Book Club

I have literally read thousands of books in my life. And of those, many were children’s books. If you write, then you admire the work of others and always want to know what’s new in the marketplace. All of this is great, but sometimes my immersion in children’s literature prevents me from reading as broadly as I would like. Even though I always have an adult novel on CD to play while driving, cooking, even cleaning house, I often feel as if I’m missing so many well-written books.

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More than a year ago I received an invitation to join a local book club. I was thrilled. I knew that each month I would read a new adult work and be able to participate in a discussion on that book. Little did I know what a life-changing experience it would become. From what I hear, there are book clubs where the wine and conversations are the most important elements. Not so with these amazing women. Yes, from time to time a glass or two of wine finds its way to our lips, and we have a wonderful time catching up on our lives during a smorgasbord-of-salads lunch.

But the discussions are phenomenal. Each woman brings a different background to the reading and commentary of our chosen book. It’s a good thing there is no time constraint because two hours can pass before anyone notices. The hostess selects the title for that monthly meeting and we all borrow or buy our own copy. We mostly read nonfiction and literary fiction, but once in a while another genre makes an appearance. I know that reading connects us to people and cultures we might otherwise never meet or explore. After all, there are only so many days in one lifetime. In this photo we broke with tradition and met at a local botanical garden for our lunch and discussion. Not everyone can be present at each meeting, but we did have eleven members here on this day. I am thankful for the opportunity to join these women once a month and think deeply about words and their impact on each of us.

Lola Schaefer