One of the fun parts of having a blog and talking about books is being able to connect with people who have the same interest and desire to share book talk and recommendations. The challenging part is that we are not always reading the same things at the same time, and when I post reviews I don’t mention spoilers. Besides a general agreement of like or dislike, there isn’t always as much discussion as I would like.
I have always enjoyed the books clubs that I have participated in over on Gayle’s blog, and I decided that it was something that I would like to do regularly with my blog readers. Since I was already working on another project with Jen from Devourer of Books, it was easy to sucker her in get her thoughts and assistance with this project. And thus, BOOK CLUB, was born. As you can see, we are not very good with titles. I tend to state the obvious.
We decided that we wanted to read literary fiction with a smattering of non-fiction and classics, and we already had some idea of where would turn for our first selections. Last spring at BookExpoAmerica, I was impressed by the titles at Graywolf Press and at Other Press. Being at their booths was like wanting to open a giant bag and just sweep everything in.
BOOK CLUB will take place the last Tuesday of each month, and going forward on the second Tuesday of each month, both Jen and I will hold a giveaway of some sort for the next month’s title. I will post my review during the month of the book club, and on the last Tuesday, discussion questions, notes about the author and other supplemental reading material will be available. Stop by with a wine recommendation or dish for book club! Participation in the discussion might make you eligible for automatic win of the next book club title.
Our first selection will be published by Other Press on January 11, 2011:
Farhad is a typical student, twenty-one years old, interested in wine, women, and poetry, and negligent of the religious conservatism of his grandfather. But he lives in Kabul in 1979, and the early days of the pro-Soviet coup are about to change his life forever. One night Farhad goes out drinking with a friend who is about to flee to Pakistan, and is brutally abused by a group soldiers.
A few hours later he slowly regains consciousness in an unfamiliar house, beaten and confused, and thinks at first that he is dead. A strange and beautiful woman has dragged him into her home for safekeeping, and slowly Farhad begins to feel a forbidden love for her—a love that embodies an angry compassion for the suffering of Afghanistan’s women. As his mind sifts through its memories, fears, and hallucinations, and the outlines of reality start to harden, he realizes that, if he is to escape the soldiers who wish to finish the job they started, he must leave everything he loves behind and find a way to get to Pakistan.
Rahimi uses his tight, spare prose to send the reader deep into the fractured mind and emotions of a country caught between religion and the political machinations of the world’s superpowers.
Please fill out the form for entry. Your mailing address will be discarded if you aren’t selected to participate or passed onto the publisher if you are. I do not share or retain any personal information. If you are interested, please fill out the for quickly. I will be selecting participants tomorrow so that everyone receives their books to read before the holidays.