Friday, March 2, 2012

Book Club Read #1: "Clara's Rib"

This is the first post of my new monthly feature "Book Club Read" where I highlight each month's book club pick. For our first read we picked "Clara's Rib" by Clara Raina Flannigan and Anne Raina.

Here is a little bit about the book:

The picture links to the Official Clara's Rib website, and the following description was taken from the site:

Clara's Rib is the true story of a young girl coming of age in a tuberculosis hospital in the 1940s and '50s. Clara's story focuses mainly on her years growing up in 'the San' in Ottawa, Canada. Readers of all ages will be drawn into the evolving seasons of Clara's life of courage, faith, pranks, laughter, first love, despair and hope from the time she enters the San as a pre-teen until her departure as a young woman in her mid-twenties. Clara, the fourth eldest of ten children, was forced to exchange the daily camaraderie of her big, close-knit family for an even larger family in a hospital filled with TB patients.
Discover why, when Clara left the San for the last time, one of her own ribs was packed in her suitcase.

As I mentioned before, this was the first read for the book club I joined in January, and it is a truly inspirational story. I laughed, I cried, and felt a whole whirlwind of other emotions. This is a true story and reading how strong and determined Clara always was, is simply incredible. She faced so much adversity, hardship, and oh so much loss, over and over again, and still found a way to stay positive and smile.

This is a story for readers of all ages - whether your are eleven or a hundred years old, you will find something to relate to. Whether it's the laughter with friends for playing a trick on another friend, or the crying over the loss of a loved one, nobody can walk away from this book unmoved.

I was lucky enough to meet Anne Raina, Clara's sister and co-author of this book, at our book club meeting, and it was such a wonderful experience. She had so many more stories to tell - how she and the rest of her family dealt with the sickness and the heartache which came along with it.

Clara's story made me see things in a more positive way. As long as you can smile, there is still hope.

I am so glad I joined this book club, because otherwise I might never have known about this book and would have missed out on an incredible journey.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

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Our book pick for March is "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society" by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows, so be on the lookout for my next "Book Club Read" post in a couple of weeks.

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