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Community book club returns for second season

By Staff | Jan 9, 2019

The All Island Book Club is returning for a second season, with its first session coming up.

Founded and organized by the Captiva Civic Association, the club is free and open to all – island residents, renters and visitors of all ages. The only requirement is reading the featured selection.

“It’s a casual come-as-you-are gathering of folks who love to read,” CCA Vice President Merni Libonate said, noting that people do not need to be a member of the association to take part.

“Our only requirement is that you read the book,” she said.

The first session will be held on Jan. 15 at 7 p.m. at the Captiva Civic Center.

The book of choice is “The Water Is Wide,” by Pat Conroy.

“We chose this book because of its wonderful message and also Conroy’s love for his surroundings,” Libonate said. “We think it’s an uplifting start to this season’s book club and the new year.”

He also authored “The Prince of Tides” and “The Great Santini.”

“The Water Is Wide” is Conroy’s 1972 memoir of his experience as a teacher on Daufuskie Island, South Carolina – which he changes to Yamacraw. She explained that the island is a poor one, with no bridges and little contact with the mainland. Many of the islanders are direct descendants of slaves.

Conroy ended up falling in love with the island and his students, waiting only the best for both.

She added that it was a love for one’s community people on Captiva may relate to.

Libonate explained that the gathering and discussion lasts for about an hour.

Attendees will get to decide on next month’s pick.

“We’ll select our February read with the help of everyone,” she said.

The next session will be held on Feb. 12.

The All Island Book Club was well received for its first season. Last year, the book selection theme was American classics – the books everyone was forced to read in high school, Libonate said.

She added that it led to some interesting discussions.

As of now, there is no decided theme for this season’s reading list.

Libonate encouraged people to come and participate.

“The wonderful thing about book clubs is that you read books that otherwise you would have ignored,” Libonate said. “It’s a great exercise and a great way to get to know new people.”

For more information, call 239-472-2111 or visit www.ccacaptiva.org.

The Captiva Civic Center is at 11550 Chapin Lane.