Community Led Book Club Policy

Community Led Book Club Policy & Agreement

The Maud Preston Palenske Memorial Library (MPPML) is happy to promote reading by supporting community led book clubs in St. Joseph City and St. Joseph Township in the following ways:

• We will make every practical attempt to obtain and reserve enough books for each member of your book club and will strive to ensure a reasonable and timely lending period, provided the title is available.
• Attempt to obtain books in multiple formats when requested (large print, audiobooks on CD).
• Provide a convenient place for book club members to pick up their copy of the book club pick.
• Offer the library’s meeting spaces as a place to host your book club in conjunction with our meeting room policy.


Requesting book club titles uses library resources (postage, staff time to locate items, send requests, record transactions and then pack items to be returned, etc.). The following guidelines help the library streamline the process.
• Titles should be at least 6 months old and not a current “bestseller.” Library lending policies vary, but most will not lend new titles via interlibrary loan.
• Book selections must be submitted to the library at least 2 months prior to the discussion. For example: March 1 book club title will need to be to the library by January 1. If you can provide a list of books for several months at a time, that is ideal.
• Once the title is submitted, it cannot be changed unless library staff cannot locate sufficient copies from Michigan libraries. If this happens, the library will contact the Facilitator as soon as possible.
• If the book club Facilitator leaves, a new Facilitator will need to update the club’s registration form.
• Each book club member or Facilitator must pick up their book(s) at the library with a valid library card and is responsible for returning the book(s) on time and paying any overdue/damage/lost fees.
• Monetary donations to offset the costs are appreciated.
• The library reserves the right to cancel or alter the agreement.


• The Facilitator of your book club must have a MPPML library card in good standing and register their book club by filling out the registration form, which includes:

o A name for your book club.
o Book club meeting dates.
o Number of copies needed, including requests for special formats (large print and audio books on CD).
o Roster with contact information for all book club members.

• Book clubs can choose to have titles requested and checked out to each individual member of the club, or to have all copies checked out to the Facilitator.

If you opt to have the books checked out to each individual, book club members who are not MPPML patrons will need to obtain a library card. If there are members who are not eligible for a MPPML library card, they can purchase a non-resident fee card, or the additional copies must go on the Facilitator’s personal account and the Facilitator will be responsible for picking up and returning those copies on time and in good condition. Reciprocal borrowers must contact their home library to request materials.

If you opt to have all copies checked out to the Facilitator, by signing this agreement, the Facilitator accepts responsibility for picking up the copies at the library, distributing them to the book club members, and ensuring that they are returned to the library on time and in good condition. The Facilitator will be financially responsible for any overdue fines, damage, or lost books checked out on their account.

• The library will endeavor to have the books available 3-4 weeks prior to the book club meeting. Book club titles come from different libraries across Michigan, and will arrive at different times. Each member will be contacted individually when their copy is ready for pickup at the library, or the Facilitator will be contacted when copies are available for pickup, depending on which option the book club has selected.

• The library reserves the right to deny or stop service to a book club if necessary.

Lost/Missing/Overdue Items

• Library staff will make every attempt to notify the Facilitator or book club patrons of overdue materials.  However, it is the user’s responsibility to return library materials in good condition, in a timely manner, and to keep account information current.
• The replacement cost of a lost or late item is determined by the lending library and will be billed to the patron account of the book club member or the Facilitator, depending on whether the book club opted to have titles checked out to each member individually, or to the Facilitator.
• Lost/missing items cannot be purchased in lieu of paying the lending library’s replacement cost fee.


• If there is a consistent problem with too many books being requested and not picked up, the library will work with you to make adjustments.


• A request for exceptions to these procedures can be submitted in writing to the Library Director. If that resolution is not satisfactory, the Facilitator can then submit the request to the MMPPML library board and it will be considered at the next regular monthly meeting.



I agree to the policies and procedures outlined in this document. By signing here, I acknowledge that my book club will be established according to the options selected in the Book Club Registration form and will alert the library to any changes in a timely manner.

Facilitator’s Name (printed) ________________________________________

Facilitator’s Signature _____________________________________________

Date ______________________



Approved by the Board of Trustees of the Maud Preston Palenske Memorial Library at the meeting held on May 25, 2021.