📚 🚶Don't miss our John Berger Zoom this evening
Tonight's Zoom is open to everyone - come along!
Dear walking book clubbers,
Thank you so much to Jab for this amazing photo, which captures yesterday’s misty Hampstead Heath and my love of bright colour. At this point, I was reading out the passage where John Berger decides Dr John Sassall’s life path was thanks to a formative love of Conrad; not all of us were quite so sure… and there was much puzzling over his paradoxical metaphor of the sea.
A Fortunate Man isn’t an easy book! Some of us felt drawn in by the gripping opening case studies and beautiful photographs, and then came rather unstuck in the onslaught of philosophy. It was, however, a GREAT one to discuss together, muddling along and helping each other make sense of its more complicated passages - thank you everyone who came along to our walk.
I’m excited to get back to wrestling with A Fortunate Man TONIGHT on Zoom at 8-8.40pm. Please join me - do please come along if you fancy trying it out, even if you’ve not yet got round to reading or finishing the book - it’s a great relaxed session to discover more about this fascinating exploration of life as a country doctor in 1960s rural Britain.
See you on Zoom: tonight at 8-8.40pm.
It’s helpful if you could book in via Eventbrite using the button above - that way you can pay and I get a better idea of numbers. But if you’d rather not, don’t worry, here are the details to connect directly:
Zoom link HERE Meeting ID: 775 4060 2428 Passcode: Berger
There’s also a chance to discuss the book, as well as share what else we’ve been reading this month at our November Live Discussion Thread: Friday 25th November, 2-2.30pm (look out for the email link that will arrive in your inbox just before 2pm on the day).
N.B. Please can you reply to this email if you would like to join these threads but can’t make 2pm on Fridays, suggesting another time, and I will bear it in mind for 2023.
Next week, look out in your inbox for more links relating to our discussion of this month’s book, as well as my A Fortunate Man webcast.
Emily’s Walking Book Club is a reader-supported publication. If you can, please support it financially by paying £20/year (or £50 if you’re feeling flush, and would like the added bonus of a one-on-one literary consultation with me).
TICKETS ARE NOW ON SALE
A Touch of Mistletoe by Barbara Comyns
Some 'mistletoe' for our Christmas meetup! N.B. This book is 300 pages - longer than our usual picks - I’d advise getting started soon…
This wonderful, utterly absorbing novel (not, in fact, a Christmas tale) is about two sisters embarking on adulthood in the interwar years, and the fortunes and misfortunes that befall them.
An alcoholic mother, extreme poverty, awful jobs, childbirth, depression, abortion, the Blitz ... It's a far from cosy novel, but somehow Comyns' calm, wry voice succeeds both in giving weight to the daily tragedies and transforming them into moments of hilarity. Who else could describe a character's 'unwashed knees' as smelling 'of roast chicken', or could state: 'when we children heard the word ‘poorly’ applied to anyone who was ill, perhaps an innocent child suffering with measles, we took it for granted that they had been drinking bottles of port or sherry'?!
At what might be a difficult time for many of us, Comyns' blacker-than-black humour is a vital tonic.
On the Heath: Sunday 11th December, 11.30-1pm, setting off from Daunt Books Hampstead, 51 South End Road, NW3 2QB. N.B. Watch this space for a seasonal surprise on our walk…
On Zoom: Monday 12th December, 8-8.40pm
Live Discussion Thread: Friday 16th December, 2-2.30pm (Note the different date)
Buy A Touch of Mistletoe from Daunt Books HERE and receive 10% off using the code WBC at checkout, or just tell them you’re in the group if you’re buying it in the shop.