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December 8, 2009

Creating Mother-Daughter Book Clubs

Posted by webmaster
In previous blog posts Denise Neary has shared the story of how she came to found the book club The Red Balloons with her daughter, as well as why Jodi Picoult's novel My Sister's Keeper led to the group's best discussion. Today, Denise tells us about a valuable reading group resource.

Starting a book club? Interested in keeping one growing? Have I got a book for you!

Just when you think you know everything there is to know about setting up, running and nurturing a book club --- along comes a book to challenge, in the nicest possible way, all of your certain and deeply-held beliefs. Cindy Hudson's Book by Book: The Complete Guide to Creating Mother-Daughter Book Clubs is a gem of a resource for those starting a book club, especially for those starting a parent/child club.

It is a helpful resource for any book club. How do you keep a book club fresh? How do you deal with new arrivals, or departures? How do you deal with (and I am sure that this has never happened in your book clubs) grumbling, infighting? What if people don't read the books?

My daughter and I have been in a daughter-mother book club for years, and have stolen wonderful ideas more times than I can count from Hudson’s great website: I was lucky enough to be one of the many people Hudson interviewed, as part of her effort to include in her book as many points of views and experiences as she could.

The book takes all that is great about the website --- wonderful ideas, great tips, book lists, author interviews --- and ratchets that good information up many levels. Hudson creates a one-stop shopping guide that pulls together all of the lessons (some happy, some less so) she has learned in the years she has nurtured two successful book clubs --- and, as an important aside, two teenage daughters who 1) read and 2) talk to their Mom!

It is a fun book to read --- organized in a way that simply walks the reader through the process of setting up a club, and keeping it going. Reading the book gave me some great new pointers for our group, and would give great guidance to anyone interested in what makes successful book clubs work.

If you are looking for a holiday gift for any Moms and daughters interested in getting closer through books, this book might be just the thing.

---Denise Neary