Queerly Reading: An LGBTQIA-Focused Book & Discussion Club

MAY 2016 Queerly Reading Group website image(1)

Join a open attendance, fun book club focused on all kind of LBGTQIA writing that spans multiple genres, from fiction to historical, from non-fiction to memoir, from graphic novels to essays. Be an active member and help us develop the process for choosing books. Contribute ideas for your favorite works or works you’d like to explore.

Join our Public Group on Facebook for the latest updates and to contribute ideas: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1549837271974664/

To get us started, group organizers will choose the first three books — announcements will be made at the first meeting. Locations will vary but will be arranged well in advance. Then attend based on your schedule and interest in the books coming up. Although you know the saying: Never judge a book by its cover! Conversation will be intellectual but not academic, and always intersectional.

*BRAVE SPACE* Although healthy debate is encouraged, discussion leaders will be responsible for keeping conversation respectful and on topic.

May 7, 2016 Discussionprairie silence

Location: Classic Rock Coffee, Mandan
Selection: Prairie Silence by Melanie Hoffert

From GoodReads: Melanie Hoffert longs for her North Dakota childhood home, with its grain trucks and empty main streets. A land where she imagines standing at the bottom of the ancient lake that preceded the prairie: crop rows become the patterned sand ripples of the lake floor; trees are the large alien plants reaching for the light; and the sky is the water’s vast surface, reflecting the sun. Like most rural kids, she followed the out-migration pattern to a better life. The prairie is a hard place to stay—particularly if you are gay, and your home state is the last to know.

For Hoffert, returning home has not been easy. When the farmers ask if she’s found a “fella,” rather than explain that—actually—she dates women, she stops breathing and changes the subject. Meanwhile, as time passes, her hometown continues to lose more buildings to decay, growing to resemble the mouth of an old woman missing teeth. This loss prompts Hoffert to take a break from the city and spend a harvest season at her family’s farm. While home, working alongside her dad in the shop and listening to her mom warn, “Honey, you do not want to be a farmer,” Hoffert meets the people of the prairie. Her stories about returning home and exploring abandoned towns are woven into a coming-of-age tale about falling in love, making peace with faith, and belonging to a place where neighbors are as close as blood but are often unable to share their deepest truths.

In this evocative memoir, Hoffert offers a deeply personal and poignant meditation on land and community, taking readers on a journey of self-acceptance and reconciliation.

PAST DISCUSSIONS

April 9, 2016 Discussion

Selection: Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel

March 5, 2016 Discussion

Selection: Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz

Feb. 6, 2016 Discussion

Selection: Rhyme Without To Reason Within, by Ames Hawkins (from the Polari Journal)

Rhyme Without To Reason Within, by Ames Hawkins