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Festivals' Book Club - September 2013

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Welcome to Festivals’ Book Club, in association with Vintage Books. Each month, we’ll be reading a different title and would love you to join us: either at our live book group in Cheltenham, or by sharing your thoughts online.

  1. We’ll announce the title on cheltenhamfestivals.com and in that month’s e-newsletter
  2. You have four weeks to read it
  3. Cheltenham Festivals Member? Apply to take part in our LIVE Cheltenham group and receive a free copy of the book
  4. Like to purchase your own copy? Save 5% at Cheltenham Waterstones as a Cheltenham Festivals Member
  5. Four weeks later, read what our Book Group thought and add your own opinions and comments online

September Book Club:

Birdsong Sebastian Faulks

An epic tale of love and death during the Great War.

In association with

Set before and during the First World War, Birdsong captures the drama of the era on both a national and a personal scale. It is the story of Stephen, a young Englishman, who arrives in Amiens in 1910. Over the course of the novel he suffers a series of traumatic experiences, from the clandestine love affair that tears apart the family with whom he lives, to the unprecedented experiences of the war itself.

2014 sees the anniversary of the First World War, and Birdsong is one of the best-loved works of fiction written about this turbulent time.

Ambitious, outrageous, poignant, sleep-disturbing, Birdsong is not a perfect novel – just a great one.

Simon Schama, New Yorker

Birdsong is also this year’s Literature Festival Big Read title.

Download a sample chapter

Download the Birdsong reading guide

Take part

Thursday September 5th, The Daily Bean @ COOK, Bath Road, Cheltenham
Cheltenham Festivals Member? Apply for your free book and chance to attend.

Apply now

Can’t attend? Save 5% on this title at Waterstones Cheltenham with Cheltenham Festivals Membership.

Sebastian Faulks was born and brought up in Newbury, Berkshire. He worked in journalism before starting to write books. He is best known for the French trilogy, The Girl at the Lion d’Or, Birdsong and Charlotte Gray (1989-1997) and is also the author of a triple biography, The Fatal Englishman (1996); a small book of literary parodies, Pistache (2006); and the novels Human Traces (2005), Engleby (2007) and A Week in December (2009). He lives in London with his wife and their three children.

This is literature at its very best: a book with the power to reveal the unimagined, so that one’s life is set in a changed context. I urge you to read it.

Nigel Watts, Time Out

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