The next book we’ll be reading at the Red Lion Readers is The Blessing by Nancy Mitford.
With razor-sharp wit, Mitford blends a comedy of manners with culture shock as Grace Allingham, a naive English rose, marries Charles-Edouard de Valhubert, a French aristo who doesn’t believe in fidelity. Both are duped, meantime, by their son Sigismund — the Blessing of the title — a juvenile Machiavelli who mixes Gallic cunning with Saxon thoroughness to become one of Mitford’s most memorable characters
We’ll be discussing this on Monday 7 September from 7.30 at the Red Lion pub in Ealing. You’ll usually find us at the large table at the back of the pub.
Red Lion Readers book club is now on Twitter @redlionreaders
Follow us there for the book chat.
We are looking for new members to join our book club. If you are interested, please leave a message below, email firstname.lastname@example.org or just come along on the first Monday of the month at 7.30.
Following Things Fall Apart in July at the Ealing Red Lion Book Club, next up on our reading list is another classic about a proud man whose place in the world is under threat as the world around him changes. This time the setting is 19th century Sicily.
“Tomasi di Lampedusa’s classic tale lovingly memorialises the details of a vanishing world while retaining its melancholic and ironic sense of time passing and the frailty of human emotions.”
Join the debate in the Red Lion pub in Ealing from 7.30pm on 6 August.
A classic of African literature, a book that was the first by an African writer to achieve world-wide success and represented a change from books by white men presenting Africa is merely something exotic. July’s book was Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe.
The book found favour with the group, although there was still plenty of debate with there being plenty of contentious issues to be discussed…
“Considered one of the finest creations of Russian literature in the 20th century, The Master and Margarita is an amazing work of fantasy, a love story, a biting satire on Soviet life, and a lot more.”
Expectations are high with praise like that. Mixed feelings on the book. Some liked it, some loathed it – many failed to finish it. Someone with an aversion to anything that could be considered magical realism refused to even start it.
May’s meeting of the Red Lion Book Club (Ealing) actually met on the 30 April. The book up for discussion was A D Miller’s Russian-set thriller Snowdrops. The book is described as follows:
“Snowdrops – That’s what the Russians call them – the bodies that float up into the light in the thaw. Drunks, most of them, and homeless people who just give up and lie down into the whiteness, and murder victims hidden in the drifts by their killers. Nick has a confession. When he worked as a high-flying British lawyer in Moscow, he was seduced by Masha, an enigmatic woman who led him through her city: the electric nightclubs and intimate dachas, the human kindnesses and state-wide corruption. Yet as Nick fell for Masha, he found that he fell away from himself; he knew that she was dangerous, but life in Russia was addictive, and it was too easy to bury secrets – and corpses – in the winter snows…”
On the whole the book was enjoyed, although no one felt much sympathy for the narrator. Some doubts were raised about the format of the book was a confessional letter to an unintroduced girlfriend. People who had been to Russia thought it was an accurate portrayl of the time and place. Not a bad debut – we await Miller’s next book with interest.