Sunday, November 28, 2010

Vote on a Readalong Book

I recently asked for suggestions of what you all might like to readalong with me next year and I got so many fabulous suggestions I can't make up my mind. Thank you to you all for your suggestions! Additionally, I stumbled across another book I'd really like to read so I've thrown it into the mix. I've narrowed it down to the ones I think I would really like to read in the next year and even this was hard!...I asked for American suggestions because European classics scare me. Also, I think they get a lot of attention already in the world, and I've been surprised by how much I've been enjoying these American books.

If you'd be interested in reading along with me please vote on which book most interests you. There will be two readalongs one starting in April and one in October so that's why each book is listed twice.

The Choices (summaries taken from goodreads--which is why some of them are lame):
Winter's Tale
The Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin
New York City is subsumed in arctic winds, dark nights, and white lights, its life unfolds, for it is an extraordinary hive of the imagination, the greatest house ever built, and nothing exists that can check its vitality. One night in winter, Peter Lake--orphan and master-mechanic, attempts to rob a fortress-like mansion on the Upper West Side.

Though he thinks the house is empty, the daughter of the house is home. Thus begins the love between Peter Lake, a middle-aged Irish burglar, and Beverly Penn, a young girl, who is dying.

Peter Lake, a simple, uneducated man, because of a love that, at first he does not fully understand, is driven to stop time and bring back the dead. His great struggle, in a city ever alight with its own energy and beseiged by unprecedented winters, is one of the most beautiful and extraordinary stories of American literature.

East of Eden by John Steinbeck

East of Eden

The masterpiece of one of the greatest American writers of all time. East of Eden is an epic tale of good vs. evil with many biblical references and parallels. The story is ultimately that of good's triumph over evil and the human will's ability to make that happen.

Roots by Alex Haley


This "bold . . . extraordinary . . . blockbuster . . ." (Newsweek) begins with a birth in 1750, in an African village; it ends seven generations later at the Arkansas funeral of a black professor whose children are a teacher, a Navy architect, an assistant director of the U.S. Information Agency, and an author. The author is Alex Haley.

John Adams by David McCullough

One of America's greatest storytellers has turned to one of America's greatest stories as the source for his most recent inspiration: a tale of one of the most influential, and often the most misunderstood, Founding Fathers: John Adams. The result is a tour de force and pure joy for the reader.

Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner

Angle of Repose tells the story of Lyman Ward, a retired professor of history and author of books about the Western frontier, who returns to his ancestral home of Grass Valley, California, in the Sierra Nevada. Wheelchair-bound with a crippling bone disease and dependent on others for his every need, Ward is nonetheless embarking on a search of monumental proportions - to rediscover his grandmother, now long dead, who made her own journey to Grass Valley nearly a hundred years earlier. Like other great quests in literature, Lyman Ward's investigation leads him deep into the dark shadows of his own life.

Five Smooth Stones by Ann Fairbairn
Five Smooth Stones
This gripping bestseller, first published in 1966, has continued to captivate readers with its wide-ranging yet intimate portrait of an America sundered by racial conflict. David Champlin is a black man born into poverty in Depression-era New Orleans who makes his way up the ladder of success, only to sacrifice everything to lead his people in the civil rights movement. Sara Kent is the white girl who loves David from the moment she first sees him, and who struggles against his belief that a marriage for them would be wrong in the violent world he has to confront. And the “five smooth stones” are those the biblical David carried against Goliath. By the time this novel comes to its climax of horror, bloodshed, and hope, readers will be convinced that its enduring popularity is fully justified.

This one is not American but I'd love to read it (and being Australian still really fits why I wanted American classics):
The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough

thorn birds

Powered by the dreams and struggles of three generations, THE THORN BIRDS is the epic saga of a family rooted in the Australian sheep country. At the story's heart is the love of Meggie Cleary, who can never possess the man she desperately adores, and Ralph de Bricassart, who rises from parish priest to the inner circles of the Vatican...but whose passion for Meggie will follow him all the days of his life.

Please vote and please readalong! (if you're reading this in a feed reader you'll have to click through for the poll...sorry!)


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