Men Have Book Clubs, Too
Article by Jennifer Miller, NewYork Times
Books seem to be in at the moment. (Or, maybe, they’re just getting more PR). What I mean is that we are reading about book clubs, and meeting in book clubs…
Here’s a detail about the men’s book club gatherings, from the article above:
The Man Book Club is going into its ninth year. It has 16 members, a number of whom are lawyers and engineers in their mid-50s. Each month, the host must prepare a meal appropriate to the book under discussion.
So, this men’s book club is pretty social, and obviously quite a hoot. (Read the article for some of the menu details).
What is the enduring (and maybe, renewed) appeal of books and book clubs? I’ve got a few thoughts.
We are surrounded by “shallow.” Shallow dives into quick bursts of content, increasingly shorter in length (think 140 characters). To read a book, and then to interact with others about the themes and ideas and challenges in that book – well, that is a heftier, lengthier, more substantive blast of content in a shorter-attention-span, content-starved era.
In my own life, I read books to learn, and to enjoy.
And, in my professional life, I provide synopses of business books at the First Friday Book Synopses (and for clients; especially for leadership teams in organizations). We are in our 19th year of monthly gatherings.
And, I also present synopses of books on social justice for the Urban Engagement Book Club and CitySquare. (And a few other groups).
And, I also enjoy what I call my “entertainment” book reveiws a few times a year. These are not synopses, but simply some of the best stories and insight from the books I select – kind of a book encounter.
And, by the way, some of the book clubs I speak at have been meeting a few times a year, every year, for four decades, or one even longer!
But, in all of these gatherings, we focus on the key content of a good book. And the conversations are stimulating, and fun, and educational… a journey into something that seems a little more enduring. Kind of an escape from the too often shallow, trivial world we all inhabit.
I can’t think of much I enjoy more than a good conversation prompted by the content of a good book.
What about you? Have you found your book club yet? If not, you could start one… You don’t need anyone’s permission. What’s keeping you?
If you are interested in starting a business book book club, you might find my white paper useful. Click on the tile of the white paper for your own copy. It’s free, by the way.