There’s a book coming out today that would be perfect for a temporary summer book club. Ana of California by Andi Teran–a paperback original–is a modern retelling of Anne of Green Gables set in Los Angeles and northern California and starring a Mexican-American protagonist.
Why a special summer book club? Because anything related to Anne of Green Gables cannot be stereotyped to fit one that currently exists.
Or maybe it can. But book club members would have to be of a certain age, born after 1905 when the first book in the series by L.M. Montgomery was published. A subgroup of the book club might be part of another generation who grew up loving Gilbert Blythe even more after Jonathan Crombie personified the character in the 1985 film version from Sullivan Entertainment.
I recognized members of my temporary summer book club through Facebook. They were the ones posting “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers” each fall. And when Jonathan Crombie died at age 48 of a brain hemorrhage in April, they were sharing Sarah Larson’s “Why We Loved Gilbert Blythe” piece from The New Yorker. They were kindred spirits. And they were some of the most intelligent people I knew.
It took 2 months of juggling sabbatical returns and conference presentations, but we finally had our first meeting on Sunday: a marathon viewing session of the movie series. And re-reading the series books ahead of time wasn’t suggested or implied. It was just expected.
Anne of Green Gables + the movie + Ana of California … to me that begs for a summer-long book club. Especially because a bookclub kit lives online and includes a map, Q & A, playlists, and recipes.
Plus it’s a good excuse to serve raspberry cordial, currant wine and hibiscus sangria. Win, win, win.