Currently Reading

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Mantis
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Currently Reading

Post by Mantis » Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:25 pm

I finished reading A Gentleman in Moscow the other day and could hardly put it down from start to finish. It was just overall a very charming and lovely book with some very nice life affirming insights from the excellent Count Rostov.

Really would recommend it.

A friend just gave me a copy of The Handmaid's Tale to plough through. I get the feeling it won't be quite as happy an experience.

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Stormbringer
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Stormbringer » Fri Aug 10, 2018 10:56 am

I'm reading Bloodstone by David Gemmell, the last in the 'Jerusalem Man' trilogy, which is itself part of the larger yet mostly incohesive 'Stones of Power' meta-narrative. I'm looking forward to seeing the 'Jerusalem Man' story concluded, but I'm not enjoying it as much as I did the other 'Stones of Power' books.

I'm also reading The Lord of the Rings to my sons as their bed-time story, having finished The Hobbit earlier in the year. Amusingly, they refer to it as "The Hobbit: Part 2".

I'm also reading up on some historical Protestant theology to help me understand my faith better. Just finished the Belgic Confession (1561) and the Canons of Dort (1619). Currently working through the Heidelberg Catechism (1563) and John Calvin's Institutes of the Christian Religion (1561).
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Sly Boots » Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:12 am

Working through some books that have been recommended by various people but are a bit outside my norm.

At the moment I'm reading A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole. It's a bit of a social satire set in New Orleans in (I think) the 1950s, with the main character both a self-important tool and a figure of fun for everyone else.

Halfway through and I'm still not sure how much I'm enjoying it, but it's certainly different.

It's quite a sad story, actually, as the author killed himself in his early 30s after failing to get the book published. His mother later took it to a publisher who read it, loved and finally released it.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Pew-Pew » Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:53 am

Stormbringer wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 10:56 am
I'm reading Bloodstone by David Gemmell, the last in the 'Jerusalem Man' trilogy, which is itself part of the larger yet mostly incohesive 'Stones of Power' meta-narrative. I'm looking forward to seeing the 'Jerusalem Man' story concluded, but I'm not enjoying it as much as I did the other 'Stones of Power' books.

I'm also reading The Lord of the Rings to my sons as their bed-time story, having finished The Hobbit earlier in the year. Amusingly, they refer to it as "The Hobbit: Part 2".

I'm also reading up on some historical Protestant theology to help me understand my faith better. Just finished the Belgic Confession (1561) and the Canons of Dort (1619). Currently working through the Heidelberg Catechism (1563) and John Calvin's Institutes of the Christian Religion (1561).
How old are your sons? I vaguely remember listening to some tapes of LotR when I was super young, didn't read them properly until I was 9 or something.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Maturin » Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:55 am

Stormbringer wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 10:56 am
I'm also reading The Lord of the Rings to my sons as their bed-time story...
Talking of LotR, I've had this illustrated hardback box set for almost 20 years and only read it once:

Image

I've been thinking of a proper read of it again. I'll take the covers off when I'm reading to protect them.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Pew-Pew » Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:57 am

Currently reading The Great Railway Bazaar by Paul Theroux. He's Louis Theroux's dad, if you're a pleb like me and aren't already familiar with him.

It's a kind of travel journal about his time riding railways east across Asia. Pretty enjoyable, he doesn't pull punches when describing people he meets (some not very PC stuff in there too...). He writes in a fairly readable way, though there are a few pretentious references to writers/books that I'm not familiar with. It's easy to forget when you're reading it that he was doing this in the 1970s - some of it sounds like something out of the 1920s, with fancy sleeper cars on trains etc. I'm only at the part where he's crossing India at the moment.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Stormbringer » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:15 pm

Pew-Pew wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:53 am
How old are your sons? I vaguely remember listening to some tapes of LotR when I was super young, didn't read them properly until I was 9 or something.
They are 5 and 6.


Maturin wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:55 am
Talking of LotR, I've had this illustrated hardback box set for almost 20 years and only read it once:

Image

I've been thinking of a proper read of it again. I'll take the covers off when I'm reading to protect them.
I have that exact same set, as well as the matching Hobbit book from the same publishers.
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Sly Boots » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:16 pm

Maturin wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 11:55 am
Stormbringer wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 10:56 am
I'm also reading The Lord of the Rings to my sons as their bed-time story...
Talking of LotR, I've had this illustrated hardback box set for almost 20 years and only read it once:

Image

I've been thinking of a proper read of it again. I'll take the covers off when I'm reading to protect them.
Wow, those are beautiful. Are the illustrations on the inside as nice as it looks from the outside?

It's only been about a year since my last re-read of LOTR, but if I had something like that I think I'd be tempted to dive straight back in!

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Stormbringer » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:22 pm

Sly Boots wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:16 pm
Wow, those are beautiful. Are the illustrations on the inside as nice as it looks from the outside?
The interior illustrations are identical. They're by Alan Lee. He's actually not my favourite artist; his paintings are very desaturated and they rarely have characters in them, making Middle-earth look like a very bleak, dreary and severely underpopulated place. They do have a certain moodiness and austere beauty, but they're nowhere near as good as the works of John Howe.
Last edited by Stormbringer on Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Maturin » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:25 pm

Yeah, the illustrations are by Alan Lee and have a classic, realistic beauty to them, perhaps not your usual fantasy drawing style.

It's not just the illustrations; the books have a lovely font, binding and are very high quality all round.

EDIT: Heavy as fuck though. Awkward to casually read if you're not in the right position.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Sly Boots » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:33 pm

Maturin wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:25 pm
Yeah, the illustrations are by Alan Lee and have a classic, realistic beauty to them, perhaps not your usual fantasy drawing style.

It's not just the illustrations; the books have a lovely font, binding and are very high quality all round.

EDIT: Heavy as fuck though. Awkward to casually read if you're not in the right position.
I remember the first ever version I read was off my parents' bookshelf. It was all three volumes in a single edition, hardback, and was the approximate size and weight of a house brick :lol:

I was 9 or 10 (in Year 3 at school anyway), and I can still remember at reading time everyone else bringing out these little light books and me slamming this behemoth down onto my desk with an almighty crash.

The pages were paper thin as well, almost like rice paper, and the text was tiny. I used to read it at night by torchlight in bed, I loved it.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Medicine Man » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:46 pm

I got the 50th anniversary edition a while back from the wife for my birthday. It's a thing of sheer beauty, but dear God is it impossibly heavy to read.

The first edition facsimile version of the Hobbit is pretty nice too.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Stormbringer » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:49 pm

Well, I have to confess I read The Lord of the Rings for the first time in my life in 2011, and that was when I bought the three-book hardback set we've just been discussing. So my current read-through with my sons is actually my second time. It's amazing how many details I've picked up this time which I didn't seven years ago.

Actually, I had previously bought cheap paperbacks in 2002 when the Peter Jackson films came out, but never read them as at the time I couldn't seem to get into the prose. I think I sold those ones (which is just as well).
Last edited by Stormbringer on Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Sly Boots » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:51 pm

If I'm honest though I skip past all the songs -_-

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Stormbringer » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:52 pm

Sly Boots wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:51 pm
If I'm honest though I skip past all the songs -_-
:lol:

Not only have I not been skipping the songs, I've actually been SINGING them to my sons!
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