City Lit Evening Reading Group
Time: 19:45 - 21:15
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
Course Code: HLT173
Duration: 9 sessions (over 42 weeks)
What is the course about?
This is not so much a course as a forum for the group to share and discuss in greater depth our reactions to and analysis of a selection of contemporary novels - written in English and available in paperback. Please come to the first session with suggestions (contemporary fiction in paperback) and having read The Offing by Benjamin Myers.
This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
A range of contemporary fiction, written in English. During the session we will discuss the novel in question by considering various aspects such as theme, plot, characters, etc. We will also discuss how successful we think the author has been in the particular work.
Featured on the Radio 2 Book Club and Radio 4's 'Book at Bedtime', Benjamin Myers' "intense and evocative" novel The Offing is an unusual coming-of-age tale about the son of a Durham miner in the 1940s. Myers has been praised as "one of the best writers of nature at work today" and this book as "an evocatively lyrical paean to the countryside".
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- read books you might not have considered before
- focus on key points when discussing a literary work
- express your opinion clearly.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
No previous knowledge or experience of literature is necessary. However, learners will, ideally, have the following skills and attributes:
An enthusiasm for reading and discussing a range of texts in large and small groups.
A willingness and ability to do some reading and preparation outside the class. You will be expected to read the selected novel for each session.
An interest in, and ability to listen to, the responses of other students to the work discussed.
A commitment to acquiring and developing ways of understanding how the writer uses language to achieve effect.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
Each month, the group will select a novel to be read before the following session, when there will be a group discussion on the merits of the book in question.
Dates of the meetings in 21/22:
Term One 27 Sept, 25 Oct, 29 Nov
Term Two 17 Jan, 21 Feb, 28 March
Term Three 09 May, 13 June, and 11 July.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
You will be expected to obtain a copy of the books to be read. Books selected will always be available in paperback (and kindle).
The first book to be discussed is The Offing by Benjamin Myers (Bloomsbury Circus, 2019).
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Look up other Fiction/Literature courses under History, Culture & Writing/literature at www.citylit.ac.uk.
Claire Allen is a published author of fiction and poetry and teaches literature and creative writing at City Lit. Her first two novels, The Mountain of Light and Protection, were published by Headline Review in 2004 and 2006. Her most recent novel, The Blackbird, was published by small independent publisher Henningham Family Press in 2020.
Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.