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The Closed Circle (Rotters' Club #2)

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3.77  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,792 Ratings  ·  134 Reviews
The characters of The Rotters’ Club–Jonathan Coe’s beloved novel of adolescent life in the 1970s–have bartered their innocence for the vengeance of middle age in this incisive portrait of Cool Britannia at the millennium.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
ebook, 384 pages
Published December 18th 2007 by Vintage (first published 2004)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jim
Mar 23, 2008 Jim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Coe writes about frustration - professional, creative, and sexual; frustrations in relationships and a loss of faith amidst the crumbling of personal verities. It can be a little depressing, but it's also cathartic and very, very compelling, with a subtle humor rooted in a very dark sense of irony. His books are perfect for those of us who have reached a certain age, who suspect that the world is broken and who are looking for the words to describe a creeping sense of malaise.

Like all of Coe's n
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T4ncr3d1
Jun 25, 2011 T4ncr3d1 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: inglesi
"Le parole possono avere il significato che vuoi, nell'era dell'ironia."

La banda dei brocchi incontra la famiglia Winshaw: e il cerchio finalmente si chiude.
Sebbene sia ormai aduso alla narrativa di Coe (e anzi, forse proprio per questo) mi risulta particolarmente difficile recensire questo romanzo. O anche soltanto scegliere il giusto giudizio. Forse, a ben vedere, è ancora troppo forte e troppo nitido il ricordo de La banda dei brocchi, che mi aveva esaltato e affascinato. E in questo romanzo,
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Tiziana
Jul 25, 2010 Tiziana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Aw, Paul Trotter, what have you turned into...
In this follow up to The Rotters' Club Paul's character is the only one that I really struggled to reconcile with his younger version in the former book. The 'creepy little thing' turned MP for New Labour has lost a lot of his scariness and become a laughable figure. A bit of disappointment there is inevitable, for a lover of black humour like me.
In fact, a lot of the characters haven't (yet) fulfilled the promises they had as teenagers, and we find
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Francesca
May 12, 2014 Francesca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Questo libro è il seguito de "La banda dei brocchi". I due libri sono da leggere in sequenza dal momento che "Circolo chiuso", oltre a trattare di tutti i personaggi de "La banda dei brocchi", è imprescindibile dagli eventi avvenuti nel volume precedente.
Sono entrambi due libri scritti in modo impeccabile. Ho apprezzato molto il fatto che, all'interno di uno stesso volume, Coe usi diversi metodi di narrazione. Anche il fatto che la narrazione non sia solo ed esclusivamente lineare rende più intr
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Agatha
Jan 18, 2008 Agatha rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I love love loved The Rotter's Club and this sequel/ending to the saga of British youth during the tumultuous 70s/80s fell flat. Some surprises of incest and religious zeal...but not worth it. You're better off imagining an ending for these characters yourself!
Boyd
Jul 10, 2010 Boyd rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Big and shapeless. At the end of THE ROTTERS' CLUB--which I liked--Coe indicated that the book's many questions and unfinished narratives would be elucidated and/or resolved in the sequel, but apparently the thing got away from him, and after a strong beginning, the story grows increasingly bloated and meandering. People keep disappearing for months or years and reappearing suddenly and going off on underexplained junkets and brooding tragically (and endlessly) about their unhappy lives while tu ...more
Ian Mapp
Nov 07, 2012 Ian Mapp rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Where to start with a beast of a book like this. In retrospect, it appears to be larger than it actually was - so many characters and so much stuff is in it.

A sequel to the excellent Rotters club, it has most of the same characters. All of them in their 40s and disappointed by life.

In very much the same vein as the RC - politics and personal lives intertwine. So much so that one of the Trotters is a blairite MP which gives the author plenty of chance to comment of the Iraq war, terrorism (very a
...more
Elsa
Jul 29, 2011 Elsa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: société, angleterre
Ceux qui étaient passés à côté de leurs rêves.

Voici la suite de l'excellent Bienvenue au club, qui nous plongeait dans la jeunesse des années 70. Si Bienvenue au club avait une petite touche de folie et de frivolité, le goût est cette fois-ci plus amer et nous place dans la noirceur des années récentes. Cette suite est plus critique et acerbe, n'hésitant à écorner la politique de Tony Blair. Aujourd'hui, cette jeunesse a 45 ans, s'est dégarnie et a pris du ventre. Nous retrouvons avec plaisir no
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Zorba
Apr 23, 2012 Zorba rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
La banda dei brocchi di Jonathan Coe si legge tutto d'un fiato.
Ci si appassiona alle vicende, si vuole sapere ad ogni costo come finiranno le storie di questi adolescenti che sono la scusa di un affresco preciso dell'Inghilterra degli anni Settanta.

Grande è la gioia quando alla fine una nota dell'autore preannuncia che ci sarà un seguito intitolato "Circolo chiuso".

Purtroppo devo dire che questo seguito non è all'altezza delle aspettative.

Benjamin Trotter nonostante sia sposato non ha dimenticat
...more
Lorenzo Berardi
The Closed Circle is the follow-up of The Rotters Club characters' story twenty five years later on paper. In the real world three years are passed by between the release of the two books.

Well, the question is: what's happened to Jonathan Coe in the meanwhile?
Apparently he has lost his touch in just a few dozens months.

Where The Rotters Club was funny and ironic, The Closed Circle is merely ambitious. Where The Rotters Club was sensible and melancholic, The Closed Circle is unemotional.
The same
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Derek Baldwin
This is a well-written and thoughtful book but it has little of the emotional depth of The Rotters Club and very few laugh-aloud moments. As a document of its time (the early 00's) it isn't especially resonant either. But I was glad to be able to find out the fate of Miriam, grim thought it was, as well as the later lives of the principal characters from the earlier novel. And it was enjoyable to finally read some of Benjamin's, ahem, poetry.



Part of what made The Rotters Club such fun was the ra
...more
Karen
May 19, 2011 Karen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really liked this book, but found it less compelling than The Rotter's Club. I especially loved the story of Claire and Miriam, and thought that Claire's character and story were the highlights of the novel. Claire actually seemed so real to me that I can't stop thinking about her, several days after finishing the book. The Closed Circle was more sober than The Rotter's Club, which could have worked if the characters were more likeable. I was especially disappointed with the choices the author ...more
Jim
Dec 25, 2010 Jim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Hmmm. I liked this, really enjoying it, until I read some stinging criticisms of it on Amazon. And they were so true. The unbelievable coincidences; the near desperation to close circles left open from The Rotter's Club; the shallowness of some of the characters who seemed to be fleshed-out as opposed to fleshed-in from the first novel; the political posturing; the neo liberalism. All true. Once I was aware of them, the book went limp in my hands. It was all wrong. Fortunately I had only fifty p ...more
Kim
Jul 15, 2015 Kim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great sequel to The Rotters Club, continuing the story of Benjamin and Lois Trotter and their friends and family, resolving many of the issues left unresolved at the end of the first book. Great read - 9/10.
Holly
Apr 15, 2010 Holly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I genuinely enjoyed this book - I loved getting back to the characters that had been so well developed in The Rotter's Club - but I can honestly not imagine enjoying this book without reading the prequel. The loose ends this book tied up were all started in the previous book. Only a few of the new issues were concluded in a satisfying way (the whole premise of this book seemed to be wrapping up the last book... and if that's what it was meant to be, then fine, but the plot of this book was just ...more
Johnlondesborough
This sequel to the Rotter's Club was not as enjoyable for me as the Rotter's Club itself, perhaps because I'm old enough to remember the seventies (when RC happens) with nostalgia. But both books are really well written and their social comment on the changes (mostly sad) in Britain during my life time struck me as very acute.I don't know if books can do anything to improve society by making readers think about it, but if so The Rotter's Club and Closed Circle may do som good as well as being gr ...more
Wolfpabiru
Mi ha preso meno di La banda dei brocchi e penso che in alcune scelte sia un po' improbabile. Sono indeciso se definire il finale(il colpo di scena) un po' furbetto.
Forse questo seguito non era necessario. Sembra che volesse dare un seguito alle storie di tutti ma la sensazione(personale) è che sia forzato.
Mi ha ricordato un po' John Irving ma con meno ironia e meno trasporto.
O forse sono io che voglio tenermi il ricordo ingenuo e fanciullesco dei ragazzi invece dei problematici e tristi adulti.
Richard Watt
Jan 27, 2016 Richard Watt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The sequel to The Rotters' Club does exactly what it promises to do; it closes the circle on the lives of all those characters we came to know and love as awkward teenagers the first time round.

In the guise of a satire on New Labour and the strange early years of this century, it manages to tell a far more meaningful and poignant story about the grip of memory and formative experiences on the lives of all of us; the choices Benjamin Trotter and his school friends made as not quite fully formed a
...more
Phyllis Sommers
Aug 29, 2015 Phyllis Sommers rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The year is 1999 when we pick up the story of Benjamin Trotter, Douglas Anderton, Philip Chase and Sean Harding, the four childhood friends we first met in Book 1 of this series, The Rotter's Club. In order to bring the reader up to date, the author begins The Closed Circle with a series of letters written by Claire, a prominent character in Book 1, to her sister Miriam, whose story we learned about in the Rotter's Club. Though Miriam wasn't a major presence in Book 1, much of Doug's story revol ...more
Paul The Uncommon Reader




Middle age, disillusionment, decay, renewal, closure

I had a strange experience when I initially started to read this book. I knew it was the sequel to The Rotters’ Club – especially after I had read the author’s note – and that it only made sense to read it if I had read that first book. The thing was, I was convinced that I had read The Rotters’ Club, and it was only after reading the first ten pages or so of The Closed Circle that I realised this was making no sense. Why was this woman w

...more
Luca
Sep 15, 2014 Luca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: u-k
Ne "La banda dei brocchi" i liceali del King's college di Birmingham cercavano di tenersi in equilibrio tra vita scolastica, sogni e progetti e il marasma e le incertezze creati dai loro genitori alle prese con matrimoni poco riusciti, amorazzi, problemi lavorativi e lotte sociali (siamo nell'Inghilterra degli anni '70). Proprio le pagine che raccontano le vicende degli adulti sono, secondo me, le migliori di quel libro. Ne ho avuto conferma leggendo "Circolo chiuso"(le due opere compongono, ins ...more
Sera
Jan 17, 2013 Sera rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As if it is not depressing enough to see our beloved characters from the first book The Rotters' Club at annoying positions and bleak situations 30 years later (surely it was inevitable especially for Benjamin but some things should have stayed as unresolved issues because life is full of unresolved issues actually), we cannot see the humor of the first book at this sequel either and that's what disappointed me the most.
by Ax
Aug 22, 2014 by Ax rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Intrecci

Le strade di coloro che ne "La banda dei brocchi" erano solo ragazzi, ora si intrecciano nuovamente e sfociano in qualcosa di più maturo.
Coe è sempre bravo a muovere i suoi attori e a donare loro dialoghi godibili e per nulla banali. Nel suo modo di narrare c'è una sorta di intimità in grado di avvolgere il lettore e renderlo partecipe al punto giusto, e per fortuna qui non strafà mai.
Questa storia è ricca di intrecci affrontati con leggerezza e mostrati per quello che sono: vite in movi
...more
Saima Nisbet
Jan 25, 2016 Saima Nisbet rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2016
I don't remember the Rotter's Club for anything bar it's front cover as it's been on my bookcase for years so reading this wasn't like revisiting old friends. On the whole, I enjoyed the book with it's negative political not so undercurrent, that reads as if it was written with a great deal of hindsight until I recall that I might be reading it in 2016 but it was written 12 years ago. The characters engage but the storytelling starts to lapse towards the end into a childlike "and then this happe ...more
Anne Claire
Jan 02, 2015 Anne Claire rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Suite de "Bienvenue au Club".
________________________________________________________________________________________________
L'Angleterre de Tony Blair entre dans le nouveau millnaire, et les hros de Bienvenue au club dans l'ge mr. Vingt ans aprs, qu'ont-ils fait de leurs idaux de jeunesse ? N'auraient-ils d'autre choix qu'entre compromissions et immobilisme ? Seul l'affreux Paul, leur cadet, un politicien opportuniste, semble s'adapter ces temps nouveaux et aux nouveaux cercles du pouvoir. Mai
...more
Opunzia Espinosa
Feb 16, 2014 Opunzia Espinosa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
Mi sono innamorata di Jonathan Coe anni fa (credo una decina, forse qualcosa di più), leggendo La Banda dei Brocchi. Quel romanzo mi ha spinta a leggere tutto o quasi di Coe. Come potevo tralasciare il sequel dell'opera che mi ha fatto scoprire ed apprezzare un autore così talentuoso? Circolo Chiuso, però, è stato una mezza delusione. Due stelline sono poche, me ne rendo conto, eppure non me la sento di regalargliene tre. Se non altro perché ho letto sbadigliando tutta la parte centrale del roma ...more
Philtrum
This, The Closed Circle (TCC) is a straightforward sequel to The Rotters’ Club (TRC) and there would be no point reading this having not read the earlier book.

The same characters from TRC are now 25 years older, with kids of their own. There were some unanswered questions from the first book and this book pretty much ties up all of them.

Sadly, I think it would have been better if TCC had not been written, but it was and, having enjoyed TRC immensely, I felt compelled to read TCC.

Even though we f
...more
Kairi
Dec 15, 2013 Kairi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: coup-de-coeur
Now, first of all I think we should separate the first 3/4 of the story from the last quarter, because they were very different since it’s in the last quarter that the circle closes, and it makes you see everything that has happened before in a new light.

There was this heavy, even kind of gloomy atmosphere all throughout the first 3/4 of the story, and actually the only ray of sunshine in the pale lives entwined in the plot was Sophie, who represented everything that Benjamin, Lois and the othe
...more
Taylor
Jul 22, 2014 Taylor rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who liked "Rotters Club"
Closed Circle is the follow-up to one of my favorite books, The Rotters Club. The Rotters Club is all about a group of friends going through their adolescence and Closed Circle finds them in middle age.

Rotters Club had a political undercurrent, but this has a lot more politics in it, which felt a little overwhelming from the standpoint of someone who doesn't know much about English politics. Once it got in to Tony Blair and Iraq, I was fine (obviously), but everything up to that point was a litt
...more
Colleen
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Jonathan Coe, born 19 August 1961 in Birmingham, is a British novelist and writer. His work usually has an underlying preoccupation with political issues, although this serious engagement is often expressed comically in the form of satire. For example, What a Carve Up! rew
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Rotters' Club (2 books)
  • The Rotters' Club

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“Yes - I've learned from my mistakes, and I'm sure I could repeat them perfectly.” 14 likes
“For many weeks after [my wife] died, I could not get used to the feeling of coldness and lifelessness on her side of the bed - and it was even worse when they took the body away and buried her.” 0 likes
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