a university library. His mother Margaret, a Chinese American poet, left without a trace when he was nine years old. He doesn't know what happened to her--only that her books have been banned--and he resents that she cared more about her work than about him. Then one day, Bird receives a mysterious letter containing only a cryptic drawing, and soon he is pulled into a quest to find her.
An electrifying novel of a young immigrant building a life for herself--a warm, dazzling, and profound saga of queer love, friendship, work, and precarity in twenty-first century America, set in Milwaukee.
Luz "Little Light" Lopez, a tea leaf reader and laundress, is left to fend for herself after her older brother, Diego, a snake charmer and factory worker, is run out of town by a violent white mob. As Luz navigates 1930s Denver, she begins to have visions that transport her to her Indigenous homeland in the nearby Lost Territory.
The story of two wealthy New Yorkers in the 1920s, and at what cost they have acquired their immense fortune, is at the center of Bonds, a fictional novel that exists in conversation with the narrative of one woman bent on disentangling fact from fiction in this novel about money, power, intimacy, and perception that spans over a century.
A young poet tells the inspiring story of his migration from El Salvador to the United States at the age of nine in this "gripping memoir" (NPR) of bravery, hope, and finding family.
They've spent their lives as assassins in a clandestine international organization, but at 60 years old, four women find they can't just retire - it's kill or be killed.
A story of summer, secrets, love, and lies: in the course of a singular day on Cape Cod, one woman must make a life-changing decision that has been brewing for decades. Tender yet devastating, The Paper Palace considers the tensions between desire and dignity, the legacies of abuse, and the crimes and misdemeanors of families.
Cast out of the royal court by Eleanor of Aquitaine, deemed too coarse and rough-hewn for marriage or courtly life, seventeen-year-old Marie de France is sent to England to be the new prioress of an impoverished abbey, its nuns on the brink of starvation and beset by disease.
A deeply researched and transporting exploration of the legacy of slavery and its imprint on centuries of American history, How the Word Is Passed illustrates how some of our country's most essential stories are hidden in plain view—whether in places we might drive by on our way to work, holidays such as Juneteenth, or entire neighborhoods like downtown Manhattan, where the brutal history of the trade in enslaved men, women, and children has been deeply imprinted.
From two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author Colson Whitehead, a gloriously entertaining novel of heists, shakedowns, and rip-offs set in Harlem in the 1960s.
Full title: Hell of a Book, or the Altogether Factual, Wholly Bona Fide Story of a Big Dreams, Hard Luck, American-Made Mad Kid
A chilling debut in which a detective must uncover the dark history of a luxury hotel in the Alps if she has any hope of stopping the deaths that won't let up.
A small independent bookstore in Minneapolis is haunted from November 2019 to November 2020 by the store's most annoying customer. Flora dies on All Souls' Day, but she simply won't leave the store. Tookie, who has landed a job selling books after years of incarceration that she survived by reading with murderous attention, must solve the mystery of this haunting while at the same time trying to understand all that occurs in Minneapolis during a year of grief, astonishment, isolation, and furious reckoning.
The small town of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin is an unlikely location for a Playboy Resort, and nineteen-year old Sherri Taylor is an unlikely bunny. But when her parents die in quick succession in 1981, she leaves the only home she's ever known for the chance to be part of a glamorous slice of history.
Steeped in Cherokee myths and history, a novel about a fractured family reckoning with the tragic death of their son long ago.
A whip-smart and dynamic thriller about the tension that unfurls when two young Black women meet against the starkly white backdrop of New York City book publishing.
One of today's most insightful and influential thinkers offers a powerful exploration of inequality and the lesson that generations of Americans have failed to learn: Racism has a cost for everyone--not just for people of color.
This high-stakes thriller follows a novice Secretary of State who has joined the administration of her rival, a president inaugurated after four years of American leadership that shrank from the world stage. A series of terrorist attacks throws the global order into disarray, and the secretary is tasked with assembling a team to unravel the deadly conspiracy, a scheme carefully designed to take advantage of an American government dangerously out of touch and out of power in the places where it counts the most.
From the indie rockstar of Japanese Breakfast fame, and author of the viral 2018 New Yorker essay that shares the title of this book, an unflinching, powerful memoir about growing up Korean-American, losing her mother, and forging her own identity.
For cynical twenty-three-year-old August, moving to New York City is supposed to prove her right: that things like magic and cinematic love stories don't exist, and the only smart way to go through life is alone. And there's certainly no chance of her subway commute being anything more than a daily trudge through boredom and electrical failures. But then, there's this gorgeous girl on the train. Jane. Dazzling, charming, mysterious, impossible Jane, showing up in a leather jacket to save August's day when she needed it most.
A profound debut about the unlikely bond between two freedmen who are brothers and the Georgia farmer whose alliance will alter their lives, and his, forever.
The first in a witty, fast-paced mystery series following struggling suspense novelist and single mom Finlay Donovan, whose fiction treads dangerously close to the truth as she becomes tangled in real-life murder investigations.
A hopeful, clear-eyed, and somehow also hilarious guide to effecting real change and saving ourselves from climate apocalypse, starting in our own lives.
A sweeping, achingly beautiful novel that moves between Germany on the eve of World War II and present day Wisconsin, unspooling a story of love, longing, and the ceaseless push and pull of motherhood.
Moving their family to what they believe will be a safer but temporary home in Houston, two young parents are forced to choose between an undocumented status in America and returning to the violence of war-torn Bogotá.
In June, 1954, eighteen-year-old Emmett Watson is driven home to Nebraska by the warden of the juvenile work farm where he has just served fifteen months for involuntary manslaughter. His mother long gone, his father recently deceased, and the family farm foreclosed upon by the bank, Emmett's intention is to pick up his eight-year-old brother, Billy, and head to California where they can start their lives anew. But when the warden drives away, Emmett discovers that two friends from the work farm have hidden themselves in the trunk of the warden's car.
From journalist Abe Streep, the story of coming of age on a reservation in the American West and a team uniting a community.
From her place in the store that sells artificial friends, Klara--an artificial friend with outstanding observational qualities--watches carefully the behavior of those who come in to browse, and of those who pass in the street outside. She remains hopeful a customer will soon choose her, but when the possibility emerges that her circumstances may change forever, Klara is warned not to invest too much in the promises of humans.
For the past four years, Margaret Renkl's columns have offered readers of The New York Times a weekly dose of natural beauty, human decency, and persistent hope from her home in Nashville. Now more than sixty of those pieces have been brought together in this sparkling new collection.
In 1944 Chicago, a young woman’s search for the truth about her revered older sister's death brings to focus the struggles of one Japanese American family released from mass incarceration at Manzanar during World War II.
The remarkable, little-known story of Belle da Costa Greene, J. P. Morgan's personal librarian, who became one of the most powerful women in New York despite the dangerous secret she kept in order to make her dreams come true: Belle's complexion isn't dark because of her alleged Portuguese heritage that lets her pass as white-her complexion is dark because she is African American.
Texas, 1934. One of the darkest periods of the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl era, has arrived with a vengeance. In this uncertain and dangerous time, Elsa Martinelli-like so many of her neighbors-must make an agonizing choice: fight for the land she loves or go west, to California, in search of a better life.
An unforgettable story about one young Black girl's attempt to find a place where she can be fully, and only, herself, inspired by the life of one of the first Black female doctors in the United States.
Part case studies, part meditation on the past, present and future of the disease, The Problem of Alzheimer’s traces Alzheimer's disease from its discovery and tells the story of the biomedical breakthroughs that may allow it to finally be prevented and treated by medicine.
The Delaney family is a communal foundation. Stan and Joy are the envy of all of their friends. One night a stranger named Savannah knocks on Stan and Joy's door. Everyone will wonder what exactly went on in that household after Savannah entered their lives that night. Because now Joy is missing, no one knows where Savannah is, and the Delaneys are reexamining their parents' marriage and their shared family history with fresh, frightened eyes.
A hilarious, romantic, and sexy‑as‑hell story of two writers discovering their second chance at love over seven days during a steamy Brooklyn summer.