How to find or start a book group

Posted by Yvonne Barlow on Tuesday, January 8, 2013

There may already be a book group in your area. Ask at your local library or check with The Reading Agency, a charity that aims to promote reading:  http://www.readinggroups.org/find/location/

Or try: http://wwwbookgroupinfo.co.uk

If a group doesn't exist in your area, or the existing group is full, you may have to start a reading group from scratch.

First, ask among your friends, co-workers and neighbours. You are likely to be surprised at how many people like to discuss books.

If you are comfortable, put a small notice of the group in your neighbourhood newsletter or newspaper. Don't include your telephone number or address. Display only an email address as contact.

If strangers are included in the group, it is probably best to meet in a public place such as a cafe, pub or your local library. Many libraries have meeting rooms.

Decide on some ground rules such as:

- no hardback books as they are expensive

- decide how you will select books. Many book groups let members take it in turns to suggest a novel. The member who selected the novel opens the session by saying why they chose it.

- the group may be free with each member speaking spontaneously about any aspect as it occurs to them, or you may wish to be methodical and take time to discuss each aspect such as plot, character, writing style, suitability of title and book cover and general satisfaction with the novel.

Good luck!

Book groups are as varied as readers. Some of us meet in homes, others in libraries, some in pubs and others even get together online. 


Tags: "book groups" "reading groups" "reading agency" "hookline books" "how to start a book group" 
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Yvonne Barlow Editor at Hookline Books - where book clubs and readers choose the novels that go to print.

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