7:00 PM PT
The Secret Window Book Club
Happy New Year friends! For our next book, we’ll review The Diplomat’s Wife by Pam Jenoff, bestselling author of The Lost Girls of Paris and other compelling Historical Fiction novels.
If you are purchasing the book, please consider purchasing from them to support their small, family-owned business. We receive a 10% discount when you mention the book club.
Cheers to a kinder, brighter year for us all,
Sasha and Crystal
ABOUT THE SECRET WINDOW BOOK CLUB
This group is for women who enjoy traveling through stories, and books become friends and markers of our lives. This book club is for women who like to escape a bit through reading stories that inspire, encourage, expand, and elevate us. The group was created and hosted by Sasha Beyers, who is independent of Capital Books.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
One woman faces danger, intrigue, and love in the aftermath of World War II in this unforgettable novel from the New York Times bestselling author of The Lost Girls of Paris.
1945. Marta Nederman has barely survived the brutality of a Nazi concentration camp, where she was imprisoned for her work with the Polish resistance. Lucky to have escaped with her life, she meets Paul, an American soldier, who gives her hope of a happier future. The two make a promise to meet in London, but Paul is in a deadly plane crash and never arrives.
Finding herself pregnant and alone in a strange city, Marta finds comfort with a kind British diplomat, and the two soon marry. But Marta’s happiness is threatened when the British government seeks her help to find a Communist spy—an undercover mission that resurrects the past with far-reaching consequences.
Set during a time of great upheaval and change, The Diplomat’s Wife, a gripping early work from Pam Jenoff, is a story of survival, love, and heroism, and a great testament to the strength of women.
If you buy the book from Capital Books, tell us that it’s for this month’s book club to receive a 10% discount.
6:00 PM PT
Local Author Kate Washington — Already Toast: Caregiving and Burnout in America — with Rae Gouirand
Kate Washington is an essayist and food writer who currently serves as the dining critic for The Sacramento Bee. Her work has appeared in many publications, including The Washington Post, Eater, Catapult, and McSweeney’s Internet Tendency. She lives in Northern California.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Already Toast shows how all-consuming caregiving can be, how difficult it is to find support, and how the social and literary narratives that have long locked women into providing emotional labor also keep them in unpaid caregiving roles. When Kate Washington and her husband, Brad, learned that he had cancer, they were a young couple: professionals with ascending careers, parents to two small children. Brad’s diagnosis stripped those identities away: he became a patient and she his caregiver.
Brad’s cancer quickly turned aggressive, necessitating a stem-cell transplant that triggered a massive infection, robbing him of his eyesight and nearly of his life. Kate acted as his full-time aide to keep him alive, coordinating his treatments, making doctors’ appointments, calling insurance companies, filling dozens of prescriptions, cleaning commodes, administering IV drugs. She became so burned out that, when she took an online quiz on caregiver self-care, her result cheerily declared: “You’re already toast!”
Through it all she felt profoundly alone, but, as she later learned, she was in fact one of millions: an invisible army of family caregivers working every day in America, their unpaid labor keeping our troubled healthcare system afloat. Because our culture both romanticizes and erases the realities of care work, few caregivers have shared their stories publicly.
As the baby-boom generation ages, the number of family caregivers will continue to grow. Readable, relatable, timely, and often raw, Already Toast—with its clear call for paying and supporting family caregivers—is a crucial intervention in that conversation, bringing together personal experience with deep research to give voice to those tasked with the overlooked, vital work of caring for the seriously ill.