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Genre Challenge 2018-20 > Modern British classics (20thC/kitchen sink) - August 2018

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message 1: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3425 comments Mod
Where did July go? I realise August is just two days away! Hurriedly, I've spun the virtual wheel and the random selector has chosen 'Modern British Classics'. So that's 20thC literature, including 'kitchen sink'. Another massive area....

I have a lot on my to read list for this one. Off the top of my head, I might try The Millstone by Margaret Drabble, or The End of the Affair by Graham Greene, but I really should read The Spire by William Golding, as it will fit in the time traveller challenge too...

What are you thinking of reading?

The Millstone by Margaret Drabble The End of the Affair by Graham Greene The Spire by William Golding


message 2: by George Bachman (new)

George Bachman | 7 comments Liz wrote: "Where did July go? I realise August is just two days away! Hurriedly, I've spun the virtual wheel and the random selector has chosen 'Modern British Classics'. So that's 20thC literature, including..."

Goulding's The Scorpion God, if my interlibrary loan finally delivers it. Ann Quin's novels, starting with Berg, which is on its way.


message 3: by Mercia (new)

Mercia McMahon (merciamcmahon) | 610 comments Liz wrote: "So that's 20thC literature, including 'kitchen sink'. Another massive area...."

So massive it might be described as everything including the kitchen sink. If I find the time I might read some Maeve Binchy.


message 4: by Bill (new)

Bill | 2714 comments I'll have to see what comes up with my reading schedule.. :0) I think it'll probably be Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey if that qualifies.


message 5: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 208 comments Bill wrote: "I'll have to see what comes up with my reading schedule.. :0) I think it'll probably be Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey if that qualifies."

I was thinking of that as well! But doesn't appear my local library has a copy ...


message 6: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3425 comments Mod
My copy of 'The Spire' has arrived at the library, but I can't pick it up 'til tomorrow and I've finished my current read.... Can't function without a book on the go. Surely I have something relevant on my kindle?


message 7: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3425 comments Mod
My copy of 'The Spire' has arrived at the library, but I can't pick it up 'til tomorrow and I've finished my current read.... Can't function without a book on the go. Surely I have something relevant on my kindle?


message 8: by Peter (new)

Peter | 16 comments I am going to read 'White Teeth' by Zadie Smith.


message 9: by Kate, Moderator (new)

Kate | 1328 comments Mod
I'm really struggling with this one for some reason. Are there any lists that could inspire me?


message 10: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 208 comments What about the one on Good Reads - not all British though

https://www.goodreads.com/list/show/6

I'm giving Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford a go.


message 11: by Mercia (new)

Mercia McMahon (merciamcmahon) | 610 comments I was inspired by this challenge to finally read David Nicholls' Us even though it is not a classic (published and longlisted for Man Booker in 2014). Nor is it kitchen sink as the protagonist Douglas Petersen is a going-on middle aged scientist, who has a placid existence until his wife declares she wants a divorce (at the start of the novel). I'm only a short way into it, but I'm loving it and it is definitely British in its understated deadpan humour. Hopefully I'll manage to finish it by the end of August (work commitments, etc.). It did win the lesser known Specsavers National Book Award and Women and Home Readers' Choice Award (info courtesy of Goodreads).


message 12: by Em (new)

Em (emmap) | 2929 comments I liked Us! For me, I’m thinking The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner by Alan Sillitoe and/or Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons.


message 13: by Kate, Moderator (new)

Kate | 1328 comments Mod
Would an Agatha Christie count??


message 14: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3425 comments Mod
Possibly ;)


message 15: by Abigail (new)

Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 359 comments Just read Wild Strawberries by Angela Thirkell. I would class Thirkell as classic but maybe not this book. But as I am reading other stuff this month, it will have to do. I like this monthly theme, though--makes me want to search out some unread masterpiece on my shelves! If I had more energy I'd dive into something like Flaubert's Parrot.


message 16: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3425 comments Mod
I hope i've got time to squeeze a few into this month too...

My academic year's just started so work is once again interfering with my reading schedule - how inconsiderate!


message 17: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3425 comments Mod
William Golding's The Spire was good, although sometimes a little hard to focus on, as it's written in a stream-of-conciousness style. Now I'm waiting for Graham Greene's The End of the Affair to arrive at the library. I hope I can fit it in before the end of the month...

The Spire by William Golding The End of the Affair by Graham Greene


message 18: by Mercia (last edited Aug 25, 2018 02:54AM) (new)

Mercia McMahon (merciamcmahon) | 610 comments I finished David Nicholl's Us, which is narrated by Douglas a rather boring scientist who faces losing his wife (through separation) and his son (through estrangement). The three of them go on a Grand Tour of Europe. The book is laugh out loud at times in a deadpan English sort of way reminiscent of Tom Sharpe's Porterhouse Blue. Us is a recent book and so not a classic and the kitchen sink is found in a variety of hotels around Europe, but I think it sort of qualifies for this challenge.


message 19: by Bill (new)

Bill | 2714 comments Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey was excellent.


message 20: by Abigail (new)

Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 359 comments I got in under the wire: finished Flaubert's Parrot. I suppose I would have enjoyed it if I liked Flaubert's writing and had an interest in the author, but I don't. And the bits that weren't about Flaubert were too bitty to hold my interest. For me, it was not a successful experiment in experimental fiction.


message 21: by Kate, Moderator (new)

Kate | 1328 comments Mod
I've been really rubbish with this genre and unable to settle on anything. :(
In desperation I picked up a book of HG Wells short stories and (after checking out the dates he wrote them) last night read The Truth About Pyecraft which was published in 1903.
Hoping I do better in September but that's not a favourite genre of mine either!!!


message 22: by Liz, Moderator (new)

Liz | 3425 comments Mod
Then again, if we found all the genres easy, there'd be no challenge ;)


message 23: by Liz, Moderator (last edited Sep 04, 2018 03:58AM) (new)

Liz | 3425 comments Mod
I've chosen short books lately so have managed to chalk up a few. Last week I read Margaret Drabble's The Millstone, which was very good and I'm about halfway through The End of the Affair, which is proving to be intriguing*, despite the fact that the characters are not at all likeable.

*edit: I've now finished it, unfortunately it changed direction in the second half and I became frustrated. A shame, as I usually love Graham Greene.

The Millstone by Margaret Drabble The End of the Affair by Graham Greene


message 24: by Kate, Moderator (new)

Kate | 1328 comments Mod
Liz wrote: "Then again, if we found all the genres easy, there'd be no challenge ;)"

Very true!


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