A Good Read and Much More

The Many Book Clubs of Greenwich



Photograph by Bob Capazzo

A room without books
is like a body without a soul.

— Cicero

Reading is one of life’s great dividing lines: It’s either as important as breathing or a pleasant pursuit of minor consequence. However, if you’re an inveterate reader — if you cut your teeth devouring Narnia by flashlight, feel bereft without a stack of novels on your nightstand and have been known to peruse cereal boxes in a pinch — this is the town for you. With a population of roughly 60,000, Greenwich supports the busiest public library in the state with two flourishing branches, the Perrot Memorial Library, two independent bookstores, a Borders and more book clubs than you can shake the proverbial stick at.

There is no official list of book clubs in Greenwich, but Jenny Lawton, the proprietor of Just Books Too in Old Greenwich, has a formula for the final count: “Take the number of women in town, take 80 percent of them, and divide by ten. That’s the number of book clubs.”

Book clubs split into three categories — library, bookstore and private — and run the gamut from a casual confab in a coffee shop to a sit-down luncheon with a moderator or hired facilitator. There are singles and couples clubs, kids clubs, faith-based clubs, newcomers clubs and innumerable others that spring up simply because, as Jane Liu, cofounder of the Lia Fail neighborhood group, says, “We all enjoy each other’s company enormously and are avid, avid readers.” Special interest clubs include those focusing on foreign affairs, science fiction and Great Books (all meet at the Greenwich Library), and those associated with the Alliance Française, Amici Del Libro and the German Club of Greenwich that read in the mother tongues. The style may vary but the content is constant. It’s all about the words on the page, and the engrossing experience of diving into another world and then re-emerging to share the journey.

“I’d never run a book club before I bought a bookstore,” says Jenny, who moderates the Just Books Too and Cos Cob Library evening groups and holds quarterly open meetings for anyone interested in starting or maintaining a club. “I’d never even been in a book club, but I was always a reader. If I go talk to a club, I just choose books that are selling well or books that I’ve read and liked, or I talk to them about books they’ve read before,” she explains. “It’s based on their interests and what I know. I just moderate, keep the discussion going, answer questions, but I’m not there to tell anyone what I think.”

 

Greenwich Agenda

  • TREEHOUSES: Look Who's Living in the Trees!

    2014.06.21
     @ Stamford Museum & Nature Center

    Saturday, June 21 - Monday, September 1 Hidden in the leaves, snug in the trunk or burrowed under the roots, what types of animals actually...

  • Greenwich Harbor Sunset Wine Cruise | Greenwich, CT

    2014.06.05
     @ Delamar Hotel Dock

    The boat "Prudence" departs from the Delamar Hotel Dock on 500 Steamboat Rd. All the wine is sponsored through VALS with food...

  • SM&NC Farm Market

    2014.06.15
     @ Stamford Museum & Nature Center

    Sundays, June 15 – October 5, 10am – 2pm We're thrilled to bring back the SM&NC Farm Market — now on Sundays!...

  • Exclusive Tour of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Yale University Art Gallery

    2014.09.09
     @ Yale University Art Gallery

    Join JCC Greenwich for an exclusive tour with museum curator Elizabeth Manekin. The collection is noteworthy for exemplary works from the...

  • Understanding the Gaza War: Strategic & Political Implications

    2014.09.09
     @ Greenwich Library, Cole Auditorium

    Dr. Efraim Inbar is a Professor in Political Studies at Bar-Ilan University and Director of its renowned Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic...

  • Bruce Museum: Look and See - Into the Deep

    2014.09.10
     @ Bruce Museum

    A program especially designed for children ages 3-5 years and their adult caregivers, who will explore the Museum’s exhibition through...

  • College Admissions Boot Camp | Greenwich, CT

    2014.09.13

    College Prep 360 will be offering two college admissions “boot camps” in their Greenwich office over the summer. The first workshop...

  • Nigh Season: New Paintings By David Konigsberg

    2014.09.13
     @ Kenise Barnes Fine Art

    Dates: September 13 – October 31, 2014 Opening Reception: September 13, 6 – 8:30 PM  Public Invited   NIGH...

  • Undulate: Paintings By Julie Gross and Margaret Neill

    2014.09.13
     @ Kenise Barnes Fine Art

    GALLERY II Dates: September 13 – October 31, 2014 Opening Reception: September 13, 6 – 8:30 PM Public Invited...

  • Greenwich Area Newcomers Annual Lobster Fest

    2014.09.14
     @ Tod's Point Clambake Area

    This is our kickoff event each year-held at Tod's Point Clambake area. The event is scheduled for Sunday September 14th starting...

  • Information Fair

    2014.09.16
     @ YMCA

    Our Annual Information Fair - This event showcases non profits , community businesses, schools and  services in the Greenwich...

  • Laurel House Family Seminar Series

    2014.09.18
     @ Laurel House

    Thursday evenings, September 18, October 2, 16, 30, 6:30-8:00 pm Join us Thursday evenings for this four part Family Seminar Series as...

  • The Many Faces of Multi Media

    2014.09.20
     @ Meli-Melo of Greenwich

    Dr. Julia Trebing, Director Creative Therapies in Stamford, CT exhibits her paintings at Meli-Melo Creperie & Juice Bar  during Sept...

  • SoulCycle GWCH for Make-A-Wish CT

    2014.09.20
     @ SoulCycle

    Make-A-Wish Connecticut is thrilled to be partnering with SoulCycle's Greenwich location for a charity ride on Saturday, September 20th!...

  • Wall Street Tennis Challenge

    2014.09.20
     @ Greenwich Country Club

    The goal of The Wall Street Tennis Challenge is to support the Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation’s efforts while spreading awareness...

  • Arts & Crafts on Bedford

    2014.09.20
     @ Bedford Street

    Shop at over 100 craft and artisan boutiques on Bedford Street, which will be closed to traffic for the weekend. Dine in our extended sidewalk...


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