We're back with day two of our comprehensive coverage of the 2014 UW-Madison Libraries Book Madness tournament! Yesterday, we looked at the Adaptations Region; today we'll concentrate on what I call the the Varyingly Filled Glasses Regional. The two subregionals are called Glass Half Full and Glass Half Empty, because ... well, honestly I have no idea why. They just are, OK?
GLASS HALF FULL:
- Bossypants vs. Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?
- Hm, tough call. The Mindy Project was just renewed for a second season, and it's the number one new comedy among women 18-34. On the other hand, Tina Fey is a grande dame of comedy and probably has better overall name recognition, so I'll say Bossypants will prevail by a small margin.
- This is Where I Leave You vs. Where'd You Go, Bernadette
- I've never heard of either of these books. The cheat sheets provided by the UW-Madison Libraries aren't much help; they have very similar ratings on Amazon and Goodreads. I'm going to go with Where'd You Go, Bernadette as the winner just because its author was a writer on Arrested Development.
- Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail vs. A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail
- I'm a bit biased here, because it's one of my favorite books, but A Walk in the Woods is a legitimate classic of the travel memoir genre, and has been much more widely read than its competition, which was just published in 2012, so I think it will win handily.
- I Capture the Castle vs. From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
- I Capture the Castle has a loyal following, but the plain fact of the matter is that it is going to be steamrollered by From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, and that's no baloney.
GLASS HALF EMPTY:
- In Cold Blood vs. It
- The former is the better book by far, but I think more voters will have read It, or at least have fond memories of Tim Curry as the creepy clown in the TV miniseries, so it will probably carry the day.
- A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier vs. Men We Reaped
- Both these books about poor black young men, and there's a fair body of evidence that Wisconsinites don't much care about poor black young men, so this is likely to have the smallest vote total of any first round matchup. I'll give the edge to A Long Way Gone, which I think is the better known of the two.
- Gone Girl vs. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
- Tough call, but Gone Girl has buzz in its favor, what with the novel having been a fairly recent bestseller and the David Fincher-directed movie adaptation coming out later thius year, and that should be enough for it to pull put a narrow win.
- A Clockwork Orange vs. The Road
- Kubrick's adaptation of the Anthony Burgess novel is widely admired among college students, which will make this a closer race than it otherwise might have been, but in the end I think The Road will prevail by virtue of it having been published more recently.
Tomorrow: the Trash and Treasure Regional!