All eyes are on Linda Cutler-Smith.
She’s talking about how the book “Consequences of Sin” piqued her interest in the British suffragist movement.
“I love when a book inspires me to go someplace else,” she says of the novel, a mystery with romantic overtones that her listeners read for their monthly meeting of the Desert Hearts Romance Readers Book Club.
The women, seven in all, met at the Sahara West Library on a recent Thursday night to talk about this book and then eat some cake. They give their opinions about female protagonists and how they tend to be atypical women, unless they’re in the TSTL category. Those are characters that are “too stupid to live,” Cutler-Smith explains.
All the while, a chocolate cake sits on a table surrounded by books the women have brought to give away. The women are all voracious readers; it’s the books that get them through the doors. But that chocolate cake, well, that serves as a little extra incentive.
“I have dessert and free books,” Cutler-Smith says. “We always talk about the book, but I always have dessert, whether I make it or buy it.”
So, if rule No. 1 of running a book club is to read books, rule No. 2 is “always have something to eat,” Cutler-Smith says.
Books can unite a group, but food seems to ensure continuing participation, say local book club organizers.
The Las Vegas Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Club started in a bookstore about 14 months ago, but recently moved its monthly meetings to Create, a hamburger restaurant.
Organizer Elizabeth Scott lives nearby, she says, and the owner was willing to accommodate the club’s meetings on the first Wednesday of each month.
The group attracts anywhere from 10 to 15 people each meeting, Scott says.
“We have great burgers and some custard,” Scott says. “We have kind of a dinner and discussion about what we’re reading, movies we’ve seen, everything.”
Some members drive as far as 40 miles to attend, which says something about the group, Scott says. Or, maybe they’re coming for the burgers. Either way, attendance is steady, she says.
Contact reporter Sonya Padgett at email@example.com or 702-380-4564.LOOKING UP A CLUB
Local bookstores, such as Barnes & Noble, get many requests from customers looking for book clubs. If they receive enough interest, the store will form a book club and have an employee facilitate it, says Dee Hicks, store manager for Barnes & Noble at 8915 W. Charleston Blvd.
Currently, three book clubs meet once a month at the store. Other clubs can be found by visiting the company’s Web site, www.barnesandnoble.com.
Following is a list of some book clubs in the valley:
Las Vegas Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Club: Meets once a month to discuss science fiction books at Create. The next meeting is May 6. You must join the group at meetup.com/sciefi-369/.
Desert Hearts Romance Readers Book Club: Meets from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. the third Thursday of the month at the Sahara West library.
The club discusses romance and other women’s fiction. Call 507-3631 for more information.
SNAFFU Science Fiction Book Club: Meets at 2 p.m. every fourth Sunday of the month at the Clark County library. The group discusses the latest science fiction and fantasy books as well as movies and documentaries in the genre. Occasional guest speaker. For more information, call 507-3458.
Cover 2 Cover Book Club: Meets at 7 p.m. every fourth Tuesday of the month at the Rainbow library. Call 507-3716 for details.
Westside Newcomers Book Club: Group for adults and seniors will next meet from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. June 24 at the Summerlin library.
Book discussion group at the Clark County Library: Meets 11 a.m. on the first Saturday of every month.