January 31, 2005
Book clubs are for losers with bad taste

I, too, have never been part of a book club, but I certainly don't spit on them from my lofty mountaintop like Li Robbins:

This instinctive aversion to the notion of book clubs springs from a deep-rooted belief in the essence of the experience of reading. (Does the phrase “solitary pleasure” ring any pleasant associative bells?) Reading is the greatest of great escapes. Reading is permission to simply be, to exist in another world, the world of the book. But you can’t maintain that Zen state when someone is wittering away about plot, tone and setting as though they are the new holy trinity.


[A book club] manufactures your experience; it does a disservice to the book-seeking heart. It puts that tender organ in danger of losing the pure experience of reading, the spontaneous pleasure of talking about what’s been read, the candy shop joy of choosing what you alone will read next. Let’s face it: clubs of any kind exist to homogenize opinion, or at the very least, tenaciously mould the honest instincts of their members.

Oi. Hate to pierce your Zen Zone, but that book you're reading sucks. It sucks!

Posted by Bill Stilwell at January 31, 2005 11:48 AM
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