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Book Discussion - 'Complicity'­ by Iain Banks

  • The Victoria

    48 John Bright Street, Birmingham (map)

    52.477736 -1.901522

  • Meet in the downstairs bar at The Victoria from 7.30. The Victoria is on the corner of John Bright St and Station St. The meeting starts in the upstairs room at 8.00 and continues until 10.00 with a half time drinks break. There’s no charge.
  • Everyone is welcome to join our Book Discussion Evening.  We share views and impressions of the book in a moderated discussion.  Opinions are often divided, but the debate is always friendly and respectful.

    The meeting lasts two hours with a half time drinks break.  There is more socialising time before and after the meeting.

    We always like to meet new people.  If you’re considering coming for the first time, please have a look at our ‘Notes for New Members’.  (More > Files from the menu at the top of the page.)

    We will also choose the book for next month’s discussion.  If you have a suggestion, please email to the message board. [masked]  You can also raise suggestions on the night.  If you have a proposal, we’ll ask you to give a brief summary at the meeting (2-3 minutes) and it will then be put to a vote.  If your book wins you can chair the discussion if you want to, but it isn’t obligatory.

    The choice of books is entirely up to the group, but some guidelines are:

    ·  Available in paperback (for affordability)

    ·  Not too long or too short. [masked] pages seems to work best.

    ·  Middle to highbrow in literary quality

    ·  We have primarily chosen fiction, but are quite open to non-fiction choices

    ·  A book that gives us plenty to talk about

    There’s a list of books we have discussed in the past on the site.  (More > Files from the menu at the top of the page.)

    The book coming second always goes back into the vote next time.  At November's meeting this was 'The Outsider' by Albert Camus.

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  • Adrian

    Can I suggest a book for January? If so, I was all set to suggest the Handmaid's Tale, because of the new tv show, but I see it has already been done by the club. In which case, in a slightly similar vein, please could I suggest Memoirs of a Survivor by Doris Lessing? (Although if you have never read the Handmaid's Tale, read that as well)

    1h ago

  • Steve L.

    Don't despair Richard! I know I started the criticism, but even I think the book has its virtues. Most importantly, there will be plenty to talk about - and no shortage of opinions. Looking forward to it.

    5 days ago

  • Carol B.

    I think the only way to get revenge on Parker is to choose Cranford or Lark Rise to Candleford for our next book!

    1 · November 29

    • Michel

      Perhaps a Trollope will pull us away from the edge?

      November 29

    • Jon A.

      There's always a good Flaubert (in the original French) ;-)

      2 · 5 days ago

  • Jon A.

    Can I put in a postal vote for the Outsider (literally, so to speak)? Read it at school, was great, short and would love to read it again!

    1 · 6 days ago

  • Richard P.

    I feel I must do a bit of pre-book group defence here, before we all end up with a weird consensus it’s a bad book before we start. I would suggest you need to look for the deeply black humour in this book. Banks set out to shock with this book, but he always has a deep vein of black humour. If you don’t think the use of the truly terrible TV soap Eldorado as part of an S&M sex game isn’t funny, you’re dead inside and I’m not sure I want to ever watch an episode of East Enders with you. :-)

    1 · November 29

    • Steve O.

      There's no backing out now Parker! Especially as we've all now got loads of horrific ideas of bad-book choice revenge torture techniques.

      3 · November 29

    • Jon A.

      That's it, I'm throwing out all my collection of home-taped Eldorado episodes now.

      1 · 6 days ago

  • Carol H.

    Don't worry I have next month's sorted.

    November 29

  • Richard P.

    Going to be fun discussion. Those too appalled to finish, here's the movie they did based on it:

    November 28

  • Michel

    Finding it a bit pulpy and the graphic descriptions are a bit much - call me coy, Nero!

    November 28

  • Paul C.

    I should have loved it but I thought it was pretty poor. I'd love to know why people liked it... and don't get me started on the sex scenes!

    November 27

  • Hannah

    I loved it! Perhaps I'm not much of a feminist...

    2 · November 23

  • Carol B.

    This is such a "male" book and a pretty horrible sort of male at that. Where are the women? Dead or in bed or tied up in a wardrobe. Aargh! I am now reading the latest Margaret Drabble as an antidote and I can recommend it; "The Dark Flood Rises".

    1 · November 23

    • Richard P.

      Hell Yeah!

      1 · November 23

    • Jen T.

      I'm struggling to get started on the book and reading the comments is not helping my motivation!

      1 · November 23

  • Steve L.

    How's everyone liking the book? I think it's a bit lightweight by our standards. But I'm enjoying the plot twists and there are some decent descriptive passages. The violence is, er, displeasing to my delicate sensibilities. But this is the guy who wrote 'The Wasp Factory' so I should have known what to expect.

    1 · November 22

    • Amanda

      It's definitely very different second time around (first time being shortly after it was published). I was clearly a lot younger and wiser then ;-)

      2 · November 22

  • Ceri

    Sorry, wanted to come to the next one but can't cope with another Iain Banks right now!

    November 9

  • Carol H.

    At last, an author I know and like, a book I wanted to read again and I already own it. Get in!

    3 · November 9

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