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You cracked a book! *thud*
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Arcticfox
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 Posted: Mon Jun 17th, 2013 11:27 am

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@ Nell, if I can't get into them I don't finish them but I give them a good try if its a novel. Obviously if I'm trying to learn about something that's another matter. To me there are some things that are worth trying to read even if you don't enjoy them. Kind of like working out when you don't want to, only for your brain.



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 Posted: Mon Jun 17th, 2013 11:28 am

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oh, ok, I get it_) An interesting philosophy_)



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Arcticfox
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 Posted: Mon Jun 17th, 2013 11:48 am

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I don't want a bad case of flabby brain.



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 Posted: Mon Jun 17th, 2013 11:50 am

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A flabby ass is bad enough... And man does he snore something awful.



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 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 01:37 pm

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Okay I finally broke down and picked up World War Z. This is one book that is turning out to be a chore. Going on 4 weeks and I'm only about 40 pages into it. The only thing keeping me going with it is pure stubbornness.



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 Posted: Wed Jul 17th, 2013 07:12 pm

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I'm reading a biography on Tony Curtis..interesting read..



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 Posted: Tue Nov 19th, 2013 11:10 pm

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I just downloaded the new Stephanie Plum audio book. Can't wait to listen to it!



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 Posted: Thu Nov 21st, 2013 05:06 am

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Right now I'm reading Kittredge's "Black London" series. For you Brits out there, it's chock-full of great British slang and cursing, not to mention the fact that the protagonists are from London. Check it out, very scary stuff...

Still waiting for the sonic screwdriver to make an appearance...

:TARDIS4:



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 Posted: Sun Jan 5th, 2014 07:53 pm

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Redshirts by John Scalzi.

As any casual Trek/sci-fi fan can probably divine from the title alone, it's essentially a novel-length extension of THAT joke.  A great little time-killer, chock-a-block with in-jokes, that centers on a group of low-ranking expendabilibuddies on an ersatz Enterprise who arrive at a collective "Just wait a damn minute here..." epiphany after their first couple away missions.

Not what I'd call great literature by any stretch (it won the Hugo award last year, which honestly has me scratching my head), but it entertained me from start to finish.  The central characters are a bit one-dimensional, which I believe was the author's intention, given the premise, and the second half of the plot is driven by

a) a literary gimmick that I've never been a huge fan of

b) a recurring Star Trek plot device that a good many Trekkies can't stand/are sick of

but to Scalzi's credit, neither detracts from the enjoyment.


Worth your while if you're a Lexx/Futurama/Bilbo67/Edgar Wright fan in the mood for a brisk little chuckler you can breeze through in one sitting.  My first exposure to Scalzi, but I'll definitely seek him out again in the future.



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Ketana
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 Posted: Tue Feb 18th, 2014 12:16 am

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he's so brainy...that's why I stalk him..*sigh*



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 Posted: Sat Oct 11th, 2014 08:09 pm

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Re-reading Holdstock.
Pure magic. Lavondyss in particular. Just like I remember it.
That guy's imagination must have been an incredible place.

I've also got myself a bunch of Koji Suzuki's books.
The Ring was a delightful read - especially when I read it with some cool dark ambient music playing in the background. Halfway through the second book in the series now.

Unfortunately, I haven't been reading quite as much lately. In recent years, I've done most of the reading in trams, trains and buses, while commuting to school or work  - much of that time has been taken up by listening to audioplays now.
I think I should limit myself to 2 audioplays a week at most. (But it's gonna be tough.)

Last edited on Sat Oct 11th, 2014 08:17 pm by Cesare



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Ketana
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 Posted: Mon Oct 13th, 2014 02:54 am

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I miss reading. Was a voracious reader but now with my eyesight failing me it's become a bit harder. Am waiting for new eyeglasses..and then maybe the headaches will ease up and allow me to hit the pages once again..



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Cesare
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 Posted: Mon Oct 13th, 2014 07:33 am

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Ketana wrote: I miss reading. Was a voracious reader but now with my eyesight failing me it's become a bit harder. Am waiting for new eyeglasses..and then maybe the headaches will ease up and allow me to hit the pages once again..
Audiobooks in the meantime, perhaps? Though it's not quite the same thing, I know...:-/
Hope it gets better soon - and not just because of the reading issue.
Fingers crossed!

Last edited on Mon Oct 13th, 2014 07:34 am by Cesare



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Cesare
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 Posted: Sat Oct 18th, 2014 12:17 pm

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Lieutenant Hornblower is an awesome read.
It's a pity I hadn't read the Hornblower books before watching the miniseries as I usually like to conjure up my own images when reading a book - and in this case the TV adaptation is completely overriding all my attempts at visualising... (On the other hand - that basically means a lot of McGann and no Jamie Bamber to obscure the view, so I'm quite content, actually. I do miss Matthews and Styles, though.)

Anyway, looking forward to the next book in the series.

Last edited on Sat Oct 18th, 2014 12:17 pm by Cesare



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Bilbo67
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 Posted: Sat Mar 7th, 2015 05:57 pm

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Dispatches from Bilbo’s reading list, lo these past couple months:
 
Andersonville by Mackinlay Kantor: A fictionalized, though thoroughly researched (over the course of twenty-five years, no less) account of life in and around the criminally mismanaged Confederate gulag of the same name during the closing year of the Civil War.  No beach read, this.  Long, demanding and thoroughly unflinching, with some of the most sublime prose I’ve read in quite some time.  Apolemical with regards to Blue vs. Grey, this is less a war story than a story simply about people: at their worst, at their lowest, and yet not so pessimistic as to entirely abandon the inverse.  Dickensian in scope and character depth, with a stark, haunting realism that—to me—recalls the likes of Joseph Conrad.  In all, probably the bleakest book I’ve read since The Road, which lends a borderline spiritually-uplifting kick to the handful of (subjectively speaking) “happy” endings.  (Speaking of which, I was slightly put off by the fact that one key character’s story is never resolved on the page, but simply “stops,” for lack of a better term.  While his fate is a matter of historical record that anyone with access to Wikipedia can punch up in five seconds, I’ve got to imagine some readers back in the 50’s were miffed at being left hanging.)  Something of a stylistic oddball, in that Kantor eschews quotation marks entirely, yet at the same time practically overindulges in semicolons (the red headed stepchild among punctuation purists/minimalists.)  Apparently courted no small amount of controversy when it was first published, presumably for its salty language and no-punches-pulled portrayal of the myriad unpleasant realities of prison life, though I doubt it would raise any eyebrows were it to debut today.  Several of the blurbs on my copy called it, “The greatest Civil War novel ever written,” and while I can neither confirm nor deny this sentiment—as, to my shame, I’ve never read The Killer Angels or any of the top-shelf Civil War fare that comes to mind when you think best-of-the-best—it’s a damn fine read that’s well worth your time if you’ve got some to spare. 
 

The Waterworks by E.L. Doctorow: For years I’ve been hearing nothing but good things about Doctorow, routinely heralded as a master of historical fiction set in and around the late 19th and early 20th century (with a particular focus on the ragtime era and its attendant gangsters and molls.)  Selected this yarn at random from an omnibus edition of his novels and…well, to be honest, I wasn’t thrilled.  This story had all the earmarks of a tight little seventy or eighty page novelette needlessly stretched out to 250+ pages.  Supposedly a gothic horror story written as an homage to Poe, the author seemed largely out of his element as far as the principal plot was concerned (far more interesting were his lavish descriptions of post-Civil War New York, the inner workings of the infamous Tweed Ring, etc, which unfortunately served as little more than filler much of the time).  No denying Doctorow can write like a bat out of hell, as his top notch prose demonstrates, but in all I found this story clunky, meandering and something of a bore.  I’ll probably give him another shot at some point, and am hoping that this was simply a rare misfire on his part.
 
 
My Father’s Paradise – A Son’s Search For His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq by Ariel Sabar: This one’s a departure from my typical beaten path, though not without reason.  Last fall I got in touch with the author’s father, a world-renowned linguist at UCLA (very much via cold call), who would up helping me with a tricky translation for a story I was completing (…still waiting on a couple credentialed lazy-asses to finish vetting the damn thing, lest you wonder).  We bantered a bit in the process, during which time he told me a little about himself—namely, that he’s an Iraqi ex-pat from a three thousand year old Jewish enclave in northern Kurdistan.  It was enough to pique my interest, so when I learned that his son, a journalist, had written a book about him, I decided to check it out.  Equal parts biography, memoir and history, it’s essentially a multigenerational account of both embracing change and coming to terms with one’s past.  More than a little reminiscent of Maus in some ways.  Fascinating stuff, all told.  (And lest anyone doubt Dr. Sabar’s geek cred, he did a guest spot on The X-Files back in the day, and served as an Aramaic consultant/dialogue coach on True Blood.)
 
 
Weaveworld by Clive Barker: The Hellraiser dude (…as in the guy who wrote it, not the guy with the nails in his face.)  Fast moving little urban fantasy yarn.  Essentially Narnia for those of us who are a bit more…well, frankly, Lexxian in our sensibilities.  Unusual pacing that basically ends up yielding what feels like a story-and-a-half, with a climax that has something of an “Aesopier-episode-of-Star-Trek” feeling and an ending that’s so godawful abrupt that I’m still not 100% sure what happened, it’s nonetheless an inviting little page-turner that’s right up your alley if you enjoy the likes of Neil Gaiman.  (Actually, “American Gods by way of Narnia” might be one way to describe it, but for the fact that it predates the former by more than a decade.)  Yet another one of those stories that reminds my generation of just how old they’re getting by subconsciously prompting the reader to muse, “None of this would be happening if these people had cell phones.”
 
 
Stall divider at 7-Eleven: Apparently for a good time, you could do worse than to call someone or something known only as The Claw.  A mystery I’m likely to take to my grave, as the number in question had only six digits.

Last edited on Sat Mar 7th, 2015 05:58 pm by Bilbo67



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