Guest Post: In Praise of Book Clubs, Vol. 17


In this 17th volume of In Praise of Book Clubs, Tracy from Book Room Reviews tells us about the wonders of a library book club!

I wanted to tell you about the virtues of joining your local library book club. I started less than a year ago and am truly enjoying my experience. I have tried to start book clubs in the past with different friends but we have always found a reason not to. We moved to a new town in Iowa a year ago and one of the first places I always go is the library of course! Needless to say they have a wonderful library here and after a while I started to notice the signs for the book club. The first meeting I went to was for the book The Poet of Tolstoy Park by Sonny Brewer and I enjoyed it so much I keep going back. There are lot of wonderful reasons to go to a library book club so I made a list:

1. The book is free! I get to check it out for at least six weeks before the actual meeting too.

2. There is a core group that is always the same but I always get to meet several different people, even a few men come!

3. I never have to clean my house, provide treats and find somewhere for the rest of my family to go! The Library always provides a comfortable meeting room and refreshments.

4. The discussions are always led by our librarian who takes suggestions and the books she picks are always well researched and she provides lots of additional information.

5. We have met several authors in person and over the phone.

The other cool thing about the library book club is we participate in the All Iowa Reads program.

The All Iowa Reads program is a book selected every year to encourage Iowans statewide to read and talk about a single title in the same year. The books are selected by members of the Iowa Center for the Book advisory council. The criteria used to select a book are

1. Be available in paperback, large print and unabridged audio

2 Lend itself to in-depth discussion and raise universal social issues relevant to Iowans

3. Be accessible to adults and high school age youth

4. It is desirable, but not required, that the book:

Have an Iowa or Midwest connection

Is a recent publication that has not been widely read

This year the selected book is Digging to America by Anne Tyler

Past selections are:

2007. Splendid Solution: Jonas Salk and the Conquest of Polio by Jeffrey Kluge

2006. Gilead by Marilynne Robinson

2005. The Master Butchers Singing Club by Louise Erdrich

Our library book club summer list is Digging to America by Anne Tyler

Looking For Salvation at the Dairy Queen by Susan Gregg Gilmore

Five Quarters of an Orange by Joanne Harris

Blogger Bio:  I am a wife and mom of two lovely boys. I also tutor Special Ed students at the college level. I just started a book review website with a companion blog My passion is reading and sharing books so I invite authors and publishers to contact me since I would love to help you get the word out about your book!

***Would you like to share about your book club here at Books on the Brain? If so, leave a comment and I will get in touch with you about a guest post!

For previous volumes of In Praise of Book Clubs, click HERE

For more info on starting your own book club, click HERE

For fun ways to make your book club better, click HERE

For a chance to win JANEOLOGY by Karen Harrington, click HERE


7 Responses

  1. Your library book club probably has a more diverse range of ages (as well as the occasional man, as you note).

    Last Fall we started a neighborhood book group – we range from late 30s to early 70s (about 10 at each meeting, all women). It’s great to have more varied perspectives; the book groups I belonged to previously were much more homogeneous (we all had kids around the same age, or spent a lot of time together outside the book group)

    The Iowa Reads program sounds interesting.

  2. What a wonderful post! You encourage me to look into our local libraries for a book club. I haven’t really researched that yet. I would really enjoy having a talk about books facilitated by a librarian. Thanks for sharing!

  3. I am also part of a library group…but I found it odd that the librarians for our library do not participate (in any way) in the group. They just provide the space for us and post our fliers. It would be nice once in awhile for them to at least visit a meeting or two.

  4. Thank you for this post – it persuaded me enough to begin looking at possible book club locations (and I don’t know why I never considered my library’s own book club!).

  5. Dawn, You’re book club sounds great! I agree about the varied ages gives different perspectives and brings alot to the group
    Literate Housewife Thanks so much. You should check out your library group:)
    Ti That is odd that the librarian doesn’t participate! They should in my opinion
    Lisa, thanks so much for letting me brag about my book club and Iowa Reads. I Love your website!! You are a sweetie:)

  6. Tracy, thanks for sharing about your book club. I enjoyed reading your post.

    Lisa, I have really enjoyed this series. Are you still open for contributions? I’d love to write about the two clubs I’m part of.

    Let me know!

  7. Hello! I wanted to Drop! on your EntreCard Widget, but I could not find it?

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