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      Something Wicked This Way Comes...   10/09/2019

      The Autumn Supporter Giveaway!       Welcome to the very first of the seasonal BCF supporter giveaways! This month also marks one year since I took on the forum, so I want to say an extra huge thank you to all of you for keeping this place going. I have a little bit more to say about that later but, for now, let's get to the giveaway!     The Autumn Giveaway winner will be getting two Penguin Little Black Classics, The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe and To Be Read At Dusk by Charles Dickens. Both of these little books contain three atmospheric short stories, perfect for autumnal evenings. The winner will also get Mary Shelley tea (a lavender and vanilla black tea) from Rosie Lea Tea's Literary Tea Collection (https://www.rosieleatea.co.uk/collections/literary-tea-collection) and a chocolate skull, to really get that spooky atmosphere .   and...   A special treat for a special month. The winner will choose one of the following recent paperback releases from the independent bookshop Big Green Bookshop:       The Wych Elm by Tana French A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan Melmoth by Sarah Perry The Familiars by Stacey Halls  The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White   The winner will be chosen via the usual random selection process in one week. Patreon supporters are entered automatically. If you aren't a patreon supporter but you'd like to join in with this giveaway, you can support here: https://www.patreon.com/bookclubforum.   I really hope you're all going to like this introduction to the seasonal giveaways. It's been a lot of fun to put together. Other chocolate skulls may have been harmed during the selection process…     
chesilbeach

The English Counties Challenge

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Clever Kay has finished Surrey - I'm not sure if she's the first of us to finish a county, but she's the first I've noticed. :)

 

How are we going to do this?   Does whoever finishes a book start a thread in this forum with something like "Surrey - War of the Worlds" as the title and then just dive in with their review, or are we going to have generic 'Book Club' type questions which people can answer and then add any thoughts not covered? 

 

Any thoughts, Claire?  :)

Do you know Janet .. it's only just dawned on me that I've read a book from the county challenge and yet I'm sure that's what put it in my head in the first place :blush2: I have put a few in my Amazon basket though .. for buying later as it were :giggle: Yes .. how are we going to organise it Claire? I'll wait for further instructions :D  

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Claire - I hope you don't mind, but I've started a thread for Cornwall as I've read the book.   If you have something else in mind, please do say and I can delete it.  :)

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That's fine, Janet. :)  

 

I was going to do one thread with a county per post, but I like your thinking, so I think if we do one thread for each county and in the first post for each county we put the book(s) we chose in the discussion, with the synopsis of each one, and then a list of any alternatives that people suggest or review so that people can have the choice.  I'm at home tomorrow, so I'll have a go at starting on them and you can see what you think. 

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Looking good, Claire.  :)

 

Just a thought, but wouldn't it be easier for discussion of we had 'Cumbria 1 - Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome' and 'Cumbria 2 - The Maid of Buttermere' by Melvyn Bragg' rather than one thread discussing two different books?  :)

 

Also, I didn't realise you wanted to start all the threads so I'll go and delete Cornwall.

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Thanks Claire, that's really helpful that you put in the alternative books for each county as well. I think for some of them i shall read more than one book per county  :smile:

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Looking good, Claire.  :)

 

Just a thought, but wouldn't it be easier for discussion of we had 'Cumbria 1 - Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome' and 'Cumbria 2 - The Maid of Buttermere' by Melvyn Bragg' rather than one thread discussing two different books?  :)

 

Also, I didn't realise you wanted to start all the threads so I'll go and delete Cornwall.

 

I see what you mean, I'd thought one thread per county and then we could also discuss the alternatives in the same place, but maybe you're right and we should have separate discussion threads for each book.  I'll separate the threads out for each book for each county, but put a link to the second book in the thread for the first book, and also leave in the alternatives on the first thread too.  Does that sound okay? 

 

You didn't need to delete Cornwall, I was just making my way through the list so the threads were all set up ready for everyone to discuss, as I'm sure we'll all start in different places, but I'll happily set up the thread for that one too. :)

 

 

 

Thanks Claire, that's really helpful that you put in the alternative books for each county as well. I think for some of them i shall read more than one book per county  :smile:

 

You're welcome.  I'm of the same mind, and have been creating my wishlist on Amazon for all the counties already - good timing for Christmas presents! :D

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I have a question. I plan to read alternatives for Greater London and Leicestershire (I have read both selections in the last couple of years so would prefer something fresh).

 

I plan to read one of the other nominations in this thread. Is there a place for these musings?

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I would suggest that you create a new thread for any new books, (preferably with the county name and alternative in the title of the thread as the others), and then I'll link to it from the main thread for the county.

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What do you want us to do when we've read a book?  Are we going to start with some generic book club type questions like a reading circle to prompt discussion, or do we just dive in.  :)

 

I'm not very good at reviews!

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Whatever you want, Janet, just dive in! :)  I'm not a great one for reviews, I just know how to say whether I liked a book or not, just in a bit more flowery language occasionally. :giggle2:  It's nice to have a mix of comments and reviews, and as we've got the synopsis for each book at the start of the thread, this will give us the opportunity to just express an opinion, or go deeper into discussion if we want.  

 

I don't want to dictate anything to anyone in this, just really setting up the basic structure and see where it goes from here!  I'm not going to be precious about it, so it's open season as far as I'm concerned :D

Edited by chesilbeach

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Thanks, Claire.   :)  I think I might find some questions and base my 'review' around those, and then maybe add some more thoughts.   :)

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Sounds good!  That may help others add to the discussion too. :)

 

On a separate note, I went to my local book group last night, and I mentioned this challenge, and everyone was really interested!  It prompted a really good chat amongst us all, with lots of questions about which books we'd chosen, and I think I might have encouraged some of them to think about the challenge themselves.

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Did you tell them what smooth sailing it was Claire? :D

 

Thanks for setting up the individual county threads :hug:  

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That's good, Claire.  :)  My Mum liked the sound of it too - I expect she'll read some of the books.

 

I went into our library today but was disappointed with their selection - I didn't find a single challenge title (apart from a Dickens and a Hardy!). 

 

I got excited when I found a copy of South Riding in a charity shop today, but when I got it down from the shelf it was in horrible condition.   They did have some in The Works in Bath a while ago which I think were about £1.50.

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Did you tell them what smooth sailing it was Claire? :D

 

Thanks for setting up the individual county threads :hug:  

 

I did say it was a rather animated discussion at times! :D

 

I've done about three quarters of the counties, so I should hopefully be able to finish them off tomorrow, and then I can start reading the books! :exc:

 

That's good, Claire.  :)  My Mum liked the sound of it too - I expect she'll read some of the books.

 

I went into our library today but was disappointed with their selection - I didn't find a single challenge title (apart from a Dickens and a Hardy!). 

 

I got excited when I found a copy of South Riding in a charity shop today, but when I got it down from the shelf it was in horrible condition.   They did have some in The Works in Bath a while ago which I think were about £1.50.

 

I'm going to print off a list to take with me wherever I go so that I can keep an eye out for any of the slightly more obscure ones in the charity shops.  If I find any, I'm more than happy to send them on. :)

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Nice work on all the threads, Claire. Good luck everyone with the challenge! I can at least say I've read one book for the challenge, A Christmas Carol, so when more of you have (re)read it, we could talk about it in the appropriate thread.

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To anyone who has read Tom Brown's Schooldays - can you give me any idea how long the book is?  (I realise this is dependant upon edition!).  The free Kindle version is just under 200 pages, but I thought it was a larger book.  Thanks.  :)

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I'd really like to do this challenge, although I imagine it will take me a very long time. :blush2: I have already read quite a few. Can anyone suggest a way of keeping a record of what I've read and what is still on my list in some sort of reading list? I can't quite think of how to do it without editing all the time (although that would be OK too).

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I've got a Excel spreadsheet I record mine on (I might change a few... Essex for one).   I think I also reserved a page on my Blog on here, but I can't remember!  :blush:

 

I'd be happy to send you the spreadsheet if you PM me an email address. :)  It's pretty basic, but I love spreadsheets!  :D

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That would be great Janet, thank you very much! Will PM you my email :friends0:

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