June 26, 2022

Student Book Clubs – The Aggie

Reading can be fun

For students, reading books is such a part of the school routine that it is sometimes associated with stress and deadlines rather than fun. While everyone has a different relationship with literature, most people expressed the challenge of trying to read books for fun during the busy school year.

Davis offers several book club and community opportunities to get in touch with the fun side of reading, such as the official Beyond the Book Club of the UC Davis Department of English. Beyond the Book Club meets at Olson 151 from 6-7 p.m. on Tuesdays.

Their mission is to “foster the literary creativity of our members by creating a safe and welcoming space for all. As an organization, we will strive to share our love of literature with the community, and as a group, we will aspire to build lasting bonds with our fellow literature lovers.

Raul Castellanos, a recent UC Davis graduate with a degree in English and a current graduate student at the UC Davis School of Education, hosted Beyond the Book Club last year.

“I really enjoyed meeting other English majors through this,” Castellanos said. “It really made me feel like part of the community and made the campus feel like home. I prepared by coming up with a lesson plan, usually just something to read and some discussion questions for it.

Even though the English major is book-based, discussing novels outside of the classroom provides a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere for people to meet while discussing literature. The club is open to all majors and welcomes anyone interested.

Third-year international relations specialist Maya Barak hosted a book club event at her home where attendees discussed “The Catcher in the Rye.”

“I was really thinking of an article that [the Aggie] wrote about the books we read in high school and how they impacted us then versus now,” Barak said. “I really wanted to read ‘Catcher in the Rye’ because that book really stuck with me in high school and I thought what better way to read it than with my friends and review it together. The first meeting was really exciting, we hiked quite a bit but more importantly it was a really fun activity to do with friends.

Sena Soleimannejad, a third-year human development student, attended Barak’s book club because he wanted a second chance to review a book he hadn’t read since high school.

“I read in my spare time, but having the chance to discuss it with friends and hear their thoughts really increases the experience and enjoyment of reading a book,” Soleimannejad said. “I think it would be really fun to discuss a short story or a poem next time, because there’s so much to analyze in such a small amount of writing.”

Since many people have very busy schedules and opinions, it can often be difficult to find a time when everyone can meet or choose a book to focus on. Some people have book clubs in their homes and others have chosen downtown places like 3rd&U to grab a beer and chat with friends.

Written by: Rosie Schwarz — [email protected]