Adventures in Reading

Weekly Geeks #12: Ask Me About My Books
July 19, 2008, 9:50 am
Filed under: thoughtful | Tags: , , ,

Another round of Weekly Geeks has arrived and this week I’ll be listed books in my growing to be read pile. I ask you, dear reader, to ask me any questions you might have regarding these books and I will later try to tackle your inquiries once I finally get to the reviewing stage. I’m at the library and unfortunately don’t have a photographic memory so please bare with the few blank spots on the list until I get an opportunity to add them in later! (Finally, an updated list!)

1. Something to Tell You by Hanif Kureishi
2. Children’s Literature by Seth Lerer
3. The Story of Mankind by Hendrik Willem van Loon
4. “Mama Loved Patsy Cline” by Laura Bork
5. Visitors by Brookner
6. Political Thinking by Glenn Tinder
7. How I Learned English by Tom Miller
8. Ask a Mexican by Gustavo Arellano
9. My Sister, My Love by Joyce Carol Oates
10. Assassin’s Accomplice by Kate Clifford Larson


I keep wanting to read Oates, so I”ll be curious to see what you think. Some people seem to find her tedious, so do you?

Comment by Andi

I like Oates, but lately I find that her writing drives me nuts with run-on sentences. Did My Sister, My Love have any stylistic eccentricities that bothered you while reading?

Comment by dew

My question to you: Have you read any of Oates’s other works (I must admit that a couple of years back I went on an Oates binge)? If so, how do they stack up to My Sister, My Love?

Comment by Katherine

I’m also curious about the Oates book. Is this a novel for adults, or another YA book?

I’m also curious about the short story (?) “Mama Loved Patsy Cline”. Does Cline’s music or pop/country music figure prominently in the story?

Comment by bybee

I have not read any Oates stuff–I always think I will get around to it, but other books get in line in front of her. I think of her stuff as pretty heavy and gloomy. I am interested in this one you have picked–is it gloomy or have hope at the end of the tunnel?

Comment by Kim

Another Oates question as I’m meant to be reading her stuff at the mo. How does it compare to her other work? And does it feature an abused female? All her work seems to be about women who have been mistreated in some way from what I have read so far

my list is here:

Comment by katrina

I’m actually reading MY SISTER, MY LOVE now — did the news about the DNA evidence re: the Ramseys affect your reading of the novel? Did you find the obvious connection to the Ramsey family distracting, or did you find it helpful to have the story grounded in “real life”?

Comment by Bibliolatrist

My question is about #8 Ask a Mexican by Gustavo Arellano.

Having gone to school this past year with a 40-something gentlemen who recently immigrated from Mexico, I discovered that he had many stereo-typical thoughts on Canadians that surprised him to be false.

My question to you is does this book successfully shatter many of the pre-concieved ideas that the general population has concerning Hispanic Americans? Or is the book written in a more humourous approach?

Comment by Joanne

I once attempted to read The Story of Mankind. I wasn’t able to finish it, though I wrote about it here. My question for you, if you manage to get through it, is whether you think it has any value as a history book, or is it just too dated to be useful? And, um, good luck! ;-)

Comment by Julie

Like Julie I attempted to read The Story of Mankind way back but I stopped even before reaching a fourth of the entire book. Was it an interesting read for you?

And I’d like to hear your thoughts on either Oates or Kureishi. I haven’t read any of their work but I’ve been meaning to. Oates particularly but she seems to have a huge number of books out already and I don’t know what to pick.

Comment by Lightheaded

Being an English learner myself, I’m intrigued by How I learned English. I imagine it’s about Spanish speakers sharing their stories about learning English. Which story impressed you the most, and why?

Comment by Alessandra

The Story of Mankind is one of the few Newbery titles that I haven’t read. How does it hold up against other Newbery titles?

Comment by Tasses

As a children’s librarian, I should probably read Children’s Literature. I see it got some really good reviews. Did you find it an interesting/entertaining book in addition to containing good research on the subject?

Comment by Tiny Librarian

I know pretty much nothing about any of those books. Out of that list, which one would you recommend above the others?
Also, I’ve answered your question; happy Weekly Geeks!

Comment by Maree

I’m interested in the technique and art of storytelling itself so anything along that line would interest me. My questions are for any or all of the fiction titles in your list:

How was Point-of-View handled? Was there a single POV character or did it alternate among two or more. Was it always clear whose eyes and mind were filtering?

How was language used to set tone and mood?

Was the prose dense or spare? Were sentences generally simple or complex?

How was metaphor used? Were associations fresh or did they tend toward cliche? Did they add to your understanding of the theme?

What was the central or organizing theme?

How does the title relate to the story? Was it fitting?

As an Oates fan who hasn’t yet read My Sister, My Love, I’d be partial to hearing your thoughts about it.

BTW I’m hosting a book giveaway this week. Four copies of Still Summer by Jacquelyn Mitchard. Four chances to enter until Saturday 3PM PST.

Comment by Joy Renee

[…] Uncategorized | Tags: joyce carol oates, my sister my love, weekly geeks Anyone else remember Weekly Geeks #12 from, well, weeks ago? Anyone? Well I have finally finished reading Joyce Carol Oates’ My […]

Pingback by In response to Weekly Geeks #12 « Adventures in Reading

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: