Crime & Beyond Wiki

For those of you who don’t read all the way through my super interesting emails, I will start with a few important things first.

Thank you to Jose for bringing homemade chocolate chip cookies, they were wonderful.

Welcome to Melissa, friend of Allie, who joined us and was bold enough to give me her email address so she can return. Insert evil laugh here.

October Meeting:
The Book: is The 6:20 Man by David Baldacci.

The Food: we will be having our annual Halloween party and the library is buying us pizza – thank you Lone Tree Library! No snack bringers needed.

The Costumes: we will have a costume contest and the winner will receive an Amazon gift card. I won’t be in attendance, but Cindy will hold a vote for best costume and let me know who won. Hopefully Jeff will take a photo of all the costumes and put them on the Wiki page.

The Notes: Cindy, if you are able to take notes (or designate someone else to) I can write up the meeting minutes. If your handwriting is easy enough to read, you can even text me a photo of the notes rather than type them.

2023 Book Choices:
We are throwing caution to the wind and choosing TWELVE books all at once. You have until October 1 to put your book ideas into BookMovement. I will then pull the books from there and create a list and we will vote, via email, the first week of October. This includes the December book. So if you don’t want us to read a 1940s written book, put other choices on there for the vote.

On to the show...

Great discussion last night. As I’m typing this, I started to type “we had a small group last night” and then I wondered how small and I counted. We had 15 people in attendance, including Kelly on Zoom. I don’t know if any of you are in other book clubs, but our small attendance at 15 is larger than a full attendance elsewhere. Yes, you heard right, I cheat on you with other book clubs – deal with it!

We had a total of 17 scores because Lisa and Nicole phoned theirs in. Of that 17 we had seven 9s, six 8s, two 7s, one 6 and one 5. Sometimes as I’m reading a book I will think to myself, the club is going to love this one (Magpie Murders). I didn’t quite expect so many high scores for this one, even though I gave it an 8 myself. So I was pleasantly surprised.

We normally get a better discussion out of a book if a lot of people don’t like it, but even with these mostly high scores we had a really good discussion. We did agree that the book was very character driven and this might account for some of the low scores. I think a few people wanted more action.

The positive comments were that the author did a good job with her characters; Eva started off bad but grew on us all by the end; we loved the zigs, zags, twists; and turns; it was clever and realistic; it was well done and creative; it was a fast read and enjoyable read; we liked the redemption story of Eva; and it wasn’t cheesy. We liked Eva so much so that some people were devastated when they found out she got on the plane. Jose in particular was a bit teary eyed. Some people missed that fact (or skipped the Epilogue) so we had to relive it at the meeting.

Most of us agreed that the book had a slow start. Given that it was character driven, this could have been explained by the fact that we were just getting to know the characters and once we did it sped up in our minds. We also thought that the ending came up fast and Allie really wanted to see Rory suffer on the page – amen to that – but we didn’t really get to.

Amy, while giving the book a decent score, thought it lacked stickiness. This is a new Crime & Beyond term, and should probably go on Wiki with “Daisy.” A Sticky Book is one that, this won’t come as a shock to you, sticks with you after you’re done. You can’t forget the plot and the characters and their circumstances linger in your mind far after you’ve turned the last page. Some thought this book was sticky and others did not.

The negative comments were that the book had a lot of plot holes, it was good but not great, it was light on action, the part where Claire was in Berkeley was slow going, and Jeff pointed out that the two main characters weren’t distinct enough and he was unable to get invested in the characters. He also never got attached to the Professor neighbor because he thought she was DEA the whole time. There were a few pink herrings we followed (pink because of the sweater).

Again, great discussion and I hope you have a fun October meeting. I will see everyone in November for Peter Swanson’s Nine Lives.