Olympics Opening Ceremony Books
List inspired by the 2012 opening ceremony.
1 Harry Potter and the Deathl...
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2 Alice in Wonderland (Alice'...
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3.98 of 5 stars 3.98 avg rating — 217,296 ratings
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3 Peter Pan
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4.1 of 5 stars 4.10 avg rating — 128,515 ratings
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4 Mary Poppins (Mary Poppins,...
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4.06 of 5 stars 4.06 avg rating — 63,373 ratings
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5 The Tempest
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3.78 of 5 stars 3.78 avg rating — 94,830 ratings
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6 Harry Potter and the Sorcer...
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4.38 of 5 stars 4.38 avg rating — 2,796,556 ratings
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7 Harry Potter and the Prison...
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4.47 of 5 stars 4.47 avg rating — 1,287,117 ratings
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8 On Her Majesty's Secret Ser...
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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91 avg rating — 7,943 ratings
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9 The Complete Tales and Poem...
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4.48 of 5 stars 4.48 avg rating — 33,997 ratings
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10 Charlie and the Chocolate F...
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4.08 of 5 stars 4.08 avg rating — 351,141 ratings
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11 Mr Bean's Diary
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3.85 of 5 stars 3.85 avg rating — 162 ratings
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12 Chariots of Fire
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3.83 of 5 stars 3.83 avg rating — 188 ratings
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13 Jerusalem
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4.43 of 5 stars 4.43 avg rating — 107 ratings
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14 Abide with Me
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3.0 of 5 stars 3.00 avg rating — 2 ratings
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15 The Real Elizabeth: An Inti...
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3.74 of 5 stars 3.74 avg rating — 529 ratings
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16 Unbroken: A World War II St...
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4.43 of 5 stars 4.43 avg rating — 237,222 ratings
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17 Great Britons
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4.0 of 5 stars 4.00 avg rating — 4 ratings
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18 Reformation to Industrial R...
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3.75 of 5 stars 3.75 avg rating — 20 ratings
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19 Our NHS: A Celebration of 5...
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0.0 of 5 stars 0.00 avg rating — 0 ratings
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20 Nathaniel's 1st Adventure (...
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4.44 of 5 stars 4.44 avg rating — 36 ratings
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21 Watching the English: The H...
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3.87 of 5 stars 3.87 avg rating — 3,938 ratings
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22 Isambard Kingdom Brunel: En...
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4.06 of 5 stars 4.06 avg rating — 17 ratings
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23 Pandaemonium, 1660-1886: Th...
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4.23 of 5 stars 4.23 avg rating — 31 ratings
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24 Weaving the Web
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3.77 of 5 stars 3.77 avg rating — 305 ratings
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25 Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
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3.95 of 5 stars 3.95 avg rating — 6,336 ratings
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26 Arctic Monkeys Suck It and ...
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4.4 of 5 stars 4.40 avg rating — 5 ratings
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27 The Rolling Stone Illustrat...
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3.87 of 5 stars 3.87 avg rating — 245 ratings
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28 Absolute Beginners
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3.7 of 5 stars 3.70 avg rating — 630 ratings
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29 Bonkers: The Story of Dizze...
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0.0 of 5 stars 0.00 avg rating — 0 ratings
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30 The Life of Isambard Kingdo...
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3.0 of 5 stars 3.00 avg rating — 1 rating
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31 Isambard Kingdom Brunel Thr...
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0.0 of 5 stars 0.00 avg rating — 0 ratings
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32 David Beckham: My Side - Th...
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3.62 of 5 stars 3.62 avg rating — 1,188 ratings
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33 Hey Jude
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4.0 of 5 stars 4.00 avg rating — 2 ratings
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34 Private Games
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3.78 of 5 stars 3.78 avg rating — 11,436 ratings
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34 The Hundred and One Dalmati...
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4.08 of 5 stars 4.08 avg rating — 21,342 ratings
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34 Oracle
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3.98 of 5 stars 3.98 avg rating — 43 ratings
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34 G.G. Snowboards (The G.G. S...
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4.67 of 5 stars 4.67 avg rating — 24 ratings
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38 Her Majesty: The Court of Q...
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3.8 of 5 stars 3.80 avg rating — 110 ratings
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39 The Games: Great Britain's ...
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39 books · 294 voters · list created July 30th, 2012 by Paul (votes) .
29 likes · like
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


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Comments (showing 1-42 of 42) (42 new)

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message 1: by Tima (new)

Tima I'm a little perplexed at the books on this list thus far.. what exactly is the criteria? I don't think 80% of these books were inspired by the 2012 Olympic opening ceremonies..


message 2: by Filipa (new)

Filipa I do think these are books that were an inspiration for the opening ceremonies or are at least related in subject :)
maybe it's only a case of bad "blurbing" a list.


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Filipa wrote: "I do think these are books that were an inspiration for the opening ceremonies or are at least related in subject :)"

That was my assumption in voting as well! :)


message 4: by Paul (new)

Paul Certainly when I started this list they were. Here's the connections I can find:

Harry Potter=Vortemort (giant puppet)

Mary Poppins=saves the children from Voldemort and other scary things.

Alice in Wonderland=The Queen of Hearts was another scary puppet.

Peter Pan=Link to Great Ormond Street. I'm not sure did Captain Hook turn up? Don't remember him.

The Tempest=Isambard Kingdom Brunel (Kenneth Branagh) quotes the Tempest

Reformation to Industrial Revolution=The same piece was set during the Industrial Revolution.

James Bond=Self explanatory

Great Britons=features Isambard Kingdom Brunel as one of the major figures.

Chariots of Fire=the Bean spoof; it's about the Olympics anyway.

Our NHS: The British nurses

Pandemonium: Coming of Machines. The show had a piece called Pandemonium where the machines came.

Tim Berners-Lee: He appeared at the music/technology bit

Jerusalem: The song at the very beginning was based on his poem.

Mr Bean: obvious.

Rolling Stone: A lot of rock and roll featured in the show.

I'm not sure about the other two but that's not bad really.


message 5: by Filipa (new)

Filipa Paul, can't agree more with your explanation :)
But the books were not inspired by, they were an inspiration to, no? (I'm not a native English speaker, maybe I'm missing something)

Anyway... great list!


message 6: by Phillip (new)

Phillip Edwards I took it mean that the list is inspired by, or reflects, the ceremony. According to Wikipedia (so it must be true) the book Pandaemonium 1660-1886 was the actual inspiration for the first part of the show.

I thought there was a part of the show inspired by Absolute Beginners as well, but I may be wrong on that. Abide With Me is there because of the moving performance of it by Emeli Sandé (which NBC shamefully cut from their broadcast in America).

I've also added Bonkers, to mark local-lad Dizzee Rascal's performance, and because it was all wonderfully bonkers!

Brilliant idea for a list, Paul.


message 7: by Paul (new)

Paul Thank you. Hopefully the title makes more sense now.


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Makes perfect sense, and it sure is a great list, too! :)

Btw, can anybody establish a connection between the opening ceremony and Dreamlancer and/or S, M, L, XL? Maybe those who added the books could explain? There was so much going on during that ceremony ... really rather amazing, and impossible to remember it all! This list will be a great reference in revisiting its various elements (or the parts of British history and culture they referred to).


message 9: by Ellie (new)

Ellie Fantastic idea for a list. I wondered if anyone can explain: I can't see the relevance for the books about Jesus Christ and the Latter Day Saints / Mormons...yes my local town has Europe's largest Temple but Mormonism is hardly (as far as I am concerned) a key part of British culture (well certainly not historically speaking. It's roots I would say are more in Salt Lake City in USA)...I'm not trying to be controversial, just being curious.


message 10: by Ellie (new)

Ellie Themis-Athena wrote: "Makes perfect sense, and it sure is a great list, too! :)

Btw, can anybody establish a connection between the opening ceremony and Dreamlancer and/or S, M, L, XL? Maybe those who added the books c..."


Not sure about Dreamlancer except that the title refers to a Tournament of Heroes (which I guess is what the Olympics is). The book S,M,L,XL when I read the review refers to the interweaving of dreams, visions, poetry etc into architectural displays. I guess that is the connection?


message 11: by Filipa (new)

Filipa I'm also quite curious about some of the new additions to the list. Does anyone (particularly the proposers) can help us understand?

Or are the books about Mormons there because of Romney's comments?


message 12: by Ellie (new)

Ellie Filipa wrote: "I'm also quite curious about some of the new additions to the list. Does anyone (particularly the proposers) can help us understand?

Or are the books about Mormons there because of Romney's comments?"


I didn't think of that connection. I did wonder about the Mormon connection. Whilst there are followers of the Latter Day Saints in the UK it's certainly not a dominant religion and I saw no feature of it in the ceremony. I'd be interested in an explanation as well.


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Hmm. Surely adding a book just because someone "likes it" (as some of the voter comments on the recent additions suggest) wouldn't cut it ...

Still curious about an explanation as well.

Also, I take this list to have been created in order to highlight the extraordinary creativity that went into the opening ceremony specifically, not in order to have a list just because the Olympics have come 'round again -- "tournament of heroes" or not ...

(Shrug.)


message 14: by Ellie (new)

Ellie Themis-Athena wrote: "Hmm. Surely adding a book just because someone "likes it" (as some of the voter comments on the recent additions suggest) wouldn't cut it ...

Still curious about an explanation as well.

Also, I ..."


Yeh I assumed it was based specifically on THIS Olympic opening ceremony. Like you I understand the majority of additions but some are "interesting"...


message 15: by Paul (new)

Paul Although we do have Mormons in this country they are kind of seen as an American import (if a religion could be so called). Many come here from American churches.

I think to get something on the list you would need to:

1) Watch the opening ceremony of 2012 Olympics.
2) Find something relevant in a book, the meaning mostly obvious.

Of course the more things that are added, the less likely this will occur.


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Alright, here are the books that, to me at least, don't seem to have a specific connection to this year's opening ceremony (though I may of course be missing something):

Falling Up
Diary of a Worm
The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ
A Child Called "It"
The Lion, the Lamb, the Hunted: A Psychological Thriller
The Doctrine and Covenants of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints
Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!
The Mark of Athena
Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption
Dreamlancer: The Tournament of Heroes
Dreamless
I Am David
S, M, L, XL
Watching the English: The Hidden Rules of English Behaviour
Lightmasters: Number 13
Half-Blood
The New Way Things Work

Paul: If no explanation keeps forthcoming why these books were added in the first place, do you want the list to be cleaned up? FWIW, it may well be that now that the games are over, this list will lose some of its attraction to those who are more interested in pursuing personal interests than abiding by a list description. So there's at least a chance that, with a bit of monitoring, this list's contents could essentially be kept to books legitimately connected with the 2012 opening ceremony ...

Anyone watch last night's closing ceremony, btw? What did you think?


message 17: by Ellie (new)

Ellie I can see loose connections to some books - "I am David" is I presume connected to David Beckham and "Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus" is I presume connected to their being lots of Pigeons in Trafalgar Square! Quite random connections!

...

I watched the Closing Ceremony and whilst I thought it entertaining it didn't match The Opening Ceremony. George Michael plugging his new song was wrong especially.


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Based on its description, "I am David" is about a boy who flees an Eastern European concentration camp and ends up in Denmark ...

I think the closing ceremony must have been great fun to attend for everyone who actually was in the stadium -- and I did enjoy revisiting the music I grew up with (erm). Not all of it was as enjoyable on TV as it would presumably have been live, though.

OTOH, the marathon medal ceremony for example was a rather special moment, I thought. Imagine having won the second-ever gold medal for your country, leaving behind even the race's two big favorites on the way, and then being honored in a stadium packed with 80,000+ people AND knowing your medal ceremony is being broadcast live to a few billion more people all around the world ...


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads I enjoyed the closing ceremony, but I'm still right pissed at NBC for what they did with The Who.


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Don't tell me they bleeped over the lyrics?!


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads No, they didn't air it, in favor of a sitcom they're trying to promote.

Guaranteeing that I shall never watch "Animal Practice."


message 22: by Ellie (new)

Ellie Susanna wrote: "No, they didn't air it, in favor of a sitcom they're trying to promote.

Guaranteeing that I shall never watch "Animal Practice.""


I've heard NBC have made a few other mistakes in their broadcasting of the Olympics...


message 23: by Ellie (last edited Aug 13, 2012 03:58PM) (new)

Ellie Themis-Athena wrote: "Based on its description, "I am David" is about a boy who flees an Eastern European concentration camp and ends up in Denmark ...

I think the closing ceremony must have been great fun to attend fo..."


I didnt read the blurb for I am David...just made an outlandish guess. Completely wrong tho.


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Susanna wrote: "No, they didn't air it, in favor of a sitcom they're trying to promote.

Guaranteeing that I shall never watch "Animal Practice.""


Oh, please. Nor would I! But then, I suppose I'm no longer part of most major TV stations' core target audience, anyway. Certainly not if they see greater commercial value in promoting yet another new sitcom instead of showing a live appearance of The Who (who at almost 70 can still whip the butts of many a younger pop artist a couple times over IMHO) ... or broadcasting ALL of an olympic closing ceremony, for that matter!


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads I am in their target demo, so #NBCFail.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads God I miss ABC's Olympics broadcasts, and the late great Mr. Jim McKay.


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Did you watch his coverage of the 1972 Munich Olympics & hostage crisis? That must have been a truly great piece of journalism, by all accounts ...


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads I watched those Olympics (the first I remember), but I was just turning six, and my grandparents (I spent that summer with them) made sure I didn't see anything relating to the tragedy. (My grandmother took me to a neighbor's farm, to meet a cow. This was highly effective.) My memories of Munich '72 are mostly of Mark Spitz and Olga Korbut.

McKay's coverage that day from Munich must have been something else - he went something like 14 hours straight with no breaks. Won two Emmies for Munich coverage, one for news and one for sports.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads But I believe he said later that the biggest compliment he ever got in his life was a telegram from Walter Cronkite, congratulating his journalism, the next day.


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Yes, I read that as well. Quite the guy!


message 32: by WatermeLoonie (new)

WatermeLoonie How was mark of Athena in the opening ceremony?


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Wolfalpha wrote: "How was mark of Athena in the opening ceremony?"

See message 16 above -- it's one of several books I'm wondering about as well! :(


message 34: by WatermeLoonie (new)

WatermeLoonie Ah yes...I should research more about it....
Also I saw the closing ceremony. It was.....okay. I was pretty upset that doctor who didn't appear in any of the ceremonies. I mean his British!


message 35: by WatermeLoonie (new)

WatermeLoonie ....what?


message 37: by Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) (last edited Nov 19, 2012 02:05AM) (new)

Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) OK, seeing as this list is SERIOUSLY beginning to be spammed, I've taken the liberty to do a bit of a clean-up job regarding books that have no conceivable connection with its contents, title or purpose:
Foster Fox: A 10,000 Lakes Tale
The Secret (Removed twice)
Coming Home
After the Storm
Breaking Free
The Mark of Athena
Falling Up
A Child Called "It"
Diary of a WormThe Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ
Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!
The Hundred and One Dalmatians
The Lion, the Lamb, the Hunted: A Psychological Thriller
I Am David
The Doctrine and Covenants of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints
Little Red Fern at the Oaklympic games
Dreamlancer
Dreamless
S, M, L, XL
Lightmasters: Number 13
Indigo Blue
Half-Blood
How to Cook Everything: Simple Recipes for Great Food
Every New Day
Wanderlove
Darkest Hour
Eat, Pray, Love
Tomorrow's Promise
The Sex Lives of Cannibals: Adrift in the Equatorial Pacific
Thicker Than Water
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change
Out of the Darkness
One Day You'll Know
Come What May
Taking Chances
Outliers
Illusions
The Satanic Bible
The Alchemist
Way of the Peaceful Warrior: A Book That Changes Lives
Dear Mr. Rogge
The New Way Things Work
It
Death in the City of Light: The Serial Killer of Nazi-Occupied Paris
In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin
P.S. I Love You
Fallen
The Duke And I
How to Marry a Millionaire Vampire
The Time Traveler's Wife
Grave Mercy
Something About You
Anna Dressed in Blood
The Phantom of the Opera
The Great Gatsby
A Princess of Mars
The Lightning Thief
The Princess Bride
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Memoirs of a Geisha
Predestined
The Little Prince
The Art Book
Change Your Thoughts - Change Your Life: Living the Wisdom of the Tao
Your Erroneous Zones
The Power of Intention: Learning to Co-create Your World Your Way
The Thirteenth Tale
Intuition
Daimon
Color: A Natural History of the Palette
The Diary of Frida Kahlo: An Intimate Self-Portrait
The Magic Mirror of M.C. Escher
The Graphic Work
Starters
The Forest of Hands and Teeth
Speak
Hush, Hush
A Scandal in Bohemia
The Odyssey
Henry V
Snowmen at Night
Is Your Mama A Llama?
... as well as just about the ENTIRE (!) "Nancy Drew" series ...


message 38: by Lianne (new)

Lianne Burwell I added Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, because I am *sure* that I saw the child-catcher and his cage cart during the 'nightmare' phase of the children's literature segment.


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Lianne wrote: "I added Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, because I am *sure* that I saw the child-catcher and his cage cart during the 'nightmare' phase of the children's literature segment."

Yes, indeed: http://www.flickr.com/photos/sumofmar...


message 40: by Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) (last edited Aug 29, 2012 09:08AM) (new)

Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) I'd be inclined to delete Patterson's Private Games, as it has nothing to do with the ACTUAL 2012 opening ceremony but, rather, is a novel surrounding fictional events associated with the ceremony IN THE NOVEL.

Opinions?

Also, does anybody recollect any specific connection to Shakespeare's Henry V (other than the fact that Branagh participated, but reciting a passage from The Tempest)?


message 41: by Sam (new)

Sam Tiffani wrote: "I'm a little perplexed at the books on this list thus far.. what exactly is the criteria? I don't think 80% of these books were inspired by the 2012 Olympic opening ceremonies.."

Wasn't it that they are all British authors?


Themis-Athena (Does not and never will own a Kindle) Sameara wrote: "Tiffani wrote: "I'm a little perplexed at the books on this list thus far.. what exactly is the criteria? I don't think 80% of these books were inspired by the 2012 Olympic opening ceremonies.."

Wasn't it that they are all British authors?"


See messages 2, 4, 6 and 7. As Paul explained, it's a list for books that either themselves directly inspired and were specifically referenced in the opening ceremony (e.g., Harry Potter, Mary Poppins or The Tempest), or that deal with people who in turn were either specifically referenced or themselves participated in the opening ceremony (e.g., Queen Elizabeth II, Isambard Kingdom Brunel or Mr. Bean), or books referencing songs used in the opening ceremony (e.g., Abide With Me or Hey Jude).


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Anyone can add books to this list.