Sunday Symposium

Book Sharing


Barber, Judi 59691 E 290 Rd 918-786-9711

Grove, Ok 74344 918-791-5479

Hale, Pauline 1635 Dilar Dr (918) 786-8375

Grove, Ok 74344

Hare, Virginia 31601 S 566 Rd 918-786-5893

Jay, Ok 74344 918-314-0205

Johnson, Michele 205 Walnut Circle, Grove, 74344 918-787-8669

PMB 113, 520 Main, Grove, 74345 949-533-8441

Leptich, Pam 59360 E. 301Rd., Grove, OK 74344 918-791-4249

Matthiesen, Sue 29501 S 585 Court 918-787-6014

Grove, Ok 74344

Moore, Linda 66500 E 258 Rd 918-787-5366

Grove, Ok 74344

Sanders, Nancy 62999 E 316 Rd 918-786-9820

Grove, Ok 74344

Van Auken, Nancy 58990 E 332 Rd, Jay, OK 74346 495-245-3913,

Vermaire, Joan 209 Walnut Circle, Grove, 74344 918-791-8252

2636 Malaita Ct.

Cape Coral, FL 33991

Womack, Ellie 1022 S Sycamore Dr, Grove,Ok 74344, 918-786-5228,

A Door Opens

Whenever you read a good book, somewhere in the world a door opens to allow in more light.

–Vera Nazarian


These guidelines offer general advice about running a book discussion group with the caveat that there are no set rules on how to do so. Don’t feel constrained by these guidelines, but use them to help create the discussion atmosphere you and your group are most comfortable with. In preparing these suggestions, I have drawn heavily from a number of “classics” about book groups (see bibliography below).

First of all, we expect you to facilitate your group, which does not mean you have to lead it or give a lecture. Your role is to get the discussion rolling, and to keep it going. Secondly, rest assured that while we hope this book will generate a lively discussion in every group, we know that some groups will be more enthusiastic than others. We have provided a list of possible questions and some background material on the book and the author.

General tasks of a facilitator:

Initiate the discussion – we have provided a list of possible questions to get you started. You may choose, for example, to go around the room and allow each person a brief period to make an “opening statement” before going on to in-depth discussion of specific questions or topics. This will also give you a sense of what the members of the group think is important or interesting.

Make sure all members of the group have the chance to speak (some may not want to say much, but all should be afforded the opportunity).

Curtail lengthy digressions; some digressions may arise naturally and even add to the discussion, but make sure they don’t lead the group too far astray. The object is to concentrate primarily on the shared material at hand, i.e. the book.

Interject questions when the discussion is running out of steam. Some groups may practically self-lead once the conversation gets rolling; others may need impetus along the way.

If necessary, make it clear that in a book discussion group everyone “agrees to disagree.” Customize the discussion to your group – a children’s group will have different needs than an adults-only one.

Some common “glitches” that may arise:

One person dominates the group and doesn’t let other people speak. An effective way to deal with this situation can be to recognize everyone who has something to say and then assign an order in which they can speak. When a reasonable amount of time has passed, point out that is now the next person’s turn.

One strong personality dictates the tenor of the discussion. Make regular reminders, starting at the beginning of the session, that differences of opinion make for lively discussion and that the object is not to develop consensus but to share a variety of viewpoints. You may want, after a particularly strong statement by a dominant personality, to ask if anyone has a counter opinion to offer.

Multiple discussions develop at the same time, especially in larger groups. Set out ground rules at the beginning about having only one conversation going on at the same time. If necessary, you can even ask people to raise their hands and be recognized before speaking. You may need to play the “heavy” from time to time and actually stop ancillary conversations. It isn’t fun, but it will lead to a better experience for everyone in the long run.

Conversation diverts too far off track. Try to interject another question, or mention that while the point is interesting, you need to steer the conversation back towards the book because of time limitations.

Discussion lags. Now is the time to go back to your list of prepared questions or to interject some of your supplementary material.

Some general suggestions/ topics that can be used to stimulate a discussion (if you

need additional ideas):

Read passages out loud to emphasize a point, get the flavor of the style, language

Formulate questions that do not have yes or no answers

Discuss how the book relates to contemporary world/culture

Credibility of story – does the author’s request to suspend disbelief work?

Resolution – does the plot ending satisfy?

Discussion of style, language, diction; the structure of this book

Setting –detail, effectiveness of descriptions of the setting(s)

Characters – favorites, how much of what happens to them is fate and how much

to do they control

Have each person describe a particular character you select with a single adjective or phrase.

Extend and deepen discussion by following up participants’ statements by asking “How?” or “Why?” or asking for specific examples from the text.

Ask for a show of hands in response to a simple question, and then ask individuals to elaborate. For example, in this case, you might ask, “How many think that the preacher is a bad man?”

Ask if they would recommend the book and, if so, to whom and why.


Rachel W. Jacobsohn. The Reading Group Handbook. New York: Hyperion, 1998.

David Laskin and Holly Hughes. The Reading Group Book: The Complete Guide toStarting and Sustaining a Reading Group, with Annotated Lists of 250 Titles forProvocative Discussion. New York: Plume Books, 1995.

Diana Loevy. The Book Group Companion: A Comprehensive Guide to the Reading Group Experience. New York: Berkley Books, 2006

Only one life???

Anyone who says they have only one life to live must not know how to read a book.

–Author Unknown

History 2012 - 2014


The Snow Child - Eowyn Ivey

The Age of Miracles - Karen Thompson Walker

The Paris Wife - Paula McLain

Mennonite in a Little Black Dress - Rhoda Janzen

The Submission - Amy Waldman


The Dovekeepers - Alice Hoffman

The Aviator's Wife - Melanie Benjamin

The End of Your Life Book Club - Will Schwalbe

The Light Between Oceans - ML Stedman

The Language of Flowers - Vanessa Diffenbaugh

Flight Behavior -Barbara Kingsolver

Saturday Night Widows -Becky Aikman

Paris in Love - Eloisa James

Defending Jacob - William Landay

The Art of Hearing Heartbeats - Jan-Philipp Sendker

An Invisible Thread - Laura Schroff

Olive Kitteridge - Elizabeth Strout


Let's Pretend This Never Happened - Jenny Lawson

On the Outskirts of Normal - Debra Monroe

The Circle - Dave Eggers

The Goldfinch - Donna Tartt

The Death of Bees - Lisa O'Donnell

And the Mountains Echoed - Khaled Hosseini

Ghana Must Go - Taiye Salasi

The Lowland - Jhumpa Lahiri

The Round House - Louise Erdrich

Still Life with Bread Crumbs - Anna Quindlen

The Girls of Atomic City - Denise Kiernan

No two persons

No two persons ever read the same book.

–Edmund Wilson

History 2015

A Tale for the Time Being Ruth Ozeki

Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker Jennifer Chiaverini

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand Helen Simonson

The Invention of Wings Sue Monk Kidd

Painted Girls Cathy Marie Buchanan

Radical: My Journey out of Islamist Extremism Maajid Nawaz

"Gardens" theme discussion various

Everything I Never Told You Celeste Ng

Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands Chris Bohjalian

All the Light We Cannot See Anthony Doerr

A Spool of Blue Thread Ann Tyler

Nora Webster, A Novel Colm Toibin

History 2016

Jan 17 Prudence David Treuer

Feb 21 The Girl On The Train Paula Hawkins

March 20 Empty Mansions: The Mysterious Life of Bill Dedman

Huguette Clark

April 17 13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl Mona Awad

May 15 A Reunion of Ghosts Judith Claire Mitchell

June 19 The Remains of the Day Kazuo Ishiguro

July 17 Postponed to August

Aug 21 "horses" you pick book & author

Sept 18 Big Little Lies Liane Moriatry

Oct 16 Boys in the Trees: A Memoir Carly Simon

Nov 20 Cancelled

Dec 18 Cancelled

Readings for 2017

January 15 I'll See You in Paris by Michelle Gable @ Nancy's

February 19 The Hole in the Middle by Kate Hilton @ Judi's

March 19 Recipes for Love and Murder by Sally Andrew @ Linda's

April 16 When the Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi @ Pam's

May 21 The Boston Girl by Anita Diamant Location TBA

June 18 A Star for Mrs. Blake by April Smith Location TBA

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