Want to be happier or have a longer retirement? Join a Virtual Book Club!!

Book Club

ITC loves a book club. In fact, we would go so far as to say we are obsessed with book clubs.  Dissecting what happens at a book club, gives you nearly enough material to write a book about book clubs.

Well guess what; joining a book club can increase your life expectancy.  In fact joining any social group has positive benefits to your health.

Now we know some book clubs in Lane Cove that have been going for years and years.  We also know some book clubs that implode after six months.  However don’t let that put you off, just find another set of like-minded people and start another book club.

So how does joining a book club or other social club extend your life expectancy?

University of Queensland School of Psychology researchers Dr Niklas Steffens and Dr Tegan Cruwys studied the health of 424 people four years before and six years after they retired, to find out whether belonging to social groups reduced mortality.

The UQ study found that for retirees who belonged to two social groups before retirement, their chance of death was two per cent if they maintained the same number of groups for six years afterwards.  However for those who lost membership of one group, the risk of death rose to five per cent, while those who lost membership of both groups had a 12 per cent chance of dying in the six years that followed.

Life expectancy
Source http://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/6/2/e010164.full

In fact, the study found that belonging to a social group had nearly the same impact as maintaining fitness after retirement.  Of course, many people find that their social group and their fitness group are one in the same.

If you would like to read the UQ study in full you can find it here.

Virtual Books Clubs are So 2020

Grab a group of friends, decide on a book and a date to hold your book club.  Then use a video conferencing app to meet.  Many people are using Zoom, the video conferencing app. You can host a book club with up to 100 people at a time.  Keep the meeting to under 40 minutes and it is FREE.  If you want to extend the meeting then there are plans.

With Zoom, you can change your backgrounds and pretend you are on the beach or at the top of a mountain.

The good news is the Burns Bay Bookery is back open for “takeaways”

If you are starting a book club, you can order the book you want from the Lane Cove Library with their new Library to Your Door.

A first for Australia, Lane Cove Council has launched a ground-breaking new service enabling all residents to have library items delivered directly to their door.

The service, operated by Lane Cove Library and launched in October, is Australia’s first seamless online-shopping style public library experience, called Library to Your Door.

For a small fee of $2.50, time-poor residents can reserve items and have them delivered within three working days of the item becomes available.

A pickup service for any items borrowed from the Library is also available. The pickup service costs $1 per item.

Library to Your Door is available to residents aged 18 years and older who live within the Lane Cove Local Government Area More details here.

Book Clubs Online

We all know that Oprah is the Queen of the book club.  She now has a book club on Apple TV – click here for the link.

Reese Witherspoon also loves to read – click here for the link to her site.

Starts at 60 Book Club on Facebook might be of interest. This group of book lovers have formed a strong passion for books, together. If you’d like to know what they are reading or want to discuss and connect with authors who inspire, check it out.

The Andrew Luck book club was started by a Jock (professional sportsperson) and breaks down stereotypes.  One for the whole family. Click the link here.

New Adult Fiction Book Club -The New Adult Book Club is a massive community of readers on Goodreads. Their members enjoy reading and discussing “New Adult” literature (ie books are essentially Young Adult books with slightly more mature themes and content). Click the Link Here

Book Clubs are Fun – Don’t Take It Seriously

ITC wonders if the researchers took into account some well known facts about book clubs. Book clubs,  food and drink (of the alcoholic type) tend to go hand in hand.

Of course being obsessed by book clubs and after talking to many many book club members, ITC has drawn up a list of possible book club members.  Some of these members could be quite irritating – so what impact would an irritating book club member have on your life expectancy?  (this said with tongue firmly planted in cheek – ITC could be one of these)

The Intellectual

The Intellectual only wants to discuss books that have been listed for a literary award or are the classics.  They are offended if you want to discuss a book on the top selling list or a comedy.  They only want to read about angst and war-torn countries.  They see War and Peace as a light read.  They are in fact a book snob.

The Chick Lit Specialist

They only want to read light novels.  They take great pride in saying they have read the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy (and they had a definite opinion on who Jamie Dorian and his portral of Christian Grey in the movie adaptations).

I Just Want To Get Out of the House Book Club Member (now called I want to go into another room and escape the family in home iso bookclub)

This person does not care what they read; they just want a night out (virtually) where they can relax eat good cheese and sip a nice wine.  They prefer books that have been adapted into movies.

The Don’t Like It Book Club Member

This person will never like a book unless they chose it.  They will have strong opinions on everything and want their opinions known.


The Procrastinator

They leave reading the book to the last minute.  They have to skip through parts of the book and really can’t join in the conversation (except maybe to say that either liked or did not like the book).

The  Enforcer

They dominate the conversation and every time the conversation strays from the book they try and bring the discussion back to the book.  They have prepared answers to the questions they found on the internet and they may not be as intellectual as “the intellectual” but they are going to give it a good try.  (this could have been ITC – I do love rules)

The Off Topic Book Club Member

They are always talking about something else.  They have Zoom side chat and then asks people to repeat themselves as she did not hear the conversation as they were typing.

Book Club Agenda – To be Displayed at All Meeting (lol perfect Mother’s Group and Mother’s Day present)

After being a member of a book club, ITC put together the Book Club Agenda Tea Towel



The Book Club Agenda Tea Towel is available for purchase here – free delivery to people in the Lane Cove Council Area.  People love our book club tea towels and we have sold out before.  We have only 100 in this design.

Now these characters may put you off joining a book club, but a book club is great fun and we really do think the researchers have come to the correct conclusion.  Being a member of a book club makes you read a new book every six weeks, you virtually meet new people, you virtually eat good food, you get a chance to talk about your partner and kids without fear or favour as long as you are wearing ear plugs – because the number one rule of book club is …. what happens in book club stays in book club.

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Did you know that In the Cove has an Instagram page? Yes, we do, and we feature pictures from our roving reporters and our ITC team that do not appear on our Facebook page. Follow us on @inthecove