Online Book Clubs

Online Book Clubs


Online learning doesn’t just mean taking online classes; the Internet also offers many opportunities for informal education and self-edification. Joining an online book club is just such an opportunity. Online book clubs allow you to engage in stimulating meetings about literature and/or trashy novels, and to see books from the perspectives of people with backgrounds different from yours. On occasion, these clubs will even give you the thrill of interacting with an author.  

When you’re searching for a book club to join, you first want to decide what type of club you’re most interested in. There are clubs for just about every genre you could imagine: science fiction, romance, mystery and so on, as well as clubs devoted to particular authors and historical time periods. If you love a variety of books, you’ll want to look for a general interest club.

Before you officially join a club, examine its website to get a sense of how often the club meets and what the expectations are for members. Make sure you can fit the reading load into your schedule. And don’t join any club unless you’re prepared to actively contribute to each discussion. You don’t want to dominate a conversation, of course, but you want to demonstrate that you care about the club and that you really have done the reading you were supposed to do. 

There are several brand-name book clubs on the Internet, including a series of Barnes & Noble clubs, and The New Yorker Book Club, which offers witty, highbrow conversation and semi-frequent chats with famous writers. And in 2012, Oprah Winfrey launched an online version of perhaps the most famous book club of all time: Oprah’s Book Club. The Internet iteration of this behemoth, called Oprah’s Book Club 2.0, allows you to read Oprah’s book choices on your e-reader.

You might even be ambitious enough to start your own book club, especially if you’re interested in a certain reading niche that you feel is currently underrepresented on the Internet. Remember, though, that once you start a club you don’t want to let your members down, so you have to be an enthusiastic, responsible leader. As a moderator, you should strive to see that everyone’s input is respected and that discussions are dynamic and relevant at all times. You also need to recruit new members and keep your club’s website and social media pages up-to-date. 

Online learning market place

Nov 30, 1999