We had an awesome meeting two Saturdays ago (yes, I am a lazy blog poster) on Saturday, January 23rd to discuss Mary Roach’s Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife. If you haven’t read it yet, it’s basically the author’s attempt to research all of the different ways that people try to understand the afterlife, and the chapters include topics such as reincarnation, mediums who allege that they can speak with the dead (who always seem to have very banal things to say), and how modern technology is co-opted into the search for ghosts. Mary Roach’s style of writing is interesting, as her footnotes could be chapters unto themselves. I found the book to be light-heartedly skeptical (she seems a little reluctant to label herself as a skeptic and let go of her irrationalities) and a mostly fun read.
Our next book is Richard Wiseman’s 59 Seconds: Think a Little, Change a Lot, in which Wiseman discusses various topics (e.g. relationships, parenting, motivation, etc.) from a psychological point of view and backs up all of his arguments with scientific literature. Each chapter is accompanied by a summary which can presumably be read in less than a minute. Unfortunately, I wasn’t in town to have more sex see Richard Wiseman when he came to Boston, so I picked this book in his honor.
If you’d like to come to our next meeting, we are meeting on Saturday, February 27th at 2:30 pm in the Clear Conscience Cafe (same bat time, same bat channel). The cafe is nice and warm and the conversation is skeptical and scintillating!
On a related note, as our book club grows we are always looking for new coffee shops or other places to host it in. If you have any suggestions, please comment below. I drive into Boston from New Hampshire, so I don’t know the local places as well, but any place that could accommodate 8-12 people and is good for facilitating conversation would be awesome. (Or if anyone wants to host a book club meeting, I promise to bring pastries and tea and stay to clean up!)