I don’t get out much. People often use that expression in a cliché sort of way, but for me, it is a reality. Unless you call wandering around my yard, looking up at the sky daydreaming and occasionally having poetic inspiration hit me between the eyes “getting out”, I don’t get out much. So it is with much anticipation I look forward to the monthly book club gathering at our local public library.
Library book club is perfect for people like me who have limited energy to be hosting guests at home, yet enjoy socializing. It combines two of my greatest loves – reading and socializing – into one enjoyable evening. I highly recommend it.
“Top 10” list of why I love book club:
- I read books that I never otherwise would choose to read on my own. Each year members submit a list of books they recommend, then the library programmer / book club facilitator selects one per month for the upcoming year. The list is always an eclectic collection across all genres.
- Just as I read books I would not have ever read, I have met interesting people I surely would never have run in to otherwise; our paths just never would have crossed.
- We are a diverse group ranging in age from about 25 to 75, from all types of backgrounds culturally, socio-economically, educationally, and so on, which makes for interesting and enlightening discussion.
- Every person brings a unique perspective to the reading of the story, so it often amazes me what another individual gleans from a story / character that I may have missed entirely.
- Whomever has their book chosen for that particular month brings a snack, so everyone takes a turn being “hostess”, without having anyone in to their home. No fuss, no muss.
- It is affordable to anyone; all you need is a library card. Once a member, the books are ordered for you automatically. You receive an e-mail when your book for the month is ready for pick-up.
- As a dabbling writer, I consider book club professional development. Not just the reading of another writer’s work, but also the varied reader’s responses to those words.
- I love discussion, even a good argument on occasion within respectful limits. The structure of the evening allows for every reader to express their opinions. I appreciate the honesty of the members.
- I enjoy watching people come to book club as “reluctant” or “retired” readers get excited about books again, and develop a sense of belonging to their new “tribe”. It’s fun to be shopping and have someone wave from across the store at me and holler “Hi!”, then I hear them tell their shopping partner excitedly, “I know her from book club!”
- Last, but definitely not least….author visits! Need I say more; nothing like hearing about a book directly from the person that wrote it. We have had local authors visit, Skype visit with a New York Times Bestselling author, award winning Canadian authors, even an author who has sold millions of books world-wide has visited our little library. Most, if not all, have complimented our group on the level of interest and questions about their work.Photo above from Shannon Raelynn author visit. Visit: http://www.shannonraelynn.com