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Image showing a Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament protest in Oxford Street

Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament protest in Oxford Street
Collage reference: 293507

The London Metropolitan Archives (LMA) Book Group meets monthly to explore a range of London writing, with a remit covering fiction and non-fiction from all periods in London's history. We dust off old classics, explore new writing, make topical choices and use material from the archives to stimulate lively discussion.

October's read –  Saturday by Ian McEwan

Wednesday 11 October – 6pm.

Published in 2005, this prize-winning and best-selling novel by Ian McEwan was critically acclaimed on release. It tells the story of a day in the life of neurosurgeon Henry Perowne, specifically 15 February 2003, when three million people in London participated in a march against the Iraq War.

Received as a “state of the nation” novel that highlighted the divisions in contemporary London and discusses the nature of private and public fear, we will look at how it has dated and whether the issues it discusses have any relevance to us today.

We will also look at comparisons with another famous “day in the life” London novel, Mrs Dalloway, by Virginia Woolf (which we read in 2013).

There will be a display of archive materials relating to London’s long history of protests and demonstrations.

Free event Book your place

Event guidance

  • The next book group meeting is at 6pm on Wednesday 11 October at LMA.
  • The book group is free, but booking is recommended.
  • You can book to attend this event on the Eventbrite website.

Previous titles read by the book group

  • John Gay - Trivia: or, the Art of Walking the Streets of London
  • Adam Foulds - The Quickening Maze
  • Michael Moorcock - Mother London
  • Marie Belloc Lowndes - The Lodger
  • Lao She - Mr Ma and Son
  • H.G. Wells - Ann Veronica
  • Patience Agbabi - Telling Tales
  • Ben Aaronovitch - Rivers of London
  • Monica Ali - Brick Lane
  • Daniel Defoe - Moll Flanders
  • Sukhdev Sandhu - Night Haunts
  • Charles Dickens - Bleak House
  • Evelyn Waugh - Vile Bodies
  • Penelope Fitzgerald - Offshore
  • George Gissing - The Nether World
  • Rachel Lichtenstein - Diamond Street
  • Jack London - The People of the Abyss
  • Pat Barker - Toby's Room
  • Louisa Young - My Dear I Wanted To Tell You
  • John Lanchester - Capital
  • Anthony Trollope - The Way We Live Now
  • Virginia Woolf - Mrs Dalloway
  • Norman Collins - The Lonely Londoners
  • Patrick Hamilton - Hangover Square
  • Peter Ackroyd - Lambs of London
  • Angela Carter - Wise Children
  • James Boswell - London Journal
  • Joesph Conrad - The Secret Agent
  • Daniel Defoe - A Journal of the Plague Year
  • Elizabeth Bowen - The Heat of the Day
  • Iain Sinclair - London Orbital
  • Samuel Richardson - Clarissa
  • Gillian Slovo - Ten Days
  • Wendy Moore - How to Create the Perfect Wife
  • Gillian Tindall - The House by the Thames - and the People who Lived There
  • Claire Tomalin - Samuel Pepys – The Unequalled Self
  • The Diary of Samuel Pepys
  • Jean Rhys – Voyage in the Dark
  • Frances Burney - Evelina
  • George Orwell - 1984
  • Amy Levy - Reuben Sachs
  • Colin MacInnes - Absolute Beginners
  • Nell Dunn - Up the Junction and Poor cow
  • Travis Elborough - London Bridge in America
  • Elizabeth Taylor - Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont
  • George Gissing - New Grub Street
  • Paula Hawkins - The Girl on the Train
  • Rose Macaulay - The World My Wilderness
10 June 2013
Last Modified:
29 September 2017