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A Worldwide Book Club

It’s BEA this week, so we are all running circles around the Javits Center and waiting for news of book deals, gossip, and trying to catch up with friends and editors we only have a chance to see during this annual book pilgrimage.

I thought it would be a good time to talk about something that aims to get people reading. Jeff Howe, a professor at Northeastern and contributor to The Atlantic, has resurrected the very cool book club he started last spring that attracted 12,000 reader to Neil Gaiman’s American Gods. He’s renamed it 1book140, and its goal is to get as many people as possible around the world together reading a single title chosen by his readers. Check out the list of books for a fun exercise in commercial and literary fiction. You’ll have ample time to get involved, even if you miss the first month since it will continue indefinitely with a new book being chosen each month. It’s a little hard to navigate the articles about the club, but here’s a bit about the criteria for chosen books.

I think it’s a great opportunity to get reading, and get involved in the larger reading community. The nominations are based on popular demand, so vote for your favorite before polls for this month close May 26. My pick is The Keep by Jennifer Egan, who just won the Pulitzer. Let us know what your picks are, and if you’ll be reading along with this new literary endeavor. Do  you have any suggestions for titles that aren’t on this first lengthy list?

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