I’ve been given the chance to enjoy a few Literati Book Club boxes and my first selection was The Divines by Ellie Eaton. This was a book selected by Elin Hilderbrand -Queen of the Beach Reads. The box contains one hardcover copy, a Q&A and bookmark. You also get access to the Literati App where you can join book club discussions before during and after. Grab an iced coffee and learn more about the boxed book club and The Divines.
by Ellie Eaton
Purchase*: Amazon | Audible *affiliate
With the emotional power of Normal People and the reflective haze of The Girls, a magnetic novel that moves between present-day Los Angeles and a British boarding school in the 1990s, exploring the destructive relationships between teenage girls.
Can we ever really escape our past?
The girls of St John the Divine, an elite English boarding school, were notorious for flipping their hair, harassing teachers, chasing boys, and chain-smoking cigarettes. They were fiercely loyal, sharp-tongued, and cuttingly humorous in the way that only teenage girls can be. For Josephine, now in her thirties, the years at St John were a lifetime ago. She hasn’t spoken to another Divine in fifteen years, not since the day the school shuttered its doors in disgrace.
Yet now Josephine inexplicably finds herself returning to her old stomping grounds. The visit provokes blurry recollections of those doomed final weeks that rocked the community. Ruminating on the past, Josephine becomes obsessed with her teenage identity and the forgotten girls of her one-time orbit. With each memory that resurfaces, she circles closer to the violent secret at the heart of the school’s scandal. But the more Josephine recalls, the further her life unravels, derailing not just her marriage and career, but her entire sense of self.
Suspenseful, provocative, and compulsively readable, The Divines is a scorching examination of the power of adolescent sexuality, female identity, and the destructive class divide. Exposing the tension between the lives we lead as adults and the experiences that form us, Eaton probes us to consider how our memories as adults compel us to reexamine our pasts.
June’s selection was The Divines by Ellie Eaton. Before reading the book club asked,” Do you remember high school fondly or would you prefer to leave that time of your life in the past?” For me, high school was a busy time. I was neither popular nor unpopular. I found my peers to be immature and my closest friends had already graduated. I ran the school paper, worked a full-time job and kept my nose clean.
We meet Josephine on her honeymoon. She and her new hubby are traveling Europe when they make a detour to see her old boarding school, St John the Divine. Josephine, like her mother, was a hair flipping, chain smoking Divine. The visit to the now closed school brings back memories, ones she isn’t sure she wants to remember.
The story that unfolds moves back and forth between present day- 1990s Los Angeles and her years at the boarding school over fifteen years ago. It raised the question of what if you were one of the mean girl in high school? We also see Josephine struggle with her current life, marriage and motherhood as the shadows of the past consume her thoughts.
Eaton captured those years of adolescence and our desire to fit in, discover and the uncertainty of it all. We experience Josephine’s firsts, feel her emotions, self-doubt, desires and the weight of the teen years. It took me over a week to read the book as found small doses worked best as we pivoted between past and present. I found the past held my attention more. I am not at all sure I liked adult Josephine.
However, as the story progresses, foreshadowing to the event pulled me further in. To me the ending of this story was brilliant and made the entire book. I devoured the last one forth of the book in a single sitting and left me satisfied.
This isn’t a book I would have selected for myself, but the discussions and reflection of my high school years made it an enjoyable one. From social divide to our own feminity The Divine proved to be a provocative read.Literati Book Club: The Divines by Ellie Eaton shares the story of Josephine between present-day Los Angeles and a British boarding school in the 1990s #MeanGirls #selfreflection #BookClubPick #Literati Click To Tweet
About the Literati Book Club
Literati is book club, reimagined.
New books chosen monthly by people you admire. Inspiration or entertainment? It’s your call.
I started with Elin Hilderbrand Book Club – Stories that show just how diverse and elevated a “beach book” can be.Take the idea of a “beach book” to new heights. The Beach and Beyond is for anyone who loves smart, sparkling writing matched with a driving narrative. Elin will curate a list of books that will become ones you’ll recommend to any friend looking for that indisputable great read. However, there are twelve different adult clubs and even clubs for kids.
There are two types of memberships:
- Premium membership: includes the monthly book and allows you to buy other book club selections for $12.00. This membership is $25.00 monthly or $20.00 a month if purchased annually.
- Standard membership: $8.25 a month. You bring your own copy of the book and gain access to the discussions, selections, app and can purchase selected books for $12.00 Try it for 99 cents.
Perks, each month you get to see the next month’s selection for all the clubs and can switch clubs. If you aren’t interested in swag but are excited to discuss books and engage with other readers, this is a fun way to explore new books.
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