Benn's Book Club

Benn’s Book Club provides a place for readers in Melbourne's south-east to read, discuss and debate great contemporary fiction from around the world.

Benn's Book Club is currently fully subscribed.
We will revisit membership periodically.

Title: 
The Post Office Girl
Author: 
Stefan Zweig

It's the 1930s. Christine, A young Austrian woman whose family has been impoverished by the war, toils away in a provincial post office. Out of the blue, a telegram arrives from an American aunt she's never known, inviting her to spend two weeks in a Grand Hotel in a fashionable Swiss resort. She accepts and is swept up into a world of almost inconceivable wealth and unleashed desire, where she allows herself to be utterly transformed. Then, just as abruptly, her aunt cuts her loose and she has to return to the post office, where - yes - nothing will ever be the same.

Title: 
The Trauma Cleaner
Author: 
Sarah Krasnostein

A poignant and powerful celebration of one remarkable woman’s unrelenting drive to make order from chaos.

Before she was a trauma cleaner, Sandra Pankhurst was many things: husband and father, drag queen, gender reassignment patient, sex worker, small businesswoman, trophy wife…

But as a little boy, raised in violence and excluded from the family home, she just wanted to belong. Now she believes her clients deserve no less.

Title: 
In the Garden of the Fugitives
Author: 
Ceridwen Dovey

From the award-winning author of Only the Animals comes an unputdownable novel of obsession, guilt, and the power of the past to possess the present.
Almost twenty years after forbidding him to contact her, Vita receives an email from her old benefactor, Royce. Once, she was one of his brightest protégées; now her career has stalled and Royce is ailing, and each has a need to settle accounts.

Title: 
Ladies in Black
Author: 
Madeleine St John

Previously published as The Women in Black and now a major film directed by Bruce Beresford and starring Julia Ormond, Angourie Rice, Rachael Taylor, Ryan Corr, Shane Jacobson, Susie Porter, Alison McGirr, Noni Hazlehurst and Vincent Perez.

At the very end of the Ladies’ Frocks Departments, past Cocktail Frocks, there was something very special, something quite, quite wonderful; but it wasn’t for everybody: that was the point. Because there, at the very end, there was a lovely arch, on which was written in curly letters Model Gowns.

Title: 
Less
Author: 
Andrew Sean Greer

The Pulitzer prize-winning novel about a failed writer trying to escape his problems by traveling abroad.

WHO SAYS YOU CAN'T RUN AWAY FROM YOUR PROBLEMS?

Arthur Less is a failed novelist about to turn fifty. A wedding invitation arrives in the post: it is from an ex-boyfriend of nine years who is engaged to someone else. Arthur can't say yes - it would be too awkward; he can't say no - it would look like defeat. So, he begins to accept the invitations on his desk to half-baked literary events around the world.

Title: 
The Tattooist of Auschwitz
Author: 
Heather Morris

The incredible story of the Auschwitz-Birkenau tattooist and the woman he loved.

Lale Sokolov is well-dressed, a charmer, a ladies’ man. He is also a Jew. On the first transport from Slovakia to Auschwitz in 1942, Lale immediately stands out to his fellow prisoners. In the camp, he is looked up to, looked out for, and put to work in the privileged position of tätowierer – the tattooist – to mark his fellow prisoners, forever. One of them is a young woman, Gita, who steals his heart at first glance.

Title: 
Dubliners
Author: 
James Joyce

‘There was no doubt about it: if you wanted to succeed you had to go away. You could do nothing in Dublin.'

Title: 
Anything Is Possible
Author: 
Elizabeth Strout

A novel in stories by the No. 1 New York Times bestselling and Man Booker long-listed author of Olive Kitteridge and My Name is Lucy Barton.

Title: 
A Long Way from Home
Author: 
Peter Carey

Australia’s master novelist takes us on the race of a lifetime.

Irene Bobs loves fast driving. Her husband is the best car salesman in western Victoria. Together they enter the Redex Trial, a brutal race around the ancient continent over roads no car will ever quite survive.

With them is their lanky fair-haired navigator, Willie Bachhuber, a quiz show champion and failed schoolteacher whose job it is to call out the turns, the grids, the creek crossings on a map that will finally remove them, without warning, from the lily-white Australia they know so well.

Pages