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      Late Autumn Supporter Giveaway   11/27/2020

      I know that winter is well on the way, but I'm sneaking the autumn giveaway in here, right at the end of the season...     I thought this giveaway seemed particularly appropriate for this year: Dear Reader: The Comfort and Joy of Books by Cathy Rentzenbrink.  I'm sure some of you will have heard of this book. It came out in September and has had brilliant reviews. It's been described as a love letter to reading and I think all of us have truly appreciated 'the comfort and joy of books' this year.  It is also a really beautiful hardback. Please excuse my picture-taking skills, it's really hard to get a good picture of something that's shiny!   As always, patreon supporters will be automatically entered into the draw. If you're not a supporter but you'd like to join our patreon you can do so here:  bookclubforum.co.uk is creating a book community | Patreon
Dimitra

John Steinbeck

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Charlie did say that Animal Farm appealed much more to the boys than the girls though. Another of the classes did To Kill A Mockingbird which went down well I think.

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I read The Grapes of Wrath last year (or maybe the year before) and thought it was very powerful. The struggle of the Joads (and others) is just heart-breaking.

 

I have also read Of Mice and Men (many years ago) and The Red Pony (back in school, but don't recall anything). After reading The Grapes of Wrath I kept telling myself to read more Steinbeck, but there are just so many others books that catch my attention instead. :doh:

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It's getting removed from the GCSE curriculum. Bigger focus on writers in England, rather than writers who write in English. Fairly narrow minded choice.

 

Will teach Jekyll and Hyde and The Sign Of Four starting next year. Neither excites me from a reading or teaching perspective.

 

I guess it could be taught lower down the school, but the push will naturally be towards books of a similar context/ilk.

Ah I understand now! I'm sorry to hear it :(.

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It's getting removed from the GCSE curriculum. Bigger focus on writers in England, rather than writers who write in English. Fairly narrow minded choice.

 

I would like my local language teachers to have as broad a mind as yours seems to be. I've only read Mia Couto, from non-european portuguese literature, and that by my own account. Hopefully, with Erasmus and the immigration waves these numbers get better. It honestly isn't hard, make it obligatory to learn the local language and english from the beginning and introduce the third a few years ahead; with migrant parents, there would be a lot of children proficient in at least three languages.

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I would agree. In my English lessons at secondary school, we read both British and American English language books. In my Dutch lessons, in the higher classes, I don't know if we were allowed Belgian authors, I don't think so, but we were allowed to read books of what were at the time part of the Netherlands (for example I read a book by an author who was partly from Curaçao). In the earlier years of secondary school we were allowed any book as long as it was in Dutch (so even a translated work) and we had a pretty free choice in this, but in the later years you had to pick from a list of literary works allowed for the course. For English we had to pick one book of ourselves and the rest of the books and also poetry, they were all picked by the teachers and everyone read the same book and poems.

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That's such a shame, welovebooks. :( Luckily I didn't know the ending when I read the book, so it had a huge effect. It's so annoying when a great twist gets ruined by careless people!

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Of mice and men... such a fabulous book. My favourite character was Curleys wife seen as though she's the only woman in the entire book and she doesn't even have a name! It's such a good book and also gives an insight as to how it was during the great depression from lots of different viewpoints: the landowners, the wives, the itinerant workers etc. Such a powerful book!

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Steinbeck has an almost pragmatic way of showing how depressing the world is. (if that makes any sense)

His simplistic style was one of the reasons I was drawn to The Pearl , a simplistic way of illustrating the total breakdown of a man for greed. It was deliciously brutal and straightforward.

 

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On 5/19/2017 at 4:28 AM, Qoajo said:

Steinbeck has an almost pragmatic way of showing how depressing the world is.

 

 

I think that's a perfect way of describing Steinbeck's work. After reading The Grapes of Wrath, I had to sit down and take a breath. The emotions I felt throughout that story were so intense, yet his writing is so simple and the plot is by no means complex.

 

I read The Grapes of Wrath years ago, but it is one of the few books that has stayed with me.

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We had to read The Pearl in class at secondary school.  I found it horribly depressing.  I wonder if I might like it better now, 30 years on.  I've read other Steinbecks which I enjoyed far more, Of Mice and Men, Cannery Row, etc.  He was always a favourite author of my mother's, and I would borrow her copies.  

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We were given The Pearl to read as well, thankfully it wasn't a set book, as the blurb on the back put us all off reading it!

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I have to say that my fave Steinbeck is East of Eden. It's one of the best descriptions of a sociopathic mind I've ever read. Way ahead of its time.

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I have only read East of Eden. It was an epic book. Different from the movie and the series. I ended up liking the book more than both the movie and the series.

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I have read the Grapes of wrath , East of Edan , cannery row, of mice and men and have just started The winter of our discontent .

I think if I had read Steinbeck in high school I would not have liked his books. But at 50+ I find them very enjoyable . As Hemmingway is with experiences Steinbeck is with society.   

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Hello and welcome to the forum, Scoaldacky! I'm glad you're enjoying John Steinbeck's novels. That's interesting, what you're saying, about Hemingway being with experiences as Steinbeck is with society. I take it you like Hemingway as well? 

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Hello Frankie thanks for the welcome. 

Yes i do enjoy Hemingway. Hemingway can write so descriptive. if he is having a drink its like you can taste that drink or feel the coolness of it in your hand. or if he is hunting a lion its like you can feel the roar in your chest. 

Steinbeck can explain the human  psychic and how it and different personalities  works in society .

Both of these Greats do not need a great plot or  suspense in there work . I believe they could write about paint drying and i would not be able to put the down.  

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I could not help noticing the similarities of "The Grapes of Wrath" with the previously published book "The Jungle" by Upton Sinclair ( a masterpiece of a book!). Very similar  circumstances both politically and from a social point of view.

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Has anyone read Travels with Charley: In Search of America by Steinbeck? I've noticed it on a few to-read lists and it seems to have very good reviews. Am a fan of Steinbeck's writing and have added it to my TBR list but would love to hear others views.

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On a semi related note, what Steinbeck do you lovely people think I should read after Of Mice and Men? I think I've got most of his work in my kindle collection and I have a battered copy of The Grapes of Wrath so any and all recommendations are welcome.

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18 hours ago, Angury said:

Has anyone read Travels with Charley: In Search of America by Steinbeck?

It's on my TBR list, but not read yet.

5 hours ago, Brian. said:

On a semi related note, what Steinbeck do you lovely people think I should read after Of Mice and Men? I think I've got most of his work in my kindle collection and I have a battered copy of The Grapes of Wrath so any and all recommendations are welcome.

The Grapes of Wrath or Cannery Road are both excellent. Cannery Road just pips the post, for me.

Edited by Marie H

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14 hours ago, Brian. said:

On a semi related note, what Steinbeck do you lovely people think I should read after Of Mice and Men? I think I've got most of his work in my kindle collection and I have a battered copy of The Grapes of Wrath so any and all recommendations are welcome.

 

Loved Grapes of Wrath - by far one of my favourite books. Would highly recommend it.

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i love all of John Steinbeck's books. He is by far my favorite author. Just yesterday I gave my granddaughter my whole collection of Steinbeck books. I believe I had all of them,

 

I would go for Grapes of Wrath but understand that it is a fairly long and heart rendering book. The book had a big impact in the U.S. in those days.

 

That said, Cannery Row was a delightful book to read. Tortilla Flats, Cannery Row, and Sweet Thursday are a trio of books that all take place in the same general area. I like to read them in that order (order written) and I have probably read each of them 2 to 3 times each. My favorites of the trio in order are Cannery Row, Tortilla Flats, and Sweet Thursday.

Edited by muggle not

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