Why The Name?
Books are the great equalizer. There are millions of books out there for us to read. History, poetry, fantasy, romance, historical fiction, etc—the sky is the limit in terms of what we can learn. Within these various genres, books fall into difference categories. Some are mirrors, others are windows, and then there are sliding glass doors. Some will see themselves in the books chosen for this book club, and others will be reading something new that doesn’t reflect their own life experiences. But ultimately, even if you do or don’t see your life experience in the books, I hope you will be able to walk into the space and be able empathize with another perspective.
The book club is named after Rudine Sims Bishop’s amazing 1990 article about diversity in children’s literature. In it she wrote:
“Books are sometimes windows, offering views of worlds that may be real or imagined, familiar or strange. These windows are also sliding glass doors, and readers have only to walk through in imagination to become part of whatever world has been created or recreated by the author. When lighting conditions are just right, however, a window can also be a mirror. Literature transforms human experience and reflects it back to us, and in that reflection we can see our own lives and experiences as part of a larger human experience. Reading, then, becomes a means of self-affirmation, and readers often seek their mirrors in books.”
What Does This Mean?
This club isn’t Diversity 101. My goal isn’t to exclaim that racism and inequality exists; it’s to learn the whys behind it and give language to confront and interact with the world around us.
Want To Join? Here’s How!
When it gets closer to the meeting date, I will post the zoom group club. The first book club will take place in the middle of October. The date will be officially announced soon! Below, you will see a form to complete that asks for your information. Please fill this out, as this will be the primary way of communication for the club. I will post information here too.
How Does It Work?
You get the book, and you listen or read it. You’ll have the span of the month to read the book. At the end of the month, there will be a zoom gathering. During this, I will ask questions that I have created while reading. It will mostly be a discussion about the book along with any other important topics or experiences that the readers believe will facilitate learning. You don’t have to finish the book to attend, but it is recommended.
This is going to be an open space for honest discussion. There will be bumps and mishaps, but everything should be coming from a place of learning.
Who Chooses The Books?
For now, I will decide and pick the books for the foreseeable future. Seeing how things go, I would love to allow readers to vote on the book In the mean time, feel free to email me some book suggestions if you’d like!
I’m picking books by subject matter and availability. Rare books or out of print books are not on my radar for this club.
Book Club Reads:
So you have an understanding of what kinds of questions I am likely to ask, I includes some past reads with questions that I made for discussion. These are free to use, I just ask that you give me credit. The questions will be available to download under each title.
October 2020–How To Be Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi
November 2020- I’m Still Here by Austin Channing Brown
Book Club Questions:
These books haven’t been done for Sliding Glass Doors. But these are questions I have created for books I’ve read and done for Well-Read Black Girl Book Club.
Passing by Nella Larson
A Phoenix First Must Burn Anthology
When No One’s Watching by Alyssa Cole
Kindred by Octavia Butler
Dear Haiti, Love Alaine by Make Moulite
The Revolution of Birdie Randolph by Brandy Colbert
Some Places More Than Others by Renee Watson
Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D Taylor
How Long ‘Til Black Future Month by N.K Jemisin
The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo
Legendborn by Tracy Deon
Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko
Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler
Cinderella Is Dead by Kalynn Bayron
The City We Became by N.K Jemisin