Your Most Successful Book Club Picks

Posted by Cybil on March 13, 2017


There are a lot of variables that go into a successful book club (from venue, to host, to group dynamics, to wine selection). But the most important piece of the puzzle can be tricky: Picking the perfect book. It must be one that people will actually read, inspire a lively conversation or debate, and make the person who recommended it look like a genius (obviously).

So, we turned to our social media community to learn about your most successful book club picks and what made them winners. And can we just say, get ready to impress your book club. Check out all of the responses on our Twitter and Facebook pages. In addition, here are some of our favorites from your comments:


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A Man Called Ove
by Fredrik Backman

"My book club just discussed it and everyone loved it. There are so many things to talk about. The characters, their trials, the humor, the heartache. So much good stuff!!" wrote Jennifer Hamatake Colovich.



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The Book Thief
Written by Markus Zusak

"It's a brilliant book, told from the perspective of death. It would lead to an amazing discussion about life, love, death, sacrifice, war etc. It's definitely worth your time," wrote Tobias Hellquist.


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The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

"It's a fantastic book, set in World War II, with many different areas to discuss," wrote Sara Hufnagle.



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The Devil in the White City
by Erik Larson

"It is my group's all time favorite book and we've been together for 12 years. Its historical name dropping was delightful," wrote Chris Markestad.



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The Rosie Project
by Graeme Simsion

"Our book club recently enjoyed The Rosie Project. The main character is just like a popular TV character. The book was amusing but also thought provoking. We have read too many serious books in a row and needed a break," wrote Cathy Teague.


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All the Ugly and Wonderful Things
by Bryn Greenwood

"I found it to be very morally challenging because it gets you rooting for questionable relationships and irregular protagonists. It's a great book to discuss, because it's interesting to see how others view the moral themes," wrote Jess Griffiths Sheldon.


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Persepolis
by Marjane Satrapi

"It's relevant and great read with a lot of good details. Plus, it's a graphic novel so everyone will be able to finish it no matter how busy they are," wrote Nikki Denton.


Want even more great book club picks? Check out Goodreads' most popular bookclub books (and filter by week, month, or all-time most-popular picks). And recommend your book club picks in the comments!

Check out more recent blogs:
Readers to the Rescue: Your Best Book Club Tips
25 Big Books of Spring
Celebrating the Joy of Rereading a Favorite Book
Most Anticipated YA Books of 2017

Comments Showing 1-12 of 12 (12 new)

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message 1: by Kandie (new)

Kandie Sweeney Our club read a couple of these and I read a couple more on my own. I agree that the ones I've read were great choices. Our club has been together 9 years and some of our top graded books were: Defending Jacob by: William Landay, The Gravity of Birds by: Tracy Guzeman, Crazy Rich Asians by: Kevin Kwan, Me Before You by: Jojo Moyes, The Dove Keepers by: Alice Hoffman, The Light Between Oceans by: ML Steadman, Still Alice by: Lisa Genova, The Help by: Kathryn Stockett, and Cutting for Stone by: Abraham Verghese. Some great choices if anyone is either looking for club picks or to read on your own.


message 2: by Ginger (new)

Ginger Thanks for the suggestions Kandie! I am always looking for new books for my group :)


message 3: by Kandie (new)

Kandie Sweeney Ginger wrote: "Thanks for the suggestions Kandie! I am always looking for new books for my group :)"
You are very welcome. I have tons more on my own personal list if you ever want more. I hope you and your group enjoy reading some of these.


message 4: by Grammarbroad (new)

Grammarbroad Father Melancholy's Daughter by Gail Godwin. Well-written, with interesting and complex characters. Lots to talk about.


message 5: by Davytron (new)

Davytron My bookclub's picks are all over the map but some of our most passionate and fun discussions have been on books that few of us have enjoyed. Two examples include:
- The Bone People by Keri Hulme
- The Dinner by Herman Koch

Of course we have great discussions with widely loved books too, but for different reasons.


message 6: by Shuvro (new)

Shuvro Das All Quite on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque
The Catcher in The Rye by J.D. Salinger
As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner


message 7: by Ada (last edited Mar 14, 2017 06:17AM) (new)

Ada Evans I recommend The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa and Commonwealth by Ann Patchett.


message 8: by Estela (new)

Estela Smith Looking forward to try some of your suggestions. Best books since the last 5 years for me have been "end of war" by David Robbins, and the classic "Count of Montecristo", both lengthy but with outstanding writing. Currently also reading " all the light we cannot see" (a little bit in the lines of book thief, which I have yet to finish but have loved reading) and recommending from our book club paste reads , a fantasy book, " Ocean at the end of the lane" for a slight scare.


message 9: by Ada (new)

Ada Evans Estela wrote: "Looking forward to try some of your suggestions. Best books since the last 5 years for me have been "end of war" by David Robbins, and the classic "Count of Montecristo", both lengthy but with outs..."

I, too, enjoyed The Ocean at the End of the Lane."


message 10: by David (new)

David Broughall I've read three of these, though only rated two. Looking at those ratings, I can't believe I rated The Rosie Project and the Book Thief the same. I'll have to fix that. As for the other, "The Guernsey ..." must have left so little an impression on me that I didn't bother to rate it. Now that I recall the book, I was rather unimpressed. Despite its high average rating and total number of ratings, in this case I have to question the wisdom of crowds. My group's all-time favorite is The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes.


message 11: by Alison (new)

Alison Bush Davytron wrote: "My bookclub's picks are all over the map but some of our most passionate and fun discussions have been on books that few of us have enjoyed. Two examples include:
- The Bone People by Keri Hulme
- ..."

Loved The Bone People - a book that really throws out the stereotypical character - made me hate and love at the same time. x


message 12: by Adrienne (new)

Adrienne the Summer Before the War by Helen Simonson. Just came from a presentation by her .She is delightful.
Also her first book "Major Pettigrew's Last Stand" Both are good book club choices. Lots of interesting characters and humor


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