although i never exceled in my english and literature classes throughout school, i really do enjoy reading for pleasure. after i graduated from college, i found i again had time to read for myself, without any expectation for reports or exams afterwards. i did a quick search online and saw that a local book club met at the barnes & noble down the road. i found out what the fiction forum was reading that august of 2010, and although i didn’t finish the book in time for the meeting, they invited me to join them at the café table with open arms.
the women of this group are quite senior to me, many of them with kids who have grandkids and some others who are, and i say this sweetly, your older cat ladies. if i mention my book club in conversation with anyone, they chuckle, and i in turn cannot help but giggle at myself as well. if you know me at all, i am an old soul in many ways, so i enjoy listening to these experienced women discuss not only their take on the books we read but also the lives they are living and what happens when we do finally grow up.
the fiction forum has been meeting for over 10 years, and i have attended for nearly four myself. although work kept me away for over a year, i always tried to keep up with the selections, providing good business for the bookstores up in chattanooga. we sometimes find ourselves on a streak a few months in a row of the same genre, which gets the ladies excited for when we have to make new picks towards the end of each year. last month’s title, the fountain of st. james court; or, portrait of the artist as an old woman, wasn’t terribly well-received, but even the least popular books give us something to discuss. for march we are reading the woman upstairs by claire messud, something i probably wouldn’t choose for myself, but that is the whole reason i am a part of this group.
my favorite reads over the years have been the girl with the dragon tattoo by stieg larsson and unbroken by laura hillenbrand, two very different kind of stories but both very moving and well-written.
until ereaders hit the market, i never even considered not buying an actual book. some friends around me started to acquire them, the kindle being the most popular from what i could tell. i do not have any qualms about ereaders; i just enjoy the feel and smell of a new book, getting to hold it, getting to actually turn the page and bend the spine. (my younger brother clark actually hates a broken book spine, which probably explains why he doesn’t do a lot of reading himself.) i was at the store to get february’s book, but they did not have it in stock. as i turned to leave, i saw the nook display cases where you can go and touch and test them out for yourself. i knew i did not need a tablet; all i wanted was a reader. so, after some discussion with the employee, i was quite easily persuaded to purchase the nook glowlight, and i have no regrets about it.
although i do love having books, i am quickly running out of room on my bookshelves to put them. i promised myself that if i start missing an actual hardback or paperback, i can still purchase them every now and then if i want to. in my mind, honestly, as long as i’m reading, does it really matter what i am using to do so?