4 March 2018

April 2018 - Moths by Karl Manders


Despite the silence, the Welwyn Garden City book group is still going strong and always on the look out for new members!

This month we're reading Ian's choice of Moths by Karl Manders, and will be meeting on Thursday 12th April to discuss it.  Here's a synopsis for you:

From rural Holland in World War II to the Soviet labour camps by way of a curious jazz band in Minsk and Moscow, Moths tells the parallel stories of a father and son who live through interesting times. 

A self-indulgent Dutch businessman finds himself caught up in the liberation of Auschwitz by the Russian army, and playing piano for an unusual band at a time when jazz is a risky business in Stalinist Russia... Meanwhile, the boy, who has barely known his father, is brought up by his doting, childless aunt in the flat farmlands of east Holland. One day he comes upon an old moated castle full of moths, and meets the curious young girl who breeds and keeps the creatures captive there.

As the fifties come to an end, their parallel tracks converge in a powerful dénoument. Vivid, magical, heartbreaking and with astonishing range and layers of meaning, Moths is a gripping and beautiful literary debut.

We've read some great books over the last few months - here are a few of them:

The Red Notebook by Antoine Laurain - chosen by Jenna

The Mistletoe Murder and Other Stories by PD James - a festive choice for our annual Christmas dinner!
Submission by Michel Houellebecq - chosen by Ian
The Power by Naomi Alderman - chosen by Louise
Horns by Joe Hill - chosen by Caroline
Red Shift by Alan Garner - chosen by Ellie
Trumpet by Jackie Kay - chosen by Alistair
The Reader on the 6.27 by Jean-Paul Didierlaurent - chosen by Beth
The Illusion of Separateness by Simon Van Booy - chosen by Clare
The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd - chosen by Kloe
A Private Moon by Peter Benson - chosen by Martyn

If you're aged 20-45 and interested in joining us (on the second Thursday evening of every month), drop us an email at wgcbookgroup@gmail.com.

12 February 2016

March - An Untamed State

Our book for March is An Untamed State by Roxanne Gay...

24 January 2016

February's book - The Big Sleep

We'll be meeting on the second Thursday of February to discuss The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler.

Last month's book received mixed responses. The Blazing World by Siri Hustvedt didn't quite draw us in.

15 September 2015

October 2015 - A Man Called Ove

Hi all,

In October we will be chatting about A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman.


27 July 2015

Remiss again!

We've read some great books in the last few months.

July 15 - Dark Matter by Michelle Paver
June 15 - The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North
May 15 - The Death of Grass by John Christopher
April 15 - Reminder by Tom McCarthy
March 15 - A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
Feb 15 - Inheritance by Nicholas Shakespeare

Next up for August is The Talented Mr Ripley by Patricia Highsmith.

If any of these sound like your sort of thing, why not come along and join us? More details on the About Us page!

11 January 2015

2014 into 2015

I've been even more lax than usual at updating what we've been reading in the last year, but the book group has continued to meet each month and we've got through some interesting reads.

The book we will be reading in February 2015 is Inheritance by Nicholas Shakespeare. Nick wrote the introduction to the book we read in Jan, and we thought we'd give his works a try.

Here's what we've read in the last few months:

Jan - Cakes and Ale by W Somerset Maugham
Dec - Tenth of December by George Saunders
Nov - Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Oct - The 100 Year Old Man Who Jumped Out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson
Sept - He Wants by Alison Moore by Herman Koch
Aug - Summer House with Swimming Pool
July - The Cement Garden by Ian McEwan
June - The Sportswriter by Richard Ford

10 April 2014

April and May

The book for May is Heft by Liz Moore. Trying to break a pattern of recent sad and dispiriting books, we're hopeful that this one has a positive vibe.

"Former academic Arthur Opp weighs 550 pounds and hasn't left his rambling Brooklyn home in a decade. Twenty miles away, in Yonkers, seventeen-year-old Kel Keller navigates life as the poor kid in a rich school and pins his hopes on what seems like a promising sporting career - if he can untangle himself from his family drama. The link between this unlikely pair is Kel's mother, Charlene, a former student of Arthur's. After nearly two decades of silence, it is Charlene's unexpected phone call to Arthur - a plea for help - that jostles them into action."

In April we discussed Falling Man by Don Delillo.

"Falling Man begins on September 11, in the smoke and ash of the burning towers. In the days and the years following, we trace the aftermath of this global tremor in the private lives of a few reticulated individuals. Theirs are lives choreographed by loss, by grief and by the enormous force of history."