Friday, May 28, 2010

Book Club

So, about 3 months ago, my good friend Jessica sent an email requesting that we "resurrect" our Book Club. You see, back in the early-mid 2000's a core group of gals, all connected to one another in different ways, were meeting approximately once a month or so to do what book clubs do: eat, chat, snack, talk, catch up on the latest, and. . . discuss the book we were "supposed" to have read prior to our meeting. In those 2-3 years we read some great/interesting books (**see below), but more importantly, we cemented friendships that will last a lifetime.

When Jessica's email made the rounds, we all agreed to give our book club another shot, even though one of the core members, my good friend Gretchen, no longer lived in eastern Kansas. (We also agreed that we would try to hold all book club meetings when Gretch was back in town visiting relatives.) The first book chosen was Eat, Pray, Love, by Elizabeth Gilbert, and so, when I had some time I dug out my sister's copy of the book (that she leant me years ago) and began reading.

Sidenote: my sister makes a lot of book suggestions. Some I pick up immediately, some I ponder awhile before actually reading, and some I have to be prompted to read over and over again. Even though I'm the Literature teacher, she and my mother are much more well-read. I completely failed them both last year when the three of us were going to read Washington Square by Henry James. . . and I have yet to read past the first few pages. Needless to say, Ari was glad to hear that I read Eat, Pray, Love, but I think she's still a little irked that I haven't "participated" yet in our nuclear-family "book club." Perhaps on the next book? :)

So, as I was saying, we read Eat, Pray, Love and met to discuss it in late March. I must say we had a lot of varying opinions on the book and an interesting discussion. I found it to be intriguing, simply because of the author's voice and the way she described her experiences. I don't think I should do a complete book review right here on my blog, but if you've read it, I'd be interested in your take. Just one observation: her take on spiritually=not a guidebook.

My friend Misty chose our next book, (we go by birthday month) The Sweetness at the Bottom of Pie. It's a great read with a wonderful protagonist: Flavia DeLuce. She's an 11 year old living in 1950's England. There are some classic scenes in this little mystery, and the characters are really well-developed. Again, if you've read it. . . I'd love to hear what you think. Alan Bradley, the author, has written a second book in the series and I hope to read it sometime this summer perhaps. (That's all of us in the picture below at Misty's after sampling a tasty Key Lime pie.)

Finally, to our current book choice (thanks Stacy), The Help by Kathryn Stockett. I haven't started this one yet, because I'm saving it for my trip to Spain (coming in just a week or so), but I've heard great things about it. Many of my friends and co-workers have read it, so I'm excited to jump on board. It is also one of the books we've chosen as a summer read for our AP Literature students, so I was going to have to read it anyway.

Well, I guess that's it about book club for now. I truly enjoy those nights spent with friends. . . especially when we're discussing a good piece of literature.

**A few of the books I remember reading (and actually finishing) on our first go-round include: Fahrenheit 451, The Eyre Affair (one of my favorite book club choices), To Kill a Mockingbird(perhaps my favorite novel ever), Endurance (a terrific nonfiction account), Memoirs of a Geisha, and Kite Runner (not one I enjoyed, but a good choice nonetheless).