February’s Reads – Why These Books?

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February’s NSBCBC books! Notice a theme? They’re all books that have been turned into movies!

It’s that wonderful time again! Time to introduce the new books for the NSBCBC! Every month, I love narrowing down the choices and then unveiling the books to my Not So Book Clubbers, but as always it was a difficult decision to make.

I’ve been struggling to find ways to reach a wider audience. Sure, there are book people—people who will read just about anything because it’s their passion. And then there are the readers who stick to their preferred genres. We have the sci-fi junkies, the non fiction fanatics, the YA  lovers—the list goes on and on. (It’s like the opening scene of any high school comedy, where the new kid is introduced to the student body by their sassy new friend who refers to each group by their clique-y name.)

But the biggest challenge lies in reaching the people who just don’t like to read at all. So how could I get them to read?

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South Park perfectly captures my feelings sometimes. I feel no shame for this.

After a lot of brainstorming, I thought back to a discussion I had with a friend in which she mentioned that she was reading “The Great Gatsby.” She said the only reason she was reading it was because Baz Luhrman was turning it into a film. She went on to say that majority of the books she chose to read were because they were made into movies, and I knew she is wasn’t alone. Walk into any Barnes and Noble in search of a book that’s being turned into a movie and you’ll see a million copies ready for customers because they know it’s a hot item.

Not long after that brainstorm session, numerous friends sent me a Buzzfeed list of books that were being released as movies this year. And so, with that list being the final straw (no worries. It’s a good straw), it was decided that February would be the month of the movie.

1. “The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History” by Robert M. Edsel

Lately I have been feeling like I don’t know enough about world history. It was a subject I thoroughly enjoyed in school, but post high school it didn’t find its way into my life all that much. Now as an adult with an innate desire to learn, I thought this would be a perfect place to start.

The story focuses on “a special force of American and British museum directors, curators, art historians, and others, called the Monuments Men” as they “risked their lives scouring Europe” to save incredible art that Adolf Hitler deemed “despicable.”

The film comes out on February 7, and features an all-star cast including George Clooney, Bill Murray, Matt Damon, Cate Blanchet, and John Goodman.

2. “Divergent” by Veronica Roth

The hit YA novel was recommended to me by my cousin a while back. I’ve had it sitting on my night stand waiting to be read for months. However, it was only when Kate Winslet signed on for the movie that I thought “Hey, if a smart lady like that thinks there’s something to it, I better see what all the fuss is about.” (Note: Dear cousin, I adore you and also think you are a smart lady. It’s just… you know…. Kate Winslet. She has an Oscar for goodness sake! So, my sincere apologies to you for not reading it sooner.)

The book tells the story of a teenage girl living in a futuristic society, in which she finds out she has a special mind and attracts unwanted attention by an authority that wants to have her (and others like her) destroyed.

The movie comes out March 21, and stars Shailene Woodley and Kate Winslet.

3. “The Help” by Kathryn Stockett

This is another book that was recommended to me by numerous people for a very long time, however I never wanted to read it until recently. Because the Oscar nominated film was released back in 2011, a lot of people have already read it. However, for those of you who are late to the party like myself, we have even more incentive to read it—it’s readily available!  Don’t believe me? Go to your library. Both book and dvd will be lining the shelves.

“The Help” (told by our aspiring writer protagonist) details the relationships between African-American house workers and their white employers during the civil rights movement of the 1960’s.

“The film received four Academy Award nominations including Best Picture, Best Actress for Viola Davis, Best Supporting Actress for Jessica Chastain, and a win for Best Supporting Actress for Octavia Spencer.”- wikipedia

Share your thoughts about the books on our facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/nsbcbc?ref=hl), and share your reading pictures on Instagram using the hashtag #nsbcbc.

Happy reading everyone!

– Nina Sclafani

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