Book Group


Visit our Saddleworth WI Members Facebook page to post your review of the month’s book and also to read other people’s reviews, or join our Zoom meeting.

Contact Cathy Wilde or Lesley Winrow.

We usually meet on the fourth Wednesday of each month at The Conservative Club, Uppermill in the big room upstairs. Discussion starts at 7.30 pm.

You are welcome to join us. Come along and see what it’s all about, even if you haven’t read the book for the month.

The Book Group is available to Saddleworth WI members only.



Nigel – My Family and Other Dogs by Monty Don

When Monty Don’s golden retriever Nigel became the surprise star of the BBC Gardeners’ World, Monty wanted to explore what makes us connect with animals quite so deeply.

The first Zoom of the year was a huge success with the group reviewing Nigel – My Family and Other Dogs by Monty Don.

Monty Don is a great writer who is well known  for his gardening books but here he has created a warm, witty touching book around his love of dogs.

He speaks about his relationship with a number of family pets and the part each one played in his family’s life. Monty is without doubt a wonderful gardener but in this book it is clear he is also very much a dog lover as well. 

This book, although enjoyed by the group, had very mixed reviews. Some felt it was very laboured with others feeling he had captured the relationship between man and his dog well. Some of the group felt the use of historical information such as the history of dogs in society added an extra layer to the book. 

“Nothing outstanding as a book”
“Made me want a dog”
“Well written”

“Could relate to own dogs”
“Appeal to dog lovers”
“Rambling in parts” 

This year the group will scoring each book out of five; this book received overall  2.5.


The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri

The unforgettable love story of a mother blinded by loss and her husband who insists on their survival as they undertake the Syrian refugee trail to Europe.

This months book was The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri. This is a well crafted book tracing the struggles and trials of a husband and his wife who are escaping Syria to England. The book examines the difficulties and horrors refugees face when fleeing their homelands. Although the book is a work of fiction it does have a ring of authenticity. The book also is in some ways a love story about the two main characters and how their love endures the difficulties life throws at them and how hope endures. The story should make the reader question the refugee crisis and the trauma that people go through to reach a safe country.

“Question the stereotyping of refugees”
“Although fiction could so easily be true”
“Subject matter makes it a difficult read”
“Strong characters”

There were 20 members present and the vote was 4.2

MARCH 24th

Dreams from My Father by Barack Obama

A Story of Race and Inheritance is a memoir by Barack Obama, that explores the events of his early years in Honolulu and Chicago up until his entry into law school in 1988.

APRIL 28th

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

The unforgettable novel of a childhood in a sleepy Southern town and the crisis of conscience that rocked it.

MAY 26th

The Trouble with Elephants by Julia Wolfendale

One is never enough!
The extraordinary events at the Belle Vue Zoo in the Victorian Era.

JUNE 23rd

The Spy and the Traitor by Ben Macintyre

The double life of a KGB insider recruited by MI6 features microfilm, Soviet secrets and a daring escape.

JULY 28th

Those Other Women by Nicola Moriarty

A controversial and darkly comic story of the frustrations of being a childless women in the modern baby-obsessed world.


I am I am I am by Maggie O’Farrell

Maggie O’Farrell’s astonishing memoir of the near death experiences that have punctuated and defined her life.


The Secrets of Sunshine by Phaedra Patrick

A single father gets an unexpected second chance at love as we follow one man’s journey to unlock his heart and discover new beginnings in the unlikeliest places


Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout

Olive Kitteridge, a retired schoolteacher, deplores the changes in her little town of Crosby, Maine, and in the world at large but she doesn’t always recognise the changes in those around her.


The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

Between life and death there is a library. When Nora Seed finds herself in the Midnight Library she has a chance to make things right. Up until now, her life has been full of misery and regret.


Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell

A fictional account of Shakespeare’s son, Hamnet who died at age 11 in 1596.