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The Chunksters > Favorite Chunksters

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message 1: by Loretta (new)

Loretta (lorettalucia) Please use this thread to list your favorite chunksters of all time (and any other 4 and 5 star chunksters you've read). Feel free to tell us why you loved these books so much.


message 2: by Kristi (new)

Kristi (kristicoleman) My favorite was one we read together. I LOVED The Woman in White! It was a great classic mystery novel...and it kept me guessing what was going to happen.

I also love all the Outlander books (which are all chunksters) by Diana Gabaldon...the story is so good...heartwrenching but good at the same time! I've been listening to them on Audio, since Audible now has the whole series Unabridged!


message 3: by Martha (new)

Martha (marthas48) Kristi, I'm with you. I loved TWIW & really enjoyed the 2 Outlander books I've read (think I gave Dragonfly in Amber 3.5 stars ... she's too long-winded for me :-).

Also, loved The Pillars of the Earth. There may be more. I'll have to give this more thought.


message 4: by Kristi (new)

Kristi (kristicoleman) Martha wrote: "Kristi, I'm with you. I loved TWIW & really enjoyed the 2 Outlander books I've read (think I gave Dragonfly in Amber 3.5 stars ... she's too long-winded for me :-).

Also, loved [book:The Pillars..."


I find that the Audiobooks of Diana Gabaldon are much more fun that the actual book. Davina Porter really brings the characters to life! It make up for any longwinded-ness on the author's part.


message 5: by Martha (new)

Martha (marthas48) I agree, Kristi, that's how I 'read' them. Her voice is wonderful, but I sometimes think that we don't need to hear every single thought that flits through Claire's head!! LOL This woman is a great writer. Just amazes me that she's written so many of them and they're all so long! I'll probably do the 3rd one this year.


message 6: by Kristi (new)

Kristi (kristicoleman) Yep...I totally agree! I'm on #5, and I'm hoping to finish them next year. Do you know if An Echo in the Bone is the last one, or is she going to come out with more. I was under the impression that was the last for the series.


message 7: by Juliette (last edited Nov 17, 2011 05:12PM) (new)

Juliette I know a lot of people felt that 20 pages (give or take a few) on the Paris sewer system was probably a bit much, but I love Victor Hugo's Les Misérables

Sharon Kay Penman's The Sunne In Splendour is also a favorite.

I've probably read The Lord of the Rings five times in my life and will probably read it five more times before I die.

And while I'm still bitter and currently boycotting his current book (I will read the rest of the series when it's finished)the first three books of George R.R. Martin's Fire and Ice series are great.


message 8: by Juliette (new)

Juliette Oh and T.H. White's The Once and Future King


message 9: by Loretta (last edited Nov 17, 2011 01:24PM) (new)

Loretta (lorettalucia) I have many:

Les Misérables by Victor Hugo - This book is filled with colorful characters, history, texture, and layers of moral complexity. One of my all time favorites.

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas - exciting, romantic, and ultimately about the dangers of trying to "play God." I adored this book.

The Mists of Avalon (Avalon, #1) by Marion Zimmer Bradley - I know the group is reading this now, but I read it about 8 or so years ago now, and remember it being a magical, empowering ride.

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon - a book about the importance and value of the tales of mythical heroes that also happens to be filled with endearing, well-drawn characters and some truly affecting love stories.

A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1) by George R.R. Martin A Clash of Kings (A Song of Ice and Fire, #2) by George R.R. Martin A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire, #3) by George R.R. Martin - I'm working my way through these now. I love how they're really aimed at the careful reader who can notice/remember small moments to help puzzle things out.

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver - a book about the power of family and love and learning how to release yourself from your past.

Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides - Chunkster "lite" at just over 500 pages, but one of my all-time favorites, about figuring out who you are and where you belong, and how that ties into everything that's come before you.

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë - what teenage girl wouldn't love this tale? I first read it when I was 14.


message 10: by Collene (new)

Collene My favorite chunkster that I can think off the top of my head is Jane Eyre but I know there's more and I will add them when I think of them. I loved the series by Jennifer Donnelly.


message 11: by Martha (new)

Martha (marthas48) I love Jane Eyre! Hadn't thought of it as a chunkster, but it really is! :-)


message 12: by Ellie (new)

Ellie (elliearcher) I never think of Jane Eyre as a chunkster-I still think it's a bit short. I think my favorite is Our Mutual Friend.

I'm beginning to think that my days as a chunkster-reader are over-although I am heavily involved with Haruki Murakami's new book, 1Q84, which at almost 1,000 pages is something of a chunkster.

But all those lovely 19th century chunksters-or even 20th century-I just don't seem to have the stamina for anymore. :(


message 13: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 885 comments Favorite chunksters? Hmmm, now.

Certainly the Iliad and the Odyssey. Timeless, wonderful, rich in characters, magnificent language, drama.

Bleak House for sure.

Middlemarch equally for sure.


message 14: by Gaijinmama (new)

Gaijinmama Too many to list, what can I say (I like big books and I cannot lie...thanks to Sir Mix-a-lot...)
but a few are:
The Lord of the Rings trilogy,
Outlander
Les Misérables
Jane Eyre
and The Sword of Shannara which was the first fantasy book
to make the New York Times bestseller list. I was only 9 when it came out.


Bookworm Adventure Girl (bookwormadventuregirl) Love Diana Gabaldon Outlander series and Ken Follet's The Pillars of the Earth and World Without End


message 17: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (bookgoddess1969) My favorite chuncksters are:

The Stand by Stephen King Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë Les Misérables by Victor Hugo A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1) by George R.R. Martin The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver

and I'm pretty certain that once I'm finished, I will be adding:

11/22/63 by Stephen King


message 18: by Suzanne (new)

Suzanne (thysanura) I loved The Woman in White! I was amazed by how compelling it was for something written 150 years ago. It had some great characters, too.

And though I'm not currently reading it with the group, East of Eden is one of my all-time favorites. I love Steinbeck's writing and of all his books that I've read, EoE is one of the most beautiful and most hopeful.


message 20: by Kristina (last edited Nov 18, 2011 04:00PM) (new)

Kristina (kristina3880) My top favorite chunksters are

East of Eden I read it last year
Cutting for Stone Awesome book
The Woman in White I read this last year and would love to read The Moonstone next year


message 21: by Gaijinmama (new)

Gaijinmama I have got to read The Count of Monte Cristo, I love the story (I've seen several film versions) and it really seems to have all the elements that make for a great book!


message 22: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 885 comments Two major chunksters I'm waiting to get to and hoping will become favorite chunksers: Churchill's History of the English Speaking Peoples and Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. I just need the time and energy to get to them! (Hmmm, possible side reads at no more than 50 pages a week??)


message 23: by Martha (new)

Martha (marthas48) Kristina, I hope to read The Moonstone next year. I'm really looking forward to it.


message 24: by Kathy (last edited Nov 18, 2011 09:14PM) (new)

Kathy (bookgoddess1969) Martha wrote: "Kristina, I hope to read The Moonstone next year. I'm really looking forward to it."

Maybe we can read it together as a side-read? :)


message 25: by Shea (new)

Shea Oooh, this is a tough question. I love all the Outlander books by Diana Gabaldon and she is not finished with the series. I believe the next one will be titled "In My Own Heart's Blood" and will be out in 2012. I also loved East of Eden and IT by Stephen King.


message 26: by Martha (new)

Martha (marthas48) Kathy wrote: "Martha wrote: "Kristina, I hope to read The Moonstone next year. I'm really looking forward to it."

Maybe we can read it together as a side-read? :)"


Would love to, Kathy! Did you have a specific time in mind? I know January won't be good as I'm reading Brideshead Revisited then.


message 27: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (bookgoddess1969) How about February? I'm flexible.


message 28: by Martha (new)

Martha (marthas48) OK ... looking forward to it. I love Collins! I want to read No Name, too, sometime.


message 29: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (bookgoddess1969) I haven't read anything by him yet, but I have my dad's old copy so I really want to read it! :)


message 30: by Loretta (new)

Loretta (lorettalucia) Everyman wrote: "Two major chunksters I'm waiting to get to and hoping will become favorite chunksers: Churchill's History of the English Speaking Peoples and Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. I just..."

I'll admit to some curiosity about the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.


message 31: by Collene (new)

Collene My favorite chunksters so far are:

Anna Karenina
Alaska
Jane Eyre


message 32: by Kristina (last edited Nov 19, 2011 05:23AM) (new)

Kristina (kristina3880) Kathy wrote: "Martha wrote: "Kristina, I hope to read The Moonstone next year. I'm really looking forward to it."

Maybe we can read it together as a side-read? :)"


I would read it as a side read for sure. We should definitely see about it in the new year!! Feb sounds good.


message 33: by [deleted user] (new)

Kristina wrote: "Kathy wrote: "Martha wrote: "Kristina, I hope to read The Moonstone next year. I'm really looking forward to it."

Maybe we can read it together as a side-read? :)"

I would read it as a side rea..."


The Moonstone is on my TBR list and I own a copy so I would love to join. I also have exams that finish at the end of January so will be looking for a good read to enjoy as a change from textbooks!


message 34: by Sandi (new)

Sandi I would also like to read The Moonstone. I wanted to join East of Eden for my first group read, but couldn't because we moved in October. My copy got packed in a box and we didn't have internet until mid-November anyway...too late to join in now! I do have a copy of The Moonstone too though, and would love to read it with this group!


message 35: by Martha (new)

Martha (marthas48) So glad to see people interested in reading The Moonstone together. Toward the end of January I will post a thread for it ... or have one of the mods do it. Offhand, I don't know how this group does it. I'll check that out.

Re another chunkster. I'm currently reading Villette. It's over 2000 pages on my iPhone and that qualifies as a chunkster in my book. It's a favorite, but not THE favorite. Many like it better than Jane Eyre, but I do not and I'm over 90% done so I don't see my opinion changing in that. It's a 'quieter' book than JE ... if that makes sense ... much more thoughtful than action oriented.


message 36: by Juliette (new)

Juliette Loretta wrote: I'll admit to some curiosity about the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.


Me too.


message 37: by Lindsay (new)

Lindsay (itwasatrickpie) The Pickwick Papers - one of Dickens' earlier works - freewheeling, rollocking, messy, FUN, and lacking in the sentimentality and moralistic overtones that irk me a bit in his later works. Martin Chuzzlewit is a close runner up - the Mantolinis make me laugh out loud.

The Mill on the Floss - It has been several years since my George Eliot-a-thon but she is my favourite 'chunkster' author and 'classics' author because of the subtlety and depth with which she portrays her characters. If that's not long enough to qualify then Middlemarch is also excellent!

Wuthering Heights - for the intensely gothic atmosphere. The Tenant of Wildfell Hall and Lorna Doone: A Romance of Exmoor for similar reasons.

I love Arthurian stories and really enjoyed Le Morte d'Arthur, Vol 1 books.

Not the chunkiest of chunksters but Pride and Prejudice is my favourite Austen, closely followed by Persuasionand Emma.

Crime and Punishment. Yes.

I like me some Thomas Hardy - I've yet to read a mediocre one of his. I did Tess of the D'Urbervilles for A-Level then read a handful more over the next few years.

I have a peculiar affinity for D.H. Lawrence - his characters are so intense and emotionally screwed up, and highly parody-able. Sons and Lovers is a fine example. I'm very glad I'm not married to the author... Along similar lines, Henry Miller. I loved the tropics, particularly Capricorn.


The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman and The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling really surprised me in how engaging, unstuffy and modern they felt given their respective times of writing.

I'm less well read in more modern chunksters but Possession really caught my attention. So rich and thickly layered, I shall have to revisit it some time as I think it's the kind of book that benefits from rereading. The gothic fairy tales were particularly captivating.



I have a strong interest in reading:
A Game of Thrones
Infinite Jest
The Divine Comedy
among others, and attempting to re-read (maybe an annotated version) after abandoning because I found the references so totally impenetrable:
Ulysses


message 38: by Andrea (new)

Andrea This is such a great discussion! I think to really give a good answer I'm going to have to go through my read book lists and come back with a reply.


Bookworm Adventure Girl (bookwormadventuregirl) Kathy wrote: "My favorite chuncksters are:

The Stand by Stephen King Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë Les Misérables by Victor Hugo A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1) by George R.R. Martin [b..."


I just received [book:11/22/63|12035084]and I'm hoping to read it before Christmas. I have heard good things so far. Perhaps I should start it today since it is 11/22/11


message 40: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (bookgoddess1969) Jolene, I would highly recommend it! I'm loving every second of it! :)


message 41: by Danielle (new)

Danielle | 31 comments I have to say my favorite chunkster was Anna Karenina. Maybe because I have been getting more into Russian literature and I want to go to Russia. I just thought that you really got to know the characters, not just one or two but almost all of them.


message 42: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 885 comments Jolene wrote: "I just received 11/22/63 and I'm hoping to read it before Christmas."

As one who lived through it once, I'm not sure I could live through it again through a book. Too painful. I still remember vividly the moment in biology lab when a professor poked his head into the room and announced the death to us.


message 43: by Martha (last edited Nov 22, 2011 08:59PM) (new)

Martha (marthas48) I was in Civics class. Not a moment I'll ever forget either.


message 44: by VeganMedusa (new)

VeganMedusa (kerriveganmedusa) Gaijinmama wrote: "I have got to read The Count of Monte Cristo, I love the story (I've seen several film versions) and it really seems to have all the elements that make for a great book!"

Which film would you recommend? And yes, you have to read it - it's a chunkster but you whiz through it, it's so much fun. (Make sure it's the Robin Buss translation).
I'll give another vote for The Count. Also War & Peace, Les Mis and Middlemarch.


message 45: by Zulfiya (new)

Zulfiya (ztrotter) My favorite chunksters are Bleak House by Charles Dickens , Drood by Dan Simmons , Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese , and It by Stephen King .


message 46: by Martha (new)

Martha (marthas48) I'm reading Bleak House now and enjoying it very much.


message 47: by Zulfiya (new)

Zulfiya (ztrotter) Martha wrote: "I'm reading Bleak House now and enjoying it very much."

It is really an excellent read - two narrators, two tenses, tow absolutely different yarns wonderfully interwoven. I have read nearly all his novels, and it is his BEST, IMHO.


message 48: by Zulfiya (new)

Zulfiya (ztrotter) Martha wrote: "I'm reading Bleak House now and enjoying it very much."

It is really an excellent read - two narrators, two tenses, tow absolutely different yarns wonderfully interwoven. I have read nearly all his novels, and it is his BEST, IMHO


Bookworm Adventure Girl (bookwormadventuregirl) Kathy wrote: "Jolene, I would highly recommend it! I'm loving every second of it! :)"

Thanks Kathy. I look forward to it.


Bookworm Adventure Girl (bookwormadventuregirl) Everyman wrote: "Jolene wrote: "I just received 11/22/63 and I'm hoping to read it before Christmas."

As one who lived through it once, I'm not sure I could live through it again through a book. Too painful. I s..."


JFK was shot on my mother's 17th birthday. She reminds me every year and tells me what she was doing at the time. I think it's one of those moments in history that everyone remembers what they were doing or where they were when they heard the news.


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