The Six and Twenty Book Club

1899One of the pleasures of promoting your book is meeting book clubs. Many have remarkable histories. For example, the Six and Twenty Club of Wilmington, Ohio, has been meeting regularly since 1898. Here is a photograph of the club in its first year (1899). Why the name? Because they meet every other week (26 weeks/year) and there are always 26 regular members. Some in the current group have been “Six and Twentyers” for 50 years.

6&20 Club 1I discovered this club when I presented When We Were Strangers at Hiram College (my alma mater) this fall and had the pleasure of speaking with a lively journalism class orchestrated by Audrey Wagstaff Cunningham, whose mother (master quilter and reader) Marsha Wagstaff is one of the current 26. I signed a book for Marsha, the club read it and sent me a photograph of their photogenic selves along with permission to “publish.”

I think of all that has happened since 1898 and every two weeks, a slowly evolving group of women has been living their lives, sharing triumphs and challenges, and reading together into their third century. To be part of this passage is an honor and a joy.

Pamela Schoenewaldt, historical novels of immigration and the search for self in new worlds: WHEN WE WERE STRANGERS, SWIMMING IN THE MOON, and UNDER THE SAME BLUE SKY (all HarperCollins).

Posted in Writing, WWWS

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“Absorbing and layered with rich historical details, in Under the Same Blue Sky, Schoenewaldt weaves a tender and at times, heartbreaking story about German-Americans during World War I. With remarkable compassion, the author skillfully portrays conflicted loyalties, the search for belonging, the cruelty of war, and the resilience of the human spirit.”—Ann Weisgarber, author of The Promise and The Personal History of Rachel Dupree

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