By TIM CLEVELAND
Since its beginnings in January, the Reader’s Choice Book Club has helped area readers expand their horizons in which books they read.
The club meets once a month at Boardman library, with attendance ranging from three to eight. The meeting on Aug. 4 had six attendees.
“Actually one of the ladies who’s in the club now [Ann Dodd] started it,” said librarian John Yingling, who oversees the meetings. “She thought we needed a book club at the Boardman library. She got in touch with the downtown library, so they got in touch with me because they know do children’s work but I also do adult work, too. They said, ‘would you like to do a book club,’ and we just went from there.”
Yingling described how the club works.
“We pick one book, we talk about it,” he said. “The group decides what book we’re going to read. Sometimes we’ll read history, sometimes fiction, sometimes a mystery, sometimes a best seller, sometimes it’s kind of a obscure book that a lot of people might not know about. We’re going to be reading a couple of classics in the next couple months. Not just recent books, but books written a long time ago. We talk about one book, then we take some time for the members to tell about a book that they’ve read recently and they like a lot. I bring out a list of books that are going to be published in the next month and give it to the members so they can maybe start planning what they’d like to read.”
Diane Crites of Canfield said she has been attending the meetings since February.
“I’m a reader and this is my first year being retired and so to discuss books and get other points of view, is just even greater than reading them on your own,” she said.
Crites said while she enjoys reading thrillers and mysteries the best, since she’s joined the club she’s read such divergent books as “Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity,” “Mrs. Kennedy and Me,” “The Cuckoo’s Calling,” “The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency” and “Beautiful Ruins.”
“I haven’t had any that I haven’t liked,” she said.
She also said that joining the club has helped get her into types of books she hadn’t read before.
“Books are chosen that I would never choose to read on my own,” Crites said. “Definitely, it’s stretched my horizons.”
Yingling said being in the club can make readers think differently about books.
“I think the whole idea is for people to get different perspectives on a book,” he said. “You might read a book and think one thing about it but somebody else will think something else about it. I think that range of ideas kind of gives you a fuller understanding of a book. You’ll read a book and you’ll think A, B, C and D, and somebody else will come along and think E, F. G and H.”