Sunday, February 06, 2011

Sunday Salon: Book Club!

I am feeling slightly apprehensive today. You see, after being asked numerous times over the years to join an acquaintance's book club I have finally agreed to do so and my first meeting is tomorrow night.

I only know the person who has invited me a little bit. She first asked me about four years ago if I wanted to join, but I couldn't fit it in because my son was too young and it would have meant trying to find babysitters etc. Now he is that much older and alternative arrangements can be made, so when she asked me again late last year I agreed.

Why I am apprehensive? There are a number of reasons. The first is to do with joining into an established group of friends and feeling like the outsider. Yes, we will have the already common bond of books and reading which will be an ice breaker, but there are questions like what if they don't like to read the same types of books I like to read. We are also supposed to take two or three suggestions of books to read for book club this year. I don't have a problem with giving suggestions as such, but how do I know which books they have already read? Do they read genre fiction? Do they have a particular focus in terms of the types of books they read? So many questions! The first book is a memoir/autobiography, so does that mean they read a lot of non fiction?

I have been in a face to face book club before about 8 or so years ago when I first moved to Melbourne. That was held in a Borders store, didn't really have a stable core group, and as a result didn't run very long,  but as I understand it this group has been going for more than 10 years.

Most of my interactions about books and reading have been online for the last five years. I do have friends that I talk books too, but this will be my first semi-formal discussions for years.

There is also the fact that I haven't read the book that they are discussing tomorrow for nearly 4 years. I did reborrow it from the library and will skim through it tonight just to refresh my memory, but I don't know if they are an in depth discussion group or a casual chat kind of group!

I guess it will all become clear tomorrow, as long as I don' t get lost trying to find the hosts house!

21 comments:

  1. Marg, you are a natural. You have so much knowledge to impart, you would be an asset to any book club. Enjoy your night x

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  2. good luck Marg, I am sure you will find the "right groove" to work with the group and it will be nice to interact with some fleshy people who like books (vs cyber friends)

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  3. Don't worry about it. Just be yourself. Bring the suggestions YOU like and see what the book group is like.

    If they are all very different from you with different tastes, then maybe this won't be your book club in the end. But usually (because it's a group of individuals) they all tend towards a safe middle ground and won't be too different from the book lovers you know from blogging.

    Have fun!

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  4. I'm sure there will be far more intimidated people there if they know about blogging about books! As for having different tastes, I think this is the beauty of book clubs, all bringing different books to the table that others may not have heard of or otherwise have tried. In any case, enjoy! :)

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  5. I understand your apprehension. I also just joined a face-to-face book club. My first meeting will be in March.

    I'll keep my fingers crossed for you if you'll keeps your fingers crossed for me.

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  6. Hope it goes well, Marg!

    I'm hoping to join a book club in the near future,BUT I'm always mostly worried that I won't like any of the book choices. I'm a particular reader!

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  7. I would be apprehensive too, but I'm sure you'll do great. Just jump in, feet first! You'll rock it.

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  8. I hope it's a group you'll enjoy becoming a part of--good luck!

    I've yet to find a group in my area besides the library group made up of sweet little old ladies who are confused by books that mention the Internet, Facebook and Twitter LOL! They're a trip, to say the least and I do drop in from time to time...

    Have fun and let us know how it goes!

    ~~

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  9. Good Luck tomorrow! I'm sure you'll just ease right into the group! I have a book group that has been together for over 5 years and someone asked to join recently. I think the "group" was more nervous that the new member! We all wanted her to feel at home, and we all do know each other from working together although not really well, but it all seems to be working out. Her tastes in books seem to run against what we "normally" choose, but that's the point of joining the reading group- to be exposed to books you wouldn't normally read!

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  10. I think Suzanne hit the nail on the head...the purpose of joining a book club is to be encouraged to read something we wouldn't normally have on our list. Just as I have come to realize late in life that the purpose of joining any group should be to expose yourself to others who are different than you but have a common bond. First on my list when I retire will be to join at least one book group. For now, I love to peruse the various blogs and pick out both books that are my comfort genre and some which are challenges. Just reading your blog today made me add The Measure of a Man to my list.

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  11. Good luck! I'm sure it will all be fine in the end. I'll be honest, I don't join book clubs either for many of the same reasons you mention here but branching out can be a good thing too.

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  12. I was in the same situation last Friday, and it was a wonderful experience! I posted about it on my blog.

    http://ravenousreader.wordpress.com/2011/02/05/friday-night-book-club-little-bee/

    I hope you have as much fun as I did.

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  13. Joining a new book club is always nerve wracking for me, but I just did it two weeks ago, and was surprised by how open the girls were, and how good their taste was in books. I hope that you have the same experience.

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  14. Today I went to the second meeting for a new book group and luckily they are really laid back and just a lot of fun. But I understand being apprehensive at first. Don't worry, I'm sure your mutual love of books will at least help to break the ice and get the conversation rolling. Have tons of fun and let us know how it goes.

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  15. Good luck. I am joining a writing group and have similar concerns/worries about seriousness

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  16. Good luck. I hope you find a group of congenial souls. My f2f group has been going for 23 years this month. It is, besides my family, pretty much the most important group in my life. If you're group is half a good you'll be home and hosed! Let us know how it goes.

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  17. Best of luck, Marg! Considering your lovely blog and the way you interact with its readers I would think you would be a wonderful asset to any book club. I hope the chemistry works out beautifully!

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  18. I hope you ended up enjoying the experience of your in person book club.

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  19. I only participated in one book club with a small group from church. They announced the book they would be reading ahead and it sounded interesting so I joined. It was a very good experience but wasn't an ongoing thing.

    I also participated in the online book club reading CeeCee Wilkes and that was a fantastic book--at least most of us liked it.

    I prefer to read what I want when I want. I read Sidney Poitier's autobiography and was very disappointed in it. It was the worst autobiography I've ever read.

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  20. How did the book club meeting go?

    I know exactly what you mean. The one reason I am so reluctant to join a book club here is because I am terrified about joining a well-established group. I know it is just the first few days to worry about - then it becomes a piece of cake. But I would still not join one on my own.

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