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Footnotes 2017-2018 > Advice please on books about how to read literature

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message 1: by Sue (new)

Sue (mrskipling) Can anyone recommend a good book about how to read literature, specifically novels? I've heard of How to Read Literature Like a Professor which I'm currently trying to get from my library. Any others?

I've been enjoying books for half a century but I'm sure I could get more out of them if I knew what to look for. I often read reviews on GR which seem so thoughtful and insightful, so it makes me think I might be just reading at a surface level and could squeeze more understanding and enjoyment out of a book with a little knowledge.

Thanks!


message 2: by Jason (new)

Jason Oliver | 2063 comments This is on my TBR also, but I find a little research, background info, author interviews and bios, other reviews, and critical articles help with particular works, especially nonfiction but also fiction. Some of those things are good to do before the book and some after. Not exactly what you are asking but it's how I get more out of my reading.

I definantly want to hear what Tom Hanks says about Uncommon Type because I don't get it.


message 3: by annapi (last edited Mar 20, 2018 06:45AM) (new)

annapi | 4916 comments I don't know about how to read literature, but I thoroughly enjoyed On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King. Perhaps a book on writing might give you insights? It's also semi-autobiographical.


message 4: by Book Concierge (new)

Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 5645 comments annapi wrote: "I don't know about how to read literature, but I thoroughly enjoyed On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King. Perhaps a book on writing might give you insights? It's also semi..."

Concur. Reading King's On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft made me a better reader.


message 5: by [deleted user] (new)

Sue- Reading Like a Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them is another book you might consider. Some of the reviews on GR state that the book made them a better reader. (I haven't read the book myself but own it. Another kindle daily deal purchase from the past.)


message 6: by Sue (new)

Sue (mrskipling) Thank you everyone, I've bookmarked these books to try out!


message 7: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl (cherylllr) I've read several of these. Beowulf on the Beach: What to Love and What to Skip in Literature's 50 Greatest Hits was about the best.

What I like is Cliff's notes, or Spark's notes. It's true that they're usually for individual works, but after working through a few of them along with the book itself, I noticed some ways of looking at literature that helped even with books that I didn't have notes for.

Also, of course, Penguin and some other publishers add appendices, prefaces, etc, to guide the reader to a deeper appreciation.


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