Not by invitation only

Bud Werner Memorial Library offers non-exclusive book club for residents

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Michelle Dover understands that some readers are intimidated by book clubs.

"It's almost like an exclusive club to be in a book club, which is crazy with the popularity of them," said Dover, facilitator of the Bud Werner Library Book Club.

Bud Werner Memorial Library book club meeting

6 p.m. Tuesday

The library house next to Bud Werner Memorial Library

Free

879-0240, ext. 307

Upcoming meetings and topics

May 23 -- Ingrid Hill's "Ursula, Under"

June 20 -- Stewart O'Nan's "A Prayer for Dying"

July 11 -- Lisa See's "Snow Flower and the Secret Fan"

Aug. 8 -- Geraldine Brooks' "Year of Wonders"

Sept. 5 -- Myla Goldberg's "Bee Season"

Oct. 3 -- Erik Larson's "Devil in the White City"

Nov. 14 -- Michael Pollan's "The Botany of Desire"

So Dover offers something different -- a hassle-free book club that people can attend whenever they want. She even helps form a book list that club members can choose from.

And unlike other, more exclusive-feeling clubs, there's no need for Bud Werner Library Book Club members to bring wine and food or feel the pressure of hosting the club.

Dover leads the book club's discussions to help keep participants on track.

"Some people join book clubs as an excuse to be social," Dover said. "It can be hard to tell your neighbor that now it's time to be quiet."

Dover has led the book club since October, when it formed as a follow-up to the Literary Sojourn Author Study.

The book clubs meets once a month at the library house adjacent to Bud Werner Memorial Library, and participants don't need to bring anything.

"It is a stress-free book club. All you have to do is read the book and show up," Dover said.

The next book for review is "Five Quarters of the Orange."

The author is Joanne Harper, who wrote "Chocolat."

"This book is darker," Dover said. "The story is told through the character Framboise as a child and as a grumpy old woman."

The story is set in a small town in postwar France that is occupied by Nazi soldiers. The Nazis killed Framboise's father, and the man who replaces him in her heart is a young Nazi soldier who trades black-market gifts with her.

"He bonds with her like a sister, and she gives him tidbits of information that have fatal consequences," Dover said. Framboise's mother is tortured as a result of the information she was given, and the townspeople are executed after a German soldier is mysteriously killed.

"There is a strong mother-daughter connection," Dover said. "She (the mother) is suffering consequences for her children's actions."

The book illustrates the darker side of humanity because Framboise hoards orange peels to control her mother, knowing that they cause her mother's severe migraines.

"It is about great human truths," Dover said. "It shows the propensity of every human being to be incredibly kind and incredibly evil."

Dover admits that she can't help but love the character. "Fear makes people do evil things," she said.

The book club meets at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the library house.

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