What is the right size for a book club? How do we turn away members?

At BookBrowse we get asked a lot of book-related questions. While we can provide our own answers we've found it's often much more useful to turn the question over to our Facebook followers to get a broad range of opinions. Here is their advice for addressing a common but knotty book club problem:

Q. Our Book Club started about 4 years ago. We have 15 members of whom 12 attend regularly. New people have shown an interest in joining and there have been discussions about closing our membership but not all agree. How do we politely turn new members away and is it necessary?

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Our neighborhood book club formed 2 years ago & we have 14 on the roll but the average size that comes is 10. We decided that if someone does not come for 2 or more meetings they are contacted to see if they are still interested. A few said they were busy & they would let us know when to start including them again. Only one has said a few times that she was coming but never did so she was taken off our email list.
# Posted By Ruthie B | 2/18/14 2:27 PM
I am the discussion leader for a book club that has 30 members. We meet once a month at 10AM in a room at a local church. Usually about 20 come. I stress that everyone needs to be heard and to please raise your hand if you have a comment. I have a bell that I ring if things get "out of hand." We have wonderful discussions and for the most part everyone does take turns speaking. We have been together for over 10 years.
# Posted By Anna | 2/19/14 12:32 PM
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