#6Degrees Of Separation Book Challenge From Fight Club to We That Are Left

Welcome to my first #6Degrees challenge

Hosted by Kate from Books Are My Favourite And Best The idea is to start at the same book as other readers, then link six books, and see where you end up! I first saw this challenge on @bookertalk ‘s blog. Here is a link to her February list.

This month the starting book was Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk The book features an unnamed narrator who leaves his lackluster job when he comes under the thrall of Tyler Durden, an enigmatic young man who holds secret after-hours boxing matches in the basement of bars. There, two men fight “as long as they have to.” This work exposes the darkness at the core of our modern world.

(I have not read Fight Club, but I have read my six books).

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I chose the unnamed narrator as my link to the next book in my chain.

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The Golden Orphans by Gary Raymond has an unnamed narrator. This is a mystery set on Cyprus. An artist is asked to paint the dreams of his mysterious Russian benefactor.

I chose Russia as my link to my next book.

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Moscow Bound by Adrian Churchward. An English human rights lawyer is asked to find a man who has been languishing for decades without trial in the Gulag system. He’ll uncover hidden cold-war secrets during his search.

I chose the cold war theme as the link to my next book.

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Nighfall Berlin by Jack Grimwood This book is set mainly in Berlin. In a plot with plenty of twists, British Intelligence, the East German Stasi and the Russian Communists are all involved.

I chose spies as my link to my next book.

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Transcription by Kate Atkinson is historical fiction with three distinct settings. It is about a young women recruited by the secret service into the world of espionage. The second part of the story is set in 1950 where she is a producer of radio programmes for schools.

I chose the post World War Two period as my next theme.

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Call Nurse Millie by Jean Fullerton For 25-year-old Millie, a qualified nurse and midwife, the jubilation at the end of the war is short-lived as she tends to the needs of the East End community around her.

I chose nursing in war as my last book.

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We That Are Left by Juilet Greenwood – Set during WWI it features three friends: Alice finds work in a hospital, Elin makes plans to grow more foodstuffs to feed the local community, and Mouse heads off to France with a truck full of medical supplies.

I’m a little late posting this. If you’d like to join the challenge in March (posts should go out around March 2nd) The starting point book is The Arsonist by Chloe Hooper, a true crime novel.

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The World of #Espionage Rosie’s #Bookreview of Transcription by Kate Atkinson @TransworldBooks

TranscriptionTranscription by Kate Atkinson

4.5 stars

Transcription is historical fiction with three distinct settings. It is about a young women recruited by the secret service into the world of espionage. Juliet is primarily employed to type up voice recordings from meetings held by British Fascists during the second world war. But later, she is assigned to infiltrate The Right Club, a small group of anti-Semitic fascist sympathisers. All the action is seen through Juliet’s eyes, which are at times cynical but at others, quite innocent. Yet all through the book I was absorbed by the depth to the characters and the setting.

After the war, Juliet finds employment with the BBC and the second part of the story is set in 1950 where she is a producer of radio programmes for schools. She encounters one or two people from the war years, and her life appears to be recovering from her war-time experiences, but unexpectedly she receives a threating letter. Now, too many faces from her past return, leaving Juliet questioning which of them is a spy. Is it all just a coincidence? And, will Juliet ever be able to leave it all behind?

This story is about Juliet and how she negotiates the complexities of spies whilst returning to the mundane work of typing. It’s comical, mystical, dark at times, whilst also exposing the raw side of a country at war and the human nature of its people.

This is the first book I’ve read by this author, but I was immediately absorbed by the writing style and equally hooked by the artistry of that writing. I particularly liked the author’s notes at the back, as they explain the basis for the storyline and were fascinating to read. You can tell the depth of research and understanding which went into this book. It all feels so real and I must remind myself that it is fiction. Recommended for those who enjoy the twists of espionage, but who are looking for something different from the genre.

View all my reviews Goodreads

Book description

Transcription is a bravura novel of extraordinary power and substance. Juliet Armstrong is recruited as a young woman by an obscure wartime department of the Secret Service. In the aftermath of war she joins the BBC, where her life begins to unravel, and she finally has to come to terms with the consequences.

About the author

Kate Atkinson was born in York and now lives in Edinburgh. Her first novel, Behind the Scenes at the Museum, won the Whitbread Book of the Year Award and she has been a critically acclaimed international bestselling author ever since.

She is the author of a collection of short stories, Not the End of the World, and of the critically acclaimed novels Human Croquet, Emotionally Weird, Case Histories, and One Good Turn.

Case Histories introduced her readers to Jackson Brodie, former police inspector turned private investigator, and won the Saltire Book of the Year Award and the Prix Westminster.

When Will There Be Good News? was voted Richard & Judy Book Best Read of the Year. After Case Histories and One Good Turn, it was her third novel to feature the former private detective Jackson Brodie, who makes a welcome return in Started Early, Took My Dog.

Kate Atkinson

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