BG’s Book Club promotes choice reading in effort to spark joy


Photo courtesy of sponsor Kim Miklusak

Christine Yuan talks to the Book Club members about the book she is currently reading.

Emily Luethy, Editor-in-chief

With a new school year, comes brand new clubs and activities at BG. One of those new clubs is a book club, which meets once a month on Friday afternoons. They also even have their own Schoology page which helps students stay informed about the various meetings and events happening. The club is run by the library’s student advisory board, and BG’s librarian Kim Miklusak, is the advisor. 

The book club is an offshoot of our Teen advisory board,” Miklusak said. “I reached out to English teachers and specific clubs in our building to try to get a wide representation of the entire BG community for students interested in helping run or be involved in library activities.”

The club has various goals they want to accomplish and junior Addison Paunan said that they want to make sure they create a non-toxic environment. It is an important step for them to be able to promote the club to the best of their ability. 

“We want to create a place for people who want to read,” Paunan said. “We [the founders] all love reading, but most of the people interested in the book club just want to read more, and we want to encourage that as much as possible.

As far as books go, they have a specific way that they are going to choose them. The club wants to make sure that they accommodate every reader, so that nobody feels left behind. 

“There are two angles to the club,” Miklusak said. “One where we discuss whatever we are reading and one where we read the books on the same theme. It was based totally on student created surveys to gather that data and create a list.” 

In light of recent events with regards to social justice, the club is also dedicated to promoting diversity. This is reflected in the titles they are selecting.

“We are very committed to including diverse voices,” Paunan said. “We aim to pick books that are all ‘own voices’, as well as receiving any feedback from book club members about how to do that better.”

At the first meeting of the club, which took place on Oct. 15, several students had mentioned that they joined the club because they wanted to start reading again, since the pandemic affected that aspect of their life, not just the stereotypical things. 

“Some people are sad they didn’t read much [during the pandemic], but the pandemic really affected how we can focus,” Miklusak said. 

Independent reading as a whole, has become more of a staple through the academic setting. The majority of English teachers have independent reading time in their classes, where students have an average of 20 minutes a block to read their own book selection, instead of a required text. 

Overall, as reading books for fun becomes more prevalent in high schooler’s lives, this book club aims to encourage the simple act of cracking open a book. The club aims to be a stress free environment where no one feels that they have to do anything specific in order to feel welcome. 

“You don’t have to read a book from the list, you don’t even have to finish it. We just hope we can help spread the joy of reading,” Paunan said.