Book Group

I joined our book group back in 2004 and it had already been going for quite a few years even then – it’s never had a name. Our group has male and female members, and we generally meet in an Abingdon pub with occasional forays out. We welcome new members, so if you’d like to join us, do contact me.

Listed below are all the books we’ve read since I joined – those that provoked particularly good discussions are starred accordingly and books are listed in the month we discuss them, (links to my report backs in brackets, title links go to Amazon).  We try to read a really wide variety of books including occasional non-fiction. Nothing scares us except pure poetry!

2014
J: The Explorer by James Smythe Report **
F: Life After Life by Kate Atkinson
M: I Remember You by Yrsa Sigurdardittir
A: Rivers of London (Rivers of London 1)by Ben Aaronovitch
M: Clean: An Unsanitised History of Washing Katherine Ashenburg
J:
J:
A:
S:
O:
N:
D:

2013
J: Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy**
F: Raffles: The Amateur Cracksman by EW Hornung * (Report)
M: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
A: The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson (Report)
M:Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris (Report)
J: The Jew’s Beech by Annette Von Droste-Hulshoff Review ***
J: The Three Evangelists by Fred Vargas ** – Review
A: Waiting for Sunrise by William Boyd – Review
S: The Dinner by Herman Koch Review
O: The Weir by Conor McPherson Report
N: Slaughterhouse 5, or The Children’s Crusade – A Duty-dance with Death by Kurt Vonnegut Report
D: The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by R L Stevenson

2012
J: Selections from Complete Ghost Stories by M R James
F: Riders by Jilly Cooper ***
M: Stasiland: Stories from Behind the Berlin Wall by Anna Funder **
A: The Canterbury Tales (Penguin Classics) by Geoffrey Chaucer
M: The Bottle Factory Outing by Beryl Bainbridge **
J: Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus: A Practical Guide for Improving Communication and Getting What You Want in Your Relationships: How to Get What You Want in Your Relationships by John Gray
J: Nights At The Circus by Angela Carter
A:Saki, The Complete Short Stories (Penguin Modern Classics) by Saki.
S: City Of Veils by Zoe Ferraris **
O: City of Thieves by David Benioff
N: The Good Soldier: A Tale of Passion by Ford Maddox Ford
D: A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness ( (report)

2011
J: Moby Dick (Oxford World’s Classics) by Herman Melville ***
F: All Quiet on the Orient Express by Magnus Mills **
M: One Day by David Nicholls **
A: True Grit by Charles Portis ***
M: The Snowman by Jo Nesbo
J: Salmon Fishing in the Yemen by Paul Torday. (Report)
J: The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters (Report) ***
A: Themed reading month – ‘Dystopias’. (Report)
S: The Radleys by Matt Haig (Report)
O: Candide by Voltaire
N: Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
D: Jamrach’s Menagerie by Carol Birch

2010
J: The Moonstone (Oxford World’s Classics) by Wilkie Collins **
F: Breathing Lessons by Anne Tyler **
M: The Death of Grass (Penguin Modern Classics) by John Christopher ***
A: My Shit Life So Far by Frankie Boyle. (Report) ** (ironically!)
M: Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn. (Report) **
J: Alice in Time by Penelope Bush
J: The Junior Officers’ Reading Club: Killing Time and Fighting Wars by Patrick Hennessey
A: Julie & Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously by Julie Powell. Report
S: The Intimate Adventures Of A London Call Girl by Belle de Jour
O: Peyton Place by Grace Metalious. (Report) ***
N: The Spy Who Came in from the Cold (Penguin Modern Classics) by John Le Carre ***
D: Don’t Look Now and Other Stories (Penguin Modern Classics) by Daphne Du Maurier

2009
J: Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford
F: Poetry night! cancelled due to snow!
M: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
A: Marching Powder by Rusty Young
M: Riddley Walker by Russell Hoban  ** but a difficult read
J: The Secret Ministry of Frost by Nick Lake
J: As You Like It / Julius Caesar / Twelfth Night by Shakespeare
A: Bad Science by Ben Goldacre ***
S: The New York Trilogy: by Paul Auster **
O: Me Cheeta: The Autobiography by James Lever **
N: What a Carve Up! by Jonathan Coe
D: Dead Until Dark: A True Blood Novel by Charlaine Harris

2008
J: Tokyo Cancelled by Rana Dasgupta *
F: Beowulf (Bilingual Edition) by Seamus Heaney (trans) **
M: The Crystal Cave (Coronet Books) by Mary Stewart
A: The Ruby in Her Navel by Barry Unsworth
M: Arthur and George by Julian Barnes
J: Boy A by Jonathan Trigell ***
J: Mutant Message Down Under: A Woman’s Journey into Dreamtime Australia by Marlo Morgan ** for its awfulness
A: Kim (Oxford World’s Classics) by Rudyard Kipling
S: The Player of Games by Iain M Banks
O: Sharp Teeth by Toby Barlow
N: 1984 Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell **
D: Blindness by Jose Saramago ***

2007
J: The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins **
F: Angels and Insects by A S Byatt
M: We Need To Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver ***
A: Old Filth by Jane Gardam
M: The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde
J: A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian by Marina Lewycka
J: The Observations by Jane Harris
A: The Wedding Officer by Anthony Capella *
S: The Testament of Gideon Mack by James Robertson
O: The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat by Oliver Sacks
N: Under the Glacier (Vintage International Original) by Halldor Laxness ** but a difficult read
D: Fiesta: The Sun Also Rises (Arrow Classic) by Ernest Hemingway **

2006
J: The Crow Road by Iain Banks
F: Acqua Alta by Donna Leon
M: The Bookseller of Kabul by Asne Seierstad **
A: Labyrinth by Kate Mosse
M: Watchmen by Alan Moore / Dave Gibbons **
J: The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger **
J: Snow by Orhan Pamuk *
A: The Master and Margarita (Penguin Classics) by Mikhail Bulgakov **
S: Gorky Park by Martin Cruz Smith
O: Quite Ugly One Morning by Christopher Brookmyre
N: A Town Like Alice (Vintage Classics) by Nevil Shute
D: The Prestige by Christopher Priest

2005
J: Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain *
F: Lake Wobegon Days by Garrison Keillor
M: Changing Places by David Lodge
A: Casino Royale by Ian Fleming ***
M: Cocaine Nights by J G Ballard
J: Northern Lights (His Dark Materials) by Philip Pullman
J: Cheri by Colette
A: Flashman and the Dragon (Flashman 10) by George MacDonald Fraser
S: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J K Rowling
O: The Portrait by Iain Pears
N: The Comedians by Graham Greene
D: The 100 Minute Bible

2004
J: The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
F: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon
M: Maximum Bob by Elmore Leonard
A: The Death of Vishnu by Manil Suri
M: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebbold
J: Morvern Callar by Alan Warner
J: Hamlet by William Shakespeare
A: Disgrace by J M Coetzee **
S: Tender is the Night by F Scott Fitzgerald **
O: Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
N: Major Barbara by G B Shaw
D: A Christmas Carol and Other Christmas Writings (Penguin Classics by Charles Dickens

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