Favouirte novels

Discussion of other topics not necessarily Keats or poetry-related, i.e. other authors, literature, film, music, the arts etc.

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Favouirte novels

Postby Saturn » Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:44 am

I'm not the greatest novel reader per se but most of those that I do read tend to be the 'classics' from the golden age of novels in the 19th century.

Tell us the novels that have had an overwhelming influence on your life, that have actually changed the way you think, feel and behave.

Here's mine, in no particular order:

Jude The Obscure - Thomas Hardy

Great Expectations - Charles Dickens

Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

Howards End - E.M. Forster

Frankenstein - Mary Shelley

The Sorrows Of Young Werther - Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

Mrs Dalloway - Virginia Woolf

The Catcher In The Rye - J.D. Salinger

The Great Gatsby - F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Remains Of The Day - Kazuo Ishiguro

Don Quixote - Miguel De Cervantes

The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath


I tried to keep this to ten but I overran


:roll:
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Postby Malia » Tue Jan 31, 2006 3:56 pm

My all-time favorite novel is Jane Eyre. I think I've read it a million times. (Though I really could do without most--if not all--of Mr. Rochester's never ending monologues.)

Some others:
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte (I love the Brontes)
The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin
A Home at the End of the World by Michael Cunningham (a somewhat depressing novel, but exquisitely written)
Maurice by E.M. Forester
A Single Shard by Linda Sue Park (I HIGHLY recommend this one)
The Giver by Lois Lowry

These aren't novels, but I absolutely LOVE anything by David Sedaris (he writes fictionalized memoirs of his life that are edgy and extremely funny)

Hmm. . .I can't think of any more right now--I guess I'm not what you would consider a prolific reader (and here I was an English lit. major at school).
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Re: Favouirte novels

Postby Despondence » Tue Jan 31, 2006 9:28 pm

Saturn wrote:Tell us the novels that have had an overwhelming influence on your life, that have actually changed the way you think, feel and behave.

I honestly can't think of any novels that did this for me. Guess I didn't read the right ones. Philosophy, poetry, history, biographies and science books can claim those accomplishments in me, but sadly no novels that I now remember.
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Postby Despondence » Tue Jan 31, 2006 9:39 pm

Here's one (the whole series) that I've reread about as often than Keats though:

Image

Just bringing some balance to the force.

An accidental passerby migh get the impression that we eat Milton for breakfast and shit marble in the evening.
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Postby Saturn » Tue Jan 31, 2006 10:37 pm

:lol:

Amadeus right? :wink:
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Postby Despondence » Tue Jan 31, 2006 10:39 pm

A variation thereon, yes :)
Good memory!
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Postby Saturn » Tue Jan 31, 2006 10:46 pm

That's one of my favourite lines from the movie :D

We're not that stuffy here are we? - the miscellaneous section is decidedly less serious and literary than the rest of the site. That was my intention anyway - to show the more humourous side we all have :P

I've just had an idea - how about a punning competition :lol:

Now how would it work?
Last edited by Saturn on Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Credo Buffa » Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:25 pm

Ugh, I'm horrible at punning. My high school band director was renowned for it, though. I don't know how many times I slapped my knee and brought out my best fake laugh during rehearsals. I heard a story once from one of his college directors that you could throw any word at him and he'd come up with a brilliant (if cheesy) pun almost without having to think about it.

Anyhow. . . novels :P

I love reading novels, but I'm very slow at it. I rarely get the chance to just sit and read, so I generally only get through ten or twenty pages at a time over a period of weeks or even months sometimes. Actually, I think my English major has made me an even slower reader, since I'm consistently compelled to write observations and analysis in the margins!

Despite my love of novels (I'm actually working on writing a young adult one right now. . . Malia knows about it :wink:), I guess I'm like Despondence in that it's hard to name any that have really changed my life. I think the closest one that comes to mind in that regard is James Agee's A Death in the Family. However, I do have several favorites: Jane Eyre (I only just read this a few months ago, and I can hardly believe I lived almost 23 years without it!) and Pride and Prejudice are definitely on the re-read list. And, call me crazy, but I can hardly remember life before Harry Potter :wink:
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Postby Malia » Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:35 pm

Credo Buffa wrote:However, I do have several favorites: Jane Eyre (I only just read this a few months ago, and I can hardly believe I lived almost 23 years without it!)


Yea! Another Jane Eyre fan :)
I believe that novel is absolutely chok full of interest because it covers and contains so many different topics:
Gothic Mystery, the story of a woman coming into her own, romance, spiritual and philosophical questioning--and so much more.
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Postby Saturn » Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:36 pm

Credo Buffa wrote:I can hardly remember life before Harry Potter :wink:


Oh no - not you as well :roll:


What's happened to the world when 100 million billion people read Harry Potter?
:roll:
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Postby Credo Buffa » Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:45 pm

Saturn wrote:
Credo Buffa wrote:I can hardly remember life before Harry Potter :wink:


Oh no - not you as well :roll:


What's happened to the world when 100 million billion people read Harry Potter?
:roll:

Hey, don't knock it until you've tried it!

I wrote my senior seminar paper on Harry Potter and the changing face of children's literature and basically defended to the core that it deserves the attention it gets. And dagnabbit, I got an A!

I'm also famous for converting people to my various fandoms (I went with a fellow Harry Potter fanatic to see the latest movie with some non-fans and I totally convinced one of the anti-HP folks that it's actually a really well-designed and original story). Beware, Stephen. Beware! 8)

Malia wrote:I believe that novel is absolutely chok full of interest because it covers and contains so many different topics:
Gothic Mystery, the story of a woman coming into her own, romance, spiritual and philosophical questioning--and so much more.

The romantic themes are incredible. It's not often you run into a classic novel about real love between two average-looking people :wink: I also adore the way the novel talks about the perception of beauty. There's a paragraph right after Jane agrees to marry Mr. Rochester where she says that even though she knows she isn't beautiful, she feels so because she knows that he loves her. . . such a beautiful and true idea!
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Postby Despondence » Tue Jan 31, 2006 11:59 pm

Saturn wrote:
Credo Buffa wrote:I can hardly remember life before Harry Potter :wink:

Oh no - not you as well :roll:

Second that :P
I couldn't get through the Potter's....I put down the first book after ~100 pages. For the life of me, can't see what's so special about them...

Actually, along this line however, maybe I can name one book that maybe had some non-trivial and lasting impact on me: Tolkien's Lord of the Rings. Not for its story (wonderous though it be) - this was the first book that I read in English, oh so many years ago, I must have been 12-13 or so. I guess in some sense it was the one that made me really want to read more books in general, though more of the same in particular (at the time), and it got me started towards a real appreciation of the English language. I wonder if I would have been able to read Keats today, if Tolkien hadn't started me off back then :)
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Postby Malia » Wed Feb 01, 2006 12:04 am

I'm going to side with Credo Buffa on the Harry Potter question. Though I still have only read the very first installment, I loved it and want to read the others. It is just fun reading and in my mind very imaginitively written. I love her choice of names for her characters :) So far, my favorite character is Hagrid--he's such a teddy bear ;) :lol:
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Postby Saturn » Wed Feb 01, 2006 12:05 am

That's an impressive achievement your first English novel being Lord Of The Rings :shock: :shock:

You don't do things by half do you D? :lol:

On Harry Potter - I think I'm more against it because it's so popular and everyone I know loves it, even people who hate fantasy stuff.

I have to admit though I had exactly the same attitude to Lord Of The Rings...until I saw The Fellowship Of The Ring and I was instantly hooked - now I've got all three films, the book and the Extended editions too :roll: :lol:

I remian resolute about Potter though - I WILL resist :o
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Postby Credo Buffa » Wed Feb 01, 2006 12:22 am

Despondence wrote:
Saturn wrote:
Credo Buffa wrote:I can hardly remember life before Harry Potter :wink:

Oh no - not you as well :roll:

Second that :P
I couldn't get through the Potter's....I put down the first book after ~100 pages. For the life of me, can't see what's so special about them...

Hmmm, well, Blackwoods and the Quarterly dismissed Keats after his first volume and I bet they're all eating their words now, wherever they are :wink:

Not that I'm comparing J.K. Rowling to Keats, but really, Harry Potter is a really different kind of reading that forces a lot of people to completely change their ideas about what makes good literature. Yes, a lot of the writing in the first book is sort of naive and child-like, but it's all part of the progression of the series. I remember re-reading the fourth and fifth books and then diving back to re-read the first one and being absolutely amazed at how startlingly different they are. The first book is about an 11-year-old, and it's written that way. Likewise, the latest one is about a 16-year-old, and it is therefore much more mature. It is a series that progresses with the characters, both in subject matter and literary style.

And don't even get me started on what a brilliant premise the whole story is, the natural talent that J.K. Rowling has for creating very real, three-dimensional characters, the intricacy of the plot, the exploration of universal themes, etc.

Ooooo, you people have no idea the can of worms you've opened!
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