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View Poll Results: Which free-for-all shall we read for July's discussion?
The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami, Jay Rubin (Translator) 8 42.11%
Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach 5 26.32%
Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly 9 47.37%
Animal: The Autobiography of a Female Body by Sara Pascoe 4 21.05%
Socrates Cafe: A Fresh Taste of Philosophy by Christopher Phillips 6 31.58%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 19. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-27-2017, 12:33 AM   #1
WT Sharpe
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July 2017 Book Club Vote

June 2017 MobileRead Book Club Vote

Help us choose a book as the June 2017 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 July 20th. Select from the following Official Choices with three nominations each:

The Wind Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami, Jay Rubin (Translator)
Goodreads | Amazon US / Overdrive / WorldCat
Print Length: 607 pages
Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

Japan's most highly regarded novelist now vaults into the first ranks of international fiction writers with this heroically imaginative novel, which is at once a detective story, an account of a disintegrating marriage, and an excavation of the buried secrets of World War II.

In a Tokyo suburb a young man named Toru Okada searches for his wife's missing cat. Soon he finds himself looking for his wife as well in a netherworld that lies beneath the placid surface of Tokyo. As these searches intersect, Okada encounters a bizarre group of allies and antagonists: a psychic prostitute; a malevolent yet mediagenic politician; a cheerfully morbid sixteen-year-old-girl; and an aging war veteran who has been permanently changed by the hideous things he witnessed during Japan's forgotten campaign in Manchuria.

Gripping, prophetic, suffused with comedy and menace, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is a tour de force equal in scope to the masterpieces of Mishima and Pynchon.


Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach
Goodreads | Overdrive
Print Length: 321 pages
Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

A New York Times Bestseller

“Rich in dexterous innuendo, laugh-out-loud humor and illuminating fact. It’s compulsively readable.” —Los Angeles Times Book Review

In Bonk, the best-selling author of Stiff turns her outrageous curiosity and insight on the most alluring scientific subject of all: sex. Can a person think herself to orgasm? Why doesn't Viagra help women-or, for that matter, pandas? Can a dead man get an erection? Is vaginal orgasm a myth? Mary Roach shows us how and why sexual arousal and orgasm-two of the most complex, delightful, and amazing scientific phenomena on earth-can be so hard to achieve and what science is doing to make the bedroom a more satisfying place.


Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly
Goodreads | Amazon UK / Amazon US / Audible UK / Audible US / Kobo US
Print Length: 373 pages
Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

Soon to be a major motion picture starring Golden Globe–winner Taraji P. Henson and Academy Award–winners Octavia Spencer and Kevin Costner

Set against the backdrop of the Jim Crow South and the civil rights movement, the never-before-told true story of NASA’s African-American female mathematicians who played a crucial role in America’s space program—and whose contributions have been unheralded, until now.

Before John Glenn orbited the Earth or Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of professionals worked as “Human Computers,” calculating the flight paths that would enable these historic achievements. Among these were a coterie of bright, talented African-American women. Segregated from their white counterparts by Jim Crow laws, these “colored computers,” as they were known, used slide rules, adding machines, and pencil and paper to support America’s fledgling aeronautics industry, and helped write the equations that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space.

Drawing on the oral histories of scores of these “computers,” personal recollections, interviews with NASA executives and engineers, archival documents, correspondence, and reporting from the era, Hidden Figures recalls America’s greatest adventure and NASA’s groundbreaking successes through the experiences of five spunky, courageous, intelligent, determined, and patriotic women: Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson, Christine Darden, and Gloria Champine.
Moving from World War II through NASA’s golden age, touching on the civil rights era, the Space Race, the Cold War, and the women’s rights movement, Hidden Figures interweaves a rich history of scientific achievement and technological innovation with the intimate stories of five women whose work forever changed the world—and whose lives show how out of one of America’s most painful histories came one of its proudest moments.


Animal: The Autobiography of a Female Body by Sara Pascoe
Goodreads
Print Length: 336 pages
Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

Sara is a comedian who has talked and joked about female sexuality, psychology and the media's portrayal of women on stage and screen. While researching her most recent live show, Sara realised that she had a lot more to say.

In her first book Sara combines autobiography and evolutionary history to entertain and inform about the female body. Why we have boobs and how they have become so fetishised. How the kidnap of a 13-year old-chimney sweep's daughter created our present age of consent. The discovery and subsequent forgetting of the clitoris, the many eras of misunderstanding the female orgasm. Did you know that clitorectomys were once performed on British and American women to cure masturbation and hysteria? And that we learned so much about female sexuality from the behaviour of sperm?

ANIMAL: HOW A WOMAN IS MADE aims to be entertaining and informative and personal and universal and silly about lots of things and serious about some.


Socrates Cafe: A Fresh Taste of Philosophy by Christopher Phillips
Goodreads
Print Length: 246 pages
Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

Christopher Phillips is a man on a mission: to revive the love of questions that Socrates inspired long ago in ancient Athens. "Like a Johnny Appleseed with a master's degree, Phillips has gallivanted back and forth across America, to cafés and coffee shops, senior centers, assisted-living complexes, prisons, libraries, day-care centers, elementary and high schools, and churches, forming lasting communities of inquiry" (Utne Reader). Phillips not only presents the fundamentals of philosophical thought in this "charming, Philosophy for Dummies-type guide" (USA Today); he also recalls what led him to start his itinerant program and re-creates some of the most invigorating sessions, which come to reveal sometimes surprising, often profound reflections on the meaning of love, friendship, work, growing old, and others among Life's Big Questions.

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Old 06-27-2017, 10:30 AM   #2
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The current votes are quite interesting. If this keeps up we'll have as many books in the runoff as the original vote!
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Old 06-27-2017, 10:56 PM   #3
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Please vote for Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach. It is the most enjoyable book in the list. Last time I said the book I wanted to win was the better book, I was very much correct. The book we had was not all that good. It was more about politics than science and the topic was supposed to be science. When we had mystery month, we got a rather tame/dull book on Africa.
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Old 06-28-2017, 07:53 AM   #4
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Please vote for Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach. It is the most enjoyable book in the list. Last time I said the book I wanted to win was the better book, I was very much correct. The book we had was not all that good. It was more about politics than science and the topic was supposed to be science. When we had mystery month, we got a rather tame/dull book on Africa.
None of the choices this month is really ringing my bell, but I'll read any of them except Murakami.

I think you were wrong last month, Jon. Heck, I could say my choice was the best each month, also, but I'd only be right for my interests and not necessarily even in terms of a good discussion and certainly not for others.

The club's already read books by Roach and Murakami and I don't see the point in revisiting either when there are different authors to choose from. Frankly, I think Murakami in particular would be disastrous. Although the most literary of the choices, which speaks to me, at 600 pages no one will end up reading it. The last time Murakami was chosen it resulted in the worst discussion ever; there were only two posts about the book. I figure the prurient will at least give Bonk a try, but I hope it's not the selection, also.
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Old 06-28-2017, 08:36 AM   #5
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I voted for all books except Murakami's. I don't want his book to win. I don't like absurd and obscure books that are cached in a literary genre.
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Old 06-28-2017, 08:38 PM   #6
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For me, the Murakami book is both too expensive and too long, especially when it doesn't grab me. I haven't decided which of the other books will get my vote, but almost certainly not the Mary Roach. One was enough.
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Old 06-28-2017, 08:41 PM   #7
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If The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle wins, I expect everyone who voted for it to read it and participate in the discussion thread.
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Old 06-28-2017, 08:59 PM   #8
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Hidden Figures sounds best to me. Well, Socrates Cafe sounds good too, but I can get Hidden Figures audiobook through Overdrive. I just placed a hold.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:17 PM   #9
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Hidden Figures sounds best to me. Well, Socrates Cafe sounds good too, but I can get Hidden Figures audiobook through Overdrive. I just placed a hold.
Those are the two that sound best to me, too. It's touch and go whether the Hidden Figures audiobook at OverDrive will be available in time (no hope on the ebook), but there's a copy available at the Engineering and Math Library at the campus in town, so I could pick that up. Socrates Cafe would have to be ILL.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:40 PM   #10
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Hidden Figures sounds best to me. Well, Socrates Cafe sounds good too, but I can get Hidden Figures audiobook through Overdrive. I just placed a hold.
Should have voted for Bonk. You can get that at Overdrive.
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Old 06-28-2017, 09:58 PM   #11
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Should have voted for Bonk. You can get that at Overdrive.
You can't say that definitively, Jon. Not all OverDrive libraries have it and those that do might have long waitlists.

However, as I tried to indicate, those who are willing to read DTBs (the horror! the horror!) might have a few more options.
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Old 06-29-2017, 12:19 AM   #12
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True, DTBs can give you additional options. Also, for those keeping track, the UK price of Hidden Figures is significantly less than the US price. While the UK WhisperSync price is way better.
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Old 06-29-2017, 05:25 AM   #13
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Although the most literary of the choices, which speaks to me, at 600 pages ...
Works for me.
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Old 06-29-2017, 08:34 AM   #14
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Should have voted for Bonk. You can get that at Overdrive.
It's not at my library. Not particularly interested in reading it anyhow.
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Old 06-29-2017, 09:37 AM   #15
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There is no way I have time to read a 600 page book. So is everyone who votes for this going to be reading all 600 pages?
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