Wouldn’t it be great to read a book together as a town? This is a new initiative we are launching for 2018. We all read the same book, plus another one at Christmas, and there will be online material and some face to face meetings so that we can discuss the books together – online, with our friends, at public meetings. There will be a final meeting in the autumn to share thoughts on the whole experience as well as on the book itself.
The book we’ve chosen to launch this initiative is Kit de Waal’s novel My Name Is Leon. Kit grew up in Birmingham and lives in Warwickshire, which is one reason for choosing the book; and this book is one that we feel will have a wide appeal in terms of ages – everyone from teenage years upwards can read it. It’s told from the point of view of a young boy, Leon, who is 8 at the start of the book. He and his baby brother end up being fostered, and the novel follows Leon as he comes to terms with this. The book raises many questions about society, about children, about prejudice, and more – it will break your heart and also warm your heart. It’s also just a very good read. This all makes it a great choice as a communal read. There is lots to talk about…including the importance of allotments!
There is a Facebook group so that those of you on Facebook can meet and chat about the book. There is a discussion sheet that you can pick up from the bookshop, or I can email it to you, there will soon be a couple of public meetings, and there is an interactive forum here where you can post comments and questions and join in discussions.
We hope you’ll get behind this, get a copy of the book (we recommend Kenilworth Books or the local library!) and get your friends and colleagues involved. We will announce another book near to Christmas – shorter and seasonal.
What larks! Look out for updates regarding the discussion sheet, website and more. We will keep a presence on this Tree House Bookshop website, and you can sign up to the Kenilworth Reads mailing list here (just click Email in the final section).