UPDATE: Next online book club meeting will be on May 17 at 7 PM EDT on Instagram Live Story, and the next in-person book club in Liverpool will meet in the cafe on Thursday May 26 at 5:30 PM.
We want to come together and celebrate literature that offers characters who have, or discover the ability to have, a positive relationship with their body, health, and idea of beauty.
When we see ourselves, or people we would like to aspire to be, in the books that we read, we’re looking at potential blueprint for how we can model our own actions.
In our book club we offer books that allow the reader to see that there are alternatives to self-hate and the unrealistic beauty standards most often presented in the media, while inviting them to discuss the content on a local and global scale. These conversations allow readers to reclaim their health, redefine beauty, and restore their relationships with their bodies.
The books selected may span a range of genres, with a potential leaning toward YA books overall as the genre is inclusive for teen readers, but engaging and still appropriate for adult readers as well.
Each month there will be four questions about the book to be discussed online on dates specified in advance.
On an international level readers will be invited to share their thoughts on the questions provided on the Circles of Change Instagram account.
On a local level we encourage readers to get together in person to discuss not only the questions we have provided, but to discuss the questions and thoughts that you come up as your read the book. Those who sign up to lead an in-person COC book club will receive a welcome tote and items to hand out to their club members.
-Book selection for the following month will be announced on the blog on the 21st of each month.
-On the first of each month the four book club questions will be made available on the blog. Additional questions beyond those talked about on social media may be included in case in-person hosts would like them. The questions will potentially have spoilers about the content in the book so only read them in advance if you would like to have them to consider in conjunction with your reading.
-Questions will be posted individually on Instagram on Wednesdays, on these Wednesdays the questions will be open for discussion all day long. A Circles of Change representative may also host a live discussion event in the evening.
Interested in hosting an in-person book club in your area?
We'd love to see Circles of Change Book Clubs popping up all over the globe, and you have the power to host them!
Here is a brief helpful tips guide, and a customizable flyer you can use to help promote your group.
Once you've started your bookclub you can email firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll send you (the host) a tote bag, as well as stickers and clings to hand out to your book club members. All we ask is that you consider making a donation to Ophelia's Place to help offset shipping costs.
Why do you announce the next month's book on the 21st?
We want to make sure that anyone who wants to read the next month's book is able to get a copy from the library if they don't want to buy the book. In our experience it can take up to two weeks to get a copy of a popular book from even the most well-stocked library. Participating in the club should be accessible for everyone and we want to make that as easy as possible.
How do you decide on the book for each month?
We look for fiction books that speak our goal of creating new conversations around health, beauty, and our bodies. We look for characters who are happy with exactly who they are in mind, spirit, and especially body, or we look for characters who have an experience that allows them to discover a new healthy relationship with their body and self. So far we've selected books that are already published and are often considered favorites in the body-positive community, we hope to continue that trend while also adding newly published books as the year goes on. We are open to suggestions and are always eager to hear about new books in this genre, so please feel free to contact us with recommendations.
Do I have to participate every month?
Nothing about our club is mandatory. Our goal is for this to be fun above all else. Unless you sign up to host an in-person COC Book Club, it's all about your personal accountability and what feels comfortable to you. Those who sign up to host should be comfortable with the idea of meeting with their group at least once a month for a discussion, and have the intent of organizing this meet up from month to month.
Some of what I'm reading is bringing up complicated feelings, what should I do?
If you ever find that any of the content we read is triggering know that there is always help available. We have a selection of resources we highly recommend, please visit our Ophelia's Place services page for more information including online resources. We never want our communal reading experience to create trauma for anyone. But, sometimes change, even change for the better can feel uncomfortable- this is one of the reasons why we encourage discussions, so that we can figure out why we feel uncomfortable and then what we can do to change that.
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