We're shining a light on the people who make Silent Book Club great—our local organizers. Get to know the folks behind the scenes, and maybe get inspired to start your own chapter! Today's spotlight is written by Kathleen Adams, host of Silent Book Club Athens, Georgia.
Several close friends had recently moved away in late 2019 and I was looking for ways to meet new people. When I heard about Silent Book Club, I thought it sounded like a perfect way for introverted readers like me to not only get out of the house, but make new friends.
One of my personal favorite things about hosting Silent Book Club is connecting people or businesses for their mutual benefit. Silent Book Club is a way for me to introduce local businesses to members of the community who may not have heard of them, or had heard of them but not visited yet. Readers are not only making friends at our meetups, but finding new hangout spots that they then support as customers and through social media and word-of-mouth. It's a win-win for everyone and brings our community closer together.
We meet regularly at the Foxglove PlantBar (top), the Graduate (above), Tapped Athens Wine Tasting Market (below), and The Globe. There are several other venues in the rotation too, including Buvez, Terrapin Beer Co. and Southern Brewing Company. In addition to reading meetups, we host book-themed events such as book swaps, art classes, and volunteer shifts at Books For Keeps, a nonprofit based in Athens that advocates for literacy and access to books.
My co-host Stacy Brooks and I have been pleasantly surprised with how far-reaching our chapter is on a local level. We have people join us from up to an hour away, driving to Athens just to enjoy some reading time in good company.
I am grateful for the concept of Silent Book Club and the opportunity to bring it to Athens. It means so much to me and hundreds of others in and around Athens that we have this comfortable, safe, and inviting outlet for enjoying our book of choice away from home.
What's the last great book you read?
My favorite Georgia author is Karin Slaughter, and I've been working my way through her Will Trent series (which just completed its first TV season on Hulu). I just finished Fallen, which was wonderful.
What is your favorite book?
East of Eden by John Steinbeck. It is not as popular as Grapes of Wrath, but it's an incredible read, in my opinion his best work, and I've reread it so many times I recently had to get a new copy.