Babble Book Club: Upcoming selection ideas?

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Caissa

I thought you suggested taking August off? Is this next selection for September?

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

I did suggest that, but I'm fine to keep going too. I'm moving and also have a wedding at the beginning of September, but am totally cool if others are motivated to keep reading! Just might shift dates a week longer so I can join the final discussion or switch it from the Friday that we have been having -- whatever works best for the most people.

Was more so putting the feelers out there to see how others were doing...

Caissa

I have read 84 books so far this year.I'm always motivated to keep reading.

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

That's crazy! Awesome!

I'm good to keep going as well and have really been enjoying our selections for the last while as well, so would be into hearing more from everyone too.

 

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

Here are some thoughts on reads from my end:

- Anakana Schofield Malarky : lots of buzz around this book and author and is supposed to be a great read

- Steven Galloway The Cellist of Sarajevo : always the perennial favourite Canadian author, his book about the Bosian genocide follows three different story lines

- I would like to read Thomas King's Inconvenient Indian but the holds are still looong at the library

Others' suggestions?


Left Turn Left Turn's picture

I'd be up for reading The Cellist of Sarajevo as our next selection. Our family is good friends with a family who came to Canada as refugees from Sarajevo in 1995, so it's a topic of interest for me.

My hold on The Inconvenient Indian at the VPL is getting closer to coming up. I'm now 35th in line on 22 copies.

Caissa

I can't remember if I have read The Cellist of Sarajevo yet but I believe Ms. C. has read it. I'd be up for it even if I have read it before.

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

Hey all,

welp, if those interested are into reading The Cellsit of Sarajevo, I'm good to go!

As previously mentioned, this month is a tad hectic personally, but that decision by you guys simplifies everything and we can just start on that!

I'll draw up some blog posts and might push the date a bit, just because I'm away the first week of September.

Does the Friday 2pm spot still work for people?

infracaninophile infracaninophile's picture

I can get Cellist of Sarajevo from the library so am all systems go for that. I have a number of friends or colleagues with personal experience of those events so look forward to reading it.

 

Quote:
Does the Friday 2pm spot still work for people?

Hasn't worked for me yet but might be OK this time. Work hours changing somewhat.

infracaninophile infracaninophile's picture

Left Turn wrote:

Quote:
My hold on The Inconvenient Indian at the VPL is getting closer to coming up. I'm now 35th in line on 22 copies.

 

I'm # 15 for 33 copies -- maybe I'll get it first;-)

It does sound like an interesting read and I like Thomas King anyway. Maybe it can be the next selection -- or the one after?

My number has come down from 170-something so people on wait lists should check. 

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

Good to know about the time infracaninophile, thanks!

And yes, this book seems like a great read, albeit a difficult one. I spent some time in the Balkans and specifically in Sarajevo and met quite a few people and heard their stories of the war.

Also re: The Inconvenient Indian, ya the holds are getting lower, but still high, eh...

Sigh, one day we'll be able to read it, one day...

Caissa

Ms. C. dug out the Cellist for me last night. She has yet to read it.

Unionist

Inconvenient Indian was delightful and infuriating. It helps if you're a fan of Thomas King's brand of humour (I am), but it's not a prerequisite. As so many times in my life, every page reminded that I knew nothing about the indigenous people whose land we have camped on. I can't be alone in that respect. When you systematically colonize people, it helps to dehumanize them and, more, render them invisible. King treats us to a sardonic and subjective account of how this was done.

 

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

Thanks for the details Unionist!

I hope there comes a time when we can have it as a selection, but I fear the holds list will never, really decrease... although I'm rather negative, so let's hope that is not the case.

Your opinions on the book U make me want to read it all the more as well.

...

slowly drawing up blogs for our next selection 'The Cellist of Sarajevo' by Stephen Galloway as well.

Caissa

So Cellist of Sarajevo is a go?

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

Ya!

I'm doing a terrible job juggling work, volunteer and real-life right now, and bbc blog posts keep getting chopped. Ack. How you guys put up with me I'll never know.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Kaitlin, we put up with you because you're awsome. The bbc wouldn't exist without you. I marvel at your ability to track down the authors for so many of our discussions. Your taste in books is great, and your posts are a pleasure to read. Not getting the bbc blog posts done promptly is minor potatoes.

Kaitlin McNabb wrote:
I hope there comes a time when we can have it as a selection, but I fear the holds list will never, really decrease... although I'm rather negative, so let's hope that is not the case.

The long holds on The Inconvenient Indian don't really bother me that much. It means people are reading it, which is important. Those of us that get a chance to read it, as I will when my hold on it comes up, can post our thoughts about it once we've read it. That may be the best we can do with that selection.

Caissa

What Left Turn said.

 

If you need to cut something out, I hear Real-Life (TM) is over-rated. Wink

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

Haha, well I wasn't fishing for compliments, but that was nice. Thanks.

rabble staff and I have noticed I like to freak out about life and then write about it on babble... haha. Oh my. But thanks for listening!

Those new posts on new bbc should be up today!

re: The Inconvient Indian

It is nice that so many people are reading it for sure, and that so many people use the library. I wish libraries got more funding so they could purchase more of the books that have 20+ holds on them though so more people can read them.

Even in US libraries the holds are loooong too. Go Thomas King!

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

The Cellist of Sarajevo was a great read and great selection to add to our repertoire of books!

Let's mull over things on the weekend and pick a new selection on Monday!

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

Does anyone have any ideas?

I'm drawing a blank except for a few short stories recommendations that I won't subject anyone to right now.

Caissa

Is The Inconvenient Indian widely available enough yet? Thomas King is coming here to read next month.

kim elliott kim elliott's picture

I would love to discuss the Inconvenient Indian in the book club.  Another proposal is Lawrence Hill's new book, Blood, the stuff of life http://lawrencehill.com/blood-the-stuff-of-life/

[edited to add..]

Also Maude Barlow's new book would be an interesting read: http://www.houseofanansi.com/Blue-Future-P2172.aspx

though if we want to start something of the theme of eating local : Barbara Kingsolver's "Animal, Vegetable Miracle" (the book was recommended by someone in the Eat Local Challenge fb event page).

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

I just finished reading most of The Inconvenient Indian -- had to return it to the library before I completely finished it. I'd had a hold on it since January, and I imagine the wait times on the holds for it are still too ridiculous to make it a viable choice for the bbc. It's a really great read though, highly recommended for anyone who wants to understand the experiences of indigenous peoples on this continent.

I'd like to bring back my previous suggestion of Carmen Aguirre's book Something Fierce: Memoirs of a Revolutionary Daughter. Given that we just marked the 40th anniversary of Pinochet's coup against Allende and whatnot.

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

I'd rather hold off on reading 'The Inconvenient Indian' until I have some more time to think through things and hopefully try to pull something together -- I'm thinking author talk if we can get 'em!

I'm interested in reading Kim's suggestion 'Animal Vegetable Miracle' not just because it fits into the upcoming week, but because I feel like people constantly reference this book in conversations about food and I have never read it!

infracaninophile infracaninophile's picture

I welcome the chance for some nonfiction, but Blood the Stuff of Life has not been released yet and won't be in libraries for months. It already has 35 holds in my local library.

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle sounds interesting but this type of book makes me a bit uneasy, as it is both elitist in authorship and market. The options it suggests are ones simply unavailable to the majority of urban low-income people. I'd be more interested in something with concrete, realistic steps to move towards that ideal.

 

Aguirre's book does sound both engrossing and worthwhile. I recall hearing the author interviewed on the radio and it suggests the book would be a gripping read. I vote with Left Turn. 

Caissa

How about you put up a poll now Kaitlin since you have some suggestions?

Unionist

I really enjoyed Inconvenient Indian, but I can wait...

Something Fierce sounds like a great suggestion. Just borrowed it (electronically) from our wonderful Grande Bibliothèque and I supposedly have till Oct. 16 to read it. I was reading other stuff, but I suppose I could always borrow it again if need be.

Just out of curiosity - do other babblers have online borrowing ability from their libraries? If yes, do you use it - or are you still clear-cutting forests?

 

 

infracaninophile infracaninophile's picture

Unionist wrote:

Just out of curiosity - do other babblers have online borrowing ability from their libraries? If yes, do you use it - or are you still clear-cutting forests?

 

I'm not sure exactly what you mean. Yes, my library has "online borrowing." Do you mean, searching the catalog, reserving and reviewing books online? I do that regularly.

As for "borrowing" books in electronic format, that is subject to more variables. They have a variety of e-reader formats you can download for a time-limited period, but of course you need an e-reader (don't have one). You can also download a pdf of a book for a time-limited period, which you can read on your computer.

I find reading hundreds of pages on a computer screen completely un-doable. I take books everywhere, and read in the car (not while driving), waiting rooms, lunch break and other opportune times. Can't take my computer with me. Paper books are not going to die out. I find borrowing them from a library is both the social justice thing to do and also environmentally friendly. Authors make more from "real book" sales (and libraries are a big customer), demand and use keep libraries in business and they serve people regardless of income, which makes books available to the poor who do NOT have Kobos or Kindles.

As for the trees, surely it is possible to have managed harvesting of forests so that tree populations are renewable. Not clear cutting.

Caissa

I have never read an electronic book. I love the feel of paper.

Unionist

I was exaggerating when I said "clear-cutting".

Yes, I meant using an ereader. I bought mine for $29 when it was on sale. I see the same brand - but with a touch screen and bigger screen - is now on sale for $39.96 (list price $149) for a display model. And more "name-brand" ones are available anywhere for $70-$80.

So it's true - it's an investment - and an adjustment in habits - but anyone I know who has tried, has made the switch and not looked back.

And yeah, it was nice to be able to log in to my library site, look for Carmen Aguirre's book, borrow it for free, and be reading it, all within 5 minutes. Hard to beat.

As to whether paper books are going to die out... I don't believe they will. But I can't believe that they'll become anything more than a specialty item (art books, cook books, crafts and mechanics, etc., things requiring illustration) within a relatively short period of time.

 

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

I was going to put up a poll, but it seems people are interested in reading Something Fierce... next read?

Infrancinophile, I hear you on the authorship stuff. I feel the same way about Jonathan Safran Foer.

I'm down to read Something Fierce if others are game... AND I know Left Turn has been waiting, patiently, for quite awhile to read it in bbc.

Caissa

Something Fierce works for me.

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

LET'S DO IT.

I need until tomorrow to write something up and make it official.

Caissa

You alliterative fool, Unionist.Wink

Unionist

Caissa wrote:

I have never read an electronic book. I love the feel of paper.

I frequently fondle foolscap folio while leafing (metaphorically) through my ereader. Best of both worlds.

 

infracaninophile infracaninophile's picture

Unionist wrote:

 

Yes, I meant using an ereader. I bought mine for $29 when it was on sale. I see the same brand - but with a touch screen and bigger screen - is now on sale for $39.96 (list price $149) for a display model. And more "name-brand" ones are available anywhere for $70-$80.

So it's true - it's an investment - and an adjustment in habits - but anyone I know who has tried, has made the switch and not looked back.

 

I have been keen to try e-readers since they first appeared, but until a neighbour buys one and tells me it works I am reluctant to fork over the cash, however discounted. I live in an electronic dead zone -- no cell phone signal, no cable TV, no wireless internet. I don't know how I would download books to an e-reader  with none of those things. By osmosis?  Surrounding country roads have all the above, while the major road I am on does not. Very weird. I don't miss TV (I can watch the odd show at the gym) but smartphones and ereaders are among the cool gadgets that are useless here. I don't want to have to get in my car and drive to Tim Horton's to download a book from the library or from Project Gutenberg. 

The e-reader users I know are still books-first folks. They love the e-reader for commuting (you can stand in the subway and read) and traveling and waiting in line. But they curl up with an old-fashioned book.

 

bagkitty bagkitty's picture

I will get all enthused about e-readers when I actually own the file I have downloaded, when I can recycle the file at the used e-book store, lend the file without having to hand over the e-reader itself (comes from having friends and family who are notorious for not returning books after they themselves have read them). Colour me archaic, but when I purchase a book I like to actually own what I have purchased - not interested in just renting it from the publisher.

Unionist

Maybe this deserves a thread of its own, but just to respond to a few points:

infracaninophile wrote:
I have been keen to try e-readers since they first appeared, but until a neighbour buys one and tells me it works I am reluctant to fork over the cash, however discounted.

It works, neighbour. Cool

infracaninophile wrote:
I don't want to have to get in my car and drive to Tim Horton's to download a book from the library or from Project Gutenberg.

You can do all those things any time to post to babble or send an email or (as you mentioned) regularly search, reserve, and review books in your library catalogue. How often would you need to borrow or buy e-books anyway?? And I can email you an ebook for free. Or send you one (or 10,000) on a USB or a DVD. Try that with a paper book.

bagkitty wrote:
I will get all enthused about e-readers when I actually own the file I have downloaded, when I can recycle the file at the used e-book store, lend the file without having to hand over the e-reader itself (comes from having friends and family who are notorious for not returning books after they themselves have read them). Colour me archaic, but when I purchase a book I like to actually own what I have purchased - not interested in just renting it from the publisher.

When you borrow from a library, you don't get to own the book either. Just to get that one out of the way. So on that point, ebooks and paper books are equivalent.

As for owning what you buy... Well, that's a separate debate. You don't really fully "own" a paper book either, do you? Otherwise you could copy and paste the whole text somewhere without worrying about copyright liability. As for lending books to friends, trust me - I can lend you ebooks and vice versa, without any kindles changing hands. Not a problemo. And best of all, we can both read it at the same time!

 

 

bagkitty bagkitty's picture

@Unionist:

Actually, I can copy and paste the pages of a paper book onto my fence if I wanted to, not cost effective though... would cost more to do the photocopying then it would to buy a second copy of the book, dismember it and do precisely that.

To the best of my knowledge, one purchases a licence for an e-book, and the licence can be revoked. I am, of course, depending on an American source, but I am going to go way out on a limb here and suggest that the author's description of the situation is broadly applicable in Canada... indeed, given the Harper Government(TM)'s inclinations, I think the description can even be applied somewhat narrowly...

LinkedArticle wrote:

In the non-digital world, copyright ends with the first sale of each copyrighted object. Under the "first sale" doctrine, once you buy a book, that physical book is yours to lend, give away, or resell. Copyright is safeguarded by the limitations of physical transfer — once the book is given or loaned, the original buyer no longer has access to it.

More seriously, the ability to "recycle" books by selling them to a used book store and/or purchasing them from such an establishment is what concerns me. I remember reading somewhere that the average paper and cardboard book passes through the hands of something like 8 or 9 people (I wish I could find the original article and have attempted to track it down repeatedly, but have had no luck finding it) -- and those 8 or 9 people don't have to worry about "compatible formats" and the like. I think continuing to purchase paper books generally contributes to greater access to the material contained therein. I am quite aware that, for many, the convenience of books in an electronic format trumps other considerations, but I have more than few Luddite tendencies to deal with and am going to continue to maintain that the paper and cardboard format has greater social utility.

Unionist

Once you've bought an e-book, it's yours forever. Trust me - not the Los Angeles Times.

And I'm not even talking about the 42,000 Project Gutenberg books which are freely available, all of them, right now.

Can you get the complete works of Shakespeare in paper format for free? I rest my case.

"Compatible formats"? No such thing. Any e-book can be read on any e-reader or any computer or any tablet. Trust me, not urban legend.

Or don't trust me. Use google. Or PM me for full details.

"Luddite tendencies"? I can't treat that. I'm assuming your vinyl and cassette collections are doing well?

 

bagkitty bagkitty's picture

What makes you assume I didn't google in the first place, oh trustworthy font of all knowledge? If the situation has changed since the time this (and other) articles on the subject were published, the PR departments for all the various platforms should be sacked for the totally incompetent way they released the information that access was now totally seamless.

Unionist

bagkitty wrote:

What makes you assume I didn't google in the first place, oh trustworthy font of all knowledge? If the situation has changed since the time this (and other) articles on the subject were published, the PR departments for all the various platforms should be sacked for the totally incompetent way they released the information that access was now totally seamless.

I asked you to trust me. You don't have to. I'm not the font of all knowledge. I do, however, know, from personal experience, a lot about use and portability of e-books. You don't. If you want a book, and if you PM me, I will be happy to give it to you. It will then be your choice whether and how you use it. Trust is important.

 

Caissa

Kudos once more to Kaitlin for organizing the BBC.  Hard to believe there was a BBBC. Wink

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

haha, Caissa.

new selection up! Who's surprised I actually did it on time -- me. I am surprised!

Yay! I'm excited for this selection, thanks for sticking to your guns Left Turn Wink

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

With 'Something Fierce' officially retired (well, we're all still chatting!) we need a new selection.

Let's take the weekend to make any final decisions, but post your suggestions here and we'll revisit Monday and get everything hashed out!

Please remember: library friendly, independent bookshop friendly and generally awesome!

 

Kaitlin McNabb Kaitlin McNabb's picture

what are we reeeeeading?

I'm low on ideas for this selection. Anyone have any good ones?

Unionist

Weren't we gonna do The Inconvenient Indian? We don't have to, I'm open to other brilliant proposals.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

In Vancouver here, The Inconvenient Indian still has way too many holds on it at public library to be accessible on short notice. However, there's at least one copy available at the People's Co-Op Bookstore on Commercial Drive (their website doesn't list number of copies available). I read part of it when I had it out of the Library in September (after 8 months on hold), but didn't finish it. Not sure how well I'd be able to discuss it without a copy in hand.

Given that Something Fierce was my suggestion, I'm going to hold off on making any suggestions for this round unless nobody else can come up with anything we can agree on.

Caissa

Fifty Shades of Grey. Wink

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