We were small in numbers for our meeting on Monday, but it was a good time of muffins, iced mango tea and of course talk of Asher Lev!
If you couldn’t make it and still like to hear some discussion on it head over to Midday Connections Book Club site. They read the book back in November of 07 and you can still access the audio archives for it and hear the broadcast.
Our next book for October is The Hound of the Baskervilles by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. If you aren’t familiar with this author… maybe Sherlock Holmes will ring a bell! It’s a mystery featuring the one and only Holmes and Dr Watson.
I hope you can find some time to read this one and we’ll see you in October!!
For those like me who like to know what’s coming up, here are the next few books planned…
The Code of the Woosters by P.G. Wodehouse for December (this will probably be in early December, the same time as our Christmas Party)
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas for February
Muslims Christians and Jesus by Carl Medearis for April
Why do you read? Sometimes I read to be entertained. Sometimes I read because I should. Sometimes I read because I want to think. Or, rather, I want to be thought-full. To me, great books are ones that both entertain and teach. The best kind of teaching comes from books. This is not the kind of teaching that tells you, “two plus two is four.” What great books offer is an opportunity for your mind to envelop a thought, idea, or perspective and chew on it for awhile. Your brain picks up tidbits of story and puts them together to form knowledge. A good book gives this to you, and you hardly even notice because you’re distracted by the story.
My Name is Asher Lev is one such great book.
My biggest complaint about many of the books I had to read in high school is that they were AWFUL. This isn’t to say that the writing was bad, but that they were filled with stories of horrible things. Asher Lev is my big “I told you so!” to high school literature.* The story isn’t fanciful and full of hearts and flowers- bad things do happen. The story isn’t comprised of events, but of a character’s thoughts, feelings and observations. Events, both good and bad, shape the main character, Asher Lev, as the book follows him from a young age through to adulthood. The author, Chaim Potok, doesn’t tell you what to think, but rather gives you space to ponder. And he leaves you wondering, too. While the book concludes, it is the first of a series of books about the gifted Asher Lev of Brooklyn. A practicing Jew who painted a crucifixion.
So, I hope you read it. I hope you ponder. Life. Art. Relationships. Family. Value. Community. Whatever your mind latches onto within the words that Chaim Potok so thoughtfully placed together.
*I guess there were a few books I liked in high school. My teachers were excellent. I just prefer not to read about some things. I won’t go into details because I’m sure you had to read them, too 😀
I hope I’m not scaring people away by changing things… again… but here I go. 🙂
Seeing that this is summer, and for most people, that means a BUSY schedule. We are pushing the book discussion on My Name Is Asher Lev back to Saturday August 15th. So, check your schedule! Are you free?! You should come!!!
Actually, that will be our last Saturday meeting. After that, we will most likely be meeting on Monday nights. But this is not set in stone. Would you rather it be a different week night? If so, please speak up!
I’ll have to admit I haven’t started this book yet. (GASP! I know!) I try to be one book ahead or have at least read it sometime in the past. But not to worry. I have several trusted sources who tell me it’s a great one! If you’ve read it please feel free to leave some comments. I’d love to hear what you think of it! I do know Asher Lev is from a Hasidic Jewish family in 1940s in Brooklyn. Sure sounds intriguing to me!
I hope you all are enjoying the club! These books shouldn’t feel like assignments for school. (Although this particular book is often required reading for school.) If you have time to read and join us for the discussion, that’s great! But if you can’t make it or a certain book doesn’t strike your fancy, no worries. Maybe the next one will! Or better yet, let me know the type of books your interested in! There might be others interested in the same kind!
I haven’t got many surveys back, but I will probably slow the books down and not have one-month-books so often. If you haven’t responded to the survey questions, please take time to let me know your thoughts!
If you have friends or family who you think would be interested in joining us, invite them! This isn’t a closed club, any are welcome!
I am interested to hear who is planning on reading this book. Please leave a comment or send me an email. I’m hoping to start reading this week! I’ll keep you posted on how that goes.
Yesterday was a beautiful day for our discussion!! I very much enjoyed our time and of course all the yummy food! (I think I’m still stuffed from it all!) We touched on everything from phantom of the opera to the turkey sex chapter to gardening. Everyone was impacted by the book and are planning more gardening of their own!! I would really encourage you to read it sometime! All of us are counting the days until more Farmer’s Markets open! And please, anyone who knows where to get those blue potatoes mentioned, let us know! We’d love to try them!!
If you did read this one, I’d be interested to know how you’d rate it on a scale of 1-10 and why? Send me an email or leave a comment.
What’s Next: The Shack
This time we only have one month to read it. May 16th will be our next discussion at the park. I’ve almost finished it and can’t wait to see how it turns out! I would definitely suggest not judging this book “by it’s cover.” My challenge to you would be to read it for yourself and not to take others opinions of it as your own.
For those who like to know what’s coming and get things on the calender, here are the following books and dates…
February:Robinson Crusoe on Feb. 21st, 10:oo am at Higher Grounds
March: social get-together! (since April’s book we are taking two months to read) We’ll make magnetic bookmarks have tea and cake and maybe some other fun things too! Date TBD. Let me know if you have any suggestions.
April:Animal Vegetable Miracleby Barbara Kingsolver, on April 18th, 10:00 am at the park
May:The Shack by William P. Young, on May 16th, 10:00 am at the park
June:Suzanna Wesley by Arnold A. Dallimore (and a brunch picnic for the whole family!) on June 20th at 10:00 am, location TBD
July:My Name is Asher Lev by Chaim Potok, 10:00 am at the park, date TBD
August:The Code of the Wooster by PJ Woodhouse, 10:00 am at the park, date TBD