One tragic night brings Isabel and June to live with their cousin Kat and aunt Lolly in the family owned Matriatch Inn on the coast of Maine. At that time, Isabel and June could not wait to be old enough to go out and live on their own, and when that time came, they left.
Now, years later, just as Isabel’s marriage is falling apart, and June is in search of a man who disappeared from her life seven years before, the girls are again called to the Matriarch Inn, but this time, because Lolly had been diagnosed with late term cancer. When the two sisters arrive they find their Aunt Lolly, weak but in good spirits and their cousin Kat newly engaged, but for some reason she doesn’t look like a happy bride to be.
As per tradition, each Friday night is movie night at the Inn, and Lolly has a nice selection of every movie Maryl Streep had ever been in. At first the girls are distant, all caught up in their own troubles, but as each movie is shown week after week, the movies plot and characters bring out deep conversations within the three cousins and Lolly. Wrongs are brought to light, fears are revealed, and dreams are shared.
Over bowls of buttery popcorn and delicious homemade cupcakes, this family learns to trust in one another, and eventually… learn to trust in themselves as well.
Why did I want to read this book? Title. I am a movie nut and any title with the word “club” in it draws my attention, “book club”, “cooking club”, Movie club”…. after all isn’t a club a gathering of people who all enjoy the same thing? How fascinating!
The Meryl Streep Book Club at first glance looked like it would be a quick read. It turns out it wasn’t and here is why. While I have seen some of the newer movies that Meryl Streep has been in, many of the older titles I had not. To get the most out of this book, I went and rented the movies to go along with it and found myself enjoying The Bridges Of Madison County, Kramer Vs. Kramer, and It’s Complicated.
What impressed me about this book is that each of the Meryl Streep movies, held a lesson for what at least one of the girls was going through. The movies themselves become the back drop of the book, and all in all it turned out to be a pretty sweet read.
The movies in the book:
The Bridges Of Madison County
The Devil Wears Prada
Defending Your Life
Kramer Vs. Kramer
Postcards From The Edge
Out Of Africa
Julie and Julia
Do I have any complaints? Yes, to quote my friend Reagan, the relationship struggles these three girls had was a hot mess. Isabel, June, and Kat’s stories are all so over the top that for me, it took a bit away from the story – too much and all at the same time made it feel a tad unbelievable.
HOWEVER (and that is a big however), if you do not over analyze the real relationship struggles, the book is extremely enjoyable. In the beginning I was unsure how I was going to feel about this book, but by the middle I was sold out and fell in love with the story itself.
This would make for a fun book club read and discussion with a possible hosting of one of the movies mentioned in the book and lots and lots of yummy buttered popcorn!