Book Clubs

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2018-04-2812-40-28D4S_8129Books can connect us with history in new and exciting ways. Each fiction and non-fiction book club series focuses on a subject that relates to the history of the Los Angeles region between 1830 and 1930. Museum staff will occasionally share items from the museum's collection that pertain to the subject of a book.

We ask that participants read the assigned book in time for each meeting.


Non-Fiction Book Club

Fall 2019: California & the West

Friday, October 4
Friday, November 1
Friday, December 6

October 4: California: A History by Kevin Starr

November 1: The Fragmented Metropolis: Los Angeles, 1850-1930 by Robert M. Fogelson

December 6: Kearny's March: The Epic Creation of the American West: 1846-1847 by Winston Groom


Fiction Book Club

Fall 2019: Best Sellers of the 1920s

Wednesday,October 16
Wednesday, November 20
Wednesday, December 18

• 7 to 9 p.m.
• Free; space is limited and advance registration is recommended. Click HERE to reserve your spot.

October 16: The Sheik (1921) by E.M. Hull

November 20: Wanderer of the Wasteland (1923) by Zane Grey

December 18: Twilight Sleep (1927) by Edith Wharton


Upcoming Book Club Themes

Non-Fiction Book Club

Spring 2020: American Presidents

February 7: Unreasonable Men: Theodore Roosevelt and the Republican Rebels Who Created Progressive Politics by Michael Wolraich

March 6: Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President by Candice Millard

April 3: Warren G. Harding: The American Presidents Series: The 29th President, 1921—1923 by John W. Dean


Summer 2020: Suffrage & Women's Rights

June 5: Feminism and Suffrage The Emergence of an Independent Women’s Movement in America by Ellen Carol DuBois

July 10: California Women and Politics: From the Gold Rush to the Great Depression

August 7: A Woman's Crusade: Alice Paul and the Battle for the Ballet  by Mary Walton.


Fall 2020: Los Angeles

September 25: Married To A Daughter of The Land: Spanish-Mexican Women and Interethnic Marriage in California, 1820-80 by Maria Raquel Casas

October 30: American Character: The Curious Life of Charles Fletcher Lummis and the Rediscovery of the Southwest by Mark Thompson

December 4: A Bright and Guilty Place: Murder, Corruption, and L. A.’s Scandalous Coming of Age by Richard Rayner


 Fiction Book Club

Spring 2020: Generations

February 19: Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

March 18: Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

April 15: Show Boat by Edna Ferber


Summer 2020: And Then It Got Worse...

June 17: Led to the Slaughter: The Donner Party Werewolves by Duncan McGeary

July 15: Deck Z: The Titanic: Unsinkable. Undead by Chris Pauls & Matt Solomon

August 19: Ghost Talkers by Mary Robinette Kowal


Fall 2020: Literature of the Progressive Era

September 25: The Jungle by Upton Sinclair (1906)  

October 30: Black Beauty by Anna Sewall (1877)

December 4: The Iron Heel by Jack London (1908)

 Past Book Club Themes



Summer 2019: History Mash-Ups

Spring 2019: The Birth of Noir

Fall 2018: WWI in Different Mediums 

Summer 2018: A Fantastical Look at California 



Summer 2019: US History: Race, Gender, & Modernity

Spring 2019: Women: Politics, Religion, Vocation

Fall 2018: Varied Views of Los Angeles

Summer 2018: California's Nineteenth-Century Economy: The Big Picture