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Prompts for book clubs

Book clubs are a fun and inspiring way to share the joys of reading with others. But when discussing a book as a group, it’s not always easy to know where to start.

Australia Reads has put together some questions that book clubs can adapt for their books and meetings – and help keep the conversation interesting and enjoyable for everyone.

Just starting out on your book club journey? Read our top tips for starting and running a book club, or explore our list of existing book club programs in Australia

General & Literary Fiction

Get to know the characters

  • Did you relate to the main character? Why or why not?
  • Which character would you most like to meet in real life?
  • What motivated the central character/s in their journey throughout the book?
  • What challenges did the characters face, and how did they overcome them?


Dig into the plot

  • Were there any plot twists? If so, did you see them coming?
  • Was there anything that was confusing or unresolved about the book?
  • What did you think of the ending?
  • What was your favourite scene, or a scene that stayed with you?
  • If the book is set in a different time period, did you learn anything new about that time and place?


Discuss the writing

  • Was the author doing anything interesting or different with language?
  • Were there any lines or passages that particularly stuck with you?
  • How do you think the title of the book related to the story?
  • Did you get a sense of the character’s voice/s through the writing

 

Look at the big picture

  • What were some of the main themes or ideas of the book?
  • What patterns or connections did you notice?
  • Did the book give you any insights into experiences outside of your own? If so, what did you learn?
  • How did the book make you feel overall?
  • If you could ask the author one thing, what would it be?

 

Non-fiction & Genre

Non-fiction

  • What was the most surprising thing you learned about the subject matter?
  • How does the author explore the subject matter? Are they objective or do they involve themselves in it?
  • Did you find the book accessible to read or difficult?
  • Are you interested in reading more, or alternate perspectives, on the subject?


Crime & thrillers

  • Which plot twists surprised you the most? Which did you see coming?
  • How does the author build suspense in the novel?
  • Which characters did you find most compelling?
  • Was there anything that felt unresolved or confusing about the plot?
  • If the book is a series, did you want to read more?


Romance

  • Was the chemistry between the characters believable? Were you rooting for them?
  • What obstacles did the characters face in their romance? How did they overcome them?
  • How did the setting or time period influence or enhance the romance?
  • Do you think the characters live happily ever after?


Memoir

  • Why do you think the author was compelled to share their story?
  • Did you relate to their journey or story in any way?
  • How does or doesn’t the author’s voice come through in the writing?
  • Was there anything you wanted to know more about or you felt was missing?
  • Did the book teach you anything or make you reflect on your own life differently?

 

Interested in running a book club but don’t know where to start? Download and share our handy guide – including top tips, book club prompts, and more.