Sunday, May 28, 2017

"Book Bliss," Shiloh Book Club, Rereading Old Favorites and More

I read paper books, though others read ebooks
or listen to recordings.
Here in Shiloh we have a fantastic book club, started by a neighbor who, instead of just complaining about the lack of an English language book club, organized one herself.

That's the best way to deal with the "imperfect" life most of us lead. In all honesty, we do all have our complaints, and complaining doesn't get us very far. It generally makes us unbearable, and then people just don't want to be around us. 

Book Bliss began pretty small, when a friend took the initiative and made a few calls, ordered some books and invited us over. Since then, it has grown and even has participants who don't live in Shiloh. And of course we take turns hosting and leading the meetings. We also changed the timing, making it a potluck dinner, which is great fun and means that we start and finish at reasonable times.

We've read all sorts of books so far. Some were books I had heard of but never read. There have also been books I never heard of at all, and others I had read over half a century ago, like The Good Earth, by Pearl S. Buck, which I'm reading right now. The previous selection was To Kill a Mockingbird, which we pretty much all agreed was better than we had remembered. I hosted and ran the meeting for Fahrenheit 451, which I had heard about but never read until needed for the club.

In theory the meetings are supposed to be once a month, but they end up more like every six weeks or so. Not all of the participants are native English speakers, but all of us enjoy reading English, no matter what our linguistic backgrounds. And we're also all different ages, educational backgrounds and professions. That also makes the meetings a lot of fun and intellectually stimulating.

The truth is that there have been books many of us didn't enjoy reading, and we have no compunctions about saying why at meetings. That's the fun of doing this as adults and not students. Nobody takes offense, there are no grades and many of us have found ourselves quickly googling the book, since we hadn't managed to finish reading it before the meeting.

Life in Shiloh is getting better all the time, bli eyin haraa...

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