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Book Chat > 2017 Nobel in Literature

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message 1: by Lily (last edited Oct 05, 2017 08:54AM) (new)


message 2: by Lily (last edited Oct 05, 2017 08:52AM) (new)

Lily (joy1) | 2465 comments These are the books by Ishiguro published 2000 and following that I find:

Never Let Me Go (2005)
The Buried Giant (2015)
When We Were Orphans (2000)
Nocturnes: Five Stories of Music and Nightfall (2009)
A Village After Dark (2001)


Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro When We Were Orphans by Kazuo Ishiguro Nocturnes Five Stories of Music and Nightfall by Kazuo Ishiguro A Village After Dark by Kazuo Ishiguro

I haven't checked. Have we read any of these on this board?


message 3: by Casceil (new)

Casceil | 1692 comments Mod
We have read Never Let Me Go.


message 4: by Kirsten (new)

Kirsten  (kmcripn) I really enjoyed The Buried Giant


message 5: by Lily (last edited Oct 06, 2017 09:08AM) (new)

Lily (joy1) | 2465 comments Casceil wrote: "We have read Never Let Me Go."

Thanks, Casceil. Whitney's list provides when:

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro 07/2012

Hugh provides links to the discussions here (Msg 17):

https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...


message 6: by Lesley (new)

Lesley Moseley | 59 comments Kirsten wrote: "I really enjoyed The Buried Giant"

I gave up, but have re-downloaded it, and will have more patience.


Bryan--The Bee’s Knees (theindefatigablebertmcguinn) | 241 comments I'm listening to The Buried Giant now, and I like it so far, but it is much different than any of the other novels of his that I've read.


message 8: by Lesley (new)

Lesley Moseley | 59 comments Bryan wrote: "I'm listening to The Buried Giant now, and I like it so far, but it is much different than any of the other novels of his that I've read."

I can't get on with the audio books! I am so used to only my own voice in my head..


message 9: by Lesley (new)

Lesley Moseley | 59 comments Lily wrote: "Casceil wrote: "We have read Never Let Me Go."

Thanks, Casceil. Whitney's list provides when:

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro 07/2012

Hugh provides links to the discussions here (..."


I read this years ago, and lucked into the movie, only a few years ago. LOVED them both.


Bryan--The Bee’s Knees (theindefatigablebertmcguinn) | 241 comments Lesley wrote: "I can't get on with the audio books! I am so used to only my own voice in my head....."

I understand. But I have to travel a lot, and I've not found anything better than an audio book for keeping me awake--an interesting audio book, anyway. A bad audio book is worse than nothing.


message 11: by Lesley (new)

Lesley Moseley | 59 comments Bryan wrote: "Lesley wrote: "I can't get on with the audio books! I am so used to only my own voice in my head....."

I understand. But I have to travel a lot, and I've not found anything better than an audio bo..."


Isn't it funny, I can enjoy them in the car, but not when I'm reading on the bed. I seem to be a slave to habit...


message 12: by Paul (new)

Paul Fulcher (fulcherkim) | 180 comments For an overview of Ishiguro's work, see here https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...


message 13: by Lily (new)

Lily (joy1) | 2465 comments Paul wrote: "For an overview of Ishiguro's work, see here https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/..."

Excellent! Thanks, Paul.


message 14: by Kirsten (new)

Kirsten  (kmcripn) Bryan and Lesley -

In some cases (depending on the narrator), I find that audiobooks are better than the books.

Other uses:
- when I have a migraine or sinus headache
- during dental visits
- when I am outside with my dog


Bryan--The Bee’s Knees (theindefatigablebertmcguinn) | 241 comments Lesley wrote: "Isn't it funny, I can enjoy them in the car, but not when I'm reading on the bed. I seem to be a slave to habit......"

I think it would be very difficult for me to set aside the time to listen to an audio book at home. I'd get antsy, I think. Unless I'm pulling into the driveway and I'm on the last disc. I can see myself listening at home then.

Back to Ishiguro, before I get into trouble for going off-topic ( :) ),
Ishiguro wrote one of my top 15 novels of all-time, maybe even top ten. I thought Artist of the Floating World was almost perfect in its depiction of a man caught in an impossible situation and yet trying not only to keep his dignity, but to be able to pass on to his family a sense of his values, even despite his mistakes. I thought it was a very truthful book, in that it looked at situations in a way that I seldom see in other novels.

I tend not to think that there are 'absolute' classics--there will always be someone who isn't affected by a book from the canon, so I realize Floating World may not be the same book to all readers, but there was something there that struck home to me.

His other two that I've read did not have that effect (When We Were Orphans and Never Let Me Go). Since Floating World was the first book of his that I read, I'm sure there were some unrealistic expectations, but I really don't think they had the same force. As I said, we all read things for different experiences, but I thought NLMG was too dependent on the situation, whereas AotFW, even with its specific situation, was concerned much more with the interior of its main character. Orphans felt like a near miss to me, which made it worse, coming off the high of Floating World

At the halfway point of Buried Giant (and I won't be traveling for a while, so halfway is where it will stay for the time being), I think it's pleasant. It kept me awake. Unless there is a dramatic change (and there could be), it will go on the shelf as a pleasant diversion. That's all the faint praise I can think of at the moment. Still looking forward to reading Remains of the Day at some future point, and I actually grabbed The Unconsoled as I was packing for my trip, but since I always over-pack with books, I don't know when I'll get round to that one.


message 16: by Whitney (new)

Whitney | 2088 comments Mod
I love all the Ishiguro novels I've read. I think you're right that perhaps the first one is going to make more of an impression. "Unreliable narrator" is a term that is frequently overused in literature, but Ishiguro is the master of it in its most meaningful usage. In most of his books, there is either a moment (or a slightly slower revelation) that completely subverts everything that has come before and makes everything shine in a new light.

I share your opinion that "When We Were Orphans" was not one of his stronger books. The Buried Giant is very different from his other books, but I did like it in its own right; and current events in the US are making its themes seem very prescient. I loved "Never Let Me Go". You're right that it focuses more on situation than interiority, compared to some of his other books, but Ishiguro's ability to switch focus and tone is one of the things that keep his writing surprising.

Here is an excellent short story of his from the New Yorker: A Village After Dark And for those who prefer audio, you can hear Ben Marcus read (and briefly discuss) it here.

He did a great interview on Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy. Part of it is about ‘literary’ writers dipping into genre and the criticisms that result. After the interview, Ishiguro was asking the host (David Barr Kirtley) about genre books that he would recommend, and Kirtley left that discussion in the broadcast. It’s a very refreshing curiosity from Ishiguro into areas he’s not that familiar with but eager to learn about. Geek’s Guide.


message 17: by Lesley (new)

Lesley Moseley | 59 comments Kirsten wrote: "Bryan and Lesley -

In some cases (depending on the narrator), I find that audiobooks are better than the books.

Other uses:
- when I have a migraine or sinus headache
- during dental visits
- w..."


Years ago, when I was too ill to read, a friend borrowed some audio cd's from the library, which I did enjoy listening to, then.

All good.


message 18: by Marc (last edited Oct 09, 2017 03:08PM) (new)

Marc (monkeelino) | 2590 comments Mod
I've not read anything by him (yet!). A Paris Review interview with the author is accessible free this week.
https://www.theparisreview.org/interviews/5829/kazuo-ishiguro-the-art-of-fiction-no-196-kazuo-ishiguro


message 19: by Lesley (new)

Lesley Moseley | 59 comments Marc wrote: "I've not read anything by him (yet!). A Paris Review interview with the author is accessible free this week.
https://www.theparisreview.org/interv...-..."


I am re-trying to read The Buried Giant Kazuo Ishiguro but its not really grabbing me. I will keep going for a while.


message 20: by Hugh (last edited Oct 10, 2017 04:27AM) (new)

Hugh (bodachliath) | 2590 comments Mod
I was away when this announcement was made so I have not yet commented here. I have read all of Ishiguro's novels and the stories in Nocturnes. He is a writer who never repeats himself, and is always interesting. I struggled a little with the premise of The Buried Giant, so the timing seemed a little strange to me, but The Remains of the Day is one of my favourite Booker winners. The Unconsoled is his most uncompromising book, but I would not recommend it to anyone who has never read Ishiguro as it is very heavy going.


message 21: by Lily (new)

Lily (joy1) | 2465 comments Marc wrote: ".... A Paris Review interview with the author is accessible free this week: https://www.theparisreview.org/interv...-..."

Thanks for this, Marc! Strong enough article that I have given myself a hard copy to be able to revisit and reread!


message 22: by Lesley (new)

Lesley Moseley | 59 comments Lesley wrote: "Marc wrote: "I've not read anything by him (yet!). A Paris Review interview with the author is accessible free this week.
https://www.theparisreview.org/interv......"


Read another 20 pages, then saw my EBOOK of Anything Is Possible Elizabeth Strout was now available....


message 23: by WndyJW (last edited Oct 15, 2017 07:13PM) (new)

WndyJW The Remains of the Day was a heartbreaking story. I loved it. I felt I was waking from a dream at the end of The Buried Giant and loved it. I remember really enjoying A Pale View of Hills, but can't recall the story. Never Let Me Go was also heartbreaking. I read, but don't remember When We Were Orphans. I can't recall if I liked it or not! I'm assuming that since it's so forgettable to me, I didn't care much for it. I presently have An Artist of the Floating World and The Unconsoled next to me to read soon.


Bryan--The Bee’s Knees (theindefatigablebertmcguinn) | 241 comments Since I last posted here, I finished listening to The Buried Giant and also read The Unconsoled. For me, reading The Unconsoled helped me to put the rest of his works in perspective--I understood better some of the things from all his novels that I'd read previously, and it also magnified my enjoyment of The Buried Giant as well. It wasn't so much that there were concrete things that happened in The Unconsoled that clued me into aspects of his other work--it was that the prolonged exposure to the shifting nature of reality in that book (and it was a long one) enabled a kind of paradigm shift in my own perspective, in relation to viewing his work. In other words, I had been resistant to the kind of logic that Ishiguro employed in his novels--I kept trying to box it into the same kind of reality that I understood. Something clicked for me, though, when reading The Unconsoled. Whether or not what I 'got' was what Ishiguro intended or not, I don't know, but suddenly it seemed like his work opened up for me, and now I want to revisit When We Were Orphans someday, a book that was pretty harsh on when I read it a few years ago, because even now, with my only my faulty memory to rely on, I think I was way off.


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