Sunday Book Club: On Book Clubs

August 13, 2017 Sunday Book Club 10

Happy Sunday!!

I am continuing to go through the topics you posted when I asked what you wanted to talk about in future Sunday Book Clubs posts.

Today’s topic comes from Rebecca Maney:

As the facilitator for a “live” book club, I would love to hear how others choose their club books. So many really great stories do not fit well into a book club format (don’t ask me how I know this). For instance, suspense is a category that I love to read, but few suspense novels have strong discussion points for groups.

As someone who has never been part of a book club, I would love to know the answer to this as well.

Now, it’s your turn!

If you’re part of a book club, how do you choose the books? And what are some ways to incorporate books that are great to read but don’t have strong discussion points?

Carrie

10 Responses to “Sunday Book Club: On Book Clubs”

  1. Beckie Burnham

    I have been the coordinator for my book club for 15 years. Because I know my members well, I usually know what is going to work and what won’t. I make a list every November and then members vote. We read the top choices. They also let me pick “surprise” books once a quarter. I try to mix in new releases and out of comfort zone reads for those. I look for interesting plots, settings, and subject matter. For those that have few discussion points, we talk about movie casting, food references, places to visit — basically anything that can be pulled from the book. we read CF exclusively, so there are usually spiritual points to discuss.

  2. Jane Tucker

    I’ve been in a book club for 18 years. The early years were a learning process, but we finally hit on the following plan. We have 12 members. Each year 11of us choose a book, while 1 acts as “Queen.” The queen handles the admin details and hosts the Christmas party where we announce our book choices for the next year. Sometimes we have a theme, but most often we simply trust each other to choose interesting books. One year our theme was genres. We read a mystery one month, a western the next,, etc. Another year we read foreign lit, defined as not American or British authors. Hope this helps!

  3. Latayne C. Scott

    I’m hearing from these two ladies that a long-lived book club involves both trust and the surprise element. Never having been a member of a book club, I just kind of thought that everyone would have to be on board for any particular book choice. Thanks for the insight!

  4. Jenna Victoria

    I found this neat link from “litlovers” (dot) com – listing book discussion questions that aren’t the normal ones. I think they could be used in situations where a book’s content (e.g., suspense story) wouldn’t easily lend itself to meaningful discourse. Plus, as a CF writer, it’s useful to see what book clubs want to see in a book 😊
    http://www.litlovers.com/run-a-book-club/questions-for-fiction
    [used with credited permission]

  5. Janet Ferguson

    We meet in January. Everyone brings a book that they have read (important rule to avoid bad books or content!) We then hear about each book from each member. We pick 11 or 12 for the coming year and set up the schedule that night.

  6. Sally Bradley

    I used to run a book club, and the members have all told me that they really, really enjoyed it. 🙂 So there’s that.

    Anyway, I chose all the books. Members did not vote. But this worked because the members were not adventurous readers. One of them told me shortly before I moved out of state that before the club started she only read Lori Wick. So that was the kind of membership we had. I, on the other hand, was a very adventurous reader, reading a wide variety of authors and genres. So it worked that I just did the picking.

    You do quickly learn that comedy doesn’t give you much to talk about. You need books that address issues, and that can be contemporary or historical. But there needs to be something meaty in the book to talk about. Some suspense authors do a good job of weaving in things that have some depth to them too. I think of Terri Blackstock in this case.

    The way I picked books then was by keeping track of books that really moved me or made me think. Was there a topic that could start some discussion? Were there sentences or thoughts of philosophies or ways of looking at things that made me think? Was it real life that readers could relate to? What was going on in my friends’ lives? Was there a novel that touched on that in a biblical way?

    And then of course I tried to go for variety. Historical, romance, suspense, biblical fiction, mystery, etc.

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