We have officially kicked off the Jane Green Book Club with a party (and lots of wine!). Eighty women gathered together in Parker Mansion, in my home town of Westport, Connecticut, to toast this exciting new venture. Why start a book club? When I first moved to suburbia, almost seventeen years ago, there were so many resources for the young yummy mommy. There were playgroups, and playdates, and meetings. There were even mommy book clubs. I met my first friends here standing outside the doors of pre-school, waiting for the children to emerge. As time went by and our children went off to different schools, I saw those wonderful women less. Between working and raising those children, life got busier and busier, until suddenly those children are in high school and getting ready to leave, and my friends are nowhere to be found.
That last bit is not quite true, but what is true is that most of the women I know, myself included, are leading lives that are far more isolated than we ever expected. Age, stage, the busy-ness of life, and perhaps most of all, technology, have all contributed to a growing sense of loneliness. Many of us are hiding behind screens, iphones and ipads, instead of getting out and living life.
Someone once told me that after the age of forty, you can divide your life into three sections: family, friends, and work. But you can only ever successfully juggle two. For many of us, it is our friendships that get short shrift, even though as human beings, we need connection; we are built for connection; we long to connect.
Which is what the Jane Green Book Club is all about. Bringing women together over the love of a shared story, to share their stories. It’s about community, connection, and looking after each other. All in the name of a good book.
I’m not in a book club, but I’d like to be. I’d also like to be able to ask the authors questions directly. I Skype in to book clubs from time to time, and I know it makes the book club experience a completely different one. And so…I have decided to launch my own book club. The Jane Green Book Club. It’s virtual if you want to stay home in your slippers and join the author in a live facebook chat, but it’s also traditional, if you want to get together with friends (and wine), or bring your existing book club (and wine), to join in and ask the author whatever you want (with wine).
Mainly because you can put your slippers on and join us online, or gather your friends, meet to chat about the book, and join us from the comfort of one of your homes.
My first pick is Mrs Fletcher, by Tom Perrotta , the bestselling author of Little Children and The Leftovers. His latest novel tells the story of a new empty-nester who becomes obsessed with an “adult” website, and finds her sleepy, suburban existence sleepy no more.
“At times morbidly funny and, at others, grim, “Mrs. Fletcher” signals a return to familiar territory for Mr. Perrotta — sex, school and suburbia … While “Mrs. Fletcher” may sound, from a plot summary, like an R-rated comedy or the outline for a raunchy Judd Apatow movie, it is more melancholy than many of his earlier books. Sex and pornography often serve as shorthand for characters’ loneliness and their search for self-worth…Mrs. Fletcher” is the sweetest and most charming novel about pornography addiction and the harrowing issues of sexual consent that you will probably ever read.”
—The New York Times
Tom Perrotta will be joining the book club live on Facebook for a videochat about his novel on November 16th at 8pm EST (East Coast US time). Join our virtual book club online, or gather your friends to form a book club in real life.
Hoping you join in the fun…it’s all happening here:
Want to know more about what I have in store for you? The gears are always hard at work!