Online Book Club – The Long Christmas Dinner

This month’s pick

For our holiday selection, the LPW Book Club is going to be reading The Long Christmas Dinner by Thornton Wilder.

Why did we pick this?

Thornton Wilder is one of the most celebrated playwrights in American history. He’s best known for Our Town but was also a master of the short form.

One of the most exciting things about his work is the way he experiments with form, and uses this to explore important truths about the human condition. (No wonder, he is LPB Director A.C. Smith’s favourite playwright!)

The Long Christmas Dinner is a long one-act that depicts a Christmas dinner continuing over generations, looking at how traditions unite us, even as time steadily marches onward. It’s a beautiful play, formally fascinating, and we figured the short pick would be welcome for those getting busy with holiday plans!

How does it work?

All you need to do is read the play and come on over to our Members Facebook Group to join the discussion! Book club threads will be marked with the hashtag #bookclub, so it will be easy to find the discussion.

We’re giving you two weeks to read the play, and then discussion will start at lunchtime (1pm) on Wednesday 13 December 2017. Don’t worry if you haven’t finished the play by then, we’ll be starting at the beginning with our discussion, so there will still be a lot that you can get out of it.

However, we can’t be held liable for any spoilers, so if this is something that will bother you, probably best to finish the play before the book club starts.

We’ll be discussing the play in the Facebook Group throughout the rest of the month, so if there’s a question or a topic you want to explore with a group of writers, this is the perfect opportunity.

Need a copy?

If you need to buy a copy, you can do so at the link below. (And if you buy through this Amazon Affiliate link, a small portion of the sale will go towards supporting LPW – at NO extra charge to you!)

You can get this play in this collection of Thornton Wilder’s Works, which also includes some of his most brilliant short plays.

The Collected Short Plays of Thornton Wilder, Volume I (£11.60)

Image: Selmer van Alten via CC Licence (

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