Book Club for adults with Aphasia

Several people attending a book club meeting.

The book club is for people living with aphasia. One of the things people miss most after a stroke is the ability to enjoy reading. The aim of the club is not to improve our reading skills but to help you enjoy literature again and give you the chance to talk about what you have read in a supported and friendly environment.
Who the club is for

Anyone with aphasia is welcome to attend. Our only criteria are that you can make your own transport arrangements and are self-caring (i.e. do not need help using the toilet or need help taking medication). We accept referrals come from local voluntary groups as well as local speech and language therapists. Members are also bringing along friends of theirs. Some people like to attend the first few sessions with their spouse or partner and this is fine.

How the club runs

We always choose a book that is easily available on Kindle/e-reader, audio book and from local libraries. Many of the books are also available to download at no cost from the internet.

The chosen book is broken down into chapters to read each week. We also have:

  • Chapter summaries. Can be at paragraph or phrase level, depending on your reading ability
  • Character summaries – to help keep track of who people are
  • Questions about the reading – this helps to ensure that you have understood the text. Multiple choice options are offered as well
  • ‘things to think about’ reflecting the main themes of the chapters read.

The challenge is to make sure everyone has their turn to speak and is able to get their message across. Some people use their iPads, some use pen and paper – anything is accepted. People often share ideas and tips they have discovered. This is always very popular with the group.

Titles so far

  • Bill Bryson (Notes from a Small Island)
  • Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Short Stories of Sherlock Holmes)
  • Mark Haddon (The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time)
  • Deborah Moggach (These Foolish Things/The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel)
  • George Orwell (Animal Farm)
  • Ian Rankin (The Beat Goes On)