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Brown Book Club: “Happiness: A Novel”

When:
October 13, 2019 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
2019-10-13T18:00:00-04:00
2019-10-13T20:00:00-04:00
Where:
Bethesda
Cost:
$6-8
Contact:
Debby Cooney

The Brown Book Club will meet on Sunday, October 13 in Bethesda to discuss Happiness: A Novel, by Aminatta Forna (fiction, 368 pp, 2007). We’ll begin at 6PM with dinner, then go on to discussion. Please RSVP by Friday, October 11 by contacting the event organizer, who will provide location information. Mention any food allergies, and bring $6 – $8 for the meal.

“A fox makes its way across Waterloo Bridge in London. The distraction causes two pedestrians to collide―Jean, an American studying the habits of urban foxes, and Attila, a Ghanaian psychiatrist there to deliver a keynote speech. From this chance encounter, Aminatta Forna’s unerring powers of observation show how, in the midst of the rush of a great city, lie numerous moments of connection.  Attila has arrived in London with two tasks: to deliver a keynote speech on trauma, as he has done many times before; and to contact the daughter of friends, his “niece” who hasn’t called home in a while. Ama has been swept up in an immigration crackdown, and now her young son Tano is missing.  When, by chance, Attila runs into Jean again, she mobilizes the network of rubbish men she uses as volunteer fox spotters. Security guards, hotel doormen, traffic wardens―mainly West African immigrants who work the myriad streets of London―come together to help. As the search for Tano continues, a deepening friendship between Attila and Jean unfolds.

Meanwhile a consulting case causes Attila to question the impact of his own ideas on trauma, the values of the society he finds himself in, and a grief of his own. In this delicate tale of love and loss, of cruelty and kindness, Forna asks us to consider the interconnectedness of lives, our co-existence with one another and all living creatures, and the true nature of happiness.” – Amazon Book Reviews

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