The Stars Beneath Our Feet by David Barclay Moore

(Book 152) We ended our year of Anatomy of a Book Club with The Stars Beneath Our Feet. As is often the case in our December meeting, discussion of the book took a backseat to the holiday cookie exchange and the announcement of next year’s reading list. But let’s take them one at a time.

This book counts as the second time we’ve read a book for young readers. The first was One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia. Many of us are, after all, grandmothers and we have to keep our eyes on things to read to the grandchildren. While we all enjoyed One Crazy Summer, only one of us, Karen, enjoyed this month’s read. She said that she appreciated the easy read. (We have tackled some difficult books this year — I’m looking at you An Instance at the Fingerpost.) Chris noted that the book is a strange combination of too many issues. I thought that the story line about the girls starting a detective agency had the feel of a much younger book such as the Nate the Great series. It seemed out of place in the midst of all the other weighty issues.

Chris started a conversation about all of this year’s books by saying that she liked this year’s list better than any of our previous year’s. Our favorites were Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead with three votes (Sharon, Melissa, Teresa), Cat’s Eye with three votes (Susan, Mary, Rosalie) and River Teeth with two votes (Linda and Chris) I could have been in the River Teeth camp as well, it was a difficult choice. Karen chose The Beauty of Your Face and Marcia abstained. Geri couldn’t attend due to her health, but I will be taking her cookies.

Somehow, I failed to get a picture of the cookie exchange and I’m writing this so long after the fact, I will forget what everyone brought. I’m going to use the sign-up sheet my daughter created, but the girls will have to put corrections in the notes. Chris brought us colorful Spritz cookies; Karen gave us bags of Christmas Krack; Linda made her delicious Toffee and something else I can’t remember; Marcia baked us Eggnog Cut-Outs and English Toffee cookies; Mary contributed Christmas Cherry cookies and Spreds; Rosalie made Chocolate Cookies with mint chips and Raspberry Spitzbuben; Sharon baked Walnut Chocolate and Apricot Cookies and Nut Cups (and raised the bar with her packaging); and Susan repeated the excellence of her Cherry Biscotti. Melissa did not use the sign up sheet, so I have no recollection of her cookie treats because I went overboard with the body part theme and still haven’t recovered. My cookies included Rosemary and Orange Marmalade Cat’s Eyes, The Hand That First Held Mine was Wearing a Coconut Lime Mitten, Date and Walnut Bloody Pinwheels, The Stars Beneath the Chocolate Peppermint Boots on our Feet, The Ischl Tart Heart, The Beauty of Santa’s Honey Basil Face, The Peanut Butter and Cinnamon Heads of the Reindeer People, and the Non-Binary Gingerbread Body.

The new reading list will be discussed in full on it’s own page, but for now we will say that in 2023 we will be looking at options for abandoning this world (if only momentarily) and choosing another. All of our titles include the word world. I will be hosting our first meeting of 2023 on January 16, when we will discuss Come Fly the World, the Jet-Age Story of the Women of PanAm, by Julia Cooke.