A few years ago, I began to search for a book club to join in my city (Kansas City). To my surprise, it was extremely hard to find a club that had a host who looked like me, a Black woman. I needed a book club that focused on stories that featured Black protagonists and other minority leads.
So, in January of 2019, I launched my own book club, Dear Reader. I wanted to create something where everyone felt welcomed. It wouldn’t be a formal setting with a list of discussion questions, but rather the focus would be on how that particular book made us feel and how it moved us. I’m the type of person that doesn’t do too well with remembering the specifics of the books that I love. If you ask me the plot point of my top five reads, it will take me a few minutes of staring into space to mush together the words to explain to you exactly what happens.
But if you ask how it made me feel, how the author’s words and chapters made me grow as a person? Grab a bottle of wine and a glass for you and me, because that’s where I could talk to you for hours.
Dear Reader’s primary focus is to read and highlight the literature of Black authors, but we also explore other voices as well. As a Black woman whose home is filled with Black literature, it was important for me to build a space where we could discuss these works of art together and learn from each other.
Prior to COVID-19, we met in person at a local bookstore once a month. Now we meet bi-monthly via ZOOM, so everyone can join. Click here to join this month’s session, we’re reading Kindred by the great Octavia Butler!