Wherein We Elect Our Favourite Novels of 1983

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Poll Results

Cassandra by Christa Wolf 2
I Served The King Of England by Bohumil Hrabal 2
The Discovery Of Slowness by Sten Nadolny 1
Waterland by Graham Swift 1
The Witches by Roald Dahl 1
Life & Times Of Michael K by J.M. Coetzee 1
The Loser by Thomas Bernhard 1
La Brava by Elmore Leonard 1
Angels by Denis Johnson 1
The Mists Of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley 1
The Sorrow Of Belgium by Hugo Claus 0
Rouse Up O Young Men of the New Age! by Kenzaburō Ōe 0
Zameen by Khadija Mastoor 0
The Tae Baek Mountains by Jo Jung-rae 0
The Christmas Oratorio by Göran Tunström 0
Cave And Shadows by Nick Joaquin 0
Silent House by Orhan Pamuk 0
Coming Out Of The Shadow by Janusz Zajdel 0
Crystal Boys by Pai Hsien-yung 0
Erev by Eli Schechtman 0
The Red Horse by Eugenio Corti 0
Rabies by Borislav Pekić 0
Love And Death In A Hot Country by Shiva Naipaul 0
Mr.Palomar by Italo Calvino 0
The Queue by Vladimir Sorokin 0
November 1916 by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn 0
The Piano Teacher by Elfriede Jelinek 0
Women by Phillipe Sollers 0
The Woman In Black by Susan Hill 0
God's Grace by Bernard Malamud 0
The Man Who (Thought He) Looked Like Robert Taylor by Bienvenido Santos 0
Ironweed by William Kennedy 0
The House On Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros 0
Heartburn by Nora Ephron 0
Duluth by Gore Vidal 0
Pet Sematary by Stephen King 0
August by Judith Rossner 0
The Anatomy Lesson by Philip Roth 0
Naked In Deccan by Venkatesh Kulkarni 0
Pitch Dark by Renata Adler 0
The Last Testament Of Oscar Wilde by Peter Ackroyd 0
Shame by Salman Rushdie 0
The Papers Of Tony Veitch by William McIlvanney 0
The Little Drummer Girl by John Le Carré 0
The Life And Loves Of A She-Devil by Fay Weldon 0
Hollywood Wives by Jackie Collins 0
The Colour Of Magic by Terry Pratchet 0
Doctor Wooreddy's Prescription for Enduring the Ending of the World by Mudrooroo 0
Praisesong For The Widow by Paule Marshall 0
Modern Baptists by James Wilcox 0

Daniel_Rf, Friday, 9 July 2021 11:32 (one year ago) link

Jean Echenoz's Cherokee but since that's not an option, I'll go with Christa Wolf.

pomenitul, Friday, 9 July 2021 11:35 (one year ago) link

Cassandra by Christa Wolf
The Piano Teacher by Elfriede Jelinek
I Served The King Of England by Bohumil Hrabal
Life & Times Of Michael K by J.M. Coetzee
The Loser by Thomas Bernhard

This is hard. They are all really strong. I have voted for Hrabal before, possibly Bernhard novel and in any case we have Old Masters to come.

Piano Teacher is Jelinek's best that is available in English. Cassandra is terrific and this period of Coetzee is really good...might go for Cassandra as Wolf is the most neglected of the three xp

xyzzzz__, Friday, 9 July 2021 11:37 (one year ago) link

Mists Of Avalon enormously important to kid Daniel - another suggestion from my dad, as I was in a major Arthurian phase at the time. I was also reading Mallory and re-enacting all the battles and tournaments on the floor with little paper shields that I would draw to represent various knights. Every time someone opened a door they'd go flying. Marion Zimmer Bradley one of the most well documented authors on wikipedia, btw, her stuff has been showing up for ages. But I'm guessing certain revelations make it so that she won't be up for revisiting anytime soon, I certainly wouldn't want to.

Read The Little Drummer Girl in anticipation of watching the Park Chan-wook TV series, because I try to always check whatever that guy's up to out. Found it quite a slog, am not convinced Le Carré knows what he's talking about regarding the psychology of young fanatics as much as he does when he's talking about the psychology of soulless boureaucrats, be they English, German or Russian. Also agents being psychologically and physically abused in the name of The Cause is a major theme in his work - it's right there in The Spy Who Came In From The Cold - but it felt a bit more gratuitous in this one? I didn't end up even watching the tv show, more fool me.

Colour Of Magic is fine, but not worth voting for.

Have a copy of I Served The King Of England knocking about, suspect that'd be it if I had read it.

Daniel_Rf, Friday, 9 July 2021 11:42 (one year ago) link

I can't justify giving any author two selections at this stage, so sorry Stephen King fans who prefer Christine over Pet Sematary (honestly don't know him well enough to know which one's more rated).

Daniel_Rf, Friday, 9 July 2021 11:44 (one year ago) link

Just to show how parochial my tastes can be, a write-in vote for David Nobbs' Second From Last In The Sack Race, a comic novel which has a spectacular level of detail and thought put into it.

A viking of frowns, (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Friday, 9 July 2021 12:43 (one year ago) link

...though actually voting for the Hrabal.

A viking of frowns, (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Friday, 9 July 2021 12:46 (one year ago) link

Poor showing from me, The Colour of Magic and maybe The Witches. Though I have seen the original and terrifying TV version of The Woman in Black, and the stage show, and the Daniel Radcliffe film.

I've only read "Ironweed" of these, and I think, "The Witches". "Modern Baptists" as been on my want-list for some time.

o. nate, Friday, 9 July 2021 15:19 (one year ago) link

itt ppl unsure whether they've read the witches

Daniel_Rf, Friday, 9 July 2021 15:28 (one year ago) link

I must've read it. I remember the outlines of the plot, and I don't think I've seen the whole movie.

o. nate, Friday, 9 July 2021 15:46 (one year ago) link

Mudrooroo = the original Rachel Dolezal, apparently.

Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

System, Monday, 12 July 2021 00:01 (one year ago) link

I really enjoyed Mists of Avalon in the early 00ies when i came across it, pretty sure in the University library. THink I read a couple of sequels too. I know that I haven't read the prequel thing though i have been aware of it for years.

Don't think I'd realised that Little Drummer Girl was so late. Was just thinking about the later tv series earlier since Florence PUgh's in it. Had thought the earlier tv series was earlier than this. Or is it set in like 1978?

Terry Pratchett is quite fun.

Stevolende, Monday, 12 July 2021 11:38 (one year ago) link

Surprised myself by voting for Waterland. I had no idea it was as early as 1983 - feels like a classic 90s novel in lots of ways.

I still can't believe how much they changed the plot for the Costner film.

Vanishing Point (Chinaski), Monday, 12 July 2021 11:41 (one year ago) link

I just heard about Mudroroo recently. unless I've forgotten earlier.
BUt I was looking for indigenous Australian writing from a non-European/white perspective at a conference webinar recently and somebody suggested his book. So I wondered if it was any good on hearing this factor. I'm not familiar with the book so it is possible it has some worth even if he isn't indigenous, not as much as if he was

Stevolende, Monday, 12 July 2021 11:44 (one year ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.

System, Tuesday, 13 July 2021 00:01 (one year ago) link

Wherein We Elect Our Favourite Novels of 1984

Daniel_Rf, Tuesday, 13 July 2021 11:42 (one year ago) link

I think I ended up not casting a vote in this one. I've read The Witches, Shame, and Pet Semetary and didn't really feel like boosting any of them. Bloody loved the stage version of The Woman in Black (and think the Radcliffe version is okay too tbh). Would be interested in reading more Hrabal, as Too Loud a Solitude is my only one so far.

emil.y, Tuesday, 13 July 2021 13:19 (one year ago) link

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