Just me talking about costume-y kind of stuff
Cop Town by Karin Slaughter is our book for March. I did not like this book. It seems to be a historical fiction novel about the first women on the Atlanta police force in the 1970's. I'm pretty sure we chose this book because we assumed it would be empowering for us girls to read about other women who came before us and were the first ones to enter an all male work place. Yes, there is that in it, a bit, but mostly it's just gratuitous violence and racial epithets and stupidity. I felt that the male characters were all the same one-dimensional, cookie-cutter, egotists, racists jerks, which I suppose was the point. However, I also felt that the female characters were not particularly well-defined or unique either. It just seemed like this was the same old detective novel with every old trope being trotted out for extra gore and violence and wasn't particularly interested in telling a feminist empowering sort of tale.
Our book for April is Day After Night by Anita Diamant. It's a historical fiction novel about the post war experiences of a group of Jewish girls being detained in the Atlit camp in Palestine. If you are looking for a novel about female empowerment, this is the novel for you. I could tell the author really did her research on this place and the refugees who peopled it. Even though the girls' stories are fictionalized I had no trouble believing that their experiences were garnered from real life. The photo referred to in the epilogue makes me sure that there was an actual photo taken of this group of girls and that it's still in the filing cabinet in the museum, just like the author says. It's a sad story, but what novel about Jewish refugees in WWII isn't? It reminded me of what strength there must be inside of us to survive the horrors of war and then to go on and make jokes and bread and families again.