But most people, MOST people, fairly rant at the notion. How do you manage to read a book every month?!! Who has the time?!! Isn’t there always one smart-ass who thinks they know everything and ruins it for the rest of you?!! Isn’t it really a competition for who can host the best meeting?!! Don’t most of the books suck?!! Don’t most people not even read the books?!! Do you even talk about books or is it all kids and menopause?!!
Okay, settle down.
I’m not trying to rub it in, I’m not trying to brag, but our book club is friggin’ AWESOME! We started with just a handful of women 13 years ago when my best friend, Charlotte, opened a literary coffee shop. The coffee shop was called Wuthering Bites. Oh, it was the cutest place ever. Art on the walls, musicians every few weeks, literary readings by prominent authors and fledgling ones (shyly raises hand). Sadly, it didn’t last. But the Wuthering Bites Book Club did. And it grew.
|The end-of-the-year potluck under Barbara's copper beech. Thanks everyone!|
(yes, we've all been photoshopped to look like Angelina Joli)
Yes, we meet once a month. We read the books. Mostly. When we don’t, we come anyway and are inspired to read them. Someone—not always the same person—might have some interesting back-story on the book or author (usually from our friend, Google). It’s not that hard to read a book a month. It’s just a few pages a night if that’s all the time you have. Of course, the books don’t suck. They’re not always to everyone’s taste, but that’s what makes the meetings so interesting. Books you wouldn’t normally pick up open your eyes to worlds you might never otherwise explore. We’re lucky: our group has a great and open dynamic, no know-it-alls or bad-mouthers. Maybe it’s the age. And we always try to talk about the book as much as we can—we’ve gotten very good at getting back on track—but yes, we also talk about life and death and heartache and illness and triumphs and efforts.
It is really really special. I don’t see most of the women outside of Book Club, but I would dearly miss them if Book Club no longer existed. I see the world through gentler eyes when I’m around them. Diverse ways of looking at the same things can have that effect on you. You can see with your own eyes that every fictional and real life struggle has its natural trajectory. And that the human spirit triumphs every time. Even if it takes a while. Or seems insurmountable.
It is complex and it is simple.
It encourages us to read read read. And books and their authors need to be championed. Where would we be without our stories? I hold my head high when I extol the virtues of my book club. Even if I don’t always tell people our private—and very immodest––name for it.
(Okay, between you and me, it’s The World’s Best Book Club.)
Deb: I think it sounds just ducky. I am the world’s slowest reader so I would not be up on the books at the same speed as the others. But I believe that anytime, anywhere a group of people comes together to read, discuss, and trade ideas and concepts is a good thing. Not everyone has to be our best friend in our lives every day. It’s nice to have people from different walks of life come in and out of our world. It makes for a more meaningful life experience I think.
So onward and upward go ye of the book club. Keep sharing and supporting. Me? I’ll be the one in the corner with the wine and the Cliff Notes!