Our 25th book club is coming up and that means we’ve read 25 great and not so great books. However it also means there are 25 possibly great books that we’ve left unread. We wanted to do something special for our 25th book club anniversary, so we’re introducing the Zombie Round! All the books that just didn’t make it the first time around get another chance in this zombie round. We’ve made brackets of all 22 books that didn’t make it and over the next few weeks you get to vote which one will get another chance to be read.
Our final bracket has the latest book club books in there. Let’s look at the face off between Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy, The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller and The Curfew by Jesse Ball.
Blood Meridian was up against The Flamethrowers and Bonfire of the Vanities in our 21st book club. We all know Rachel Kushner won that round and in the zombie round The Bonfire of the Vanities didn’t make it any further either. So is McCarthy going to have more luck?
Blood Meridian is an epic novel of the violence and depravity that attended America’s westward expansion, brilliantly subverting the conventions of the Western novel and the mythology of the Wild West. Based on historical events that took place on the Texas–Mexico border in the 1850s, it traces the fortunes of the Kid, a fourteen-year-old Tennesseean who stumbles into a nightmarish world where Indians are being murdered and the market for their scalps is thriving. ‘Cormac McCarthy’s violent lyric masterpiece, Blood Meridian acquires an amoral, apocalyptic dimension through the Miltonic grandeur of the language …It is a barbarously poetic odyssey through a hell without purpose’ Irish Times ‘McCarthy’s achievement is to establish a new mythology which is as potent and vivid as that of the movies, yet one which has absolutely the opposite effect …He is a great writer’ Independent ‘A bloody and starkly beautiful tale’
The Song of Achilles lost in our historical fiction round against The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton. It was a close call and we’ll find out next month if it was the right chose. Should we give Miller another shot?
Achilles, “the best of all the Greeks,” son of the cruel sea goddess Thetis and the legendary king Peleus, is strong, swift, and beautiful— irresistible to all who meet him. Patroclus is an awkward young prince, exiled from his homeland after an act of shocking violence. Brought together by chance, they forge an inseparable bond, despite risking the gods’ wrath.
They are trained by the centaur Chiron in the arts of war and medicine, but when word comes that Helen of Sparta has been kidnapped, all the heroes of Greece are called upon to lay siege to Troy in her name. Seduced by the promise of a glorious destiny, Achilles joins their cause, and torn between love and fear for his friend, Patroclus follows. Little do they know that the cruel Fates will test them both as never before and demand a terrible sacrifice.
William and Molly lead a life of small pleasures, riddles at the kitchen table, and games of string and orange peels. All around them a city rages with war. When the uprising began, William’s wife was taken, leaving him alone with their young daughter. They keep their heads down and try to remain unnoticed as police patrol the streets, enforcing a curfew and arresting citizens. But when an old friend seeks William out, claiming to know what happened to his wife, William must risk everything. He ventures out after dark, and young Molly is left to play, reconstructing his dangerous voyage, his past, and their future. An astounding portrait of fierce love within a world of random violence, The Curfew is a mesmerizing feat of literary imagination.
After this we finish off round 1 and will continue with Round 2 in just a couple of days. We’re getting close to December and we’re excited to see what books will make a comeback!