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ARCHIVE 2017 > April Group Read Nominations

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message 1: by Winter, Group Reads (last edited May 02, 2017 01:19AM) (new)

Winter (winter9) | 4556 comments Hi Everyone!

I hope you're all doing well. It's time to nominate again! This time we will decide what book to read in April The theme is World Faiths

Please remember to state a connection to the theme when you nominate. Thank you :)

Here are some short rules for nominating books:

~ Each person can nominate 1 book.

~ Book must be available both as a physical copy and as an ebook.

~ Authors: Please do not nominate your own book.

~ Please include the name of the book and the author or link to the book.

~ Please do not nominate books that are part of a series, unless it is the first book.

~ You can second someone else's nomination, but that will count as your nomination.

~ When nominating, please state a connection to the theme.

~ You cannot nominate a book which has previously been a group read. Past buddy reads are fine. (See Group Reads in the bookshelf)



This thread will be closed by February 25th, and we will choose ten books for the poll. If there are more than ten books nominated, we will choose the ten most nominated. If there is still a tie to get into the top ten, we'll go back to the Goodreads average rating to see which is highest.


message 2: by Ilona, Welcome Committee (last edited Feb 01, 2017 06:38AM) (new)

Ilona | 3809 comments I would like to nominate Here I Am by Jonathan Safran Foer

There are mixed reviews on the front page, so that would probably make for an interesting discussion :)

The abstract:
In the book of Genesis, when God calls out, “Abraham!” to order him to sacrifice his son Isaac, Abraham responds, “Here I am.” Later, when Isaac calls out, “My father!” to ask him why there is no animal to slaughter, Abraham responds, “Here I am.”

How do we fulfill our conflicting duties as father, husband, and son; wife and mother; child and adult? Jew and American? How can we claim our own identities when our lives are linked so closely to others’? These are the questions at the heart of Jonathan Safran Foer’s first novel in eleven years--a work of extraordinary scope and heartbreaking intimacy.

Unfolding over four tumultuous weeks in present-day Washington D.C., Here I Am is the story of a fracturing family in a moment of crisis. As Jacob and Julia and their three sons are forced to confront the distances between the lives they think they want and the lives they are living, a catastrophic earthquake sets in motion a spiraling conflict in the Middle East. At stake is the very meaning of home–and the fundamental question of how much life one can bear.

Showcasing the same high-energy inventiveness, hilarious irreverence, and emotional urgency that readers and critics loved in his earlier work, Here I Am is Foer’s most searching, hard-hitting, and grandly entertaining novel yet. It not only confirms Foer’s stature as a dazzling literary talent but reveals a mature novelist who has fully come into his own as one of the most important writers of his generation.


message 3: by Kristina (new)

Kristina | 343 comments I nominate The Book of Strange New Things. The main character is doing missionary work on another planet. I think it may be an interesting interpretation of world faith - spreading a faith/belief system from one world to another.


message 4: by Cassandra (new)

Cassandra | 5832 comments Hi Kristina! Unfortunately we read The Book of Strange New Things as a group read already, so it's not able to be nominated again. It's a good book and was really great to discuss, so I recommend you propose it as a buddy read if you're interested. :)


message 5: by Kristina (new)

Kristina | 343 comments Ah okay. I'm sorry for not checking first.


message 6: by Cassandra (new)

Cassandra | 5832 comments No problem! It's easier for me to remember since I've been in the group for a long time. :)


message 7: by Megan, Challenges (new)

Megan (lahairoi) | 6304 comments I nominate To a Mountain in Tibet by Colin Thurbron. It's part travel memoir, about the journey he took to Mount Kailas in Tibet after his mother's death. He also chronicles how a number of different world religions recognize this area as sacred and how the area was affected by the Chinese Cultural Revolution.


message 8: by Meghan L (new)

Meghan L | 298 comments I nominate The Prophet. It is a book of beautifully poetic essays on many topics that hold spiritual and philosophical meaning.


message 9: by Beatriz (new)

Beatriz | 1 comments Hello, I want to nominate Seveneves. When humanity faces extinction and must choose some representatives to preserve the different cultures of our planet, we will certainly read about many worldly beliefs.


message 10: by Meaghan (new)

Meaghan (immortalraine) | 284 comments Ok I REALLY want to nominate Sacrifice but I'm not sure if there is anything against independently published books. It's available as a physical book and an ebook but it's not widely distributed. Like you can't just walk into a Barnes and Noble and pick it up. It has to be ordered online. Is that a problem?

Sacrifice is a YA novel with a really interesting take on the Judeo-Christian mythology and I really want more people to read it.

If Sacrifice isn't acceptable as a nomination I'll nominate The Complete Persepolis.


message 11: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie  | 976 comments I would like to nominate Life of Pi because it emphasizes that if your life is a story, you have the power to choose your story, but it will be better with God. At least, that's what I have heard. I have wanted to read it for a while and just haven't gotten around to it. My understanding is that is an examination of many religions and the absence of religion.


message 12: by Eileen (new)

Eileen  | 184 comments I would like to nominate The Golem and the Jinni since the characters come from two different faiths :)


message 13: by Cassandra (new)

Cassandra | 5832 comments Hi Eileen! Unfortunately The Golem and the Jinni was a group read before, so it can't be nominated again. It's one of my favorite books, so I definitely recommend that you propose it as a buddy read if you want to find folks to read it with.

Feel free to choose another book to nominate or second!


message 14: by Eileen (new)

Eileen  | 184 comments Ho yeah sorry, my bad =\ I haven't checked far enough... I looked it up in the research bar and it was in grey I didn't realize it meant that it was already in the bookshelf.


message 15: by Cassandra (new)

Cassandra | 5832 comments No problem! It's much easier for me to spot a book that we've already read than for you to go through the whole shelf. :)


message 16: by KellI (new)

KellI Preston | 156 comments I want to nominate Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth. I don't think its been a group read but maybe nominated before...


message 18: by AnnaG (last edited Feb 07, 2017 12:14AM) (new)

AnnaG | 151 comments I want to nominate Hitman Anders and the Meaning of It All -Jonas Jonasson I've seen this book everywhere for the last six months and just started reading it. It's quirky, it's funny (Terry Pratchett meets The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo?) and it focuses in on what is right and wrong and "the meaning of it all".

The plot starts with a semi-retired hitman living in an ex-brothel meeting a recently defrocked priest, who accidentally converts him to Christianity... which is inconvenient as she was looking forward to a lucrative career managing his assault-and-battery contracts... now there are some rather disappointed customers and a new religion to found....


message 19: by [deleted user] (new)

Can I withdraw my nomination to second another's nomination?


message 20: by Cassandra (new)

Cassandra | 5832 comments Sure, Pam!

In that case, I'd like to nominate Alif the Unseen so it stays in the ring. :)


message 21: by [deleted user] (new)

Cassandra wrote: "Sure, Pam!

In that case, I'd like to nominate Alif the Unseen so it stays in the ring. :)"


Haha, thanks...Too many good books that fit the theme out there that I want to read but can't remember off the top of my head until someone else mentions it, and it's this particular title that is higher on my list than the one I nominated...

deleting my nomination post....


message 22: by [deleted user] (new)

I second Hitman Anders and the Meaning of It All. Had this checked out from the library for a long time but never got around to reading it because I was reading for various group reads & challenges. I'm really really want to read it though sooo bad. :D


message 23: by Biblio (new)

Biblio Curious (bibliocurious) Pooja wrote: "I want to nominate The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible."

That's a great book! He's crazy funny. It includes a lot of Jewish culture as well as Christian.


message 24: by Biblio (last edited Feb 07, 2017 07:57AM) (new)

Biblio Curious (bibliocurious) Could I nominate a non fiction, The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions? It's about the roots of our religions. It covers everything from Greek philosophers to Jesus, Buddha, Confucius, Lao Tzu and Asian Philosophy.

If non-fiction isn't allowed, could I nominate Paradise, the heaven part of Dante's Divine Comedy would be great also. It's a fast read and is loaded with great quotes. This is book 3, it covers heaven from a Christian point of view. I finished Inferno (hell) and loved it!!

I just finished The Invention of World Religions: Or, How European Universalism Was Preserved in the Language of Pluralism Highly recommended for non-fiction buffs :D


message 25: by Winter, Group Reads (new)

Winter (winter9) | 4556 comments Biblio wrote: "Could I nominate a non fiction, The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions? It's about the roots of our religions. It covers everything from Greek philosophers..."

There is no rule saying you can't nominate non-fiction :)


message 26: by Ramy (new)

Ramy Ali (Ramires) | 2 comments Hii. I want to suggest two nominations:
1- The trilogy of fifty shades of Grey
2-So Good They Can't Ignore You: Why Skills Trump Passion in the Quest for Work You Love.
I hope my suggestions is useful .


message 27: by Cassandra (new)

Cassandra | 5832 comments Hi Ramy! A couple things:

We can each only nominate one book each month. We also need to provide a connection to the theme, which for April is World Religions. And if the book is part of a series, it needs to be the first book in the series.

Please narrow down your nomination following those guidelines!


message 28: by Kelly B (new)

Kelly B (kellybey) I'd like to nominate White Teeth by Zadie Smith. It's about two friends and their families living in North London: Archie Jones and his best friend, a Muslim Bengali named Samad.

From the book description: "Zadie Smith's dazzling first novel plays out its bounding, vibrant course in a Jamaican hair salon in North London, an Indian restaurant in Leicester Square, an Irish poolroom turned immigrant café, a liberal public school, a sleek science institute. A winning debut in every respect, White Teeth marks the arrival of a wondrously talented writer who takes on the big themes —faith, race, gender, history, and culture— and triumphs."


message 29: by Aurora (new)

Aurora | 143 comments I'll second White Teeth!


message 30: by Mindy (new)

Mindy Jones (mindyrecycles) I second Year of Living Biblically. I had to give it back to the library while I was in the middle of it since it had holds. Been wanting to finish it ever since.


message 31: by Auntie Terror (new)

Auntie Terror (auntie_terror) | 415 comments I would like to second Megan's suggestion of "The Prophet" , if I may, as it has been sitting on my the most accusingly for more than a decade, I fear, and it even was a gift from a dear friend which makes my feelings of guilt even worse... Also I'm completely at a loss for any original suggestion from myself...


message 32: by Kelly (new)

Kelly (kellysrambles) | 1000 comments I'll third White Teeth!


message 33: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Grønsund (gullita) | 3262 comments I'd like to second Seveneves :)


message 34: by Nik (new)

Nik (bleepnik) | 852 comments I fourth White Teeth. =)


message 35: by Kadijah Michelle (new)

Kadijah Michelle (kadmich) | 2176 comments I would like to nominate A History of God: The 4,000-Year Quest of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Karen Armstrong is wonderful to read, and she is one of the worlds best authorities on the subject. This book will not just be about the monotheistic religions, but about all of the world's religions.


message 36: by Joe (new)

Joe | 110 comments I've had Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse on my list for awhile. I know nothing about the book, so I'll go with the Goodreads blurb...

"leaves his family for a contemplative life... This sound signals the true beginning of his life—the beginning of suffering, rejection, peace, and, finally, wisdom."


RJ - Slayer of Trolls (hawk5391yahoocom) | 930 comments Joe wrote: "I've had Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse on my list for awhile. I know nothing about the book, so I'll go with the Goodreads blurb...

"leaves his family for a contempl..."


I'll second Siddhartha


message 38: by Marcus (new)

Marcus Vinicius | 101 comments I'll second A History of God, by Karen Armstrong. It's a no brainer! Kudos for Kadijah!


message 39: by Winter, Group Reads (new)

Winter (winter9) | 4556 comments Thanks everyone :)


message 40: by Paul Emily (new)

Paul Emily Ryan (kickbackyak) I nominate/second Persepolis! (depending on whether Meaghan's Sacrifice was accepted or not [huh, swear I didn't plan that... whateveryou'dcallit I guess]) I'm happy to retract and throw my weight behind White Teeth if people think this doesn't quite fit, but I feel like the story of a girl/young woman growing up in the shadow of the Islamic Revolution and trying to find her own identity for herself is pretty relevant to the theme for this month. :)


message 41: by Taylor C (new)

Taylor C | 454 comments I'd like to nominate Have a Little Faith: a True Story by Mitch Albom.

Slightly cliche with the title and the theme, right? However, this book is a nonfiction book that I think is perfectly suitable. Albom writes his eight year journey between himself and his hometown rabbi. The rabbi in the beginning asks Albom to deliver this 82 year old man's eulogy.

To cut to the chase on why I'm nominating this book, Albom seeks out understanding the rabbi more after such an odd proposal. In doing so, he discovers observations from variously different men, who in the end, practice their faith similarly. He finally understands the unity and how faith can correlate; what the men (from different backgrounds) have been teaching all along. That there are comforts in believing in something bigger than yourself.

It's a book with purpose, finding your faith again, and a story that can unify everyone.


message 42: by Lindsay (new)

Lindsay | 1311 comments I'd like to nominate Partitions for April. I've had it on my shelf for about 5 years and this would seem a good opportunity to get to it. It fits with the world faith theme.

"As India is rent overnight into two nations, sectarian violence explodes on both sides of the new border, with tidal waves of refugees fleeing the blood and chaos. Fighting to board the last train to Delhi, Shankar and Keshav, six-year-old Hindu twins, lose sight of their mother and plunge into the whirling human mass to find her. A young Sikh woman, Simran Kaur, flees her father, who would rather poison his daughter than see her defiled. And Ibrahim Masud, an elderly Muslim doctor driven from the town of his birth, limps towards the new Muslim state of Pakistan."


message 43: by Ania (new)

Ania | 9 comments I'll third Siddharta! :)


message 44: by Winter, Group Reads (new)

Winter (winter9) | 4556 comments I'm closing this now. The poll will be a little late this week due to death in family. I will have it up as soon as i can.


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