Sometimes, at 11 London, we like to take a moment out of our busy schedule and get together to talk about books. In honour of World Book Day, here’s a round-up of the titles we’ve enjoyed most in our book club, reviewed by the team members who picked them.
1. This is Going to Hurt by Adam Kay
‘One of my favourite reads of last year – Kay’s diaries documenting his time as a junior doctor had us cry-laughing - as well as just crying - all the way through. As funny as it is poignant, This is Going to Hurt is a must read for all of us working this side of health, reminding us of the real life working conditions of everyone in the NHS.’ – Jo, Senior Account Manager
2. The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris, chosen by Judith, Finance Director
‘A heart-breaking story of human survival in the most horrific conditions. Eloquently written and almost cinematic at times, the novel’s highly personal narrative shines a light on one of the darkest parts of human history.’ – Judith, Finance Director
3. The Power by Naomi Alderman
‘The Power was a great read, that uses one electrifying conceit to examine perceptions of gender around the world. It sweeps through all manner of micro and macro aggressions, taking swings at assumptions we hold as a society about sex and gender.’ – Lucy, Copywriter
4. Normal People by Sally Rooney, chosen by Hannah, Project Manager
‘It was an interesting read and I really enjoyed it. I found the relationship between the two main characters very interesting, and there was a big generational divide about how we reacted to them. Both had dislikeable traits, but were also really engaging. I thought it was a very raw, realistic portrayal of adolescence and young adulthood.’
5. My Sister the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite, chosen by Helen, Business Director
‘A lovely alternative take on the serial killer theme, very unlike the usual format with commentary on family dynamics, sisterhood, gender politics, society’s attitude to beauty, power and manipulation all explored. Strong themes approached in an outwardly light-hearted way, a bit like a Lily Allen song. The added element of a West African backdrop made it a must-choice.’
6. The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell
This was an epic imagining of late 18th century Japan and the Dutch East India Company, with some truly dark and disturbing moments. Very atmospheric and detailed, definitely one of the more challenging book club reads!
7. Wreaking by James Scudamore, chosen by Matt, MD
‘Wreaking was unlike anything else I’ve ever read. It threw me into the extraordinary world of a closed-down mental asylum in East Anglia, and the emotionally fraught relationship between the lead father and daughter characters. The descriptions are epic, and keep you going as the story unravels slowly to reveal the true extent of how toxic relationships can get.’
8. How Democracy Ends by David Runciman
‘Really thought provoking – it made me realise what a fragile structure democracy is.’ Steve, Creative Director
9. Putney by Sofka Zinovieff, chosen by Jax Lynch, Head of Copy
“My best read of 2019. It’s rightly described as ‘a Lolita for the MeToo age’ but is so much more than that – bringing unexpected ambiguity to the topic of childhood sexual abuse as it flips between very different times, places and perspectives with the remorseless grip of a thriller..’
10. Calypsoby David Sedaris
‘Calypso was a warts-and-all look at family life, sibling relationships, and creeping middle age. Sedaris’ disarmingly honest voice creates a sense of intimacy with the reader, which he occasionally upends with a new detail that makes you reassess the narrative. It’s an excellent example of how humour is so often used to both reveal and conceal what we mean.’ – Mark, Director
11. Next on our list!
Our next choice for book club will be The Bees by Laline Paull.
About 11 London
11 London is an advertising and communications agency, based in West London. We work in the areas of health and humanity - with organisations, brands or products that improve or prolong life. To learn more about 11 London, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org