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Joan's picks: Anna O and The Wartime Bookclub

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Sun, 18 Feb 2024, 1:38PM

Joan's picks: Anna O and The Wartime Bookclub

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Sun, 18 Feb 2024, 1:38PM

Anna O by Matthew Blake. A psychological thriller in the vein of things like Gone Girl- Anna O is found unconscious next to the bodies of her murdered friends and it’s believed she killed them while sleepwalking. She enters a state known as “resignation syndrome” and stays asleep for the next four years, which is obviously of interest to both the medical world, the police and the victims’ families. The government needs her conscious to stand trial and ask a guy who’s both a forensic psychologist and sleep specialist to wake her up. It’s an extremely risky process as it turns out that before this event happened, Anna was investigating a possible connection between some murders and a government entity who, if they’re implicated, might just add an extremely dangerous dimension to this whole affair. It’s the kind of book that is likely to be picked up by a lot of readers and spark a lot of debate. 

The Wartime Bookclub by Kate Thompson. Set on the Channel Island of Jersey during the German Occupation in WW2, in a place where the Nazis are firmly in control, the small population finds ways to rebel and show resistance. The library becomes the centre of town for many, with young Grace making sure that books and reading are still available and, despite an increasing number of banned books making the Nazis’ list, establishes a bookclub which helps protect the heart of the community. Her friend Bea works for the postal service where she manages to intercept letters sent by would be collaborators to the authorities. Against a background of ordinary people trying to get on with their lives in such awful circumstances, and based on real historical events, this is a gentle insight into an extraordinary time. 

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