Saturday, 28 May 2011

blog bookgroup: A Spot of Bother

A month ago, I blogged about doing a sort of online bookgroup blog on this book – A Spot of Bother by Mark Haddon.  Read that blog here.

Over the last week I have spent considerable effort finishing this book, even to the point of waking up at 5.30am to read in bed before I have to go to work.  I’m pretty useless when I try to read at night in bed because I just fall asleep after a page!

So.  A Spot of Bother.  A very close-up look at an adult dysfunctional family who swing wildly between happiness together and getting on each other’s nerves.  A lot. But in spite of their weaknesses and individual ‘spots of bother’, they still love and protect each other when the going gets tough.  There are moments of shared beauty and also moments of sheer darkness usually experienced alone by the characters.

The characters.  George the main character is suffering depression and anxiety and is in denial.  He has never learnt to talk to his wife, Jean, who is having an affair.  Their daughter, Katie, has announced her second marriage to Ray – who everybody hates.  And their son, Jamie, is gay but is feeling alone and unaccepted.  So now the family prepares for a wedding and suddenly all sorts of tensions erupt.

Questions for Blog Bookgroup:
  1. What do you think is the spot of bother of the title?
  2. Did your opinion of Ray change during the book?
  3. Why do you think Jean had an affair?  
  4. Are the family’s problems largely self-inflicted?
  5. What was your favourite moment in the book?
  6. Any other comments?

Go ahead and make a comment.  Answer any or all of the questions above in relation to A Spot of Bother.  

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