07 Jan Why The Woman in the Window is a Great Company Book Club Read
One of my favorite things that we do at Swift Kick is our monthly book club. At first, I found it annoying because I already read a lot. Adding another book to my list felt overwhelming. But now it is one of my favorite parts of the month. Last month it was my turn to pick a book. Normally, I would have assigned everyone a play to read. But I decided to spare my team members from reading The Lower Depths* and selected a psychological thriller titled The Woman in the Window* by A.J. Finn.
I selected this book for two reasons: 1. I love the genre, 2. It is filming in New York and I am always curious about how books translate to film.
Statistically, more women are in book clubs than men in America. In fact, 56% of women are a part of at least one book club, compared to only 45% of men. Book clubs are also more popular for older people with more free time – 67% of women over the age of 75 belong to a book club.
Book clubs are so beneficial within a company. They really challenge the group to debate and discuss, be vulnerable and share personal connections, and build team trust in a fun and creative way. Reading in and of itself has amazing benefits. An article on Bustle states that, “Just 10 minutes of reading is enough to reduce stress levels by two thirds. It increases your writing, reading comprehension, analytical thinking skills, and memory capacity. And, most importantly, reading increases longevity.”
Now, lets see what we had to say about The Woman in the Window.
Without giving anything away, the story centers around Anna Fox. Anna is a young woman struggling with a traumatic event in her life, which has led to an alcohol and drug addiction. She suffers from agoraphobia, which keeps her at home all hours of the day watching movies, due to her fear of going outside. She witnesses something horrible while spying on her neighbors – but did she really see what she claims to have seen?
At Swift Kick, we all gave the book 5/5 stars. Our reasons included how in-depth and accurate the psychology was, how the mystery element always kept us guessing, and the incredible creation of character. We all sympathized and empathized with Anna sometimes and hated her at other times. It was interesting to discuss who we all connected with and for what reason. We all loved the ending, which kept us guessing until the big reveal. Some of us were into it from the first page, while other members of the team took a little longer to get hooked. But we all agreed…once the hook was in, we all could not put the it down! Truly, a must-read!
One of my questions in the discussion was about having a moment of panic or agoraphobia and not wanting to do something out of fear. It turns out, 1.8 million Americans over the age of 18 suffer from agoraphobia. Even though, clearly, no one in the office suffers from the condition, we all had a moment that we could talk about that we related to Anna’s situation. It was vulnerable for us all to share a moment of such intense fear that stopped us from doing something. But the book and discussion brought us closer as a team.
All around, The Woman in the Window is an excellent book for a company book club. Everyone on the team can find something to relate to in the story. The characters in the book and plot will keep you questioning and guessing, and this leads to a great book club discussion for any team!
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