According to podcastinsights.com, more than 140-million people now listen to podcasts, and the numbers are rising.

The most popular topics are comedy and education, followed by news.

Fort Bend County Libraries’ University Branch Library is launching a new Podcast Club where podcast listeners can meet and share their opinions on trending topics.

Similar to a book club, a podcast club provides an opportunity for podcast listeners to get together to discuss podcast selections from a themed podcast-listening list.

The inaugural meeting of the University Branch Library Podcast Club will take place on Thursday, Feb. 27, beginning at 7 p.m., in Conference Room 1 of the library, located at 14010 University Blvd in Sugar Land, on the UH campus.

Each month will feature a different theme, along with a short list of podcast episodes.

The theme for February is “Friendship.”

The list of podcasts from which to choose includes:

§ “Make New Friends (And Keep Them)” – Life Kit from NPR (24 minutes). Learn from the experts about how to make new friends and deepen existing relationships.

§ “When Friendship Changes, How to Cope” – Life Kit from NPR (22 minutes). In this episode, learn how to manage friendships as your life changes — and as your friends’ lives change, too. You’ll get practical advice on keeping friends throughout the years and even a few instructions on how to — eek — break up with a friend.

§ “The Science of BFFs” – Stuff Mom Never Told You (1 hour). What’s the scientific function of best friendship? Cristen and Caroline put besties and bromances under the microscope to discover the pros and cons of how these influential relationships shape our lives.

§ “When the World is Exploding Around You” – StoryCorps (10 minutes). On this episode of the StoryCorps podcast, hear two stories from veterans about friendships they forged on the battlefield. After decades of separation from the military — and each other — you’ll hear from the soldiers and the medics who had their backs.

A direct link to the podcasts can be found on the University Branch Library’s online calendar on the Fort Bend County Libraries website.

The Podcast Club is free and open to the public.

For more information, see the Fort Bend County Libraries website (www.fortbend.lib.tx.us), or call the University Branch Library (281-633-5100) .

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