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Summary and book reviews of The Reading Group Handbook by Rachel Jacobsohn

The Reading Group Handbook

Everything You Need to Know to Start Your Own Book Club

by Rachel W. Jacobsohn

The Reading Group Handbook
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  • Paperback:
    Apr 1998, 236 pages

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A definitive, step-by-step guide to starting your own book club, written by a professional reading group leader who has organized and lead groups - face-to-face and even on-line - for over twenty years.

Book clubs and reading groups give fellow members the chance to break out of established reading patterns and learn adventurous approaches to creative material. With the help of The Reading Group Handbook, you'll get a definitive, step-by-step guide to starting your own book club, written by a professional reading group leader who has organized and lead groups - face-to-face and even on-line - for over twenty years.



Introduction: Oprah Did It

  1. What Is A Book Group?
  2. What Makes A Good Member?
  3. Before The Real Fun Starts: Cost and Organization Details
  4. Rachel's Rules of Order
  5. Food!
  6. Group Composition
  7. The Art of Discussion
  8. You Are What You Read
  9. Member-led vs. Professionally Led
  10. Chat Room vs. Living Room
  11. What Do We Really Talk About?
  12. Past Fear


Appendixes
  1. Selected Reading Lists
  2. Syllabi From Rachel's Reading Groups
  3. Syllabi From Groups Around The Country
  4. Sources For Reviews, Criticisms, and Author Information
  5. Glossary of Literary Terms
  6. Advice From Questionnaire Respondents

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Jacobsohn, founder and president of the Association of Book Group Readers and Leaders, recently published what became the bible of book discussion groups, The Reading Group Handbook Everything You Need To Know from Choosing Members to Leading Discussions (Hyperion, 1994). This newly revised edition includes updated reading lists and bibliographies plus additional suggestions on group dynamics; organizational, administrative, and logistical issues; and discussion techniques garnered from extensive surveying of book groups.

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