Tuesday 20 March 2012 10.21pm
ok, here are my suggestions for June's book (it feels weird saying June):
1) Margaret Atwood, "The Handmaid's Tale"
"In the world of the near future, who will control women's bodies?
Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words because women are no longer allowed to read. She must lie on her back once a month and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, because in an age of declining births, Offred and the other Handmaids are only valued if their ovaries are viable.
Offred can remember the days before, when she lived and made love with her husband Luke; when she played with and protected her daughter; when she had a job, money of her own, and access to knowledge. But all of that is gone now....
Funny, unexpected, horrifying, and altogether convincing, The Handmaid's Tale is at once scathing satire, dire warning, and tour de force."
2) Edward St Aubyn, "Mother's Milk"
"SHORTLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2006 WINNER OF THE 2006 SOUTH BANK LITERATURE AWARD The once illustrious, once wealthy Melroses are in peril. Caught in the wreckage of broken promises, child-rearing, adultery and assisted suicide, Patrick finds his wife consumed by motherhood, his mother consumed by a New Age foundation, and his five-year-old son Robert understanding far more than he ought. Showcasing Edward St Aubynís ability to combine the most excruciating emotional pain with the driest comedy, Mother's Milk is a dazzling exploration of the troubled allegiances between parents and children, husbands and wives. Acerbically witty, disarmingly tender, it goes to the core of a family trapped in the remains of its ever-present past. 'So good - so fantastically well-written, profound and humane . . . it is heart-stopping' Observer 'The bravura quality of St Aubyn's performance is irresistible' Sunday Telegraph 'Wonderful caustic wit . . . Polished yet profound, itís even better than his previous work, and thatís saying somethingí Guardian 'Mother's Milk has the cerebral excitement and piercing funniness of St Aubyn at his brilliant best' Tatler"
3) Christopher Isherwood, The Berlin Novels: "Mr Norris Changes Trains", "Goodbye to Berlin" - although as this is really 2 books in 1, maybe just the 1st half?
"MR NORRIS CHANGES TRAINS
The first of Christopher Isherwood's classic 'Berlin' novels, this portrays the encounter and growing friendship between young William Bradshaw and the urbane and mildly sinister Mr Norris. Piquant, witty and oblique, it vividly evokes the atmosphere of pre-war Berlin, and forcefully conveys an ironic political parable.
GOODBYE TO BERLIN
The inspiration for the stage and screen musical Cabaret and for the play I Am a Camera, this novel remains one of the most powerful of the century, a haunting evocation of the gathering storm of the Nazi terror. Told in a series of wry, detached and impressionistic vignettes, it is an unforgettable portrait of bohemian Berlin - a city and a world on the very brink of ruin."