Thursday, December 10, 2009

Your Idea of Frankenstein

Thanks, everyone, for coming to book club and discussing A Christmas Carol. I learned a lot and enjoyed all your comments. Thanks, Hailey, for your preparation and for making this night a great learning experience.

Next time we meet (January 27th), we'll be discussing Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. April is going to lead this discussion, and I'm so excited! For now, you have an "assignment":

Create your idea of what Frankenstein's "monster" looks like, and give it to me (Kim). You can choose any medium, but we want to be able to put your monsters on the blog, so if you choose to create one out of clay, or something, take a photo and email it to me. You have until January 20th. HAVE FUN!!! BE CREATIVE!!! PRIZES ARE INVOLVED!!!

Friday, December 4, 2009


Susannah, you're our winner! You get a copy of "A Christmas Carol." Congratulations, and thanks, everyone, for your posts. They were so great! I loved hearing all your thoughts.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Contest Question

Answer the following questions in a comment, and you'll be entered in a contest to win a copy of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. The drawing will take place Friday morning (this Friday), so enter by Thursday night.

Question: Who is the character you most identify with in A Christmas Carol, whether it be in one of the many movie versions or in the book? Why?

Date Change for December Book Club

We will meet for our December book club on Thursday, December 10th, at 8:30 p.m. at the Hillside Village clubhouse. Please bring your own mug, as we'll be doing steamers, hot chocolate, and cider again! Hailey will lead us in a discussion of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. I have two copies in circulation and another at home if anyone wants one. Stay tuned for a contest! I'm thinking free books would be good this time.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

December Book Club

Tonight's book club discussion on Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest" was fantastic! Thanks, Katie L. for all your hard work and preparation. You quotes were great discussion prompts. Thanks to everyone who came and participated and brought yummies to share!

Next month's (December's) reading will be Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol." We will discuss it December 16th at 8:30 at the Hillside Clubhouse. Bring your own mugs again, as well as any goodies you'd like to share. Hailey will be leading our discussion. Stay tuned for details on an upcoming contest! Yes, I like contests. Mostly, I like to give away prizes. And I like to figure out tricky ways to get people to come to book club!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

November Book Club Date Change

Book club will be held on Wednesday, November 18th, at 8:30 p.m. at the Hillside Village Clubhouse. Katie Langston will be directing our discussion of Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest," a HILARIOUS play! We will also be enjoying some yummy hot drinks, so BYOM (Bring Your Own Mug). We will be giving away some prizes throughout the evening, so be sure to come! And bring friends!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Wilde Winner

Congrats to Hilary, the winner of our Wilde Contest! She gets a ticket to see Jim Carrey's adaptation of "A Christmas Carol." Cool! Thanks for participating, everyone, and remember to come to book club on the 19th!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Lowering the Stakes for Our Wilde Contest

I haven't received any emails from anyone regarding the Wilde Contest, so I'm lowering the stakes a bit. If you commit to reading "The Importance of Being Earnest" (full text available at multiple online locations such as here) and email me a statement to the effect, I'll put your name in a drawing for a ticket to "A Christmas Carol" (new Jim Carrey movie adaptation). If you can get friends to commit, email me their names. For every friend who commits, I'll put your name in the drawing again. In other words, the more commitments you get, the more your name goes in the drawing. If someone asks you for a commitment and you've already given one to someone else, please don't give it again (unless it was just your own commitment to me). Please send me your emails by TOMORROW, MIDNIGHT!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Wilde Contest!

I love contests, and I love books. So, here's a contest that involves a book and a movie, too! How cool is that?!

You have until November 5th (that's right--four days) to commit to reading our November book club book, which is actually Oscar Wilde's play, "The Importance of Being Earnest," AND get three other people to commit to reading it and attending our November book club, which will be held on the 19th (note that this is a Thursday). The catch is, once your three friends commit to reading the play, they can't commit to anyone else to do it. In other words, if I ask my dear ward member friend to read the play and she commits to it, then she can't also commit to you. Her commitment is MINE. If you commit to reading the play and get three friends to commit too, then your name will be put in a drawing for a ticket to see the new Jim Carrey movie adaptation of "A Christmas Carol," which comes to the Pullman theater (Village Cinemas) THIS WEEKEND (the 6th, to be exact). We're reading A CHRISTMAS CAROL for our December book club, so watching the show will be good preparation.

*Commit to reading "The Importance of Being Earnest" and to attending book club on November 19th.
*Talk to three friends FAST and get them to commit (it's short, by the way) to reading the play and coming to book club, too.
*Email Kim by 11:59 p.m. on November 5th so she can put your name in a drawing (I'll probably wait to draw in the morning, if that's okay with ya'll.).
*Actually keep your commitments! If you don't...then you have to repeat your commitment for the month of December (including getting three friends to read our book and come to book club).

To encourage reading! And discussion! It's really so much fun. I hope you'll join us and participate in this contest. Good luck!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

THE Bookish Woman

Congratulations to Hailey, the winner of our Face of Bookish Women contest! Her super cute picture of herself, her baby, her book, and her food won many of our hearts. She won a Bookish Women tote bag and a copy of Kate Umansky's SOLOMON SNOW AND THE SILVER SPOON (a fabulous middle-grade novel). Katie and Hilary took second and third places in our contest and also won tote bags. All three of these gals will look sooooooooo stylin' when they go to the library, don't you think?

One side of bag (I need to figure out how to flip images!):

Other side of bag:

April did a great job of leading our discussion on Elie Wiesel's NIGHT and Livia Bitton-Jackson's I HAVE LIVED A THOUSAND YEARS, two non-fiction Holocaust accounts. Thanks, April! And thank you, everyone who came. The company, conversation, and autumn drinks were all very good.

In other news, Katie L. is going to lead our discussion of Oscar Wilde's play, "The Importance of Being Earnest." Mark your calendars for November 19th from 8:30 - 9:30 p.m. Note that this is a Thursday! Location will be announced a little closer to the date.

As always, even if you don't get the chance to read our book club books, there is so much that can be learned from out get-togethers. Plus, we have a lot of fun. So please come!

FYI: I've included the notes from our book club discussion of PETER PAN on the post with the September date.

Monday, October 26, 2009

New Location for Book Club

Book Club will be held in the back room at Sisters Brew (218 S. Main Street) this Wednesday, the 28th, from 8:30-9:30 p.m. Sisters Brew is a nice coffeehouse serving plenty of hot drinks, not just coffee. I love their caramel steamers. They also serve cider, hot cocoa, herbal tea--even sandwiches.

We will be discussing Elie Wiesel's NIGHT and Livia Bitton-Jackson's I HAVE LIVED A THOUSAND YEARS. Even if you haven't read the books, the discussion promises to be very enlightening. Please join us!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Great Minds Think Alike

Katie L. just sent me her picture, and because I think it's so cute, I've decided to add it to this post (though it won't be a contender in our contest). Also, I'm adding a photo from my author website, which, you'll notice, is in a similar style. Katie and I get along just too well! Loves to you, Katie-girl!

Voting Time!

Only three people sent me their pictures, so we have our "Face of Bookish Women" contest winners! All three gals get a tote bag for their library books. However, we need to decide on the first prize winner of the contest. She alone will have her mug on our blog. You have until October 28th, at 12:00 AM, to vote. Our winner will be "crowned" at book club that night.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Everybody Likes Free Stuff...Right?

Okay, so I know I was pretty strict sounding when I said that I needed your Bookish Pictures by October 21st at 8 p.m. Well...I'll give you until Saturday, midnight. :) Thank you to everyone who sent me photos already! They are SO CUTE. I can't wait to put them up on the blog!

And speaking of contests and free stuff, my friend, the children's book librarian at the Moscow Public Library, just announced a contest on her uber-cool blog. The winner gets a free spooky book! Check it out: Words World and Wings

Great List of Classics

We've cast our votes for the plays and novels we'll be reading in Book Club, but I will keep this list of classic novels on the website in case anyone wants to refer to it for additional reading.

The Crucible, Arthur Miller - 1953 - American author - New World Salem Witch Trial setting (1692)

The Importance of Being Earnest, Oscar Wilde - 1895 - British author - British setting of about the same time period

Pygmalion, George Bernard Shaw - 1913 - British author - British setting of about the same time period; basically the story of "My Fair Lady"

Romeo & Juliet, William Shakespeare - 1597 - British author - Italian setting (though Shakespeare always feels overtly British to me); you've seen the movie, but have you read the play?


Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain – 1884 – American author – U.S. (pre-abolishment of slavery) southern setting

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Caroll – 1865 – British author – Fantasy setting; not the story you thought you knew from the Disney movie

Anne of Green Gables, L.M Montgomery – 1908 – Canadian author – Canadian setting of about the same time period

Arabian Nights – Scholars suggest this collection of stories came together around 800 A.D.; if we read these stories, I suggest everyone getting the same translation—maybe the Barnes and Noble classic (2007) version, just because it’s readily accessible

The Call of the Wild, Jack London - 1903 - American author - Yukon gold rush late 1800s setting

Emma, Jane Austen – 1815 – British author – British setting of about the same time period

Frankenstein, Mary Shelley – 1818 – British author – European and Arctic settings; this book is not the story you thought you knew

Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck – 1939 – American author – U.S. Depression Era setting

Heidi, Johanna Spyri – 1880 – Swiss author – Swiss and German setting of about the same time period

Ivanhoe, Walter Scott – 1819 – British (Scottish) author – 12th century English setting; historical fiction (with many make-believe characters)

Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte – 1847 – British author – British setting of about the same time period

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, from “The Chronicles of Narnia,” C.S. Lewis – 1950 - British author – British WWII and fantasy world setting

Little House on the Prairie, Laura Ingalls Wilder – 1935 – American author – U.S. late 1800s Midwestern setting based on the author's life

My Antonia, Willa Cather – 1918 – American author – U.S. Midwestern pioneer setting

Pinocchio, Carlo Collodi – 1883 – Italian author – Italian fantasy setting (talking animals, talking puppet)

Pollyanna, Eleanor H. Porter – 1913 – American author – U.S. (Vermont) setting of about the same time period

Ponder Heart, Eudora Welty – 1954 – American author – U.S. southern setting of about the same time period

Rebecca, Daphne Du Maurier – 1938 – British author – British setting of about the same time period; some consider this novel to be very similar to Jane Eyre

Robinson Crusoe, Daniel Defoe – 1719 – British author – takes place in the latter half of the 1600s on a tropical island near Venezuela; this novel is considered by some to be the first novel in English

Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett – 1909 – Author is British by birth, but wrote the story after immigrating to the U.S. – Indian and British setting of about the same time period

Silas Marner, George Eliot – 1861 – British author – British setting (fictional location)

Swiss Family Robinson, Johann Rudolf Wyss – 1812 – tropical island (East Indies) setting

Things Fall Apart, Chinua Achebe – 1958 – African author – African setting

To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee – 1960 – U.S. deep south Depression Era setting

The Three Musketeers, Alexander Dumas – 1844 – French author – French 1600s setting

Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson – 1883 – British (Scottish) author – British, maritime, and tropical mid-1700s setting

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Betty Smith – 1943 – American author – U.S. (Brooklyn) pre-WWI setting

Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Harriet Beecher Stowe – 1853 – American author – U.S. (pre-abolishment of slavery) southern setting

Winnie-the-Pooh, A.A. Milne – 1926 - British author – British fantasy setting (talking animals); witty, charming writing—much cleverer than Disney adaptations; if we choose this book, we ought to read others in the series, as they are so short

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum – 1900 – American author – U.S. (Kansas—1889) and fantasy setting

Friday, October 16, 2009

Great Deals on Great Books

One of our lovely Bookish Women bought all four of our novels for Book Club for $15 at TJ's Books, here in town. That's another great benefit of choosing classics--they're so readily available and often very inexpensive, as opposed to new and trendy books, which can cost so much more and are sometimes harder to find. Anywho, TJ's is a fun bookstore, if you haven't been in there, as is Bookpeople of Moscow (downtown). Hastings also carries new and used books and sometimes they're used books are at a steal of a price. Occasionally you can find some used books at the thrift stores in town, but I've found that usually they're bodice-rippers and not classics....

Does anyone know of any other stores in town (or nearby--Pullman, Troy, etc.) that carry the books we'll be reading? If so, post in the comments, PLEASE!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Votes Are In!!!

Thank you, everyone who voted! I tallied the votes tonight, and the results are as follows:

The Importance of Being Earnest, by Oscar Wilde

Arabian Nights
Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley
Silas Marner, by George Eliot
Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe

Please view our calendar (on the left side of this blog page) to see which month we'll read which book. Thanks again, and we'll see you all on October 28th for Book Club! Hillside Village Clubhouse, 8:30 p.m.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

October Book Club

Next Month's Reading: A Classic and a parallel book...
*Night: By Elie Wiesel (1958)
*I Have Live A Thousand Years: By Livia Bitton-Jackson (1999)

These are great examples of Holocaust memoirs: one from a young man, the other from a 13 year-old girl. I have both if someone would like to borrow them. ~ April

Plan on meeting October 28th from 8:30 - 9:30 p.m. at the Hillside Village Clubhouse (1126 N. Polk Extension--I really will reserve it this time!). Don't forget to enter the Bookish Women contest! ~ Kim

Monday, September 28, 2009

Peter Pan

When: Wednesday, September 30th, from 8:30 - 9:30 p.m.
Where: Hillside Village Clubhouse (1126 N. Polk Extension)
What: The Bookish Women are discussing J.M. Barrie's PETER PAN
Details: Bring food.

UPDATE: Here are the notes from our Peter Pan book club (much of these notes were taken from Wikipedia. Cool site, that Wikipedia, though not always 100% accurate...):

Bookish Women
September 30, 2009

J.M. Barrie’s PETER PAN

Meet Sir James Matthew Barrie (from Wikipedia):

Born: May 9, 1860 in Kirriemuir, Scotland
Died: June 19, 1937 (of pneumonia, aged 77) in London, England

Childhood and Adolescence:
James’ father, David Barrie, was a moderately successful weaver. His mother, Margaret Ogilvy, had assumed her own deceased mother’s responsibilities when she was eight, and often spoke of how she hadn’t had a childhood.
When James was seven, his older brother, David (who was his mother’s favorite), died in an ice-skating accident the night before his 14th birthday. James’ mother was devastated, and in an effort to gain his mother’s attentions, James would dress up in his brother’s clothing. It has been suggested that, as a result of his brother’s death and his mother’s resultant negligence, James suffered from psychogenic dwarfism—dwarfism caused by intense stress.
James studied at various academies before he enrolled in the University of Edinburgh.

Literay Career:
While in Edinburgh, James wrote drama reviews. Later, he moved to Nottingham, where he worked as a journalist at a newspaper. He then moved back to Kirriemuir and wrote nostalgic tales of Scotland for a London newspaper. His interests turned to novels and to playwriting.

Barrie’s Works:
• Auld Licht Idylls (1888)
• Better Dead (1888)
• A Window in Thrums (1889)
• The Little Minister (1891)
• Sentimental Tommy, The Story of His Boyhood (1896)
• Margaret Ogilvy (1896)
• Tommy and Grizel (1900)
• Quality Street (1901)
• The Admirable Crichton (1902)
• The Little White Bird; or, Adventures in Kensington Gardens (1902)
• Peter Pan (play) (1904)
• Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens (1906)
• What Every Woman Knows (1906)
• When Wendy Grew Up - An Afterthought (1908)
• Peter and Wendy (novel) (1911)
• Dear Brutus (1917)
• Echoes of the War (1918)
• The Old Lady Shows Her Medals (1918), basis for the movie Seven Days Leave (1930), starring Gary Cooper
• A New World (1918)
• Barbara's Wedding (1918)
• A Well-Remembered Voice (1918)
• Alice Sit-By-The-Fire (1919)
• Mary Rose (play) (1920)
• My Lady Nicotine, A Study in Smoke (1926)
• Farewell Miss Julie Logan (1932)
• The Boy David (1936)
• Stories by English Authors: London (Selected by Scribners) (as Contributor)
• Stories by English Authors: Scotland (Selected by Scribners) (as Contributor)
• The Young Visiters or, Mr. Salteena's Plan by Daisy Ashford (preface

Barrie became acquainted with actress Mary Ansell in 1891. He was very ill in 1893 and ’94, and Ansell helped his family care for him. Barrie and Ansell married in 1894.
Barrie and Ansell divorced in 1909, on the grounds of Ansell’s infidelity.

Llewelyn Davies Family:
The Arthur Llewelyn Davies family (Arthur-father, Silvia-mother, George, John, Peter, Michael, Nicholas) played an important role in Barrie’s personal and professional life. Their acquaintance began in 1897 and lasted until Barrie’s death. Barrie was considered a trusted friend of the entire family. When Arthur died in 1907, Barrie supported the family financially. Upon Silvia’s death in 1910, Barrie was entrusted with the guardianship of the Llewelyn Davies boys, along with their maternal grandmother, their Uncle Guy Du Maurier (Silvia’s brother), and another uncle, Compton (Arthur’s brother).

Barrie was devastated by the deaths of George (killed in action in 1915—WWI) and Michael (drowned in 1921).
Of his “Uncle Jim,” Nicholas (the youngest of the Llewelyn Davies boys), wrote, “He was an innocent – which is why he could write Peter Pan.”

Barrie was made a baronet in 1913; his baronetcy was not inherited. He was made a member of the Order of Merit in 1922. In 1919 he was chosen to be Rector of the University of St Andrews for the next three years, and served as Chancellor of the University of Edinburgh from 1930 to 1937. He has a school named after him in Wandsworth, South West London. The Barrie School in Silver Spring, Maryland, is also named in his honor.


The first appearance of the character, Peter Pan, came in a book called THE LITTLE WHITE BIRD (serialized in the United States). Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Would Not Grow Up, was performed in 1904. PETER PAN IN KENSINGTON GARDENS was written in 1906, and depicts the character Peter’s life before Neverland. In 1908, a short work entitled, When Wendy Grew Up, was printed. In 1911, the Peter Pan play was developed into the novel, PETER AND WENDY. It has been adapted into films, plays, and musicals.
FYI: In 1929, Barrie gave the copyright of the Peter Pan works to Great Ormond Street Hospital in London. All proceeds resulting from the sales/performances of those works go to the hospital.
FYI 2: The Peter Pan works introduced people to the name Wendy, which Barrie said was inspired by a young friend’s calling him “fwendy”—friendly.

Possible Discussion Topics
Unreliable narrator
Racism / Exaggerated Stereotypes
Gender Roles
Duty & Responsibility