What’s This? A Literary Blog Hop? You Mean, One Without Cartoons?

This is such a relief. It’s such a relief that I’m standing here at the kitchen counter, after standing all day, because I’m so enthused about this discovery I can’t take the time to find my chair.

First, I visited Park Bench Bookends for a wonderful post on their favorite literary books, and then I skedaddled over to Dead White Guys because isn’t that a witty name for an ‘other people think it’s dry’ subject, and then I find that the common bond here is not only quality books but a wonderful “hop” hosted by The Blue Bookcase. A hop which does not specialize in the trivial and trite, the pulp fiction and “sparkly font on black background” as Jane Doe put it.

Nope, this hop is focusing on what is essential to those who love the classics. The literary wonders which take your breath away.

What shall I choose as my favorite literary piece? Could it be The Robber Bride by Margaret Atwood? Could it be Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy or the recently reread Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert? Could it be Kafka on The Shore by my beloved Haruki Murakami? It could be all of these and more, but tonight I’ll settle on A. S. Byatt’s Possession.

A novel which took me several tries in which to fully immerse myself, once immersed I couldn’t extricate myself. Nor did I want to. And, if you want to talk about one of the best endings ever, this has got to be it.

Love. It.

Truly.

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34 thoughts on “What’s This? A Literary Blog Hop? You Mean, One Without Cartoons?”

  1. I never wanted to read Possession until I found out there was a love story in it and I realised that I rarely read love storys. I'm going to track it down soon I hope.

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  2. Ha ha, you sound like you've finally come home! I like the idea of this blog hop too, but am not sure I'm literary enough. But if you're reading Adriana Trigiani and joining in this literary blog hop, then maybe so should I. My last few readings have been very un-literary, though. :-)Happy weekend – hope you find lots of like-minded people here.

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  3. leeswammes, I was smiling to myself to see the cover of Brava, Valentine in my sidebar (which I'm reading for TLC book tours) as it is a great escape read. But, not one would consider a literary classic. There are certain times for certain books, and although I love the classics most, I find a place for the lighter fare. For example, after this week from Hell when I had fourteen hour days. 😉

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  4. Bellezza, I love book blogger hops, "literary" or not! (Actually, technically,the word 'literary' just has to do with books and writing, although I do love great literature and writers.) Anyway, the best thing about these hops to me is discovering new blogs, and being "discovered" by others as well. Hops help create goodwill between book bloggers, some interesting discussions, and are also a lot of fun. 🙂

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  5. Suko, I agree with you about the best thing in 'hopping' is finding new blogs and for me, like-minded bloggers, as well as creating a spark for some interesting discussion.

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  6. Hi, Belleza! Wow, this is an exciting idea. I read such a weird mix of non-fiction, mysteries and classics that I have no idea whether or not I have a literary blog. But I'm sure I'll enjoy reading all the blogs of the participants. Your blog always introduces me to the most fun things, and for that I am truly grateful! Col

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  7. I came across this hop today as well, and was excited to find it!Possession is one that, like Bibliophile by the Sea, I've had on my shelves for quite some time but haven't picked it up yet. I'm not quite sure why, but it appears I must remedy this. I've been enjoying The Count of Monte Cristo, but I daresay that it would not be one of my ultimate favorites (at least not so far, but that certainly could change as the story progresses). Perhaps my favorite literary classic to date is The House of Mirth — I've been ecstatic to come across some online options of short stories of Ms. Wharton and have started to immerse myself! As wiped as I am from the work week, it's certainly a pleasure to dilly dally away in some amazing stories…

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  8. Coffee and a Book Chick, I've never read Edith Wharton and certainly not The House of Mirth. Thanks for the good suggestion! I could sure use some dilly-dallying (our school's Word or The Week as it so happens) in some amazing stories.Winstonsdad, I've tried a couple of Byatt's pieces and not been nearly as entranced as I was with Possession. I imagine she's a bit like Margaret Atwood; Cat's Eye and The Robber Bride are so much more favorite than Oryx and Crake or The Handmaid's Tale. I guess I'm just not a huge fan of futuristic/science fiction. Back to Possession, you should give it a try.

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  9. bibliophiliac, I'm glad you reminded me about Anthony Trollope on your post. Elizabeth, I've read Possession twice, and I could easily read it several more times. You're so right about there being a lot to absorb, and the poetry is so lovely interspersed within the plot.

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  10. Can you believe I STILL haven't read Possession?? It's sitting on my bookshelf waiting to be read though and I just can't wait to read it!!! I've been wanting to read it for like….FIVE years now!

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  11. Chris, that's about what it was like with me. I started it about five times, and I thought, "I'll never get into this!" Then, one Christmas about eight years ago, we were laying on a beach in the Florida Keys and I read it in one day. Could not put it down.But, I can't tell you how many books I have sitting on my shelf that I'll read about on someone's blog and think, "I have that! I should open it up." It happened just yesterday when I read a post on DeLillo's Underworld. 🙂

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  12. Thanks for stopping by my blog, I'm following you now :)I haven't read Possession, even though I have a copy somewhere. I loved Madame Bovary though, I've only read it once so far but it will definitely get a re-read at some point.And I agree, the ride through the woods to the castle in Dracula is beyond creepy. I'm glad someone else found it scary – for me suggestion is much worse than gore for making me scared.Sam at Tiny Library

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  13. I purchased this book immediately after reading A Children's Book. I love Byatt's writing style and had heard that this was a great second choice. Of course, I haven't found the time to read it….yet….but I will make the time someday soon.

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  14. Sam, it was nice to meet you yesterday through the Literary Blog Hop. I saw lots of blogs that looked so exciting and were new to me! I'm glad you know what I meant when I spoke of the drive through the woods in Dracula; surely, the power of suggestion is scarier than anything. As Hitchcock once said,"There is no terror in a bang, only in the anticipation of it." Molly, I had The Children's Book, but I gave it away to one of my friends. The friend, in fact, who introduced me to A. S. Byatt with Possession. I'll plan on reading it this year even though it came out last.Beachreader, I hope you like it. Thanks for visiting.

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  15. What a wonderful collection of books you have on your blog. I love my job, but I want to retire and read more! There's so much out there I'll never catch up.I came over from the blog hop (I'm a new blogger) and I'll stop by again.Susan from ReadingWorld.

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  16. I've had Possession on my 'to read' list for ages! Still haven't read it because it seems to intimidate me. I'm thinking about reading Th Children's Book first.

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  17. I haven't ready any of Byatt yet, if you can believe it. I feel like I am missing out on something really special. I almost bought The Children's Book at the airport the other day since it was now a trade paperback but decided against it. I've got in on my list though and will get around to it one of these days!

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  18. YAY! I'm so glad that you've found us and joined our hop! I think you and I have a very similar taste in books. It's funny, it seems like EVERYONE recommends Possession to me when they hear what kind of books I like, but I still haven't read it! -Ingrid from The Blue Bookcase

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  19. Possession is on my nightstand…just waiting for me to finish up my book club book and find some quiet time to spend with it. I hear so many good things about it.Glad to have found your blog!

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  20. I read Possession years ago and loved it but haven't read it since. It seems like it's been popping up in blogs lately though, reminding me that I'd really like to read it again. Maybe after the Holidays…

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  21. Hey Bellezza! I'm totally with you and Dead White Guys – there's a place in the world for sparkly blogs, but it's so much easier to find other like minds through the literary blog hop. Massive high five on Possession – it's one of my all time favourites. Disappointing film though.

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  22. Does it count if I watched and loved the movie? (Ooops, just noticed that Lyndsey said it was disappointing.) 😉 I have the book in my stacks. It's been there for at least a half-dozen years!And you must read some of Edith Wharton's books, my dear. Age of Innocence, The Children, Ethan Fromme, The House of Mirth… I love her novels and need to read the rest that I have on my shelves. The Reef has been languishing there for decades!

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  23. Here via the Hop – isn't it awesome having a hop for literature? Without all the YA & paranormal romance? Sigh. I've read Possession … and hated it. I'm sorry! Although I do agree it's literature lol. Anyway, great blog!

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  24. Came here from the Hop. Oh I am glad you chose Possession, it's one of my favorite books too. I was swept away by the writing! And glad I hopped over 🙂

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  25. Beautiful post, Bellezza! I have 'Possession' on my 'TBR' list – I keep buying copies of it and I have three now 🙂 I have to stop buying and start reading. The edition you have has a wonderful cover!When I saw the word 'skedaddle' in your post, it made me smile 🙂 I remember reading it with a lot of pleasure in 'The Glass Castle' by Jeannette Walls 🙂

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  26. Possession is a novel that just grabs me each and every time I read it, and I've read it half-a-dozen times now. I love Victorian poetry, and this novel glorifies Victorian poetry, and makes you think very seriously about it at the same time. Byatt is a genius.I found you via the Literary Blog Hop, and I'm glad I did too. Have a great weekend. Cheers! Chris

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