Reading is a solitary act, but there’s so much to be gained by reading together. Which is why I love our Modern Mrs. Darcy book club and wanted to fill you on what we’re reading this fall. I hope you’ll want to join us!
Our one-of-a-kind online community makes it easy to connect with fellow bookish kindred spirits for fun, for encouragement, and for a more fulfilling reading experience. Each month we read one core title together, plus an optional complimentary selection or two that creates a “book flight.” We discuss these books—and other titles and bookish topics—around the clock in our forums (not facebook). At the end of the month, we have an online video meet-up to discuss the month’s main selection. (Many times, we chat with the author, and that’s always a special treat!)
If you can’t make one of our events, don’t worry. All members have unlimited access to a video library full of all the classes, book chats, and author discussions we’ve ever done.
I love getting to meet book club members in person! Here we are in Nashville.
I recently asked our book club members what they love about book club and three things stuck out:
- A community that LOVES to read. Not everyone has the pleasure of knowing fellow readers or many readers who read with their level of enthusiasm. If you love the smell of books, plan your travel around indie bookstores, or would drive hours to meet a beloved author, you’ve found your people.
- A kind community. The Internet is not always a kind place, but we expect all our members to be respectful of each other’s opinions. When I hear that our space is a safe space, I know we’re doing a good job.
- Flexible. Life is hectic and one of the main goals with our group was that I wanted it to be flexible. You can participate as much or as little as you want, from desktop or mobile, at any time of day.
Now that we’ve finished up our summer reading with our lovely discussion with Marissa de los Santos about I’ll Be Your Blue Sky, it’s time to look toward fall. We consciously mix old titles and new, and you’ll see that reflected in the fall choices. Today I’m happy to announce our next reads!
For the first time, our members voted to choose our September selection. I presented two options: Gaudy Night and Special Topics in Calamity Physics. We’d all read the winner; the runner-up would be the flight pick.
Gaudy Night by Dorothy Sayers carried the most votes. This 1935 classic has a fun meta spin: it’s a mystery about a mystery novelist, set at a college reunion (the “gaudy” of the title) in Oxford between the wars. The book’s protagonist is a female well ahead of her time, who’s trying to answer the question “can a woman really have it all?” well before that became the stuff of headlines, and the book marks a turning point in Sayers’ work.
We’ll go back to high school for our flight pick with Special Topics in Calamity Physics by Marisha Pessl.
This October we’re reading Tell Me More by Kelly Corrigan, and we’re looking forward to chatting with Kelly (!!!) at the end of the month. I adored this book, I wish I could download it into my brain, I want everyone I know to read it, and we’ll never exhaust the discussion topics it presents.
Our flight pick, You Learn by Living by Eleanor Roosevelt, comes at the same topics in a vastly different way, and reading the two in tandem provides so many excellent discussion opportunities and insights into the genre. (I dedicated a whole blog post to this book several years ago.) Of note: last chapters are on politics, and Roosevelt’s insights and advice is shockingly prescient in today’s cultural climate.
In November we’re reading The History of Love by Nicole Krauss, a literary mystery that revolves around the book-within-a-book of the title. This long-lost manuscript links two broken people who need each other desperately, but don’t know it yet.
This novel pairs beautifully with Pam Muńoz Ryan’s middle-grade novel Echo, in which three young people’s lives are also linked, not by a manuscript but by a musical instrument. (Heads up, audiophiles: Echo is especially good on audio.)
I hope to see you in the forums this fall!