Book Club

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One author has given some questions for possible discussions. If you have any book or author you would like a list of book club questions from, please also email me and I will contact the author to email you and add the list to this page. If we get enough, I will make them all as downloadable PDF links. Have fun reading and mingling!

The Fabrications by Baret Magarian Book Club Questions:

In Chapter 1 the cinema projection room is dark and dingy, whereas Lilliana’s shop is filled with colour and animation – what other contrasts are there in the first chapter in terms of setting, meaning and atmosphere?

In the third chapter Oscar and Bloch go swimming – Bloch’s perception of Oscar is at first alien as he cannot see him while he is submerged in the water – does Bloch know Oscar at all in fact? In what sense can Oscar be said to be Bloch’s friend? Or is Oscar really Bloch’s shadow and reflection?

In the first part of the novel Najette emerges as a person of moral intregity. But can she also be said to be selfish and egotistical?

In Chapter 8 Oscar encounters Ryan Rees for the first time. How is this meeting orchestrated? What is the atmosphere of the library in which they meet like?

Bloch’s story starts to come true – what details from the story manifest in reality (throughout the whole book)?

Is Webster really no more than an idiot ?

Oscar’s visit to the brothel seems to be a descent into an unsuspected underworld – after Oscar emerges from it, is he any different? (Remember that the events he described in chapter 9 took place earlier in the book, between chapters seven and eight. He visits Bloch at the beginning of chapter 9, after having been to the brothel.)

What is your impression of Bloch’s father, Samuel?

The Sopso family dinner rendezvous in Chapter 12 is an amalgamation of different elements – farce, tragedy, trashy sub-plot. Does this amalgamation work?

What symbolic function does the renovation of Mr Grindel’s apartment building have?

The Duchamp Prize Banquet is incredibly farcical and absurd but does it have a more serious side ?

Is the party in chapter 17 the kind that you would like to be invited to?

In what sense can Oscar in Part Three be said to be sympathetic? Is his transformation the making or the breaking of him?

What do you think of Ryan Rees? Is he completely horrible or does he have any redeeming sides?

What do you think of the way Alastair Layor and Lilliana meet ?

Is Vernon Lexicon a manifestation of one possible alternative destiny for Oscar?

Do you find Bloch’s breakdown to be understandable in any way?

The orgy sequence is followed by a riot – is there an impllication in the book that sex and violence are linked?

When Najette and Oscar make love what is the nature of that love?

How is Egham evoked in the book?

How is Oscar and Bloch’s reunion staged?

How would you interpret the story that Béla tells Oscar in the final chapter? What is its relevance to the rest of the book?

How would you interpret the ending of the novel?