So apparently, I’m in trouble. My mother is always calling me, asking for book recommendations for her monthly book group, although I’m not sure why. The book is usually the least important aspect of their meetings, easily overshadowed by food, wine and gossip. Regardless, she is always asking for suggestions which I rarely give because there’s a lot of pressure! Of course I will be blamed if they don’t like the choice, however kindly they’ll try to excuse it, and it would be especially embarrassing if the book has too much sex, violence or some kind of weirdness that would get associated with me. Ok, I’m overanalyzing by a long shot, but still, this all would happen to some degree and I don’t know what I would do if they told their children (who I went to school with) that I’m into weird, explicit books of some sort. You know how rumors start, add the small town with little else going on, and bam, there goes my reputation, all because of a book recommendation.
I’ve recommended a few before, but they had always turned them down during their selection process. Earlier this year I read The Thirteenth Tale and discussed some of it with my mom (she always asks what I’m reading). Naturally, she asked if it would make a good book club book and my response was: “There are some really weird parts, including some incest, but it makes for a good discussion. I don’t know how much your group (read: gossippy, conservative, middle-aged soccer moms) would like it.” My mom accepted that, passed it on to the group when The Thirteenth Tale came up and they decided to veto it. End of story, or so I thought.
My mom got an angry phone call from a friend in the book club, ranting about how they should never have listened to me, how I’m still too young to understand their taste, etc etc etc. Apparently, others have read and loved The Thirteenth Tale (which, by the way, I did enjoy. Very thought provoking, almost haunting). Because I didn’t recommend it, my reputation as a knowledgeable bookworm is ruined.
At least I’m off the hook for recommendations!