We were inspired by Becky Jack and domestic abilities so we decided to have a service project wherein we each brought a pie to share with lonely neighbors. Of course we couldn't give them all away we had to devour some ourselves. We really love all of Shannon Hale's bookes, this is the third book we've reviewed together. Due to the controversial subject mater, this was the least favorite.
While we sampled the pies (we kept a key lime, a deep dish apple, and a pumpkin) we started the dialogue. To get the conversation started, we each put a question or discussion point on a slip of paper and then pulled them out one by one. The topics/questions varied drastically and the reaction was diverse to say the least. The opinions of Becky Jack varied greatly. Several members felt she was almost evil for fairly denying her testimony whereas other members did not see that at all. They felt Becky was a real person with real shortcomings who crossed a boundary line of which she should have been more aware.
We have a member who is struggling with a spouse in remission and so the saga of Becky and Mike hit especially close to home. To add humor and reality to a difficult situation, she and her husband talk about what should happen in the event the cancer returns--in terms of moving on with another person. Other members felt that if they were in a similar situation they would never move on with another spouse. There was a very robust conversation about who was right and if this is an appropriate conversation to have with your spouse.
We also briefly touched on the concept of "celebrity lists," meaning that if a certain person on your list presented himself, you would be "allowed" to have a relationship of some sort. Our book club consensus was that this is not appropriate for a committed relationship but almost everyone had a friend or family member who didn't agree with us and felt we were silly for thinking this way.
Overall, we didn't love this book but we did appreciate the honest conversations it brought about as well as the opportunity for each individual woman, as she read, to reflect on the state of her own marriage, her own values related to that marriage, and her feelings as a woman and individual in general. We all walked away from this book club meeting with a better understanding and appreciation for our own spouses.