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All Island Book Club to hold next gathering

By Staff | Feb 4, 2020

PHOTO PROVIDED “Defending Jacob” by William Landay

An American crime-drama novel that raises the question of how far would one go to protect a loved one or family member will be the topic of discussion at the next meeting of an island book club.

The All Island Book Club will meet on Feb. 6 at 7 p.m. at the Captiva Civic Center to review “Defending Jacob,” written by novelist William Landay. The group’s second gathering of the season, it is free and open to all and attendees do not need to be a civic association member to take part.

“Everybody’s welcome,” Merni Libonate, a member of the Captiva Civic Association Board of Governors, said. “You do not have to be a CCA member, you do not have to be a resident.”

Returning for its third season, the group is organized through the CCA.

“We wanted to start one for those who come down here for a month or more at a time, those who don’t have a neighbor-based (book club), but might want to have book club and want to join in,” she said.

“It’s kind of filled a little bit of a gap,” Libonate added. “We have people who are year-rounders, we have people who come in and rent for two or three months. They get their book club fix this way.”

A New York Times best-seller, “Defending Jacob” is about:

“Andy Barber has been an assistant district attorney for two decades. He is respected. Admired in the courtroom. Happy at home with the loves of his life: his wife, Laurie, and their teenage son, Jacob.

“Then Andy’s quiet suburb is stunned by a shocking crime: a young boy stabbed to death in a leafy park. And an even greater shock: The accused is Andy’s own son – shy, awkward, mysterious Jacob.

“Andy believes in Jacob’s innocence. Any parent would. But the pressure mounts. Damning evidence. Doubt. A faltering marriage. The neighbors’ contempt. A murder trial that threatens to obliterate Andy’s family.

“It is the ultimate test for any parent: How far would you go to protect your child? It is a test of devotion. A test of how well a parent can know a child. For Andy Barber, a man with an iron will and a dark secret, it is a test of guilt and innocence in the deepest sense.”

A Web television mini-series based on the novel will premiere on Apple TV+ in April.

“It’s a great book. It’s going to be a great discussion,” Libonate said. “It’s how far would you go for your family, your loved ones? When you find out things about your family, your loved ones?”

“It’s a juicy one,” she added, describing the book as both a thriller and enjoyable read.

“It’s a good beach read, it’s a good escape, but it makes you think,” Libonate said.

The meetings typically last for at least an hour.

“The nice thing about our discussions is that we start out on the book, and it’s interesting how our discussion of the book can lead to other discussions and other subjects that are related to the book,” she said, adding that some will share related experiences. “It’s just a really organic healthy discussion.”

“There’s always some interesting piece that comes out of this that’s unexpected,” Libonate added. “It’s about the book, but the book invariably gives rise to other interesting discussions.”

She noted that the location is also conducive to good conversation.

“It’s a great space to meet,” Libonate said.

The club’s next gathering will take place on March 11 at 7 p.m. During the February meeting, attendees will have the opportunity to recommend what the next read should be and to help decide the pick.

“We ask people to bring their book suggestions and sell the group on it,” she said.

People are encouraged to take part.

“It’s a great way to meet new people and to do so in a really special place, and have a stimulating discussion that lifts you out of the daily routine and gets your mind working,” Libonate said.

For more information, call 239-472-2111 or visit www.ccacaptiva.org or follow the Captiva Civic Association at www.facebook.com/CCAcaptiva.

The Captiva Civic Center is at 11550 Chapin Lane, Captiva.