Whether you are prepping virtual or in-person book club discussion questions, these 109 generic and general book club questions for discussion of fiction & nonfiction can apply to ANY book. It’s a one-stop-shop for your book club discussion needs!
Below are the generic and general book club questions for discussion arranged by category:
- About the Title
- About the Author
- About the Cover Art
- About the Writing Style
- General Questions
- About the Beginning
- About the Plot
- About the Characters
- About the Setting(s)
- About the Point of View
- About the Timeframe / Chronology of Events
- About the Ending
- Beyond the Book
- Hypotheticals / for Fun
109 Generic and General Book Club Questions for Discussion of Fiction & Non-Fiction
About the Title
- Discuss the title of the book.
- What would you title this book?
About the Author
- What did you already know about the author?
- How does this book compare to other books or work of this author with which you are familiar?
- Did you learn anything new about the author?
- Do you believe the author’s personal life affected the story in any way?
- Discuss the author’s world view.
About the Cover Art
- Does the cover artwork well for this book?
- How would you design the cover art?
About the Writing Style
- What were your thoughts on the writing style?
- Do you have any favorite quotes from the book?
- Did you find the book to be a page-turner or a slow burn?
- Did you find the book to be more character-driven or plot-driven?
- Was the book too short, too long or just right in length?
- Was the pacing too fast, too slow or just right?
- Was the story presented with any bias?
- In what form did you read the book (paper, ebook, audiobook)?
- Where did you obtain the book?
- What did you like about the book?
- What did you dislike about the book?
- How would you rate this book on a scale of 1-10?
- What emotions did this book make you feel?
- How long did it take you to read this book?
- Describe the book in one sentence.
- What was your favorite part of the book?
- What was your least favorite part of the book?
- Did any parts of the book surprise you?
- Did this book remind you of any other books?
- To whom would you recommend this book?
- Did your opinion of the book change or stay the same as you read it?
- Do you have any questions about the book?
- Do you believe the book touched upon any broader social issues?
- Did any historical or cultural references stand out to you?
- Are you glad you read this book?
- Did this book feel original to you?
- How did this book compare to other books in this genre?
- Was the book similar or different to what you normally read?
About the Beginning
- Discuss the first sentence of the book.
- How would you rewrite the first sentence of the book?
- What was the inciting moment that set this book into motion?
About the Plot
- What was the major conflict to be resolved?
- What were the themes of the book?
- What do you think was the main point of this book?
- Were there any holes in the plot?
- Was the plot believable?
- Did you uncover any symbols in the book?
- Discuss the tone of the book.
- Would you cut out any sections or storylines from this book?
- Would you add any sections or storylines to this book?
- Whose “story” was this — the author, the narrator or another character?
About the Characters
- How would you describe the characters?
- What did you like about the characters?
- What did you dislike about the characters?
- What were the characters’ biggest struggles?
- What are the characters’ strengths and weaknesses?
- To which character did you most relate or empathize?
- What do you think would happen in the characters’ lives if the book continued?
- Did you agree with any specific actions of the characters?
- Did you disagree with any specific actions of the characters?
- Did the characters remind you of anyone?
- Were the characters believable?
- Were the characters’ actions believable?
- Were you able to easily keep track of the characters?
- How did the characters process their emotions?
- Were the characters one-dimensional or multi-dimensional?
- What motivated the characters’ actions?
- What did you think about the way the characters related to each other?
- Discuss the characters’ world view.
- How did the characters influence each other?
- Was the main character reliable or unreliable?
- Did the main character’s journey come full circle?
- Were you able to envision the characters in your mind?
- How do you think you would act if you were in the characters’ shoes?
- How did the characters change throughout the course of the book?
- Did the characters learn any lessons?
About the Setting(s)
- Discuss the setting(s) and the impact of the setting(s) on the story.
- Have you ever been to a location of this book?
- Did the book inspire any travel plans for you?
- How would the book differ in another setting?
- Were you able to envision the setting in your mind?
About Point of View
- Discuss the point of view and whether it worked for this book.
- Would you prefer a different point of view?
- How would the book change if told from a different point of view?
About the Timeframe / Chronology of Events
- Did the timeframe of the book affect the plot?
- How would the plot differ in another timeframe?
- What did you think of the way the author presented the chronology of events (i.e., linear, backward, jumping in time)?
- How would a different chronology of events change the story?
About the Ending
- Were you able to “guess” the ending?
- Was the ending satisfying?
- How did you want the book to end?
- Discuss the last sentence of the book.
- How would you rewrite the last sentence of the book?
- Did the ending leave anything unresolved?
Beyond the Book
- Did you Google anything about the book while reading it?
- Did the book change your opinions or way of thinking at all?
- What will you remember most about this book in a few months?
- Did you learn anything new by reading this book?
- Did reading the book affect anything in your own life?
Hypotheticals / For Fun
- Who would you cast in a movie about this book?
- What emojis best capture this book?
- What Enneagram number would you assign to the characters?
- What Zodiac sign do you think the characters are?
- What is the personality type of the characters?
- What would you ask the author about this book if given the opportunity?
- Which supporting character would make the most interesting main character in a spinoff?
- What songs would you add to a playlist for this book?
- What would be the ideal food or drink to consume while reading this book?
- If you were this author’s editor, what feedback would you give?
- Is there another author you would like to see tell this story?
- Do you think there should be a sequel or a prequel or is this book better as a stand-alone?
- Would you read any other books in a series including this book?
Use these 150+ Best Quotes About Books and Reading to foster discussion questions for a book club.
Get a Book Club Questions PDF with all the Generic Book Club Questions for Discussion
Book Club Questions for Specific Books
- A Gentleman in Moscow
- A Man Called Ove
- An American Marriage
- Late Migrations
- Normal People
- Open Book
- Summer Darlings
- The Dutch House
- The Great Alone
- The Guest List
- The Immortalists
- The Last Thing He Told Me
- The Mystery of Mrs. Christie
- The Silent Patient
- The Vanishing Half
- Where the Crawdads Sing