Benneton Book Club Meetup

Please note: this Meetup is happening on the 3rd Wednesday of the month instead of the 2nd.

The book for August will be Jeanette Winterson's Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit.

 

Narratively, Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit is built on a particular irony - a contradiction in which it takes some sly delight. It can be simply stated. The Bible is the all-controlling authority to which the narrator's fundamentalist mother makes her defer, yet it is also the book on which the novel is based. The young Jeanette knows the Bible as a work of warning, prohibition and eschatological fear. (When she goes to school she duly terrifies the other children by explaining the fiery judgment that will soon be visited upon them.) Yet, though this is a story of the heroine's escape from her Scripture-obsessed mother and the Christian sect to which she belongs, the Bible gives shape and meaning to that story.

The novel is divided into eight sections, with the titles of the first eight books of the Bible, from Genesis to Ruth. These make sense of the different phases of Jeanette's life, from the age of seven to that of 16 or so. She herself looks to these Scriptural chapters for significance. After an official letter commands her mother to send her daughter to school ("the Breeding Ground"), Jeanette describes her confusing experiences in "Exodus". "When the children of Israel left Egypt, they were guided by the pillar of cloud by day, and the pillar of fire by night". She, however, is led out of bondage without any guide. In Joshua, where her "Unnatural Passion" for Melanie is discovered, she rebels against her mother's tyranny. "It is in the nature of walls that they should fall. That walls should fall is the consequence of blowing your own trumpet".

From The Guardian.

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  • Rochelle N.

    Sure wish I could but hubby is scheduled for surgery (minor, thank goodness) that afternoon. I still plan on reading the book, though, in case the procedure gets rescheduled.

    July 10, 2013

    • Abiah

      I hope everything is okay with your husband, Rochelle!

      August 21, 2013

    • Rochelle N.

      Thanks, Abiah. Everything went well; he's home and happy today. I've ordered Out Stealing Horses, so I'll see you next month. Looking forward to finally getting back on schedule.

      August 22, 2013

  • Avelynn

    Agh sorry to bail out at the last minute! The lo napped right through 7. I'm having egg and toast soldiers tomorrow morning in remembrance of my missed meetup :-( See you next month!?

    August 21, 2013

    • Abiah

      Haha, no roast for you! I hope we'll see you in September, thanks for updating your status. :)

      August 22, 2013

  • Yvonne

    So sorry for canceling at the last minute. A few unexpected things came up this week --- hope to participate next month.

    August 20, 2013

    • Abiah

      No problem Yvonne, we'll see you next month!

      August 21, 2013

  • Avelynn

    Thanks for the invite! Looking forward to reading JW. Just the right size, too, for my baby life lol

    July 12, 2013

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