Hello Buzz Book Club readers! Between covering the ins and outs of the Sex and the City movie and reading Four Blondes as my last book club selection, I'm a little spent on the fabulous lives of women in New York City.
And while I'm excited for summertime, the truth is that many of us are stuck in an office during these sunny days. So, I thought a fun way to get us through the doldrums of gazing longingly out the window would be to commiserate with a hilarious book about life on the cubicle farm.
Introducing my June selection: Then We Came to the End: A Novel by Joshua Ferris.
The book has received all kinds of buzz and critical acclaim, so I've been excited to read it. Stephen King called it "hilarious" and the New York Times named it one of the best books of 2007.
For those of you new to my book club format, here's how it works: I'll announce a new book each month. Every week I'll suggest chapters to complete by the next post (which, in this case, will go up every Friday in June). In these weekly Book Club posts, I'll posit a few discussion-provoking questions for you to respond to in the comments section.
To find out what Then We Came to the End is all about and to get the first assignment,
The synopsis for Then We Came to the End reads:
"It's 2001. The dot-com bubble has burst and rolling layoffs have hit an unnamed Chicago advertising firm sending employees into an escalating siege mentality as their numbers dwindle. As a parade of employees depart, bankers boxes filled with their personal effects, those left behind raid their fallen comrades' offices, sifting through the detritus for the errant desk lamp or Aeron chair. Written with confidence in the tricky-to-pull-off first-person plural, the collective fishbowl perspective of the 'we' voice nails the dynamics of cubicle culture — the deadlines, the gossip, the elaborate pranks to break the boredom, the joy of discovering free food in the breakroom. Arch, achingly funny, and surprisingly heartfelt, it's a view of how your work becomes a symbiotic part of your life. A dysfunctional family of misfits forced together and fondly remembered as it falls apart. Praised as 'the Catch-22 of the business world' and 'The Office meets Kafka,' I'm happy to report that Joshua Ferris's brilliant debut lives up to every ounce of pre-publication hype and instantly became one of my favorite books of the year." (Brad Thomas Parsons)
The first assignment: Read from the start of the story until the end of chapter two of the section titled, "You Don't Know What's In my Heart." We'll chat about this first section a week from today, June 6.