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Monthly Reads > November 2016 Monthly Read

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message 1: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 23 comments It's time to pick a book for Turkey Day. You global folks may have no idea what I'm talking about but it's the day in November the descendants of immigrant Europeans like me are thankful that our ancestors cleared off the rightful owners of North America so we could ruin it. We eat loads of turkey, cranberries, bread stuffing, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes, and such while watching parades and American Football. We've done this here in the USA for like 400 and change years.

Oh, and we'll be thankful that our elections are finally over for better or worse.

That said we still need a book for a November read.


message 3: by Marie-Therese (new)

Marie-Therese (mariethrse) | 550 comments The Lineup: 20 Provocative Women Writers looks really interesting. I'd be happy to read that for November. I'm also good with your other choices, Bill, as I haven't yet read most of them (although I own the two Marshall collections).


message 4: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 23 comments I'm leaning towards a female writer. There is so much horror written by men that features victimizing/objectifying of women that I would like to read something from the female perspective even if it turns out to victimize/objectify women. Fairs fair as they say.


message 5: by Bill (new)

Bill Hsu (billhsu) | 1220 comments Randolph wrote: "I'm leaning towards a female writer."
A few more suggestions I'm happy to revisit:
The Wilds (though I notice Marie-Therese has also read this)
Mother Box and Other Tales

The Helen Marshall collections are probably closer to "horror" though.


message 6: by Randolph (last edited Oct 23, 2016 09:59PM) (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 23 comments The poll for the November 2016 read just went live. Have at it. As usual Amazon and goodreads and their subsidiaries have no connection to the opinions or views expressed in this discussion group. I have to say that now.

https://www.goodreads.com/poll/list/1...


message 7: by Randolph (last edited Oct 27, 2016 10:31PM) (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 23 comments The Bitterwood Bible and Other Recountings by Angela Slatter came out first in the November poll. I know this is available as a trade paperback now, a ridiculously expensive hardcover, and an ebook. In the US the TP is available from Ziesing books or directly from the publisher in the UK, or the Kindle edition is available from Amazon. For those that cannot buy through Amazon US, the TP and ebook in both mobi and epub formats is available directly from the publisher, Tartarus Press in the UK. It appears that Ziesing has both signed and unsigned copies of the TP, a few.

This won the World Fantasy Award in 2015 which is one of the reasons the limited edition hardcover is so dear. A few libraries may have this since it won a major award but there were not many hardcovers printed.

Here is the Tartarus Press link:

http://www.tartaruspress.com/slatter-...


message 8: by Canavan (last edited Nov 04, 2016 06:03PM) (new)

Canavan Just curious. I was told that this month’s selection is a prequel of sorts to Sourdough. I was wondering if a prior reading of Sourdough was necessary for a full appreciation of Bitterwood Bible . Opinions by any who have already read both?


message 9: by Marie-Therese (new)

Marie-Therese (mariethrse) | 550 comments That's interesting, Canavan. I didn't know that about the prequel bit. I have 'Sourdough' (not yet read) and plan to buy the 'Bitterwood Bible' ebook for this month's read but am curious now as to which order I should read them in. Hope those more familiar with Slatter's work will chime in.


message 10: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 23 comments It is not necessary to read Sourdough first. I have read both.


message 11: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 23 comments I actually wished I had not read Sourdough first.


message 12: by Marie-Therese (last edited Nov 05, 2016 03:58PM) (new)

Marie-Therese (mariethrse) | 550 comments Randolph wrote: "I actually wished I had not read Sourdough first."

Good to know. Thank you, Randolph.


message 13: by Bill (new)

Bill Hsu (billhsu) | 1220 comments Randolph wrote: "I actually wished I had not read Sourdough first."

I'm curious to hear why. But I suppose it's difficult to explain without spoilers.


message 14: by Bill (new)

Bill Hsu (billhsu) | 1220 comments It's been a black, black month, in many ways. But I finally downloaded Bitterwood Bible and read "The Coffin-maker's Daughter". What a pleasant surprise; it's charming, with more than a few surprises. The sly, dark turn at the end is very nice.

Slatter's writing is quite elegant; she mostly steers clear of the kind of over-explanation that I find unbearable in a lot of genre fiction. I'm looking forward to more.


message 15: by Marie-Therese (last edited Nov 12, 2016 10:50PM) (new)

Marie-Therese (mariethrse) | 550 comments Bill wrote: "It's been a black, black month, in many ways. But I finally downloaded Bitterwood Bible and read "The Coffin-maker's Daughter". What a pleasant surprise; it's charming, with more than a few surpris..."

I am really looking forward to this now! I definitely need something charming and surprising* in my reading queue this month.

(Pleasantly surprising, anyway!)


message 16: by Bill (new)

Bill Hsu (billhsu) | 1220 comments My initial enthusiasm has cooled off a bit. "Maiden in the Ice" and "Badger's Bride" are both more conventional in language and approach, but still charming.


message 17: by Tony (new)

Tony | 53 comments I've read the first few stories in the collection. I'd say they were delightful, except they are shot through with violence and cruelty! Very enjoyable though.


message 18: by Bill (new)

Bill Hsu (billhsu) | 1220 comments Tony wrote: "I'd say they were delightful, except they are shot through with violence and cruelty! "

In this group, I thought we'd be delighted with violence and cruelty.


message 19: by Bill (new)

Bill Hsu (billhsu) | 1220 comments I'm afraid I'm losing patience with this collection. It's hard for me not to be charmed with a school for girl poisoners. But Slatter seldom seems content with one sentence, when she can make the same point with three. And the piling on of scarcely relevant detail, especially about what the characters happen to be wearing.

Not to mention exclamations like "Sweet Jesu, Hepsibah, control yourself!". Sigh.

I know: picky picky picky. Sorry, everyone else here is probably loving this, despite the radio silence. "The Coffin-maker's Daughter" seemed so tight and cutting. Then I'm not sure what happened. Does it get better?


message 20: by Tony (new)

Tony | 53 comments In this group, I thought we'd be delighted with violence and cruelty."

That's a fair point!

Revenge seems to be the author's key theme. It crops up again and again.


message 21: by Bill (new)

Bill Hsu (billhsu) | 1220 comments Sweet Jesu, Hepsibah! Is anyone still reading this?

I'm done.


message 22: by Randolph (new)

Randolph (us227381) | 23 comments Sorry, I've been totally out of the loop. Now that I work for Amazon, things have been berserk since the week before Thanksgiving. And this week with cyber Monday, wow. 60 hours in straight 10 hour shifts. There is no place to sit down. There are literally no chairs in this massive Amazon place except for the break room where you have strictly monitored 50 minutes of break in a 10-1/2 hour day. Concrete floors and I put in easily 14 miles of walking everyday. Even the managers stand up all day! Their computers are on these rolling stand up carts so they never sit down either. All the powered trucks are 100% stand up. It's crazy. Everything is hyper fast and they know what you are doing every second and can see every tiny error you make in real time.

Anyway I apologize for not getting a new book up and not facilitating the discussion more. I'll figure out a new read in the next couple of days.


message 23: by Marie-Therese (new)

Marie-Therese (mariethrse) | 550 comments That sounds intense, Randolph. Take care of yourself as best you can (can't imagine that's easy in these crazy times). We'll all still be here when you get a chance to breathe.

I missed the window on this month's book but I did end up actually obtaining it and, once I get a chance to read it, I'll post my impressions here. Given the varying opinions on it (Sweet Jesu, Hepsibah! such varying opinions ;-)), I'm really curious about it now and looking forward to diving in.


message 24: by Suki (last edited Dec 05, 2016 08:35PM) (new)

Suki St Charles (goodreadscomsuki_stcharles) | 38 comments Sorry for posting late! I had never heard of Angela Slatter before this, but I found the comparisons to Angela Carter intriguing. When I looked up Bitterwood Bible, I got the impression that it was a sequel to Sourdough (it's actually more of a preview, I found out later. I loved both books (5 stars to each), but I think that I actually liked Sourdough a bit better- the stories were a bit more like fairy tales, and (in my humble opinion) they were more intense than Bitterwood. The only thing I didn't like was that I had to buy them in ebook format, because they are out of print and quite $$$. The stories were all interconnected, and there were so many times I wanted to flip back to a previous story to pursue a thread, but in an ebook, it is nearly impossible.


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