Sunday, July 17, 2011

July 2011 Book Club Meeting

Summary: When Kimberly Chang and her mother emigrate from Hong Kong to Brooklyn squalor, she begins a secret double life: exceptional schoolgirl during the day, Chinatown sweatshop worker in the evenings. Disguising the more difficult truths of her life-like the staggering degree of her poverty, the weight of her family's future resting on her shoulders, or her secret love for a factory boy who shares none of her talent or ambition-Kimberly learns to constantly translate not just her language but also herself back and forth between the worlds she straddles. -- Riverhead

For July, my book club decided to read GIRL IN TRANSLATION by Jean Kwok. I loved this book when I read it last year (you can read my review here) and I was excited to see if all of my friends would agree. Most everyone enjoyed the book although I'm not sure anyone loved it quite like I did. A few of the women weren't disappointed with the ending.

I was worried that since most of us liked (if not loved) the book that there might not be a lot to discuss; however, I shouldn't have worried -- we all had a lot to say. We ended up addressing most of the questions in the reading guide, and I'm happy to say that many of them were addressed before we even went through the list.

As was the case when I first read this novel, all of us were deeply affected by Kimberly's story. I think it's safe to say that we all looked at how fortunate we are just to be born in the United States, and how we tend to take things for granted. Our discussion even went down the path of what we can do to make sure that our kids are aware of people with less and whether we should insulate them from sadness and discomfort. All in all, I'd say it was an excellent book to discuss.

Next month we decided to forgo reading a book and instead do something a little different. Rather than having our regular book club meeting, we will be going out for a movie and a quick dinner. Since we read THE HELP a few years ago, we thought it might be fun to see the movie and then compare and contrast with the book. Plus we have so many members vacationing over the next few weeks, we weren't sure how many of us would even be available to meet next month.

10 comments:

Karlie said...

I'm looking forward to seeing this movie as well. You will have to let us know if you liked it!

bermudaonion said...

My book club's reading The Help in September. We're going to see the movie and have dinner afterward to discuss the book and the movie! Great book clubs think alike!

iwriteinbooks said...

How fun! I wasn't a big fan of The Help but I didn't hate it so I might go see the movie to see how it compares. I've heard very good things about Girl in Translation and I'm anxious to read it. Sounds like your book club is moving along nicely!

rhapsodyinbooks said...

I have thought about doing a movie thing for bookclub - it seems like a really fun idea!

Rebecca Rasmussen said...

This looks like fun!!

bookmagic said...

I really want to read Girl in Translation, it just keeps getting pushed down on the tbr list.
I didn't realize The Help had been made into a movie. It will be interesting to see how true it is to the book

Bonnie said...

Girl in Translation was one of my favorite reads last year. My book club is going to see The Help next month also! We're all looking forward to the movie.

SweetestLittleBookworm said...

I just finished Girl In Translation late last week, and it tops my list this year (along with The Help, of course). I would have loved a book club to share all of my thoughts with! I'm sure you guys probably talked about everything I was feeling. Such an incredible book.

~Asheley

Carin Siegfried said...

The movie of The Help is great! I saw a preview of it last month! My review of it is here if you're interested. I hope you all like it!

Kailana said...

The movie looks really good. I have to get around to reading the book!