Sunday, November 04, 2007

(First November) Sunday Salon

It is SundaySalon time again and this time I am home and trying to get properly involved. Been travelling around a bit over the last couple of days but have to get down to a bit of work now...

This morning (and yesterday on the train) I read this

as recommended by Stephen King. It was as horrifying as he said it was, and not literature at all (and didn't pretend to be) but very, very interesting all the same. I think it deserves a blog post all of its own but shall deal with that later.

Now I have to look around for something else out of my TBR pile, and since there have been several Amazon deliveries recently I find I am embarrassed for choice. So I choose this THE NAME OF THE ROSE by Umberto Eco.

I think I have signed up for real time alerts courtesy of yahoo - but given my general level of technical incompetence probably have not - time will tell....


Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, what's that Hot Zone book about? I'm intrigued.

Does this mean you're using Yahoo as an RSS reader? Does this imply that you *haven't* been using an RSS reader previously???!

Sun Nov 04, 04:17:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hot Zone is the non-fiction book on which the film OUTBREAK (which I haven't seen) was based. It tracks outbreaks of Ebola and Marburg in Africa before going on to describe an outbreak in a monkey house in Washington DC (not the White House - sorry couldn't resist). It ends with 'It'll be back...' Very scary since they have established that in the said monkey house the variety of ebola there was spread through the air although, unusually and very fortunately, harmless to humans.

I thought I was using an RSS feed before (bloglines - but found that a bit tiresome) but this one much better since it emails me whenever anyone posts anything (and yes, it's working). Excellent for very lazy people...

Sun Nov 04, 04:38:00 pm  
Blogger iburnbooks said...

The book "How to Talk About Books You Haven't Read" by Pierre Bayard mentions "The Name of the Rose". It uses the characters William of Baskerville and the librarian Jorge to show how people perceive books they haven't read, but have only heard of.

Sun Nov 04, 04:48:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ha, I like it - rather like 'the bluffers guide to...' books I used to read a few years back. Yes, I can see why someone might feel the need to pretend they've read this book - it's one lots of people talk about and quite long (500 pages of small print).

Sun Nov 04, 04:54:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I loved 'The Name of the Rose'; it's definitely the most accessible of Eco's novels. But it does take a really concentrated read. If at all possible, I advise a long evening by the fire with plenty of liquid refreshment of choice and the phone off the hook until you've got yourself thoroughly immersed in the story.

Sun Nov 04, 05:44:00 pm  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Ann, I can't find your blog. Yes, wise comments, I feel. I have read just a couple of pages because I've been interrupted, but the writing is very good and I know I'm going to love this.

Sun Nov 04, 06:29:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really enjoyed The Name of the Rose. I cannot remember if I read the book first, or watched the movie first. I love both. :)

Sun Nov 04, 09:32:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Clare, here's Ann's blog.

Actually, that book about talking about books not read sounds more interesting than I would have supposed: we do develop ideas about unread books somehow. How accurate are our perceptions? Where do we get them from?

Sun Nov 04, 11:45:00 pm  
Blogger Jacob Russell said...

The judgments we make about books we don't read are pretty important--given the number of books out there and how selective we have to be. In choosing the 40 or 50 books we do read in a year (for some, quite a few more)--we elect not to read millions?.

Granted, most of them we're not even aware of, but the publishing business lives or dies on figuring out what goes into the filtering process for the those that do cross our radar. It's a pretty complicated process, when you think about it. Reviews play their part--but does word of mouth, the associational game Amazon plays up (those who recently bought x, also bought y and z)... actually, that's a pretty effective tactic. I do tend to notice those other titles, and when I'm not familiar with an author, I check it out.

But not always.

To buy or not to buy, to read or not to read--that's the last stage. The filter is turned on way early in the process. I can say, nope. Amazon got it wrong there. Someone else may have bought a Gombrowicz, but it's clear only a small part of the circles encompassing our respective tastes overlap.

But then, this doesn't have much to do with talking about books you haven't read... or does it?

Mon Nov 05, 12:55:00 am  

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