Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Book Group, Round 5

Couple new people this month, but they really only replaced old people who didn't show up. I'm hoping that it was due to the odd freezing fog that hung around all day. It was there when I went to work, and it was there when I left. Actually had a guy show up. He'd even read the whole book. An especially surprising occurrence considering this month's title was Elizabeth Berg's The Art of Mending. This is, of course, a rather sexist statement on my part. On the other hand, the only other guy to come to book group has been a husband who was dragged along with with his wife for emotional support since she hated the book (last month's The Stupidest Angel). The new guy gave it the resounding approval of "[reading this book] wasn't a waste of my time."

Laura's a big-time quilter. She's looking forward to the annual trip to the Minnesota State Fair with her family, but when her little sister calls her up and asks if the siblings can talk privately about their childhood, Laura knows that her relaxing vacation isn't going to happen. When Caroline reveals her secret, Laura has to reevaluate her entire childhood and examine trust, guilt and forgiveness.

It's a pretty quick read. Pat loved it, but she's a quilter. I liked it. Laura had a tendency to relate anecdotes of friends' experiences with abuse, which served to illustrate points, but after about the second or third anecdote I began to wonder if anyone in Laura's past hadn't been exposed somehow to abuse. It threw me out of the story. The use of photographs describing scenes from their childhood was very effective. Much better done than The Wish House's use of the same technique.

Basically: It wasn't a waste of my time to read. ;)


Little Willow said...

I once had a teenage boy show up to the teen book group who told us his mom paid him $20 to read the book and attend the meeting. He then barely participated in our discussion. That made me sad.

Jackie said...

That sucks. There are so many parents that don't get that forcing kids to read doesn't actually get them anywhere.