Welcome to my new feature Ultimate Guide to Book Clubs, in which I will do my best to answer all of the questions you may have about joining a book club. Why take part? Where can you find one? What actually happens at a book club meeting? Do you have to be a scholar of high-brow literature to be welcome?
This week I will be sharing my top 7 reasons to join a book club:
1.Meet like-minded people
Personally, this was the main reason that I joined my book club. None of my friends were really into reading and I wanted some people to talk books with! It’s not all about the books either, we chat about plenty of other things as well and take a genuine interest in each other’s lives.
My book club is made up of a huge range of different backgrounds, ages and occupations but we all have one thing in common – a love of reading.
2. Become more motivated to read
As they say, there’s nothing like a deadline! I am always motivated to read more when my book club meeting is approaching and I want to get the pick of the month finished. I have also buddy-read trickier books such as Les Miserablés with friends from my book club which really helped.
3. Add variety to your reading life
Being in a book club encourages you to read books that you might not normally pick up – and often I have ended up becoming addicted! I now read a much wider variety and I’ve got into entire new genres including non-fiction and poetry.
The books we have read together have removed some of my prejudices surrounding certain genres.
4. Get more out of the books you read
I find that I always remember books better if I’ve read them with my book club; I think about them more as I’m reading them. Listening to new ideas at the meeting can also completely change the way that I think about a story.
5. Improve your confidence
When I first started attending, I used to just quietly listen in the corner most of the time. However, now I’ll happily get involved in debates and stand up for my opinions (and poor Anne Bronte!)
6. Looks good on application forms
I’m really not a fan of doing things just for your CV, but an additional pro of being in a book club is that it does look quite impressive in that menacing hobbies & interests section. It definitely helped with my English Literature university application.
The skills developed at book club without you even realising it, such as confidence, debate and communication, can help to enhance your CV.
7. Blogging material
In-depth discussions about books have helped me to write more detailed book reviews and find new angles to discuss what I’m reading.
Bonus: it’s fun!
My book club is one of my favourite events each month and I look forward to it a great deal. If you’re into reading, whatever the author, genre or interest, there will be a book club for you somewhere out there! Look out for next week’s feature on how to find a book club to join.
Are you in a book club? What is your favourite thing about it? Let me know in the comments – I would love to hear from you!