Currently Reading

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The Jackal
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by The Jackal » Thu Feb 28, 2019 9:59 pm

Metro 2035 was very good and very moving but at the same time very unlike what was expected. Overall a great trilogy though.

I then blew through Beau Geste by P.C. Wren - it turns out that none of the films you've seen on this story actually follow the book, as no feature adaptation has done so since 1939... This book made me want to drink a lot of wine and made the fuck off it's February it's still winterrrrrr hot spell nearly bearable. I recommend this for any adventure/mystery fans.

Now, I'm on Brave New World - I've read it before, but I didn't own a copy until last week.
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Stormbringer » Fri Mar 01, 2019 10:12 am

I read BNW when I was 17, I think. I wouldn't read it again, but I think it's a very important work, and there's elements of it that I still use in my thinking -- e.g. "The Arch Community Songster" is how I describe most Church of England/Church of Scotland clergymen today.
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by The Jackal » Sat Mar 02, 2019 6:24 pm

Stormbringer wrote:
Fri Mar 01, 2019 10:12 am
I read BNW when I was 17, I think. I wouldn't read it again, but I think it's a very important work, and there's elements of it that I still use in my thinking -- e.g. "The Arch Community Songster" is how I describe most Church of England/Church of Scotland clergymen today.
It's not helping my current mood, having Bernard aghast at the world around him. Hardly escapism (I know it's been remarked that I read some depressing/heavy stuff, but at least it takes my mind off it ¬_¬)
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Achtung Englander » Sun Mar 10, 2019 12:49 pm

1/2 way through the Sister Brothers. I bought this on a Kindle sale without any knowledge the film was being made. So far so good, its a pretty good western. Want to finish it before the film to do a compare and contrast.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Stormbringer » Wed Mar 20, 2019 9:54 am

I think my reading interest must hibernate between September 23 and March 20; I feel as if I've not read any novels (for my own enjoyment) for the past six months, but this morning I woke up really excited about getting back into some novels once more!

I have begun reading The Rigante series by David Gemmell. The first one is Sword in the Storm. So far, so good; it's really well written and I have a good feeling about it.
So filled with hope, I can taste mythical fountains...

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by The Jackal » Mon Mar 25, 2019 9:44 pm

Got through BNW, thoroughly depressed, and into I Sank The BIsmarck by John Moffat - pilot of the Swordfish torpedo-bomber that (many years afterward) was determined to have hit Bismarck's rudder and caused the literal death-spiral that led to its sinking. The action of May '41 is only a small part of the book though - there's plenty about growing up in Scotland and being out of work in the Depression, and learning to fly and serving in the Med and the Indian Ocean and that. It's co-written by the bloke who documented the re-discovery of the Bismarck's wreck, too.

After that, I began on The Naked And The Dead by Norman Mailer. Published in 1949, one of the first post-WWII novels on the topic, it's one of those books I imagine people think I've read when I actually haven't.
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Sly Boots » Thu Apr 04, 2019 9:30 am

I've been slightly obsessively reading Joe Abercrombie since the turn of the year. Had bought his first book on a 99p sale a while back but had been reading other things so not looked at it until just after Christmas. Since then I've just been ploughing through them one after the other, buying the next immediately (full price, no messing around waiting for sales) when I finish one. The stories are good, and gritty, but it's the characters that really keep me hooked... I'm astonished at the life and complexity he imbues almost every character with.

Case in point, I finished his first trilogy (The First Law) but, when I saw that all the characters I'd grown to love were absent in the first book of his next trilogy (set in the same world), I skipped book one and went straight to book 2 (that series is pretty standalone) which did see many of them returning. And it was great. I then went back to the book I'd skipped with a little bit of if not trepidation then some regret that my favourites wouldn't be in it... and within the first chapter was hooked all over again and thoroughly invested in the new characters.

If you're a fan of fantasy, particularly on the 'grimdark' end of the scale, then highly recommended.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Hatredsheart » Thu Apr 04, 2019 11:32 am

Sly Boots wrote:
Thu Apr 04, 2019 9:30 am
I've been slightly obsessively reading Joe Abercrombie since the turn of the year. Had bought his first book on a 99p sale a while back but had been reading other things so not looked at it until just after Christmas. Since then I've just been ploughing through them one after the other, buying the next immediately (full price, no messing around waiting for sales) when I finish one. The stories are good, and gritty, but it's the characters that really keep me hooked... I'm astonished at the life and complexity he imbues almost every character with.

Case in point, I finished his first trilogy (The First Law) but, when I saw that all the characters I'd grown to love were absent in the first book of his next trilogy (set in the same world), I skipped book one and went straight to book 2 (that series is pretty standalone) which did see many of them returning. And it was great. I then went back to the book I'd skipped with a little bit of if not trepidation then some regret that my favourites wouldn't be in it... and within the first chapter was hooked all over again and thoroughly invested in the new characters.

If you're a fan of fantasy, particularly on the 'grimdark' end of the scale, then highly recommended.
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I also enjoyed his Shattered Sea trilogy, even though it was more YA oriented which I normally avoid.
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Sly Boots » Thu Apr 04, 2019 12:26 pm

Yeah, I'd read in the reviews for that series that people who enjoyed his others were a bit disappointed with it in comparison... no doubt will check it out next.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Stormbringer » Fri Apr 12, 2019 3:26 pm

Stormbringer wrote:
Wed Mar 20, 2019 9:54 am
I have begun reading The Rigante series by David Gemmell. The first one is Sword in the Storm. So far, so good; it's really well written and I have a good feeling about it.
Got a little tired of this, so I've switched back to reading The Iron Lance by Stephen R. Lawhead, which I mentioned earlier in the thread. An adventure set in the First Crusade (1096 AD).
So filled with hope, I can taste mythical fountains...

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by The Jackal » Sun Apr 14, 2019 1:43 pm

TN&TD was very good (albeit with an odd, abrupt ending). As I have no money for more books, I am doing a bit of re-reading until my birthday. Currently, returning to enjoy Johnny Panic and The Bible of Dreams, a short-story compilation by Sylvia Plath. I have a second-edition printed in the '70s, but which I believe is the most-distributed edition (since I've always seen that one in libraries etc.)
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Sly Boots » Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:26 am

Sly Boots wrote:
Thu Apr 04, 2019 9:30 am
I've been slightly obsessively reading Joe Abercrombie since the turn of the year. Had bought his first book on a 99p sale a while back but had been reading other things so not looked at it until just after Christmas. Since then I've just been ploughing through them one after the other, buying the next immediately (full price, no messing around waiting for sales) when I finish one. The stories are good, and gritty, but it's the characters that really keep me hooked... I'm astonished at the life and complexity he imbues almost every character with.

Case in point, I finished his first trilogy (The First Law) but, when I saw that all the characters I'd grown to love were absent in the first book of his next trilogy (set in the same world), I skipped book one and went straight to book 2 (that series is pretty standalone) which did see many of them returning. And it was great. I then went back to the book I'd skipped with a little bit of if not trepidation then some regret that my favourites wouldn't be in it... and within the first chapter was hooked all over again and thoroughly invested in the new characters.

If you're a fan of fantasy, particularly on the 'grimdark' end of the scale, then highly recommended.
Aw man. Still working through my Abercrombie odyssey, last night started the third World of the First Law book, Red Country, mere moments after finishing the first book (which was brilliant, feel silly for reading them out of order now).

I'll admit this one didn't grip me as much right away, it's pretty clearly going for a Western feel rather than straight fantasy, which isn't my genre really, but then right at the end of the chapter, which was going a bit slow for the most part, one of the characters utters the line "you have to be realistic"... actual chills up my spine (in a good way!) :) Two novels since his last appearance with nary a mention of his cliffhanger ending, and one of my favourite characters of the first trilogy looks set to make a reappearance. Such good character development that a five word sentence had that effect.

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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Alan » Tue Apr 30, 2019 12:10 pm

Finished up Pet Sematary and Born A Crime.

PetSem is one Ive read a long time ago but the movies have all but erased and mutated the memories of it. Reading it again reminds me how it actually makes a great deal more sense, comparatively speaking, than the movies. It makes the characters actions more believable and understable for the most part.


Born A Crime is Trevor Noahs autobiography of sorts. Its more a collection of stories from his childhood than a straight biography. From really funny quirky tales to the shooting of his mother. I like Noah, he seems like a really interesting guy, equal parts smart and funny and this is that same mix with some sprinklings of tragedy. Its a good read and very interesting. A couple of the tales seem far fetched but thats probably just a daft white boy without a huge knowledge of South Africa. The kitchen poop was particularly great especially with all the great detail he goes into on the subject of pooping. :lol:


Not sure what to start now. I'm thinking Heroes, Stephen Frys follow up to Mythos because I did enjoy that a fair bit.
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by The Jackal » Wed May 22, 2019 9:44 pm

S'been a while. Not sure I even have these in the right order now...

So, in the run-up to my birthday (and more books), I was re-reading stuff. After Plath, I went for It Can't Happen Here by Sinclair Lewis, which I may well have posted before as I only first read it last year. In short, populist American presidential candidate wins power and brings in fascism, told via a Vermont family embroiled in the whole thing from local to national level. Great book.

By unwitting coincidence of author names, I then picked up The Jungle by Upton Sinclair - this is the book that famously provoked food and beverage regulation in the US, although the author had actually tried to make a point about workers rights and exploitation... Grim reading at times, especially if you get the point and consider the characters rather than the foodstuffs...

I was reading this when I went home, so I now return with new books (and a couple from my library to re-read after a long while). Currently reading Ethel Voynich's The Gadfly - this is a 1897 novel set in 1830s/1840s Italy. The main reason I sought this out is because one of my favourite Shostakovich compositions is from a [name for the collection here, I'm not very good with classical terminology] set to the story, so I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. Really enjoying the book so far.
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Re: Currently Reading

Post by Alan » Wed May 29, 2019 12:25 pm

Stardust
I love the movie and it turns out its pretty faithful to the book! I do prefer the sky pirates in the movie though ¬_¬ Very good, very quick and easy read. Just like I like them. Speaking of quick easy reads...


The Hellbound Heart
Been a while since I last read it, like 15 years! I love how perfectly concise and lacking in any waffle it is. Its a perfect little story. Ok perhaps how it depicts our main character as a bit of a stupid cockcrazy loon might be a little problematic and her choices are somewhat suspect but acht!


Ancillary Justice

I dont get the teeming praise that seems to be lavished on it. I also dont get the "feminist scifi" thing Ive seen attached to it. The only reason I can think of is the weird and frankly annoying gender pronoun misuse - every character is referred to as "her" even after identifying them as male. It feels like there was this interesting seed of a genderless race that doesnt understand gender yet it goes on to identify genders within that genderless race and then the amazingly smart AI cant grasp genders even in other races. Its an interesting universe with some interesting characters and some interesting ideas but it doesn't feel like a real universe, not yet at least. Its certainly not bad but for "winner of X and Y and Q awards of awesomeness" I guess I expected more? Better? I guess I'll give the next book a shot at some point.

I also dont think it has to say "Anaander Mianaai" so many times even if it is kind of fun to say.
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