May Book Club Pick: Such a Fun Age (Chapters 1-7)

Hello, interwebbing bookworms!

Last month, some friends of mine invited me to a book club. Last month we read Redeeming Love, and this month we are reading Such a Fun Age. I figured to post my thoughts of the book club reads, to further engage with the blogging community on their thoughts and ideas of the reads!

Our book club consists of four early-20s women. We all go to different unis, and all of us have wildly different backgrounds. Though I am the youngest of the bunch, I’m roughly two years ahead in my university degree than them.

This book club reads ONE book per month, so I will post the quarterly updates each week.

About the Book:

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Synopsis: “Alix Chamberlain is a woman who gets what she wants and has made a living, with her confidence-driven brand, showing other women how to do the same. So she is shocked when her babysitter, Emira Tucker, is confronted while watching the Chamberlains’ toddler one night, walking the aisles of their local high-end supermarket. The store’s security guard, seeing a young black woman out late with a white child, accuses Emira of kidnapping two-year-old Briar. A small crowd gathers, a bystander films everything, and Emira is furious and humiliated. Alix resolves to make things right.

But Emira herself is aimless, broke, and wary of Alix’s desire to help. At twenty-five, she is about to lose her health insurance and has no idea what to do with her life. When the video of Emira unearths someone from Alix’s past, both women find themselves on a crash course that will upend everything they think they know about themselves, and each other.

With empathy and piercing social commentary, Such a Fun Age explores the stickiness of transactional relationships, what it means to make someone “family,” the complicated reality of being a grown up, and the consequences of doing the right thing for the wrong reason. “

 

Pre-view Re-view:

Before reading this read, I decided to check what my Goodreads buddies have said so far. I read infamous blogger Chaima’s (a queer migrant Muslim, currently living in France) review, and loved it. FYI: it is spoiler-free and a terrific literary review, so check it out.

“Reid’s subtle evisceration of these woke wannabes—every person of color will undoubtedly recognize in the deftly rendered characters at least a few people they’ve encountered in real life—might be even more bracing at close range. People love the idea of being “woke”, even if they don’t know what to do with it. Even if they only know how to do exactly the wrong thing. They want to be considered progressive, and want everyone to know just how progressive they are. But these efforts, while they create the illusion of reflectiveness and depth, are in fact brittle and shallow as a mirror. Some people do acknowledge the benefits that accrue to them by means of their white privilege, carefully listen, and do their best to amplify the voices of their marginalized counterparts. But many utterly fail to recognize the prejudices in themselves, and like Alix, feel compelled, even, to assert a kind of spurious decency: they claim to be culturally aware and yet are, sadly, incredibly lacking in self-awareness,” (Chaima, 2020). 

 

Week 1: Chapters 1-7:

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  • Pre-reading note: This was not something I would’ve picked up!
  • Chapter 1 – much lighter than I expected the fiasco to go. I thought a real crime investigation would undergo. It was more a misunderstanding.
  • Chapter 2 – Alix’s adult life.
  • Chapter 3 – Not important.
  • Chapter 4 – Alix group phone call w girl gang.
  • Chapter 5 – Emira trying to distance herself; Alix trying to get closer.
  • Chapter 6 – Alix gets closer; reads Emira’s texts; Emira is gifted wine from Alix; Kelley says the n word on their date
  • Chapter 7 – Kelley and Emira exchange stories about their exes; Kelley shares (anonymously) his first gf who was Alix; Kelley broke up with Alix with a poorly worded, pseudo-poetic line.

 

Discussion Questions:

  1. What would you have done in Emira’s shoes at the shops?
  2. Is Alix really in a position of power?
  3. Why do you think Emira wanted to distance herself from the child?
  4. Love that Alix is shown to have well connected friends. This isn’t shown in the media/entertainment much: women as support networks for each other. What are your thoughts?
  5. Do you think Alix’s pursuit to gaining an intimate relationships (as in authentic, calm down if you read that as a sexual innuendo) with Emira is genuine? Can it even be an act of genuine intent, since it was spurred on by a traumatic/unfair incident? Do you think guilt has motivated her?
  6. What are your thoughts on Kelley? So far he’s a mystery, but there seems to be a foreshadowing dark twist bound to happen (that cliffy after Chapter 5!!!). What are his good points/weak points? Do you think he’s shown as multifaceted-ly as the women in this novel?

 

While trying to find some visuals of the characters I found: “White Men Loving Black Women: Facebook Page“. Oh my gosh. If Emira (or Zara) saw that…….


Who else has seen this book all over their timelines?!?