Dos and don’ts for book club? Rules for book club? Really?
Well, I use the term “rules” loosely. But still, there has to be some understanding among members, right? You need a little structure. After all, someone has to bring the chocolate, and someone has to bring the wine. Munchies? Of course.
You’ve probably seen beverage napkins that joke about the wine and conversation being more important than reading a book, right? Oh, wait. Was that a joke?
In my book club, we actually do try to read a book every month. And often, it’s a book outside of my comfort zone – outside of my typical genre and possibly written by someone I’ve never even heard of. Our little group is made up of friends of friends, an eclectic assortment of women from different backgrounds, careers, socio-economic levels, life stages, etc. We take turns choosing a book that appeals to us personally. And that makes it interesting.
My favorite type of book is slice-of-life fiction. But some members prefer non-fiction. Some like mysteries, or classics, or historical fiction. Because we have diverse interests, I’ve read books I never would’ve picked up, books that never would’ve piqued my interest if left to my own devices. The funny thing is, I’ve liked many of them. Sure, there’ve been a few dogs. I admit, on more than one occasion I simply couldn’t slog through the book. Ahem, another glass of wine, please.
But overall, I love that we each enjoy different types of books, and that we all give them a try. That’s one of the rules. It makes us stretch. I’ve learned a thing or two. I don’t often read non-fiction, but I found myself completely absorbed in “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.” I had no idea that nearly all cancer research can be traced back to the cells of this one woman. One month we read “Silence” by Shusaku Endo, a book about the persecution of Christians in Japan during the early 1600s. Say what? Yep. Pass, the chocolate, please.
Another rule? If you choose the book (which also involves some background, discussion questions and research on the author), then someone else hosts book club at their house. That spreads the work around. Of course, that brings me to yet another rule – no dusting required. We come. We chat. We eat and drink. We don’t mind a little dust. The important thing is, we’re talking books. And having fun.
Cheers to friends, books, wine and chocolate. Happy reading!