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TASK HELP: Fall Challenge 2019 > 20.3 - Best Review - TrishhartUK's Task: We Didn't Start the Fire

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message 1: by SRC Moderator (last edited Sep 03, 2019 09:00AM) (new)

SRC Moderator | 4347 comments Mod
20.3 - Best Review - Trishhartuk's task: We Didn’t Start the Fire

The Billy Joel song “We Didn’t Start the Fire” was released thirty years ago, on 27 September 1989. In the lyrics, he lists more than 100 events, people, plays, films and books from the year he was born (1949) to the year he turned forty (1989).

This is a one-book task. Read a book of at least 175pg that satisfies one of the following two options. REQUIRED: State which option you chose when you post.

Option 1: Read a book first published between 1949 and 1989 (inclusive), where the author’s initials can be found in “WE DIDN’T START THE FIRE”. Spaces determine initials and all initials count. Books by multiple authors work, if the initials of each of the authors can be found in the phrase, while keeping to the same letter distribution (e.g. you couldn't have two authors with the initial A, as there's only one in the song title). REQUIRED: Specify the date the book was first published.

Option 2: Read a book named in the song, or related to one of the topics mentioned. The book can be fiction or non-fiction. For help unpacking these, take a look at the following Wikipedia link: We Didn't Start the Fire. The book choice must be linked to the topic name (in bold blue immediately after the bullet), not just a single word in that topic or the description.

If the topic refers to a place, then the book should be set at least 75% in the place. For a named person, the book must be directly connected to that person - for example a history or biography about them, or a book written by them, e.g. "Hemingway" is mentioned, you could use any book he wrote, or for "Joe McCarthy" it could be a biography or a history of McCarthyism and the Communist witch hunts in the US.

Examples: The Catcher in the Rye is specifically named; 11/22/63 could be used for “JFK, blown away”; or All the President's Men for “Watergate”.
REQUIRED: Include the topic you're using in your post, and if it isn’t clear from the GR description what the connection is, please explain it.


message 2: by Trish (last edited Nov 08, 2019 08:21AM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Bright sparks

South Pacific, The King and I: Something Wonderful: Rodgers and Hammerstein's Broadway Revolution, Todd S. Purdum (both musicals are mentioned in the GR description)
Tales of the South Pacific, James A Michener - the source material for the musical (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tales_o...)

North Korea, South Korea: North Korea Journal, Michael Palin

Joe DiMaggio: The DiMaggios: Three Brothers, Their Passion for Baseball, Their Pursuit of the American Dream, Tom Clavin

Eisenhower: Ike and Kay, James McManus

England's Got a New Queen: Princess: The Early Life of Queen Elizabeth II, Jane Dismore

Joe McCarthy: The Chelsea Girls, Fiona Davis (set against the background of McCarthyism).

Boris Pasternak: The Secrets We Kept, Lara Prescott

Princess Grace: Meet Me in Monaco, Hazel Gaynor

Mafia:: Lucian, Bethany Kris

Belgians in the Congo: Everfair, Nisi Shawl
book:King Leopold's Ghost|40961621], Adam Hochshild

Malcolm X: X, Ilyasah Shabazz, Kekla Magoon (biography and also with the personal connection of his daughter)

AIDS: How to Survive a Plague: The Story of How Activists and Scientists Tamed AIDS, David France

Various topics related to US show business, including television: The Entertainment Machine: American Show Business In The Twentieth Century


message 3: by Trish (last edited Nov 12, 2019 11:43PM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Dull embers

Peter Pan: Everland, Venom - too far away from the original to qualify.

Brooklyn's got a winning team: Superfan, Sarina Bowen - isn't about the Brooklyn Dodgers or baseball.

The Boy Who Knew Too Much: An Astounding True Story of a Young Boy's Past-Life Memories - not about either the Dodgers or one of the California baseball teams.

Ayatollahs in Iran: Nine Parts of Desire: The Hidden World of Islamic Women, Geraldine Brooks - doesn't fit the topic closely enough.


message 4: by SRC Moderator (new)

SRC Moderator | 4347 comments Mod
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message 5: by Aprilleigh (new)

Aprilleigh (aprilleighlauer) | 1023 comments Small typo in the first paragraph - he was born in 1949, not 1959 (it's correct in option 1, however).


message 6: by Kim (new)

Kim | 626 comments Will this work for option 2? Something Wonderful: Rodgers and Hammerstein's Broadway Revolution

Rodgers and Hammerstein wrote the music for South Pacific and The King and I.

What a great task idea. I'm a huge Billy Joel fan. Well done!

Thank you.


message 7: by Bluemoon (new)

Bluemoon (bluemoon286) | 1837 comments Just for clarification - If we pick a place does the book just have to be set 75% in that place or does it also need to be about the topic mentioned on Wiki?


message 8: by Dee (last edited Sep 02, 2019 04:34PM) (new)

Dee (austhokie) | 7514 comments Kim wrote: "Will this work for option 2? Something Wonderful: Rodgers and Hammerstein's Broadway Revolution

Rodgers and Hammerstein wrote the music for South Pacific and The King and I.

What ..."


That’s the book I requested from the library as well


message 9: by Deborah (new)

Deborah | 1318 comments How specifically related to the topic does it need to be?

Adolf Eichmann (1961) for example
Would a book on WW II suffice? Fiction/Nonfiction
Him specifically?
Or hunting down a WWII war criminal, such as our current group read The Huntress

Or

1958 Starkweather homicide: Charles Starkweather

Would I be reading about him, or would a book with a serial killer suffice? Black-Eyed Susans


message 10: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Aprilleigh wrote: "Small typo in the first paragraph - he was born in 1949, not 1959 (it's correct in option 1, however)."

Doh. Half a brain. Still, it looks like the mods have fixed it.


message 11: by Trish (last edited Sep 02, 2019 11:34PM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Kim wrote: "Will this work for option 2? Something Wonderful: Rodgers and Hammerstein's Broadway Revolution

Rodgers and Hammerstein wrote the music for South Pacific and The King and I."


It mentions both South Pacific and The King and I in the GR description for the book, so yes.

"What a great task idea. I'm a huge Billy Joel fan. Well done!"

Thanks.


message 12: by Trish (last edited Sep 02, 2019 11:27PM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Bluemoon wrote: "Just for clarification - If we pick a place does the book just have to be set 75% in that place or does it also need to be about the topic mentioned on Wiki?"

It also has to be related to the topic. So "Red China" would need a book set in Mainland China since 1949, and "Communist bloc" would have to be set in a Communist country between 1953 and 1989 (the fall of the Berlin Wall/Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia).


message 13: by Trish (last edited Sep 03, 2019 09:11AM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Deborah wrote: "How specifically related to the topic does it need to be?

Adolf Eichmann (1961) for example
Would a book on WW II suffice? Fiction/Nonfiction
Him specifically?
Or hunting down a WWII war criminal, such as our current group read The Huntress


It would need to be about him specifically, or related to the Holocaust, his involvement in which is what he was hanged for.

1958 Starkweather homicide: Charles Starkweather
Would I be reading about him, or would a book with a serial killer suffice? Black-Eyed Susans "


It would need to be specifically about Charles Starkweather.


message 14: by Brooke (new)

Brooke | 1396 comments Sorry for all the questions, just trying to nail this one down.

For "Red China" or "China's under martial law," would near-future China work? For example, Waste Tide or Ruse.

For "Belgians in the Congo," would Everfair work?

For "Berlin," will any book set in Berlin work, or only those also set while the Berlin Wall existed (1961-1989)? Same for Alabama and Budapest - is any time period acceptable, or only those specifically mentioned in the description?


message 15: by Christine (new)

Christine | 702 comments I don't have a question, but GREAT TASK! Your Wikipedia link led me down a fascinating internet rabbit hole today, and I just wanted to share this neat Youtube video I found illustrating all the different historical figures and events mentioned in the song: Billy Joel - We Didn't Start the Fire (lyrics and history)


message 16: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Christine wrote: "I don't have a question, but GREAT TASK! Your Wikipedia link led me down a fascinating internet rabbit hole today, and I just wanted to share this neat Youtube video I found illustrating all the di..."

Thanks. I'll take a look!


message 17: by Trish (last edited Sep 03, 2019 11:28PM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Brooke wrote: "Sorry for all the questions, just trying to nail this one down.

For "Red China" or "China's under martial law," would near-future China work? For example, Waste Tide or Ruse.


No for these two I'm afraid, as I don't get a specifically "Red China" vibe from either of them.

For "Belgians in the Congo," would Everfair work?

This one I'm going to say yes to - and it looks like a really interesting book.

For "Berlin," will any book set in Berlin work, or only those also set while the Berlin Wall existed (1961-1989)? Same for Alabama and Budapest - is any time period acceptable, or only those specifically mentioned in the description?"

The book would also have to be related to the topic, so Berlin would need to be while the Wall existed.

The Alabama reference is related to Rosa Parks, and by extension the Civil Rights movement, so it would need to be set during that period (roughly 1954-68).

Budapest refers to the failed revolution against the Soviets, so again, it would need to be related to that. That said, you could use a book set there at any time between 1953 and 1989 for "Communist Bloc".


message 18: by Brooke (new)

Brooke | 1396 comments Trish wrote: "Brooke wrote: "Sorry for all the questions, just trying to nail this one down.

For "Red China" or "China's under martial law," would near-future China work? For example, Waste Tide or Ruse.

No f..."


Thank you! I have a much better grasp of the task requirements now.


message 19: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Brooke wrote: "Thank you! I have a much better grasp of the task requirements now."

Great. Shout if you have any more questions.


message 20: by Sara (new)

Sara G | 795 comments Hi Trish, I love your task!

Does this one work for option 2? Meet Me in Monaco for Princess Grace. I haven't read it yet obviously, but from the description it appears to be historical fiction about her wedding to Prince Rainier of Monaco.


message 21: by Trish (last edited Sep 04, 2019 11:06PM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Sara wrote: "Hi Trish, I love your task!

Thanks.

Does this one work for option 2? Meet Me in Monaco for Princess Grace. I haven't read it yet obviously, but from the description it appears to be historical fiction about her wedding to Prince Rainier of Monaco."

Looks like it works from the description.


message 22: by Sara (new)

Sara G | 795 comments Trish wrote: "Sara wrote: "Hi Trish, I love your task!

Thanks.

Does this one work for option 2? Meet Me in Monaco for Princess Grace. I haven't read it yet obviously, but from the description i..."


Thank you!


message 23: by Amy (new)

Amy | 1123 comments I have a couple that I wanted to run by you for option 2. I was considering X, but I think it's the life of Malcolm X prior to the event referenced in the song. If it won't work, can I use a retelling of Peter Pan: Everland?


message 24: by Jen B (new)

Jen B (jennybee618) | 346 comments Would The Chelsea Girls work for option 2 - Joseph McCarthy?


message 25: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Amy wrote: "I have a couple that I wanted to run by you for option 2. I was considering X, but think it's the life of Malcolm X prior to the event referenced in the song. If it won't work, can I use a retelling of Peter Pan: Everland"

I'm happy to approve X, which looks to fit "the book must be directly connected to that person" - as a biography and also with the personal connection of his daughter.

Unfortunately, from the description, it looks like Everland is too far away from the original to qualify.


message 26: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Jen B wrote: "Would The Chelsea Girls work for option 2 - Joseph McCarthy?"

Looks like it does from the description.


message 27: by Melanie (new)

Melanie (watermelanie) | 124 comments I'd just like to run by some books to see if they qualify.

Belgians in the Congo: King Leopold's Ghost
South Pacific: Tales of the South Pacific
AIDS: How to Survive a Plague: The Story of How Activists and Scientists Tamed AIDS


message 28: by Jecca (new)

Jecca | 518 comments I wanted to check on 1959 - Mafia, it describes as "organizations are the center of attention for the FBI and public attention builds to this organized crime society with a historically Italian-American origin."

Would a book such as this work?
Lucian

While this is set in present-day, it is about an Italian mafia family. I have already read this particular title, but I wanted to see if that connection was close enough.

Thank you


message 29: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Melanie wrote: "I'd just like to run by some books to see if they qualify.

Belgians in the Congo: King Leopold's Ghost
South Pacific: Tales of the South Pacific
AIDS: How to Survive a Plague: The Story of How Activists and Scientists Tamed AIDS"


These two, definitely yes.
King Leopold's Ghost
How to Survive a Plague: The Story of How Activists and Scientists Tamed AIDS

Not really for Tales of the South Pacific, as the reference is to the musical.


message 30: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Jecca wrote: "I wanted to check on 1959 - Mafia"

Would a book such as this work? Lucian"


Yes, as the Mafia are clearly central to the plot.


message 31: by Melanie (new)

Melanie (watermelanie) | 124 comments Trish wrote: "Melanie wrote: "I'd just like to run by some books to see if they qualify.

Belgians in the Congo: King Leopold's Ghost
South Pacific: Tales of the South Pacific
AIDS: How to Survive a Plague: The..."


Cool, thanks! Tales of the South Pacific is the source material for the musical, but the two other options interest me a lot, so I'll gladly go with those!


message 32: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Melanie wrote: "Cool, thanks! Tales of the South Pacific is the source material for the musical, but the two other options interest me a lot, so I'll gladly go with those!"

I've just found the wikipedia link confirming that, so I'll move it into the accepted column.


message 33: by Julia (new)

Julia (julia103) | 1613 comments Would Princess: The Early Life of Queen Elizabeth II work for "England's got a new queen"? Most of the book seems to be her life before becoming queen.


message 34: by Trish (last edited Sep 10, 2019 11:53PM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Julia wrote: "Would Princess: The Early Life of Queen Elizabeth II work for "England's got a new queen"? Most of the book seems to be her life before becoming queen."

That's fine. It works as a biography of her.


message 35: by Book Concierge (new)

Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 3606 comments For Eisenhower would Ike and Kay work ... It's about Eisenhower during WW2, rather than as president.


message 36: by Trish (last edited Sep 16, 2019 05:42AM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Book Concierge wrote: "For Eisenhower would Ike and Kay work ... It's about Eisenhower during WW2, rather than as president."

Apologies for the delay in answering.

That's fine - Eisenhower is mentioned by name in the GR description.


message 37: by SandyL (new)

SandyL | 891 comments For 1955 "Brooklyn's got a winning team" - would Superfan work? The series is "Brooklyn" and it's about a member of the Brooklyn Bruiser's hockey team, and set primarily in Brooklyn.

Thanks!


message 38: by Trish (last edited Sep 22, 2019 10:07PM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments SandyL wrote: "For 1955 "Brooklyn's got a winning team" - would Superfan work? The series is "Brooklyn" and it's about a member of the Brooklyn Bruiser's hockey team, and set primarily in Brooklyn..."

That wouldn't, I'm afraid, as the reference is specifically to the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team and their World Series win.


message 39: by Wayne (new)


message 40: by Trish (last edited Sep 25, 2019 11:05PM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Wayne wrote: "Would The DiMaggios: Three Brothers, Their Passion for Baseball, Their Pursuit of the American Dream work, even though it's not specifically about Joe?"

That would be fine. Joe is mentioned in the GR description - and is presumably the one in the New York shirt on the cover.


message 41: by Blueberry (new)

Blueberry (blueberry1) | 493 comments 1979 - Ayatollahs in Iran

Can I use Nine Parts of Desire: The Hidden World of Islamic Women? It is a nonfiction book that is the story of Geraldine Brooks' journey toward an understanding of the women behind the veils, and of the often contradictory political, religious, and cultural forces that shape their lives. It is mostly about rules/laws established by Mohamed and the Ayatollah Komeini.


message 42: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Blueberry wrote: "1979 - Ayatollahs in Iran

Can I use Nine Parts of Desire: The Hidden World of Islamic Women? It is a nonfiction book that is the story of Geraldine Brooks' journey toward an understa..."


It looks fascinating, but I'm afraid it doesn't really fit the topic, which is the Iranian Revolution against the Shah.


message 43: by Blueberry (new)

Blueberry (blueberry1) | 493 comments Trish wrote: "Blueberry wrote: "1979 - Ayatollahs in Iran

Can I use Nine Parts of Desire: The Hidden World of Islamic Women? It is a nonfiction book that is the story of Geraldine Brooks' journey ..."


Ok, thanks.


message 44: by Aprilleigh (new)

Aprilleigh (aprilleighlauer) | 1023 comments Can I assume the original Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie works for option 2?


message 45: by Trish (last edited Oct 08, 2019 12:24AM) (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Aprilleigh wrote: "Can I assume the original Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie works for option 2?"

That's fine, as long as it meets the SRC children's requirements.


message 46: by Aprilleigh (new)

Aprilleigh (aprilleighlauer) | 1023 comments Trish wrote: "Aprilleigh wrote: "Can I assume the original Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie works for option 2?"

That's fine, as long as it meets the SRC children's requirements."


It does, as long as you're not reading an adaptation.


message 47: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Cool. Go for it.


message 48: by Kathy (last edited Oct 20, 2019 03:41PM) (new)

Kathy | 712 comments Kathy KS

Need verification that War at Home, by Kris Nelscott, fits option 2.

This historical mystery series is set with a background of the turbulent times of the 1960s, beginning with the assassination of Martin Luther King.

In this particular volume, African-American detective Smokey Dalton travels from Chicago to Connecticut/New York to search for a friend's missing son; it seems he has disappeared after attending Yale on scholarship for a couple of semesters.

The main "current event" topic behind this story is about the anti-war movement during the summer of 1969. Since this is Vietnam war-related, this might fit with the several topics related to the whole war in Vietname (and sending troops there).

Other topics covered in the story are:
* Richard Nixon back again: Nixon is president during the story
* Moonshot: character reading a book on the upcoming mission
AND,
*all of the civil rights topics mentioned. (Integration, Ole Miss, Malcolm X, etc.) The missing student has issues at Yale about not "fitting in" because he's not a rich white guy, and gets involved in militant activities. Smokey and his son have trouble finding safe places as they travel across the U.S. because of racism.
Also, a character that is a Vietnam veteran has issues with flashbacks and other psychological problems.


message 49: by Trish (new)

Trish (trishhartuk) | 2435 comments Kathy wrote: "Kathy KS

Need verification that War at Home, by Kris Nelscott, fits option 2.

This historical mystery series is set with a background of the turbulent times of the 1960s, beginning..."


Tricky one.

From the way you describe the above, these are mainly things in the background: adding setting and colour to the story, but the book is not specifically about the stated topics. In that case, then it wouldn't actually work.

The exception MIGHT be the Civil Rights movement link to Alabama - it would depend on how much of the book is actually focused on that, and again, how much is background.


message 50: by Kathy (last edited Oct 21, 2019 04:11PM) (new)

Kathy | 712 comments Trish wrote: "Kathy wrote: "Kathy KS

Need verification that War at Home, by Kris Nelscott, fits option 2.

This historical mystery series is set with a background of the turbulent times of the 19..."


The principal topic is the whole anti-war movement among young people, including SDS, Weatherman, and other groups. If that isn't close enough on all the Vietnam related topics, I'll look for somewhere else to use it.

I'll be back...


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