Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Literary Blog Hop: May 12-15

Welcome to the Literary Blog Hop hosted by The Blue Bookcase!

This blog hop is open to blogs that primarily feature book reviews of literary fiction, classic literature, and general literary discussion.

How do I know if my blog qualifies as "literary"? Literature has many definitions, but for our purposes your blog qualifies as "literary" if it focuses primarily on texts with aesthetic merit. In other words, texts that show quality not only in narrative but also in the effect of their language and structure. YA literature may fit into this category, but if your blog focuses primarily on non-literary YA, fantasy, romance, paranormal romance, or chick lit, you may prefer to join the blog hop at Crazy-for-books that is open to book blogs of all kinds.

Instructions for entering the Literary Blog Hop:

1. Grab the code for the Button.

Literary Blog Hop

2. Answer the following prompt on your blog.

(Suggestions for future prompts? Email to them us at

What books have you read that have been hyped as literary and, in your opinion, were not?

Our answer comes from Lucia:

Lovesong by Alex Miller

I heard amazing reviews praising both the book and it's Australian author. It won/ was shortlisted for a handful of literary prizes. However did I not like the story's plot, and was bored by the author's style and descriptions. Before I go further I will say that this is just one girl's opinion and that others may have perfectly legitimate reasons why this book is literary. Miller's language is simple in a way that I did not find captivating or reflective of the proposed mood of the text. The primary theme which I obtained from Lovesong was how even very ordinary lives can be both beautiful and ripe with aching sadness. I felt that the descriptions were meant to be intimate portrayals of the characters and their circumstances, although I did not understand how the use of language showed this. It just seemed flat and at times even teetered on being poorly written. For the most part, I found the characters to be the strongest element of the novel. The narrating character Ken, an aging writer searching for a last story, however, was highly disagreeable. In his constant niggling at obtaining the full story of another couple's relationship, Miller creates the impression that the character is somewhat unsympathetic or indifferent to his friend's evident despair. Furthermore, the details of Ken's past and the death of his wife propose to create an understanding and deeply empathetic character, yet to me he did not display either of these qualities. Miller sets the scene for Ken to be able to sympathize with John, and yet this does not occur.

3. Add your link to the Linky List below.

Happy Hopping!

*PLEASE NOTE: if you do not answer the question and link back to The Blue Bookcase in a post on your blog, you will be removed from the Linky list.