After the support gained here for the idea of regular topic challenges on Literature as a way of hopefully broadening our cultural scope, a new post was set up here to gather suggestions for specific topics to be used. Since it's been decided to have month-long topic challenges, the first one will run through April 2017, and the topic will be the current highest-voted proposal, suggested by Gallifreyan:
Hard to be a God, by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky.
I'm posting the announcement a week before the start of April, so that people have time to prepare, get a copy of the book to start reading, and so forth. The topic challenge itself will start on April the 1st.
What's a topic challenge?
See the meta posts linked above, and also this main meta post. In short, during April we should all read "Hard to Be a God" and try to post thoughtful and interesting questions about it.
There's no obligation for any particular community member to do so, but hopefully between us we'll rack up a good collection of questions about it over the course of the month. And of course it goes without saying that questions on other works are more than welcome during April too; they just won't count as part of this topic challenge.
How can I take part?
By getting hold of the book, in whatever language you prefer, and asking good questions about it. (An English translation is freely available in PDF form from a US government website here.) These questions should be tagged with hard-to-be-a-god and strugatsky-brothers and russian-literature, and other tags if applicable. We'll keep track of the list of all such questions in an answer to this meta post.
Go here to vote on different possibilities for the May topic challenge, and perhaps to suggest new topic challenge proposals of your own!