Book choice for June 2016

The Good Soldier [suggested by Ross Allatt]

The Good Soldier

'A Tale of Passion', as its sub-title declares, The Good Soldier tells of the complex social and sexual relationships between two couples, one English, one American, and the growing awareness by the American narrator John Dowell of the intrigues and passions behind their orderly Edwardian facade. It is the attitude of Dowell, his puzzlement and uncertainty, and the seemingly haphazard manner of his narration that make the book so powerful and mysterious. Ford called it 'the only novel of mine that I considered...at all to count' and it has perplexed and delighted commentators since its publication in 1915. The novel has many comic moments, despite its catalogue of death, insanity, and despair, and has been read as both a comedy and a tragedy. It has inspired the works of many later, distinguished writers, including Graham Greene. [from the back cover]

Once again this month's choice has its own Wikipedia page and has also been made into a (TV) movie, which has an associated Wikipedia page.

The novel is also available to read for free, online, at Project Gutenberg.

About the Author

Author's Wikipedia page.
There are some Biography notes at the Ford Madox Ford Society website.

 

Shortlisted for this month

The "alternative book selection" plan was in action this month where each attendee brings along a book they haven't read, and we vote on the subset of those books that NO-ONE has read. 'Lanark' by Alasdair Gray, despite being strongly recommended was disqualified mainly because one person had read it, but also because it was felt to be too long for a 'short month' and more suitable for the Christmas read. That left us with one other book on which to vote:

The Truth About Celia

The Truth About Celia

While playing alone in her backyard one afternoon, seven-year-old Celia suddenly disappears while her father Christopher is inside giving a tour of their historic house and her mother Janet is at an orchestra rehearsal.

Utterly shattered, Christopher, a writer of fantasy and science fiction, withdraws from everyone around him, especially his wife, losing himself in his writing by conjuring up worlds where Celia still exists—as a child, as a teenager, as a young single mother—and revealing in his stories not only his own point of view but also those of Janet, the policeman in charge of the case, and the townspeople affected by the tragedy, ultimately culminating in a portrait of a small town changed forever. The Truth About Celia is a profound meditation on grief and loss and how we carry on in its aftermath. [Product description from Amazon]

About the Author

Author's Wikipedia entry.

 

 

 

Previous Months' Book Choices

2016

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2015

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2014

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2013

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2012

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2011

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2010

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2009

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2008

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2007

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2006

January February March April May June July August September October November