March, 2013: People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks

(Book #35) As I explained for February, 2013, a short time after we started this group, I began keeping a journal of all of our gatherings. At some point I decided I should have the hostess record the events of the meeting, but the journal would stay too long at one house, not be delivered to the next or the next and soon there was no record except those items I could remember. I wasn’t able to attend this meeting, so once again I have only my Goodreads review:

Beautifully crafted. This book fulfills the need I experience constantly while traveling, wanting to know the personal history of a staircase or painting or gown — who has touched it, influenced it, marked or stained it. People of the Book is a fascinating read.

Favorite Quotes:

We were too intelligent, too cynical for war. Of course, you don’t have to be stupid and primitive to die a stupid, primitive death.

The book has survived the same human disaster over and over again. Think about it. You’ve got a society where people tolerate difference, like Spain in the Convivencia, and everything’s humming along: creative, prosperous. Then somehow this fear, this hate, this need to demonize ‘the other’–it just sort of rears up and smashes the whole society. Inquisition, Nazis, extremist Serb nationalists…same old, same old.”