Mount Airy: Big Blue Marble Bookstore’s Reading Club Binds Community

Maleka Fruean led the book discussion.

The Big Blue Marble Bookstore, located at 551 Carpenter Lane in West Mount Airy, is the place where a group of women meet monthly to discuss books about women.

Maleka Fruean led the book discussion.

The Women of the World Book Club, created in 2004, meets once monthly to discuss international and multicultural books written by women.

This book club attracts women from Mount Airy, Chestnut Hill and Germantown as well as a regular from Center City, Corinne Lagermasini, who has been a member of the club for two years.

“I enjoy coming out to Mount Airy. It is kind of like my adventure out into nature,” Lagermasini said. “What I really like is the books we read have an element of history and culture in them because we try to read books from women around the world.”

Maleka Fruean, a journalist and freelance writer, started the World Book Club to give a voice to female authors and challenge stereotypes of women’s literature.

“Women’s stories from all over the world and the United States tend to be ghettoized or considered chick lit or family stories,” Fruean said. “I wanted to raise the status [of female books]. I think this is literature that needs to be told.”

Pamela Laucks, a new member of this book club, said she believes the bookstore is an asset to the Mount Airy community.

Local residents reacted to another woman discussing the book of the month, "Salvage the Bones."

“I think it is an anchor for this neighborhood. I also think it’s become a place of exchange for intellect and learning. It’s not just a single reader and a book but an entire community that comes together,” Laucks said.

The bookstore, nestled among homes Mount Airy homes, is one of a number of  quaint stores in what is known as Mount Airy Village.

In addition to the women’s book club, the Big Blue Marble hosts weekly events ranging from poetry readings to writing workshops. For a full schedule of events, visit the store’s website.

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