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When did you last read a truly great book and what was it?

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Showing 26-38 of 38 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on 9 Jan 2013, 17:20:45 GMT
Err. Topic failed. F. Sit down, Stella.

*hangs head in shame*

In reply to an earlier post on 9 Jan 2013, 17:36:50 GMT
Anita says:

Posted on 10 Jan 2013, 09:23:26 GMT
monica says:
Many many thanks, Anita. I've read and liked v. much other Cortazar books but I'd never heard of that one. Straight to the wish list.

Posted on 10 Jan 2013, 09:36:34 GMT
Last edited by the author on 10 Jan 2013, 14:20:42 GMT
Greatness is subjective, surely? My greatest read is not necessarily going to be great to anyone else.

Anyway, I think the last truly great read for me was Shades of Grey by Jasper Fforde in 2011. Nothing I read last year really compared, although the Chaos Walking Trilogy by Patrick Ness came close.

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Jan 2013, 10:03:54 GMT
Last edited by the author on 10 Jan 2013, 12:26:33 GMT
Anita says:
To be honest I don't imagine Hopscotch and 62 without one another, the latter - in a way - being an "expanded version" of chapter 62 of the former

Edit: it actually comes to the personal taste, but I prefer 62 over Hopscotch - perhaps

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Jan 2013, 15:19:26 GMT
Dan Holloway says:
I was having a conversation with one of the booksellers at Blackwell's a couple of days ago about what an exciting time it is for the availability of Latin American fiction, and how much Bolano's been responsible for showing the reaidng public's interest. He introduced me to the new Alejandro Zambra book Ways of Going Home. I read Bonsai last year and loved it.

Posted on 10 Jan 2013, 20:31:46 GMT
Booktigger says:
Three that spring to mind from last year are both Andrew Kaufmans books, and The Time Child by Lexi Revellion

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Jan 2013, 21:16:30 GMT
I Readalot says:
So many new Latin American and Spanish names appearing now. I received a proof of the new one by Marias and have started reading that. I was discussing his with the rep last time he was over, the fact that he is a great writer and as yet virtually unknown in the UK. As well as writing his own novels he has translated the likes of Joseph Conrad and Laurence Sterne.

Posted on 13 Jan 2013, 10:35:31 GMT
Last edited by the author on 13 Jan 2013, 11:24:14 GMT
Looks like someone's not feeling the love for William Trevor...
Your reply to Ryan Williams's post:
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Posted on 13 Jan 2013, 19:48:30 GMT
DPL says:
Hereward by James Wilde

Posted on 19 Feb 2013, 21:54:26 GMT
r p bradley says:
I know what the original poster is talking about.
Every time I sample a new author recently I'm under whelmed.
However I have just been blown by this unexpected gem.

Straw Houses

I was in two minds as to whether or not to buy this one, knowing nothing of it, or the author, and to be honest, if it weren't for the 5* user review I probably wouldn't have bothered.

Glad I did though, as this booked really blew me away. It usually takes me a week or two to get through a novel, but I finished "Straw Houses" in two days.

It's the deceptively simple tale of a bored young man, a bit of a wall flower I guess, who befriends a charismatic loner in a bar one night, and gets drawn into a conspiracy involving a corrupt politician and a snuff movie.

The prose is snappy and playful, the lead character's truly three-dimensional, and even now a week later details and moments keep creeping up into my mind.
I might even read it again, which is virtually unheard of for me.

Couldn't find anything else about the author though, so any help in that department would be greatly appreciated.

In reply to an earlier post on 19 Feb 2013, 23:01:30 GMT
Last edited by the author on 19 Feb 2013, 23:12:41 GMT
Chris says:
I love Discworld, but haven't been able to get through Unseen Academicals, I Shall Wear Midnight, and Snuff. Normally Terry's beginnings are fantastic, but these last few just haven't been grabbing me.
Tell me I'm wrong, and should go back and persevere. I didn't make it past the opening chapter or so of Snuff. Does it develop into a great tale?
I don't really want to return to Unseen because I got about half way through and thought it was lacking. The new characters seemed like warmed-over versions of old ones, and the old characters just weren't themselves. The wizards' conversations were dull, and that's never been the case in previous books.
What about I Shall Wear Midnight? Is there any humour and wondrousness in it, or is the whole thing like the opening?

Posted on 19 Feb 2013, 23:45:44 GMT
Chris says:
Not sure if these qualify as great literature because I'm not sure what that is, but they're great to me because they gripped me from cover to cover, and also left me a little stunned for twenty minutes or so after they ended, as if I didn't want to move on straight away. For some reason they're all a bit morbid.
The Bell Jar, The Judas Tree (AJ Cronin), Atonement, and The Finger of Saturn.
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Discussion in:  fiction discussion forum
Participants:  23
Total posts:  38
Initial post:  8 Jan 2013
Latest post:  19 Feb 2013

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