Each month I host an open meeting at Browsers Bookshop, Woodbridge in Suffolk. We usually focus on modern fiction and the discussion regularly attracts around 20 people, men and women, of all ages.
A fascinating account of a mountaineering expedition exploring sibling rivalry, guilt and fear. But did it need to have the 'ghost story' cover badge? The group was in two minds
Fast-paced, fantastical and intriguing with a Bond-like central character and a powerful, sinister setting of Siberia. Or far-fetched and confusing with no character or cause to care about. The group was divided in its response!
The Watchmaker of Filigree Street
Quirky, magical, mystical with beautiful scene-setting. Most enjoyed reading this unusual novel but felt it could have been better - the ending in particular disappointed.
The Bricks That Built The Houses
A bleak picture of young people's lives told using violent imagery and, in places, coarse language upset some. Others thought it original, compelling and powerful with stunning imagery.
The Tidal Zone
Incredibly moving, thought-provoking and beautifully written, though others weren't convinced by the characters' behaviours and motivations.
Do Not Say We Have Nothing
A harrowing subject beautifully told but requiring concentration and application from the reader. Not a quick or easy read, but almost everyone agreed they were pleased to have read it.
The Versions of Us
A clever construction presenting three different outcomes for a relationship. Fascinating for some, challenging for others seeking to remember who was who, what was happening when. Some felt it was the best book they've read for a long while!
Spill Simmer Falter Wither
Poetic language, vivid descriptions and ultimately a gripping, compelling and poignant plot. Too sad some claimed, others loved it.
Great fun - a well researched 'romp' keeping us turning the pages until the last surprising 'twist'. Tedious, indulgent, too wordy, too long. The group was divided in its response!