One-Minute Book Reviews

June 26, 2008

Another Meeting of the One-Minute Book Reviews Online Book Club on Tuesday

Filed under: News,Ruthless Book Club — 1minutebookreviewswordpresscom @ 8:48 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

Last night I had dinner with some of my most literary friends, and we had an interesting conversation on the subject of: Are we supposed to take seriously the reading lists in books like 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die? One of my companions — who used to be the top editor at an esteemed imprint — argued that we weren’t. He said that he thought editors published those lists to spark arguments, not to make a definite statement. And he may be right. But I suspect that whether or not editors intend it, a lot of people do take the lists seriously.

A new discussion will begin Tuesday on the online book club that started on this site on June 1 And this might be a good topic to explore there: Did you ever buy a book because it had turned up on a lot of those “best of” lists (or even on one list)? What was your reaction?

You can also use the comments section of Tuesday’s post to bring up other books you’ve enjoyed recently (or would like to warn others away from), whether or not they’ve been reviewed on this site.

© 2008 Janice Harayda. All rights reserved.


  1. I read a proposed “top 100 books” list put out by one newspaper or another, and next to it they had a reader poll of books. Guess what? Some Objectivists and Scientologists hijacked the voting system and the top ten books on the second list were all by Ayn Rand and L. Ron Hubbard.


    Comment by Amelia — June 26, 2008 @ 9:14 pm | Reply

  2. Are you serious? I’ve never heard that one, but I believe it. When I was at Boston magazine, a local pizza place tried to hijack the voting every for “Best Pizza.” But we could always tell, because the ballots were paper and we could see the similarities in handwriting.

    Maybe that’s partly why more papers don’t have polls of that sort and leave the voting up to their editors.

    Comment by 1minutebookreviewswordpresscom — June 26, 2008 @ 9:43 pm | Reply

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