The University Libraries now offers book club kits for certain titles, similar to those you might find in a public library. Each kit includes a handful of copies of a book, along with a set of discussion questions related to the book and its possible themes. A group of classmates, friends, or coworkers can check out the kit, read the book over a month or two, and then have a meeting to discuss the book using the prepared discussion questions, or questions of their own. Once the group has finished reading and discussing, they can return the kit to the library.
We hope that by making it easy to check out a ready-made kit, people can more easily gather with a group of friends or colleagues to read these books and discuss their broader meaning and impact on society.
What is a book club?
A book club is usually a group of people who regularly read a book and then meet to talk about the book. Many books provide discussion questions at the end, which are perfect for starting conversations.
How often does a typical book club meet?
Book clubs typically meet monthly or every few months — whatever is most convenient for your group! For a lower commitment, you can also host a single session around just one book. Interested in starting a book club? The University Libraries is now offering kits to help you get started.
How do book club kits work?
Kits are available at the Hunt Library Circulation Desk on a first come, first serve basis. Each kit includes a bag, six to eight copies of a book, and a list of questions/conversation starters to help you dig deeper.
One person from your group will check out the whole kit and then distribute it to members. This person is ultimately responsible for the kit and its return. You can borrow the kit for up to 90 days. There are no renewals, and a limit of two kits per person.
What if a book is lost?
Kits with missing parts will not be discharged until all parts are returned. Kits will be billed for replacement once they become 30 days overdue. 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 in like new/good condition.
What if I need an accessible copy of the book?
Some of our kits already include a large print copy or an eCopy of the book. The book club kits also include links to translations and eCopies available from the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, as well as links to Library of Accessible Media for Pennsylvanians for people who want braille and audio copies.
- Kits are cataloged in Alma and discoverable in Primo. They are kept at the Hunt Library Circulation Desk.
- Kits are available on a first come, first serve and cannot be requested via Primo.
- Kits circulate for 90 days, with no renewals.
- One person can check out a maximum of two kits at a time.
- The person who picks up a kit will check it out on their account, and this person is ultimately responsible for the kit and its return.
- There are no overdue fines for kits, but borrowers will be charged to replace a kit once it becomes 30 days overdue.
- Kits with missing parts will not be discharged until all parts are returned.
- The Libraries will accept replacement copies when copies are lost. These copies must be in clean and like new/good condition.
- "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks," by Rebecca Skloot
- "Ghost Boys," by Jewell Parker Rhodes
Interested in hosting a book club around a title that’s not available through the Libraries yet? Check out the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh for more options.
Librarian and GIS Specialist
Access Services Manager