Freddie de Boer’s Digital Book Club

[image via geetika perpetually confused]

Freddie used to run one of my favorite blogs.  He had passion, ideas, intellectual honesty, and the ability to articulate his case like no one else.  And then, one day, he shut it down.

[…] ultimately it comes down to simply this: I am incapable of writing on the Internet without becoming an asshole.  This fact has asserted itself to me again and again.  And while I believe the blogosphere is a narrow-minded and vulgar space, there is no excuse for my own vulgarity, my own lack of compassion, my own failure.  I have tried reform; I have tried rededication; I have tried genre and tonal shifts.  Sooner or later I revert to my hands, this keyboard, and my anger.

He probably needed to walk away even though I didn’t want him to.  Still, I was elated when, last week, a new post from L’Hôte indicated that Freddie was back and he had a new project:  a book club focusing on discussing Umberto Eco’s the Name of the Rose.  I know next to nothing about Eco, this book, or the time period it’s set in.  Oh well.  Reading starts tomorrow.

It’s my intention, if any are interested, to engage with readers of this remarkable book.  I am not qualified to be a guide, but perhaps a companion is sufficient.  My hope is to begin the book club on December 7th and proceed through the novel in about two months.  As the date approaches, I’ll post with my ideas for the structural makeup and logistics of this book club.  It’s my hope that everything I write exists in a context with a community of commenters, of whatever size.

So get to a library, a used book store, or dust off your dad’s old copy like I did.  This is a great time to read, as Freddie can tell you.

Winter is a season for reading, for turning inwards, into interior warmth.  I mean this in the simplest sense and less speakable ones as well.  It’s cold out, in winter, and to curl up with a book in the light of a fire in your own hearth is wonderful

More details can be found at the book club’s discussion hub.

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December 6, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , . Reading.

3 Comments

  1. Richard Milward replied:

    Eco is difficult reading — incredibly dense stuff, full of more details than seems possible. BUT, also incredibly rewarding as well. I have to read his books slowly in order to absorb just -some- of it! Highly recommended, and best of luck! I’m checking his site now…

  2. Phil Bost replied:

    Richard, thanks for the comment. Dense is a nice word for this. I’ve felt the same way when reading Annie Dillard. As if I’m failing to appreciate most of a sentence or a page if I choose to progress, yet if I re-tread too much, I lose the broader context. Very challenging and frustrating line to walk, yet ultimately deeply satisfying.
    So, what are you reading?

  3. Julia GP Haupt’s Top 10 Knife City Creamery Posts « Knife City Creamery replied:

    […] 3. Freddie de Boer’s Digital Book Club […]

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