Making sure your book club doesn't become a wine club

Loren’s Alcohol-Free Co-Founder Kris Patrick has over twenty years of experience across book publishing, public libraries, and PreK-12 education.

oranges at a book club

Don’t choose the latest bestseller. Choose titles that are more likely to be on library and bookstore shelves. Waiting until a paperback version is available increases the likelihood that participants can score a copy. Participants can’t talk about the book if they haven’t read it!

Choose books that spark dialogue. Talk to a bookseller or librarian for ideas. Historical fiction typically works well, but try to mix up the setting. Participants will tire if every title is World World II-related. We love Cynthia and Maddy at MacArthur Books in The Village of West Clay and Brian at the Carmel Clay Public Library for recommendations.

Watch the page count. Long page counts can be discouraging. This is especially true for busy people who are relying on pockets of time to get through a text. Aim for 300-350 pages or less. Be mindful of small print and slim margins.

Print some discussion questions ahead of time. It doesn’t mean you have to use them. You can Google the book title + discussion questions, but most publishers are producing questions a set as part of their marketing efforts. You may need to find the publisher or author's website. 

Provide alcohol-free drink options. Most book clubs take place on weeknights. Even though everyone in your group might identify as a wine drinker, you never know who might be taking the night off or setting some new health goals. We recommend adding a bottle or two of Giesen Sauvignon Blanc, Rosé, or Premium Red ($15 each) to your beverage tub.

Reprinted from our Holiday Gift & Wine Guide.

Illustrations by Andee Simpson

Cover photo by Aung Soe Min on Unsplash  


Making sure your book club doesn't become a wine club
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