Friday, May 29, 2009

June Selection Poll

I like to use a theme to select potential book club reads, and for June I was drawing a blank, so I decided upon a British writers theme, based mostly on titles sitting on my bookcase that I have yet to read. So, the list of nominees for the June selection are as follows:

Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
I've read Mitchell's Black Swan Green and really enjoyed it, and Cloud Atlas has been up there on my to be read list. Mitchell plays with linearity, telling the story across several generations and through several characters. Its structure is essentially 12 short stories that make up the whole of the novel. Interesting enough to try, anyhow. Here are two views that, in my mind, add to the hype: Reading Matters and this one.

The Believers - Zoë Heller
Zoë Heller is also the author of Notes on a Scandal: What Was She Thinking? that was made into a pretty good movie with Cate Blanchett a few years back. Her latest novel is a "layered and utterly assured study of a family driven by political passion whose personal lives refuse to comply with prescribed ideology." So it's funny and bittersweet and sharp, and brilliant, according to this critic. Sounds interesting!

On Beauty - Zadie Smith
Another modern classic of the British family, Smith's novel was shortlisted for every major award in 2006, winning the Orange Broadband Prize which celebrates female authors. I've read a number of reviews and synopses of On Beauty, and I can only say that it intrigues me more. Her writing is celebrated, the characters are celebrated, the cultural and social issues are celebrated, and, of course, she's celebrated. It sounds delightful.

So there's the three. After researching these three I feel that it is not a question of if I will read them, but in what order. Which will be first? You decide. Poll opens tomorrow.

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