Over the last decade or so, I’ve been a member of two book groups.
The first, where I was the youngest participant of a collection of wise souls with a pointy end of members well past their 8th decade of gathering life knowledge and experiences.
It was a privilege to sit with all these ladies, especially Betty and Lyn (both RIP) and share their insights. It was an added delight to learn of authors such as Patrick White and his love of ravani cake, but more about this another time.
My second book group, which currently satisfies my desire to read and ruminate is a much different combination. This is another fabulous bunch of women collected around our children’s school experience.
I have only recently learned though, that there is a loose adoption of a title for our group, B.A.B.E.S. My initial look of horror was fleeting as the acronym was expanded: Books And Bubbles Every Session.
Well, I can cope with that!
B.A.B.E.S. is a ‘revolving-door’ style of group where there is a rounded-out number of 12-14 lovely ladies. Given our busy calendars and sometimes complicated attachments to other life factors, our monthly meeting will consist of 8-10 eclectic views shared around that month’s book.
So, here’s how our evenings seem to take shape.
Arrival can occur anytime within about a 30-40 minute window. Now, to be fair to all, we wouldn’t even contemplate starting our much anticipated discussion until everyone has arrived. So, we open the bubbles and debrief about the happenings of the week or previous month, in some instances.
We solve the issues surrounding our children and school, sport or any other associated activity that crosses over this group. Naturally we move on to the greater local community and then of course, we put in our best efforts at solving the global condition and the seemingly unattainable attributes of world peace and putting a stop to world hunger.
Eventually, we turn our attention to the book in question. Some have read it, some have not – but all contribute to our feisty, often funny and sometimes sad discourse.
Departure from the evening’s gathering means an enlightenment for all, whether that comes from sharing the company of good friends or whether a salient point about the book or author has been uncovered.
Our book group – we love it!
Feel free to copy this successful formula for the structure of your book group. Alternatively, give me some hints on how yours works and together we could create the formula for a ‘Super Book Group’. Imagine the franchise opportunities!
What to read though.
Another question entirely.
Join me tomorrow as we try to discover the ultimate reading list.