Themes and Ideas
Dear Book Club Members:
I have to admit that I came late to the whole internet party. I was dragged kicking and screaming into the new millennium. With great reluctance (and more than a bit of whining), I updated my website and set about the task of blogging.
Who would have thought I’d enjoy it??? You could have knocked me over with a feather.
In the past year, I’ve been able to “talk” to book groups via speakerphone during their meetings. What a blast! For so long, I wrote books and never really met anyone who had read them. It is such a joy to talk to women from all over the country. We talk about anything and everything—my books, other books, best friends, kids, sisters. You name, we’ll discuss it. So if you belong to a book group and you’ve chosen Night Road as your pick, please come on over to the website and set up a conversation with me. I can’t promise to fulfill all the requests, but I will certainly do my best. And don’t forget to join me on my blog and/or facebook. I love talking the readers. The more the merrier!
Enhance Your Book Club Experience with Night Road:
My son’s senior year of high school was the best, worst, craziest, scariest, most stressful year of my life, and it became the inspiration for Night Road.
I know that senior year is supposed to be all of those things. Your child is breaking free, trying to use their new wings to fly away from the nest, while you are trying to keep them safe and on track for the rest of their life. Everything becomes a battlefield; everything scares you. There’s the drinking, the partying, the curfew, the testing. All of it is enough to make a sane woman mad. (I maintain that I started sane: allow me my small fantasies.)
I didn’t write the book right away. I needed my son’s senior year in my rear view window before I could see it clearly, and when I did, I realized I had something to say about that watershed time in life, that one irreplaceable year that changed both parents and their kids. Night Road is the result. Many people have said that it’s a novel every parent and teen should read.
As such, I think Night Road presents a special opportunity for those of you with teenaged children. Wouldn’t it be great to schedule a special mothers-and-daughters book group to read the book and talk about the issues raised? I’d love to be a fly on the wall for that meeting. Your daughters could invite their friends. The more the merrier.
Here’s a video of me talking about Night Road. Maybe that will jump-start your discussion.
Finally, flowers and balloons figure prominently into the story, and what party isn't just a little more fun with both?
Enhance Your Book Club Meeting for Winter Garden
If you usually go out to dinner before your meeting—or eat during it--why not prepare one of the featured recipes? Or if life is too hectic for you to spend time in the kitchen, stop by your local store and pick up some frozen pierogies. What really matters is the company and the laughter…
A huge part of the book is the apple orchard; it was really the heart of the Whitson family. Your group might like to sample a few cups of hot spiced apple cider to get you in the mood. Or maybe it’s all about the cocktails for your group. Instead of your regular white wine, try a Winterized beverage! There are lots of great White Russian recipes to be found on the Web. Just remember to stay safe if you have to drive home.
You may choose to share some of your own “fairy tales” while you’re chilling out as well. Bring photos of yourself or your family in the winter, building snowmen or sledding. Nothing makes us all laugh and smile like photos from long ago.
If someone has a computer at the meeting, check out some pictures of St. Petersburg (Leningrad) during the war. It will really bring home both the beauty of the city and the horror of the siege.
Enhance Your Book Club Meeting for True Colors
Check out TheInnocenceProject.org. Look at the statistics about wrongful imprisonment, DNA testing, and the problems with evidence. Use this information to enhance your discussion of True Colors.
- Jazz up your meeting with a True Colors theme night---cowboy hats, country music, margaritas (leaded or unleaded), and ice cream. Discuss each person’s favorite ice cream and what that says about his or her personality.
- Go to ExploreHoodCanal.com and see pictures of this very special part of the state.
- Iím sure you all can come up with more ideas on your own. Let me know what your "big idea" is on how youíre going to celebrate sisterhood during your True Colors book group discussion.
Enhance Your Book Club Meeting for Firefly Lane
I would love it if you would consider Firefly Lane for your next book club discussion group. I can assure you that the novel will spark plenty of animated conversation, as well as encouraging shared memories. Here are a few ideas to make the evening special:
- seventies night (encourage everyone to bring a picture from high school)
- eighties night (margaritas are mandatory)
- music of your life (everyone brings their favorite cd from the seventies or eighties)
- girlfriends night (meet downtown for pedicures after the meeting)