On September 25th we met to speak about Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel. This detailed biography of the rise of Anne Boleyn, from the viewpoint of Thomas Cromwell. It was a rather long read, and when I got to the end of it, I was surprised to find out there was a second part. It’s called Bring up the Bodies, if you are interested.
30 OctoberHowards End by E.M. Forster
27 NovemberRoss Poldark by Winston Graham
18 December some short stories
Suggestions for next year:
The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro, who won the Nobel prize in Literature for 2017.
Something by Sinclair Lewis.
I am having trouble coming up with anything contemporary….. Perhaps Call the Midwife?
This week we had our last meeting of the year – this is our fifth year running! – to speak about Jamaica Inn by Daphne du Maurier. It was a page-turner for sure, but didn’t come quite as close in liking as Rebecca. I do think, though, that I will eventually finish the collection of Great Cornish Novels, which include the two mentioned above and Frenchman’s Creek (set in the 17th century, it tells the story of a love affair between an English lady and a French pirate) and My Cousin Rachel (a mystery-romance).
We had our meet on David Copperfield this Monday in a small circle. Lots of laughs, as usual. I had a bit of a love/hate relationship with David. Love the beginning and the end, but the middle was trying. I might have given up but for the book club!! So, thanks, ladies for bearing with me on that choice.
It is also up to me to choose the book for the month of June (we are meeting on the 19th), so I thought I’d try my hand at setting up a poll where you can vote. (If no one votes, I will choose from among these at the weekend.)
See you next month for our last meet before the summer.
my new year’s resolution to blog more regularly did not last very long, as this is only my second post this year – and it’s April already.
On Monday evening we met up to discuss David Copperfield – the first half! With the exception of Eileen, we only made it halfway (who knew the book was 945 pages long?). We are all enjoying the read so much, though, that we decided to continue with the second half of the book for next time. In addition, we will talk about a few short stories, which you will find below. As the book originally chosen for May was also longish (over 600 pages) we will read it over the summer. That leaves us with the following:
22 May : David Copperfield – the second half ; plus the following short stories:
I’m running late, but before the new meeting is upon me, just a quick note regarding our last meeting in October.
Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford was not every one’s cup of tea. I certainly enjoyed it. For one, some of the characters are modeled after her family members. The Mitford sisters (six of them, after which there came one boy) seem to have been a crazy bunch, often referred to as ‘Mad, Mad Mitfords.’ Their own mother, seemingly the inspiration for Sadie in the novel, lamented: “Oh, why do all my daughters fall for dictators?” (The reference is to Diana, who took up with Sir Oswald Mosley, leader of Britain’s fascist party; Unity, who became a close friend of Hitler’s, whom she worshipped. She shot herself in the head when Britain declared war on Germany but survived with some brain damage, Hitler paying her German hospital bills, according to Time Magazine from 20 April 2002. Jessica, a would-be-communist, eloped with Winston Churchchill’s nephew. Who needs novels with such a family?
In any case, here are some of my favorite lines:
I, Albert Edward Christian George Andrew Patrick David take thee, Leopoldina…
Polly on her dress: ‘Mine is liver lamé, it smells like a bird cage when it gets hot but I do love it.’
They all… had a thousand questions to ask about mutual acquaintances in Paris, fashionable foreign ladies with such unfashionable English names as Norah, Cora, Jennie, Daisy, May and Nellie. ‘Are all Frenchwomen called after English housemaids’? Lady Montdore said, rather crossly.
‘The old French tart was telling me the whole system last night.’ Lady Montdore was famous for picking up words she did not quite understand and giving them a meaning of their own.
She said that the duke of Barbarossa (this may not be the name, but it sounded like it) had told her the inside story, in which case he must also have told it to the Daily Express, where I had read word for word what she now kindly passed on to me, and several days before.
Her curtsies, owing to the solid quality of her frame, did not recall the graceful movement of wheat before the wind. She scrambled down like a camel, rising again backside foremost like a cow…
I better stop there! Onto upcoming meetings:
21 NovemberWuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
19 December suggestion: Hercule Poirot’s Christmas by Agatha Christie