Martha’s Book Club: A Short History and a Meeting Notice

by Milt Lum, Staff Writer

Vivacious, intelligent, talented, and energetic were just a few of the adjectives associated with Martha Dawson at her memorial service in 2015. The great hall at the Bay Club was filled with community members who had been touched by her generous spirit and came to honor her.

Martha brought her talents as a cellist and educator to enhance the lives of the Port Ludlow community. She served as president of the Arts Council, sang with the Port Ludlow singers, and sustained the book club that is named for her.

During her tenure as leader of the book group, which was founded in 1993, she enlivened the meetings by inviting local authors such as Carol Cassella (who wrote Healer) and Greg Olson (who wrote Starvation Heights), to discuss their works. She modeled what is best about a book club: fostering discussions about controversial subjects, listening to differences, and learning from others. On occasion she would surprise us with a treat she baked from scratch or provide us with a soothing song played on her cello.

Though devastated by her loss, faithful attendees of the book group decided to continue, and named it Martha’s Book Club in her honor. To this day her spirit pervades the group, welcoming all in the Port Ludlow community who love books.

May Meeting

Join us on the second Tuesday of each month, 3:30 PM at the Bay Club. At the May 10 meeting, we will be discussing The House in the Cerulean Sea, by TJ Klune. It is a fanciful tale of misfits exiled to a magical island and the by-the-book bureaucrat sent to report on their misad- ventures. It is a New York Times bestseller and the Port Townsend Public Library’s “Community Read” designation for 2022.

Watch for monthly notices of each upcoming Martha’s Book Club selection in the Voice. For further information, contact Sarah Schuch at bookclub|||plvoice|||org|||Bookclub Info.