I believe in the power of books because books allow me to explore a life that might look wildly different than mine.(Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert,for example) I also believe in the power of books because they show me what is possible in my own life. (Better Than Before by Gretchen Rubin comes to mind). And, books can be powerful connectors, showing us in big and small ways how we are humans having a human experience and not so different after all. (Untamed by Glennon Doyle, ‘nuff said).
As a sober human and alcohol-free coach, I see how ‘quit lit’ (books focused on not drinking and understanding alcohol-use disorder) can be an incredible tool in someone’s own AF journey. As a coach, I recognize that books allow me to borrow ideas from experts on habits and hormones and happiness, things I am NOT an expert on.
While books are read in solitude, it is often the discussion of the book that brings them to life or creates deeper meaning. I did a bit of research around ‘why women love book clubs’ to understand more of why this dynamic is so compelling. It turns out that book clubs have been traced back to Socrates when they were called ‘learning circles’. Women only book clubs became popular in the late 18th century and early 19th century when expanding women’s freedom was often a contributing factor.
From the article How Women Invented Book Clubs, Changing Reading and Their Lives, by Jess McHugh, we learn that ‘Throughout the 19th century, we learn that ‘Throughout the 19th century, women’s reading circles expanded, and some became outspoken on social issues such as abolition. Well into the 1900s, book clubs continued to serve these dual purposes: functioning as both an intellectual outlet and a radical political tool.’ Ms. Hugh writes ‘“Talking about literature is not only about talking about literature. It is also examining one’s ideas, identities, thoughts, sense of self,” said Christy Craig, PhD, a sociologist who examines the subversive possibilities of women’s book clubs. Ms Craig found that women turned to book clubs in times of upheaval, as a way of seeking wisdom both from books and from one another. Women relied on their book clubs at pivotal moments in life, such as after college, following divorce or the death of a spouse, or after children left the home.’
My friend Sarah Showard and I have a fun discussion about book clubs and introduce our offer My Sober Girlfriends’ Book Club on the podcast. We are so excited to create a place where we can ‘Loose the Booze; Keep The Party” and build a thriving community full of Fun, Friendship, Reading, Connection and Growth.
Get all the details here: My Sober Girlfriends’ Book Club
Let’s be BFF’s (book friends forever!)