Saturday, June 25, 2011

June Book Club in Summary

Well, I went to the book club meeting without having finished the book--partly because I was a little too hooked on 13 Little Blue Envelopes, and partly because I really was avoiding a book that talked a lot about cancer (sad about my cat's recent bout with cancer) and described the awful plight of an indigent black family (just sad all over). Some of the questions went over my head, obviously, and some things were revealed that I hadn't read yet. I wouldn't claim "spoilers," just because it's my own fault that I did not finish.

I would note that this is not the first time I went without having finished a selected book. One time, they assigned two books, and I just could not devote any time or interest to the second one (The Thirteenth Tale), so I skimmed it. It was totally "meh" to me, although it turned out to be a favorite among a fair proportion of the group.

The highlights:

--Our hostess' house was really interesting--I mean, it's similar in basic layout to most of the other houses in my parents' neighborhood (my parents' being slightly different because the front door and garage are reversed, so the living room is sideways and not longways)--there was a lot of cool art on the living room walls. Some was photography and some was painting.

--As we were getting our beverages (me: wine) in the dining room, we observed a dry-erase board propped up on a side table with the headings "Boy" and "Girl." There's going to be a new baby in the house next month, so the board contained a bunch of name ideas. They already have a daughter, but they chose not to find out early if the new baby will be a son or a daughter. My mom put in a plug for her name. Happens every time. (Well, she was named after somebody.)

--I got to show off my Kindle a little bit. One thing I did realize as I was discussing the pros and cons with one of the other club members is that it's much easier to leave a paperback on the front seat of your car (guilty, just about 24/7) than a Kindle ("Steal me!" it screams).

--One of our club members who made it that night is a nurse (we actually have two nurses in the group) and another one is a biologist (I think) so it was interesting to get their take on medical rights and privacy.

--The wine was refreshing.

The not-so-highlights:

--This was a rescheduled meeting, and a lot of people could not make it--as they could not make the other date, anyway, as many people's schedules go haywire when summer comes. We had seven people, and usually it runs around ten to twelve (or more).

--Obviously, when there are fewer people, it's a bit more noticeable who are the talkers and who are the listeners. Unless I'm fired up about something or really feel I can contribute, I fall more in the listener category. I don't mind hearing other people talk.
Maybe it's the librarian in me, but I really enjoy listening to other people talk about something they've read, and how it made them think, and what it made them think about.

--However, I could tell that one particular person was getting agitated by the the fact that someone else talked as much as she did. (I guess there's room for only one of those in each group?) I'll get into the fallout in my next post. As a reaction to her own irritation, she took it upon herself to "go around the room" and make- I mean, give each person the opportunity to say something about the book.
Again, maybe this is the teacher-librarian in me, but it feels wrong to force people to talk. Kills the dialogue and spontanaeity. Yeah, that's it.

--I wound up having to go back to retrieve my purse after walking back to my parents' house. I think I had set it on the floor to make more room on the sofa for other people, and then it was out of sight, out of mind for the rest of the night. (I did get an introduction to the hostess' husband at that time, which was a nice thing.)

Our next selection--and when I say "our" I mean the book they chose after rejecting the three titles I suggested--is Cutting for Stone.

Looks like another uplifting read!

And more medical stuff. What is it with all the medical stuff!?


ccr in MA said...

I don't know how the club laid out its rules, but if you were supposed to be suggesting, why didn't they *have* to take your suggestion?

My mother really enjoyed Cutting for Stone; I hope you do, too.

Kate P said...

CCR, I have no idea if there are rules at all! What bugs me is that some people in the group keep suggesting books they've already read (like Cutting for Stone), particularly for other book groups. What's the point? Save yourself some time? How nice for you!
I'm just totally put off by the premise of Cutting for Stone. Admittedly, as a Catholic, I find it kind of scandalous. And then just SAD for the two brothers. Sad, sad, sad.