Because our drive for this book came from the Emmy nominations and wins for the HBO limited series of the same name, we decided that this month we would read the novel and binge watch the show as a way to debrief! One of our members pointed out an ironic quote from the book that relates to several bookworms – “It didn’t take Celeste long to realize that this was going to be the sort of book club where the book was secondary to the proceedings. She felt mild disappointment. She’d been looking forward to talking about the book. She’d even embarrassingly, prepared for book club…marking up a few pages with Post-it notes and writing a few pithy comments in the margins” (Moriarty 263). The funny part is, that is what happened haha. Beginning at 6pm, we knocked out 3.5 episodes (we met on a Tuesday and we are all avid This Is Us fans so we had to stop at 9pm!).
Based on what we had seen, there was tons of overlap and loyalty to the book. We wished there were more scenes of Tom (the owner of Blue Blues) and that the main female characters were casted BEAUTIFULLY! Laura Dern has been in a movie with both Reese Witherspoon and Shailene Woodley (Wild and The Fault in Our Stars), so it was fantastic to see all 3 women together for this dynamite of a series. The Bonnie we imagined from the book seemed more of a hippie in the series but it worked. Before knowing what the outcome was (aka who was murdered and who was the murderer), each of us shared who we thought was whom – majority looking at Renate and Madeline’s toxic relationship with Celeste and Perry not far behind. I thought it was interesting how in the end, we see a lot of focus on Celeste which makes me wonder since each woman in a way has endured abuse and/or challenging times where they needed to come back stronger in the end. If anything, this is a female empowerment novel since all the mothers (including Renate and Bonnie) are strong-willed and make life-changing choices throughout the novel.
Here’s to our next book club selection, The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah.Happy Fall, Y’all! 🙂