Book Club Benefits

7

I’m a firm believer that every mommy needs time to herself doing whatever makes her happy. It could be scrap-booking, running, sewing, maybe even cooking! For me it’s reading. Buying a new book makes me a little giddy, and it’s my time to get away, to escape. People often ask me “when do you have time to read”? Honestly, I don’t know! All I know is that I totally believe you make time for what you love. If you love and have a passion for doing something, you will find the time to do it.

What makes a book more enjoyable is when you can talk about it, right? How many times have you read a really good book and just wanted to run to someone and say, “Oh my goodness, what did you think about this?” Your hubby isn’t always the best option because let’s face it, if you’re like me and your spouse has different taste in hobbies than you, it’s hard to talk to someone who hasn’t read the book. They just don’t get it!

booksI was blessed to be surrounded with friends at work who were fellow readers – given that we were all teachers, I guess that was a good thing. We found ourselves always giving each other book recommendations and talking about books, so we decided to create a book club. Best.Decision.Ever. We kept it fairly small, set up some “guidelines” for how we wanted to it work, and our book club was born! Every month I had an evening out of the house to be with some of my favorite girls, to eat together, to drink together, to laugh together, and most importantly to talk! It quickly became something I looked forward to all month.

Here’s why I loved book club so much:

1. It made me read books I probably wouldn’t have picked up on my own. The Handmaid’s Tale and The Red Tent are two amazing examples of this.

2. It has given me some of my favorite reads. The Art of Fielding and The Art of Racing in the Rain. {Just a coincidence they both start with ‘The Art’}

3. It has made me think and discuss really difficult/delicate issues. Room, The Kitchen House, and The Glass Castle are tough but amazing reads.

 

There are so many ways to “run” a book club, but it is really important that you put guidelines in place to make it run smoothly. So here is how we set ours up:

1. Assign months at the beginning. So if there are six girls in your club, run your book club in a six month cycle, where each girl gets a month. On your month you select the book that everyone will read.

2. Designate a night your book club will meet. I suggest choosing the same night each month, like the last Friday of the month, or something like that. That way the date is always the same, it’s on your calendar, and it’s easier to remember and plan around.

3. Decide where to meet. When we first started ours, we would meet at a restaurant. After closing down a couple of restaurants and getting kinda loud, we quickly realized meeting at someone’s house was the way to go. So whoever’s month it was, that was the girl who hosted!

4. Set a price limit. This is something you don’t have to do, but I think helps. We decided to make ours paperback only, mainly due to cost of hardback books. Over time though, we all started using e-readers, so that helped out with just published book costs.

Book clubs are so much fun. Even if you’re not an avid reader I encourage you to grab your gal pals and give it a try! You will have so many interesting conversations and explore so many issues. You may discover a new love for reading and if not, then it can still be a night well spent with friends….and we mamas can all use those!

So what are your thoughts on book clubs?  Or if you’re already in one, what are your top book club reads?

7 COMMENTS

  1. My favorite book from my book club has been ‘The Outlander’. This one has been great because it was the first book to a 7-part (so far) series and several of us have continued to read the series and discuss it (I just finished book 5). STARZ is also making a TV show out of it so we discuss casting news and plan to watch it all together. 🙂 I also loved ‘Before I Go to Sleep’. I totally agree that it has made me read books I wouldn’t normally, and we have lots of great discussion from it. And the wine drinking doesn’t hurt either! I find that I don’t get out very often to socialize (as a ‘working outside the home’ mom I’d prefer my free time to be with the kids), but I NEVER miss book club!

  2. I LOVE my book club. we’ve been going strong for almost 4 years I think. a couple more tips I would add:

    – get a library card. that way if you’re on a fence about a particular book, you don’t have to commit to buying it and you can still pick it up. the FW library has an ever-expanding e-library too

    – start a Goodreads group. it’s fun to keep track of what your book club has read and to see reviews on what people read in between our monthly selections

  3. I’m a huge fan of book clubs and coordinating groups of people who enjoy reading as much as I do. Two years ago, I created a local book club with women I knew from church and helped them establish their own small group that meets once a month. I attend when I can but I’m still a reading machine!

    You have certainly read some FABULOUS books mentioned above …… especially The Red Tent and Room, wow, those are definitely page-turners. If you’ve not read LITTLE BEE (shown in the photo above), it’s another great read and discussion book for groups.

    Nicole @ Three 31
    https://nicoleandkevin.wordpress.com/

  4. Alena, we used to love when our books were made into movies. We always went to see them together and a whole different conversation happened, comparing book to movie!!

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here