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Outmoded Authors Challenge Wrap-Up

February 29, 2008

OACThis challenge, hosted by Imani, focused on looking at authors that used to be really popular and have now fallen out of style.  It was a lot of fun, and Imani’s decided to make it an annual challenge (yay!).  It was up to us to pick how many books to read, and I chose five (click through to reviews on all but the last one).
The Last September by Elizabeth Bowen
The Wisdom of Father Brown by G.K. Chesterton
The Small Room by May Sarton
Rob Roy by Walter Scott (Note that this is a six-word review)
The Country of the Pointed Firs by Sarah Orne Jewett
The best book: The Last September, but that’s a close one, since I also loved The Small Room and the Father Brown. :)
What book could I have done without? Well, I’m glad I read Rob Roy, since I’ve always been curious about Sir Walter Scott, but I doubt I’ll ever read anything else by him. Dialect is just not my thing, although I liked the characters.
Any new authors? All of them!
Books I did not finish: The Country of the Pointed Firs; I intend to get around to it, I just didn’t quite make the deadline.
What did I learn from this challenge? Well, I made the buttons, so I learned a little bit about how to use Photoshop, which was fun.  More to the point, I discovered lots of great authors, through both my own reading and the reviews from other challenge participants. I really enjoy reading older, ‘classic’ books, so it was great to have such a new field open to me. And, some reviews confirmed my suspicions that Lawrence and I wouldn’t be friends!

10 Comments leave one →
  1. February 29, 2008 5:11 pm

    I know what you mean about Bel Canto. I’m trying to read it at the moment and just not enjoying it at all!

  2. February 29, 2008 6:27 pm

    I’m sorry I missed this one but how do you decide which author is ‘outmoded’? Was there a list? I’ll have to try and get in on it next year.


  3. February 29, 2008 6:35 pm

    CJ Hill, there was a list! If you go to the blog ( and click back the beginning, you can see how Imani solicited suggestions, did research, and finally cut it down to 35 for participants to choose from. Since it’s going to be an annual thing, she’s decided she’ll remove any authors that more than 3 participants read, and solicit suggestions for their replacements, keeping the total at 35. It was a pretty long challenge (five or six months), so you’ll be able to join the next one in the fall!

  4. February 29, 2008 6:36 pm

    Jess, I’m glad I’m not the only one who felt that way about Bel Canto!

  5. March 1, 2008 7:08 am

    Wasn’t this just such a fun challenge. I wasn’t aware that you’d created the button. I’m working on coming up with some challenges of my own. Can I entice you to create the buttons for me?

  6. March 1, 2008 8:46 am

    Really was a neat idea for a challenge. But I’m really impressed with your button!

  7. March 1, 2008 3:32 pm

    You did great! I only read one of my picks – ack. Ah, well at least there is next year. I did “discover” May Sarton so I’m glad I joined in.

  8. March 1, 2008 4:00 pm

    Emily, sure I’ll make buttons for you. I’m not super-talented though, lol. I’m curious about what kind of challenges you have up your sleeve!

    Debi, aww-thanks so much. :) I agree-it was an awesome idea for a challenge!

    Iliana, isn’t it fun to ‘rediscover’ authors?

  9. March 1, 2008 9:53 pm

    My book club all loved Bel Canto. Oh well. Thanks for an interesting post. I’ll have to check out the outmoded authors challenge, sounds like just the sort of thing I’d enjoy.

    Thanks for an interesting site.

  10. March 1, 2008 10:34 pm

    C.B. James, yep-I’m definitely in the minority re: Bel Canto. And I can totally see why people loved it! It just didn’t do it for me. :)

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