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Cornflower book group

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I nominate The Good Soldier as my favourite.


We'll agree to differ there, Harriet! (You'll approve of the February book also ...)

Susie Vereker

Yes, I agree with Cornflower. I didn't join in every month but, of the ones I read, The Bookshop was my favourite and I actively disliked The Good Soldier.
Thanks for vm running the group, Karen.

adele geras

I have been an onlooker to the Book Group this yeear and will try and join in more next year but LOVE Donna Tart, Winifred Holtby,Isak Dinesen, Oscar Wilde and Evelyn Waugh. I am going to read Fitzgerald in 2012 encouraged by you and my husband both loving her so much. I am never going to try FMF's Irritating Soldier. My life is too short, I reckon. I have a LONG list of books but am HUGELY enjoying Gillespie and I about which both you and Harriet Devine agree! A very happy New Year to all of you up there in Hogmanay territory.

Susan in TX

I was shocked at how few I had actually read - 4! I skipped Wilde having read it previously, and ended up abandoning LeGuin due to busyness (but put it on a list to revisit later). I think I may have missed some good ones! I did read Ford, and thought as little of it as you did. :) My favorite of the remaining 3 surprisingly would be the Brother Cadfael (because it was one my dds and I read together). That said, I did enjoy the other two that I read, the Bookshop and South Riding. I already have Lady Audley on the reading table, and I hope to keep up much better in 2012! I saw a mention of "February" above -- are you going to reveal that title soon, asked the list-maker? :)


You're welcome, Susie, and thankyou for joining in.


So glad you're enjoying Gillespie and I!




Only joined with Donna Tartt, which I loved, but have previously read Dorian Gray, which I hated, as well as the Cadfael, South Riding and Wizard of Earthsea, which are all old favourite, and Decline and Fall, of which I have no recollection whatsoever, which is a terrible thing to say about any book.

Mr Cornflower

Of the ones I hadn't read before, the three I enjoyed best (for very different reasons) were The Secret History, the Bookshop and Ella Minnow Pea. But if I arrived to stay with someone and found these ten on a little bookstand by my bed I would know I was in good hands.


My vote is for A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula Le Guin.

I am still chuckling over your 'The Very Irritating Soldier in the list - it made my evening!


It's amazing how quickly books can fade from the memory, isn't it, or you remember some insignificant detail while forgetting the arc of the story.


Yes, my apologies to anyone who loves and admires that book, and undoubtedly it's my blindness to its strengths which underlies my (not entirely serious) references to it!


Thankyou, kind sir.


I hope Cornflower that you and all of the rest of us are allowed a sense of humour! For me I know that my love of the fantasy genre is met with some teasing at home sometimes - but that is what friends do!


I hope you do not mind me just dipping in. I loved South Riding. I am passing it to family who haven't read it. I also enjoyed the Secret History a while back.


You're welcome to dip in, Anne, and yes, South Riding was a good read for me, too.


I love the variety in the Cornflower Book Group selections and always enjoy the anticipation of what the next month's book will be. I liked Ella Minnow Pea for its quirkiness and to differing degrees all the others in 2011. I was disappointed in myself when reading The Good Soldier as I expected to love it so I am relieved that others had a lukewarm reaction too. Decline and Fall shocked me with the racist language but I totally accept it as a model of the time in which it was written...and a great satire. The rest all contributed to a very satisfying year of reading. Thank you again Cornflower.

Julie Fredericksen

I didn't do very well this year compared to last year. I didn't even buy the Waugh. I had every intention of re-reading Ella Minnow Pea and The Secret History but didn't get around to them and thus did not join in the discussion (see previous comment about books quickly fading from memory). However, I did buy Lady Audley's Secret as soon as you announced it. I am looking forward to comparing it to The Crimson Petal and the White, which I recently read.

I found Corrag (known in the U.S. as The Highland Witch) under the Christmas tree and look forward to starting it this three-day weekend.

Julie Fredericksen

PS - I forgot to mention that my favorite would be The Bookshop. And I hated the Insufferable Soldier.


I'm glad you enjoy the variety, Jill, and I'm pleased to hear that there's a sense of anticipation about whatever's coming next!


Julie, my fingers are crossed that you'll love Corrag as much as I did.

Dark Puss

Firstly apologies for not manageing to get hold of two of the CBG books in 2011. Of the books listed that I did read, I'd nominate The Picture of Dorian Gray as my favourite in 2011.

Rosie H

I didn't read any of these as part of the book group, but of the four I have read, I'm afraid I found The Bookshop incredibly dull. The plot (or at least such of it as made any impression on me!) could be summed up in three sentences, and I found myself unable to care about the characters - so what was the point?

South Riding and Ella Minnow Pea are both among my favourite books, but top place has to go to A Wizard of Earthsea, which has been both entertaining me and stretching my mind for nearly thirty years so far.


Wow! There are not many books that can provide such lasting entertainment and stimulation.

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