Book Club

For Weekend One on December 3rd-5th, where the ATP Nightmare Before Christmas will be curated by Godspeed You! Black Emperor, the book list picked by Godspeed is as follows:

  • A Book of Common Prayer - Joan Didion (Vintage Books)
  • Antwerp - Roberto Bolano (W.W. Norton and Co)
  • The Good Life: Sixty Years of Self Sufficent Living - Helen & Scott
  • Nearing (Schocken Books)
  • High Rise - J.G. Ballard (Harper)
  • Jane Seymour's Guide to Romantic Living - Jane Seymour (Atheneum Books for Young Readers)
  • Memory of Fire Trilogy - Eduardo Galeano (Da Capo Press Inc)
  • Palestine - Joe Sacco (Jonathan Cape)
  • Ragtime - E.L. Doctorow (Penguin)

At the Book Club for Nightmare Before Christmas we will be discussing J.G. Ballard's High Rise. For more information on all of these books see below...

Space will be limited for the Book Club so anyone who's interested in participating should email to register their interest for the Godspeed Book Club.

A Book of Common Prayer - Joan Didion (Vintage Books)

In this Conradian masterpiece of American innocence and evil set in the fictional Central American country of Boca Grande, two American women face the harsh realities, political and personal, of living on the edge in a land with an uncertain future. Writing with her signature telegraphic swiftness, the author creates a terrifying commentary on an age of conscienceless authority.
Antwerp - Roberto Bolano (W.W. Norton and Co)

As Bolano's friend and literary executor, Ignacio Echevarria, once suggested, Antwerp can be viewed as the Big Bang of Roberto Bolano's fictional universe. Reading this novel, the reader is present at the birth of Bolano's enterprise in prose: all the elements are here, highly compressed, at the moment when his talent explodes. From this springboard -- which Bolano chose to publish in 2002, twenty years after he'd written it ("and even that I can't be certain of") -- as if testing out a high dive, he would plunge into the unexplored depths of the modern novel. Antwerp's fractured narration in 54 sections -- voices from a dream, from a nightmare, from passersby, from an omniscient narrator, from "Roberto Bolano" all speak -- moves in multiple directions and cuts to the bone.
Palestine - Joe Sacco (Jonathan Cape)

"A political and aesthetic work of extraordinary originality, quite unlike any other in the long, often turgid and hopelessly twisted debates that have occupied Palestinians, Israelis, and their respective supporters... With the exception of one or two novelists and poets, no one has ever rendered this terrible state of affairs better than Joe Sacco." - Edward Said

In late 1991 and early 1992, at the time of the first Intifada, Joe Sacco spent two months with the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, travelling and taking notes. Upon returning to the United States he started writing and drawing Palestine, which combines the techniques of eyewitness reportage with the medium of comic-book storytelling to explore this complex, emotionally weighty situation. He captures the heart of the Palestinian experience in image after unforgettable image, with great insight and remarkable humour. The nine-issue comics series won a l996 American Book Award. It is now published for the first time in one volume, befitting its status as one of the great classics of graphic non-fiction.
Jane Seymour's Guide to Romantic Living - Jane Seymour (Atheneum Books for Young Readers)

Explains how to achieve a romantic lifestyle by bringing novelty, joy, romance, and surprise back into the routines of everyday life.
The Good Life: Sixty Years of Self Sufficent Living - Helen & Scott Nearing (Schocken Books)

This one volume edition of Living the Good Life and Continuing the Good Life brings these classics on rural homesteading together. This couple abandoned the city for a rural life with minimal cash and the knowledge of self reliance and good health.
Memory of Fire Trilogy - Eduardo Galeano (Da Capo Press Inc)

Memoria del fuego (Memory of Fire) is a three-volume narrative of the history of America, North and South. The characters are historical figures; generals, artists, revolutionaries, workers, conquerors and the conquered, who are portrayed in brief episodes which reflect the colonial history of the continent. It starts with pre-Columbian creation myths and ends in the 1980s. It highlights not only the colonial oppression that the continent underwent but particularly the long history of resistance, from individual acts of heroism to mass revolutionary movements.
Ragtime - E.L. Doctorow (Penguin)

Welcome to America at the turn of the twentieth century, where the rhythms of ragtime set the beat. Harry Houdini astonishes audiences with magical feats of escape, the mighty J. P. Morgan dominates the financial world and Henry Ford manufactures cars by making men into machines. Emma Goldman preaches free love and feminism, while ex-chorus girl Evelyn Nesbitt inspires a mad millionaire to murder the architect Stanford White. In this stunningly original chronicle of an age, such real-life characters intermingle with three remarkable families, one black, one Jewish and one prosperous WASP, to create a dazzling literary mosaic that brings to life an era of dire poverty, fabulous wealth, and incredible change - in short, the era of ragtime.
High Rise - J.G. Ballard (Harper)

The unnerving tale of life in a modern tower block running out of control. Within the concealing walls of an elegant forty-storey tower block, the affluent tenants are hell-bent on an orgy of destruction. Cocktail parties degenerate into marauding attacks on 'enemy' floors and the once-luxurious amenities become an arena for technological mayhem! In this classic visionary tale, human society slips into violent reverse as the inhabitants of the high-rise, driven by primal urges, recreate a world ruled by the laws of the jungle.