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Thread: What book are you reading?
10-06-2013, 04:17 AM #1521
Some of that won't just be the translation - I've never found Ol' Dusty to be a particularly great writer as far as putting one word in front of the other is concerned. It's that rich stew of plotting, ideas and borderline insane characters that I stayed for.
White Noise would be my favourite Delillo but it was the first I read and I've found him to be very much an author of diminishing returns.
Currently, I've been reading a lot of George Saunders (amazing) and have just started cracking into You Bright And Risen Angels by Vollman. So far so very good but I should probably also get into the the 3rd ASoFaI (did I do it right?) before I am exposed to spoilers for the TV series' third season finale that left everyone so shocked.
14-06-2013, 03:43 AM #1522
- Join Date
- Jul 2011
I'm currently reading Pride and Prejudice, which so far seems like a really bad episode of Downton Abbey. There are far too many named characters here (most of whom do absolutely nothing), and no one really stands out in a way that makes me actually care about what happens to them. I'm only one "volume" in, however, so maybe it'll get better as it goes along.
When taking breaks from Pride, I'm also making my way through From Hell, which I was excited about because the Jack the Ripper mythos fascinate me, but I'm only three chapters in and its taken a turn into some weird X-Files level conspiracy weirdness so...we'll see. The art is fantastic to be certain, and there have been some great scenes, I'm just not sure how it'll all come together. Still, I suppose I'm enjoying it.
14-06-2013, 09:47 AM #1523
I made it through Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom! in one piece, somehow. It's good. Really, really good. It's still very difficult to read, though.
Next in line is either Heart of Darkness or A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. Both are fairly short, thankfully.
14-06-2013, 12:45 PM #1524
Finished Volume 1 of Sandman. It was the first time i read one of his comics.
I had always been a DC fan. Sandman tough feels weird tough when comparing to regular action comics. Yet I love the setting and want more!
Shame its 25 bucks per volume. Can't justify buying one volume more than once a month.
14-06-2013, 07:36 PM #1525
They did a rerelease of the full set which you can get for £90 in the UK now. Still seems like a lot of money but it's not so bad for 10 volumes. I've been thinking of getting it, I have the first 3 volumes already but never read further due to later ones being out of print at the time, plus one of them got water damaged.
14-06-2013, 09:01 PM #1526
15-06-2013, 10:16 AM #1527
Just bought the 4th book of the Japanese light novel series Math Girls by Mr. Hiroshi Yuki. I have ordered the previous 3 books as well and hopefully will get them within 2-3 weeks. Of course, I am gonna read the Chinese translated version. Glad to learn that this series has English translation as well but the prices are rather high:
Actually Mr. Yuki has recently finished the 5th book but it generally took about a year for an installment to be translated. After all, translation involves a large amount of mathematical languages.
Mr. Yuki is a IT professionals who happens to be very enthusiastic in authoring textbooks and casual readings promoting science and technology. He wrote tons of elementary programming textbooks though no one bothers to translate them in foreign language. His science promotion writings, however, are generally quite popular both in Japan and overseas.
About a guy and some math-gifted girls discussing mathematics, and, of course, some common Japanese style teen romances. In East Asia we have a genre call Science Promotion Publications. Scientists try to promote understanding of science through those readings. Fiction is an increasingly popular kinda presentation.
15-06-2013, 10:38 AM #1528
15-06-2013, 08:08 PM #1529
16-06-2013, 08:35 PM #1530
Finished up Abaddon's Gate (third book in The Expanse) the other night, started reading the english translation of Metro 2033.
I still think the strongest Expanse book is Leviathan Wakes, but mostly because of the strong contrast between the viewpoint characters. It was nice to read about two very strong and very moral characters who just have completely different ethical views. Caliban's War was okay, but there was no real contrast. Everyone was of the "I have to do some bad stuff to make the world a better place", and they just varied in terms of what they thought was "bad".
Abaddon's Gate did a decent job of going back to the original contrast while also demonstrating that the solar system has changed since the protomolecule was discovered. Holden is still a goody-two-shoes, but he is also a much more mature man who is capable of admitting when he is wrong. And Bull was similar to Miller in that he was willing to do some pretty messed up stuff in the name of making the world a better place, but he was also a man who was truly selfless and only cared about protecting the world (Miller was a selfish asshole :p). And not to spoil anything, but Melba was a surprisingly interesting read.
Also had a few great gut punches and did a really good job of making the reader care about even the lesser viewpoint character (Pastor Anna). Her narrative gets really good near the end (in fact, during the climax, I would put her as first/second best read), but it is clear the authors didn't know what to do with her for the first half of the book but also understood they couldn't just pull her out of storage when it was important. The contrast of her and Amos (who still has no viewpoint chapters) was VERY good and well written. And it was nice that the writers toned back the borderline comedic sociopathy that Amos exhibited in Caliban's War and brought him back to "a good-hearted unrepentant killer". As much as I would love a few viewpoint chapters from him, I think keeping his mind a secret is a much better choice as the reader knows just enough to have a good feeling of the turmoil that is going through his head but not enough to truly comprehend him.
26-06-2013, 08:55 AM #1531
On a non fiction wave at present. Have been reading 'The Art of Thinking Clearly' by Rolf Dobelli which is a book that basically categorizes and succinctly explains all manner of everyday cognitive biases. Really interesting stuff, very insightful and full of good (and often amusing) examples of them in effect. Highly recommended to all and sundry.
26-06-2013, 10:30 AM #1532
Rereading William Gibson's Pattern Recognition for what I think is only the third or fourth time (not much for me; I reread a lot), and I'm growing more and more fond of it each time. There's something about the tone or atmosphere or whatever to call it, that makes it feel very sharp in a pleasant way. The plot is good, but for me it's much more about the tone.
It's sort of like Gibson has been working towards getting that sharpness through all of his books and now it's really there.
26-06-2013, 11:50 AM #1533
26-06-2013, 12:10 PM #1534
26-06-2013, 01:23 PM #1535
26-06-2013, 03:55 PM #1536
As we speak, I've reached the final pages of Stephen Kings The Stand (the unabridged edition). I read it a few years back and wanted to read it again during a long flight a couple of weeks ago. I didn't manage to finish it then, but I will tonight. Great book, even though I don't care much for the somewhat christian hocus pocus the book ends with.
26-06-2013, 04:23 PM #1537
- Join Date
- Jun 2011
Finally finished the last ~80 pages of Eisenhorn last night. I put it off for months for some reason. It felt like an extended graphic novel, but what an engaging and overall well-written story -- great series, all told. Ending felt incredibly rushed though. For anyone who's read it and the Ravenor omnibus, is Alizabeth mentioned at all? I don't see why she'd be relevant in it, but it's the end I most wanted unloosed in Eisenhorn.
Next on the list: The Road. Finally catching up with my years-old book backlog.
26-06-2013, 05:25 PM #1538
- Join Date
- Jun 2013
Voyage au bout de la nuit.
26-06-2013, 09:33 PM #1539
Just finished Everything Flows by Vasiliy Grossman. Second book of his that I've read (the other being Life and Fate), and I can't recommend them enough. Really worth reading, historically accurate novels that draw heavily on the experiences of the author living in Soviet Russia.
Life and Fate is a long and often subtle war story. Everything Flows is the opposite. It's short and direct; at times it becomes more essay than novel (unfinished, Grossman was still revising it when he died). Grossman's writing is clear and concise, and frequently insightful and moving. It's the fresh perspective I liked most. The book contains an account of the "Terror Famine", an event I hadn't even heard of where millions of Ukrainian peasants died due to state grain confiscation. He also devotes a few chapters to attacking Lenin and Lenin's image. Even now Lenin seems to be venerated to a degree as a noble revolutionary while everything bad is attributed to Stalin, but Grossman paints him as a man defined by the ruthlessness that brought the Bolshevik Party to power and laid the foundations for Stalin's state.
Haven't had the chance to look into proper non-fiction accounts yet, but certainly an interesting read.
27-06-2013, 04:54 AM #1540
In fact, come to think of it, they also barely promoted the latest Gaunt's Ghosts book. So yeah, pretty sure BL is pissed at him for something or another.
Err, to answer you question: she is a presence in Ravenor, but she was really Gregor's love (her and Gideon were just friends), and Ravenor kind of has other stuff to deal with. It is unclear exactly how the Bequin/"Eisenhorn VS Raveor" trilogy is going to work, but the viewpoint character is a pariah who is referred to as Bequin, so yeah :p
Of the two existing trilogies, I prefer Eisenhorn conceptually (a good man being turned into a Renegade), but Ravenor has much better writing.