Sense of Belonging – by Karolina Ioannou

“That is part of the beauty of all literature. You discover that your longings are universal longings, that you’re not lonely and isolated from anyone. You belong.”
F. Scott Fitzgerald

Paradise LostBook clubs are a recent frenzy! There are book clubs about travel, food, ones that appeal to the young, and the not so young, poetry fans, fans of a single author, even virtual or online book discussion gatherings or blogs. One way (over a glass of champagne!) or another (through a computer), millions of people are drawn into book discussions. And we couldn’t stray away from them either. The HPST book club is a relatively new HPST tradition that has been gaining popularity amongst our members.

So why join? There are of course the general advantages and pleasures of being part of a book club: The extra push to read more, the sense of aspiration, the opportunity to have intellectual discussions about your read («Τι εννοεί ο ποιητής;»)-even not so intellectual, the reminders of important details you might have completely missed which might give a completely different twist to the story … But also reading books that you would have never picked yourself (and end up being amazing reads), getting engaged into lively discussions about the good, the bad or the ugly traits of the fictitious characters and making new friends out of an interesting group of people. But our book club is more special than that.

The focus of the HPST book club is on books either written by Greek authors or with a Greek theme. The books we have discussed bring smells from the Jasmine Isle, history awareness from Asia Minor and intimate family history memories and bruises, revive the proud feeling of being Greek through observation of the passionate character of Zorba, admiration of the genius mathematical brain of Doxiadis and his Logicomix, the brilliant art of writing of Greeks of the past (The Fonissa of Papadiamantis) and the more recent ones (The Daughter by Pavlos Matesis), a proof that Greek literature is strong as ever. It is the chance to re-discover Greek history and customs, habits and typical Greek characters- με σαρκα και οστα-, places of our country visited through a book. And all that while enjoying the diversity of thought amongst our attendees with different backgrounds and personalities, men and women, enjoying the good company of friends and top notch literature! The sense of belonging that Fitzgerald talked about…

I am hoping my enthusiasm to be contagious! Come join me on Saturday October 25th for a discussion about “Paradise Lost: Smyrna 1922» by Giles Milton.

You may find information on the book at the two sites:

http://www.amazon.com/Paradise-Lost-Smyrna-Giles-Milton/dp/0465011195/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1405142869&sr=1-1&keywords=smyrna+paradise+lost

http://www.biblionet.gr/book/133978/Milton,_Giles,_1966-/Χαμένος_παράδεισος:_Σμύρνη_1922

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