Literati sent me a 3 month subscription to their book club in exchange for 3 blog posts. As always, these are my honest thoughts on the service & subscription.
related: Literati: Pros & Cons
I’ve never done a buddy read and/or book club with someone before! The book, Kara and the Sun, is broken into 6 parts. I decided to do 2 parts for every 8 days.
I went ahead and flagged my own reading. I did parts 1&2 June 1-8, parts 3&4 June 9-15, and parts 5&6 June 16-22. I didn’t get a suggested reading pace like I did when I received a sample box in May. The pace I set was was fine. The first section was shorter but the middle one was a bit longer. Nothing unbearable though.
For members’ privacy I don’t want to share too much of the forums side.
The above is roughly what the discussion side looks like on the app & website. It’s very similar looking to a tweet or a social media post rather than a traditional message board or forum. It’s aesthetically pleasing.
You can click on any of them and it expands the thread.
The Luminary (in my case Kelly McGonigal) can start discussions and members in the club can also start a new thread.
This is what the overview of my entire book club for the month looks like. You can read at your own pace. The separate areas keep spoilers contained.
The discussions were interesting. It was a great mix of book questions and questions that make you look a bit deeper. My Luminary, Kelly McGonigal, is a health psychologist so she ‘read’ the book from that perspective. She asked questions and lead discussions in a way that I wouldn’t have thought of as a ‘regular reader’.
I particularly like that aspect of having various celebs/Luminarys lead the various clubs. Being an ‘expert’ in a particular field shapes how you view the world. Reading a book through a different lens generates great discussions and allows you think about the world in a different way.
Overall, I quite liked the buddy read idea. It was nice to have a little downtime each day to read at home.
I do however wish Literati suggested a reading pace. I did math on my own and calculated about 3 weeks of reading and broke it down across the 6 sections. It worked well enough. Some sections were shorter and others were longer. Doing the math to give an exact number of pages to read a day was okay. I didn’t love how the ending places weren’t always the ‘best’ stopping point. [Normally, I read to the end of a chapter or a defined section break].
The McGonigal’s club is fairly new so the discussion wasn’t as active as one could have hoped for. Perhaps if I had joined one of the original clubs, there might have been more discussions going. Also, some books just lend themselves to discussion more than other books.
My Thoughts on Klara and the Sun
The book isn’t something I would have picked up on my own. So I appreciated that the book club is pushing my boundaries. It was a slower paced, meandering story. If reading on my own, I might have stopped pretty early on. I generally prefer a good plot over a character based story. The small bits of reading I did each day made it pretty easy to stick with. I did start looking forward to my reading time each day.