boxofdelights: (Default)
[personal profile] boxofdelights
I hosted book group last month. (This is the book group that I was in for eleven years, then dropped out for ten, then dropped back in; the group is a year older than my daughter, so I've been back in for ~three years. We each pick a month to host: the host chooses the book and makes dinner. I host at Jo's house because my house is really not fit to invite people into.)

My book was Housekeeping. I checked a book group kit (10 copies of the book + a binder with reviews and biographical information) out of the library. It's due back today.

Three people didn't return their copies to me at book group, which was three weeks ago. I sent email to the whole list earlier this week, reminding people that the kit was due August 8, and that the library has a strong preference that all the items be returned together, so to please give them back to me. Two people did.

What would you do? Other pieces of information that may or may not affect your decision:

- I am almost but not 100% sure that I know who took a book and hasn't given it back.

- I find this woman very tiring, because I don't think she likes me, but she seems to want to cover it up by over-acting affection. Insincerity is never more exhausting than when it comes in hugs and prolonged one-on-one conversations.

- I have been considering dropping out of this book group anyway, because as a whole, it doesn't bring me enough happy to make up for the times it makes me feel slighted.

- On the other hand, there are people in this book group that I like a lot and I am sure they like me. I know I could theoretically drop out of book group but maintain the individual relationships, but I know me and I would not make that happen.

- Also long-term relationships are more useful for learning about people than any number of first dates.

- This is not a good time for me to accept advice that begins, "Why don't you just..."

Date: 2015-08-09 01:15 am (UTC)
sasha_feather: Retro-style poster of skier on pluto.   (Default)
From: [personal profile] sasha_feather
I think I would drop out. Book groups involve work. Work that can be spent elsewhere. I might also deputize someone else to try to get the lost book.

Date: 2015-08-09 02:31 am (UTC)
melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)
From: [personal profile] melannen
I would go to the library with what you have, and explain. (Maybe not in the detail you did here, but "there's one member who still has the book despite multiple reminders, and based on experience, it might be hard to get it back in a timely manner...") And then ask them what you should do.

If they have these kits on the shelf, I suspect they regularly talk to people in your position, and will have some kind of way to help you out.

RE: getting the book back, I agree about deputizing someone else.

As for the long-term solution, I have no idea.

Date: 2015-08-09 07:23 am (UTC)
jesse_the_k: those words in red on white sign (be aware of invisibility)
From: [personal profile] jesse_the_k
+1 to library has dealt with this before. Some of the book group leaders no doubt swan in and said, "hmm, seem to be X books short. Sorrrrry."

If the library insists you supply the book ...
1. price a replacement at your local second hand book emporium
2. Send an email saying the book is missing, you are replacing per the library's request, and each group member owes you their portion of the cost.
3. Collect at next meeting

Go back to group and basically ignore the one you don't like. When she enthuses at you, "box! I've been longing to see you! The months have cruelly dragged!" Respond with polite disinterest, "nice to see you. How about the weather."

Ugh and sympathy.

book groups

Date: 2015-08-18 10:28 am (UTC)
bibliofile: Fan & papers in a stack (from my own photo) (Default)
From: [personal profile] bibliofile
I'm glad that you finally collected the entire set of books to return.

Yes, the people of book group can be a mixed bag, simply becuase you're not going to get along with everyone in the world are you.

Oh dear, now I wonder if I come across as insincere sometimes when I'm just enthused. (To add to the list of reasons why I irk other people, which reasons are mostly unknown.)


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