Book Club

Kiley McMahon

As Gwynedd began the new school year, students were excited to return to the red and gold halls, where they could attend their favorite after school activities. A new year, too, means new clubs. Along with many others, one of Gwynedd’s latest additions is the Book Club, which was originally started by recent alumnus Vivian Couchara ’20 and has been continued by juniors Kelly O’Donnell ’22 and Zoe Grabowski ’22. During the first meeting in October, Kelly and Zoe discussed the goals of this club: exploring different genres, discussing classic novels, and voicing opinions. A new theme is applied to each month. The theme for October was books by women of color. As a collective club, the girls decided on reading A Blade So Black by L.L. McKinney. The first book of the Nightmare-Verse series, A Blade So Black follows high school teen, Alice Kingston, who lives a seemingly normal life. In her spare time, Alice goes to work at The Looking Glass Pub in downtown Atlanta, Georgia. What appears to be just your run-of-the-mill, shabby pub turns out to be a cover up for the Veil: a strong portal that connects the real world to Wonderland. On the other side of the Veil, she defends her world from Nightmares (massive creatures powered by fear) alongside her mentor and close friend, Addison Hatta. When Hatta becomes severely poisoned, it is up to Alice to save him from the madness before it is too late and in time for curfew. Alice Kingston fully lives up to Gwynedd’s mantra, “She is the future.” Alice empowers readers, especially young women, by showing them that no matter how hard the fight or how big the battle is, you must get back up again and face your fears. After a successful meeting of sharing their thoughts on the book, Zoe and Kelly announced the theme for the book of November: Classics and Mysteries. Once the meeting was over, Kelly sent out a form for the girls to write down their favorite classic mysteries and then vote on the ones that sounded most appealing to them. In the end, they decided on Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin. While the girls of Book Club prepare to read this all-time classic, they can only begin to imagine what the other months will have in store for them.