February 2017

 

all-the-lightsReview by Margie

Monday 13th February the group discussed All The Lights by German writer Clemens Meyer.
Winner of the Leipzig Book Fair Prize 2008.  The book is a collection of short stories putting society’s misfits centre stage, set in what was former East Germany – described as the “unforgiving backdrop of post-unification East Germany”.
The group was quite polarized in their review of this book.  Some found the pathos burdensome, and too much repetition of theme in each of the stories. A member thought that they had to work hard to get in to the stories due to their dullness, and only managed to read the book after reading the informative introduction by Stuart Evers. They said that writing was good, but the limited scope of the stories greatly diminished the interest of the book.

Meyers writing style is minimalistic, stripped bare, even plain language – which on the surface appears simple, however it contains a subtlety and complexity that places demands on the readers.   One of the group said “you have to bring your own emotion to the story and characters”.
Some found themselves skimming pages and losing interest, whilst another thought the extreme simplicity of the writing revealed so much about the story, it was an extraordinary work.
Meyers certainly challenges his readers and one reviewer described it as “razor blade slices of life that neither glamorize or celebrates its cast of lost lonely characters”.

Ratings: Alexa 2.5, Claudia 3, Denise 3.5, Di 3, Gail 2, Janet 2, Margie 3, Nic 4.5, Penny 3.5 and Viv 3.

Next month we get together on the 13/02/17 at 6:30pm at Preece House, 50 Nerang St Bischof Pioneer Park, Nerang (next to 54 Nerang St. shops) to discuss The Year of The Hare by Finnish writer Arto Paasilinna.
Hope to see you there and Happy Reading!

 

About Us

We are a group that gets together once a month to discuss good books. Each of us gets to choose a book on a rotational basis, preferably one outside our personal comfort zone – we try to keep the trash to ourselves. After the discussion, we comment on other books we read that month. Most of the time we remain friends after the meeting.

Preece HouseWe meet at the 1948 heritage Preece House, 50 Nerang St Bischof Pioneer Park, Nerang (next to 54 Nerang St. shops) on the second Monday of every month from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. excluding Public Holidays. A small contribution is required towards the rent of the room, but not if you are a first timer. The amount depends on the number of people attending.
One book title is chosen each month and we all read that book. There is a ‘host’ who introduces and co-ordinates the discussion. The role of host is rotated around the group so that each member has the opportunity to nominate their book (it could also be an author, theme or genre). The host also acts as chairperson for that meeting.
Although we are not a social club (we are readers), we occasionally attend literary events, relevant movies or plays here at the Gold Coast, Brisbane or Byron Bay. We conform to basic meeting practices and everyone has an equal opportunity to express their opinion. Everyone’s interpretation is valid, as long as it’s expressed respectfully.
We welcome any new members who share our aims and are happy to contribute to our group. Newcomers are not required to have read the book to attend the first meeting and no contribution is required from them.
Feel free to have a look at our Booklist and Newsletters in the sidebar. If you are reading this blog in a mobile device, switch to desktop view.

CONTACT DETAILS

We meet from 6:30 to 8:30 PM on the 2nd Monday of every month at the heritage listed CERAMIC HOUSE located on Bischoff Park, Nerang Street (next corner White St), Nerang next door to shops at 54 Nerang Street. Please contact us for info on meetings that fall on Public Holidays.
For more information use the contact form.

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