Thursday, April 04, 2013

Inspired by Reading Book Club Tips...

When we decided on launching the Book Club, I asked some of my English teacher friends if they had any suggestions on how to improve retention and get the most out of the books.

Here are some of the suggestions:

- Create a "book journal" with two columns running down the pages.  While you're reading, list in one column the major events of the book and in the other, write your reactions.  It only has to be a few words describing your emotional response and/or your critical appraisal of the author's writing style.  Does it move you?  Does it bore you?  Does the flow of language fit the sequence and pace of events?

- Keep a list of any quotes that you felt were particularly powerful or stand-out... especially ones that underscore the theme of the book.

- Is there any imagery that is strong?  Make a descriptive list of recurring visuals and why they are important.

- Do a little research.  Who was the author?  When was the book written?  Who were the author's contemporaries?  How was the book received by critics of the time?  Does the book remind you of any other books?

-  When you're finished reading the book, create a list of five words that capture and epitomize your response to the book and the author.

- Imagine sitting down with the author.  What questions would you ask him or her?  Were any plot points confusing and needing clarification?  Is there anything you wished that the author elaborated more?

Are there any tips that you recommend to help readers come away from the book with a fuller and richer experience?

2 comments:

Paula, Chief Bead Officer said...

I really like these tips, Andrew. Plan to take them to my next book club meeting.

Jeanne aka Gem Chick said...

great tips!
I teach my students to use post-its and jot notes as they read. Although, I haven't tried it myself for my book club books. I might have to when I join your "inspired by reading book club"!