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BOOK CLUB BUNDLES

Hi, I’m Lauren. The Library will provide books for your book club. Our book club bundles include 10 copies of the same title, along with a discussion guide. Check out available bundles when visiting the Library, or fill out the form below! Patrons can reserve book club bundles up to six months in advance. Our book club bundles are stored on the second floor for the public to browse and check out. Contact us at bookclub@gpld.org or call us at 630-232-0780 if you have questions.



The Glass Hotel

by Emily St. John Mandel

GENRE: Literary Fiction

Mandel, author of the Arthur C. Clarke award winner Station Eleven, opens her next novel with Vincent, trophy wife of financier and hotel owner Johnathan Alkaitis, as she mysteriously disappears from the deck of a container ship. Moving between time, place, and points of view, this is a story of greed, loss, delusion, regrets, and the unrelenting ghosts of one’s past.

Download Discussion Guide

REQUEST THE GLASS HOTEL

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author biography

Emily St. John Mandel is the author of five novels, most recently The Glass Hotel, which was selected by Barack Obama as one of his favourite books of 2020, was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, and has been translated into 20 languages. Her previous novels include Station Eleven, which was a finalist for a National Book Award and the PEN/Faulkner Award, and won the 2015 Arthur C. Clarke Award among other honours, and has been translated into 33 languages. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.  - Author's website

More titles by this author.

reviews

Booklist

 /* Starred Review */ Mandel follows her breakout dystopian hit, Station Eleven (2014), with another tale of wanderers whose fates are interconnected, this time by a Ponzi scheme rather than the  demise of most of the  world's population. Beautiful young bartender Vincent Smith (named for poet Edna St. Vincent Millay) has no illusions about the relationship she enters into with Jonathan Alkaitis, an uber-wealthy investor more than twice her age. Vincent leaves her job at the remote Hotel Caiette to move into Jonathan's mansion in Connecticut and pretend to be his wife, attending dinners with his investors. Mandel reveals early on that Jonathan's business dealings aren't above board, but even with this information front and center, she still manages to build nail-biting tension as things start to go wrong for Jonathan and his associates. Mandel weaves an intricate spider web of a story, connecting the people whom Jonathan and Vincent's lives touch and irrevocably change, from Vincent's feckless brother to the small group of colleagues abetting Jonathan's scheme to the people whose fortunes are decimated by Jonathan's machinations. A gorgeously rendered tragedy.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: The phenomenal success of Station Eleven has set high expectations for Mandel's new novel, and both books been optioned for television series. -- Kristine Huntley (Reviewed 1/1/2020) (Booklist, vol 116, number 9, p35).

Publisher's Weekly

/* Starred Review */ Mandel’s wonderful novel (after Station Eleven) follows a brother and sister as they navigate heartache, loneliness, wealth, corruption, drugs, ghosts, and guilt. Settings include British Columbia’s coastal wilderness, New York City’s fashionable neighborhoods and corporate headquarters, a container ship in international waters, and a South Carolina prison. In 1994, 18-year-old drug-using dropout Paul Smith visits his 13-year-old half-sister, Vincent, in Vancouver. Vincent has just lost her mother and acquired her first video camera. Five years later, in the wilderness north of Vancouver, Vincent tends bar at a luxury hotel where Paul works as the night houseman. Paul leaves after writing on a window in acid marker a message even he doesn’t understand. Vincent relocates to the East Coast and what Mandel calls the kingdom of money to play trophy wife for investor Jonathan Alkaitis. When Jonathan’s Ponzi scheme collapses, he goes to prison, where his victims’ ghosts visit him. Finished with Jonathan and the affluent lifestyle and ignored by her best friend, Vincent takes a job as assistant cook on a container ship. Paul, meanwhile, has set Vincent’s old videos to music. The videos have helped Paul, despite a lifelong drug problem, tap into his creative gifts. Using flashbacks, flash-forwards, alternating points-of-view, and alternate realities, Mandel shows the  siblings moving in and out of each other’s lives, different worlds, and versions of themselves, sometimes closer, sometimes further apart, like a double helix, never quite linking. This ingenious, enthralling novel probes the tenuous yet unbreakable bonds between people and the lasting effects of momentary carelessness. 200,000-copy announced first printing. Agent: Katherine Fausset, Curtis Brown, Ltd. (Mar.) --Staff (Reviewed 11/11/2019) (Publishers Weekly, vol 266, issue 45, p).

Kirkus Reviews

/* Starred Review */ Mandel’s wonderful novel (after Station Eleven) follows a brother and sister as they navigate heartache, loneliness, wealth, corruption, drugs, ghosts, and guilt. Settings include British Columbia’s coastal wilderness, New York City’s fashionable neighborhoods and corporate headquarters, a container ship in international waters, and a South Carolina prison. In 1994, 18-year-old drug-using dropout Paul Smith visits his 13-year-old half-sister, Vincent, in Vancouver. Vincent has just lost her mother and acquired her first video camera. Five years later, in the wilderness north of Vancouver, Vincent tends bar at a luxury hotel where Paul works as the night houseman. Paul leaves after writing on a window in acid marker a message even he doesn’t understand. Vincent relocates to the East Coast and what Mandel calls the kingdom of money to play trophy wife for investor Jonathan Alkaitis. When Jonathan’s Ponzi scheme collapses, he goes to prison, where his victims’ ghosts visit him. Finished with Jonathan and the affluent lifestyle and ignored by her best friend, Vincent takes a job as assistant cook on a container ship. Paul, meanwhile, has set Vincent’s old videos to music. The videos have helped Paul, despite a lifelong drug problem, tap into his creative gifts. Using flashbacks, flash-forwards, alternating points-of-view, and alternate realities, Mandel shows the  siblings moving in and out of each other’s lives, different worlds, and versions of themselves, sometimes closer, sometimes further apart, like a double helix, never quite linking. This ingenious, enthralling novel probes the tenuous yet unbreakable bonds between people and the lasting effects of momentary carelessness. 200,000-copy announced first printing. Agent: Katherine Fausset, Curtis Brown, Ltd. (Mar.) --Staff (Reviewed 11/11/2019) (Publishers Weekly, vol 266, issue 45, p).

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Everything is Illuminated

by Jonathan Safran Foer

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The Goldfinch

by Donna Tartt

Taken in by a wealthy family friend after surviving an accident that killed his mother, thirteen-year-old Theo Decker tries to adjust to life on Park Avenue.

A Little Life

by Hanya Yanagihara

Moving to New York to pursue creative ambitions, four former classmates share decades marked by love, loss, addiction and haunting elements from a brutal childhood.