As I type, the Bloody Bones Mystery group is settling in for their first meeting. The ladies are laughing and getting to know each other, introductions are being made.
A hardcore romance reader, Dawn speaks excitedly about her trepidation in reading a brand new genre; her expectation of boy gets girl and a white picket fence to boot may not have been met but she feels she's been wholeheartedly converted.
Listening to them talk about Kyle, a child of neglect and trauma, you would think it was someone each of them had met, personally; how they feel about him, for him; their pity, their hope for his brighter future... Just another character on paper, but to them, a living breathing person who they can identify with.
As they discuss their favorite characters and the reasons they felt such a connection to them, I can't help but smile. This is what books do; they bring perfect strangers together, they expand horizons, they help us make connections, they bridge the gaps.
This is literature at work.
This is a book club.