Great American Read List discussion

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The 100 Novels and Series > 2018 Questionnaire

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message 1: by Lavan, moderator (last edited Dec 10, 2018 12:01PM) (new)

Lavan Zerach | 498 comments Mod
This questionnaire was inspired by a conversation with Bethany from the thread Congratulations, Bethany!
As I mentioned then, this will be a nice way to encourage discussion of our progress before the new year begins.

Answer all or answer some; answer simply or as detailed as you'd like and feel free to add additional questions for members!
_______

Of The Great American Read list books* you've read in 2018:

*GAR groups reads and GAR side-reads

1. Your favorite? (If it's a book series, which book in the series did you like best?)

2. Best-written (overall)?

3. Couldn't put it down? (Lost sleep to continue reading?)

4. Best characterization?

5. Best twist/s?

6. Best ending?

7. Liked it so much you're going to (or already have) read more by that author?

8. Most likely to reread?

9. Most likely to recommend?

10. Learned the most from?

11. Most important (a book you think would benefit everyone to read at least once in their life)?

12. Agree it most deserves to be on the GAR list?

13. Introduced you to a genre you'd never read before and you liked it?

14. Were hesitant to read, but ended up enjoying it?

15. Most bizarre (not necessarily a bad thing)?

16. Took you the furthest from your comfort zone?

17. Wouldn't have read if not for the GAR list?

18. Most difficult to read (writing style, vocabulary, non-English language/s, unfamiliar references, etc.)?

19. It isn't the best book from an author? (Which book from that author do you think should have been on the GAR list instead?)

20. Thought you'd like it, but didn't?

21. Worst characterization?

22. Worst ending?

23. Think it least deserves to be on the GAR list?

24. Most disliked?


message 2: by Andrew, moderator (last edited Dec 06, 2018 03:59PM) (new)

Andrew (andyhuey) | 332 comments Mod
I read about a dozen TGAR books in 2018, so I'll stick with just those for my answers. And I don't have time to answer them all right now, so I'll just answer a few to start.

1. Your favorite? (If it's a book series, which book in the series did you like best?)
Hmm, maybe Sirens of Titan. I love Vonnegut, and hadn't read that one before.

2. Best-written (overall)?
Probably Lonesome Dove. Larry McMurtry is a great writer.
(Technically, I haven't finished it, but I'm most of the way through.)

4. Best characterization?
Again, Lonesome Dove. No specific character stands out; they're (nearly) all well done.

7. Liked it so much you're going to (or already have) read more by that author?
Well, I read the whole Track series by Jason Reynolds, and bought one more of his books, which I'll hopefully get to in 2019. So I guess the Track series.


message 3: by Lavan, moderator (last edited Dec 16, 2018 05:30PM) (new)

Lavan Zerach | 498 comments Mod
Thank you for taking the time to answer some of these questions, Andrew!
Sounds like Lonesome Dove made quite the impression on you. Do you plan to continue the series with Streets of Laredo?
_______

1. Your favorite? (If it's a book series, which book in the series did you like best?)
A Game of Thrones

2. Best-written (overall)?
Siddhartha

3. Couldn't put it down? (Lost sleep to continue reading?)
Lonesome Dove

4. Best characterization?
Lonesome Dove

5. Best twist/s?
And Then There Were None

6. Best ending?
And Then There Were None

7. Liked it so much you're going to (or already have) read more by that author?
A Song of Ice and Fire series (added Martin's Sandkings to my to_read_next shelf)
Siddhartha (added Hesse's Narcissus and Goldmund)
Track series (added Reynolds' Long Way Down)
1984 (added Orwell's Animal Farm to reread)
Lonesome Dove series (added McMurtry's Terms of Endearment)
Harry Potter series (added Rowling's Short Stories from Hogwarts of Heroism, Hardship and Dangerous Hobbies—Pottermore Presents #1)

8. Most likely to reread?
A Song of Ice and Fire series
Siddhartha
1984
Lonesome Dove series

9. Most likely to recommend?
A Song of Ice and Fire series

10. Learned the most from?
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

11. Most important (a book you think would benefit everyone to read at least once in their life)?
1984

12. Agree it most deserves to be on the GAR list?
Siddhartha

13. Introduced you to a genre you'd never read before and you liked it?
Lonesome Dove series

14. Were hesitant to read, but ended up enjoying it?
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

15. Most bizarre (not necessarily a bad thing)?
The Sirens of Titan

16. Took you the furthest from your comfort zone?
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

17. Wouldn't have read if not for the GAR list?
The Sirens of Titan
Track series
Lonesome Dove series

18. Most difficult to read (writing style, vocabulary, non-English language/s, unfamiliar references, etc.)?
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

21. Worst characterization?
The Lovely Bones

22. Worst ending?
The Lovely Bones

23. Think it least deserves to be on the GAR list?
The Lovely Bones


message 4: by Larissa (new)

Larissa Langsather (langsather) | 50 comments It is going to be really hard to answer these questions without giving a little explanation but I will do my best.

1. Your favorite? (If it's a book series, which book in the series did you like best?)
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

2. Best-written (overall)?
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

3. Couldn't put it down? (Lost sleep to continue reading?)
The DaVinci Code

4. Best characterization?
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (this is a reread but I don't know if any piece has better characterization)

5. Best twist/s?
The Count of Monte Cristo

6. Best ending?
Ready Player One

7. Liked it so much you're going to (or already have) read more by that author?
JK Rowling author of Harry Potter- I read The Cuckoo's Calling

8. Most likely to reread?
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone although this is already at least my 10th reread so I guess A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

9. Most likely to recommend?
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

10. Learned the most from?
The Help

11. Most important (a book you think would benefit everyone to read at least once in their life)?
The Help
The Joy Luck Club

12. Agree it most deserves to be on the GAR list?
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

13. Introduced you to a genre you'd never read before and you liked it?
I read pretty eclectically so there wasn't really a genre I have never read before. but since I don't usually read sci-fi so I guess Ready Player One could fit.

14. Were hesitant to read, but ended up enjoying it?
I was only hesitant because of its sheer size but The Count of Monte Cristo

15. Most bizarre (not necessarily a bad thing)?
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

16. Took you the furthest from your comfort zone?
not sure but possibly The Color Purple because of all uncomfortable topics

17. Wouldn't have read if not for the GAR list?
Ghost or
The Lovely Bones (though I am not quite done with it)

18. Most difficult to read (writing style, vocabulary, non-English language/s, unfamiliar references, etc.)?
at certain parts The Count of Monte Cristo or The Catcher in the Rye because of the repetitive language and frustrating character

19. It isn't the best book from an author? (Which book from that author do you think should have been on the GAR list instead?)
none from what I read this year

20. Thought you'd like it, but didn't?
And Then There Were None

21. Worst characterization?
The Catcher in the Rye I should feel sorry for him but I absolutely don't understand his train of thought

22. Worst ending?
The Catcher in the Rye

23. Think it least deserves to be on the GAR list?
Left Behind

24. Most disliked?
The Catcher in the Rye


message 5: by Andrew, moderator (new)

Andrew (andyhuey) | 332 comments Mod
A few comments on Larissa's answers:
- I should give "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn" a try. Maybe next year.
- I definitely plan to read "Ready Player One" in 2019.
- I liked "Catcher in the Rye", but I understand why a lot of people don't. The main character isn't really likable.
- I wouldn't have read Ghost or The Lovely Bones either, if they weren't on the GAR list.


message 6: by Larissa (new)

Larissa Langsather (langsather) | 50 comments Andrew wrote: "A few comments on Larissa's answers:
- I should give "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn" a try. Maybe next year.
- I definitely plan to read "Ready Player One" in 2019.
- I liked "Catcher in the Rye", but I..."


Andrew, you have got me really interested in reading Lonesome Dove so I picked it up at my used book store for cheap. I don't know for sure if I never would have read Ghost because I do have kids in that perfect age group but I am not usually into sports. It definitely caught my attention because it made the GAR list though!

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn was so great. Hands down my favorite book I read this year. I hope you enjoy it when you get to it.

I hate to say this but The Catcher in the Rye is kind of a "boy" book and I obviously read it as a grown up and not as an angsty teenager so that makes all the difference in the world when it comes to that book or so I have been told.


message 7: by Lavan, moderator (last edited Dec 29, 2018 05:46PM) (new)

Lavan Zerach | 498 comments Mod
Like Andrew, I'm now intrigued by your enthusiasm of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Larissa. I really want to read it now!

I read Angels & Demons, The Da Vinci Code, The Lost Symbol, and Inferno feverishly. Readers tend to either love or hate Brown's works. I've enjoyed them all and I'm looking forward to book 5, Origin.

The Help is exceptional. I'm looking forward to rereading it with this group when it wins a future poll.

I'm an eclectic reader as well. We're alike in that way!

If you don't mind me asking—what didn't you like about And Then There Were None?

Lonesome Dove is my second favorite read this year. It's only behind A Game of Thrones.
I finished Streets of Laredo (Lonesome Dove #2) about a week ago and rated it 4 stars. I plan to start book 3, Dead Man's Walk, soon. It's a fantastic series.
Let us know what you think of Lonesome Dove, please!


message 8: by Larissa (new)

Larissa Langsather (langsather) | 50 comments Lavan wrote: "Like Andrew, I'm now intrigued by your enthusiasm of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Larissa. I really want to read it now!

I read Angels & Demons, The Da Vinci Code, The Lost Symbol, and Inferno feveri..."


I hope you enjoy A Tree Grows in Brooklyn as much as I did!

The funny thing about Brown's work is I don't love it or hate it but I think it is super entertaining and suspenseful. I know I liked The Da Vinci Codeit and it was a fun read. I haven't read any other of his books though.

The Help was also amazing! I almost put it under favorite characterization. I love Minny so much!

I need to clarify with And Then There Were None- it wasn't so much that I didn't like it- it was more like I didn't like it as much as I thought I would. I keep thinking I am one day going to like Agatha Christie but I just kinda don't. I don't feel much tension. It feels more like I am reading a manual on how to murder than an actual story. It was just such a quick read that I didn't feel for any of the characters. I guess I was hoping for something different.

I don't know when I will get to it but Lonesome Dove sounds good. I will probably just focus on whatever we have going on in this group for now. I joined a little late to start.


message 9: by Lavan, moderator (last edited Dec 30, 2018 08:16PM) (new)

Lavan Zerach | 498 comments Mod
I agree, Brown's books are entertaining and suspenseful!

I read The Help about a decade ago and I still remember Minny's character clearly. She's unforgettable (I adore her)!

I understand what you mean. If the ending didn't wow me as it did, I might have rated And Then There Were None 3 stars instead of 4.

I started Dead Man's Walk (Lonesome Dove #3) today. It pulled me right in. I would never have guessed that I'd enjoy a western series before reading this one.

I'm glad you joined this group, Larissa (it's never too late to become a valued member here)!


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