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When writer Robert McCrum completed his own , after developing it over the course of two years , it was greeted with a mix of enthusiasm and criticism.
Most of the scepticism centred on the lack of diversity , though many readers had their own favourite omission. So we asked you to nominate the books you thought should have made the list. Here are the novels that received the most nominations, in no particular order — we have included all that received a minimum of two votes. Its inventive idiomatic prose highlights the malleability of the English language: no other writer or translator has evoked the true essence of another language in English.
Also quite readable. Set in the advent of colonialism and its implications for the native people, the clash of cultures of two different worlds. A story of how a way of life was replaced by another culture. Black African novelists are often sorely under represented in literary criticism and lists of this kind. In Things Fall Apart, Achebe explores the colonial experience by arguably using the tools of colonialism itself, ie the English language.
The story is told from the African perspective and his use of African colloquialisms and proverbs is genuinely subversive and innovative. And most well written English literature works, including poems, embody such almost straightforward characters, both in their wording and storytelling The gentle singsong wording and wave-like storytelling combined with the vividness of English captured me like a dream. It explores caste, sexism, colonialism and the strange unspoken rules that tie Indian families together.
Like in most great novels, the prose itself is stunning, with imagery fresh and original and at the same time, somehow familiar. Perhaps it is this coincidence that ties me so strongly to the book, to see in tangible words the burden that history passes along to Indian women. Every character is complete and completely human; the plot is intricate and perfectly woven; the sentences sparkle with lapidary precision. Roy frames tragic personal stories within the context of the greater tragedy of Indian social strictures and politics. And the ending made me cry for two solid hours.
I read the book four years ago and writing this critique is making my throat tighten even now, such is its incandescent power and brilliance. It is the most extraordinary excavation of the bones and ghosts of American history slavery, lynching, Jim Crow segregation , limned in a deeply haunting, profoundly moving multi-layered epic tragedy. The novel also uses a beautiful and poetic style to hone in its themes.
Lastly, Morrison utilises magical realism to enhance the setting and the characters that occupy it.
Morrison is one of the first American authors to use magical realism as a primary stylistic choice. Living in America gives you a sense, sometimes, that the fundamentalist Christians, with their literalist readings of the Bible, would be capable of reading the story of an infertile woman who had her husband impregnate her handmaid and see that as a solution to infertility in the modern age. And Atwood not only gets the reading of the Bible correct, she also foresaw that we would wreck the planet at the level of reproduction, too.
A Texan, his dark descriptions of the American West are second to none. His voice is unique and unmatched in its originality. This is a novel which hypnotises, horrifies and leaves the reader as dazed as man who has stood too close to freight-train as it has roared by his head. Jolting and vividly spattered with blood, the pages brand themselves deeply into the readers memory and imagination: A true American masterpiece crafted by a true master. It tells a fascinating and complex story with incredible power.
It has arguably the greatest villain ever written. It shows the utter superfluousness of punctuation. It evokes a little-known period in American history with startling beauty and incredible realism. The Judge is one of the most sinister characters in the history of literature. It educates you about Indian politics and history. This book takes you right into the drama of ordinary, seemingly forgettable lives. Been a long time lurker on your blog. Love your emails.
Loved your book. And your blog is me to a tee. Hello world! This is a tricky issue and doubly so when the person offering feedback is your partner. I would suggest that, if you can, you find an extra person or two to read and comment. If they AND your wife are making similar suggestions for changes, then they may well have a point. A fair number of writers I know work on a rule of thumb of changing things if two or more beta readers agree.
Thanks Ali, tip on reading script ALOUD was very valuable…trouble was I became so engaged with how I sounded that my editorial function was invalidated…still, I am enjoying the process, unusually! All the best, Catherine. Secondly, proofreading in chunks could be a huge help. Thank you. Wonderful tips you have shared here. I also use to read the article loud out to find any sort of mistakes that I made.
Its also remember me the days when I was in School and I read my books loudly. It was really a fun and good way to grasp everything. I also take the help of some proofreading tools like Grammarly. It works great for me.
- Stage #1: Rewriting.
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Thanks again for sharing this informative post. The three stages are: Rewriting — adding and cutting whole chunks scenes, chapters, paragraphs , and moving and reworking material. Proofreading — checking that what you think you wrote is what you actually wrote, and fixing typos and spelling mistakes. Three Proofreading Tips 1: Work in Short Bursts If you find proofreading a bit tedious, work on it for 20 — 40 minutes at a time.
This tip works for any slightly tedious yet focus-demanding task… 2: Read Out Loud While I cringe at the thought of this one, I know that reading out loud is a brilliant way to make mistakes leap out from the page. Newsletter The Aliventures newsletter includes a short article on writing, and comes to your inbox every week. When you join, you also get four free mini-ebooks.
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The Three Stages of Editing (and Nine Handy Do-it-Yourself Tips)
Learn More. Start Here If you're new, welcome! Find More Posts. Sharyn Kopf on January 28, at pm. Ali on February 5, at pm. Bill Polm on January 29, at am. Ali Jayne on January 29, at pm. Thanks Ali another Ali! Jeremy Montoya on February 19, at pm. Thanks Ali! Ali on February 26, at pm.
Express Yourself (Madonna song)
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iBooks Top Romance Novels
Peter on April 29, at pm. Ali on April 30, at am. Thanks for sticking around, Peter! And thanks for commenting. Best of luck! Catherine on May 1, at am.
having a heart to heart respect yourself mini e book series 1 Manual
Hassaan Khan on March 19, at pm. Ali on March 20, at am. Thanks, Hassaan! Vishwajeet Kumar on March 21, at am. Hello Ali, Wonderful tips you have shared here.