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50 Book Club Questions for Good Discussions About Any Novel

Are you part of a book club that’s always on the lookout for thought-provoking questions to spark engaging conversations? Or maybe you’re starting a new club and need some inspiration for your first meeting? Regardless of your situation, we’ve got you covered!

Universal Book Club Questions

We’ve compiled a comprehensive list of 50 book club questions that work for almost any book. These questions will help generate lively and meaningful discussions, no matter what you’re reading.

To make things even easier, we’ve categorized the questions under four subheadings: characters, plot, setting, and additional questions. We’ve also provided some tips for coming up with your own questions specific to the book.

But that’s not all! We know that sometimes you might be searching for questions tailored specifically to the book you’re reading. That’s why we’re also working on creating individual book club guides for popular titles. So, keep an eye out for those soon!

For now, let’s dive into these 50 universal book club questions that will enhance your reading experience and lead to memorable conversations with your fellow book lovers!

PS: Our Buy Me a Coffee Members can access a printable version of these questions! You can find more details below the list.

Book Club Questions About the Characters:

  • Which character did you connect with the most, and why?
  • Did any characters change significantly throughout the book? If so, in what way?
  • How do the relationships between characters develop or change throughout the story?
  • Were there any characters you disliked or found frustrating? Why?
  • Did the author do a good job of creating distinct and complex characters?
  • If you could ask any character a question, what would it be?
  • What did you think of the dialogue between the characters? Did it feel natural or forced?
  • How do the characters’ pasts influence their actions and decisions in the story?
  • If you could give a piece of advice to any character, what would it be?
  • Did the characters’ motivations seem believable to you? Why or why not?
  • Can you think of any real-life people who share traits with the characters in the book? How do these similarities affect your perception of the characters?
  • Which character’s actions or decisions did you find the most surprising or unexpected?
  • Who would you cast to play the lead characters in a movie adaptation?

Book Club Questions About the Plot:

  • What was your favorite scene or moment in the book? Why did it stand out to you?
  • Did the book have any twists or surprises? If so, did you see them coming?
  • How would you describe the pacing of the story? Was it too fast, too slow, or just right?
  • Were there any plot holes or inconsistencies that bothered you?
  • Did the story have a satisfying conclusion? Why or why not?
  • How does the book’s structure (e.g., linear, nonlinear, multiple viewpoints) contribute to the story?
  • Were there any themes or symbols that stood out to you? How did they enhance the story?
  • Did the book make you think about any real-life issues or situations differently?
  • What do you think the author’s message or main point was in the story?
  • If the book had a sequel, what do you think would happen next?
  • Were there any subplots that you found particularly interesting or compelling? Why?
  • How did the author handle the passage of time in the story? Did it feel smooth or disjointed?
  • If you could change one thing about the book’s ending, what would it be?

Book Club Questions About the Setting:

  • How would you describe the book’s setting? Did it feel well-developed and immersive?
  • Did the setting influence the characters or plot in any significant way?
  • How does the author use sensory details to bring the setting to life?
  • Would the story have been different if it took place in another location or time period? How so?
  • How does the setting reflect or contrast with the characters’ inner lives or emotions?
  • Were there any aspects of the setting that you would like to learn more about or explore further?
  • How does the setting contribute to the overall mood or atmosphere of the book?
  • Would you like to visit any of the places mentioned in the book?

Additional Book Club Discussion Questions:

  • What was your initial reaction to the book? Did your opinion change as you read?
  • If you could rewrite one part of the book, what would it be and why?
  • What did you think of the writing style? Did it enhance or detract from the story?
  • Did the book’s title and cover accurately represent the story? Why or why not?
  • How does this book compare to other works by the same author or in the same genre?
  • Which passages or quotes stood out to you? Why?
  • Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?
  • Did the book remind you of any other books, movies, or TV shows? If so, how?
  • What emotions did the book evoke in you as you read?
  • Were there any parts of the book that made you laugh or cry? What specifically provoked these reactions?
  • How does this book challenge or confirm your preconceived notions or beliefs about its subject matter?
  • What do you think the author’s writing process might have been like for this book? How might they have approached research, character development, or plotting?
  • Are there any unanswered questions or unresolved issues that you wish the author had addressed?
  • What did you think of the narrative voice or point of view? Did it add depth to the story or create confusion?
  • If you could ask the author one question about the book, what would it be?
  • How has reading this book influenced your thoughts or opinions on similar stories or themes?
  • If you were to choose a different book for your next book club meeting, what would you pick and why?

Printable Copy of Our Universal Book Club Questions

As a special thank you to our amazing Buy Me a Coffee BFF members, we’ve created an exclusive, printable version of these Book Club Questions just for you! Your continued support means the world to us, and we’re excited to provide you with this resource to enhance your book club experience.

To access your exclusive printable, just click to visit the printable on our Buy Me a Coffee page here. You may need to log in after you click. Print it out, grab a cup of coffee, and enjoy thought-provoking discussions with your fellow book lovers. If you’re not yet a member, we’d love to have you! You can read more about the perks here.

Tips for Writing Your Own Book Club Questions

When crafting your own book club questions, consider the following tips to ensure engaging and thought-provoking discussion.

  • Focus on open-ended questions: Instead of asking questions that can be answered with a simple “yes” or “no,” try to formulate questions that encourage members to share their thoughts, opinions, and feelings.
  • Dig deeper into themes and motifs: Look for recurring themes, symbols, or motifs in the book, and ask questions that help readers explore these elements and their connection to the story.
  • Encourage personal connections: Ask questions that invite members to relate the story to their own experiences or perspectives, fostering empathy and understanding.
  • Don’t shy away from controversy: If the book contains controversial or thought-provoking topics, don’t hesitate to ask questions that challenge members to consider different viewpoints and engage in respectful debates.
  • Adjust questions based on the group’s preferences: Finally, keep in mind that every book club is unique. Tailor your questions to the preferences and interests of your group members, ensuring that the discussions remain engaging and enjoyable for everyone involved.

Angela has met with the same book club for over 10 years, so she has tons of experience cultivating great discussion questions. We hope our 50 universal book club questions and tips will provide a solid foundation for your next book club meeting, regardless of your chosen book.

If you need help selecting your next book club read, we also have a great list of the best Book Club Books for 2023, the Best Book Club Books from 2022, and our favorite Uplifting Books for Book Clubs.

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Angela & Melissa

The Book Girls are best friends who jointly read over 200 books per year. We started Book Girls' Guide in 2019 to help others de-stress and find joy through the power of a great book. We do in-depth research on thousands of novels and non-fiction titles each year to provide curated book lists covering a variety of genres.

Barbara Dullaghan

Friday 15th of September 2023

Wow! Incredible website. Congratulations. I would like to suggest my award-winning debut novel for your lists! "Secrets in the Hollow: A Sleepy Hollow Novel" tells a story of the power of secrets in our lives. It takes place in Sleepy Hollow, NY, a charming river-town on the Hudson River; it's a place full of legends and magic and I was fortunate to grow up there. I would be glad to send you copies. Thanks for your consideration! Barb

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