CBB’s Jewish Book Club meets four times a year on Sunday mornings to read and discuss both fascinating and critically-acclaimed Jewish novels. We are joined by Charles Lynn Batten, a UCLA professor and master facilitator. All events start at 9:30 AM.

For Fall 2022 dates, we will continue to meet via Zoom, but plan to transition to meeting in-person when possible.

Do you have ideas for other books we should read?
To submit suggestions, contact Stephen Stone, the book club coordinator, here

Sunday,
Sept. 18, 2022

While touring Amsterdam’s Jewish Historical Museum with his wife, renowned author Yoel Blum stumbles upon footage portraying prewar Dutch Jewry and is astonished to see the youthful face of his beloved mother staring back at him, posing with his father, his older sister…and an infant he doesn’t recognize. This unsettling discovery launches him into a fervent search for the truth, shining a light on Amsterdam’s dark wartime history. The deeper into the past Yoel digs up, the better he understands his mother’s silence, and the more urgently he starts to wonder:  Who am I?

Sunday,
Nov. 20, 2022

When Liat meets Hilmi on a blustery autumn afternoon in Greenwich Village, she finds herself unwillingly drawn to the charismatic and handsome young artist from Palestine. Despite knowing that their love can be only temporary, that it can exist only away from their conflicted homeland, Liat lets herself be enraptured by Hilmi. Banned from classrooms by Israel’s Ministry of Education, Dorit Rabinyan’s remarkable novel is a bold portrayal of the strains—and delights—of a forbidden relationship.

Sunday,
Feb. 26, 2023

Lily is a mother and a daughter, a second wife and maybe a writer. Vivian Barr seems to be the perfect political wife, dedicated to helping her ambitious husband find success in Watergate-era Washington D.C. Esther is a fiercely independent young woman in ancient Persia. For fans of The Hours and Fates and Furies, this bold, kaleidoscopic novel intertwines the lives of three women across three millenia as their stories of sex, power, and desire finally converge in the present day.

Sunday,
May 21, 2023

Chicago, 2018: Ole Henryks is a popular restauranteur,  well known for his actions in Nazi-occupied Denmark during World War II. Most consider him a hero. Britta Stein, however, does not. The ninety-year-old Chicago woman levels public accusations against Henryks by spray-painting “Coward,” “Traitor,” “Collaborator,” and “War Criminal” on the walls of his restaurant, resulting in a criminal charge and a bitter lawsuit. This is thrilling take on a modern day courtroom drama, and a masterful rendition of Denmark’s wartime heroics.