“Ghosts grip governess, Gothic ghost story, extra-terrestrial tortuous torment.” These are some of the descriptions used by book club members to depict this month’s offering – The Turn of the Screw by Henry James.

Readers in the club found the language complex and convoluted whilst others categorised it as masterful. Those who listened to the story through an audio book generally commented that this made comprehending it more palatable.

The tale of a governess sent to an isolated country estate to look after what seem to be two beautiful children turns into a horror story of apparitions that leads to a blurring of reality.

The narrative, told around a fireplace in winter includes many aspects of the human experience from love to terror. Book club members debated its merits and faults whilst also aiming to decipher meaning in the context of Victorian English society. We agreed that such tales were, in the 19th century, the entertainment that our movies are today.

Perhaps knowing that James was a contemporary of Sigmund Freud, Karl Marx and writers like Bram Stoker (author of Dracula) can lead to a better elucidation of the novella’s essence.

There was a contentious opinion among book club members regarding its rating out of ten. This ranged between a 1 to an 8 with an average score being 7.

The upcoming book for discussion is “Running Deep: An Australian Submarine Life” by Peter Scott. Our Book Club members will meet on Tuesday 23 April at 17:30 for their monthly discussion. Additionally, a special lunch event titled “Our Lunch with the Author” featuring Peter Scott will take place in the Dining Room on Wednesday 24 April, at 12:30, all members and their guests are invited.

Tickets Price: $95 per person for one book, 2-course lunch and drinks included.
$180 for 2 persons for one book (to share), 2-course lunch and drinks included.

In “Running Deep: An Australian Submarine Life,” Commodore Peter Scott offers a compelling narrative of his experiences, including top-secret missions and leadership of the longest deployment ever undertaken by the Australian submarine service. Through his storytelling, readers gain profound insights into the rigorous life of a submariner and the myriad challenges they encounter.