Last year, Oprah Winfrey re-launched her popular book club after a two-year hiatus, marking the return of America’s best-known reader’s group. That might have re-ignited interest in book clubs held in private homes and book stores, but there’s one spot that’s always been a favorite local meeting place for readers - Broward County Library. With 37 locations countywide, readers who love to talk about books can find like-minded people to chat about fiction, non-fiction, mysteries and more.
For many, the appeal of the book club/group is multi-faceted. You have the opportunity to meet and engage in discussions with interesting people in a friendly atmosphere. While some enjoy book clubs filled with best friends, others find that a book club is a great place to bring together a mix of people who might not otherwise meet, with the varying opinions, outlooks and world views, making for lively discussions.
While you’re meeting people you wouldn’t ordinarily meet, you’re also reading books you might not otherwise read. Book club suggestions bring you out of your literary comfort zone and give you a new lease on life. In addition, peer pressure encourages reluctant readers to finish up; no one wants to admit to not reading the book come meeting time.
Top Five Tips for a Successful Book Club
Whether you’re starting a club or joining one, follow these five tips for success:
- Be a good member: Without good members who read the books and come ready to talk literature, a book club can easily turn into a glorified coffee klatch. Members shouldn’t be too busy to read the books and should be motivated to discuss them in-depth.
- Be serious, but have fun: Successful book clubs mix intellectual and general-interest approaches for a blend of light and serious inquiry.
- Decide logistics up-front: Usually at library book clubs, a librarian leads the discussion and selects the books. Will others take on the role of leader? When will you meet? Where will you meet? Try to find a place in the library that is comfortable and conducive to discussion.
- Read to discuss: Make notes as you read. Identify themes, symbolism and structure in the story. Think of stimulating questions to inspire in-depth conversation.
- Incorporate food: Feed people. Whether the group offers a sign-up sheet for potluck or has refreshments provided by a library Friends group, food is always appreciated. Broward County Library has a number of book clubs that meet during lunch or brunch time, so it’s easy to mix books with bites. (And yes, there’s even a book club designed to do just that! See November 16 in the list below for details.)
Upcoming Book Clubs, Discussions and Reviews @ Broward County Library
Thinking of joining a club? Check out the list of clubs below and decide which interest you, and then select a library location and meeting time that’s convenient.
November 13 – Byblos Book Club, 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Weston Library
November 13 – Ruth E. Cohan Jewish Book Review Series: The Lawgiver by Herman Wouk, 2 to 3 p.m., Northwest Regional Library
November 14 – Friends of the Library Book Club, 1 to 3 p.m., Miramar Branch Library and Education Center
November 14 – Ruth E. Cohan Jewish Book Review Series: The Lawgiver by Herman Wouk, 1 to 2 p.m., Main Library
November 16 – Books and Bites Book Club, 3 to 4 p.m., Hallandale Beach Library
November 18 – Ruth E. Cohan Jewish Book Review Series: The Lawgiver by Herman Wouk, 2 to 3 p.m., Tamarac Library
November 19 – Book Discussion: Fin & Lady by Cathleen Schine, 2 to 3 p.m., Pompano Beach Library
November 19 – Let’s Talk About Books Book Club: The Innocents by Francesca Segal, 10:30 to 11:30 a.m., Southwest Regional Library
November 19 – Booked for Lunch Reads: The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris by David McCullough, 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Bring a bag lunch; Friends of Imperial Point Library will supply dessert, Imperial Point Library
November 19 – Book Discussion Group, 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., Stirling Road Library
November 20 – Beach Reader’s Book Club, 1 to 2:30 p.m., Beach Branch Library
November 20 – Let’s Talk About Books, 1 to 2 p.m., Pembroke Pines Library
November 20 – Ruth E. Cohan Jewish Book Review Series: The Lawgiver by Herman Wouk, 2 to 3 p.m., North Regional/Broward College Library
November 22 – West Regional Book Club: Eye Contact by Cammie McGovern, 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., West Regional Library
November 23 – Author Book Presentation: Miami Habla with author Adriana Blanco, 2 to 4 p.m., Weston Library
November 23 – Book Discussion: A Deadly Game, 2 to 3:34 p.m., African-American Research Library and Cultural Center
November 25 – Book Discussion: Peony by Pearl S. Buck, 2 to 3:30 p.m., Galt Ocean Mile Reading Center
November 25 – Jewish Book Discussion, 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., Century Plaza Leon Slatin Library
November 26 – Book Brunch, 10:30 to 11:45 a.m., Riverland Library
December 3 – Ruth E. Cohan Jewish Book Review Series: A Guide for the Perplexed by Dara Horn, 1 to 2 p.m., Pembroke Pines Library
December 3 – ShortCuts: Short stories book discussion, 1 to 2:30 p.m., North Regional/Broward College Library
December 3 – Grandma Max talks about her book, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., Sunrise Dan Pearl Library
December 4 – Reading Roundtable Book Discussion, 2 to 3:30 p.m., North Regional/Broward College Library
December 5 – Short Story Book Discussion, 12:30 to 2 p.m., South Regional/Broward College Library
December 5 – Rosa's Book Club, 1 to 2 p.m., North Lauderdale Saraniero Library
December 7 – Lauderdale Lakes Friends Book Club, 2 to 3 p.m., Lauderdale Lakes Library
December 9 – Ruth E. Cohan Jewish Book Review, 2 to 3 p.m., Tamarac Library
December 10 – Audio Book Club, 10:30 a.m. to 12 noon, Tyrone Bryant Library
December 11 – Ruth E. Cohan Jewish Book Review Series 2013-2014, 2 to 3 p.m., North Regional/Broward College Library
December 12 – Ruth E. Cohan Jewish Book Review Series 2013-2014, 1 to 2 p.m., Main Library
December 14 – Knit*Lit Book Club, 2 to 4 p.m., West Regional Library
Special Literary Event with Libby Hellman, Author of Havana Lost
Broward County Libraries Division and the Florida Center for the Book present a special literary event with Libby Hellman, author of the new novel Havana Lost. The event will be held at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, November 26 at Main Library. The event is free and open to the public. Please RSVP to 954-357-7386.
Havana Lost is award-winning author Libby Fischer Hellman’s tenth novel, and her third thriller to explore how strife and revolution affect the human spirit.
Books by the author will be available for sale and signing, and light refreshments will be served. For more information on this and other Florida Center for the Book events, please contact Tara Zimmermann, 954-357-7386.