The only thing better than losing yourself within the pages of a good book is discussing it with others who share the same passion. Book clubs are certainly not a new concept – book lovers have been gathering to discuss their favorite reads (and authors!) for centuries. In fact, the earliest recorded book clubs date back to the mid-1600s! As technology continues to advance, virtual book clubs have become more popular – offering bibliophiles with mobility or transportation challenges a new way to engage with like-minded individuals. There are dozens of online clubs covering just about every genre of literature – following are just a few.
The Girlfriend Book Club
Hosted by AARP, The Girlfriend Book Club is a private Facebook group with over 22,000 members. The community decides each month on the book they will read and discuss the following month. Members are also invited to participate in live chats with the author, also hosted on the group’s Facebook page. Recent selections include The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd and Big Summer by Jennifer Weiner.
The Reddit Book Club
Hosted by the popular social news aggregation site Reddit, the Reddit Book Club offers members their choice of several books per month to read and discuss with others. For those unfamiliar, Reddit can take a little getting used to, but the effort is well worth it. Topical tags allow members to easily access content related to the books the group is currently reading. Another fun and unique feature is the “Marginalia” tag, that encourages users to share the notes they have placed in the margins while reading, or passages they have highlighted.
Think of Goodreads as a digital library assistant. Members can keep track of, and write reviews for books they have read, receive recommendations for future reads, and connect with others in topic-based groups. From broad-based clubs like The Perks of Being a Book Addict to Horror Aficionados, Goodreads offers something for every book lover. Depending on the group you join, you will read a selected book, or dive deeper into a particular author or genre. Other features include reading challenges, as well as chats with authors.
The Rumpus Book Club
Providing a platform for new and yet-to-be discovered authors, The Rumpus is a community for those who love to write and to read. The Rumpus Book Club is their monthly subscription-based service featuring books that have not been released yet. Members discuss the book in their online Facebook group, and take part in a live chat with the author at the end of each month.
Modern Mrs. Darcy Book Club
A subscription-based virtual club, the Modern Mrs. Darcy Book Club is for those who are serious about taking their reading to the next level. In addition to the typical book-related discussions and author interviews, members also have access to a wide variety of classes aimed strengthening reading skills. How to write better book reviews, clearing book-related clutter, and learning how to journal are just a few of the topics covered.
Silent Book Club
Offering in-person groups all over the world, the Silent Book Club recently added a slew of online groups. Perfect for introverts, the concept of the club is fairly simple – members meet together for a drink and to spend time reading together. No discussion guides or worry over having to answer questions – just your favorite beverage and your current read. Bliss.