Martha Merrell’s hosts a variety of book clubs and is pleased to offer the following services free-of-charge to area clubs. We can:
  • Provide a meeting space for clubs
  • Provide a selection of books for your club to choose from
  • Special order club selections
  • Provide a 15% discount on club selections
  • Facilitate discussions
  • No-charge consulting on new books and current trends
  • Share what other clubs are reading
We invite you to stop by our location at 231 West Main Street in the Avalon Square Building. Discover what we have to offer!   Contact us to set up your club meeting at the store on a regular monthly basis. If you are interested in using our space on a more occasional basis, feel free to schedule a time with us as well.  (New surroundings can be just what your book club needs to invigorate itself.)  We will gladly accommodate your group’s needs and can even arrange for refreshments from one of our downtown partners.

UPCOMING BOOK CLUBS

MARTHA MERRELL’S BOOK CLUBS

Monday Morning Group meets at 10:30 AM

2/11 The Story of Arthur Truluv by Elizabeth Berg

“This is a moving novel about three people who have lost the person they love most and must find their way back to happiness. Arthur, a widower, meets Maddy, an angry and friendless teenage girl, while visiting his late wife at the cemetery, where he goes every day for lunch. Against all odds, the two strike up a friendship that pulls them out of a serious rut. They band together with Arthur’s nosy neighbor Lucille to create lives that are truly worth living. Proving that life’s most precious moments are sweeter when shared, they go from strangers to friends, creating an untraditional, but loving family. Betrayal, loneliness, romance and family are at the heart of this book. This is a story about life being affirmed at all ages, old and young, and about finding happiness when hope seems lost.”

NOTE: The author has written an equally moving sequel entitled NIGHT OF MIRACLES.

3/11 Paris By the Book by Liam Callanan

“When eccentric novelist Robert Eady abruptly vanishes, he leaves behind his wife Leah, their daughters, and hidden in an unexpected spot, plane tickets to Paris. Hoping to uncover clues–and her husband–Leah sets off for France with her girls. Upon their arrival, she discovers an unfinished manuscript, one Robert had been writing without her knowledge that was set in Paris. The Eady girls follow the path of the manuscript to a small, floundering English-language bookstore whose weary proprietor is eager to sell. Leah finds herself accepting the offer on the spot. As the family settles into their new Parisian life, they trace the literary paths of some beloved Parisian classics, including Madeline and The Red Balloon, hoping more clues arise. But a series of startling discoveries forces Leah to consider that she may not be ready for what solving this mystery might do to her family–and the Paris she thought she knew.”

4/8 The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

“Mary Lennox is a sour-faced 10-year-old girl, who is born in India to selfish, wealthy British parents who had not wanted her and were too wrapped up in their own lives. She was taken care of primarily by servants, who pacify her as much as possible to keep her out of the way. Spoiled and with a temper, she is unaffectionate, angry, rude and obstinate. Later, there is a cholera epidemic which hits India and kills her mother, father and all the servants. She is discovered alone, but alive. She is sent to Yorkshire, England to live with her uncle Archibald Craven at his home called Misselthwaite Manor.”

Wednesday Evening Group meets at 5:45 PM

3/6  The Story of Arthur Truluv by Elizabeth Berg

“This is a moving novel about three people who have lost the person they love most and must find their way back to happiness. Arthur, a widower, meets Maddy, an angry and friendless teenage girl, while visiting his late wife at the cemetery, where he goes every day for lunch. Against all odds, the two strike up a friendship that pulls them out of a serious rut. They band together with Arthur’s nosy neighbor Lucille to create lives that are truly worth living. Proving that life’s most precious moments are sweeter when shared, they go from strangers to friends, creating an untraditional, but loving family. Betrayal, loneliness, romance and family are at the heart of this book. This is a story about life being affirmed at all ages, old and young, and about finding happiness when hope seems lost.”

NOTE: The author has written an equally moving sequel entitled NIGHT OF MIRACLES.

4/3  An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

“Newlyweds Celestial and Roy represent both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive, and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. As they settle into the routine of life together, they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years for a crime Celestial knows he didn’t commit. Though fiercely independent, Celestial finds herself alone and takes comfort in Andre, her childhood friend who was the best man at her wedding. As Roy’s time in prison passes, she finds herself no longer in love with him. After five years, Roy’s conviction is suddenly overturned. He returns to Atlanta ready to resume their life together.“

NOTE: This is a 2018 Oprah book club selection.

5/1 Eggshells by Caitriona Lally

“Vivian doesn’t feel like she fits in and never has. As a child, she was so whimsical that her parents told her she was ‘left by fairies’. Now, living alone in Dublin, the neighbors treat her like she’s crazy, her older sister condescends to her, social workers seem to have registered her as troubled and she hasn’t a friend in the world. So, she decides it’s time to change her life. She begins by advertising for a friend; not just any friend, one named Penelope. Meanwhile, she roams the city, mapping out a new neighborhood every day while seeking her escape route to a better world, the one her parents told her she came from. Then one day someone named Penelope answers her ad for a friend. From that moment on, Vivian’s life begins to change.”

6/5 Wishtree by Katherine Applegate

“Red is an oak tree who is many rings old. Red is the neighborhood “wishtree”–people write their wishes on pieces of cloth and tie them to Red’s branches. Along with a crow named Bongo and other animals who seek refuge in Red’s hollows, this wishtree watches over the neighborhood. However, when a new family moves in, not everyone is welcoming, and Red’s experience as a wishtree is more important than ever. With a message of inclusion for dreamers and welcomers, this is a book for our lives and times. “

NOTE: This is a special edition for adults of the author’s novel for children.

Avalon Book Group meets at 2 PM (Avalon Square)

3/4 The Story of Arthur Truluv by Elizabeth Berg

“This is a moving novel about three people who have lost the person they love most and must find their way back to happiness. Arthur, a widower, meets Maddy, an angry and friendless teenage girl, while visiting his late wife at the cemetery, where he goes every day for lunch. Against all odds, the two strike up a friendship that pulls them out of a serious rut. They band together with Arthur’s nosy neighbor Lucille to create lives that are truly worth living. Proving that life’s most precious moments are sweeter when shared, they go from strangers to friends, creating an untraditional, but loving family. Betrayal, loneliness, romance and family are at the heart of this book. This is a story about life being affirmed at all ages, old and young, and about finding happiness when hope seems lost.”

NOTE: The author has written an equally moving sequel entitled NIGHT OF MIRACLES.

4/1 The Eighty-Dollar Champion by Elizabeth Letts

“This is the dramatic odyssey of a horse called Snowman, saved from the slaughterhouse by a young Dutch farmer named Harry. Together, Harry and Snowman went on to become America’s show-jumping champions, winning first prize in Madison Square Garden. Set in the mid to late 1950s, this book captures the can-do spirit of a Cold War immigrant who believed–and triumphed.”

No Tears, No Fears Book Group meets on Thursday at 1:30 PM

3/21 Pachinko by Min Jin Lee

“This novel follows one Korean family through generations that begin with the early 1900s in Korea. Sunja, the prized daughter of a poor yet proud family, has an unplanned pregnancy that threatens to shame them all. Deserted by her lover, Sunja is saved when a young tubercular minister offers to marry her and bring her to Japan. So begins a sweeping saga of an exceptional family in exile from its homeland that is caught in the indifferent arc of history. Through desperate struggles and hard-won triumphs, its members are bound together by deep roots as they face enduring questions of faith, family, and identity.”

NOTE: This was a National Book Award Finalist.

4/18  Carnegie’s Maid by Marie Benedict

“Clara Kelley is not who they think she is. She’s not the experienced Irish maid who was hired to work in one of Pittsburgh’s grandest households. She’s a poor farmer’s daughter with nowhere to go and nothing in her pockets. The other woman with the same name has vanished, so pretending to be her just might get Clara some money to send back home. Serving as a lady’s maid in the household of Andrew Carnegie requires skills she doesn’t have, answering to an icy mistress who rules her sons and her domain with an iron fist. What Clara does have is a resolve as strong as the steel Pittsburgh is becoming famous for. This is coupled with an uncanny understanding of business which causes Andrew to begin relying on her. However, Clara can’t let her guard down, not even when Andrew becomes something more than an employer since revealing her past might ruin her future — and her family’s. This is the story of one brilliant woman who may have spurred Andrew Carnegie’s transformation from ruthless industrialist into the world’s first true philanthropist.

5/16 Paris By the Book by Liam Callanan

“When eccentric novelist Robert Eady abruptly vanishes, he leaves behind his wife Leah, their daughters, and hidden in an unexpected spot, plane tickets to Paris. Hoping to uncover clues–and her husband–Leah sets off for France with her girls. Upon their arrival, she discovers an unfinished manuscript, one Robert had been writing without her knowledge that was set in Paris. The Eady girls follow the path of the manuscript to a small, floundering English-language bookstore whose weary proprietor is eager to sell. Leah finds herself accepting the offer on the spot. As the family settles into their new Parisian life, they trace the literary paths of some beloved Parisian classics, including Madeline and The Red Balloon, hoping more clues arise. But a series of startling discoveries forces Leah to consider that she may not be ready for what solving this mystery might do to her family–and the Paris she thought she knew.”

6/20 Varina by Charles Frazier

“Her marriage prospects limited, teenage Varina Howell agrees to wed the much-older widower Jefferson Davis, with whom she expects the secure life of a Mississippi landowner. Davis instead pursues a career in politics and is eventually appointed president of the Confederacy, placing Varina at the white-hot center of one of the darkest moments in American history-culpable regardless of her intentions. The Confederacy falling, her marriage in tatters, and the country divided, Varina and her children escape Richmond, Virginia, and travel south on their own as fugitives with ‘bounties on their heads and an entire nation in pursuit’.”

DeMensa Book Club meets on the 2nd Tuesday of the month at 1 PM

Lost Faculties Book Club meets on the 2nd Thursday of the month at 12:30 PM