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Friday, March 30, 2012

Book Club

In college I majored in US History and English Lit. I think it’s pretty much an understatement but I love to read. A small group of friends and I started a book club. Not that I needed an excuse to read books but we also like to discuss the book, the story and the language used, lasting impressions that kind of thing. I usually judge the book chosen for reading to be a success if a member recommends it to someone once we have finished. 

The story of a book is great. It is obviously an important piece to what a book is, but I really love language. I love the words that authors choose. The tone that is evoked from certain words would not always be the same had the author instead chose a different word. The dialogues would be different, the characters would evolve into something else. I like to work out what the author is saying deeper by looking at the language they use. Partly, I believe this is why movies are never the same as the books. Screen writers changing a loved book changes intricate pieces to the characters and story that are then lost in the movies. Never mind that they also change lots of other things too.  

This month we read A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness. I have to say that it was my turn to pick a book, and I picked this one based on the main character as being a historian and the setting being in Oxford’s Bodleian Library. While I have never been there, it is, in my mind, the most wonderful of all places.  I initially thought this book was going to be a work of fiction but more of historical fiction, a history of witches or perhaps a history of Alchemy. I was wrong for the most part, but pleasantly surprised all the same.

A Discovery of Witches is book 1 in a trilogy. It is neither an earth shattering literary classic book nor even really a work of historical fiction. Actually, it is another take on witches and vampire myths. I would compare it to a grown up version of Twilight. The vampires, however,  do not sparkle, thank goodness.  I also liked that for the most part, the characters are educated. I like that they work in laboratories and that there is a research aspect to what they do. The story revolves around two main characters, one a witch and the other a vampire.  Without giving too much away to the story line, I do have to say it is an original take on the witch/vampire stories out there or atleast that I have read.  It was a quick read. The author does a nice job of setting the scenes and I like her language. It is not over the top cheesy on the romance level. I will read the other books in the trilogy because it has sparked my interest. 

As I’m typing this, a thunder storm has rolled into town. The room has gotten dark and its noon. ..This means I need to wrap this up and snuggle on the couch with our next book, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. This is perfect reading weather! 
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