Published on October 9th, 2020 | by University Communications


Reading groups highlight works of diverse female authors

Registration is continuing for the virtual book clubs organized under the recently announced Saint Leo Reading Challenge.

These online groups are not classes. Instead, they are opportunities for people with a shared interest to read something together and share the joys of talking about the works. Many books are available in free or inexpensive formats, so do not let finances be a barrier.  

There are seven book groups in all, open to anyone from the Saint Leo community, including students wherever they study, faculty, and staff. The Community site is highlighting one or two of the groups each week, and more complete information is on the challenge website.

Two separate groups have been organized that give readers a chance to explore the works of female authors from diverse backgrounds: one devoted to African-American authors, and another to authors of Mexican heritage.

The Women of Color reading group is organized by Dr. Pamela Lee, who directs the MBA program. She selected “a few works that speak to me.” They include the very popular autobiography of Michelle Obama, Becoming, as well as another work of nonfiction, Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly, which inspired the film about Black women working at NASA in the early days of the space program. Three acclaimed novels are on the list: An American Marriage by Tayari Jones, Halsey Street by Naima Coster; and the literary classic, The Color Purple by Alice Walker.  

Amanda Forrester, an author and adjunct faculty member who teaches English courses, has organized a group called Women Authors of Mexican Heritage. She described the featured authors as writers whose works are concerned with contemporary language, roles, struggles, and possibilities. Several of the selections are collections of poetry: The Carrying by Ada Limón; Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz: Selected Works (which includes some writing in other genres) translated by Edith Gossman; Loose Woman by Sandra Cisneros; and When My Brother Was an Aztec by Natalie Diaz. A recent novel is also on the list: I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sánchez.

Sign up for a group, or explore others, by visiting the Reading Challenge site. The Saint Leo Reading Challenge is sponsored by the Division of Academic Affairs and the Daniel A. Cannon Memorial Library.


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