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View Poll Results: Multiple Choice - Which region should we use for nominations this month?
Ireland & The U.K. 2 50.00%
North & Central Europe 2 50.00%
Portugal, Belgium, The Netherlands, Spain & France 3 75.00%
Southeast Europe 3 75.00%
Sub Saharan Africa 1 25.00%
South Asia 2 50.00%
The Korean Peninsula, Mongolia & China 2 50.00%
Japan 0 0%
The South Pacific 0 0%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 4. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-01-2015, 11:33 AM   #1
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Region Nominations • November 2015

Help us select what the MR Literary Club will read in November 2015!


The category for this month is:

Region
Portugal, Belgium, The Netherlands, Spain & France, as determined by the poll and tie-breaker


This month is a two-part process:

The first part begins with a one-day poll to determine the region we will use. It is multiple choice and you may choose as many options as you like when voting. This voting is separate from your nominations and there are no nominations during the poll, only voting. If there is a tie, first listed wins by default (the regions are re-arranged each time in a specific set cyclical order based on location).

Bonus votes:
Spoiler:
When the poll ends, bonus votes will be manually added before determining final results. Basically, anyone who has commented in two out of the last six discussion threads is eligible for bonus votes, and everyone eligible will have any votes cast doubled.

Everyone is welcome and encouraged to vote if interested in participating in the literary club whether eligible for bonus votes or not, and anyone interested in bonus votes is encouraged to become eligible as it doesn’t take much.

Currently eligible-
BelleZora, bfisher, Bookpossum, Bookworm_Girl, caleb72, ccowie, fantasyfan, Hamlet53, HomeInMyShoes, Lynx-lynx, poohbear_nc, sun surfer

This includes posts thus far in the May to October discussion threads.
*There are a few caveats to eligibility as outlined in this post.
**If anyone feels there is any mistake in eligibility, please let me know before the poll is over. Once the poll ends and the tally with bonus votes added is announced, the results will be final.

As soon as the poll is over and the region is determined, then the second part (nominations) starts and you may begin nominating like normal. This will run for four days until 6 November.

Nominations can be set in any region, but they should be written by an author from that region.





Notes:

-Regions are named in the poll and colour-coded on the map. Region names are generalities and not exact.

-If a country or territory is too small to show regional colour on the map, it will be part of the region closest to it physically and culturally. If you are unsure, just ask.

-I had help from issybird making the regions list that was much appreciated.

-Previously chosen regions currently ineligible:
Latin America
Central Asia, East Europe & Russia
Canada & the U.S.A.
North Africa & The Middle East
Southeast Asia


Once the poll is over and nominations begin:

In order for a work to be included in the poll it needs four nominations - the original nomination plus three supporting.

Each participant has four nominations to use. You can nominate a new work for consideration or you can support (second, third or fourth) a work that has already been nominated by another person.

To nominate a work just post a message with your nomination. If you are the first to nominate a work, it's always nice to provide an abstract to the work so others may consider their level of interest.


What is literature for the purposes of this club? A superior work of lasting merit that enriches the mind. Often it is important, challenging, critically acclaimed. It may be from ancient times to today; it may be from anywhere in the world; it may be obscure or famous, short or long; it may be a story, a novel, a play, a poem, an essay or another written form. If you are unsure if a work would be considered literature, just ask!


The floor is now open!

*

Nominations closed. Final nominations:


The City and the Mountains by Eça de Queirós, Portugal - 2
Spoiler:
In favour- sun surfer, Bookworm_Girl


From Goodreads:

Born in Paris, Jacinto is the heir to a vast estate in Portugal which he has never visited. He mixes with the creme de la creme of Paris society, but is monumentally bored. And then he receives a letter from his estate manager saying that they plan to move the bones of his ancestors to the newly renovated chapel—would he like to be there? With great trepidation, Jacinto sets off with his best friend, the narrator, on the mammoth train journey through France and Spain to Portugal. What they discover in the simple country life will upend their own lives deliciously....

Amazon Australia - Amazon UK


Queen of the South by Arturo Pérez-Reverte, Spain - 1
Spoiler:
In favour- Pablo


From Amazon:


A remarkable tale, The Queen of the South spans continents, from the dusty streets of Mexico to the sparkling waters off the coast of Morocco, to Spain and the Strait of Gibraltar. A sweeping story set to the irresistible beat of the drug smugglers' ballads, it encompasses sensuality and cruelty, love and betrayal, as its heroine's story unfolds.

Teresa Mendoza's boyfriend is a drug smuggler who the narcos of Sinaloa, Mexico, call "the king of the short runway," because he can get a plane full of coke off the ground in three hundred yards. But in a ruthless business, life can be short, and Teresa even has a special cell phone that Guero gave her along with a dark warning. If that phone rings, it means he's dead, and she'd better run, because they're coming for her next.

Then the call comes.

In order to survive, she will have to say goodbye to the old Teresa, an innocent girl who once entrusted her life to a pinche narco smuggler. She will have to find inside herself a woman who is tough enough to inhabit a world as ugly and dangerous as that of the narcos-a woman she never before knew existed. Indeed, the woman who emerges will surprise even those who know her legend, that of the Queen of the South.


Amazon


Le Testament Français by Andreï Makine, France & Russia - 1
Spoiler:
In favour- Bookpossum


Makine is described as a French author and won by the Prix Goncourt and the Prix Médicis with this book. But he was born in Siberia and sought asylum in France, where he started writing. D

Despite the French title, the book is easily available in English. It is also called Dreams of My Russian Summers.


This is from Goodreads:

Dreams of My Russian Summers, tells the poignant story of a boy growing up amid the harsh realities of Soviet life in the 1960s and '70s, and of his extraordinary love for an elegant Frenchwoman, Charlotte Lemonnier, who is his grandmother.

Every summer he visits his grandmother in a dusty village overlooking the vast steppes. Here, during the warm evenings, they sit on Charlotte's narrow, flower-covered bacony and listen to tales from another time, another place: Paris at the turn of the century. She who used to see Proust playing tennis in Neuilly captivates the children with stories of Tsar Nicholas's visit to Paris in 1896, of the great Paris flood of 1910, of the death of French president Felix Faure in the arms of his mistress.

But from Charlotte the boy also learns of a Russia he has never known, of famine and misery, of brutal injustice, of the hopeless chaos of war. He follows her as she travels by foot from Moscow half the way to Siberia; suffers with her as she tells of her husband - his grandfather - a victim of Stalin's purges; shudders as she describes her own capture by bandits, who brutalize her and left her for dead. Could all this pain and suffering really have happened to his gentle, beloved Charlotte? Mesmerized, the boy weaves Charlotte's stories into his own secret universe of memory and dream. Yet, despite all the deprivations and injustices of the Soviet world, he like many Russians still feels a strong affinity with and "an indestructible love" for his homeland.


Short Stories by Guy de Maupassant, France - 3
Spoiler:
In favour- Bookpossum, sun surfer, Bookworm_Girl


This one's free and to be found in the MR Library. It is the collection uploaded by crutledge. epub


From Goodreads:

Guy de Maupassant is one of the few writers whose short stories—witty, economical, elegant, yet straightforward in style—are so forceful that his literary reputation can rest on them alone. Beneath their deceptively simple surfaces lies a deep understanding of the complexities of the human psyche. Maupassant explores the full panoply of late-nineteenth-century French society, from prostitutes in Parisian brothels and peasants in rural cottages, to adulterous aristocrats at expensive spas and patrician parties.


Memoirs of Hadrian by Margeurite Yourcenar, Belgium - 3
Spoiler:
In favour- sun surfer, Bookpossum, Bookworm_Girl


From Goodreads:

Both an exploration of character and a reflection on the meaning of history, Memoirs of Hadrian has received international acclaim since its first publication in France in 1951. In it, Marguerite Yourcenar reimagines the Emperor Hadrian's arduous boyhood, his triumphs and reversals, and finally, as emperor, his gradual reordering of a war-torn world, writing with the imaginative insight of a great writer of the twentieth century while crafting a prose style as elegant and precise as those of the Latin stylists of Hadrian's own era.

Last edited by sun surfer; 11-06-2015 at 11:35 AM.
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Old 11-02-2015, 11:49 AM   #2
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The results are the same with or without bonus votes, and we have a tie. First listed wins, so our region winner is:

Portugal, Belgium, The Netherlands, Spain & France
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Old 11-02-2015, 04:33 PM   #3
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I'll begin by nominating The City and the Mountains by Eça de Queirós, from Portugal; the description intrigues me and I like that it mentions three countries of this region.

From Goodreads:

Born in Paris, Jacinto is the heir to a vast estate in Portugal which he has never visited. He mixes with the creme de la creme of Paris society, but is monumentally bored. And then he receives a letter from his estate manager saying that they plan to move the bones of his ancestors to the newly renovated chapel—would he like to be there? With great trepidation, Jacinto sets off with his best friend, the narrator, on the mammoth train journey through France and Spain to Portugal. What they discover in the simple country life will upend their own lives deliciously....

Goodreads - Amazon Australia - Amazon UK
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Old 11-02-2015, 05:38 PM   #4
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I nominate Queen of the South by Arturo Pérez-Reverte from Spain.

From Amazon:

Quote:
A remarkable tale, The Queen of the South spans continents, from the dusty streets of Mexico to the sparkling waters off the coast of Morocco, to Spain and the Strait of Gibraltar. A sweeping story set to the irresistible beat of the drug smugglers' ballads, it encompasses sensuality and cruelty, love and betrayal, as its heroine's story unfolds.

Teresa Mendoza's boyfriend is a drug smuggler who the narcos of Sinaloa, Mexico, call "the king of the short runway," because he can get a plane full of coke off the ground in three hundred yards. But in a ruthless business, life can be short, and Teresa even has a special cell phone that Guero gave her along with a dark warning. If that phone rings, it means he's dead, and she'd better run, because they're coming for her next.

Then the call comes.

In order to survive, she will have to say goodbye to the old Teresa, an innocent girl who once entrusted her life to a pinche narco smuggler. She will have to find inside herself a woman who is tough enough to inhabit a world as ugly and dangerous as that of the narcos-a woman she never before knew existed. Indeed, the woman who emerges will surprise even those who know her legend, that of the Queen of the South.
Amazon
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Old 11-02-2015, 05:44 PM   #5
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I would really like to nominate a wonderful book called Le Testament Français by Andreï Makine, but am not sure if it qualifies. Makine is described as a French author and won by the Prix Goncourt and the Prix Médicis with this book. But he was born in Siberia and sought asylum in France, where he started writing. So I think he is an author from the region, even though he wasn't born there.

Over to you to decide on that one, sun surfer. By the way, despite the French title, the book is easily available in English. It is also called Dreams of My Russian Summers.

This is from Goodreads:

Quote:
Dreams of My Russian Summers, tells the poignant story of a boy growing up amid the harsh realities of Soviet life in the 1960s and '70s, and of his extraordinary love for an elegant Frenchwoman, Charlotte Lemonnier, who is his grandmother.

Every summer he visits his grandmother in a dusty village overlooking the vast steppes. Here, during the warm evenings, they sit on Charlotte's narrow, flower-covered bacony and listen to tales from another time, another place: Paris at the turn of the century. She who used to see Proust playing tennis in Neuilly captivates the children with stories of Tsar Nicholas's visit to Paris in 1896, of the great Paris flood of 1910, of the death of French president Felix Faure in the arms of his mistress.

But from Charlotte the boy also learns of a Russia he has never known, of famine and misery, of brutal injustice, of the hopeless chaos of war. He follows her as she travels by foot from Moscow half the way to Siberia; suffers with her as she tells of her husband - his grandfather - a victim of Stalin's purges; shudders as she describes her own capture by bandits, who brutalize her and left her for dead. Could all this pain and suffering really have happened to his gentle, beloved Charlotte? Mesmerized, the boy weaves Charlotte's stories into his own secret universe of memory and dream. Yet, despite all the deprivations and injustices of the Soviet world, he like many Russians still feels a strong affinity with and "an indestructible love" for his homeland.
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Old 11-02-2015, 11:05 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bookpossum View Post
I would really like to nominate a wonderful book called Le Testament Français by Andreï Makine, but am not sure if it qualifies. Makine is described as a French author and won by the Prix Goncourt and the Prix Médicis with this book. But he was born in Siberia and sought asylum in France, where he started writing. So I think he is an author from the region, even though he wasn't born there.

Over to you to decide on that one, sun surfer...
Given the murkiness of the author's region, the votes can decide.

Personally I think it sounds quite interesting but seeing as it seems to be a Russian expat writing about Russia I feel compelled not to support it for this region unfortunately, though if it wins I'll happily read it.

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Old 11-03-2015, 03:08 AM   #7
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Okay, that seems fair. I was using the fact that we had included Nabokov as a US writer. Given that many of us live in immigrant countries, where a person was born seems to be of less importance than whether the person is claimed as a French (or other country) author, as Makine is. The book was written in France, in French, and won French prizes, so to me that makes it French.

The book is set in both France and Russia. By the way, I think the English title, which I hadn't heard of before I did my research, is a lousy one!
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Old 11-03-2015, 11:25 PM   #8
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Okay, I'll try again. (This one's free and to be found in the MR Library.)

Short Stories by Guy de Maupassant. From Goodreads:

Quote:
Guy de Maupassant is one of the few writers whose short stories—witty, economical, elegant, yet straightforward in style—are so forceful that his literary reputation can rest on them alone. Beneath their deceptively simple surfaces lies a deep understanding of the complexities of the human psyche. Maupassant explores the full panoply of late-nineteenth-century French society, from prostitutes in Parisian brothels and peasants in rural cottages, to adulterous aristocrats at expensive spas and patrician parties.
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Old 11-04-2015, 12:22 AM   #9
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I second Short Stories. Bookpossum, do you have a Goodreads link for it? There are a few similar collections listed and I want to make sure to link to the right one.

I'll also offer a second nomination. I hesitated since this is only in pbook and since I'd just nominated this in the other club, but the lit club may be a better fit for it: Memoirs of Hadrian by Margeurite Yourcenar, from Belgium. I've wanted to read this for awhile now; it was nominated and ended only one vote away from winning in the lit club some years ago.

From Goodreads:

Both an exploration of character and a reflection on the meaning of history, Memoirs of Hadrian has received international acclaim since its first publication in France in 1951. In it, Marguerite Yourcenar reimagines the Emperor Hadrian's arduous boyhood, his triumphs and reversals, and finally, as emperor, his gradual reordering of a war-torn world, writing with the imaginative insight of a great writer of the twentieth century while crafting a prose style as elegant and precise as those of the Latin stylists of Hadrian's own era.

Goodreads

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Old 11-04-2015, 03:49 AM   #10
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I'll second Memoirs of Hadrian. One I have heard of but never read.

The problem with a Goodreads link is that there are so many different collections of de Maupassant's short stories. That's why I thought it would be best to nominate the particular copy which is in the MR library, so we could all have the same book, were it to win. I found that quote on one of the Goodreads collections and thought it would do as it's a general comment. Hope that's okay.
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Old 11-04-2015, 10:55 AM   #11
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Oh yes, that's fine. Are you nominating the crutledge upload found here? (there is also a series by Patricia uploaded as "Short Stories 1", "Short Stories 2", etc.)

I see the difficulty in finding a Goodreads match. I can't seem to find crutledge's collection anywhere else so perhaps he just chose which stories he wanted to upload and made his own ebook. If anyone else can find it on GR please let me know, and I'm also curious who the translator is. I checked its length and it's around 230 pages or so.

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Old 11-04-2015, 12:20 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by sun surfer View Post
I'll begin by nominating The City and the Mountains by Eça de Queirós, from Portugal; the description intrigues me and I like that it mentions three countries of this region.

From Goodreads:

Born in Paris, Jacinto is the heir to a vast estate in Portugal which he has never visited. He mixes with the creme de la creme of Paris society, but is monumentally bored. And then he receives a letter from his estate manager saying that they plan to move the bones of his ancestors to the newly renovated chapel—would he like to be there? With great trepidation, Jacinto sets off with his best friend, the narrator, on the mammoth train journey through France and Spain to Portugal. What they discover in the simple country life will upend their own lives deliciously....

Goodreads - Amazon Australia - Amazon UK
I second this.
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Old 11-04-2015, 12:20 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Bookpossum View Post
I'll second Memoirs of Hadrian. One I have heard of but never read.

The problem with a Goodreads link is that there are so many different collections of de Maupassant's short stories. That's why I thought it would be best to nominate the particular copy which is in the MR library, so we could all have the same book, were it to win. I found that quote on one of the Goodreads collections and thought it would do as it's a general comment. Hope that's okay.
I will third Memoirs of Hadrian.
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Old 11-04-2015, 05:15 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by sun surfer View Post
Oh yes, that's fine. Are you nominating the crutledge upload found here? (there is also a series by Patricia uploaded as "Short Stories 1", "Short Stories 2", etc.)

I see the difficulty in finding a Goodreads match. I can't seem to find crutledge's collection anywhere else so perhaps he just chose which stories he wanted to upload and made his own ebook. If anyone else can find it on GR please let me know, and I'm also curious who the translator is. I checked its length and it's around 230 pages or so.
Ah sorry, I didn't realise there were other versions in the MR Library, as I was just looking at the epub list. Yes please, the crutledge collection was the one I meant. I think it is a good collection and a manageable size.
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Old 11-05-2015, 01:37 PM   #15
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Thanks Bookpossum; I'll leave the GR link as a general search for the title and add the links to the spoiler.

We have a little less than a day left to go!

FYI, here are our guidelines in various situations. Basically, if there aren't at least two fully nominated works then we take the nominations with the most votes to the poll. If only one nomination has the most votes (whether fully nominated or not) then it's our de facto winner and we won't need a poll.
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