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BBC Poll To Find Best Novel...
# 1 : Sunday 6-4-2003 @ 19:13

At the moment the BBC is conducting a poll to find the best 100 novels.

It is similar to the thing they had last year to find the Greatest Ever Briton..they are going to cut it down to the best 10 books eventually, and then, after showing a documentary on the top ten, have a vote for the best of all.

Thyis will take place over a few months, but the first stage in the process is on now, to find the best 100.

you can vote on the website until April 19th (www.bbc.co.uk/bigread).

I was wondering what book we could all vote on to ensure a good gay representation. (In the spirit of that poll earlier on which made "A nation Once Again" Britain's best loved song!)

Obviously the best strategy would be to vote for a book which is popular generally, and will get votes anyway.

I was thinking about it and the two that came to MY mind, at least, were "Tales of the City" by Armistead Maupin, and "A Boy's own Storey" by Edmund White.

Does anybody else have any suggestions?
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# 2 : Sunday 6-4-2003 @ 19:47
Yeah, I'd go for "A Boy's Own Story" -it's a long time since I read it but I remember being engrossed by it. I'd certainly recommend it ahead of "At Swim, Two Boys".

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# 3 : Sunday 6-4-2003 @ 19:55

What is wrong with "At Swim Two Boys"?

I have been meaning to getting around to reading it but have not done so yet.

It got good reviews mostly I thought.
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# 4 : Sunday 6-4-2003 @ 19:58
I read a few chapters and I thought it was just a kind of pastiche of Joyce.

I just couldn't get into it . . .

What's Tales of the City like?
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# 5 : Sunday 6-4-2003 @ 20:07

The Tales of the City series is very difficult to describe. It is a series of 6 books about a group of friends in San francisco from about 1975 to 1985.

It was originally written as a newspaper serial. It is quite funny and you become very interested in the lives of the characters.

They are mostly gay, (Michael 'Mouse' Tolliver, a gay man, is the main character).

As I say, it is very difficult to describe the attraction of the books, the character get involved in a rather zany set of adventures that pokes fun at all aspects of life, both gay and str8.

Just read the first instalment, and see if you like it!
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# 6 : Sunday 6-4-2003 @ 20:18
Tales of the city is a great series. Another book to nominate
would be Maurice by EM Forster.
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# 7 : Monday 7-4-2003 @ 13:49
"The Liar" by Stephen Fry is a cracker. Not high lit, but very sharp stuff.

I've started reading "Dorian Gray" again. This time around I'm beginning to think that it is not all that well written.

Is that a heresy?
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# 8 : Monday 7-4-2003 @ 15:24
A Picture of Dorian Gray is NOT a work of literature but a ribald picaresque with a clear moral.It is an interesting read and it reflects Bosie very well as an egocentric narcissist but that is all.Everything is subjective in the end including literature therefore if you can justify your dislikes they are valid in themselves.
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# 9 : Thursday 10-4-2003 @ 09:33
"There is no such thing as a moral or immoral book. Books are either well written or badly written. That is all."
- from the Preface to 'The Picture of Dorian Gray'.

I think Oscar failed by his own standards. When I first read it about 15 years ago, I loved it. I read it now and find that there is so much sobbing, gasping and flinging of oneself upon the divan in despair, it could read as a parody. Perhaps it was very original in its day.

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# 10 : Thursday 10-4-2003 @ 19:08
Now we are diverting away from the original aim. I'll go with Ronanr choice ie Tales of two cities. I lived in Sf around the time the colomn was coiming to an end so I always enjoy reading the books. As they say I left me Heart in San Francisco . . . .
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# 11 : Friday 11-4-2003 @ 10:55
I say, fellows - what about "Five go to Finniston Farm". Do let's give it lashings of votes!

George's heroic resistance to the received norms of heterosexual society must be acknowledged.

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# 12 : Friday 11-4-2003 @ 10:55
He who hesitates is a damned fool Wheelie Bin.
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# 13 : Friday 11-4-2003 @ 11:54
Well said young chap, tally ho its nearly time for high tea.
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# 14 : Friday 18-4-2003 @ 15:25
Whatever you think, today is the last day to cast your vote.

Go, vote for something queer!

The website is

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# 15 : Saturday 19-4-2003 @ 21:15
Thanks for the reminder.

Gave my vote to The Poor Mouth.
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