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University of Arizona student book club mixes reading and relaxed discussion

UA+Bookworms+offers+an+inclusive+and+judgment-free+zone+to+express+your+love+for+literature.+The+club+meets+every+other+Saturday+at+3+p.m.+in+the+Main+Library+room+B252%2F254.
Xavier Urias
UA Bookworms offers an inclusive and judgment-free zone to express your love for literature. The club meets every other Saturday at 3 p.m. in the Main Library room B252/254.

UA Bookworms is a student-run club at the University of Arizona dedicated to all things literature. The group aims to provide a welcoming environment for students of all literacy levels to come together and discuss their current reads. 

Vice president of the club and UA senior Malani Gonzales spoke on behalf of the club president, who was unable to attend the latest meeting. 

“She noticed that there wasn’t a book club on campus, which is really surprising for a campus this big,” Gonzales said. “[Melia Gemrose and I] were on board to join and help create the book club for a lot of people to come together.”

The club officially began running this year. Its is open to all genres and forms of literature as the members read anything from classics, science fiction and high fantasy to short stories and poems. 

When it comes to choosing their next read, they keep it easy and “democratic.” 

“We have a Google Form that members get access to, and they fill out a suggestion. Then we make a list, and we have people vote whenever we finish a book,” club secretary Gemrose said.

UA freshman Caitlyn Wiley is a returning member of the club who discovered them at Bash at the Rec. 

“I enjoy it. It gives me a reason to read a book and to talk to people, because I had friend groups in middle school and high school that I would talk to about books, but I don’t have as big of a friend group now. But now that I have a book club, I can talk to people about the books, so I enjoy it,” Wiley said. 

This book club is open to people of all ages at the university and welcomes people from all different walks of life around campus, including Tatiana Rastoskueva, a freshman whose native language is Russian. 

“I also like reading books, but since English is not my native language. I might also like to increase my level of proficiency by reading books in the English language,” Rastoskueva said. 

If anyone is on the fence about joining a book club or is trying to get into reading, this book club would be a great place to start, Gemrose said. 

“We genuinely read all kinds of different books, and we’re open to suggestions. We don’t mind if people haven’t finished an entire book. It’s not a judgmental place. So I think it’s a really good point for people to start reading or to just pick up reading again,” Gemrose said.

The club meets every other Saturday at 3 p.m. in the Main Library in room B252/254. They are currently reading “Wuthering Heights” by Emily Brontë. At the club’s meeting on Nov. 11, they were discussing the first half of the book. They have another meeting set for Dec. 2, where they will be discussing the rest of the book in its entirety. 

For updates about meetings and current reads, check the UA Bookworms Instagram page or visit the UA Bookworms website, which also has the club officers’ emails for specific questions.


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