Author Topic: Author/novel analysis  (Read 2098 times)

Offline Plain Helvetica

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Author/novel analysis
« on: December 01, 2015, 04:00:57 PM »
Are there any resources that people use when done reading a novel?

I try to analyse what I enjoyed and didn't like about novels when I am done with them. Normally I try to supplement this by searching online for others' opinions.  Unfortunately this is a bit hit and miss and I rarely find much that focusses on the author's style. Book reviews don't really cover this sort of thing as far as I can see. They tend towards more 'readerly' concerns of 'I didn't like the MC' as opposed to 'writerly' issues such as 'the author relied heavily on dialogue to push forward the plot' or 'the author occasionally slips out of the POV'. Obviously that is fair enough from a book review and useful in its own way but I would be more interested in the latter.

Anyone know of any sources of this sort of criticism? Anything else that people do to get the most out of their reading? :)

Offline Alice, a Country Gal

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Re: Author/novel analysis
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2015, 05:10:15 PM »
I'm not aware of any site such as you describe. But perhaps it would help your delve in more depth into such if you can find a book club either in RL or online.

I found when I was in an online book club and we all were reading the same book at the same time and later discussing it, what we liked or didn't like  and why, I tended to give it more thought than I normally would have because I had to gather my thoughts and write it all down.

On top of that, reading/hearing how others felt about the same book, how it was written, the plot, character and how they were handled, I tending to examine and/or ask myself why my personal opinion may have differed or or was stranger about some points than how others may have felt.

Hope that makes so sense and helps you in some way.



 
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Offline Annmarie

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Re: Author/novel analysis
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2015, 03:07:24 AM »
I agree with Alice you could find a book club, or even just find a few like-minded writers and create a "writers reading" club. That would be a great way to learn.

I don't know if any English-speaking countries have this, but there's a long-running TV show in Germany called the Literary Quartet. Four lit critics and/or authors each present a book they recommend, which the others must also read. On the show, they discuss each book, and there's usually big differences of opinion. Goes to show you can't please everyone. Some of the past critics on the show were very famous (like Marcel Reich-Ranicki, an amazing guy in his own right). I was surprised how indepth the crits got, very passionate, very opinionated, and they got into the mechanics of how the books were written, POV, structure etc., what worked, what didn't. The show used to have a big influence on what people read, and it's hugely intelligent and literate for a show that's for the general public, not just for writers or lit types.

Maybe you could find something along those lines online?  ???
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Offline thatollie

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Re: Author/novel analysis
« Reply #3 on: December 03, 2015, 04:35:09 AM »
This might help. It's basically designed for kids to copy homework from, but you can learn stuff from actually reading them.
http://www.sparknotes.com/sparknotes/
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Offline Plain Helvetica

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Re: Author/novel analysis
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2015, 09:21:50 PM »
I attended a book club recently. It was quite interesting and there was some insight to take but nobody really looked at the book from the point of view of how it was constructed. Of course there was no reason why they should do so I'm not complaining. You are, however, quite right Alice that it did help me to focus on what exactly I did and didn't like about the novel. I plan to return.

I like the idea of a "writers readers" club Annmarie. Although I'm somewhat lacking in RL writer acquaintances to make it work. That show you mention sounds great. I feel like something like that should exist in the recesses of the BBC archives somewhere! Worth a look.

Thanks Ollie. That's a pretty good resources in terms of theme. Oh to be a plagiarist child again.