Guest Post: Author Cheryl Kaye Tardif asks, “What’s Your Book Club Looking For?”

Canadian Author Cheryl Kaye Tardif wants to know-

What’s Your Book Club Looking For? 

As a suspense author, I’m often asked whether any of my books are suitable for book clubs, and I usually answer with: “Definitely! But which one depends on what your book club is looking for.” So what can I offer to a book club? Well, I hope to give you an exciting, suspenseful read with location settings that add to each novel. 

Divine Intervention:  For book clubs that enjoy the paranormal/supernatural world, crime fiction or just suspense in general, I recommend Divine Intervention. Set in various BC locations, it has enough twists and turns to keep you guessing and it explores tough societal issues, like child abuse, the foster care system, and abortion. 

Fans of authors J.D. Robb (aka Nora Roberts), Kay Hooper and Iris Johansen, and TV’s CSI, Medium and Ghost Whisperer will enjoy Divine Intervention, a sizzling paranormal crime novel that sends a team of psychic agents on a manhunt for a deadly serial arsonist who is leaving behind a blazing trail of corpses.

The River:   If your book club prefers high adventure, suspense, intrigue and controversial issues then I recommend The River. Discussion topics range from Multiple Sclerosis to family dysfunction to stem cell research to nanotechnology to conspiracy within our governments.

 This thriller takes place in the wild Nahanni River area of Canada’s Northwest Territories and it explores biotechnology, nanotechnology, and the search for longevity and youth as a group of near strangers search for a man who had been presumed dead. The River asks a thought-provoking question: How far have we gone with our technology…until we’ve gone too far?

Whale Song:  For book clubs that enjoy character driven tales, like novels by Jodi Picoult or Alice Sebold, I recommend Whale Song, set on Vancouver Island and Vancouver. Touching on the sensitive issue of assisted death and drawing on wise native legends, Whale Song is a poignant story of family ties, love, tragedy, sacrifice and transformation that will change the way you view life…and death. And it is “my heart book.”

 Reviewers have called it “beautiful”, “thought-provoking”, and “emotional”. New York Times bestselling author Luanne Rice calls Whale Song “a compelling story of love and family and the mysteries of the human heart…a beautiful, haunting novel.”

There is a discussion guide available for Whale Song that you can view online and/or download (PDF). Please feel free to copy it for your book club. There are no discussion guides yet for The River or Divine Intervention.

My novels have been used in many book clubs in Canada and the US. Whale Song has even been used for novel studies in schools (elementary to high school), and as recommended reading for a tutoring company, plus mandatory reading for women at a Georgia women’s shelter. I’ve had the honor of visiting book clubs in the Edmonton area and I have immensely enjoyed the interaction, questions and of course, the great munchies. Why does book club food always taste so darned good?

My goal as an author is to hopefully give you suspenseful stories and memorable characters that will become like old friends, ones you won’t want to forget any time soon and ones you’ll think of long after you’ve read the novel.  

Book clubs: Please let me know if you choose any of my novels for your book club. I have some goodies I’d like to send you. Happy reading! 

~Cheryl Kaye Tardif

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada 

7 Responses

  1. I am very interested in Whale Song. I don’t have a book club but I think I will put this on my tbr.

  2. My book club selects our books once a year, for the entire year so I will keep these in mind as we have not read too many novels that fall into this genre.

  3. They all sound so good. I will have to suggest them to our library

  4. Thank you all for your interest in my novels. I truly appreciate it.

    If any of you do get any of my novels, please email me through my site (click on my name above or in post). I’d be happy to send you a signed bookplate. 🙂

    For libraries and book clubs, I’d be happy to send a handful of bookmarks. 🙂

    Thank you again and happy reading to you all!


  5. I have a question for you Cheryl (and maybe Lisa and all other authors…) You mention that you only have a discussion guide for Whale Song; how and when do these guides become a part of a book and/or website? is it up to the publisher? do you as the author make your own or is this hired out? I’m curious. Thanks, Care

  6. Hi and thanks for the question, Bk. 🙂

    It’s usually up to the author to write the discussion guide, although publishers will sometimes suggest it. Mine didn’t mention it, but once I discovered that Whale Song was popular with book clubs, I decided to write the guide.

    Some book clubs have their own questions. Some ask the same questions of every book, which can be quite interesting. And other clubs find it helpful to have the guide questions–they act as prompts.

    I wrote the guide quite a bit after Whale Song was published. I’m planning on writing guides for my other two books, but I’m going to wait a bit. I’m hoping my agent will find a bigger publisher for The River and Divine Intervention–so I’d like to write the guides based on new versions.

    I think it could also be a subcontracted job too. When I was a teen, I wanted to write book jacket flaps–or back cover text. So…are you looking for a job writing discussion guides, bk? 😉

  7. Thanks for responding to my questions – very interesting. I was under the assumption that they were always done before the printing started, but it’s likely to be a case of ‘it depends’. THEN, in one book I read, I saw that the guide was written by a company that specialized in reading guides! I would be intrigued in a job writing discussion guides, yes, but I’m not actively searching for such at the moment. Thank you very much! (and to Lisa, too!)

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