Thursday, April 26, 2012

Book Club: What the Dog Saw

This month I hosted book club.  In our group, the hostess picks the book.  I waffled, I debated, I had to be talked down from suggestion Ayn Rand more than once, but months ago I decided I'd go with either Mary Roach or Malcolm Gladwell.  While we read a lot of "Chick Lit" I wanted to choose a book that was a little more me while still being approachable.

Eventually, Terrence convinced me to go with the newest Gladwell book What the Dog Saw and Other Adventures.

It wasn't hard to convince me, I really like Gladwell (while despising him, of course) and Terrence convinced me he finally gave up on shoving that square peg into the round hold.  Well, maybe not entirely.

The excellent thing about Gladwell is he is a fantastic researcher and an entertaining writer.  I sometimes think of his as the Huell Howser of human psychology.  Huell Howser is a local TV personality who can literally be SO excited about a group of rocks some man in the desert collects that despite yourself, you are compelled to watch a little more closely just in case you're missing something in that group of rocks.

Who, besides Gladwell, could make an entire chapter on Ketchup and mustard?  Who could then go on to also write about the history of women, through the lens of birth control and hair dye, and the lessons of the Challenger Tragedy?

As I read the first chapter, I became concerned that some of the women would give up on the book before finishing the first chapter.  But the great thing about the book was each article was stand alone.  I hoped everyone would find one they could relate too.

In the end, several did give up on the book.  But the topics are so relevant that we were still able to have meaningful and interesting discussion even with those who didn't finish the book.

I'm interested in next months book as well, The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin.

Anyone reading anything else interesting?

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