Modern paper books are printed on papers designed specifically for printed books. Traditionally, book papers are off-white or low-white papers (easier to read), are opaque to minimise the show-through of text from one side of the page to the other and are (usually) made to tighter caliper or thickness specifications, particularly for case-bound books. Different paper qualities are used depending on the type of book: Machine finished coated papers, woodfree uncoated papers, coated fine papers and special fine papers are common paper grades.

Today, the majority of books are printed by offset lithography. When a book is printed, the pages are laid out on the plate so that after the printed sheet is folded the pages will be in the correct sequence. Books tend to be manufactured nowadays in a few standard sizes. The sizes of books are usually specified as "trim size": the size of the page after the sheet has been folded and trimmed. The standard sizes result from sheet sizes (therefore machine sizes) which became popular 200 or 300 years ago, and have come to dominate the industry. British conventions in this regard prevail throughout the English-speaking world, except for the USA. The European book manufacturing industry works to a completely different set of standards.

A book club is a group of people who get together on a regular basis to discuss books. One standard format is that the group selects a set of books in advance. The participants read the book. Then, they meet to discuss the book. Some books even provide questions or suggestions for discussion starting points. The club may appoint leaders to come with questions and to lead the conversation. The discussion may be an academic analysis or a casual chat.

Some libraries, schools, book stores and publishers help run book clubs, discussion groups or alternatively, a stand-alone session on one book or author, sometimes attended by the author. The libraries and schools may help by providing copies of the book. The book stores and publishers often support book clubs in part in order to sell books. They may provide discounts to clubs or for bulk purchases. In some places getting onto some book club lists has been a critical step in getting a book more widely read and sold.

A group may focus on a particular kind of book, author or topic. Some groups may be focussed more on learning more about a topic, but read books in support of their primary activities.

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