'The Moment' by Douglas Kennedy

Discussion Staps language laboratory le 16/05/2012 à 12:15

I would like to invite you to a discussion about the book 'The Moment' by Douglas Kennedy on Wednesday 16th May from 12.15 to 13.45 . It will take place in the Staps language laboratory Ist floor of the Staps building Allée Paschal Grousset behind the résidence des Bailly,where Jim's bookcorner is housed.If 500 pages is too much for you the book exists in French.(Cet instant-là). There are questions for discussion at the end of the book. I found it absolutely gripping,because I lived in East Germany in 1981/1982 and it brought back so many memories.At the same time you will be able to borrow books from Jim's bookcorner. We hope to have the website which students from the IUT are doing,up and running.
Here is a summary of the book.


Thomas Nesbitt is a divorced American writer in the midst of a rueful middle age. Living a very private life in Maine - in touch only with his daughter and still trying to reconcile himself to the end of a long marriage that he knew was flawed from the outset - he finds his solitude disrupted by the arrival, one wintry morning, of a box postmarked Berlin. The return address on the box - Dussmann - unsettles him completely. For it is the name of the woman with whom he had an intense love affair twenty-six years ago in Berlin - at a time when the city was cleaved in two, and personal and political allegiances were haunted by the deep shadows of the Cold War. Refusing initially to confront what he might find in that box, Thomas nevertheless finds himself forced to grapple with a past he has never discussed with any living person - and in the process relive those months in Berlin, when he discovered, for the first and only time in his life, the full, extraordinary force of true love. But Petra Dussmann - the woman to whom he lost his heart - was not just a refugee from a police state, but also someone who lived with an ongoing sorrow beyond dreams...and one which gradually rewrote both their destinies. In this, his tenth novel, Douglas Kennedy has written that rare thing: a love story as morally complex as it is tragic and deeply reflective. Brilliantly gripping, it is an atmospherically dense, ethically tangled tale of romantic certainty and conflicting loyalties, all set amidst a stunningly rendered portrait of Berlin in the final dark years before "The Wall" came down. Like all of Kennedy's previous, critically acclaimed bestselling novels, "The Moment" is both unputdownable and profound. Posing so many searching questions about why and how we fall in love - and the tangled way we project on to others that which our hearts seek - it is a love story of great epic sweep and immense emotional power.

Book details




The English version of the book has questions for discussion at the end. Please tell me if you plan to come and if anybody would like to organise a discussion of a recent English book in June, please let me know.

'The Road Home' by Rose Tremain

Discussion Staps language laboratory le 01/01/1970 à 00:00

Five of us had an excellent discussion about the Moment.

The next discussion in early September will be about the Road Home by Rose Tremain. It is available in French and English and you have the summer holidays to read it.

"In the story of Lev, newly arrived in London from Eastern Europe, Rose Tremain has written a wise and witty book about the contemporary migrant experience.

On the coach, Lev chose a seat near the back and he sat huddled against the window, staring out at the land he was leaving... Lev is on his way to Britain to seek work, so that he can send money back to Eastern Europe to support his mother and little daughter.

Readers will become totally involved with his story, as he struggles with the mysterious rituals of "Englishness," and the fashions and fads of the London scene. We see the road Lev travels through Lev's eyes, and we share his dilemmas: the intimacy of his friendships, old and new; his joys and sufferings; his aspirations and his hopes of finding his way home, wherever home may be. "