The Group meets on the second Friday of each month. We meet in the home of one of the group members and discuss the book of the month whilst enjoying coffee (or tea) and cake
We met in December to talk about "Transcription" by Kate Atkinson.
Juliet Armstrong was recruited into the world of espionage at the age of eighteen. The year is 1940 and Juliet is sent to an obscure department of MI5, tasked with monitoring the comings and goings of British Fascist sympathizers. Ten years later, now working for the BBC, Juliet is confronted with figures from her past.
This was potentially a good story, it was amusing in places and the plot was intriguing. We found it too long and difficult to follow. There were too many characters, some with more than one identity, and the story jumped a great deal between time frames which was frustrating.
Kate Atkinson is a respected author and the book received good reviews but we felt that it was not up to her usual standard and we would not recommend it.
We followed our discussion with a delicious "Bring and Share" lunch, which has become a tradition since the group started in 2013.
We started the New Year with "Camino Island" by John Grisham. This was the first time the group had chosen a Grisham novel and some of us were not familiar with his work. He usually writes legal thrillers but this book is an exception and explores the world of writers, publishers and first editions.
A gang of thieves stage a daring heist from a secure vault below Princeton University's Firestone Library. The five manuscripts of F Scott Fitzgerald's only novels have vanished without trace. Early arrests are made and then the trail goes cold. The manuscripts are insured for twenty five million dollars. In an attempt to find the priceless works, a struggling writer, Mercer Mann, is recruited to help. She has personal knowledge of Camino Island, where the manuscripts are believed to be hidden.
The plot is very clever and characters are well researched. This was described by one of our members as a "literate page turner." We all really enjoyed it, an excellent start to 2020.
Our choice for February is "Freida" by Annabel Abbs.