Reading a good book is the closest we will ever get to traveling to a new dimension; every time we pick up a book we travel to that setting and we become engaged in the characters’ lives and growth. We are there for their origin story and we are there when they win against the antagonist. For many college students, however, we don’t get to experience reading the way we did years ago due to homework, work and other extracurriculars. Luckily, Fairfield offers a book club to enjoy reading again with a group of friends!
Zana Imetovski ‘24, Grace Foltin ‘24 and Madie Lynch ‘24 have been apart of Book Club since they were freshman and have been running the club since their sophomore year. This year they’ve come up with some new changes to help make the readings more accessible and inclusive to the entire group.
Book Club meets bi-monthly to discuss their book of the month. The books aren’t chosen randomly but by popular vote. The first vote is on what theme the books should be. For example, this month’s theme is the Top 100 books of all time. From there, another vote is conducted on books within that list. The three that win the most votes become the books of the semester!
Oftentimes, people can shy away from reading because of how expensive books can be, but another unique thing I noticed was that you don’t have to pay for the books. Book club covers the cost of the books for everyone and if there are more people than expected, a small fee of $10 is requested. That’s a great deal as there are many books today selling for $20 or more.
Nevertheless, if you can not pay it, you can talk to one of the three executives.
If the book becomes too much amongst your other homework or you decide that you really don’t enjoy the novel all that much, there is zero commitment to finish. Book club prioritizes discussion so they want to hear why you didn’t like it or what you enjoyed of what you were able to read in the time.
I believe Book Club also offers a different perspective on reading compared to most other literature-based clubs and classes. Overall, there is no rush to finish a book for a certain date in order to complete a project. Forced deadlines can push people away from reading and make it stressful more than enjoyable.
Finally, I thought the popular voting of the books was a very smart idea from the executives. Oftentimes, books in these types of clubs are selected based on what the club president has decided and the theme is often random. Foltin, Lynch and Imetovski makes sure everyone’s opinion is seen and included when it comes to the readings.
Frequently Asked Questions With Club Leaders Zana Imetovski ‘24, Grace Foltin ‘24 and Madie Lynch ‘24:
What would you say to people who are hesitant to join the club because they feel they
don’t have the time to pleasure read with all their homework?
Our club is not meant to feel stressful or like a homework assignment, if you don’t
finish the book or get to a part in the book that’s completely okay we just want
everyone to have a good time. Even if people don’t finish the book they are always welcome to attend the meetings and talk about the book anyway. We love hearing everyone’s thoughts
on the books we read and people really enjoy the discussions whether they get
to read the whole book or not. This is also why we’re trying to incorporate bonding this semester so that we can still create “bookish” spaces and have fun activities that aren’t built on people having read a certain book.
Does the difficulty of the book vary by meeting?
Each month we vote on a new book and the difficulty will depend on what the
club has collectively decided to read. We normally tend not to pick a book that will
be difficult since we try to keep things fun and light.
Are there any other activities that are done outside of reading?
Yes! We are looking to incorporate group bonding activities this semester just to
get more interactions with each other within the club since we are growing so
Do you see a wide variety of majors in this club?
We have lots of majors represented! It’s definitely not just a club for English
majors or CAS students. Anyone who enjoys reading is sure to get some fun
discussion from this club.