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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…     

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I'm hoping you all can help! I read The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood last year and I absolutely adored it so I'm looking for something similar. By that I mean a big family saga, preferably covering several generations with lots of family secrets and unexpected twists along the way! I'm thinking a nice hefty book that I can really get my teeth into, and hopefully something beautifully written too.

 

I know this is a bit vague, but any ideas? :eek2:

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Try 'One Hundred Years of Solitude' by Marquez - covers 7 generations so I think it fits the bill. Knowing Marquez it will have twist and turns plus beautifully written as well.

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Linda Gillard's 'A Lifetime Burning' will knock your socks off! It's great and thought provoking read. In Linda's own words,

I took five women from three generations of the same family and used their interwoven stories as a vehicle for looking at what it has meant to be a woman at different times in the latter half of the 20th Century - what choices, opportunities and limitations they faced. What you could make of your life depended largely, it seemed to me, on when you were born.

James Clavell's 'Tai Pan', 'Gai Jin' and 'Noble House' are great reads and family sagas, each following a different era of the Struan family.

 

A favourite read of mine is Anthony Burgess' 'Earthly Powers'. Wikipedia notes,

Earthly Powers is a panoramic saga of the 20th century. On his eighty-first birthday, the gay writer Kenneth Toomey is asked by the Archbishop of Malta to assist in the process of canonisation of Carlo Campanati, the late Pope Gregory XVII. Toomey subsequently works on his memoirs, which span the major part of the 20th century.

 

I know more, but I cannot remember them at the moment. I will ponder this further! :eek2: Hope this helps.

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I enjoyed the Dollanger Saga by Virginia Andrews. The first book in the series, Flowers in the Attic is especially good.

 

Andrews wrote several very good family sagas as well as this one. Two which spring to mind besides this one Cutler and Casteel. I grew up with these through my teenage years and they have never left me. I remain to this day a huge fan of Andrews' earlier stuff. Another one, which was later on in her career is the Landry series.

 

If you decide to go down the Andrews route, my reading list, in order would be as follows:

 

Flowers in the Attic, Petals on the Wind, If There Be Thorns, Seeds of Yesterday (Dollanger). And then work your way through Dawn, Secrets of the Morning, Twilight's Child, Midnight Whispers, Darkest Hour (Cutler), and Heaven, Dark Angel, Fallen Hearts, Gates of Paradise, Web of Dreams (Casteel), Ruby, Pearl in the Mist, All That Glitters, Hidden Jewel, Tarnished Gold (Landry).

 

She has written a few other sagas as well, but these are the best ones.

 

Happy hunting :eek2:

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I would highly recommend Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides. It spans several generations and has a couple of excellent plot twists. And it's very well-written. ;)

 

Also, The Town and the City by Jack Kerouac is a wonderful book about the lives of an American family in the late 40s/early 50s. I wouldn't say there are crazy plot twists or anything, but the journeys of the different characters are fascinating to witness and I adored the writing. It left me with a crazy desire to jump on the next plane to America. :eek2:

 

Both are reasonably chunky reads too.

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How about the books by Barbara Taylor Bradford? They are about a woman called Emma Hart who builds an empire for herself. There are several books that span over several generations. I absolutely loved them. The first one is called A Woman of Substance :D

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Elizabeth Jane Howard's series of books about the Cazalet family in WWII is much loved:

 

THE LIGHT YEARS

MARKING TIME

CONFUSION

CASTING OFF

 

A personal favourite of mine is THE CROW ROAD by Iain Banks, a slightly wacky Scottish family saga with a bit of a who-dunnit factor.

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In my English Lit/Lang A Level we had to study 'A Thousand Acres' by Jane Smiley which is a family saga. I don't know if it's as in depth/'generation-spanning' as you would like but it's an idea nonetheless!

:D Hope it helps.

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A personal favourite of mine is THE CROW ROAD by Iain Banks, a slightly wacky Scottish family saga with a bit of a who-dunnit factor.

 

Another vote from me for Iain Banks. Brilliant book. Not so taken with his more recent work, but this is a great read.

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Ooh there's some good sounding ones there!

 

Try 'One Hundred Years of Solitude' by Marquez - covers 7 generations so I think it fits the bill. Knowing Marquez it will have twist and turns plus beautifully written as well.

I actually already have One Hundred Years of Solitude sitting on my shelf. I took it on holiday with me a few years ago but couldn't get past the first couple of chapters! I think I probably just wasn't in the right frame of mind. I will definately be trying it again!

 

Linda Gillard's 'A Lifetime Burning' will knock your socks off!

This one sounds very interesting, I think I'll be adding this to my wishlist!

 

A bit of a shot in the dark here, but have you read Dickens' BLEAK HOUSE? Believe it or not, it fits the description you give and it's a fantastic read!

Hhmmm I've never actually read any Dickens, and I've never enjoyed any of the TV adaptions I've seen either! I just find it all a bit depressing! I may give this a go though, just to see what I'm missing!

 

Some of the others sound very good too, I think a bit of Amazon research is required....

 

Thank you all so much for you help! :D

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