Jeph Jacques's comics discussion forums

Fun Stuff => ENJOY => Topic started by: Jessidee on 25 Nov 2008, 04:09

Title: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jessidee on 25 Nov 2008, 04:09
just a post to see what everyone is reading at the moment. i apologise if there is one already out there...

at the moment, I am reading :-)

'death acre, inside the legendary body farm' - by bill bass and jon jefferson
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 25 Nov 2008, 04:24
I'm reading Emma by Jane Austen.

And because it's hard to read Austen when you're tired, at bed-time I'm reading Deer Hunting With Jesus by Joe Bageant.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: CardinalFang on 25 Nov 2008, 05:03
I am currently reading Fighting Techniques of the Medieval World: Equipment, Combat Skills and Tactics by Matthew Bennett, Jim Bradbury, Kelly DeVries, Iain Dickie, and Phyllis Jestice.

So far it's pretty good assuming that you have an interest in the subject matter of course.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: imapiratearg on 25 Nov 2008, 05:49
Everything Is Illuminated by Jonothan Safran Foer.  It is a wonderful book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Border Reiver on 25 Nov 2008, 08:04
The Military History of Canada by Desmond Morton
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: De_El on 25 Nov 2008, 08:51
Brutality Garden: Tropicália and the Emergence of a Brazilian Counterculture by Christopher Dunn
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Usopp on 25 Nov 2008, 09:09
The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana by Umberto Eco
and
Free to Choose by Milton and Rose Friedman
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: michaelicious on 25 Nov 2008, 09:21
I had never read Watchmen before so my roommate let me borrow his copy of Ultimate Watchmen. That book is so heavy I am now an Olympic weightlifter after finishing it.

I'm also leisurely working my way through A Canticle For Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller, Jr. I stole it from my brother when I was 13 but I didn't really understand it then. It's a post-nuclear apocalyptic novel about a wilfully ignorant world and (so far) it centres around an Abbey in the desert that has worked for centuries to preserve the little bits of pre-deluge academia that weren't destroyed by the surviving ignoramuses. It's starting to get more exciting as the Abbey is becoming somewhat of a thing of interest to a relentlessly expansionist military leader. I've got about a hundred or so pages left.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 25 Nov 2008, 11:41
I'm reading Emma by Jane Austen.

You continue to convince me that we must be literary soulmates.

I'm reading The Unbearable Lightness Of Being by Milan Kundera and Fatelessness by Imre Kertész.  Should finish up the former soon, so tonight I plan to start something else which is yet to be decided.  I've also been reading a lot of E. E. Cummings' poetry lately.  May start Eimi soon.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jimbunny on 25 Nov 2008, 13:49
I don't even know anymore. Someone stop this thing called college.

(If on a winter's night a traveler by Italo Calvino)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 25 Nov 2008, 16:18
You continue to convince me that we must be literary soulmates.

Do you also love James Baldwin, William Maxwell, and Thomas Wolfe?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Surgoshan on 25 Nov 2008, 16:20
I finished Watchmen last night, and am currently reading Barry Straus's The Trojan War: A New History, Charles Mann's 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus, Neil Gaiman's Sandman (Volume 3), and Terry Pratchett's Going Postal.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 25 Nov 2008, 16:24
Just finished a Gotham Central trade paper back, moving on to Soon I Will be Invincible
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Be My Head on 25 Nov 2008, 16:48
The Counte of Monte Cristo (unabridged) by Alexandre Dumas

One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey

And just today I started reading A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens, it's tough but very very very very well written.

Oh, and I am also in the midst of reading Watchmen.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: blanktom on 25 Nov 2008, 17:59
The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy by Douglas Adams, for the third time.

I never really get bored of it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jessidee on 25 Nov 2008, 18:05
tom, i love that 'trilogy'
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KvP on 25 Nov 2008, 19:29
You continue to convince me that we must be literary soulmates.

Do you also love James Baldwin, William Maxwell, and Thomas Wolfe?
I love Daniel Baldwin, Maxwell (the singer) and George Plimpton. Are we soulmates?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Liz on 25 Nov 2008, 20:46
"Death Be Not Proud" by John Gunther.

It is one of my favorites. I read it many, many times per year.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: CarrionMan on 25 Nov 2008, 20:53
The Right Stuff by Tom Wolfe.

Excellent romanticizing of flying, the space program, and the risk involved. Nothing better but hearing of how the wife of Pete Conrad had to go to funeral after funeral after funeral after a "bad run" at the field caused the deaths of several test pilots over the course of a couple weeks.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 25 Nov 2008, 21:40
I'm currently reading the 3rd volume of Age of Apocalypse: The Complete Epic.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: actreal on 25 Nov 2008, 21:49
Man, everyone is so literary in here.

I'm skipping gaily through some light fantasy: the Dragon Jouster series by Mercedes Lackey.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jessidee on 25 Nov 2008, 21:56
its ok actreal. occaisionally i switch to chick lit, or some other mindless garbage just for the hell of it. i need some light reading at times
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: fozmo on 25 Nov 2008, 21:58
Flowery language and beautiful prose, deeper truths, whoopee. But will that save you when the zombies come? Didn't think so.

The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

Arm yourselves with knowledge... and a shotgun.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Liz on 25 Nov 2008, 21:59
Yeah well the other book I am reading right now is Twilight. So go figure.

(p.s. please read the Twilight thread before you comment on my choice of literature)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 25 Nov 2008, 22:40
Ended up going with Georges Bataille's Story of the Eye after I finished The Unbearable Lightness of Being.  There were some interesting ideas that came up in both that sort of surprised me, given the very different nature of the two books.  Lord, was that Bataille book something else though.  I feel like I did the first time I read Burroughs.  Going to get a book of essays on him out of my school's library tomorrow.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: n0tj3sus on 26 Nov 2008, 00:32
Currently I’m reading a most bland mix of;
Being and Nothingness -John-Paul Sartre
Critique of Pure Reason- Immanuel Kant
The Leviathan- Thomas Hobbes
An Enquiry concerning Human Understanding- David Hume.

So if anyone is willing to put me out of my misery I don’t think I would complain.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blademan on 26 Nov 2008, 02:39
I just finished World War Z, now I'm gonna have to go back and read The Zombie Survival Guide.  And then freak out about all my house's vulnerable spots until I find something a bit more literary to distract me...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Nodaisho on 26 Nov 2008, 02:58
Flowery language and beautiful prose, deeper truths, whoopee. But will that save you when the zombies come? Didn't think so.

The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

Arm yourselves with knowledge... and a shotgun.
I still need to read that. And then point out his mistakes every time someone brings it up as gospel, because I know there will be some, unless he is very well-studied when it comes to guns.

Currently reading Superior Saturday by Garth Nix.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: dozyrozy on 26 Nov 2008, 03:21
I'm reading A Complicated Kindness by Miriam Toews for university and I should have finished that by Monday. After that I have Songs of the Humpback Whale by Jodi Picoult lined up, which is for fun, not study.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: blanktom on 26 Nov 2008, 05:20
Currently I’m reading a most bland mix of;
Being and Nothingness -John-Paul Sartre
Critique of Pure Reason- Immanuel Kant
The Leviathan- Thomas Hobbes
An Enquiry concerning Human Understanding- David Hume.

So if anyone is willing to put me out of my misery I don’t think I would complain.


There is nothing bland about Sartre.

And Hume has his moments too, although I wouldnt pick that book as one of them.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: StreetSpirit on 26 Nov 2008, 11:10
I just finished re-reading Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger and am about to start The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: CamusCanDo on 26 Nov 2008, 12:28
Acacia - David Anthony Durham
The Steel Remains - Richard Morgan

I'm also re-reading The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman, this time the British version as opposed to my first read through with the American release. As much as I love Dave McKean, his illustrations are beautiful in this book, I am far more enjoyng Chris Riddell's works.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: allison on 26 Nov 2008, 15:35
The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul by Douglas Adams.
This book has posed a large problem in that I read it on the subway, and on more than one occasion I have laughed heartily, out loud. This morning I chuckled at a certain passage and a woman looked at me like I'd kicked a puppy.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 26 Nov 2008, 16:24
Because nobody is allowed to have fun in the city.

Fuck 'em. If they think you're weird because you're reading a book and laughing, then that's between them and their miserable life and is nothing you should be concerned with.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scarychips on 26 Nov 2008, 16:28
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

Not advanced enough on it to give an impression.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jessidee on 26 Nov 2008, 16:34
Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: CarrionMan on 26 Nov 2008, 17:20
I just finished re-reading Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger and am about to start The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.

Franny and Zooey is such an excellent book. Kinda depressing until the end.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: actreal on 26 Nov 2008, 18:11
Flowery language and beautiful prose, deeper truths, whoopee. But will that save you when the zombies come? Didn't think so.

The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

Arm yourselves with knowledge... and a shotgun.
I still need to read that. And then point out his mistakes every time someone brings it up as gospel, because I know there will be some, unless he is very well-studied when it comes to guns.



How can you have gospel about defending against a made-up enemy? Is there an accepted canon for zombies, or does the book cover survival against the various different imaginings of a zombie horde in pop culture?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dimmukane on 26 Nov 2008, 18:46
There are two schools of thought, basically...the Romero school, which is largely what the Survival Guide is based on, although it pretends not to be; and the zombies who can basically perform physically like a human being, which aren't talked about.


The guide itself I think makes a few assumptions.  Also, fozmo, if you were paying attention to the guide, shotguns are looked down upon for their potential to attract attention.  And yeah, that's definitely a shortcoming of the Guide, it doesn't cover all the different types of zombies.  In fact, it takes itself seriously when it's dismissing some of them as being too silly to exist.


I sometimes fear that the Guide is going to become something of a beacon to the Hot Topic crowd and then everyone will think they know what to do, and there'll be an Evil Dead 3 or something.

I don't know.  I'm a huge zombie fan (don't question me on this) and I didn't find it all that great.  You could basically chop it down to the weapons section and the bits about being stealthy and also buy a Boy Scout guidebook and you'd probably be better off.  I just don't like how it takes itself so goddamn seriously.  I know that's part of the humor of it, but I felt somehow cheapened after reading this, like reading all the other zombie comics and books and watching countless zombie movies was pointless because so many of them treated zombies differently.  That's part of the appeal of zombies, is that the only set rules are that they have is to have died or been bitten first and that headshots are the most effective way to kill them (not even required, necessarily), and the rest is up to the people making the stories.  Then this book comes along and demands that I forget all that.

I'm probably making too big a deal out of this.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Uber Ritter on 26 Nov 2008, 18:51
Just finished the superb World of Wonders* by Robertson Davies.  It's the last of the Deptford Trilogy^ by Robertson Davies#, one of the most famous and internationally renowned Canadian writer of his day (mid-late 20th century, a generation before Margaret Atwood).  To describe the general style, all three novels share a sort of Jungian magical-realism to greater and lesser degrees.  I read the first, Fifth Business, my senior year in high school for English class (it made up for having to read The Grapes of Wrath and all of Preacher Casey's tedious sermons with it), and it's still my favorite.  They all revolve around the consequences of one childhood friend throwing a snowball at another for the two friends through their lives and in their death, and for the child of the woman that the snowball actually hits.  The same characters and motifs occur in many of the novels, such as Liesl, the ugliest and most alluring woman any of the characters ever meet, new names and new identities, and sundry other Jungian things.


*http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_of_Wonders (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_of_Wonders)
^http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deptford_Trilogy (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deptford_Trilogy)
#http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robertson_Davies
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Uber Ritter on 26 Nov 2008, 18:56
Currently I’m reading a most bland mix of;
Being and Nothingness -John-Paul Sartre
Critique of Pure Reason- Immanuel Kant
The Leviathan- Thomas Hobbes
An Enquiry concerning Human Understanding- David Hume.

So if anyone is willing to put me out of my misery I don’t think I would complain.


Man, the prose may be bland (except in Sartre and more poetical bits of Kant, or when Hobbes and Hume let their humor shine through, which is often...so I guess except for 95% of Kant and 50% of Hobbes even the prose isn't that bad, if archaic) I would hardly call these guys bland.  Granted I've never read Being and Nothingness, but I liked Sartre's plays well enough.

Read poetry!  Poetry is the perfect antidote to too much philosophy, along with music.  John Donne, TS Eliot, Derek Walcott are all favorites, but you might prefer someone less intellectual then these.   John Berryman (I've read little of him, but what I've read I've liked)?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Surgoshan on 26 Nov 2008, 21:08
When the inevitable zombacolypse occurs I'll be arming myself with a baseball bat and discardable cheerleaders.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Liam on 27 Nov 2008, 00:41
I don't even know anymore. Someone stop this thing called college.

(If on a winter's night a traveler by Italo Calvino)

1. That sounded like a So I Married an Axe Murderer reference. But I've seen that movie way more times than is easily explained.
2. Good choice of book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: PizzaSHARK on 27 Nov 2008, 04:59
Without Remorse, by Tom Clancy.  Not one of his better novels, I've been on a Ryanverse binge lately so I'm rereading all of em.

A friend was talking about Emotional Intelligence the other day, said it talks about how the brain and body react to emotion.  I'll probably go see if the library has a copy, sounds interesting.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 27 Nov 2008, 11:50
Began Joyce Carol Oates' Black Water yesterday.  I'm quite enjoying it.  It moves quickly, is fairly simple to read, and it captures moments of panic and the thought processes of impulsive decisions beautifully.

I've also started flipping through Barthes' Critical Essays, picking it up mainly for the essays on Bataille and Robbe-Grillet.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SonofZ3 on 27 Nov 2008, 15:05
On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman
Its a pretty interesting book, puts forth a lot of theories about why violence rates are rising in America, why violence rates are higher in certain types of communities than others, and how to deal with those problems.

edit: Nodaisho is right, its Grossman, not Grissman
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Nodaisho on 27 Nov 2008, 19:48
I believe you mean Grossman. I'm vaguely familiar with him. I know him for his book where he says that video games are training people to kill.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 28 Nov 2008, 14:37
stuff about zombies and the survival guide

i'm pretty much feel the same way, except i probably liked it a bit more than you did because i'm extremely easy to please.

i liked how it didn't really follow either school of thought on zombies and used a new, sort of hybrid version that actually makes sense. as in, zombies can be fast if they're fresh but the longer they are moving around for, the weaker and weaker they become because the muscle tissue they are tearing doesn't fill in and grow back. that kind of thing.


but whatever, World War Z was better anyway.


edit:
so as to stay on topic: i am currently reading The Trouble With Physics by Lee Smolin
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Vendetagainst on 28 Nov 2008, 14:56
Dune.

I started it today and am only thirty-some pages into it. I rarely read pure sci-fi but there has been so much hype that I was curious. So far it seems pretty good, though I'm not really far enough into it that I can say I feel one way or another.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SonofZ3 on 28 Nov 2008, 15:56
I was in our local used book store the other day, and picked up a copy of The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran, because it was only 2 bucks hardcover, and was in the poetry section. I really enjoyed it, and have since found out Gibran was a favorite of my father's during his hippy days. When I finish Anna Karenina and the last chapter of Grossman's book I'm thinking about checking out The Madman and maybe some of Gibran's others as well
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Reed on 28 Nov 2008, 22:03
Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

My PI gave this to me, and I was pleasantly surprised by it. The scary thing is that while most of the book is a little far fetched, it is still feasible.


I also happen to be reading Anna Karenina. I expected it to be dreadfully boring, and only started because I didn't have anything better, but I am finding it to be very engaging (even though I'm only 150 pages into it).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: CarrionMan on 29 Nov 2008, 00:56
I'm moving onto The Prince, Discourses on Livy, and Discourse on Method/The Meditations. All for a damn research paper advocating war as a necessary evil.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 29 Nov 2008, 10:28
It sounds like you have an impossible premise to fulfill.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: CarrionMan on 29 Nov 2008, 11:06
I need to convince my English teacher. Not that hard.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Uber Ritter on 29 Nov 2008, 14:16
Discourses on Livy is fantastic.  One of my favorite books on political philosophy.
The Meditations and Discourse on Method are...important.  I'll leave it at that.  Though the divide between imagination and reason, while not perhaps philosophically sound, is useful when discussing math, for instance non-Euclidean Geometry.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ashashash on 29 Nov 2008, 14:19
I can't really keep myself to reading one thing at a time lately, so I kind of have a list:

Houseof Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski
Perdido Street Station by China Mieville
Dubliners by James Joyce
The Gypsies by Jean-Paul Clebert

I've also been reading a bunch of comic books and graphic novels for school lately, so that's kind of taking most of my reading time.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jessidee on 29 Nov 2008, 16:54
Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

My PI gave this to me, and I was pleasantly surprised by it. The scary thing is that while most of the book is a little far fetched, it is still feasible.


I also happen to be reading Anna Karenina. I expected it to be dreadfully boring, and only started because I didn't have anything better, but I am finding it to be very engaging (even though I'm only 150 pages into it).



i have read a few of margaret atwoods, and im not really a fan of her writing style so much, but i do love the fact she can switch genres quite easily, from the futuristic stuff that could happen to books like the blind assassain that were set in the early 1900's. i'm REALLY  enjoying it, i cant seem to put it down...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SonofZ3 on 29 Nov 2008, 18:28

I also happen to be reading Anna Karenina. I expected it to be dreadfully boring, and only started because I didn't have anything better, but I am finding it to be very engaging (even though I'm only 150 pages into it).


Tolstoy kicks ass. Hardcore. I think his works are prefaced by so much bullshit that people go into them already jaded, I mean how many times have you heard some comment like "I asked for a phonebook/report/directions, not War and Peace!". When I was in college I took an Honors Russian Lit course, and all we did was read Tolstoy and talk about it. Its the only course I ever got better than a perfect 100% average in, i just got into Tolstoy that much.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Liz on 29 Nov 2008, 18:40
Aha, so you are actually doing your homework! Good job, Jens.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Liz on 29 Nov 2008, 18:59
Aww, I am so proud of you. Didn't you start it today too?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Liz on 29 Nov 2008, 19:04
I have read A Doll's House and quite liked it, but that was quite a few years ago already and I don't really remember it at all.

Now I really want to read it again but I should really work on my paper. Meh. My brain is not in the right state for anything academic right now. I just need pointless videos and silly conversations and perhaps a children's book or something.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Reed on 29 Nov 2008, 19:15

i have read a few of margaret atwoods, and im not really a fan of her writing style so much, but i do love the fact she can switch genres quite easily, from the futuristic stuff that could happen to books like the blind assassain that were set in the early 1900's. i'm REALLY  enjoying it, i cant seem to put it down...

I had only heard of Handmaiden's Tale before reading this book, so I didn't know what to expect, but I wound up neglecting my research far too much for the next few days because of Oryx and Crake
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Alex C on 29 Nov 2008, 19:41
I am currently reading Giraffes? Giraffes! (http://www.amazon.com/Giraffes-Dr-Doris-Haggis-Whey/dp/0743267265). It comes highly recommended.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Reed on 29 Nov 2008, 19:54
Tolstoy kicks ass. Hardcore. I think his works are prefaced by so much bullshit that people go into them already jaded, I mean how many times have you heard some comment like "I asked for a phonebook/report/directions, not War and Peace!". When I was in college I took an Honors Russian Lit course, and all we did was read Tolstoy and talk about it. Its the only course I ever got better than a perfect 100% average in, i just got into Tolstoy that much.

I completely agree with that. It has become one of those books that people only associate with pretentious Lit grad students and wind up avoiding as a result.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jessidee on 29 Nov 2008, 20:02

i have read a few of margaret atwoods, and im not really a fan of her writing style so much, but i do love the fact she can switch genres quite easily, from the futuristic stuff that could happen to books like the blind assassain that were set in the early 1900's. i'm REALLY  enjoying it, i cant seem to put it down...

I had only heard of Handmaiden's Tale before reading this book, so I didn't know what to expect, but I wound up neglecting my research far too much for the next few days because of Oryx and Crake


i had to read handmaid's tale for a college literature class and loved it, hence the reason i went out and bought a lot of atwood's books. but i generally dont like to read much of the same author all at once, so i put them aside for later...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jessidee on 30 Nov 2008, 16:45
im currently reading: the other side of me By Sidney Sheldon

it appears to be his autobiography
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 30 Nov 2008, 23:27
Battle Royale right now
and American Gods.
I'm kinda mixing it up. Dunno why
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 01 Dec 2008, 00:12
For School: The Skull Beneath the Skin - P.D. James

Initial impression: Good God is this book boring, James is a stern looking woman and writes a "crime novel" as if she were Emily Post. The only crime being the savage cozy-fication of the idea of a private detective - atmosphere, dialogue, actions and plotting create at least an entertaining crime novel, not the stately design of the furniture, the gardens and manners that reveal nothing except "look at me I'm a fairly aloof upper-class twat with some mildly questionable behaviour,how scandalous!" Yes, it's a cozy but the novel itself can be reduced to 50 pages by removing all the hyper-unnecessary details. I might also add that the idea of a crime novel by Emily Post would be hilarious if Chris Onstad did it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: eddie on 01 Dec 2008, 10:58
Mad Dogs by James Grady

Its about 5 mentally demented CIA agents who escape from a top secret government insane asylum after being framed for murder. As cliche as it is, its been really good so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Trollstormur on 02 Dec 2008, 02:36
I'm re-re-rereading A Feast For Crows (christ, it's only been out 3 years I'm so goddamn nerdy) by george r r martin, the latest A Song of Ice and Fire novel.

it was cheaper than getting new books.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: CamusCanDo on 02 Dec 2008, 03:37
This totally reminds me I have to re-read the series so fa,r in anticipation for ADwD (hopeful) release for next year.

Excited
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Boro_Bandito on 02 Dec 2008, 06:36
Just finished Anansi Boys last night, pretty good.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: eddie on 02 Dec 2008, 11:55
I'm re-re-rereading A Feast For Crows (christ, it's only been out 3 years I'm so goddamn nerdy) by george r r martin, the latest A Song of Ice and Fire novel.

it was cheaper than getting new books.

And less effort than going to the library!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: imapiratearg on 02 Dec 2008, 12:02
I am currently reading Giraffes? Giraffes! (http://www.amazon.com/Giraffes-Dr-Doris-Haggis-Whey/dp/0743267265). It comes highly recommended.

Ahaha!  I wonder if the band is named after this book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Gilead on 02 Dec 2008, 16:02
I'm reading Johnathan Strange and Mr. Norrel. It's very good, like an Austen novel with magic and whimsy instead of interminable boredom.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Katherine on 02 Dec 2008, 16:12
I am currently reading Junky and when that is finished, I have The Posessed by Dostoevsky waiting for me.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Puki on 02 Dec 2008, 16:28
Terror, by Dan Simmons. Quite good, must admit.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 02 Dec 2008, 16:35
o/

high-five for The Terror because that book is fucking sick.

have you read the Hyperion series? those are probably my most favoritest books of all time.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 02 Dec 2008, 17:05
Just finished Anansi Boys last night, pretty good.

Anansi Boys is awesome stuff
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jessidee on 02 Dec 2008, 17:11
I finished Sidney Sheldon's autobiography, and now im reading The orphans of the storm its really just a trashy novel, but it doesn't involve thinking
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pen on 04 Dec 2008, 05:08
I'm currently reading Definitely Dead, by Charlaine Harris.  It's the 6th book in the Sookie Stackhouse Series, and the series is the basis for the HBO series, True Blood.  The whole series is a quick read, and is entertaining. I wouldn't qualify it as good literature, but it's good enough to take on the train with me.  I like it a lot. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Gemmwah on 04 Dec 2008, 05:22
I'm reading The Accidental by Ali Smith. It's very pretty at the moment but nothing's happened quite yet, so we'll see how it goes when I've got more time to sit and actually get a chunk of it read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TheFuriousWombat on 04 Dec 2008, 17:23
Well I'm in the middle of a busy semester so, as a mix of school and outside of school books, I am currently reading:
"We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow we will be Killed with our Families: Stories from Rwanda" by Philip Gourevitch
"A Problem from Hell: America in the Age of Genocide" by Samantha Powers
"The Dark Side" by Jane Mayer
"The Body in Pain: The Making and Unmaking of the World" by Elaine Scarry
"Journey to the End of the Night" by Celine
"Slaughterhouse: Bosnia and the Failure of the West" by David Rieff
"2666" by Roberto Bolano
"Collected Stories" by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
"Globalizing Rights: The Oxford Amnesty Lectures" by various people
"The South Atlantic Quarterly: Claims of Human Rights" by various people
"The Tin Drum" by Gunter Grass
"The Painted Bird" by Jerzy Kosinski

...all I ever do is read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jackhammer on 05 Dec 2008, 09:59
Arthur by Stephen Lawhead
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: rynne on 05 Dec 2008, 12:33
I just finished Michel Houellebecq's The Elementary Particles, which I thought was really good.  Especially if you like you nihilistic French novels with a little bit of sci-fi.  But I can understand why some people hate it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Ozymandias on 05 Dec 2008, 16:22
o/

high-five for The Terror because that book is fucking sick.

have you read the Hyperion series? those are probably my most favoritest books of all time.

Oh man. I loved Hyperion. I really need to get the rest of the books.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Uber Ritter on 06 Dec 2008, 16:06
Currently reading Strategy by Liddel Hart.  Good book so far, but I'm more interested in it's political implications than it's military ones. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Surgoshan on 07 Dec 2008, 05:53
I finished Watchmen last night, and am currently reading Barry Straus's The Trojan War: A New History, Charles Mann's 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus, Neil Gaiman's Sandman (Volume 3), and Terry Pratchett's Going Postal.

Well, I finished the Trojan history, Sandman 3, and Going Postal.  Moved on to Thud, finished it.  Now I'm reading a history of Greece (at home) and still working on 1491 (at work).  I'm almost done with 1491; I think I'll reread Watchmen.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Uber Ritter on 07 Dec 2008, 22:12
1491 is awesome.  One of my favorite popular-scholarship books that I've read recently.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: crabjob on 08 Dec 2008, 13:48
I just finished This Is Your Brain on Music by Daniel Levitin and it was great; lots of insight about how music affects our brains, why we like listening to music, and there's even a chapter about the evolutionary development of music.  I also just started on Letter to a Christian Nation by Sam Harris.  I've been youtubing a lot of his talks on religion and society lately so I decided to start reading his stuff.  It's pretty stimulating so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Usopp on 08 Dec 2008, 14:19
Quote
I'm re-re-rereading A Feast For Crows (christ, it's only been out 3 years I'm so goddamn nerdy) by george r r martin, the latest A Song of Ice and Fire novel.

it was cheaper than getting new books.

Done that for all the series at least 4 times :laugh:. So nerdy, yet so very great. Also, I've back-to-fronted A Game of Thrones so many times, it isn't even funny.

Re-read Making Money, Thud, and Wintersmith, all by Terry Pratchett.
Reading Bitter Virgin manga again as well as Thursday Next: First Among Sequels.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jessidee on 08 Dec 2008, 15:22
so, you all confinced me that reading Anna Karenia was a good idea, so i made the effort of going to the local library (who have a crap range) and hired it out... im not far in, but enjoying it
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 08 Dec 2008, 17:13
The Hippopotamus, by Stephen Fry now

It's ... well it's quite bizzare I have to say
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GreyGabe on 09 Dec 2008, 20:25
I just read 1984 By George Orwell a few weeks ago. It terrified and intrigued me.

Then I read Shadow's Edge by Brent Weeks (the second in a trilogy by him). I'm now reading the third of those. The trilogy is your basic fantasy novel type story. Easy reading but quite enjoyable.
I am eagerly awaiting The Last Watch by Sergei Lukyanenko. Hopefully it will be out in the next couple of months. I must have it for my own.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: vollmond on 17 Dec 2008, 09:47
Depending on which room of the house I'm reading in:

Dialogues of Plato - Plato
Catholicism and Fundamentalism: The Attack on ‘Romanism’ by ‘Bible Christians’ - Karl Keating
Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology - Ayn Rand
Cryptonomicon - Neal Stephenson
It's Not News, It's Fark: How Mass Media Tries to Pass Off Crap As News - Drew Curtis

Taking me wayyy too long to make any headway on any of them :-)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 17 Dec 2008, 14:15
Goddammit, I feel so inferior

People reading Plato and shit, and I'm laughing and clapping my hands at Stephen Fry
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Katherine on 17 Dec 2008, 14:19
But you're reading something, and that's what is important!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: celticgeek on 17 Dec 2008, 21:54
Reading Is FUNdamental!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Surgoshan on 18 Dec 2008, 03:53
But you're reading something, and that's what is important!

Not only that, but he's reading and clapping his hands at the same time.  Ask yourself this; what's he holding the book with?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dimmukane on 18 Dec 2008, 06:03
This thread serves to remind me how little I've been reading.  Used to check out 11 books every 3 weeks.  Now I'm reading one book 30 minutes a day over a period of 2 months.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 18 Dec 2008, 13:26
People have been talking about me while I was away

It's Christmas now, and I got a month off as of tomorrow so hopefully I'll be reading loads more. Get American Gods outta the way, and maybe read BATTLE ROYALE (heart) once more.

I got a Divine Comedy I could read. Then I'll be all like "yeah I'm reading Dante"
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jessidee on 18 Dec 2008, 21:06
currently reading the kite runner by khaled hosseini
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Nodaisho on 18 Dec 2008, 21:32
All Tomorrow's Parties by William Gibson. It's taking me a while, his books are usually rather slow reads, exception Mona Lisa Overdrive, and I haven't been reading much.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: celticgeek on 18 Dec 2008, 21:39
I am currently re-reading The Dancing Wu Li Masters, by Gary Zukav.  I have read it before, but it is well worth the second reading.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: tuna ketchup x on 19 Dec 2008, 08:46
The Areas of My Expertise by John Hodgman, a Professional Writer. It is funny as hell. After that probably a knee-high stack of comics anthologies. Plus Ten Little Indians by Sherman Alexie as my bedtime book, not because it's sleepy, but because short stories are good for bedtime reading.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jimbunny on 20 Dec 2008, 12:23
I'm going on vacation, bringing a bunch of books along. Basically, a lot of finishing up things I've started, or have been lying around.

Cormac McCarthy, The Road
W.S. Merwin, Travels
Mervyn Peake, The Gormenghast Novels
Italo Calvino, If on a winter's night a traveler
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aurjay on 20 Dec 2008, 16:42
Just Finished Moby Dick. It took me forever to read that book. Not that I didn't like it, but it was filled with absolutely everything I'd want to know about Whales, Whale Hunting, Whale Ships and so forth. I was expecting more of a Old Man and the Sea type book I guess.

So now for some light fare im reading Masterpieces of Mystery selected by Ellery Queen. By far my favorite collection of short stories.

If I ever work up the nerve again I will try and continue reading Poetical Works of Elizabeth Barrett Browning 1890 Beautiful poetry that I just can't seem to get into.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dimmukane on 20 Dec 2008, 23:10
Moby Dick

I'm still reading this.  It's the only book I've had time to read in the last 4 months.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TheFuriousWombat on 21 Dec 2008, 09:22
Just Finished Moby Dick. It took me forever to read that book. Not that I didn't like it, but it was filled with absolutely everything I'd want to know about Whales, Whale Hunting, Whale Ships and so forth. I was expecting more of a Old Man and the Sea type book I guess.

Man, Melville and Hemingway are as different as can be. The Old Man and the Sea is waaaay too simplistic in plot and style to be anything Melville would have considered writing. Personally I think Moby Dick is one of the greatest things ever written in any language but that's just me.
My reading list has, thankfully, seriously decreased now that I'm on vacation from school. I'm reading right now:
2666 by Roberto Bolano
The New York Trilogy by Paul Auster

And that's it! It's a nice change of pace.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aurjay on 21 Dec 2008, 10:12
Just Finished Moby Dick. It took me forever to read that book. Not that I didn't like it, but it was filled with absolutely everything I'd want to know about Whales, Whale Hunting, Whale Ships and so forth. I was expecting more of a Old Man and the Sea type book I guess.

Man, Melville and Hemingway are as different as can be. The Old Man and the Sea is waaaay too simplistic in plot and style to be anything Melville would have considered writing. Personally I think Moby Dick is one of the greatest things ever written in any language but that's just me.

I agree with you on difference in style and simplicity. What I meant though about Old Man and the Sea is that the whole book was about him catching the fish while as Moby Dick he doesnt even see the whale till almost 500 pages into it. Just wasn't expecting to learn everything there was to learn about whaling. Again not to say I didn't enjoy it but seriously was not what I was expecting. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 22 Dec 2008, 00:12
Working through Speak, Memory by Vladimir Nabokov.  Easily one of my favourite writers, this memoir is as beautifully written as anything else of his I've read.  He certainly lead a fascinating life, and he captures it well.

Other than that, I've been reading a lot of comics.  DC Universe: The Stories of Alan Moore and The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen Volume II, also by Alan Moore, are what I have on the go at the moment.

2666 by Roberto Bolano

I've heard quite good things about this, and Bolano in general.  Is there a particular book that you (or anyone else) would recommend starting with for him?  I've been meaning to pick up The Savage Detectives for a while.

The New York Trilogy by Paul Auster

I read the first book of this, City of Glass, and wasn't nearly as impressed as I thought I would be based on what I'd heard, though it certainly was an enjoyable read.  How do the other two books compare?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TheFuriousWombat on 22 Dec 2008, 07:30

2666 by Roberto Bolano

I've heard quite good things about this, and Bolano in general.  Is there a particular book that you (or anyone else) would recommend starting with for him?  I've been meaning to pick up The Savage Detectives for a while.

The New York Trilogy by Paul Auster

I read the first book of this, City of Glass, and wasn't nearly as impressed as I thought I would be based on what I'd heard, though it certainly was an enjoyable read.  How do the other two books compare?

In regards to Bolano: I'm am definitely firmly on board the Bolano hype wagon. I think the man's a genius and his writing immensely compelling. 2666 is actually absurdly good so far but it might not be the best one to start with. Just the size is a little daunting and he has a fairly particular style (very long sentences, the whole thing, thus far, is purely anecdotal and so on) that, if you're not really into, would get really frustrating. Still, although I'm not finished, I can't recommend it enough. As far as an introduction goes, however, it makes sense to start small. He's written several rather brief novellas. By Night in Chile is a 100-page rant by a dying priest who spent much of his life helping the Pinochet regime in some shadowy way. Distant Star is about a sky writining propagandist for the same regime. I still haven't read Amulet but I've heard good things. Anyway, all three of those are around 100-150 pages and all are probably good to start with, just as a way of becoming acquainted with Bolano's general approach to telling a story. I started with The Savage Detecttives and loved it so it's certainly not a bad place to start, it just isn't the easiest. He's also written some short stories and some fairly bizarre poetry that I recommend looking at if you like the novels.

As far as Auster goes: I think he's a really cool writer. Probably not as great as some make him out to be. He's not "the American writer of our time" or anything like that. In fact, as far as the list of great living American writers go, I don't think Auster would be on it (my list, for what it's worth, includes Pynchon, McCarthy, Delillo, Updike and a handful of others). I actually am only on the first book on The New York Trilogy and like it a lot, but I don't love it. I really love detective fiction in general (and so, as a matter of fact, does Bolano, and it often shows in his writing) so a weird, existentialist pulp approach to the genre is simply stylistically interesting for me to read. Long story short, I don't think I'll end up loving the book(s) but I do/will rather enjoy it for what it is.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aurjay on 22 Dec 2008, 09:04
Oh and another book I finished reading recently that truly changed my viewpoints was The Jungle by Upton Sinclair. Loved that book eventhough it kinda annoyed me that as soon as he went to Socialism all his troubles were soon gone.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 22 Dec 2008, 11:52
as far as the list of great living American writers go, I don't think Auster would be on it (my list, for what it's worth, includes Pynchon, McCarthy, Delillo, Updike and a handful of others)

Have you read any Philip Roth?  I would certainly put him above everyone on there, with the possible exception of Updike.  I've yet to be impressed with McCarthy, though I'll likely give The Road a spin soon.  I'd also say your list is quite lacking, in that it doesn't include any of America's wonderful female writers, who are easily the equals of those you've included.  Joyce Carol Oates and Marilynne Robinson are notable omissions, in my mind.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TheFuriousWombat on 22 Dec 2008, 14:50
Just a note: that is not my complete list in any sense. Roth would be on it as well, as would Joyce Carroll Oats and probably Joan Didion. John Ashbury, Robert Kelly and several others would be on there as well if we're including poets. I haven't read any Marilynne Robinson so I can't comment on her work. Maybe, if I get around to it, I'll put together a full list. Hopefully, if it happens, it'll be a bit less lacking than the very abbreviated one above
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 22 Dec 2008, 23:53
I figured it wasn't the complete list, what with the "handful of others" bit.  I was just trying to see what else might've been up there.  I really love hearing what other people enjoy to read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TheFuriousWombat on 23 Dec 2008, 07:42
Oh me too! I guess "handful" is a fairly vague term. Of course, if these are my picks for "the best" than it can't be too long since any such list aught to be fairly short. Anyway, my list would look something like this (although, come to think of it, this is more a list of "great" living American writers, not the "greatest" living American writers to me):
Philip Roth
Don Delillo
Thomas Pynchon
Cormac McCarthy
John Updike
Joan Didion
Joyce Carroll Oats
Toni Morrison
Mary Caponegro
Emily Barton
Francine Prose
Michael Chabon
Jonathan Franzen
Tom Wolfe
Bradford Morrow

I'm sure the list would go on if I thought about it more. These are just writers of fiction, no poets of essayists included. Um....yeah. Your comment made me think of more women authors that I like and there are certainly a bunch (more than I thought there would be, to be honest). Anyway, this is my list of "great" living American authors. If I had to pick a top 5, however, it would still be something like:
Roth
Updike
Pynchon
McCarthy
Delillo
Fairly standard, I know, but these guys are revered for a reason.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TimA on 23 Dec 2008, 11:55
I'm behind the curve, but I just finished The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. Good fun, and a great read. I'm delaying reading anything else, to give that one a chance to get out of my system. Just enjoying the afterglow for now.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jimbunny on 23 Dec 2008, 22:33
I was a little let down by The Road. Parts of it were brilliant, but if you've read a bit from the "postapocalyptic" genre (e.g. The Stand) there's not much new here, save for some quality writing. I don't regret reading it at all, though, and it goes quickly.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The Cheesinator on 25 Dec 2008, 16:26
Finished Breakfast At Tiffany's by Truman Capote, and I'm currently reading The Joke by Milan Kundera. Way too good.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: MrSteevo on 25 Dec 2008, 23:58
I just finished the Book "Atlas Shrugged". Now will look into a different Philosophy with "War and Peace" (which I hope isn't as boring as my friend said)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 26 Dec 2008, 00:30
War and Peace is excellent.  If you can make it through a chapter of Ayn Rand, I can't see it being a problem for you.  Seriously.  Which translations are you going to read?

Yesterday I read The Breast by Philip Roth, which was absolutely hilarious.  Very self-consciously Kafka/Gogol-esque, it's an absurd little book.  Engaging and short enough to read in one sitting, I highly recommend it, though it's still quite far from my favourite Roth.

Began Jealousy by Alain Robbe-Grillet.  It's really interesting so far, a novel written to evoke film-like imagery.  Before now I'd only read about Grillet, who originally came to my attention due to reading Nabokov mention him repeatedly in interviews.  Going to try to finish it up before I go to bed, as it is quite short.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: NeverQuiteGoth on 29 Dec 2008, 22:23
... The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. Good fun, and a great read. I'm delaying reading anything else, to give that one a chance to get out of my system. Just enjoying the afterglow for now.

OMG /agree
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: squishything on 30 Dec 2008, 19:47
I'm currently reading The Joke by Milan Kundera. Way too good.

Holy crap Kundera is awesome. I just finished the joke a few days ago. Has anyone here read The Art of the Novel? best book about writing I've read.

Right now the only thing  have access to in english is Razor Wire Pubic Hair/i], by Carlton Mellick, and it's not nearly as good as his other stuff so far. Anyone else here into Bizarro fiction?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Ikrik on 30 Dec 2008, 21:44
Working on Moby Dick

Hyperion

and Thirst for Love

First is by Melville...second is by....I don't know but I almost want to say it's Dan Simmons and the third is by something Mishima...damnit, all my books are in boxes or are two far away.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: NeverQuiteGoth on 31 Dec 2008, 01:29
I'm just finishing The First Half of the Book of the New Sun. Weird stuff.
I'm planning to read a book called Luthiel's Song next.

Woot for obscureness. :roll:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Josefbugman on 31 Dec 2008, 01:51
At the moment, reading "nation" by terry Prachett (soon to be SIR terry Prachett)

"Zombie survival guide"

and "The man who ate bluebottles: and other Great British Eccentrics"

When I go back to uni its going to be medieval stuff and a large amount of victorian reading as well :-)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Katherine on 31 Dec 2008, 08:11
I am currently reading the Wiley CPA Exam Review 2008: Business Environments and Concepts.  Its, uh, awesome.  Great plot line and such.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: kaitco on 31 Dec 2008, 09:06
I am currently reading the Wiley CPA Exam Review 2008: Business Environments and Concepts.  Its, uh, awesome.  Great plot line and such.
It sounds riveting.

I am currently re-reading Stephen King's The Stand again. I read my mother's copy of the original version when I was twelve, and I remember loving it, but it took close to eight months for me to read so much of it is a blur. It just makes re-reading the uncut version all the more interesting because of the many "Oh yeah...I forgot about that." moments.

Also reading, Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray and re-reading Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun. I had started reading Dostoyevsky's Crime and Punishment at the gutenberg.org, but I know it is going to require my full attention, so I have tabled it until after The Stand. If mangas count, I am reading Bleach Volume 4, too.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TMac91 on 31 Dec 2008, 09:30
I've got "Child of a Dead God" by Barb and J.C. Hendee
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 01 Jan 2009, 12:18
How to Kill - the complete history of assassination, and The Lucifer Effect.

 8-)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: vollmond on 01 Jan 2009, 16:37
Working on Moby Dick

Hyperion

and Thirst for Love

First is by Melville...second is by....I don't know but I almost want to say it's Dan Simmons and the third is by something Mishima...damnit, all my books are in boxes or are two far away.

Yeah, Hyperion is Dan Simmons. Absolutely one of my favorite books ever :-)

I just finished the Fark book. My wife gave me a copy of Snow Crash for Christmas, and once I finish that World War Z is glaring at me...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Fishboy on 01 Jan 2009, 17:18
I just finished the Book "Atlas Shrugged".

You are a different man than I, I could never stand Rand. War and peace however, hopefully you will enjoy, I adored it.

I am currently flicking through a collection of Chekhov's stories, an anthology of Ginsburgs work (not the complete one, I could not afford that), and am just about to begin reading Midnights Children, on recommendation from my sister. I just having finished Huxley's The Doors of Perception/Heaven and Hell and Trotsky's The Russian Revolution for the umpteenth thousandth time.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Surgoshan on 01 Jan 2009, 17:49
Chekhov is great.

Nuclear Wessels?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Fishboy on 01 Jan 2009, 23:39
Chekhov is great.

I echo your assertions, Chekhov is brilliant. I am actually learning Russian at the moment so I anticipate the day when I can read it as it was intended.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Vendetagainst on 02 Jan 2009, 13:22
Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book.

<3

I can never remember the rules for underlining, quotations, and italicizing
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 02 Jan 2009, 13:30
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey, I only just started it and it's taking a while to actually get into the book.

Also, maybe it's just me but it's bugging me slightly that people are forgetting to put the names/titles of novels in italics.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: vollmond on 02 Jan 2009, 13:49
Also, maybe it's just me but it's bugging me slightly that people are forgetting to put the names/titles of novels in italics.

You're not the only one. :-)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The Voice on 03 Jan 2009, 18:23
The Zombie Survival Guide  by Max Brooks
Blindness by Jose Saramago
Three Case Histories by Freud
Ghosts/Aliens by Trey Hamburger

For some reason I can not read just one book at a time.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TMac91 on 03 Jan 2009, 18:58
Kitty and the Midnight House - Carrie Vaughn
I may get I Am The Messenger by.. I forgot..
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 03 Jan 2009, 20:11
Kitty and the Midnight House - Carrie Vaughn
I may get I Am The Messenger by.. I forgot..
The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks
Blindness by Jose Saramago
Three Case Histories by Freud
Ghosts/Aliens by Trey Hamburger

Grrrr
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ruyi on 04 Jan 2009, 22:34
I'm currently reading Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë. To be honest, I've always confused it with Jane Eyre and Pride and Prejudice, and I never found any of them appealing enough to bother distinguishing them in my mind, much less read them. I only decided to read this because supposedly my dad named me Cathy/Catherine after the character in the book.

Now I'm less than halfway through. I am trying to do a 'blind' reading of it, in that I didn't read up anything about it beforehand, so my impressions are probably going to sound dumb. I find the narrator presumptuous and patronizing. The domestic setting is bleak and the relationships are painful to read about. I didn't expect it to be so intense and awful, actually, but it's a welcome surprise.

I'm very ambivalent about Catherine. She's so manipulative, and typically I can't help feeling a little envious in response to what I perceive as that girl, who is attractive and powerful because of it. But it might be a false othering on my part - I still haven't decided, because part of me still believes it's a true distinction. In any case her manipulation is motivated by a real desperation so I end up feeling sympathy for her despite my own petty hangups.

I'll see if I change my mind when I'm through.

I'm honestly so glad to be on break from being a student because I finally get to read. It's dumb, probably, but I'm reluctant to go into academia because I feel like I won't have time to read the books and watch the films I want to.

After this I'm probably going to read A Better Angel, short stories by Chris Adrian. Then I have some Truman Capote and Steinbeck. There's just so much I haven't read, and I feel so slow! I hope I can just get through this pile of books, small as it is, before class starts again.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: E. Spaceman on 04 Jan 2009, 22:55
I just picked up In Search of Lost Time by Proust again. They are one of my favourite (maybe my favourite) series of novels. I will attempt to not read other books to not get distracted. I should have finished by August i hope.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Puki on 05 Jan 2009, 03:12
Olympos - Dan Simmons
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 05 Jan 2009, 06:11
Following discussions earlier in this thread, I'm reading No Fond Return of Love by Barbara Pym. I regret to say that about a hundred pages in, I'm not really enjoying it all that much. I find the characters rather irritating, and the plot rather overly reliant on coincidence. But I'll finish it, and I've got Excellent Women by her too so I'll give that a go, before I dismiss her entirely.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cicero on 05 Jan 2009, 06:40
A turn of the century (20th) book in German on World History.    Has that damn crazy type.   It's like trying to read monkey spit.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 05 Jan 2009, 15:04
Hyperion

ohmygod ohmygod please let me know when you've finished all four books because i desperately want someone to talk with about how amazing those books are. i never thought science fiction could change my life, but those books did. also, if you like Dan Simmons i highly recommend his newest The Terror. it's fantastic. be warned, though, that it's not science fiction it's actually the exact opposite: historical fiction. really great book though.


oh and to stay on topic: i just started reading Player Piano by Kurt Vonnegut. i love me some Vonnegut.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: carrotosaurus on 05 Jan 2009, 21:31
His Excellency, George Washington by Joseph Ellis. It's really interesting for people who want to know the man behind the myth.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: mberan42 on 06 Jan 2009, 13:35
Just finished Plato and a Platypus Walk Into a Bar (http://www.amazon.com/Plato-Platypus-Walk-into-Understanding/dp/0143113879/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1231277378&sr=8-1). Funny and enlightening.

Before that I read Apathy and Paying Rent (http://apathyandpayingrent.com/) by Zach VandeZande. He used to draw Animals Have Problems Too, but stopped it a year-plus-ish ago. The book was decent. Written in a weird way - the author talks to the reader - and the ending was disappointing, but altogether a decent book.

I have The Gone-Away World (http://www.amazon.com/Gone-Away-World-Nick-Harkaway/dp/0307268861/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1231277658&sr=8-1) on my bookshelf, plus four books on ethics and leadership but haven't opened any of them yet.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: n0tj3sus on 06 Jan 2009, 17:05
everything is illuminated by jonathan safran foer
catch 2 by joseph heller
if you havent read either of these books, do it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: satsugaikaze on 06 Jan 2009, 21:08
I read the actual published script by Ethan and Joel Coen on Burn After Reading.

The ending was rather subdued but the characters and the dialogue, simply by looking at the script, was brilliant.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: allison on 06 Jan 2009, 21:42
I'm re-reading The Birth House by Ami McKay. If you are interested in any of the following: women, babies, witches, Nova Scotia, WWI, midwifing, or wicked awesome books in general, read this book. It is fantastic.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jimbunny on 06 Jan 2009, 21:52
I just finished Use of Weapons by Iain M. Banks. Starting off, I was chafing at the blunt, rather SF-standard writing. Then, it got really good; I remembered why I loved good SF and Banks in particular. Then, the ending sucked balls. Damn you, Banks.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JD on 06 Jan 2009, 22:15
Yar, I be reading a book called Pirates of the Chesapeake. I got it for Christmas, lets see how it goes.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: n0tj3sus on 06 Jan 2009, 23:02
...Catch 2?
catch 22...fuck.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kanhoji on 07 Jan 2009, 01:06
Reading Let Us Compare Mythologies by Leonard Cohen over and over again,
and am three quarters of the way through Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: frances65406 on 09 Jan 2009, 18:12
Black Rabbit Summer by Kevin Brooks
and my next book I'll be reading :
Shopoholic Ties The Knot by Sophie Kinsella
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: StaedlerMars on 10 Jan 2009, 17:14
...Catch 2?
catch 22...fuck.

Am I the only one that thinks this book is hugely over rated? It was funny sure, but it wasn't the great text it's made it to be by some.

Just finished reading A Farewell To Arms by Hemingway, of which I have to say: Fuck that ended on a downer. For the rest it was pretty good. Gotta say that I enjoy his writing style.

Now I'm reading 'The Drunkard's Walk' by Leonard Mlodinow. It's a book about how randomness is really important to our lives. My dad gave it to me after a discussion about determinism vs. free will. While it doesn't prove his point about free will, I haven't fully agreed that it actually argues against determinism. So far it's a fairly good read though. Definitely interesting.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: David_Dovey on 12 Jan 2009, 02:58
Staedler, yes, you are in fact the only one.

I am reading "Six Easy Pieces" by Richard P. Feynman and have just finished reading "Watchmen" by Alan Moore. I'm currently weighing up whether to start in on "Fear And Loathing on the Campaign Trail '72" by Hunter S. Thompson or "Dreams From My Father" by Barack Obama next (I had a big book-buying spree recently).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 12 Jan 2009, 16:18
Woo, got The Graveyard Book and Neverwhere
Which to start first?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TheFuriousWombat on 12 Jan 2009, 16:54
Neverwhere!! It's great!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: the_pied_piper on 12 Feb 2009, 15:38
Little bit of a necro-post but its a good thread to dig up.

As part of my degree i am studying Catalan (language of Catalunyan region of Spain) and have been given a book to read. Its called 'La Pell Freda' ('Cold Skin' in English) by Albert Sánchez Piñol. Good so far but reading in a different language is hard. May get the English translation to help out.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Caleb on 13 Feb 2009, 13:20
Neverwhere!! It's great!

That's actually what I just finished up reading.

I also finished up World War Z.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 13 Feb 2009, 18:02
Halfway through graveyard book and i'm taking an interlude to read Death: Time of your life.

Neil Gaiman binge!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: t3hsteph on 13 Feb 2009, 19:34
Life, the Universe and Everything - Douglas Adams

And I'm finishing, Without You - Anthony Rapp
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Vendetagainst on 13 Feb 2009, 19:37
I'm reading Jose Saramago's The Cave. It's a really interesting read and I've grown fond of the characters and really impressed by the author's unique perspective and writing techniques, but at the same time it's a tremendously slow read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 13 Feb 2009, 19:50
Truman Capote's In Cold Blood, I've only just started (30pgs) but I found how Capote paces the first part incredibly slowly in order to build suspense before the the murder of the Cutter's very striking.

I'm also reading Brubaker's run on The Immortal Iron Fist. Standard Brubaker + orientalism, I'm enjoying it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 13 Feb 2009, 20:07
The last of the Spider-man/Sinister Six novels by Adam-Troy Castro
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Gilead on 14 Feb 2009, 07:16
Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer.

It is really fucking good.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LucyStag on 14 Feb 2009, 13:20
The third book in the "Regeneration" trilogy,"The Ghost Road" by Pat Barker is calling to me. Instead I am on the internet, pretending that I am just about to start my essay on media polarization... Yes, so much easier to pretend you're just about to do your work this way.

But holy shit, Pat Barker is good. Especially "Regeneration" which is one of those books I read twice in the span of about two months, then read several times more over the next two years.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: data damage on 14 Feb 2009, 13:21
Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer.

It is really fucking good.

That quickly become one of my favorite books ever.  It's incredible.  The film adaptation isn't half bad either (especially with the lead singer of Gogol Bordello as Alex).

I'm currently reading Salt: A World History by Mark Kurlansky and The Principles of Uncertainty by Maira Kalman.  Salt is pretty interesting.  The Principles of Uncertainty is pretty amazing.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elk on 17 Feb 2009, 13:35
I also finished up World War Z.

Man, I've been meaning to pick up that for the longest time.

Right now I'm finishing up Haruki Murakami's Underground: The Tokyo Gas Attack and the Japanese Psyche.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 17 Feb 2009, 14:29
The third book in the "Regeneration" trilogy,"The Ghost Road" by Pat Barker is calling to me. Instead I am on the internet, pretending that I am just about to start my essay on media polarization... Yes, so much easier to pretend you're just about to do your work this way.

But holy shit, Pat Barker is good. Especially "Regeneration" which is one of those books I read twice in the span of about two months, then read several times more over the next two years.

I am incredibly impressed at your willpower, managing to go two years without reading The Ghost Road when you had read Regeneration.  Once I had started the trilogy, read the whole thing within a week.  Stunningly well done.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: arkhym on 17 Feb 2009, 17:02
Just After Sunset : Stephen King
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Rachel_Grace on 17 Feb 2009, 19:03
I just started Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult. It was recommended by a coworker; we shall see if it turns out that this coworker has good taste or bad.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: bff on 17 Feb 2009, 22:00
Halfway through graveyard book ....

Did you see that The Graveyard Book won the Newbery this year?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 18 Feb 2009, 10:15
I did

Didn't even know what the Newberry was before
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Katherine on 18 Feb 2009, 19:25
Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer.

It is really fucking good.

I am glad to hear that.  I picked it up and looked at it in a book store, but ended up putting it back because I wasn't sure if it was worth the time and money.  Maybe I will grab it next time.

I am currently reading Death by Black Hole: and Other Cosmic Quandaries by Neil DeGrasse Tyson.  It is most fascinating.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Wolf on 20 Feb 2009, 14:16
Consider Phlebas by Ian Banks

To your scattered bodies go by Philip Jose Farmer

Both are very good
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: celticgeek on 20 Feb 2009, 14:26
I just finished The Pluto Files, by Neil deGrasse Tyson.  It is informative and hilarious.  I highly recommend it to everybody.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Katherine on 20 Feb 2009, 17:52
I am really enjoying Death by Black Hole... so maybe I will pick that up next.  Thanks!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 21 Feb 2009, 13:27
I just read X-Factor v3 #40, and OH MY GOSH SO FUCKING AWESOME.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The_Bartender on 21 Feb 2009, 18:19
Attacks (WWI Infantry Tactics) by Erwin Rommel

Recently:
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
From a Buick 8 by Stephen King

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: doctorb on 21 Feb 2009, 22:00
My Boring-Ass Life by Kevin Smith.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 22 Feb 2009, 12:01
Somehow I've gotten myself juggling Neverwhere (Gaiman), The Jungle Books (Kipling), The Phantom of the Opera (Leroux) and Double Indemnity (Cain)

Need to focus on just one
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: the_pied_piper on 23 Feb 2009, 12:18
I am currently reading Watchmen for the first time after it was recommended by a friend excited by the upcoming movie. So far, i really like it.

[I am still reading La Pell Freda (Cold Skin) at the same time. Protip: do not waste your time with this book, it is awful]
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: el_loco_avs on 24 Feb 2009, 03:48
Glamorama by Brett Easton Ellis (for on the train)

Absolute Sandman vol1 - Neil Gaiman (for in bed)


and some Book of Longing by Leonard Cohen for when I'm in the mood for poetry.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jed on 24 Feb 2009, 04:36
Antony Beevor - The Battle for Spain

Really interesting book if you are into European military/political history. I also suggest reading Beevor's Berlin - The Downfall and Stalingrad.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Rez on 24 Feb 2009, 18:16
TS Eliot's The Wasteland obsessively.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ViciousWarGoose on 24 Feb 2009, 18:24
Red Lightning by John Varley, also just picked up The Philip K. Dick Reader, so I can finally read the stories that every other scifi movie is based on.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Miniluv on 01 Mar 2009, 13:14
Just finished Microserfs by Douglas Coupland. I'm currently getting a slow start on The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Boro_Bandito on 01 Mar 2009, 18:14
So far this semester I've been working on short story collections. I've made it through Sherwood Anderson's Winesburg, Ohio and a "best of" kinda book of Hemingway's short stories called The Snow's of Kilimanjaro , named after one of the stories in the book. I'm about to start on Tim O'Brien's The Things They Carried and eventually read Flannery O'Connor's A Good Man is Hard to Find.

Wineburg was a really good read, but Sherwood Anderson really has something against people being happy I think. This may or may not have anything to do with the fact he was married like 4 times and died because he swallowed a toothpick. Also I think my new favorite short story ever is one of Hemingway's The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KharBevNor on 01 Mar 2009, 19:30
Recently I have been consolidating, reading things again that I have not read for a long time that I remember enjoying a lot. I have a large stack. I have already (re-)read Titus Groan, Gormenghast, The Left Hand of Darkness, The Word for World is Forest, A Wizard of Earthsea, The Tombs of Atuan, The Farthest Shore, The Neuromancer, Virtual Light, Gullivers Travels, Salt, Stone, Mutants, The Wasp Factory and The Bridge. Got some real monsters ahead, including Dune, Illuminatus!, The Nights Dawn Trilogy (all 5000 odd pages), The Silmarillion, The Riverworld Saga, and if I ever get time I want to refresh my grasp on recent Russian history by re-reading Orlando Figes' 'A Peoples Tragedy' and Robert' Services biographies of Lenin and Stalin, books which I am fairly sure I have never actually read all in one go, in order. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Ford Prefect on 02 Mar 2009, 19:14
Mostly Harmless. Again.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TheFuriousWombat on 04 Mar 2009, 15:16
I'm now reading Gabriel Garcia Marquez's "The General in His Labyrinth" about the last days of Simon Bolivar. It's great, as I expected, and a nice supplement to the piles of historical documentation I'm reading about the same time period for class. Garcia Marquez has created a complex, humane, and beautiful portrait of this legendary figure and I, for one, am convinced this is a far deeper examination of his life and accomplishments than many historians have pulled off.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: the_pied_piper on 04 Mar 2009, 16:01
Thanks for reminding me, Wombat, i have been meaning to pick up a copy of "cien años de soledad" for a while.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 04 Mar 2009, 16:30
Olympos - Dan Simmons

I started this yesterday.

So cool.


i am three-quarters of the way through this right now.

shit is ridiculous! oh man


p.s. have you read the Hyperion books? if not, they should probably be next on your to-do list because that shit is so fucking epic that it hurts.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Victorinia on 04 Mar 2009, 22:07
American Pastoral!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KickThatBathProf on 05 Mar 2009, 10:02
Man I don't know what it is about Hiaasen I like so much, but I can't stop reading his stuff
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Acid on 10 Mar 2009, 10:56
Dune, for the 10,000th time.

Now, if I could only see the future like Paul...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: the_pied_piper on 10 Mar 2009, 11:16
So i have finally finished the pile of shit that was 'La Pell Freda' and now have a new reading assignment, this time for my Spanish class.

Hence, i am now reading 'Relato de un náufrago', a series of articles written by Gabriel García Márquez about a mistake in a military exercise which was attempted to be covered up by the Colombian government in order to retain the heroic status of certain military personnel.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 10 Mar 2009, 11:31
Dhalgren by Samuel R. Delany
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 11 Mar 2009, 12:24
Aspho Fields (http://gearsofwar.wikia.com/wiki/Battle_of_Aspho_Fields)

Damn good.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 11 Mar 2009, 16:23
The Fountainhead - Ayn Rand
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 11 Mar 2009, 17:39
The Jungle Books by Rudyard Kipling

and 

Battle Royale IN FRENCH
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Daft pun on 12 Mar 2009, 09:26
The middle mind by Curtis White

It's not really suited for bedtime reading, which is what I've been doing so far. Interesting though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 12 Mar 2009, 15:14
I'm actually having trouble finding good bedtime reading books, cos if a book's in any bit really exciting or interesting it'll just make me want to stay up and write. What I'm liking about TJB actually
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ThePianoMan on 12 Mar 2009, 19:14
Flannery O'Connor's A Good Man is Hard to Find.
That's a really great one once you get into it. Have you thought about Dubliners by James Joyce? It's one of my favorites, and surprisingly readable considering it's written by Joyce.


Right now I'm reading The Brothers Karamazov for the third time and getting ready to dive into Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 12 Mar 2009, 20:01
The Fountainhead - Ayn Rand

Why?

I'm in the middle of Nabokov's Transparent Things.  Enjoying it pretty greatly so far, but then, the man is likely my favourite novelist, so I'm not surprised.

Picked up a recent volume of his translations of a number of Russian poems by a variety of authors today, Verses and Versions.  Haven't done more than flipped through it, but I'm excited to dig in a bit more.

Read the first couple of E. E. Cumming's Six Nonlectures today as well.  Really wonderful stuff.  Highly recommended to anyone who enjoys his work, though being familiar with his work is in no way essential to enjoying these 'socalled nonlectures.'

Also been reading through a variety of Gogol's works.  Plays, stories, and I have Dead Souls waiting for me.

As far as poetry goes, I read a scattering from A Stone Diary by Pat Lowther and Siegried Sassoon's war poems today.  Pat Lowther's work is heartbreakingly beatiful, but also rather sad.  Hard to explain, but if you ever happen to chance upon a volume of her poetry in a used bookstore, take a moment to flip through it.

Following discussions earlier in this thread, I'm reading No Fond Return of Love by Barbara Pym. I regret to say that about a hundred pages in, I'm not really enjoying it all that much. I find the characters rather irritating, and the plot rather overly reliant on coincidence. But I'll finish it, and I've got Excellent Women by her too so I'll give that a go, before I dismiss her entirely.

How did you find No Fond Return of Love upon finishing it?  It's one I've yet to read, and I'm interested to hear your impressions, given that I really quite like your taste.  Did you ever get around to Excellent Women?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 12 Mar 2009, 21:42
I haven't read Excellent Women yet. To be honest the only strong emotion I felt at finishing No Fond Return of Love was relief that I could move onto something I'd enjoy. I must admit that my expectations were heightened by the blurb, which compared the book to Persuasion, which I adore.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 13 Mar 2009, 08:02
Just finished Darkly Dreaming Dexter.

Probably going to swing by a bookstore after work. No clue as to what to get, though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 13 Mar 2009, 11:27
I recently read all three of the Dexter's.  I like them - and I like the series on Showtime, though I like them as seperate entities.  Good books though.  :D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 13 Mar 2009, 22:30
The Fountainhead - Ayn Rand
Why?
I think she's a fantastic writer and I enjoy her views on a laissez faire structure.

I've also been reading some of Nietzsche's philosophy and Aristotle's Political anthology.

Great web-site for you philosophical nerds. (Menu on top right hand corner)
Quote
http://www.davemckay.co.uk/philosophy/nietzsche/
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Surgoshan on 13 Mar 2009, 22:53
Let's see...  Avec, you're... 17?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 14 Mar 2009, 00:32
I think she's a fantastic writer...

Really, I'm curious to know why you think this - assuming that by 'writer' you're referring to style. I've found "romantic realism" to have been done so much better by other authors who managed to integrate their ideas and themes easily into the novel's fabric instead of leaving it as a thick layer of caked-on mud.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TheFuriousWombat on 14 Mar 2009, 11:37

Also been reading through a variety of Gogol's works.  Plays, stories, and I have Dead Souls waiting for me.


I love Gogol so much. A brilliant, zany writer to be sure. Dead Souls is a treat. You should be excited!
Speaking of brilliant, zany writers, I recently plunged into Thomas Pynchon's Mason and Dixon. As far as complexity goes, it's Pynchon most accesible book. It's also probably his best. It's a magnificent, immense, sprawling book that is lucid and insane and honestly a true delight. Pynchon is a masterful writer and, towering as Gravity's Rainbow might be, I feel this book is the one that proves that before his others. It's also interesting to see an obvious source of inspiration for Neil Stephenson's Baroque Cylce which, while certainly less well written than Mason and Dixon, owes it a stylistic debt.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 14 Mar 2009, 13:45
Let's see...  Avec, you're... 17?

Fifteen.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 15 Mar 2009, 01:14
figured
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 15 Mar 2009, 01:43
ooooh, burn.




I'm actually not having a go at you for liking Ayn Rand
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 17 Mar 2009, 19:42
I guess I'm not allowed to develop an opinion until I reach my 30's, at which point I can logically lurk and post my thoughts on Ayn Rand.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 17 Mar 2009, 19:45
Liking Ayn Rand is not any better if you are thirty.

It just makes even less sense.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Siibillam-Law on 18 Mar 2009, 13:16
Alright Atlas Shrugged wasn't too bad. I Daresay I did enjoy it, after forcing myself to read the first 300 pages, it got a bit easier.Much like when I tried to read Pride and Prejudice, although I forced myself to go through the entire book

That Liz Bennett's a bitch
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dollface on 18 Mar 2009, 14:54
Serial Killers: The Method and Madness of Monsters by Peter Vronsky
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 18 Mar 2009, 22:45
Empire: How Britain Made the World by Nial Fergusson. Insofar, a balanced view on the economic legacy of British Imperialism.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Alex C on 18 Mar 2009, 23:03
Jesus shit. Ayn Rand.

Damn it guys, I've gone like, a month without crapping on her on this forum. Why must you tempt me forums?


Anyway, I'm reading Salt: A World History
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 19 Mar 2009, 01:30
Done with Dexter. On to Rushdy. Midnight's Children to be exact. I have the sneaking suspicion that this book might be smarter than its reader ...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 22 Jun 2010, 09:35
Hey guys, is it okay if I bring this back? I was thinking about making a thread like this last night and decided to search, because there was bound to be one.

Anyways, I just finished a book called "Field Notes on the Compassionate Life" by Marc Ian Barasch.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 22 Jun 2010, 14:08
recently started fellowship of the ring again

wee
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: onewheelwizzard on 22 Jun 2010, 14:17
Olympos - Dan Simmons

I started this yesterday.

So cool.


i am three-quarters of the way through this right now.

shit is ridiculous! oh man


p.s. have you read the Hyperion books? if not, they should probably be next on your to-do list because that shit is so fucking epic that it hurts.

Dan Simmons is so fucking good

I'm working on "Boneshaker" by Cherie Priest right now (it's described as a "steampunk-zombie-airship adventure" on the front and Warren Ellis really likes it apparently) and I just finished "The Arcanum" by Thomas Wheeler (in which Arthur Conan Doyle, Marie Laveau, H.P. Lovecraft, and Harry Houdini need to get together to save the world).  I'm on kind of an awesome easy-reading novel kick right now.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 22 Jun 2010, 16:11
I read a short, very positive review-blurb about that "Boneshaker" book somewhere a little while back and it sounds very interesting. I might have to check that out.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Beren on 22 Jun 2010, 22:40
Done with Dexter. On to Rushdy. Midnight's Children to be exact. I have the sneaking suspicion that this book might be smarter than its reader ...

Rushdie makes everyone feel that way, and we're all probably right.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: onewheelwizzard on 24 Jun 2010, 13:24
I read a short, very positive review-blurb about that "Boneshaker" book somewhere a little while back and it sounds very interesting. I might have to check that out.

I just finished it.  It's fun, it keeps the pages turning, and it's easy to see how it could get made into an AWESOME movie.  It's kinda predictable, but nothing about it is poorly done.  It's not a hack job or anything.  If you're into steampunk, it's definitely a tasty morsel.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 25 Jun 2010, 08:27
I've been casually reading "A Scanner Darkly" by Phillip K. Dick, which happens to be the first brush I've had with him.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Coward on 25 Jun 2010, 12:31
You may wish to try The Man in the High Castle by Dick as well. It's an alternate-history novel set a decade or so after the end of the Second World War where the Axis powers won and divided the world between them. Whilst not the sci-fi he is widely known for, I found it a well thought out and executed piece of literature with an interesting take on cultural subservience.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 25 Jun 2010, 14:53
If I can I'll keep it in mind. The library has...hundreds, probably thousands of books for sale in the basement, a bagful for a dollar, so I usually just buy whatever I can get there.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 25 Jun 2010, 16:27
It seems like roughly 70% of all alternate history books involve the Axis Powers winning World War II. Which is boring as fuck when you think about what could be done with tinkering with early western civilizations' development, like Rome, Greece, etc.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jimbunny on 25 Jun 2010, 17:40
Portrait of a Lady, by Henry James

It's like reading Jane Austen, or Charlotte Bronte. Except better.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: De_El on 25 Jun 2010, 18:20
It seems like roughly 70% of all alternate history books involve the Axis Powers winning World War II. Which is boring as fuck when you think about what could be done with tinkering with early western civilizations' development, like Rome, Greece, etc.

That may be so, but if yr gonna give a shit about any of them, I'd hand the prize The Man in the High Castle.  It may ostensibly be about Axis powers winning WWII, but it's ultimately stranger than that.

It's really easy for me to say that, though. I've never read any other alternate WWII-outcome books. I don't think. If I have they weren't very memorable.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 25 Jun 2010, 18:59
I'm sure there are a couple brilliant ones that started the trend, like how Tolkien is the babydaddy of every epic fantasy novel ever, but there's so many now it's hard to care about anything but the original.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: De_El on 25 Jun 2010, 20:40
Right! I was trying to think of what might be the original of that particular trend though, and I got nuffin. Is there such a thing? I dunno if it's originals doin it rite the first time so much as the occasional excellent writer taking an obvious idea and going awesome places with it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 25 Jun 2010, 20:51
some wiki skimming has led me to believe it started in 1845 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P.%27s_Correspondence) with nathaniel hawthorne!

h.g. wells also hit that shit up. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Men_Like_Gods)

but alternate history as we know it didn't really take off until the late 80s/early 90s, the most notable of which appears to be harry turtledove's worldwar series (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tosev_timeline)?

i have no idea and i am past the limit of my caring now. haha
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: De_El on 25 Jun 2010, 20:57
yeah see i did the requisite wiki skimming but it did not seem interesting like at all
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 25 Jun 2010, 21:01
back on topic now

i am halfway through fellowship of the ring! it's going quicker than i remember, but that kinda makes sense seeing as how last time i read it i was 12.

and boy tolkien can't write dialogue for shit!

still enjoying it a lot though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Ikrik on 26 Jun 2010, 02:36
I just finished Candide, and before that I read River Out of Eden and the God Delusion, all of which were fantastic.

Currently I'm slowly reading Necronomicon by H.P. Lovecraft and wow, that man has one of the densest writing styles I've ever read, I love reading him but it takes a while to finish even just a short story.  And I'm also reading Behind the Pink Curtain which is a book all about Japan's Pink Cinema, it's really interesting read even if the subject matter is not for everyone.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 27 Jun 2010, 08:57
So I've put off all my personal books for my summer reading, and it goes like this:

1. Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoevsky
2. Hardball : How Politics Is Played Told By One Who Knows The Game - Chris Mathews
3. The World Is Flat - Thomas L. Friedman
4. Too Close to Call: The Thirty-Six-Day Battle to Decide the 2000 Election - Jeffrey Toobin
5. The Death of Ivan Ilych - Leo Tolstoy
6. Ishmael: An Adventure of the Mind and Spirit - Daniel Quinn
7. An Inconvenient Truth: The Planetary Emergency of Global Warming and What We Can Do About It - Al Gore
8. The Diversity of Life - Edward O. Wilson

Aside from classics is anyone else stuck with similar mandatory summer readings?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 28 Jun 2010, 13:13
I just started started a book called "The Lives of the Monster Dogs" by Kirsten Bakis. I'm about three chapters into it and will probably end up reading it all the way through in one sitting tonight.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: smack that isaiah on 28 Jun 2010, 14:23
I got Carrion Comfort by Dan Simmons awhile ago, after I finished his short story which led to it.  I finally started it today.  I'm liking it so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 28 Jun 2010, 21:59
Reading Anne McCaffrey's Nimisha's Ship at Course

Reading Robert A. Heinlein's Time Enough For Love at home


Ahhh the dichotomy      :-D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: De_El on 13 Jul 2010, 23:29
Read and finished The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, by PKD.  For some reason I'd had the impression that it's one of his lesser works, but I think I may have liked it even better than The Man in the High Castle. It was really good, anyway.

This afternoon I started Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse. It's quite good so far; I have to stop myself from rushing through it.  It's written so simply, almost like a fable. It'd be easy to finish it in an evening or something, but I sort of feel like if I did, I'd be missing the point.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Emaline on 13 Jul 2010, 23:36
I just started The World According To Garp by John Irving. Mostly because I wanted to relive the days when I started to super get into book. So a lot of John Irving, and David Sedaris, and Richard Brautigan. I'm pretty excited. However, I must have lost some books while moving, so I'm done to one John Irving and one Sedaris. I'm gonna stop by the used bookstore before work one day and see if I can pick up any more. However, I'll miss the cracked spines and water damage on the others.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Runner4406pack on 14 Jul 2010, 00:49
Hunter S. Thompson - Rum Diary

and i just found out the are making a movie of this starring some pretty good actors, well at least people i like: Depp, Aaron Eckhart, and Giovanni Ribisi pretty excited!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JD on 14 Jul 2010, 00:53
Galileo's Daughter by Dava Sobel
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cartilage Head on 14 Jul 2010, 01:11
Kung Fu Basics by Paul Eng.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: a pack of wolves on 14 Jul 2010, 16:45
Joseph Conrad - The Secret Agent, Giorgio Agamben - State Of Exception and Jacques Rancière - On the Shores of Politics. I'm finding the Rancière tough going, philosophy isn't my strong suit, but there's some excellent concepts and imagery in there although I think I disagree with his conclusions. You can really tell that it was written for an audience of fellow academics though (it's all adapted from things he delivered at various conferences). The Agamben's much more readable even though I know even less about the law than I do philosophy, he's great at making his argument very clear and doesn't assume too much background knowledge. I'm really starting to like Conrad, I don't know why I've taken so long to get around to him. I only read Heart Of Darkness last week which was a pretty sizeable oversight.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: De_El on 14 Jul 2010, 17:02
Conrad is good! I like his style even though it's kind of boring, because it's soooo of its time and soooo British..
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scarychips on 15 Jul 2010, 21:51
Just finished Beatrice & Virgil by Yann Martel. Not as god as Life of Pi, but still pretty solid.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: negative creep on 16 Jul 2010, 08:59
It seems like roughly 70% of all alternate history books involve the Axis Powers winning World War II. Which is boring as fuck when you think about what could be done with tinkering with early western civilizations' development, like Rome, Greece, etc.

I read an interesting book a few years ago, the basic premise of which was that the Roman Empire never ended and that Christianity never broke big. It was set in the 1990s or something. I forgot what it was called, or who wrote it, but it must be around here somewhere.


Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoevsky

I can't stress enough how good this book is.


Currently I'm reading History of Greece by Ernst Curtius (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernst_Curtius)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 16 Jul 2010, 17:14
The Cat Who Walks Through Walls - Robert A. Heinlein
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Daft pun on 17 Jul 2010, 05:14
Blind willow, sleeping woman by Haruki Murakami.

The last of my Murakami books for now, after Dance dance dance and The wind-up bird chronicle (and Kafka on the shore a few years ago). I quite like his writing style, but I've noticed it loses a bit of its attraction when you read a lot of it. So, on to other writers, probably something by Gabriel García Márquez or maybe Ruhm by Daniel Kehlmann. Picked up his excellent Measuring the world on the cheap a while ago, and Ruhm received good reviews as well.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jimmy the Squid on 17 Jul 2010, 06:00
Man I just finished a huuuuge Raymond E. Feist kick. I've now read, pretty much back to back, The Riftwar Saga (which is Magician, Silverthorn and A Darkness At Sethanon), Prince of the Blood, King's Buccaneer, The Serpentwar Saga (Shadow of a Dark Queen, Rise of a Merchant Prince, Rage of a Demon King and Shards of a Broken Crown) and The Conclave of Shadows Saga (Talon of the Silver Hawk, King of Foxes and Exile's Return). When The Demonwar Saga comes out in paper back I might get that and read those but I think I'm over high, Dungeons and Dragons-esque fantasy and the awesome, swords and shields based dreams I have after I read it.

Maybe I'll re-read all my comics in chronological order. Then my dreams will be filled with hanging out with Superheroes being awesome and shit. I love my subconcious.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 17 Jul 2010, 17:06
Have you read the trilogy of books covering the Riftwar era from the Kelewan side?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jimmy the Squid on 18 Jul 2010, 01:17
The Servant of the Empire stuff? I haven't no. I'm always hesitant to read stuff by two authors as I find that often those works tend to have two very different voices.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 18 Jul 2010, 23:01
It is different in that it follows the fortunes of House Acoma on Kelewan and Mara, last survivor of the old Acoma line from the near disaster of her family being wiped out by trechery during the Riftwar to her rise to the position of Mistress Of The Empire and the changes she brings to the stagnating Tsuranni culture, but it's well worth the read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: HiFranc on 19 Jul 2010, 01:34
I, personally, enjoyed the Empire books more than the other books.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SaskiWhiteflower on 19 Jul 2010, 22:01
Im currently reading "Cross Country" in English. Its challenging like hell for me  :oops:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: a pack of wolves on 20 Jul 2010, 09:17
Conrad is good! I like his style even though it's kind of boring, because it's soooo of its time and soooo British..

Aw, I wouldn't call him boring. He's quite snappy and modern for a late 19th/early 20th century writer. Very much of the empire though, I'm with you on that.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jimbunny on 22 Jul 2010, 15:21
...or is he?

In any case, Lord Jim is absolutely fantastic.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: FIXDIX on 22 Jul 2010, 16:34
I'm about 300ish pages into The Passage by Justin Cronin. I can see what the hype is about and I'm enjoying a lot more than I thought I would.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: smack that isaiah on 01 Aug 2010, 20:12
So I'm reading regularly again, and I'm so happy.  I already feel less depressed, and I find myself grinning widely as I read... and giggling occasionally.  At first I found my giggling a little weird, but I've rationalized that I'm getting a thrill from knowing these characters' intentions and inner thoughts better than the other characters, and that makes me giddy.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 01 Aug 2010, 21:48
started Let the Right One In, and am continuing to push through Return of the King
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: DavidGrohl on 02 Aug 2010, 10:23
The Dark Tower : Wizards and Glass.

That's right, bitches!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: De_El on 02 Aug 2010, 11:05
The last things I read were Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse and Master of Reality by John Darnielle.
Now I'm getting ambitious and trying to read The Tale of Genji.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Nettle on 03 Aug 2010, 04:30
I'm reading Going Postal by Terry Pratchett. :D It's fantastic. I read the one that comes after it first by accident.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 03 Aug 2010, 05:58
Now I'm getting ambitious and trying to read The Tale of Genji.

I've been thinking of getting into that. Having just finished reading all 870-odd pages of Life and Fate, though, I think I might need to give my brain a bit of a rest.

Right now I'm reading This Sporting Life by David Storey.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 03 Aug 2010, 09:51
Currently checking out the manga version of "The Dark Hunters".

Meh, light but entertaining.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 04 Aug 2010, 00:33
Two new books on the go.

Heinlein's The Number Of The Beast

Harry Harrison's Stars And Stripes Triumphant
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KickThatBathProf on 04 Aug 2010, 01:07
Kind of an odd mix, but:

Siddhartha - Hermann Hesse
The Inner Game of Tennis - W. Timothy Gallwey
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JD on 04 Aug 2010, 09:27
I read The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest

Almost done Galileo's Daughter
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 04 Aug 2010, 15:20
If only we were as good at discussing books as we are at telling each other what books we're reading.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jimbunny on 04 Aug 2010, 19:02
I just finished William James' "Pragmatism" lectures. Inspiring, but rather dated and vague. Rorty's Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature is in the mail.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: philharmonic on 12 Aug 2010, 12:37
Confiscated copy of School Rumble manga from my daughter. I'm like woah thats way too much drama for you heh but it 's pretty funny so I gave it back to her when I was done. Not long after i was poking around and found it was made into anime. So much for the manga.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 13 Aug 2010, 04:31
I'm about 300ish pages into The Passage by Justin Cronin. I can see what the hype is about and I'm enjoying a lot more than I thought I would.

Reading this aswell. Great opening, weak middle, signs of a great sprint into awesome at the end.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 13 Aug 2010, 10:24
I'm still tip-toeing through Black Hills (which, after a strong beginning and dull middle, has finally picked back up again as it reaches it's final chapters), but I need to finish reading it before next week because I just ordered Gravity's Rainbow and I'm gonna want to start it as soon as it arrives. Wish me luck.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SonofZ3 on 14 Aug 2010, 11:45
I'm burning through the Maturin & Aubrey novels by O'Brian and loving it. I wish I read slower though, because they're 16 bucks a pop and I go through 3  or 4 a week. On the upside once I finish a few I mail them to my grandfather, who introduced me to the Hornblower series, so hes enjoying them as well.

I think my fellow QC forumites should check out some James Branch Cabell sometime. His novels are a great read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Chesire Cat on 15 Aug 2010, 09:10
Just finished Atlas Shrugged. The book freaking changed me, someone derisively called me some sort of neo-libertarian in some thread I was pissing everyone off in, and I think this pretty much solidified that at the expense of minimizing my socialist values. I didnt eat up everything the book said, I pretty much get the feeling that Ayn Rand carved out her niche by being polarized nutbag on everything because she found out it worked though, so good for her I guess. The 65 page sermon by John Galt about 5/8ths into the book felt like work to read though.

What I took out of it was that I should be the absolute best I can at everything I do. Which is a pretty good concept.

Am now reading Ender's Game for some light reading and the fact that I am a sucker for a well titled book (reading Watership Down next.)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 17 Aug 2010, 08:04
I just picked up 3 of the 'Dresden Files' books.

Not bad at all so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Jimmy the Squid on 17 Aug 2010, 08:09
Oh man the Dresden Files are pretty damn awesome. I have all the books bar the newest one (isn't out in paperback here yet) and each one I have found entirely enthralling. It's possibly because Jim Butcher used to write for Spiderman but something about the writing style is just really snappy.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Josefbugman on 17 Aug 2010, 09:47
Just finished reading "Excession" by Ian M. Banks. I rather enjoyed it, and as I have a few of his books lying around from a few christmases ago I'm going to enjoy reading them.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JD on 17 Aug 2010, 19:27
Just read BONE
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Vendetagainst on 17 Aug 2010, 23:52
Reading Cryptonomicon.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 18 Aug 2010, 03:22
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 18 Aug 2010, 04:21
Just read BONE
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dollface on 18 Aug 2010, 04:38
Bears Can't Run Downhill by Robert Anwood
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 18 Aug 2010, 06:28
Just finished up "Transgender Warriors" by Leslie Feinberg, which actually ended up making me look into the Stonewall Rebellion/Riots further. Awesome!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: CardinalFang on 18 Aug 2010, 10:16
Oh man the Dresden Files are pretty damn awesome. I have all the books bar the newest one (isn't out in paperback here yet) and each one I have found entirely enthralling. It's possibly because Jim Butcher used to write for Spiderman but something about the writing style is just really snappy.

Most of my friends have read and love the Dresden Files. They were stunned to find out that Jim Butcher is going to be the special guest of honor at a small nearby sci-fi convention called Marscon (http://www.marscon.net/). Marscon's previous claim to fame was having a really good con suite. I am rather stunned that Jim Butcher and his wife are going to be there. I fully expect people, my friends specifically, to go insane.

I am currently reading Wellington: The Years of the Sword by Elizabeth Harman Pakenham, Countess of Longford. I picked it up at an estate sale. So far it's pretty interesting.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 13 Oct 2010, 08:26
Oh man the Dresden Files are pretty damn awesome. I have all the books bar the newest one (isn't out in paperback here yet) and each one I have found entirely enthralling. It's possibly because Jim Butcher used to write for Spiderman but something about the writing style is just really snappy.

I THOROUGHLY enjoyed the 3 that I got to read.  Unfortunately my library doesn't have any more of them, so I'm going to have to use other means to track them down.  Worth tracking down though.  Great reads.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JD on 13 Oct 2010, 17:09
The Book Of Negroes
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 13 Oct 2010, 17:31
just started Carson Mell's Saguaro today and I'm really enjoying it. I kinda figured that I would since his videos are so damn funny, but I wasn't fully convinced that it would translate to the page very well. I'm glad I was wrong.

if you've never heard of Carson Mell before, you better do yourself a favor and get on Youtube right now and get busy. I recommend Chonto, Spider, and Field Notes from Dimension X.

his live-action stuff is a little too weird and awkward for me, but his animated shorts are fantastic and I'm loving the book so far. Can't wait for his next one.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 13 Oct 2010, 21:04
The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles By Haruki Murakami, then on to Johannes Cabal: The Detective by Jonathan L. Howard
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 13 Oct 2010, 21:39
Star Trek Vanguard: Reap The Whirlwind
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theriandros on 13 Oct 2010, 21:45
China Mieville ~ The Scar

Disliked Perdido Street Station for its thin plot, but I'm giving this guy a second chance.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jimbunny on 15 Oct 2010, 07:17
To Say Nothing About the Dog, by Connie Willis

I'm actually not too enthused at the moment - this kind of comedy just isn't my thing - but I'm determined to get to the end because I'm pretty sure it's good.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 15 Oct 2010, 11:45
Just finished Kraken by China Mieville. This man has an amazing imagination, but the middle 200 pages were pretty aimless. First 100 and last 100 were ace, though. Basically if you liked Gaiman's Neverwhere, you'd probably dig it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: celticgeek on 15 Oct 2010, 12:18
Stories In Stone, by David B. Williams, subtitled Travels Through Urban Geology.  An interesting discussion of where various building materials (stone, in particular) came from.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Buttfranklin on 15 Oct 2010, 21:37
The Wind in the Willows

Holy cow why didn't I read this as a kid?  Soooo much fun.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 15 Oct 2010, 21:50
Your astonishment matches your avatar well.


I just read Good Omens.


Holy shit! That was SO GOOD.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Buttfranklin on 15 Oct 2010, 21:56
Just how good are we talking!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: muffy on 16 Oct 2010, 05:05
I've just finished:

Perfume - Patrick Susskind: This got a lot of recommendations in another thread and I think they are well deserved - it's disturbingly sensory and every character placed in the story is monstrous in their own way. It's a lot of fun to read.

if nobody speaks of remarkable things - Jon McGregor: Some people find this book frustrating - the pace is slow and the time frames are haphazard, and the author is irreverent of things such as conventional grammar. It's also gorgeously evocative and every description is appropriately detailed without wasting any words. I really loved it.

Eats, Shoots and Leaves - Lynn Truss: She's surprisingly funny but my god is she uptight.

I'm now reading:

Skating to Antarctica - Jenny Diski: Technically, this is travel writing. It's caustic and upsetting and carefully written. The author is remarkably pragmatic about the sorts of things that would have most writers spewing realms of self pity. I'm about a third of the way through it and it is quite brilliant.

Fugitive Pieces - Anne Michaels: Thematically dark (holocaust survivor coming to terms with the horrors of the past) but written with disjointed floral prose which is hard to engage with and jars against the points the author is trying to make. Not sure about this one.

I'm about to read:

Jane and Louisa Will Soon Come Home - Erna Brodbery
Selected Stories - Katherine Mansfield
Words from a Glass Bubble - Vanessa Gebbie


And a bunch of tests about 'reading like a writer' and so on. Being a student is strangely fun.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: nekowafer on 21 Oct 2010, 12:26
I am reading the Animorphs series on my Nook. I'm on book 19. No, I am not currently in middle school..
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 21 Oct 2010, 13:56
I'm reading the Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay. I can tell that when I'm done this'll be one of my favourite books ever.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jackmort on 25 Oct 2010, 02:48
I like to try and read two books at the same time, not exactly at the same time but you know what I mean
I'll pick something reasonably heavy-weight and something more readable for if the former aches my brain

currently I'm reading:
Moby Dick by Herman Melville and Thinner by Stephen King
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 26 Oct 2010, 18:09
After several discussions with my literature teacher I decided to take a stab at James Joyce's Ulysses. I know the premise and I know this is going to be one of the most difficult books to pick up. Has anyone else finished Ulysses with some idea of what's going on?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Hairy Joe Bob on 29 Oct 2010, 11:22
Currently finishing off On the Road by Jack Kerouac. For some bizarre reason I'd never read any Kerouac, despite reading a huge amount of Burroughs and Ginsberg. Enjoying it so far.

Also, at the charity bookstall at the Co-op I picked up 'Back to the Batcave' which is the crazy memoirs of Adam West. He fucking insane.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 01 Nov 2010, 14:55
After several discussions with my literature teacher I decided to take a stab at James Joyce's Ulysses. I know the premise and I know this is going to be one of the most difficult books to pick up. Has anyone else finished Ulysses with some idea of what's going on?

Yes.

It's difficulty is massively overstated by people who are frightened of novels which veer away from more traditional storytelling practices. Ulysses is filled with beautiful language, ornate structuring, and incredible passages. It's not a book to zip through; take your time with each page, and you'll be able to draw a lot from it. Lots has been written on the book, but it's probably a better idea to take a stab without the aid of a crib or review. Have fun with it.

Then think about attacking Finnegans Wake.

Have you read Joyce at all before? Or any of the other writers of the period (who tend to be called Modernist)? Woolf, Pound, Eliot, Stein, etc?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: negative creep on 06 Nov 2010, 20:18
I'm reading King Lear right now, for our production of that play. Also, a few days ago I started reading The Conspiracy of Catiline by Sallust. Pretty interesting so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Ozymandias on 06 Nov 2010, 22:02
Machine of Death.

It is decent. Not incredible. But decent. Occasionally hilarious and clever.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 06 Nov 2010, 22:10
I'm currently reading the Lost Dog by Michelle de Kretser. It's pretty good, though I do feel there are too many moments of intrusive authorial opinion. I'm writing a story about a stray cat at the moment so I'm kind of immersing myself in the literature of lost pets: next up (and long overdue) is Timoleon Vieta Come Home by Dan Rhodes.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scarychips on 07 Nov 2010, 07:36
I just finshed reading L'Ignorance by Milan Kundera.
It cemented the fact that Kundera's my favourite author.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: terrence66 on 01 Dec 2010, 03:03
I am just finishing up The Story of Edgar Sawtelle and I am also reading The Reader. After Edgar Sawtelle I am going to start Knit Two, or Breaking Dawn, I have not decided yet.....
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: laizeohbeets on 01 Dec 2010, 16:57
Re-reading Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman. It's been 5 years since I read it last, so it's sort of new to me in a way. Even though I cannot read that book without picturing Paterson Joseph as Marquis de Carabas now.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 01 Dec 2010, 17:12
finishing up A Train To Potevka by...uh....Mike Ramsdell, I think is his name. It's pretty sweet, it's about an American spy in Russia during the fall of the soviet union. As far as I know, it's true story too, so that's pretty cool. He hammers on the religion angle a bit much for my liking, but he is a devout mormon so I can't really blame him. It's just not my thing.

Next I'm gonna re-read Chuck Palahniuk's Rant because it's completely fucking awesome and I haven't read it since it came out, so I've forgotten most of it already. Looking forward to that one.

I'm also planning on getting Ender's Game as soon as I'm not broke, since I've somehow managed to never read it and everyone says it's awesome.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Katherine on 01 Dec 2010, 18:52
I just finished Skinny Legs and All by Tom Robbins and dove right into my next book: Demons by Dostoevsky.  I am hoping that it will take me a little while to finish it so that some people can give me funds for Christmas so that I can purchase more books.  I haven't been able to read recreationally in forever, I've missed it so!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 01 Dec 2010, 21:13
The Skies Of Pern

 By Anne McCaffrey
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ginandphonics on 01 Dec 2010, 23:58
Childhood's End by Arthur C. Clarke. Going to start on the third Hunger Games book tomorrow.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: nekowafer on 02 Dec 2010, 04:21
The Skies Of Pern

 By Anne McCaffrey

This makes me happy :D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 02 Dec 2010, 10:54
The Skies Of Pern

 By Anne McCaffrey

This makes me happy :D

Reading the Pern series backwards as a fun way to enjoy the series, so started with that, the last book.

Got the urge to read it again after I found my copies of the Atlas and The People of Pern and perused them again.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Caleb on 02 Dec 2010, 14:35
As usual I am reading random stuff.

Blew through Steven King's latest when I was bored.  Some it it was a bit more dreary then his normal work.

I was skimming through the "Machine of Death" when I was at the Laundromat.

I was also skimming through "squirrel seeks chipmunk" which was a huge disappointment and not nearly as funny as his previous books.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 02 Dec 2010, 14:41
what King was it?

Something about a Dome? I'm not sure if that's his newest one or not, I just saw it the bookstore the other day and I don't really follow King's exploits that closely anymore. I've heard decent things about that Dome one though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: nekowafer on 02 Dec 2010, 16:37
Reading the Pern series backwards as a fun way to enjoy the series, so started with that, the last book.

Got the urge to read it again after I found my copies of the Atlas and The People of Pern and perused them again.

That sounds fun. I have maybe half the series in paperback. I might buy the rest as e-books, as I've run out of space, between Pern novels, Xanth novels, and various old sci-fi and fantasy paperbacks.

There's something called The Book Thing in Baltimore where you can go get free books, and they always have an awesome selection in those genres.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 02 Dec 2010, 16:39
I started rereading Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury on the plane to/from Chicago, I forgot how good it is.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 02 Dec 2010, 17:53
Continuing with a theme of dogs I'm just about done reading Started Early, Took My Dog by Kate Atkinson. It's absolutely fantastic, a real exemplar of the "Crime fiction as a means to examine society in general" style of literature (and infinitely better in that regard than, say, anything with the name Stieg Larsson on it), and beautifully written with characters so strongly and clearly defined that even when they exhibit extreme behaviour it's absolutely believable.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 02 Dec 2010, 20:51
Reading the Pern series backwards as a fun way to enjoy the series, so started with that, the last book.

Got the urge to read it again after I found my copies of the Atlas and The People of Pern and perused them again.

That sounds fun. I have maybe half the series in paperback. I might buy the rest as e-books, as I've run out of space, between Pern novels, Xanth novels, and various old sci-fi and fantasy paperbacks.

There's something called The Book Thing in Baltimore where you can go get free books, and they always have an awesome selection in those genres.


BTW nekowafer, you know about this place?    http://www.annemccaffreyfans.org/forum/index.php
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: nekowafer on 03 Dec 2010, 05:08
No! That is awesome, thanks for showing me :D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: cyro on 03 Dec 2010, 07:14
Fiction - Dune: Messiah. It's been 4 years since I read Dune, I really should have reread it before this. It's good, but damn it's hard to remember crap.

Non-Fiction - Plato's Republic. I always try to have a nonfiction on the go at the same time, it's usually philosophy or something. I've been "reading" Republic for nearly a month now but damn.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 03 Dec 2010, 12:09
No! That is awesome, thanks for showing me :D

You're welcome  :)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The Seldom Killer on 06 Dec 2010, 14:48
Just finished Tears of the Giraffe by McCall Smith and Blood Hunt by Ian Rankin. Reckon I'll follow that up with Her Fearful Symmetry by Niffeneger. I really enjoyed The Time Traveller's Wife and I reckon this should stack up. Nothing too taxing my reading recently, although I'm quite close to splugging on the new William Gibson.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 06 Dec 2010, 15:21
I'm refreshing my brain a little now by reading the new Iain M. Banks, then it's going to be into my Christmas read -  the Iliad. I always have trouble deciding which translation of classic literature to read, but I picked up the Robert Fagles translation published by Penguin because it's just such a beautiful object.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 06 Dec 2010, 16:47
If you get a chance, find the Robert Fitzgerald translation and read through that a little. It's the one I read in the fall, when I wanted to go over The Iliad again, and it was wonderful. Easily the most lucid and compelling Homer I've looked through, and the one favoured by such discerning critics as Guy Davenport and James Laughlin. The edition which is in print now isn't so very pretty, but I found a first edition of his Odyssey in a used bookstore, and it's stunning. Going to be reading that once I'm through with exams.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: smack that isaiah on 06 Dec 2010, 18:43
I gotta say though, the Fagles translation is amazing.  I have a set of both of his translations for The Iliad and the Odyssey, bound in a fake leather.  They are wonderful, and the margins are full of my little notes from the very many times I've read them.

I've also read a translation that was something like from Greek to Chinese, then to English (the book had the Chinese on the left and English on the right), and all the flavor and elegance was lost in the double translation.  (on the order of "Antilochus, Nestor's son, threw his spear and killed the first Trojan captain."  very bland)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 06 Dec 2010, 19:06
It's worth noting that there are very many translations which manage to mangle the verse without needing to go through the steps twice.
It's also worth noting that the first of Ezra Pound's Cantos is, primarily, a double translation of the Odyssey, being a translation into English of a Renaissance Latin translation by Andreas Divus. And it is incredibly striking in its language:

Quote from: Ezra Pound
And then went down to the ship,
Set keel to breakers, forth on the godly sea, and
We set up mast and sail on that swart ship,
Bore sheep aboard her, and our bodies also
Heavy with weeping, and winds from sternward
Bore us onward with bellying canvas,
Crice's this craft, the trim-coifed goddess.
Then sat we amidships, wind jamming the tiller,
Thus with stretched sail, we went over sea till day's end.
Sun to his slumber, shadows o'er all the ocean,
Came we then to the bounds of deepest water,
To the Kimmerian lands, and peopled cities
Covered with close-webbed mist, unpierced ever
With glitter of sun-rays
Nor with stars stretched, nor looking back from heaven
Swartest night stretched over wreteched men there.
The ocean flowing backward, came we then to the place
Aforesaid by Circe.

Guy Davenport - the remarkable poet, story-writer, critic (of culture and literature), translator, and an all around astute man - has a very good essay (which predates Fagles translation, to be fair) on the merits of various tranlations of Homer. It's called "Another Odyssey", and is in his large book of essays The Geography of Criticism, alongside pieces on the work of Ezra Pound, Marianne Moore, Louis Zukofsky, Charles Olson, Jonathan Williams, and many other remarkable things. You can read most of the essay here (http://books.google.ca/books?id=3NlHEbnP_AYC&pg=PA29&dq=Davenport+odyssey&hl=en&ei=UKP9TLmfK8qs8Aa_5PCQBw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=2&ved=0CCkQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=Davenport%20odyssey&f=false). The Davenport book really is worth tracking down though, as is pretty well everything else he wrote or translated; over the past year, he has perhaps been the writer I've been returning to the most often.

Honourable mentions to Vladimir Nabokov, Robert Bringhurt, Jan Zwicky, Hilary Mantel, Dennis Lee, Jane Austen and Marilynne Robinson though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 06 Dec 2010, 21:43
I've got Nabokov's translation into English of Pushkin's Eugene Onegin somewhere and I really ought to get around to reading it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 06 Dec 2010, 21:59
To be honest, it's one of the only things of his which I haven't read (along with a couple of the early Russian novels and the recently released fragments of The Original of Laura. Oh, and Look at the Harlequins!). Well, I gave it a bit of a try a couple of years ago, but it was right during exams, and my time fell pray to other things (as I'm now only rereading The Trial in stops and starts, and the Heidegger and Wittgenstein I was reading is half finished by my bed). Keep in mind, if you read it, that it's quite deliberately literal, with that whole other giant volume of notes to try and make a non-Russian reader grasp the depths of its cultural references. Reading the long, long debates about it, and the meaning of translation, can be quite enlightening. Nabokov vs Wilson and all that. But I'm sure you already know all that, Harry. You're pretty remarkably well read, after all.

Man, I kind of do want to give Eugene Onegin another go now; I can see it from where I sit. But better that I wait a month.

Oh, hey, Harry. I ended up picking up a few Elizabeth Taylor books out a dollar bin a while back, but haven't read any of them yet. I remember you saying wonderful things about her. Which one should I be reading first?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 06 Dec 2010, 22:13
A View of the Harbour is my favourite, but that's partly because it was my first. In a Summer Season and the Soul of Kindness in particular are also terrific. And her short stories are pretty much universally regarded as her best work.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 07 Dec 2010, 14:18
Recently finished House of Leaves for the third time. Still think it's a bit overrated, but I found things I hadn't noticed before, so I was pleased.

Picked up Michael Crichton's post-mortem release Pirate Latitudes and wasn't very impressed. Also for some strange reason I hadn't even heard that he died, and didn't realize it until about halfway through the book when I happened to look at the inside back cover, so after that it was a little creepy.

Currently rereading Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon. I like his humor, and this one's less corny than, say, Snow Crash. It's an 1100-page book but going pretty quickly.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 07 Dec 2010, 17:14
About half way through Johannes Cabal the Detective
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 08 Dec 2010, 17:36
I have basically only read literary fiction all year (except for Cat's Cradle and Fahrenheit 451 again - fuck you I can like both (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e1IxOS4VzKM&has_verified=1)) and I'm sick of it. It's taking me forever to get through Keep the Aspidistra Flying of all books. Subsequently I've ordered the first Johannes Cabal and Song of Ice and Fire books as well as San Perdido Station by China Mieville. I usually don't order from Dymocks because they charge shipping (really?,your brick and mortar stores have a selection limited to best sellers and young adult vampire love romances and are almost non-existant anywhere) but I had a gift voucher.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 08 Dec 2010, 17:57
I read at a ratio of about 3-4 "literary" books to 1 "genre" book (usually sci-fi, very occasionally crime). I find I need a bit of page-turning hard-plotted action to refresh my mind every now and then.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 08 Dec 2010, 21:39
Now moved on to All The Weyrs Of Pern
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Caleb on 09 Dec 2010, 11:40
Reading The Bloody Crown of Conan one of the books that I got for the library with the surplus I had for 2010.

Oh man.  So fun to read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 09 Dec 2010, 19:11
Robert E. Howard Conan is so damn good.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Caleb on 10 Dec 2010, 13:43
Thanks for suggesting that again.  These are some really good quality paperbacks.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: snalin on 10 Dec 2010, 13:47
Niels Klim (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niels_Klim's_Underground_Travels) is surprisingly funny at times for a book written during the 1700s. Although I suspect that I'm laughing in the wrong places as well as in the right ones. It's also pretty awesome to think of how a guy that early used a fictional world to write about contemporary issues. It's much more blunt than modern works doing the same, with the main character pretty much jumping up and down on the points the novel is trying to make at times ("I thought at the time that this gender equality/fair trial/whatever business was quite silly, but as I learned, it's much better than our society, really!"), but that's not really a bad thing - it's quite refreshing, really.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 10 Dec 2010, 14:15
That bluntness is entirely apparent in Moore's Utopia; Swift also did it before Kilm. It was one of the reasons why my class-mates despised it in high school.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 10 Dec 2010, 15:41
god i love Rant so much. particularly the second time around cause you actually sort of know what it's about


i think it's pretty safe to say that it's Palahniuk's best
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 12 Dec 2010, 13:06
Currently in the middle of Edwin Muir's translation of Kafka's The Trial. Hoping to finish it off over the next day or two in the middle of studying for my cognitive science exam (reading a bunch of really not that interesting stuff for that as well). Also reading Slavoj Zizek's The Sublime Object of Ideology, which is pretty enjoyable, and definitely compelling in a lot of ways. It's finally providing me with an into to Lacan which overrides the aversion built by years of neuroscience classes, but, as is normal when I read Zizek, I don't find myself agreeing with much of what he says. But he's great at making one think.

And then lots of poetry. Went through all of Dennis Lee's Riffs yesterday, and am probably going to go through them at a more measured pace. Plus Lisa Robertson, Christopher Patton, Robert Bringhurst, Jan Zwicky, Robert Creeley, Charles Olson, and Denise Levertov.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JD on 14 Dec 2010, 00:08
Dante's Inferno
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SonofZ3 on 14 Dec 2010, 07:34
Picked up a book called Antarctic Fishes by Boshu Nagase at the half price book store the other day. Its a collection of beautiful Gyotaku prints of all these deep sea antarctic fish. The descriptions of the individual fishes is a little boring since the life cycle of deep sea dragonfish is not that intersting. What is interesting is the way an ancient artform has been combined with what is more or less a field guide, to make a unique book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: neomang5 on 17 Dec 2010, 12:15
I'm most of the way through Kevin J. Anderson's Jedi Search and after that, it's the next in the trilogy, Dark Apprentice.

SHUT UP I KNOW I'M A NERD
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 03 Jan 2011, 15:09
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v619/ackblom12/IMG_1106-1.jpg)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Caleb on 03 Jan 2011, 17:47
That is an awesome hardcover.

I just finished reading Metro 2033 and The Strain.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The Seldom Killer on 04 Jan 2011, 08:30
Still kicking along with Her Fearful Symmetry, which is pretty good so far.

I left it at home while I was away for Christmas so snuck in The Bicycle Diaries by David Byrne (Talking Heads) and Solar by Ian McEwan.

The Bicycle Diaries is an excellent look at contemporary history, car culture and cycling around the world and strongly recommended. Solar was good although I'm not sure why.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Katherine on 04 Jan 2011, 10:47
I'm a little over halfway through with Anna Karenina and have been enjoying it immensely.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 04 Jan 2011, 14:23
Having read in the past two of his essay collections, I'm finally reading some of David Foster Wallace's fiction. Most of the way through The Broom of the System, and while I'm enjoying it, I have to say I'm not as pleased as I'd hoped to be. It can be a lot of fun, but the heavy reliance on dialogue is a bit grating, as are some of the scenarios. I also can't shake the thought that the characters in the book are often entirely misreading Wittgenstein, but whatever. All in all, I'd rather be reading Donald Barthelme, but there is a lot of good in this book, and I'm hoping by the end my take on it will have improved. Definitely reads like a book written by a young person though, so I'll be interested to read some of his other fiction.

Also halfway through Hilary Mantel's Vacant Possession. It's really rather good, as I'd expect of Mantel, who I think has one of the most consistent bodies of work in contemporary literature. It doesn't hit the highs of Fludd or An Experiment in Love but still, excellent.

Beyond that, mostly reading poetry. Robert Bringhurst, Robert Duncan, Robin Blaser, Karen Solie, H.D., Charles Olson, and Jonathan Williams, mainly. All very, very good.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Johnny C on 04 Jan 2011, 18:23
broom of the system is like probably his weakest fictional work, i'd say; his short fiction was much better and infinite jest is far more readable.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 04 Jan 2011, 21:38
The Renegades of Pern at the moment. 

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: CoyoteKnight on 05 Jan 2011, 08:51
I've been reading the Comic/Graphic Novel "Kick Ass". Far bloodier and awesomer (yes, I just said that) than the movie.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SonofZ3 on 05 Jan 2011, 10:46
Picked up World War Robot with a B&N gift card I got for x-mas. Pretty neat book, something to grab if you're an Ashley Wood fan. The captions for the paintings are letters written by soldiers, generals, and even the lunar based robot creator/catalyst for WWR/mad scientist named Rothchild. The art is great, but the letters feel uninspired and fail to flesh out the world of the paintings.

WWR link-http://www.worldwarrobot.com/
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 05 Jan 2011, 18:33
broom of the system is like probably his weakest fictional work, i'd say; his short fiction was much better and infinite jest is far more readable.

I was kind of hoping you'd defend it a little, actually, but I suppose this means I can sit fairly comfortably in my own judgement. I had been planning on sending you a message or something to get your take on it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SonofZ3 on 05 Jan 2011, 19:02
I'm a little over halfway through with Anna Karenina and have been enjoying it immensely.

The Pevear and Volkhonsky translation? I loved it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 15 Jan 2011, 14:06
Here is a poem by Lorine Niedecker from the selected poems Cid Corman edited, The Granite Pail:

Quote from: Lorine Niedecker
There's a better shine
on the pendulum
than is on my hair
and many times
  .  .  . 
I've seen it there.

Maybe this won't do much for any of you, but I find this a remarkably crystalline, condensed and subtle poem, of the sort Emily Dickinson excelled in. The entire book is absolutely remarkable, and I want to get the collected poems that the University of California put out very very very much. Gilbert Sorrentino, Guy Davenport, and Jonathan Williams have some pretty nice essays about Niedecker that I've been rereading alongside the book.

I've also been reading Jan Zwicky's first book of poems, Where Have We Been. It's nice, and there are some pretty things, but ultimately nothing as shocking or as fully voiced as in her more recent collections Songs for Relinquishing the Earth and Thirty-seven Small Songs & Thirteen Silences.

And then I've been getting into this Evan S. Connell books, Mrs. Bridge it's excellent so far, but my thoughts on it aren't fully together. As I progress I'll try and write out a decent assessment.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JD on 15 Jan 2011, 22:09
Black Hole. It's one of the prettiest and most detailed comix I've ever read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 15 Jan 2011, 23:30
Burns' is a treat. Too bad he takes forever to finish his comics. I don't expect to see the end of X'ed out til 2016.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 16 Jan 2011, 12:52
Heart of Darkness for school, Critique of Pure Reason for myself.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 16 Jan 2011, 13:08
I'm rereading I Capture the Castle which is one of my favourite books ever, and Woolf's Orlando which I just started. I love Virginia Woolf and I'm fascinated by her life and the people she associated with (The Bloomsbury Group would be my Mastermind topic) but her books are probably the most intellectually challenging that I read at the moment, so I have to be in the right mood.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Liz on 16 Jan 2011, 20:17
I am reading three books right now, since I like to switch back and forth depending on my mood.

Machine of Death (http://www.amazon.com/Machine-Death-Collection-Stories-People/dp/0982167121/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1295237713&sr=8-1)
The Remedy (http://www.amazon.com/Remedy-Novel-Michelle-Lovric/dp/0060859865/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1295237727&sr=1-3)
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (http://www.amazon.com/Midnight-Garden-Good-Evil-Berendt/dp/0679751521/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1295237746&sr=1-1)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thomas Edison on 17 Jan 2011, 02:43
Fear and Loathing (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Fear-Loathing-Las-Vegas-Perennial/dp/0007204493/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1295260897&sr=1-1) is my current "might as well read between lectures" book.

Story (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Story-Substance-Structure-Principles-Screenwriting/dp/0413715604/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1295260829&sr=8-1) by Robert McKee is my current "might as well read until I fall asleep" book.

Nerd Do Well (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Nerd-Do-Well-Simon-Pegg/dp/1846058112/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1295260957&sr=1-1) by Simon Pegg is my current "might as well read whilst I poop" book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: CoyoteKnight on 17 Jan 2011, 20:01
I am reading three books right now, since I like to switch back and forth depending on my mood.

Machine of Death (http://www.amazon.com/Machine-Death-Collection-Stories-People/dp/0982167121/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1295237713&sr=8-1)
The Remedy (http://www.amazon.com/Remedy-Novel-Michelle-Lovric/dp/0060859865/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1295237727&sr=1-3)
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (http://www.amazon.com/Midnight-Garden-Good-Evil-Berendt/dp/0679751521/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1295237746&sr=1-1)

I desperately want to get my hands on Machine of Death.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Forgotmytea on 17 Jan 2011, 23:59
I've just started Frank Herbert's 'Dune'. Enjoying it so far :-)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dollface on 18 Jan 2011, 05:58
Fear and Loathing (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Fear-Loathing-Las-Vegas-Perennial/dp/0007204493/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1295260897&sr=1-1) is my current "might as well read between lectures" book.

You just earned some points there.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 19 Jan 2011, 09:33
 I just got three books for free. One is Simone de Beauvoir's The Second Sex. The other two are Rush Limbaugh. Know yr enemy, all that.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Liz on 20 Jan 2011, 10:01
I desperately want to get my hands on Machine of Death.

It's not expensive, buy it and enjoy the thing. I've read about two thirds of the stories so far and most of them are pretty dang good.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JD on 20 Jan 2011, 11:56
It's worth buying to spite Glenn Beck alone.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 20 Jan 2011, 22:42
I once read one of Glenn Beck's picture books. I may dig it up and scan out the most absurd pages for shits and giggles.

I'm really enjoying the Cryptonomicon but Yours Truly's stupid retelling of his "mission" with DSM is one of the most tedious things that I have ever had the displeasure of reading.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The Seldom Killer on 21 Jan 2011, 22:25
Just finished William Gibson's Zero History. Once again another cracking read and this time set in a city I know well, which makes it even better. Nicely developed storyline and unpredictable. The previous two books of his, whilst very good, haven't ended in a way that sat well with me as a reader but this time he did a really good job of balancing tying off and leaving open.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: StaedlerMars on 22 Jan 2011, 07:04
Alright, I am slowly chugging my way through A Feast For Crows, but just got the first volume of The Sandman and Chronicles by Bob Dylan in the mail. Exciting reading lies ahead of me!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 22 Jan 2011, 08:00
I'm really enjoying the Cryptonomicon but Yours Truly's stupid retelling of his "mission" with DSM is one of the most tedious things that I have ever had the displeasure of reading.
I'm still trying to figure this one out and I really hope this isn't a dumb question... Who's Yours Truly and who's DSM?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: horsefish on 22 Jan 2011, 08:16
I'm in the middle of

Under the Dome - Stephen King
The Dead Zone - Stephen King

Star Wars: Heir to the Empire by Timothy Zahn (never read a Star Wars EU novel before - someone told me to start with this one... I don't like it much so far. )

Introduction to Indexing and Abstracting - Donald & Ana Cleveland

I'm currently on a genre binge - sometimes i have literary or non-fiction binges.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 22 Jan 2011, 11:03
I'm really enjoying the Cryptonomicon but Yours Truly's stupid retelling of his "mission" with DSM is one of the most tedious things that I have ever had the displeasure of reading.
I'm still trying to figure this one out and I really hope this isn't a dumb question... Who's Yours Truly and who's DSM?

Randy Waterhouse spends the whole chapter referring to himself as Yours Truly and to Douglas MacArthur Shaftoe as DSM. He thinks he's being witty.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 22 Jan 2011, 12:49
I must have really zoned out at that part. Also, I'm assuming it's DMS... that's kind of why I'm confused. I'm too lazy to go get my copy right now though lol.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 22 Jan 2011, 13:33
Arrgh, my bad. I have dyslexic dysgraphia or something.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 24 Jan 2011, 19:03
Now reading a giant history of Black Mountain College (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_Mountain_College), mostly out of interest in the poets associated with the place, like Charles Olson, Jonathan Williams, Robert Creeley, Denise Levertov, Ed Dorn, and Robert Duncan (not to mention the involvement of Buckminster Fuller, John Cage, Willem De Kooning, Josef Albers, and Cy Twombly), but in general the book is a fantastic look at what was a really awesome attempt at making a workable, artistically driver place for alternative education. Fascinating reading, and I haven't even gotten to any sections dealing with the figures I was originally interested in.

Also reading some Spinoza, some Gertrude Stein, some Zizek, some Ed Dorn, and going to start a Samuel R. Delany novel soon. Plus this really great book of interviews with American independent publishers (http://www.amazon.com/Against-Grain-Interviews-Maverick-Publishers/dp/1587298279/ref=tmm_pap_title_0).

Woo! Literature!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 26 Jan 2011, 05:06
I finished reading the Iliad last week and it was just as incredible as I'd hoped it would be. I'm going to move on to the Odyssey soon but in the meantime I decided there wouldn't be a better time to read the recently pulished Ransom, David Malouf's short, beautiful retelling of the meeting between Priam and Achilles at the end of the Iliad. I only started it yesterday and I could have finished it tonight if I didn't want to savour it so much.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: smack that isaiah on 26 Jan 2011, 06:51
After I read both the Iliad and The Odyssey for the third time I found Dan Simmons' Ilium and Olympos books, and they are as amazing as anything else Dan Simmons has ever written. 
If you've liked anything by Dan Simmons before, and you've read a fair amount of classic literature (Shakespeare, Proust), and classic sci-fi, I'd recommend Ilium and Olympos once you finish The Odyssey
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 27 Jan 2011, 18:25
I'm reading Ulysses while reading the Odyssey. Pretty solid plan, actually.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 27 Jan 2011, 18:59
The Odyssey definitely provides some good background on Ulysses, but it's pretty important not to get too hung up on that sort of intertextuality; the real power of Ulysses lies in the use of language, innovation, and attention to detail, with the various guiding principles Joyce employed certainly being interesting and serving to lend a certain structure to the narrative, but not ultimately being of central importance. Nabokov's lectures on Ulysses can be a pretty good thing to look in to, to show the novel's other powers, beyond what could be called the more "superficial" structural choices. There are other good essays out there, of course (predictably, I'll recommend the Guy Davenport and Hugh Kenner ones especially).

Either way, two incredible books. What translation of The Odyssey did you end up turning to?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KharBevNor on 28 Jan 2011, 08:49
Can we please, please, please stop describing literature and sci-fi as entirely separate things? thanks!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 28 Jan 2011, 10:07
Agreed (hopefully that wasn't directed at me at all? I don't think I've said anything that could be construed like that, and I certainly don't think along those lines, but for whatever reason I feel guilty anyhow).

I'll admit that since I was in high school my reading of sci-fi and fantasy has really fallen off, mostly because my reading tends to follow certain progressive lines: I'll read a book, and then read a variety of reviews of the book, and if they are available, interviews with the author and and of his/her/etc. own essays that I can find. I'll then take the names and titles I gather from that, and try and follow through on at least a few of them, or at least add them to my ever growing list for future reading. Unfortunately, it's pretty uncommon for "genre" writers to end up being discussed, as the literary community tends to shun them for whatever reasons. There are exceptions though: Nabokov was pretty outspoken about such genre divides being meaningless, and on his recommendations I've read some Russian sci-fi (like Aleksey Tolstoy). Guy Davenport and Jonathan Williams are also pretty comfortable approaching and recommending books from across the literary spectrum.

So, Khar, is there any sci-fi you'd especially recommend? Lately I've read and enjoyed Samuel R. Delany and Avram Davidson, and I've always had a lot of love for Ray Bradbury and Philip K. Dick.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 28 Jan 2011, 10:36
I just bought Dan Simmons' Hyperion for about the fifth time in my life, this time digitally on my new Kindle.

I am super psyched to reread it and it's sequels. Last time I read them was 2006.


I'm about 30% of the way through Hyperion and it is extremely awesome but the Kindle version has a lot of really stupid typos, which leads me to believe maybe it was transcribed by a computer or something because of stuff like turning "of" into "qf" or "dl" or any other combination of letters that might sort of accidentally look similar to "of."

Also, they apparently decided to "correct" Simmons' grammar from time to time by inserting commas, except they did so without reading the entire sentence first so there are all these incorrect commas fucking up the flow, confusing the message and shit.

Wish they would have tried a little harder with it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 28 Jan 2011, 10:38
Sounds like they probably just scanned the book and converted it to text. The inserted commas are maybe flecks of dust or markings on the original page that the text converter interpreted as punctuation?

I have to say, eReaders don't have much attraction to me.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 28 Jan 2011, 16:42
Can we please, please, please stop describing literature and sci-fi as entirely separate things? thanks!

Only as long as we continue to recognise that while literature can encompass any genre, there is a clear difference between "literary" and "non-literary" writing.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KharBevNor on 29 Jan 2011, 08:29
Please describe that difference? I wasn't aware that there were standards. Is this like how an academic journal requires a certain system of referencing? Who are we excluding from the realm of the literary exactly? I am interested to see how you can formulate a set of rules for dividing the 'literary' and 'non-literary' (unless you are simply talking about fiction and non-fiction) which does not end up excluding important parts of even the accepted canon, let alone all the other things thought to be worthy of consideration but not generally included in that illustrious company.

As for sci-fi recommendations, I've been doing a lot of bus-riding the last few months, so I've been returning a bit (when I don't have academic reading to do, which is admittedly rarely) to short story collections. Some of the best sci-fi writing is in short story or novella form. We had a sort of thread about the subject last year (http://forums.questionablecontent.net/index.php/topic,24859.0.html). I posted a list of great sci-fi shorts in there, which I could expand upon endlessly, with particular ommissions I note at this juncture being:

Ray Bradbury - Dark They Were, and Golden Eyed
David Brin - Piecework
Octavia Butler - Speech Sounds
C.J. Cherryh - Pots
Harlan Ellison - Repent Harlequin, Said the Ticktockman and I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream
William Gibson & Michael Swanwick - Dogfight
Robert Heinlein - "All You Zombies-"
Ursula K. LeGuin - The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas
George R.R. Martin - Sandkings
Robert Silverberg - Passengers

All in anthologies I read recently.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 29 Jan 2011, 14:05
Please describe that difference? I wasn't aware that there were standards.

It's got nothing to do with standards and everything to do with what the writer is trying to achieve. I define a "non-literary" piece of writing as something that has no more aspirations than simply entertaining the reader. There's nothing wrong with that and I read my share of such books, but they don't linger long in the mind. As far as I'm concerned "literary" writing aspires to actually tell us something about the world in which we live, to make some incisive comment or to drive the reader to ask questions about their surroundings or see those surroundings anew.

For an example I'll offer Matter, the most recent Culture novel by Iain M. Banks. I've read all the Culture novels and enjoyed them a good deal (otherwise I wouldn't keep reading them!) but ultimately in the majority of cases they don't say anything to me of greater significance than "Here, read this, it'll be fun". By contrast the Iliad, while just as action-packed and gruesome as any of Banks's novels, offered me all sorts of insights into war and humanity.

This is not a comment on quality. It's got nothing to do with style. There are plenty of books which aspire to be purely literary and are boring or badly written. There are plenty of genre books which use crime, or science fiction, or what have you, to make genuinely incisive observations about the world. And there are plenty of genre books which try to do so and fail miseraly, such as Stieg Larsson's "Millennium" trilogy. But to say that there's no difference between "literary" and "non-literary" books is some postmodern relativist nonsense that I can't support.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 29 Jan 2011, 14:56
I'm about 200 pages into A Game of Thrones and I must say, I've gotten pretty sucked in.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 29 Jan 2011, 17:06
I'm probably going down a rabbit-hole here but I don't for a minute want to suggest that all "literary" writing is better than all "non-literary" writing. There's long been a trend in crime fiction in particular for what we might call "literary crime writing" - George Pelecanos is an obvious example. I would place Stieg Larsson in that particular sub-genre - but at the lowest, least impressive end of it. However ham-fistedly, he was clearly trying to say something meaningful about identity politics, and about the role of the outsider in society, and about control of society by the authorities, etc.

So really I suppose I'm suggesting two levels of classification: "literary" and "non-literary", and "good" and "bad". They're both pretty subjective I guess but neither should be confused with the other and each is almost entirely independent of the other. There are good and bad "literary" books and good and bad "non-literary" books, and the best of the "non-literary" books are better than the worst of the "literary" books. As I've maintained since the start:

literature can encompass any genre

And by extension, works in any genre can be "literary".

Also you're right, Surface Detail is the book I was thinking of but Matter was the title that came to mind.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KharBevNor on 29 Jan 2011, 21:04
It's got nothing to do with standards and everything to do with what the writer is trying to achieve.

Hey now now. Ever read any Roland Barthes...death of the author, etc.? The intent of the author is seperate from the content of the text which is seperate from the reading reached by the reader. This is like, post-modern literary criticism 101, and it makes eminent sense. We can only really claim to have an idea of what the author intends the messave of their work to be through cultural, linguistic and metatextual clues outside of the text itself; where these clues do not exist, how are we to evaluate the text? As critics, we are readers. Any text must be considered from the point of view of how it is read; anything else is really insupportable. And it seems plain that any text can communicate the arbitrarily defined 'meaningful' messages you claim seperate the literary from the non-literary to a specific person. Some people may draw meaningful meditations on the human condition from Iain M. Banks, or from the back of a cereal packet. But of course, the very idea that there are certain aspirations a writer must have is woefully subjective in the first place.

And what about the sections of Shakespeares plays written entirely to amuse the cheap seats. What of the endless words Dickens churned out mostly to meet publishers deadlines.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JD on 29 Jan 2011, 21:21
A History of Western Philosophy

I will be reading that soonish, whenever I finish Russell's Best.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 29 Jan 2011, 23:57
We can only really claim to have an idea of what the author intends the messave of their work to be through cultural, linguistic and metatextual clues outside of the text itself

I'm sorry but as a life-long reader this strikes me as manifestly untrue. Reading is a skill like any other and those who are practiced in it - as everyone participating in this thread surely is - should be able to identify what point (if any) an author is trying to make in his or her writing with relative ease. Of course we're free to add our own intepretations and doing so will even enhance our experience of the text but the idea that the author is simply a vessel through which the words pour is ridiculous. Perhaps I'm occupying an unusual position in that I've written many tens of thousands of words of fiction over the last decade or more and I spend a large amount of time thinking very seriously and in great depth about the craft as well as the art of writing, but if a writer is unable to convey their intentions clearly to the reader then the writer has failed in their chosen field of endeavour.

And what about the sections of Shakespeares plays written entirely to amuse the cheap seats.

What about them? They're sections, as you say, not the whole. Surely you're not suggesting that we start isolating particular excerpts from a piece of writing and start considering them as if they were a whole and complete text?

What of the endless words Dickens churned out mostly to meet publishers deadlines.

Maybe they're not "literary" by my definition. That doesn't mean that Dickens isn't a "literary" writer. Graham Greene famously divided his novels into "novels" and "entertainments".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: StaedlerMars on 30 Jan 2011, 04:53
I've just finished A Feast For Crows and the first volume of Sandman, and have started reading Bob Dylan's Chronicles. The first two were good, and I'm enjoying Chronicles so far, really like the way he's written it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: elizaknowswhatshesfor on 30 Jan 2011, 05:33
I have just read the books that Homicide Life on The Streets, The Corner & of course The Wire were based on. They were tirelessly brilliant in tone style & honesty.

I'm finding choosing other books quite hard work since reading them as everything falls flat.

I followed it up with Iain Banks' Canal Dreams. Which I found quite weak & nowhere near his best work.

 I have also read the Adventures of Huck Finn & Sense & Sensibility (I have decided I do not like Austin, not one bit)

Funnily enough, baring in mind some the discussion in the thread. I am trying not to read any Sci Fi or Horror based books until after my birthday in April. Not for any reason except I like to push myself to read as many different types of book as possible.

I would like some suggestions for good Non Fiction or Fiction books. Of any kind (Although having read through most of the thread I may have to get on Amazon....)


EDIT: Ignore me I have just found the recommendations thread. I will go in there....
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KharBevNor on 30 Jan 2011, 08:12
if a writer is unable to convey their intentions clearly to the reader then the writer has failed in their chosen field of endeavour.

I think this is a very narrow idea indeed. Surely this is a difference between fiction and non-fiction. Much art arises out of a failure to be able to clearly communicate. Furthermore, I think you're fundamentally wrong; the text itself cannot reliably communicate the authors intentions. Even the most straightforward text can be interpreted in a huge number of ways: as a code, as an allegory, using a marxist reading or a feminist reading. Winnie the Pooh can be about the class system or spiritual enlightenment or whatever, depending on how the reader chooses to see it. The intention of the author is a fact that is extrinsic to the text itself; even if it is stated in the text we do not actually know the authors intention, we only know the authors stated intention. It becomes clear, in fact, that the stated or presented intention is all the intention we can ever know, if we know the intention at all. Thus, plainly the idea of intention is meaningless; it is the relationship between the reader and the text that is important, as it is the only one that we, as the critic/reader, actually understand, at least in the single special case of our own relationship with a text. An author can call his works whatever the hell he wants, but if a reader can read a book that has been called mere 'entertainment' and comes away enlightened, and if a reader can read a book that is supposed to be full of some deep, considered meaning and is merely entertained, or bored shitless, then we can see the idea is completely false. It relies on an insupportable intellectual premise.

EDIT:

What about them? They're sections, as you say, not the whole. Surely you're not suggesting that we start isolating particular excerpts from a piece of writing and start considering them as if they were a whole and complete text?

Not exactly. It raises another enormous flaw in your argument though. How do you judge the overall quality of a work which contains supposedly 'literary' and 'non-literary' segments? If a novel contains 10 chapters of 'non-literature' and one chapter of 'literature' is the overall result 'literature' or does the 'literature' content have to be over a certain level. Bringing up things like this exposes the terrible weakness of the definition you're trying to make.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 30 Jan 2011, 08:39
we only know the authors stated intention. It becomes clear, in fact, that the stated or presented intention is all the intention we can ever know, if we know the intention at all. Thus, plainly the idea of intention is meaningless

Although I am happy with the idea that we can choose to place our own interpretation on the text (and in many cases may have to), I really do not see any justification for the jump at the end of your statement in my quote.  If the author tells you something, why is it then "plain" that what they tell you is meaningless?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KharBevNor on 30 Jan 2011, 08:59
Because we cannot assume the author is reliably stating his intention. I should probably have been a little clearer; it's not meaningless in terms of being without content, it's meaningless in terms of being an objective or reasonable standard by which to categorise work.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 31 Jan 2011, 07:02
I'm about 3/4 of the way through A Short History of Nearly Everything (http://www.amazon.com/Short-History-Nearly-Everything/dp/0767908171) by Bill Bryson. Not quite as fun as, say, A Walk in the Woods, but it's kind of neat to brush up on my natural history and science a bit, even if it is just bits and pieces.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The Seldom Killer on 31 Jan 2011, 07:15
Just read The Pursuit of Glory - Bradley Wiggins

Not the best written biography but very clear and very honest, offering a keen insight into the competitive mind.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: valley_parade on 31 Jan 2011, 13:27
The Game, by Ken Dryden.

It's aboat hockey, eh.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 31 Jan 2011, 13:29
pretty much every Siege Tie in from Marvel. I find the tie in books are a lot better than the actual event.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 31 Jan 2011, 14:28
Gillen's Thor is probably my favourite thing about that event. I'm glad they're giving him Journey into Mystery as well as Uncanny and Generation Hope.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 31 Jan 2011, 17:13
Wait, there are people who haven't read Phonogram?

Imo, The Singles Club is superior to Rue Britannia in every way.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: cyro on 01 Feb 2011, 02:30
Wait, there are people who haven't read Phonogram?

I haven't, I never really got around to it.

I actually remember Kieron's work back when he was a reviewer with PC Gamer UK. It never really jumped out at me (Though his Deus Ex review kicked ass as I recall - then again it's Deus Ex it would be hard for it not to) so I never really rushed into the transition.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 01 Feb 2011, 06:12
Part of me really wants to continue this whole literature/non literature debate because it's endlessly fascinating but a greater part of me realises that it's got less and less to do with the thread at hand and it really only involves myself and Khar, and neither of us are going to change the other's mind.

Anyway I'm reading the Odyssey now which is a story I'm much more familiar with, as is anyone who was ever a child I think. From a technical perspective it's fascinating to see how how Homer's style evolves and matures between the composition of the Iliad and the composition of the Odyssey, even through the filter of translation and nearly 3000 years of cultural distance.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 01 Feb 2011, 11:32
Wait, there are people who haven't read Phonogram?

I haven't, I never really got around to it.

I was being facetious.

Gillen is credited as having invented New Games Journalism, I find this a little ridiculous but he is/was my favourite game critic.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Ikrik on 01 Feb 2011, 17:43
Started Neuromancer and now have a giant backlog of Gibson books to get through. 

Every time I think of it my mind immediately jumps to Blade Runner and every time I pick it up and read it I wonder why the two are so synonymous in my head. I guess my friend and I have been talking about whether or not Blade Runner is cyberpunk or not and he always brings up Neuromancer and Gibson.  I need to start separating the two.

Also, finished Casino Royale a little while ago and it really wasn't what I expected.  I was expecting it to be old, dated, and quite boring.  It wasn't exactly the most interesting thing I've read and parts of it really confused me, but it was quite a bit better than what I thought it would be like.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: cyro on 02 Feb 2011, 01:46
Yeah that's how I learned of him first as well, the first thing I ever read by him was a review of the PCG UK that had Warcraft 3 in it - it might even have been the Warcraft 3 review, or possibly Neverwinter Nights. I forget! Anyway he was brilliant at reviewing things, I'm kind of sad he left because now I'm not giddy about buying PCG when I go to the UK any more.

NWN and WC3 reviews were the same issue if I recall. I think it was NWN, he was always the go-to guy for RPGs and FPSs.

Anyway Gillen does regular blogs/reviews with Rock, Paper, Shotgun (http://www.rockpapershotgun.com), if you're not already familiar with the site, it's pretty good. The Deus Ex 10 year anniversary article in particular made me chuckle profusely.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: muffy on 05 Feb 2011, 03:53
Have just finished 'To the Wedding' - John Berger.

I hated it. It's about a young woman dying of AIDS and her separated parents trying to make it to her wedding day. It's ostensibly about the ferocity of love and whatnot, but the whole thing was littered with misplaced exclamation marks and abstract bits of poetic prose that didn't sit too well.

Now reading 'Child of God' - Cormac McCarthy. He really doesn't like people, does he?

- And to chip a couple of penneth into the resting discussion between Khar and Inlander: most has already been said, so this is more of an aside: The intention of the author can be strengthened or weakened depending on the delivery (naturally). For example - say that an author uses the symbolism of a beetle to illustrate a point - the beetle will be different to every person who reads it. It could have connotations to the reader which hint at something more profound, it could remind someone of a phobia or it could just mean a shiny bug. The experience, knowledge and the cynicism of the reader will affect their interpretation. If the author wants to direct that interpretation more clearly, they can try, but it ultimately comes down to what the individual words mean to each reader. I don't think I illustrated that very well.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 06 Feb 2011, 01:59
.Now reading 'Child of God' - Cormac McCarthy. He really doesn't like people, does he?


haha no i don't think he does

maybe that's why i like him so much
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jwhouk on 08 Feb 2011, 19:04
That First Season by John Eisenberg.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: cyro on 09 Feb 2011, 01:16
The Girl With The Dragon Tatoo. I'm not really a fan of Thrillers, but I need to be slightly more diverse than my usual Philosophy and Sci-fi/Fantasy norms.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ginandphonics on 10 Feb 2011, 10:17
Rollback by Robert J. Sawyer

This book is such a fast read, I'm really liking it so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 16 Feb 2011, 12:50
I just finished the Nymphos of Rocky Flats. Here's the blurb on the back:

Quote
Felix Gomez went to Iraq a soldier. He came back a vampire.

Now he finds himself pulled into a web of intrigue when an old friend prompts him to investigate an outbreak of nymphomania at the secret government facilities in Rocky Flats. He'll find out the cause of all these horny women or die trying! But first he must contend with shadowy government agents, Eastern European vampire hunters, and women who just want his body . . .

It's pretty good and not as trashy as I was expecting.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 16 Feb 2011, 16:22
Just finished the second book of the Walking Dead.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Stephquiem on 19 Feb 2011, 15:11
Just bought Delirium by Lauren Oliver. Only on chapter 3, so I have no idea if it's any good yet. But it's a dystopian novel, and those usually hold my attention pretty well.

Hopefully I won't lose this book I like I did the last one the author wrote.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 19 Feb 2011, 16:09
Normally waiting 550 pages for the action to get started is unacceptable, but the buildup and character development in A Game of Thrones is so well-structured and engaging that it's impossible not to get completely sucked in. Of course, with 200 pages to go everything could still get terrible, but at this point I'd consider myself invested in the series.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: amok on 20 Feb 2011, 08:49
Don't get too invested, at the rate he's 'writing' the 'new book' you'll never find out what happens.

What's already written is superb though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 23 Feb 2011, 19:44
Virgina Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway, which is typically excellent, and somehow a book I've skipped until now. I adore Woolf's prose and technique, and her interest in relating experimental writing directly to feminism. Barely into this book, but already enjoying it quite a bit. Probably will read The Waves soon after.

Gail Scott takes Woolf's ideas on the intersection of feminism and writing, and builds on them with attention to more contemporary theories of gender. She is also one of the few authors working in English who is in direct contact with current experimental Quebecois writers like Nicole Brossard. I'm reading her book of essays, Spaces Like Stairs right now, and it's really incredible. Already wanting to revisit her early stories which I read a few month ago, looking at them again through the ideas presented here, but as I lent that book to my girlfriend, I'll probably read one of her novels in the near future.

Edward Dorn's Gunslinger is a long modernist poem set in the mythical American West, with a mysterious gunpacking cowboy, his pot smoking talking horse, long asides about philosophy, many puns, and a great sense of music and mirth. Only done the first book so far, but it is absolutely excellent.

Samuel R. Delany's Jewel Hinged Jaw & Empire Star, which are both making me really hungry to read more sci-fi. Going to try and track down a few Theodore Sturgeon, Joanna Russ, Ursula K. Le Guin, and Alfred Bester books soon, and read up.

Slavoj Zizek's The Sublime Object of Ideology, which is a pretty great and entertaining book of critical theory. It's his first book written in Englihs, and I'm enjoying it a lot more than the more recent books of his which I've read. I've been reading it pretty slowly until recently, and now that I'm going through it, from the beginning again, at a decent pace, I'm getting a lot more out of it. Good introduction to Lacan, at the very least, and great stuff on ideology and Hegel as well. Not much to say beyond that until I get more into it though.

And then mostly just various collections of contemporary poetry.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Johnny C on 24 Feb 2011, 21:30
Part of me really wants to continue this whole literature/non literature debate because it's endlessly fascinating but a greater part of me realises that it's got less and less to do with the thread at hand and it really only involves myself and Khar, and neither of us are going to change the other's mind.

actually i hadnt read this but it owns that khar is a strict barthesian re: authorial theory it's too bad he's already been ethered like fifty years previous by sartre who posited that texts are ultimately a negotiation between writer and reader not reader and text and that the work of the two interested human parties in tandem is ultimately what generates the meeting so in fact Writers Do Matter i'm sorry to weigh in on this really glibly i should go home
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KharBevNor on 25 Feb 2011, 03:53
Just because Sartre posits something doesn't mean it's true. I don't do much thinking about literature (such a restricted form of communication is beneath me), but you seem to be suggesting something similiar to the idea in aesthetics whereby a work of art is taken to be like a conversation and people find aesthetic value in the same sort of things they value in a conversation. Value/quality and meaning are not the same thing at all however, although the two things may have already been rather confused in the conversation above, but not in the same way. My argument, which I think is perfectly sound and pretty difficult to assail, is that the intent of the author is ultimately uncertain and thus cannot be used as a qualifier to sort works into two sets ('literature' and 'not literature'), because it makes the two sets meaningless, and thus the terms meaningless.

New thread?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Stephquiem on 25 Feb 2011, 11:35
Desires of the Dead by Kimberly Derting. It's... eh, okay. I remember really liking the book before it, but I re-read it before this one came out and couldn't remember why. It's getting better as I get further along, anyway.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 25 Feb 2011, 12:02
I finally spent my Christmas gift card and picked up:
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (have never read)
Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov (have read before and wanted a copy of it)
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess (have seen the movie but never read the book)

I'm starting with Brave New World and have gotten a few chapters in so far. Not quite sure what I think - normally I love a good dystopian novel, but so far I'm finding this one a little strained and often downright corny. We'll see.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Johnny C on 25 Feb 2011, 13:16
Just because Sartre posits something doesn't mean it's true. I don't do much thinking about literature (such a restricted form of communication is beneath me), but you seem to be suggesting something similiar to the idea in aesthetics whereby a work of art is taken to be like a conversation and people find aesthetic value in the same sort of things they value in a conversation. Value/quality and meaning are not the same thing at all however, although the two things may have already been rather confused in the conversation above, but not in the same way. My argument, which I think is perfectly sound and pretty difficult to assail, is that the intent of the author is ultimately uncertain and thus cannot be used as a qualifier to sort works into two sets ('literature' and 'not literature'), because it makes the two sets meaningless, and thus the terms meaningless.

New thread?

good call
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 27 Feb 2011, 16:28
So, I'm about 100 pages through Perdido Street Station and it more or less feels like a Discworld novel written by Upton Sinclair in his twilight years.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The extra letter on 02 Mar 2011, 22:47
I'm reading "Ender's Game" at the moment. I'm about 1/3 of the way through. So far, I'm really not too sure what to make of it. I'm enjoying it, but the way Card is portraying the kids is just bizarre. I understand that they're supposed to be more intellectually developed than kids these days, but I still think Piaget et. al. would just be scratching their heads and going "what the hell is this?"

Suspension of disbelief? Whassat?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 03 Mar 2011, 14:08
Mostly Yuri Slashfic online at the moment   :-D

But still chewing through Anne McCafftey's Pern Series as well.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Joseph on 03 Mar 2011, 14:28
Lots of Language Poetry, trying to figure out my feelings towards it. Definitely someone like Lyn Hejinian seems far and away better (at least to my sensibilities) than someone like Charles Bernstein, but we'll see where I am in a while with all this. Ron Silliman has a few interesting things, but his blog, though full of lots of interesting things, is a little too shallow. But, I haven't had a chance to immerse myself in Language writing properly yet - perhaps sometime in the next few weeks when my workload falls off a little.

Also a fantastic book by Jacques Roubaud, Poetry Etc.. Investigates the nature of poetry in a series of short essays, and one long long dialogue. Fun and entertaining, and it's all theory on poetics! Roubaud is one of my favourite Oulipo writers, though he doesn't begin to approach Raymond Queneau or George Perec. Miles ahead of Harry Matthews and (especially) Jacques Jouet though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: est on 08 Mar 2011, 00:54
Mostly Yuri Slashfic online at the moment   :-D

That you say this shit to us is one of the reasons why we find you a really creepy dude.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 08 Mar 2011, 01:50
I've been catching up on Breaking Bad. I just finish watching the episode "One Minute" and holy shit was tense.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 08 Mar 2011, 16:15
Mostly Yuri Slashfic online at the moment   :-D

That you say this shit to us is one of the reasons why we find you a really creepy dude.

Probably, but that all depends on the style it's written in.  Some of the stuff out there has me going WTF was the Author thinking??!!  Then again, there is Yuri Fiction out there that is well written and isn't just PWP or worse.  Believe me est, I do have standards as to what I read in that Genre.

Yes, I know it's not everyone's cup of Coffee, and I rarely if ever mention it - save for the links to what I consider very good, well written Yuri/Shoujo-Ai style fics on my Homepage.  The only reason I mentioned it that time was I was in one of my silly moods after a long, irritating day.  Probably shouldn't have and just stuck to mentioning the Pern Novel I was also reading, but there you are - I did.  Sorry if it creeps you out, didn't intend it to, just meant if as a bit of humour.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: eyefielbad on 08 Mar 2011, 16:25
I was recommended The Adderall Diaries by Stephen Elliott a while back so I'm four chapters into that. It's an engaging read so far. True-crime mystery report/memoir/commentary on life in 2008/everywhere at once. That's the best way to describe it. Alright, it's not the best way to describe it, but that's the best I can do for now because I'm not sure where it's going yet. So many things going on, and I kind of like that. I hope it doesn't fizzle out.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Border Reiver on 11 Mar 2011, 04:53
For the Emperor  by Sandy Mitchell.

Think Flashman in space.  Don't judge me by the lowbrow stuff - I do 90% of my reading on the bus and need somthing that I can pick up and put down without too much concern.  That and I read lots of intellectually demand stuff at work each day, so want the mind-candy to wind down with.

*Damn I should never try to type without triple checking my work when tired.  Those sentences read like a mentally deficient individual wrote them.  Or someone to whom English is just something that other people speak....
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 11 Mar 2011, 10:41
Interspersing my McCaffrey reading with a bit of Tom Clancy.  SSN is the one of his I'm reading at the moment along with The Masterharper Of Pern.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: horsefish on 15 Mar 2011, 19:17
Stuck Rubber Baby by Howard Cruse - a graphic novel about the Civil Rights movement and being gay in the 1960s rural South.  Best graphic novel since Maus.  Although I also highly recommend Persepolis.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Stephquiem on 16 Mar 2011, 12:57
Evercrossed by Elizabeth Chandler.

I'm completely lost on why anyone felt this book needed to be written. The last one was written in 1995. What would possess someone to write a sequel to a series they'd finished satisfactorally (or satisfactorally enough, anyway) sixteen years ago? I think I'm reading it purely in the hope that it will not totally disappoint me like I think it will.

And... just for clarification: "Trilogy" still means "three," right? They didn't change the meaning since I last looked or anything? It doesn't now mean "four, more than likely five"?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: scarred on 19 Mar 2011, 12:13
just started A Clash of Kings.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Durin on 24 Mar 2011, 12:54
The Character of Physical Law by Richard Feynman
Tess of the d'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy
In the Aeroplane over the Sea by Kim Cooper (from the 33 1/3 series. This one came highly recommended so I decided to check it out)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scarychips on 24 Mar 2011, 15:22
Maus by Art Spiegelman.
A friend of mine lent it to me; she just fiished reading it for her english class. about graphic novels. I am jealous.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Ikrik on 24 Mar 2011, 15:35
Man, it seems like every single month I'm hearing about someone who's reading Maus. 

The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins
The Stranger by Camus
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 24 Mar 2011, 18:57
Does anyone know where I can get a french copy of Camus' the Stranger? Amazon and ebay are failing me.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 25 Mar 2011, 00:23
Amazon and ebay are failing me.

Really?  Amazon.ca and Amazon.fr both give L'Étranger as the first result when you search for just "Camus" (IME, Amazon logins work over all their sites).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 25 Mar 2011, 01:59
Try a bookstore's online service. I found this easy-peasy on borders:
http://www.borders.com/online/store/TitleDetail?sku=0679720200
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 04 Apr 2011, 12:22
I FINALLY grabbed a copy of American Gods by Neil Gaiman. He is seriously my favourite writer, so I can't wait to dig into this.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 04 Apr 2011, 13:57
I'm just about to finish The Adventures of Huckleburry Fin, which I've loved, to my surprise. I wasn't convinced at first but then slowly began to realise that it is masterfully written. Thank goodness for my Kindle, I'd never have picked it up in a library or a bookshop.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 04 Apr 2011, 18:40
Current focus of reading

Red Storm Rising by Tom Clancy


You know, I've always felt that that book would make the mother of all war films.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scarychips on 07 Apr 2011, 18:22
I just finished reading Asterios Polyp by David Mazzucchelli. Really great graphic novel. Very well ilustrated, well written, I would recommend it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: celticgeek on 07 Apr 2011, 19:48
A Writer's House In Wales, by Jan Morris.  I recommend it highly. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Border Reiver on 08 Apr 2011, 09:23
Current focus of reading

Red Storm Rising by Tom Clancy


You know, I've always felt that that book would make the mother of all war films.

Concur - much better written than most of the other books he wrote, this would be on the order of a movie like "A Bridge Too Far" in terms of length and breath of material, but the sheer breadth of the material and necesary sets would probably stymie most production companies.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: StaedlerMars on 08 Apr 2011, 14:49
I've started reading, for what is probably the 10th time, Anna Karenina. See whether I get further this time.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 08 Apr 2011, 17:21
Current focus of reading

Red Storm Rising by Tom Clancy


You know, I've always felt that that book would make the mother of all war films.

Concur - much better written than most of the other books he wrote, this would be on the order of a movie like "A Bridge Too Far" in terms of length and breath of material, but the sheer breadth of the material and necesary sets would probably stymie most production companies.

Probably true 10-15 or so years ago, but with the advances in CGI and Animation techniques that has gone on in the recent decade or so, it just might be a doable film these days.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Border Reiver on 11 Apr 2011, 07:44
That and there are a lot of Warsaw Pact vehicles that could proabably be picked up for some of the shooting
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 11 Apr 2011, 14:43
That and there are a lot of Warsaw Pact vehicles that could proabably be picked up for some of the shooting

True enough.  It would certainly give the rusting stuff a 'Good End' so to speak. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Johnny C on 12 Apr 2011, 11:07
just read daniel handler's adverbs, some of the decisions he makes are cloying and obnoxious but for the most part the book is too lucid & incisive for that to really matter
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Stephquiem on 13 Apr 2011, 14:04
I just finished reading Where She Went by Gayle Forman. I can't decide if I'm mildly disappointed with it because my expectations were way too high, or because it was actually a let down.

At the moment, I'm reading The Complete Peanuts: 1979-1980 because I'm such an intellectual.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 14 Apr 2011, 15:30
Good grief!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Inlander on 25 Apr 2011, 04:17
I've just finished reading A Game of Thrones. It's the first fantasy book I've read since I rushed through Lord of the Rings way back before the first film came out, and I really only read it because my curiosity was piqued by the HBO TV series and because all you nerds keep banging on about it.

It was good, definitely very gripping and at times exciting, and I've got the second book and I'm kind of eager to read it, but on the other hand I kind of feel like I can't quite face up to diving into the second book just yet (I only finished the first last night) because it's a thousand fucking pages long and I don't know that I can quite face up to immersing myself into that much oppressive violence and cruelty again just yet. Not that I think for a moment that the violence in the first book was exploitative, but it was very upsetting - as I think depictions of violence in art ought to be - and I could just do with a break, regardless of how excited I am to find out what happens next.

So for now I've gone back to my old stand-by, Muriel Spark, to read the Comforters. Of course Spark is not exactly the warmest or most loving of writers but she's hands-down one of the wittiest which comes as a great relief after George R. R. Martin's world. Take this exchange, for instance:

Quote
'. . . How has she been lately?'

'Miserable. She's gone away to some religious place in the north for a rest.'

'She won't get much of a rest in a religious place.'

'That's what I thought. But this is one of Mother's ideas. She gets together with her priests and builds these buildings. Then they dedicate them to a saint. Then mother sends her friends to stay in them.'

God I love Muriel Spark.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dollface on 06 Jun 2011, 00:31
I wish i was readig this (34 quids for a book gimme a break) (https://www.taschen.com/custom/image_popup_cover.php?descr_id=18256&size=480)
NSFW
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 06 Jun 2011, 07:43
Gravity's Rainbow - Thomas Pynchon
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 08 Jun 2011, 01:08
Freedoms Landing by Anne McCaffrey
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dollface on 29 Jul 2011, 07:08
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51unFoHlkNL._SS500_.jpg)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Scandanavian War Machine on 29 Jul 2011, 11:55
currently about 20 or thirty percent through Darwin's Origin of Species

good read for sure, but it's kind of hard because he's trying to convince people that have never heard of natural selection that it's real, when i've known that natural selection was real for my entire life. so half the time, im saying "well duh" and then the other half i'm going "wait what?" This is due to both the archaic language he uses, and also his lack of data that we now have. For example, he makes almost no mention of mutation, which is a crucial element, and if he does he generally calls it something weird, or attributes it to something else. he doesn't even know about DNA! how quaint!

anyway, it's pretty awesome. one of those things i think everyone should try to read at some point, just because it's so important.

pretty much only reading it because A) i never have before, and B) because i've been having a hard time coming up with good fiction to read because of lack of funds and also nothing has really sounded that appealing to me.

Origin of Species was free, and i love science and evolution and stuff, so it was an easy sell
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 31 Jul 2011, 17:05
Grave Peril - Book 3 of the Dresden Files, and now I have the whole series - or at least, what's been written so far.  Going to be fun getting through them.  One of my favorite series' ever.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: IMMANotListening on 02 Aug 2011, 05:17
Diamonds Are Forever by Ian Fleming.

I'm never really been impressed by James Bond novels but they are always my go-to for trashy fiction so...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: satsugaikaze on 08 Aug 2011, 17:57
So like I'm a couple chapters into A Feast for Crows and it's starting to dawn on me that R.R. Martin has been gradually trying to rid his writing of any sort of catharsis whatsoever

I mean, it's an entertaining read if you want to avoid specifics but honestly so much terrible shit happens in the past book or two that even events that might have been remotely positive have not been satisfying at all

Also some people I know have been wierdly gushing over how awesome a character Cersei is and I really don't get it  :mrgreen: Even when Martin's diving into her head in some of the pov chapters she's still utterly predictable and just a flat Bitchy Narcissist Powergrubbing McBitchface ugh
Nice intrigue in the plot even though the reader knows half of what's happening before the other characters do so we get to hear about how Bran and Rickard and Arya and Sansa are dead for nearly two books when we all know that they aren't HURR
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 08 Aug 2011, 18:27
I'm only 1/6th through a Clash of Kings and what is it with the elder Baratheons and their crazy wives.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: satsugaikaze on 08 Aug 2011, 18:46
The longer you read through the series the more you'll realise that there are only a few wives in the story

There are the walking doormats, the batshit insane wives, and there are the widows

And if they don't end up dead by the end of the series they will have neatly slotted into one of those three
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: IMMANotListening on 09 Aug 2011, 03:32
I've almost found it depressing as I'm getting through the series because so far with A Feast for Crows, nothing is getting done. At all.

I thought it was a little interesting to dive into Cersei's head even though it's not like finding out (through her head) that she's an uppity-super-bitchy-skank was groundbreaking. I do find it entertaining that although she knows how to 'play' the 'Game of Thrones', she has absolutely no idea how to keep winning and be in control of a very political environment. Especially how she alienates herself from Jaime and the rest of the Lannister family; trying to win over loyalty through 'special benefits'.

I just wish it would go back to the reader not knowing what's going on because 'X1 person trying to find X2 person, questions are they still alive' whilst 'X2 person is figuring out their own shit miles and miles away from where X1 person is' is just long-winded and unexciting.

Also, at this point, I would not be surprised if Martin decided to pull a 'EVERYBODY DIES' on the readers.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: My Aim Is True on 12 Aug 2011, 10:18
I'm taking a little break the usual lengthy novels I read, to focus on some short story collections and graphic novels.

Short stories -

Slow Learner - Thomas Pynchon
Last Evenings On Earth - Roberto Bolano

Graphic Novels -

Ego & Hubris - Harvey Pekar
Mid-Life - Joe Ollmann
Life In Pictures - Will Eisner
Ronin - Frank Miller
Big Baby - Charles Burns
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: My Aim Is True on 12 Aug 2011, 10:28
Sorry for the double posting and quotes, but I've tried to make this halfway readable, while still responding to the most recent page (I won't dig up every single book I like form the previous 9 pages)

Gravity's Rainbow - Thomas Pynchon

Awesome. I read that about a year and a half ago. I'm going to go back SOMEDAY and read it again.

Stuck Rubber Baby by Howard Cruse - a graphic novel about the Civil Rights movement and being gay in the 1960s rural South.  Best graphic novel since Maus.

I read that a few months ago. The at bugged me at first, but I got used to it. Really good character development. Though the time period, and hence cultural subtext are differe, I really recommend you check out Mid-Life by Joe Ollmann. I feel like the personal nature is similar to Stuck Rubber Baby.

I just finished reading Asterios Polyp by David Mazzucchelli. Really great graphic novel. Very well ilustrated, well written, I would recommend it.

I've heard great things about that, been meaning to check it out.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ashashash on 13 Aug 2011, 00:49
I'm also reading Gravity's Rainbow at the moment.

I'm going through all the Animorphs books too because I never finished the series when I was a kid... Book 24, represent.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: My Aim Is True on 13 Aug 2011, 04:22
They actually had animorphs when you were a kid... another thing to make me feel old.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: nekowafer on 13 Aug 2011, 09:02
Yeah Animorphs! I think I'm still on book 35-ish, but I took a break to read some Dresden Files.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: tjradcliffe on 02 Sep 2011, 20:10
"The Gods of Mars"--Edgar Rice Burroughs. Trashy fiction becomes literature when left to ferment long enough!

"Terminal World"--Alastair Reynolds.  Never read Reynolds before, but this one grabbed me in the first few pages.  Hope it holds up!

Just finished:  "Julius Caesar"--Philip Freeman.  Solid biography. though tends to become a bit "and then..." toward the end.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 17 Sep 2011, 22:46
The Transitive Vampire: A Handbook of Grammar for the Innocent, the Eager, and the Doomed

To be honest, I actually grabbed it because I thought it said The Transvestite Vampire.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 18 Sep 2011, 00:17
Tbh, that's how I just read the title.

I'm currently 1/4 of the way through Embassytown. China Mieville is my fave.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 19 Sep 2011, 15:35
Tbh, that's how I just read the title.



For years I stubbornly claimed not to like Discworld. Then I read some Discworld by accident and realised how wrong I was. So at the moment I'm reading Unseen Academicals.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: satsugaikaze on 21 Sep 2011, 07:06
Finished A Dance With Dragons recently.

I dunno, dudes
Sometimes there's this unvalidated but niggling feeling whenever I put the book down that this whole story could have been written far more efficiently
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 22 Sep 2011, 13:45
Heinrich Böll - Als der Krieg ausbrach ("When the War Broke Out")

http://books.google.de/books?id=HdleNfKrcKAC&pg=PA568&lpg=PA568&dq=when+war+broke+out+b%C3%B6ll&source=bl&ots=V-CKVCwjvG&sig=vvWGZb_IArVPK9D2afCPuTFPbZ8&hl=de&ei=65x7Tq3xNYOZ8QOm0uTiCQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=5&ved=0CEMQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q&f=false

I´ve only just read the first 2 stories but it´s quite good.
I don't think I understand all the references but it is of a wry humor and disgust for the oppressive militarism.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 23 Sep 2011, 06:10
White Night - of the Dresden Files.

Can someone tell me how the hell Jim Butcher got so good?  I swear it feels like I KNOW Dresden, instead of just reading about him in a book.  The last character I gave that much of a shit about was Roland Deschain, of Gilead.  It feels nice to care again.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: IrrationalPie on 24 Sep 2011, 03:37
Voltaire - Candide
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theriandros on 28 Sep 2011, 19:28
Reading Crime and Punishment. Started it a few months ago, but my paperback was so old it fell apart after about 70 pages. Finally got a new copy a few days ago.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 29 Sep 2011, 14:44
Tbh, that's how I just read the title.

For years I stubbornly claimed not to like Discworld.

Why would you claim that.
Also, what does that have to do with the quote?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 29 Sep 2011, 18:24
Doing a bit of light reading with a couple of books at the moment

Sassinak by Anne McCaffrey and Elzabeth Moon

Dwellers In The Crucible by Margaret Wander Bonanno
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tom on 30 Sep 2011, 03:51
Tbh, that's how I just read the title.
Also, what does that have to do with the quote?

Barmy was probably just saying she thought the same. She then tried to separate the two topics by dividing with a number of blank lines or maybe I'm reading to much into it and I should just get off the internet now.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 04 Oct 2011, 18:24
I just finished 'John dies at the end' (http://johndiesattheend.com/)...

I can honestly say I have never read anything quite like that.

And the teaser trailer is out for the upcoming movie.  I'm not sure it's even possible to do some of the shit in the book, in a movie - however, I would love to see the attempt.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lavacano201014 on 14 Nov 2011, 21:49
I found a book with four different space-related stories Heinlein wrote.

Right now I'm finishing up "Rocket Ship Galileo".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 15 Nov 2011, 20:03
The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove by Christopher Moore.

Pretty great.


Quote
At this point in his life, the Collector was more interested in explosions than in naked women. He was only ten, and it would be a couple of years before his interests moved to girls. Freud never identified a stage of devel-opment known as "pyrotechnic fascination," but that was only because there wasn't an abundant supply of disposable lighters in nineteenth-cen-tury Vienna. Ten-year-old boys blow shit up. It's what they do. But today, a strange new feeling had come over Mikey, a feeling he couldn't put a word to, but if he could, the word would have been "horny." As he Rollerbladed through town, tossing the Los Angeles Times into the shrubs and gutters of businesses along Cypress Street, he felt a tightness in his shorts that until now he had associated with having to take a raging pee in the morning. Today it signified a need to see the Crazy Lady in a state of undress.

(If you haven't gathered from my posts in this thread, I like really horribly trashy novels. B-grade trashy novels.)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: DrPhibes on 18 Nov 2011, 02:03
The Silmarilion - JRR tolkien
Never let me go - Kazuo Ishiguro
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ElvisRevenge on 18 Nov 2011, 19:52
Do comics count? Because I'm reading a shit-ton of Marvel right now. Avengers Academy is my top gun recommendation right now.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 21 Nov 2011, 09:11
Started reading Palahniuk for the first time. Just finished Choke and Fight Club, and I'm about halfway through Diary.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 21 Nov 2011, 19:04
Diary was too depressing for me to read. My ex-boyfriend was insisting I read it, but I only made it about halfway through before giving up. It was too nihilistic for me to go on (which amuses me, in hindsight).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 22 Nov 2011, 16:35
Read Fight Club a few years ago. Loved it but I'd seen the film so many times before reading it I couldn't get my own clear image of the story without just pasting the film over it.

After near a year of fictional reading hiatus which didn't mean to go on that long I've picked up The Coffin Dancer by Jeffery Deaver. I read The Bone Collector so long ago after a friend made me buy it and wanted to continue the series but couldn't find The Coffin Dancer without buying the whole series which was too expensive. Then I found it in a charity shop for £2, it's in really good condition too.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 22 Nov 2011, 16:46
I only saw Fight Club the one time, right after it came out on video, and I barely remembered anything about it, so it worked well for me - the book was pretty much new material in that regard.

I enjoyed Choke very much. But after finishing Fight Club, I can honestly say I became a Palahniuk fan. We'll see if that continues with Diary.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 23 Nov 2011, 16:30
Reading through my Anne McCaffrey collection as a kind of memorial since the author passed away on Monday
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: celticgeek on 23 Nov 2011, 17:08
I have dredged up my Anne McCaffrey books, too, (the regular ones, not the signed copies) and I am planning on re-reading them.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 23 Nov 2011, 18:46
You're kidding, right? I used to love those books

Unfortunately not tuathal, Ms. McCaffrey passed away late on Monday of a heart attack.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: idontunderstand on 24 Nov 2011, 03:55
Sputnik Sweetheart by Murakami. Didn't quite get it but still liked it, which I guess is the normal reaction.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 24 Nov 2011, 04:21
Of Kafka on the Shore (one of my favourite books), Murakami says that the secret to understanding the novel lies in reading it multiple times:
Quote from: Murakami
Kafka on the Shore  contains several riddles, but there aren't any solutions provided. Instead, several of these riddles combine, and through their interaction the possibility of a solution takes shape. And the form this solution takes will be different for each reader. To put it another way, the riddles function as part of the solution. It's hard to explain, but that's the kind of novel I set out to write.

Perhaps Sputnik Sweetheart has similar elements.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 15 Dec 2011, 13:17
I found Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter in the non-fiction section at a used book store. That fact alone was enough to make me buy it.

Spoiler: Abraham Lincoln actually freed the slaves because vampires were eating black people like, left and right.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 15 Dec 2011, 14:53
That's hilarious. I got Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter for my brother last Christmas. My family were doubtful he'd like it and then he loved it. Was right chuffed.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 27 Dec 2011, 08:55
Just got 2 Palahniuk books for Christmas- Damned and Diary. I read Diary when it came out and absolutely loved it, so I'm looking forward to reading it again now that I actually own it. I'm going to start with Damned though, I'm excited to see just how bizarre it can get- I've heard good things.

I know this is a little late, but for anyone looking to start reading Chuck's books- while Fight Club is a decent choice, Survivor is brilliant.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 27 Dec 2011, 12:51
Finished Diary. Very interesting, but not really at the top of my list. Not what I was expecting at all, though I really wasn't sure what to expect anyway. I've been making sure I know nothing about the books whatsoever before I start reading them. I read Lullaby next and really loved it. Since we just had a baby, it made me a little uncomfortable at first haha... but it ended up being one of my favorites. I've just started Snuff. I'll check out Damned and Survivor next, thanks for the recommendations.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 27 Dec 2011, 19:11
That's pretty typical of Palahniuk in general...and sums up quite nicely why I like him so much. I love that all his stuff is so unpredictable and twisted. I'm dying to read Haunted....apparently, at a reading he did someone in the crowd actually puked when he read the first story.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Papersatan on 28 Dec 2011, 20:28
Right now I am reading a book of essays on French materialist feminism. It is a lot. I was certainly aware of the notion of gender as a social construction, and even used it as the basis of my understanding about "male" and "female", but the first two authors argued that sex  is also a social construction. wait, what?... I think I buy it, but it is still a lot to wrap one's head around.  Just finished the third essay, which gave three ways to look at the relationship between sex and gender.  I thought I had handle on the issues surrounding sex and gender, but really I have had my mind blown.  I have never put this much thought into it before, and I was nearly a gender studies minor. 

Before this I read the Curious Case of Benjamin Button.  It was a much easier read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 28 Dec 2011, 22:46
I have just finished my Ann Coulter collection and I'm about to order her newest book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 29 Dec 2011, 06:02
Still reading The Coffin Dancer. Well, I stopped reading because I would read it in between classes. Then when I was sick my eyes were too messed up to read for long.

Delight to get World War Z and The Zombie Survival Guide for Christmas from my brothers. I'd been looking at the books for ages but just never got them.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 29 Dec 2011, 23:20
Right now I am reading a book of essays on French materialist feminism. It is a lot. I was certainly aware of the notion of gender as a social construction, and even used it as the basis of my understanding about "male" and "female", but the first two authors argued that sex  is also a social construction. wait, what?... I think I buy it, but it is still a lot to wrap one's head around.  Just finished the third essay, which gave three ways to look at the relationship between sex and gender.  I thought I had handle on the issues surrounding sex and gender, but really I have had my mind blown.  I have never put this much thought into it before, and I was nearly a gender studies minor. 

I'm curious - how do they claim that? It seems like it's a fairly obvious trait one is born with, unless the authors are pulling intersexuality into the mix.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 30 Dec 2011, 09:31
Just finished reading Damned....it was ridiculously fucking twisted but definitely an interesting read. Took me longer to get into it than his other books, but gets much meatier as you go on. (here's a tip- don't read it stoned unless you are interested in a complete mindfuck)

I think I need something lighter for my next read.....
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Papersatan on 31 Dec 2011, 17:59
The arguments are kind of complected.  I tried to write out a summary, but when I made it to the second page of a 11pt Word doc I decided that was no good.

The gist of it is:
Author 1: Categories of oppression arise out of the oppression. Sex is only a category into which we sort ourselves because we live in a hierarchy which places one sex over the other. 

Author 2: The development of Gender gave us a way to understand the social differences between the sexes, but we somehow forgot to question the legitimacy of the sexes in the first place.  Mostly this is because it is scary to imagine a world where there are no sex categories, since we base so much of our personal and social understanding on them.  We haven't actually proved in anyway that sex division is natural or that it comes before gender division.  We need to examine why we think that sex is natural and that is precedes gender and why we think that just because there is more than one type of something that they are necessarily hierarchical.   

The idea is that just because there are different traits doesn't mean that people have to be categorized by them and the fact that we categorize ourselves by whether we have a penis or not is social. 

I actually am interested in talking about this more.  The book is available online for free.  If other people are game we could start a DISCUSS thread about it maybe?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 31 Dec 2011, 18:01
I'm currently getting ready for a NYE party, but this sort of topic is up my alley. I'd love to have a DISCUSS thread.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 31 Dec 2011, 20:28
The development of Gender gave us a way to understand the social differences between the sexes, but we somehow forgot to question the legitimacy of the sexes in the first place.  Mostly this is because it's nonsensical liberal bullshit/
Fixed
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 01 Jan 2012, 01:36
Oh hey! I like how instead of trying to debate the merits or fallacies of an argument, you call it bullshit. Prime posting there, dickweasel. (See what I did there? I insulted you! And that's not a very good way to have a debate. Try something else next time.)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Papersatan on 01 Jan 2012, 03:02
Discuss thread started.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 13 Jan 2012, 13:54
Well, I finished Thus Spake Zarathustra. There are a lot of great thoughts in that book, but I also wasn't short on things to disagree with. Did anyone else read it, or rather stumble into it like I did?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: muffy on 14 Jan 2012, 06:50
That's pretty typical of Palahniuk in general...and sums up quite nicely why I like him so much. I love that all his stuff is so unpredictable and twisted. I'm dying to read Haunted....apparently, at a reading he did someone in the crowd actually puked when he read the first story.

Haunted is brilliant, and the short story that caused (multiple) faintings/vomittings is free to read on his website. It's not the most unsettling short in the book, mind.
http://chuckpalahniuk.net/features/shorts/guts (http://chuckpalahniuk.net/features/shorts/guts)

Survivor is probably my favourite one that he's done. Just finished a huge coursework project which involved trying to emulate his writing style/nihilism...not sure how well it worked in the end. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 14 Jan 2012, 07:41
Oooooh...I'd be interested in reading that if you don't mind sharing.


As for that story from guts....wow. It didn't make me feel physically sick, but it's definitely one of the more fucked up things I've read by him. I gotta get that book! lol
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 14 Jan 2012, 14:43
"Bitterly Divided", a history of the South during the American Civil War.

High points: a majority opposed secession but had it rammed down their throats by vote fraud, crooked delegates, and outright coercion. Only a third of the Confederate Army was on the field at the end of the war, most of the rest AWOL. The planter class that wanted secession insisted on growing cash crops while the soldiers and public were starving. Some states were in virtual civil war within their borders.

EDIT: Barbara Demick, "Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea". Individual stories of chaste romances and attempts at advantageous marriages that might have come out of Jane Austen, followed by societal collapse in the famine. Extensively researched. Image that stuck in my mind: a doctor Demick interviewed found, at the first building she saw after sneaking across the border to China, a luxury she could only have dreamed about at home -- a bowl of rice, with chunks of meat. She couldn't figure out why something so valuable was left unattended on the floor. She figured it out an instant before the dog barked to chase her away from its dinner.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: DrPhibes on 18 Jan 2012, 14:33
Currently just LOTR but I still have about 5 unread books to read that i started and didnt finish like: Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk and more
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 19 Jan 2012, 18:26
"False Economy", by Alan Beattie: the choices which (in his opinion) make the difference between economic success and failure.

There's some interesting research, like the difference in trajectories between otherwise similar Botswana and Sierra Leone, but mostly things that have been said before.

The best chapter was the one about corruption. It turns out you can have high growth even with institutionalized bribery and theft, if you do it right.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 19 Jan 2012, 18:56
Queer Essentials: Facts for Your Gay Brain

It's an okay primer, it just glosses over a number of things. It's great for pointing someone in the right direction for further studies, but let's face it, a page on Stonewall isn't exactly going to cut it.

I do like the argument that Sappho wasn't a lesbian, she merely taught and was fond of her female students much in the same way Socrates taught and was fond of his male students. It's one of the most hilarious arguments I've ever heard because it failed so miserably.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Carl-E on 19 Jan 2012, 20:34
The Italian Secretary,  one of the further adventures of Sherlock holmes, by Caleb Carr.  A christmas gift from one of my daughters, and the first book I've been able to read for pleasure in years. 

It's very convincing - he's got Watson's narrative voice down pat, and the mystery is a good one, typical Holmesian nonsense where the reader doesn't have a chance of knowing what's really going on...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 20 Jan 2012, 21:07
"Flirting With Disaster", Marc Gerstein and Michael Ellsberg.

Kind of a more popularized version of Nancy Leveson's "Safeware", with much less informative detail than Leveson in the horror stories.

Advocates out-of-band reporting systems so people can report safety problems without being punished for it, but doesn't mention the highly successful working example of the Aviation Safety Reporting System. Other good advice is to treat near-miss reports, not as bad news to be suppressed or as evidence that accidents won't actually happen, but as "free tuition".

Recommends whistleblowing. After a few lame suggestions about seeking allies first, finally admits that anyone who takes his advice will ruin their career and maybe their life.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 20 Jan 2012, 22:06
So the book basicaly says that nothing you read will actually work well in the real world? It's like finding out at the end of a movie that it was all a dream or some shit.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 21 Jan 2012, 09:44
Currenty reading 'The City and the City' by China Mieville.  Just got copies of the 'Hunger Games' trio that is currently out too.  Oh, and 'Full Dark, No Stars' by Stephen King - it's a collection of short stories, and I always like his short stories.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 21 Jan 2012, 14:50
More like saying it's your ethical obligation to ruin your life if you see a safety problem.

EDIT: "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks", by Rebecca Skroot. Painful so far. Ms. Lacks died at 31 of metastatic cervical cancer. It was 1951, and America was still so bitterly segregated that the hospital had separate morgues for white and "colored". Whites literally would not be caught dead next to an African-American.

Lazy travel writers begin articles with "___ is a land of contradictions". It's lazy because every place is a land of contradictions. This was painfully true of America at the time. Someone progressive managed to bring the work of mass-culturing HeLa cells for the first time to a black institution, providing experience and meaningful mainstream work to young black scientists and technicians. The institution was Tuskegee, yes, THAT Tuskegee (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tuskegee_syphilis_experiment).

EDIT: Finished it. Ouch. This was all in living memory. US doctors doing things that would have gotten them hanged at Nuremberg.

What made the most impression on me was the educational deprivation of the Lacks family. What does "informed consent" mean from someone who doesn't know what a cell is? Plenty of material in the book for a thread in Discuss.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 31 Jan 2012, 12:02
Both good reads which I approve of (as if that matters!).

I'm currently on a Haruki Murakami kick.  I was given Kafka on the Shore  a few years ago, and have read it several times with increasing enjoyment each time, so now I'm reading Sputnik Sweetheart,  and The Wind-up Bird Chronicle  is waiting in line.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: DrPhibes on 31 Jan 2012, 13:28
I finished "A Young People's History - United States - Class Struggle to the War on Terror" Quiete a long name for an awesome fun and short history book. Only 220 pages but it gives the perspective of people, young included but not only. Some serious questions about the government are made and I think the writer does test the limits of your confidence in the government after reading this.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 05 Feb 2012, 01:33
_Under the Loving Care of the Fatherly Leader_, by Bradley Martin.

An attempt at a history of the Kim dynasty, striving mightily to avoid the cartoonish treatment of them that their propaganda encourages, and to figure out what kind of people they were and are.

Martin is reasonably skeptical and has interviewed many defectors, trying to cross-check their stories to resist exaggeration.

High points so far: defectors still seem to revere the Kims, at least Kim Il-Sung. Kim Jong-Il told someone with a hidden tape recorder that he thought the people were only pretending to worship him. North Koreans competed fiercely and paid large bribes to experience the relative prosperity and freedom of Siberian labor camps. Kim Il-Sung, based on the testimony of people who knew him as a guerilla fighter but who were interviewed outside his jurisdiction, seems to have been intelligent and charismatic, though cursed with ego problems. Kim Jong-Il comes across as a spoiled little shit who consolidated power by flattering his father with an elaborate personality cult, which has continued to inhibit change and growth.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 05 Feb 2012, 15:30
Tomorrow I have to take the train back to my apartment. On friday we got a whole three inches of snow, and the resulting apocalyptic effect this has on the railway gives me the opportunity to read One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest while I wait.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 06 Feb 2012, 17:05
I'm beginning No Logo by Naomi Klein.

One nice thing about an anarchist punk house: Excellent selection of books.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 08 Feb 2012, 18:03
"Merchants of Doubt", Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway. It's about controversies over issues with a need for scientific input, where political controversy took place over scientific assessments.

Pretty disappointing, really. The authors confound science, engineering, economics, and policy. They drift from their claimed primary point to argue for their theory of the proper role of government.

There is, however, good material on how scientists have seen their work being manipulated for political ends, and how the same people and PR firms have been active over and over in issues as diverse as tobacco safety and climate change.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GroovyKinda on 08 Feb 2012, 22:39
Find a copy of Life and Fate by Vasily Grossman. Not only is it one of the best novels ever, but it has a series of chapters where one of the main characters, a physicist, fights the government because his conclusions "contradict what the State believes." Yes, it's the Soviet Union. Amazing book.
http://www.amazon.com/Life-Fate-Review-Books-Classics/dp/1590172019/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1328769195&sr=1-1 (http://www.amazon.com/Life-Fate-Review-Books-Classics/dp/1590172019/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1328769195&sr=1-1)

Right now I'm reading "Walt & Skeezix: The Complete Gasoline Alley" volume 3. Great stuff. Gasoline Alley was one of the first strips where the characters aged. And it was HUGE in the 1920's.
And the Peloponnesian War, by Thucydidies.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 09 Feb 2012, 17:14
"The Hidden People of North Korea: Everyday Life in the Hermit Kingdom"
Ralph Hassig
Kongdan Oh

Not as extensively documented as Bradley Martin's book, and more partisan, but presents much the same picture.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 09 Feb 2012, 17:33
I don't wanna be disruptive in DISCUSS, but that one book you read...

...his name is Nodong.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 09 Feb 2012, 22:32
Also the name of a missile, a fact which would have overjoyed Freud.

Currently reading "The Cleanest Race", an attempt to reverse-engineer the North Korean psyche from their internal propaganda (which is interestingly different from what they send to the outside world).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 10 Feb 2012, 07:11
Budget Wedding Planning for Dummies. I may have dreamed about this day my whole life but I'll be damned if I'm going to go deeper into debt for it. People that work in the wedding business are effing vultures.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GroovyKinda on 10 Feb 2012, 08:16
Off topic, but hey, lepetitfromage, congratulations!
You'd be surprised at what a nice wedding you can have if you rope all your friends into helping.
Use your local library (I work in one) for all the resources you can find. They're really helpful.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 10 Feb 2012, 10:11
Thanks! I'm really excited  :-D Although, some of the "average price" stats are terrifying! Did you know that the "average" wedding costs 20k?  :-o We're aiming for less than half of that, but we're keeping it pretty small and i am a big DIYer, so I think we'll be in good shape.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jwhouk on 10 Feb 2012, 13:48
Waking the Dead by John Eldredge.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 10 Feb 2012, 23:34
"The Italian Secretary", Caleb Carr. It's a new Sherlock Holmes story, in the original style. Reading it provides the same comfort as putting on an old shoe.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 11 Feb 2012, 15:55
I've just finished The Death and Life of Syliva Plath, so I'm about to move onto The Bell Jar. It's part of my entry for the Rose Book Collecting prize, the theme of which is apparently going to be "depressing works by women who came to my college and then killed themselves".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 26 Feb 2012, 21:40
"One Hundred Names for Love", Diane Ackerman.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 28 Feb 2012, 16:38
The Dreamer, Her Angel, And The Stars

By Linda S. North

Better known as Cygirl among the Voyager Fan Fiction Community, this is her first published novel and something I've been looking forward to for several months.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: DrPhibes on 28 Feb 2012, 17:56
Now Reading: Charles Lewinsky - Melnitz

So far (100-700) it's about the family Meijer (or mybe melnitz in german, i dunno). A jewish family in Austria around 1890. So far pretty good.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 28 Feb 2012, 21:18
Rogue Regime: Kim Jong Il and the Looming Threat of North Korea by Jasper Becker

Disappointing: lots of small factual errors and little if anything that hasn't been covered elsewhere. Get Bradley Martin's book instead.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 29 Feb 2012, 04:02
Chasm City by Alastair Reynolds
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theyis on 29 Feb 2012, 06:55
Jack McDevitt - A talent for war
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 29 Feb 2012, 17:50
"Comeback: A Conservatism That Can Win", David Frum.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 01 Mar 2012, 14:40
"Comeback: A Conservatism That Can Win", David Frum.

Was that in the Fiction Section?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 01 Mar 2012, 16:02
Heh.

Rogue regime : / Becker, Jasper. Sloppy editing hurts the credibility of this North Korea book.

EDIT: The Paranoid Peninsula, Paul French. Detailed. Best line so far is a quote from Walter Mondale,  'Anyone who claims to be an expert on North Korea is either a liar or a fool'.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Avec on 06 Mar 2012, 12:55
The Lost Cyclist!

An amazing travelogue that makes me want to adventure.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 10 Mar 2012, 11:17
"Witness to Transformation: Refugee Insights into North Korea", Haggard and Noland. Extensive structured interviews and statistical analysis.

EDIT: "American Nerd: The Story of My People", Benjamin Nugent.

EDIT: "North Korea: A Strange Socialist Fortress", Hy-Sang Lee. Heavy on economics, and also includes some finds from 1996 propaganda including "Kim Jong Il Is the God of the Contemporary World", and a statement that both Kims were gods superior to Christ in love, to Buddha in benevolence, to Confucius in virtue, and to Mohammed in justice. (From Rodong Sinmun and Minju Choson). The latter also appears in Marcus Noland's "Korea After Kim Jong-Il".

EDIT: "Kosher Jesus". by Rabbi Shmuley Boteach. Intriguing, but so far doesn't seem to have the rigor necessary to support its conclusion.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 29 Mar 2012, 12:32
Are you reading those back-to-back or all at the same time?

I bought Terry Pratchett's Unseen Academicals as an experiment from Amazon's ebook download service. Turns out they only object when you try to download PC games from their US site, while ebooks are fine. Anyway, I've discovered that my Sony reader is the functional equivalent of a Kindle touch wifi when I crack it and install the kindle android application. Sweet!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 09 Apr 2012, 11:38
Partial overlap.

Currently _The Inquisitor's Apprentice_, by Chris Moriarty. He does atmosphere well. It is unmistakably a Young Adult book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 09 Apr 2012, 13:41
Captain Grant's Children, by Jules Verne, Dutch translation. Was surprised to find that on gutenberg.org. Feels weird to read archaic Dutch when I don't do much of my reading in Dutch in the first place. So far, it is significantly less fantastical than Journey to the Center of the Earth, of which I read the English translation.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 09 Apr 2012, 14:51
Catching the Big Fish: Meditation, Consciousness, and Creativity by David Lynch

It's nice to know he comes from a happy place.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: blewupthesun on 12 Apr 2012, 12:39
I'm slowly making my way through the Wheel of Time series (currently on #8), and slowly also reading other things interspersed here and there. The last book comes out in January, so I don't want to finish everything else too early and leave a giant gap between #13 and #14. I finished Battle Royale not too long ago, and started on Thus Spake Zarathustra last night. I haven't made too much progress, but I'm looking forward to enjoying it properly.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 27 Apr 2012, 16:01
Blood of Elves, by Andrzej Sapkowski, otherwise known as the man who spawned the Witcher universe. Really digging it by now - the universe as well as the writing - and the book provides a number of interesting perspectives, as well as reinforcing the image of a world where there are no good guys, not a single one.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 27 Apr 2012, 21:44
About to start Ender's Game. I've been told to read it since I was 13, but I never did. Now I will.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Sorflakne on 01 May 2012, 18:18
I read Ender's Game for the first time two years ago, and frankly, being an officer in the Air Force, I wish I had read it ten years ago.  There's a reason why it's the only science fiction book on the military's (well, Marines anyway) recommended reading list.  No, really. (http://www.militaryreadinglist.com/cmcreadinglist/doctrine.htm)


Right now I'm reading 'Dwarves', by Markus Heitz, and after that, I will be starting 'The Galileo Affair' by Eric Flint.

And then when I'm done with that, I will randomly select a book from the stack of ~30 I have yet to read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 02 May 2012, 01:38
Was gonna borrow The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo from Mammy but she's lent it to her sister. Reading The Zombie Survival Guide now. Enjoying it a lot. Makes me glad I've moved out of a bungalow to a two storey house.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 02 May 2012, 23:40
The Aquariums of Pyongyang.

By a refugee and a survivor of a re-education camp. After living in both Koreas and in China, he says that given the ubiquity of bribery that North Korea is the most money-ruled society he's lived in.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 08 May 2012, 09:05
About to start Ender's Game. I've been told to read it since I was 13, but I never did. Now I will.
Reading it as well. A friend recommended it and I bought it right away, not because she was so convincing, but to demonstrate how easy Amazon makes it to buy ebooks.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 08 May 2012, 10:36
I can't wait until e books are pirated as freely as mp3's.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 08 May 2012, 10:37
They're pretty close already.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 08 May 2012, 11:59
More popular books are easy to find, but biographies about Charles Bronson and stuff aren't as available
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 08 May 2012, 23:35
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince WHY DID SIRIUS HAVE TO DIE GODDAMMIT
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 10 May 2012, 14:46
Montaigne's essays.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 10 May 2012, 16:14
Finally found time to finish Ender's Game. Blew me the fuck away. I really wish I read it in the 5th grade when my friend suggested it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 11 May 2012, 16:41
Having just finished it as well, I can concur on the blowing-the-fuck-away-ness. But I don't think I would have wanted to read it earlier, because my younger self wouldn't have appreciated it as much. On the other hand, maybe if my younger self did read it, this book may have sparked this appreciation for a good book.

Basically, I would recommend this book to myself above any other book, although I'm not sure if that says more about me, or about the book. Maybe it's a strange thing to ask, but have any of you considered whether you would recommend a book to yourself after reading it? I think it has to do with a feeling that when you're done reading (or viewing, playing, or insert medium-appropriate-gerund-here) you have gained something, learned something, or are more complete than before.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: smack that isaiah on 11 May 2012, 20:39
You both ought to go out and read Ender's Shadow now.  I loved that book to pieces.  It runs parallel to Game, telling the story of Bean.  I prefer it to Game by a good order of magnitude or two.  I read both of them when I was in 6th grade.  To sort of portray how amazing both books are: I picked up Ender's Game and was so enthralled I finished it in 3 days--skipping my favorite TV shows, losing sleep, finishing meals very quickly, etc.  Then, I got Ender's Shadow and I finished it in 2 days--I was so much more into the whole everything of that story (partially cause I had already read Game, partially because it's just freaking amazing) that I finished it more quickly despite it being longer.

(Also, IMO, Ender's Shadow and the whole Shadow series feels like a much more appropriate sequel and follow up to Ender's Game than Speaker for the Dead and the rest of the Ender series were)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 12 May 2012, 04:47
I read the back of Speaker of the Dead and that was enough for me. It sounded terrible.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 14 May 2012, 07:22
Over the weekend I started and finished Let's Pretend This Never Happened. I actually had to put it down on three different occasions because it made me laugh so hard I couldn't breathe.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 21 May 2012, 06:02
Just finished reading The Baby Laundry for Unmarried Mothers, which was interesting but unfortunately just didn't quite work, either as a novel or as a memoir. It was co-written, with the woman whose story it narrates dictating to an author. I enjoyed the story and it was thought-provoking but not well written.

I'm also reading the collected works of Amy Levy, and a book called The Madness of Adam and Eve. Only just started that last one but it appears to be about how genius and schizophrenia have close genetic links - a lot of geniuses have family members with schizophrenia, or demonstrate schizotypial traits themselves. It tracks back to the origins of man (the evolutionary origins, despite the title).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 21 May 2012, 07:22
I started reading This Is How by Augusten Burroughs last week. It's ok. Not really like anything else he's ever written. I usually eat his books up in an instant but this one is taking a while. I'm waiting for it to get funny but I don't know if that will happen. Now I know to read the description of the book before I buy it rather than just assuming I will love it because I love everything else the author has written.


The Madness of Adam and Eve sounds really interesting. I'd like to hear your thoughts on it when you finish it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Carl-E on 22 May 2012, 18:24
"Chances Are",  a book on probability and popular misconceptions of that topic. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 22 May 2012, 20:15
You both ought to go out and read Ender's Shadow now.  I loved that book to pieces.  It runs parallel to Game, telling the story of Bean.  I prefer it to Game by a good order of magnitude or two.  I read both of them when I was in 6th grade.  To sort of portray how amazing both books are: I picked up Ender's Game and was so enthralled I finished it in 3 days--skipping my favorite TV shows, losing sleep, finishing meals very quickly, etc.  Then, I got Ender's Shadow and I finished it in 2 days--I was so much more into the whole everything of that story (partially cause I had already read Game, partially because it's just freaking amazing) that I finished it more quickly despite it being longer.

(Also, IMO, Ender's Shadow and the whole Shadow series feels like a much more appropriate sequel and follow up to Ender's Game than Speaker for the Dead and the rest of the Ender series were)
I second all of this. As much as I loved Ender's Game, Ender's Shadow was just spectacular. I read both about every year or so heh. Just one of those mindless books I can blow through and enjoy, and pick up different things each time.

Right now I'm reading Rant by Palahniuk. A bit hard to follow because of the writing style, and I have no idea what it's about, as usual, but again, as usual, enjoying it immensely.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 22 May 2012, 21:09
I would actually suggest reading Speaker for the Dead. It's a very very very different book from Ender's Game, but it's probably the best sci-fi Card has written. Just... don't bother reading Xenocide or Children of the Mind. Pretend they don't exist.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Puddin &#9829; on 22 May 2012, 22:14
I actually just started reading The Infernal Devices: Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare.  Its turning out to be kind of interesting! :-)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 24 May 2012, 11:04
Rimjin-gang, from Asiapress. North Koreans who make brass monkeys look like eunuchs smuggle interviews, photos, and video across the border for publication.

Interesting so far: an official at a state-run company describes corruption and outright looting reminiscent of the end stages of the USSR. If the reporters are reporting things straight, then the people they're interviewing are talking with shocking frankness about their country. Like, for example, the one who was willing to tell a stranger that he hoped Kim Jong-Il would die.

Someone was interviewed who (2008) was on the security team that protected public appearances by Kim Jong-Il. He described how he prepared for a visit to a military base. It involved kidnapping soldiers and their families, moving them to a guarded location at some distance, and replacing them with ringers of better-known loyalty.

Multiple interviews in the book confirm what we've heard about malnutrition in the military.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 27 May 2012, 22:44
I was very excited to start reading this series I knew nothing about called The Steampunk Chronicles. I just finished up my current nonfiction book (I try to alternate between fiction and nonfiction) and got started. I was immediately upset to see that the publisher is Harlequin Teen. I didn't even know there was a whole section of Harlequin just for teens and there probably shouldn't be. By the end of the fourth page, I was done and for the first time ever in my life, I was so dis-satisfied with a book that I felt compelled to give it a bad review on Amazon. I will also point out that on the dedication page, the author thanks somebody for seeing Twilight with her.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 02 Jun 2012, 10:34
I would actually suggest reading Speaker for the Dead. It's a very very very different book from Ender's Game, but it's probably the best sci-fi Card has written. Just... don't bother reading Xenocide or Children of the Mind. Pretend they don't exist.
Picked this up on your recommendation, and because a friend found the hierarchy of alienness to be an interesting one. I finished the book now, and I got the impression that it was as much, or even more, about people as it is about science fiction. I don't remember many books I've read that are like that. While it's interesting to read about the implications of instantaneous communication combined with the relativistic effects of near-lightspeed travel, they're obviously subservient to the stories of the characters' themselves.

One thing I really didn't expect in Speaker for the Dead was an AI. Card never really uses that term, but it is. I recall that in Ender's Game, the term 'intelligent program' was deliberately downplayed by one of the characters, who preferred to say "it's complex". That was an attitude I could relate with, because I recently realized that artificial intelligence as described in the majority of science fiction is based on some extremely anthropocentric assumptions about what it means to be intelligent. The notion that a spontaneously arising AI would have any sort of higher agency it didn't possess before is frankly absurd. So I was somewhat disappointed to see exactly this sort of AI in Speaker for the Dead, given that Card hinted before that he didn't 'believe' in it. I did, however, like the bit where Ender realized he has no idea how to use a computer.

Finally, after reading this book I realize that I still have no idea why faster-than-light communication breaks causality. For all its hard sci-fi, the book never addresses that - though I hardly think it should. Just, y'know, wondering.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Sorflakne on 03 Jun 2012, 18:37
I'm under the impression that the ansible (spelling?) sends the information via quantum wormhole.

I'm about to start 1493, which is a sequel to 1491.  Which is probably the best book on pre-Columbian history of the Americas I've read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Lummer on 08 Jun 2012, 03:13
I'm about 300ish pages into The Passage by Justin Cronin. I can see what the hype is about and I'm enjoying a lot more than I thought I would.

Reading this aswell. Great opening, weak middle, signs of a great sprint into awesome at the end.

Necro-replyin' like it ain't no thang.

Currently reading this, and by GOD does this middle section fuckin' suck. It just drags, and draaags, and draaaags along, with a leaden stride to nowhere. It's a real chore getting through, I feel. The only reason I haven't put it down is because my girlfriend (who recomended it to me) promised that the end section more than makes up for it. Also, it gets a lot of rope because the first section was mindblowingly good.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Penheart on 17 Jun 2012, 13:34
"Oliver Twist", "What it's like to go to War" Gulliver's Travels", "Mid Summer Night's Dream", and "The King Must Die"

I recommend all the first four books, especially "Gulliver's Travels" and "What it's like to go to War" for anyone and everyone who likes to read.
I'm only 35 pages into Oliver Twist and I already feel more sorry for a person than I've ever felt for anything. I just want to hug him and tell him that it'll be alright.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 17 Jun 2012, 20:32
I started reading American Gods recently. I read Neverwhere for a school project and then found out later that Neil Gaiman was married to Amanda Palmer and that he wrote it. I was doing pretty well and flying through that book, having a grand time doing so, but lately I've been too busy drinking and feeling sorry for myself to do much reading.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Skaltura on 22 Jun 2012, 20:36
(http://markgorman.files.wordpress.com/2009/07/1.jpg) and (http://www.awesomestories.com/images/user/98a91802be.jpg)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: nekowafer on 22 Jun 2012, 20:52
I finally finished reading the entire Animorphs series. And the cliffhanger at the end just pissed me off.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 23 Jun 2012, 03:19
Did you lose a bet?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 24 Jun 2012, 14:09
"The Impossible State: North Korea, Past and Future"
Victor Cha

This adds to the literature in giving a detailed history of diplomatic efforts and gives informed opinion about the motives of the NK leadership, but isn't about the internals of NK (except for an interesting list of coup attempts, about which he's oddly confident of details that other sources consider uncertain).

He describes a growing belief among involved parties that the only solution is reunification.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 25 Jun 2012, 05:53
The Flinch, a free kindle book. I like books that tell me something about myself, even more when they're not trying to. I don't like books that tell me something about myself that I already knew, even less when they're trying to. This book falls in the latter category. Though it seems like a good excercise of free will. I wouldn't recommend it to myself, so I don't feel like I can recommend it to anybody else, but if you want to read it, you can download it from Amazon for free.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Lines on 25 Jun 2012, 10:15
Re: Ender's Game conversation...I didn't particularly care for Ender's Game. I can't tell you why exactly, because it's been a while, but would I probably like Ender's Shadow better? Or should I just try different sci-fi?

The first three books I've got lined up to read are Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7082.Do_Androids_Dream_of_Electric_Sheep_), The Botany of Desire (http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13839.The_Botany_of_Desire), and Last Child in the Woods (http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/156599.Last_Child_in_the_Woods). I've been meaning to read Philip K. Dick for aaaaaaaages and I managed to snag a copy at Half Price Books. (I've seen all the movies based off of his works, I think it's high time to actually READ them.) The other two I had the intention of reading while I was working on my thesis (I did manage to read a bit of Last Child in the Woods - it was good), but, ha, I never had time because I was swimming in articles and writing. So yeah. Here's hoping I manage to find time now that I'm trying to re/decorate a house and here's hoping I can manage to pull myself away from Diablo III when I'm not doing house stuff.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 25 Jun 2012, 13:15
Linds, I think it depends on what you didn't like about Ender's Game :) I know a lot of people couldn't stand Ender's character and that's part of why they preferred Ender's Shadow. I don't think I could pinpoint why I prefer it to Ender's Game; I just found Bean to be a more enjoyable character, and part of it may have been that it filled in a lot of the storyline of Ender's Game - if I'd read ES first, maybe I would have preferred EG. If you don't care for OSC's writing, though, none of the books will really appeal to you, most likely.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Lines on 25 Jun 2012, 15:21
It wasn't the writing, I enjoyed the writing. I think it was all of the violence centered around children that left me a little uneasy. Which mostly centered around Ender, so he was probably the problem for me. I do remember liking Bean, so maybe I'll give it a shot.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 25 Jun 2012, 16:08
Actually, there are kind of a lot of problems with the message in Ender's Game if you look at it with a critical eye. I enjoy the book, but part of it is that Ender is portrayed as a totally blameless murderer. It wouldn't be so problematic if Ender was a lot dumber than he was supposed to be, but can you seriously believe that Ender thought he was beating someone into submission rather than trying to kill them in the descriptions of his fights?

Here is an essay on a lot of the problems with the book. I don't necessarily agree with every point made, but most of it is pretty spot on from my readings.

http://www4.ncsu.edu/~tenshi/Killer_000.htm

Of course I refuse to give any money to Card anymore anyways. Fucking bigot.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mister D Nomms on 26 Jun 2012, 07:06
I was already a huge Evangelion fan before I read Ender's game, so whiny protagonists and violent children do not bother me anymore.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 29 Jun 2012, 08:18
_The Crisis of Zionism_, Peter Beinart.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 13 Jul 2012, 15:17
I've been reading Ray Bradbury's short stories (R is for Rocket). It's undeniably sci-fi of the 'just go with it' variety. Otherwise, I like it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 14 Jul 2012, 07:53
Finished Five People You Meet In Heaven. Simple enough, sweet wee story. Short, about 250 pages and jumps back and forth in time and through different scenarios but is very easy to follow. Read it over four nights so I'd recommend it if you're in between books.

Rereading Misery for the God-knows-what time now while I'm waiting for someone to lend me Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. I've seen the film but long enough ego my memory has blurred slightly for the finer details and I won't be constantly comparing it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Redball on 14 Jul 2012, 08:08
Albom, the author of Five People... is a sportswriter here in Michigan. It's definitely worth a read, but I've never read his first one, Tuesdays with Morrie. I read all of The Girl series and saw all three Swedish films with English dubbing. Despite that, preferred the Swedish film to the American Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Omega Entity on 14 Jul 2012, 09:47
We read Tuesdays with Morrie for English class in high school. Awesome book, but damn, it made me cry.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Redball on 14 Jul 2012, 13:02
Guess I'd better read it. I won't say making me cry is necessarily the mark of a good book, but it's certainly the mark of an engaging one. I was in tears, sobbing -- this belongs in confessions -- when Ayla's Neanderthal mother died in Clan of the Cave Bear and wondered if I was substituting my own mother. For better or worse, I was much more detached when she died more than a decade later.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 15 Jul 2012, 16:08
_Sex at Dawn: The Prehistoric Origin of Modern Sexuality_, Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jetha.

They argue, based on comparative anatomy, consistent features of sexual behavior, and study of contemporary hunter/gatherer groups, that humans are not "designed" for lifetime pair bonds but are at heart more like bonobos, sharing partners and child-rearing responsibilities with the other members of a tribe of at most 150 members. In their view, the widespread current paradigm of a man buying exclusive access to a woman is an artifact of the recent change to agricultural societies.

Provocative, and full of horrifying historical material.

Extensively researched, though I'm not qualified to evaluate the quality of their work.

May be worthy of a Discuss thread if anyone else reads it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 15 Jul 2012, 16:43
Sex at Dawn is actually a really common book suggested to people looking into non-monogamy/polyamory/etc. I've got mixed opinions on it for that purpose, since I think that Evo-Psych is kind of a horrible basis for relationship advice.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 20 Jul 2012, 10:11
"The Silver Ship and the Sea", Brenda Cooper.

EDIT: "Cats in the Sun", Hans Silvester. It's a collection of photos.

EDIT: "The Theory of Moral Sentiments", Adam Smith.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Redball on 07 Aug 2012, 11:27
Can you buy a Maxtor at a Mac store?
No, and you can't buy a Mac at a TJ Maxxstore. Not that I've tried.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 07 Aug 2012, 15:22
Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy. I started reading it before and loved it but stopped for some reason. Loving it again.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 10 Aug 2012, 21:30
"Erotic Tongue: a Sexual Lexicon", Lawrence Paros. A history and compendium of sexual euphemisms and slang, almost all from English, going back to Chaucer.

A fun book for people who see English as an inexhaustible toy.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Elysiana on 11 Aug 2012, 08:36
"Bossypants" by Tina Fey - happened across it so I figured why not. Amusing, and some fun anecdotes, but it felt very scattered, like she didn't know what to write about so she just wrote down whatever was in her head at the time and nobody thought to try to make it all cohesive. It felt like she wasn't sure whether to make it an autobiography or a book of anecdotes or an inspirational book, and she couldn't decide whether she liked herself or not.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 13 Aug 2012, 12:52
Brenda Cooper, "Mayan December".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Abyssalin on 14 Aug 2012, 04:47
Currently reading Murder on the Orient express, Agatha christie,

I have a fondness for the Poirot books.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 15 Aug 2012, 05:22
I think "Death in the clouds" was the first english fiction I read outside of school :)


right now creeping through "Light in August"

and "The 7th cross" by Anna Seghers.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jwhouk on 15 Aug 2012, 17:43
The Last Christian, by David Gregory.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JayJay on 15 Aug 2012, 17:51
Hi there people :D

I'm re-reading "a dance with dragons"
anyone read that too?

I'm a big fan of the songs of ice and fire series :P
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 16 Aug 2012, 01:29
I may be an anomaly. I read "Shadowmarch" and "Dragonbone Chair" and didn't read any further.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 25 Aug 2012, 23:48
Sex at Dawn is actually a really common book suggested to people looking into non-monogamy/polyamory/etc. I've got mixed opinions on it for that purpose, since I think that Evo-Psych is kind of a horrible basis for relationship advice.

What would you recommend w/r/t/ books on non-monogamy? I rather loved The Ethical Slut (I loaned it out but it never was returned to me) and would like to read more.

Mostly I learn just from being in Seattle. Seriously, at least 90% of the people I know here are poly.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 26 Aug 2012, 08:01
The Ethical Slut,  more specifically the 2nd edition, I personally found great, but I think it is for a slightly narrower audience than I would prefer It does go a litle more into the philisohpical side of poly and I think is a little more geared towards folks who are already mostly convinced Poly is for them and gives you more tips on how to be ethically non-monogamous, how to deal with jealousy and has a bit of the hippy dippy thought process behind why it is kind of a better option for most and also kind of delves into the spiritual aspects a bit. The main problem the book has, which was greatly reduced but still present in the 2nd edition, is the over use of the spirituality and anti-monogamy rhetoric.

I think the more universally useful book on the subject is probably Opening Up: A Guide to Creating and Sustaining Open Relationships (http://www.amazon.com/Opening-Up-Sustaining-Relationships-ebook/dp/B001GCUCV8/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_nS_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=ZP0IWIF3FOHL&coliid=I3HLE39V80FU26). While the book does cover some aspects of the spirituality of polyamory that makes so many Atheist, such as myself, roll their eyes, it isn't part of the core philosophy as it is with The Ethical Slut. It goes into just how difficult it is to try and start up the levels of communication required for non-monogamous relationships, how poly got started in the US and what exactly are the social, mental and sexual benefits of going into the lifestyles. What it does best with though, is that it's very monogamous friendly and is actually written in such a way as to help those who are monogamous understand the concepts and does it in such a way that it doesn't try to invalidate either choice. It's an especially great read for those who are trying to make the shift from mono to poly/open/etc and those who are simply trying to understand the lifestyle better, whether it's because they want to stop judging their friends who are non/monogamous or just for curiosity sake.

Sex At Dawn is just... dodgy I think. Outside of it being Evo-Psych, which makes me incredibly skeptical the moment it's brought up anyways, it also has a lot of somewhat dodgy logic, science and a lot of extremely eurocentric and heteronormative problems. It's well liked by a good chunk of folks, but it's to be taken with several grains of salt.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 26 Aug 2012, 18:38
The Ethical Slut,  more specifically the 2nd edition, I personally found great

Well, I was rather already convinced that polyamory was right for me, I was just not...experienced in dealing with it. I got the second edition myself, and never read the first, and
 
Quote
how to deal with jealousy

this bit was probably the single most useful piece out of all of it.

I think the more universally useful book on the subject is probably Opening Up: A Guide to Creating and Sustaining Open Relationships (http://www.amazon.com/Opening-Up-Sustaining-Relationships-ebook/dp/B001GCUCV8/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_nS_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=ZP0IWIF3FOHL&coliid=I3HLE39V80FU26).

I do like the sound of this one a lot. I plan on getting it and reading through it and sending it to my father to see what he thinks of it (not because I think he would benefit from polyamory, but to help him understand - he seems to accept the fact I am poly, even though he doesn't seem to understand it at ALL).

Thanks!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 29 Aug 2012, 13:49
Currently been reading the 'Odd Thomas' books by Dean Koontz.  I didn't realize he'd gotten up to 5 of them now, and some comics thrown in to boot - but I find the character (Odd Thomas) to be a wonderfully likeable person.  He feels real, and that definitely makes me like him, so yeah...

Also, looking to find a copy of 'Freakonomics'.  Been wanting to read that for a while.

Hmmm - reread all of the Dresden books, because 'Ghost Story' left me wanting more, and who knows when the next one will be out.

Also, reading 1Q84, which might be the strangest book that I have enjoyed.  I can't really tell you why I like it, but I absolutely do.

Oh, and somewhere in there, I finished 'Under the Dome' by Stephen King.  It was fun, if not too deep.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 02 Sep 2012, 23:06
"Lord Jim", Joseph Conrad.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Carl-E on 03 Sep 2012, 08:08
The Lovely Bones.  Because I had a week at the beach. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 03 Sep 2012, 08:23
Discworld stuff.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 05 Sep 2012, 18:58
Just finished  the 'Hunger Games' trilogy again.  Christ I hate the movie more every time I read the books.  They just did NOT do the story justice.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 13 Sep 2012, 17:03
"The Paranoid Style in American Politics", Richard Hofstadter. From the 50s. It sounds contemporary, except that the paranoid freaks of his time were better grounded in reality that today's are.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: nekowafer on 16 Sep 2012, 09:15
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories. So far I'm not really enjoying it, but my boyfriend insists that I must keep reading because it is the best thing ever.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 16 Sep 2012, 10:30
See, he thinks it is the best thing ever because...well, wouldn't you make someone think that if you could mess with their brain? It's obviously all part of a ploy to get as many people to read it and then achieve world domination.

Although now that I think of it, all Cthulhu would have to do is wander down the street...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: idontunderstand on 16 Sep 2012, 14:03
Murakami, What I talk about when I talk about running.

So far kind of liking it, mainly the parts which are not about running at all. I must say he may overestimate his talent for writing though. I think he is a wonderful story teller and I love reading his books, but he seems to think he is a talented author, which I'm not so sure about, it just seems he has a great imagination and the right mindset for writing books, combined with a very good work ethic. Or maybe that's what he means... I just mean that he's not a Steinbeck or Strindberg or whatever. But blah, I still like his books, some of them I love, that's not the point.

I don't think I have a point, now that I think of it. I'll abandon this post. Post abandoned successfully.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ponderch3rry on 19 Sep 2012, 16:55
Just finished  the 'Hunger Games' trilogy again.  Christ I hate the movie more every time I read the books.  They just did NOT do the story justice.

Watching the movie really put me off wanting to read the books. I may grab the first one to see if I can banish the weak plot line of the movie from my mind, whilst doing my best to take in the book as a separate entity.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 20 Sep 2012, 02:40
I bought a load of Discworld books a couple of weeks ago. Just realised one of them is signed, but it isn't a particularly rare one.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 20 Sep 2012, 03:25
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories. So far I'm not really enjoying it, but my boyfriend insists that I must keep reading because it is the best thing ever.

They're pretty great stories, they're just horribly written. Especially with the plot device refrain of

Quote from: Every H.P. Lovecraft story ever
One time, there was this big and scary thing that was so big and scary, I can't even begin to tell you how big and scary it was, that's how big and scary it was. You should be scared now.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: nekowafer on 20 Sep 2012, 06:01
Exactly! It's just been really hard to get through this book. But I'm going to keep going at least until I can finish the Call of Cthulhu.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 20 Sep 2012, 06:12
The novellas especially have their stretches but overall I think the atmosphere is worth it.

If you are so inclined you can listen to a lot of free Lovecraft stuff here ->http://hppodcraft.com/ (http://hppodcraft.com/)

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 20 Sep 2012, 07:48
I'd say calling it bad writing isn't fair in the least, but it's definitely not easy reading. By far the hardest thing I have a hard time dealing with is the incredibly blatant and terrible racism, even for the time. By the time he gets to the Dreamscapes that is mostly done and over with, but it's pretty blatant early on especially.

If you are actually interested in going for it, I'd say the novella "At The Mountains of Madness" is the most accessible starting point by a long shot.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 20 Sep 2012, 14:18
Quote from: ponderch3rry
Watching the movie really put me off wanting to read the books. I may grab the first one to see if I can banish the weak plot line of the movie from my mind, whilst doing my best to take in the book as a separate entity.

The books are actually very well written, and the movie felt more like, 'The Hunger Games, Lite' by comparison.  I knew that was probably going to be the case, because there is a fuck-ton of Katniss simply going through her own mind, thinking through a situation.  There were times when I read the books the first time that I was literally thinking to myself, "Goddammit girl, you're not thinking this through the right way!  Pull your head out of your ass!"  but that's just good writing if you ask me.  Drew me in pretty good. :)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 20 Sep 2012, 19:41
Susan Jacoby, "The Age of American Unreason". Title is a bit misleading since she traces anti-intellectualism and contempt for rationality through the country's entire history.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 20 Sep 2012, 20:44
I'd say calling it bad writing isn't fair in the least, but it's definitely not easy reading.

Okay, you're right. He's a technically good writer but his writing style makes me want to strangle babies because it's so bloody dense. I find it irritating; the only person who's ever written in that sort of style (not horror, but that sort of...verbose 1800s feeling) whom I have enjoyed was Poe, and even then I can only stomach him in small doses before I start to claw my eyes out.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 21 Sep 2012, 02:30
Maybe have a look at Lord Dunsany. Lovecraft took his Dreamland-stuff straight from him, but the guy also wrote a lot of interesting short-stories about ghosts and haunting and stuff which are pretty neat and not as brooding as old Howard Philips.
The longer stories  bored me a bit but the shorter stuff was nice and weird and english folk tale-ish.
Haven't read any of the poems yet.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 22 Sep 2012, 21:17
"The Republican Brain".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 05 Oct 2012, 13:00
I have just read John Brunner's The Shockwave Rider yet again; in fact, I have probably read this more times than any other single book. 

It's a cyber-punk novel written ten years before the genre was recognised.  It was rather poorly received, both because it was seen as too fantastical (in many respects it wasn't), and because its style is rather disjointed (it works for me); the rather moralistic ending is weakly done, even though it fits the theme of the book just fine.  In many respects the book has also dated somewhat, which was inevitable - however, it was also the book that gave us the term "computer worm".  The inspiration for the book was Alvin Toffler's Future Shock, hence the title. 

The idea in it that resonates so strongly with me that I keep coming back to it is the importance of individuality, and of recognising and nurturing it.  The depiction of what happens when this recognition is lost may be extreme, and strained at times; but it never seems to me to go beyond the bounds of possibility, in the sense that I can picture people who would be pleased to build such a future.  I would wish to forestall such people before they reached this point.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 15 Oct 2012, 22:52
Reading Emily Dickinson, until I got fed up with the death obsession and re-viewed Randall Munroe's rejoinder (http://xkcd.com/788/).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jwhouk on 16 Oct 2012, 07:43
Apollo 13 (fka Lost Moon) by James Lowell
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: drmike on 17 Oct 2012, 17:40
An old TSR novel called The Savage Caves.

Have no clue what's really going on.  Something underground concerning spiders, goblins, and hobgoblins.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 20 Oct 2012, 13:11
James Branch Cabell, "Jurgen: A Comedy of Justice".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 23 Oct 2012, 06:28
Wrapped up Dry by Augusten Burroughs. Moved onto Vonnegut's Breakfast of Champions
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 24 Oct 2012, 00:41
Daang

Breakfast of Champions is my favorite book ever. Must have read it 20 times.

I´m reading Heinrich Böll Das Brot der frühen Jahre because he is the man and I held his Nobel Prize certificate while visiting the city archive.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 24 Oct 2012, 06:15
I enjoy it, hard to believe I haven't read this one yet. I'm making it a mission to read everything he's ever written since I've loved everything of his that I've read so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 24 Oct 2012, 06:51
Same here :)

Check out Hocus Pocus next if you haven't yet. It is positively hilarious.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ElitistJerk on 28 Oct 2012, 13:52
Just finished The Gambler by Fyodor Dostoyevsky. I'll now get started with Cryptonomicon or To Kill a Mockingbird, still not quite sure which.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 02 Nov 2012, 04:56
The Lovely Bones.  Because I had a week at the beach.

Is the book as stupid and morally bankrupt as the film?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Carl-E on 02 Nov 2012, 19:11
No.  Well, maybe. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 03 Nov 2012, 02:03
The moral of the film's story was 'if someone rapes and murders you, it's okay if no one catches them because they'll fall off a cliff anyway.'
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Carl-E on 03 Nov 2012, 08:23
the book focuses more on the collapse and re-imagining of the family. 

This makes it much more engaging. 



OF course, I haven't seen the film. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 03 Nov 2012, 09:00
I'm told the film lost a lot of what was in the book and the ending was changed too, so I don't think I've just spoilered it.

If I did just spoiler it, feel free to come back and inform me on here, and I will go hang myself.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 05 Nov 2012, 01:25
A bunch of stuff by H. Beam Piper. Definitely Golden Age, looks like it was written to appeal to Campbell in the macho sub genre rather than the sense-of-wonder sub genre.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 07 Nov 2012, 02:11
50 shades of gray.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 07 Nov 2012, 05:58
Heh, for realz`?
If so, what do you make of it?


Time for some non-fiction for me. Questions to Prussia - On the history of an abolished state by german historian Rudolf von Thadden. It deals with the history of Prussia and it´s relation to the german state(s) both past and present.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Carl-E on 07 Nov 2012, 21:56
(http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/fifty_shades.png)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 09 Nov 2012, 05:11
For real. I wanted to know what the fuss was about.

Well. it's not good. It's not literature. It's not Shakespeare, Elliot, Winterson ... but then it never sets out to be any of those things. It claims to be and it is a romance novel. And it does what a romance novel is supposed to do. So, in that sense, it's not a bad book. It does what it sets out to do.

You know, it just is. I'm sure I won't be able to recall anything from it in about a month.

If kinky people have issues with it, that's fine. But since it's a romance novel it never has a hope of ever claiming to represent reality in any way shape or form. Just read it if you want to and otherwise ... don't.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 09 Nov 2012, 05:34
That's the kindest review of it that I've read or heard.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 09 Nov 2012, 05:35
Ehhh, I'd say that's a bad defense of it as far as the BDSM community goes. Many books and films have very problematic characters and stories that are not necessarily intended to be based on actual reality, does not make them immune to crtique or not problematic. I think a better defense would be that it's not necessarily any more problematic than anything the Marquis de Sade, Lady Chamerbly, or something more modern, "The Story of O" had.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 09 Nov 2012, 05:47
Oh.. well, making sport of romance novels is too easy.

Moving on.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 09 Nov 2012, 07:38
Ehhh, I'd say that's a bad defense of it as far as the BDSM community goes. [...]
I'm not going to defend anything against the BDSM community because I know next to nothing about the BDSM community. I'm just saying read it or don't. Get angry at it or don't. It'll blow away in a little bit.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 09 Nov 2012, 07:48
Oh god, I think you may be wrong...

http://www.themarysue.com/twilight-fanfic-book-deal/
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 09 Nov 2012, 07:59
Emma Watson has said she'd play the main part in 50 Shades of Grey, from what I've heard, which makes me sad because that actually makes me want to watch it.  I dunno how true the rumour is.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 09 Nov 2012, 08:28
I heard that the rumour existed, but also that she'd replied that she wouldn't be in it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 09 Nov 2012, 13:33
The British actress has denied that she has been approached to play Anastasia Steele in the highly anticipated film, however, she has said that she is ready and willing to do nude scenes if needed. (http://www.enstarz.com/articles/7659/20121006/50-shades-of-grey-movie-cast-rumors-emma-watson-on-nude-sex-scenes-of-course-ill-do-it.htm)

I can't find anything definite.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 09 Nov 2012, 19:17
"The Turn of the Screw".

All the literary critics are wrong: it's actually a vicious satire on English society.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 10 Nov 2012, 14:48
Who Goes There, the book that was the basis for The Thing
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 12 Nov 2012, 18:08
Nice, taut, Golden Age material there.

Reading up on Campbell's childhood makes it resonate even more.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 13 Nov 2012, 09:25
Anybody into sci-fi read anything by Theodore Sturgeon?
I just read he is the guy Kurt Vonnegut based the character of Kilgore Trout on (ICWUDT).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bev on 25 Nov 2012, 05:40
Currently reading the original Ninja Turtles comic, it's in a big fat compilation book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 25 Nov 2012, 06:00
This thread?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bev on 25 Nov 2012, 06:01
This thread?

Your post.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: riccostar on 25 Nov 2012, 16:52
Calculus, I liked it at the beginning but the plot seemed to get a little repetitive when it got to the multivariale chapter.  That being said the characters are wonderful and so dynamic, it seems like X has an entirely new value every time you turn the page.  I would definitely recommend it to those with some time on their hands. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Carl-E on 25 Nov 2012, 22:25
Didn't you know?  It's an infinite series...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 27 Nov 2012, 14:00
I found The Jungle Book in a book-sharing thingy and it´s pretty damn fucking cool :)

I had a book of Rudyard Kipling shorts that I lost when I was only half the way through and they were also pretty good. Loved the one about two englishmen going to Afghanistan and trying to start a kingdom.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: riccostar on 29 Nov 2012, 17:19
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass.

It's much quicker paced than I had expected.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jwhouk on 29 Nov 2012, 18:35
That's funny; the living unit where I work is named after Frederick Douglass.

Current reading: Ragtime. The novel, not the play nor the movie.

Trivia: the movie was the final appearance of Jimmy Cagney and one of the first appearances of Samuel L. Jackson on the silver screen.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 30 Nov 2012, 11:09
The Founding arc, from Dan Abnett's Gaunt's Ghosts series.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 01 Dec 2012, 21:50
Calculus, I liked it at the beginning but the plot seemed to get a little repetitive when it got to the multivariale chapter.  That being said the characters are wonderful and so dynamic, it seems like X has an entirely new value every time you turn the page.  I would definitely recommend it to those with some time on their hands.

A good book about life on the delta, but I found the characterization had limits.


The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion by Jonathan Haidt,

Cognitive psychology research about moral intuition and reasoning, aimed at a popular audience, putting ideas in the context of their development and their application. Interesting points include that the contemporary mid-to-upper-class EuroAmerican idea of the scope of morality is far narrower than in anyplace else that's been studied. Also that social class correlates better with moral ideas than does age, urbanization, or anything else that's been studied.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 02 Dec 2012, 09:08
The Founding arc, from Dan Abnett's Gaunt's Ghosts series.

Very good books, but they get better as they go on. The Saint is a brilliant arc (Guns Of Tanith is an action book, a thriller, a legal drama and a murder mystery all at once), The Lost not as good of an arc but it has Traitor General, which is easily the best book in the entire series, absolutely stunning book.

How far through are you?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 04 Dec 2012, 22:08
Just finished _House of Silk_, a new Sherlock Holmes novel.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Skaltura on 05 Dec 2012, 01:46

A good book about life on the delta, but I found the characterization had limits.


I felt his style was a bit derivative in places, and lacking some of the integral elements I had come to expect of the author.

#mathpuns

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/5/50/With_the_Old_Breed_%28Eugene_B._Sledge_book_-_cover_art%29.jpg)

(http://www.booklovers.co.uk/Images/BookScans/164114.jpg)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 05 Dec 2012, 08:31
The Founding arc, from Dan Abnett's Gaunt's Ghosts series.

Very good books, but they get better as they go on. The Saint is a brilliant arc (Guns Of Tanith is an action book, a thriller, a legal drama and a murder mystery all at once), The Lost not as good of an arc but it has Traitor General, which is easily the best book in the entire series, absolutely stunning book.

How far through are you?

The Armour of Contempt was the latest book that I read. Been reading them for years as they've been released. But as much as I love the series, the more of the core characters that get killed off, the less I can connect with the series. Yes, its a war series, characters are going to get die, but at the same time there is this point of how many characters getting killed off before the replacements outnumber the originals and that what connected people to the story is gone.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 05 Dec 2012, 09:02
I agree with you there. I've loved some of the new influx (particularly the Verghastites) but some of the older characters are still around, I'm sick of (Criid, for one, and her shitbag of a son).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 05 Dec 2012, 09:19
Oh yeah, I mean the series got far better (and worse....DAMN YOU CUU!) in the Saint arc and the new recruits, and it was also the arc that showed you that no one was safe. Its brave of Dan Abnett to be wholly willing to kill characters off, but he's also kind of shooting himself in the foot by bringing in these new recruits. Unfortunately, I lost interest in the latest couple of books after the Armour of Contempt with another character being killed off. There are only a couple of characters from the original core still alive that I like, like Varl. The new characters kind of feel like square pegs being fit into circular holes.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 05 Dec 2012, 11:03
I hated that he ruined Van Voytz's character. Van Voytz was the only reasonable officer they'd ever served under, so obviously he had to become a dick in the last couple of books. Sigh.

Blood Pact is a great story, but I really wish it had more of the characters in it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 05 Dec 2012, 19:17
I'm reading an interesting NYTimes article about how batshit-insane John McAfee was/is, even before he was wanted for murder in Belize.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 06 Dec 2012, 12:21
"Cold Days" AKA, Dresden Files 14 - Hells yes.  God I needed a fix of Dresden.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 29 Dec 2012, 01:45
2nd part of the 50 shades trilogy.

Book seems to imply that the urge for kinky fuckery can come from having a history of abuse and mental problems. So, yeah, might be a bit problematic for some people.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 29 Dec 2012, 06:41
Has he talked about his mother yet? I read that passage and it sounds priceless.

I'm reading Rod Stewart's autobiography. It came out in October and I got it free from a PR to review on my blog - then the whole marital breakup happened so I never bothered. I didn't expect to enjoy it much, but it's actually really good. He's got a laid-back tone, he's genuinely pretty funny and insightful and he doesn't dwell on his own alleged awesomeness too much.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jwhouk on 29 Dec 2012, 07:23
I have to ask - did he mention at all whether or not "Every Picture Tells A Story" was autobiographical?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 29 Dec 2012, 10:08
He is very cagey about his writing process in general, and I'm not sure I believe him.

He says that he mostly comes up with lyrics on the fly close to deadline, shoving together whatever works, and hasn't really illustrated any eureka moments. He mostly just seems to think that's a good tune and not much more.

So he doesn't really say.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 29 Dec 2012, 10:42
"Existence", David Brin. The ideas overwhelm the story. I'm OK with that.

Now reading something that claims to be the best American humorous short fiction. The stories seem to depend on long-dead cultural assumptions for their humor. It doesn't include "The Night the Bed Fell". If it predates that story, that's still no excuse: they should have delayed publication by however many decades it took so they could include it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 29 Dec 2012, 14:46
Has he talked about his mother yet? I read that passage and it sounds priceless.
He has. It is. The theory is that he chooses his subs because they look like his mum. And then he beats them and fucks them. Merry fucking christmas! After that revelation the criticism levelled at these books became a bit more understandable.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: henri bemis on 29 Dec 2012, 15:08
I got a kindle for christmas, so I went on a book rampage.  Currently reading Octavia Butler's Patternist series.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 29 Dec 2012, 17:36
Has he talked about his mother yet? I read that passage and it sounds priceless.
He has. It is. The theory is that he chooses his subs because they look like his mum. And then he beats them and fucks them. Merry fucking christmas! After that revelation the criticism levelled at these books became a bit more understandable.

I sort of understand the 'is terrible with women because his mother was a whore' motivation, but the fact that he is not only aware of it, but drops it in a clod of exposition is just mind-blowingly brilliant.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 30 Dec 2012, 01:01
It's ... not good, I think I can say that. I was very lenient with the first book, because, you know, what do you expect from porn/romantic fiction (ha! It's 'slash fiction') but this is just ... not setting a good example. A bad way to treat kinky fuckery.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 02 Jan 2013, 16:07
So I'm working on a 3 different books right now.

Phillip K. Dick's A Scanner Darkly

Ray Bradbury's Something Wicked This Way Comes

William Gibson's Neuromancer
 
And I just finished John Scalzi's Old Man's War

The thing is, with the exception of Scalzi I've read all of these books before, though it's been many years. I wanted to see if something I kind of suspect to be true was actually accurate. I know sci-fi wasn't well regarded as a genre up until the 80's or so, and even up to now it's looked upon with some disdain. Popular sci-fi works are labeled as something else entirely in many instances, with scant acknowledgement that they might dare be science fiction. On the other hand, every time I go back to read older sci-fi novels, I kind of feel like the genre has done some things to deserve it.

One of the things that I know a lot of sci-fi nerds do, including myself, is forgive a hell of a lot of problems in a work as long as there is an interesting premise. Lower quality writing and many tropes are regularly ignored, or even celebrated, as long as the interesting shinies the story promises deliver. Prose is generally a background consideration at best, as long as the internal logic of the "science" is intact. I feel like this is especially evident with writers like Robert Heinlein, Larry Nivel and William Gibson, though it's certainly not unique to them. These faults of the genre are part of why I just love Ray Bradbury so damn much. His prose is basically sex in the form of literature. He basically ignores the things that hardcore sci-fi lovers demand and just writes amazing stories, which is incredibly refreshing. He also does something that I wish more sci-fi would do, which is to get rid of the fucking white male Libertarian baggage so much of sci-fi loves to bandy about.

There are many others who get around these problems, though strangely enough it seems to be mostly female sci-fi authors in my experience. Margaret Atwood, Ursula LeGuin, Melissa Scott especially come to mind. In fact, here is a list of female sci-fi writers someone on my G+ shared if you are interested.

Quote
For XXX specifically, but really for anyone out there who doesn't think that women write Science Fiction. Because not only do they write SF, they write some of the best SF.

Elizabeth Bear -- her Jenny Casey trilogy is a great place to start.

Lois McMaster Bujold -- the Vorkosigan Saga is her magnum opus, a series of books in theory starring (or at least based around) the eponymous family.

Emma Bull -- Bone Dance probably should've won the Hugo.

Octavia Butler -- many reccomend her Patternist series, but I like the Xenogenesis books better.

CJ Cherryh -- Oh, where to start; she's written over sixty novels, about fifty of them SF, about two-thirds of that in one continuous universe. I adore the Foreginer series, which is currently at 14 books and waiting on the next one.

N. K. Jemisin -- The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms was gobsmacking, considering it was her debut novel. Look for better stuff to come.

Nancy Kress -- XXX mentioned her Beggars trilogy, but I liked the Probability books better.

Madeline L'Engle -- seriously, she single-handedly introduced an entire generation of readers to SF, me among them; before I read RAH, I read MLE. And glad I did.

Ursula K. LeGuin -- nevermind her Earthsea books, since they're Fantasy; set aside one of the single best essay collections by a writer about writing, The Wave in the Mind; if you read nothing else, read The Lathe of Heaven and then you'll know why she's a Grand Master.

Elizabeth Moon -- She wrote not one but two of the best Military-SF series ever written, and if you don't like Mil-SF then you can console yourself with Remnant Population or Speed of Dark and be happy.

Andre Norton -- You owe it to yourself to read Sargasso of Space if you have any adventurous soul in you. Or, you could pick from any of the 100+ other works she wrote since 1936 .

Melissa Scott -- Everyone raves about how much they loved Neuromancer and how it introduced them to cyberpunk and how it changed their lives. But for my money, Trouble and Her Friends was the book that really made me want to live in the future. And Night Sky Mine made me want to be a writer (I was later disabused of that notion).

Alice Sheldon -- You probably don't recognize this name. That's because she wrote under the name James Tiptree, Jr. and as 'Tip' was one of the most influential short-form writers of the 20th Century. She wrote only two novels, but Up the Walls of the World is one of the greatest meditations on what it means to be a thinking being ever written.

I've ended up leaving a bunch of names off this list; Naomi Novik, because she only writes Fantasy; Anne McCaffery because I can't stand her, Margaret Atwood because she doesn't "consider herself a Science Fiction Writer", and others I'm sure. There is a huge well of talent out there. When the Hugo Awards were handed out at ChiCon 7 this year, 10 of the 18 awards (including Best Novel, Best Novella, Best Novellette, and both Best Editor awards, as well as the Campbell Award) were given to women. Any time someone talks about SF being a boys club, kick them in the junk. Then go read some really excellent work by women.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 02 Jan 2013, 19:01
You all make me feel like that one kid who didn't do their summer reading assignments because he was wasting time leveling up his mage in Phantasy Star. Ugh...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 02 Jan 2013, 19:07
Nah, no reaosn to feel that way. I've had some serious problems getting myself to focus enough to read for the last several years and this is part of what I'm doing to force myself back into it. Re-read some of the more enjoyable classic reads and sprinkle it with small bite size chunks of of works I haven't read. It's working, but it's incredibly frustrating for someone who used to read a couple of books a week yer around.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: henri bemis on 02 Jan 2013, 20:56
For fuck's sake, I'm going to go broke on books this year.  I'm already on my third of the new year.

(in other words, thanks for that list!)

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 04 Jan 2013, 01:46
I dunnoo, I revisited "A wrinkle in time" and found it very boring and pretentious.


For Johnny Tolkien's birthday I got meself the 1978 all-books-in-one paperback and have a go at LOTR again.
It´s the one with the black riders from Bakshi's comic film on the cover :)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 04 Jan 2013, 09:05
You all make me feel like that one kid who didn't do their summer reading assignments because he was wasting time leveling up his mage in Phantasy Star. Ugh...

Bro I'm a literature critic and I don't even finish half of what I read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 04 Jan 2013, 19:30
You all make me feel like that one kid who didn't do their summer reading assignments because he was wasting time leveling up his mage in Phantasy Star. Ugh...

Bro I'm a literature critic and I don't even finish half of what I read.

I feel like I've accomplished what I needed to earlier on...I read Handmaid's Tale, 1984, and Brave New World all in one week as a summer reading assignment. After reading my synposes, my english teacher said I had a dark mind. (Bitch, what the fuck was I supposed to write, given that source material?!)

But after that, the only thing I've read front-to-back are take-me-away-from-reality things, like Harry Potter and Tolkien's works.

...I've been meaning to get JK Rowling's new novel, but I keep forgetting about it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 04 Jan 2013, 19:34
...she thought the paper based on 3 of the more dystopic popular science fiction novels was gonna be cheery?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 04 Jan 2013, 19:54
Maybe it was my choice of reading material...we had to pick three books from a list of about a dozen, and after reading summaries of all of them, and eliminating all the crap by Hemingway and Steinbeck, those three seemed to pique my interest the most. Heh...maybe it is me. Figures.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 05 Jan 2013, 01:18
Mhh, reading Steinbeck in the late afternoon sun in august after work, the only person waiting for the train at a run down station with overgrown plattforms simmering in the heat :)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 05 Jan 2013, 06:29
Mhh, reading Steinbeck in the late afternoon sun in august after work, the only person waiting for the train at a run down station with overgrown plattforms simmering in the heat :)

Yeah, that's what I mean. They say a picture's worth a thousand words...but only those two would actually use A THOUSAND GODDAMN WORDS to paint that picture.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: VonKleist on 05 Jan 2013, 06:37
Stay away from Faulkner then, I guess :mrgreen:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Carl-E on 05 Jan 2013, 09:57
And Victor Hugo.  I swear, there were a half-dozen chapters in the Hunchback of Notre Dame, each of which just described a part of Paris at a certain time of day... 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Spriteling on 05 Jan 2013, 10:25
I'm rereading The Hobbit, and I'm also reading Elantris by Brandon Sanderson.   I figured I should try out some of his writing, since he was selection to finish WoT and all.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 05 Jan 2013, 11:08
Yeah, that's what I mean. They say a picture's worth a thousand words...but only those two would actually use A THOUSAND GODDAMN WORDS to paint that picture.

Yeah, that's why I can't stand Anne Rice - 3 fucking pages of bougainvillea description and I was about to lose my fucking mind.  Sorry, just felt the need to share.

Also, reading John Dies at the End again, because I'm about to pick up This Book is Full of Spiders.  :D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: de_la_Nae on 07 Jan 2013, 23:20
I'm all set to order This Book Is Full of Spiders at the end of the month. Yay!

After a while of hanging out in 4chan's /tg/, I finally gave in to THE GLORY OF THE EMPRAH and checked out a couple of Warhammer 40k books from the county library. Currently working on Legends of the Space Marines. It's just fine for what it is, though in the interest of full disclosure I fuckin' loved the Dragonlance books for a long time and am still fond of many of them.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 19 Jan 2013, 04:14
The Number 73304-23-4153-6-96-8 by Thomas Ott

and

Black Hole by Charles Burns
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: DavidGrohl on 19 Jan 2013, 16:35
1Q84 by Haruki Murakami. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1Q84)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 19 Jan 2013, 18:59
I am a Cat by Natsume Sōseki, a book that, "satirizes the follies of upper-middle-class Japanese society during the Meiji era."
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 19 Jan 2013, 23:53
During the Meiji? I wasn't aware upper middle class was quite so bourgeois at that point in time...shows how much I know of Japanese history.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 27 Jan 2013, 22:51
"Real Man Adventures", by T Cooper, about the life of a trans man, a non-binary one.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 30 Jan 2013, 08:14
Nowhere Near Normal by Traci Foust. It's..interesting.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 09 Feb 2013, 14:23
"Conservatives Without Conscience" by John Dean.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Valdís on 09 Feb 2013, 19:16
"Surely you're joking, Mr. Feynman (http://25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lvyw19scXt1qdnwzfo1_1280.png)!"

(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_eq3H_NYuELo/S1-XSdhg0xI/AAAAAAAAANk/BOHpvpPC-yA/s320/surely_you_re_joking_mr_feynman_adventures_of_a_curious_character_1.jpg)

I still haven't figured out who Surely is; it's a real nail-biter!

badum-tish
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 09 Feb 2013, 22:11
"Sustainable Energy Without the Hot Air", http://withouthotair.com
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ScruffCardinale on 12 Feb 2013, 13:22
I got Neil Young's "Waging Heavy Peace" as an xmas gift from my sibling in laws, and I've been reading it little by little whenever I find some free time. Some of it is really interesting, but a lot of it just reads as an advertisement for his PONO/Puretone audio format and takes you out of the stories.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 12 Feb 2013, 18:13
This Book is full of Spiders, and Good Omens - Both Excellent so far.  I think David Wong's writing might the most fun I have had reading in my entire life.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 13 Feb 2013, 19:02
"The Holocaust is Over, We Must Rise From Its Ashes", Avram Burg.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 13 Feb 2013, 21:09
"Nexus"....a currently unpublished book. I've agreed to beta-test it for the author. So far, I'd say it's kind of 1984 meets Hunger Games, except better. ;D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 14 Feb 2013, 21:18
Judge by Karen Traviss

She's not an Author I've read before but got intrigued by the book.  Will look at getting more of her work after I finish this one.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 15 Feb 2013, 11:32
Judge by Karen Traviss

She's not an Author I've read before but got intrigued by the book.  Will look at getting more of her work after I finish this one.

I read her Gears of War story a few years ago, Aspho Fields.  I thought she did great work.  She is a very talented writer, in my opinion.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 16 Feb 2013, 01:19
"True Selves: Understanding Transsexualism".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 16 Feb 2013, 21:30
The Book of Were-Wolves, by Sabine Baring-Gould.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 17 Feb 2013, 08:32
After putting it off for months I am reading Hannibal by Thomas Harris. I already know what happens storyline wise and so I braced myself for it being fucking awful and... it's actually kind of amazing.

I forgot how absorbing and unique Harris's writing is.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 07 Mar 2013, 12:58
I am not sure if this fits here, but I just reread a plot summary of Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë on Wikipedia. I had read the books a few years ago.

I just realized that there is no way I'd read it again.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ankhtahr on 07 Mar 2013, 13:09
Judge by Karen Traviss

She's not an Author I've read before but got intrigued by the book.  Will look at getting more of her work after I finish this one.

I totally fell in love with the Republic Commando series of her, which I like better than the original Star Wars movies (even the older ones), so I was devastated when the last book of the series was cancelled. George Lucas decided that the "Clone Wars" animated series would bring in more cash, and as the storylines were a little bit conflicting he declared the novel series (which had started long before "Clone Wars") as out of canon. Karen Traviss then decided not to write the last book, which really bummed out her fans.

If you don't mind having an open end I would still recommend these books though. The first three novels don't end with such a big cliffhanger, and are absolutely fantastic. It's basically the clone wars of the perspective of some rather ordinary foot soldiers (read clone "special forces"), than of the position of these omnipotent Jedi. Contains humor, drama and romance.

But currently I'm reading through Terry Pratchett's novels once again. I'm reading them not in chronological order, but following the story lines. Right now I'm in "Thud!" of the City Watch story line. Afterwards I'll skip right to the latest novel "Snuff".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 07 Mar 2013, 15:41
Afterwards I'll skip right to the latest novel "Snuff".

Which I still haven't read yet. I did, however, find out recently that Cheery Littlebottom's last name is Sh'rt'azs in Dwarfish. :-D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 07 Mar 2013, 16:00
I am finally going to read "Casual Vacancy" by JK Rowling. I've put it off for far too long.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ankhtahr on 07 Mar 2013, 21:26
I did, however, find out recently that Cheery Littlebottom's last name is Sh'rt'azs in Dwarfish. :-D

heh, until a year ago I only had read the books in a German translation, so reading them in English was interesting. All these meaningful names were translated as well. Vimes was called "Mumm", Carrot was "Karotte" and Cheery Littlebottom was "Grinsi Kleinpo". Took some time getting used to it. As well as thinking of Treacle Mine Street as "Sirupminenstraße".

Anyway, it's a shame reading Pratchett in a translation, there are so many untranslatable puns.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 14 Mar 2013, 00:15
chugging through dutch literature at stellar pace. I've been asked to sit in on the oral lit. exams at my girlfriend's school. It would be nice if I had something intelligent to contribute.

Anyway ... Komt een vrouw bij de dokter, Turks fruit, de uitvreter, kinderjaren, dagboek van Anne Frank, de aanslag, de kroongetuige, red ons Maria Montanelli, het diner, Eilandgasten, Kaas, Oeroeg ... and so, so much more ...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 23 Mar 2013, 09:41
Just finished reading the Rats and about to start the Fog, both by James Herbert. Quite sad to hear that he passed away during the week as he was one of my favourite writers as a teenager.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 23 Mar 2013, 16:25
Finished "The Casual Vacancy"...wow. Boobs, gossip, drugs, murder, and politics. All by the mind who gave us Ron Weasley and his friend whose name I can't recall.

It really was a great read. ^o^
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Masterpiece on 23 Mar 2013, 17:43
Just read "A Streetcat named Bob" by James Bowen, is nothing special, but still kinda cute
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: celticgeek on 24 Mar 2013, 21:49
I am reading The Romance Of Tristan & Iseult, as retold by Joseph Bedier, translated by Hillaire Belloc, and completed by Paul Rosenfeld. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SethDeAlba on 24 Mar 2013, 22:04
Drawing down the moon by Margot Adler. T'is kinda dry.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 25 Mar 2013, 08:01
I have picked up a copy of The Holy Qur'an, and it will probably take me a while to get through. I thought it would be interesting to read biblical stories as told through an alternate viewpoint.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 01 Apr 2013, 12:03
"The Jewish Annotated New Testament": annotations by Jewish scholars. Heavy going and fine print, but fascinating.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 01 Apr 2013, 12:35
I finally got back to writing on my literature blog.

http://geneticallymodifiedhughes.wordpress.com/2013/04/01/i-feel-like-i-just-paid-a-lot-of-money-for-a-dead-dago/

I reviewed Hannibal by Thomas Harris!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 01 Apr 2013, 20:30
Fell off the wagon again, and overdosing on manga. Now reading Hana-Kimi. I'm not usually one for shoujo, but I like this one.

"The Jewish Annotated New Testament": annotations by Jewish scholars. Heavy going and fine print, but fascinating.

Is that seriously a real book? I HAVE to read that.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 02 Apr 2013, 11:06
About to start 'Heart of Darkness' by Joseph Conrad.

What?  I've never read it.

 :oops:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 02 Apr 2013, 13:42
Horror manga called Homunculus. It's... Intense?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 02 Apr 2013, 19:43
About to start 'Heart of Darkness' by Joseph Conrad.

What?  I've never read it.

 :oops:

It's....dark. No pun intended. It's quite psychologically morbid.

However, it's honestly the only required reading in school (other than 1984 and Brave New World, but those were my personal choice for assignments) that I actually read, cover to cover. Good luck.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: mtmerrick on 02 Apr 2013, 23:29
In the process of (yet again) re-reading Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy

one of my favorite books ever.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 03 Apr 2013, 06:41
So, this isn't exactly a proper thread for this news, but it's the closest I can think of without making a new thread for it.

Iain Banks diagnosed with terminal cancer. Has maybe as much as a year to live. (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-22015175)

Quote
Fellow Scottish author, Ian Rankin, said the news of Banks' terminal cancer was "just awful".

He Tweeted: "Typical of Iain to propose marriage to his partner Adele with the words 'Will you do me the honour of becoming my widow?"

And a personal statement from Banks.

http://friends.banksophilia.com/

Quote
"A Personal Statement from Iain Banks April 3rd, 2013 in From the Author
I am officially Very Poorly.

After a couple of surgical procedures, I am gradually recovering from jaundice caused by a blocked bile duct, but that - it turns out - is the least of my problems.
I first thought something might be wrong when I developed a sore back in late January, but put this down to the fact I'd started writing at the beginning of the month and so was crouched over a keyboard all day. When it hadn't gone away by mid-February, I went to my GP, who spotted that I had jaundice. Blood tests, an ultrasound scan and then a CT scan revealed the full extent of the grisly truth by the start of March.

I have cancer. It started in my gall bladder, has infected both lobes of my liver and probably also my pancreas and some lymph nodes, plus one tumour is massed around a group of major blood vessels in the same volume, effectively ruling out any chance of surgery to remove the tumours either in the short or long term.

The bottom line, now, I'm afraid, is that as a late stage gall bladder cancer patient, I'm expected to live for 'several months' and it’s extremely unlikely I'll live beyond a year. So it looks like my latest novel, The Quarry, will be my last.

As a result, I've withdrawn from all planned public engagements and I've asked my partner Adele if she will do me the honour of becoming my widow (sorry - but we find ghoulish humour helps). By the time this goes out we'll be married and on a short honeymoon. We intend to spend however much quality time I have left seeing friends and relations and visiting places that have meant a lot to us. Meanwhile my heroic publishers are doing all they can to bring the publication date of my new novel forward by as much as four months, to give me a better chance of being around when it hits the shelves.

There is a possibility that it might be worth undergoing a course of chemotherapy to extend the amount of time available. However that is still something we're balancing the pros and cons of, and anyway it is out of the question until my jaundice has further and significantly, reduced. Lastly, I'd like to add that from my GP onwards, the professionalism of the medics involved - and the speed with which the resources of the NHS in Scotland have been deployed - has been exemplary, and the standard of care deeply impressive. We're all just sorry the outcome hasn't been more cheerful.

A website is being set up where friends, family and fans can leave messages for me and check on my progress. It should be up and running during this week and a link to it will be here on my official website as soon as it’s ready.

Iain Banks
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 03 Apr 2013, 10:48
Fuck, I heard about this and I had no idea it was that bad.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 06 Apr 2013, 00:28
Currently on an Iaido prep course (self imposed) so I'm rereading the Hagakure, the Book of Five Rings, a book on the basic principles of Iaido and the courtesies involved (Iai: The Art of the Drawing the Sword), a general history text on Samurai culture and history, and finally when I'm not working through those, I'm studying from my actual text books for college, and some gunsmithing texts.

Oh and a bunch of travel blogs and guides to Japan for trip planning purposes. The sections on food are killing me. I'd kill for some takoyaki right now. T_T
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 08 Apr 2013, 04:37
Finished 50 shades ... !

Continuing Casual Vacancy.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 10 Apr 2013, 15:44
Continuing Casual Vacancy.

Just wait under Samantha shows Miles her Bankai. :mrgreen:

Seriously though, it's an excellent read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 11 Apr 2013, 07:14
The woman can actually write different things. It's quite impressive, really.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Deathjester on 12 Apr 2013, 17:11
I'm currently reading A Storm of Swords book 1 from A Song of Ice and Fire. because i have to finish them before i watch season 3 of Game of Thrones haha
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 13 Apr 2013, 17:08
I am reading MANGA. All of my manga, because I haven't read it in sooooo long. I have about 300 volumes of various series to get through.

You can call me Mister Marigold. :parrot:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 15 Apr 2013, 10:57
I was about to buy the Kindle edition of "Feeling Pain and Being in Pain", a book about the dissociation between pain and suffering, when I thought of looking it up in the university library first. Turns out, the university's subscription to MIT CogNet lets me download the entire book for free. Score! So I'll be reading that when I get the chance.

They also had a featured title called "The Dream Drugstore", which is about altered states of consciousness, both drug-induced and sleep-induced. That's next on the list.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 15 Apr 2013, 13:22
I have about 300 volumes of various series to get through.

But you haven't told what manga! 300 volumes could be from 10 to 50 different series, depending on how long they are...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Lupercal on 15 Apr 2013, 14:21
David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas. Didn't see the film, but I do for some reason love a good epistolary novel. And I love novels that are essentially several novellas/vignettes rolled into one. So this is going pretty good for me so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 15 Apr 2013, 20:09
I have about 300 volumes of various series to get through.

But you haven't told what manga! 300 volumes could be from 10 to 50 different series, depending on how long they are...
I'll have to compose a directory...my wife and I are still going through them. I'll let y'all know. ^_^
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Masterpiece on 15 Apr 2013, 20:27
the perks of being a wallflower.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: HappyHavoc on 15 Apr 2013, 21:56
The Road
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ankhtahr on 16 Apr 2013, 11:54
Once again I'm reading Nineteen Eighty-Four. Have to do a presentation about it tomorrow. Still as frightening as it was when I first read it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 16 Apr 2013, 19:49
You can mention in your presentation that North Korean refugees who read it tend to go "Wow! How could he have known so accurately how it works?".

Now reading "Ignition!", by John Clark, about the history of liquid rocket fuel development. He was a clear and vivid writer with an easy conversational style and fascinating subject material. Working with some of those materials was on the borderline between bravery and grounds for involuntary commitment.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ankhtahr on 16 Apr 2013, 21:43
1984 was also rather accurate for the former GDR (eastern Germany). Everybody could have been a Stasi member, children have been trained from early on (even the uniform of the "spies" is somewhat similar to the uniform of the FDJ) and have been used to spy on their parents.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 16 Apr 2013, 23:18
1984 was always creepy to me, whenever I finish it after a re-read "Shit that could happen" then I read Huxley's Brave New World... and I start to wonder if it HASN'T happened already.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Zingoleb on 17 Apr 2013, 01:25
Huxley was the one who was proven right in the end, really.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 17 Apr 2013, 18:27
Indeed. I thoroughly enjoy the contrast between Orwell's and Huxley's views on society. ^^
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 19 Apr 2013, 13:58
"The Beekeeper's Apprentice". Wow. The writing is charming and the characterization is spot-on.

EDIT: I'm about half-way through. it keeps getting better.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: mtmerrick on 21 Apr 2013, 16:26
Considering getting Mila 2.0
Anyone heard anything, good or bad, about it?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: idontunderstand on 28 Apr 2013, 05:38
Just finished the LOTR trilogy for I think the third time in my life. Still great. What stood out to me this time was all the kissing and holding hands going on between (as far as we know) heterosexual males. I remember reading something about stuff like this on wikipedia, with heterosexual men showing very tender signs of affection towards each other. There was some special term for it. Anyone?

Other than that I realize now how many parts I skipped when I read it as a kid because I thought they were boring, like most of the walk through Mordor in the final book. Now it stood out as a really great piece of work, if a bit melodramatic.

Excellent stuff, anyway.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 28 Apr 2013, 08:29
Bromance?  :mrgreen:

Anyway, I finished Feeling Pain And Being in Pain. It was more philosophical than I expected, but it also made me reconsider what I thought I knew about pain and suffering. The fact that lobotomised patients appear to be unbothered by chronic pain made me think that internalising pain, and experiencing it as the worst feeling in the world, may require some higher cognitive function that a lobotomy removes. That would imply that animals with smaller and less developed brains may only experience pain as a mechanical rather than an emotional motivator, and that they are less capable of suffering as humans are.

But the other types of pain disorders, such as pain asymbolia, indicate that the aversiveness of pain is inextricably linked to its motivational component. It is apparently impossible to be not bothered by pain, and at the same time avoiding it. I'm not sure how the experience of lobotomised patients fits in here, but this does indicate that pain, in order to be of any use, has to hurt. Since virtually every animal that has muscles is able to move away from something that's hurting it, the capacity to feel pain and respond to it is ubiquitous among animals, which implies that they all hurt just as much. So it's possible that the pain that an earthworm feels when it is poked by a needle is identical to the pain felt by a human after the same action. That's hard to imagine, isn't it?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 28 Apr 2013, 08:35
I thought I posted this already and maybe I did but I'm currently reading The Psychopath Test. I find the subject interesting but the voice, I think that's the right word, annoys me for some reason. I think it's got a bit of, "I hate myself but also think I'm better than everyone I encounter" to it. I don't think that makes any sense but it's the closest words I can get to why I think it bothers me.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Bluesummers on 28 Apr 2013, 11:36
UGHH my head....I am currently reading Homestuck, and am the middle of Act 4 right now.


I swear to god, guys, people have had acid trips more understandable than this. :psyduck:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 28 Apr 2013, 11:52
And then the archive binges. IT KEEPS HAPPENING.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: mtmerrick on 28 Apr 2013, 16:07
UGHH my head....I am currently reading Homestuck, and am the middle of Act 4 right now.


I swear to god, guys, people have had acid trips more understandable than this. :psyduck:

i've been reading homestuck.

i'm here (http://www.mspaintadventures.com/scratch.php?s=6&p=005774).

god i love it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 28 Apr 2013, 21:44
I just can't find the appeal of homestuck. Maybe it's hiding the couch cushions with the TV remote.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: mtmerrick on 28 Apr 2013, 22:13
The appeal is the blatant insanity.  :-D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 29 Apr 2013, 21:46
Psh. Insanity. It's a web comic, try spending some time at a Veteran's Retirement home. I learned stuff about Korea and mental illness that would make the guy who wrote "Heart of Darkness" terror shit himself for months.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 30 Apr 2013, 14:41
Marine - I mean this not to sound mean but as a genuine question from someone who's never known a military man; is your entire life being a marine, revolving round that?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: mtmerrick on 30 Apr 2013, 15:13
Completely different kind of insanity, garand. You're comparing a drug trip to a massacre, nikola tesla to Hitler here.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 30 Apr 2013, 15:57
Gareth, let me explain this way. They did a study a few years ago about how quickly members of the U.S. armed forces reintegrate to civilian society, to be a complete civilian again I mean. I lost the citation but the tables are as follows:
Airforce - 6 months to a year
Army/Navy - 1 year of reintegration for every year served
Marines - Never

So yes, the Corps is what I am. Being a Marine is part of the very fabric of what makes me up as an individual. It's a little worse for me because it's family tradition to serve. Again mostly in the Marine Corps.

That's what you get for joining a cult though, and per Marine Corps order we never leave the service. You're a Marine till you die, and if there's an afterlife you're expected to promptly report in at your next duty station.

"Marines are about the most peculiar breed of human beings, I have ever witnessed. They treat their service as if it were some kind of cult, plastering their emblem on almost everything they own, making themselves up to look like insane fanatics with haircuts to ungentlemanly lengths, worshipping their Commandant almost as if he were a god, and making weird animal noises like a band of savages. They'll fight like rabid dogs at the drop of a hat just for the sake of a little action, and are the cockiest sons of bitches I have ever known. Most have the foulest mouths and drink well beyond man's normal limits, but their high spirits and sense of brotherhood set them apart and, generally speaking, the United States Marines I've come in contact with are the most professional soldiers and the finest men I have ever had the pleasure to meet."
                                                                                                                                                                                          -Anonymous Canadian Citizen
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 30 Apr 2013, 16:25
Right, but again, in the nicest possible way, do you seriously not do anything else?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 30 Apr 2013, 16:37
There's a whole holy fuck ton of posts that suggest  if not flat out state that it's not all I do just in this forum. So I'm forced to interpret this as more intentional then you're trying to come off. I talk about not Jarhead stuff constantly. It's the bulk of my posts.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Valdís on 30 Apr 2013, 16:46
Marine - I mean this not to sound mean but as a genuine question from someone who's never known a military man; is your entire life being a marine, revolving round that?

Well, I should hope not. Otherwise I'm tangled up in a very, very strange mission of his.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 30 Apr 2013, 16:54
Valdis, I've been sent back in time from the year 2155, I'm a member of the Star League Space Marine Corps, and you are the target of assassins from the future. Come with me if you want to live.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 30 Apr 2013, 17:00
There's a whole holy fuck ton of posts that suggest  if not flat out state that it's not all I do just in this forum. So I'm forced to interpret this as more intentional then you're trying to come off. I talk about not Jarhead stuff constantly. It's the bulk of my posts.

It's honestly not intentional in the least, there's a lot of new posters around and I still don't know you very well. I think this is pretty obviously my issue with reading a post about marine related stuff, and clocking 'oh it's Garand' and then not necessarily clocking other posts as being you.

Just checking it was my fault >_<

Genuinely sorry for any offence caused.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 30 Apr 2013, 17:08
It's cool I just tend to assume an anti-military slant when people start asking questions like that. So it's my bad as well. Sorry Gareth.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 30 Apr 2013, 17:15
I was pretty left wing when I was younger but I'm not against military folk in any sense, it's just something I could never possibly understand as a motivation.

And I just remembered there was that photo of you in the Star Trek gear. That was you right?

Okay so you're Star Trek Marine, WE CAN DO THIS
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 30 Apr 2013, 17:26
Yep that was me XD
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 30 Apr 2013, 17:29
STAR TREK MARINE TO THE RESCUE





IN COLOUR
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Valdís on 30 Apr 2013, 17:40
Valdis, I've been sent back in time from the year 2155, I'm a member of the Star League Space Marine Corps, and you are the target of assassins from the future. Come with me if you want to live.

y-You really are just here on a mission? Not to woo me? Who says I want to be saved anymore..! ;_;

can i go to the future with you? if so the answer is definitely still yes

I was pretty left wing when I was younger but I'm not against military folk in any sense

Hey now, someone being on the left-wing politically doesn't make them anti-military. Only fools think you can have a functioning society without defending it. :-P
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 30 Apr 2013, 17:42
That's a different debate, my point was that I was pretty hard left and so anti-nationalism and I considered all soldiers to be nationalists and so fuck those guys. That was my opinion at the time anyway.

These days I just don't even understand nationalism, and I do struggle to see how one would become a soldier without some kind of nationalistic streak. But I'm always willing to learn when it comes to these things.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 30 Apr 2013, 17:43
Valdis, I've been sent back in time from the year 2155, I'm a member of the Star League Space Marine Corps, and you are the target of assassins from the future. Come with me if you want to live.

y-You really are just here on a mission? Not to woo me? Who says I want to be saved anymore..! ;_;

can i go to the future with you? if so the answer is definitely still yes

It can't be both?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: mtmerrick on 30 Apr 2013, 18:41
Valdis, I've been sent back in time from the year 2155, I'm a member of the Star League Space Marine Corps, and you are the target of assassins from the future. Come with me if you want to live.

=O

take me with you?

Also, i'm left wing (all the parties are fucked up, but they're the least of all evils) and i got nuttin but respect for the US military. In fact they're one of the few parts of the US governemt i DO have repect for.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 01 May 2013, 10:41
Currently reading 'How to Kill'  A history of assassinations - not the CIA training manual that used to exist.

Oh, and being former Navy, I can tell you that 'There is no such thing as an EX-Marine.' is not just a saying.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 01 May 2013, 12:41
Actually there being no such thing as an Ex or Former Marine (unless you're stripped of your title/position by receiving a bad conduct or dishonorable discharge) is a Marine Corps order as well as tradition.

Currently rereading Red Storm Rising. I freaking love this book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Danni on 03 May 2013, 19:08
Fabric of the Cosmos by Brian Greene.

Actually, I start tonight.

I read his other book Elegant Universe and it was a fun read, the library didn't have the others I was looking for so figured this should be a reasonable alternative.

I did just finish "The Quark and the Jaguar", or is it "the Jaguar and the Quark"?  forget but its written by Murray Gell-Mann, the guy who actually named Quarks quarks - very fun read.

oh, and Hi, I'm new
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 06 May 2013, 03:21
Moving on to The Dream Drugstore. This book is amazing! It attempts to explain all aspects of dream-related experiences from a whole-brain perspective, and it's doing a pretty good job of it so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: bainidhe_dub on 06 May 2013, 10:20
I'm on book 6 of 9 in the Young Wizards series, and I think further than I ever read it originally. The first four were as good as I remembered but now I'm getting into some parts that hit fairly close to home and it's harder to enjoy them.

I tried reading The Elegant Universe but never finished it. I don't recall where I heard about it but I definitely knew the title and went looking for it in the library. I think I was about 5 years too young to really have any idea what I was getting into.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: mtmerrick on 06 May 2013, 17:57
Dai'stiho Cousin!

I love the young wizards books.
My favorites books 2, 3, and whichever A Wizard of Mars is. :P
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: TheCollyWolly on 12 May 2013, 15:02
House of Leaves is blowing my mind. And now I finally get this comic! http://xkcd.com/472/
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 19 May 2013, 11:14
The Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes novels seem to be getting worse. "The Moor" has her kvetching constantly and contributing little.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 09 Jun 2013, 16:27
R.I.P. Iain Banks

Iain Banks Dead at 59 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22835047)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ChaoSera on 10 Jun 2013, 00:44
After seeing the trailer for the new movie, I borrowed "City of Bones" from a friend and started reading it. I'm not completely sure if I like it yet, the general plotline is kinda predictable.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ThomasEll on 10 Jun 2013, 01:02
R.I.P. Iain Banks

Iain Banks Dead at 59 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22835047)

:( RIP




Currently I'm rereading the Night Watch series.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 10 Jun 2013, 02:13
Night Watch? As in Lukyanenko?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ChaoSera on 10 Jun 2013, 02:26
Night Watch? As in Lukyanenko?
I hope so, because those books are truly awesome. When I read them it took me a while to comprehend the world he's describing but once I got into it, it was great. I was amazed how different the writing style apparently is in Russia.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 10 Jun 2013, 14:40
I always found Lukyanenko awful to read in any language but Russian, because Russian names take up to twice so many letters in English/German  :roll: Glad he gets some love, though. I truly love some of the characters. You may guess my favorite character.

Spoiler: She is a (I think True Neutral) High Witch.

The movies are an awful bastardization of the story, though. They get a few shout-outs in the book and are by Word of Canon set in an alternate universe.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ChaoSera on 10 Jun 2013, 14:45
To be honest, I barely remember any characters besides Anton and Boris (who was always my favourite). Do you mean Anton's later wife? Can't remember whether she was neutral...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 10 Jun 2013, 14:53
To be honest, I had trouble remembering which one was Boris... until I realized you meant Geser. I am still not sure whether I don't prefer Zavulon over Geser. I mean. Zavulon is an asshole. But he kicks ass. Geser is slightly less of an asshole. But he is kinda lame.

No, the one I mean is
(click to show/hide)
Anton's later wife is
(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ChaoSera on 10 Jun 2013, 15:07
God damnit, even reading the name I can't remember who she was... Is she the one Anton encountered in that wood cabin?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 10 Jun 2013, 15:26
Yesss.

The part where he suspects her of being a witch, but doesn't yet know for sure. She serves him tea:
Quote
"It's really nice to have an electric cattle", I said. "Heats water quickly. Where do you have electricity from anyway, Arina? Somehow I never noticed cables going to the hut."
Arina's face faltered. She said lamentably:
"Maybe the cable is underground?"
"Nuh-uh", I said, carefully spilling the tea on the ground. "This is not the right answer. Try again."
Arina bobbed her head in annoyance.
"What a shame... getting caught on such a small detail."
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ThomasEll on 10 Jun 2013, 16:15
Yeah I'm reading it in English, and while they are very good, there are some parts that fall a little flat (like some jokes), although I think that's because part of the joke revolves around a play on words in Russian that isn't easily translatable.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 10 Jun 2013, 16:27
If you need any part explained, just ask. I have the full four-book-volume.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 15 Jul 2013, 11:55
Cryptonomicon.  I enjoyed Snow Crash immensely.  Should be good stuff.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Schmee on 19 Jul 2013, 06:15
I've recently read Wool and Shift, by Hugh Howey; waiting on the third in the series. Great books, they somehow manage an original aspect on the dystopian-future theme.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Akima on 26 Jul 2013, 00:39
I have just finished reading Rana Mitter's new book China's War With Japan 1937-1945: The Struggle For Survival. It is very good, and I recommend it strongly if you are interested in 20th century history. The book is due to be released in the USA in September under the title Forgotten Ally: China's World War II, 1937-1945.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dream on 28 Jul 2013, 09:47
I don't really read books so much as listen to them by virtue of audiobooks. That said, the most recent book i've been reading is George Orwell's "The portrait of Dorian Gray". I have to admit, i am surprised at how interesting and engaging the book particularly regarding the characters.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 29 Jul 2013, 00:03
The Lord Of The Rings
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 31 Jul 2013, 10:52
"Names for the Sea", a memoir of moving a family to Iceland.

"Little Fuzzy", H. Beam Piper.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SageJiraiya on 31 Jul 2013, 14:44
Ship of Gold in the deep blue sea, by Gary kinder. Slow beginning, but picks up in the middle.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Edguy on 05 Aug 2013, 11:12
So, I just finished A Storm of Swords, and am by that a little ahead of the TV show (Game of Thrones, duh). I really want to jump on to the next book immediately, on the other hand I want to delay it until I've watched season 4 of GoT, since I believe you get more out of watching the show and then reading for greater depth, than the other way around. Dilemmas.. :[
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 05 Aug 2013, 20:57
Decided to vary my reading of LoTR

I'm also reading Shogun
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 07 Aug 2013, 08:46
Jenny Lawson's Let's Pretend This Never Happened.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 07 Aug 2013, 09:44
Loooooooooove.



I've read that 4 times already. She's my hero.





I recently bought The Hunger Games because it was $2 at Salvation Army. Plan on starting that by the end of the week.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 08 Aug 2013, 08:39
Also rereading Warren Ellis' freakangels.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 08 Aug 2013, 09:59
JLA/Avengers. Got it at Christmas and I've only managed to read it the once before now. Loving it because I missed out on the first run and it was so difficult to get it without paying an astronomical amount for ir.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 10 Aug 2013, 13:38
"Names for the Sea" was worthwhile. It covered some everyday details of being an Iceland resident and included interview with people who remember and preserve the old days.

It's a good complement to Alda Sigmundsdóttir's work and it must have been really informative since it left me more confused than when I started.

And just finished "Just Add Hormones", an eloquent memoir by a trans man which discusses a lot of little things you might not have expected.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 12 Aug 2013, 08:55

just finished "ANGELMASS" by Timothy Zahn.
good enough.  think it was written for the Teen-Young Adult section tho...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 15 Aug 2013, 08:58
Finished Hunger Games. Wooohoo.

Last book kinda got dragged out imho.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 15 Aug 2013, 09:57
Best book about infanticide ever!

... I didn't like it much, to be honest.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Case on 08 Sep 2013, 18:20
Neil Gaiman:
* The Graveyard Book
* Neverwhere

Damn brilliant bastard. Can't even figure out what it is he does so damn good.
But he does.

Kim Stanley Robinson:
* 2312
I didn't think it possible for 'classic' SF to be that much (odd & highly intelligent) fun to read in 2013, but it is.

Charlie Stross
* 'Halting State'
Best near future SF since Neuromancer, IMHO.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 08 Sep 2013, 19:00
The Assassin's Curse by Cassandra Rose Clarke. I heard it was good from tumblr of all places so I decided to check it out. It's pretty good so far.

I'm also reading Pariah by Bob Fingerman, mainly cause I wanted to read something by him after I read Maximum Minimum Wage.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 12 Sep 2013, 11:16
World War Z - good stuff so far.   8-)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 12 Sep 2013, 11:48
"Yellow Eyes" by John Ringo.


for about the 6th time.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 13 Sep 2013, 06:22
Library just dumped on me the following ebooks:
Mercy Thompson series books 1-5
Gone Girl
2xAgatha Christie

Plus I'm rereading Robin Hobb's Assassin series.

My head is spinning    :-o
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 14 Sep 2013, 09:24
"Yellow Eyes" by John Ringo.


for about the 6th time.

I much prefer "Blonde Hair" by George McCartney.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 15 Sep 2013, 13:53
can't find that publication.

only thing I'm turning up on Amazon is a textbook on Modernist tradition and conservative thought.

Here's the book I mentioned:
http://www.amazon.com/Yellow-Eyes-Posleen-John-Ringo/dp/1416555714/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1379278451&sr=1-1&keywords=%22Yellow+Eyes%22++Ringo
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 16 Sep 2013, 06:57
Please tell me you got the joke, Grognard.....
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 16 Sep 2013, 08:01
(http://i.qkme.me/78ch.jpg)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 16 Sep 2013, 10:58
cf. The Beatles

There's a rather contrived Latin pun in here as well.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 16 Sep 2013, 12:52
John Ringo and George McCartney
John Lennon
Ringo Starkey
George Harrison
McCartney, Paul
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 17 Sep 2013, 11:27
So, I just finished reading 'World War Z' and I thoroughly enjoyed it, but while it's a lot different than movie, that didn't really diminish my enjoyment of the movie.  I saw a couple of places where they obviously made reference to the book, and I get that making an action movie is probably going to sell a lot more tickets than a 'mockumentary'.  I do hope, however, that one day someone really makes a movie based on the actual book, and not just loosely interpreted.  I think it could be very well done, and would make for a hell of a social commentary.

"Tell it to the whales," indeed.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 17 Sep 2013, 15:07
cI'm reading Young Men in Spats by PG Wodehouse. I just finished My Life in Black and White by Kim Izzo, and before that The New Moon with the Old by Dodie Smith. Next up is The Children by Edith Wharton, followed by a collection of short stories by Virginia Woolf (I am reading my library books in intellectual order).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 17 Sep 2013, 19:14
VBScript, Step by Step: by Microsoft.

this CE stuff can be a pain.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 18 Sep 2013, 12:53
I'm reading Young Men in Spats by PG Wodehouse.

IDK if you've read much of his stuff, but even he recommended that you read it in small doses to avoid becoming angry at the inanity. It's good, but not all at once.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 18 Sep 2013, 14:07
I've dipped into it - my last employers had quite a few volumes so I'd read them when the baby was either asleep or quietly building towers (the two year old was too interested in what I was doing to let me sit with a book, ever). I find the inanity amusing! I know several of the sort of people he's parodying.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 19 Sep 2013, 04:10
American Dervish by Ayad Ahktar.

It was the "summer reading" book for freshmen at my university. And after the author came and spoke at opening convocation I decided I wanted to read it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 20 Sep 2013, 06:14
Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn.

The characters have gotten into my head.   That said, I'm finding them bizarre and unrealistic at times, though I suspect that's just me.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 20 Sep 2013, 12:18
Not just you - I had a look on Amazon and there are hundreds of reviews with the same criticism. I've heard of it but not read it; I might pick it up if I see it in the library just to see whether I agree with you.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 20 Sep 2013, 13:06
Thanks, I don't want to peek until I"m done.

Reading as an ebook from the library, fwiw.

EDIT:  In general, unrealistic (to me) characters is one of my biggest literary turn-offs.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 20 Sep 2013, 15:43
Oh, me too. I've read a couple of chapters of books with a promising plot and given up because the characters are so badly written that I just can't get engrossed in the story. It's a fairly crucial skill for writers.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 01 Oct 2013, 07:14
So Gone Girl wound up having that kind of modern artificial/clever, everyone-has-a-hard-luck-story feel* that I abhor.  Overall, well written and engrossing, but not for me.

Spent some time in urban fantasy.  Butcher's Cold Days continued to strengthen my belief that the series has jumped the shark.  Also, he is so, so screwed.  Book essentially made things worse for him, not better, imo.  Plus, been reading some Mercy Thompson stuff.  Light and airy.

*I'm sure lit types have a term for it.  I only studied 1.5 courses worth of lit in uni, so I'm ignorant.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 01 Oct 2013, 07:47
Nick got me Rant by Palahniuk for my birthday! I started reading it last week and it is so twisted and disgusting and wonderful.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 01 Oct 2013, 12:57
Reading Who I Am by Pete Townsend.

IT'S A BARREL OF SHITTIN' LAUGHS
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Allie_Allie on 01 Oct 2013, 12:57
I'm currently reading, "Amor En Tiempos de Colera (Love in the Time of Cholera)" by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, "Rayuela (Hopscotch)" by Julio Cortazar, and "El Hombre Mediocre (The Mediocre Man)" by Jose Ingenieros.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 17 Oct 2013, 21:09
"Brainstorm: The Flaws in the Science of Sex Differences", Rebecca Jordan-Young.

She takes a keen rigorous look at the literature on sex-related brain development and leaves it in tatters.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 18 Oct 2013, 10:58
I read Pete Townshend's book. Here's what I thought: http://geneticallymodifiedhughes.wordpress.com/2013/10/12/who-is-pete-townshend-anyway/
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aimless on 18 Oct 2013, 11:26
Reading "Republic of Thieves" right now! A couple of negative early reviews made me very nervous, but I'm more than half-way through the book and still loving it. It is, in several ways, very different from the first two books. I'm kinda digging those differences, even though I loved the others :o I think some reviewers have been put off by the difference in plot and by the Locke-Sabetha story. I see where they're coming from, but I feel like the plot rightly takes a back-seat to the characters and their relationships this time 'round... and I feel Lynch is doing justice to those characters. As before, Lynch's writing is unique, skilful, fluid, unobtrusive in a way different from that of many of my favourite writers. In this book, the writing is more restrained, more focused and freer from flights of fancy.

There is of course still time for last-minute disappointment, but I reckon I'm going to end up enjoying this one more than "Red Seas Under Red Skies".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 21 Oct 2013, 19:48
Smoke and Mirrors by Dan Baum, interesting book about the War on Drugs and how it failed so horribly.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 21 Oct 2013, 19:50
After watching the Hobbit for the 3rd or 4th time I've decided to read the book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 21 Oct 2013, 23:37
Just remember that unlike The Lord of the Rings it's unashamedly a children's book.  It's also quite small, which makes filming it on the same scale as LotR a bit unexpected (and requiring substantial additional material, I gather).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ackblom12 on 21 Oct 2013, 23:41
Yeah, it's using a fair amount of material from The Silmarillion to flesh things out.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 22 Oct 2013, 13:03
Ender's Game.  I've always been interested, but never read it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Edguy on 28 Oct 2013, 05:45
Just started on the Malazan Book of the Fallen series, by Steven Erikson. Pretty heavy reading to start with!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 29 Oct 2013, 15:50
Muhammad: A Very Short Introduction by Jonathan Brown for my Arabic class. It actually is rather short and (although there isn't much in there I don't know from previous classes) informative.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 01 Nov 2013, 22:36
Ravenor.  A trashy sci-fi novel about a warhammer 40k potent psychic inquisitor confined to a hovering wheelchair, encased in a life support system.  the first few chapters where rough to get through, I'm in part two now and it has gotten quite exciting. His crew are an interesting group. Favorite characters other than the named one is Patiences Kys - a self proclaimed "non-people person" telekenetic psychic, Nayle - a gruff merc (makes me think of wolverine with guns), and Kara Swole - a bodacious former acrobat turned merc.  Most of the other characters are quite fun too.  The first planet they were on was beyond depressing.  I think its safe to say if I was living in those slums I would have turned to drugs and ate my own gun three times over.
 :-\


update: finished it.  Not bad.  William King is the best story teller for 40k stuff so far, but dan abnett who wrote this didn't do half bad.  Switching perspectives from person to person kind of got confusing towards the end but all in all its not a bad bit of sci-fi in the warhammer 40k universe.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 18 Nov 2013, 18:19
Just finished "Angles of Fire" by William king (see above) it is the first of the Macharius trilogy.  My god I love this author.  If you like 40k, you gonna love this!  Its all done from the first person perspective of a Baneblade driver.  You learn so much about the guard, war on a planetary scale, hives, heretics, Macharius, battles of faith.  It was just awesome.  If you are familiar with 40k and love the lore, I'd recommend this as a buy or borrow from a friend.  400 pages so you can get through it fairly quickly when you get sucked in.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 19 Nov 2013, 10:31
I read Novice to Master by Soko Morinaga. It's an autobiographical account of the spiritual development of a Zen master. It's very light reading - I finished it in three sittings - but fascinating nonetheless. I find some of his revelations very relatable; on some of them I know I've had similar thoughts. For example, early in the book he describes how his master showed him the surprising efficiency and ingenuity in how to do something as simple as sweeping a floor. I realised something similar when I was working a summer job at a plantation: even though the work is menial and not intellectually stimulating in any way, there is a great deal of skill involved in maximising the efficiency with which you do it. This is not at all what the book is about but it still stood out to me.

There are a lot of other teachings that really resonated with me in the book. I'm suddenly very interested in learning more about Zen.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 20 Nov 2013, 13:57
Are lovecraftian books worth it?  I have often heard that lovecraft books are rough to read but the lore that comes out of it in other mediums are more enjoyable.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Usurpatore Hominum LXVI on 21 Nov 2013, 02:21
(http://i42.tinypic.com/1zxv0us.jpg)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 21 Nov 2013, 13:13
NECROTELICOMNICON

(Alt. title Liber Paginarum Fulvarum)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 27 Nov 2013, 16:46
All the King's Men by Robert Penn Warren. Trying to catch up on "classics."
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 27 Nov 2013, 23:25
"Sexual Life in Ancient China", 1961. A semi-scholarly look at art, porn, marriage manuals and medical literature up to the end of the Ming dynasty.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 28 Nov 2013, 00:02
Does it mention "the pillow book" at all?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 28 Nov 2013, 10:32
I'm ploughing through the complete works of Austen, and various other classics which catch my eye in the library. At the moment, though, I'm reading Henrietta's War by Joyce Dennys, which reminds me of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer - similar style and setting, both excellent.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 29 Nov 2013, 01:00
STONE COLD JANE AUSTEN

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 29 Nov 2013, 10:22
I wish I made that name connection when I was studying English Literature. It'd be a lot more fun to have analysed Darcy as a face turn.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 01 Dec 2013, 15:16
Does it mention "the pillow book" at all?

Don't know yet.

"Double Cross", a history of WW2 double agents and how they were used to support the great D-Day deception. "Colorful" only begins to describe them. There was one whose drinking and womanizing might as well have been James Bond's.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 06 Jan 2014, 06:57
On the weekend I read

Hunt for Red October
Ysabel (Kay)

Enjoyed the heck out of both.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 06 Jan 2014, 08:06
Recently read Disaster Artist, an autobiography/tell-all by Greg Sistero, co-star of infamous terrible movie The Room.

I'll say this much, reading about how Tommy Wisseau acts in real life makes The Room seem outright coherent. The book is surreal, depressing, funny and a little bit touching. Made me want to watch the movie again.

OH HAI MARK
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 06 Jan 2014, 09:15
I got a few books for my kindle and I'm reading Johannes Cabal: The Fear Institute
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 06 Jan 2014, 21:15
I've started Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner. I'm not sure I like it very much, but I'll finish it before forming a definite opinion.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 11 Jan 2014, 16:59
John Stuart Mill, "Considerations on Representative Government", much more interesting than it sounds like.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 11 Jan 2014, 18:37
Finished Absalom!, Absalom! Southern Gothic (aka tales about rich Confederates) isn't really a genre I enjoy, but I'm just trying to keep up with my "read more classics" resolution.

I'm about to start reading When I Was Cool: My Life at the Jack Kerouac School by Sam Kashner. I meant to start today, but the university library was closed even though the website said they'd be open today.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 18 Jan 2014, 21:33
Just finished "The Professor and the Madman".

EDIT: Now into "Quiet: the power of introverts in a world that won't stop talking".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 23 Jan 2014, 18:15
Charles Dickens' American Notes
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 25 Jan 2014, 07:00
Finished Salvation's Reach by Dan Abnett. I don't know if I'm just starting to tire of the series or if this actually is one of the lesser books. It's still good, but he insists on focusing so much time on new characters when it's like goddammit you already have 200 characters in the regiment as it is, can we hear more about them? I liked Maggs, what the fuck happened to Maggs?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 01 Feb 2014, 09:04
Naked Lunch by William Burroughs. It's...um...interesting.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Lupercal on 01 Feb 2014, 16:48
The beat-version of Confessions of an English Opium Eater, as I recall.

I've been alive for just over 23 years on this Earth and have so far managed to avoid watching The Shining because I wanted to read it first, relevance or not. Classic King so far...I'll see how this turns out. King's forward suggests that this was a turning point, stylistically, in his career from Carrie and 'Salem's Lot, which I also loved.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 02 Feb 2014, 18:02
Have not read any King yet, and I'm in my 40s.

Snacked on Scalzi's Ghost Brigades today.  Not bad.  Not as good as Old Man's War, though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 02 Feb 2014, 20:39
The beat-version of Confessions of an English Opium Eater, as I recall.

Junkie would be more along that line as far as Burroughs talking about the hows and whys of being a heroin addict (interestingly he declared himself cured of his addiction late in his life, despite claiming in Junkie that addiction is permanent and you can only fight it). Naked Lunch is an interesting look at what happens when a very smart man takes a lot of drugs and then tries to write a Modest Proposal-esque satire of everything.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 14 Feb 2014, 16:55
Anne McCaffrey: A Life With Dragons by Robin Roberts
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Schmee on 17 Mar 2014, 04:41
Working my way through Arc 26 of Worm (http://parahumans.wordpress.com/). It's... I was about to write "Incredibly good for a web serial", but on second thought, I'll settle for "Incredibly good." Superheroes, supervillains, psychopaths, combinations of the three, parallel universes, and surprisingly well-thought-out characters and powers.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 17 Mar 2014, 06:21
Guilty of Everything: The Autobiography of Herbert Huncke.

He really was guilty of a lot of things. I feel like every 3rd paragraph ends with "and then I was sent to Rikers Island."
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 17 Mar 2014, 22:31
"Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher", about a Seattle-based photographer who documented the vanishing Indians.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LawGeek on 09 Apr 2014, 19:22
All the King's Men by Robert Penn Warren. Trying to catch up on "classics."

That is a fantastic book.  It's the only one we own as a signed special edition; since it's hubby's fave I got it for him as a present when we were dating and ten years later it still has a place of pride on our shelves.

Right now I am reading:
Runaway (Munro, Alice / Short stories)
As I Lay Dying (Faulkner)
Tomorrow-Land: The 1964-65 World's Fair and the Transformation of America (Tirella, Joseph)

Normally I try not to read more than one book at a time, two if one is fiction and the other non-fiction.  However, the first one is for a book club coming soon, and the last one I am reading in anticipation of the fair grounds being opened up next week for two hours only.  So Faulkner's been back-benched for a bit, but I'm still sneaking him in when I can. 

I finally got my husband to start reading again, after being consumed with classics in high school and college then somehow drifting away.  I think this was mostly accomplished when he got me a Kindle Paperwhite for Valentine's Day and he inherited my new-ish Kindle complete with huge library.  His obsession with the World's Fair got the better of him, and we're competing to see who can get through Tomorrow Land first in anticipation of the fair ground event. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 11 Apr 2014, 20:34
fiction for the moment:
just finished: "The Dark Beyond the Stars" by Frank Robinson
just started: "Blue Horizon" by Wilbur Smith
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 12 Apr 2014, 08:20
Currently reading No Logo by Naomi Klein, a book about branding's effect on the economy and society. I picked it up from the free book table in the Sociology building after reading on the back cover that it inspired Radiohead to ban advertising on their tour.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Mlle Germain on 19 Apr 2014, 11:41
I'm currently re-reading "The Fault in Our Stars" by John Green (after reading it for the first time two weeks ago). And wow, that is one of the best books I've read. I guess you could classify it as a book for young adults, but if you're a not-so-young-anymore adult (like me. I mean, I'm still pretty young, but not in the prime target group for young adult fiction anymore), that should totally not stop you from reading it - my 63-year-old mum gave it to me because she thought it was really good. It is, in my opinion, extremely well written, gripping, funny and terribly sad at once. The first time I read it, I read it in one go.
So yeah, if you're looking for something new to read, maybe check it out.

I'm ploughing through the complete works of Austen, and various other classics which catch my eye in the library. At the moment, though, I'm reading Henrietta's War by Joyce Dennys, which reminds me of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer - similar style and setting, both excellent.
Very late to the party, but I also really enjoy Jane Austen. To anyone who wants to read something of a similar type, I'd also recommend Anne Bronte's (can't do the double dots over the e) "The Tenant of Wildfell Hall".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: hedgie on 19 Apr 2014, 19:32
Spinoza's Ethics.  Bear in mind, it is for a course, so even though I enjoy it, it's only half-pretentious.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 20 Apr 2014, 13:28
I just finished On Basilisk Station and In The Name Of The Queen and I must say I <3 the Honorverse. Sure it's basically Horatio Hornblower genderbent and IN SPAAAAAAAAAAAACE but... I fucking like Horatio Hornblower!

Mr. Gareth sound general quarters and bring the ship to battle station if you please. Helm, Mr. Cold lay in an intercept, I want to do everything we can to avoid that broadside once we close. Tactical, Groggy hold to 100,000 klicks then engage with laserheads, please remind your defensive fires teams that another missile through our sidewall could well cripple us.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 20 Apr 2014, 13:50
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Brought it with me for travel reading and wanted to wait till most of the details of the Fincher film had faded from my memory so I could enjoy the mystery element better. Seemed to be kind of unnecessary since there is obviously a lot more detail in the book but even more than I expected. I'm managing to create my own image of the characters quite nicely. Was worried I'd just be picturing Daniel Craig the whole time.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 20 Apr 2014, 18:37
I just finished On Basilisk Station and In The Name Of The Queen and I must say I <3 the Honorverse. Sure it's basically Horatio Hornblower genderbent and IN SPAAAAAAAAAAAACE but... I fucking like Horatio Hornblower!

Mr. Gareth sound general quarters and bring the ship to battle station if you please. Helm, Mr. Cold lay in an intercept, I want to do everything we can to avoid that broadside once we close. Tactical, Groggy hold to 100,000 klicks then engage with laserheads, please remind your defensive fires teams that another missile through our sidewall could well cripple us.

So, it turns out I've got scurvy, and uh... doctor says I have to tell everyone I've... 'been' with...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 20 Apr 2014, 22:20
Space scurvy? Damn that's worse than normal scurvy...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 21 Apr 2014, 07:11
Tried the first Wallander novel.  I want to like it, but it's just way too depressing.  Like reading Sartre.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 21 Apr 2014, 09:46
I just finished On Basilisk Station and In The Name Of The Queen and I must say I <3 the Honorverse. Sure it's basically Horatio Hornblower genderbent and IN SPAAAAAAAAAAAACE but... I fucking like Horatio Hornblower!

Mr. Gareth sound general quarters and bring the ship to battle station if you please. Helm, Mr. Cold lay in an intercept, I want to do everything we can to avoid that broadside once we close. Tactical, Groggy hold to 100,000 klicks then engage with laserheads, please remind your defensive fires teams that another missile through our sidewall could well cripple us.

Sir,  PD launchers 19 and 20 report frame damage and cannot launch. All others are ready.

Additionally, the HMS Hydra (CLAC-19) reports 10 squadrons of LACs launched, but HYDRA has taken minor damage to their wedges and are falling out of line at 20 klicks per second.

Finally, the HMS Loyalist (CL-42) is not responding to comms, is venting from her port-side frames, and her wedges are at 50% and falling.  She did manage to flush her PD missiles, and while they are on automatic zone defense, their layers will be overlapping ours.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 09 Jun 2014, 09:52
New Dresden.  Skin Game.  FUCK YES!  That is all.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 09 Jun 2014, 13:30
Wait how did I miss that there's a new Dresden out there?  I think he's jumped the shark, but I'll still read it, because books.

Read Gaiman's the Ocean at the End of the Lane.  Loved it.  Reminiscint of Coraline.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 09 Jun 2014, 14:18
It actually snuck up on me.  I wasn't aware of it until about a week ago.  But yes, loving it so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LocoJoe on 09 Jun 2014, 15:19
I'm currently reading the third book in the Ender series, Xenocide. I really enjoyed the first two books and can't wait to dive into this one. I also picked up Dune. I've been told nothing but amazing things.

As far as comics go, I'm currently reading Chew and Morning Glories.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 09 Jun 2014, 16:40
I hope you enjoy Xenocide.  It's where the Enderverse dropped off for me.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 09 Jun 2014, 17:03
I highly recommend Ender's Shadow.
it is MUCH, MUCH better than Speaker or Xenocide
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KOK on 13 Jun 2014, 04:41
I just finished The Thin Man, and am about to start on Tortilla Flat. I tend to pick up classics if I run into them in second hand book stores.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Noxx on 03 Jul 2014, 09:14
Just finished "Island of the lost: shipwrecked at the edge of the world", which was a pretty well written account of a pair of wrecks in the Auckland islands. In between other books I'm still working on "A terrible mistake", which is great, but one of those books that requires you to stop and research or vet a lot material, so it's dragging on.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 03 Jul 2014, 09:31
My current reading list is...  well, weird.  I've been reading a shitload of websites, and journals and research papers because someone asked me to determine if:

A. The 'Rage' virus from the 28 ____ Later series is possible.

and

B.  if actual Zombies (dead returning to life) is even remotely viable.


Reading about infectious diseases is not conducive to good sleep. 

 :psyduck:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Noxx on 03 Jul 2014, 09:46
No it's not, hemorrhagic fevers in particular, might want to pick up The Demon in The Freezer
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 03 Jul 2014, 14:34
No it's not, hemorrhagic fevers in particular, might want to pick up The Demon in The Freezer
Awesome, thank you.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 03 Jul 2014, 17:52
Since I'm done with American Gods I picked up Anansi Boys, and after that I'm gonna read Horns by Joe Hill
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The Seldom Killer on 04 Jul 2014, 01:21
Recent reading has included:

Perdido Street Station - China Meiville - Quality on a par with Neal Stevenson with the combined imaginations of Iain Banks and Jeff Noon. Wonderful telling of a story combined with an excellent portrait of an evolved city. I will be looking forward to getting into more from this author. Genius verging on madness.

How I Won the Yellow Jumper - Ned Boulting - A very endearing account of Ned's transformation from a pitch reporter/journalist into on of the main faces of British coverage of the Tour de France. Probably only going to appeal to cycling fans but it does give a fascinating insight into the other side of the camera on the easiest, and hardest sport to report on. You will need to have watched at least one Tour to understand a lot of what gets discussed in the book (it starts tomorrow, yay).

The Bone Season - Samantha Shannon - Emerging young writer. Hunger Games-ish setting. Not brilliant but enjoyable and will probably buy the sequel.

The Humans - Matt Haig - Simple plot, simple storytelling but absolutely wonderful and great take on what it is to be human. I strongly advise you to read this book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Schmee on 04 Jul 2014, 03:45
I'm currently working my way (very, very slowly) through Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid by Douglas Hofstadter. It's fascinating, but very heavy reading.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Noxx on 04 Jul 2014, 07:16
Just went back to try to finish "executed on a technicality". I had previously abandoned it because it was pissing me right the hell off, as Innocence Project cases tend to do.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 04 Jul 2014, 10:02
Just finished "Cibola Burn" the latest in The Expanse series.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Noxx on 07 Jul 2014, 09:42
Just downloaded "convicting the innocent" for the kindle. Hopefully it gets me through all of today's waiting rooms.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 14 Jul 2014, 19:58
Finished Anansi Boys and I really liked it. It's a nice sequel of sorts to American Gods, even if they are completely different books. Time to start reading Horns by Joe Hill
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Nyithra on 15 Jul 2014, 01:28
Been going through the series that showtimes Dexter is based off of
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 16 Jul 2014, 12:42
Just picked up And the Mountains Echoed, haven't started reading it yet but hopefully I will tomorrow.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 17 Jul 2014, 12:32
Been going through the series that showtimes Dexter is based off of

A friend of mine bought me the first three, and I enjoyed them.  How many are they up to now?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Nyithra on 18 Jul 2014, 01:05
The series is complete and there are 7 books if my memory is correct.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aimless on 19 Jul 2014, 15:30
"Our brains, wired to detect patterns, are always looking for a signal, when instead we should appreciate how noisy the data is."
-- Nate Silver


Kicked off my vacation reading with Nate Silver's The Signal and the Noise, a book about some of the more important challenges associated with forecasting--and decision-making--in vitally important fields ranging from baseball to seismology. I believe it's his first book and it's a little rough around the edges (spineless editor, I suspect), but it's a great read so far.

I'm nearing the halfway mark and each chapter so far has focused on a specific field of research--that is also of direct real-world importance to real people--in order to highlight a few important concepts or ideas that help the reader understand when, how and why forecasting may be difficult as well as recognize when these limitations are the most dangerous wrt their impact on decisions (at all levels from the individual going for a walk without an umbrella to the politician voting for the wrong stimulus bill). To some extent these chapters seem to have the goal of eliciting indignation and outrage from the reader and I expect the second half of the book will concern itself with [Messianic :o] Bayesian approaches to mitigating many of the problems described in the first half.

This description may make the book sound a little dull or fussy or irrelevant, but it's actually really fun! The subjects and discussions are diverse but coherent, grounded in reality and presented in a way that is clear and entertaining.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: hedgie on 19 Jul 2014, 18:42
Re-reading "Good Omens", also reading a book on the Empiricists (Locke, Berkeley, and Hume)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 22 Jul 2014, 16:38
Weekend was Spin, by Robert Charles Wilson.  Now working through Nika Harper's Old Souls stories.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KOK on 22 Jul 2014, 23:42
Good Omens may be the funniest book I ever read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 22 Jul 2014, 23:46
It is.

Currently reading The Girl Who Saved The King Of Sweden.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aimless on 24 Jul 2014, 11:33
Review of "The Signal and the Noise" forthcoming, until then here's a review (my first on Goodreads!) of "Zealot":

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1005676526
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Noxx on 25 Jul 2014, 11:37
Reading "The Icemaster", polar exploration historical nonfiction. Really it's just filler but it's mildly interesting.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 27 Jul 2014, 08:49
Just read The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman in one go, in a warm garden.

I don't think I can recommend it enough. It's a stunning piece of art.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 28 Jul 2014, 03:52
I loved that story so much.

I'm currently in the middle of 3 books at once.
- A collection of stories told by home children
- Nika Harper's Echoes of Old Souls
- Tammy Salyer's Contract of Defiance
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Noxx on 31 Jul 2014, 21:27
Going back through classics, I picked up "West with the night" just about twenty years after my first reading of it.

SO good, wish it wouldn't end.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 01 Aug 2014, 01:38
Just read The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman in one go, in a warm garden.

I don't think I can recommend it enough. It's a stunning piece of art.
On my strong suggestion my girlfriend read it and she was all like: yeah, 's allright, I suppose.

How? What? I don't even ... ?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 01 Aug 2014, 08:39
Are you sure she didn't accidentaly read American Gods?  Because then the reaction would make sense....
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 01 Aug 2014, 11:48
That almost sounds like grounds for a breakup. I'm not sure I could continue dating a woman if our values were that far apart.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 01 Aug 2014, 13:08
She thinks it's okay, the story does stay with you for a while, but she's just not blown away by it.

How the hell is that possible?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KOK on 04 Aug 2014, 04:03
Are you sure she didn't accidentaly read American Gods?  Because then the reaction would make sense....

I thought we had a no trolling rule here.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aimless on 04 Aug 2014, 04:59
She thinks it's okay, the story does stay with you for a while, but she's just not blown away by it.

How the hell is that possible?

Is she a huge Neil Gaiman fan?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 04 Aug 2014, 09:49
The only Gaiman book I've read that I didn't completely enjoy was Interworld. It did fail to grab me the way his other work did.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 22 Aug 2014, 14:07
I finally finished the Golem and the Jinni, and it was really good. I assumed it was going to be a story about two people from different religions coming together in 19th century New York City, but was surprised that it was actually about a Golem and a Jinni
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 29 Aug 2014, 09:19
So I finished up the second book in the Ravenor omnibus.  It was a lot of fun and way more exciting than book 1 (http://forums.questionablecontent.net/index.php/topic,21782.msg1198835.html#msg1198835).  Some new characters, new factions.  At one point there were 5 different factions (I simplifies them as the good guys, the bad guys, the evils guys, the cops, and pirates) that then morphed into 2 (The good guys and the bad guys) with a secret 3rd in the end.  It was like 1 part cop drama with 1 part heist movie, a dash of love craft, a splash of x-men, and stuffed with warhammer 40k!
(http://fc01.deviantart.net/fs71/f/2010/008/0/8/08bf47b7532bab778bfa440f532bae89.jpg)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 18 Sep 2014, 00:17
Just finished "Twilight of the Bombs" by Richard Rhodes.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Orkboy on 18 Sep 2014, 02:37
Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series.  Mr. Butcher is best known for his modern-fantasy series, The Dresden Files, but his foray into swords-and-horses fantasy is very compelling as well.  The first book of the series, Furies of Calderon, takes a little while to get going as he introduces the setting, but the series as a whole delivers everything you could want.  He's working on a Steampunk book, but i haven't heard anything definitive yet.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Barmymoo on 18 Sep 2014, 09:37
I've just zipped through I am Malala, and am now on Clare Balding's Walking Home - I've seen both of them speak this week, and am enjoying reading the books in the context of having met them in person! Malala's book is an incredibly good introductory history of Pakistan (probably in no small measure thanks to Christina Lamb, who helped her write it) and Clare is even funnier than I had realised.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 18 Sep 2014, 10:08
I've had I am Malala sitting on my dresser forever, but I can't seem to pick it up.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Akima on 21 Sep 2014, 19:08
I just finished The Martian by Andy Weir. I made a mental note to buy this book once it came out for the Kindle on the basis of the huge tick (http://www.schlockmercenary.com/blog/the-martian-book-review) given to it by Howard Taylor in his blog, and frankly I was very disappointed. Fundamentally the problem is that the author completely failed to make me care about his protagonist.

(click to show/hide)

I was really looking forward to this book, because I'm so tired of lazy science-fiction that might as well have Harry Potter waving his wand in the engine-room, but the author's complete failure to engage me emotionally relegates it to second-rate in my opinion.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 23 Sep 2014, 06:46
That's too bad.  I agree with your upsides, but found the narrator's propensity for sense of humour and for making really stupid mistakes engaging.

That said, I gamed with Andy Weir years ago, read his online comic religiously back in the day, so I may have been biased in favour of the book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KOK on 30 Sep 2014, 09:14
Saint-Exupéry: Terre des Homme (in Danish translation). He tells about his experience during the early days of mail flight, when motors were fragile and emergency landings were something you must always keep in mind.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: evilQuälgeist on 02 Oct 2014, 13:36
Andrzej Sapkowski's "Die Dame vom See" the last book of the witcher series

//Edit: Oh and Pact, how could I forget that?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dalillama on 10 Oct 2014, 14:20
I'm having a go at Thomas Piketty's Capital in the 21st Century, with George Macdonald Fraser's McAuslan for light entertainment.  Also Bujold's Paladin of Souls (Sequel to Curse of Chalion), when all I've got with me is my phone.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SubaruStephen on 20 Oct 2014, 18:42
I just finished The Martian by Andy Weir. I made a mental note to buy this book once it came out for the Kindle on the basis of the huge tick (http://www.schlockmercenary.com/blog/the-martian-book-review) given to it by Howard Taylor in his blog, and frankly I was very disappointed. Fundamentally the problem is that the author completely failed to make me care about his protagonist.

(click to show/hide)

I was really looking forward to this book, because I'm so tired of lazy science-fiction that might as well have Harry Potter waving his wand in the engine-room, but the author's complete failure to engage me emotionally relegates it to second-rate in my opinion.

I just started this one (didn't click on the spoiler button).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: celticgeek on 22 Oct 2014, 15:38
I have just finished "Simple Dreams - A Musical Memoir" by Linda Ronstadt.  An interesting look at her influences and her music, with comments on the music scene of her time. 

Also just finished "The Pluto Files" by Neil DeGrasse Tyson.  A very fun look at the demotion of Poor Poor Pitiful Planet Pluto. (Apologies to Linda and Warren Zevon.)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 28 Oct 2014, 05:13
I read the latest Dresden Files book last night.  It's been something like 14 books, and Dresden seems to be to be in more and more trouble with every book.  I don't know if that's a credit to the writer, or the opposite.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 13 Nov 2014, 12:15
I just finished Awoken. It is Twilight with Cthulu. It's glorious. A review I saw described it as "The Room of books" and I agree with that sentiment. Also I am aware of the book's writing process but don't want to get too into it if anyone decides to look into the book.

Now I am on to Chameleon Moon (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18687522-chameleon-moon) which I demand you all buy HIGHLY RECOMMEND. Not just because my friend wrote it, although I wouldn't hold it against you if you did it for that reason, but because I'm only a couple chapters in and it is so good. I'm loving the characters and world building.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: KOK on 06 Dec 2014, 11:33
HC Andersen Mit eget Eventyr
and
Herodotos The Histories
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The Seldom Killer on 08 Dec 2014, 06:29
Bit of a reading slump but now trying to decide between The Ocean at the End of the Lane - Neil Gamain (comments upthread noted), Bone Clocks - David Mitchell and The Peripheral - William Gibson.

I feel Bone Clocks will win out.

Also Gary Spencer Millidge has finally gotten his act together and gotten a new episode of Strangehaven out. The clearly means I need to fully re-read the first three trades.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 08 Dec 2014, 10:28
Moab is my washpot.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BenRG on 08 Dec 2014, 11:51
All the Weyrs of Pern (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/All_the_Weyrs_of_Pern) by Anne McCaffery. IMHO, the last Pern book she wrote before age started seriously eating into her ability to maintain internal consistency in her stories.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 08 Dec 2014, 21:59
All the Weyrs of Pern (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/All_the_Weyrs_of_Pern) by Anne McCaffery. IMHO, the last Pern book she wrote before age started seriously eating into her ability to maintain internal consistency in her stories.

Heh, started reading the Talent Series a week ago - in reverse order. :-D - Just finished The Tower and The Hive and am moving on to Lyons Pride tonight.

As well as reading some of my fave Online Fiction at The Athenaeum.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 11 Dec 2014, 19:06
I'm currently reading the Left Hand of Darkness, after that it's either Bird Box or Wolf in White Van
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 12 Dec 2014, 00:21
I'm currently reading the Left Hand of Darkness, after that it's either Bird Box or Wolf in White Van

I love that book, anything by Le Guin, really.

Currently reading "Shift" the second volume of the Silo Series.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The Seldom Killer on 17 Dec 2014, 14:57
Bluegh...

Just finished Bone Clocks - David Mitchell and having that horrible transition of Fiction Decompression where you have to adjust to not loving in book world and the world around you seems a less real and more hollow and grey.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 22 Dec 2014, 23:07
The Aquariums of Pyongyang, which is about life in a North Korean gulag. I actually had put it on reserve at the library before the recent movie situation because a friend recommended it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Schmorgluck on 23 Dec 2014, 13:10
I'm currently reading the Left Hand of Darkness
Oh, I've been wanting to reread it ever since I attended a "class" in a sci-fi con, which was about the figure of the Visiting Stranger in Le Guin's work, with a strong emphasis on Genly Ai (the scholar who lead the class noted that "Ai" sounds like "eye", which may or may not be a coincidence).

I just finished reading the Mistborn Trilogy, by Brandon Sanderson. I'm currently reading The Alloy of Law, set in the same universe. Very interesting take on fantasy, with its following of tightly rule-based magic.

After that I'll go for Icare, a manga written by Moebius and Jean Annestay, and drawn by Jirō Taniguchi. I borrowed it from my local library. As far as I know, it has only been published in Japanese, French, and Italian.

And after that, well, I also borrowed the integral edition of Inspector Canardo (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inspector_Canardo) by Benoît Sokal. Been years since I read it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 23 Dec 2014, 14:05
I read Dune. Way better than the movie.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Orkboy on 25 Dec 2014, 18:11
I'm finally reading the Song of Ice and Fire series.  I don't want to get ahead of the show, though.  Dramatic plot twists are much more dramatic on TV, where you can actually see everyone you like die horribly. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 25 Dec 2014, 20:01
I'm finally reading the Song of Ice and Fire series.  I don't want to get ahead of the show, though.  Dramatic plot twists are much more dramatic on TV, where you can actually see everyone you like die horribly.

The show is starting to (partially) run ahead of the books starting next season. Things have gotten confusing.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Orkboy on 25 Dec 2014, 20:09
I'm most of the way through book 2, and the differences are starting to build up.  For example, weasel soup. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Gladstone on 01 Jan 2015, 21:38
Started reading Don Quixote earlier today.  I haven't read it before, and, save for watching that Wishbone episode on PBS when I was a kid, I don't know anything about the story at all.  All I really remember is the tilting-at-windmills bit, which I just read, and so the next 900 pages are a complete mystery to me.  No spoilers!

(Kidding.  It's a 400-year-old book, spoil as much as you want, I won't get mad.)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 02 Jan 2015, 00:19
The butler did it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Gladstone on 02 Jan 2015, 16:08
He was dead the whole time!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 02 Jan 2015, 20:48
The Windmills are a lie.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 02 Jan 2015, 23:38
It's a cookbook! It's a cookbook!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Akima on 04 Jan 2015, 12:52
It was his sled?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 04 Jan 2015, 12:56
He was the princess all along!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 04 Jan 2015, 14:45
Rocinante is a traitor.

Currently reading See Rock City, a story collection by Donald Davis.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 07 Jan 2015, 17:31
I just finished Cicero's "de Officiis" and am most of the way through Salman Rushdie's memoir.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: explicit on 07 Jan 2015, 18:25
I picked up Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls by David Sedaris at the airport. It looked interesting, and was clearly a national bestseller if it was in the little airport bookstore (and I guess it does say national bestseller on the title page... huh look at that). It's in short story format and is a quick read. I like the humor and the occasional amount of absurdity. Literally bought it on a whim and had no idea what it was about, so I'm pleasantly surprised.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 08 Jan 2015, 06:16
He's delightful :-) I've read all of his books and saw him at the Bardavon last Fall. He signed my book and drew an owl with a screwdriver in its head. Also, I feel it relevant to share that he was wearing culottes. <3


If you haven't yet, read Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim. Or Me Talk Pretty One Day.
(Or...well, anything else, really. I love them all.)




I plan on starting Beautiful You by Chuck Palahniuk this afternoon. I'm excited but apprehensive! I'm a huge fan of his as well and this book has had some seriously mixed reviews. I have high hopes but we'll see where it goes.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 08 Jan 2015, 12:06
I picked up Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls by David Sedaris at the airport. It looked interesting, and was clearly a national bestseller if it was in the little airport bookstore (and I guess it does say national bestseller on the title page... huh look at that). It's in short story format and is a quick read. I like the humor and the occasional amount of absurdity. Literally bought it on a whim and had no idea what it was about, so I'm pleasantly surprised.
I picked that up based solely on the title. Okay read. I figured out later that the author is a semi-regular on This American Life whom I enjoy. The more you know.

Currently reading: Worst. Person. Ever.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 09 Jan 2015, 21:42
I am reading a biography about Dietrich Bonhoeffer:

"Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy."

very interesting and in depth about the fight for Germany's soul prior to & during WW2.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: GarandMarine on 09 Jan 2015, 21:54
I picked up Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls by David Sedaris at the airport. It looked interesting, and was clearly a national bestseller if it was in the little airport bookstore (and I guess it does say national bestseller on the title page... huh look at that). It's in short story format and is a quick read. I like the humor and the occasional amount of absurdity. Literally bought it on a whim and had no idea what it was about, so I'm pleasantly surprised.
I picked that up based solely on the title. Okay read. I figured out later that the author is a semi-regular on This American Life whom I enjoy. The more you know.

Currently reading: Worst. Person. Ever.

Mein Kampf? Or did you get Margaret Thatcher's biography?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 12 Jan 2015, 07:40
Funny. But ... no: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Worst._Person._Ever.

Douglas Coupland. His books are cocaine to me. (Though this wasn't his best.)

Currently reading ... The fault in our stars. I feel so ... YA.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Gladstone on 15 Jan 2015, 23:06
Fell into some sort of weird mood that made me lose interest in everything I'm currently reading (no matter how enjoyable), so I set aside Don Quixote for a bit and started The Magic Mountain by Thomas Mann.  Is there a word (in German, probably) for that feeling you get when you want to read something, but just not the book(s) you're reading at the moment or even any of the books you currently own/have borrowed from the library?  Because I get that feeling every few months, and it completely ruins me for a day or two until I can find the exact book to get me out of it. 

On the plus side, that's how I ended up reading Moby-Dick a few years ago, and TMM is going rather well, so I can't complain too much...but it's still annoying when it starts.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 17 Jan 2015, 19:30
"Founder's Son", a Lincoln biography.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 18 Jan 2015, 06:38
Finished TFIOS, finished Looking for Alaska, currently reading an Abundance of Katherines.

Yes, I have a box set.

... finished 'katherines' and paper towns.Just one more and then I can go and do something else.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ankhtahr on 30 Jan 2015, 17:56
I'm ill, can't really leave bed, and spend the time finally reading Dune.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 30 Jan 2015, 18:21
The Spice must flow.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: hedgie on 31 Jan 2015, 00:03
Bless the Maker and his water.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ankhtahr on 31 Jan 2015, 00:09
Whoa. I now realise how often I've read that sentence, now that I understand the reference…  :psyduck:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 31 Jan 2015, 14:20
MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

Shaihuluuuud
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Orkboy on 31 Jan 2015, 18:43
Finished the first three Game of Thrones books, and I refuse to read farther because I want to be surprised by the show. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: DavidGrohl on 01 Feb 2015, 00:58
The shows have made it past book 2.  I think there are a few events left towards the end of the third book that have yet to take place.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 01 Feb 2015, 03:46
Kul Wahad.

Also: finished all the John Green books I have. A+, would recommend. Currently reading Stikvallei, a dutch book about a valley in Kameroen where 1200 people died, over night, in their sleep.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Orkboy on 01 Feb 2015, 14:11
The shows have made it past book 2.  I think there are a few events left towards the end of the third book that have yet to take place.

Yeah, like the book three epilogue.  Don't worry, no spoilers, but having read it now, I'm a little surprised they didn't choose that for the season closer, unless they plan to ignore it entirely.  It's a hell of a dramatic moment.  I don't know how book 4 wraps up, but if it ends on an insufficiently dramatic moment, they could dust off the book 3 epilogue and use that, and watch people's heads explode.  George RR Martin seems to have a knack for ending a book on a dramatic high point, though. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 06 Feb 2015, 10:28
Read "Fist of Demetrius" the sequel to "Angels of Fire (https://forums.questionablecontent.net/index.php/topic,21782.msg1203745.html#msg1203745)" in the Marcharius Crusade trilogy.  Was interesting the way the narrative would switch from Leo (the protagonist from book 1) and the villain.  Was also interesting having Xenos as a story teller and the villain. I quite liked it and thought it was a nice romp in the 40k verse but I thought the ending was pretty lack luster to what it was leading up to.  Then again a lucky throw of a grenade, though mundane, makes it more realistic in a story stepped with evil space elves.  Will need to pick up the final installment at some point.

In the meantime I'm delving into non-fiction with "King Leopold's Ghost".  its about western imperialism in the Congo.  I'm 2 chapters in and its been very eye opening.  The West's romanticized ideal of the "Dark Continent" ignited by Henry Morton Stanley was interesting and King Leopold's lack luster early life and terrible marriage have been remarkable.  Finding out that Queen Victoria and Prince Albert had to explain sex to Leopold and his bride is really hysterical.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: The Seldom Killer on 09 Feb 2015, 04:16
I cracked through two books while on holiday;

Mime Order by Samantha Shannon - This is the sequel to Bone Season and is showing a maturation of the author and development of storytelling ability. The first book was a decent enough little read but I found this one far more engaging. It seems likely that there will be further growth and improvement. It's also good to see a sci-fi/fantasy genre'd book playing about with psychic powers as a principle device. It's an area I haven't bumped into that often but it does manage to avoid the more obvious cliche's.

Station Eleven by Emily St John Mandel - A really good take on the post-apocalyptic scenario. I was a bit sceptical about this book as the usual fare on this genre tends to follow quite a set pattern. I'm glad I picked it up though as it deviates from that very early on and strikes a good balance between the inevitable bleakness and that human capacity for adaptation and hope.

Currently reading Before I Go to Sleep by S J Watson. There already seems to be a film of this so I'll probably watch that later. It's a good take on the amnesia/Memento scenario where the amnesiac character slowly uncovers her past and present situations. Immense plaudits have to be given to the author/editor/publishers for setting the scene before reading that the central character can't trust the person who's looking after her. However, with two principle carers, you don't know which is the unreliable narrator about what. You're immediately thrust into questioning details and chewing over inconsistencies as they're revealed to the central character. About half way through you'll be guessing as to what is going on but you'll either be pleased with yourself to have guessed right or pleased with the storytelling if you guessed wrong.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 11 Feb 2015, 19:53
Well, picked up Red Mars by Kim Robinson from the Library today.


Haven't read it in years, and even then I don't think I got more than half way through it due to various reasons.  Meant to go back and get it again to read, but never got round to it, but since it appears that there is a Big Screen version of it in the works, I thought I'd read it and it's sequels right through this time.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dalillama on 11 Feb 2015, 22:21
Just finished The Daedalus Incident and the sequel The Enceladus Crisis.  Parallel universe fun, where one is a century odd in our future, with various nations exploring the Solar System, and the other in an alternate 18th century where alchemy allows sailing ships to travel the Void.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 12 Feb 2015, 13:03
Ever read A Transatlantic Tunnel, Hurrah! by Harry Harrison?

Great Alt History novel set in a world of 1973 where Washington lost the Revolution and the Americas are still a British Colony.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Dalillama on 12 Feb 2015, 16:39
Yup.  Have you seen his The Hammer and the Cross trilogy?  A group of Norse pagan priests set out to compete with Christianity in an organized fashion, and forge a new kingdom with the aid of a renegade Englishmen.  Vikings, warfare, technological development, and vikings abound.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jwhouk on 12 Feb 2015, 18:27
Becoming Big League. Book by a U of Washington professor about the Seattle Pilots, and the whole morass surrounding their one season as an American League team.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 12 Feb 2015, 20:34
Yup.  Have you seen his The Hammer and the Cross trilogy?  A group of Norse pagan priests set out to compete with Christianity in an organized fashion, and forge a new kingdom with the aid of a renegade Englishmen.  Vikings, warfare, technological development, and vikings abound.

Haven't read that one.  Have read his Stars and Stripes Trilogy though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 21 Feb 2015, 03:08
I weeded through the boxes of old books in my parents' attic and found a few Charles Dickens hardbacks. I took Oliver Twist home to read, as well as The Origin of Species. But those haven't captured my interest as much as Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality (https://www.fanfiction.net/s/5782108/1/Harry-Potter-and-the-Methods-of-Rationality), the fanfic, which has received a slew of new chapters and is nearing its end. You can get a reasonable idea of where it's going with the first chapter, and it's boundlessly entertaining.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Schmee on 21 Feb 2015, 16:08
HPMOR is an excellent read, but the first 5 or so chapters have a different feel to the rest. It starts off with "ha ha the magical world makes no sense look at all these inconsistencies", but afterwards it slows down a little and starts actually building a story.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 28 Feb 2015, 15:29
The whole "magical Britain is insane" business seems to be referenced regularly throughout the story, but yes, it wastes no effort in supporting that notion at the beginning of the story. There's plenty of comedic notes throughout as well, which I really enjoy. And also plenty of times where it breaks your fucking heart and stomps it into the ground.

Just look at the last chapter, it was posted tonight. I can hardly read the text with how goddamn grimdark this has gotten.

(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 01 Mar 2015, 08:20
Reading "The Book of Barkley" by L.B. Johnson

 Amazon Link  (http://www.amazon.com/Book-Barkley-Through-Labrador-Retriever-ebook/dp/B00M7GCTZO/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1425226621&sr=8-3&keywords=barkley)

Johnson is a poetic wordsmith with a flowing cadence all her own.
  If there ever was a book PERFECT to be an audio book, this is it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: hazlett on 03 Mar 2015, 22:13
I'm starting to read Great Expectation by Charles Dickens
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 04 Mar 2015, 00:20
Are you looking forward to it? Do you have great expe-*trapdoor*
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 04 Mar 2015, 07:42
Just finished King Leopold's Ghost.  It is about the life of King Leopold II of Belgium and how in his constitutional monarchy he was able to set up his own fiefdom in the Congo and sap as much profit as possible for himself. It was totally his personal colony and not of the Belgian people's until about a year before his death.  Trying to gather as much money as possible his colonial offices really enslaved the native and treated them harshly just to increase his profits.  The horrible things I've read and how one of the earliest modern humanitarian movements to stop this occurred.  It is a very well written book and the author almost likens it to a novel of short stories.  You learn about the "heroes" of the time and how they were venerated when they were far from heroic, as well as those demonized for speaking out about the treatment of the Congolese.  If you ever want to read about the period or learn the darker side of the imperialism of Africa I highly suggest picking this up.  It is amazing how Leopold used webs of media and propaganda to placate not only the Belgian populace but also the government of foreign powers like France, Germany, UK, and USA!  More amazing on how a bunch of nobodies was able to speak up and defend the Congolese and try to get Leopold's grip wrestled from the Congo.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51YaI3jz23L.jpg)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 06 Mar 2015, 06:12
A Child of Christian Blood, about the trial of Mendel Beilis. He was a Jew living in Czarist Russia who was arrested in Russia and charged with blood libel (for those who don't know: the accusation that Jews kidnapped and murdered Christian children), and his trial brought international attention to Russia's extreme antisemitic policies.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 13 Mar 2015, 06:33
Anyone have a recommendation for a Buddhism primer?  Need some light reading while I'm on vacation next week.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aziraphale on 13 Mar 2015, 09:04
Anyone have a recommendation for a Buddhism primer?  Need some light reading while I'm on vacation next week.

Practice, sutras, or overview?

My personal favorite is Thich Nhat Hanh's The Miracle of Mindfulness, and a lot of the rest of his work is also quite good. Pick up something with a good translation of the Heart Sutra. Alan Watts' The Way of Zen is quite good. So is Mindfulness in Plain English, by Henepola Gunaratana. City Dharma by Arthur Jeon is worth a look. And pretty much anything by Pema Chodron is worth reading.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 13 Mar 2015, 11:12
Overview was the answer.  Thanks for the recommendations
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ev4n on 24 Mar 2015, 07:59
So far, I am enjoying Mindfulness in Plain English.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aziraphale on 24 Mar 2015, 09:38
Glad to help!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 28 Mar 2015, 20:21
Phenomenal (http://www.amazon.com/Phenomenal-Hesitant-Adventurer%C2%92s-Search-Natural/dp/1594204713), written by my sophomore writing professor. Essentially she went around the world experiencing natural wonders (the Northern Lights in Iceland, the butterfly migration in Mexico) as a sort of unorthodox therapy for postpartum depression. It's actually really interesting, because she connects it to the wonder we all see in small things in children and how we can (and I'm a bit tipsy so I can't find a better word) 'rediscover' that.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 11 Apr 2015, 00:39
I'm in the second book of Weber's Safehold series.

Touching, but the good guys are just plain too good, and people take mind-shattering revelations in stride.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 12 Apr 2015, 06:08
I am having a second read through Chris Jericho's third autobiography, Best In The World: At What I Have No Idea and I am increasingly realising that as much as I love his work, and as much as his arrogance is justified to some extent... the guy really seems to be an asshole.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 12 Apr 2015, 15:35
Whatever I'm in the frakin' mood for

Granted, it's a lot of FanFic at the moment, but I do have Green Mars on the go too.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 19 Apr 2015, 18:21
Just finished "The Sociopath Next Door".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Gladstone on 22 Apr 2015, 22:56
Halfway through The Last Samurai (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1133500.The_Last_Samurai) by Helen DeWitt.  Child prodigy seeks absent father.  Amazing so far.  No relation to the Tom Cruise movie. 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Gladstone on 25 Apr 2015, 23:15
Just started "The Faerie Queen" by Edmund Spenser.  Huzzah for epic Elizabethan poetry!

The Sarazin sore daunted with the buffe
Snatcheth his sword, and fiercely to him flies;
Who well it wards, and quyteth cuff with cuff:
Each other's equall puissaunce enuies,
And through their iron sides with cruel spies
Does seeke to perce: repining courage yields
No foote to foe. The flashing fier flies
As from a forge out of their burning shields,
And streames of purple bloud new dies the verdant fields.
(Book I, Canto II, v. 17)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 05 May 2015, 18:25
I'm reading Howl's Moving Castle, and I feel like it fills in a lot of the holes in the movie.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Edguy on 20 May 2015, 21:23
Have anyone here read the the Witcher books? Are they well written? How do they compare to similar series such as Malazan Book of the Fallen or Song of Ice and Fire? Are the English translations good?

After all the amazing previews and trailers, and now reception, to the third game, I've been picking up the first two games. I've really taken a liking to the series, and I'm considering reading the books.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 21 May 2015, 23:00
Now caught up on David Weber's Safehold series. The good guys are showing a definite dark streak now.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Active Madness on 27 May 2015, 02:00
Reading Chuck Palahniuk's "Doomed".

In recent years he's definitely relying more on shock value than writing quality.

Got to the requisite big shocking bit in Doomed this morning and it was just... eh. It's not shocking, it's not thought provoking, It's not titillating. It's not transgressive, it's just grubby.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Gladstone on 27 May 2015, 19:39
"Recent years" meaning since about 2007, but probably long before that.  I read most of his novels after "Rant" out of sheer habit, but finally decided to stop after "Damned."  Everything he writes just seems tired and half-assed, like he knows what he's expected to do and just barely cares enough to do it.  I still think "Fight Club 2" is a giant joke, but nobody wants to be the first to admit it.

That said, I have his new collection of stories on hold at the library, but I'll probably just read one or two to confirm that he's still doing the same old shit.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Active Madness on 28 May 2015, 00:58
I loved Haunted and Rant, but the others since Lullabye have left me quite cold.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 29 May 2015, 21:25
Just finished "Good Omens", Gaiman/Pratchett. Wish I'd read it long ago.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 30 May 2015, 00:04
Daughter Of The Empire - Janny Wurtz
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 30 May 2015, 22:26
Moloka'i by Alan Brennert, set mainly in Hawaii's leper colony in the late 19th-mid 20th centuries.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 01 Jun 2015, 15:04
Daughter Of The Empire - Janny Wurtz

!!! A most EXCELLENT READ !!!
I highly recommend reading the entire trilogy.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 02 Jun 2015, 17:08
I will be, I have them as well as The Riftwar Trilogy by Raymond E. Feist.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: lepetitfromage on 09 Jun 2015, 18:41
Moloka'i by Alan Brennert, set mainly in Hawaii's leper colony in the late 19th-mid 20th centuries.

Whoaaaa....it blew my mind a little that you're reading this. He's my mom's cousin!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jwhouk on 10 Jun 2015, 05:27
Just finished a great (and funny!) book by someone from another message board: The City of Smoke And Mirrors (https://nickpiers.wordpress.com/the-city-of-smoke-mirrors/).

It takes the dime detective novel, sets it on its ear and smacks it around a lot. Imagine your everyday gumshoe in a Gotham-like city - except the city is "protected" by a creature named the Vulture.

And your gumshoe is an armadillo.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 22 Jun 2015, 08:03
Alan Cumming's memoir, Not My Father's Son

Whoaaaa....it blew my mind a little that you're reading this. He's my mom's cousin!

Well if you ever speak to him tell him I greatly enjoyed the book, especially the flow of time in the plot. Moloka'i is something I've been interested in ever since learning about St. Damien in Sunday school. And the perspective of a character who grew up in the colony and then was able to leave it was pretty awesome.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aimless on 09 Aug 2015, 14:40
Reading The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau. excellent so far, review forthcoming
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 17 Aug 2015, 19:43
Slowly, By Thy Hand Unfurled by Romulus Linney. Also picked up Heathen Valley. I'm familiar with Linney's plays but hadn't had the pleasure of reading one of his novels before now. His writing style is very unique, very poetic although still in paragraphs.

It's amazing what gems professors will leave in piles marked "Free" in the hallways. I think at least a third of my bookshelf is filled with such finds.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 21 Aug 2015, 13:22
I'm 15 pages into _Resilience_ by Eric Greitens and impressed as hell.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 22 Aug 2015, 16:40
I am currently reading "My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry" ( http://books.simonandschuster.com/My-Grandmother-Asked-Me-to-Tell-You-Shes-Sorry/Fredrik-Backman/9781501115066 ). It's great (or the translation is, at any rate). I enjoy the easy unconvoluted sentences (which I suppose are there to emphasize this is told from the POV of a child).
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 25 Aug 2015, 19:39
I finished Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and now I'm reading the Restaurant at the End of the Universe. I loved Hitchhiker's and I'm loving Restaurant, they're both pretty short, fun reads.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BeoPuppy on 26 Aug 2015, 03:58
The unlikely pilgrimage of Harold Fry. Not as fun as advertised.
The city & the city. Good stuff, great idea.

Just finished The long utopia. I love this series. Great SF.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 06 Sep 2015, 23:13
Had to read Wonder of the World, because it's one of the shows the theatre department is considering putting it on next year's mainstage season and I'm one of the students on the advisory committee.

Funny how David Lindsay-Abaire wrote one of my favorite plays (Rabbit Hole), which is a serious drama, and every other play of his I've had to read is faux-Expressionist bullshit. It's probably gonna get picked because certain people love it, and honestly I don't have a case against it much better than 'I think the plot, dialogue, and characters are all really stupid.' It has a favorable gender ratio which has been a big problem with show selections, and it would present some interesting but manageable technical challenges.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 11 Sep 2015, 15:33
I finished Shepherd's Crown yesterday. very bittersweet.
May he rest in peace.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 12 Sep 2015, 04:32
Shouldn't that be "Mayherestinpeace"?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Loki on 13 Sep 2015, 15:10
Why? Because the clacks signals don't contain spaces?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 14 Sep 2015, 00:06
Nah, I was thinking of Goodie Whemper and the chorus of "Maysherestinpeace" that goes around every time her name is mentioned.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 14 Sep 2015, 12:05
Currently reading "Overthrow: America's Century of Regime Change From Hawaii to Iraq".  As if I didn't have a low enough opinion of the US government by virtue of my Native heritage.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: downtowneddie on 18 Oct 2015, 22:32
A colleague of mine recommended Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age by Sherry Turkle. The idea is that we've sacrificed communication and conversation for just being connected. It's an interesting observation and I look forward to getting deeper into the book.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 31 Oct 2015, 03:45
Finishing up Ready Player One and then I'm on to the Nightvale book
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 31 Oct 2015, 04:31
At the suggestion of one of my professors, I'm about to start a parallel reading venture. The Kentucky Cycle, a series of 9 one-acts that won the Pulitzer for Drama in 1991, and an essay series that breaks down the playwright's reliance on stereotype as well as talks about other representations of Appalachia in the media.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 22 Dec 2015, 21:16
"A Peace to End All Peace", by David Fromkin. It's about how the aftermath of World War 1 sowed dragon's teeth in the Middle East. The level of ignorance the decision makers showed is worse than you imagine. Often they did not know what their own governments were doing.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 22 Dec 2015, 23:05
Currently reading some old D&D novels from the 80s I picked up at a thrift store. Sweet slumbering Cthulhu they are so awful.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: cucumber error on 28 Dec 2015, 14:01
Just finished reading Newt's Emerald by Garth Nix- a fun read but it left a couple things unresolved. Also, I can't help comparing it unfavorably to Magician's Ward (Patricia C. Wrede) which I've read probably half a dozen times and love.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 31 Dec 2015, 15:11
"I am Malala"

It gives a clear portrayal of her native culture and an angle on the recent history of the region that we don't normally get in the US.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Akima on 21 Jan 2016, 01:44
I just finished "JFK's Forgotten Crisis: Tibet, the CIA, and the Sino-Indian War (http://www.amazon.com/dp/0815726996)"

I bought it for my Kindle on the basis of its strong reviews. It's good, and I recommend it. The perspective is American, of course, but it is no bad thing to get multiple views of events (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sino-Indian_War). The author makes use of recently declassified sources which shed interesting light on the barmy things the CIA was getting up to in China at the time.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 21 Jan 2016, 12:38
Open Secrets: Star Trek Vanguard
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 26 Jan 2016, 16:13
Gonna try reading On the Road by Jack Kerouac, but if I don't get into it I'll switch to Wake of Vultures by Lila Bowen
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 31 Jan 2016, 01:15
Now going through the books Michael Santos wrote during his 27 years in Federal prisons, which are a bit more real than Orange is the New Black (the book).

If the system were designed to perpetuate itself by encouraging recidivism, it would look much like it does today. For example, having his studies for a degree interrupted by an "education" supervisor who forbade receiving books from the university wasn't conducive to preparing for a career outside.

Ditto policies that take away visiting privileges for months or years for minor breaches of regulations, cutting off the outside support network that's vital to staying out after release.

One side conclusion is to stay a million miles from the drug trade. One of Piper Kerman's fellow inmates was serving four years for answering her boyfriend's phone and taking messages from his customers.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: ThePerilsOfDan on 01 Feb 2016, 15:32
Muster by J P Fahey
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 15 Feb 2016, 21:57
Inside This Place, Not Of it
Narratives From Women's Prisons
Robin Levi and Ayelet Waldman

It's mistitled. The cover should simply say "TRIGGER WARNING". This book is the most painful sustained reading I've done in ten or fifteen years.

The horrors almost always begin long before the criminal record does. Over and over and over, the women were derailed in childhood by abuse. They're left unable to control their emotions, unable to assert themselves when a "friend" asks them to be an accomplice, unable to live without self-medicating illegally. Thus they are launched into the prison pipeline.

Some of them killed abusers, in circumstances that my training says were open and shut self-defense.

Once in prison, further sexual abuse is common, and medical neglect to the point of malpractice or beyond apparently universal.

Don't read this unless you have extraordinary emotional defense mechanisms.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 18 Feb 2016, 12:13
Finished A Wake of Vultures and now I'm on to The Brothers Cabal.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 18 Feb 2016, 12:25
Reading "The Varieties of Scientific Experience" by Carl Sagan.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 22 Feb 2016, 23:27
"The Slumber Party From Hell"
Sue Ellen Allen

It's another prison memoir, mostly about creating meaning and spiritual development. Emotionally fragile people should skip the first couple of chapters about her cell mate dying of untreated leukemia while the prison nurse refused even to take her temperature.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sheenobu on 23 Feb 2016, 00:12
I'm working through the beginning of Mastermind: How To Think Like Sherlock Holmes by Maria Konnikova for the 100th time. I keep picking it up and not committing to finishing it.

As a valentines day present, I was given Girl Sex 101 by Allison Mood and KD Diamond. It keeps my attention a little more as it is a much easier read and has plenty of pictures.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 24 Mar 2016, 20:04
"Freeing Tammy", Jody Heather.

"The New Jim Crow", Michelle Alexander.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 26 Mar 2016, 19:22
Finished No Country for Old Men and I can see why they took out certain parts for the movie.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Emoroffle on 30 Mar 2016, 04:08
I'm re-reading Pieta by Nanae Haruno, it's probably my favorite manga. I read it again every now and then, it deals with socials outcasts who meet at a therapist's office. It's a lesbian romance but deals with heavy stuff such as suicide. Although it is about a lesbian couple it doesn't focus on their sexuality, that is secondary to the problems they are experiencing. Fair warning, while I absolutely adore it, the story gets very dark at some points so avoid it if you have issues with suicide, parental abandonment, as well as physical and psychological abuse.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Aimless on 16 Apr 2016, 17:24
Best read of the week, for me: http://steve-yegge.blogspot.se/2008/10/universal-design-pattern.html?m=1
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 08 Jun 2016, 04:39
I just finished reading Heathen Valley by Romulus Linney. It was a slog to get through, it took the entire plane trip from D.C. to Rome and then the return flight from London to D.C. for me to read. I'm usually a pretty quick reader. But there were so many ridiculous, lengthy metaphors, that I found myself having to re-read passages a lot. It also continuously shifts perspectives between third and first person, sometimes within chapters.

It's based partially on the real-life Valley Crucis mission in North Carolina. A wide-eyed young bishop, a bumbling preacher, a seminary student, and a sorrowful church groundskeeper who grew up in the mountains, set out to build a mission in a ginseng-rich valley so isolated that its people became animists and practitioners of witchcraft. It's very much a cultural story more than a religious one, I should add.

From a plot perspective, Heathen Valley is a great story, with a lot of twists and great character evolutions. But the writing style is exhausting, it's filled with mixed metaphors, jumps backwards and forwards in time, and broken up with narrative interludes from a character that's otherwise not very important to the main plot. The best written passages in the book are the ones written from the perspective of Starns, the groundskeeper, who is the closest thing the novel has to a main character (although there are a truly Tolstoyan number of characters).

Romulus Linney is one of my favorite playwrights, and I'm left thinking he was probably a far better playwright than author. He did rewrite this into a stage play. Maybe I'll find a copy of that and see how I like it.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 23 Jun 2016, 07:34
Reading "The illustrated manners book; a manual of good behavior and polite accomplishments" ("Thanks to Hark a Vagrant!") published in 1855. It is remarkably progressive of its time. Particularly around pages 111-114 about women and men.  I wish I had a means of copying and pasting it here rather than transcribe it.  Was very interesting.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 23 Jun 2016, 11:15
Quote
"In a true society, there are no husbands and wives, no lovers and mistresses, no owners and property with ear marks or finger marks, no masters and slaves; but free men and women of society, who meet in a certain sphere of relation, to contribute their utmost to each other's enjoyment. "
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Edguy on 23 Jun 2016, 11:36
Andrzej Sapkowski - Season of Storms
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 23 Jun 2016, 15:23
Red Storm Rising - Tom Clancy
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 23 Jun 2016, 22:21
classic Clancy. 

his house isn't but a 90 minute drive away, but I still never met him, despite wanting to.

but I kept missing his appearances and book signings.

and now he is gone.

By Order of the President: WEB Griffin
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 23 Jun 2016, 23:11
There was a time back in the early 2000's when a lot of Clancy fans I knew would have liked to see that book turned into The Ultimate War Movie.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 24 Jun 2016, 07:31
I've honestly never understood the appeal of Tom Clancy.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Gladstone on 24 Jun 2016, 20:45
League of Dragons, the final novel in Naomi Novik's Temeraire series.  Quite good so far (I'm about 1/3 through it), but still doesn't quite make up for the last three lackluster books.  I still think the series should've ended with #5, Victory of Eagles.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: NemesisDancer on 28 Jun 2016, 08:56
Persuasion by Jane Austen :3
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tova on 04 Jul 2016, 22:38
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 09 Jul 2016, 13:26
"The Maximum Security Book Club", by a volunteer who led literature discussions in a men's prison.

Murderers mulling Macbeth.  Convicts consuming Conrad.

The author is thoughtful and she appreciates and preserves the ambiguity of life. The men she discussed the books with considered  that wishy-washy and were proud of having firm opinions. She was opinionated enough and bold enough to reply with "and look where that got you". I wouldn't have tried that while outnumbered by people to whom respect is desperately important.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: 94ssd on 26 Aug 2016, 12:13
The theatre I work at is doing a show about Janis Joplin, which has made me more interested in her life. So I ordered a copy of Love, Janis, a biography written by her sister Laura, and I'm going to start it on Monday once the show ends and I have some extra time.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 26 Aug 2016, 12:40
Currently reading "The Demon Haunted World: Science As A Candle in the Dark" by Carl Sagan.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 28 Aug 2016, 09:24
One Way by Mark Iliff, which is only available as an ebook. It's as realistic as possible an account of being sent on a one-way colonisation to Mars as part of a crew of four, written in the style of a diary by one of the crew members.

I am finding it gripping.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 29 Aug 2016, 15:38
Reading one of my favorite Fan Fic Sagas at the moment.

It's one I go through once a year.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 06 Sep 2016, 21:54
semi-historical fiction:

1356 by Bernard Cornwell
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: nellsen on 08 Sep 2016, 02:12
Haven't started it yet, but The Myth of Sisyphus by Albert Camus is on the way in the mail, I can't wait... I read The Stranger years ago, but now finally getting around to reading more Camus.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SubaruStephen on 08 Sep 2016, 20:07
It's September and I just realized that I haven't read a single book all year....

What the hell is wrong with me?!?

Seriously, this has never happened before, I think I should see a doctor.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 08 Sep 2016, 20:52
You'd be better off seeing a librarian.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SubaruStephen on 09 Sep 2016, 04:19
One that has a doctorate....
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 11 Dec 2016, 13:18
"Correction Officer's Guide to Understanding Inmates"
"The Ethical Slut"
Just finished those and moving on to finishing a book about ombudsman programs.

I'm weird, aren't I?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 11 Dec 2016, 13:49
Reading Shogun at the moment.

Started reading it some months ago, but sorta lost interest for a while but picked it up again about two weeks ago and am steadly plowing through it
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 27 Dec 2016, 07:08
So last week and even during the Christmas break it was rather boring at work or during travel so I read some of HP Lovecraft's works:

Dagon:
(click to show/hide)

This was a good way to start if you asked me.  It was both literally and literarily a glimpse into the Cthulhu mythos.  Of all the stories I read this week, it was by far my favorite.

Call of Cthulhu:
(click to show/hide)

This story was rather hard to get into.  The researcher’s story is more or less the story telling device for everything.  I think that part was well executed.  I found the artist’s story to be very boring and the police raid story to be cut short before it got anywhere.  The Ship’s story on the other hand was amazing.  It brought up memories of the old black and white King Kong movie.  It had me on the edge of my seat compared to the other stories.  There was a clear begging middle and end complete with a build up to a climax.  Something I would later find lacking in Lovecraft’s other works.  My main complaint was this tale’s ending could have been handled a bit better.

Shadow over Innsmoth:
(click to show/hide)

This story was very interesting, but like with the rest of Lovecraft, I feel like he can set up a good atmosphere and have great concepts, but poor story telling.  I feel it would have been better to experience the raid/siege of Innsmouth or give us a better reason for the trip.  I feel like perhaps I was spoiled from watching the “Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth” game which had a tighter story than the book it’s based on (I’ll explain later).

At the Mountain of Madness
(click to show/hide)

Again, great concepts and atmosphere, but a poor story.  Too much time spent on how to do archeology and reading hieroglyphics.  No real excitement or horror until the new creature shows up and chases them away.  If the story sounds vaguely familiar, it’s because it’s been adapted into movies like “The Thing.”  Reading these stories is starting to inspire me to write better version of them.

The Dunwich Horror
(click to show/hide)

This was better than the last two stories I read.  The first half is a mysterious character study of Wilbur Whateley and the strange things going on at the Dunwich Township.  The second half introduces the scientist and remind me of the old black and white monster movies where the monster terrorizes a small town.  I also liked that the educated old men were the only ones that could save the simple farming folk.  Showcasing a “knowledge is power” kind of story.


Extra Credit:
Cryaotic’s Lets Play of “Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth.”  If you’ve read Shadow over Innsmoth (or are just as curious about Cthulhu myths as I am) you should check out this 13 episode video series.  You can try and play the game if you want but it’s extremely buggy (played for laughs by Cry).  His voiceover may be a bit unusual at first but the story, intrigue, and mystery is well worth your time. It is a better and more complete version of Shadow over Innsmouth IMHO.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uvbfzs-FjaI&list=PLeqwXTaiY-Oxj4EvTtjJ09ZAdDGSEeV08
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 28 Dec 2016, 05:40
I read Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the theater script in book form. It's titled that but it's mainly about the misadventures of Harry's son and Draco's son. Time fuckery is a big part of the plot, and it's handled much worse than in the original novels. Rules about time-travel are broken for the sake of allowing scenes with characters from the past, which feels too fanservicey. It's not unenjoyable, I actually like the character of Draco's son, but it's not something I'd highly recommend either.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Case on 03 Jan 2017, 03:35
I'm currently Experiencing a Significant Gravitas Shortfall, i.e. reading through the Ian M. Banks' Culture-cycle for the 2nd time - (almost finished with 'Surface Detail')

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: shanejayell on 04 Feb 2017, 11:31
Just finished rereading the 'Black Tide' zombie novels by John Ringo. An entertaining read but lots of stuff I could nit pick.  :-P
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BenRG on 05 Feb 2017, 13:14
The Expanse Series by James S A Corey

Having seen the TV show first, all I can say is that the producers of the show are going to have to be careful not to Flanderise Holden!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 05 Feb 2017, 13:41
I read Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. It's full of impenetrable Britishisms but it had me laughing heartily throughout nonetheless.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: shanejayell on 06 Feb 2017, 16:49
Oh I loved Good Omens.  :-D There's going to be a TV mini-series adapted by Neil too....
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 06 Apr 2017, 23:24
David Weber, At the Sign of Triumph

The premise is a planet undergoing the Enlightenment, the Reformation, and the Industrial Revolution simultaneously. It is even bloodier than you might guess.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 07 Apr 2017, 05:10
The Adventures of WIM
(apparently now expanded slightly and renamed "The Adventures of Whim")

Utterly different style to The Dice Man, which I'm finding rather refreshing. Openly and deliberately humorous, verging on literary slapstick at times!
But at the same time, moments of excellently observed comments on modern life.

It's Luke Rheinhart's follow up to The Dice Man. (Not in any way a sequel - Unlike Son of The Dice Man)
I have also just bought The Way of the Die to round off the whole experience! ;)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 07 Apr 2017, 11:01
Finished reading the novel "Private Wars" by Greg Rucka. The last story starring Tara Chase from the comic series Queen & Country.  It's rough and brutal, like most of the series, but a good cap to the series and the character.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 13 Apr 2017, 21:13
"Between the World and Me", by Ta-Nehisi Coates.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tova on 14 Apr 2017, 03:52
I read Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. It's full of impenetrable Britishisms but it had me laughing heartily throughout nonetheless.

I love that book. I couldn't help but feel that it was somehow greater than the sum of two already-brilliant authors.

And seeing as though I'm here, I'm currently reading Jasper Jones. Probably not for long though, as I'm getting through it pretty quickly. It's hard to put down.

Before that was A Man Called Ove (a remarkably moving story), and before that was The Sudden Appearance of Hope.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 17 Apr 2017, 04:45
Well, "Adventures of Wim" was pretty groovy.

Now reading (and almost finished) Stephen King's "Bazaar of Bad Dreams" (short story collection.)
It actually contains one of the best things I've read of his a short called UR it's slightly linked to the Dark Tower epic, but aside from it.
Nice concept and for King... well...

(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 03 May 2017, 16:09
I read Crime and Punishment by Dostoyevsky. I'm really not sure what to make of it. It's certainly a compelling tale but I've been told it was "life-changing" and that I don't see.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 03 May 2017, 17:53
The Mammoth Book of Kaiju, 27 short stories featuring giant monsters.

Why yes, I am on a kaiju kick at the moment, what gave you that idea?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: audrina on 21 Jul 2017, 05:57
Imagine Me Gone by Adam Haslett

Starting... :-)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 21 Jul 2017, 06:45
Just started reading Lovecraft Country. I like it so far.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Kugai on 21 Jul 2017, 17:18
Writes Of Passage (http://glitterberries.freehostia.com/author_deref.html)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Devcca on 27 Jul 2017, 00:53
I am reading Storm Front by Jim Butcher.  I have a few mangas I am trying to read as well.  One is Bleach  I think the other is Inu Asha... totally misspelled that!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 27 Jul 2017, 03:32
So I've discovered that Charles Dickens was a fucking prick.

When I was in year 9, we had to read Oliver Twist for some assignment work. It was impenetrable and florid and I hated it, however given the way Shakespeare's work sounded to me, and how antiquated language from even fifty years ago could sound, I thought that just meant that writing from the 19th Century and earlier would just be something I didn't understand. As such, I've read basically none of the 'classics.' I am appallingly read.

In conversation with my partners recently it arose that, well, Dickens just writes like a complete asshole and is no reflection of what actual language was like at the time.

The example given to me was Pride And Prejudice, which in my head had been consigned to the pile of 'book/film/TV series for cis-white housewives' as a piece of culture. I Googled for an extract and found that it was witty and interesting and - here's the kicker - completely understandable.

Fuck you, Dickens.

I'm now about 60 pages into reading Pride and Prejudice and it is so entertaining. It's actually a quite pointed bit of social commentary, which if you can read between the lines more than a tiny bit is pretty obvious. It's like a slating of white privilege centuries before that concept even existed. The characters are engrossing and entertaining - my current favourite being Mr. Bennett. I have a running gag with my partners now that almost any of Mr. Bennett's dialogue could be replaced by 'Fuckin', whatever.' and it wouldn't change the narrative at all.

Example:
'I have more than once observed to Lady Catherine, that her charming daughter seemed born to be a duchess, and that the most elevated rank, instead of giving her consequence, would be adorned by her.- These are the kind of things which please her ladyship, and it is a sort of attention which I conceive myself peculiarly bound to pay.
'Fuckin', whatever,' said Mr Bennett.


Another book they encouraged me to read very strongly was Nation by Terry Pratchett. This I am well over halfway through and am finding it to be a quite extraordinary read. I need to finish it as a matter of urgency, and the resonance that Mao has with one of my partners is of great significance to me.

Moving in with them is going to allow me the headspace to start reading again. And my God, how I've missed reading.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 27 Jul 2017, 04:13
So I've discovered that Charles Dickens was a fucking prick.

When I was in year 9, we had to read Oliver Twist for some assignment work. It was impenetrable and florid and I hated it, however given the way Shakespeare's work sounded to me, and how antiquated language from even fifty years ago could sound, I thought that just meant that writing from the 19th Century and earlier would just be something I didn't understand. As such, I've read basically none of the 'classics.' I am appallingly read.

In conversation with my partners recently it arose that, well, Dickens just writes like a complete asshole and is no reflection of what actual language was like at the time.

The example given to me was Pride And Prejudice, which in my head had been consigned to the pile of 'book/film/TV series for cis-white housewives' as a piece of culture. I Googled for an extract and found that it was witty and interesting and - here's the kicker - completely understandable.

Fuck you, Dickens.

I'm now about 60 pages into reading Pride and Prejudice and it is so entertaining. It's actually a quite pointed bit of social commentary, which if you can read between the lines more than a tiny bit is pretty obvious. It's like a slating of white privilege centuries before that concept even existed. The characters are engrossing and entertaining - my current favourite being Mr. Bennett. I have a running gag with my partners now that almost any of Mr. Bennett's dialogue could be replaced by 'Fuckin', whatever.' and it wouldn't change the narrative at all.

Example:
'I have more than once observed to Lady Catherine, that her charming daughter seemed born to be a duchess, and that the most elevated rank, instead of giving her consequence, would be adorned by her.- These are the kind of things which please her ladyship, and it is a sort of attention which I conceive myself peculiarly bound to pay.
'Fuckin', whatever,' said Mr Bennett.


Another book they encouraged me to read very strongly was Nation by Terry Pratchett. This I am well over halfway through and am finding it to be a quite extraordinary read. I need to finish it as a matter of urgency, and the resonance that Mao has with one of my partners is of great significance to me.

Moving in with them is going to allow me the headspace to start reading again. And my God, how I've missed reading.

But Sir,
 You must agree that, whenever one is faced with such a devastating critique, particularly within the multi-faceted world of the creative arts, of which I do attest (though some may find it otherwise) to be a part of - that it may, on occasion, and within strictly bounded circumstances, be not only required, but, yes, necessary to allow one's muse (no matter what or whomsoever it might be) the full and unfettered flow of one's artistic outpourings? How else would the struggling artiste, in the grasp of pow'rs   not only larger, but indeed many times greater in both scope and... (cont. Pgs: 96/97/98)


Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Pilchard123 on 27 Jul 2017, 10:06
I recall having read or heard - though it may be that I do not remember correctly; or that the so-called 'fact' is in truth a complete fabrication, spun like a yarn and made of the resulting whole cloth - that because a lot of Dickens' novels were originally serialized in the periodicals of his day, and popular from one end of the country to the other, they were deliberately stretched and strung-out so there would be a greater number of episodes, that the readers thereof may be at turns delighted and dismayed still further. It rather brings to mind a well-established and time-honored practice among students of adding excessively florid and baroque passages of nigh-incomprehensible text in their scholarly assignments to fit an arbitrary requirement of "1000 words" or "5 pages" when the subject at hand could be adequately - not to say well, or even excellently; many a time have I submitted a paper and been given a mark denoting that my work was lacking nothing in its exposition of the relative merits of one method or another, and yet still been chastised for my deliberate and crafted omission of extraneous verbiage - dealt with in a couple of paragraphs.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 28 Jul 2017, 01:24
Exactly so! Being serialised he was dragging them out as much as possible.

Also these last two posts were meta as fuck, good job everybody.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 29 Aug 2017, 06:30
"Non-violent Communication", by Marshall Rosenberg.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 29 Aug 2017, 12:20
Just started reading "The Gone-Away World" by Nick Harkaway. Bizarrely surreal post-apocalyptic comedy. Kinda has a Pratchett feel to is, but less goofy. It is very British, though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 30 Aug 2017, 03:20

Just finished Stephen Fry's autoblobyblob "More Fool Me"

Am now back on a Luke Rheinhart tip, and am reading "Invasion" (and have "Long Voyage Back" waiting for when I've finished it)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 02 Oct 2017, 08:15
Back in 1816 Mary Shelly, her husband, and some friends went to Geneva with Lord Byron.  If my memory serves me the weather was terrible so they were mostly stuck inside.  They started reading some German ghost stories and came up with an idea: a friendly scary story competition.  Mary Shelley wrote what would later be published as Frankenstein and Lord Byron wrote The Vampyre (which would later inspire Bram Stoker to write Dracula) although his physician Paul Polidori rewrote and published it with Byron's assistance.  I had 2 free credits on audible and downloaded both.  The Vamypre was shorter and so I started with that and it was pretty good and I can see where Bram stoker took some of the mythology.  I found out this weekend while visiting my parents that my dad started reading Dracula and after a few chapters he had to stop reading as he was getting nightmares (granted he was reading Dracula during his graveyard shift at the hotel he works with and is often the only one there).  I thought it was rather coincidental that we read similar stories.  However now that I have started Frankenstein, I have to say Mary Shelley is definitely the better of the two as far as prose and is more captivating.  I am only 4 chapters in but is so far really good and better than The Vampyre.

The Vampyre was very fun though and being that my wife comes from that area of the world were the protagonist visits and learns about vampires, it added some dimension to it.  I remember looking up vampire folklore a long time ago and found that in her culture only twins were qualified to hunt vampires.  I could totally imagine her people's traditional clothes and superstitions as I read the story which made it seem all the more real.  The ending was dark and reminded me of a horrific version of the old German folktale "Bearskin."  I would not be surprised if Lord Byron read it and combined parts of it with his journeys and folktales told to him in the Balkans.  I'd recommend it if you want a really short story for the month of October.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 02 Oct 2017, 08:39

Finished Invasion - really liked it...

And have also just finished "Long Voyage Back", which I also really liked, but the voice is not like any other Rheinhart book I've read.
(Some of the parsing is a bit odd in this one. There are occasions when it's like reading a book written by Yoda!)

Am currently reading "A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian" by Marina Lewycka... which, according to the blurb, is a comedic novel.
Am about half way through.. nothing funny in it. It seems really badly written to me (seemingly shortlisted for the Orange prize).
I got this from a book exchange thing at work. It'll be going back very quickly. Can't say I recommend it. (But I will finish it.)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 06 Oct 2017, 05:11
The Collected Works of HP Lovecraft.

I've been a fan of his stories for years, so my sister gave me a collected copy of his work a couple of years ago. His work is still the only one that leaves me feeling disturbed going to sleep at night, which I suppose is a testament to how timeless Lovecraft's writing is. The Whisperer in the Darkness and the Rats in the Walls in particular still leave me feeling cold.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 06 Oct 2017, 05:18
The Collected Works of HP Lovecraft.

I've been a fan of his stories for years, so my sister gave me a collected copy of his work a couple of years ago. His work is still the only one that leaves me feeling disturbed going to sleep at night, which I suppose is a testament to how timeless Lovecraft's writing is. The Whisperer in the Darkness and the Rats in the Walls in particular still leave me feeling cold.

I've tried to read Lovecraft SO often... I just cannot get into it...
(Maybe try again.. it's been about 10-15 years since...)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 06 Oct 2017, 06:30
@JoeCovenant (and anyone else interested in getting into Lovecraft)
Last Christmas I started reading them just to fully understand what the deal with Lovecraft and all things lovecraftian.  I have read a dozen or so of his stories.  I can make some suggestions as far as getting into them if you like.  Some of his stories are very dense with purple prose or have long stretches of tedious boring things so I can understand how it can be rough to get into.

I always suggest to start off with "Dagon" as it is short and gets the idea of Lovecraft across.  When I first read it, it reminded me of those stop motion monsters in Sinbad movies.  "The Whisperer in Darkness" is also a good read.  The first part can be a bit tedious as the professor rattles on about some ancient folklore, but it really gets interesting when the letters start.  "The Dunwich Horror" is also very good, with an excellent character study in the first half and a 50s B-movie as the latter half.  I like the symbolism in the latter half but it may just be my take from it and not at all what Lovecraft intended.

I will say there are a few you should stay away from until you get familiar with Lovecraft's style of writing. Here is a breakdown of the ones I have read and what I think are easy to get into followed by the ones that get rougher and finally the tough ones that you may not want to attempt until you really get into his writing.

Easy:
Dagon
The Dunwhich Horror
The Hound
The Whisperer in Darkness

Medium:
The Color Out of Space
A Shadow Out of Time
The Case of Charles Dexter Ward
Call of Cthulhu
Rats in the Wall
Herbert West: Reanimator

Hard:
Shadow Over Innsmouth
At the Mountain of Madness


Be it from me to tell you what to read or in what order but this is just my feeling on it.  For me "At the Mountain of Madness" was very boring until the 2nd act but others might find it to be their favorite or to read a different book entirely absent from the list.

It's October so it may be quite fun to read them while in the spooky spirit of things. Have fun!

(https://i.pinimg.com/originals/a0/45/ec/a045ec8607354789178aa20587a965b0.jpg)

edited: reread The Case of Charles Dexter Ward and wanted to update my ranking.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 10 Oct 2017, 07:57
I finished Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein."  The old Universal movie is but a glimmer to what the actual story is!  The only things similar is that there was a scientist named Frankenstein and he made a monster.  I find it had more parallels with movies dealing with AIs or robots with consciousness.  Creating a new life form with the consequences and moral/existential questions that follow.  It also dealt with nature and nurture a bit.

for example:
(click to show/hide)

You really start to feel for the creature.  Being that the story is told from Victor Frankenstein's point of view, it is a very biased side of the story.  Victor jumps to many conclusions based off of very little interactions from the monster and condemns the creature so early.  Totally convinced the monster had maligned motives.  Granted from his pov it seems warranted, but he just assumes the monster is malicious or deceitful from the get-go.  I could not help but think of Mel Brooks's "Young Frankenstein."  In the movie, Frankenstein wants to nurture and help the monster become accepted by society.  He legitimately cares about the creature's well being like a father should a son.  In the novel he runs away scared as soon as the monster is born, leaving the monster to roam the country side and fumble for meaning.  It is truly a tragic tale!  Mary Shelley uses amazing prose and poetry in her story.  I also love how she handled the "explanation" of the creature's creation.  I thought it was very clever. 
(click to show/hide)

There were a few moments where she was hung up on the scenery and it seemed like a love letter to the Swiss countryside which slowed the pacing at time.  Other than that it was a great read and I fully encourage everyone to check it out.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 17 Oct 2017, 06:52
I just finished Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury. It was really good.  I loved the characters (especially the bad guy) and the premise. A small Illinois town is visited by a strange carnival a week before Halloween.  2 curious boys stumble upon its Dark and sinister secrets.  People of the town start to disappear after attending some of the attractions and its up to Will and Jim to save the day, with Will's distant father in tow.

The characters, settings, and story was amazing, however I was not a fan of the purple prose.  A number of times I told myself "we get it, we get it, its dark outside! Get on with it."  Baring the extreme descriptions I felt it had a lack lust ending.  Now this was written in 1968 so perhaps back then the ending wasn't so cliche as it is now-a-days (it did inspire Stephen King and Neil Gaiman).  I just wanted a more interesting ending I suppose.  I also wanted to know more of the carnival and the freaks.  What some of the rides/attractions did to people and how the mysterious illustrations came to be on the Illustrated man.

Baring the purple prose and the tropey ending, I would definitely recommend reading this (especially in mid to late October).  Bradbury is an amazing writer and very poetic.  His characters are well fleshed out but also leaving you wanting to know more about them.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 17 Oct 2017, 19:51
Mann and Ornstein's latest book about the collapse of American politics.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 18 Oct 2017, 04:22
I just finished Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury. It was really good.  I loved the characters (especially the bad guy) and the premise. A small Illinois town is visited by a strange carnival a week before Halloween.  2 curious boys stumble upon its Dark and sinister secrets.  People of the town start to disappear after attending some of the attractions and its up to Will and Jim to save the day, with Will's distant father in tow.

The characters, settings, and story was amazing, however I was not a fan of the purple prose.  A number of times I told myself "we get it, we get it, its dark outside! Get on with it."  Baring the extreme descriptions I felt it had a lack lust ending.  Now this was written in 1968 so perhaps back then the ending wasn't so cliche as it is now-a-days (it did inspire Stephen King and Neil Gaiman).  I just wanted a more interesting ending I suppose.  I also wanted to know more of the carnival and the freaks.  What some of the rides/attractions did to people and how the mysterious illustrations came to be on the Illustrated man.

Baring the purple prose and the tropey ending, I would definitely recommend reading this (especially in mid to late October).  Bradbury is an amazing writer and very poetic.  His characters are well fleshed out but also leaving you wanting to know more about them.

Sorry, I have to jump to defence here...

I know you mention it in your post, and that it was written almost as long ago as I've been alive, but to then go on to say it has a *tropey ending* seems to negate your understanding.

Bradbury was a STUNNING writer.
Where you see *purple prose*, I see literal poetry.

Have a go at "The Hallowe'en Tree"... it ranks right up there with some of the finest books I have ever read.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 18 Oct 2017, 09:05
I meant no offence JoeCovenant. It was very poetic.  Perhaps it was the exciting nature of the story that I just desperately wanted to know what was going to happen next that my impatience got the better of me.  Which really is a testament to Ray Bradbury as a writer.  I think I am spoiled by the ending because it has been done over and over again as of now which is what makes it cliche.  The fact of the matter is, it has been done to death in the cultural conciseness as of now that it seemed lack luster.  I did qualify it by saying it may not have been when it was first published but so many stories have ended the same way since, that I have been exposed to, that it just didn't end as excitingly as I had hoped.  Not to say it was unexpected, and I am sure if I read this when I was younger and less jaded I would have been satisfied by the ending.

I would still compel others to read it as it is beautifully written and I loved the story, characters, and atmosphere.

I almost picked up "The Halloween Tree" but decided against it as I watched the movie when I was a child (which Ray Bradbury also wrote and wasn't adapted by someone else) and it was definitely a treasure!  I wanted to do something different. Sheepishly I will admit my pick of "Something Wicked This Way Comes" derived from the Rick and Morty episode "Something Ricked This Way Comes" which more parody's Stephen King's "Needful Things."  After reading "Something Wicked This Way Comes" I see how R&M may have designed Mr. Needful off of Mr. Dark.

I picked up Bram Stoker's Dracula to round out my October.  I almost picked up "Needful Things" but may save that for next year, along with "The Halloween Tree" after your recommendation.  :-)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 19 Oct 2017, 02:22
I meant no offence JoeCovenant. It was very poetic.  Perhaps it was the exciting nature of the story that I just desperately wanted to know what was going to happen next that my impatience got the better of me.  Which really is a testament to Ray Bradbury as a writer.  I think I am spoiled by the ending because it has been done over and over again as of now which is what makes it cliche.  The fact of the matter is, it has been done to death in the cultural conciseness as of now that it seemed lack luster.  I did qualify it by saying it may not have been when it was first published but so many stories have ended the same way since, that I have been exposed to, that it just didn't end as excitingly as I had hoped.  Not to say it was unexpected, and I am sure if I read this when I was younger and less jaded I would have been satisfied by the ending.

I would still compel others to read it as it is beautifully written and I loved the story, characters, and atmosphere.

I almost picked up "The Halloween Tree" but decided against it as I watched the movie when I was a child (which Ray Bradbury also wrote and wasn't adapted by someone else) and it was definitely a treasure!  I wanted to do something different. Sheepishly I will admit my pick of "Something Wicked This Way Comes" derived from the Rick and Morty episode "Something Ricked This Way Comes" which more parody's Stephen King's "Needful Things."  After reading "Something Wicked This Way Comes" I see how R&M may have designed Mr. Needful off of Mr. Dark.

I picked up Bram Stoker's Dracula to round out my October.  I almost picked up "Needful Things" but may save that for next year, along with "The Halloween Tree" after your recommendation.  :-)


I REALLY hope you do!
And I REALLY hope you like LOVE it !   :laugh:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 24 Nov 2017, 17:16
Mark Manson, "The Subtle art of not Giving a F*ck".

So far my summary would be "potty-mouthed Buddhism". I'm pretty sure I saw a paraphrase of the "second arrow" parable and a message about attachment.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: dutchrvl on 05 Dec 2017, 08:43
Mark Manson, "The Subtle art of not Giving a F*ck".

So far my summary would be "potty-mouthed Buddhism". I'm pretty sure I saw a paraphrase of the "second arrow" parable and a message about attachment.

Currently: "The emperor of all maladies" by Siddhartha Mukherjee. Pretty riveting read, despite (or because of?) its subject matter. May also be because i'm a biomedical engineer, so it's close to heart/head.

Previously: "Secret life of laszlo" by Anscombe. Really enjoyed that one.

Next: who knows? Perhaps something about hiking in the white mountains, although I'm also tempted to start rereading the Death Gate Cycle, which I read about 20 years ago in Dutch and absolutely loved. Kinda wondering if I'll still love it and if it'll feel different in English.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 10 Dec 2017, 07:55
Finding more time to read of late, and trying to make sure I do more of that.

Still reading Pride & Prejudice, which is great, and also a biography of FDR I got for my birthday which is a truly engrossing read and is helping me rediscover my love of history.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Case on 13 Dec 2017, 16:51
Just finished "So you've been publicly shamed" (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22571552-so-you-ve-been-publicly-shamed) by Jon Ronson (1.19€ as Kindle-edition).

Starting on Charlie Stross' "Empire Games - A Tale of the Merchant Princes Universe".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tova on 19 Dec 2017, 01:34
Just finished Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami.

About to start in on the Philip Glass memoir Words Without Music.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 27 Dec 2017, 07:12
I finished Dracula on Halloween.  I initial picked it up because my Dad was reading it when I visited him in August and figured we'd have something to talk about.  I talked with my dad recently on Christmas and, unfortunately he never finished it.  Not because he got bored or became uninterested; quite the opposite in fact!  He started having nightmares because of the book.  It was really nicely written.  If you knew nothing of vampires or Dracula going into it, the story would have seemed more like a novel about a serial killer than anything paranormal.

Not unlike Frankenstein, the book is written in the form of letters.  In this book it is a series of letters from 4 or so different people's points of view experiencing different things related to Dracula all at the same time.  About 2/3 of the way into the story it becomes relevant as Minna collects all of the letters from everyone and transcribes them for the rest of the cast to read.  This was interesting because after this moment everyone in the story was now synced up with what the reader knew.  I thought that was very clever and a good way of making the story framing device part of the story.

As for the plot:
I am putting it in spoilers as well it is spoilery and also has some possible triggers for those that may have suffered some abuse.

(click to show/hide)

The themes of the novel were very interesting as well.  Not only does it seem like a cat and mouse game with a paranormal serial killer, but also deals with trauma.  Lucy becomes like her attacker, Minna becomes distant and feels unclean, her husband Jonathan goes crazy and feels no one would believe him and bottles it up.  Even the heroic trio Arthur, Dr. John, and Quincey show how the victim's family and friends would respond to loss and trauma suffered by a loved one.  The story also shows those who have been traumatized that they have a support network.  Whether is with friends and family, or with medical professionals.  There are many other themes too like, what is expected of a woman in Victorian times, science and mysticism, good vs evil, etc.  I feel like those are pretty evident and are more talked about than the theme of trauma so I will not go into detail about the other themes here.

All in all I would highly suggest reading this classic novel.  A century later it is still just as exciting, creepy, and relevant as when it was published.  Reading it around Halloween made it extra creepy, as the days in the novel started to sync up with the days I read them.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 30 Dec 2017, 01:29
Just read Animal Farm by George Orwell.  Was really good!  I loved the parallels that it shares with the Russian revolutions and how twisted absolute power can be on ideals and good intentions.  Many people think it just addresses Stalin-ism and communism, but it really doesn't stop there.  It is a critique of autocracy in general and can be applied to multiple political and social systems.

Its also super short.  My version was about 112 pages.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 30 Dec 2017, 07:46
The revolution could have succeeded if it hadn't been for the sheep.

"I Contain Multitudes", a book about microbiome research. Captivating! @Akima, the conclusion that seems inevitable after the first hundred pages, even though the author does not explicitly draw it, is that it's a mistake to think of organisms and their symbiotic microbes as separate entities. Is that dependent co-arising, or just a choice of scientific paradigms?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 30 Dec 2017, 14:37
The revolution could have succeeded if it hadn't been for the sheep.
I'd argue it was because:
(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 11 Jan 2018, 10:23
Worm (https://parahumans.wordpress.com/). I've been glued to my screen for the past week.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 19 Jan 2018, 13:33
I've started reading an extensively researched, meticulous biography of FDR. It's just... a big bath in learning juice. Love it. I have the first part of a series of TR ones to read next, probably for my plane out to NYC.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: A Duck on 19 Jan 2018, 15:00
I'm trying to shed my "100% videogames" self, one step at a time.

I read Frankenstein, pretty good book. I'm now reading Asimov's "The Complete Robot" and having a lot of fun with it.

Looking forward for some non-fiction after this, though.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 19 Jan 2018, 15:58
If it's science non-fiction you like, you really can't go wrong with The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins. I read it years ago and I'm still reminded of it frequently. There's a lot of knowledge that it puts into perspective, new and old.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 20 Jan 2018, 19:59
Valerie Young, "The Secret Thoughts of Successful Women". Mostly about impostor syndrome and with most material also applying to men.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 23 Jan 2018, 18:34
Just finished Red October by Douglas Boyd. The book chronicles the lead up to, the events of, and the civil war following the Russian Revolutions.  It was a great read as it starts with the lives of Marx and Engels and their philosophies. This is followed by the main trio: Lenin, Trotsky, and Stalin. After a brief origin story for each of them in the early chapters, the book then changes tune and follows the ineptitude of the last Russian Emperor as he blunders time and again with foreign and domestic policy.  He was totally out of touch on how to be a ruler, and on how his country was even ruled up to that point.  Times were changing, and Russia was in the past.  It didn't help that his father didn't bother to teach him anything, as he thought Nicholas II was too stupid to learn.  Why Nicholas II was made his successor is beyond me.  I put the blame on the entire revolution on the shoulders of Nicholas II and WW1.  Not only was the army woefully under armed and trained, but the home front could not support such an endeavor.  Combine this with outdated tactics, an aggressive enemy, and foreign funding of prominent exiled revolutionaries, it was a powder keg thrown into the fireplace.  I felt rather bad for Nicholas II.

Boyd really shows how dire life was during the wars, revolutions, and counter revolutions.  You really get to know the main three players mentioned earlier and how much they just hated each other.  If Stalin didn't over shadow Lenin in history as a megalomaniac, I'd rank Lenin up there with Napoleon and Alexander.  Lenin wanted the world, but only if he was the sole ruler of it.  Trotsky was rather flamboyant in comparison and was diametrically opposed to Lenin in most things.  Stalin just played in the background waiting, biding his time and gathering secret support.  It truly was a revolution, as it ended up similar from where they started.  After the dust was settled, Lenin (and later Stalin) were the monarchs, just in a different name.  The communist party was their religion, where banishment from the party was no different than being excommunicated from the church in medieval times.  The secret Tsar police, the Okhrana, was replaced by the Cheka.  Oppression of the peasants and the working class just changed hands rather than improved their well being.  The list goes on.

The most interesting of the accounts in the book was a chapter two-thirds of the way through about the execution and disposal of the Tsar and his family.  It is written as a report by the commissar in charge that was retold by said commissar years after the event.  If the subject matter wasn't so grim, it would be comical, but was overall very compelling.  There are a number of colorful characters that pop in and out throughout the book, along with flavorful small stories.

If I had one complaint: it's that the author seemed to sneer at the people or subject matter at times.  I know most of these men are not looked upon favorably by contemporaries, but I generally like a unbiased (or as unbiased as you can get) viewpoint when dealing with historical subjects.  That is just my own pet peeve, but all in all it was a really nice read, especially if the era or subject matter of revolution interests you.  I'd recommend it to any history buff.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 24 Jan 2018, 03:06
I finished Worm, took me about two weeks, and now I know that's the time it takes for me to read 1.65 million words, if I'm sufficiently motivated.

I see a lot of people saying "it's so dark and gritty!" which I'm not sure I agree with. It's *human*, with all the highs and lows that entails. Adding superpowers to an quintessentially human story makes those highs and lows correspondingly extreme: the stakes keep getting higher until they literally can't, victories become increasingly hard-fought and happen in lower and lower odds, and losses are more devastating each time.

The author hasn't bothered to give content warnings because pretty much every disturbing thing you can think of happens, with the exception of sexual violence. But unlike other grim 'n gritty stuff, it doesn't revel in it, it doesn't rub your face in how horrible people are, even if the upper limit for horribleness is much higher than normal. I really enjoyed it because of that; it contrasts with the other fiction I've tried to read recently, superhero and otherwise, where the world is shit and horrible things happen for basically no reason, which is no way to write a story.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 29 Jan 2018, 19:24
I reread "The Case of Charles Dexter Ward."  I tried to listen to this on audible during a trip.  In this case it was a train ride to NYC back in August.  I fell asleep several times and had to rewind and re-listen for me to catch up.  By the end of the trip I felt like this was by far the worse Lovecraft story I have ever read! I meant to write up my review but things were so busy in my life at that moment that it fell to the way side.  Last week I felt I should pick it up again and re-listen to it since it has been so long the details became fuzzy.  I finished it today on my way home from work and my opinion had reversed from my initial reading.  I am glad I gave it another try as there were chunks of the story I missed or misheard.

It was a great mystery story!  I will say, the second time reading it, having a basic blueprint of the story from the first reading did help me make more connections than previously.  I wonder if that is why I enjoyed it more the second time around.  Lovecraft seemed to be at his best in this novel.  Not the most chilling, but definitively his most satisfying from begging middle and end.  Whereas his previous stories seems to start atmospherically, bring on the tension, only to ramp up and rush the ending; this novel was very well paced and did not disappoint in the end.  His poetic language was expertly used and didn't come off as too self indulgent at all.  Definitely a fine read and I recommend it to any mystery and/or paranormal novel enthusiasts.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 03 Feb 2018, 16:23
I read Bringing Up Bébé by Pamela Druckerman.  I was going through audible a few weeks ago with 2 credits and trying to figure out what to get.  I got Red October (https://forums.questionablecontent.net/index.php/topic,21782.msg1397704.html#msg1397704) for myself and relized that my wife should read something too.  She didn't seem to interested in anything, but then I came across Bringing Up Bébé.  The synopsis seems to indicate it was an American mother's exploration of Parisian parenting.  It triggered what I learned in my French culture class back in college.  I mentioned it to her and played an excerpt of it for us to listen too.  It sounded so interesting that we decided to get it.  After I finished Red October I decided I hadn't read many "baby books" other than the mayo clinic's guide to pregnancy and newborns, and so I decided to listen to Pamela's pseudo-anthropological study of French parenting.

It was fascinating!  Druckerman had moved to Paris with her British husband and decided to settle there.  After having her first baby and she started noticing that French babies behaved differently.  They did not cry or throw a fit in public, they slept through the night 3-6 weeks after delivery, and they were overall just well behaved.  And the French parents looked happy and content as opposed to the ragged looking American and British parents.  She found through Parisian anecdotes and some research that the French parenting philosophy exists but is taken for granted in France.  To them what they do is just "common sense."  There's an entire chapter dedicated to what the author calls "The Pause" and how it teaches the baby to "do their nights" as well as instill patience in their child.  Another chapter is how they introduce children to food in a way they gets them to eat all kinds of different foods that most Anglophone kids would never eat let alone try.  Its all very fascinating with pros and cons to the French parenting philosophy.  For example, my wife and I have decided that we will do "The Pause" as well as getting them on a feeding schedule that matches our own, but unlike the french we do plan to breastfeed and do more than just let the child "discover" things.

I would highly recommend this book if you are going to be a parent, love french culture, interested in anthropology, love philosophy, or just love fun short stories about family.  It was just an utterly captivating book that not only shows and critiques French parenting philosophy but also Anglophones as well.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 05 Feb 2018, 20:18
I am at an impasse.  I want to continue delving into classical literature, particularly those that are well known that I have missed out on.  I am trying to choose from the following:

Moby Dick
Pride and Prejudice
The Three Musketeers
War and Peace
Heart of Darkness

any suggestions?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 06 Feb 2018, 13:50
Moby Dick is one of those books where you need to read it in a couple of sessions over a relative short period, its not the kind you can drop and pick it up over weeks or months. Its just so dense.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 06 Feb 2018, 23:37
It really is. But don't let that discourage you: it really is rewarding, and, to me, much more so than Pride and prejudice. But then, I'm not an Austen fan.
Pride and prejudice is a fairly easy read.
The three Musketeers, I'm ashamed to admit I've only ever read in translation, but it's full of everything you would expect from the story, including some very funny episodes that don't generally make it into the movies.
War and Peace is still on my reading list, so that's all I can say about that. If it is like the other Russian literature from that period, it'll be slightly less dense than Moby Dick.
Heart of Darkness, being only a novella, is the shortest read of them all. It manages to pack quite a lot in there, though. I'd say it's definitely Conrad's best work. I like to borrow his description of Brussels.

I've just finished Notre Dame de Paris, and started Kipling's Plain Tales from the Hills.

Edited to clean up the autocorrect.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 07 Feb 2018, 10:33
I'm wrestling with "The Divine Milieu" by Teilhard de Chardin.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 24 Feb 2018, 21:12
I ended up going with The Three Musketeers. What an amazingly fun adventure!  So many fun and interesting characters, places, situations, and intrigue.  I feel the book has been cheated in its movie adaptations (granted I have only seen the one Disney made in 1993).  So many characters cut out or completely changed!  It was an audio book and the voice actor did an amazing job. I really loved whenever he did Planche's voice as it sounded like Baldrick from Blackadder and its how I imagined him.  Nearly every character was well developed with interesting backstories, ambitions, and attitudes. I fell in love with some and detested the villain (great job Dumas!!).  The ending was a bit bittersweet with a few items tied up in the epilogue which could have used its own chapters but it was still and amazingly fun adventure.  I highly recommend this book!

I am not sure how good the current BBC show is, but I really wish I could find a show or movie that did the book justice.  The 1993 Disney movie was fun in a cheese action comedy kind of way, but does not do the book nor the characters justice. :psyduck: 
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 26 Feb 2018, 08:07
Glad you enjoyed it. From what I've seen, the current BBC series is good to watch, but should not be watched as a representation of the book. Rather it takes the setting, the basic conflict, and the characters, and goes its own heroic way.

Having finished Kipling's tales, I've started on the Discworld novels.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 26 Feb 2018, 08:27
Glad you enjoyed it. From what I've seen, the current BBC series is good to watch, but should not be watched as a representation of the book. Rather it takes the setting, the basic conflict, and the characters, and goes its own heroic way.

Having finished Kipling's tales, I've started on the Discworld novels.

Force your way through the first one... the second gets easier, after that.. it's all gravy! :)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 26 Feb 2018, 08:43
I've had to go to Dublin repeatedly the last couple of weeks, which means a five hour round trip on the train. So I've taken the opportunity to do some travel reading, which usually means the novel equivalent of trash B-movie horrors.

In the last few weeks I've read:
- Vespers, by Jeff Rovin. A cop and a biologist team up to investigate a series of mysterious deaths. Turns out its giant bats descended from one that was exposed to the Chernobyl disaster.
- Meg, By Steve Alten. Deep sea submariner is called in to help a friend with a project involving a deep sea trench. Turns out megalodons still live in the trench and one is accidentally brought to the surface. Submariner has to stop the shark.
- Flesh and Blood, by Graham Masterton. Guy kills his family, samples of his son's brain is placed into the brain of a giant pig. It all goes downhill from there.

They're not the best novels, but they're good for what they and they're entertaining enough for a train ride.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blyss on 13 Mar 2018, 09:29
Started rereading the Dresden Files again.  Just recently finished "What the hell did I just read?" the third in the "John Dies at the End" series.

Nothing too taxing at the moment, but comfort reading I guess.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: NovemberX on 13 Mar 2018, 20:55
The Science Fiction Hall Of Fame, Volume One

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Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: NovemberX on 13 Mar 2018, 20:57
Flowery language and beautiful prose, deeper truths, whoopee. But will that save you when the zombies come? Didn't think so.

The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

Arm yourselves with knowledge... and a shotgun.
And a crowbar!

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Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: NovemberX on 13 Mar 2018, 20:59
The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul by Douglas Adams.
This book has posed a large problem in that I read it on the subway, and on more than one occasion I have laughed heartily, out loud. This morning I chuckled at a certain passage and a woman looked at me like I'd kicked a puppy.
That means you're doing something right!

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Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Clovis Man on 14 Mar 2018, 23:38
I just finished two by Russian authors (in translation, of course).

The Master and Margarita, by Mikhail Bulgakov, was recommended by an acquaintenance at the local coffee shop.  It's a brilliant satire on late 1930s Moscow.

When I ordered The Master and Margarita, Amazon recommended We, by Yevgeny Zamyatin.  It's set up as the diary an engineer, set in a failed scientific socialist utopia (think: H.G. Wells gone badly wrong) after a 200-year war.  Published in 1921, it predates 1984 and Brave New World.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 17 Mar 2018, 12:44
"The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" is required reading in nearly all schools in the States.  Like most of these schools, I too had to read Mark Twain's tale of a young adolescent as he went on his own Mississippi Odyssey with an escaped slave. The book is actually a sequel, and Huck first showed up with Tom Sawyer in "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer."  I am vaguely familiar with the story of Tom Sawyer from made for TV movies and cartoons in my youth but never actually read it.  When I saw it on Audible, and narrated by Nick Offerman himself (Ron Swanson of Parks and Rec), I decided it was time to know the chronicle of this little boy from Missouri.

"The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" is truly a love letter to being a little boy.  His adventures and superstitions remind me of when I was a little lad; trying to not get caught as I pursued my own fun with my friends and relations. What really struck me was how they think they know the world and proper incantations to bring about good luck or remove warts.  It's a true insight on being a young kid.  His adventures become the talk of the town as he witnessed a murder with the town delinquent and the wrong man was arrested, to striking it out as a pirate, and avoiding the real killer who may be out for vengeance.  I would say that if "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" was "The Odyssey" then "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" would be the stories with Thor and Loki from "Norse Mythology" by Neil Gaiman (which is also a good read).  The ending was amazing and could only happen to an 8 year old.

I did tell my wife that if our next baby is a boy, then this book will be required reading for her.   :mrgreen:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: NovemberX on 24 Mar 2018, 17:05
"The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" is required reading in nearly all schools in the States.  Like most of these schools, I too had to read Mark Twain's tale of a young adolescent as he went on his own Mississippi Odyssey with an escaped slave. The book is actually a sequel, and Huck first showed up with Tom Sawyer in "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer."  I am vaguely familiar with the story of Tom Sawyer from made for TV movies and cartoons in my youth but never actually read it.  When I saw it on Audible, and narrated by Nick Offerman himself (Ron Swanson of Parks and Rec), I decided it was time to know the chronicle of this little boy from Missouri.

"The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" is truly a love letter to being a little boy.  His adventures and superstitions remind me of when I was a little lad; trying to not get caught as I pursued my own fun with my friends and relations. What really struck me was how they think they know the world and proper incantations to bring about good luck or remove warts.  It's a true insight on being a young kid.  His adventures become the talk of the town as he witnessed a murder with the town delinquent and the wrong man was arrested, to striking it out as a pirate, and avoiding the real killer who may be out for vengeance.  I would say that if "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" was "The Odyssey" then "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" would be the stories with Thor and Loki from "Norse Mythology" by Neil Gaiman (which is also a good read).  The ending was amazing and could only happen to an 8 year old.

I did tell my wife that if our next baby is a boy, then this book will be required reading for her.   :mrgreen:
I never actually had to read Huck Finn or Tom Sawyer. I should really remedy that.

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Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 10 Apr 2018, 02:47
Force your way through the first one... the second gets easier, after that.. it's all gravy! :)

To be honest, there's not much force necessary. I've definitely read worse.

I'm tackling them chronologically, and it's nice to see the development he's gone through.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 10 Apr 2018, 05:21
I finished the FDR Biography. I was very pleased that it immediately ended as soon as Franklin died rather than eulogizing him or going into the political events after the War. I was less pleased that it had 300 pages of notes and Bibliography in a 900 page book. Also irritated it didn't touch on the Newport Sex Scandal, like the Ken Burns ones didn't.

I have moved onto the first part of the Theodore Roosevelt biographies by Edmund Morris, the Pulitzer Prize-winning ones from the early 1980s.

It's in a whole other league to the FDR one. The FDR one was crammed with information and analysis and was just a great big delicious cup of knowledge juice.

But Morris writes about TR, who was a larger-than-life character almost from birth, as if it's a novel. He writes a novel about a non-fiction individual. And it's beautiful and moving and brutal and honest and heartbreaking and epic and rage-inducing and so many more things in between. It's a fucking masterpiece and I've hoovered up 700 of its 800 pages in the past two weeks.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Ignominious on 13 Apr 2018, 02:49
I just discovered that The City and The City by China Meiville has been televised so now I'm rushing through the book before it gets taken off IPlayer. Its a rare occaision to be glad it isn't one if his finger straining tomes that cripple ligaments long before your appetite for the story is sated.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 30 Apr 2018, 20:15
I did it. I got my harpoon and went a-whaling, I went after the white whale and read Moby Dick.  Herman Melville is an amazing author and is very poetic in his writing. I read the unabridged version, so 1/3 of the book was about Ahab and the crew of the Pequod going after Moby Dick.  The other 2/3 of the book is everything to know about whales and whaling.  Even those parts are beautifully written! It can be a bit of a slog because it goes off tangent and talks about whales.  Stories, legends, paleontology, oceanography, history, how to hunt and harvest whales.  It really gets into the nitty gritty of it all.  I can see why its a classic, the story itself is pretty amazing as we follow Ishmael and his budding friendship with the Polynesian Queequeg as they sign onto a whaling voyage with the bitter old Ahab who wants nothing but revenge!

Honestly, you could probably find the abridged version without all the whale and whaling stuff in it, but I think you really lose out on the atmosphere and foreshadowing that Melville uses with those chapters, to build up tension and under stand what risks are involved when going after the demi-god of whales.

I also have found when talking to other people about this book, that different people get different things out of the story.  Sometimes its a vengeance rampage tale, others its a philosophical look on existence, and everything in between.  Not only is it a wonderful story, but it may be also worth the read to see what the ink blot shows you.  Another book worthy of the title "classic."

(https://i.pinimg.com/originals/03/a6/b4/03a6b4f33891917333b9c53a4dea9f76.jpg)

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 01 May 2018, 03:52
I totally agree, I'd read the complete version over the abridged version containing only the bits about the Pequod any day. Maybe that's because I'm a huge nerd, but encyclopedic chapters really do add a lot to the overall mood of the book. Ahab's obsession with Moby Dick wouldn't be nearly as credible without it.

A while ago I backed a project for an illustrated version of Moby Dick on kickstarter, and the author had some interesting things to say about the book:

Quote
I recently finished a big series of illustrations for Moby-Dick, and I’m currently running a Kickstarter campaign to self-publish an illustrated edition of the book (but also, you can read the book for free any time you like). I’m going to use this as an excuse to add to the pile of writing about one of the most written-about books in history: a book that is pored over and analyzed and cross-referenced as if it were scripture.

I am obsessed with this book: as a story and as an unfashionable, aggressive effort, and as an articulation of an interest I have in humanity’s confrontation with the limits of itself and its understanding. I am only lately and by the light of this book seeing that particular throughline connecting a lot of the stories I’ve been preoccupied with throughout my life. It’s a good book to get obsessed with, and to build an overambitious, impractical project on the back of.

Full blog post (https://evandahm.tumblr.com/post/153178447003/i-recently-finished-a-big-series-of-illustrations)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 01 May 2018, 07:51
Yeah, its often been said that Moby Dick was less a story about whaling and revenge and more an encyclopedia about 19th Century whaling.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 02 May 2018, 01:00
Recommended background reading: The Ashley Book of Knots
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Trebane on 02 May 2018, 02:54
I went through a period of trying to break out of fantasy novels, unfortunately classical literature and depressing real life books like Thousand Splendid Sons just don't do it for me.

I decided to be true to myself as a person and read what I love, not reading what I "should" be reading. I finished Half a King by Joe Abercrombie which was just ok, It was paced well but felt too cliche. I read the first 4 books of the Earthsea which was fantastic, on the lookout for more. I'm currently rereading the Abhorsen trilogy. I think Lirael might be my favourite character in all of fantasy.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 02 May 2018, 03:13
Aeschylus - The Oresteia; Murakami - after the quake and Underground.

Well, so far I have read the introduction to the Aeschylus in my Oxford edition, which is as long as the text of the three plays (and the notes on the text are as long again); also the first Murakami, which is a collection of short stories themed around the Kobe earthquake of 1995.

I am reading these as background after finding a series of articles which tie the themes of both The Oresteia and Underground to the plot and individual personalities of the anime Marawu Penguindrum.  The anime is built on the idea of inescapable familial guilt, and specifically it references the Tokyo underground (subway) sarin gas attack, also of 1995.  The idea of responsibility being passed down a family is present in Japanese society as well as in Greek myth, which is obviously where the Aeschylus comes in; and the second Murakami book is his account of interviews with survivors and other people affected by the gas attack.  One of the short stories (Super-Frog saves Tokyo) becomes a plot item in the anime, and is about forestalling disaster by challenging and placating the gods (a giant worm in this instance).

All very educational, at the least.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 17 May 2018, 10:27
I took a plunge and read The Iliad by Homer.  It takes place in the 9th year of the Trojan War and largely follows Achilles and Hector. There was a lot of drama between the Achaeans and their champions. Some I never heard of (like Diomedes) but it was fun to learn about them. Hector just out and out hates Alexandros (aka Paris) for being a little arrogant punk. Helen at one time decides to give herself up to end the war, but Aphrodite threatens to make her existence a living hell for the rest of her life if she does. Poor Helen.  Most of the story seems to be x killed y with their z, which made the story a bit of a slog at times.  I felt like sometimes my mind checked out until a familiar or important hero shows up like Diomedes or Aeneas. It does paint quite the picture on how the ancient Greeks performed war.  Its less like phalanxes coming at each other (that's way later in the historical record anyway) and more like a brawl of dogs fighting over meat (in this case dead men's armor).  Also there is no cavalry. Cavalry didn't exist yet as horses where not bred for that (which matches historical/archaeological evidence), but there were a ton of chariot fights.  Sometimes fighting like a mobile platform, sometimes as mobile archery positions, and sometimes just to drop off and pick up champions in the fight.  The Olympians get funky fighty with themselves and the mortals too. Always trying to undermine Zeus and each other by helping/hindering the mortals.  You learn about some of the physical features of the gods too, like Athena having grey eyes and a storm cloud on her shield. I thought that was pretty cool.  I also liked that they illustrated the time frame of when this event took place as they mentioned that several of the fighters are literal sons of Hercules.  Which is kind of cool, as now you have a sense of time in the legends.

I liked it, but would only really read it again for research purposes.  It doesn't read like a compelling novel and there are many parts that you have to slog through as its just x killed y with z and repeat.  It is a great piece of work when it comes to historical warfare and Greek mythology though.  The language can be a bit dense at times and beautiful at others, but that may depend on what translation you read. I don't really give out ratings for the books I read, but I'll make an exception and rate this a solid 3/5 golden apples.
 :mrgreen:

edit:
Also this legit happens in the book.
(click to show/hide)

le sigh, I really miss Hark a Vagrant.  :-\
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SordidEuphemism on 18 May 2018, 10:03
I've discovered that my library now has audiobooks online available for checkout, so I've been re-"reading" my favorites from Gaiman. Just finished Anansi Boys, and Lenny Henry was an excellent choice for the narrator.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 18 May 2018, 13:14
Lenny Henry was an excellent choice

THINGS I NEVER THOUGHT I'D READ EVER FOR 500
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: SordidEuphemism on 23 May 2018, 07:18
Lenny Henry was an excellent choice

THINGS I NEVER THOUGHT I'D READ EVER FOR 500

*shrug* He's leagues ahead of the plodding, wanna-be Keillor who narrates American Gods, who can't even get inflection right.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 23 May 2018, 08:41
Lenny Henry was an excellent choice

THINGS I NEVER THOUGHT I'D READ EVER FOR 500

*shrug* He's leagues ahead of the plodding, wanna-be Keillor who narrates American Gods, who can't even get inflection right.

(slightly off-topic)
I think the worst "narrator" I've ever heard was the dude who did the voices for the Watchmen motion comic... bloody awful.
(And his attempt at female voices was laughable!)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Stahlman on 28 May 2018, 06:01
I'm reading the Oathbronger by Brandon Sanderson. Oathbringer is the third book of The Stormlight Archive series. It's one of his most recent books, from last year I believe. It's amazing! Can't get enough of Brandon's books...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 19 Jun 2018, 09:04
I've discovered that my library now has audiobooks online available for checkout, so I've been re-"reading" my favorites from Gaiman. Just finished Anansi Boys, and Lenny Henry was an excellent choice for the narrator.
I have never read the print version of that book, and I never will. Henry's awesome and masterful reading has destroyed it for me.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 19 Jun 2018, 09:05
On my nth re-read of The Chronicles of Amber. Now in the early chapters of Sign of the Unicorn.
Easily my favorite epic fantasy series. Leagues ahead of The Dark Tower or The Lord of the Rings. (I haven't read A Song of Ice and Fire yet, but I don't anticipate it changing my mind.)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 03 Jul 2018, 06:37
I am reading Nisioin's "monogatari" series (https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=nisioisin+monogatari) (Bakemonogatari, Nisemonogatari, etc) as they come out in English translation.  I read Kabukimonogatari while on holiday, and Amazon tells me it will deliver Hanamonogatari around next weekend.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 04 Jul 2018, 09:03
Finished the "Corwin" arc of the Amber series; taking a break before diving back into Merlin's story.
In the meantime, Harlan Ellison's recent passing reminded me that I got his book "The City on the Edge of Forever" a while ago on iBooks when it was on special.
Finished the first half, a protracted rant against Roddenberry and everyone else who slandered Ellison's character and ability, and eviscerated his script. Now at the actual meat, I've read the two plot treatments and am finally into the first draft of the script itself.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 04 Jul 2018, 11:44
Just finished "The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt" by Edmund Morris. It covers Theodore Roosevelt's life from birth to the moment he became president. I cannot remember the last biography I've read but this was truly amazing.  Theodore Roosevelt is perhaps the most interesting historical figure I have ever read.  It seems almost fantasy to see him born as a sickly little boy with super asthma and nervous diarrhea only to grow up and become a literal cowboy while also writing 13 books, fathering 6 children, being an active politician and even fighting in a war (he was 38)!  His boundless energy and will power along with his keen intellect is near superhuman.  Its almost unbelievable! He put together his own museum of natural history when he was 8 years old.  He tracked down boat thieves from his ranch pursuing them down an icy river, got in a fist fight with an armed cowboy that was shooting up the saloon, stalked the streets of New York City at night as Police Commissioner to catch cops sleeping on the job, lead a couple of battle charges in a war, modernized the navy, ran the state of New York.  Just wow.  His resume is staggering that its no wonder he became president.  His oration and charisma alone could have done the job but he had the experience, intelligence, and the grit to do it.

There's just so much more I want to say but the words escape me.  You just really need to check it out.

It was a bully of a read and I am delighted to recommend it.  :-D

(https://us-east-1.tchyn.io/snopes-production/uploads/2017/08/Untitled-design-2.jpg?resize=865,452)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 05 Jul 2018, 02:55
Just finished "The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt" by Edmund Morris. It covers Theodore Roosevelt's life from birth to the moment he became president. I cannot remember the last biography I've read but this was truly amazing.  Theodore Roosevelt is perhaps the most interesting historical figure I have ever read.  It seems almost fantasy to see him born as a sickly little boy with super asthma and nervous diarrhea only to grow up and become a literal cowboy while also writing 13 books, fathering 6 children, being an active politician and even fighting in a war (he was 38)!  His boundless energy and will power along with his keen intellect is near superhuman.  Its almost unbelievable! He put together his own museum of natural history when he was 8 years old.  He tracked down boat thieves from his ranch pursuing them down an icy river, got in a fist fight with an armed cowboy that was shooting up the saloon, stalked the streets of New York City at night as Police Commissioner to catch cops sleeping on the job, lead a couple of battle charges in a war, modernized the navy, ran the state of New York.  Just wow.  His resume is staggering that its no wonder he became president.  His oration and charisma alone could have done the job but he had the experience, intelligence, and the grit to do it.

There's just so much more I want to say but the words escape me.  You just really need to check it out.

It was a bully of a read and I am delighted to recommend it.  :-D

(https://us-east-1.tchyn.io/snopes-production/uploads/2017/08/Untitled-design-2.jpg?resize=865,452)

I'm just over halfway through the second volume, Theodore Rex, and it's not quite as good, but is still fantastic. The way I described the first one, possibly even in this very thread, was that it reads like a novel, but it's about a real person. TR was so extraordinary a person that his life's exploits seem fictional.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 13 Jul 2018, 16:41
Read Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin to see what all the hubbub is about. I never imagined I would be swept up in such a story, but I am glad I was.  Jane Austin wrote wonderfully and kept it at a nice pace.  Its a nice drama about 5 sisters and their mother's mission to see them married before their father dies and they lose everything to his cousin. Not that the Father is on his deathbed or anything, he's in good health. Wonderful characters, witty verbal sparring, middle class intrigue, and a decent love story.  Elizabeth was an interesting character and her observations and changes in feelings toward some of the characters felt natural and never forced.  After the first 10 chapters I thought I knew what was going to happen, only for a cast of new characters to show up and constantly wreck everything and change the scenario. I don't know why, but I kept imagining Elizabeth's father as Stephen Fry. His sarcastic humor, especially toward his silly wife, was always a welcome sight. I honestly felt nothing for Jane and really didn't care much about the courting of Mr. Bingley. I detested Lady Catherine, Lydia, Kitty, Wickham, Caroline Bingley, Mrs. Bennet, and Mr. Colins, but I think the author didn't have much regard for them either. I kind of feel like many girls today try to be a Lydia as oppose to a Jane or Elizabeth, only to end up a Mrs. Bennet.  That just be in my experience though, and I don't read too much into it. Just a fleeting thought.

Worth a look if you haven't.  Time to go back to my original post (https://forums.questionablecontent.net/index.php/topic,21782.msg1398699.html#msg1398699) and cross that off the list.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 06 Aug 2018, 14:40
"People of the Lie", a psychologist's book about people for whom the best diagnosis is not a DSM entry but instead the word "evil".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: fantasticalice on 14 Aug 2018, 04:57
I normally have several at once. Just.finsihed The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet and found it delightful. Also has me re evaluating if I like romances or not.

Watched the movie so I could read a 7+ volume novel with a black man as the lead and am already halfway through The Dark Tower: Gunslinger. Really enjoying it. Also on kindle: Deadline by Stefanie Ahn. Read it. It moves quickly and just like Frankenstein is also written by a 19 year-old. It's a lesbian mystery novel. The genre is small and this is billed more as an urban fantasy as the Korean-American lead is also a witch. I'm not sure the extent of its Own Voice-ness but I'd be surprised if the East Asian author is not attracted to women and the way its written suggests she is pagan as well.

What I like is 2 chapters in I feel like I am reading about someone like me and who I would date. I read a lpt of scifi and fantasy which sadly often means low amounts of gay. It's also why I only deviate from Doctor Who for other inclusive fare. Because I think knowing a universe and character accepts you is important as well as the works in that Universe that show why.

I'm also actively reading Scientific Secrets of Doctor Who. I'm normally reading a dozen short story collection all at once but this one has me keeping a tight eye on it as every story is loosely based on real scientific concepts and then there is a discussion and elucidation of those concepts afterwards.I'm also reading "Lives of Dax" which is a lot of fun especially considering it does what Doctor Who does at least once a year.(A story anthology with multiple incarnations)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 14 Aug 2018, 19:14
I'm nearly halfway through War and Peace. Its good, but long. If a typical novel was to an hour and a half movie; War and Peace would be to a 10 season series from HBO, with each episode being an hour a piece, with 10 episodes a season.  Its gripping and interesting with a bunch of colorful characters.  Arguably there are 4 main characters: Pierre (the intellectual), Andrei (the noble), Nikolay (the hussar), and Natasha (the wild one) with many fun supporting characters and ancillary ones.  All go through interesting turmoils both societal and emotional during Napoleonic era Russia.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 15 Aug 2018, 00:44

Shade of the Tree by Piers Anthony.

I love his Xanth series (to a point) and quite enjoyed his Sci-Fi output.

But this one is a straight up 'horror' novel.
And by god it's pretty dull.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jwhouk on 15 Aug 2018, 04:58
"Paul McCartney - The Life" by Philip Norman.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 16 Aug 2018, 04:32
For some light summer reading, De imitiatione Christi. It's been on my list for ages, to better understand the Modern Devotion.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: sitnspin on 16 Aug 2018, 14:49
Currently reading "The Art of Not Being Governed: An Anarchist History of Upland Southeast Asia".

It posits an convincing counter argument to the old standard narrative about civilisation. It makes the argument that the people of the hinterlands, rather than being the remnants of pre-civilisation are actually refugees escaping from civilisation whose culture and social structures are diliberately designed to frustrate the encroachment of state power from without and hinder its rise from within.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 22 Aug 2018, 13:13
I just read Strip Tease by Carl Hiaasen, which is an entertaining piece of immaculately crafted trash, coated in Florida filth. Great fun. Just started reading Lucky You also by him.

Can't remember if I said in her already but I'm reading a Jeeves and Wooster book to my partners at the moment. I get to do accents and everything. It's so. Much. Fun.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 24 Aug 2018, 06:43
Can't remember if I said in her already but I'm reading a Jeeves and Wooster book to my partners at the moment. I get to do accents and everything. It's so. Much. Fun.
I love pretty much anything Wodehouse, but J&W is my favorite.

Now reading the Preacher comic book series .
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Welu on 24 Aug 2018, 13:59
I got The Adventure Zone graphic novel! Haven't started reading it yet but it looks so pretty.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: nekowafer on 28 Aug 2018, 07:15
I'm reading Son of a Witch for the second time. With how awful my memory is, it's like reading it for the first time again, so that's kinda cool I guess? I remember it being awesome, though and I was not wrong there. I need to read more, I miss it so much!!

Also I seriously love the idea of story time for adults. The guy I'm sort of seeing is a journalist and I'm gonna ask him to make up a bedtime story next time I spend the night. He used to report on violent crimes. This should be interesting!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: jeremiah on 08 Sep 2018, 08:26
I'm reading the Orkneyinga Saga.  One of the Norse Sagas.  This one deals with the Earls Of Orkney and their relation to one another and the monarchs around them (most notably the Kings of Norway and Scotland).  I'm enjoying it quite a bit.

jeremiah
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: dutchrvl on 10 Sep 2018, 07:56
Oddly enough perhaps, the Fellowship of the ring.....or more accurately I'm having the book read to me (audiobook)

Tried reading the book about 20 years ago but couldn't get into it for some reason. Then the movies came out and well, never really thought about the books much again.
The audiobook is excellent so this time I managed to really get engrossed in it, so far at least (about 7 hours in)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: BenRG on 11 Sep 2018, 03:04
Making Steam by the late, great Sir Terry Pratchett. Only on the Disc could a culture go through the entire Renaissance, going from late medieval to early industrial age, in less than a single generation!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 11 Sep 2018, 03:14
I've just taken the opportunity to buy the Jules Verne editions they had in the library when I was a kid.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 11 Sep 2018, 06:39
Started A Short History of World War I by James Stokesbury a couple days ago. iBooks edition on my iPad.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 25 Sep 2018, 07:26
Got the Count of Monte Cristo on my tablet, I think I'll be using it for train journeys. Like tomorrow.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LTK on 25 Sep 2018, 15:17
It's a really engaging book! It also interesting how it portrays the society and mores of the time, given that it takes all its characters from the idle rich. Their way of interacting is so strange, I struggle to believe that people of that era were truly so overdramatic.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 25 Sep 2018, 22:52
If I remember correctly - it's been a while since I last read it - many started from more or less humble beginnings. It's all Dantes' circle throughout. So, it's really the nouveau riche.
As for how they act, there's some evidence that people really did act more emotionally in that day and age. I'll see if I can dredge up that study.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 26 Sep 2018, 00:20

I've had Terry Pratchett and Steven Baker's "The Long Earth" for ages, but didn't want to read it as I knew it was the first of a series... but then I was in "the Works" (weird stationery/art supplies/bookstore) and they had the full run of five books for a mere tenner!

So... now I have two copies of The Long Earth!

Just started it, and it reads very well... looking forward to it! :)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: hedgie on 27 Sep 2018, 12:55
I just started the series a little over a month ago as something to read on the bus or at the kava bar when I want to take a break from my computer.  I started the second book last week, and it seems to go a bit faster since the basic world-building is out of the way, and am over halfway through despite only sporadic reading.  Probably going to pick up the next one today.  With the funeral and reception I'm at tomorrow forcing me to deal with people I wouldn't under other circumstances, I need something enjoyable to stick my nose in.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 27 Sep 2018, 17:29
I finished Mike Reiss' Springfield Confidential and it was a pretty good read. I flew through it and I definitely recommend it for any Simpsons fan
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 07 Oct 2018, 22:38
I'm nearly done with War and Peace (If I didn't get sick so much the past few months I would have finished in August).  It is Spooktober and I have a free credit on audible.  Any suggestions in the spirit of the month regarding classics?  Last year I read Dracula, Frankenstein, Something Wicked This Way Comes, and The Vampyre. I don't want to waste the credit on anything short that I can just listen to while at work in a couple of hours.  Are there any classics I am missing?  I tried to do some googling but many lists have stuff I already read (Young Goodman Brown, Macbeth) or something I am just not interested in (Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde) but I am pretty sure there's a spooky scary classical novel in my blind spot and welcome any suggestions.
 :venonat:
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 07 Oct 2018, 23:27
There's Poe, of course.

If you're looking for classic Gothic novels, there's also the Monk, and the Castle of Otranto.

Each individually might be a bit short, though. Especially compared to War and Peace.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 08 Oct 2018, 19:21
I've read some of Poe (The Raven, Cask of Amontillado, The Tell-Tale Heart, and The Fall of the House of Usher) and I may take it upon myself to read a few more this Spooktober but its not enough to justify a credit.

The Monk synopsis makes it seem too...how should I say...rapey? hardcore? gorn-ish? So I may have to pass on that.  The Castle of Otranto seems comical but short.

I am wondering if I've already hit all of the classics. If so, my mission is complete and I can pick something a bit more modern.  Thank you for the suggestions Cornelius.  :-)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 08 Oct 2018, 22:39
I can see that. I don't remember it as quite as explicit as that, but there's definitely that kind of tone.

In the same generation, there's also the Mysteries of Udolpho, and Melmoth the Wanderer. Vathek as well, but that shares a bit in the sins of the Monk.

Otherwise, I think you've skimmed off the top titles already.

There's still Le Fanu, with Carmilla. Though I haven't read that myself yet.
You might be interested by some of Hoffman's tales as well.

Edit: tip of the day: when posting in English, switch from the French autocorrect.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Case on 09 Oct 2018, 05:08
Medusa Uploaded by Emily Devenport - The story of a self-declared mass-murderess' struggling to instigate a revolution of the calcified quasi-feudal society aboard a generation-starship.

Classical music & pop-culture references abound! Courtly intrigue! High-tech-assisted liberation movement! Lots of people get on the wrong side of an airlock! (I'm about half-way through, and the protagonist has already taken five 'involuntarily spacewalks')

Surprisingly fun.  :-D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 09 Oct 2018, 14:44
Currently reading the prequel novel to "The Predator". Supposedly sets up events for the film. But really, the author just uses one of my biggest pet peeves and keeps hopping from perspective to perspective to perspective within a chapter. Not only that, but he keeps rehashing the same points over and over again. I get it already, old man had an encounter with a Predator during Vietnam and survived and now he feels haunted. I get it. I don't need to be told every time he shows up! JUST GIVE ME A PREDATOR HUNTING PEOPLE IN SWAMPS! THAT'S ALL ANY OF US WANT FROM ANYTHING INVOLVING THE FRIGGIN' PREDATOR!
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tova on 15 Oct 2018, 02:30
I got about three-quarters through Thrawn (2017) before I gave up on it, realising that I simply didn't give a shit.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 15 Oct 2018, 07:44
I finished "War and Peace".  My thought halfway through can be found here (https://forums.questionablecontent.net/index.php/topic,21782.msg1410765.html#msg1410765). If I hadn't been sick for the past few months, coupled with my Daughter's surgery, I probably would have finished sooner.  As I mentioned earlier it follows arguably 4 protagonists during the Napoleonic War in Russia.  Where as the first half really focuses on the plot, personal beliefs, and soul searching of the main characters (as well as some small characters), the second half picks up where they left off with the addition of whole chapters and series of chapters of the author/narrator's personal view on philosophy, history, and people. This can really slow down the plot as you want to know if character X is going to be okay or what is character Y's reaction to another character's death/mutilation.  I will say the narrator's essay are very intriguing and make you question the narrative you learned in school that  historians have put in place.  These parts could have been a whole other book titled "The State of Historians and the Philosophy of People Over Persons" or some such thing.  When you get to the end of the book there are 2 epilogues. The first wraps up everything with the characters and the rest of their lives.  The second epilogue is all about the narrator's view on everything covered in those essays. I will say the story is incredible and if you can get past a couple of boring chapters of soirees in the beginning, it really gets good. The interweaving stories of Pierre, Andrei, Nikolay, Natasha along with their friends and relations are captivating. It has action, romance, comedy, tragedy, political and societal intrigue, philosophy, history, and even a look inside the secretive Freemasons.  Its worth the read, but there is no denying that its a mountain.  If you are a literary hiker you will enjoy this trail but be sure to pack for a couple of nights.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 24 Oct 2018, 18:49
"The Practicing Stoic", by Ward Farnsworth.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 31 Oct 2018, 12:42
I needed a palette cleanser after War and Peace and so I just read both The Exploits of Brigadier Gerard and The Adventures of Brigadier Gerard by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Funny story, I didn't know there were 2 volumes and I read The Adventures (which is vol 2) before The Exploits(vol 1). Which didn't matter as its a collection of stories.  It takes place in Paris at a cafe where an old hussar hangs out and he tells you about his adventures when he was a hussar for Napoleon's Grande Armée. Imagine D'Artagnan if he was a Napoleonic hussar and there were no musketeers to hang out with. He duels, is sent on James Bond style secret missions, wooes lovely ladies (that didn't really know what love was until they met Gerard! *swoon*), swaggers with his dangling saber, and twirls his mustache! Of course this is all told from Gerard's perspective as he recounts the tale so who knows how much of it was "true" and how much is imbelished. The stories are told out of order so the first story may take place in Spain in 1810 but the next one may be in Venice in 1805!  This was rather confusing at times considering I read vol2 and then vol1, and the story about how he did something so unspeakable that any British soldier that finds him would execute him immediately, only for the next story to be about him in a British Lord's house after being released as a p.o.w. After consulting Wikipedia I discovered that the second story happened a year before the first (and that there was a volume 1 that told how he got captured). It was really fun to read. In one story he rides with a hussar to duel a German count that killed the hussar's father during the revolution, only to fall into a trap and have to McGuyver their way out and save the princess. So many twists and turns along with Gerard obviously embellishing the story a bit made for a really exciting and fun adventure.  I listened to them on audio book which was great because the voice actor was British doing a faux French accent the whole time. He kept switching back and forth on the pronunciation of lieutenant that it added to the comedy, along with his exaggerated British accents he put on for British characters. If you're looking for some adventure or want to read some Doyle outside of Sherlock Holmes then check out this adventure comedy.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 01 Nov 2018, 04:00
Sounds interesting.

So we imagine this kind of character?
(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 01 Nov 2018, 06:13
At the start of every story, most definitely. Then its a younger version (20s) during the flashbacks.  :-D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Castlerook on 08 Nov 2018, 11:33
Currently listening to the Haunted Forest Tour audiobook.

I don’t know if it’s meant to be serious, comically gruesome or if it’s just the narrator not having a clue.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 27 Nov 2018, 20:42
Hmmm,

Should I pick up Le Morte D'Arthur By Sir Thomas Malory, or The Once and Future King By T. H. White? Le Morte D'Arthur was written in the 1480s and the language is very much of that time (almost seems like a mix of the Iliad translation I read and Moby Dick) but is probably the closest thing to "original" Arthurian legend, however The Once and Future King was written in the 1950s and has a more contemporary approach to story telling and is also the contemporary retelling of the Arthurian legend. I can honestly go either way and wanted to know if anyone has read either of them.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 28 Nov 2018, 11:17
Finally on the third volume of William Morris's outstanding Theodore Roosevelt biography. This is a trilogy of masterworks. I am absolutely gripped throughout and I am dreading when I run out of pages.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 28 Nov 2018, 12:55
Finally on the third volume of William Morris's outstanding Theodore Roosevelt biography. This is a trilogy of masterworks. I am absolutely gripped throughout and I am dreading when I run out of pages.
The same William Morris who wrote the fantasy novels that inspired Tolkien and Lewis?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 28 Nov 2018, 12:58
Finally on the third volume of William Morris's outstanding Theodore Roosevelt biography. This is a trilogy of masterworks. I am absolutely gripped throughout and I am dreading when I run out of pages.
The same William Morris who wrote the fantasy novels that inspired Tolkien and Lewis?
I don't think so. I think it was Edmond Morris that wrote the Theodore Roosevelt trilogy.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edmund_Morris_(writer) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edmund_Morris_(writer))
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 28 Nov 2018, 23:59
Nope. His first name is Edmund. I was sleepy when I wrote that...
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 29 Nov 2018, 06:58
I picked up Le Morte D'Arthur. Holy shit there are a lot of neighboring kings when Arthur is crowned.  :psyduck:

Wish there was a map. I cannot find a decent one from google.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 29 Nov 2018, 12:39
Nope. His first name is Edmund. I was sleepy when I wrote that...
Ah. The timeline doesn't work anyway.  Wm. Morris died in 1896. But now I want to go back and reread The Well at the World's End or The Water of the Wondrous Isles again.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 30 Nov 2018, 06:43
Damn Arthur. As soon as you are crowned king you get thrown into a war. You win a great battle seduce a maid and get her pregnant, fight another battle, "fall in love" with Guinevere and then get your half sister (he didn't know they were related) pregnant when she came to spy on you for her husband (the guy at war with you). Dude is getting everyone one pregnant except his wife! I can't help but feel like this is the medieval equivalent of the modern action hero. Manly McAwesome is so awesome he slaughters his enemies like a boss and so virile he gets all the hotties pregnant. Meanwhile, Merlin is essentially telling him what to do and pranking Arthur on the reg.

The "great battle" was interesting insight into dark age/medieval combat (or at least Malory's interpretation of it). It kind of reminded me of the Iliad except instead of fighting over fallen soldier's armor, they just unhorse each other, grab the horse, and give it to one of their allies that got unhorsed. Arms and heads are getting severed and ambushes from the bushes. Was fun but battle scenes have come a long way since Malory.

I'm only 1 hour into a 37 hour story but I feel like so much has happened that it could have filled its own novel, provided more detail and dialog was in place.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 30 Nov 2018, 09:03
I'm only 1 hour into a 37 hour story but I feel like so much has happened that it could have filled its own novel, provided more detail and dialog was in place.
Wait, so it's an audiobook?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 30 Nov 2018, 13:09
Yes. I almost exclusively do audio-books now during my commute to and from work. Its the only time I have to get any "reading" done which is tough to do with actual books on the train or while driving.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 30 Nov 2018, 18:09
I feel ya. My job is now driving a library truck so I've been getting back into audiobooks. I'm currently a few hours deep in my copy of Battlefield Earth that I made over a decade ago - the library had it only on cassette, not CD, and I had to digitize it in real time to my computer and convert to MP3. The full thing, including the author's introduction, is only 19 seconds short of 43 hours.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 01 Dec 2018, 03:37
I'm only 1 hour into a 37 hour story but I feel like so much has happened that it could have filled its own novel, provided more detail and dialog was in place.

Well, Malory did try to tie all exiting stories and romances together, so there probably is one, or several out there.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 06 Dec 2018, 08:17
How many Ladies of the Lake are there? How are they different from the damsels of the lake?  I think either the translation is not adding up or Malory just expected the reader to understand or not care but dammit I want to know! Like who the fuck was in the water giving out Excalibur if The lady of the lake was the one on the shore explaining everything to Arthur and gave him her boat to get the sword? Then she dies a few chapters later. But how if she is suppose to be magical? Then Nimue shows up and is also a lady/damsel of the lake as well as others. Are they of different lakes? Is the one inside the lake the queen of the lake? Is there a hierarchy of some sort? Who is in charge? Is anyone in charge? How do they work?

(https://www.ir-rs.com/applications/core/interface/imageproxy/imageproxy.php?img=https://i.imgur.com/fpgxujN.gif&key=6ca189911aa81a5a451a3dbb3ac49e22324eecac2fead6c37658d7ed5937e672)

Also I keep getting Morgan le Fay and Morgause confused which may explain why in other retellings they just combine the two sisters of Arthur into one. Half of the Le Morte D'Arthur articles I can find end up confusing them or combining them too, which makes me really distrust them since they obviously did not read the book they are reporting on.

Thus far, I really wish Arthur didn't marry Guenever, but instead got together with Nimue. No wonder Merlin liked her. She's so charming and helpful that she rescues Arthur a few times. Guenever has pretty much done nothing but sit around and eat cake.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 06 Dec 2018, 11:25
So after starting it a month or so ago and stopping because of stress, I finally went back to Mort by Terry Pratchett and I feel like my mind has been blown open by ideas and observations about humanity.

I feel so much like I identify with Death. He tried dancing, drinking and fishing, the things that are supposed to be fun, right? And he couldn't understand them. This feels so much like my own AS interpretation of the world. He also likes to cook, loves a curry, and likes cats. I have definitely over-identified with him.

My partners are huge Pratchett fans and have almost all of his books. I've got a stack of four more Discworld ones they recommended I tackle next, and I'm doing Soul Music next.

The phrase I said to them was that if Soul Music says as much to me about music as Mort did about life and death, my life might change just a little.

Before I carried on with Mort, I finished Colonel Roosevelt by Edmund Morris. I've discussed it before, the third volume of an extraordinary set of biographies.

Roosevelt is an individual I have a great deal of admiration for (while very, painfully aware of his many faults), and I was crying about a death that happened a century ago pretty much throughout the last few chapters.

This was a combination of things. Of an adventure with those books being over. Of an ending of a life that made many positive differences to the world, and paved the way for a later, even greater figure who I admire even more. But I have also found since my father died that I seek the lessons that you receive from a father through the great figures I admire through history, and it felt like a tiny sliver of losing him again. I don't regret this feeling, it was a special one to have. And finishing those three books, which believe it or not across their 1600 plus pages were an easy on-ramp for me to return to this pasttime, has reignited my passion for reading. The last parts of Mort were read voraciously in my lunch breaks at work at commuting to and from, and when I had some time to myself on Monday I found myself impatiently waiting for a YouTube video by someone I subscribe to to end just so I could get back to my reading.

I've missed reading being able to make feel this way.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 06 Dec 2018, 13:36
How many Ladies of the Lake are there? How are they different from the damsels of the lake?  I think either the translation is not adding up or Malory just expected the reader to understand or not care but dammit I want to know! Like who the fuck was in the water giving out Excalibur if The lady of the lake was the one on the shore explaining everything to Arthur and gave him her boat to get the sword? Then she dies a few chapters later. But how if she is suppose to be magical? Then Nimue shows up and is also a lady/damsel of the lake as well as others. Are they of different lakes? Is the one inside the lake the queen of the lake? Is there a hierarchy of some sort? Who is in charge? Is anyone in charge? How do they work?
"Fuckin' Ladies of the Lake, how do they work?"
- Mad Jester Gang
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 07 Dec 2018, 01:20
How many Ladies of the Lake are there?

Let's see...
Lady of the Lake,
Strange women lying in ponds
Moisten Bint
Aquatic Tart

Yeah.. quite a few!

;)


Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 07 Dec 2018, 02:08
If I remember correctly, Malory distinguishes between two ladies of the Lake, with Nimue as the most important.

Things sometimes get a bit chaotic, as he tries to tie together all he's heard or read, which definitely isn't helped by the fact that same character, depending on the version of the story, can get a slightly different name, copying traditions being what they are. As such, it has been suggested that Morgause, though the character first appears in the tradition as Anna, and later Sangive, has gotten her name as a corruption of Orcades (Orkney), under the influence of Morgana.

The matière de Bretagne is really very fascinating to study as a tradition as well, to pluck apart all the different strands, and see how, when, and where the characters develop.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 07 Dec 2018, 02:52
How many Ladies of the Lake are there? How are they different from the damsels of the lake?  I think either the translation is not adding up or Malory just expected the reader to understand or not care but dammit I want to know! Like who the fuck was in the water giving out Excalibur if The lady of the lake was the one on the shore explaining everything to Arthur and gave him her boat to get the sword? Then she dies a few chapters later. But how if she is suppose to be magical? Then Nimue shows up and is also a lady/damsel of the lake as well as others. Are they of different lakes? Is the one inside the lake the queen of the lake? Is there a hierarchy of some sort? Who is in charge? Is anyone in charge? How do they work?
"Fuckin' Ladies of the Lake, how do they work?"
- Mad Jester Gang

I wish I could like this post six times for the gag and the ICP alternative name.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 19 Dec 2018, 11:53
Reading more of "Le Morte d'Arthur"

I really like the tale of Sir Gareth of Orkney ,but there wasn't an ork (https://nightsatthegametable.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Goff-boy.png) in sight!  :engel: Thought it was funny that Lyoness's little sister was cockblocking her by summoning a knight to stab Gareth in the leg on the nights they wanted to bone-down before marriage. As we all know, nothing kills the mood like being stabbed in the leg. Siblings would do something like that.

I am currently on the "First and the Second Book of Sir Tristrams de Lione" which feels weird to me because I read "Tristan and Isolde" in college for a French culture class. They are very similar so it kind of feels like I am reading an extended version of a reboot. Its the same story but now with more knightly battles, slightly different backstories, and weird arbitrary facts. For example a girl really liked him and sent him 3 letters but he didn't get them because he set sail for Ireland to fight in a duel so the girl got depression and died. I feel like I could skip this whole chapter but I know I am going to miss something different or important if I do.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 24 Dec 2018, 17:06
Typically for Christmas I usually give two gifts. One is the real gift and the other is the joke/goof gift. Just meant to be funny or a jab. This year the real gift for my wife was a pregnancy pillow (Baby 2 is due in July! Genetic tests shows its most likely a girl!). 
 :-D

This is the joke gift:
(https://i.imgur.com/8Rnl84B.png)

The back cover:
Quote
It's been several months since the 2016 presidential election, and "Uncle Joe" Biden is puttering around his house, grouting the tile in his master bathroom, feeling lost and adrift in an America that doesn't make sense anymore.

But when his favorite Amtrak conductor dies in a suspicious accident, Joe feels a familiar desire to serve- and he leaps into the role of amateur sleuth, with a little help from his old friend President Barack Obama (code name: Renegade). Together they'll plumb the darkest depths of Delaware, traveling from cheap motels to biker bars and beyond, as they uncover the sinister forces advancing America's opioid epidemic.

Part action thriller, part mystery, part bromance, and (just to be clear) 100 percent fiction, Hope Never Dies imagines life after the oval office for two of America's greatest heroes. Together they'll prove that justice has no term limits.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 26 Dec 2018, 07:43
(https://i.imgur.com/8Rnl84B.png)
I work for the county library system now and I've seen that book a couple of times.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Case on 02 Jan 2019, 10:38
https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/jan/02/the-drought-is-over-mass-us-copyright-expiry-brings-flood-of-works-into-public-domain
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Case on 02 Jan 2019, 10:42
So after starting it a month or so ago and stopping because of stress, I finally went back to Mort by Terry Pratchett and I feel like my mind has been blown open by ideas and observations about humanity.

<snip>

I've missed reading being able to make feel this way.

One of my all-time favorites.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: pwhodges on 02 Jan 2019, 14:56
https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/jan/02/the-drought-is-over-mass-us-copyright-expiry-brings-flood-of-works-into-public-domain

That's not so much good news as a partial reduction of the effect of some particularly bad news, if you see what I mean.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 03 Jan 2019, 07:36
So after starting it a month or so ago and stopping because of stress, I finally went back to Mort by Terry Pratchett and I feel like my mind has been blown open by ideas and observations about humanity.
I'm actually rereading this one now.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 09 Jan 2019, 21:23
Shane Bauer, "American Prison"
Miraca Gross, "Exceptionally Gifted Children"
David Weber, "Through Fiery Trials"
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 10 Jan 2019, 07:48
Growing Up in Public by Ezequiel Garcia.
The coworker who lent me it also lent American Splendor which I haven't started yet.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 24 Jan 2019, 10:47
I am picking up Le Morte d'Arthur again. I put it down for awhile because I have a habit of falling asleep on trains.

I am kind of surprised there is a few knights from India and a prominent knight named Palamedes that is middle eastern running around in England in Le Morte d'Arthur. I have a feeling if Netflix or the BBC ran a Le Morte d'Arthur show they would get flak for having such characters, even though they were in the stories.

Also, is the questing beast just a giraffe?

"following the Questing Beast that had in shape a head like a serpent's head, and a body like a leopard, buttocks like a lion, and footed like an hart; and in his body there was such a noise as it had been the noise of thirty couple of hounds questing, and such a noise that beast made wheresomever he went"
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Cornelius on 24 Jan 2019, 12:53
I never thought it was, really. It sounds smaller. But I may be confusing with The once and future King which draws quite openly on the Morte dArthur.

One romance has Gawain travel to India, to retrieve a flying chessboard, and he marries the Indian princess, as well. Turns out the legend is a bit more diverse than most people realise.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 24 Jan 2019, 13:41
The Heart Goes Last (audio) by Margaret Atwood.
Atwood has a flair for writing really bleak dystopian sci-fi.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 24 Jan 2019, 13:50
One romance has Gawain travel to India, to retrieve a flying chessboard, and he marries the Indian princess, as well. Turns out the legend is a bit more diverse than most people realise.

You know, it seems like Gawain is the one knight that pretty much gets with every girl that he comes into contact with. He's quite the rake.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Blue Kitty on 24 Jan 2019, 18:07
I've been going though the Eyeshield 21 series like crazy. I don't know why I'm so into it, but I love it and I can't get the books out of the library fast enough
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 15 Feb 2019, 23:44
"The Little Book of Stoicism".
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Is it cold in here? on 21 Feb 2019, 09:46
"Words on the Move", about how language changes and works in real life.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Thrillho on 21 Feb 2019, 11:50
I finished Richard Nixon: The Life.

Nixon is undoubtedly one of the most fascinating people in American political history. There is SO much good in him, and it just got erased by his less compassionate qualities until he became infamous for his failures. And then, after that, he was an outcast from everyone; Democrats hated him, and he was too liberal for the Republicans. Reading about his viewpoints on some things for the time, like abortion, religion, homosexuality and civil rights - or even, ignoring his viewpoints and looking solely at his pre-Watergate record, which quite frankly I think should be the real measure of a politician - is pretty amazing. What a great man he could have been. I'm not sure he ever had a chance.

I've started reading now, Jeff Tweedy of Wilco's autobiography, We've Got to Leave So We Can Come Back. After the upsetting news about Ryan Adams recently, reading Jeff's book is a breath of fucking fresh air. I'm almost scared to keep reading due to how much I like it so much, and how much more it makes me like him.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: cybersmurf on 28 Feb 2019, 09:51
I've got to look whether the latest Expanse novel is available for me, should've been released somewhen this month.

But I have yet to finish the Altered Carbon book, and it's quite different from the Netflix show though. yes, the characters are the same, and the main story probably is, too, but maaaaaaan the details are so different, and I'm not even talking about small ones
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 05 Mar 2019, 22:31
David Brin's The Postman
A pre-movie copy I found.

Fiction's Law still stands: the Book is always better than the Movie.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: JoeCovenant on 06 Mar 2019, 03:36
David Brin's The Postman
A pre-movie copy I found.

Fiction's Law still stands: the Book is always better than the Movie.

The exception which proves the rule?
The Witches of Eastwick.

One of only two books I put down without finishing... (both, before I reached the third chapter. The other was 50 Shades of Garbage Grey)
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: cybersmurf on 06 Mar 2019, 07:43
David Brin's The Postman
A pre-movie copy I found.

Fiction's Law still stands: the Book is always better than the Movie.

The exception which proves the rule?
The Witches of Eastwick.

One of only two books I put down without finishing... (both, before I reached the third chapter. The other was 50 Shades of Garbage Grey)

Isn't the latter some fan-fic gone viral, riddled with errors of all kinds?
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 06 Mar 2019, 12:54
Picked le morte d'arthur back up. Seems like a bit of a slog now. Like its all filler episodes. One of my favorite knights just died game of thrones style.

I am thinking of picking up Good Omen after this. The trailer for the show looks interesting.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: hedgie on 06 Mar 2019, 13:11
Isn't the latter some fan-fic gone viral, riddled with errors of all kinds?

Twishite fancic, if I recall.  The original was trash writing and not worth the pixels wasted on the Kindle edition (not to mention glorifying abuse).  The fanfic is even WORSE.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Tova on 06 Mar 2019, 18:18
David Brin's The Postman
A pre-movie copy I found.

Fiction's Law still stands: the Book is always better than the Movie.

The exception which proves the rule?

*twitch*

If there's an exception to the rule that "the Book is always better than the Movie," then the rule is disproven...

("Thank you, Bernard...")
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Grognard on 06 Mar 2019, 18:25
tonight's reading ... just gotten started.

"Voyage Across the Stars" by David Drake.

concept: take "The Odyssey" and wrap it in a military sci-fi setting.

Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 10 Mar 2019, 21:01
Just got through the Tale of Sir Tristan books 1 and 2 of Le Morte D'Arthur. That was a long one! It felt like I was watching an adventure show with a lot of filler episodes. Don't get me wrong, his story was fun and fascinating but there were moments when it dragged and recycled the same story over and over. I understand that Malory probably took all the Tristan stories everywhere and strung them in one story but man it was just a slog at certain points. I took a long break from it and listened to podcasts instead. It ended differently than the story I read in college but it was still fun to flesh him out more. And a quick shout out to Palamedes. Poor guy is a great knight but his jealousy always gets in his way. Its pretty human to tell you the truth and there were many times he called Tristan his friend only for the jealousy to crop up and they fight or he calls him his sworn enemy.

There were two other stand out characters of the story. Sir Dinadan the sassy knight of the table round (Seriously this guy was the comic relief but without making him doofy. He had the quips and jokes to bring levity to everything while also being a great fighter and knight). And then there was Sir Lamorak de Gales who was a pretty badass character in his own right. I am trying to figure out the best way to explain his role in the story.

If Tristan was Aang (The hero)
Palamedes would be Zuko (rival/nemesis but they team up)
Lamarak de Galis would be Toph (Badass friend)
Dinadan would be Sokka (the smartass who can hold his own)
which would mean Iseult would probably be Katara with Kink Mark as Azula?

Maybe this is a bad example.

Well we're off to seek adventure with Lancelot and the Sangrail saga.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 11 Mar 2019, 07:26
If Tristan was Aang (The hero)
Palamedes would be Zuko (rival/nemesis but they team up)
Lamarak de Galis would be Toph (Badass friend)
Dinadan would be Sokka (the smartass who can hold his own)
which would mean Iseult would probably be Katara with Kink Mark as Azula?

Maybe this is a bad example.
Not at all! Avatar analogies are always awesome!  :-D
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: cybersmurf on 11 Mar 2019, 15:00
Not at all! Avatar analogies are awesome!  :-D

Damn. I guess I'll have to watch it then. that's a few days lost to binging, right? [or rather won to binging, by what I've heard]
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: Theta9 on 11 Mar 2019, 16:26
Not at all! Avatar analogies are awesome!  :-D

Damn. I guess I'll have to watch it then. that's a few days lost to binging, right? [or rather won to binging, by what I've heard]
One of the best animated series in recent memory.
Title: Re: What are you currently reading?
Post by: LeeC on 11 Mar 2019, 19:38
Not at all! Avatar analogies are awesome!  :-D

Damn. I guess I'll have to watch it then. that's a few days lost to binging, right? [or rather won to binging, by what I've heard]
One of the best animated series in recent memory.

Its really good. Season one can be a bit weird though as its very "kiddie" at times but by season two it grows up. Season 2 is by far the best IMHO