Our First Book Club Meetings

Just before half term, we held our first book club meetings in the library. There are two clubs – one for Year 7-9 and the other for our more senior pupils.

Both clubs met in the library, during lunch, on separate days, and I was delighted at the evident enthusiasm of all those who took part!

The Year 7-9 group discussed “The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged 13 3/4”:  a good choice by James Brine!  Between mouthfuls of cake and sandwiches, the group unanimously agreed that they loved the book. The discussion was lively as they each shared their favourite characters and their most touching and funniest moments.  Olivia Hall has chosen the next, quite different, novel  – “Swallows and Amazons” by Arthur Ransome. The next meeting will take place, again in the library, on the 28th November, and I look forward to the illuminating discussion (and cake!) that will take place.

The Year 10 – 13 Reading Club chose the challenging novel “The Handmaid’s Tale”. Just over half of our members managed to read the whole of the novel – with many not realising that the final “Historical Notes” chapter was actually part of the narrative! However, some of our club members had not only completed, but enjoyed the difficult novel. Much of the discussion was spent working out areas of ambiguity or some of the narrative gaps; and some of the discussion focused on how shocked the pupils were at discovering that it was an example of  ‘speculative’ fiction and that Atwood had only included ideas in the narrative that had actaully taken place in our recent history. If you have read the novel you will realise that this is a truly terrifying thought.  Jae has chosen our next novel “The Book Thief” written by Markus Zusak and we will be meeting to discuss the book on the 29th November in the library.

Thank you to Mrs Jackson, our librarian, for allowing us to picnic and meet in the library, and to those parents who have supported the clubs by finding their child copies of the chosen books … and most importantly for providing the cakes and flapjacks!

Claire Park

Head of English, Curriculum and Enrichment