Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Nonfiction November, Week 2: Book Pairings


It's Week 2 of  Nonfiction November. Our host this week is Sarah from Sarah's Book Shelves  and we're talking about book pairings:

It can be a “If you loved this book, read this!” or just two titles that you think would go well together. Maybe it’s a historical novel and you’d like to get the real history by reading a nonfiction version of the story.




Middlemarch by George Eliot
and 
My Life in Middlemarch by Rebecca Mead


My literary pairing this year combines a beloved classic with a modern blend of memoir, author biography, and literary criticism.

When I first read Middlemarch  in 2014, my intention was to follow up immediately with My Life in Middlemarch. In actuality, nearly three years passed before I began listening to Mead's book... and it might have been even longer without added incentive from an audible BOGO sale.

My Life in Middlemarch is a wonderful, well-written book. I learned a lot about George Eliot, thoroughly enjoyed Mead's discussion of the great novel, and found her personal story interesting, too.

For Middlemarch fans, My Life in Middlemarch is truly a must read!


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Nonfiction November is hosted by Katie at Doing Dewey, Lory at Emerald City Book Review, Sarah at Sarah’s Book Shelves, Julz at Julz Reads, and  Kim at Sophisticated Dorkiness.

Visit Sarah's Book Shelves for more book pairing posts.
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35 comments:

  1. I haven't read either, but I like that you paired them!

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    1. Vicki - It was the most obvious pairing based on my reading this year :)

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  2. You had me LOL! How many times have I had to say 'I meant to...' but several years later I still haven't done the reading?! Glad you finally got yours checked off!

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    1. Kim - Isn't that always the way? After finishing My Life in Middlemarch, I want to reread Eliot's novel... though it seems a little soon.

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  3. Nice pairing! I would like to read both...someday. :)

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    1. Les - I have a pretty extensive someday list, too ;-)

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  4. I haven't read either of those books.

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    1. Kathy - Both probably have limited appeal, but I sure enjoyed them.

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  5. Clever paring...classic + reflection about book or author.
    I will have to see if I can find something like this in 2018!

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    1. Nancy - A couple bloggers recommended Les Miserables with The Novel of the Century today. Another pairing I'd like to get to next year is a reread of Rebecca and Manderley Forever, a DuMaurier biography.

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  6. I also have books that I plan to read shortly that end up taking years to get to. I loved Middlemarch and My Life in Middlemarch has been on my radar for awhile. Your commentary makes me want to read it even more.

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    1. Brian - I think you would appreciate My Life in Middlemarch. The combination of literary discussion, biography, and memoir was enjoyable, and I learned something, too.

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  7. Middlemarch is on my Some Day TBR. Such a chunkster. I've heard of the other book too. A great pairing.

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    1. Louise - I started Middlemarch at least a couple of times before, but didn't get very far. This time, the combination of print and audio helped... it's become my preferred method of attack for long classics. Juliet Stevenson's narration was excellent.

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  8. I really need to read Middlemarch. I always thought I had until I was looking at a list of other books Eliot had written and realized that I had read Mill on the Floss instead. This sounds like a great pairing!

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    1. Katherine - I'm not sure I've read Mill on the Floss, but am not a big fan of Silas Marner. If you decide to tackle MIddlemarch, I highly recommend a read/listen combination... and Juliet Stevenson's narration.

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  9. Two of my favorites, though I read Middlemarch in an overly long (year long?) readalong and have always meant to re-read it. Or re-listen! I've had a spurt of Juliet Stevenson lately, which has been wonderful.

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    1. Audrey - My inclination after finishing Mead's book was to immediately begin rereading Middlemarch! Think I picked up another Trollope instead, but will certainly reach for JS narration when it is time to reread. What are you listening to now?

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    2. JS reading Emma, and Adam Gopnik reading his own new book, At the Stranger's (Strangers'?) Gate.

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    3. Loved JS reading Emma... might go the audio route for Persuasion next month. I need to listen to Gopnik!

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  10. Onward you go! Week 2 already! I need to read MiddleMarch!

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    1. Patty - Do it when you have looooots of time ;-)

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  11. Thanks for this pairing! Middlemarch is on my Classics Club list and I will definitely check out My Life in Middlemarch. I read Romola by George Eliot this year and it was excellent.

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    1. Nick - The only other Eliot I've read is Silas Marner, which I wasn't particularly fond of. Will try Romola at some point.

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  12. Great pairing. I've been wanting to read Middlemarch (or any George Eliot) for the longest time. Hopefully I'll get round to it in the new year.

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    1. Ceri - I tend to start the new year with an overambitious plan, but hope you do get a chance to read Eliot.

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  13. Middlemarch is one of those classics I really want to read. Great pairing!

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    1. Iliana - Middlemarch is especially good as a read/listen combination.

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  14. Nice pairing, I have to admit I've never read Middlemarch, but I think I have a copy. :)

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    1. Anita - When you do get to Middlemarch, I recommend adding in the audio.

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  15. I haven't read Middlemarch...I hear it's loooong! So probably won't get to it until the kids are much older!

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    1. Sarah - Ha ha! Mine were in college before I got to it;-)

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