|Carla's book shelf of Tribeca Book Club selections|
|Tribeca Book Club favorites: fiction (2), non-fiction (1)|
|Satirical Sci-Fi vs Routine Erotic: Can you guess what we picked?|
We range in age from mid-fifties to mid-sixties with 19 children--10 boys, 9 girls) among us and a scattering of grandchildren. We are married (6), divorced (1) and separated (1), and a couple of members, who joined after the core group came together, are single (2). The current members include a lawyer, an investment banker, a nursery school teacher, a nurse-turned-social marketer, an insurance executive, and the co-founder with her spouse of a company that sells beautiful household products that you probably use. The latter stayed home for a decade with her children but the other women except for brief breaks worked outside home.
Others of us have had direct contact with books in our professional lives. One was head of a publishing company that acquired among other titles the Harry Potter books (by the way, J.R.Rowling's first adult fiction The Casual Vacancy will be published in September), Babysitters Club and the early works by Suzanne Collins before she wrote Hunger Games. Another member, a graphic artist who also does wood cuts, designed book covers including the cover of my daughter’s collection of poetry, and still another, an advertising vice president won the industry’s top awards for an ad campaign for 13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher, a book about bullying. Of course, as a former magazine editor, I've published my share of writers and, now in my second life, I interview authors, such as Joan Didion, for Publishers Weekly. I’m about to interview Tom Wolfe about his upcoming book Back to Blood, the story of Cuba immigration in Miami. I like to think of my beat as literary legends.
|Art imitates life or life imitates art|
Another tragedy struck much closer to home. A woman who belonged to the club--a mother of two sons--was killed in a tragic car accident. (The driver of the other car was drunk.) At her service, the book club members, uniform in their little black dresses and their grief, stood together as their eulogies were read. They recalled their friend and club member: Her warmth, her smile, her striking profile, her verve, her effervescent energy, her quiet eloquence, her thoughtfulness, her generous spirit. "I think you can learn a lot about a person just by listening to them speak about books," said one member. "This is how I learned about Helene. She was a woman with a keen intellect, a wonderful sense of humor, an enthusiasm for life. . and a love for the printed word that was infectious."
I have said more than once that I read books to excavate the truth from our lives, to teach me how to exist in a world that confounds. But I have learned from my book club that those truths when shared with others, and considered and maybe reconsidered, make the examined (second) life well-worth living. And, yes, ritualized socialized interaction does indeed make for greater happiness.
|Edith: Where art thou?|