We chose The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins to fit in with an event at the Hexham Book Festival. But, reading the blurb, we were concerned. A troubled heroine who gets overinvolved in the lives of strangers. Wasn’t this another one of those unreliable narrators we’d sworn to avoid? Well, yes. But this novel was genuinely gripping, with a clever plot that subverted the standard thriller format. And one of us read it on a long train journey too – perfect.
May’s read was Mrs Hemingway by Naomi Woods, a fictionalised account of Ernest Hemingway’s four marriages told by each of his wives: Hadley, Fife, Martha and Mary. We loved it. My notebook is full of words like, ‘fascinating’, ‘evocative’, ‘decadent’, ‘distinctive’, and ‘vivid’ and we agreed it’ll stay with us for a while. Some of us also confessed to having a ‘favourite’ wife (or was that just me?). Anyway, we’re on the lookout for more on this fascinating era. Here’s our list so far:
Villa America, Liza Klaussman
Tender is the Night, F. Scott Fitzgerald
Careless People: Murder, Mayhem and the Invention of The Great Gatsby, Sarah Churchwell
The Paris Wife, Paula McLain
Between Two Women: Hemingway in Love, AE Hotchner
Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald, Therese Anne Fowler