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View Poll Results: Which book from the Patricia Clark Memorial Library shall we read for October?
The Night Life of the Gods by Thorne Smith 8 36.36%
Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson 11 50.00%
Pudd'nhead Wilson by Mark Twain 7 31.82%
The Virginian by Owen Wister 11 50.00%
The Haunted House and Other Horror Stories by Charles Dickens 2 9.09%
Lord of the World by Robert Hugh Benson 4 18.18%
Riders of the Purple Sage by Zane Grey 5 22.73%
Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell 5 22.73%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 22. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 09-26-2015, 11:59 PM   #1
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October 2015 Book Club Vote

October 2015 MobileRead Book Club Vote

Help us choose a book as the October 2015 eBook for the MobileRead Book Club. The poll will be open for 5 days. There will be no runoff vote unless the voting results a tie, in which case there will be a 3 day run-off poll. This is a visible poll: others can see how you voted. It is You may cast a vote for each book that appeals to you.

We will start the discussion thread for this book on October 20th. Select from the following Official Choices with three nominations each:

The Night Life of the Gods by Thorne Smith
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub | Kindle
Spoiler:
Thorne Smith's rapid-fire dialogue, brilliant sense of the absurd, and literary aplomb put him in the same category as the beloved P.G. Wodehouse. The Night Life of the Gods—the madcap story of a scientist who instigates a nocturnal spree with the Greek gods—is arguably his most sparkling comedic achievement.

Hunter Hawk has a knack for annoying his ultrarespectable relatives. He likes to experiment and he particularly likes to experiment with explosives. His garage-cum-laboratory is a veritable minefield, replete with evil-smelling clouds of vapor through which various bits of wreckage and mysteriously bubbling test tubes are occasionally visible.

With the help of Megaera, a fetching nine-hundred-year-old lady leprechaun he meets one night in the woods, he masters the art (if not the timing) of transforming statues into people. And when he practices his new witchery in the stately halls of the Metropolitan Museum of Art—setting Bacchus, Mercury, Neptune, Diana, Hebe, Apollo, and Perseus loose on the unsuspecting citizenry of Prohibition-era New York—the stage is set for Thorne Smith at his most devilish and delightful.

Born in Annapolis, Maryland, in 1892, educated at Dartmouth, THORNE SMITH was an early cohort of Dorothy Parker's. He achieved literary success in 1926 with the publication of Topper and went on to publish nine novels in the next eight years. He earned a passionate following among both critics and readers before his death, at the age of forty-two, in 1934.

The book was made into a Universal Pictures movie in 1935 starring Alan Mowbray.


Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub | Kindle
Spoiler:
From Amazon:

Spirited, romantic, and full of danger, Kidnapped is Robert Louis Stevenson's classic of high adventure. Beloved by generations, it is the saga of David Balfour, a young heir whose greedy uncle connives to do him out of his inherited fortune....

Acclaimed by Henry James as Robert Louis Stevenson's best novel, Kidnapped achieves what Stevenson called, "the particular crown and triumph of the artist...not simply to convince, but to enchant."

Quote:
Orphaned and penniless, young David Balfour sets out to find his last living relative. But in doing so he will become caught up the greatest and most frightening adventure of his life.


Pudd'nhead Wilson by Mark Twain
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub | Kindle (Both versions are illustrated)
Spoiler:
It's part a detective story, part comedy, and part social commentary.


The Virginian by Owen Wister
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub | Kindle
Spoiler:
In the untamed West, pioneers came to test their fortunes -- and their wills. The Wyoming territory was a harsh, unforgiving land, with its own unwritten code of honor by which men lived and died. Into this rough landscape rides the Virginian, a solitary man whose unbending will is his only guide through life. The Virginian's unwavering beliefs in right and wrong are soon tested as he tries to prove his love for a woman who cannot accept his sense of justice; at the same time, a betrayal by his most trusted friend forces him to fight against the corruption that rules the land. Still as exciting and meaningful as it was when first published one hundred years ago, Owen Wister's epic tale of a man caught between his love for a woman and his quest for justice exemplifies one of the most significant and enduring themes in all of American literature. With remarkable character depth and vivid passages, "The Virginian" stands not only as the first great novel of American Western literature, but as a testament to the eternal struggle between good and evil in humanity. With an engaging new introduction by Gary Scharnhorst, professor of English at the University of New Mexico, this volume is an indispensable addition to the library of American Western literature.


The Haunted House and Other Horror Stories by Charles Dickens
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub | Kindle
Spoiler:
Quote:
The Haunted House was first published in 1859. It was part of a collection for the periodical All the Year Round that contained five other authors, but here only the three contributions from Charles Dickens are present.
• "The Mortals in the House"
• "The Ghost in Master B's Room"
• "The Ghost in the Corner Room"


Lord of the World by Robert Hugh Benson
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub | Kindle
Spoiler:
From a review by Joseph Pearce:

[Lord of the World] is truly remarkable and deserves to stand beside Huxley's Brave New World and Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four as a classic of dystopian fiction. In fact, though Huxley's and Orwell's modern masterpieces may merit equal praise as works of literature, they are clearly inferior as works of prophecy. The political dictatorships that gave Orwell's novel-nightmare an ominous potency have had their day. Today, his cautionary fable serves merely as a timely reminder of what has been and what may be again if the warnings of history are not heeded. Benson's novel-nightmare, on the other hand, is coming true before our very eyes.


Riders of the Purple Sage by Zane Grey
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub | Kindle
Spoiler:
Zane Grey's very first Western.


Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub | Kindle
Spoiler:
From Goodreads

'It is very pleasant dinning with a bachelor...I only hope it is not improper; so many pleasant things are!'

A portrait of the residents of an English country town in the mid nineteenth century, Cranford relates the adventures of Miss Matty and Miss Deborah, two middle-aged spinster sisters striving to live with dignity in reduced circumstances. Through a series of vignettes, Elizabeth Gaskell portrays a community governed by old-fashioned habits and dominated by friendships between women. Her wry account of rural life is undercut, however, by tragedy in its depiction of such troubling events as Matty's bankruptcy, the violent death of Captain Brown or the unwitting cruelty of Peter Jenkyns. Written with acute observation, Cranford is by turns affectionate, moving and darkly satirical.

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Old 09-27-2015, 12:29 AM   #2
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Note that I have uploaded an ePub and a mobi version of Riders of the Purple Sage, and removed the link to the BBeB/LRF Books version, as I know of no one still using those formats. The link can still be found in this month's nominations thread.

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Old 09-27-2015, 01:16 AM   #3
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Thanks, Tom, for the upload.
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Old 09-27-2015, 05:01 AM   #4
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It was tough but I limited my vote to my three favourites. I didn't anticipate voting for a western, but I really enjoyed the preview for The Virginian.

Since it's not in its spoiler I'll note that Lord of the World is a religious-themed book written by a Catholic priest. It could be an interesting discussion.

The complete The Haunted House is a loose anthology novella made up of chapters by various authors (coincidentally including, I just found out, Elizabeth Gaskell). Each chapter covers a haunting in a different room of the same house. It was Dickens' Christmas offering one year, the same as A Christmas Carol and The Cricket on the Hearth were in other years. The nomination download link is for two of Dickens' own chapters from the novella (the third mentioned in its spoiler is oddly not included) plus two separate short stories. If anyone is interested, I noticed that the full novella of The Haunted House is also available in the library; here's the epub.

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Old 09-27-2015, 07:22 AM   #5
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This is an exceptionally strong list. I've only eliminated two so far; Zane Grey because it's already been discussed in a group read and Dickens because the club has done him twice.
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Old 09-27-2015, 10:04 AM   #6
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From Jo Walton's post on her Tor.com blog:

Quote:
Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford (1851) is one of those books that makes you smile whenever you are unexpectedly reminded of it. Think about that, think about smiling whenever you’re reminded of it for the rest of your life, and then consider: not only is it very short but it’s absolutely free on Project Gutenberg. It’s also probably in your library, and if not then you can probably find an old copy lying around second hand for very little. Maybe you don’t believe me about the smile, though I assure you it’s true—I’ve seen it on an astonishingly wide variety of faces when Cranford comes up in conversation. Indeed you can test it right now by wandering up to acquaintances and mentioning it to them. If they smile, they’ve read it, if not then they’re part of today’s lucky ten thousand and you can point them at this post.
http://www.tor.com/2012/12/21/the-la...ells-cranford/
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Old 09-27-2015, 11:29 AM   #7
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So I voted for Pudd'nhead Wilson, no surprise since I nominated it and would like to see it win. I also decided to cast a vote for The Virginian even though fictional westerns do not generally appeal to me. Way back when (the early 1960s clear through the early 1970s) it inspired a television show that was a favorite of my mother and I figure that a show that ran that long the novel that it was based on must have something going for it. I do recall that one of the characters always dressed all in black, much like Adam from the western Bonanza. Whew, dressing all in black in the summer in Wyoming. Well TV westerns were never based on realism. No knock on the other two books that I have not read. It's just neither piqued my interest much.
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Old 09-27-2015, 08:49 PM   #8
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I voted for the two westerns, and Cranford. Even though other areas of MobileRead have discussed Purple Sage, I've never read it, and certainly haven't been party to a discussion of it, so that's my first choice. Actually, I'll likely read it regardless. I've started Cranford a couple of times, but got distracted by new releases, so this would be a good excuse to finish it. And the Virginian because I actually _do_ want a good reason to read a western, though this one isn't exactly typical.
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Old 09-28-2015, 10:09 AM   #9
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Good grief. I wonder if the book club will come to the realization that they are voting for a book nominated by me. :P
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Old 09-28-2015, 10:39 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by HomeInMyShoes View Post
Good grief. I wonder if the book club will come to the realization that they are voting for a book nominated by me. :P
Uh, oh. Quick, everyone—think hard. Is there a way we can legitimately disapprove HIMS's nomination? We don't want to spoil a near-perfect record!
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Old 09-28-2015, 11:13 AM   #11
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0-22 right now. I had one finish second in voting once.
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Old 09-28-2015, 01:07 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HomeInMyShoes View Post
Good grief. I wonder if the book club will come to the realization that they are voting for a book nominated by me. :P
Quote:
Originally Posted by WT Sharpe View Post
Uh, oh. Quick, everyone—think hard. Is there a way we can legitimately disapprove HIMS's nomination? We don't want to spoil a near-perfect record!
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0-22 right now. I had one finish second in voting once.
"It ain't over till it's over."
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Old 09-28-2015, 01:16 PM   #13
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"It ain't over till it's over."
RIP, Yogi!
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Old 09-30-2015, 10:10 AM   #14
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Pretty light voting so far. Only a couple of days left. Only 19 voters and we usually average 30. Plenty of time for some movement in a pretty close vote.
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Old 09-30-2015, 11:56 PM   #15
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I've been reading Cranford while waiting on the poll to close . If anyone is interested, there is a terrific audio version read by Prunella Scales (John Cleese's wife Sybil in Fawlty Towers)
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