Book Clubs

XMen56CoverBook Clubs! They’re great, and also super not amenable to a weekly publishing schedule. So in the interest of giving people a more useful setup, we’ve decided to move book club events to this page!

That means Book Clubs specifically, “book” type events will still be in the newsletter. We’re just not going to tell you about how you can read a 400-page novel tonight if you want to discuss it tomorrow anymore.

Note: this is not an exhaustive list! We’re still finding new book clubs, and we’ll be happy to add any here that you see missing!

So without further ado:


Newly Added!

Meets: Every month starting March 15th at Panera Bread at 935 Riverdale St, West Springfield
The Harry Potter and the Sacred Text Club of Western Mass will be modeled on the podcast Harry Potter & The Sacred Text (http://www.harrypottersacredtext.com). We will use the podcast’s example to closely examine themes in Harry Potter through discussion and through traditional forms of sacred reading.The group is aimed at adult Potter fans, but we also welcome young fans who want to engage in serious discussion of the books.
Sunderland Library World Literature Book Club
Meets: January 23rd 5:30pm to 6:30pm
January Book: The Invisible Life of Euridice Gusmao by Martha Batalha
Around the World in Twelve books!

 

Meetup Groups [Various Locations]:

Meets: Every month-ish
This club focuses on science fiction (you can tell by the name) and generally has a limit of 12 participants. They meet in downtown Northampton, usually at either Mama Iguana’s or the back room at Packard’s.

Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060]:

Meets: First Monday of the month 7:00pm – 8:30pm
February Book: The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen
March Book: How To Be A Good Wife by Emma J. Chapman
April Book: How To Be Both by Ali Smith
Respectful, queer/LGBT-friendly, easy-going bunch who want an excuse to get out more and talk about books. And have some snacks.
Meets: First Wednesday of the month 7:00pm – 8:00pm
February Book: Dawn by Octavia E. Butler
March Book: A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller, Jr.
April Book: The Nightmare Stacks by Charles Stross
May Book: The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
June Book: The Time Machine by H.G. Wells
July Book: The Core of the Sun by Johanna Sinisalo
Anyone interested in Science Fiction or Fantasy is welcome! Although they focus on the selection of the month, they will discuss any topics related to Science Fiction or Fantasy books or movies. Copies of the discussion book are available in the library to check out!
Meets: Second Wednesday of the month 7:00pm – 8:00pm
February Book: 1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created by Charles C. Mann
March Book: The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben
April Book: Sapiens by Yuval Harari
May Book: Soul of the Octopus by Sy Montgomery
June Book: The Emperor of All Maladies: a Biography of Cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee
July Book: When the Rivers Run Dry by Fred Pearce
The Nature and Environment Book Club is devoted to the best of nature writing and environmental reporting with discussions on the second Wednesday of each month.
Meets: Second Monday of the month 6:30pm – 8:30pm
February Book: Wolf Hall by Hilary Martel
March Book: Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather
April Book: Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
May Book: How to be both by Ali Smith
June Book: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
July Book: Christ Stopped at Eboli by Carlo Levi
Literary minded discussion. Open to new members.
Meets: Third Friday of the month 1:00pm – 2:00pm
January Book: The Alice Network by Kate Quinn
February Book: The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
March Book: The Stone in the Skull by Elizabeth Bear
April Book: A Catalog of Birds by Laura Harrington
May Book: The Radium Girls by Kate Moore
June Book: The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro
The Afternoon Book Discussion group meets on the 3rd Friday of the month in the Watson Room for a casual hour long discussion. The reading selections are mostly fiction choices with a sprinkling of non-fiction, young adult, and classics with an emphasis on books appealing to an eclectic taste as well as those with interesting points of discussion.  Pre-registration is not required and drop-ins are welcome. Tea and light refreshments are served.
Meets: Third Monday of the month 7:00pm – 8:30pm
January Book: Moby Dick, or, The Whale by Herman Mellville
February Book: The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
March Book: Candide, or, Optimism by Voltaire
April Book: The Group by Mary McCarthy
May Book: Play It as It Lays by Joan Didion
June Book: Germinal by Emile Zola
July Book: The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
The Great Books discussion is structured so that the evening’s selected reading is discussed in a think tank environment with the intention of gaining insight from other readers that one would not have by reading alone. The seminar facilitator asks questions of the participants about the reading selection and helps the discussion stay focused. Our main goal is to have fun and take many interpretations from the group in order to enjoy a greater understanding of a selected reading.
Meets: Third Monday of the month 7:00pm – 8:30pm
January Book: Shattered by Dick Francis
February Book: The Fallen Angel by Daniel Silva
March Book: The Merlot Murders by Ellen Crosby
April Book: The Mao Case by Qiu Xiaolong
May Book: The State of the Onion by Julie Hyzy
June Book: Sacred Games by Vikram Chandra
The Mystery Book Discussion Group meets monthly at the library for a casual discussion. New members are always welcome. Pick up a copy of this month’s discussion book at the library.
Meets: Third Thursday of the month 3:30pm – 4:30pm
Current Book: The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman
An informal hour long discussion led by Kat Janeczek. The selections are both fiction and non-fiction, chosen to appeal to a wide variety of people and provoke interesting discussion. Snacks will be provided!

Jones Library [43 Amity St, Amherst, MA 01002]:

Meets: First Tuesday of the month 6:30pm – 8:15pm
This club will discuss a monthly selection, as well as other books and movies of interest. All are welcome, whether you have read the book or not! The club meets on the first Tuesday of the month, from 7 to 9 p.m (and from 6:30-8:15 in July, August, and September). The discussion is moderated by Amherst resident Paul Budney, a retired mathematics professor and long-time enthusiast of science fiction & fantasy books and movies. Contact Linda Wentworth, wentworthl@joneslibrary.org for more information.
Meets: First Thursday of the month 6:00pm – 7:00pm
Interested in what the teens are reading? Just a fan of YA literature? Young at heart? A vampire, keeping up with you apparent age by staying up on what teens are up to? This book club discusses one YA title a month!
Meets: Saturdays, 2:00pm – 3:00pm
This club reads books widely considered classics in the English and American traditions. Recent selections include: Pale Fire, Middlemarch, Light in August, Their Eyes Were Watching God, and Bleak House. The group will meet at the Jones Library from 2:30 to 4 p.m. on the scheduled Saturdays (see above). For more information, contact Jones Library staff member Seth Rothberg at 413-259-3092 or rothbergs@joneslibrary.org, or visit their Classics Book Club blog.
Meets: Second Thursday of the month 7:00pm – 8:30pm
This club focuses on recent works of literary fiction and occasional non-fiction. We normally meet from 7 to 8 p.m. on the second Thursday of the month. Copies of the current book are available to borrow at the Reference Desk. For more information, please contact Jones Library staff member Linda Wentworth at wentworthl@joneslibrary.org.
Meets: Second Tuesday of the month 7:00pm – 8:15pm
Does expanding awareness of social differences interest and concern you? By encouraging ourselves to think outside familiar “boxes” and by imagining what it would be like to walk in another’s shoes, we challenge each other to do just that! All are welcome to join us. We normally meet on the second Tuesday of the month, from 7 to 8:15 pm. Copies of the current book are available to borrow at the Reference Desk. For more information, please contact volunteer Caryl-Rose Pofcher at mydogtraining@aol.com or Jones Library staff member Linda Wentworth at wentworthl@joneslibrary.org.
Meets: Monthly September to May, on the 3rd Wednesday of the month!
This club meets monthly from September through May at the Munson Memorial Library in South Amherst. All are welcome to join us. For more information, please contact Munson Library staff member Sue Hugus at 413-259-3095 or huguss@joneslibrary.org.

Odyssey Bookshop [Mount Holyoke College, 9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075]:

Meets: Third Monday of the month 7:00pm – 8:30pm
January Book: Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
February Book: All The Lights We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
The group reads one paperback novel a month and its discussions are led by local author Ellen Meeropol. The group typically meets the third Monday of each month at 7 p.m.
Meets: Second Monday of the month 7:00pm – 8:30pm
February Book: Girl Waits With Gun by Amy Stewart
March Book: Brighton by Michael Harvey
April Book: All Things Cease to Appear by Elizabeth Brundage
May Book: The Cold Dish by Craig Johnson
The group reads one paperback mystery a month and its discussions are led by co-owner Neil Novik. The group typically meets the second Monday of each month at 7 p.m.
Meets: Last Sunday of the month 4:00pm – 5:30pm
Current Book: Slavery By Another Name by Douglas Blackmon
Join this group to discuss current affairs in the US and around the world. Future topics will include the environment, racism, economic and gender inequality, and worker’s rights. This group meets monthly on the last Sunday of the month and is lead by Joan Grenier and Jon Weissman.
Meets: Third Sunday of every month at 11:00am
January Book: Tempest by Not Shakespeare jk jk
February Book: Cymbeline by Shakespeare’s Mom
This group reads one play each month and its discussions are led by UMass Professor Arthur Kinney. The group typically meets the third Sunday of each month at 11 a.m.
Meets: Second Thursday of the month 6:00pm – 7:30pm
February Book: Turtles All the Way Down by John Green
This group reads one paperback young adult book each month.The discussion will be lead by Hannah Moushabeck, the Odyssey’s children’s department’s director and Ann Childs, a children’s book reviewer for Kirkus Magazine. The club typically meets the second thursday of the month at 6pm.

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