Around the Year in 52 Books discussion

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Archives > [2019] Voting for 4th Mini-Poll

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message 1: by Laura, Celestial Sphere Mod (new)

Laura | 3783 comments Mod
Voting is now open!

The entire Around the Year challenge list is generated by the group members. We enjoyed the process so much in the past three years that we are creating another list for 2019.

The Process:
The topics for the 2019 RC list will be determined through around 13 mini-polls. Each user will vote for their favorite 4 topics in each mini-poll, which will then add up to the 52 topics (13 polls x 4 topics/poll=52 weekly topics). Suggestions for each poll will be opened until 15-20 suggestions are received+seconded. Then a poll will be opened for voting for one week so you can select your 4 favorite suggestions. This timeframe allows for a completed list in October-November.

The Rules:
- Vote for your TOP 4 and BOTTOM 4 - You are allowed to vote for less than 4
- Voting for a linked prompt only counts as one vote. If the results have a top 5 or 6 then it will simply make up for some of our shorter results in polls 2 and 3.
- Voting ends July 15
- One vote per poll per user

- see the suggestions thread for more details on some entries.

Poll Entries
- A book with a dual timeline
- A book whose page count is a prime number.
- A fiction and non-fiction book on the same topic
- A hyped book that has been given mixed reviews by your friends or people you follow
- A book you have completely ‘judged by its cover’
- A book about someone that you'd like to have dinner with
- A book by an author who is no longer alive
- A book with a family member in the title or a book in which a character's role as a family member in central to the plot
- A book inspired by Shakespeare or actually by Shakespeare
- A book with one of the 5 W's in the title (Who, what, where, when, why)
- A book related to an activity on your bucket list
- The first book shown on your TBR page
- A book with a rare kind of hero
- An author's last book
- A book where the main character is a psychic, medium, clairvoyant or empath
- A book inspired by a fairy tale or a book told from the perspective of a villain from a fairy tale
- Two books by an author who writes using two different names (Nora Roberts/J. D. Robb; J. K. Rowling/Robert Galbraith, etc,)
- A book that was mentioned in another book you read
- A book related to a zodiac sign
- A book linked to a library

Survey Link


message 2: by Angie (new)

Angie I had two that were definite bottoms for me, but there were several I liked for the top. I picked the four that jumped out at me, but I would be happy with several other options. I will be excited to see the results of this one.


message 3: by dalex (new)

dalex (912dalex) | 2095 comments My bottom four were easy; I was pretty sure as soon they got mentioned and a little research into possibilities did not change my opinion. But it was super hard to pick a top four because I really loved quite a few of them! I'm very curious to see the results.


message 4: by Jill (new)

Jill (dogbotsmum) | 1048 comments Very hard this time. Lots I don't want but also lots I would like. Oh well done now


message 5: by Chinook (new)

Chinook | 639 comments I picked a bottom three - I’d be perfectly fine with the rest, though there were four that really stood out for my top four as well.


message 6: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8324 comments Mod
I narrowed it down to a top 6 and a bottom 5! This round was tough -- there were a few that I knew right away I wanted and I didn't want, but I thought all of them were intriguing. Definitely more pleased with this round of suggestions than last round.


message 7: by Jillian (new)

Jillian | 2023 comments Once again, I don’t know what to vote for. I really like several and there are none that I really dislike. So, I need to come up with a top four and pass this week on the bottom.


message 8: by Jessica (new)

Jessica (seejessread) | 187 comments So do the two subjects that would fill two spots count as two votes like last year?
Two books by an author who writes using two different names (Nora Roberts/J. D. Robb; J. K. Rowling/Robert Galbraith, et
A fiction and non-fiction book on the same topic



message 9: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8324 comments Mod
No, they would only count as one vote. So you could choose one of these and three other prompts, or both of these and choose two other prompts (for both top and bottom).


message 10: by Jackie, Solstitial Mod (new)

Jackie | 1554 comments Mod
I had about 8 I needed to whittle down to a top 4, very tough round. I didn't have very many where I would absolutely hate to have it as a prompt - pretty much every suggestion I could find at least one option to read for.


message 11: by Rachel (new)

Rachel A. (abyssallibrarian) | 2820 comments This was a relatively easy vote for me. I had 4 very clear top choices, and 4 even more clear bottom picks. All of the others are prompts I'd be fine with or at least have several options for.

Not to nitpick, but is there any way to shorten the family member or fairy tale prompt to something a little more concise if they make the final list? I really like both of those and would be glad to see either of them, but I wonder if there is a way to condense it a little?


message 12: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8324 comments Mod
I downvoted the fairytale because I felt like it was two prompts in one. “Inspired by a fairytale” is very different than “fairytale told from the villain’s point of view”. I don’t really like those flipped fairytales, and we already have a retelling prompt for those who want to go that route (with the “something borrowed” prompt from week 1).

I think if we trimmed that down to just villain POV (since we already have retelling), it would be more concise.


message 13: by Steve (new)

Steve | 606 comments Emily wrote: "I downvoted the fairytale because I felt like it was two prompts in one. “Inspired by a fairytale” is very different than “fairytale told from the villain’s point of view”. I don’t really like thos..."

We do have the villain POV as a prompt this year, though. I guess this would be slightly different if it would be only fairy tale villains, but that’s also probably a narrow list to choose from.


message 14: by dalex (last edited Jul 09, 2018 05:09AM) (new)

dalex (912dalex) | 2095 comments Emily wrote: "...we already have a retelling prompt for those who want to go that route (with the “something borrowed” prompt from week 1)"

The "something borrowed" prompt can be, but does not have to be, a retold fairytale. It can be a book with a title borrowed from another work, like The Fault in Our Stars is from Shakespeare's Julius Caesar. Or it can be a book with a character borrowed from another work like The Beekeeper's Apprentice, which features Sherlock Holmes. Or it can be book that borrows from an actual historical event as a lot of historical fiction does, or a book that features a real historical figure like Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker (Mary Todd Lincoln) or The Invention of Everything Else (Nikola Tesla). Or it could be a book that borrows from mythology, like The Song of Achilles. Or you could even do something like a book borrowed from the library or a friend.

I agree that the fairytale prompt is perhaps worded oddly. The add-on of "told from the perspective of a villain" is not really necessary. It could just be "a book inspired by a fairytale" and the challenge participant could choose whether the book is told from the POV of the protagonist or antagonist. It is not, imo, two separate prompts nor is it necessarily a repeat of this year's prompt.

Also, if you don't like fluffy fantasy retold fairytales there are many books inspired by fairytales that fall more firmly in the historical fiction genre, like Bitter Greens or The True Story of Hansel and Gretel.

Just my two cents. :)


message 15: by Jody (new)

Jody (jodybell) | 3468 comments I think “inspired by a fairytale” is a good shortened catch-all for that prompt, as it also encompasses being told from the villain’s perspective.


message 16: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8324 comments Mod
I guess I mispoke! What I meant was that IF you wanted to go the retelling route, you could use the Something Borrowed prompt for that. Some of the choices on my plan for that prompt are fairytale retellings, so I that's why I was thinking that way. Those are all really good suggestions on how to use the Something Borrowed prompt though, dalex! I hadn't even thought of the title being a borrowed line.

Also, I guess it's important to note that the book is "inspired" by a fairytale and not necessarily a fairytale retelling. To keep it simple, you could even include books that refer to fairytales throughout the text without actually being a retelling of the story.

Maybe just "A book inspired by a fairytale or featuring a villain protagonist from a fairytale"? If we are determined to keep the villain suggestion in it at all.


message 17: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8324 comments Mod
Some lists for villain's POV:

https://www.bustle.com/articles/15290...

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/lisa-j...

https://offtheshelf.com/2017/08/waiti... (Not all fairytales, but some on here are)

Definitely a small list to choose from, but there are also a TON of children's books that flip the narrative on fairytales, if you want to go that route.


message 18: by dalex (new)

dalex (912dalex) | 2095 comments I understand, Emily. It just frustrates me to think that people are voting down prompts because they are thinking too narrowly (not a statement directed at you Emily).

Like, I'm sure there are people who are voting down the Shakespeare prompt because their first thought is, "I hate Shakespeare." (By the by, I think Shakespeare is better appreciated as a theater performance, which was how it was originally intended.) Thinking more broadly you could use a title inspired by Shakespeare, like, as I previously mentioned, The Fault in Our Stars. Or you could do a book with Shakespeare as a character like Ink and Steel or Fools and Mortals. Or you could do a book that features a performance of a Shakespeare play like Station Eleven or Hag-Seed.


message 19: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8324 comments Mod
dalex, I hope you are commenting on Amy's thread, because you have some great ideas!

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


message 20: by Nicole (new)

Nicole Sterling | 452 comments This was a pretty good round of suggestions. I had four very definite bottom picks, and four pretty definite top picks, but most of the other choices are ones I would be perfectly happy with, as well. Can't wait to see the results!


message 21: by Nadine in NY (new)

Nadine in NY Jones | 1688 comments "Shakespeare" was one of my "yes" votes!! I love categories like that, because it's a little outside what I usually read, easy to search for, and results in a nice selection of different types of books, so I can choose what I'm in the mood for! Plus, I've been trying to read a Shakespeare play each year.

A YA book for that category could be "Wondrous Strange," in which the protagonist is acting in a Central Park production of Midsummer Night, and it turns out one of the actors IS Puck (disguised as a human, of course), and she gets dragged into a whole scheming fairy thing.


message 22: by Zaz (new)

Zaz | 2978 comments I downvoted Shakespeare because he's absolutely not a part of my culture so it's very difficult for me to see what could fit. I know Romeo and Juliet and read it (without pleasure), but not the rest. I could do the effort to dig if the prompt wins, but it's probably like suggesting something related to Molière to US readers.


message 23: by Charity (new)

Charity (faeryrebel78) | 552 comments I downvoted Shakespeare as well. I read some in high school and didn’t care for it and none of the books I found that were inspired by Shakespeare looked interesting to me. I’d be more likely to vote for something inspired by classic literature. That would give people a lot more options.


message 24: by Marie (new)

Marie | 823 comments I'm definitely not a Shakespeare fan, but I don't mind the prompt since it's not limited to reading his stuff (which I definitely wouldn't do, having had to endure far too much of that at school).

There are a couple of books I've read fairly recently that I can recommend. Bill Bryson's Shakespeare: The World as Stage is excellent if you want a non-fiction book, it's funny and interesting (and quite short!). I read Fool by Christopher Moore last year for the inspired by a classic prompt - apparently it's based on King Lear. Again, it's a lot of fun and you definitely don't have to have any interest in Shakespeare to enjoy it.

Charlaine Harris has a series set in a place called Shakespeare that you could probably count at a stretch - I've only read the first one, and it wasn't amazing, but it was good enough that the second is on my TBR.

I've got Vinegar Girl by Anne Tyler on my TBR, so that'd probably be my choice. It seems to be part of a series of "reimagings" of Shakespeare plays, done by different writers https://www.goodreads.com/series/1586...


message 25: by Zaz (new)

Zaz | 2978 comments Marie > Thanks for the ideas, they'll be helpful if the suggestion wins!


message 26: by Marie (new)

Marie | 823 comments I suspect it won't be a winner - I had the "urgh, Shakespeare" reaction and I knew I had something I wanted to read for it! I like to take every opportunity that comes my way to suggest people read that Bill Bryson book though :)


message 27: by Katie (new)

Katie | 2362 comments And the Shakespeare prompt was the one I'm hands down most excited about from this list. It's so interesting to see how we all have such different tastes. I'm much more interested in something inspired by Shakespeare than inspired by a fairytale, but like was mentioned in regards to the fairytale prompt, the Something Borrowed topic could be used for a lot of these if they don't win.


message 28: by Nadine in NY (new)

Nadine in NY Jones | 1688 comments I was just coming back to suggest the Hogarth Shakespeare series! I've got Jo Nesbo's Macbeth checked out from my library right now!!


message 29: by Jill (new)

Jill (dogbotsmum) | 1048 comments I voted for the Shakespeare as Rory Clements has a series about Shakespeare's brotherMartyr But as others have mentioned there are a of alternatives to actually reading Shakespeare .
I down voted the Bucket list one, as I don't have one.


message 30: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8324 comments Mod
Jill wrote: "I voted for the Shakespeare as Rory Clements has a series about Shakespeare's brotherMartyr But as others have mentioned there are a of alternatives to actually reading Shakespeare ...."

I didn't downvote it (I had others I wanted less), but I also don't have a bucket list so that prompt would be more difficult for me to fill... I'd have to first make a bucket list haha. I would probably just end up reading a book set in a country that I'd like to visit before I die.


message 31: by Jill (new)

Jill (dogbotsmum) | 1048 comments Emily wrote: "Jill wrote: "I voted for the Shakespeare as Rory Clements has a series about Shakespeare's brotherMartyr But as others have mentioned there are a of alternatives to actually reading ..."

I think I will have to do that too if it does get in.


message 32: by Katie (new)

Katie | 2362 comments Emily, that's how I was thinking of interpreting the bucket list prompt as well, but I put that in my bottom because I didn't want to have to think about how I'd interpret it & make a book fit.

I also put the 2 books by an author who uses a pen name in the bottom because I've seen similar prompts in past challenges. I do think it's interesting to read books published under both names, which is a spin on the previous prompt, but I feel like that's something a lot of mystery/thriller/chick lit/romance writers do, and I don't read much in those genres. If people have other suggestions for authors not in those genres with pen names, I'd be interested to know.


message 33: by dalex (last edited Jul 12, 2018 11:18AM) (new)

dalex (912dalex) | 2095 comments Katie wrote: " I feel like that's something a lot of mystery/thriller/chick lit/romance writers do, and I don't read much in those genres. If people have other suggestions for authors not in those genres with pen names, I'd be interested to know."

Science fiction and fantasy:
Katherine Addison; Sarah Monette
Rachel Bach; Rachel Aaron
Emily Devenport; Maggy Thomas; Lee Hogan
E.L. Tettensor; Erin Lindsey
Ursula Vernon; T. Kingfisher
Robin Hobb; Megan Lindholm
Claire North; Kate Griffin; Catherine Webb


message 34: by dalex (last edited Jul 09, 2018 09:14AM) (new)

dalex (912dalex) | 2095 comments Emily wrote: "I also don't have a bucket list so that prompt would be more difficult for me to fill... I'd have to first make a bucket list haha. I would probably just end up reading a book set in a country that I'd like to visit before I die."

Me too! Haha!

(Although we are going to a festival next weekend where we will get to see the World's Largest Rubber Duckie! I'm stupid excited (seriously!) and I've been joking that that is something I can finally cross off my (non-existent) Bucket List. I don't think I could find a book about the World's Largest Rubber Duckie, though. Unless I did
Slow Death by Rubber Duck How the Toxic Chemistry of Everyday Life Affects Our Health by Rick Smith
LOL )


message 35: by Chinook (new)

Chinook | 639 comments I didn’t vote for the Shakespeare one, but it was one I was considering for my top 4. It probably suffered from the fact that I just listened to an audiobook of The Tempest and I found it a very difficult format for Shakespeare - it didn’t have all the other cues that a play does and I found it hard to follow the language. But I liked that someone else was interpreting the flow of the liens for me. I may try doing audio+ebook if this one wins.


message 36: by Rachelnyc (new)

Rachelnyc | 943 comments This was probably the easiest poll for me so far. There were 4 that stood out as my top with several others I will be fine with if they are chosen.

If the Shakespeare category had been solely reading his work, I would have downvoted but while not a top choice, I think it would be fun to find something inspired by him since I am sure there is plenty to choose from. I agree with Dalex that Shakespeare is much better to watch performed than to read, in my experience at least.


message 37: by Marie (new)

Marie | 823 comments dalex wrote: "Katie wrote: " I feel like that's something a lot of mystery/thriller/chick lit/romance writers do, and I don't read much in those genres. If people have other suggestions for authors not in those ..."

We could possibly add to that list Iain Banks/Iain M Banks, Kelley Armstrong/K L Armstrong and Victoria Schwab/V E Schwab?

There are probably quite a few more who publish work with different variations to their name, rather than an actual pen name, to differentiate between the genres they write in.


message 38: by Katie (new)

Katie | 2362 comments dalex, in my post I was totally going to say "dalex, I'm looking at you here," because I feel like you're such an awesome researcher & giver of ideas. Thanks!


message 39: by dalex (new)

dalex (912dalex) | 2095 comments Katie wrote: "dalex, in my post I was totally going to say "dalex, I'm looking at you here," because I feel like you're such an awesome researcher & giver of ideas. Thanks!"

Haha! Thank you! :)


message 40: by Emily, Conterminous Mod (new)

Emily Bourque (emilyardoin) | 8324 comments Mod
The more I think about it, the more I hope the Shakespeare prompt ends up in the top (or at least not in the bottom so it can be resubmitted).


message 41: by Jody (new)

Jody (jodybell) | 3468 comments I voted for old Will! But I’m slowly reading through his complete works so it’s an easy pick for me. Am I mean slowly - I read three on the early 90s and didn’t read a fourth until a year or so ago. 😂


message 42: by Bryony, Circumnavigation Mod (new)

Bryony (bryony46) | 1081 comments Mod
I voted for the Shakespeare one too. I do like reading Shakespeare, but I also thought it’d be a good opportunity to read another of the Hogarth Shakespeare books too. I read Hag-Seed last year and enjoyed it so I’ve been meaning to read more of the books in the series.

I’d be happy with if the author who publishes under two names idea wins too. I think I’d pick books by Iain Banks / Iain M. Banks for that, or if the new Robert Galbraith book is published by then I might combine that with a Harry Potter re-read.


message 43: by Jackie, Solstitial Mod (new)

Jackie | 1554 comments Mod
Well, now I wish I'd voted for shakespeare. Dang it. As a very different take on that prompt these are two books where shakespeare plays a large role in the book, but the plot isn't "inspired" by his works per se.

If We Were Villains If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio
Interred with Their Bones Interred with Their Bones (Kate Stanley, #1) by Jennifer Lee Carrell


message 44: by Jill (new)

Jill (dogbotsmum) | 1048 comments Jackie wrote: "Well, now I wish I'd voted for shakespeare. Dang it. As a very different take on that prompt these are two books where shakespeare plays a large role in the book, but the plot isn't "inspired" by h..."

I know how you feel. As soon as I had voted I thought I bet I did that wrong, but I seemed to be dithering for so long, I just went ahead. Maybe I should have walked away and come back later.


message 45: by Manda (new)

Manda (bookwenchmanda) | 943 comments This week was tough for me, and the point where I felt like the “old timer”. A lot of the suggestions were uninspiring to me; not that they were bad, just that having been around since the original group, it feels like these have been seen in one way or another. Hence the “old timer” comment. You all are doing a lovely job, I think I’m just having suggestion fatigue in finding something new/different.


message 46: by Bec (new)

Bec | 897 comments Ok voted. I found it hard this week, not really sure why.


message 47: by Silvia (new)

Silvia Turcios | 1062 comments Manda wrote: "This week was tough for me, and the point where I felt like the “old timer”. A lot of the suggestions were uninspiring to me; not that they were bad, just that having been around since the original..."

I know what you mean! Should I choose the devil I know? :P What a difficult selection and that is why I waited until the end.


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