How To Kill a Book Club

Book clubs are no easy feat. Let alone managing or organizing one, sometimes merely being in one is painful, and they should come with their own warning label: “Fragile. Handle with care.”

One misstep and it can all go to hell. Book Riot has plenty of material to help you start and keep a book club going, but what are the absolute no-nos which will inevitably kill a book club? My fellow Rioters and I have rounded up the worst of the worst.

1. Choose a book you’ve secretly worked on/edited, and then throw a fit when no one likes it. Don’t make me reach for the Conflict of Interest form!


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2. Become a tyrant and veto everyone else’s book suggestions. Give the people what they want!

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3. Insist on reading books which are over 500 pages. We get it, you have Several Degrees in Literature, but the rest of us just want to read romance!

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4. Say “To play devil’s advocate here…” at every opportunity. Nobody asked you, Patrice!

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5. Insist on adding everyone to a social media group to do regular check-ins. We have other things to do all day!

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6. Make attendance mandatory for each meet-up and be passive-aggressive to the absentees.

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7. And the Holy Grail of No-Nos: choose a book and never finish it.

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In a book lover’s life, there’s nothing as magical as a perfect, surprising recommendation from someone who just gets you. But finding those people can be tough! That’s where TBR comes in. Go here to find out more, or just click the image below:
Deepali Agarwal: Deepali Agarwal has a Master’s in literary linguistics, which means that every person she’s ever known has, at some point, asked her to ‘edit a thing’ for them-- ‘just see if it reads okay?’ She doesn’t mind, because she believes that the world can be fixed one oxford comma at a time. Deepali lives in Delhi, the capital of India, where cows are sacred, but authors and poets exist and write brilliant things. She works as an editor with OUP India’s School ELT division, where she moves apostrophes, looks up pictures of cats, and talks about children’s books for eight hours. The rest of her day is spent reading, thinking about Parks and Recreation, and wondering if there exist jobs for English majors that pay more than peanuts. Twitter: @DeepaliAgarwal_