Democracy Sucks

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by steve319, Jun 17, 2005.

  1. steve319

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    I had meant to post this within the book club topic I posted a few weeks back, but, alas, it has slipped away into oblivion like my misspent youth, so I'm doing a new topic for it.

    Well, the college book club has chosen its selections for the second half of the year, and I have to say that, given the outcome, the whole concept voting is WAY overrated. :eyes:

    I mean, why should anyone be allowed to vote who doesn't feel exactly the way I do? ;)

    At any rate, only two of the suggestions I presented to the group were chosen (and neither of those the one I was really eager to do!). Here are the final six:

    The Tortilla Curtain by T. C. Boyle
    Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi
    Empire Falls by Richard Russo
    The Road by John Ehle
    The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
    Ragtime by E. L. Doctorow

    Not a terrible list by any means--I'm certainly interested in five of the six--but not the mixture I'd hoped to see either. And kind of dark, don't you think?

    I do believe that two of those choices were mentioned by you guys in the suggestions, though! Thank you all for your generous contributions. You've certainly enriched and lengthened my own reading list for the coming year!

    So, have any of you read these? And do you maybe have opinions to share?
     
  2. Steve26

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    Well, Steve, I really enjoyed Empire Falls, so you're batting at least, uh, .166. Hard to go wrong with any novel that's won the Pulitzer, IMHO. Let us know if any of the others prove worth reading!

    Steve :)
     
  3. SpeedoGuy

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    Steve:

    I liked Ragtime and other works by Doctorow.

    SG
     
  4. absinthium

    absinthium New Member

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    I keep meaning to read The Bell Jar, among the scores of other things I occasionally tease myself with the idea of picking up. I must admit, I've never even heard of the others.
    I've often considered joining a book club... How does one go about finding one for a person with very odd taste in literature, such as myself?
     
  5. steve319

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    Well, if you're in an urban area, you might have more luck than I have around here. My tastes tend more toward the odd and unusual too, but that's not the norm for community book clubs. Think Oprah books (which isn't a bad thing). Maybe there's a listing in the community section of the local paper? Or at local libraries?

    I have to work pretty hard to get award winners or left-of-center books considered and supported in the club.

    Hey, if you have a taste for the bizarre in novels, you might enjoy Observatory Mansions by Edward Carey. Read it early this year and found it strange and clever.
     
  6. naughty

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    Hi,

    I really enjoyed "Ragtime" by E L Doctorow. It was a mind blowing look at early 20th century American life in one vibrant slice. Coalhouse Walker, Jr. was riveting!

    Naughty
     
  7. headbang8

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    No, not terrible at all.

    I wasn't taken with The Road, more a history lesson than a ripping yarn. But it's about your region.

    Dark? Lots of rich, complex involving stories, many of which don't end entirely happily. But hey, Gone With the Wind doesn't have a happy ending either.

    Looking at the list, I'm tempted to pick up The Tortilla Curtain. I read The Road to Wellville and enjoyed it, so I'm curious to see what Boyle does with non-historical subject matter.

    I have heard rave reviews about Reading Lolita in Tehran.

    Doctorow and Plath? Proper attention to the modern classics, I guess.
     
  8. steve319

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    Dark is good in my book, but it won't do anything for the effort to pull in more community members.

    I got to start The Tortilla Curtain last night and so far I like his use of language. I've not read anything else by him.

    I'm not enthused about The Road and am sure I won't love it, but John Ehle is a "local" author, so there you go. In general, I don't live for local fiction. I can certainly enjoy the technical side of things, but for the artistic side, I think I read fiction to be transported elsewhere.

    Do you guys find that to be true for you as well?
     
  9. dolf250

    dolf250 New Member

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    I find that I read a little more non-fiction than I do fiction. However, when I read fiction I find that even if I do not get transported “elsewhere” in terms of location, most stories differ enough from my life that I still go “elsewhere” by looking at life from an altered perspective (at least if it is well written.) I also find quotes in fiction that really strike a chord and will often book mark them for later reference. (My current sig line is from the Fifth Estate- I find that sometimes quotes from “fiction” contain as much truth as you are likely to find anywhere.)
     
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