Reading Group Center




Phillip Margulies Shares the Journey of Belle Cora’s Unforgettable Heroine

Phillip Margulies Shares the Journey of Belle Cora’s Unforgettable Heroine

In an exclusive essay for the Reading Group Center, Phillip Margulies shares the journey of his debut novel, Belle Cora, and talks about the inspiration for his enigmatic heroine.

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Explore the Unique Architecture of Jenny Offill’s Dept. of Speculation

Explore the Unique Architecture of Jenny Offill’s Dept. of Speculation

The unique narrative structure of Jenny Offill’s novel Dept. of Speculation has caught the attention of fans and reviewers alike, including the folks at Slate’s Audio Book Club. Listen to their podcast, in which they discuss everything from the form and the shimmering language to the narrator’s struggle with domesticity and the marital betrayal that transforms the story.

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Group Talk

Read tips from other book club members and join the discussion by sharing your own advice.


Celebrating the Female Artist in Claire Messud’s The Woman Upstairs

Celebrating the Female Artist in Claire Messud’s The Woman Upstairs

In Claire Messud’s The Woman Upstairs, elementary teacher Nora Eldridge embarks on a series of dioramas, miniature versions of the rooms of four famous women artists whom she admires and emulates. We take a look at each of Nora’s role models and how they represent aspects of her life, personality, and creative vision.

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5 Novels in Translation to Read with Your Book Club

5 Novels in Translation to Read with Your Book Club

Fiction in translation is a treasure trove for reading groups to explore! We’ve selected five novels that hail from Spain, France, Japan, Turkey, and Germany, and represent some of the most accomplished literary voices from around the globe.

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Q&A: April Smith Shines a Light on a Nearly Forgotten Historical Footnote

Q&A: April Smith Shines a Light on a Nearly Forgotten Historical Footnote

April Smith answers questions about her novel A Star for Mrs. Blake, which draws attention to a nearly forgotten moment in American history, and shares thoughts on women’s sacrifice during the WWI, the importance of righting the wrongs of history, and what she hopes readers take away from her novel.

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Ben Dolnick Shares His Favorite Coming-of-Age Stories

Ben Dolnick Shares His Favorite Coming-of-Age Stories

Ben Dolnick—acclaimed author of three coming-of-age novels, including At the Bottom of Everything—shares a few of his favorite examples in the genre.

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Linda Spalding Shares the Historical Fiction That Inspired Her

Linda Spalding Shares the Historical Fiction That Inspired Her

Linda Spalding offers some thoughts on a number of historical novels set on the American frontier, and explains how they inspired and informed her novel The Purchase.

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5 Stunning Landmarks of the Australian Outback from Robyn Davidson’s Tracks

5 Stunning Landmarks of the Australian Outback from Robyn Davidson’s Tracks

Browse through photographs of five remarkable locations featured in Robyn Davidson’s Tracks. We’ve paired them with excerpts from the memoir; use these scintillating snippets of travel writing toenhance your conversation about the book—no plane ticket required.

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Recipe by the Book: Tourain Blanchi à l’Ail for Martin Walker’s The Devil’s Cave

Recipe by the Book: Tourain Blanchi à l’Ail for Martin Walker’s The Devil’s Cave

Get transported to the French countryside through a recipe for tourain, a traditional Périgordian soup. Follow Bruno Courrèges’s investigation in The Devil’s Cave and treat your reading group to a bowl of tourain—spiked with red wine, of course—at your next meeting!

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3 Reasons That Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam Trilogy Is a Great Reading Group Pick

3 Reasons That Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam Trilogy Is a Great Reading Group Pick

As Margaret Atwod’s bestselling postapocalyptic trilogy draws to a dramatic close with the novel MaddAddam, readers have a great opportunity to enjoy the complete work. We propose three reasons you should consider the MaddAddam trilogy for your reading group.

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