R.A.Y. Resources

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Selected Resources for Book Clubs

About the Program | Title List | F.A.Q. | Discussion Tips | Book Clubs

Are you interested in starting a book club or looking for ideas to enhance your book club? Check out the Library’s print and online resources. All the books listed below are available from the Yolo County Library. Additionally, you can access the online resources from the library or from the comfort of your own home.

Print Resources

Bloomsbury Essential Guide for Reading Groups by Susan Osborne

Bloomsbury Essential Guide for Reading Groups by Susan Osborne (2008)
If you want to gain new insight into literature and share your passion with friends, this book offers readers' guides for seventy-five of the very best reads-guaranteed to provoke spirited debate. Each of the readers' guides includes a summary of the book, a brief author biography, discussion points to spark debate, and a set of titles for further reading that deal with similar themes.

The Book Club Bible

The Book Club Bible: the definitive guide that every book club member needs with a forward by Lionel Shriver (2008)
Containing a diverse selection of books to choose from, the guide includes a non-spoiler synopsis, background information on the author, historical context, interesting discussion points and facts, and potential companion volumes. Compiled by a range of English literature experts and avid readers, this informative and enthusiastic guide is guaranteed to inspire.

The Book Club Companion by Diana Loevy

The Book Club Companion: a comprehensive guide to the reading group experience by Diana Loevy (2006)
While Loevy covers the basics, offering tips for organizing book clubs and dealing with common problems, she takes it one step further by suggesting menus (including recipes), drinks, music, and special settings related to her various themes such as Brit Lit, Nonfiction, and Noir.

The Mother-Daughter Book Club by Shireen Dodson

The Mother-Daughter Book Club: how ten busy mothers and daughters came together to talk, laugh and learn through their love of reading by Shireen Dodson with Teresa Baker (2007)
Dodson based this step-by-step guide on her own experience of forming a mother-daughter book club and advocates that such groups can encourage confidence and independence in girls while increasing communication and enriching the mother-daughter relationship.

Read It and Eat by Sarah Gardner

Read it and Eat: a month-by-month guide to scintillating book club selections and mouthwatering menus by Sarah Gardner (2005)
Sharing a meal that compliments the book your group is discussing can enhance the entire experience. Gardner suggests a wide array of titles, organizing them by monthly themes and including recipes.

The Reader's Choice by Victoria Golden McMains

The Readers’ Choice: 200 book club favorites by Victoria Golden McMains (2000)
McMains surveyed more than 70 reading groups nationwide to come up with this list of 200 titles. Reviews and a few discussion questions are provided for each title. Additionally, the first chapter offers tips on forming a book club and selecting titles.

The Reading Group Handbook by Rachel W. Jacobsohn

The Reading Group Handbook by Rachel W. Jacobsohn (1998)
Jacobsohn, a professional book club leader, provides readers with an experienced eye, covering everything from recruiting members to sharing hosting responsibilities. This book is a must-read for first-time book club leaders and members.

A Year of Reading by Elisabeth Ellington and Jane Freimiller

A Year of Reading: a month-by-month guide to classics and crowd-pleasers for you and your book group by Elisabeth Ellington and Jane Freimiller (2002)
This title offers book clubs themed monthly selections in the following categories: “Crowd-pleaser”, “Classic”, “Challenge”, “Memoir”, and “Potluck”. For each title, the authors’ provide a summary, author information, discussion questions, author bibliographies, read-alike suggestions, and video and Internet resources.


Online Resources

NoveList (EBSCO Host Database)
NoveList is a fiction database that provides subject heading access, reviews, annotations, and much more for over 147,000 fiction titles. It also includes other content of interest to fiction readers, such as Author Read-alikes, What We're Reading, Book Discussion Guides, BookTalks, and Annotated Book Lists.
Note: Home access requires your library card number.

Devoted to current fiction and nonfiction books. Contains information for starting a book club, including hundreds of discussion guides "with a substantial excerpt and multiple reviews of each book." Also features interviews with authors, bestseller lists, discussion forums, and more. Searchable and browsable.

Book Movement
This site offers registered clubs an Essential Book Club Planner where clubs create their own private, customized web page on which they can post book selections and send notices to members. Users have access to over 800 reading guides that include publisher-provided discussion questions, an email link to the author, and web links to author and publisher websites.

An online community dedicated to books and book clubs. This site offers reading guides, discussion tips, information on how to start and lead a book club, and global menus and recipes to compliment your book.

Oprah’s Book Club
The Web site for daytime talk show host Oprah Winfrey offers this week's schedule, information about Oprah's Book Club, all previous book club selections, topics of discussion, her biography, details on how to become a guest, and more.

A good site for readers advisory in libraries and for readers themselves. This site includes recommended booklists in genre fiction, a discussion area, "hot lists" of forthcoming hardcover fiction releases, and lists of books that received at least one "starred review" in a major journal. Previously titled Book Links.

Reader’s Circle
"An online directory for book clubs, reading groups, and literary salons of all kinds" in the U.S., Canada, and Australia. Search by zip code or type of club (such as social or academic).

This site was "built especially for reading groups, providing them with all they need to make their book club experience better than ever." Presents the publisher's reading guides by category, title, and author name, along with advice, interviews, recipes, a newsletter, and online community for readers and book clubs. From The Book Report Network.