January Booked For Lunch Selection

January 24 at noon: The Beantown Girls by Jane Healey.

The January discussion theme is strong female protagonists, and the Booked for Lunch group is starting 2022 by reading The Beantown Girls. This work of historical fiction is the second novel by author Jane Healey.

The story follows Fiona, who joins the Red Cross with hopes of finding her missing-in-action fiancé, and her two best friends as they face the brutal realities of war and attempt to offer comfort to the men fighting it. In the latter part of WWII, the morale of the U.S. military was so low, the Red Cross came up with the idea of Red Cross Clubs on wheels, (or Clubmobiles), so they could bring “a bit of home” to the front lines.

Although the characters are fictional, much of the book is based on true stories. “I definitely do the bulk of the research first, because that helps me shape the narrative,” said Healey. She used primary sources, such as the diaries and letters of women who served in the Red Cross, helping to give the reader a true sense of what these women accomplished. Healey notes, "Their bravery, compassion, strength and sense of humor in the face of constant danger was nothing short of extraordinary."

Join Robin Brz., in person or online via Zoom, on Monday, January 24 at noon to discuss this novel that earned 4.5 stars with nearly 10,000 ratings from both Goodreads and Amazon. Regular, large print, and audio copies are available at the adult circulation desk. At this time, digital editions are NOT available for download using Libby or Overdrive (sorry). Registration is encouraged using our new calendar at https://athol.librarycalendar.com/events/booked-lunch-0 or by email at RBrzozowski@cwmars.org.