January is almost over (how did that happen?!), which means that right about now, a lot of us are reflecting on how well we’re keeping up with our resolutions for 2018.
“Read more” was predictably at the top of my list, and although I’ve managed to start a book or two on my daily commute, it never seems like I have enough time to actually sit down and finish them. But one of my other resolutions—to exercise more consistently—has been made far easier thanks to my new gym buddy. She forces me out of bed on the weekends; she encourages me to run an extra mile. As a result, I find myself making fewer excuses and more time to workout whenever I can.
Sometimes we need that extra push from our friends and our community to hold us accountable and keep us on track. Book clubs aren’t a novel idea (no pun intended), but literary communities are now more accessible than ever thanks to the internet, and can seriously help us when it comes to reaching our reading goals. They’re also great places to meet new people, seek inspiration, and delve more deeply into the themes, characters, and language of our books than we might on our own.
Check out these three book clubs—all run by women-driven businesses—and get ready to not only find your next favorite book but actually finish it.
Much of the charm of Man Repeller is rooted in its writers’ voices—their articles read like your funny-but-impossibly chic friend who always has the low down on the next big thing before anyone else realizes it’s cool. With that, you can always count on a Man Repeller recommendation to be tasteful, thoughtful, and a little bit quirky. For the month of January, the team’s reading list consists of Rules of Civility by Amor Towles, Mating in Captivity by sex therapist Esther Perel, and Kindred by Octavia Butler. Pick one—or tackle them all, really—and discuss your feels with fellow readers in one of the liveliest (and most positive) comments sections on the Internet.
If you’re new to book clubs, never fear — so is Create & Cultivate, a platform dedicated to fostering the next generation of female entrepreneurs and creatives, which launched its club right before the new year. The first book on the roster: Carmen Maria Machado‘s Her Body and Other Parties, the author’s debut book of short stories. Readers can follow along in the club’s Facebook group, and contemplate prompts like the following:
How do women in Machado’s book take up space, both literally and figuratively?
What urban legends do the individual stories remind you of? How have they made you rethink your relationship to those legends?
Reese Witherspoon is not only starring alongside Oprah in the upcoming film adaption of A Wrinkle in Time, but the Academy Award-winning actress appears to be turning into a media mogul herself. With the launch of her company Hello Sunshine and expansion of Reese’s Book Club, which started with posts on her personal Instagram account, Witherspoon is sharing her favorite literary picks and encouraging her community of readers to follow along. The current pick on Witherspoon’s list: Braving the Wilderness by Brené Brown.