This month, Lausanne Book Club travelled to its new home – the delightful Le Lacustre on the shores of Lac Leman. Not only did the group have its own private room but some delicious pizza (and, of course, wine)
We welcomed one new member to the group this month – Helena. After about 10 minutes, it was as if she’d been in the group all along (and even came along to the inaugural Lausanne Book Club karaoke session).
This month, we were reading Lady Chatterley’s Lover by DH Lawrence. The book scored a very respectable 7/10. The majority of the group felt the book was well written. Those who weren’t keen on the writing still scored the book fairly highly citing their surprise at the modern views expressed in the book, its honesty, and the social and political commentary throughout.
The book led to incredibly revealing conversations about sexuality, sensuality, passion, the views of women and men on sex and marriage. It has been said that Lawrence wrote Lady C’s Lover to “normalise” sex. The group felt that it wasn’t simply about normalisation, but that Lawrence made sex seemed positive (something the group agreed, it is). It was interesting that Lawrence didn’t gloss over some of the less appetising parts of sexual encounters. Unlike some romance novels (yes, we’re looking at you Jilly Cooper) the sex in Lady C’s Lover wasn’t all rainbows and soft lighting – it was realistic. Thrusting buttocks and all.
There was some discussion about a male writer describing female orgasm and talk about whether women felt sex was always linked to children (spoiler: no).
Conversation moved onto Connie’s relationship with her father, diverted to talk about parents having sex, and then settled on Clifford and his role in the novel. The group felt that Connie didn’t respect Clifford – was this purely because of it sexual inadequacy or was there something deeper. Perhaps a lack of devotion?
Finally, the group analysed the ending of the book. Was it believable? Did the group like it? What kind of life did Connie and Mellors now have? Was the book about Mellors (the reference to Lady C’s lover in the title, not just Lady C) or was it about Connie?
The group stayed chatting late into the night – happy to have found a new and hospitable home. I’m looking forward to next month’s discussion which, I feel, may descend into an in-depth political debate. The best kind of debate!