Reading Group

SWINDON ARTSWORDS READING GROUP                                             July 2018

Dear Reader

The 178th monthly meeting of the Swindon Artswords Reading Group took place on the evening of 17th July ‘18.

We talked about Booker Prize winner Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders, which dealt with the death of Abraham Lincoln’s 11-year-old son and the bardo. Some thought it ‘unique, riveting, and highly-imaginative’ while others found it ‘confusing, weird, and cacophonous’. But it did give us plenty to talk about!

We made time to suggest, consider, and choose titles for the last part of 2018. Here are the four final choices, all available in paperback but slightly different to people’s ‘first’ choices on the night (because it turned out that three of the preferred books will not be available in paperback till next year) but these four are still multiple vote-winners.

7.30pm Tuesday 11th September – Where I’m Reading From by Tim Parks. Why do we read and/or need fiction? Do we read to escape or to discover? Do we read to challenge our vision of the world or to confirm it? Has novel writing turned into a job like any other? Why are books copyrighted? Any other questions?

7.30pm Tuesday 16th October – The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists by Robert Tressell. A story of a group of working men, who toil chiefly for the benefit of their masters, and are joined one day by a journeyman-prophet with a vision of a just society. A critique of Edwardian England's social inequality. Any relevance today?

7.30pm Tuesday 13th November – The Eternal Husband by Fyodor Dostoyevsky. Five short stories filled with many of the themes and concerns central to Dostoyevsky’s novels.

7.30pm Tuesday 4th December – Landmarks by Robert Macfarlane. Words are grained into our landscapes, and landscapes are grained into our words. This book looks at the power of language to shape our sense of place. It shows how words provide us with a keen way of knowing landscape, and a means of coming to love it.

For this last session, please bring suggestions of books for next year.

All meetings are held at Lower Shaw Farm, Old Shaw Lane, Shaw, West Swindon, SN5 5PJ.

Start time is 7.30pm. - The cost is £2 per session.

If there is anything else you need to know, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Happy reading and summer greetings!

Matt Holland


01793 771080 Email: