Oprah’s Book Club Is Back, Bitches

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Oprah’s Book Club is back from a short hiatus I was fully unaware of ever taking place. Winfrey paid her BFF Gayle King a visit on CBS This Morning to announce her latest Book Club pick, The Water Dancer by Ta-Nehisi Coates, his first work of fiction. Cool!

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According to Deadline, an interview with Oprah and Coates will stream on Apple TV+ November 1, when the new streaming platform launches. New episodes will appear every other month, and each episode will center on a new book club pick. I love the idea of Book TV; I do not love the idea of having to pay for yet another streaming service. But it’s Oprah, and it’s talk show adjacent, so exceptions should be made.

“[The Water Dancer] is one of the best books I have ever read in my entire life. Right up there in the Top 5,” Oprah said on CBS. “I was enthralled, I was devastated. I felt hope, I felt gratitude, I felt joy. I mean, it’s the range of emotions. That’s why I think it has everything that a novel is supposed to [have]. I’m on my second read now, because the first read I was just reading to see if I was going to choose it. And then the second read, I actually am sort of spoon-feeding every word to myself.”

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That’s a glowing review if I’ve ever heard one. Suddenly I’m budgeting for yet another television service?

It's facetious. Senior Writer, Jezebel. My debut book, LARGER THAN LIFE: A History of Boy Bands, is out now.

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DISCUSSION

I’m excited to read this, and really hope it’s good. TNC was pretty nervous about it, about trying his hand at fiction and having it be critically reviewed, when I heard him speak a few months ago. But I have high hopes for it, and him.

(Not buying another streaming service, though.)

ETA: I just opened my copy of Bookpage, the free monthly library magazine, and it gets a starred review there. “Here he weaves a clear-eyed story that has elements of magic but is grounded in a profoundly simple truth: A person’s humanity is tied to their freedom.” (Amy Scribner, reviewer)