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17 October 2012

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This is a great topic! I'm not a working librarian right now, but I am trying my first book group at my branch library. (See CR's reasons for why I've never done one of these except her menage!) Since its October, the book is Stephen King's Pet Semetary (the book discussion will include watching the movie.) I thought the first "rule" of book group selections was not to choose genre fiction, but as I read the book and think about the possible topics to discuss, I think these rules are meant to be bent including the one on nonfiction. I love your suggestion on reading different books by the same author or books on similar themes. What about books on opposing ideas? Maybe even a month that asks readers to read a book that contradicts their own ideas? I'm looking forward to reading your notes!


Hi Sarah. Thank you for visiting us in Richland County. We really enjoyed it and learned a lot. Jim

Venta,
For myself, I kind of wish a library would do a "kids friendly" book group or something. I'm sure it would be a nightmare in practice, but I wouldn't mind meeting up with a few others watching kids during the day and discussing books. You know, while the kids are just in the room with you, reading their books or playing or whatever, while we just keep half an eye on them. A gal can dream, right? Let me know how your explorations of library book groups go!

I think genre picks are a great choice for book groups, and it almost seems to me lately that all (library) book groups I see are genre-related. Mystery, Fantasy, etc.

All of this reminds me we should Menage here soon!

Jim,
It was my pleasure. Thank YOU.

I have done tons of nonfiction books for book discussions (including one just last night, on The Latehomecomer by Kao Kalia Yang). I am of course doubtless biased, since I have a master's degree in nonfiction writing, but I've never found it any less worthy of discussion (or any less easy to discuss) than fiction.

I am too tired now to recall specific titles that worked well, but my general "pick at least some books people will hate" strategy always seems to lead to good discussions.

I would LOVE a kid-friendly book group. Maybe I should start one.

Laura,
How did discussing "The Latehomecomer" go?
LOVE the tip about picking some books people will hate. Good tip, that.
I wish you and Baby X lived near us so we could start our own kid-friendly book group! :)

My book group in Seoul read Escape From Camp 14 by Blaine Harden.

Our book club mixes in 2 or 3 nonfic choices each year - right now we are reading The Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius and all of us enjoyed Egger's Zeitoun a few years ago. Other titles: The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman, Little Bighorn by Joe Marshall III, Cheryl Strayed's Wild, Three Cups of Tea and Same Kind of Different as Me by Ron Hall and ?. I missed the month when we read one by a local author: Dirty Bombshell by Lorna Brunelle. Unbroken was suggested last month but got voted down.

But, really? We really don't get much book discussion at our meetings. OR not as much as I would like. :)

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