My book club is awesome

Friday, November 18, 2011

You guys, I love my book club. For years I tried to find a good book club, but every time I joined a new one I would once again be disappointed. Each time I quickly discovered that “book club” was mom code for “get out of the house and hang out with people.” Which is great except, I didn’t know those people well enough to want to talk about their kids for 30 minutes, I wanted to talk about the book! We rarely even got around it, which is just not cool.

So time and time again, I realized that every book club made up of 20 and 30-somethings was not for me. Believe me, I have nothing against sitting around and drinking wine or coffee and chatting. It’s just I’d just rather do that with my friends than with a group of people I don’t know well.

After years of this, one of the women in my United We Read program invited me to her book club. This was about two years ago and I have been a member ever since. During my first meeting they showed me a list of books they’d read and rated over the past decade and the vast majority were ones that I either loved or had on my TBR list.

I’m the youngest member in the group by 30 years and it’s perfect. It’s a small group, but one that’s very committed to reading the book and showing up for the meetings. Our difference in age and personalities allows for a diverse reaction to books and great discussions. Each year we try to read at least one mystery, nonfiction and classic in addition to various fiction.

Here’s the list of books we’ve picked for 2012:
January: The Paris Wife
February: The Forgotten Garden
March: Case Histories
April: Cold Comfort Farm
May: Unbroken
June: Life is so Good
July: The Liar’s Club
August: Middlesex
September: The Madonnas of Leningrad
October: Clara and Mr. Tiffany
December: Cutting for Stone

Of the books we chose, I’ve only read Middlesex and The Forgotten Garden, both of which I loved.

So how about you all, are you in a book club? If so, do you love it or what would you change?

Image from here.


Alex (The Sleepless Reader) said...

I know exactly what you mean! When I first arrived in Brussels I knew no one, so joining a bookclub of other newcomers was a good way to meet people. Now that we know each other very well, we end up talking about the book for 30m and then just chat away.

That's fine because now we are "friends", but I needed more book talk. Recently I decided to join another group that only discusses classics where I'm the youngest by about 20 years and I absolutely love the insightful meetings :)

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

I wish I could find a book club like yours. The one club around here has a leader who is terrible. What great books you have to look forward to for 2012.

Kat @ NoPageLeftBehind said...

Your book club sounds great! It would be interesting to have such an age gap. I love your list for 2012 - great choices!

I'm also in a book club and I love it. My only complaint is that our numbers have dwindled down to only 4 ladies! People have mostly left due to the fact that they discovered that we're not meeting just to drink wine and chat. The upside is that at least we know our members are dedicated to discussing the book! :)

Kath said...

I love my book club here in Taipei! It's lots of fun, we all read the book and there's always someone who has organised a list of questions/ideas for discussion. There's a good range of ages too, from 29 (me, the youngest) to 60-something. We're doing nominations for next year soon so I've been carefully considering which books to put forward so seeing your list has been helpful to prompt some ideas. Thanks!

Jenners said...

I don't have a book club but I want one … I want one just like yours!!! You've got some great picks on there that I think you'll enjoy … particularly Case Histories!

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

Alex - That is awesome. I love that books can be an immediate bond with people. It's awesome that you have such a great age difference too. I think it adds so much to a group's dynamic.

Diane - That's awful. We actually don't have a leader. Everybody seems to contribute equally and it works out well.

Kat - Our group only has 5 people (including me) who are there every time. It's nice in some ways because it's easier to stay focused on books and to be flexible if we need to move the date.

Kathmeister - I'd lvoe to hear what books you end up choosing for next year!

Jenners - Oh good, I can't wait to read that one.

Jillian said...

So awesome to know and are friends with like-minded and bookish people around you! That itself is rare to find, so it's definitely exciting!
Maybe they'd be interested in doing a guest post here too! Like a book discussion, online :)

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

Jillian - That is a great idea! I'll have to see if they would be up for that sometime.

Admin said...

Wow what a picture.

BookQuoter said...

Cutting For Stone is one of my top top books of all time. Please read it before Dec 2012, I am dying to see what you think of it!!!

I have to keep this list in mind for 2012. I only have read the same ones you did, plus Cutting for Stone.

Rebecca Chapman said...

Im sort of in a book club. My friends and I try to pick a book and read it, and when we have all finished then we get together over wine (or tea for me at the moment, the down side of pregnancy!) and talk about it.

Because we are all so busy and its hard to catch up (although there is only 3 of us!) we don't have a time frame. We just pick a book and when the last person has finished it we get together. It means that we do probably 4 a year but it works for us.

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

BookQuoter - Oh good! I'll definitely read it before then. Now I'm excited about it.

Becky - That's a great way to do it. It seems like there's a lot less pressure that way.