By Katrina Margolis
Hometown Weekly Reporter
As technology becomes more ubiquitous, reading interests and levels drop more and more. Libraries are doing all they can to keep up with the times, and to maintain interest in good, old-fashioned books. The Westwood Public Library has a number of programs that combat diminished reading, but one of their most successful and popular is the Mother/Daughter Book Club. The group meets once a month, the most recent meeting held on April 4, and not only brings together Westwood locals, but also mothers and daughters.
Children’s Librarian Lizzy McGovern began the program two years ago. At the start, she was rather skeptical, as only one mother/daughter pair showed up. This pair was Kirsten Baima and her daughter, Taylor Baima, who are still loyal attendees of the Club today. “For a few months, we were the only people who came to the group. We were founding members,” Baima said.
However, over the last couple of months, the group has rapidly expanded. Now, each meeting hosts eight to ten pairs of mothers and daughters.
“There was definitely a desire there for this kind of group,” McGovern said. “I think a lot of these things start organically, but it’s hard to plan when and where and make sure everyone is available and figure out who is going to host, so I provide the venue for it, which I’m happy to do.”
This week’s book was “The Candymakers.” “It was one of my favorite books,” Taylor said. “Usually we have a snack that goes with the book, and we have a discussion about the book. We say our names and we rate the book five to one, like how we liked it. Then we talk about it, and then we usually play Pictionary.” The Pictionary is created by McGovern with words and phrases taken from the books, making it easier for the kids to guess. “It used to be mothers against daughters when there were two or three members,” Baima said. “But now that there are so many of us, it’s good to let all of the kids get a chance.”
Most of the children are around Taylor’s age, who is currently in fourth grade. “I want it to extend past fifth grade!” Baima said. “I know there’s a teen book group but it doesn’t include the parents, and I love that it’s something that we can do together.”
Taylor ended with what every librarian and book-love wants to hear: “I love to read and I just want to read a lot of different things.”
The enthusiasm this group generates is only growing.