You'll love this one...!! A book club & more discussion

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Closed Discussion Topic > December Book Nominations - NOW CLOSED!!

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message 1: by Jenny, honorary mod - inactive (last edited Nov 14, 2008 01:37AM) (new)

Jenny (notestothemoon) | 846 comments So it was a close call but we did have a winner - Victorian Mysteries.

You have 3 days to nominate your chosen title. I will stop taking nominations at 10.00 am UK time on 17 November 2008. The nominations will then be put to a poll.

If you can give me

The title, the author

Brief description of the book

That would be great :)

One nomination per person please. Thank you!

message 2: by Jenny, honorary mod - inactive (new)

Jenny (notestothemoon) | 846 comments The Woman in White, Wilkie Collins

The Woman in White famously opens with Walter Hartright's eerie encounter on a moonlit London road. Engaged as a drawing master to the beautiful Laura Fairlie, Walter is drawn into the sinister intrigues of Sir Percival Glyde and his 'charming' friend Count Fosco, who has a taste for white mice, vanilla bonbons and poison. Pursuing questions of identity and insanity along the paths and corridors of English country houses and the madhouse, The Woman in White is the first and most influential of the Victorian genre that combined Gothic horror with psychological realism.

message 3: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Ooh I'm so glad someone nominated The Woman in White - its one of my favourite books, so any excuse to read it again is very welcome! However, in an attempt to reduce my TBR, I'll also nominate another book:

Kept: A Novel, by D. J. Taylor

August 1863. Henry Ireland, a failed landowner, dies unexpectedly in a riding accident, and his young widow disappears. Three years later his friend James Dixey, a celebrated naturalist, is found dead on his grounds with his throat torn out. Are these deaths connected? What has happened to Mrs Ireland? And what are the sinister bonds that link these men to the poaching of osprey eggs in Scotland, the doomed romance of Dixey's kitchen maid and the first Great Train Robbery?

message 4: by Terri (last edited Nov 14, 2008 02:43AM) (new)

Terri (terrisa-uk) I was going to nominate Kept! I can see this is going to be a tricky decision!!! I will nominate:

A Most Dangerous Woman by LM Jackson

'It was said that she had the good manners of a respectable upper servant but was far too young to have been pensioned; that she spoke as if she had received an education, but knew the coasters' slang as if she were born-and-bred to it; and that she not only had no husband - which was a commonplace on Leather Lane - but seemed never to have possessed one.' When the mysterious Sarah Tanner opens her Dining and Coffee Rooms upon the corner of Leather Lane and Liquor pond Street, her arrival amongst the poor market-traders is a nine-days' wonder. Few doubt that she has a 'past'; but no-one can possibly predict how it will return to haunt her. When an old friend is brutally murdered by the unlikeliest of assailants, Sarah Tanner is the only witness. Unable to turn to the police, she reluctantly finds herself drawn back into the dark underworld of the Victorian metropolis. Assisted by unlikely friends, dogged by the criminal machinations of 'the greatest gamester, felon, villain, swindler, and scoundrel in London', she must unravel a web of treachery and deceit, that takes her from the gaming hells of Regent Street to the suburban heights of Upper Holloway; from the slums of St. Giles to the fast-flowing waters of the Thames. Relying on her wits, trading on her past, Sarah Tanner risks gambling her own life upon a desperate quest for justice and vengeance. Lee Jackson returns with a new "Lady detective," the first of a gripping series set in 1850s London.

message 5: by Jenny, honorary mod - inactive (new)

Jenny (notestothemoon) | 846 comments Any more for any more :P I think this is quite a difficult theme this month. I'm liking the suggestions so far though!

message 6: by Terri (new)

Terri (terrisa-uk) I had a hard time choosing which one to nominate Jenny! Luckily Heidi nominated one of the three I had in mind ...

message 7: by Jenny, honorary mod - inactive (new)

Jenny (notestothemoon) | 846 comments Yeh it is a hard one. I had one other in mind when choosing mine. See if anyone suggests that one.

message 8: by Terri (new)

Terri (terrisa-uk) lol ... wonder if it's the same as mine!

message 9: by Alice (last edited Nov 15, 2008 01:38PM) (new)

Alice (aliceg) Alias Grace by Margaret Atwood

Intrigued by contemporary reports of a sensational murder trial in 1843 Canada, Atwood has drawn a compelling portrait of what might have been. Her protagonist, the real life Grace Marks, is an enigma. Convicted at age 16 of the murder of her employer, Thomas Kinnear, and his housekeeper and lover, Nancy Montgomery, Grace escaped the gallows when her sentence was commuted to life in prison, but she also spent some years in an insane asylum after an emotional breakdown. Because she gave three different accounts of the killings, and because she was accused of being the sole perpetrator by the man who was hanged for the crime, Grace's life and mind are fertile territory for Atwood. Adapting her style to the period she describes, she has written a typical Victorian novel, leisurely in exposition, copiously detailed and crowded with subtly drawn characters who speak the embroidered, pietistic language of the time. She has created a probing psychological portrait of a working-class woman victimized by society because of her poverty, and victimized again by the judicial and prison systems. The narrative gains texture and tension from the dynamic between Grace and an interlocutor, earnest young bachelor Dr. Simon Jordan, who is investigating the causes of lunacy with plans to establish his own, more enlightened institution. Jordan is hoping to awaken Grace's suppressed memories of the day of the murder, but Grace, though uneducated, is far wilier than Jordan, whom she tells only what she wishes to confess. He, on the other hand, is handicapped by his compassion, which makes him the victim of the wiles of other women, too: his passionate, desperate landlady, and the virginal but predatory daughter of the prison governor. These encounters give Atwood the chance to describe the war between the sexes with her usual wit. Although the narrative holds several big surprises, the central question: Was Grace dupe and victim or seductress and instigator of the bloody crime, is left tantalizingly ambiguous.

message 10: by Jenny, honorary mod - inactive (new)

Jenny (notestothemoon) | 846 comments This post is on behalf of Kate. Kate has nominated

Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, Robert Louis Stevenson

Everyone has a dark side. Dr Jekyll has discovered the ultimate drug. A chemical that can turn him into something else. Suddenly, he can unleash his deepest cruelties in the guise of the sinister Hyde. Transforming himself at will, he roams the streets of fog-bound London as his monstrous alter-ego. It seems he is master of his fate. It seems he is in complete control. But soon he will discover that his double life comes at a hideous price ...

message 11: by Jenny, honorary mod - inactive (new)

Jenny (notestothemoon) | 846 comments Just under 11 hours left to nominate :)

message 12: by Jaime (new)

Jaime | 240 comments Fingersmith by Sarah Waters

From the dust jacket:

"Sue Trinder is an orphan, left as an infant in the care of Mrs. Sucksby, a "baby farmer," who raised her with unusual tenderness, as if Sue were her own. Mrs. Sucksby's household, with its fussy babies calmed with doses of gin, also hosts a transient family of petty thieves-fingersmiths-for whom this house in the heart of a mean London slum is home.

One day, the most beloved thief of all arrives- Gentleman, an elegant con man, who carries with him an enticing proposition for Sue: If she wins a position as maid to Maud Lilly, a naive country gentlewoman, and aids Gentleman in her seduction, they will all share in Maud's inheritance. Once the inheritance is secured, Maud will be disposed of- passed off as mad, and made to live out the rest of her days in a lunatic asylum.

With dreams of paying back the kindness of her family, Sue agrees to the plan. Once in, however, she begins to pity her helpless mark and to care for Maud Lilly in unexpected ways...only the first surprise in this Dickensian novel of stunning thrills and reversals."

One of my favorite books. I'd love to read it again and discuss with others!

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