The Lessons by Naomi Alderman

bookshelves: fraudio, spring-2010, britain-england, published-2010, glbt

Recommended for: Radio 4 listeners
Read from April 13 to 23, 2010
** spoiler alert ** Rory Kinnear begins reading the Orange New Writers Award Winner, Naomi Alderman’s, second novel, ‘The Lessons’, a story of ambition, friendship, betrayal and desire. Today: James goes up to Oxford but finds her beauty only skin-deep.

Reader Rory Kinnear
Abridger Sally Marmion
Producer Di Speirs

BBC blurb – The Lessons is the second novel from Naomi Alderman, winner of the Orange New Writers Award and Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year. Set among the dreaming spires of Oxford, it follows the progress of a gilded group of under-graduates drawn together by their dazzling and mercurial fellow student Mark Winters. Fuelled by his trust-fund they live a charmed life of learning and parties and love-affairs. But university is no grounding for real life and none of the friends will be prepared, some years later, when tragedy strikes. The Lessons is a novel about friendship, ambition, betrayal and desire, and the fact that only life can teach the lessons you really need to learn.

Naomi Alderman won the Orange New Writers Award for her first novel Disobedience and has subsequently been named as the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year. She is a graduate of Lincoln College, Oxford. Rory Kinnear, fresh from playing Angelo at the Almeida and about to play Hamlet at the National Theatre studied at Balliol College, Oxford and reads his first Book at Bedtime.

My mind keeps throwing up Highsmith’s Ripley.

There are a few inconsistencies in this that jar, for example – one minute there are eight smooth unwrinkled fifty pound notes and then the next moment the crumpled notes are gazed at.

picky wench aren’t I?

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