Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Are you in a Book Club?

Blogging Friends,

Are you in a book club?  How long have you been in it and how are the choices?

It has been a full year, almost 1 1/2 years since I joined one.  Please hear me out, this is not a venting post, I just want to share my experience and get feedback.

I will start with the main positive, the ladies are beautiful spirits and have embraced me fully.  They are all over 60, retired or about to retire and I am only 40.  The diverse general conversation is quite fulfilling actually. I work with one of the ladies and we always discussed books, she recommended 3 of mine to the group, Glass Castle, We Need to Talk about Kevin and Trans-Sister Radio.  I was invited as a guest one evening and then they asked if I would join.  I love books why wouldn't I say yes.

Wellllllllll, a year and half later.  I believe my lack of reviewing and blogging is due to the book club..... and not in a good way.

The choices, in my opinion are horrible for a book club.  Some have been good books, All the Light We Cannot See, great book but what is there to discuss, conversation is minimum.  Many I put down and felt tortured to have to pick up again, I just didn't care about the characters such as  The Housekeeper and the Professor, The Boston Girl and others I can't even remember.

One book was ok but the translation was terrible which took away from the book, Happy are the happy.

The ladies read a lot, just as I used to but the books they are passionate about they don't choose for Book Club, it's annoying.  The lady I work with says some books I don't want to debate, I only want to discuss with others that enjoyed it or understood it.  Well what is the point of a book club, I ask......

Also, shouldn't you read a book first before recommending, who doesn't like their own choice?

So book club has made me read out of my comfort zone and I have NOT enjoyed it.  The ladies are amazing, they have been together over 10 years but I want to get back to enjoying what I read and reviewing again, searching for another blog that has read the book and network that way.  This part of blogging had me on the edge of my seat, knowing someone else is reading it, waiting for their review or the rewarding comments on 'great review, adding to my list, etc'.  I feel like I will let them down but one to many unfinished books, torture of reading, instead of a book a week I feel like I waste 3 weeks on the book club read and then I get 1 book that I want to read in.  The book I choose is always my normal approx. 5 days complete. 

What would you do, please give me honest feedback and what has worked for your book club?

We are currently reading A Man Called Ove........ again in my opinion it is the first choice were I have said OMG this is for retirees to read, smile.  It is kind of sweet but I'm only 25% in.

If you think, suck it up for the experience, I am open to hearing that also.

Thank you for any comments on this, I am truly thankful.

Blogging has definitely made me realize my love of reading, reflecting and networking HERE.  I miss you guys.  I may have to make a hard decision for myself.



  1. I have a similar problem with my book club. A lot of times they choose books from the best seller list that aren't good for discussion. When I suggested We Need to Talk About Kevin, only one person finished it (besides me). They said they stopped reading it because it was disturbing. That was the point and there is so much to discuss with that book. I've kind of decided that I'm going to back off and only go when I think the book is discussion worthy.

  2. Kathy exactly. All but one enjoyed it. The other 4 hated it, all said disturbing and never want to read something like that again. I still find the thought of that book fascinating with so much to discuss.

    I think I have to decide if I'm in or out. Human Bobby was a choice and 1 lady actually said this is not a top seller and almost made it sound like the author wasn't real. WHAT....

  3. It takes a few meeting to figure out why a group meets, which is fine, but may not be for me. Right now I am busy with my grandkids so I am not actively searching and am happy reading on my own, blogging and talking books with my daughter. If it makes reading a chore, or you dread going, I'd say it may be time to move on.

  4. Thanks Nise - I am really considering. We are meeting on Sunday for our holiday book club get together and I am going to try to bring it up. I give up on books when it feels like torture, that is maybe 3-4 times a year, now due to book club it is more like 10 times and that is because I am choosing books to read out of my comfort zone as options, some not great. Thanks for feedback.

  5. I agree--it sounds like it's time to move on. My book club died a natural death about a year ago. All of the other girls saw each other all the time so there was nothing really special about meeting once a month for them. I'm so quiet I was never able to express my opinions over the one or two who always cut me off with their own thoughts. The same thing always happened to one other lady. Our book discussions were generally only maybe five minutes of who liked it and who didn't, then we were on to what was going on in our personal lives. I really liked all the other ladies, we did choose some great books, and I do actually miss the idea of having a couple of hours every month to discuss books, but I'm kind of glad my book club ended. I keep thinking about how I can rope my sister and a couple of friends into reading with me now...

    Good luck with whatever you decide!

  6. Move on I'd say, or go only when they choose a book you want to read. Reading should be a pleasure, not a chore.
    I've been to book clubs where we discussed the book of the month and to book clubs where everyone talked about a book they liked. The latter worked better for me. Sure, it's nice to have that shared experience of reading the same book but chances are you'll like the chosen book only once in a while.

  7. I feel like earlier this year my book club was totally headed in that direction. We're all good friends outside of book club, and we got to the point where we'd meet up for actual book club only to have everyone say they didn't finish the book, didn't like the book, didn't have anything to say about the book, or weren't enjoying the choices. It felt like homework and it was impacting all of our reading outside f book club. What we decided was to have a meeting devoted to coming up with very broad themes/prompts that appeal to all of us (this month is "book you've had on your shelf unread for a long time, last month's was "road trips", we've also done "classics", "comfort reads", and "villains you love to hate". Each person chooses whatever they want to read in whatever genre that fits however loosely into the theme and then we discuss them without spoilers. It's been a breath of fresh air for my group. Occasionally someone reads a book that others have read, but most of the time we all end up leaving with additional books on our TBR list. The freedom to choose has made a huge difference, especially since we're fairly diverse in our tastes. If you get to a point where it's keeping you from reading anything (and I was totally there earlier this year), I say either ask for a change or find a new group with less demand or more in line with your taste.

    PS: I've missed you around the blogosphere!


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