Atlantic Beach woman's book club explodes in popularity on Facebook

Librarian Renee Weingarten has been told that she is Facebook famous.

Cecilia Dowd

Sep 8, 2023, 9:44 PM

Updated 290 days ago

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A book lover from Atlantic Beach took her passion for the written word and turned into a popular Facebook reading group with thousands of members.
Librarian Renee Weingarten has been told that she is Facebook famous. She started the social media page "Renee's Reading Club" in 2017. The club now has more than 47,000 members, including people in all 50 states and around the world.
Weingarten holds weekly Facebook Live events with authors. The first author to do one was Brenda Janowitz, who recently penned "The Audrey Hepburn Estate." Janowitz, a Long Islander like Weingarten, says Weingarten's group is a "place of positivity." And Weingarten stresses the same sentiment: no negativity allowed. She says the purpose of her site is sharing books and connecting readers. Once a month she puts out books she thinks will be popular that month and says people have told her they go to her list, rather than others, to decide what they'll be reading.
The page has spurred friendships among strangers, sales for authors and even a local book club on Long Island. Lisa Zeiler Yikiel is one of 11 people who gets together at local eateries to talk books – all thanks to Renee's Reading Club where they connected.


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