In Ballymena Waterstones shave been running a busy book club for many years. Their motto is the All are Welcome and the band of readers have read lots of different books – both good, bad and indifferent. Today I want to look at some of their best discoveries and recommend some brilliant stories. We know that it isn’t quite holiday season yet but now is a good time to browse some interesting titles and then you will be well prepared for a quiet weekend, a trip to the caravan or for when you are at the airport.
Over the years the book club have battled their way through some terrible books but here are a few that I think are worth picking up inspired by some book club choices and some recent television adaptations. Hopefully there will be something for everyone.
The Son by Philipp Meyer
The Son has just been aired on AMC and it is based, faithfully so far, on the novel of the same name from Philipp Meyer. The Son is a family saga set in Texas, it visits the same family across a decade and follow their success and failures. If you have watched the first episode then you will know that it can be gruesome and brutal. The book is beautifully written and is my top recommendation for any avid reader.
This choice was inspired by another book set in the American west – Days without End by Sebastian Barry. I found it hard to read at the start, as it is written as it would have been spoken at the time. The prize winning novel is a similar brutal read but it is so beautifully written that you honestly won’t mind.
The book club have
A Little History of the World by Ernst Gombrich
A Little History of the World by Ernst Gombrich is the perfect airport book. Originally written as a book to explain history to children the book is as enjoyable for adults and a good book for those of us who aren’t interested in fiction or indeed heavy history books. Gombrich’s writing is entertaining and informative and this chapters are set out meaning that they are easy to lift and put down again on your travels. Imagine Horrible History but a bit more serious!
Tigers in Red Weather by Liza Klaussmann.
Recently the book club read Klaussmann’s second novel Villa America, and all agreed that it was a great read. However those of us who had read her debut novel Tigers in Red Weather were quick to point out that it is the superior of the two. Tigers in Red Weather follows a family as they holiday in New England n the 1950’s. Their lazy, privileged vacation is spoilt by a grizzly murder and the story tales a creepy turn. Don’t expect a literary masterpiece but it certainly is entertaining and will keep you reading to the last page.
If you are holidaying on the North Coast get stuck into a local story.
Author Bernie McGill recently visited with Waterstones book club to discuss her historical novel “The Butterfly Cabinet”. McGill has taken a local story which involved a terrible incident resulting in the death of a child. The story was the gossip of the North Coast at the time and McGill has brought the 1900’s to life with her beautiful writing telling the story of two very different women and their role in the grizzly incident. Perfect of you are a local history fan , or if you are a frequent visitor to the North Coast.
Reading is a brilliant pass time and I firmly believe that there is a book out there for everyone. Please consider picking up one of our favourites or if you have read something amazing recently please share the conversation and let us know about it.