The Readers Review: Literature from 1714 to 1910 discussion

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Miscellaneous Archives > So, What's On the Bedside Table these Days? -- Part 1

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Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) | 1483 comments Mod
This is the place to take a moment and tell us what you are currently reading, and maybe even share a few of the books in your teetering 'To Be Read' pile.


message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

I am keeping my Nook busy with a re-read of Jane Austen's Persuasion and Heart of Darkness and Selected Short Fiction by Joseph Conrad, and in the more traditional trade paperback mode I have just started East of Eden by John Steinbeck. I also have a stack of books from the public library about the Plains Indians (native Americans) and their demise in the late 19th century as tribes/nation by the hands of the US government.


message 3: by MadgeUK (new)

MadgeUK | 5214 comments I have a huge tome on the go called 'Austerity Britain 1945-1951' by David Kynaston, which is like reading 'All My Yesterdays'. It makes me both laugh and cry:). I have also made a start on the long introduction by Fagles and Stanford to the Penguin translation of The Oresteia, prior to reading it with the Classics of the Western Canon group. That will be a (nice) challenge - I haven't read or seen a Greek play since the 1970s, when my brain was much younger!


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) | 1483 comments Mod
Sharon wrote: "I am keeping my Nook busy with a re-read of Jane Austen's Persuasion and Heart of Darkness and Selected Short Fiction by Joseph Conrad, and in the more traditional trade..."

Sharon, I think it is terrific you're re-visiting Austen's Persuasion! Such a beautiful novel, and one that I try and re-read every year or so. Somehow, I think Persuasion becomes even more meaningful and special the older that one becomes. The younger Janeites tend to love Pride and Prejudice, but it seems that over the years we all seem to gravitate to Persuasion.

I haven't gone back and re-visited Steinbeck in many, many years, but East of Eden was one of my favorites of his works. A very powerful novel.

Having been born, raised, and resided in the American West my entire life, I have always had a significant interest in Native American history and issues. The Department of the Interior's Indian policy is seriously and fundamentally flawed in my humble opinion. Setting aside the historical campaign of genocide that was waged in the 19th century, the government has developed this paternalistic attitude of trying to care for Native American peoples; and then with the other hand they have attempted to treat tribes as 'sovereign' entities. While I believe that maintaining Native American cultural values and traditions is important, I also believe that putting Indian peoples on reservations and this 'odd' relationship with the federal government has led to social isolationism, and inhibits the ability of Native Americans to fully succeed in American society today. A truly complicated situation; and probably no easy answers.


message 5: by MadgeUK (new)

MadgeUK | 5214 comments I would very much like to read some Native American literature, which seems to be sadly neglected in book clubs generally:(. Indeed, all native people's literature seems to be sadly neglected - the same can be said of the Aborigines and the Maoris, for instance.


message 6: by Grace Tjan (new)

Grace Tjan I've just finished reading Far from the Madding Crowd and had nothing Victorian on the bedside table right now. I'm currently reading a history of colonial Batavia, and Between the Assassinations.


message 7: by [deleted user] (new)

On the bedside table? Oh dear! I don’t know what this says about me. Far From The Madding Crowd – now on Chapter XXXVI; A History of Wales by John Davies – stuck in Chapter 3; Journey to Portugal by José Saramago - just started, I am tentatively planning a bicycle trip in Portugal for next summer; Paroles de l’Ombre by Jean-Pierre Guéno (to exercise my very poor French) and Circle Games by Jo Mazelis (her second collection of stories- wonderful) – these last two I dip into when the mood takes me.


message 8: by Joy (last edited Sep 01, 2010 10:52AM) (new)

Joy (joylnorth) Sharon wrote: "I am keeping my Nook busy with a re-read of Jane Austen's Persuasion and Heart of Darkness and Selected Short Fiction by Joseph Conrad, and in the more traditional trade..."

Sharon - I do hope you are taking advantage of downloading the Barnes & Noble classics that are available each week; I know I have been filling up my Nook with glee!

Persuasion is my favorite Austen and one of my all-time favorite novels all the way around. East of Eden is the only Steinbeck I have read, but the beauty of his imagery and prose put it on my all-time favorites list as well. I haven't read it for years, but I would love to read it again.


message 9: by Joy (new)

Joy (joylnorth) I have read some Native American literature, although it has all been from the end of the 20th century. Those I have read have been pretty powerful. I shall ponder which impacted me the most and list some in the recommendations thread.


message 10: by Joy (new)

Joy (joylnorth) I am currently reading Barbara Pym's A Few Green Leaves, which centers around a group of individuals in a sleepy village in the English countryside. Set in the 1970s, it focuses on the relationships of the individuals and the dynamics of a small community.

After I finish that, I think I will move on to Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell. It has come highly recommended from Chris, so I hope to enjoy it immensely!


message 11: by Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.), Founder (last edited Sep 01, 2010 11:16AM) (new)

Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) | 1483 comments Mod
Joy wrote: "I am currently reading Barbara Pym's A Few Green Leaves, which centers around a group of individuals in a sleepy village in the English countryside. Set in the 1970s, it focuses on th..."

Joy, I surmise that you soon will become a 'Pymphomaniac' too! She is a delightful author to read, with a wonderful sense of humor. I am excited for you to read Susanna Clarke's "JS&MN" too. I truly believe that people will read this novel 150 years from now!


message 12: by [deleted user] (new)

Joy wrote: "Sharon wrote: "I am keeping my Nook busy with a re-read of Jane Austen's Persuasion and Heart of Darkness and Selected Short Fiction by Joseph Conrad, and in the more tr..."

Joy,

Yes I am taking advantage of the Barnes & Noble classics for free each week. I am also downloading lots of pre-1923 (out of copyright) books from Google books via Barnes & Noble. I have over 300 downloaded so far and have only paid for maybe 5 or 6 books!


message 13: by [deleted user] (new)

Sandybanks wrote: "I've just finished reading Far from the Madding Crowd and had nothing Victorian on the bedside table right now. I'm currently reading a history of colonial Batavia, and Between the Assassinat..."</i>

Sandybanks, how are you liking the Adiga? I loved [book:The White Tiger
...



message 14: by [deleted user] (new)

David wrote: "On the bedside table? Oh dear! I don’t know what this says about me. Far From The Madding Crowd – now on Chapter XXXVI; A History of Wales by John Davies – stuck in Chapter 3; Journey to Portugal..."

David, can you recommend some Welsh literature? (I've only read How Green Was My Valley, which I enjoyed very much.) My great-grandfather was from Wales, and I would like to read more literature from there.


message 15: by Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.), Founder (last edited Sep 01, 2010 08:17PM) (new)

Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) | 1483 comments Mod
Sharon wrote: "David wrote: "On the bedside table? Oh dear! I don’t know what this says about me. Far From The Madding Crowd – now on Chapter XXXVI; A History of Wales by John Davies – stuck in Chapter 3; Journ..."

Was Edith Pargeter (she also used the pen-name 'Ellis Peters') from Wales? Her Heaven Tree Trilogy is definitely on my TBR list. I have heard nothing but great things about it.

Here's a list of Welsh writers from Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_.... Hopefully David can provide some recommendations too.


message 16: by Grace Tjan (new)

Grace Tjan Sharon wrote: "Sandybanks wrote: "I've just finished reading Far from the Madding Crowd and had nothing Victorian on the bedside table right now. I'm currently reading a history of colonial Batavia, and [book:Bet..."

Sharon, I'm only on page 50, but it seems interesting. It's about a Southern Indian city and the various people who live there. I think this is something that he wrote before White Tiger and just got published recently.


message 17: by MadgeUK (new)

MadgeUK | 5214 comments I was born not long after the Great Depression and one of the books about that period which my father introduced me to at an early age was the memoir of Welshman W H Davies The Autobiography of a Super Tramp. He also wrote some very fine poetry, two lines from which have become very well known: 'What is this life if full of care/We have no time to stand and stare'.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/W._H._Da...

Perhaps the most famous Welsh poet is Dylan Thomas, who was well known in my youth for reciting his poetry on radio, much of which was in the 'stream of consciousness' style:-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/wales/arts/sites...

Here is an example of him reading some of his works in his melodious Welsh accent:-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NIoXV-...

I am sure David can tell us lots more about Welsh authors and the use of their wonderful, unique Celtic language.


message 18: by [deleted user] (new)

Hmm... recommend some Welsh Literature, well this is not easy. A distinction has to be made between pure Welsh literature, that is literature that was originally written in Welsh and has subsequently been translated into English and Anglo Welsh literature which is literature written by Welsh people in English and I would include in that literature about Wales written in English.

I have to confess that I was born and brought up and currently live in a very anglicised part of Wales adjacent to the border with England and I am not a Welsh speaker. The border country has a rich vein of literature in English. My favourites include the Diaries of Rev Francis Kilvert edited by William Plomer and Wild Wales by George Borrow neither of them fiction (although it is likely that Borrow is not strictly factual) but certainly literature.

Two classics of early Welsh literature are The Journey Through Wales and The description of Wales by the cleric Giraldus Cambransis from the 12th century and the Mabinogion originally translated by Lady Guest but there is a new translation which has been well received here.

In more recent times you might try a Mary Webb, perhaps Precious Bane or Richard Vaughan's Moulded in Earth. A modern classic is the Old Farmhouse by D J Williams and another favourite of mine is a collection of Welsh Short Stories published by Penguin although I'm not sure if it is still in print.

Poetry thrives in Wales as you would expect with its Bardic tradition and among the modern Welsh poets writing in English I would recommend Gillian Clarke, Dannie Abse, Robert Minhinnick, Owen Sheers, Gwyneth Lewis and the late R S Thomas.

I would also heartily endorse Madge's recommendations of W H Davies' Autobiography of a Super Tramp and anything by Dylan Thomas but especially Under Milk Wood. Finally, a book I am studying currently is Mererid Hopwood's Singing in Chains which looks at the traditional strict Welsh verse form called 'cynghanedd' published by Gomer. It is written in English and is accompanied by a CD in Welsh so you get an introduction to the 'music of cynghanedd'.

I think I've covered most tastes but these are only examples of what's available and I am personally familiar with. There is an awful lot of excellent Welsh literature and my experience is limited to Welsh literature in English which only scratches the surface of the subject.


message 19: by [deleted user] (new)

Thanks, everyone, for your Welsh literature recommendations!!


message 20: by MadgeUK (last edited Sep 02, 2010 04:08AM) (new)

MadgeUK | 5214 comments Thanks David for those excellent recommendations. I hope we can take up some of them here, especially Singing in Chains with its CD.

Those who haven't heard the beautiful Welsh language may like to listen to this Song for the Bard from the 2008 Eisteddfod - an annual festival of music, dance and poetry:-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3OShN...

http://www.celticcafe.com/archive/Wal...

The Welsh are also famed for their male voice choirs. Here is a video of a village choir singing a sad favourite, Myfanwy, together with scenes of Wales:-

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vIgW7s...

Here are the words in both English and Welsh:-

http://www.xs4all.nl/~werksman/cale/l...


message 21: by [deleted user] (new)

Christopher wrote: "Sharon wrote: "David wrote: "On the bedside table? Oh dear! I don’t know what this says about me. Far From The Madding Crowd – now on Chapter XXXVI; A History of Wales by John Davies – stuck in C..."

I always thought that she came from Shrewsbury or very near to Shrewsbury where the Brother Cadfael stories were set, she was a Salopian through and through.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) | 1483 comments Mod
David wrote: "Christopher wrote: "Sharon wrote: "David wrote: "On the bedside table? Oh dear! I don’t know what this says about me. Far From The Madding Crowd – now on Chapter XXXVI; A History of Wales by John..."

Ahh, okay. I do remember Shrewsbury from the Cadfael mysteries too. Sounds like she's relatively close to the border with Wales. Thank you, David.


message 23: by Jan (new)

Jan (auntyjan) | 483 comments Like the greedy child who piles their plate with more than they could possibly eat, I have a little book problem: I'm the bookworm who buys the books faster than she can read them. I started on Buddenbrooks last year but put it down about halfway through and haven't finished yet.Then on and off I've been reading Decca which is the correspondence of Jessica Mitford and lends itself to being read episodically. Buddenbrooks by Thomas Mann Decca The Letters of Jessica Mitford. by Jessica Mitford Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel Last Christmas I started on Wolf Hall, but put it aside as life got busier as it requires a little more concentration than I could devote to it after the holidays. I started reading Vanity Fair but was too far behind so I moved on to Far From The Madding Crowd, which I'm still reading(about halfway). In another group I was reading Under the Net, but now they've moved on to Dr Zhivago, so I borrowed that from my son, who likes Russian writers. A friend lent me Mao's Last Dancer, but I haven't started it and my sister lent me the White Gardenia.
Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray Far from the Madding Crowd (Penguin Classics) by Thomas Hardy Under the Net (Vintage Classics) by Iris Murdoch Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak Mao's Last Dancer by Li Cunxin White Gardenia by Belinda Alexandra
This week I bought Musicophilia by Oliver Sacks which presents various case studies on music and the brain, The Best Australian Humorous Writing, The Idiot, Just Me by Sheila Hancock and Jane Austen An Illustrated Treasury.
The Best Australian Humorous Writing by Andrew O'Keefe Musicophilia Tales of Music and the Brain by Oliver Sacks The Idiot (Wordsworth Collection) by Fyodor Dostoevsky Just Me by Sheila Hancock Jane Austen An Illustrated Treasury by Rebecca Dickson

I told you I had a little book problem...and I can't resist a bargain. So many books, so little time!


message 24: by MadgeUK (new)

MadgeUK | 5214 comments My 'habit' isn't much better and reading posts like yours doesn't help one jot! I don't have a bedside cabinet for books, I have the floor both sides of my bed, two very large shelves and a cupboard....


message 25: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 3582 comments My bedside table runneth over. I tend to browse at night, picking a book that suits my mood. As best as I can remember, being too lazy to actually go upstairs and look, my bedside table currently contains the Essays of Elia (since we're reading those in the Western Canon group; a second copy is on the table beside my living room chair, and a third copy on my Kindle charging by my computer), one of my two copies of the Oxford Book of English Verse, Quiller-Couch edition (the 1911 edition on my bedside table, the 1900 on my library desk), the Thousand and One Nights (Penguin edition, edited but not expurgated), I.F. Stone's The Death of Socrates, Benet's John Brown's Body, the Essays of Montaigne (there because I wasn considering it as an interim read for my Western Canon group), and my guilty pleasure but I feel safe in mentioning it because of the Welsh references here, Evan's Gate, a modern mystery by Rhys Bowen. I'm sure there are two or three more books piled up there, but I can't remember offhand what they are.

As to my TBR shelves, don't even go there. I actually have 7 TBR shelves, each packed, plus several piles of books that have been moved from TBR closer to actual reading positions. They're an eclectic lot, a pretty even mixture of fiction (including Eliot, Dickens, Dostoevsky, Chekhov, Mann, Proust, Stendhal, and many others), poetry (Keats, Byron, Tennyson, Wordsworth, Dickinson, Longfellow, etc.), essays (E.V. Lucas, E.B. White, Johnson, several collections,) and nonfiction (ranging from The Barbarian Conversion to Russell's History of Western Philosophy to two newer translation of Plato's Republic to Boethius, to . . . ) I like to browse, particularly in reference works, poetry collections, essay collections, and tend to use my TBR shelves as a repository for books I am actively browsing in from time to time; that's why so many poetry books and essays.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) | 1483 comments Mod
Ami wrote: "Jan wrote: "Like the greedy child who piles their plate with more than they could possibly eat, I have a little book problem: I'm the bookworm who buys the books faster than she can read them. I st..."

I have it too, and what you say is validated by many of my friends. The third-person format confuses the hell out of everyone, and it is extraordinarily easy to get topsy-turvey in Mantel's writing.

Apparently, reading and re-reading is the norm with significant sections of the novel. I have 'gently' and 'kindly' deposited it deeper in the TBR stack as a result. ;-)


message 27: by Jan (new)

Jan (auntyjan) | 483 comments Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel You need concentration and time...when I was on holidays...husband out kayaking the estuaries of our south coast, teenage daughter still asleep in bed, I could read for a couple of hours...no problem, but back home with many distractions and things to attend to...just can't be read a bit here, a bit there...or when you're tired...one day I'll have to start again.


message 28: by Grace Tjan (new)

Grace Tjan Ami wrote: "Jan wrote: "Like the greedy child who piles their plate with more than they could possibly eat, I have a little book problem: I'm the bookworm who buys the books faster than she can read them. I st..."

I also have it in my ereader. It seems that people either love or hate it.


message 29: by Rosemary (new)

Rosemary | 180 comments Oh man. I finished Bleak House last night. I was halfway through Swann's Way before I started BH, so I've picked that back up again. War and Peace is waiting for me on the bedside table. On my Kindle is Adam Bede, while I wait for the hardback to arrive in the mail. I'm really tempted to start A Tale of Two Cities because now I'm on a Dickens kick.

I also love detective fiction (detective fiction and Georgette Heyer are my two HUGE guilty pleasures), and I'm halfway through Josephine Tey's A Shilling for Candles- it's the second to last Tey I have left to read. I recently tried to get into the Brother Cadfael novels, but didn't like them as much as I'd hoped.

Um, I'm also partway through William Penn's No Cross, No Crown (Quaker spiritual classic). I've stalled out for some time on Karen Armstrong's latest, The Case for God. It's not as strong as her prior books. And I'm still fighting Kierkegaard.

After all this, an immediate TBR is The Magic Mountain, whether or not we read it over on WC.

I have two very long groaning shelves of books next to my bed. It contains the volumes I'm always reaching for, the TBR pile and the constantly re-reading pile (I must re-read my three favorite Austen novels once a year or so) and the pile of books I dip into constantly but don't read all in one go- various translations of the Bible, modern poetry (Oliver, Gluck, Kumin, Paley, Kenyon, Hall) . . .

Happily my husband is a carpenter and builds me new book-cases whenever I need them.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) | 1483 comments Mod
S. Rosemary wrote: "Oh man. I finished Bleak House last night. I was halfway through Swann's Way before I started BH, so I've picked that back up again. War and Peace is waiting for me on the bedside table. On my Kind..."

You are on some kind of a reading jag! Personally, I would read Bleak House time and time again before I'd go back to Proust; but that's me--I dig Dickens, not so much Proust. I read, or re-read, all of Dickens' novels in the order that he wrote them over several months in 2008 and 2009. It was an awesome experience.

Is this your first read of War and Peace, upcoming? If so, you are in for an amazing treat! I know that you'll love it!

Say, I don't suppose I could talk your husband into a short trip out to the 'left-coast' to build a few bookcases for me, could I? LOL!

Finally, I have some very close friends in Pawlet, Vermont. My oldest daughter and I visited them last summer, and absolutely had a ball. I could definitely live in Vermont! Being a Montanan, born and raised, I think I could even handle the Vermont winters. I am very envious of you living there.

Cheers! Chris


message 31: by [deleted user] (last edited Sep 12, 2010 07:06PM) (new)

S. Rosemary wrote: "(detective fiction and Georgette Heyer are my two HUGE guilty pleasures), and I'm halfway through Josephine Tey's A Shilling for Candles- it's the second to last Tey I have left to read."

Huge grin! Heyer has been a guilty pleasure forever and I enjoy Tey as well. I just reread Brat Farrar last week--one of her best, I think.

@Chris: What part of Montana? My husband's family is from the area around Big Fork and Kalispell. I love it over there, but NOT in the winter!!!


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) | 1483 comments Mod
Kate wrote: "S. Rosemary wrote: "(detective fiction and Georgette Heyer are my two HUGE guilty pleasures), and I'm halfway through Josephine Tey's A Shilling for Candles- it's the second to last Tey I have left..."

Kate, I was born in Libby (extreme NW); lived in Red Lodge (as a little boy); teen-aged years in Helena; and after the Coast Guard, I lived in Missoula and went to the Univ. of MT and worked for the U.S. Forest Service. I miss Montana a lot; especially in the summer months. ;-)


message 33: by [deleted user] (new)

Christopher wrote: "Kate, I was born in Libby (extreme NW); lived in Red Lodge (as a little boy); teen-aged years in Helena; and after the Coast Guard, I lived in Missoula and went to the Univ. of MT and worked for the U.S. Forest Service. I miss Montana a lot; especially in the summer months. ;-)
"


Have you read English Creek or Dancing at the Rascal Fair? You might enjoy Doig's books.


message 34: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 3582 comments S. Rosemary wrote: "I also love detective fiction (detective fiction and Georgette Heyer are my two HUGE guilty pleasures),"

Don't tell anybody, keep it secret, but I love detective fiction also -- I call it my brain candy. Most of all I love the classic mystery writers -- Sayers, Stout, Tey, Marsh, that generation, but I also like Dick Francis, Robert Parker, the Evan series (momentary brain freeze remembering the author's name and my mysteries are shelved in the upstairs balcony of my library), and some others. But I don't want people to realize that I read such non-serious stuff, so don't tell anybody, okay?


message 35: by Jan (new)

Jan (auntyjan) | 483 comments And this from the man that reads nothing post 1945!


message 36: by Rosemary (new)

Rosemary | 180 comments @ Chris: Yah, this is my last desperate pre-thesis jag. Although I usually do have that many books going on at a time. I just can't be monogamous. First reading of War and Peace- I used to think I HATED Russian literature after a miserable reading of A Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich in high school. Of all the great Russian novels, why did they pick that one for us to read?

@Kate: Oh, yay, Brat Farrar is the last one I have left to read! Which is your favorite Heyer?

@Everyman and Jan: Well, that generation of mystery is right on the 1945 cusp . . . but Dick Francis! Shock! (coughireadkathyreichscough)


message 37: by [deleted user] (new)

S. Rosemary wrote: "@Kate: Oh, yay, Brat Farrar is the last one I have left to read! Which is your favorite Heyer?"

I have to pick ONE???! *looks helplessly at Rosemary* If I only get one shot at this I would have to say "The Unknown Ajax", but there are 4-5 that might be my favorite on any given day.


message 38: by Jan (new)

Jan (auntyjan) | 483 comments While we're in true confession mode, I read a Dick Francis novel once and thoroughly enjoyed it and have also read a few by Heyer which were a lot of fun and you wouldn't believe how much television I record...far more than I can find time to watch! I'm constantly deleting last night's French movie from the hard drive to make way for tonight's shows, then I fall asleep so I don't want to delete them because I might go back to it the next day and see what happened while I was sleeping...and I still don't know when I'm going to get around to de-cluttering the house...completely hopeless...


message 39: by Gail (new)

Gail | 91 comments Nice to know we're all in the same boat, drowning in a sea of books...

On the nightstand? Five Children and It by E. Nesbit; The Judas Window by Carter Dickson, but I keep pushing it away as I'm not in the mood for it right now; Essays of Elia on the Nook; The Complete Saki, also on the Nook; The Goblin Market and Other Poems by Christina Rosetti.

I'm working on The Children's Book by Byatt, which is why I'm reading Nesbit: just to get a feel for the real author the book is based on. But that follows me all over the house, it doesn't just stay by the bed.

Everyman, I might recommend the detective stories of Heyer to you. Except for the first one, they are uniformly witty and well-plotted. I've always got a mystery or two kicking around the house somewhere.

And Christopher, if you haven't yet read Montana 1948 by Larry Watson, try to get to it. It's extremely well-done, sort of in the same mode as A Death in the Family by Agee.

My plan (ignore the hysterical laughter of those who know me) is to read/re-read Austen's six major novels next year. And I really, really want to read more Hardy, as I appreciate Jude the Obscure more and more over time.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) | 1483 comments Mod
Gail wrote: "Nice to know we're all in the same boat, drowning in a sea of books...

On the nightstand? Five Children and It by E. Nesbit; The Judas Window by Carter Dickson, but I keep pushing it away as I'm..."


A couple of comments, Gail. First, 'Saki' is simply some one of the best (and funniest) collections of short stories. I dip into my complete Saki time and time again. Second, Christina Rossetti is an awesome poet, and I am into my volume of her 'Complete Poems' many, many times each year. She is truly one of the most underrated poets of all time. Personally, I think she is one of the great Victorian poets!

I will be very interested in your assessment of Byatt's "The Children's Book" when you're finished. I loved it myself, but it seems that a lot of readers didn't care for it. I loved the fascinating look at the "Arts and Crafts" movement. I thought it was vintage Byatt.

Thanks for the reference/recommendation to the Watson book too. I'll definitely have a look-see at it. Cheers! Chris


message 41: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 3582 comments Gail wrote: "Everyman, I might recommend the detective stories of Heyer to you. Except for the first one, they are uniformly witty and well-plotted. "

Looking around furtively to make sure nobody is watching. Shhh. But I had my wife get me several of them for my birthday in May, and I'm parceling them out slowly. Have enjoyed them so far. But don't tell anybody. I have my reputation to uphold!


message 42: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 3582 comments Christopher wrote: "A couple of comments, Gail. First, 'Saki' is simply some one of the best (and funniest) collections of short stories. "

Absolutely. He's wonderful. A delight.

We have to hope that Christopher stretches the 1910 limit a wee bit, since his first stories were written before 1910, but his best work was in the few years after that.


message 43: by Gail (new)

Gail | 91 comments Your guilty secret is safe with me, Eman. Of course my own reputation is already in tatters, as befits one who reads classics, fairy tales both traditional and with very modern twists, mysteries, and just general nonsense.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) (captain_sir_roddy) | 1483 comments Mod
Everyman wrote: "Christopher wrote: "A couple of comments, Gail. First, 'Saki' is simply some one of the best (and funniest) collections of short stories. "

Absolutely. He's wonderful. A delight.

We have to hop..."


I am a dyed-in-the-wool and inveterate imbiber of 'Saki.' So no worries there.

I believe that I have stated on several occasions that the time period for this group is "late-18th century through the early-20th century." Are we all on the same page now? [wink, wink, wink] ;-)


message 45: by Grace Tjan (new)

Grace Tjan Gail wrote: "Nice to know we're all in the same boat, drowning in a sea of books...

On the nightstand? Five Children and It by E. Nesbit; The Judas Window by Carter Dickson, but I keep pushing it away as I'm..."


Heyer wrote mysteries? I thought that she only wrote Regency romances. Any recommendation?

*outs self as another closet mystery fan*


message 46: by Grace Tjan (last edited Sep 13, 2010 11:49PM) (new)

Grace Tjan Gail wrote: "Nice to know we're all in the same boat, drowning in a sea of books...

On the nightstand? Five Children and It by E. Nesbit; The Judas Window by Carter Dickson, but I keep pushing it away as I'm..."


I thought that The Children's Book is a mixed bag of both good and clunky writing. The parts that discuss and describe the Craftsman movement and the objects that the artists make are the most interesting for me.


message 47: by [deleted user] (last edited Sep 13, 2010 08:48PM) (new)

Sandybanks wrote: "Heyer wrote mysteries? I thought that she only wrote Regency romances. Any recommendation?
"


She wrote very typical Golden Age mysteries. Try Behold, Here's Poison


message 48: by Grace Tjan (new)

Grace Tjan Kate wrote: "Sandybanks wrote: "Heyer wrote mysteries? I thought that she only wrote Regency romances. Any recommendation?
"

She wrote very typical Golden Age mysteries. Try Behold, Here's Poison"


Thanks for the rec, Kate. I'll try it.


message 49: by Jan (new)

Jan (auntyjan) | 483 comments Everyman wrote: "Gail wrote: "Everyman, I might recommend the detective stories of Heyer to you. Except for the first one, they are uniformly witty and well-plotted. "

Looking around furtively to make sure nobody ..."

The above revelations have inspired another little rhyme:

Everyman Is Falling Down

Everyman is reading
And that is all that matters
Although his reputation
Is now somewhat in tatters!

Don't worry, Everyman, this diversion into the realms of popular fiction just makes you all the more relatable to the rest of us mere mortals!


message 50: by Historybuff93 (new)

Historybuff93 | 287 comments Currently, I'm reading Don Quixote, Miguel de Cervantes; Speak, Memory, Vladmir Nabokov; Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Friedrich Nietzsche; The Short Stories of John Cheever; and I'm re-reading Heart of Darkness, by Joseph Conrad.


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