What Is a Book Club and How Does It Work?

Book club meeting.

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Do you love books? Are you often looking for people to discuss literature with? Lots of people love to read, but it can be hard to find someone to discuss the book you're reading — especially if you love an uncommon genre. If you're having a hard time finding people to talk with about your reading material, you might want to consider joining or starting a book club. They're also great opportunities to meet new people and make new friends with common interests.

What Is a Book Club?

A book club is a reading group, usually consisting of a number of people who read and talk about books based on a topic or an agreed-upon reading list. It's common for book clubs to choose a specific book to read and discuss at the same time. Formal book clubs meet on a regular basis at a set location. Most book clubs meet monthly in order to give members time to read the next book. Book clubs can be focused on literary critique or on less academic topics. Some book clubs are focused on a certain genre, such as romance or horror. There are even book clubs dedicated to a particular author or series. Whatever reading material you prefer, if you can't find a book club for it why not think about starting your own? 

How to Join

It's common for groups of friends who enjoy reading to start book clubs, but if your friends aren't the literary type there are other options. You can check your local library or community center to see if they run a book club. Independent bookstores often run book clubs as well, and they might even offer a discount to members. Websites are also a great place to search for book clubs in your area.

Where Do Book Clubs Meet?

Clubs started among friends often meet in people's homes. But if the purpose of your club is to meet new people, it's best to meet in public locations like library community rooms or coffee shops. Bookstores are often happy to host book clubs as well. Remember, if you meet in business (like a coffee shop), it's polite to purchase something if you plan on staying for an extended period of time.

Choosing Books

Deciding what to read in your club can be hard, especially if your club lacks a theme. Many books come with lists of discussion questions at the end, which are perfect for starting conversations. Books can be chosen as a group or by the club leader. Some clubs rotate who chooses the reading material.