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Book Group Buzz

A Booklist Blog
Book group tips, reading lists, & lively talk of literary news from the experts at Booklist Online

Archive for March, 2008

Wed, March 19th, 2008
Let's try this at home
Posted by: Kaite Stover

I’m verklempt. On 12 marrt Boekenweek 2008 began in Amsterdam and I’m not there. This annual book festival celebrates reading in all its glory. Readers are first-class citizens in this world class city. This year the theme celebrates senior citizens. The kick off event was a piano concert in the Amsterdam City Theatre presented by […]


Tue, March 18th, 2008
Books find a home, homeless find books
Posted by: Kaite Stover

I want to be surprised by the following news story, but I’m not. I say that because it just seems so obvious, creating a book discussion group for some of a library’s most faithful and widely read patrons, the homeless. This project is the sort of low maintenance, low cost program almost any library can host. […]


Tue, March 18th, 2008
10 Innovative Ways to Recharge Your Book Club
Posted by: admin

Is your book club in a well-worn rut?  Are you satisfied but not stimulated?  Has your book club become as predictable as the ending to Pride and Prejudice? Well, in the spirit of spring renewal, here are 10 field-tested tips to help revitalize your book club and encourage your members to reengage!  Photo by Gallebee […]


Tue, March 18th, 2008
Chairman Ted’s Little Brown Book
Posted by: Gary Niebuhr

  It is an honor to be on the same team with one of my mentors, Ted Balcom. Let’s step into the Wayback Machine (for the young:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wayback_Machine). Way back in the early nineties, four Milwaukee-area librarians attended the same Public Library Association event in Chicago.  These were seminars held in the years that the […]


Mon, March 17th, 2008
READABLE VS. DISCUSSABLE
Posted by: Ted Balcom

A friend told me recently about a discussion she led that didn’t go well.  “They hated the book!” she said, referring to her group, which has been meeting at the local library for many years.  “They said it was the worst book I’ve ever asked them to read.  They said they could hardly get through […]


Sun, March 16th, 2008
The Double Bind
Posted by: Misha Stone

Chris Bohjalian is the kind of author who tackles timely issues.  He crafts his fiction around topics like midwifery or animal rights or sexual identity and then humanizes and fleshes out the topics with characters and plot.  Another popular author who does this is Jodi Picoult.  I compare these two authors a lot. (Oh, and […]


Sat, March 15th, 2008
Wordless book: Discuss
Posted by: Kaite Stover

Seems kind of unusual, asking a book group to discuss a book without text. But I think it’s possible. Especially with The Arrival by Shaun Tan. This haunting, poignant and compelling picture book tells the classic story of an immigrant coming to a new country. The nameless male protagonist (a husband and father) leave his […]


Fri, March 14th, 2008
What We Never Discuss: the Physicality of Books, Part 1
Posted by: admin

The riddle? What’s that thing called – the kettle? The device that’s going to replace books in the future – the rattle? It will come to me. One thing book junkies never talk about is what we FEEL when we read. That’s why people who aren’t book junkies can think an electronic gizmo could induce […]


Thu, March 13th, 2008
Book Group Toolbox #31: The Readers' Choice
Posted by: Kaite Stover

Recently I gave a workshop on Book Group Basics–starting, facilitating, choosing titles, that sort of thing. Don’t look at me like that. There are still folks out there who don’t belong to a book club and think it might be nifty to start one. One of the print resources I bring with me is The […]


Wed, March 12th, 2008
You Don't Need to Read the Same Book, Part 3
Posted by: Neil Hollands

I hope this set of messages has convinced a few of you to try a discussion of multiple books at a future group meeting. If you do, you’ll find that the mechanics change when everyone reads a different book. Here are ten hints to make sure your discussion doesn’t trip over too many titles:  1) Don’t Give […]





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