Posted by : atcampbell | On : January 22, 2002

The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien

Fourteen people attended this meeting, include one first time participant. The subject of this meeting was the first book of the Lord of the Rings trilogy. The meeting was scheduled a month after the movie opened, so that everyone who wanted to see the movie first could do so. Everyone had finished the book.

The group quickly divided into two camps. About half of us had originally read this book as children and reread it regularly since. The story was so deeply ingrained in these people that they could not speak objectively about it. One person felt

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Posted by : atcampbell | On : January 8, 2002

Mendoza in Hollywood by Kage Baker

Eleven people attended this meeting, and one submitted comments by email. Mendoza in Hollywood is the third novel in Baker’s continuing series about the Company. In this book, the immortal botanist Mendoza is sent to collect rare plants in Southern California in the 1800s. In the course of her assignment she absorbs local color, learns about the great movies that will be made soon in this location, gets involved in local politics, and learns unexpected new things about time travel. Everyone at the meeting had read the book and both its predecessors.

This meeting was unusual because our group had discussed all of Baker’s previous books and many of us had read her stories in Asimov’s. We came into the discussion already knowing that the author knows how to write, how to pace, and knows how to do research. Thus many of our comments were at a higher

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