Thursday, November 18, 2010

Literary Blog Hop 2

This Literary Blog Hop is quickly becoming one of my favorite things in the week.  I really enjoy connecting with all you fellow book lovers and bloggers and hearing your various thoughts.  This week, the question is easy for me.  "Is there such a thing as literary non-fiction?"  Yes!


In my opinion, the very best response to this question is the book by Truman Capote: In Cold Blood.  I have already written some of my thoughts on the topic.  Please check it out HERE or you can find it in my List of Reviews tab.  This is one of my all-time favorite books, and I believe it absolutely qualifies as "literary."  The writing is phenomenal and compelling, and yet the subject matter is 100% true.  I believe it is literary because it tells an engaging story and reveals a lot about human nature in the course of the work.  It sparks thought and controversy, and I don't think I'll ever forget it.  If anyone else has read it, I imagine they'll be singing its praises today on the blog hop.  Again, I explain it better in my earlier review.

However, I think I would be cheating if I left my blog hop entry just like that.  I have no doubt that there are more literary non-fiction books out there.  It's been a while since I've read The Color of Water by James McBride, but from what I remember of it, I think it could qualify as well.  I think it's more difficult to assess non-fiction in this category, especially with the celebrities' books that seem to be pouring into our bookstores these days.  I would be cautious before I allowed an autobiography or memoir to come into the literary classification, but I do think it's possible.  I'm eager to read the other blog hops today to find out what some of the other books out there in this category are!

16 comments:

Melody said...

It seems that those who have read In Cold Blood ARE mentioning it. I'm not sure why this wasn't already on my list, but it is now!

Becky (Page Turners) said...

I am glad that someone enjoyed In Cold Blood. I tried to read it a couple of years ago but I was so bored by it I never finished it. I will try again one of these days.

Becky (Page Turners) said...

Great blog by the way, ill definitely be back!

Coffee and a Book Chick said...

I need to dive into In Cold Blood. Many thanks for the reminder. Here's my Literary view...: Coffee and a Book Chick -- Literary Blog Hop...

Amy said...

Thanks for stopping by and sharing your feedback! I hope you do check out In Cold Blood, but it does come with a warning. This is not for the light of heart! I can't guarantee that everyone will have the same reaction, but I was absolutely transfixed in my reading. I hope you had a chance to read my fuller analysis of it from an earlier entry so you can get a better understanding of why I like it so much.

petekarnas said...

In Cold Blood seems to be the standard example of a piece of literary non-fiction. Sadly, it's one that I've never read. I'm going to have to get my hands on a copy. Great post!

gautami tripathy said...

I am yet to review In Cold Blood!

Here is my Literary Blog Hop post!

litlove said...

I've seen lots of votes for In Cold Blood and I've long been meaning to read it. Have you read the book by Deborah Davis: Party of the Century; Truman Capote and his Black and White Ball? It's fabulous, a subtle biography of Capote inserted into the story of the ball he held at the height of his fame (with lots of gossip about the party goers and detailed social history about the food, the clothes and so on). Highly recommended literary non-fiction.

IngridLola said...

Hi Amy! In Cold Blood is an EXCELLENT example. One of my favorite books too!

parrish lantern said...

This Truman Capote Book keeps haunting me,it appears to be following me around this Bloghop, so I openly declare a truce & will beg my library for a copy.
Thanks for your write up.
Parrish

Susan said...

I keep seeing In Cold Blood on this hop. The only Capote book I've read is Breakfast at Tiffany's, which isn't going to be similar at all! But I'm going to have to give this one a try.

JoAnn said...

In Cold Blood is a perfect example of literary nonfiction (I used it, too). It's been many years since I read The Color of Water, but would agree that it qualifies.

Heather said...

I also mentioned In Cold Blood in my response to this question-that seems to be a theme running through a lot of the blogs today. I'd forgotten about The Color of Water. That was a great read as well.

Brian Bither said...

How about Eat, Pray, Love as another example? The reason I mention it is that I recently watched a wonderful speech that Elizabeth Gilbert gave on literature; I haven't even read her book, but I was very impressed with this lecture. Anyway, I mentioned it to a friend and it evoked this very discussion - whether there is such a thing as literary non-fiction. An interesting question indeed!

Amy said...

I am not surprised people are talking about In Cold Blood, and I'm glad so many of you are encouraged to read it. Since I have read so little non-fiction, I'm taking notes across the blog hop for ideas so I can expand my knowledge in this genre.

I suppose Eat, Pray, Love is written in a literary style, but I don't know that it has the depth of some of these other examples. However, I'd be very interested to watch that speech if you could give me a link.

readerbuzz said...

I have an entire list of nonfiction that I'd say qualifies as literary.

Here's my post on literary nonfiction. I'd love to hear what you think.

And if you have read any wonderful literary books
published in 2010, I urge you to nominate your favorites
for The Independent Literary Awards. The awards
include categories of Literary Fiction and Literary Non-Fiction.
Nominations close December 15.