Book Club Articles

Book Club Selection #1: The Saturday Wife

06.24.10

Well, our book club is official. We had three books to choose from and the majority of you picked The Saturday Wife. Special thanks to Ciaran for suggesting it.

Amazon says this about The Saturday Wife:

Like Emma Bovary, Delilah Goldgrab longs for a better life. A Queens yeshiva girl, Delilah is prayerfully remorseful after fornicating with young, opportunistic Yitzie Polinsky, and quickly marries mediocre rabbinical student Chaim Levi, who is unable to provide her with a house, much less the glossy upper-middle-class life she longs for. When Chaim accepts a position as the rabbi of an affluent Connecticut congregation, Delilah has the opportunity to indulge her ideas about happiness as the congregation’s rebbitzin, with deliciously disastrous consequences. It’s hard to like selfish, clueless Delilah or anyone else here: the pleasure of this novel is in its mercilessness, with Ragen (The Covenant) raising the stakes until the very end.

Ciarian wanted to pair it with Manischewitz, but at some point I have to be friendly to all of you. I would never suggest anyone drink more than a thimble full of Manischewitz. I do, however, enjoy a glass of Baron Herzog during Peseach, so I’ll recommend the 2007 Cabernet.

Our book discussion will be twofold, I’ll read the book within the next week or two, and come up with a few questions (for easy posting), I’ll post them here, and ask y’all to discuss the book (either here on your blogs), and we’ll do a big link round up. This way we’ll all be able to find each other. Hopefully everyone can post sometime between July 15 and 21st.

Early in the evening on July 22 I’ll have a few local bloggers over for wine and a round table chat. We’ll go ahead and stream that on UStream (I’ll have exact links for you the day before), and hopefully get at least a few of you to virtually connect.

Let me tell you what excites me the most. This is officially an International Book Club (watch out Oprah).

SavvyMegz will be joining us all the way from Delhi. If moments like this don’t make you fall head over heels in love with the Internet, I don’t know what will.

If you’re participating in our inaugural Book Club please use Mr. Linky below so we can all find you. Don’t forget to pick up a copy of The Saturday Wife and a bottle of Baron Herzog Cabernet

From: Book Club? To: Book Club!

06.23.10

I’m really excited, it looks like we’ll have a book club here. I’m still working out the details, but so many of you have emailed me that I’d like to pick a book within the next 24 hours.

Here are some of the criteria we will have for picking the book:

  • Must be available in libraries (ie not a book released last week)
  • Must be available in paperback
  • We would prefer it’s available on Kindle
  • We would prefer it’s available as an audiobook
  • It should be read easily within 2-3 weeks
  • It must pair nicely with an inexpensive to moderately priced wine

As for the actual book club meeting. Whomever suggests the book and I will come up with a few questions that could jump start a post if you’re a blogger. If you aren’t a blogger don’t worry one bit. We’ll have a discussion right here, and I’m pretty sure I have a widget that can help us. We can also do a videochat with Skype or U Stream, whichever is easiest for larger groups. I’ll also pick an evening and we can try our wine and live chat.  This way there will be something for everyone.

Each month I’ll give you three member selections and open up voting for 24 hours. This month the first three books are:

Angle of Repose (Contemporary American Fiction) This was suggested by @bsletten and seconded by my mother. It appears to deal with the Western Frontier, here’s the back cover:

Angle of Repose is available for as little as a penny used on Amazon, and it is on Kindle. We will have to choose a suitable wine if this ends up being the selection.

When I asked The Virgin for a suggestion she gave me this:

What about reading Breakfast at Tiffany’s: A Short Novel and Three Stories (Modern Library)? Everyone loves the Audrey Hepburn movie, and the book is terrific too but much racier than old Hollywood would allow. Capote’s dialogue is really excellent, and you’ll recognize parts the movie plays verbatim. But it’s very interesting to see how Capote really characterized the lovable whore, Holly. Plus, it’s short and should be available at everyone’s local library.

This is really a book for bourbon or gin, but recently I liked a Kenneth Volk chardonnay (the 2004, I think). I’m not a chardonnay person normally but it was very good for the $20 range.

This book is NOT available for the Kindle. You can pick up Breakfast at Tiffany’s solo, so you aren’t getting the short stories with it. Completely up to you.

Our third selection is The Saturday Wife. This is available in a Kindle edition. Cirian suggested it with Manischewitz, however my only use for Manischewitz is to make Charoset. I will not be drinking that, but we could pair it with a nice red from Baron Herzog. Here is the back cover:

During the next 24 hours I’ll need y’all to vote on our book/wine club so please vote now, and we can get started.