The Rules of Book Club

The first rule of book club is that you talk about book club, preferably to the same person not in book club over the course of several months in order to cement in them a respect for the intellectual and horizon-broadening hobby that you’ve chosen instead of binge-watching The West Wing (alternatively Gilmore Girls) during every free moment.

The second rule of book club is to read the book, even during “Classics September” because when you referenced the “scene when Mr. Darcy jumps into the lake” we all knew you just watched the miniseries.

The third rule of book club is to talk about the book at book club, especially if you were an English major before joining the corporate world and you still remember burning your notes about the male gaze and bell hooksian critical theory for warmth during your “unemployment phase.”

The fourth rule of book club is to start the discussion with the phrase, “I think it’s interesting that…” even if you didn’t actually find it interesting and you’re just looking at your Kindle highlights for something to say.

The fifth rule of book club is to discuss only one book at a time, even if you’re all scrolling through your GoodReads “to read” lists adding recommendations left and right.

The sixth rule of book club is to go on as long as there is wine.

The seventh rule of book club is to go to book club even if you didn’t read the book because you know you’ll end up griping about significant others and life anyway, and that’s important, too.

The eighth rule of book club is if this is your first night at book club you need to wonder if talking about Dietland for two hours was actually better than watching Netflix by yourself at your apartment and realize, with a spurt of gratitude at the awesome people around you, that it absolutely is.

 

(With apologies to Chuck Palahniuk, and also, if you haven’t read Dietland, you should probably do that.)
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