Next Book Club: The Clothes They Stood up In, 8/22/18

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ClothesTheyStood

So sorry you couldn’t join us for our last discussion on The Bookseller of Kabul. We had no problem finding interesting viewpoints to share–about the subject matter, the author, and the state of the world.

Our next “book” is The Clothes They Stood up In, by Alan Bennett. We say “book” because it really is a short story; you will likely find it published with other stories. You would have no problem finishing it even if you picked up the book the day before we meet–maybe even that morning!

Amazon says,

“From Alan Bennett, the author of The Madness of King George, come[s] two stories about the strange nature of possessions…or the lack of them. In the nationally bestselling novel…the staid Ransomes return from the opera to find their Regent’s Park flat stripped bare–right down to the toilet-paper roll. Free of all their earthly belongings, the couple faces a perplexing question: Who are they without the things they’ve spent a lifetime accumulating? Suddenly a world of unlimited, frightening possibility opens up before them.

In “The Lady in the Van,” which The Village Voice called “one of the finest bursts of comic writing the twentieth century has produced,” Bennett recounts the strange life of Miss Shepherd, a London eccentric who parked her van (overstuffed with decades’ worth of old clothes, oozing batteries, and kitchen utensils still in their original packaging) in the author’s driveway for more than fifteen years. A mesmerizing portrait of an outsider with an acquisitive taste and an indomitable spirit, this biographical essay is drawn with equal parts fascination and compassion.”

Perhaps we’ll have enough time to discuss The Lady in the Van, too. (Did you see the movie?)

As always, you can borrow book club reads (typically available in several formats) from your local library (or follow this local library link), or purchase them from your local independent book store, or on-line from sites such as Amazon, where they are no doubt available in a variety of formats and editions.

Do join us, whether or not you’ve found two free hours of reading time, on August 22nd, 7-8pm. It’s fun!