The Book Group

The Book Group

The cast of The Book Group
Genre Sitcom
Created by Annie Griffin
Starring Anne Dudek
Michelle Gomez
James Lance
Rory McCann
Saskia Mulder
Bonnie Engstrom
Country of origin United Kingdom
No. of episodes 12
Running time approx 23 minutes
Original network Channel 4
Original release 12 April 2002 – 28 February 2003

The Book Group is a British comedy drama that was broadcast on Channel 4 between 2002 and 2003 and ran for two seasons. It was written and directed by the American-born, Glasgow resident Annie Griffin, who also wrote and directed Festival. It was the winner of two BAFTA Scotland awards.

In January 2006, it was announced that screenwriter Andrew Davies would make a feature film adaptation of The Book Group for Film 4,[1] but the project was never started.


The Book Group revolved around the life of American Clare Pettengill (Anne Dudek), who, at the start of the series, had recently arrived in Glasgow, Scotland. She starts up a book club to try to find friends with similar interests. Those whom she encounters are not what she expected; her new group consists of a drug-addled, egotistical postgraduate student (and subsequently his neurotic and ever-worrying brother), an easy-going disabled man who aims to be a writer, three discontented footballers' wives, and a straggler who hides his homosexuality with an obsession for football. All of the members are brought together not so much by the books that they read (if they read the book at all), but by their own longings for companionship, and their ambitions to better their lives.

Critical reception

Reviewing The Book Group for The Guardian, Gareth McLean stated "the acting is as cracking as the script and the production values" and described the show as "a genuine ensemble drama in which everyone plays a vital part".[2]




Season one

  1. "On The Road"
  2. "The Alchemist"
  3. "Magical Realism"
  4. "Bedtime Stories"
  5. "Dark Alley"
  6. "A Little More Living"

Season two

  1. "Sueños"
  2. "Hunger"
  3. "You Must Change Your Life"
  4. "Drowning"
  5. "Research"
  6. "A'salaam Insha'lah"


  1. "Davies to write Book Group film". The Guardian. 31 January 2006.
  2. McLean, Gareth (27 April 2002). "Literally Dazzling". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 March 2013.
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