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Vote For The First Bgo Book Group Read Of 2013

Vote for the first BGO book group read of 2013  

21 members have voted

  1. 1. Which book do you want to read and discuss?

    • March Violets - Philip Kerr
      5
    • Orlando - Virginia Woolf
      9
    • Frankenstein - Mary Shelley
      7


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Hello everybody. As a welcome to the new-look BGO site the subject of our first read of 2013 will be renewal, rebirth, starting over, etc.

Our book group is open to all members of the site. Every member can vote and take part.

 

The nominations are:

 

March Violets by Philip Kerr.

The brutality and corruption of Nazi Germany serve as the backdrop for this impressive debut mystery novel. Scottish-born Kerr re-creates the period accurately and with verve; the novel reeks of the sordid decade that saw Hitler's rise to power. Bernhard Gunther is a hard-boiled Berlin detective who specializes in tracking down missing persons--mostly Jews. He is summoned by a wealthy industrialist to find the murderer of his daughter and son-in-law, killed during the robbery of a priceless diamond necklace. Gunther quickly is catapulted into a major political scandal involving Hitler's two main henchmen, Goering and Himmler. The search for clues takes Gunther to morgues overflowing with Nazi victims; raucous nightclubs; the Olympic games where Jesse Owens tramples the theory of Aryan racial superiority; the boudoir of a famous actress; and finally to the Dachau concentration camp. Fights with Gestapo agents, shoot-outs with adulterers, run-ins with a variety of criminals, and dead bodies in unexpected places keep readers guessing to the very end. Narrator Gunther is a spirited guide through the chaos of 1930s Berlin and, more important, a detective cast in the classic mold.

 

Orlando by Virginia Woolf.

Virginia Woolf's Orlando 'The longest and most charming love letter in literature', playfully constructs the figure of Orlando as the fictional embodiment of Woolf's close friend and lover, Vita Sackville-West. Spanning three centuries, the novel opens as Orlando, a young nobleman in Elizabeth's England, awaits a visit from the Queen and traces his experience with first love as England under James I lies locked in the embrace of the Great Frost.

At the midpoint of the novel, Orlando, now an ambassador in Costantinople, awakes to find that he is a woman, and the novel indulges in farce and irony to consider the roles of women in the 18th and 19th centuries. As the novel ends in 1928, a year consonant with full suffrage for women. Orlando, now a wife and mother, stands poised at the brink of a future that holds new hope and promise for women. 

 

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley.

Frankenstein was Mary Shelley's immensely powerful contribution to the ghost stories which she, Percy Shelley, and Byron wrote one wet summer in Switzerland. Its protagonist is a young student of natural philosophy, who learns the secret of imparting life to a creature constructed from relics of the dead, with horrific consequences. Frankenstein confronts some of the most feared innovations of evolutionism: topics such as degeneracy, hereditary disease, and mankind's status as a species of animal. 

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1.  Can you explain how these three options were chosen?

 

2.  For future polls, would you consider adding an option to vote for "none of the above, I would prefer another set to vote on"?  

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1. We discussed it here : http://www.bookgrouponline.com/topic/7087-nominations-for-the-next-bgo-book-group-read/?hl=%2Bfirst+%2Bgroup+%2Bread+%2B2013#entry137044

 

 

2 Really up to Tagesmann to answer - moderator who is moderating the group read - but I'd say no since we got the chance to nominate and discuss before the vote.

 

ETA information on the Book Group is here : http://www.bookgrouponline.com/topic/5788-introduction-to-the-2010-bgo-bookgroup/. Please feel free to join in.

 

Welcome to the board.

Edited by lunababymoonchild

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Hi Everyman

 

We go through a round of nominations and then vote on those that received support.

 

You don't have to vote and even if you do, you don't have to read the chosen book. However, the more people that read a book the (hopefully) better the discussion.

 

There is a bit more background to our book group here and here

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Tag - Is there a specific edition of Virginia Woolf's Orlando we are to read: i.e. Wordsworth's Classics?

 

ETA: Typo kinda day...

Edited by BananaKiwi

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We don't tend to worry about versions or editions, BananaKiwi. Interestingly there is an early version of Frankenstein which is quite different to the later better known versions.

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We don't tend to worry about versions or editions, BananaKiwi. Interestingly there is an early version of Frankenstein which is quite different to the later better known versions.

Thank you, Tag. Wasn’t the first version titled "The Modern Prometheus"?  Also, wasn't the version we know as the story the third version?

 

I wonder if the first version can be bought?  It would be interesting to read it.

 

It’s a story that 24 years after first reading left such an impression, I still remember clearly…

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Thank you, Tag. Wasn’t the first version titled "The Modern Prometheus"?  Also, wasn't the version we know as the story the third version?

 

I wonder if the first version can be bought?  It would be interesting to read it.

 

It’s a story that 24 years after first reading left such an impression, I still remember clearly…

 

Indeed it was, when first published, anonymously, in 1818, called "Frankenstein or The Modern Prometheus".  The second edition was published in France in 1822.  The popular edition was published in 1831, having been heavily revised by Mary Shelley herself to make the story more conservative.  This is the one that's most widely read but you can still get the 1818 edition rather easily (Amazon have more than one edition but one, as an example here : http://www.amazon.co.uk/Frankenstein-Modern-Prometheus-Oxford-Classics/dp/0199537151/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1375045815&sr=1-2&keywords=frankenstein+mary+shelley) they also seem to have a few copies of the popular edition so it's personal choice.

Edited by lunababymoonchild

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And there's a couple of alternative cheap Kindle versions of the 1818 text available too, which weren't easy to get hold of for a long while (studied the 1818 text way back for an OU course)...

 

And checking the poll results at the top of the page, Frankie is making a late surge up the outside! ;)

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And there's a couple of alternative cheap Kindle versions of the 1818 text available too, which weren't easy to get hold of for a long while (studied the 1818 text way back for an OU course)...

 

And checking the poll results at the top of the page, Frankie is making a late surge up the outside! ;)

I bought one such 1818 text the other day for 49p and probably should have included this in my list. Edited by lunababymoonchild

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Just need a couple more votes! Come on people, you know you want to get into a discussion of the differences between the 1818 and the "popular" texts! ;)

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There seems to be a 'Changed My Mind' option for anyone who wants to delete their first vote  (I don't know if you get a chance to vote again once your first vote is deleted - didn't try as I didn't want to risk it)

 

Or are we not allowing the changing of minds?

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There seems to be a 'Changed My Mind' option for anyone who wants to delete their first vote  (I don't know if you get a chance to vote again once your first vote is deleted - didn't try as I didn't want to risk it)

 

Or are we not allowing the changing of minds?

 

I left that setting as it was - you can change your mind, cancel your original vote and cast it for another option if you want.  After all, this is about choosing the book you want to read, so if something makes you think differently before the poll closes then I think you should be able to change your vote.

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Indeed it was, when first published, anonymously, in 1818, called "Frankenstein or The Modern Prometheus".  The second edition was published in France in 1822.  The popular edition was published in 1831, having been heavily revised by Mary Shelley herself to make the story more conservative.  This is the one that's most widely read but you can still get the 1818 edition rather easily (Amazon have more than one edition but one, as an example here : http://www.amazon.co.uk/Frankenstein-Modern-Prometheus-Oxford-Classics/dp/0199537151/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1375045815&sr=1-2&keywords=frankenstein+mary+shelley) they also seem to have a few copies of the popular edition so it's personal choice.

Thank you for the link, I'll have a look. 

 

I still have my copy of the popular edition and have never been able to part with it or loan it out. I've never seen it as a horror story, yet It's amazing how many people believe it to be so...

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Just need a couple more votes! Come on people, you know you want to get into a discussion of the differences between the 1818 and the "popular" texts! ;)

That's no fair, lol!  We would be reading two books effectively.....and.....and......and that means two choices I now have and I can't decide whether to change my vote or not.....thinking.gifnono.gif15.gifbanana.gif

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Thank you for the link, I'll have a look. 

 

I still have my copy of the popular edition and have never been able to part with it or loan it out. I've never seen it as a horror story, yet It's amazing how many people believe it to be so...

You're more than welcome. I didn't know that you already have a copy and put the link in just for your information. As already stated the edition you choose to read is entirely up to you so there's no need to buy a different one. I've never read it so went for the cheapie original to see what it's like because I'm like that - as it turns out I have an e-edition of the popular version that I got free with an app, so I might read that instead. You don't need to change your vote either, we'll probably end up discussing Frankenstein anyway, even if it doesn't win, it's not really the most formal/ rigid book read in the whole world.

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You're more than welcome. I didn't know that you already have a copy and put the link in just for your information. As already stated the edition you choose to read is entirely up to you so there's no need to buy a different one. I've never read it so went for the cheapie original to see what it's like because I'm like that - as it turns out I have an e-edition of the popular version that I got free with an app, so I might read that instead. You don't need to change your vote either, we'll probably end up discussing Frankenstein anyway, even if it doesn't win, it's not really the most formal/ rigid book read in the whole world.

That's what I like about this group, is it more informal/relaxed approach to book discussions.  I did join a local (to where I was living at the time) book group, however found it too formal and starchy. 

 

The popular version was my French Grandfathers' copy, so I keep it for sentimental reasons.  I'm interested in the original version to compare how much more unrefined and independant it is.  One review on Amazon I read made some interesting observations about how it reflected social change at the time it was first written.  Another observation the reviewr made was with regards to likening the story to Beauty and the Beast, Cyrano de Bergerac, the Elephant Man, or E.T.  I feel the reference to Cyrano de Bergerac is a little weak as he uses his razor sharp wit to conceal his low self-esteem issuses and fear of rejection, when comparing to "the Monster" in Frankenstein. 

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I hope Orlando holds on - don't fancy Frankenstein, however what will be will be.   

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