I’ve chosen seven books as candidates for our upcoming reading group. There wasn’t any particular criteria I used in selecting these candidates, but I did intentionally stay within the latter half of the twentieth century for two particular reasons: 1) For our first book I want a text that is more fun than challenging. 2) These texts shouldn’t require an abundance of historical background for a full understanding.
If this goes well the next batch will come from a more challenging time period that requires some additional research to fully appreciate. I’ll post these up, we’ll talk about them, and in the next day or so we can all vote on which book we’d like to read collectively.
And yes, there are several science fiction texts on this list. I like science fiction, but I feel like the academy, or at least the academies I’ve attended, fail to acknowledge the importance of science fiction in literary studies. So without further adieu, here’s the list:
Breakfast of Champions — Kurt Vonnegut
Shalimar the Clown — Salman Rushdie
The Gods Themselves — Isaac Asimov
Falling Man: A Novel — Dom Delillo
Stranger in a Strange Land — Robert Heinlein
Never Let Me Go — Kazus Ishiguro
War Trash — Ha Jin
So there you go; I hope you’re as excited as I am. Let me know what you think.