Last week in the threads over at Mindless Diversions, I tossed out the idea of having a Beowulf/Grendel Book Club. It was really just a random afterthought at the end of an overly long comment – kind of like that moment at the end of a night out when you and your friends say, “Hey! We should totally open our own bar!,” and you decide on the name and the theme and who will work which shift and then no one really remembers any of it the next day.
But I’m finding that the more I think about it, the more I like the idea. So, some questions for our readers:
1. First of all, is there any real interest? Were we to have such a Book Club, would people not named Tod actually participate?
2. If we did such a Book Club, should we do it here on the Front Page, or might we want to do it over at Mindless Diversions?
3. John Gardner’s Grendel is written in English, so no real issues there – but there is the question of which translation to use for Beowulf. My initial choice would be to go with Seamus Heaney’s version, both because it’s well regarded and because it’s widely available. But if you want to make a pitch for a different version, feel free.
4. My inclination would be to read Beowulf through and then read Grendel. However, we could read them at the same time, or in the opposite order, or something else.