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Hi everybody, i need your help. Thanks in advance.

So, I'm taking part in some competiiton and I'm required to read three american and three brittish works of literature (list to pick from follows). If You have any reccomendations or some other insight, please share. It will help me choose.

I've allready read The Great Gatsby and Lodge's Deaf Sentence in the past, so I will probably be picking those two. I've seen The Caretaker performed on stage, but i don't know about picking that, i'd rather stay with novels, I think. I will probably pick Blood Meridian too, since i've been wanting to read it since forever. That leaves me with two brittish novels and an american one to choose.

Here's the list:


* Martin Amis Times Arrow

* John Banville The Sea

* Samuel Beckett Endgame or What, Where

* A.S. Byatt Possession

* Pat Barker Regeneration

* Julian Barnes Flaubert’s parrot

* Angela Carter Wise children

* J.M Coetzee Waiting for the Barbarians or Disgrace

* Kiran Desai The Inheritance of Loss

* Roddy Doyle Paddy Clark Ha, Ha, Ha

* Carol Ann Duffy selected poems

* John Fowles The Magus

* Ted Hughes selected poems

* Hanif Kureishi The Buddha of Suburbia

* Doris Lessing The Grass is Singing or The Good Terrorist

* Iris Murdoch The Sea, the Sea

* David Lodge Small World or Deaf Sentence

* Martin McDonagh The Leenane Trilogy

* Ian McEwan Amsterdam

* Andrew Motion selected poems

* Harold Pinter The Caretaker

* Salman Rushdie Fury or The Enchantress of Florence

* Zadie Smith White Teeth

* Muriel Spark Robinson or The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie

* Tom Stoppard Cahoots Macbeth

* Derek Walcott selected poems (not less than three)

* Jeanette Winterson Oranges are not the only fruit

* Virginia Woolf Jacob’s Room or Mrs Dalloway


* Edward Albee Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf

* Paul Auster The New York Trilogy

* James Baldwin Another country

* Willa Cather My Antonia

* Kate Chopin The Awakening

* e.e. cummings selected poems

* Don DeLillo Falling Man or Underworld

* Emily Dickinson selected poems

* William Faulkner The Sound and the Fury

* F. Scott Fitzgerald The Great Gatsby

* Robert Frost selected poems

* Nathaniel Hawthorne The Scarlet Letter

* Jack Kerouac The Dharma Bums

* Harper Lee To Kill A Mockingbird

* Cormac McCarthy The Road or Blood Meridian

* Arthur Miller Death of A Salesman

* Toni Morrison Beloved or A Mercy

* Tim O’Brien Going after Cacciato

* Sylvia Plath The Bell Jar

* Adrienne Rich Diving into the Wreck

* Philip Roth The Dying Animal

* John Steinbeck Of Mice and Men

* Elizabeth Strout Olive Kitteridge

* Alice Walker The Color Purple

* Tennessee Williams A Streetcar Named Desire


also sorry if this would be considered off topic, but this is the only active book thread i knew about

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i haven't read many of the British books listed though i have read a few of those authors

if you haven't read Endgame, please read that

for Americans, I like Underworld, Sound and the Fury, and both the ee cummings and the emily dickinson

of the works listed, those are the ones that have endured for me

i feel a certain resentment against the canon right now

but i will always be awed by Faulkner, dickinson, and cummings

game changers and fucking strange even to current sensibilities

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Tennessee WIlliams! if you haven't read any Tennessee Williams, i mean, come on! read A streetcar named desire.

Underworld I think would get double points because A. widely excepted as one of the greatest american novels, B. apparently you have to read something, so read that. C. People in coffee shops will think you are cool.

I love Steinbeck, but Of Mice and Men isn't his best. Death of a Salesmen is better on stage (typcailly). Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf is one of those rare exceptions where the film is actually quite (really) good (its a play anyway). The Sound and The Fury is wonderful, but a little difficult, like any Falukner (IDK what your competition is)

I vote Bell Jar or Blood Meridian for your 3rd.

British: ehhhh.

End Game

Paddy Clark ha ha ha is very readable and enjoyable. (Irish tho, not british)

and I honestly haven't read any others on the british list. The selections I've read from Rushdie were not as good as i was expecting, considering his rep power. haha

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(Irish tho, not british)
Haha, sorry, actually, on the original list the title was "English" (and they didn't mean the language, since the other one was "American"). I googled a couple of those authors I wasn't sure about, but they were all English. Changed to Brittish anyway, just to be sure. I even thought about Ireland for a sec, but i wouldn't know how to call it then (Iro-Brittish? Brittish and/or Irish?), so I just went with Brittish.

Thanks for the insight, anyway. If anyone else has anything to add, by all means, please do.

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This was a fantastic, blow-your-hair-back book for me. I hate that cover, though.

the cover on my copy is even worse...

but yeah about halfway done right now and this is a great book. really engrossing, super descriptive. and even though it is fairly lengthy it doesn't feel like a chore to read. really enjoying it. last book i read that read like this was A Prayer for Owen Meany

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Maybe late pass, but any of you read this?


Pretty good story. At first kinda lame and couldn't get past how self-righteous the author makes himself out to be. Plus the descriptions can be a bit of a wank. Once it gets going though, tells a good tale. Based on his life but author has admitted it is part fictional.

I read about half of it then I googled the author and quickly put the book down.

Who wants to read a book that this guy wrote?


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