Book Discussion Kits - Virtual

The following kits have been curated by librarians and are available virtually. Your group members can each download a copy of the selected book, as multiple copies are always available. You only need a Plainfield Library card or a card from a Library that offers hoopla. Check out our device guides for step by step instructions on how to use hoopla on your device. Please also see this list of free video chat services you can use to host a virtual discussion.

Book jacket of The Alice Network by Kate Quinn The Alice Network by Kate Quinn
Two women a female spy recruited to the real-life Alice Network in France during World War I and an unconventional American socialite searching for her cousin in 1947 and are brought together in a mesmerizing story of courage and redemption. Book Discussion Guide
Book jacket of Autopsy of a Boring Wife by Marie Renee Lavoie Autopsy of a Boring Wife by Marie-Renee Lavoie
Tells the hysterically funny and ultimately touching tale of forty-eight-year-old Diane, a woman whose husband leaves her and is having an affair because, he says, she bores him. Book Discussion Guide
Book jacket of Caging Skies by Christine Leunens Caging Skies by Christine Leunens
An avid member of the Hitler Youth in 1940s Vienna, Johannes Betzler discovers his parents are hiding a Jewish girl named Elsa behind a false wall in their home. His initial horror turns to interest-then love and obsession. After his parents disappear, Johannes is the only one aware of Elsa's existence in the house and he alone is responsible for her fate. Book Discussion Guide
Book jacket of Children of the Land by Hernandez Castillo Children of the Land by Marcelo Hernandez Castillo
This unforgettable memoir from a prize-winning poet about growing up undocumented in the United States recounts the sorrows and joys of a family torn apart by draconian policies and chronicles one young man's attempt to build a future in a nation that denies his existence. Book Discussion Guide
Book jacket of Good Riddance by Elinor Lipman

Good Riddance by Elinor Lipman
Daphne Maritch doesn't quite know what to make of the heavily annotated high school yearbook she inherits from her mother, who held this relic dear. In a fit of decluttering, she discards it when she moves to a small New York City apartment. But when it's found in the recycling bin by a busybody neighbor/documentary filmmaker, the yearbook's mysteries-not to mention her own family's-take on a whole new urgency. Book Discussion Guide

Book jacket of The Lady From the Black Lagoon by Mallory O'Meara

Lady From the Black Lagoon by Mallory O'Meara
Uncovers the life and work of Milicent Patrick-one of Disney's first female animators and the only woman in history to create one of Hollywood's classic movie monsters. Book Discussion Guide

Book jacket of The Magnetic Girl by Jessica Handler The Magnetic Girl by Jessica Handler
In rural north Georgia two decades after the Civil War, thirteen-year-old Lulu Hurst reaches high into her father's bookshelf and pulls out an obscure book, The Truth of Mesmeric Influence. Deemed gangly and undesirable, Lulu wants more than a lifetime of caring for her disabled baby brother, Leo, with whom she shares a profound and supernatural mental connection. Lulu begins to "captivate" her friends and family, controlling their thoughts and actions for brief moments at a time. After Lulu convinces a cousin she conducts electricity with her touch, her father sees a unique opportunity. He grooms his tall and indelicate daughter into an electrifying new woman: The Magnetic Girl. Book Discussion Guide
Book jacket of The Mountains Sing by The Mountains Sing by Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai
Tells an enveloping, multigenerational tale of the Trần family, set against the backdrop of the Việt Nam War. Trần Diệu Lan, who was born in 1920, was forced to flee her family farm with her six children during the Land Reform as the Communist government rose in the North. Years later in Hà Nội, her young granddaughter, Hương, comes of age as her parents and uncles head off down the Hồ Chí Minh Trail to fight in a conflict that tore not just her beloved country, but her family apart. Book Discussion Guide
Book jacket of Recipe for a Perfect Wife by Karma Brown Recipe for a Perfect Wife by Karma Brown
When Alice Hale leaves a career to become a writer and follows her husband to the New York suburbs, she is unaccustomed to filling her days alone in a big, empty house. But when she finds a vintage cookbook buried in the basement, she becomes captivated by its previous owner: 1950s housewife Nellie Murdoch. As Alice cooks her way through the past, she realises that within the pages Nellie left clues about her life. Book Discussion Guide
Book jacket of Resistance Women by Jennifer Chiaverini

Resistance Women by Jennifer Chiaverini
Recreates the danger, romance, and sacrifice of an era and brings to life one courageous, passionate American-Mildred Fish Harnack-and her circle of women friends who waged a clandestine battle against Hitler in Nazi Berlin. Book Discussion Guide

Book Discussion Kits

The Plainfield Public Library has a growing collection of Book Discussion Kits available to lend to our patrons and fellow libraries who are seeking multiple copies of books for discussion. New titles are added periodically and each discussion set contains between 10-12 books. Contact the Reference Desk at info@plainfieldpubliclibrary.org if you are interested in borrowing a kit.

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More discussion kits will be available over the coming year. Contact the Reference Desk at info@plainfieldpubliclibrary.org if you are interested in borrowing a "Book Club in a Bag".

All the Beautiful LiesAll the Beautiful Lies
by Peter Swanson
Devastated when his father commits suicide days before his college graduation, Harry returns to his home in Maine, where he is baffled by the increasingly sensual attentions of a mysterious woman and his own alluring stepmother, who he comes to realize are hiding dangerous secrets. By the award-winning author of The Girl With a Clock for A Heart.
Book Discussion Guide
American DirtAmerican Dirt
by Jeanine Cummins
Lydia Quixano Pérez lives in the Mexican city of Acapulco. She runs a bookstore. She has a son, Luca, the love of her life, and a wonderful husband who is a journalist. And while there are cracks beginning to show in Acapulco because of the drug cartels, her life is, by and large, fairly comfortable. Even though she knows they’ll never sell, Lydia stocks some of her all-time favorite books in her store. And then one day a man enters the shop to browse and comes up to the register with a few books he would like to buy—two of them her favorites. Javier is erudite. He is charming. And, unbeknownst to Lydia, he is the jefe of the newest drug cartel that has gruesomely taken over the city. When Lydia’s husband’s tell-all profile of Javier is published, none of their lives will ever be the same.
Book Discussion Guide
And Then There Were NoneAnd Then There Were None
by Agatha Christie
Ten people, each with something to hide and something to fear, are invited to a isolated mansion on Indian Island by a host who, surprisingly, fails to appear. On the island they are cut off from everything but each other and the inescapable shadows of their own past lives. One by one, the guests share the darkest secrets of their wicked pasts. And one by one, they die…
Book Discussion Guide
Ask Again, YesAsk Again, Yes
by Mary Beth Keane
A family saga about two Irish American families in a New York suburb, the love between two of their children, and the tragedies that threaten to tear them apart and destroy their futures.
Book Discussion Guide
Baker's Secret, TheBaker's Secret, The
by Stephen Kiernan
After her kind mentor is arrested because of his Jewish heritage, a young baker's apprentice in Normandy engages in discreet resistance activities, baking contraband loaves of bread for the hungry using surplus ingredients taken from occupying forces.
Book Discussion Guide
Book of Lost Friends, TheBook of Lost Friends, The
by Lisa Wingate
NEW! From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Before We Were Yours comes a new historical novel: the dramatic story of three young women searching for family amid the destruction of the post–Civil War South, and of a modern-day teacher who learns of their story and its vital connection to her students’ lives.
Book Discussion Guide
Book of Two Ways, TheBook of Two Ways, The
by Jodi Picoult
NEW! Everything changes in a single moment for Dawn Edelstein. She&;s on a plane when the flight attendant makes an announcement: Prepare for a crash landing. She braces herself as thoughts flash through her mind. The shocking thing is, the thoughts are not of her husband but of a man she last saw fifteen years ago: Wyatt Armstrong.
Book Discussion Guide
Book Woman of Troublesome Creek, TheBook Woman of Troublesome Creek, The
by Kim Michele Richardson
The hardscrabble folks of Troublesome Creek have to scrap for everything—everything except books, that is. Thanks to Roosevelt's Kentucky Pack Horse Library Project, Troublesome's got its very own traveling librarian, Cussy Mary Carter. Cussy's not only a book woman, however, she's also the last of her kind, her skin a shade of blue unlike most anyone else. Not everyone is keen on Cussy's family or the Library Project, and a Blue is often blamed for any whiff of trouble. If Cussy wants to bring the joy of books to the hill folks, she's going to have to confront prejudice as old as the Appalachias and suspicion as deep as the holler.
Book Discussion Guide
Caste: the origins of our discontentsCaste: the origins of our discontents
by Isabel Wilkerson
NEW! In this brilliant book, Isabel Wilkerson gives us a masterful portrait of an unseen phenomenon in America as she explores, through an immersive, deeply researched narrative and stories about real people, how America today and throughout its history has been shaped by a hidden caste system, a rigid hierarchy of human rankings.
Book Discussion Guide
Children of the LandChildren of the Land
by Marcelo Hernandez Castillio
NEW! This unforgettable memoir from a prize-winning poet about growing up undocumented in the United States recounts the sorrows and joys of a family torn apart by draconian policies and chronicles one young man&;s attempt to build a future in a nation that denies his existence.
Book Discussion Guide
Daisy Jones and the SixDaisy Jones and the Six
by Taylor Jenkins Reid
When singer Daisy Jones meets Billy Dunne of the band The Six, the two rising 70s rock-and-roll artists are catapulted into stardom when a producer puts them together, a decision that is complicated by a pregnancy and the seductions of fame.
Book Discussion Guide
Dear Mrs. BirdDear Mrs. Bird
by A.J. Pearce
An adventurous young woman takes a typist job to assist the war effort and lands in the employ of a renowned advice columnist before she begins secretly replying to heart-wrenching letters rejected as unsuitable.
Book Discussion Guide
EducatedEducated
by Tara Westover
Traces the author's experiences as a child born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, describing her participation in her family's paranoid stockpiling activities and her resolve to educate herself well enough to earn an acceptance into a prestigious university and the unfamiliar world beyond.
Book Discussion Guide
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely FineEleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine
by Gail Honeyman
Smart, warm, uplifting, Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is the story of an out-of-the-ordinary heroine whose deadpan weirdness and unconscious wit make for an irresistible journey as she realizes that the only way to survive is to open your heart.
Book Discussion Guide
Falling Woman. The Falling Woman. The
by Richard Farrell
NEW! First, it’s just a barely believable rumor: one person may have survived the midair explosion of a passenger jet on a cross-country course from Washington, D.C., to San Francisco. But soon she becomes a national media sensation when “the Falling Woman,” as the press dubs her, is said to have been taken to a Wichita hospital—and then to have disappeared without a trace.
Book Discussion Guide
Finding DorothyFinding Dorothy
by Elizabeth Letts
This richly imagined novel tells the story behind The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, the book that inspired the iconic film, through the eyes of author L. Frank Baum’s intrepid wife, Maud.
Book Discussion Guide
Girl He Used to Know, TheGirl He Used to Know, The
by Tracey Garvis Graves
Annika is an English major at the University of Illinois. Anxious in social situations where she finds most people's behavior confusing, she'd rather be surrounded by the order and discipline of books or the quiet solitude of playing chess. Jonathan Hoffman joined the chess club and lost his first game--and his heart--to the shy and awkward, yet brilliant and beautiful Annika. What follows is a tumultuous yet tender love affair that withstands everything except the unforeseen tragedy that forces them apart, shattering their connection and leaving them to navigate their lives alone.
Book Discussion Guide
Girls In The Picture, TheGirls In The Picture, The
by Melanie Benjamin
A reimagining of the powerful creative partnership between Hollywood superstars Frances Marion and Mary Pickford traces their friendship and boundary-breaking achievements against a backdrop of pre-World War I Hollywood.
Book Discussion Guide
Good Neighborhood, AGood Neighborhood, A
by Therese Anne Fowler
In Oak Knoll, a verdant, tight-knit North Carolina neighborhood, professor of forestry and ecology Valerie Alston-Holt is raising her bright and talented biracial son, Xavier, who’s headed to college in the fall. All is well until the Whitmans—a family with new money and a secretly troubled teenage daughter—raze the house and trees next door to build themselves a showplace. With little in common except a property line, these two families quickly find themselves at odds: first, over an historic oak tree in Valerie's yard, and soon after, the blossoming romance between their two teenagers.

Book Discussion Guide
Guest Book, TheGuest Book, The
by Sarah Blake
The Guest Book follows three generations of a powerful American family, a family that “used to run the world.” And when the novel begins in 1935, they still do. Kitty and Ogden Milton appear to have everything—perfect children, good looks, a love everyone envies. But after a tragedy befalls them, Ogden tries to bring Kitty back to life by purchasing an island in Maine. That island, and its house, come to define and burnish the Milton family, year after year after year. And it is there that Kitty issues a refusal that will haunt her till the day she dies.
Book Discussion Guide
Henna Artist, TheHenna Artist, The
by Alka Joshi
NEW! Escaping from an abusive marriage, seventeen-year-old Lakshmi makes her way alone to the vibrant 1950s pink city of Jaipur. There she becomes the most highly requested henna artist and confidante to the wealthy women of the upper class. But trusted with the secrets of the wealthy, she can never reveal her own.

Book Discussion Guide
Holdout, TheHoldout, The
by Graham Moore
NEW! A woman is wrongly implicated in a murder one decade after convincing the members of a deadlocked jury to return a not-guilty verdict. By the Academy Award-winning screenwriter of The Imitation Game.
Book Discussion Guide
How to Stop TimeHow to Stop Time
by Matt Haig
A man with a secret rare condition that has enabled him to survive for centuries moves to London to become a high-school history teacher and considers defying his protective guardians' rule against falling in love when he becomes entranced by a captivating colleague.
Book Discussion Guide
LakewoodLakewood
by Megan Giddings
NEW! When Lena Johnson's beloved grandmother dies, and the full extent of the family debt is revealed, the black millennial drops out of college to support her family and takes a job in the mysterious and remote town of Lakewood, Michigan. On paper, her new job is too good to be true. High paying. No out of pocket medical expenses. A free place to live. All Lena has to do is participate in a secret program and lie to her friends and family about the research being done in Lakewood. An eye drop that makes brown eyes blue, a medication that could be a cure for dementia, golden pills promised to make all bad thoughts go away. The discoveries made in Lakewood, Lena is told, will change the world, but the consequences for the subjects involved could be devastating. As the truths of the program reveal themselves, Lena learns how much she's willing to sacrifice for the sake of her family.

Book Discussion Guide
Last Story of Mina Lee, TheLast Story of Mina Lee, The
by Nancy Jooyoun Kim
NEW! Suspecting foul play in the wake of her mother's accidental death, Margot Lee investigates her mother's past as a Korean War orphan and undocumented immigrant before uncovering profound secrets.
Book Discussion Guide
Leavers, TheLeavers, The
by Lisa Ko
One morning, Deming Guo's mother, an undocumented Chinese immigrant named Polly, goes to her job at the nail salon and never comes home. With his mother gone, eleven-year-old Deming is left with no one to care for him. He is eventually adopted by two white college professors who move him from the Bronx to a small town upstate. Set in New York and China, the Leavers is the story of how one boy comes into his own when everything he's loved has been taken away--and how a mother learns to live with the mistakes of her past.
Book Discussion Guide
Library Book, TheLibrary Book, The
by Susan Orlean
On the morning of April 29, 1986, a fire alarm sounded in the Los Angeles Public Library. As the moments passed, the patrons and staff who had been cleared out of the building realized this was not the usual fire alarm. As one fireman recounted, “Once that first stack got going, it was ‘Goodbye, Charlie.’” The fire was disastrous: it reached 2000 degrees and burned for more than seven hours. By the time it was extinguished, it had consumed four hundred thousand books and damaged seven hundred thousand more. Investigators descended on the scene, but more than thirty years later, the mystery remains: Did someone purposefully set fire to the library—and if so, who?
Book Discussion Guide
Little Fires EverywhereLittle Fires Everywhere
by Celeste Ng
Fighting an ugly custody battle with an artistic tenant who has little regard for the strict rules of their progressive Cleveland suburb, a straitlaced family woman who is seeking to adopt a baby becomes obsessed with exposing the tenant's past, only to trigger devastating consequences for both of their families.
Book Discussion Guide
Miracle CreekMiracle Creek
by Angie Kim
In rural Virginia, Young and Pak Yoo run an experimental medical treatment device known as the Miracle Submarine—a pressurized oxygen chamber that patients enter for therapeutic “dives” with the hopes of curing issues like autism or infertility. But when the Miracle Submarine mysteriously explodes, killing two people, a dramatic murder trial upends the Yoos’ small community.
Book Discussion Guide
Mother-In-Law, TheMother-In-Law, The
by Sally Hepworth
From the moment Lucy met her husband’s mother, she knew she wasn’t the wife Diana had envisioned for her perfect son. Exquisitely polite, friendly and always generous, Diana nonetheless kept Lucy at arm’s length despite her desperate attempts to win her over. And as a pillar in the community, an advocate for female refugees, and a woman happily married for decades, no one had a bad word to say about Diana…except Lucy.
Book Discussion Guide
Music Shop, TheMusic Shop, The
by Rachel Joyce
The owner of a 1988 music shop in a down-at-heel suburban community uses his talent for connecting customers to the music they seek and resists a chance at an intimate relationship with a beautiful young woman who hides a mysterious agenda and compels him to confront painful elements from his past.
Book Discussion Guide
Night in Question, TheNight in Question, The
by Nic Joseph
When her husband's medical bills become overwhelming, Paula starts a side job as an Uber driver. One night, she picks up a quiet stranger and drops him off at a suburban Chicago address. When she later recognizes him as the musician husband of a famous actress--an actress who is obviously not the woman she saw him embracing that night--Paula does what any down-on-her-luck bystander would do: She asks for money to keep quiet. But the biggest risk of her life quickly becomes her biggest mistake when a tenant is found murdered in the same apartment building where she left the musician--and she's the only person who knows he was there...
Book Discussion Guide
Night Watchman, TheNight Watchman, The
by Louise Erdrich
NEW! Based on the extraordinary life of National Book Award-winning author Louise Erdrich's grandfather who worked as a night watchman and carried the fight against Native dispossession from rural North Dakota all the way to Washington, D.C., this powerful novel explores themes of love and death with lightness and gravity and unfolds with the elegant prose, sly humor, and depth of feeling of a master craftsman.
Book Discussion Guide
Other Mrs., TheOther Mrs., The
by Mary Kubica
Unnerved by her husband’s inheritance of a decrepit coastal property and the presence of a disturbed relative, community newcomer Sadie uncovers harrowing facts about her family’s possible role in a neighbor’s murder.
Book Discussion Guide
Searching for Sylvie LeeSearching for Sylvie Lee
by Jean Kwok
NEW! It begins with a mystery. Sylvie, the beautiful, brilliant, successful older daughter of the Lee family, flies to the Netherlands for one final visit with her dying grandmother and then vanishes. What happened to Sylvie? Amy and her parents are distraught and desperate for answers. Sylvie has always looked out for them. Now, it's Amy's turn to help. Terrified yet determined, Amy retraces her sister's movements, flying to the last place Sylvie was seen. But instead of simple answers, she discovers something much more valuable: the truth. Sylvie, the golden girl, kept painful secrets . . . secrets that will reveal more about Amy's complicated family and herself than she ever could have imagined.
Book Discussion Guide
Silent Patient, TheSilent Patient, The
by Alex Michaelides
Criminal psychotherapist Theo Faber becomes dangerously obsessed with uncovering the truth about what prompted his client, an artist who refuses to speak, to violently murder her husband in a way that triggers mass public speculation.
Book Discussion Guide
Such a Fun AgeSuch a Fun Age
by Kiley Reid
Seeking justice for a young black babysitter who was wrongly accused of kidnapping by a racist security guard, a successful blogger finds her efforts complicated by a video that reveals unexpected connections.
Book Discussion Guide
Undergound Railroad, TheUndergound Railroad, The
by Colson Whitehead
After Cora, a slave in pre-Civil War Georgia, escapes with another slave, Caesar, they seek the help of the Underground Railroad as they flee from state to state and try to evade a slave catcher, Ridgeway, who is determined to return them to the South.
Book Discussion Guide
Vanishing Half, TheVanishing Half, The
by Brit Bennett
NEW! The Vignes twin sisters will always be identical. But after growing up together in a small, southern black community and running away at age sixteen, it's not just the shape of their daily lives that is different as adults, it's everything: their families, their communities, their racial identities. Ten years later, one sister lives with her black daughter in the same southern town she once tried to escape. The other secretly passes for white, and her white husband knows nothing of her past. Still, even separated by so many miles and just as many lies, the fates of the twins remain intertwined. What will happen to the next generation, when their own daughters' storylines intersect?
Book Discussion Guide
Welcome to the Pine Away Motel and CabinsWelcome to the Pine Away Motel and Cabins
by Katarina Bivald
The Pine Creek Motel has seen better days. Henny would call it charming, but she's always seen the best in things. Like now, when she's just met an untimely end crossing the road. She's not going to let a tiny thing like death stop her from living fully—not when her friends and family need her the most. After the funeral is over, her body is buried, and the last casserole dish is empty, Henny is still around. She's not sure why, but she realizes she has one last opportunity to help her friends discover the happiness they once knew before they lose the motel and cabins they've cherished for years.
Book Discussion Guide
When the Lights Go OutWhen the Lights Go Out
by Mary Kubica
Jessie Sloane is on the path to rebuilding her life after years of caring for her ailing mother. She rents a new apartment and applies for college. But when the college informs her that her social security number has raised a red flag, Jessie discovers a shocking detail that causes her to doubt everything she’s ever known.
Book Discussion Guide
When We Were VikingsWhen We Were Vikings
by Andrew David MacDonald
For Zelda, a twenty-one-year-old Viking enthusiast who lives with her older brother, Gert, life is best lived with some basic rules: 1. A smile means "thank you for doing something small that I liked." 2. Fist bumps and dabs = respect. 3. Strange people are not appreciated in her home. 4. Tomatoes must go in the middle of the sandwich and not get the bread wet. 5. Sometimes the most important things don't fit on lists. But when Zelda finds out that Gert has resorted to some questionable--and dangerous--methods to make enough money to keep them afloat, Zelda decides to launch her own quest. Her mission: to be legendary. It isn't long before Zelda finds herself in a battle that tests the reach of her heroism, her love for her brother, and the depth of her Viking strength.
Book Discussion Guide
Where the Crawdads SingWhere the Crawdads Sing
by Delia Owens
**TEMPORARILY UNAVAILABLE**
For years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life--until the unthinkable happens.

Book Discussion Guide
Woman in the Window, TheWoman in the Window, The
by A.J. Finn
An agoraphobic recluse languishes in her New York City home, drinking wine and spying on her neighbors, before witnessing a terrible crime through her window that exposes her secrets and raises questions about her perceptions of reality.
Book Discussion Guide
Wonder, TheWonder, The
by Emma Donoghue
Hired to care for a small Irish village girl said to have miraculously survived on nothing but "manna from heaven" for months, a journalist and nurse veteran of Florence Nightingale's Crimean campaign quickly finds herself fighting to save the child's life.
Book Discussion Guide