Lavanya Karthik: Lavanya is from Mumbai, India and is a licensed
architect and consultant in environmental management. She lives in
Mumbai with her husband and six-year old daughter. She loves reading
and enjoys a diverse range of authors across genres.
Author: Clive Endive Ogive IV
Author: Clive Endive Ogive IVPublisher: Dog Ear Publishing
When a book claims to be the “Definitive Universal Handbook” of everything you “..REALLY need to know about Private Clubs”, the lay reader may well expect to find a number of things within its pages– lists of rules, bylaws and arcane regulations, perhaps, or convoluted procedures designed to keep out any but the most ‘deserving’ (read influential) candidates. Maybe even tips on how to circumvent those procedures for a chance to breathe the rarefied air beyond those great portals and rub shoulders with the nation’s stuffiest. What she probably won’t expect is this sly tome with its irreverent humour and no-holds barred lampooning of that secret society and its eccentric denizens.
Prequel to the wickedly funny Murder at the Old Bunbury released last year (that this writer had the pleasure of reviewing), Private Clubs.. begins with an endorsement from Plato no less, and proceeds to walks us through the mysterious inner workings of its subject with gleeful political incorrectness.
Our guide on this voyage is the venerable Clive Endive Ogive IV (his initials say it all) , veteran of this privileged universe and- as President of the Old Bunbury Golflinks and ReadingClub- long suffering shepherd to a wildly eccentric flock of adulterous golfers, bickering dowagers, curmudgeonly senior members and a motley crew of employees of dubious talent. Yet none of these people is as taxing – or entertaining – as Esther the waitress, with quirks to match the best of them. Who else, after all, could single-handedly improve attendance at Church among the Sunday brunchers with merely a withering look, or reverse Club policy on uniforms by threatening to go nude?
Be prepared for belly laughs as you unravel the intricacies of membership, understand the essential taxonomy of private clubs, decipher the semaphore to the teaching golf professional’s “other services”, and negotiate the minefield that is the Pickle Committee (not to be mistaken for that daunting hub of intrigue, the Pillow Committee). And watch out for author Norm Spitzig’s greatest skill – fantastically named characters and clubs, often accessorized with hilarious black and white portraits.
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