Book of the Week

Heti angol nyelvű könyvajánló - 2021. március 29.

This week a wonderfully gripping novel is chosen as Book of the Week.

The Rotters' Club
Jonathan Coe

Reading a book is a frequently observed activity on the underground lines. There is no doubt that many people are reading paper books, but tablets are becoming more and more popular. Therefore it is not always possible to see what others are reading. But it is quite interesting because of the diversity of books. Yesterday on the M4 line I spotted two persons reading, a woman was reading the Speak, Memory by Nabokov, autobiographical memoir of his life. And in the hands of a young man I saw a book by John Le Carré, the British intelligence agent turned author.

One of my choices would be The Rotters’ Club by Jonathan Coe - a novel about England in the '70s published in 2001. Coe also describes not only school rivalries of the youth but the clothes, the music and the hair of the decade. This is the story of a group of teenage school friends growing up in Birmingham when Margaret Thatcher was elected the leader of the Conservative party in 1975. Britain was going through the miners’ strike and power cuts, racial tensions, IRA violence. The young friends inherited the editorship of their school magazine. The teenage cluelessness is well illustrated in this scene, a chat on the Cold War:

‘Why is Berlin divided, anyway?’ Philip asked.‘I've always wondered that.’ ‘I don't know… I suppose there’s a river through the middle of it, isn't there? Like the Thames. I expect it’s the Danube or something.’

(Oreréné Stauróczky Zsuzsanna)

The Rotters' Club pdf
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