Book Discussion Group


The Book Discussion Group led by Bill Hayes and Mary Lou Thompson has a dedicated group on the third Monday afternoon of each month at 2 pm. Newcomers are welcome at any session. It is not necessary to have read the book and it’s okay to come for one book and not another.

Jan.   Between the World and Me by Ta Nehisi Coates discussing what it is like growing up Black in America especially knowing that race is a made up idea to support the concept of slavery and has no basis in science.

Feb.  Edison and Westinghouse rivalry. Two carloads went to Fort Myers for a tour of the Edison properties.


April. Eleanor Roosevelt vol. 3 by Blanch Weisen Cook. Discussion led by Geri Pasquarella.

Monday, May 22 at 2:00pm.   Karen Armstrong’s The History of God.  Skip McAfee will lead the discussion and we will use the synopsis he developed.  If anyone needs a copy of the  synopsis. please see Skip, Bill or MaryLou.

Monday, June 12 at 2:00pm.  Night by Elie Wiesel.  He won the Nobel Peace Prize for this book about his imprisonment during the holocaust.  Bill Hayes will lead the discussion.

We will meet  on Monday, July 24, to discuss the novel The Sin Warriors by Julian E. Farris.  The novel is based on the true story of the disappearance of homosexuals from Florida universities due to the  covert investigations by state senator Charlie Johns.  We will meet at 2:00pm.

On Tuesday, July  25 we will meet to take a field trip to the Holocaust Museum in St Pete.  We will have lunch in St Pete at Albert Whitted Airfield in downtown St Pete.

In August we will meet on Monday, August 28, to discuss The Grace of the Gingko by Michael Hardesty.  It is the story of an atheist grandfather bringing up his orphaned granddaughter.

Do not hesitate to invite others to our discussions.  This is not a closed group by any means

Suggestions for the next books include:
Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor Frankel.
The Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline
A Chosen Faith by John Buehrins and Forrest Church
The Third Reconstruction by Rev. William Barber
America’s Original Sin by Jim Wallis
Dark Money by Jean Mayer
The River Doubt, Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey by Candice Millard
This Fight is our Fight by Elizabeth Warren


The first book of the Book Club was Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson. His presentation at the UUA GA 2017 is available on You Tube at: uua ga 2017.

The second book was Being Mortal by Atul Gawande. It deals with the medical care being provided to the elderly in our nation and how it too often fails to prepare us for our inevitable death. Members discussed and shared forms for end of life:  medical directives, power of attorney, wills, MUUF Life Crisis Forms. A November 6 Sunday Service was presented by members of the Book Group on the many end-of-life issues that arose during discussion. Two Share-a-Dish program on related subjects were presented by Tidewell Hospice.

Zealot: Jesus of Nazareth by Reza Aslan was next and the group used the recommended UUA Study Guide. This book put forth the argument that the historically accurate Jesus is a Hebrew Zealot and not the divine Christ as invented by Christianity.

Acts of Faith by Eboo Patel began August. Mr. Patel was the 2013 Ware Lecturer at GA. We use the study guide developed by UUA. These discussion were scheduled for 8/29, 9/12 and 9/26. The book describes Patel’s growing up as a Muslim in interfaith America. To view and listen to his Ware Lecture, go to 2013

Nov. 7   Black Flags and the Rise of ISIS by Joby Warrick. The author depicts how the zeal of one man, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, and the mistakes of two US Presidents led to the banner of ISIS being raised over large swaths of Iraq, Syria and other countries.

Nov. 21  The Miracle of the Kurds

Dec. 5 .  The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore. This is an historical novel about George Westinghouse’s law suit against Thomas Edison over who discovered the electric light bulb. Billions were involved. In conjunction with reading the book, the club traveled to Fort Myers to visit the Edison and Ford winter vacation homes on Jan. 9, 2017.