READ FOR BOOKCLUB:
Chosen by Rachel
A satirical novel that details the aftermath of a school yard shooting in America.
⚈ “Vernon Gregory Little is a 15-year-old who avoids being killed in a schoolyard shooting by being on the toilet. His best friend Jesus Navarro shoots 16 of his classmates before turning the gun on himself. In the wake of the tragedy, the townspeople seek both answers and vengeance. Because Vernon was the killer’s closest friend, he becomes the focus of their fury. Vernon finds himself on the run, being charged with deaths of people across the country.
“The book is an absurdly humorous look at the serious topic of America’s history of mass shootings. The book tackles many aspects of modern American society, including consumer culture, the death penalty, the media casting tragedy as entertainment, plus the craving for fame some people have.
“Don’t be lookin’ up at no sky for help. Look down here, at us twisted dreamers”. He takes hold of my shoulders, spins me around, and punches me towards the mirror on the wall. “You’re the God. Take responsibility. Exercise your power.”
⚈ “Startling satirical comments regarding a school yard mass murder was initially a difficult concept to grasp. War satire has been done to death (pun intended) but school shootings, at a time when they were leading the news, was another story. But once Vernon sucked me in, there was no going back and I had to hear his story, prepared to be entertained but also shocked. A powerful book that has stayed with me.” – Rachel
⚈ “I remember this was the very first novel our bookclub looked at. I still remember Nadine’s insights too, picking up so much that I had missed! A sad, angry, entertaining read. Interesting author information too for Dirty But Clean Pierre.” – Suzy
⚈ “I really liked this book. For me it sparked my love of reading again. Yay! I enjoyed the dark humour and found it very refreshing.” – Nadine
Faber & Faber
The first draft, or when an idea grows out of the speculative stage and into implementation. The first draft, or when execution is in a formative state and those involved seem to tip toe around each other, around the idea, feeling their way, excited and energised about what could be.
This was us in 2007 when bookclub became more than a thought; more than a dream! The concept was thrown out there, I mean our love of literature was apparent but it was our desire to form a serious bookclub that propelled us. Less women’s group, more English Lit lecture.
So we threw it out there into the universe and the universe answered. Here’s what we achieved: three founding members, Suzy, Rachel and Nadine who alternated between one another’s book choices (which were picked at random) and one another’s homes for nibbles, dessert and a glass of wine.
Crazily, we met every two to three weeks at the start (first drafts are meant to be revised!), so we happily got through many books in that first year. But it was never a struggle, never a chore. We were three mothers with young children in bed early and minds that needed stimulation. Bookclub was the answer.
Here, we outline our thoughts on each book. This blog was not built at this time but at a later date, so we are trusting our fading memories for posts this far back, but then good books stay with you forever, don’t they?
2007 Reading Schedule
Vernon God Little – DBC Pierre
The Catcher In The Rye – J D Salinger
Life of Pi – Yann Martel
Never Let Me Go – Kazuo Ishiguro
The Bone People – Keri Hulme
To Kill A Mockingbird – Harper Lee
The Blind Assassin – Margaret Atwood
Everything Is Illuminated – Jonathan Safran Foer
The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle – Haruki Murakami
The Accidental – Ali Smith
She’s Come Undone – Wally Lamb
Teh Red Tent – Anita Diamant
The People’s Act Of Love – James Meek
The Unconsoled – Kazuo Ishiguro
Atonement – Ian McEwan
The Metamorphosis – Franz Kafka