Monday, 13 April 2015 11:48
We read plenty about what book clubs think of authors (and their books). But here's a twist— author Cathy Lamb tells us what SHE thinks of book clubs . . .
Here is a little secret: I love visiting with book groups.
I chat with women here in Oregon and all around the country. Over the years I've heard some pretty funny comments—here are a few of the more amusing ones:
“My husband is an a--h--. He’s like Slick Dick in The Last Time I Was Me.”
“My husband gets irritated sometimes with how much time I spend with the kids but I say to him, ‘The kids hug me and want me to read them stories but you always want to have sex. Of course I’d rather read stories.’”
“The guys from the fire department came to take care of my husband, AGAIN, but I knew they thought he was crazy. He thought he was having another heart attack. His third that week. They didn’t say it, but I heard it: My husband is anxious about his anxiety. That’s what causes his heart to beat too fast.”
“My daughter shaves her legs too much. Is that weird?”
“Should we take off our tops like they did in Julia’s Chocolates?”
“Pot is now legal in Oregon. Do you think we should get a joint for the next book club meeting?”
“Did you run naked by a river, Cathy, like Jeanne in The Last Time I Was Me?”
“Oh, my gosh. We finished ANOTHER bottle of wine!”
“You know that sex therapist in your book, Cathy? How did you learn all that?”
I visit many book groups during the year. If they’re within twenty minutes of my home, I go to their home. If not, we skype or chat via speaker phone.
I’ve skyped with ladies in New York and Massachusetts, Florida and California, a whole pile of other states, and Canada. If there was a book group on the planet Pluto, I’d skype there, too.
Here’s what I’ve learned: All books groups are fantastically, mightily different from one another.
They all have different goals. Some book groups are very intellectual/literary. I have sat and been drilled about everything from character and plot development, to tone, symbolism, metaphors, pacing, structure, who are my favorite literary writers and why, etc.
Then there are groups who talk about the book half the time and chat and laugh the other half of the time.
There are other groups who read the book, talk about it for fifteen minutes, then dive into their lives. Their book group is a social group. Period. Some of ‘em don’t even hide that anymore.
Then there are groups of women who simply want to meet me, don’t want to talk a whole lot about the book, and did I want more wine? How about a couple more glasses? Beer? Vodka? They have that, too. (I don’t drink, but they do their best to make me happy.)
One of my favorite groups only wanted to sit down and have dinner with me. They came in laughing and drank a whole ton of wine. It was a neighborhood book group, no one drove, and they stumbled home singing and chatting. They wanted a nice girlfriend sort of visit. I did not envy them their Book Group Hangovers.
Another book group was the Laughing Book Group. My stomach hurt when I left we laughed so hard. They were all fifty-plus and life was fun.
I once went to a book group that was very, very quiet, almost somber. No one laughed. Not once. They took their reading seriously. I could tell that my book, Julia’s Chocolates, was a wee bit too wild for a few of them. Perhaps they had not liked, Breast Power Psychic Night? Perhaps, Your Hormones and You: Taking Cover, Taking Charge, was a little much? Love scenes too graphic? I don’t know.
Some groups are small, only four or so women, others are thirty – plus. The age range in most of the groups varies from women in their twenties to women in their seventies.
They want to know how I come up with my ideas, (wild imagination) how I write the book, (carefully, obsessively) what my daily life is like (just like theirs), are my characters based on real people (no), etc.
Anyhow, ladies, I’m happy to attend your book groups. Email me through my website, and we’ll set up a time.
Cathy Lamb is a LitLovers author—4 of her books are listed here. We were delighted when she offered to do a guest post.
Tuesday, 17 March 2015 09:31By Kristi Spuhler for LitLovers
A study by The American Educational Research Association found that 88% percent of children who are not reading on-level by third grade are unlikely to graduate from high school—pretty heavy repercussions from simply being unable to enjoy a book every now and again!Sue Henry wanted to do something in her hometown of Nashua, New Hampshire. So she created a one-time project called BOOKS TO KEEP to bring books to children in a local preschool learning program. That was nearly 20 years ago. Today she and her BOOK CLUB have duplicated the same program in The Villages of central Florida.
Wednesday, 04 March 2015 10:28Ah the joys of book clubs! This exchange is from our mailbox and comes all the way from the DOMINICAN REPUBLIC. It's the kind of email that puts BIG SMILES on our faces and makes our jobs so much fun.
February 9, 2014
I loved this website so much, that I created my book club TODAY! Approximately 8 members are IN! So, lets see what happens. I named it after my initials. LOL SO it's called MQ's Book Club.
February 24, 2015
Today is the day. I'll send you the notes and some pictures :D i'm so happy. We are 14 girls now, initially. Let's see if it keeps up.
March 2, 2015
Everything went smoothly.... Everyone was happy to join, and I was so excited to make this little dream come true. Our first choices were "The Little Prince" and "The Old Man and the Sea": because they're classics and easy reads. (I didn't wanna start with a book that could give anyone an excuse not to read!).
We've got plenty more clubs to read about. Take a look at all of our FEATURED CLUBS...and consider having your club featured on LitLovers.
Monday, 16 February 2015 12:07
Now that the contenders have weighed in, what do you think? Are dogs or cats more suited to a literary setting?
Our 11 Favorite Literary Dogs
Travels With Charley, John Steinbeck
Who better to accompany a lone traveler on a 10,000 mile road trip than their faithful dog?
The Curious Incident of The Dog In The Nighttime, Mark Haddon —Though not around for long, Wellington the poodle makes his presence known and sets in motion a monumental chain of events. The Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum
Is Dorothy’s companion, Toto, a lovable confidant or a sneaky canine hiding his powers of speech? Turns out, he may be a little of both.
Marley and Me, John Grogan
"The World's Worst Dog" ends up teaching his owners about loyalty and unconditional love. Was anyone dry-eyed at the end?
The Art of Racing in the Rain, Garth Stein
Confirms what we've know all along: dogs know far more about the human condition than they let on. This one sure does!
A Song of Ice and Fire, George R.R. Martin
Direwolves Nymeria, Ghost, Lady, Summer, Shaggydog, Greywind steal the show when found as pups. Though they part ways, they're as much a part of the story as any other character.
Call of the Wild and White Fang, Jack London
We follow Buck after he's stolen from his comfortable life and sold into sled dog slavery. In White Fang, we thrill to the growing bond between man and his wolf-dog.
; Cujo, Stephen King
Far from lovable, this guy terrorizes the Trenton and Cambers families, to say nothing of readers. A victim of a rabid bat—he was a good dog at heart.
Peter Pan, J.M. Barrie
A dog as British nanny? This charming twist is the perfect fit for J.M. Barrie’s fantasy about never growing up.
The Phantom Tollbooth, Norton Juster
Tock proves to be a great companion for adventure and one who imparts a little wisdom along the way.
Harry Potter, J.K. Rowling
Fang makes recurring appearances thoroughout the series. A Bit of a slobberer, even a coward, he’s still there when Hagrid needs him most.
Tuesday, 03 February 2015 09:17
|Click on each cover for a summary.|
Wednesday, 21 January 2015 19:52By Kristi Spuhler for LitLovers.
Monday, 29 December 2014 12:33A dear friend gave me one of those gifts that keep on giving...and giving... AND GIVING—a beautiful hand-knit scarf. I was thrilled with it, THRILLED! ...until suddenly I wasn't. So what happened? Well, I sent her a note about the mess she got us ALL into. I wanted to be gentle.
True story (pretty much).
December 28, 2014
You ruined my life.
There was a time I could jump out of bed and make it downstairs in an easy 10, get my coffee, and get to WORK.
But NOW, Sue...I jump out of bed and my eyes land on The Scarf. YOUR scarf. And here's what happens...
OOH...I think, that would look good with my new sky-blue blouse (The Limited, 50% off...down to $24.95). So I try it on. No...WAIT...how about the other blouse, the BLUE-GREEN-GRAY one (same 50% off sale). Oh, yes!!! But no. The collar's wrong.
WHOA! Lookie here...!!! I try on this smart blue (fleecy) vest. But the neck's too high. Okay maybe the beige crew-neck SWEATER: the scarf could dress it up a bit.
So, um...how should I wear this thing? Drape it in front and let it DANGLE? How 'bout a little tie in front? I COULD loop it first and then bring one end up over the shoulder. Or let's see...I could...
But wait, wait...look at this NECKLACE! It picks up the scarf's teal color! Hey, I should try that new turquoise jacket I got from CHICOS (online close-out for only $8.89 with FREE shipping). Yessss!
Nope—right color, wrong fabric. Okay, back to the beige sweater.
You see what's happening, Sue.
So I finally go downstairs to get to work. I've got 3 ponderous book reviews to get out this week.
But, Sue, I CAN'T CONCENTRATE. I'm having troub....
Oh, wait, I've got it! Back upstairs to try on that blue vest again (see above). Actually, it looks pretty good...with the NECKLACE (also above). OKAY...the vest and the necklace and the SCARF.
Back downstairs, Sue. Now to work.
Oops....... UPSTAIRS again. Just noticed there's red in the scarf—a smidgen—and I've got that new Macy's vest in a QUILTED RED pattern ... $17.69 because of a 40% sale, plus another 20% off with my new Macy's charge card, which I opened for that express purpose. Yep. the red vest looks good.
HOLD ON...! Just thought of something else. This time it's a black micro-knit top I keep folded in my dresser (center drawer, 2nd row down). Well, damn...that looks good. Oh, and look at this bracelet (top row, 3rd drawer from the left)...the way it picks up the scarf's teal. Ooh, NICE!
Back downstairs. And on it goes.
Sue. Your scarf has put MILLIONS OF LIVES at risk. Three, four MILLION lives around the globe.
I think you know, Sue, that I own and operate LitLovers—a Massively Important website...for Book Lovers. ♥ They depend on our guidance. They look to US for their literary fulfillment...and we CANNOT allow distractions.
But speaking of SCARVES, Sue...think you could you whip me up something...in, say, a taupe? You know, start with a soft GRAY, work it into some BEIGE and then (avoiding brown) bleed it gradually into a lovely tan (but NOT a TAWNY tan...that doesn't do much for me—too much yellow. I'm thinking a sort of mushroomy tan)? That would be lovely. Those colors would go well with a few THINGS I've got...?
It would fun to see what you could do.
Well, gotta get back to work...for now.
Love and kisses,
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