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Old 04-16-2021, 02:00 PM   #1
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The Readers' Room by Antoine Laurain

'When the manuscript of a debut crime novel arrives at a Parisian publishing house, everyone in the readers’ room is convinced it’s something special. And the committee for France’s highest literary honour, the Prix Goncourt, agrees.

But when the shortlist is announced, there’s a problem for editor Violaine Lepage: she has no idea of the author’s identity. As the police begin to investigate a series of murders strangely reminiscent of those recounted in the book, Violaine is not the only one looking for answers. And, suffering memory blanks following an aeroplane accident, she’s beginning to wonder what role she might play in the story …

Antoine Laurain, bestselling author of The Red Notebook, combines intrigue and charm in this dazzling novel of mystery, love and the power of books.'


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There are two phases of discussion. The first begins immediately and may contain conversations about anything pre-completion of the selection including reading progress, section thoughts, outside info, etc. The second begins on the 1st and also includes anything post-completion. These are recommended to help us discuss things in a similar timeframe but anyone can discuss any part or aspect at any time.


This is the MR Literary Club selection for April 2021. Everyone is welcome so feel free to start or join in the conversation at any time; the more the merrier!



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Old 05-04-2021, 07:36 AM   #2
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I felt the book started rather slowly but when it ignited it was a real page-turned. The Goodreads review described its “intrigue and charm” and summarised The Readers’ Room as a “dazzling novel of mystery, love and the power of books.”I can agree with most of that. I really didn’t find much “charm” though. It was quite dark and sinister with some remarkable twists and turns in the plot. I thought at one point I had it all figured out. Of course, I didn’t.

It isn’t the kind of mystery novel I usually read—I’m a fan of Father Brown and Lord Peter Wimsey but I really enjoyed The Readers’s Room.

Last edited by fantasyfan; 05-05-2021 at 06:12 PM.
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Old 05-04-2021, 12:25 PM   #3
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I really enjoyed this book. I read it very quickly because I couldn’t put it down. It was an unusual plot device the way the publishing house was involved. I was surprised by the twist too! I don’t want to reveal too many spoilers.
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Old 05-06-2021, 11:01 PM   #4
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Reallistic description of publishers competing for the Goncourt book prize. The author name dropped enough authors to keep me reading for some time. Michel Houellebecq, the only author from the book I have seen interviewed, chain smokes and takes five minutes before he replies to questions. The cloud of smoke around him description is accurate.
The email exchanges between Voilaine and Camille were entertaining. /Very polite, yet desperate tone.
An enjoyable mystery with a lot of suprise events and misdirections. Thanks for the suggestion.
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Old 05-07-2021, 12:06 AM   #5
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I’m glad that people enjoyed this book. I really enjoyed The Red Notebook by the author and so I had high hopes for this one. It was fun having the literary references throughout the book.

Thanks for the info on Michel Houellebecq - that was an interesting story.
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