Choosing A Book For Book Club

Shutterstock / Lana U © choosing a book for book club

Anyone who has been part of a book club knows that strange sense of dread when asked to pick the next book. Who knew that choosing book club books could be so fraught!

At the DC Thomson Book Club, it’s now time to choose the next batch of books for the year ahead.

Last year, we all chose a book and submitted it anonymously. The choices were then shuffled to decide which book we would read for each month. Then we had to each guess who picked which book. It was much more difficult to guess than we anticipated!

We’re using the same method this year as the anonymous aspect is fun, even though we’re a bit rubbish at it.

But no one wants to be the person to pick the worst book, even though they often generate the best discussions.

Overhyped Books

We’ve noticed a pattern over the years – when we choose a book that has been raved about, we tend to be disappointed.

Is it a case of the Emperor’s New Clothes, or is it that we put too high an expectation on it and it ends up falling short?

So, I think I’ll steer clear of choosing something I’ve heard lots about this time. Too risky.

No favourites

It takes a brave person to suggest a book they adore for book club! I couldn’t do it.

Although it is tempting to introduce a favourite to lots of people and have a lengthy discussion about it . . . it could backfire.

I picked a book once that I had read and enjoyed. It wasn’t a favourite, but I liked it. I spent the whole discussion trying not to be too defensive!

What to pick?

I can’t reveal what I’ve chosen here, because there are a few book club members who will see it . . .

Instead, I’ll just say that I’ve whittled my list down to about five different options.

Part of the fun is that you never know how other people are going to interpret the book you choose!

Even the way the reader consumes the book can make a difference in a person’s experience with a story, as we recently discovered when we talked about audiobooks.

In the end, I just can’t wait to find out what we’ll be reading this year. It’s always a great time!


Abigail Phillips

Abbie is the newest member of the fiction team at the "Friend." She loves how varied the role is - every day is different and there is always a new story to read. She is keen to work closely with established writers and discover new writers, too.