A book discussion club is a group of people who meet to discuss a book or books that they have read and express their opinions, likes, dislikes, etc. It is more often called simply a book club, a term that is also used to describe a book sales club, which can cause confusion. Other frequently used terms to describe a book discussion club include reading group, book group, and book discussion group. Book discussion clubs may meet in private homes, libraries, bookstores, online forums, pubs, and in cafes or restaurants over meals or drinks.
A practice also associated with book discussion, common reading program or common read, involves institutions encouraging their members to discuss select books in group settings; common reading programs are largely associated with educational institutions encouraging their students to hold book discussion meetings.
A single-title club is one in which people discuss a particular title that every person in the group has read at the same time, often with each member buying a personal copy. Clearly, the club must somehow decide ahead of time what that title will be. Some groups may decide to usually choose new release titles, whilst others may choose older ones, or a mixture of the two. If it is a book discussion club that meets at a library then each member may borrow a copy of the book from the library over a given timeframe in order for a later discussion.
There may be a few problems with these clubs, Some members may regard them as opportunities to meet people for social contact and general conversation, partially veering off onto a wide variety of non-literary topics, while others wish to engage in serious literary analysis focused on the book in question and related works, with little non-literary interaction. Additionally, some members may suggest a book not because they are interested in it from a literary point-of-view but because they think it will offer them an opportunity to make points of personal interest to them or fit an external agenda. Also, different expectations and education/skill levels may lead to conflicts and disappointments in clubs of this kind.
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