Monday, July 08, 2013
I had heard about a book with the intriguing title of “The End of Your Life Book Club”, which a friend told me sounds like the perfect book for a librarian. So I had to read it. It’s a memoir about a man and his mother, quite a memorable, well traveled woman, who was getting chemo treatments for her inoperable pancreatic cancer. As they wait each week for the treatment, they talk about what is most important to both of them: books. They have formed a little book club of their own. Each chapter is about a specific title and how it relates to their lives. Sometimes it’s depressing, sometimes it’s inspirational. But it is always interesting. As you are learning about that book, you are learning about their lives as well. I am sure you have read at least some of these well known books:
And if not, there are some good titles to choose from for your next book club, preferably not for the end of your life, however.
Speaking of book clubs (you may have read this article) there was a fascinating article in the Washington Post on June 28, 2013 written by Ron Charles, the Washington Post book critic: “A Book Critic’s Night on the Town” wherein he meets a woman on the metro who is reading a book he critiqued, and they strike up a conversation. He eventually attends their book club and is energized about the titles they discuss.
And if you are looking for books about books, you need go no further than Nancy Pearl who is the undisputed readers advisory library super star. She even has her own action figure which when you push the button on the back, her arm goes into the “shushing” mode! I am privileged to own such a figure and even more privileged to have it signed by her.
Her books “Book Lust: Recommended Reading for Every Mood, Moment, and Reason” “More Book Lust” and “Book Crush: for Kids and Teens” are designed to get you off your seat and into the stacks, or at least into the virtual stacks where you will get lost in the literary world, be it fiction or non-fiction.
I just opened "Book Lust" and fell upon a chapter called “Epistolary Novels” (novels written in letter form, as in The Epistles) a particular favorite of mine, and I found a book that I’ve never read: "Ella Minnow Pea", a lippogrammatic epistolary fable, which means something written without using one or more letters of the alphabet! Even this world weary librarian is discovering new titles. Ms Pearl will do that to you.
And if you would like some more suggestions about book clubs click onto Reader's Cafe and slide down to "Tips for Book Discussions" most of which came from our Super Star Nancy Pearl.