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The Memoir Club

3.34  ·  Rating Details ·  269 Ratings  ·  56 Reviews
"In a memoir, the author and the narrator have an uneasy relationship. What does the reader know of the author? That the author lived to tell the tale. What does the reader know of the narrator? That the tale needed to be told."

Six women, each with her own misgivings, take a university extension night class in Writing Your Memoir, looking only for a little bibliotherapy. T
Paperback, 288 pages
Published April 1st 2005 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published 2003)
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Jan 27, 2009 Nancy rated it liked it
Although I found it an easy read in that it kept my attention, I did get confused as each chapter centered on a different one of the six main characters and it took me a while to remember who I was reading about. The novel concerns six women from different walks of life and dealing with a variety of problems, who become friends through taking a memoir writing class through a university extension. What was interesting to me was how quickly the friendships evolved. It reminded me of my own experi ...more
A group of women, strangers to each other, take a memoir writing class, and when the class is over, form their own memoir writing club. Looking into the past through the filter of time, is, as they discover, a very dangerous prospect. They make new realizations, and their present day lives begin to change.

The characters seemed incredibly real and vibrant, and the story sucked me in, and made me care about the characters. The only problem with that, is that, in a weird way, it made me protective
Mar 31, 2008 Leslie rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: not to anyone
Shelves: novel
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 26, 2008 Jessica rated it liked it
If I could give half stars, I'd give Laura 3-1/2 for this one. I know her and she writes some amazing prose. But there's always some part that either drags for me, or maybe it feels too neatly tied up at the end. And that was my problem with this book. It ties up too neatly at the end. There is this huge "holy cow!" event a little over two-thirds of the way through the book and then.... it just never really recaptures the energy after that and the story continues for a little too long. And then ...more
Marcia Voss
Jul 31, 2012 Marcia Voss rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book, and I haven't loved a book in a long, long time. As a former English teacher, I found Penny's(the teacher's) instructions interesting albeit a bit confusing to follow if I were a student. Unlike some of the other reviewers, I enjoyed each chapter being written in the voice of each of the memoir writers. I did confuse who was who at times but quickly found myself where I was meant to be. The varied personalities of each woman were fascinating as were the memoirs they ...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
If books were television shows, this one would be a daytime soap. Early in my career as a stay-at-home mom, I found myself addicted to the soaps. I finally had to discipline myself by refusing to turn on the tv during the day. I must find the discipline to do the same thing with book soaps; I must never put the book on my wish list...just seeing the cover and reading the blurb on the back sets me in motion to reading them and nothing will stop me from reading to the end.

Absolutely nothing wrong
Jul 18, 2011 Kim rated it it was amazing
Amazing book which is very well and lovingly written. Especially given the past few years when memoir writers have been accused of falsifying their accounts, this is a very relevant book. But more than that, the author does a masterful piece of work in interweaving the lives of very different people into each other, through a single class in memoir writing. It always interests me not just to find out where people came from, but where they are going, and this book satisfies that urge very well.

Feb 28, 2012 Melinda rated it really liked it
Pretty good. Liked the use of a "how to write a memoir" tool throughout the book to weave the people's stories together. Some of the stuff at the end was kind of a stretch. Like the Memoir professor being an angel. Pretty hokey. I think I got this book at the Dollar Tree - it was definitely worth $1!!
Sep 21, 2012 Joanie rated it it was ok
Aaaaaarg! Chick Lit! I find myself sucked in by competent writing and a smart quote or two, only to wake up knee deep in vacuous characters who make lifelong friendships, reconcile with their families, find everlasting love, and congratulate one another on their platitudinous growth. Again - Aaarg!
Jan 16, 2011 Mady rated it really liked it
Shelves: borrowed, 2005
In the beginning I didn't really know what was a 'Memoir' and I wondered if all those people wanted to write a book. But then I got it and made me wish I could do something similar. I loved to get to know a bit more of all those people's lifes.
Paulette Gauthier
Oct 12, 2016 Paulette Gauthier rated it liked it
It took me quite a while to finish this book because it was a bit boring and far fetched. After reading it I'm still not even sure what a memoir is.
Feb 27, 2017 Lorraine rated it it was ok
This book was boring and confusing. Didn't like the writing, it jumped from one characters to another. Perhaps one characters with her memoir would've been less confusing. Couldn't finish it.
Earl Preston Pofahl
Feb 18, 2017 Earl Preston Pofahl rated it really liked it
This book is an old time favorite of mine. I happily snatched it off the giveaway cart at the library where I work. My fondest wish would be to be a leader in a Memoir Club. I think we all have stories to tell and if done correctly, our writing can be inspiring as well as empowering. Unfortunately, I'm not much of a leader or much of a writer, but I love the idea.

Wouldn't it be nice?

If you're a woman who enjoys reading about women's lives and personal struggles, I think you'll enjoy this book. I
Mar 07, 2008 Susan rated it liked it
Recommends it for: women who like to get together, drink tea, and talk about their memoirs
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mary Lou
Feb 16, 2017 Mary Lou rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
Okay chick-lit with pro-abortion message.
Feb 11, 2017 Louise rated it liked it
It's okay but I have probably enjoyed it if I were on my 40's. Still, thanks to my friend who gave me this book as a birthday gift.
Mar 21, 2012 Ellen rated it liked it
As usual with books of this type, some of the characters and storylines are more captivating than others. Overall I really liked it though. At times entertaining, at times shocking, the twists and turns this novel takes are quite impressive.

Rusty's story (and her obsession the daughter she gave up long ago) was especially compelling, as was Nell's, since she's a character who at first seems to live strictly to please others and later learns that there are things that can make her happy in her ow
Oct 09, 2013 Loretta rated it really liked it
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. The title caught my attention as I was taking a memoir writing class. It was remarkable how women with diversified backgrounds/lives formed a bond and friendship through their mutual desire of wanting to write a memoir. They had varied reasons for writing a memoir and through their writing found truths and answers about their lives. The story is well written and the characters interesting and engaging. This was my first read by this author and I am definit ...more
Bobbie Grob
Sep 18, 2012 Bobbie Grob rated it it was ok
This book was a slow starter, but I kept going. I enjoyed the stories of the women, but I'm still left wanting somehow. The book follows 6 women who are taking a memoir-writing class, and tells their tales through their memoirs. I did not feel as though the author varied the voices enough, so I ended up having to keep going back and seeing who was who.

I did enjoy the core stories and I found the characters to be well developed, but still, there was just something lacking.
Bobbie N
Feb 23, 2016 Bobbie N rated it really liked it
Shelves: womens-fiction
SUMMARY: Six women, seeking a little bibliotherapy, take a university extension class entitled Writing Your Memoir. The following semester, calling themselves The Memoir Club, they continue to meet at the home of one of the participants, as they try to come to terms with the losses, guilt, and grief they each have suffered, and, in doing so, try to forge a new beginning. COMMENTS: Thoughtful, inspiring, beautifully written; highly recommended, especially for women.
Sep 27, 2015 Joanna rated it liked it
Shelves: chicklit
Sweetly told story of the connections and friendships formed when a disparate group of women choose to enroll in a summer course of memoir writing. There were men, too, but they hardly seem to count. Some of the melodrama got a little too drama for me but overall I enjoyed this. Unsurprisingly, the women grow and learn from each other, and find strength from each other as they do so.
Katherine Wms
Jul 17, 2012 Katherine Wms added it
Shelves: for-fun, ccpl
like some of the other, I felt like 2/3s through the book it became a different story. I liked the process of the characters learning what was important about their life and hence what to write or how to write a memoir. The drama was over the top and unexpected for me and not sure if it was totally necessary or just set up badly.
May 08, 2009 Danielle added it
Shelves: just-fun
Yet another book I picked up at the library, just because it looked interesting. I've read one chapter so far, and it's a little weird, but I'm willing to keep going.

Ended up scanning the second half of the book, because I wanted to know what happened to each of the characters, but it wasn't holding my interest. Not bad, just not what I was in the mood for.
Feb 14, 2008 Melisa rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: sunny vacation goers.
Shelves: vacation-reads
The story itself was catchy and I often think about the characters and how their lives all interwove together; however, I wasn't that impressed with the writing. What bothered me most of all is that one of the main character's name was "Karen" but it was spelled "Carin" in the book - may seem trivial but it made me not really like the character. Also, the ending was pretty cheesy.
Jul 27, 2012 Pam rated it it was ok
Beautiful book jacket but the book didn't quite live up to it's cover. It had its moments and a couple of interesting parts but didn't seem much different than others I've read. It did have some interesting info on how to write a memoir.
Oct 29, 2013 Karen rated it it was ok
Although I enjoyed The Memoir Club for the most part (I did read it in three evenings), I felt that it seriously needed stronger editing and keener proofreading. It got sloppy in both regards in the last third of the book.
Oct 01, 2008 Missyk rated it really liked it
Another pleasant surprise. I had a hard time getting into this book, but after a chapter or two, I was firmly ensconced. The characters were richly developed, and I found myself caring deeply for them.
May 09, 2010 Bveselsky rated it really liked it
im a couple of chapters in and it's a wonderful book so far--the characters' stories, all brought together by their joining the memoir class, are very authentic.. i think it's a brilliant idea to start a memoir club.
Aug 15, 2011 Michelle_Mck rated it liked it
I loved this book after the first 30 stories I wasn't sure, and one of the characters I didn't really warm to but for the most part I thought the stories were wonderful and some unique perspectives on stories we all know. Wonderful book
Aug 16, 2007 Susie rated it it was ok
Easy read - story of women's lives as they're writing their memoirs - lives intersect, weave together - divorce, death, adoptions, reunions, deception - everyone dealing with their lives. Unlikely but you want to find out what happens.
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