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Book Club Kits

bookclub kit bags

We know how difficult it is to choose a book for your next book group meeting, and to find enough copies for all the members of your group. We've made it easier for you by collecting donated and withdrawn copies of discussible books and putting all the copies in a canvas bag. We've included discussion questions and information about each author in a folder for each collection.

There are at least 8 copies of the book in each kit. At this time we have over 320 kits for you to choose from.

Printable lists of titles are also available, without cover art, sorted by title and by author.

How can we get a kit?

Call us at 266-6300 or visit the Central Library and we will help you check out a kit. The kit will be checked out on the library card of the person picking them up. The person checking out the kit may choose a due date for the kit, up to 3 months from the day they pick it up. Due to high demand, please take only one or two kits at a time. Kits can be shipped to any library in Madison as well as any public library in the South Central Library System.

What if a book is lost?

If your group happens to lose a book, we ask that you replace it with another copy of the book, new or second hand, that is clean and readable.

Search our collection of kits

Nine Perfect Strangers

Cover of Nine Perfect Strangers
Liane Moriarty

Nine people gather at a remote health resort. Some are there to lose weight, some are there to get a reboot on life, some are there for reasons they can't even admit to themselves. Amidst all of the luxury and pampering, the mindfulness and meditation, they know these ten days might involve some real work. 
But none of them could imagine just how challenging the next ten days are going to be.
 

Norwegian Wood

Cover of Norwegian Wood
Haruki Murakami

In Murakami’s poignant coming-of-age story, Toru, a college student in 1960s Japan, is devoted to Naoko, a thoughtful young woman who shares Toru’s sense of isolation and yearning for beauty.  But while Naoko struggles with the harsh realities of life, Toru discovers that he must make a choice between his love for her and the unknown possibilities of adulthood. 

Ordinary Grace

Cover of Ordinary Grace
William Kent Krueger

In the summer of 1961, life in New Bremen, Minnesota moves slowly for thirteen-year-old Frank Drum.   The tragic death of a child in a train accident prompts old memories to resurface between the Drum and Brandt families, revealing the pain and dark shadows that lurked just under the surface of an idyllic life, and introducing Frank to the harsh realities of adulthood.

Pachinko

Cover of Pachinko
Min Jin Lee

Pachinko follows one Korean family through the generations, beginning in early 1900s Korea with Sunja, the prized daughter of a poor yet proud family, whose unplanned pregnancy threatens to shame them all. Deserted by her lover, Sunja is saved when a young tubercular minister offers to marry and bring her to Japan. So begins a sweeping saga of an exceptional family in exile from its homeland and caught in the indifferent arc of history. 

The Paying Guests

Cover of The Paying Guests
Sarah Waters

Frances Wray and her mother, formerly genteel but fallen on hard times and devastated by the toll of the Great War, offer a portion of their London house to rent.  A young lower-class couple, the Barbers, become the Wrays’ ‘paying guests.’  Drawn to the vivacious Mrs. Barber, Frances embarks on a relationship that quickly turns into something far more serious with unimagined repercussions.

Penance

Cover of Penance
David Housewright

P.I. Holland Taylor reluctantly agreed to help Minnesota gubernatorial candidate and media darling Carol Catherine Monroe. A scandal that could rattle the skeletons in her closet had to be diffused. But the murder of an innocent campaign worker hit Taylor where it hurt and taught him a simple truth--some sins can never be forgotten or forgiven.
 

The Perfect Nanny

Cover of The Perfect Nanny
Leïla Slimani

When Myriam, a French-Moroccan lawyer, decides to return to work after having children, she and her husband look for the perfect nanny for their two young children. They never dreamed they would find Louise: a quiet, polite, devoted woman who is everything they dreamed. But as the couple and the nanny become more dependent on one another, jealousy, resentment, and suspicions mount, shattering the idyllic tableau. 

The Person You Mean to Be

Cover of The Person You Mean to Be
Dolly Chugh

Many of us believe in equality, diversity, and inclusion, but how do we stand up for those values in our turbulent world? Chugh reveals the surprising causes of inequality, and offers practical tools to respectfully and effectively talk politics with family, to be a better colleague to people who don't look like you, and to avoid being a well-intentioned barrier to equality. Being the person we mean to be starts with a look at ourselves.
 

The Poison Squad: One Chemist's Single-minded Crusade for Food Safety at the Turn of the Twentieth Century

Cover of The Poison Squad: One Chem
Deborah Blum

The dramatic true story of the fight for food safety in the United States at the turn of the twentieth century, led by the inimitable Dr. Harvey Washington Wiley. Detailing the complex interchanges of industry, media, and government regulation with a bracing clarity, The Poison Squad offers a prescient perspective on the enormous social and political challenges we face today. The 2019-2020 UW-Madison Go Big Read selection.

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