These are the books we read in 2018. If anybody has any more reviews, please send them in.
Nutshell – Ian McEwan
Unsettling, disturbing, frustrating…it was certainly a book that generated strong opinions.
The concept of a baby in the womb hearing, thinking and commenting about what was going on in the world was both interesting and disconcerting – although most enjoyed the social commentary that was included as part of the dialogue.
It was felt that the language attributed to the baby was quite pretentious but darkly amusing e.g. his comments on the quality of the wine, complaints when Claude and his mother were sexually intimate.
Did the baby inherit this pretentious attitude from his mother / was this written tongue in cheek? Was the baby reflecting Trudy’s subconscious thoughts?
It wasn’t as funny /hilarious as the critics suggested….did they read the same book?
There were inconsistencies which were frustrating, sometimes the baby seemed to possess in depth knowledge e.g. wines and vineyards, other times he was debating simple concepts e.g. the difference between yellow and gold.
The characters were generally unpleasant and difficult to warm to; although everyone agreed that they’d hoped that the protagonists would not go through with the murder. Claude was manipulative – clearly only interested in acquiring the house. Trudy seemed shallow, not really interested in anything but herself.
To summarise, it was felt that the plot on its own was quite weak, it was the premise of the story being told from the baby’s perspective that set it apart. This is what formed the basis for most of the discussion and it is what the book will be remembered for rather than its stellar plot. The story started well, seemed to drift in the middle and then ended quite abruptly.
It is a book that readers will remember…but not necessarily in a positive way and most definitely one to miss if you are pregnant!
Colyford Thursday Branch CGSPA Book Club