Last night the Bumble Book Club ran into a dilemma: we couldn't find any new books to read! We're all fairly avid and voracious readers, so the desire to read good books isn't the issue. You know what the issue is? We cannot find any good books to read. We scanned lists and lists of suggested book club picks and settled on Freedom for January, a short story collection for next month and The Hunger Games for March--but beyond that? Nothing. Not a single title grabbed us, not a single book description made us exclaim, "I want to read that one! I've heard it's awesome!"
The trouble, you see, is that we're weary of sad stories. We don't want to read about abuse at the hands of bad parents, Nazis, corrupt governments, evil corporations. We don't want to read about heartbreak, death, depression, illness, or loss. Unlike Oprah, who has a fixation on all books with miserable endings, we want an infusion of lightness and joy in our reading. We want a happy ending. And all the lists of book club reading suggest things like Room (about an abusive parent) or Sarah's Key (Holocaust) or Cutting for Stone (poverty, addiction, betrayal). It's not that these aren't worthwhile topics to explore and discuss, it's just that we believe in balance--we don't want to read only books about Bad Things. We want a little sweetness with our bitter, a little chocolate cake after the steamed broccoli.
Our last book was The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake. Well written and fascinating, but the bottom line is this: the book's about a dysfunctional family. So dysfunctional, in fact, that the brother ends up becoming (SPOILER ALERT) a metal folding chair, stored in his sister's closet. I mean, really, is that any way to end a book? Where is the hope? How does one go on? We're collectively sick of the heavy stuff. We're desperately seeking a good book club read that leaves us inspired and optimistic and laughing. Reader, can you suggest anything along those lines?
Now, in other news, that red blob dancing on the corner of the stage is Mr. B's big solo debut at the 1st-2nd grade concert at Happyland Elementary. I'm so proud of him.
Gratuitous photo of Jax and Mr. G and Mr. B:
Oh hell, one more:
That's it, now. No more. Sit.
Happy weekend, reader. And feel free to share any happy, uplifting book titles in the comment box!