Thursday, November 15, 2007

Did You Read It?

For many years, I wanted to be in a book club. I miss school and the academic sharing. The thought of reading books and getting together to discuss them and share ideas sounded heavenly. I'd hear friends refer to their book clubs, and I guess I looked too eager, because I'd be informed that their book club was at maximum capacity for members. Fine. Your book club was probably stupid anyway. (But I really wanted to be in a book club.) The first rule of many book clubs seems to be: Book club is full. No newbies.

A few months ago, a darling acquaintance invited me to join her book club. Hurray! Even though the book selection looked like something I would hate, because it was nothing I'd pick out myself, I read the book cover to cover. I liked it. It was The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory. I enjoyed the historical fiction, and have always been interested in the House of Tudor. There were a few bodice-ripper scenes that I found tiresome, but it wasn't a huge part of the book. At my first book club meeting, I made myself look kind of silly by actually trying to discuss the book. Apparently, the second rule of many book clubs is: In book clubs, only a few dorks read the book, and no one wastes much time talking about the book.

I attended my second meeting of book club tonight. Only the hostess and I read the book this time, which was Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen. Again, I liked the book. The hostess and I chatted about it for a few minutes. She is the same darling acquaintance who invited me into the book club. She had gone to some trouble planning the snacks to fit a circus theme since the book was about circus life. She served mini corn dogs with fancy mustard, gourmet popcorn, frosted animal cookies, yummy cinnamon cupcakes with chocolate frosting and some other snacks. She had old-fashioned boxes of animal crackers that look like little circus train cars carrying the animals for favors. It was too cute.

I love the book club meetings, because they afford time with friends in the relaxed setting of a member's home. We have great gab-fests. In my short time in the book club, I feel closer to the other women who go. I'm so happy to finally be in a book club, even if it wasn't what I thought it would be. I'm going to tell you the third secret of most book clubs: Book clubs are not actually about books.