Wednesday, October 6, 2010

R.E.A.D. Book Group

A Post by Tammra Salisbury

I started working at the Pleasant Grove City Library in the fall of 1991.  In 1992 I was asked to organize a book group for library patrons. I came up with R.E.A.D (Reading Entertainment and Discussion) and started to advertise. During that first year I would prepare a book review and discussion every month.  Occasionally a few people would show up. Often the only person who attended was Maxine Davis. I would sit across from Maxine and review the book I had prepared and then we would talk about it. I am so glad she kept coming because it kept the book group going.

In the fall of 1993 I heard that Jane Robinson had given a book review on Women Who Run With the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes for different groups in the community so I asked her if she would be willing to come and review it for R.E.A.D.  She was happy to and we drew quite a crowd.  The review was wonderful!  After her review she invited all of us over to the Bungalow for a delicious lunch of soup and homemade bread.  Many of us bonded on that day and membership at the book group really picked up.

The book group became unique because those attending asked that we do book reviews like traditional literary groups used to do rather than everyone reading the book and then discussing it.  At first I did about six or seven reviews a year and invited friends to do the other three or four.  Today I only do one or two per year and all the other months are filled with wonderful and talented reviewers.  Each year we have had book reviews by people such as Jane Robinson, Yara Wilson, Etta McQuade, Howard Carpenter, Eloise Fugal, Edith Chiles, Camille Hadley, Cheryl Carson, Diane Marsh and others. 

When we get together we laugh and we cry and we discuss things that are important to us.  We have reviewed and talked about hundreds of books over the years.  We have heard from authors and had parties.   We have especially loved meeting new people who decide to join us.   

In September 2010 I reviewed Mockingbird: A Portrait of Harper Lee by Charles Shields.  Sitting across from me, this time with several people, was Maxine Davis.  Bless her heart.  She has hung in with me all these years!

R.E.A.D. Book Group meets on the first Thursday morning of every month at 10:00 a.m.  Everyone is invited and encouraged to attend.  Hope to see you there!!

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