For the most voracious and active readers, a book club is an excellent way to meet with other people who have the same passion for the written word that you do. These clubs provide an opportunity to discuss the deeper meaning of a particular work in a friendly setting where you can gain insights from others that you otherwise might not have realized on your own. The difficulty, though, comes in finding a book club that suits the types of genres you most enjoy reading. In the city of Edmonton, the public library system actually offers many different book clubs that focus on all sorts of different areas, whether it be literary fiction, genre fiction, or non-fiction. Here are just some of Edmonton’s most interesting book clubs.
AGA Book Club for Lovers of Quality Art and Literature
One of the Edmonton Public Library's (EPL) more unique gathering of readers is its AGA Book Club, which is the result of a collaboration between the EPL and the Art Gallery of Alberta (AGA). Their main focus is on books that have some sort of connection or relationship with exhibits being featured at the AGA. Each meeting offers participants a chance to explore the undertones of certain fictitious works that have closely interwoven themselves with works of art in the real world. Meeting once a month for 1 hour at the Stanley A. Milner Library, the club itself offers free registration through the AGA for anyone 18 years of age or older, with a participation limit of 25 people per meeting. Some of their most recent meetings have been centred around books like The Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio (inspired by the exhibit Of Heaven and Earth: 500 Years of Italian Painting), Curiosity: A Love Story by Joan Thomas (connected to the exhibit Thomas Bewick: Imagination Field Guide), and Silent Spring by Rachel Carson (which draws from the exhibit Flora and Fauna: 400 Years of Artists Inspired by Nature). The next meeting for The AGA Book Club is April 23, at 7PM. Register to attend and explore how the worlds of art and literature can merge together as one.
CanLit Book Club for Canadian Literature Enthusiasts
The CanLit Book Club is another of the EPL's available clubs that primarily looks at fostering exciting discussions the Canadian literature scene. This is the regular get- together for you to attend if you're someone who knows and loves many different Canadian authors, as each month the group chooses a book by a different author from somewhere across the country. Registration is open to all adults for their hour- long meetings (15 member participation limit) that occur on the fourth Wednesday of every month at the Jasper Place Branch. Upcoming meetings for April 23, and May 28, at 7PM, will feature works such as Indian Horse by Richard Wagamese, Astray by Emma Donoghue, and Louis Riel by Chester Brown. The CanLit Book Club is your chance to indulge in your passion for great Canadian literature.
Mystery Book Club for Readers of All Things Murder and Mayhem
The EPL's Mystery Book Club is ideal for anyone who can't get enough when it comes to murder mystery, detective, or crime books. Expand your reading experience by joining the club to discuss the genre with a welcoming group of people who enjoy a good mystery just as much as you. They're always open to reading any book by any author, whether a newer title or an older classic, just as long as it's something steeped in mystery. Each of their meetings on the third Thursday of every month at Whitemud Crossing Branch are open for anyone to drop in - no registration required. These 1-hour meetings are limited to 15 participants. Upcoming dates include April 17 at 2PM and May 15 at 2PM. The Mystery Book Club will allow you to conduct further investigations with your peers into some of the best works the genre has to offer.
Reading on its own is a fulfilling activity, but the experience gets even better when you reach out to connect with a community of others who are just as interested in a particular genre as you are. That's why you should consider taking advantage of one of the different book clubs offered by the EPL, including the AGA Book Club, the CanLit Book Club, and the Mystery Book Club. Each of these will allow you to look beyond the page and discover the deeper layers of meaning to a wide range of works.
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