Hello everyone, this month I wanted to discuss something I have heard/seen questions going around the book community on various platforms. This month I wanted to talk about both Buddy Reading and Book Clubs. But, before I dive into this new topic I wanted to talk about the outcome of our last discussion.
Previous Discussion: Lets Talk | Preordering Books
Last month we talked about pre-ordering books. It seems from both of the poll questions that 72.7% of the individuals who voted have in the past pre-ordered books. While the second question, dealing with the idea of pre-ordering, 100% thought it was a good idea. I find it interesting that there is a 27.3% difference, while I do understand the reason for the difference. While it is a good idea to pre-order and support authors, it is not always practical and/or a possibility. Thanks again to those who voted!
First I thought it would be important to define both of these terms that are often thrown around.
Definition of book club via merriam-webster
Definition of Buddy Read via Moderators of NBRC
A “Buddy Read” has a discussion leader and a reading date is set to start the book. A reading schedule is posted prior to the start date and discussion questions are posted each day regarding that section of the book. More information about these types of reads is below. An example is here, showing a reading schedule here.
I just want to also say that the Buddy reads that I have been part of have a reading schedule and the book is usually broken into 50 page increments. One individual picked the book and the person who chooses the book rotates so others have a chance to be a leader. Discussion days are set, but I have not always had discussion questions set prior sometimes they are set and other times the conversations are just organic.
When looking at a bookclub the main thing that stands out in the definition is that an organization/entity chooses the books for the members, there is not a discussion over the book that is picked and there is not a rotation of this power. For me I find that having someone always having control of picking the book leaves me to skip months or I end up loosing an interest because I have no equity in the bookclub or the outcome. While this can be a positive for some by getting them to try new books or different genres for me it is not. One example of this is Barns and Nobles new Book Club that was accounted last month. I only joined it because The Female Persuasion was already on my anticipated releases of April. If it has not been I would not have even thought about joining.
Another thing that stands out is the fact that is has a regulated schedule that sits usually at once a month. I really enjoy this format because I can read the book in a single day or take the entire month to read it. It is totally up to me. I can break it down by how much to read per week or just wing it.
Now, looking at buddy reads there are a few things that stand out to me. The first being Is that there is a reading schedule set. As I said earlier I do like how bookclubs give you more flexibility here, but to be honest I enjoy having a weekly goal. For me it allows me to be the mood-reader that I am by allowing me to read more than one book at a time. I can read by 50 pages earlier in the week and then explore other books the rest of the time. Also, chances are, depending on the size of the book, can take more than a single month to read.
Another thing that I like is that there is a leader who chooses the book, for me the person who chooses always changes. There is not a single entity who is in charge. That way, I as a reader, get to pick something I really want to read with others, but I also get to explore what others want to read. I have equity in the group and that give it value. For me this keeps me involved and excited about reading with a group.
Realistically I will never have to choose one over the other, but if I had to pick between only taking part in a bookclub or in buddy reads chances are I would choose buddy reads. For my reading style and my personality they work better.
I hope this post explained a little bit more about what these terms actually mean and is helpful in some way. If you have any questions or want to point out more positive and negatives of either of these please share in the comments, I would love to hear them. Also, there is once again a poll at the end of this post. I am curious to see what everyone thinks.
What do you think about buddy reads and book clubs?
Have you ever taken part in either of these?