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Our 2016 Favorite Books Winners Are…

Thank you to everyone who filled out our 2016 survey!
We hope you enjoy looking at the 2016 Favorite Books Lists!

The Winners of our survey drawing to win a gift certificate to a local bookstore and a package of RGC-recommended books for your entire group are. . .

Dunes West Book Marks
Charleston, South Carolina

Our group is the Dunes West Book Marks and we have been meeting for seventeen years. We meet one evening a month either at a member’s home or our neighborhood clubhouse.

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Name Inspiration for Your Reading Groups

To Name or Not to Name? It’s not surprising that reading groups find creative ways to describe themselves, and we are the lucky ones who get to hear fun and unique names from around the world.

We know how much effort is put into selecting the perfect name that reflects the character of the group, the history of the group, and the mission of the group. It might even be harder than selecting the books you read! If you haven’t named your group yet, or if you’re just starting your group, we hope you find some inspiration below!

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How to Prepare for Discussion

We receive so many suggestions for how to make discussions lively and interesting, and there is an enormous variety! But the one common element from the years of suggestions and experience is: a little preparation goes a long way!

In our annual survey, we ask groups about meeting preparation, and nearly 98% of groups prepare in some way before their meeting (and to be clear – that’s in addition to reading the book!).

We hope some of the ideas below, which come from reading groups worldwide, will help make your discussions even livelier. There are a few unique ideas too that go beyond the last-minute Wikipedia skimming on our phone (it’s okay – we’ve all done it!).

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When to Choose Your Books

Reading Groups tend to be an organized bunch, or there’s at least one of us in the group that is organized and handles the logistics. When to choose books might be a little less confusing than how to choose books, but it’s just as important.

In our annual survey we always ask our groups when they choose books, and we’ve received the same answers each year in the same order: Most groups (by a large majority) choose one book at a time to discuss, and a majority of those groups choose the book at the previous meeting or two meetings in advance.

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How to Choose the Next Book to Discuss

There are so many ways groups can choose the books they will read, but how do you figure out what works best specifically for your group?

In our annual survey, which we send out to our reading groups, readers have listed a number of options for selecting books, and many groups said they had to try out a few methods before finding the right fit – kind of like Goldilocks!

Some groups might have members with busy schedules who don’t have time to host and/or prepare to lead discussion. Some members might be happy having the choices left to a committee so that they can just show up and participate.

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