Monday, July 7, 2008

Book Clubs

I am forever joining Book Clubs. After a few disappointments, I learned not to expect any one of them to fulfill all my reading needs. Better to collect a few, like friends that share different interests. Right now, I meet with a Club at my church, in person. This month, we are slated to discuss The Tenth Circle, by Jodi Picoult. The title reference is to Dante's description of the levels of Hell (only nine of them). Not going to review the book here, except to say that I kept feeling like I was reading a YA book, despite the fact that is it written for adults.

A new Book Club that is about to start is the Post Apocalyptic Book Club, a year-long review of books that describe the various ways the world ends or is drastically changed. July's Theme is The Classic Guy’s Apocalypse: Cannibalism, Cannons and Doom! I read this month's books in my murky science fiction past, so I re-read them for the discussion: The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress by Robert Heinlein, Lucifer’s Hammer by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle, and the epic poem, “The Wasteland” by TS Eliot. The discussion will be blog-based, in commenting, a new format for me.

I have also participated online at Barnes & Noble's forum-based discussion groups, usually attracted by a particular author or book.

But my primary book club continues to be family-based: DH and me, sometimes one of the kids. DH and I are reading the latest from Jacqueline Carey in the Kushiel series, a double-trology of fat kinky alternative European history novels. Both DDs and I are reading the Gregor the Overlander series this summer. DD15 and I are reading the Modern Fairy trilogy by Holly Black, who young readers may know better as a collaborator on The Spiderwick Chronicles series. And I have been reading the Inspector Shan series from Eliot Pattison. They are complex murder mysteries, all set in Chinese-occupied Tibet. The author lives in the next county, and a local newspaper profile drew my attention. I haven't gotten anyone else to read those with me, yet.

Summer is a Peak Fiction Reading season for me, vacations for my brain, even if the rest of me cannot leave right now. Winter is another Peak Fiction Reading time, with long, dark days when I don't want to go outside in the arthritis-poking cold. You might have figured out, by now, that I am a voracious reader, although not as heavily as I once did. I don't speed read, I just read very fast. Books, magazines, newspapers, online zines, blog feeds. "Reader" is a primary descriptor for me.

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