Seattle Culture

Quiet Time

Silent book clubs pop up across region

By Seattle Mag February 2, 2024

People reading books at the beach

This article originally appeared in the January/February 2024 issue of Seattle magazine.

What began as a small group of friends in West Seattle has exploded across the Puget Sound region.

Friends Sara Richards, Lisa Fieldson, and Hannah Nieman formed the Silent Book Club West Seattle chapter last year to pursue their love of reading in a fun and casual way. Today, that effort has grown to more than 350 readers who gather across more than 10 neighborhood bars and cafes each month to read together in places including Ballard, Shoreline, Everett, Renton, Burien, and Tacoma.

Silent book clubs started in 2012 in San Francisco when two friends began reading at a neighborhood bar. Silent book clubs differ from traditional book clubs in several ways: Participants can read whatever they like (there are no assigned readings), and everyone reads together. There are no requirements to finish a book, so you don’t have to stress when you realize you need to finish John Grisham’s latest bestseller, The Exchange, in just two days.

The clubs have been half jokingly described as a place for introverts because there is no expectation of social engagement.

“If a person wants to, they can show up and silently read without ever having to engage in a conversation,” says Fieldson, adding that the West Seattle chapter is full of all personality types. “However, there is dedicated time to chat with a fellow book lover if desired.”

To get started: sbc.westseattle@gmail.com

Follow Us

The Wild Sauna of Seattle

The Wild Sauna of Seattle

A taste of Norwegian culture comes to the Pacific Northwest

In the heart of Kirkland, tied up to a public dock, one of the United States’ first floating saunas bobs on Lake Washington, providing a unique experience inspired by sauna culture in Norway. On a recent crisp chilly day, I had the opportunity to visit Von Sauna...

Party on, Seattle!

Party on, Seattle!

The city doesn’t have to fight for its right to party

Who likes to party? I do, and apparently, so do you, because Seattle is ranked among the top party cities in America.

The Therapy Revolution

The Therapy Revolution

 Changing your ability to love, one session at a time

To my mind, some form of counseling or therapy is helpful in preparation for meeting someone, in maintenance of a relationship, in repair when relationships stall or shatter, and in support when you have to start the whole dance over again. Photo by Glasshouse Images/Getty

Captain America, Lando Calrissian, and Emerald City Comic Con 2024

Captain America, Lando Calrissian, and Emerald City Comic Con 2024

Four-day event kicks off Feb. 29 at Seattle Convention Center

Come meet Lando Calrissian this weekend. Stop by and see Captain Marvel, or Frodo Baggins from Lord of the Rings.