Since 1997, you’ve been coming to BarnesandNoble.com to discuss everything from Stephen King to writing to Harry Potter. You’ve made our site more than a place to discover your next book: you’ve made it a community. But like all things internet, BN.com is growing and changing. We've said goodbye to our community message boards—but that doesn’t mean we won’t still be a place for adventurous readers to connect and discover.

Now, you can explore the most exciting new titles (and remember the classics) at the Barnes & Noble Book Blog. Check out conversations with authors like Jeff VanderMeer and Gary Shteyngart at the B&N Review, and browse write-ups of the best in literary fiction. Come to our Facebook page to weigh in on what it means to be a book nerd. Browse digital deals on the NOOK blog, tweet about books with us,or self-publish your latest novella with NOOK Press. And for those of you looking for support for your NOOK, the NOOK Support Forums will still be here.

We will continue to provide you with books that make you turn pages well past midnight, discover new worlds, and reunite with old friends. And we hope that you’ll continue to tell us how you’re doing, what you’re reading, and what books mean to you.

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ande
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What are you reading next?

Thanks for asking, Alan. It's a good question for everyone. I have two piles going at anytime: professional reading and my own reading (though I don't read more than one book at a time -- never could).

And I have eccentric reading habits. Recent reads: Philip Roth's upcoming book (Exit Ghost) followed by Year of Wonders, by Geraldine Brooks, which I reread. Both toxic in their own very different ways. Not sure where I am going next.
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IBIS
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Re: What are you reading next?

I'll be very involved with B&N October's reading list. Here is my eclectic list:

Lyn Stegner's BECAUSE A FIRE WAS IN MY HEAD. I listened to your review on NPR.
Dalia Sofer's THE SEPTEMBERS OF SHIRAZ. I heard your review of this book as well.

Claire Messud's THE EMPEROR'S CHILDREN.
Laura Moriarty's THE REST OF HER LIFE.

The Crime Book Club will be discussing Raymond Chandler's classics: THE BIG SLEEP, FAREWELL MY LOVELY and THE LONG GOODBYE. I can't wait to sink my teeth into his pulp stories as well.

The Mystery Club will be discussing Ira Levin's A KISS BEFORE DYING. I'm also watching both movie versions of it for comparison.

What can I say. I have no life!
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
Blogger
ande
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Re: What are you reading next?

No life?? If I've got it right, music and reading are two great passions and pastimes of yours. What's wrong with that? Will others weigh in on this matter, please.
Frequent Contributor
thinker
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Re: What are you reading next?

You've got no life Ibis! so then what will you say about me

Right now I'm on about four different titles both fiction and non-fiction

Haven't given my self time to think about what should come next, but I'm considering something by Woolf or Joyce, classic stuff

Say - give me some suggestions, I like to be reading more than one book at once, to have many varied scenarios whirling around in my head
Thinker
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IBIS
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Re: What are you reading next?

Thinker, you brightened my day with your comment!

Although I'm a great reader, I've shied away from certain authors, like Joyce or Woolf.
I've struggled with James Joyce's FINNEGAN's WAKE and ULYSSES. And Virginia Woolf's stream-of-consciousness writing leaves me so anxious, I forget to breathe!

This October B&N Bookclubs have a fascinating roster of books...I've found myself reading and prepared to join 5 discussions (and may squeeze in a 6th by end of the month!)

At least you read both fiction and non-fiction. I need to flex some of my mind muscles, and brave David Halberstam's THE LONGEST WINTER for the History Book Club.

Who knows, I may learn something!
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
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ande
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Re: Looking forward to talking about Lynn Stegner's Because a Fire Was in My Head

Welcome back, IBIS (or maybe you never left). I eagerly await your thoughts on Lynn Stegner's Because a Fire Was in My Head in the Book Explorers Club. You bring great brain power -- and humor -- to the mix.

And those of you who stopped by in September for Alan Cheuse and his new book, The Fires, will be happy to hear that he and Lynn Stegner have agreed to have an online conversation about writing, publishing and reviewing later this month. I'll let you know when.
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IBIS
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Re: Looking forward to talking about Lynn Stegner's Because a Fire Was in My Head

Hi ande, I am looking forward to reading about Lynn Stegner's anti-heroine. It's always refreshing to follow the thoughts of the more adventurous of my gender!

One of my favorite quotes from FAREWELL, MY LOVELY is where Raymond Chandler's Philip Marlowe says: "I like smooth, shiny girls, hard-boiled and loaded with sin."

I guess Philip would love BECAUSE A FIRE WAS IN MY HEAD.
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
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IBIS
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Re: Waiting for delivery of Because a Fire Was in My Head

I've ordered Because a Fire Was in My Head, and am still waiting for delivery.
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
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ande
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Re: Waiting for delivery of Because a Fire Was in My Head

Did you order from your local store or online?
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IBIS
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Re: Waiting for delivery of Because a Fire Was in My Head

I ordered it online from B&N. It's been a 2 weeks already. (SIGH)
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
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lynnstegner
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Re: Looking forward to talking about Lynn Stegner's Because a Fire Was in My Head

I thought I'd jump into the conversation about what everyone's reading with my own bedside stack of currents. I started Javier Marias' Tomorrow in the Battle Think on Me several months ago. It is a magnificent book, as are all of his others, but it is quite dense and demanding and I've had so much of my own Life interfering these days that I've had to set it aside. Also in the stack, Jeffrey Lent's A Peculiar Grace; Ron Carlson's Selected Stories entitled A Kind of Flying; and because I never read it and still need to fill in gaps in my education, Graham Greene's The Power and the Glory. Anyway, these should keep me out of trouble for a while.


Learn more about Because a Fire Was in My Head.
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ande
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Re: Looking forward to talking about Lynn Stegner's Because a Fire Was in My Head

Thanks for that, Lynn. It's great to know what's on your reading runway. Last week I was at a book festival and a booksellers conference. Now my tower of books is more towering than ever! How about the rest of you? What are you reading?
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ande
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Re: Waiting for delivery of Because a Fire Was in My Head

I checked with B&N and they said they have the book in stock. I will alert them to this.
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Maria_H
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Re: Waiting for delivery of Because a Fire Was in My Head

IBIS,

Sorry about that. Did you call or check the order status online? If not, go to this page. They should be able to track your order. We do have stock in the warehouse. Let us know.


Looking for a discussion? Find a Book Club for all your interests!


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ande
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Re: Share your thoughts with us

Ibis: You are unusually quiet. Or maybe you are still reading. Everyone else: speak up.
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IBIS
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Re: Share your thoughts with us

Ande, I received the book last Friday, and am reading it.

First impressions? I love the cover design...cutting off the top of the pearl necklace woman, thereby rendering her almost unidentifiable...immediately telegraphed to me that here's a literary character who's not going to be easy to get to know.
And the landscape photo--the big blue sky and the wire post fence---great for wandering in spacious western landscapes.

I hope the author liked the design as well. I've met many authors who have strongly disliked the final covers that publishers approve.

What a marvelous poem by William Butler Yeats "The Song of Wandering Aengus". I especially love "...glimmering girl with apple blossom in her hair". Is that a poetic approximation of Kate?

I will post my thoughts as I proceed into BECAUSE A FIRE WAS IN MY HEAD.
IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
Author
lynnstegner
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Re: Share your thoughts with us

IBIS:

I thought you'd be pleased to know that I like the cover design of Because a Fire Was in My Head -- very much. Initially, I had hoped for something geometrically simple, as the prairies themselves are, a bowl and disc universe. But having that empty landscape up there where the woman's head is, and which contains her yearnings-backward, her disappointments, her memories, works so well, in terms of the book's themes.

In fact, I have only not liked one of the proposed covers for my books -- the first suggestion for my first novel. When I told the publisher that if they kept the design and went to press with it I would remove the cover whenever I gave a copy of the book to a friend, they graciously changed it. So I have been quite lucky.


Learn more about Because a Fire Was in My Head.
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lynnstegner
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Re: Share your thoughts with us

IBIS, I forgot to mention that that Yeats poem, one of his earliest, struck me as particularly apt for this novel. Kate is, alas, not the girl with apple blossom in her hair, but rather the seeker, the one who yearns for something that may or may not be illusory. It is this yearning, this FIRE, that drives her from man to man, from pillar to post.


Learn more about Because a Fire Was in My Head.
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ande
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Re: Book covers

In my line of work I try very hard NOT to judge a book by its cover. But Lynn's book cover had a magnetic effect. I was very happy to discover that the inside pages delivered on the promise and that the story had a similar hold on me.

So let's talk covers: The little person on the cover of The Handmaid's Tale, by Margaret Atwood, haunted me for a long time (as did the book). The illustrator managed to show the movement -- and the loneliness -- of that person in the white cap. Who is this person? Where is she? Where is she going? Why is she dressed that way? Readers of this book got all the answers -- and more.
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Late-Life-Literacy
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Re: Book covers

My book club chose On The Road for our December read. We live in San Francisco, and we will hold our discussion/Christmas party at a restaurant in North Beach. This will be followed by stops at Spec’s and Vesuvio’s (for rob roys and gimlets -- because we‘re 50‘s hipsters for the night), and then, when we have a nice glow going, we’ll keep it alight by basking in the luminescence of the cramped stacks at City Lights.

When I went to buy my copy of On The Road I had four choices: the 50th anniversary hard cover, and three paperback editions. I did flip through the hard cover edition, but it just seemed wrong. On The Road was meant to be a paperback; a little book you read in high school, and then pass along to a friend. Maybe not your closest friend but someone else; someone you suspect who, sometimes, somewhere deep inside, feels what you feel. Which paperback? I had it down to two: the one with the black and white photo of Kerouac and Cassidy on the cover, and the one with the collage of black and white photos taken by Allen Ginsberg. The collage won because the upper left hand photo was of Carolyn Cassidy standing on Broadway Street (in SF’s North Beach - for those of you who don’t know the area) with the “Alfred’s” steak house sign and the spires of Our Lady of Guadalupe, clearly visible. Carolyn, smiling broadly, hands outstretched, looks like one happy good-time gal. Just as free and questioning and tough as the two (soon to be infamous) men she often accompanied. If you think about it she had to tougher; someone had to “clean-up” after these guys. She’s certainly NOT the image of a pathetic willowy wispy child like muse so often associated with rebellious male writers.

I’m a middle aged mom with a mortgage and PTA duties; will I regret the reread? Who knows -- who cares.