Let’s Start a Book Club!

There’s just nothing quite like a really good book club.

Reading is usually a solitary pleasure, but certain books cry out to be mused over or bickered about. Certain books live better when we can see them from someone else’s point of view or yell together, “Can you believe that ending!?” Like most of life’s beautiful things, books are often better shared.

And my new theory is that you just haven’t really experienced a book club until you’ve been in one at the Pfister Hotel.

Seriously, I’ve been desperately attempting to decorate my home library to look like a corner of the Pfister, all brown leather and fireplaces and striking antiques. It’s…a work in progress. Now is my chance to read in the real place. Are you with me?

Let’s meet up monthly at the Pfister to discuss a good book together!

Here’s what you need to know:

1. Beginning July 13, for the next year we will meet the second Thursday of each month from 7-9 pm.

2. Bring a friend, bring your book club, bring someone who wishes they could be nudged into reading more.

3. If you’ve never been in a book club before, don’t be intimidated! Join us every month or just drop in when you can. Half the fun is listening in on the myriad of perspectives on the same book. I can promise delicious, sometimes book-themed refreshments, the Pfister as the perfect literary backdrop, and a non-pretentious, welcoming club—maybe our motto will be “Not Snobby, Still Swanky”.

4. We are partnering with Boswell Book Company (2559 N Downer Ave, Milwaukee 53211, www.boswellbooks.com). If you haven’t been there yet, go now. I take all my bookish friends from out of town there and they marvel. If you are ever unsure of what to read next, Boswell booksellers have covered the walls with handwritten suggestions that are varied, intriguing and spot-on. Look for the Pfister Book Club selection for each month displayed at Boswell.

5. If you’re staying at the Pfister, you can also pick up a copy of the month’s book in our gift shop.

6. If you can’t make a month’s meeting but are still reading along, tune in to this blog the Monday following each club meeting to see photos from the evening and read some of the highlights of what we talked about. It will feel like the next-best-thing to being at our club in person.

Onto my first book selection!
I’m so excited to read A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles right along with all of you. It’s racking up so many glowing reviews and I also chose it because it’s set in a hotel, which will be the perfect way to begin our bookish pursuits in this beautiful hotel.

Here’s the book’s description that will have you racing to Boswell right now to start curling up with A Gentleman in Moscow tonight:

He can’t leave his hotel. You won’t want to.

From the New York Times bestselling author of Rules of Civility—a transporting novel about a man who is ordered to spend the rest of his life inside a luxury hotel.

In 1922, Count Alexander Rostov is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, and is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. Rostov, an indomitable man of erudition and wit, has never worked a day in his life, and must now live in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history are unfolding outside the hotel’s doors. Unexpectedly, his reduced circumstances provide him entry into a much larger world of emotional discovery.

Brimming with humor, a glittering cast of characters, and one beautifully rendered scene after another, this singular novel casts a spell as it relates the count’s endeavor to gain a deeper understanding of what it means to be a man of purpose.

“And the intrigue! … [A Gentleman in Moscow] is laced with sparkling threads (they will tie up) and tokens (they will matter): special keys, secret compartments, gold coins, vials of coveted liquid, old-fashioned pistols, duels and scars, hidden assignations (discreet and smoky), stolen passports, a ruby necklace, mysterious letters on elegant hotel stationery… a luscious stage set, backdrop for a downright Casablanca-like drama.” –The San Francisco Chronicle

Enjoy reading it, and I can’t wait to hear what you think on July 13!

Author: Nicole Mattke

Nicole Mattke looks to bring a vibrant literary culture to the historic Pfister hotel through a variety of activities. As the 10th Pfister Narrator, she will host seasonal mini-events with book themes, a modern take on a monthly book club and provide story prompts for guests and the entire community. She will share these, and all of her Pfister experiences, through blog entries over the course of a year. As a published and award-winning author, Mattke has presented her work at various events throughout the community. Her talents lie in creating stunning pieces of writing that reveal the beauty in daily life. A busy mother of two sets of twins, Mattke finds time to write in a variety of genres as well as contribute to blogs. Mattke was chosen to serve as the hotel’s tenth narrator-in-residence based on her excellent writing and vision for the role. She succeeds Dominic Inouye, who served as the ninth Pfister Narrator.

  • Pam Parker

    What a great idea!!! Maybe you can also showcase books of Milwaukee authors sometimes…

    • Nicole Mattke

      That’s a great idea, too!

  • Megan

    I can’t wait to discuss A Gentleman in Moscow!