Any tips on running a book club at a Jewish non-profit?
December 4, 2016 6:08 PM   Subscribe

I'm going to be starting up a book club at my work, a large Jewish non-profit, and I'm looking for some advice and getting some answers to my questions. HR knows about this and is on board.

We have around 80 employees in my office, and I'm guessing we'll get 10-15 at our monthly gatherings.

1. While there is plenty of advice online about running a book club, I don't see much specifically about doing it as an employee, in the workplace. Anything specific to that?

2. Any books to recommend? Anything Jewish/Israel is fair game, fiction and non-fiction.

3. Are there potentially authors who might be interested in connecting with us via phone or video to talk about their book? I'm assuming a big name author wouldn't be interested in a group of 15 people, but for an obscure or niche book, would an audience with a book club that is discussing their book be worth their time?

4. Anything else I might be missing? Any other advice or comments appreciated.
posted by andoatnp to Media & Arts (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
This sounds fun and awesome; my workplace has a similar collection of "healthy workplace" extracurricular activities.

My one suggestion: if you're going to be hosting meetings on a regular schedule, it may be useful to identify an amenable colleague to be your deputy. That way you have someone who can host on any occasions when you have to be out of town.
posted by heatherlogan at 6:18 PM on December 4, 2016

The American Library Association has had Jewish literature programs in the past--you might get some book ideas here.
posted by leesh at 6:36 PM on December 4, 2016

This list of books may be of help
posted by bq at 6:42 PM on December 4, 2016

check this program out. I think they even send you the books. I haven't used them yet but will probably try them next year for Jewish book club I run. Memail me if you want to see my current list of options.
posted by fingersandtoes at 9:00 PM on December 4, 2016


1. Jonathan Safran Foer's new novel Here I Am. (People seem to love or hate him, though.)

2. I've been enjoying the book Strictly Kosher Reading, which basically uses the literature of the Haredi Orthodox Jewish as a lens through which to examine that world. (I grew up basically Haredi and find the characterizations true and insightful.)

The author has a blog about the book and it seems probable that he'd be willing to chat with book club members.
posted by needs more cowbell at 9:35 PM on December 4, 2016 [1 favorite]

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