Hello all you beautiful people and welcome to the first ever edition of the Gilmore Girls Book Club!
I can't tell you how excited I am to finally get the book club started, you have all been so lovely and kind on twitter and instagram about the book club too and I really, really hope you have fun taking part in it as well. So let's get started with book one....
Book Title - Franny and Zooey
Author - J.D. Salinger
What do we know about this Salinger dude? - J.D.Salinger was born in 1919 in New York and went on to be one of America's most famous writers. In 1951, The Catcher In The Rye was published which became his most iconic piece of work. After the success of that book he never wrote another novel instead he focused on writing short stories and Novellas most of which were published in The New Yorker and were mostly about The Glasses. This was a fictional family that Salinger created, the family consisted of a mother, a father and 7 children. Two of these children were called Franny and Zooey.
The 411 on Franny and Zooey - Franny and Zooey is actually two completely separate stories. Franny was originally published as a short story in The New Yorker in 1955 and then in 1957 Zooey was published as a novella also in The New Yorker. In 1961 Franny and Zooey were compiled together to create this book. The book became a massive success especially with young people in the 50's and early 60's because of the subject matter. Even though The Catcher In The Rye was undoubtedly Salinger's most successful piece of work some people believe that Franny and Zooey is actually his writing at its best.
What is the book about - Taken from the back of the book..."Franny Glass and Lane Coutell are the perfect campus couple: beautiful, intelligent, their whole lives ahead of them. But one weekend when Franny is visiting, amid the excitement of the big Yale game, something goes wrong and tensions begin to surface. Are they really such a perfect match after all?
Franny's older brother is Zooey. They come from a sophisticated yet highly eccentric family: all seven Glass siblings are former child stars, all strange and enchanting and damaged in their own way. And when Franny's anxiety spirals into a full-blown breakdown, Zooey is the only one who might be able to save her."
My View on the book - I LOVE this book. I had read this once before, a long time ago and it took me a while to get into it and it took me even longer to finish it. I kept reading little bits here and there and it just wasn't happening for me but as I got nearer to the end of the book I read it all in one go and I ended up enjoying it more. Fast forward to now and I wanted to add it to this list as I really wanted to re-read it again but because I had struggled as much the first time I knew I would need something like this book club to push me to do it and I'm so glad I have because I just thought it was perfect this time around. Because of knowing how it was written, long monologues, ongoing dialogue I realised that it really does work better to read as much of it as you can in one sitting rather than picking it up and putting it down like a normal book as you really do lose the flow of the writing which was my problem the first time. My favourite kind of books and movies are ones with very few characters and a really simple, beautiful chatty story which is basically what this book is, sort of my dream scenario of a book really. It blows my mind how it was written so long ago yet it still feels so relevant to what is going on in the world today, the anxiety that Franny is dealing with, the family issues they have, the wonder of what to do with your life. Its all very much on point for today's world too. I guess that's where its success lies in that its just a story about life, maybe one that you haven't lived your self but one that you can relate to and understand. There is no magic, no craziness, no flying, just two people trying to work out their place in the world a bit better. Its such a stunning, simple book and I am determined now to make my way through Salinger's other work too.
Wait, when did this appear on Gilmore Girls?- Well, in Season 2 in the episode entitled Lost and Found, Lorelai finds Jess (My favourite Gilmore boy ever) coming out of Rory's room when no one else was in the house, suspecting him of being up to no good, because remember this was season two, Rory still had dean and Jess was still a bad boy, they have the following conversation...
LORELAI: Did you get lost?
JESS: No, I was looking at Rory’s books.
LORELAI: Uh huh.
JESS: I wanted to see if she had Franny and Zooey. She does.
JESS: I was gonna get it for her if she didn’t.
So that is why Franny and Zooey got it's self into my Gilmore Girls book club because Jess was being all kinds of dreamy and holding a copy of it!
Where can I watch the movie of the book? - You can't. There isn't a movie version of Franny and Zooey which is pretty strange as Hollywood has managed to make at least 10 versions of every book ever written in the 50's but there is a good reason why it doesn't exist. In the 1940's Salinger allowed a movie to be made of one of his short stories, legend has it that he was so upset and mortified by what they turned his story into on screen that he vowed there and then to never let any of his work be turned into a movie again and he kept to his word. Many super famous writers, directors and actors (Leo I'm looking at you dude) have been turned down in the past when they have tried to get the rights to make his stories into a film.
Although if you are a fan of Iranian cinema you may have heard about an unofficial version of Franny and Zooey that was made due to different copyright laws in the country but when Mr Salinger heard about it, he swiftly put a stop to it premiering.
Any movie or book that is similar?- A lot of people compare The Royal Tenenbaums to Franny and Zooey due to the similarities of the family in the movie and the Glasses in the book. It's definitely not a similar storyline but maybe a nice one to watch after reading the book. Also the real life Lorelai Gilmore, Lauren Graham named the character in her novel Franny and part of the story line is inspired by Salinger, Lauren said reading Franny and Zooey when she was younger made a massive impact on her.
My favourite quote? - "She was not one for emptying her face of expression"
Some Book Club questions...
- Favourite quote?
-Favourite character in the book?
-What you liked/didn't like about the story?
-Would you read it again?
- Who would you cast in the roles of Franny and Zooey if you were making a movie of the book?
And that's it, the first book from the book club is now up and running!
I wanted to make this different from a normal review, its a bit longer and I wanted it to be fun too and not take its self too seriously. I think sometimes people can think that 'classics' have to be spoken about or written in a certain way and I wanted to sort of turn that on it's head. I have added some questions at the bottom that you can answer in the comments or on twitter/instagram if you like. I just thought it would be a fun way we can all interact with one another and talk about the book using the questions. I will be answering all comments on this post and replying to them all as well so remember and check back.
If you are talking about the book, Book Club or this post on twitter and instagram it would be awesome if you'd use the hashtag #GilmoreGirlsBookClub as then I can see all your tweets and reply to them and chat about the book.
Remember if you want to buy Franny and Zooey or any of the other books from my book club you still have a few days left to get a 10% discount off of them all from Wordery. Have a peek of THIS post for all the details and for the dates of the rest of the book club too.
Buy Franny and Zooey using the discount code - ISTHISREALLIFE
I really hope you've had fun if you've been reading along with me and I hope you've enjoyed the post.
Tweet me HERE
Say Hey on Instagram HERE