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The Forgotten Summer – our next book club choice (8 replies)

Nina
4 years ago
Nina 4 years ago

The Forgotten Summer written by best-selling author and award-winning actress Carol Drinkwater is our next book club choice. The book is fiction and takes us through the trials and tribulations of a wealthy family in the South of France. Although husband and wife Luc and Jane Cambon are the main characters in the book, Luc’s mother Clarisse Cambon is a towering figure whose dislike of her daughter-in-law makes up most of the drama in the book. Unknown to Luc, both women share a secret, which is at the root of the schism between them. But what is it?

Discussions on the book will begin on Monday August 1st and will run throughout the whole week. Here are the links to both the Kindle and paperback versions of the book:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Forgotten-Summer-Carol-Drinkwater-ebook/dp/B016JKY3IE/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Books-Forgotten-Summer-Carol-Drinkwater/dp/1405924144/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

Here are the questions to answer once you have read the book:
1. On a scale of 1 to 10, how will you rate this book and why?
2. What would you say is the most memorable scene or piece of writing in the book?
3. What impact did the book have on you?
4. If you had a chance to meet the author, what question would you ask her?
5. What have you learnt as a result of reading this book that you didn't know already

Nancy
4 years ago
Nancy 4 years ago

Hello Nina,
Love the idea of a book club and I've just downloaded The Forgotten Summer.

Nina
4 years ago
Nina 4 years ago

Hi Mayflower,
Thanks for becoming a member of the book club and for downloading The Forgotten Summer! I look forward to reading your views on it. Please refer to my initial post above for the questions to answer once you have read the book. Although discussions will start officially from August 1st, feel free to post your contribution earlier if you feel like it. I want the club to be as flexible as possible.

Nina
4 years ago
Nina 4 years ago

I look forward to debating this great book with as many of you as possible.

https://www.nonparents.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/1_the_forgotten_summer2.jpg
Nancy
4 years ago
Nancy 4 years ago

Enjoying The Forgotten Summer. Though long book, slow reader!
Jane has started wondering why Luc seems so secretive sometimes and the tension between Jane and Clarisse is so strong. There has already been a reference to that hot summer in their past that she prefers to forget.

Nina
4 years ago
Nina 4 years ago

Hi Mayflower, I am glad you are enjoying The Forgotten Summer. Yes the animosity between Jane and Clarisse is what makes the book what it is, which is a great read. My heart goes out to any woman who has a mother in-law like Clarisse!

Nina
4 years ago
Nina 4 years ago

Here are my answers after reading The Forgotten Summer
1. On a scale of 1 to 10, how will you rate this book and why?
I will give the book 9, because I fell out of love with Jane the main character at some stage (although she did redeem herself towards the end of the book). I did find her somewhat lack of courage a bit annoying. The fact that she was not brave enough to stand up to her mother in law, was very disappointing. It is true that at the end, she was in charge, but only because her mother in law had become too frail to fight. And then there was the rather unedifying incident when she went to Paris to confront the person she thought was having an affair with Luc her deceased husband, only for her to lose the courage to go through with it.

2. What would you say is the most memorable scene or piece of writing in the book?
On page 401 - 402, I felt deeply moved by the scene where Jane finally decides that it was time to let go of her husband’s spirit. I could almost feel the weight of her loss.

3. What impact did the book have on you?
History was one of my favourite subjects in college and the Algerian war was one of the subjects we studied. I was fascinated by it and so it was great to revisit some of the things that I learnt back then.

4. If you had a chance to meet the author, what question would you ask her?
When I decided to read The Forgotten Summer, I didn’t anticipate that childlessness would be one of its main themes. I have now discovered through my own research that the author is childless too. I did a Q&A with the author as part of this book club and I asked her what advice she would give women who cannot have children and believe they will never be happy because of it? Her response was honest and inspiring. Here is a link to the Q&A: http://www.nonparents.com/featured-article/qa-with-carol-drinkwater-author-of-the-forgotten-summer/

5. What have you learnt as a result of reading this book that you didn't know already?
Although I did study the Algerian war as mentioned above, I cannot recollect the reaction that the fleeing settlers received back in France. I didn’t realise the extent of the resentment that some in France felt towards them, which I learnt by reading the book. Not only were they hated by the Algerians, but they were also hated by their own people who blamed them for the war and its impact on France.

Nancy
4 years ago
Nancy 4 years ago

I thoroughly enjoyed reading The Forgotten Summer by Carol Drinkwater. I will rate this book as 9 on a scale 1-10 - because it made a positive impact on me. It taught me about new beginnings and regeneration/redemption of people and places as it happens in Nature all the time.
On page 391 (most memorable piece of writing for me)
"Regeneration. It was Nature's smartest trick. We damage the soil with toxins, burn it, poison the plants ...
Still, Nature will find her way back through the earth,... rarely defeated"
Jane, a truly English character and Clarisse with her truly French personality find Fusion/redemption in the character of Annabelle/Annie who shared qualities of both her English and French parents.
If I had a chance to meet the author, I would ask her if any of the characters in her book was based on someone she knew.
How I enjoyed reading descriptions on the Provence landscape, it almost felt as if I was there, and I realised how laborious and interesting is the process of harvest and production of wine!

Nina
4 years ago
Nina 4 years ago

I too felt transported to Provence. The idyllic and almost magical scenery the author describes shows why this part of France is so popular.

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