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September & October 2006 FICTION suggestions! 
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Post September & October 2006 FICTION suggestions!
September & October 2006 FICTION suggestions!


This suggestion thread is going up rather late. I sincerely apologize. I've had plenty of difficult things happening in my personal life over the past few weeks so I have been necessarily distant from BookTalk.

I am suggesting we approach this next fiction reading more casually. Past fiction suggestions were supposed to be bestsellers of some sort, but that rule doesn't seem to be having the desired effect of bringing in a flood of new members. So we ought to simply try to satisfy ourselves and suggest and read whatever we want.

So no real rules this time. Suggest whatever fiction books you like and we'll discuss those suggestions as a community. Bestsellers aren't always the best choices anyway.

The only thing I ask is that you include a link to where the book can be purchased or reviewed. Simply suggesting a book and not including a description or link means we all have to research it ourselves. So help us and do the footwork for us. ;)

Again, sorry about this thread being created so late. The past few weeks have been the most stressful and difficult I've had in years and years.

Edited by: Chris OConnor  at: 8/9/06 2:54 am



Fri Jul 21, 2006 10:04 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
Herb's First 100 Years by Randy Perkins
I love this story. Uplifitng,emotional,and it left me feeling great about the world and potential we all have for making the world a better place.

Check it out. It's a wonderful story.

Lori




Mon Jul 24, 2006 12:52 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
[Oh, another Lori! Hi...and you spell it 'correctly' too!]

The Brothers K by David James Duncan
Quote:
From Publishers Weekly
Duncan took almost 10 years to follow up the publication of his much-praised first novel, The River Why, but this massive second effort is well worth the wait. It is a stunning work: a complex tapestry of family tensions, baseball, politics and religion, by turns hilariously funny and agonizingly sad. Highly inventive formally, the novel is mainly narrated by Kincaid Chance, the youngest son in a family of four boys and identical twin girls, the children of Hugh Chance, a discouraged minor-league ballplayer whose once-promising career was curtained by an industrial accident, and his wife Laura, an increasingly fanatical Seventh-Day Adventist. The plot traces the working-out of the family's fate from the beginning of the Eisenhower years through the traumas of Vietnam. One son becomes an atheist and draft resister; another immerses himself in Eastern religions, while the third, the most genuinely Christian of the children, ends up in Southeast Asia. In spite of the author's obvious affection for the sport, this is not a baseball novel; it is, as Kincaid says, "the story of an eight-way tangle of human beings, only one-eighth of which was a pro ballpayer." The book portrays the extraordinary differences that can exist among siblings--much like the Dostoyevski novel to which The Brothers K alludes in more than just title--and how family members can redeem one another in the face of adversity. Long and incident-filled, the narrative appears rather ramshackle in structure until the final pages, when Duncan brings together all of the themes and plot elements in a series of moving climaxes. The book ends with a quiet grace note--a reprise of its first images--to satisfyingly close the narrative circle.


Here's a discussion guide, with a couple of short excepts:

An extra advantage: it's from 1992, so good possibility of library & 2ndhand availability.

"All beings are the owners of their deeds, the heirs to their deeds."

Loricat's Book Nook
Celebrating the Absurd

Edited by: Loricat at: 7/24/06 3:31 pm



Mon Jul 24, 2006 1:04 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
Thanks for those two suggestions. Please try to put links in your posts to where other members can read about your suggestion. Thank you. ::80




Mon Jul 24, 2006 1:23 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
Sorry for being such a pest about getting the suggestion thread up, Chris. I hope things are going better on your end.

As for extending the reading and discussion time, I'd say don't commit until you've seen two things: a) how many pages are in the chosen book, and b) how many people participate in the voting and actually vote on the winner. If it's a long book and/or a lot of people are showing interest, then we probably should extend the reading period to include October. But if it's a relatively short book, or there aren't a lot of people involved in the voting process, then we can probably squeeze it in without running over schedule.

I'll have some suggestions up in a little while.




Mon Jul 24, 2006 4:58 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
A few suggestions for consideration:

Mother Night, by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
A few months ago we discussed the possibility of reading a Kurt Vonnegut book as a group, but nothing came of it at the time. I think this, among his collection, makes for a good nomination because a) it's one of his lesser known works, and b) it isn't overtly science fiction, and we've done two sci-fi novels in a row.

Book Description
Kurt Vonnegut is a master of contemporary American literature. His black humor, satiric voice, and incomparable imagination first captured America's attention in The Sirens of Titan in 1959 and established him as a "true artist"* with Cat's Cradle in 1963. He is, as Graham Greene has declared, "one of the best living American writers."

Mother Night is a daring challenge to our moral sense. American Howard W. Campbell, Jr., a spy during World War II, is now on trial in Israel as a Nazi war criminal. But is he really guilty? In this brilliant book rife with true gallows humor, Vonnegut turns black and white into a chilling shade of gray with a verdict that will haunt us all.


The Woman in the Dunes, by Kobo Abe

I've read one other novel by Kobo Abe, and for sheer oddity, I don't think I've read anything to surpass it. This is his most famous novel, and I believe it's likely to be a little more restrained than that other book. Might do us some good to read something a little less... American.

From Amazon: This beautiful novel by one of Japan's most important writers is also one of the most strangely terrifying and memorable books you'll ever read. The Woman in the Dunes is the story of an amateur entomologist who wanders alone into a remote seaside village in pursuit of a rare beetle he wants to add to his collection. But the townspeople take him prisoner. They lower him into the sand-pit home of a young widow, a pariah in the poor community, who the villagers have condemned to a life of shoveling back the ever-encroaching dunes that threaten to bury the town. An amazing book.




Mon Jul 24, 2006 6:49 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
Despite having been a pest about getting the fiction suggestion thread going, I'm now starting to think that maybe we should give the currect selection an extra month. The reason for my second thoughts is simply that it's the peak vacation season, and BookTalk seems to be going through a slow period as a result. So maybe we should take a full month to do the suggestion and selection process for the next book, and start reading and discussing in September, by which time people should be wrapping up their summer activities and have more time to put towards reading. Does that sound reasonable?




Fri Jul 28, 2006 1:57 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
Going with Mad's or Chris' suggestion seems to be a good idea. Either prolong the reading period for the next selection, or prolong the current one by drawing out the selection process. Diving right into the next book just doesn't seem to be necessary. Does anyone else have an opinion on this?




Fri Jul 28, 2006 2:38 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
Well...the current book discussion was basically stillborn...so chosing something now and extending that reading might be best.

I am all for a Vonnegut book...but I suggest "Galapagos" or maybe "Player Piano"

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The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"

I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper





Fri Jul 28, 2006 3:44 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
"Player Piano" doesn't interest me as much, but I'd be up for either "Mother Night" or "Galapagos". But I don't think we should run the risk of having two Vonnegut books dividing the vote on the final poll. We should probably have a separate discussion to determine which Vonnegut book would garner more interest, and suggest that as a possible fiction selection.

While we're at it, I think we might also consider "Bluebeard", and I've always been interested in reading "Hocus Pocus".




Sun Jul 30, 2006 6:12 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
I will read either Bluebeard or Hocus Pocus. I have had these books for a while now (bought a lot of "V" books off EBay) and have put them off for other readings. Realy. I am good with any Vonnegut book.

Although my reading time has dwindled...so only take my input as an aside for now as I may not be able to commit to anything. I have not read past chapter 1 of each of the current books.


Mr. P.

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The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.

The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"

I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper





Mon Jul 31, 2006 9:30 am
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
Chris:

Galapagos was GREAT. Hilarious social commentary.

I will be opk with Hocus Pocus...but as I said...I will be very busy the next two months at least...so I may not be as active in the discussions. Keep that in mind when weighing my vote.

Mr. P.

Mr. P's place. I warned you!!!

The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.

The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"

I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper





Thu Aug 03, 2006 9:26 am
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
We seem to have had some success with Ender's Game, what about something else in the series?

"...the great events in life come from the books, rather than the people, one comes across." - Robert D. Kaplan, Mediterranean Winter: the Pleasures of History and Landscape in Tunisia, Sicily, Dalmatia, and Greece




Thu Aug 03, 2006 10:10 pm
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
I was thinking of that PC. I already read Speaker for the Dead and thought it was incredible.

Much more depth than Ender's and much more mature. Since I read it already...it would make part of the process easier for me, since my time is short lately.

Mr. P.

Mr. P's place. I warned you!!!

The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.

The pain in hell has two sides. The kind you can touch with your hand; the kind you can feel in your heart...Scorsese's "Mean Streets"

I came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper





Fri Aug 04, 2006 7:58 am
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Post Re: August & September 2006 FICTION suggestions!
I'll put the poll up soon. Anyone want to name the 3 books they think should be on the poll? More than 3 books would be excessive for the number of people currently active and potentially participating. ::44




Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:27 am
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