July 28, 2009

Book club: first meeting

As I announced earlier this week, last Wednesday I really achieved my first goal from my life list: my new book club met to discuss the first book we all read. We did not really know how to shape our discussion, whether we should ask each other questions or whether we should just start talking. I think this lack of structure caused our discussion about the book to be rather short. But I guess it is also fair to say that we were also distracted by other urgent matters we had to discuss, such as upcoming graduation, job interviews, men etc. (My friend S. had an interview for a PhD position on Thursday and found out on Friday she got it! Yay!).

Still, if any of you has a good idea on how to structure a book club meeting and how to really accellerate the discussion, I would be very grateful if you could leave a comment!

For next time we are reading One Day by David Nicholls. The cover looks great so I can't wait to dig in.

(if you haven't read the Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger yet and you're contemplating doing so (you should! you should!), DON'T read on!)

Besides the logistics of time travel, I think the most important theme we talked about regarding the book was predestination. I think I would become so frustrated if I knew it didn't matter what I would decide to do, the effect was already decided. Another friend of mine felt it would be quite comforting to know that it wouldn't matter. Like when Clare and Henry go house hunting, Clare doesn't even get the chance to form an opinion about any of the places because Henry already knows. I wouldn't have it. I'm a bit of a smarty pants and I would be sure to check it out myself and maybe even push it. Just because. But then, even if I would push it, I would know that it wouldn't work. It wouldn't make a difference. How frustrating. Like you're in a really fast current and you just have to go along...

Another thing we discussed about a lot, was the end. Some of my friends felt a happy ending would have been much more satisfying, while I feel that a book doesn't always have to have a happy ending. It can make a book so much more interesting, so much more thought provoking. The book left me sad and confused but I think that's also a beautiful thing a book can do for you.

What did you guys think about these issues?

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