Friday, March 28, 2014

The World's Smallest Book Club

Mistah and I both love to read.

I read mostly contemporary fiction; he reads lots of non-fiction and natural history. Occasionally we recommend books to eachother -- he recently read Colum McCann's As The Great World Spins; he turned me on to Ivan Doig  -- but we almost never read the same book at the same time . . . with the highly dramatic exception of Lonesome Dove, which we read at the same time, years ago, traveling through California. We had identical 25¢ mass market paperback copies; he started his, I joined in and blew by him, he finished soon after.

We both loved it.

Anyway, twelve years later we thought it would be fun to read the same book at the same time and then, you know, talk about it.

A Book Club! For two!

There are many considerations to take into account when planning the inaugural meeting of a book club -- world's smallest or not.

The Book.
Our book choice, in honor of Spring and next week's Opening Day, was The Natural, by Bernard Malamud.

Good choice, right?

Ancillary material can be helpful, too.

The Food.
It is vitally important, hugely crucial, to have good snacks for book club meetings. Reading is, after all, hungry work.

 For our inaugural meeting, we chose chili . . .

. . . with all the accouterment . . . 

. . . preceded by snacks.

And please, please, don't forget the wine.

The Atmosphere.

For book club -- world's smallest or not -- it's very helpful and exciting to create a relevant Display-of-the-Day . . .

 . . . or two.

Display-of-the-Days are very fun and festive. And Mistah is a Display-of-the-Day machine.

And then . . .

Time to Have At It.

Further Activities.
We happen to have chosen a book that -- 32 years after it was written -- was made into a movie. So we did what any self-respecting book club -- world's smallest or not -- would do.

We borrowed the movie from the library . . .

. . . and bought accompanying peanuts and, um, Crunch 'n Munch. Sigh. I couldn't find Cracker Jacks anywhere.

Sadly, The Natural was made into a really bad, really cheesy, really awful, really Hollywood-ized movie. Like, Hollywood-ized to the point where the entire ending -- the entire theme of the book, really -- is turned completely upside down and exactly opposite.


Still, it was a perfect, brilliant, awesome, inaugural meeting of the World's Smallest Book Club.

Oh, and one last cautionary note to those eager to start books clubs of their own, world's largest or no:

It's a really bad idea to eat shelled peanuts indoors.


mom said...

what a lovely book club, love the eats... even though the movie was awful, you have to admit Robert Redford was pretty cute... love, mom

Pat said...

sonAH…opening day…the purest of all holidays, but don't you know they found a way to louse it up!
It was to be Monday afternoon--perfect. But MLB and ESPN decided to move our game to Sunday night. So we now have opening night on Sunday made for TV and then Opening Day on Tuesday afternoon with all the usual festivities. It left me and Beth in a quandary. I will go to both but Beth and I, being purists, will go to Tuesday's game and celebrate Opening Day as it should be--my 37th in a row.

Beth said...

I've not read the book, or seen the movie.....hopefully the book was good/great/terrific???

I am so very, very impressed with your Display-of-the-Day. Wow! Your book club may be small, but it's highly achieving!

I remember our 3 person book club, when we used to meet a Chiba. Man that was a LONG time ago. Too long. Get yer ass back out here, E!


mom c said...

Pat, I'm a baseball fan, but next to you, um, yah, I like baseball, but basketball - (Go UConn)..... Ellen/mom c

Me, You, or Ellie said...

Love it! Wharton's your next book?



Ellen said...

Love the display and the food, and of course the wine...only one glass?? Now I'm waiting for a review of the book.

Me, You, or Ellie said...

Wait, Jacquie, what? Wharton?


Me, You, or Ellie said...

Whoops. Random autotype. What's your next book?

Me, You, or Ellie said...

LOL Jacquie!

We're a seasonal book club -- which I should have mentioned -- so we'll read our next book for the beginning of summer.

The title is TBD; we have several in mind. And don't think for one second you won't be the first to hear about it.