Six Degrees of Separation is a meme hosted by Kate over at Books Are My Favourite and Best. It works like this: each month a book is chosen as a starting point and linked to six others to form a chain. A book doesn’t need to be connected to all the titles on the list, only to the one next to it in the chain.
This month we’re starting with Patricia Lockwood’s Women’s Prize for Fiction shortlisted No One is Talking About This which follows a woman who finds herself opining on all manner of things when her cryptic tweet goes viral.
Lockwood’s was one of several novels published last year that took swipes at social media my favourite of which was John Boyne’s The Echo Chamber in which a celebrity’s family’s week goes horribly wrong when he gets his pronouns in a twist when tweeting about his publisher’s trans receptionist.
A similar disaster happens in Jonathan Coe’s House of Sleep when a character confuses the numbering of a footnote with life-changing results.
Coe was once a film critic and a novelist leading me to actor Ethan Hawke’s road novel Ash Wednesday, presumably written between movies.
Days of the week takes me to Lily King’s new collection of short stories, Five Tuesdays in Winter.
Sticking with title connections, Helen Dunmore’s A Spell of Winter, about a brother and sister growing up in their grandfather’s decaying mansion, popped into my head.
Dunmore’s novel won the inaugural Orange Prize, now the Women’s Prize for Fiction which was won last year by Susanna Clarkes’ Piranesi, set in the strangest of houses, the same prize for which No One is Talking About This was shortlisted.
This month’s Six Degrees has taken me from a novel about social media to one set in a fantastical house. Part of the fun of this meme is comparing the very different routes other bloggers take from each month’s starting point. If you’re interested, you can follow it on Twitter with the hashtag #6Degrees, check out the links over at Kate’s blog or perhaps even join in.