MSB Book Club – January

The MSB Book Club welcomes in the New Year with their first read for 2023 and discuss their New Year Resolutions.

A Christmas Carol

December’s book

In line with the festive season, December’s book invited the club to delve into a Charles Dickens classic with ‘A Christmas Carol’.

This novella was first published in 1843, taking Mr Dickens just six weeks to write the timeless classic. After being first published on 19th December 1843, it had completely sold out by Christmas Eve. 179 years later and ‘A Christmas Carol’ has never been out of print and has since been translated into several languages.

The story has been adapted many times for film, stage, opera and other media. MSB recommend watching the 2017 film ‘The Man Who Invented Christmas’, which focuses on how Mr Dickens came to write the story.

About the book: A Christmas Carol recounts the story of Ebenezer Scrooge, an elderly miser who is visited by the ghost of his former business partner Jacob Marley and the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come. After their visits, Scrooge is transformed into a kinder, gentler man.

Staff Reviews

“I would give A Christmas Carol 4 stars. I have watched several versions of the story but had never read the novella until now and found I enjoyed reading the original story, especially during the Christmas period. I think the message is still relevant today and is worth remembering.”
Beth McKeown, Solicitor ****

“I read this book every year and I watch nearly every adaptation available. I love the message and it’s clear it is one that has stood the test of time with adaptations continuing to be made and the book still being in print. It is so easy to get lost, especially in today’s commercialism, of what Christmas means and the stress involved, but this story always reminds me to look after those who need help and to enjoy the time with my family and friends. I would give it 5 stars.”
Rachael Payne, Solicitor *****

“I love this classic book. It is a brilliantly festive story about the moral of generosity, redemption and is a true Christmas tradition in our house!  5 stars!”
Louise Murphy, Partner *****

January’s book

This month’s book was chosen by Megan Clarke, Paralegal. Megan has chosen the bestseller ‘How to Kill Your Family’ by Bella Mackie.

‘How to Kill Your Family’ is Bella Mackie’s first fiction book and was released in July 2021, following her first book ‘Jog On’, which was a memoir about mental health and running.

About the book: Meet Grace Bernard. Daughter, sister, colleague, friend, serial killer.

Grace has lost everything. And now she wants revenge — by killing them all, one by one.

I have killed several people (some brutally, others calmly) and yet I currently languish in jail for a murder I did not commit

When I think about what I actually did, I feel somewhat sad that nobody will ever know about the complex operation that I undertook. Getting away with it is highly preferable, of course, but perhaps when I’m long gone, someone will open an old safe and find this confession. The public would reel.

After all, almost nobody else in the world can possibly understand how someone, by the tender age of 28, can have calmly killed six members of her family. And then happily got on with the rest of her life, never to regret a thing.

A wickedly dark romp about class, family, love… and murder.

On this month’s pick, Megan said: “I chose this book because I’ve heard lots of good things and haven’t got round to reading it yet!”

New Year Resolutions

As we kick off 2023, we asked our staff what goals and resolutions they had set for themselves for the year ahead – spoiler alert, we sense a lot of new book purchases this year!

Rachael Payne, Solicitor
“I managed to read 42 books last year and would like to aim for a nice round 50 this year! I have so many books in my ‘to be read’ shelf and continue to buy more before I have read them, so I would like to start reducing it down! I saw something on social media where you turn the spines away of the books and then randomly select a book so that’s what I will do this year. Can’t promise I won’t buy more books though.”

Sarah Sharples, Trainee Solicitor
My resolution is to read 24 books this year (two a month). Last year I found it quite difficult to fit in as much reading as I would like to, so my plan in 2023 is to read every day before bed.”

Beth McKeown, Solicitor
“I have a few goals for 2023, which include reading 50 books, reading for at least 30 minutes a day and keeping up to date with my book reviews. I will be keeping track with a book journal and a social media account.”

Biba Metcalfe, Paralegal
“My aim for 2023 is to read more. I have to read a lot for university, so after that I tend to want to switch off. This year, I would like to read for pleasure more.”

A book journal
A water bottle

Amy Tagoe, Associate Solicitor
“My New Year’s resolution is to drink more water. I have bought a two-litre bottle to help remind me throughout the day. ‘Less Wine. More Water.’ is my motto for 2023.”

Nicola Hunt, PA to Managing Director
“My New Year’s resolution is to prioritise me. It is important to do what I enjoy doing and not drain myself physically and mentally. It can be easy for people to end up exhausting themselves and trying to pour from an empty cup.”

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