Return to Headlines

Vista Book Club helps forge empathy with students

VHS book club members During the start of the 2019-20 school year, Vista High School English teacher Hilary Brown noticed many of her students were avid readers outside of class. From there, the Vista Book Club was born.

Brown wanted to build a community of voracious readers, inside and outside of her classroom, so she invited students to be a part of the club. Vista Book Club members, including Aileen Camarena, Victor Avila, Carala de la Torre, Montzerat Raya, and Isis Covarrubias, selected a book to discuss with local author Jessica McGhee at various locations. They meet twice monthly at Northend Coffeehouse and go over themes, personal opinions, and various other topics in the reading.

“The students built community and learned to speak up about the issues they read,” Brown said. “It forges empathy for each other and for people they don’t know through books.”

More than a dozen students have joined the club, realizing the importance of diversity in literature.

McGhee wrote an acknowledgment in her latest book, "Wings of Ebony," to the 12 Vista students who participated.

Eric Patten