Running a book club – general advice
Do you like to meet new people? Do you like to talk about the books you read? Why not start a community book club at the library! The library has the space and books, as well as the information you need to help you get the group launched. Read below for some resources to get you started.
Use your library card to access Novelist, full of resources for readers and book clubs including Book Discussion Guides, Read-Alike lists, Recommended Reading in different categories, etc.
Picking books to read
Once you find some potential books for your club to read, check the library catalog to make sure there are enough copies for all the members of your book club to place holds on one. If you pick new best-selling books, you’ll often find that many of our copies are checked out, so you may want to look for books that have been in circulation for a couple of years.
If you would like more help finding a title for a book group, please ask a library staff person at one of the branches or contact us by phone or email.
Once you find some potential books for your club to read, check the library catalog to make sure there are enough copies for the members of your book club to place a hold on one. If you pick new best-selling books, you’ll often find that many of our copies are checked out, so you may want to look for books that have been in circulation for a couple of years.
Each member of your book club will be responsible for reserving and checking out his or her own copy of the book.
To place a hold on a book owned by FCPL, see our FAQ “How do I reserve a book?”
If FCPL doesn’t own enough copies of your club’s selected book, members may contact an FCPL staff member to help them request the title through Interlibrary Loan*. Such requests will typically take a week or 2 to arrive, so please schedule your request accordingly.
Book club members may also request books through Direct Loan.
*Note: Although normally you can place your own InterLibrary Loan requests, when FCPL owns copies of the item you are requesting, a staff member will need to place your request.
Keep your book club’s discussion on track with questions and prompts about the book’s plot and themes.
Harper Collins discussion guides
Harper Collins publishing company offers guides for many of its books, browseable by title, author, or topic
ReadingGroupGuides: What to do when there’s no guide available
Reserving Meeting space
Several branches – Brunswick, C. Burr Artz Public Library, Emmitsburg Library, Thurmont Regional Library, and Urbana Regional Library – offer meeting rooms that can be reserved through our website. Rooms can be booked 3 months in advance.
If your book club would like to meet at one of the other library branches, talk to a branch staff member to see if meeting time and space for your group can be arranged.