Not a Book Club Book Club

The alternative to a book club!

I’ve never belonged to a book club. There I’ve said it! There’s nothing wrong with being in a book club, but it has never appealed to me. I could be completely wrong about them and I accept that, but I don’t like “having” to read a book. The one thing guaranteed to turn me off a book is being told I “must” read it. Yes I read reviews and I buy and read books based on reviews but if I don’t like them after the first paragraph, first page or first chapter I give up (occasionally if I’ve been given a book for review I will finish it so I can write an honest review and usually I can find something positive to say). I’ve reached an age where I don’t need to finish something I’ve started as there are thousands of other books out there waiting for me. And I don’t want to miss something brilliant by ploughing on through something mundane… I’m not a snob – I rate Patricia Cornwell and James Patterson as highly as Charlotte Bronte and Dickens. They all tell stories. As a writer, I enjoy the story, the plot, the characters.


In non fiction I go for honesty and entertainment as well as information and education. One of the best books I’ve read recently was written by a young doctor who had a terminal illness. It was heartbreaking and yet thoroughly uplifting. Yes I’d be happy to sit round and talk about that book but not if I have to read something I don’t choose to next month… Then I got to thinking. What about a book club where people talk about the book they are reading. And all the books are different! How would that work? Would that work, even? I’m talking about “When Breath Becomes Air” and someone else is talking about “Gone Girl” and someone else is talking about a biography of Lenin and a fourth about steam trains in Dorset… Then I thought I like that idea! Luckily the library management like the idea too. So we’ve created the “Not a Book Club Book Club”. People who like books sit around and talk about them – but randomly. And nobody “has” to read anything that anyone else recommends. What do you think?


I’ll finish with a quote from Ray Bradbury that I’ve come across:
You must lurk in libraries and climb the stacks like ladders to sniff books like perfumes and wear books like hats upon your crazy heads… May you be in love every day for the next 20,000 days.

Good enough for me!

If you’re interested in joining the book club please visit the High Wycombe library or call them on 0845 230 3232 for more information!