Friday, May 25, 2007

Like Being a Fly on the Wall

I had the wonderful opportunity on Monday evening to attend a book group meeting where the book being discussed was . . . drum roll, please . . . Best Intentions, written by yours truly. Now, I have attended a few book group meetings in the past at which my book was discussed, but in those instances the attendees were all friends of mine. In this case, the book had been recommended to the group by a friend, but otherwise I had no connection to the group.

It was a great experience. All of the women appeared to have read the book quite closely (indeed, one member had tabbed certain pages with Post-It notes!), and they were quite passionate about their opinions. I loved listening to them discuss Jack, the protagonist of the novel, and I found it very interesting to hear so many differents views about the choices he makes along the way. It was also satisfying to know that readers do pick up on the subtle things -- this particular group was very attuned to how one line of dialogue here, or a small action there, affected the meaning and tone of a particular scene. They were the enthusiatic and engaged readers that every writer hopes for!

Thanks to Leanne and Melinda, and all the other ladies who participated!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Great books I've read lately . . .

I have no idea why I didn't discover this writer earlier, but I'm hooked on Paul Watkins after just one book and I can't wait to read more of him. I just read The Story of My Disappearance and it was fantastic.

Other books I've read recently and highly recommend:
The Great Gatsby (okay, that's obvious, but I just reread it for the first time in years, and I just appreciated it so much more than I did back when I read it in high school).
The Tortilla Curtain, by T.C. Boyle (should be required reading for Floridians and Southern Californians -- but would benefit anyone who thinks they have the whole illegal immigration thing figured out)
Water for Elephants, by Sara Gruen (when I read the synopsis, I was skeptical - a novel with a circus setting just didn't appeal to me -- but I was wrong. It's a great read.)