By Katrina Margolis
Hometown Weekly Reporter
In today’s hectic world, it can be hard for anyone to make time to read for pleasure, let alone a hard-working student. Overwhelmed with school, extracurriculars, chores and household responsibilities, reading can often fall to the wayside.
It is for this exact reason that the group of students who have decided to join the Westwood Public Library’s Just For Fun Teen Book Group are so unique.
The Just For Fun Teen Book Group is open to “teens and tweens” in grades five to eight. These students are invited to “take a break from the stresses of class and read a book just for fun!” Meeting roughly once a month, they gather during half days in the library to chat about the book as well as have some yummy snacks.This past Wednesday, the group discussed “Plain Janes” by Cecil Castellucci. A graphic novel, the book not only relates to a wide number of topics relevant to the students’ lives, but also introduced them to a genre of novel often overlooked. “Plain Janes” follows the story of a transfer student, named Jane, who moves from Metro City to suburbia. When she arrives, she finds her “tribe” in a group of three other girls named Jane who start a secret art gang. Lizzy McGovern, Head of Children's Services, led the group in discussion, moving from larger questions such as, “What is the definition of art?” To more book-specific ones such as, “Why did Jane choose to sit with the Janes in the first place?”
The students were interactive and vocal. Their excitement about a printed book was a refreshing change from the technology-crazed world surrounding them. The kids shared their experiences with street art, such as seeing different works in Boston, as well as voicing their thoughts on what aesthetics they prefer in art.
Among the book club members, there was a noticeable joy and excitement about being able to read and share their experience with a group of like-minded people.