There’s a “Boring Talker” in Every Book Club

But you probably think it's not YOU, right?

“We use it as an excuse to drink wine and gossip and eat good food,” says my friend T. about her book group, held monthly at various members’ homes around Chestnut Hill. All the members try to finish reading the book each month but not everyone can, she admits, given that almost all the women have children under age 5. “Usually we hear all about the only remaining single lady’s sex life, which makes for most interesting entertainment,” she adds.

The single girl’s sex life does sound interesting — can The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society top that? (I did love the Guernsey book though, to be honest.) Other book-clubbing acquaintances recount more gripes than admiration for their fellow members, though, and don’t have any fun members sharing tales of bedroom romps. If anything, it seems that there’s a Boring Talker in most book groups. “There was a woman in my last book group who was the ultimate interrupter and sentence-finisher,” complains J., who admits that she “hates all the books,” but sticks with the group, enjoying the wine and hoping someone will choose a mystery or chick-lit novel one of these months.[SIGNUP]

Another woman (it seems men don’t do book groups) complains that her group’s selections aren’t literary enough — she was hoping to revisit Gatsby and Trollope, while her friends are into Fannie Flagg. “The person who nominated the book gets insulted if others don’t like it,” she says. “And so you have to try to find nice words to say that you thought it was crap, like ‘insubstantial.’”

Even after all the bellyaching I’ve heard about these groups, I’ve been hoping to join one, so I’m excited about a new book club that’s forming among some friends — it’s a great group of girls, and we’ve all agreed that wine will be on the menu along with fun books and snacks. However, we’ve been planning the group now for more than three months, and while we’ve chosen our first book — The Red Tent — we can’t actually find a night when everyone can meet. Oh well. The longer the group takes to get together, the greater the chance that I might actually read the book.