If you’re an avid reader, you’ll know that there’s no better feeling than finding someone to talk about all things book-related with. It’s even better when you find someone who shares your thoughts on a book, and a book club is the perfect place to find like-minded, bookish people.

However, book clubs do require some structure to be successful. Whilst I’m sure you could talk about books all day, having an in-depth book club discussion about a book requires some preparation beforehand.

That’s why having a list of book club questions ready to discuss with your book club members is essential. 

What Discussion Questions Should I Ask at a Book Club Meeting?

What Discussion Questions Should I Ask at a Book Club Meeting?

Regardless of the preferred genre that your book club likes to read, there are some great discussion questions you can ask. Discussion questions can be adapted once you’ve read the book and can delve into particular plot points, but there are many great discussion questions to ask that you can add to your list beforehand. 

We’ve compiled a detailed list of the best book club discussion questions to get the conversation flowing and to help your book club members open their minds to different perspectives on the book they’ve been reading.

How to Prepare for a Book Club Meeting

You can use the discussion questions below at your next meeting to begin a group discussion about your chosen book for the month. These questions can also help your book club to decide what should be the next book you all read together.

Although many of the questions are genre specific, you can adapt them to suit almost any book, and you can use the general book club questions to spark a discussion at your next meeting. These discussion questions can also help your book club to discover more books that they might enjoy, too.

There are many book club resources out there that can also help you find new books, such as:

  • Visiting bookstores and libraries
  • BookTok (TikTok’s answer to a book club)
  • YouTube
  • Book tracking apps, such as Goodreads or StoryGraph

However, a book club discussion can often be the best way to discover new books that suit your reading tastes and interests.

Choosing the best book club questions for your group is essential to having an enjoyable conversation, and you should utilize a range of resources before delving right into a group meeting. These questions can help you to guide an interesting and lively discussion.

You can download the list of printable book club questions as a PDF to use in your next meeting. You may also prefer to write down some questions on sticky notes or a piece of paper, which you use to continue writing notes throughout the book club meeting.

General Book Club Discussion Questions

  1. What rating would you give this book out of 5?
  2. Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?
  3. Did this book remind you of other books you’ve read?
  4. Have you read any of this author’s other work? If so, was it similar to this book?
  5. If not, after reading this book, would you read any of the author’s other work?
  6. If you had to choose one word to describe this book, what would it be?
  7. What was your favorite quote or chapter from the book, and why?
  8. What do you think were some of the key themes or symbols in the book?
  9. Do you think the title and book cover of the book reflects the content? 
  10. If you could choose a different title and book cover for the book, what would they be?
  11. How would you describe the pacing of this book?
  12. How did this book make you feel, and did it have a lasting impact on you?
  13. Would you consider re-reading this book in the future? Why or why not?
  14. How does this book compare to other books you’ve read this year?
  15. Did the book have a satisfying ending?

Fiction Book Club Discussion Questions

Fiction Book Club Discussion Questions

Fiction books can be packed with themes, tropes, and character development. There is a lot to discuss when it comes to fiction writing, and we’ve outlined some thought-provoking questions for you to ask regarding the plot and characters specifically.


  1. What do you think were the key themes of the novel, and how were they explored throughout the story?
  2. What was the pacing of the book like? Was it a slow burn, a fast page-turner, or somewhere in the middle?
  3. Was the book more plot-driven or character-driven?
  4. Were there any plot holes in the story?
  5. Did the author use any conventional or cliche plot devices? If so, did they work or not?


  1. Who was your favorite character and why?
  2. Did you think the characters were believable?
  3. Who was your least favorite character and why?
  4. Was the main character likable or not?
  5. Was there a diverse cast of characters?
  6. Did you feel that you could relate to any of the characters?
  7. Did the main characters act as you expected them to as the book progressed?
  8. What was your favorite relationship in the book?
  9. Did any of the characters have strong character development? 
  10. If you could be any character from the novel, who it would be and why?

Themes, Symbolism, and Writing Style

  1. How would you describe the author’s writing style?
  2. What were the recurring symbols and motifs throughout the book?
  3. Were the key themes throughout the novel central to its overall plot?
  4. Do you think the themes and symbolism are indicative of the author’s point of view?
  5. What genre would you classify the book as, based on its themes, symbolism, and writing style?

Genre-Specific Book Club Discussion Questions

Making your book club discussions more genre-focused can create a deeper conversation around specific tropes and themes related to that genre. If your book club is focused on reading one particular genre, too, then these questions will be useful for you, in tandem with our general fiction questions.

The questions you ask about a thriller novel will be different compared to questions about romance novels. It’s important to recognize what makes a novel fit into the conventions of a genre, and you can use these questions to explore how the author does this and how the book may stand out against similar novels within that specific genre.

Thriller or Mystery Book Club Questions

  1. Did you predict the outcome of the story, and if so, was it early on in the novel?
  2. Do you think the ending was shocking or predictable?
  3. Were there enough twists and turns in the book to hold your interest?
  4. Did the outcome make sense or was it too far-fetched?
  5. Was everything wrapped up by the end of the novel, or was it left on a cliffhanger? How did this impact your enjoyment of the overall story?

Fantasy Book Club Questions

  1. Were you content with the world-building? 
  2. Did the world-building help to immerse you in the story?
  3. Were there any themes or messages in the novel that we can relate to our world?
  4. Were some of the plotlines or characters’ abilities too far-fetched for you, or did they make sense within the world?
  5. Was the story easy to follow or was it more complex?

Romance Book Club Questions

  1. Did the author use any common romance tropes in the novel, such as ‘friends to lovers,’ ‘enemies to lovers,’ or a ‘second chance romance,’ and if so, was it effective?
  2. Do you think the lovers were a good match? Why or why not?
  3. Who would you cast in a film or TV adaptation of the novel?
  4. Was there a happy ending or was it heartbreak for the characters?
  5. Were there any other plotlines outside of the main romance?

Horror Book Club Questions

  1. On a scale of 1-10, with 1 being child-friendly and 10 being traumatizing for life, how scary was the novel in your opinion?
  2. How did the setting contribute to the mood and atmosphere of the novel?
  3. How did the author create suspense or tension throughout the novel?
  4. What subgenre of horror would you classify this novel as, and why? Supernatural, gothic, psychological horror, survival horror, or something else?
  5. Did the author tackle deeper themes such as revenge, justice, or loyalty throughout the book? And if so, were these themes intertwined with any of the violence or psychological trauma explored within the novel?

Historical Fiction Book Club Questions

  1. Did you already know about this period of history before reading the book? If so, has the reading changed your perception of this period?
  2. How do you think the characters and events of the novel could work in a modern setting? What do you think a modern interpretation would look like?
  3. If you knew about this time period already, do you think there was historical accuracy throughout the novel? Was it well-researched in your opinion?
  4. Why do you think the author chose to write about this period of history?
  5. What new things did you learn about this time period, if anything?

Non-Fiction Book Club Discussion Questions

Reading a non-fiction book with a book club can be a great way to help you remember key information and, if the book is educational, you can then apply this information to your day-to-day life.

It can be easy to say that non-fiction books spark less discussion than fictional novels because of their more narrow focus. However, non-fiction books can offer you new insights and perspectives, and discussing this with your book club can be a rewarding experience.

We’ve grouped together some engaging questions for you to discuss by different genres of non-fiction.

Self-Help Book Club Questions

  1. Has the book inspired you, and, if so, in what way?
  2. What were your three key takeaways from the book?
  3. Did the author have a more practical approach to self-help, or was it more focused on inspiring the reader through useful insights?
  4. Did the book offer any follow-up reading or materials for you to use, and if so, will you use them?
  5. Would you recommend this book to someone who may need help with the same issue?

History Book Club Questions

  1. Is the book biased or does the author state the facts from a neutral perspective?
  2. Did you find it beneficial to learn more about this period of history?
  3. What challenges were faced by people during this time?
  4. What lessons did this time in history provide us with, and how can we implement them in the modern world?
  5. Would you be interested in learning more about this period of history?

Memoir Book Club Questions

  1. How much did you know about the author prior to reading their memoir?
  2. Did you enjoy reading about the author’s life? Did you find it relatable to your own life?
  3. If so, what parts, in particular, were most enjoyable or relatable to you?
  4. Were there moments where you negatively judged the author for particular choices they made?
  5. Did you find the memoir to be reliable or, at least, believable? Can this ever be true of a memoir?

Enjoy a Lively Discussion with our List of Book Club Questions

Enjoy a Lively Discussion with our List of Book Club Questions

It’s easy to let your book club meeting become a short discussion without any real depth to the conversation. Using our thought-provoking book club questions will certainly get the conversation flowing, and might even help you to find your new favorite book.

You can pick and choose which questions from our list work for you, or you can print the list of questions off and work your way through them at different book club meetings. If you have new members at your book club, you can also use these questions to better understand their taste in books and discover what they enjoy.

General book club questions work well for most discussions and can be adapted, but incorporating some genre-specific book club questions is also an engaging way to liven up a discussion. These discussions can then help you to find other books to add to your TBR (that means ‘to-be-read,’ in the book world) pile for your future book club meetings.