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Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Awesome Book Club for Awesome Cool People Starts October 1st.

Simple rules.

1) I pick a book. It will be a book that I think looks interesting that I want to read. It will not be a thing that I have already read before, which defeats the purpose of this thing.

2) I will post on the 1st of the month about this book that we will be reading this month.

3) In the comments of that post, read along together. Post your thoughts, impressions, etc. Label spoilers so people can skip them if they wanna. Generally, I like the kind of books where knowing a spoiler doesn't change your reading experience much, so no worries about going crazy trying to avoid them.

4)I will pick interesting things that people say and edit them into the main post, so everyone can keep up with what is happening in the comments.

5) I will stop doing this for that post at the end of the month, when we begin the next book.

6) The next book will be announced at least two weeks before the next month begins, so we can all have time to locate a copy. I bet we're going to end up with some obscure things here and there, because what's the point of a book club dedicated to easy-to-find, easy-to-read stuff?

The book I have chosen for our book club, after consultation with some of y'all is this one:

EMBERS by Sandor Mari, translated by Carol Brown Janeway

From Publishers Weekly
Two very old men Konrad and Henrik, "the General" once the closest of friends, meet in 1940 in the fading splendor of the General's Hungarian castle, after being separated for 41 years, to ponder the events that divided them. This 1942 novel by a forgotten Hungarian novelist, rediscovered and lucidly and beautifully translated, is a brilliant and engrossing tapestry of friendship and betrayal, set against a backdrop of prewar splendor. In the flickering glow and shadow of candlelight, the General recalls the past with neither violence nor mawkish sentiment, but with restrained passion. The two met as boys, Henrik the confident scion of a wealthy, aristocratic family, and Konrad the sensitive son of an impoverished baron. Of their closeness, the General says, "the eros of friendship has no need of the body." When they are young men, Konrad introduces Henrik to Krisztina, the remarkable daughter of a crippled musician. Henrik and Krisztina marry, and the two keep up a close friendship with Konrad, until one morning, on a hunt, Henrik senses that Konrad is about to fire at him. Nothing happens, but Konrad leaves at once, vanishing. For the first time, the General goes to his friend's rooms, and then his wife unexpectedly comes in. He never speaks to her again. Capturing the glamour of the fin de siĆ cle era, as well as its bitter aftermath, M rai eloquently explores the tight and twisted bonds of friendship. (Oct. 2)Forecast: M rai's history he was born in 1900, rose to fame in Hungary in the 1930s, fled the country after WWII and committed suicide in San Diego in 1989, virtually forgotten is at least as compelling as the story he tells here.

link: Indiebound (<-strongly recommended) Amazon:


tim said...

This sounds great! I will certainly be reading it. I am not sure, though, if I will be able to muster the thinking to make any useful comments.

J m mcdermott said...

I read it. Will be adding comments to post about it and selecting our next book for next month.