Peter Fritz from Everyday E-book blog in this post titled "What is Normal? The Question Behind Richard Ford's Canada" writes:
Underlying themes of family, maturity, relationships, and secrecy swim just below the surface of the story. And perhaps it is there we learn the deeper values of our ongoing but ever-adjusting sense of "normal" in our lives.
The Quivering Pen gives books away on Freebie Fridays. Put FRIDAY FREEBIE in the e-mail subject line. One entry per person, please. Despite its name, the Friday Freebie runs all week long and remains open to entries until midnight on Thursday—at which time he draws the winning name. The lucky winner is announced on Friday. Last week it was Canada by Richard Ford and The Tell by Hester Kaplan.
David Abrams writes about those memorable first two lines in Canada "First, I'll tell about the robbery our parents committed. Then about the murders, which happened later."
Those words set the tone for the rest of the novel which Colm Toibin says is "a brilliant and engrossing portrait of a fragile American family and the fragile consciousness of a teenage boy.
"The vast, empty prairie lands of Montana and Canada come alive in Richard Ford's latest work,Canada," Nicole Rojas writes for Latinos Post blog.I agree with her, Richard Ford's writing style does paint a vivid picture. Dell's mother describes Great Falls, "It's just cows and wheat out here." Dell said, "And, of course, the winters were frozen and tireless, and the wind hurtled down out of the north like a freight train, and the loss of light would've made anybody demoralized, even the most optimistic souls."
I was an early Stephen King fan but I hadn't read anything by him since The Stand. This 700 page novel's title and cover captured my attention and I am so glad it did. I am loving every surprise along the way. I found this video below at http://112263book.com/. In the video Stephen King talks about how he began this novel in 1973 and why he stopped writing then and why he is glad he waited to write 11/22/63 until now.
Just finished The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Stedman and I highly recommend it. I enjoyed it so much I picked it for Book Club Extraordinaire's January Read. I can't wait to hear what everyone thinks!
For starters, read Turn the Pages blog's review of the novel.
I found this fun website called tvtropes. Tropes are devices and conventions that consists of words used in ways other than what is considered its literal form. Metaphors, and similes are the most common. Tvtropes has analyzed some of the rhetorical devices used in The Reluctant Fundamentalist. For example, Ambiguous Situation -- why is Changez talking to the American in the cafe? Why is the American listening? Why does author use this device? Or how about the Evil Foreigner? After 9/11 Changez is seen as an evil foreigner especially with the "Beard of Sorrow."
In preparation for tomorrow's discussion on A.S. Byatt's The Children's Book based loosely on the life of E. Nesbit, one of Britain's most loved children's authors, I found a website called the Classic Bookshelf that has free great literature. If interested, there are some of E. Nesbit's books available to read for free online. The Five Children and It was the first in a series of books she wrote to supplement the family income much like Olive Wellwood. Edith Nesbit was born in 1858, the daughter of Sarah and John Collis Nesbit, the head of a British agricultural college. She met and married Hubert Bland E. Nesbit when she was 18. She and her husband, a journalist, were both socialists and founders of the English Fabian Society. Bland was a philanderer who couldn't make a living. Nesbit was unconventional, cutting her hair short, dispensing with corsets, smoking habitually, and living flamboyantly. She was a prolific writer as she raised five children, one an illegimate offspring of her husband. The Nesbits inhabited Well Hall in the Kent countryside. They entertained many famous friends and colleagues. She died in May 1924. Read more on E. Nesbit at The Edith Nesbit Society website.
Culture Vulture: Everyone can benefit from my opinion from Chicago is not a fan of A.S. Byatt but finds the plot engaging though melodramatic. She writes that "she [Byatt] does a fairly admirable job presenting a whole swath of socio-political issues embodied in actual people.
The Children's Book is on Uzma Aslam Khan, the author of The Story of Noble Rot, Trespassing, and The Geometry of God, bucket list of books to read. Her novel, The Geometry of God was voted one of Kirkus Reviews' Best Books of 2009.
Beth from Southern Bluestocking is rereading The Children's Book because "(a) I’m a little obsessed with Byatt’s work, (b) the period in which it is set is absolutely fascinating (1895-1920), and (c) I just hate feeling like I missed something good." She does suggest when reading this difficult book to make notecards for all the characters, "...you’ll get completely and totally confused if you don’t remember that Charles Wellwood changed his name to Karl after he went to Germany..."
Parnassus Reads gives The Children's Book 4 out of 5 stars writes "this book is really amazing in its historical sweep, but this is also part of its flaw."
Book Club Extraordinaire Nov/Dec book pick is The Children's Book by A.S. Byatt. Characters abound in this book so I will begin my list so I can keep track of who's who.
Tom Wellswood- age 13 dark gold hair; looked younger than he was; large dark eyes, soft mouth
Julian Cain - age 15; neither tall nor short, slightly built with a sharp face and a sallow complexion.
Phillip Warren- does Indian rope trick and disappears; hay haired, shaggy and filthy; living in the basement of the museum; in the Russian crypt. The shrine of an old dead saint, where the bones used to be on a stone bed.
Dorothy- oldest daughter
Hedda- age 5, vegetarian; little demon; clever; cannot keep still
Florian- age 3; bashful
Robin- age 1
Major Cain- Julian's father; Special Keeper of Precious Metals at the South Kensington Museum
Humphrey Wellswood- Olive's husband, Tom, Dorothy, Phyllis, Hedda, Robin,Florian's father, tall, thin man, with a fox-red beard, neatly trimmed, pale blue eyes and a dark brown velvet jacket; works at the Bank of England and was an active member of the Fabian Society.He tells tales to his family of secret naughtiness amongst the bank clerks.
Olive Wellswood- Tom, Dorothy, Phyllis, Hedda, Florian's mother; vegetarian; author of magical tales; bold, pleasant face, high coloured, eager, firm-mouthed, with wide-set huge dark eyes, like the poopy centres, around 35; moves a little to freely, impuslsivel, fine flesh, fine ankles; authority on British Fairy Lore
Violet Grimwith, Olive's sister, short dark-haired woman in a loose mulberry-coloured dress, vegetarian
Ada - Wellswood's cook
Cathy- young servant
Stephanie Honor Convery, a Melbourne-based writer blogs about Franzen's keynote speech at the Melbourne Writers Festival on August 25. She writes, "Citing Kafka as an example, he claimed that the closer a writer gets to accurately portraying those deeper, murkier parts of themselves in their fiction, the less such fiction resembles the narrative of their own life. Read more...
I'd like to recommend Books on the Nightstand blog. It is written by Ann Kingman and Michael Kindness, two lifelong readers who work in the publishing industry. They have put together a terrific resource for readers. Books on the Nightstand provides book recommendations, and a behind-the-scenes look at the world of books. They offer frequent blog posts, weekly podcasts and a yearly reader retreat. On there most recent podcast, they talks about Better Book Titles, Coverspy, and Bookrageous all on Tumblr. They share the books they want to read and what they can't wait for you to read.
Student, writer, blogger, and editorial intern at Milkweed Editions, Ann Mayhew has an ambitious summer reading list like most of us.Check out her website readingthroughcollege for a fun post on Jonathan Franzen's Freedom called Freedom to Choose our Great Novels.
I'm an expert amateur or maybe an amateur expert.