Lit Reads Book Club Report: Frankenstein in Baghdad / by Time Out Bookstore


Thanks to all of our book-loving members that came to our inaugural Lit Reads Book Club meeting!

For a long time, we’ve had customers longing to join fellow book-lovers in literary discussion, but struggling to find book clubs to call home. It felt like we had the perfect solution: a cozy upstairs space with brick walls and plush leather couches, a Village Winery across the road (for the essentials), well-read and enthusiastic customers and of course, lots of books!

It was great to see a mixture of new and familiar faces come together to discuss the irreverent Man-Booker International shortlisted title, Frankenstein in Baghdad.  Gory, layered and exhaustive in its cast of characters, Frankenstein in Baghdad explores the impact of war on different intersections of Iraqi society, and sews together a political parable packed with nods to local and literary myths.

Starting the discussion with the title; its military green letters stitched into a beige background, our book club members dug into the relationship between Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and our contemporary monster, similarities between this and other political satires, the realities of daily life during war, and whether or not humour becomes lost in translation.

Our members all brought interesting ideas and new ways of thinking about the book to our discussion. Some had gone so far as to researching the Jewish architecture discussed in the book; others providing political and historical context to the post-War Iraq the book is set in.

The best part of any book club is watching the ice crack and hearing all of the thoughtful, intelligent and engaging conversation that takes part both during and after the session. Watching people who are connected by Time Out and their love for books engaging in discussion and sharing emails and phone numbers was an encouraging start for our book club.

Our mission with Lit Reads is to connect communities of readers and hear new and varied perspectives on fresh, contemporary titles. If this sounds like you, please email Suri at for more information.