Po Bronson's collection of vignettes is the choice

Book club

Howard Live

May 20, 2004

An interview with Stella Pilecki, facilitator of the Good Reads Book Club at the east Columbia library.

What is your club reading? What Should I Do With My Life? by Po Bronson.

What is it about? It's a nonfiction book, published in 2002. It's a collection of vignettes of people that Bronson interviewed across the country. He was really interested in people who dropped what they were doing and went after what they truly wanted to do.

How long has your club been meeting? It's been meeting since 2000. It was formerly called Encounter. Last summer, the leader decided to change the name. I took over the club in October.

What has kept the group going this long? I think it's the books themselves that bring people in. We got a big draw when we did Lucky: A Memoir by Alice Sebold.

What was so interesting about Lucky? I'm not sure. It's a really upsetting book -- a story about a woman's rape. I think the good part about the book is that the woman overcomes the effects of the rape. She's really strong. The author makes you have empathy for her and the story makes you want to talk about it with other people.

What books have generated the liveliest discussions in your club? They all do. The members come in excited about what they read. All the discussions are memorable, and the members get along really well. Our last book was Atonement by Ian McEwan.

There were two different schools of thought among the members about how the book worked. It was interesting to see how the discussion went back and forth between the two ways of thinking. At the end, some people had changed their minds about their views on the book and were excited about seeing it in a new way. What's really cool about that is, in this group, it happens a lot.

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