An Author’s Note on Book Clubs
Book club is code for GNO, which is code for girls night out, which is code for night off/no kids. The reason I mention it is because the first book club meeting I ever attended had not understood the code and it went down like this:
1. I breast fed my daughter until the milk was squirting out her eye sockets. That should hold her!
2. Put on make up and heels
3. Grab the bottle of wine from the fridge, get in the car and remember to get the book (where had I left it? What was it called?)
4. Arrive at ‘book club’ fashionably late
5. Strip heels, hand host wine with apologies for being late, survey room, GASP
* If you suffer from bouts of anxiety you might want to skip the next two paragraphs. Trigger warning!
I noticed that everyone was sitting in a lovely quiet (no chatting, they were all waiting for me) neat circle in one of those living rooms that had the plastic on the furniture moments before we arrived and everyone was (pause for effect), drinking tea! I swear to God, in a mug, not Long-Island-Iced, TEA.
Host asked if I would like tea. I said ‘No thanks. I would like some of that wine you’re holding.’ Having my wine in a tea mug I realized I was being punked – only explanation. You see, they discussed the book while enjoying the non-long-island tea (I like to think that some of them were secretly jealous of my mug – damn breast feeding, cuz I could only have one – but this was definitely a three drink minimum ‘party’. Would it be wrong to lick my mug?). These women had made notes, researched and planned to talk about the book!
I had read the book but had no relationship with it. I barely remembered it by the meeting. I was getting a couple hours of sleep a night, I had to make notes to wear clothes to come to the meeting, not notes on character development. Seriously?
So I kindly told the tea toddling group that ‘I was finding the pressure of reading a book in 6 weeks and keeping up on my Dora The Explorer to be in conflict.’
So I started my own club with a friend. We were to meet in a pub, never bring the book, talk briefly about why we liked or didn’t like it and spend the night just being with friends away from husbands and kids. Win win.
One of our club members moved this past summer and it all changed. I can’t seem to get off my ass and organize anything (I did one night, but only one other friend showed. Still fun. Not quite as rowdy). So, do I start again? I miss my GNO’s. Maybe I should start a Mum Revised book club? Here’s what I’ll do. I will tell you what book I am currently in the middle of and you can download them while I open a beer. Better, I will open the beer and you tell me what books I should download since my current selection is Divergent and that just sounds sad.
Even better, I pour a martini and you download the book I am in.
Pouring, I’m waiting…