Rural Missouri - February 2021 - 44

The Happy Bookers
Fun and friendships keep this book club going

For this evening's meeting, the Happy Bookers donned straw hats and Walgreens name tags, just like Polly, the main character in " The Book of Polly, " which they
discussed during their meeting. The group is known for dressing as characters from the books they read not only at meetings but also for local events.

by Jack Wax | info@ruralmissouri.coop

Books have always been part of Lisa's life. Before marrying, she worked as a librarian for a law office, and as her
children became school aged, she went back to work in
f anyone thinks book clubs are quiet, somber groups,
Linn at the public library and later at State Technical Colthey haven't met the Happy Bookers of Linn. Although
lege of Missouri. Even in retirement, she formerly worked
the eight current members of the club are more relias a substitute librarian for two libraries while volunteerable than GPS devices for finding the nearest bookstore
ing at a third. Lisa credits her mother for making books
or library wherever they go, they are better known for the
and fun an important part of her life. " My mom didn't hook
lighthearted, zany way they promote books and reading.
up the TV from the time I started seventh grade until my
They know how to have fun together, they love reading and
junior year in high school, " Lisa says. " Going to the library
they appreciate the close friendships that have taken
was a big thing. "
years to develop. One of Missouri's longest-lived
local book clubs, they've been meeting almost
Missouri is home to thousands of book clubs. Many
every month for the past 27 years. Together, they
are sponsored by local public libraries or churches,
have read and discussed nearly 300 books.
but most are like the Happy Bookers, informal
Lisa Klebba, the founder of the group, has seen
groups of friends and neighbors. Of all those book
Linn
clubs, it's likely there is only one that's donned
members come and go. At one time, the circle
sumo wrestler costumes and marched in a local
swelled to 18 members, but Lisa finds the smaller
Christmas parade to show that they celebrate
group more satisfying. She recalls how difficult it
reading in a " big " way. That would be the Happy
was to find time to read and socialize with other
Bookers. And it would be difficult to find another book club
adults while her husband worked full time as a banker.
that has paraded in red boa scarves along with matching
" I started the Happy Bookers because I had moved to a
white top hats and sweaters. In a Christmas salute to the
small town, and as the mother of four, I had finally read my
famous Radio City Rockettes and to the joys of reading, the
first book from cover to cover since having kids, " Lisa says,
Happy Bookers became the Bookettes. But that's in the
" and I wanted to talk to adults about it. "

I

44

RURAL MISSOURI | FEBRUARY 2021



Rural Missouri - February 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - February 2021

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Rural Missouri - February 2021 - Contents
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