I belong to five book clubs.
I’ve become part of them all in the last year or so. Before that, I had tried a few book clubs, one at a time, but I never could find a group that wanted to read the serious literature that I wanted to read. I found that people don’t generally like reading as much as I do, at least the people I know in real life, and sometimes the books I wanted to read would be objectionable to them for various reasons.
But all of that has changed recently. I’m overwhelmed with book clubs and readers who think like and read like me. That’s not to say we are so alike as to be boring, but I’ve found some kindred spirits in reading that I connect with and can argue with about the books we read. It is delightful!
Here are all of my book clubs.
Number One. The one I’ve participated in for the longest time (on and off) is the Literary Wives book club. It is a virtual one that I do on my blog with other bloggers. We read a book about wives, we each post our thoughts, and then we comment on each other’s posts. It makes for some good perspectives and interesting reads.
Number Two. The book club that I joined just over a year ago is one that has been running for over a decade. When I moved into my new house, my neighbor found out that I liked to read as much as she does. She invited me to her book club, which we fondly call Micol’s Book Club, because Micol is the founder and the glue that keeps us together. She’s an astute reader, and I ended up having her as a student in one of my classes last year. We get together once a month. We have a big meeting in November at Micol’s house where we all bring the books we want to read over the next year, we present the books to the group, and then we all vote in a tally system on each book. The top 11 books that get the most tally marks are the ones we read over the next year. Here is what we’re reading in 2019. (Not pictured is one called Red Notice by Bill Browder.)
Number Three. Because Micol is a great reader and a social butterfly, she introduced me to another group of readers who are also bookstagrammers. (If you aren’t bookstagramming on Instagram, you should be!) She met them through her bookstagram and she started the group that meets together in the city once a month. There are are seven of us, and we take turns picking a book each month to discuss. We call it the “Real Readers” because we pick difficult novels and books to read that we wouldn’t normally read with other groups. It challenges us! I joined the group about a year after they formed, so here’s what we are reading for March, April, and May.
Number Four. My fourth book club is a feminist book club where I get together with all of my feminist friends in the area. It is comprised of many of my professor colleagues at work, some of my neighborhood friends, and people I’ve met online in feminist groups but who live near me. It has been fun to bring these women (and a few men) together and to discuss novels and social issues. So far, we have read the following books. The only rule in picking them is that they have to be written by a woman.
Number Five. My fifth and final book club is one that meets twice a year. It is faculty book club at my university. We read a book each semester, and we try to make those reads coincide with an author who will be visiting our campus. In the fall, we read Lincoln in the Bardo (which I thought was just meh). This semester, we read Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward, who is visiting our campus at the end of the month. It will be amazing to meet her! I loved her book.
So, how many book clubs are too many book clubs? How many do you belong to? Do you like book clubs?