Book Club: Too British?


“No offense Beth, but it was just TOO BRITISH!” (cue scrunched up face to express distaste)

Is that even a thing? Too British?

I can imagine someone like The Queen may be accused of being “too British” and Hugh Grant doesn’t stand a chance, but to repel a book essentially for it’s Britishness is wholly unreasonable. It is true the book clubbers in question are American (and I am trying not to hold that against them) but surely a dislike for a book should come from solid criticisms such as the poor writing, the grammatical errors (of which I am guilty time and again with this blog- I apologise profusely for what I miss in the editing), the boring plot, the weak characters showing no depth or simply that it just did not appeal to the individual. They remained unmoved. But this is Evelyn Waugh. He is terribly famous. At least one can appreciate the skill involved in his manipulation of his written expression. He is a genius wordsmith by all accounts and he can mold the English language to his will, forming ambiguity in his meanings and catching you off guard with his sudden outburst of gifted humour.

In fact the main criticism of ‘Scoop’; a PARODY on the state of journalism and the culture of Fleet Street in the 1930s was that it was TOO stereotypically British. I felt that that was entirely THE POINT. Reading between the lines, for want of a better phrase, it was as if the sheer distaste stemmed entirely from the constant reference to this faded empire nation. Ouch.

As a native to this ‘Green and Pleasant Land’ I could not help but feel a pang of vexation as the insults came thick and fast. And by fast I mean the deluge was over momentarily and the topic turned to more pressing matters: reality tv. I sat silent and downtrodden (I don’t have a television yet), too inarticulate to defend my nation and too clueless to contribute on the new subject, munching (happily as it was delicious) on a burger and fries. YUM and BOO in unison.

This country is making me into quite the patriot.

Now isn’t that just Green and Pleasant?


So since I have not quite enough friends to form my very own book club, in the city, I am planning an international venture on the matter. If you would like to join in on the book club festivities, which would involve reading a book over approximately 4 weeks, where book choices are made democratically please do apply.

You will be vetted first of course.


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