Moira's Seattle Times Book Club will be having its discussion of Michael Ondaatje's "Warlight" starting at noon on Tuesday, March 5.
Update, 1:30 p.m. 3/5:
The first meeting of Moira’s Seattle Times Book Club was a great success — visit the comments thread below to read our discussion of Michael Ondaatje’s novel, “Warlight.” Here are just a few excerpts (lightly edited for typos):
“All told, I am glad to have read it, though I probably won’t read it again. Its atmospheric, nostalgic, and transcendent moments are what I will remember the most. His writing shines, and in places is so achingly beautiful it makes you stop in your tracks. Those are the instances that will make me recall the murk around it, which overall leaves an impression of carefully considered clues, lost innocence, and what makes a family and, ultimately, a life.” – EmilyBR
“I loved the way the author described something simple like Mr. Malakite’s neat garden — “No plant left its bed and wandered off as a volunteer.” – user1051916
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“The slow pace of the novel reminded me of when I read fellow English novelist Ian McEwan’s ‘Atonement’ — very slow and you have to be patient throughout. Then it all comes together in as astonishing way at the end. Is this an English novelist thing?” – KPwriting
“This was one of those books I didn’t want to end, so took it slow and savored, trusting the author to reveal mysteries when they needed to be.” – jlamore
“So much of technology in our modern world, smart phones for example, causes us to move at a faster pace and have a short attention span. I know my attention span is less than it was 20 years ago. A book like this makes us discipline ourselves, slow down the pace. And that’s a good thing.” – rideaway
“This was not what I’d call a breathless “page-turner.” I found it slow going at first. I should probably confess that I never made it through ‘The English Patient.’ It was too slow and never captured my interest. With ‘Warlight,’ I finally started connecting when he bought the Malakites’ house as an adult. It made me wonder if I would like the book more if Ondaatje had started the book there and then started telling the childhood story.” — user14909719728069
(Regarding the book’s title) “I assumed that it also referred to the kind of ‘light’ that the narrator had to use to understand his past. The little bits of orange light on the bridges or blue lights at corners were just enough to see a little by, but not enough to be seen. The narrator is reconstructing a large part of the story of his mother from just little bits that he can see.” – I Should Be Anonymou
Update, noon 3/5:
The book club meeting has begun. Please join us in the comments below! Bring your own snacks!
Bookmark this page: This is where Moira’s Seattle Times Book Club will be having its discussion, starting at noon on Tuesday, March 5, of Michael Ondaatje’s “Warlight.” We’ll be chatting in the comments below; feel free to leave a question or a thought about the book before the discussion begins. I’ll arrive online promptly at noon Tuesday to facilitate the discussion, and am very curious to see how this will go — this is a first for me! Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on the book. (For those who haven’t yet finished the book: You’re welcome to join us but please be aware that we’ll be discussing what we thought of the entire book, up to and including the ending.)
A note, for all who joined the club via Facebook: We had initially thought to have our discussion on Facebook, but have since decided to hold the discussion on our Seattle Times site so that those who aren’t on Facebook can join in. (We’ll see how it goes; this first edition of the book club is, as I’ve said before, a work in progress!) But the Facebook Moira’s Book Club group — a closed group monitored by Seattle Times editors — is alive and well, and I’ll continue to post there frequently. If you’d like to join, here’s the link: facebook.com/groups/stbooks/
Reminder to all who plan to join the discussion: This page, and the Facebook group, is a spoiler-free zone until noon on Tuesday, at which time those who haven’t finished the book will need to be aware that some of us may want to discuss the ending and other potentially revealing content. Also, a reminder that the discussion will be moderated, and off-topic comments (that is, comments that aren’t about the book) may be deleted. Any questions? Shoot them to me here or at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I look forward to chatting on Tuesday!