Friday, January 10, 2014

Cock-a-Doodle: Tournament of Books!



I loooooove the Tournament of Books, so imagine how excited was when ToB announced the books in the running for this year's prize! Not familiar with the Tournament? Here's some more info...
In case you’re new to all this, the ToB is an annual springtime event here at TheMorning News, where a group of the best works of fiction from last year enter a March Madness-style battle royale.
In March, these novels will be seeded and paired off in an NCAA Tournament-like bracket. For each pairing, one of our esteemed judges will read both novels and advance one, with a transparent explanation of how they made their decision. Along the way, our ToB Chairmen, authors Kevin Guilfoile and John Warner, will weigh in with commentary, and you, the readers, will add your own.
It's soooo much better than basketball, you guys! Here's the list of contenders in this literary blood sport.

Finalists for the 2014 Tournament of Books:

  • At Night We Walk in Circles by Daniel Alarc√≥n
  • The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton
  • The Tuner of Silences by Mia Couto
  • The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert
  • How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia by Mohsin Hamid
  • The Dinner by Herman Koch
  • The Lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri
  • Long Division by Kiese Laymon
  • The Good Lord Bird by James McBride
  • Hill William by Scott McClanahan
  • The Son by Philipp Meyer
  • A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki
  • Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
  • The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
  • The People in the Trees by Hanya Yanagihara
  • [Winner of the Pre-Tournament Playoff Round]
Pre-Tournament Playoff Round
  • Life After Life by Kate Atkinson
  • Woke Up Lonely by Fiona Maazel
Judges include people like...
  • Geraldine Brooks
  • John Green
  • and other exceedingly cool people
How many have you read? Any plans to read any of these books in the near future? I'm itching to try The Luminaries, A Tale for the Time Being, and The Goldfinch is staring from my shelves. The only books I've read from this list are Eleanor and Park and Life After Life. It should be a great competition!

42 comments:

  1. I got The Luminaries, The Goldfinch and Eleanor and Park on my shelves. Sounds like great fun!

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    1. Great fun indeed! Each time the judges make a pick between two books they usually do quite a nice/humorous write up. The whole thing is just wonderful. :)

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  2. I've read 5 already (if you include my DNF of The Luminaries) and 6 more are already on my TBR list. I think this is going to be a great year!

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    1. That's awesome!!! You're making great progress.

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  3. I've only read one but I have a few others of those staring at me!

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    1. I'm about to order A Tale for the Time Being....because I'm weak! lol Which one have you read?

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  4. Oh Andi, I learned about this from you! See how much I learn from blogging. I think it's great. Great selection of books. I have read The Goldfinch, Life After Life and I am in the midst of The Luminaries -- all fairly long books. Need something short coming up.

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    1. I'm doing several longer books back to back myself, and I will definitely need a shorter read soon. Enjoy watching the Bout of Books, Barbara! It is great fun.

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  5. I'm so mad mad mad at myself because I had At Night We Walk In Circles from Penguin's First To Read program, and I was just too busy to get to it. Now, of course, it's all over the Best Of lists everywhere and I'm going to have to buy a copy.

    From the list I've only read The Goldfinch and Life After Life. I'll probably never read The Signature of All Things because I hated Eat Love Pray, but I'll join you in A Tale For The Time Being. Hopefully in January before my Japanese Literature Challenge 7 ends. xo

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    1. Signature of all Things is wonderful and is so different from Eat, Pray, Love! Don't let that sway you!!

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    2. I can't tell you how many times something like that has happened to me, Bellezza! I ordered A Tale for the Time Being last week (weak moment), and I can't wait to receive it!

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  6. For some reason, I'm not all that enthusiastic about this year's tournament. I was discussing this with Frances (Nonsuchbook) via twitter earlier this week. I am excited to see A Tale for the Time Being on the list. I predict that Eleanor & Park will win. :-)

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    1. I wasn't really excited about it last year, so the urge comes and go. But there are a lot of books on the list that I've liked or am itching to read. We'll see how it goes. I don't think I will read as many as I have in previous years. Go E&P!

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  7. Fun! I really need to get around to a few of these. :)

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    1. I'm gonna try, too! We'll see how that goes with all my other plans. lol

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  8. I've only read five of them, but I hope to read more soon! Quite a few on my TBR list.

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    1. There's a good bunch in the running this year, Leah. I think it'll be a lot of fun to watch!

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  9. I've read two books off this list but wish I could read them all. There are even a few I've never heard of before.

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    1. I always love the mixture of really well-known books on this list a long with lesser known gems. I always find good stuff.

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  10. Gahh, I love the Tournament of Books, too! I've read The Signature of All Things, The Dinner, The Son, Eleanor & Park, The Goldfinch, The People in the Trees and I started (but couldn't finish) The Luminaries. I'd really love to get in A Tale For the Time Being and The Good Lord Bird before tournament time. I'm surprised by how many books there are that I haven't heard of this year!

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    1. I knew you'd read a bunch because I think I heard about most of them on your blog! lol I always love the mix. I find good stuff from this list.

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  11. I haven't heard of this, cool! I've read A Tale for the Time Being and Eleanor & Park, will soon be reading The Goldfinch, and tried to read but DNF'd The People in the Trees.

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    1. Monika, it's so much fun! Closer to Tournament time they release a printable graphic with all of the books in their brackets. I used to plaster it all over the college where I worked before. They thought it was nuts and then the students started getting excited to see which book would win. lol I'll be reading The Goldfinch in February. Wooohoo!

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  12. Sadly, I don't think I've read any of the books on the list, but it still sounds like a fun idea!

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    1. It's super fun to watch and read about, even if you haven't read any or many of the books. It's always better than basketball March Madness. lol

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  13. I am intrigued by this every year. Perhaps one year I'll get on board and read all the books and form my own conclusions. Ack! I'm making more challenges for myself. Andi, slap some sense into me!

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    1. I've never read all of the books, but a few years back I read at least half to three quarters, and it was awesome! And no more challenges for you. Maybe next year. lol

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  14. I've read Signature, Good Lord Bird, The Goldfinch and Life after Life. Want to read The Lowland, Tale for the Time Being, The Luminaries (if I can stave off intimidation, the Dinner, Eleanor and Park, The Son and The People in the Trees! Some of the contenders I've never heard of it but I feel like I discover some great books through the list. Example, last year I discovered and LOVED The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller. I'm excited for the TOB to start too!

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    1. Exactly! The discovery process is always great for me when I work through this list. Awww, I loved The Song of Achilles! Such a great book.

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  15. I've seen something like this with classics! Very cool.

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    1. Very cool indeed! Now I need to know where you've seen this setup with classics!

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  16. I love the Tournament of Books, more than most award longlists. I read every single book last year and tried to play along, and want to do the same this year. I have read five (Koch, Lahiri, Ozeki, Atkinson, Yanagihara) so far and quit on one (Catton), and Im halfway through the Laymon, which is a great read. I have the Gilbert, Tartt, and Park at home so I'm working on gathering them!

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    1. Me too! I'm always so excited for the announcement and to get this thing going! You're off to a great start! I hope you're able to read the rest.

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  17. I've been wondering if we could get book club to read Goldfinch after The Secret History. LOL! Though I'd be up for Lahiri as well--I have a couple of her books on the shelf. I'll laugh if Life After Life wins.

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    1. They would mutiny. LOL But the Lahiri is a good idea. I'd love to read The Namesake.

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  18. I haven't read many of the books on the list but for a change I'm anxious to read most of them. Wish I could read fast enough to keep up with the tournament!

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    1. Me too! There's no way, but I wish! lol

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  19. I did this a few years ago after reading about it on your blog. I don't remember how well I did, but I was inspired nonetheless. ;) From this year's list, I've only read Eleanor and Park. My mom's reading The Goldfinch and says it's very good.

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    1. It is definitely fun and inspiring. Gotta love that! I can't wait to read The Goldfinch. And after loving E&P and liking Fangirl, I'm excited to try Attachments and her new book in 2014.

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  20. I've read the same two you have. I'm not sure which others I will have the time to pick up before March!

    Not to downplay how awesome the tournament is, but isn't pretty much anything better than basketball?!? :)

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    1. Good luck if you decide to pick some more of these up before March!

      And yes, re: basketball. You got that right!

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