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General Chat - anything Goes > Have you read the 21st-century's 'greatest novel so far'?

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message 1: by David (new)

David Hadley | 4873 comments http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/bo...

Well, I've read 4 out of the twenty listed and I regard one (No. 8) as one of the worst books I've ever read.

Atonement & The Road I did like though.


message 2: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments I shan't bother with number 8, then! I loved Half of a Yellow Sun.


message 3: by Elaine (new)

Elaine | 148 comments Atonement is the only one i have read, but I did like it :)


Rosemary (grooving with the Picts) (nosemanny) | 9087 comments I've read eight of them, and started two others (which I failed to finish). The refusals were 1 and 7.


Gingerlily - The Full Wild | 36808 comments Haven't read any, don't intend to!


message 6: by Sam (new)

Sam Kates I've read four of them. Wolf Hall and The Road were both superb. Atonement was good. The Corrections was no more than ok.


Jay-me (Janet)  | 4325 comments I've not read any & I doubt that I would bother with them anyway.
I have an obstinate streak that makes me avoid books, films, tv programmes and so on that appear on these lists that "everyone should read/watch"


message 8: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments Read it, I wrote it! :-)


(he says modestly)


message 9: by Joo (new)

Joo (jooo) | 1636 comments No, none.
And I'm with Janet, I run away from "should reads"
Apart from when people on here say I should read something :)


message 10: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments Back on a serious note, I confess to not reading any of them, never having heard of half of them (at least) but wolf hall is one that I intend to get round to at some point.
I'll see it in a charity shop with the sequels and be tempted :-)


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Want a 'should read'?

Will Once Will Once


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments His love death and tea is brilliant.


Something he's done with his search format has seriously messed it up...


message 13: by Joo (last edited Jan 20, 2015 11:34AM) (new)

Joo (jooo) | 1636 comments Guess what I just bought :)



I'm sure that particular mind control will only work once.

"Once"
gettit


Desley (Cat fosterer) (booktigger) | 11197 comments Jay-me (Janet) ~plum chutney is best~ wrote: "I've not read any & I doubt that I would bother with them anyway.
I have an obstinate streak that makes me avoid books, films, tv programmes and so on that appear on these lists that "everyone sh..."


I'm like that, so end up starting something when it's either half way through or finished and then try and get hold of them from the beginning


message 15: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Lawston (andrewlawston) | 1791 comments Pft, not only have I not read them, I've only even seen one of the films!


message 16: by David (new)

David Staniforth (davidstaniforth) | 7939 comments I've read Atonement & The Road, but before I knew they were "must reads" seen the films of both those too. Enjoyed each but they didn't blow me away as being in any way spectacular.


message 17: by David (new)

David Hadley | 4873 comments Jim wrote: "Read it, I wrote it! :-)


(he says modestly)"


We all know you are far too good (as well as too modest) to allow yourself to appear on a list like this.


message 18: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments I've read The Road - I liked it more than many people, apparently! But Chimamanda Etc Etc is a stonking writer. Read several of hers.


message 19: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments Andrew wrote: "Pft, not only have I not read them, I've only even seen one of the films!"

Unless 'Despicable Me' was the film of a major 21st century novel, I have never seen any of the films ;-)


message 20: by David (new)

David Hadley | 4873 comments Joo wrote: "No, none.
And I'm with Janet, I run away from "should reads"
Apart from when people on here say I should read something :)"


Well, yes, as someone who only ever regrets giving up smoking on National No Smoking Day, I only regard these lists as interesting curiosities and not as anything compelling.

What interests me is the disconnect - as shown in the posts here - between those books we are told we 'should' read, and what people actually do read and - more importantly - like.


message 21: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments It's maybe my age but I get a sneaking feeling of 'eat up your cabbage, it's good for you' when people tell me what books are 'worthy'.


message 22: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments David wrote: "Jim wrote: "Read it, I wrote it! :-)


(he says modestly)"

We all know you are far too good (as well as too modest) to allow yourself to appear on a list like this."


With no disrespect to any of the writers on the list (because I've not read any of them so I'm not going to comment about their merits,) I think I may tackle different 'issues' to them in my writing. ;-)


Rosemary (grooving with the Picts) (nosemanny) | 9087 comments I've read The Road too, I found it unremittingly dreary. I mean I know it's post-apocalyptic but come on!
Wolf Hall - fantastic in parts, exceedingly dull in others. Might watch the series which starts tonight, it has some good actors in it.
The Corrections, sprawling, recall enjoying it whilst reading it but now can't remember a thing about it.
Kavalier and Klay - comic strips? Again it's all gone.
Atonement, good. Not my favourite McEwan (Enduring Love)
White Teeth. Read with my book group. Didn't really grip me.
Middlesex - weird and a tad contrived.
The Line of Beauty - self-indulgent and dull.
I am such an incisive critic, aren't I? ;)
I guess what I'm saying is I didn't really find any of those a "greatest novel". Nor even, in fact, a great one...


message 24: by Tim (new)

Tim | 9478 comments Sits polishing 2013 Indie Book Awards Category Winner trophy (if you can call a jpeg a trophy - the guy at Ca$h Converters didn't seem too impressed when I took it in to see how much I could get for it...)


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Oh Tim? Which book won you that, darling?


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Joo wrote: "Guess what I just bought :)



I'm sure that particular mind control will only work once.

"Once"
gettit"


Gotit. ;)

I do think you'll enjoy it, Joo. Let me know what you think of it, please.


message 27: by Anita (last edited Jan 21, 2015 08:30AM) (new)

Anita | 3758 comments I haven't read any on the list,I'm don't normaly bother when novels appear on lists as when everyone raves about a book I usually find I don't enjoy them at all.
I did buy Wolf Hall when it first came out but couldn't get into it at all. I think I might have another go at it, or shall I watch the series, not sure which.


message 28: by Stuart (new)

Stuart Ayris (stuayris) | 2668 comments I've been listening to the adaptation of The Corrections on Radio 4 - seems like a poor man's John Irving to me and certainly doesn't lead me to want to read the book. Have to say that I love Cormac Macarthy's books though


message 29: by Karen (new)

Karen Lowe | 2335 comments I loved both 'Wolf Hall' (and 'bring up the bodies') and Atonement - AND have included them on my list to quilt for my Fave 100 Books - so they are very highly honoured!


message 30: by Darren (new)

Darren Humphries (darrenhf) | 6980 comments Nice to know that BBC Culture is polling AMERICAN critics for the best novel. Wouldn't want the rest of the world, or even the country the first B stands for, having a voice.


message 31: by Tim (new)

Tim | 9478 comments Patti (baconater) wrote: "Oh Tim? Which book won you that, darling?"

Wanted :)


message 32: by Marc (last edited Jan 22, 2015 01:56AM) (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Read 5, loved 3, hated 2

Loved "Middlesex", "Goon Squad", "Atonement" (although not the third part)

hated "2666" & "The Road"

Would never read Franzen - he's a to**er of the first order, slagging off new writers all the time, a case of having pulled up the ladder after him now that he's 'made it'.

Surprised "Room" isn't on there, nor any of Tom Mccarthy, David Peace or David Mitchell. My favourite 21st century book to date is The Flame Alphabet" by Ben Marcus. But no way does any of his work get on any list...


message 33: by Will (new)

Will Macmillan Jones (willmacmillanjones) | 11721 comments Seeing that the list is american put me off immediately.

I'd rather read some Nick Hornby


message 34: by Jamie (new)

Jamie Sinclair | 985 comments Hmm, I've read four of them. Never been a fan of lists, especially ones dictating what's good, bad, better than something else. A lot of the list seems to be what might be considered "literary" novels. I'm drawn to crime thrillers, Rankin, King, Cohen etc. You'll never see them on a list like this. I think it was either Lee Child or Ian Rankin who said that writing a literary novel is all well and good. But they'd rather write a book that sold a lot of copies.


Patti (baconater) (goldengreene) | 61757 comments Tim wrote: "Patti (baconater) wrote: "Oh Tim? Which book won you that, darling?"

Wanted :)"


Oh, this one?

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Wanted-Flick-...


message 36: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments who do I have to sleep with around here to win virtual trophies? ;-)


message 37: by Kath (new)

Kath Middleton | 25063 comments Marc wrote: "who do I have to sleep with around here to win virtual trophies? ;-)"

Not me! I'm told I snore! ;)


message 38: by Natasha (new)

Natasha Holme (natashaholme) | 801 comments Oh dear. Have read none. And have only heard of three of those authors. *Hangs head*


message 39: by Tim (new)

Tim | 9478 comments Patti (baconater) wrote: "Tim wrote: "Patti (baconater) wrote: "Oh Tim? Which book won you that, darling?"

Wanted :)"

Oh, this one?

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Wanted-Flick-..."


Yes, that one. ;) (link corrected in quote - ?tag not &tag)


message 40: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Looks like I'll be sleeping on my own and still prizeless then...


message 41: by Will (last edited Jan 26, 2015 02:08AM) (new)

Will Macmillan Jones (willmacmillanjones) | 11721 comments Like the rest of us, Marc


message 42: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments We could huddle up for warmth...


message 43: by Will (new)

Will Macmillan Jones (willmacmillanjones) | 11721 comments *Steps back slowly*


message 44: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments I think the interesting thing about that list is that very few are truly great novels irrespective of when they were written. By which I mean if you weren't restricting the list to the opening 14 years of the century, how many of them would get in a top 100 novels list? I would venture none.


message 45: by Jim (new)

Jim | 21943 comments Seriously how many of them will be remembered in thirty years time?


message 46: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Jim wrote: "Seriously how many of them will be remembered in thirty years time?"

maybe a bit longer but yes I agree. But then I don't think S.King esq will be remembered this time next century either


message 47: by Jim (last edited Jan 26, 2015 10:58AM) (new)

Jim | 21943 comments Die leaving huge and resolvable debts so that in fifty years elderly bankers will still shake their fists at the sky and shout "Curse you Jim Webster" ;-)

Well it's one way of being remembered


message 48: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments hasn't Margret Attwood written a book only to be published 100 years after her death?


Simon (Highwayman) (highwayman) | 4698 comments I hate these literary lists. They confirm my status as a heathen. I'm going to publish my own top ten of books that people can actually read and enjoy.

No. 1 - Big boobs volume four. A classic.


message 50: by Marc (new)

Marc Nash (sulci) | 7481 comments Simon (Highwayman) wrote: "I hate these literary lists. They confirm my status as a heathen. I'm going to publish my own top ten of books that people can actually read and enjoy.

No. 1 - Big boobs volume four. A classic."


Philistine... or do I mean Gertrude Stein?


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