February, 2012: Bel Canto by Ann Patchett

(Book #22) Melissa hosted and we enjoyed the low background music of opera playing as we enjoyed our wine and cheese.  Melissa served both roast turkey and roast pork, rice and fruit salad. For dessert she’d purchased a lovely heart-shaped ice cream cake with dark cherry and chocolate chip ice cream covered in a chocolate ganache to celebrate Valentines Day!

Everyone enjoyed this book — even those who didn’t attend the meeting sent a note about the book in their rsvp. Marcia liked the use of multiple languages including the language of music. We all enjoyed the relationships that developed and appreciated how the lines of good and evil became a little blurry. Melissa, Rosalie and I were not thrilled with the prologue — the notion that remainders would end up together seemed too pat. I foolishly embarrassed myself by saying that I couldn’t get beyond my disbelief that it would take so long to handle a hostage situation particularly given the brutality of the outcome, when Sharon said that it was based on a true story — proving once again that truth is stranger than fiction.

More big news — one of our number, Rosalie, is about to be published — a book of oral histories of people who have gone to prison for peace. Oh sure, we may come for the heart-shaped ice cream cake but we stay for the discussion between intelligent women — even if one of those women is a little vague on hostage events in South America.