Typically meeting the second Tuesday of each month from 1:30 - 3:00 PM at the Uptown JCC, the JCC Book Club offers engaging and insightful discussions in a laid back environment. Free and open to the community - all are welcome. Books are available for purchase at our neighborhood partner bookstore, Octavia Books.
All JCC Book Club discussion are now held virtually. For more information, please contact Judy Yaillen. If you would like to be placed on our Book Club email list, send a message to Beth Orgeron with your request.
The Imperfects by Amy Meyerson
Reviewed by Omri Einav, Adjunct Hebrew Professor at Tulane University
Mistress of the Ritz by Melanie Benjamin
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Aviator's Wife and The Swans of Fifth Avenue comes Mistress of the Ritz, a captivating novel based on the story of the extraordinary real-life American woman who secretly worked for the French Resistance during World War II—while playing hostess to the invading Germans at the iconic Hôtel Ritz in Paris.
Nothing bad can happen at the Ritz; inside its gilded walls every woman looks beautiful, every man appears witty. Favored guests like Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Coco Chanel, and the Duke and Duchess of Windsor walk through its famous doors to be welcomed and pampered by Blanche Auzello and her husband, Claude, the hotel’s director. The Auzellos are the mistress and master of the Ritz, allowing the glamour and glitz to take their minds off their troubled marriage, and off the secrets that they keep from their guests—and each other.
Until June 1940, when the German army sweeps into Paris, setting up headquarters at the Ritz. Suddenly, with the likes of Hermann Goëring moving into suites once occupied by royalty, Blanche and Claude must navigate a terrifying new reality. One that entails even more secrets and lies. One that may destroy the tempestuous marriage between this beautiful, reckless American and her very proper Frenchman. For in order to survive—and strike a blow against their Nazi “guests”—Blanche and Claude must spin a web of deceit that ensnares everything and everyone they cherish.
But one secret is shared between Blanche and Claude alone—the secret that, in the end, threatens to imperil both of their lives, and to bring down the legendary Ritz itself.
Based on true events, Mistress of the Ritz is a taut tale of suspense wrapped up in a love story for the ages, the inspiring story of a woman and a man who discover the best in each other amid the turbulence of war.Reviewed by Kathy Rush, retired cultural anthropologist and one of the founders of the Oral History Library of the University Women's Club of Buenos Aires
If you’re a member of the JCC, odds are that you’ve encountered the energetic and encouraging presence that is Michele Huck. As an instructor at the JCC for six years, Michele has done a little bit of everything from cycling, senior chair exercise, Barre, HIIT, and what she’s known most for these days –– LOTS of Aqua Fit....