Why are we reading this book? Who suggested it? Do you ever get those questions in your book group? We didn’t get them often, but they did come up.
My friend Cathy started our book group about 14 years ago. It started as a social group for working moms at our church. The intention was to discuss good books, have some wine and catch up with friends. In the beginning, we would pick books at a meeting. Whoever could be there would suggest some books, then we would pick a few books for the upcoming months. With everyone’s schedule, it was difficult for some to make the meetings. As time went on, there were questions about the books and who was picking them.
In 2013, we decided to use a survey. The members nominated books and I created the online survey. The first time, I used an average rating for the survey. We quickly learned that it was hard to different between 20 books with the average rating. We didn’t get enough statistical spread. The next time, I used the ranking feature which means they have to rank ALL the books. This year, we had 28 books to rank. Not everyone likes the method because it is time consuming and it requires taking a look at all the books. The upside is the quality of books have improved and everyone can give their opinion. We keep it anonymous until books are finalized. We now pick books once a year and our group keeps growing and growing.
The question I get these days is what are you reading in your book club? Can I have the list?
Current book list for 2020-21
Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
The Dutch House by Ann Patchett
News of the World by Paulette Jiles
Pachinko by Min Jin Lee
Olive Again by Elizabeth Strout
Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
Catfishing on CatNet by Naomi Kritzer
Disappearing Earth by Julia Phillips
Call Your Daughter Home by Deb Spera