Until relatively recently, I had a mental image of book clubs that was, shall we say, stereotypical and unflattering. I pictured a book club as an Oprah-esque meeting where a bunch of women sat around and expressed their feelings as they related to a certain book. In between all that, they'd all gab about the innermost workings of their complicated personal lives, with more of the aforementioned feelings sprinkled in liberally. (Not that I have issues, or anything, but I'm not such a fan of the spilling of souls. In case you couldn't tell.)
I am relieved to dispel that notion, or at least grant that not all book clubs are like that. Based on a certain book and movie tie-in, a good friend of mine started her own Jane Austen book club. It's a casual affair with minimal soul-spilling. For that matter, it's a casual affair, period. Not everyone reads the book, or reads it all the way, but we talk a bit about the book, eat nice food, then watch a version of the book for the month, and sometimes talk a bit more either about plot or how the movie was or wasn't faithful to the book. It's like a once-a-month social gathering with people I might not otherwise spend a weekend day with, and I'll miss it when we run out of Austen-ly goodness.