Brooklyn Public Library


Read 'Em and Talk

Dec 17, 2008 12:49 PM | 1 comment

The successful book club—lofty dream or attainable reality? The New York Times recently looked into the question, and most book club joys and troubles boiled down to clashing or matching agendas.

It got me thinking about my brief experience in a book club: we had a group “leader” who suggested the book list and then asked for us to vote on each month’s selection. Many of us were on the same page (ha ha) about the list, which leaned toward weighty European tomes, but the reaction from others was not so warm. One member proclaimed that Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse “had no plot,” and wasn’t worth reading; she didn’t bother to show up to discuss Thomas Mann’s Boodenbrooks, though the 500 page back-breaker is virtually nothing but plot. And there was disagreement about what our discussions should entail: Friendly agreement? Heated debate? Love-life issues? There was no clear answer for us—so I’ve moved on. 

However, it was a great opportunity to read challenging books with some moral support. Why not put together your own book club with the help of the Library? With over 12 million books to choose from, it would be a snap to form a book club that's serious, casual, themed or otherwise. Prefer to leave choosing the book up to someone else? Attend a book discussion group at one of BPL’s 60 neighborhood libraries!

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12/21/2008 11:36:30 PM #

Or talk about books online at BPL's own Brooklyn Book Talk Blog. This month, just in time for the holidays, we discuss finding happiness in Eric Weiner's "The Geography of Bliss: One Grumps Search for the Happiest Places in the World."