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Other Topics => Entertainment => Topic started by: ER on November 19, 2008, 09:52:20 PM



Title: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on November 19, 2008, 09:52:20 PM
Just started Bleak House. I have a mixed record of finishing Dickens' books but I'll see how it goes.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Javakoala on November 19, 2008, 10:17:47 PM
I'm not reading anything of such grand value.

Recent titles:

"The Cats"  Which would make a great movie that would p**s off PETA

"The Jeweled Dagger"  Modern romantic suspense (well, modern as of 1974) but it looked like a gothic romance

"Night Of The Crabs"  Another that would be a hoot if they filmed it in all of its blood-soaked gory...uh, um, glory

"The Worms"  People turning into giant grub worms.  No, I'm serious.  Really.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on November 19, 2008, 10:24:46 PM
I am in the middle of Seymour Hersch's THE DARK SIDE OF CAMELOT.  Great read.  Man, the Kennedys are  a slimy clan.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on November 19, 2008, 10:48:07 PM
Finishing up SELECTED WORKS OF EDGAR ALLEN POE.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on November 21, 2008, 12:39:31 AM
Finishing up a very thick bio of Picasso and at the same time "The Last Stand of the DNA Cowboys". 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: frank on November 21, 2008, 05:13:26 AM

"The Tender Bar" by J.R. Moehringer.

Recommended to all barflies...



Looking at you, Rev. ...





Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on November 21, 2008, 05:15:22 AM
My brother gave me a copy of William Shatner's Up Till Now for my birthday. A very good book and strangely emotional in places.

One thing that did knock me for 6 was the disclosure that Leonard Nimoy was struggling with alcoholism for many years until his wife convinced him to give up drinking, which he did. I've always had a huge amount of respect for Mr Nimoy and now I have even more.  :smile:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on November 21, 2008, 08:17:58 AM

I just got done reading Stone of Tears by Terry Goodkind, started on the Cirque De Freak series (heard it was pretty good, even for a YA series.)

Also have the book Sacrifices by Andrew Vauches that I'm going to start soon as well.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on November 21, 2008, 08:19:14 AM
I'm not reading anything of such grand value.

Recent titles:

"The Cats"  Which would make a great movie that would p**s off PETA

"The Worms"  People turning into giant grub worms.  No, I'm serious.  Really.

Who are those two by?  I couldn't' find them in a search on Amazon.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ghouck on November 22, 2008, 12:18:15 AM
I have a few books I'm trying to pick up, but it only shows me how bad my eyesight is getting. I REALLY want to finish "Into the Wild" and a book of Hemmingway shorts, , but every time I do I realize my eyes aren't that good anymore. I've also started "Foley is good" and "The Prince and the Pauper". . I wonder if my medical covers lasik or whatever it's called?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sister Grace on November 22, 2008, 06:18:44 AM
As a hermit, I read quite a bit. When we moved down here, twenty-three cardboard boxes of books were put into storage. Currently I don't have anything on hand to read; which is rare...going to the flea-market today to try and find some decent books. I was so hard up for something to read last night, that I began to read my daughter's Clue series. Now talk about a trip down memory lane... However, this month I've had the pleasures of...

The Sinner-
by Tess Gerritsen. She is a great author and I love her books, however I read this one out of sequence so I didn't feel as if I got the whole picture.

Triptich-
by Karen Slaughter. Great book; I actually felt so bad for some of the characters that I cried during the 'sex in the closet at the juvie center' scene...

The Long Last Call-
by John Skipp. I waited so long to read this book. It was aweful!! The ending was so anti-climatic and p**s$% me off so bad, I actually threw the book after reading the last page.

Pandora Drive-
Tim Waggoner. Awesome book, but some of the scenes were too graphic, even for my tastes... I really liked the premises of this book, if our imaginations could become real. There was a lot creative violence in this book, which was refreshing for a genre that has been so over-done.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on November 22, 2008, 06:40:57 PM
Wrapped up an English translation of Ildefonso Falcones' Cathedral of the Sea, the story of Spanish Medieval life and the building of Barcelona's famous fourteenth-century church of Santa Maria de la Mar. While many are comparing this novel to The Pillars of the Earth, that's mostly for marketing purposes, as the stories don't share much common ground beyond their mutual church construction. I have mixed feelings about this book, which was sometimes fascinating and at others a slow moving, marginally far-fetched take on the rise of one person from poverty to society's greatest heights, all set during the era of the Black Death and Inquisition. It was descriptive as far as the laws and customs of the era, and some practices of the time are shocking, but it also required a reader to just accept some improbable happenings. I'm glad I read Falcones' work but its sheer size required an investment of about a week to get through. Apparently it was and is a record-setting best seller in Spain but I don't think it's making similar waves here so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on November 28, 2008, 10:29:55 AM
2001's Lights Out: Sleep, Sugar, and Survival by the Sansum Medical Research Institute's T.S. Wiley, is a scary book about how modern people are suffering the catastrophic health effects of chronic sleep deprivation. Wiley provides copious data that correlates spiking levels of heart disease, cancer, obesity, insanity, even the increasing global phenomenon of male infertility, to the recent decline in the time people spend asleep.

Through most of history, going back tens of thousands of generations, humans have slept nine to twelve hours nightly in patterns ruled by the seasons, and the human body was created/evolved/adjusted to operate in conjunction with this downtime, but in the last three generations as we in the developed nations stay up late to watch TV and read via readily-available artificial lighting, that figure has fallen to about six hours a night, with potentially horrifying results for our blood sugar levels, hormones, brain chemistry and much more.

With our long, light-soaked hours, we have tricked our bodies into thinking we dwell in perpetual summertime, resulting in the body staying in a metabolic mode with enhanced cravings for carbohydrates, the rapid storing (for leaner wintertime) of consumed calories, and a minimizing of the production of vital chemicals. For example, the hormone melatonin, necessary to life itself, is only produced in darkness, and only during specific periods in the human sleep cycle. The average modern person neither sleeps in darkness nor gets enough sleep for the body to cycle through the peaks and valleys of the slumbering process necessary to produce nearly enough melatonin, leaving the majority of us literally starved for this age-retarding, weight-regulating, mood-enhancing hormone.

As Wiley convincingly points out, the results of all this, our sleep deprivation and the demonstrated effects in lab rats, in monkeys, in humans under test conditions, mirror many of our modern health ills.

A frightening book!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on November 28, 2008, 04:09:14 PM
2001's Lights Out: Sleep, Sugar, and Survival by the Sansum Medical Research Institute's T.S. Wiley, is a scary book about how modern people are suffering the catastrophic health effects of chronic sleep deprivation. Wiley provides copious data that correlates spiking levels of heart disease, cancer, obesity, insanity, even the increasing global phenomenon of male infertility, to the recent decline in the time people spend asleep.

Through most of history, going back tens of thousands of generations, humans have slept nine to twelve hours nightly in patterns ruled by the seasons, and the human body was created/evolved/adjusted to operate in conjunction with this downtime, but in the last three generations as we in the developed nations stay up late to watch TV and read via readily-available artificial lighting, that figure has fallen to about six hours a night, with potentially horrifying results for our blood sugar levels, hormones, brain chemistry and much more.

With our long, light-soaked hours, we have tricked our bodies into thinking we dwell in perpetual summertime, resulting in the body staying in a metabolic mode with enhanced cravings for carbohydrates, the rapid storing (for leaner wintertime) of consumed calories, and a minimizing of the production of vital chemicals. For example, the hormone melatonin, necessary to life itself, is only produced in darkness, and only during specific periods in the human sleep cycle. The average modern person neither sleeps in darkness nor gets enough sleep for the body to cycle through the peaks and valleys of the slumbering process necessary to produce nearly enough melatonin, leaving the majority of us literally starved for this age-retarding, weight-regulating, mood-enhancing hormone.

As Wiley convincingly points out, the results of all this, our sleep deprivation and the demonstrated effects in lab rats, in monkeys, in humans under test conditions, mirror many of our modern health ills.

A frightening book!

That's an interesting theory.  I suspect he's on to something. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on November 28, 2008, 04:21:08 PM
post-war by Tony Judt.  it is about europe 1945-1989  though it was started in 89 and finished in 99 so there is the beginings of the post commie era as well.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on November 28, 2008, 05:24:19 PM
Hey, lester, another book you might like is Nicholson Baker's Human Smoke. If you haven't heard about it, it concerns the time between the world wars, thru to the end of 1941, and traces the decisions made that ultimately led to the beginnings of World War Two as we know it. The entire book, written by a pacifist, is composed of virtually nothing except quotes from the major figures or descriptions of the actions of literally thousands of people alive in the period between the wars, each of whom played some part in the outcome of history. It's a familiar story told from a different angle.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on November 28, 2008, 08:21:34 PM
Currently reading Michael Slade's "Crucified" which seems, at first glance, like an attempt to compete with Dan Brown.

Recently finished Slade's most recent Special X crime novel, "Kamikaze." I really enjoy Slade's books. Kind of like a horror story wrapped in a whodunit wrapped in a history lesson wrapped in a police procedural. Riveting stuff, and meticulously researched. The books are currently written by a father-daughter team with backgrounds in criminal law and history. Apparently, the Slade pen name has had a couple of owners over the years.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on November 29, 2008, 04:10:35 AM
At present, I'm reading Off Season by Jack Ketchum, having just finished The Twilight Realm by Christopher Carpenter (aka Christopher Evans). 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on November 30, 2008, 07:59:04 PM
The Collected Stories of Louis Auchincloss

The most unique American writer of his times.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on November 30, 2008, 10:09:38 PM
I read Off Season. It was enjoyable, and didn't leave me with the kicked-in-the-stomach feeling that The Girl Next Door did.

I'm currently reading a multitude of books, but am focusing on The Terror (http://www.amazon.com/Terror-Novel-Dan-Simmons/dp/0316008079/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1228100711&sr=8-1) by Dan Simmons. It's a historical horror based off of the lost Franklin expedition to find the Northwest Passage. The men on the two ships get trapped in the ice and must spend the time trying to stay warm while fighting off malnutrition and scurvy. Unfortunately, there is something else out on the ice that slaughters the occasional man from time to time.

It's a great book. I admire how thoroughly the situation goes from bad to worse, and then much worse.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on December 01, 2008, 12:13:54 PM
Anyone gotten Stephen King's latest yet? Time was I'd have rushed out and bought it and read it in a sitting, but....times change. It might be good, though. Anyone read it?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: princess dragonmom on December 01, 2008, 12:28:01 PM
Are you talking about " Just after Sunset" the new collection of short stories?  I've been reading it for the last few days.  So far I'd give it 3 stars.  A few of the stories have been pretty flat, in that you read it  and say "Is that it?"  A couple of them have been good, I'm in the middle of "The Gingerbread Girl" right now and it's the best I've read so far. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: WilliamWeird1313 on December 03, 2008, 08:35:20 AM


I'm currently in the middle of...

Zombie C.S.U. -by Jonathan Maberry

The Backwoods- by Edward Lee

The Long  Walk- by Richard Bachman




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on December 03, 2008, 09:00:26 AM
The Long Walk is a hard-hitting book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on December 03, 2008, 09:49:56 AM
ER-  I had a choice between that and Pat Buchanans latest which has a similar theme and I'm a big fan of pats believe it or not so I opted for that one "churchill hitler and the unneccasary war" but they both have the same sort of idea.  post war is very interesting thusfar.  1939 thru 1945 were basically a battle between germany and russia to see who could be the most horrible.  I can't fairly say who won.  then after the war came retributions against collaborators and so forth and massive ethnic cleansing.   


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Javakoala on December 03, 2008, 01:01:34 PM
I'm not reading anything of such grand value.

Recent titles:

"The Cats"  Which would make a great movie that would p**s off PETA

"The Worms"  People turning into giant grub worms.  No, I'm serious.  Really.

Who are those two by?  I couldn't' find them in a search on Amazon.

SARRANTONIO, AL  wrote "The Worms"  and Nick Sharman wrote "The Cats".  You'll need to haunt your used books stores for those delightful wrecks.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on December 03, 2008, 02:04:08 PM
I have the Buchanan book, too, lester, but I've only read the first few chapters so far. I don't think it's as similar to Human Smoke as it might seem once you get into it, but you're right, there are points in common, yeah. Both are re-examinations of the accepted versions of World War Two history, and neither makes Churchill come off unblemished or accepts that the war was inevitable or had to be as bloody as it was. I'll get back to finishing the book soon. Studying mistakes is fine but overall I think it might just be ungrateful for those of us who are the heirs to the post-war world to be too critical of those who won WWII and gave us the world we've lived in since.

I think Buchanan's best work was probably State of Emergency, his dead-on accurate diatribe on the illegal immigrant catastrophe not only in America but in the entire west, which he claims is under invasion.

I think for the first time in modern history right-wing intellectuals (not neo-cons but the old school kind, what few remain) seem to be writing better books than their left-wing counterparts. Never thought I'd say so, but I think it's true.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: WilliamWeird1313 on December 03, 2008, 02:44:39 PM
The Long Walk is a hard-hitting book.

I found copies of all four original Bachman books at a flea market not too long ago and I was thrilled. I'd read Running Man before and thought it was great. I instantly preferred the Bachman persona titles to the actual King ones. Anyway, I'd been hoping (in vain, I thought) to run across Rage for a while, 'cause I know that one's out-of-print and a bit controversial due to it's subject matter. I was excited to read it and I thought it was great. Now, I just started The Long Walk. I'll read Road Work last, since I'm not really terribly interested by that one. But if The Long Walk is as good as Running Man and Rage (which I suspect it will be) then I'll be happy.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on December 03, 2008, 03:15:16 PM
Danny Peary - "Cult Movies".  Reminds me of some of the great and not-so-great-but-certainly-unique movies I have yet to see.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on December 04, 2008, 10:28:09 AM
ER-  have you heard of the ludwig von mises institute (http://www.mises.org/)?  they have released alot of excellent right wing history and economics books.

     my favorites are probably the Driver by garett garet,  The discovery of freedom by Rose Wilder Lane,  and the politically incorrect guide to capitalism by robert Murphy, which is actually put out by someone else but he writes alot for them.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on December 04, 2008, 12:43:02 PM
lester, I hadn't heard of that institute, but thanks for the link. I'll check it out. Is that the same Rose Wilder Lane who was the daughter of Laura and Almanzo Wilder of Little House fame?

Today I'm re-reading The Waterworks, by E.L. Doctorow. He is a deft writer and that's probably my favorite among his books. Well, maybe...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: peter johnson on December 04, 2008, 05:44:21 PM
Mofo:  Dan Simmons lives up the road a piece from me in Longmont, Colorado.  I've never gone up and knocked on his door, nor bothered him in our local pubs, so can't claim personal contact.  Hoping to meet him as part of our local theatre audiences.  Many of his contemporary bits are set in towns very much like Longmont.

I recently finished reading "The Graveyard Book" by Neil Gaiman.  My wife went to hear him read from it, but I was rehearsing that night & couldn't go.  She did get me an autographed copy.

Very good young adult book -- sort of on a Harry Potter level.  Not much really gross, apart from when the protagonist meets up with some ghouls, and no sex to speak of.  Mostly deals in atmospherics and a then-what-happened-next plot.  The villians, especially the central villian, are quite deadly and very dangerous.  Not at all cartoony, and may scare the willies out of younger readers.

As reviewers have noted, it's sort of like The Jungle Book, but rather than wild animals, the boy is raised in a graveyard by ghosts and a vampire.  One of the nice things about it is that the book never ever comes right out and says that the vampire is a vampire, but you're able to get it by inference.  Also, there's a werewolf thrown in for good measure.

Like the best of childrens' books -- eg.  The Wind in The Willows, Stuart Little, et. al. -- it can be enjoyed very much by adults as well.  The writing is about what you'd expect:  Precise, concise, and evocative.  Gaiman can have a character say three words, and you immediately know what sort of being they are.  In its own way, I liked it even better than "Anansi Boys", the last book for adults of his I read.  Though I must say, I recently read a short story of his called "A Study In Emerald" that's better than both of them!!

peter johnson/denny crane


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on December 04, 2008, 07:34:59 PM
I am about a third of the way into Colleen McCullogh's FIRST MAN IN ROME.  I am reading the series out of order, but oh!! they are brilliant.  I want to live in that world so badly at times it hurts.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on December 05, 2008, 10:15:08 AM
Quote
Is that the same Rose Wilder Lane

indeed.  you can also download all their books for free


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Derf on December 05, 2008, 06:12:00 PM
Mofo:  Dan Simmons lives up the road a piece from me in Longmont, Colorado.  I've never gone up and knocked on his door, nor bothered him in our local pubs, so can't claim personal contact.  Hoping to meet him as part of our local theatre audiences.  Many of his contemporary bits are set in towns very much like Longmont.

I recently finished reading "The Graveyard Book" by Neil Gaiman.  My wife went to hear him read from it, but I was rehearsing that night & couldn't go.  She did get me an autographed copy.

Very good young adult book -- sort of on a Harry Potter level.  Not much really gross, apart from when the protagonist meets up with some ghouls, and no sex to speak of.  Mostly deals in atmospherics and a then-what-happened-next plot.  The villians, especially the central villian, are quite deadly and very dangerous.  Not at all cartoony, and may scare the willies out of younger readers.

As reviewers have noted, it's sort of like The Jungle Book, but rather than wild animals, the boy is raised in a graveyard by ghosts and a vampire.  One of the nice things about it is that the book never ever comes right out and says that the vampire is a vampire, but you're able to get it by inference.  Also, there's a werewolf thrown in for good measure.

Like the best of childrens' books -- eg.  The Wind in The Willows, Stuart Little, et. al. -- it can be enjoyed very much by adults as well.  The writing is about what you'd expect:  Precise, concise, and evocative.  Gaiman can have a character say three words, and you immediately know what sort of being they are.  In its own way, I liked it even better than "Anansi Boys", the last book for adults of his I read.  Though I must say, I recently read a short story of his called "A Study In Emerald" that's better than both of them!!

peter johnson/denny crane

Hey! I'm reading Anansi Boys right now! I had read Gaiman's collaboration with Pratchett (Good Omens) and enjoyed it reasonably well, though I think ultimately I prefer Pratchett on his own. I figured I'd give Gaiman a chance on his own as well. I can't say this one has me riveted, but it is entertaining if slightly pretentious at times (that's just my impression, so take it for what it's worth). Maybe I'll give The Graveyard Book a try and see if I can get into it more than this current one I'm reading. The plot for The Graveyard Book sounds vaguely similar to one of my favorite novels: Peter S. Beagle's A Fine and Private Place, which tells the story of an older man who lives in the graveyard, never leaving it after burying his wife (nothing morbid like a murder or necrophilia; he just wants to stay near her). I can heartily recommend anything by Beagle; the worst thing (and it wasn't really bad) I've read by him was his most famous work, The Last Unicorn.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on December 05, 2008, 06:19:37 PM
Reading my favourite fictional novel again for the 6th time...

(http://darrylslibrary.files.wordpress.com/2006/12/kings-fromabuick8.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on December 05, 2008, 10:26:27 PM
One of the few King books I haven't read, circus. I'll add it to my list. Ugh, my list, though. It's like two pages long and growing.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on December 06, 2008, 08:36:14 AM
One of the few King books I haven't read, circus. I'll add it to my list. Ugh, my list, though. It's like two pages long and growing.

I think it's very underrated and highly recommend it. It's not full of loads of pointless information and confusing back story to flesh out characters. King flicks between the present day situation involving the car and police station and back to the past when it was first discovered and left in the garage. I also didn't see coming, the route that the story took either. Very interesting, so much so, that I've always kept reading and finished this book in 2 days.  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BeyondTheGrave on December 07, 2008, 02:21:21 PM
I'm reading "People's History of The United States" by Howard Zinn. So far its a great read and tells it like it was and is.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on December 07, 2008, 03:25:49 PM
I read Off Season. It was enjoyable, and didn't leave me with the kicked-in-the-stomach feeling that The Girl Next Door did.

I'm currently reading a multitude of books, but am focusing on The Terror ([url]http://www.amazon.com/Terror-Novel-Dan-Simmons/dp/0316008079/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1228100711&sr=8-1[/url]) by Dan Simmons. It's a historical horror based off of the lost Franklin expedition to find the Northwest Passage. The men on the two ships get trapped in the ice and must spend the time trying to stay warm while fighting off malnutrition and scurvy. Unfortunately, there is something else out on the ice that slaughters the occasional man from time to time.

It's a great book. I admire how thoroughly the situation goes from bad to worse, and then much worse.


By the time I got to the end of Off Season, I was pretty desensitized to the story and its elements.  I do want to read The Girl Next Door some time, especially since they've made a movie out of it, and I'd like to match the two up.

As stated above, I finished Off Season and will begin reading The Cipher by Kathe Koja.  I've never read any of her stuff, but a friend of mine raved about her.  He even gave me two of her books, the previously mentioned one and Bad Brains.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Torgo on December 08, 2008, 12:21:38 AM
I'm going to start reading Duma Key by Stephen King sometime this week. I don't think that he's written a good book in quite a few years but this one has been getting good reviews and some critics have said it's kind of a return to form for him.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: peter johnson on December 10, 2008, 12:35:24 PM
Derf:
If you're not as familiar with Gaiman, you may find "Neverwhere" or "American Gods" to be more impressive -- "Anansi Boys" is more of a leitmotif for him.  If you read graphic novels, I'd heartily recommend the "Sandman" series that he wrote -- there he really goes all out re. heavy plotting & wild side-stories.  "Anansi Boys" is much more straight-ahead.

A suggestion:  Check out his website & download his short story, "A Study in Emerald", one of the single best Sherlock Holmes imitations ever written:  Conan Doyle meets H.P. Lovecraft!!

peter gaiman/denny fan


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mr. DS on December 11, 2008, 06:28:09 PM
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/b/bf/PercyBattleLabyrinth.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sister Grace on December 11, 2008, 07:49:49 PM
At present, I'm reading Off Season by Jack Ketchum, having just finished The Twilight Realm by Christopher Carpenter (aka Christopher Evans). 

Off Season was a great book; be sure and read its sequeal titled The Offspring, not only is it a fantastic story also, but fills us in alot about the cave family beginnings...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on December 12, 2008, 12:46:20 AM
The Ballad of Frankie Silver, by Sharyn McCrumb. It's the sort of novel that takes its toll on a reader's emotions. It's brilliant storytelling but frustrating because of its subject matter: the unjust hanging of a young woman in 19th century Appalachia.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on December 12, 2008, 02:09:42 AM
Mofo:  Dan Simmons lives up the road a piece from me in Longmont, Colorado.  I've never gone up and knocked on his door, nor bothered him in our local pubs, so can't claim personal contact.  Hoping to meet him as part of our local theatre audiences.  Many of his contemporary bits are set in towns very much like Longmont.

peter johnson/denny crane

I've only read Song of Kali in addition to The Terror. Dan Simmons is a pretty good writer. Better than a lot; but what really impresses me is that he spans so many genres. Fairly rare to see that these days.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Brother Ragnarok on December 14, 2008, 03:32:42 PM
Working on Danse Macabre by Stephen King right now. It started strong, but now that he's talking about novels instead of movies, he's becoming very "lit professor"-ish, and it's pretty dull.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: HappyGilmore on December 14, 2008, 08:28:28 PM
I've been reading The Catcher in The Rye.  Picked it up over the summer, just now about reading it.  Good book.  Never read it before.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: CheezeFlixz on December 14, 2008, 11:20:19 PM
The Rommel Paper's and A Soilders Story

Pretty only read history and military tactic books.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on December 15, 2008, 10:33:29 AM
Re-reading Shape Your Self, by my on-court hero, Martina Navratilova.

I also picked up a little tract called What If You Died Tonight? that someone had left in the organic food aisle at Krogers. It was well-drawn, lurid, quite entertaining, frightening if you let your mind drift that way. In a mere sixteen pages good prevailed, the wicked saw retribution for their wayward "secular" habits, and the rectitude of the artist's personal epistemology was demonstrated. A fast-moving plot to say the least.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on December 29, 2008, 04:09:01 PM
IT.....again!  :lookingup:

(http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/n0/n707.jpg)

My friend gave me a brand new copy on boxing day, so it's another bash at over 1,300 pages  :buggedout:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on December 29, 2008, 04:57:14 PM
V for Vendetta
Judge Dredd Case File 08
Batman : Dark Victory
And I've placed an order for Clive Barker's Books of Blood vol 4-6
Thinking about getting Stephen Kings "IT"...I've read The Shining, Christine and Dream Catcher (was it one word or two). Didn't like any of them, in fact, found them really boring but I have IT on DVD and it seemed cool. Who knows maybe it's worth getting.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on December 29, 2008, 05:12:17 PM
MY IDEA OF FUN - Will Self - A satirical novel.  I haven't gotten far into it.  The author is obviously in love with his own prose, but he pulls it off for the most part.  I'm about 10% of the way through and the plot isn't apparent yet, but the main character seems to have disturbing fantasies about killing and molesting hobo's (in that order) and there's an ominous character referred to only as "The Fat Controller" who's slated to show up in the future.

MONDO MACABRO - Pete Tombs - A great little trade paperback on weird 3rd world exploitation cinema, covering Hong Kong, Indonesia, Turkey, the Philippines, etc.  I think it would be impossible for anyone on this board to read this book without highlighting a dozen or more titles that sound like must-sees.
 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on January 06, 2009, 10:51:57 AM
I'm reading the Immortal Iron Fist series

(http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/ee71/HammockRider/TI_IRONFIST_001_COVER_RGB.jpg)

And I can't wait for this to finally come out. Amazon says October 27, 2009.

(http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/ee71/HammockRider/ADWD.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on January 06, 2009, 10:54:26 AM
This came yesterday....


(http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/c0/c3811.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on January 06, 2009, 02:03:05 PM
This came yesterday....


([url]http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/c0/c3811.jpg[/url])


Is that the one with Rawhead Rex in it?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Saucerman on January 06, 2009, 02:23:11 PM
"A Critical History and Filmography of Toho's Godzilla Series" -- pretty good, I had a copy years ago that got donated to the library by accident, so I was quite happy to receive a new copy this year for Christmas...a little disappointed that it hasn't been updated to include the Shinsei series, instead ending with "Godzilla vs. Destroyah" (1995). 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on January 06, 2009, 03:28:09 PM
This came yesterday....


([url]http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/c0/c3811.jpg[/url])


Is that the one with Rawhead Rex in it?


No, that's vol 1-3.
It has the story that Candyman was based on, though.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on January 21, 2009, 07:40:45 PM
Re-reading Ghost World. Bought a copy to send to my cousin for his birthday but bought myself a new one too.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on January 21, 2009, 09:55:37 PM
I just finished a book called SEARCHING FOR THE ORIGINAL BIBLE by Randall Price - about how accurately the Scriptures have been copied and transmitted through the centuries.  Very educational.  And I am nearly done with CENTENNIAL CRISIS, by Chief Justice William Renqhist - the story of the disputed 1876 Presidential Election.  Got several more "haven't read yet" on my shelf to choose from next.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: CheezeFlixz on January 21, 2009, 10:37:43 PM
I just finished a book called SEARCHING FOR THE ORIGINAL BIBLE by Randall Price - about how accurately the Scriptures have been copied and transmitted through the centuries.  Very educational.  And I am nearly done with CENTENNIAL CRISIS, by Chief Justice William Renqhist - the story of the disputed 1876 Presidential Election.  Got several more "haven't read yet" on my shelf to choose from next.

This is my current problem ... to many book and not enough time/energy to read them.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on January 26, 2009, 01:49:01 PM
I just placed an order for this...
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41H41NZRSPL._SS500_.jpg)

I'm desperate to get the second one...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on January 27, 2009, 02:20:04 PM
Been going through the Andrew Vachss Burke series books, just finished Footstep of the Hawk.  Also just finished Nightworld by F Paul Wilson, and I'm in the middle of Blood of the Fold by Terry Goodkind, third in the Sword of Truth series.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Torgo on January 28, 2009, 03:18:20 AM
I just started re-reading The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on January 28, 2009, 08:07:51 AM
I bought Colleen McCullogh's ANTHONY AND CLEOPATRA yesterday.  It's pretty good - the woman really makes me want to live in ancient Rome.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on January 28, 2009, 12:35:31 PM
I just started re-reading The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker.

I don't know where the "hell" my copy has gone??


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Torgo on January 28, 2009, 03:56:46 PM
I just started re-reading The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker.

I don't know where the "hell" my copy has gone??

I actually had to replace my copy about a year or two ago. My original one just disappeared.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Allhallowsday on January 28, 2009, 04:26:33 PM
I'm reading CHARLES DICKENS' A Christmas Carol (just about done)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on January 28, 2009, 06:37:41 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41DMY13BMVL._SS500_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BeyondTheGrave on January 30, 2009, 06:54:50 PM
Our Enemies in Blue by Kristian Williams
(http://www.kristianwilliams.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/01/enemies_in_blue_small.jpg)

Contrary to the title of the book, this not a I hate cops rant but indepth look and policing history, tatics and just realness of policing in america.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on February 01, 2009, 05:02:48 PM
The Journals of Louisa May Alcott. She wrote her diary from age eleven till four days before her death forty-five years later, and was skilled in the art of recording the many tiny moments that create a lifetime.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on February 20, 2009, 07:36:42 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/211PX4N8HXL._SL500_AA180_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on February 20, 2009, 07:59:51 PM
Reading my favourite fictional novel again for the 6th time...

([url]http://darrylslibrary.files.wordpress.com/2006/12/kings-fromabuick8.jpg[/url])


Found a copy in a used book store. On your recommendation, I bought it, and I'm enjoying it so far. At this point, everybody is still puzzling over what a weird car it is, but it has yet to do something.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Zapranoth on February 20, 2009, 09:47:43 PM
Read _Lonely Werewolf Girl_ which is highly entertaining.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Torgo on February 20, 2009, 11:01:15 PM
I just got done reading through Watchmen in preparation for the release of the movie on March 6th.  Great stuff. Took me years to get around reading it but it was well worth it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on February 21, 2009, 05:42:22 AM
Reading my favourite fictional novel again for the 6th time...

([url]http://darrylslibrary.files.wordpress.com/2006/12/kings-fromabuick8.jpg[/url])


Found a copy in a used book store. On your recommendation, I bought it, and I'm enjoying it so far. At this point, everybody is still puzzling over what a weird car it is, but it has yet to do something.


That's great Andy!  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on February 21, 2009, 08:35:18 AM
Just finished a biography of Andrew Jackson called AMERICAN LION by John Meacham.  It was a very well-written and sympathetic portrait of our seventh President,  who was not the brute he was sometimes portrayed as.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on February 21, 2009, 08:59:21 AM
Just finished...for the first time since high school...John Hershey's Hiroshima.

Got from ebay...

Famous Monsters of Filmland mags! Issue #34-which has a fun articale on the HORRORS of SPIDER ISLAND,FM 1965 Fearbook-with a cool Basil Gogos Glenn Strange/Frankenstein cover, and...this one...!

FM # 20!!! Yowsa!

(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/06c8_2.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on February 21, 2009, 09:24:53 AM
That's great Andy!  :thumbup:


One thing that struck me about that particular cover, though. Looks like they're trying to evoke thoughts of Christine, since they didn't use an actual Buick Roadmaster in the design.
(http://darrylslibrary.files.wordpress.com/2006/12/kings-fromabuick8.jpg)
The Roadmaster described in the story is a far more sinister looking car.
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/66/1949_buick_roadmaster.jpg/800px-1949_buick_roadmaster.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on February 21, 2009, 09:28:45 AM
That's great Andy!  :thumbup:


One thing that struck me about that particular cover, though. Looks like they're trying to evoke thoughts of Christine, since they didn't use an actual Buick Roadmaster in the design.
([url]http://darrylslibrary.files.wordpress.com/2006/12/kings-fromabuick8.jpg[/url])
The Roadmaster described in the story is a far more sinister looking car.
([url]http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/66/1949_buick_roadmaster.jpg/800px-1949_buick_roadmaster.jpg[/url])


There's a couple of different covers for the book, the others do depict a Buick Roadmaster tho'.  :smile:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on February 21, 2009, 09:36:36 AM
That's great Andy!  :thumbup:


One thing that struck me about that particular cover, though. Looks like they're trying to evoke thoughts of Christine, since they didn't use an actual Buick Roadmaster in the design.
([url]http://darrylslibrary.files.wordpress.com/2006/12/kings-fromabuick8.jpg[/url])
The Roadmaster described in the story is a far more sinister looking car.
([url]http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/66/1949_buick_roadmaster.jpg/800px-1949_buick_roadmaster.jpg[/url])


There's a couple of different covers for the book, the others do depict a Buick Roadmaster tho'.  :smile:


I've tried to read four King books and I haven't finished any of them. I think he's over-rated, I prefer Clive Barker.

The four I tried to read:

The Shining
Christine
Dreamcatcher
Tommyknockers


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on February 21, 2009, 10:03:38 AM
For me, King is one of those authors who rewards patience. His stories can start out pretty slow, there's a lot of setup, and it's tempting to put the book down a couple of chapters in. Read far enough, though, and it gets pretty engrossing. When I read The Shining last year, the only thing that kept me reading was that I'd seen the movie many times and knew what was coming, but also that the book was sufficiently different that there would be surprises. It paid off as the book got going, but I might have moved on to something else had the story been entirely new to me.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: CaptnTripps on February 21, 2009, 10:05:53 AM
currently reading, Wolves of the Calla (S.K.)... almost done with the series.

(http://images.amazon.com/images/P/0743251628.01.LZZZZZZZ.jpg)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on March 03, 2009, 01:14:57 AM
(http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/n11/n57041.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Wag on March 03, 2009, 05:42:35 PM
For me, King is one of those authors who rewards patience.

I have only read From a Buick 8 of Stephen King (at the insistance of Circus) but from what I have read, I have to say I agree with that. I am impressed with him so far because Buick is a potentially stupid concept but it is pulled off so effectively.

I'm currently trying to read a Heroes novel (Saving Charlie) but as big a fan as I am of Heroes, it is proving less than engrossing, so am open to suggestions for my next read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on March 03, 2009, 10:11:11 PM
Coraline, by Neil Gaiman

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/6/61/Coraline.jpg)

I was interested in the changes in the story between the novel and the movie version.  Actually, the story so far is a bit darker and more surreal, but there's a lot more detail in the movie.  And, Coraline herself was sort of a cypher in the story, whereas in the movie she has a definite character as an ingrate kid.  I think that change was really effective in bringing out the "there's no place like home" theme.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: schmendrik on March 04, 2009, 06:41:46 AM
I mentioned elsewhere that I'm working my way through this collection of pulp stories:

(http://img352.imageshack.us/img352/1052/42159175.jpg)

I just made the pleasant discovery that The Saint is a character from this era, in a story called "The Invisible Millionaire" by Leslie Charteris. I thought when Roger Moore played The Saint on TV, that was an original character. Now I've got a new mission: tracking down other Saint stories.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on March 05, 2009, 07:37:21 PM
I'm reading The Red Badge of Courage and Fahrenheit 451 for school.

I just finished reading MW by Omeza Tezkua, here's the guy behind Astro Boy.  I must say, as a Christian, that was certianly a bit of a... different story that was a bit weird to read.  It was overall good, but I hate the ending.  I mean I could see this coming a mile away after that guy got shot to death.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on March 10, 2009, 11:04:51 AM
Hey doggett Carl Hiaasen is tops. So is this guy, who writes in a similar vein:

(http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/ee71/HammockRider/152.jpg)

When I'm finished with this one I plan to check out his newest, Nuclear Jellyfish.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 10, 2009, 03:48:13 PM
Finished From a Buick 8. Very entertaining story. Having a family full of cops, and having worked with the police as a reporter, the story struck a chord with me. I also love a good "object of unknown origin" story. King was really at his most Lovecraftian.

I've now moved on to Michael Slade's Headhunter. I got into his Special X thrillers a couple of years ago, and read all the ones that were readily available. Now I'm tracking down the earlier ones that keep getting referenced. Headhunter is the first. Slade is an amazing author. He comes up with stuff that is sick beyond belief, yet very compelling. And the stories always have a lot of real history behind them. They're sort of a mix of police procedural, horror and history lesson.

(http://www.specialx.net/specialxdotnet/images/headhun2.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sister Grace on March 14, 2009, 09:29:47 AM
I've now moved on to Michael Slade's Headhunter. I got into his Special X thrillers a couple of years ago, and read all the ones that were readily available. Now I'm tracking down the earlier ones that keep getting referenced. Headhunter is the first. Slade is an amazing author. He comes up with stuff that is sick beyond belief, yet very compelling. And the stories always have a lot of real history behind them. They're sort of a mix of police procedural, horror and history lesson.

([url]http://www.specialx.net/specialxdotnet/images/headhun2.jpg[/url])


I have a copy of Headhunter that I've cherished for long time.
Lately, I've been reading Brian Keene's The Rising. So far so good, but not as promising as I thought it would be. Someone told me I had to read the sequel to really appreciate the first one...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on March 14, 2009, 07:26:29 PM
Picked up Hermann Hesse's STEPPENWOLF today at the library.  I've been meaning to reread it since my college days, when I didn't really enjoy it.  According to the preface, Hesse says its about middle-age, and he was surprised to find it championed by young people...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on March 14, 2009, 09:03:26 PM
Right now I'm reading Whispers of the Moon: the life and times of Scott Cunningham. Also, I'm reading parts of The Dread of Difference, which is basically a collection of papers on gender in the horror film.

(http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c375/fausto963/5110A1KN07L__BO2204203200_PIsitb-st.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on March 16, 2009, 12:27:31 PM
Michael Tolliver Lives, by Armistead Maupin.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Pilgermann on March 17, 2009, 11:18:04 AM
I've been reading the trade paperbacks of Y: The Last Man that a friend loaned me.  It's a pretty interesting last man on earth scenario, but I'm not too crazy about the artwork.

I just got a copy of Russell Hoban's The Moment Under the Moment in the mail and I'll be digging into that tonight.  It's a collection of short stories, essays, poems, and a libretto.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on March 25, 2009, 08:26:32 AM
(http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/ee71/HammockRider/royko1.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on March 25, 2009, 11:04:32 AM
Last year, I signed up for the 100 Greatest Books Ever Written from the Easton Press.  They send me one book every month.  They're really nice leather-bound books with gold leaf pages and illustrations on some of the pages.

Currently, I'm reading THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO (one of the best novels I have ever read, by the way).  I'm about 700 pages into the story with about another 500 or so pages to go.  Next up is probably either A TALE OF TWO CITIES or OF MICE AND MEN.

Also last year, I bought the entire James Bond paperback collection in a boxed set.  I'm reading them in chronological order and am currently near the end of DR. NO (which I already read 2 or 3 times many years ago).  Next up is GOLDFINGER. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on March 25, 2009, 10:59:20 PM
The Last Rock Star, Or, Liz Phair, a Rant by Camden Joy.

Despite the warm fuzzy title this crazy book is not actually about Liz Phair, which sucks. Now I know how an equally mislead Otto felt all those years ago when he left Stoners' Pot Palace. (Um, you know, Simpsons reference? Back from when the show was good?) Seriously, this novel is about almost nothing except the writer's fictionalization of his own life as he goes off the deep end and takes his girlfriend, Brian Jones' daughter, more or less with him. In college my boyfriend said I was in love with Liz Phair, a wistful fantasy from his little head, but come on, something about Liz Phair would've been nice in here. A fictionalized cameo from the queen of 90's indie? Jeesh this is a bad book. Mad, bad, and nauseating to know. Makes me want to drive to Chicago and get my money back from whotheheckever Camden Joy is. As I see it the man owes me money and three wasted hours of my life, plus compensation for the headache I got sifting through his prose, looking for something redeeming. I mean this book is so utterly terrible it leaves something I'd only THOUGHT was horrid, something like Shelia Levine Is Dead And Living In New York, for instance, looking like Tolstoy. This book could put me off reading, and that's akin to food poisoning putting some 300-pound person off fried chicken: in other words, pretty danged tough to accomplish. What scares me now as I think about it is what if this Camden Joy dude writes again? It's bad enough the world of American fiction has had inflicted on it the blunt force trauma of The Last Rock Star, Or, Liz Phair, a Rant, but what if like Camden Joy launched a writing career that got Oprah's attention and she book clubbed him and then women and gay men the world over started reading his books just cause Oprah said for them to, and then universities offered seminars in The Late-Period Works of Camden Joy, and someday Camden Joy became writer laureate and represented the United States overseas and...and people all over the world thought he was the best our nation had to offer, so they laughed and sneered and no longer feared the bold audacity that has been the hallmark of American literature yea unto these four centuries? Oh, my gosh, what if, seriously, like, what if Camden Joy's novels became enshrined in the public consciousness, and in seventy years Easton Press released leather-bound gold leaf editions of his collected forty-nine novels?  Can't Camden Joy's next novel be stopped? Somehow? Um, non-violently? Can't the rightful place of our great nation be preserved against the harm this Chicagoan stands to do it? Ye gods, what if our grandchildren study the bovine scatology with which he assaults the pristine page? Just a little Liz Phair in the book would've done a bunch, I'll tell ya what, just, like, Guyville material or even her much-ballyhooed 2003 self-titled release, the one people got on her case over, saying she went mainstream and sold out to the world of pop. (Nobody ever gives U2 attitude when Bono and company do the same thing.) So anyway, not a very good book. Kinda like twisting your ankle in a mudpuddle and slipping onto broken glass. Funny to see as long as it's not you or someone you care about doing it, but dude, this is exactly like you being the one to suffer the fall. It's that bad.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 25, 2009, 11:18:25 PM
Well, my last book was a very positive experience!!!

I just finished Lee Strobel's THE CASE FOR THE REAL JESUS.

It is tough to be a Christian when there is literally one book, TV special, or movie PER WEEK coming out with the basic premise that everything the New Testament tells us abou the life of Christ is a lie, a myth, propaganda, borrowed from Eastern mystery cults, or some sort of masculine plot to suppress the "Divine Feminine".  (Wow, Anne Hathaway was alive 2000 years ago!?!?! :buggedout:)

Anyway, Lee Strobel interviewed a dozen and more leading scholars and historians all over the world, bombarding them with the questions posed by discoveries like the Judas Gospel, the "Jesus Family Tomb", the Nag Hammadi library, as well as some of the more scholarly works (?) like MISQUOTING JESUS and all the other attacks on the faith that have emerged in the last 5 years.

Their unanimous verdict?

The New Testament remains, to this day, the earliest and most accurate account of the life of Jesus of Nazareth.  Even the accounts of His miracles and His resurrection pass the test of historical scrutiny.  The attacks that have emerged in recent years are all guilty of bad scholarship, academic bias, and inconsistent standards according to the ulterior motives of the authors.  (One of the Gnostic Gospels, "Secret Mark", has actually been exposed as a forgery perpetrated by a disgraced academic back in the 1950's, but the Jesus-bashing crew still cites it regularly as "proof" that Jesus was a homosexual).

I realize that many people here are not Christians and have little interest in Christian apologetics.  But if you were to read this book with an open mind, it might very well change your life!  Or at least, raise some very interesting questions.  At amy rate, it is well-written, informative, and has a ton of very credible scholarship to back it up.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: schmendrik on March 26, 2009, 08:30:49 AM
Well, my last book was a very positive experience!!!

I just finished Lee Strobel's THE CASE FOR THE REAL JESUS.

It is tough to be a Christian when there is literally one book, TV special, or movie PER WEEK coming out with the basic premise that everything the New Testament tells us abou the life of Christ is a lie, a myth, propaganda, borrowed from Eastern mystery cults, or some sort of masculine plot to suppress the "Divine Feminine".  (Wow, Anne Hathaway was alive 2000 years ago!?!?! :buggedout:)

Anyway, Lee Strobel interviewed a dozen and more leading scholars and historians all over the world, bombarding them with the questions posed by discoveries like the Judas Gospel, the "Jesus Family Tomb", the Nag Hammadi library, as well as some of the more scholarly works (?) like MISQUOTING JESUS and all the other attacks on the faith that have emerged in the last 5 years.

Well, you can be interested in the historical questions without getting tangled up in the theological ones. As I'm sure you know, there was a contemporary Jewish historian who used the latin name Josephus, who mentions Jesus. Unfortunately, there are questions about the authenticity of some of what is attributed to him. There's pretty good evidence that some over-enthusiastic monk inserted some stuff into a translation that he didn't actually write. I find the historical questions fascinating. So far as I know, outside of Josephus we have no secular mentions of Jesus.

Equally fascinating, I've read the statement that there seems to be nothing in Egyptian writings that corresponds to the whole Moses story which is so basic to Jewish written and oral history, including the Jews being kept as slaves in Egypt. But a story so important to a culture's history surely has some basis in fact, doesn't it? Interesting stuff.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on April 08, 2009, 12:29:50 AM
Danny Danziger's 1215: The Year of Magna Carta is a nice overview of daily life for all levels of society in England in that famous year. I enjoyed this immensely.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Zapranoth on April 08, 2009, 08:35:40 PM
Just read _The Host_.

Damned good book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on April 08, 2009, 09:33:20 PM
Well, my last book was a very positive experience!!!

I just finished Lee Strobel's THE CASE FOR THE REAL JESUS.

It is tough to be a Christian when there is literally one book, TV special, or movie PER WEEK coming out with the basic premise that everything the New Testament tells us abou the life of Christ is a lie, a myth, propaganda, borrowed from Eastern mystery cults, or some sort of masculine plot to suppress the "Divine Feminine".  (Wow, Anne Hathaway was alive 2000 years ago!?!?! :buggedout:)

Anyway, Lee Strobel interviewed a dozen and more leading scholars and historians all over the world, bombarding them with the questions posed by discoveries like the Judas Gospel, the "Jesus Family Tomb", the Nag Hammadi library, as well as some of the more scholarly works (?) like MISQUOTING JESUS and all the other attacks on the faith that have emerged in the last 5 years.

Well, you can be interested in the historical questions without getting tangled up in the theological ones. As I'm sure you know, there was a contemporary Jewish historian who used the latin name Josephus, who mentions Jesus. Unfortunately, there are questions about the authenticity of some of what is attributed to him. There's pretty good evidence that some over-enthusiastic monk inserted some stuff into a translation that he didn't actually write. I find the historical questions fascinating. So far as I know, outside of Josephus we have no secular mentions of Jesus.

Equally fascinating, I've read the statement that there seems to be nothing in Egyptian writings that corresponds to the whole Moses story which is so basic to Jewish written and oral history, including the Jews being kept as slaves in Egypt. But a story so important to a culture's history surely has some basis in fact, doesn't it? Interesting stuff.


The passage in Josephus was almost certainly edited in later years by a Christian copyist, however, textual; critics have succeeded in pretty much restoring the original text with the aid of a couple of surviving, unaltered copies.  That  Josephus did mention "Jesus, called the Christ," is very evident, for in the next chapter, he mentions the martyrdom of James "the brother of Jesus called Christ" in a narrative that no critic has ever challenged.  There is actually a substantial discussion of this particular passage of Josephus in Strobel's other book, THE CASE FOR CHRIST.  Other non-Christian references to Jesus include an ancient letter from a Greek scholar to his son, written about 75 AD, in which he refers to the destruction of the Temple being a judgement on the Jews "for crucifying their wise king."  Also, Suetonius mentions Jesus briefly in his writings.  But one of the earliest references to Christ, albeit an indirect one, is an inscription of an Imperial decree found in the town of Nazareth.  The decree was issued by Claudius Caesar, who ruled from 41 - 54 AD.  It pronounced a death penalty on anyone who stole a body from a sealed tomb.  Why would Claudius issue such a decree, and why would he make sure a copy of it was posted in an obscure town like Nazareth, especially since no other copies of the decree have been found elsewhere?  The most obvious answer is that some garbled account of the Resurrection had reached Rome, and he decided to address the problem by posting this decree at its source, Jesus' home town.  (Interestingly enough, Suetonius mentions that the Jews had been expelled from Rome during the reign of Claudius because there had been much rioting "at the instigation of one Chrestus".  Chrestus is a Latin corruption of the Greek word "Christos", the title for Christ, and the reference probably refers to the feuding between Jews and Christians so vividly described in the Book of Acts.
   As far as the lack of reference to Moses in Egyptian records goes, it's hardly surprising.  The Egyptians were a fiercely proud and fairly xenophobic people, who were notorious for their selective recording of history.  Would you like to write down for posterity that you got your clock cleaned by a rag-tag gang  of slaves and their foreign god?  There is, however, some pretty interesting archeological data that certainly seems to conform to some details of the Exodus story.  I'll admit, Old Testament apologia is an area where I haven't read nearly as much as I have of the later stuff.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on April 09, 2009, 01:24:39 PM
(http://religiasatanista.files.wordpress.com/2008/08/thestanicbible.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on April 09, 2009, 04:59:43 PM
Still reading The Red Badge of Courage for school, but we'll soon be moving onto Fahrenheit 451.  I'm also reading the comic series Case Closed and Naruto.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on April 09, 2009, 05:33:54 PM
Won this on ebay....

(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/3370009875_5e42e036b3.jpg)

Many of the stories I haven't seen before...such as the HOUND and the MOON BOG.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on April 12, 2009, 04:54:29 PM
Tennis Confidental II, by Paul Fein.  It's a little gossipy at times with its behind the scenes tell-alls from the tournament circuit but it's also an interesting read for anyone who likes the sport of tennis.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on April 15, 2009, 04:17:12 PM
Kevin Roose's "The Unlikely Disciple," or, how a nineteen-year-old secular Quaker spends a semester at Jerry Falwell's Liberty University, and what he learned, when he was there.

The funniest chapter is the one where he's attempting to witness at Daytone, during Spring Break, and all his attempts blow up in his face. I couldn't get beyond each paragraph without going into hysterics.

And yet, there is an undercurrent of sadness there.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on April 16, 2009, 03:42:39 PM
Finally finished Red Badge of Courage and now I'm onto Fahrenheit 451.  I'm also reading Air Gear and The Drifting Classroom as well.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on April 28, 2009, 08:34:35 AM
This was turned into a movie with Tony Randall called The Seven Faces of Dr. Lao
(http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/ee71/HammockRider/F2755.jpg)

And of course this book needs no introduction.

(http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/ee71/HammockRider/Seagalogynew-thumb.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on April 28, 2009, 10:56:03 AM
Finished Headhunter and now reading Slade's second book, Ghoul. Apparently, Alice Cooper inspired this 1987 thriller, having been a fan of Slade's first book. Just a few chapters in and so far, there's an axe-murderer obsessed with Poe and Lovecraft, a mad bomber, a gang of heroin-dealing gay bikers, a drug dealer/porn king, a heavy metal band called Ghoul, who will no doubt become important, and what looks like the makings of a joint investigation between Scotland Yard and the RCMP. Various people have been buried alive, blown up, shot, stabbed through the eyes, drained of blood and chopped into bits, and one cat has been euthanized. I'll say one thing for Michael Slade, he packs his books.
(http://www.specialx.net/specialxdotnet/images/ghoul_guitar.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on April 28, 2009, 10:59:28 AM
The Complete Tales of Nicolai Gogol.  He wrote some ghost stories based on Ukrainian folklore, although I'm getting more of an absurd comedy vibe from them than a fear vibe.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Moreau on April 28, 2009, 03:11:25 PM
the keep, by f paul wilson. i love the idea, even if the delivery is a little workman-like. good for reading in the bath while sipping a beer. i'd love to watch the michael mann adaptation, as i've heard so many mixed things about it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on April 28, 2009, 03:16:57 PM
I'm finally reading Fahrenheit 451 and it is pretty good.  Also, I'm just finishing up all the volumes of Case Closed I have so I'll be moving onto Uzumaki or Pluto to read next.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on April 28, 2009, 04:35:34 PM
I'm finally reading Fahrenheit 451 and it is pretty good.  Also, I'm just finishing up all the volumes of Case Closed I have so I'll be moving onto Uzumaki or Pluto to read next.

Fahrenheit 451 is a great book. It was one of the staples of the English curriculum when I was in high school. Read a few really good books back then - Fahrenheit 451, Lord of the Flies, The Ox-Bow Incident, In the Heat of the Night, among others.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on April 28, 2009, 09:00:36 PM
I'm finally reading Fahrenheit 451 and it is pretty good.  Also, I'm just finishing up all the volumes of Case Closed I have so I'll be moving onto Uzumaki or Pluto to read next.

Fahrenheit 451 is a great book. It was one of the staples of the English curriculum when I was in high school. Read a few really good books back then - Fahrenheit 451, Lord of the Flies, The Ox-Bow Incident, In the Heat of the Night, among others.

It is one of the books I have to read for High school as well. 

My French class has just issued us to read Le Petit Prince.  It's good, but I have to translate most of the text to figure it out.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: kakihara on April 29, 2009, 05:29:36 PM
the book of 5 rings.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: wickednick on May 01, 2009, 06:46:17 AM
Right now Im reading Beowulf. I also tried reading Paradise Lost but its old english writting is almost impossible for me to figure out, maybe its the version I bought anyone know a good easy translation of this poem. After Beowulf I think im going to start reading the Dune series.Im finding my self reading more lately because tv sucks.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on May 02, 2009, 09:12:18 AM
I'm readin "Introducing Marx"  from the  introducingbooks (http://www.introducingbooks.com) series.  I am ideologically the polar opposite of a marxist but I was curious about what it actually was.  The book is cartoons!  so it's easy to read and learn.  marxism is like if yuo took someone who never had a job and had no idea how the world worked and gave them the task of laying the rules for an economy and a country.  It's easy to see why it's reaked havoc over so much of the world.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Zapranoth on May 07, 2009, 02:25:17 AM
Re-reading the Wild Cards books.  Not going to read much beyond book 4 or 5 (I forget which one starts to seriously suck, but I'm going to stop at that one).   Almost a pulp scifi feel -- had forgotten how much fun these stories are.  Particularly the stories about the Turtle.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Moreau on May 07, 2009, 12:59:15 PM
'london fields' by martin amis. i like to read it in the bath with a cup of tea.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on May 08, 2009, 04:09:02 PM
I am sure all of us are familiar with Chaucer's Canterbury Tales. This is something similiar, as the author P. C. Doherty uses the same group of travelers to tell tales of mystery and murder.

This is the sixth in the series and entitled "A Haunt of Murder" and subtitled: "Being the Clerk of Oxford's Tale."

Very much English, as the author lives in England. Very much Catholic, as the author is a devout Catholic. I would say very much mumbo jumbo, but that does not do credit to the authors' faith. Perhaps, a better word would be very much mystical.

Even if you do not like mysteries, you might try this series, as it is part horror novel. The first in the series, which I also read is "An Ancient Evil: Being the Knight's Tale" and deals with vampires and vampire hunters. Also part historical saga, as the series includes real historical personages from that era. It is also part religious parable. And it is very short in length. This one runs under 200 pages.

The second in the series is "A Tapestry of Murders: Being the Man of Law's Tale." The third in the series is "A Tournament of Murders: Being the Franklin's Tale.. The fourth in the series is "Ghostly Murders: Being the Priest's Tales," And the fifth in the series is "The Hangman's Hymn: Being the Carpenter's Tale." All of which I'll have to go back and read.

Try 'em, you'll may like 'em.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ghouck on May 08, 2009, 07:44:47 PM
"Industrial Society and it's Future". On Chapter 87.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on May 09, 2009, 09:00:15 PM
Still reading "IT".... :lookingup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 09, 2009, 09:29:12 PM
Still reading "IT".... :lookingup:

That might be next on my list, assuming I can't acquire the next Michael Slade book in the next few days.

I'm just getting into the home stretch of Ghoul, where all the various story threads come together. You'd probably enjoy it, Circus. A late-80s setting (present-day when it was written), a Lovecraft-obsessed serial killer in the London sewers, and a heavy metal band somehow tied to the crimes.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on May 09, 2009, 09:31:37 PM
Still reading "IT".... :lookingup:

That might be next on my list, assuming I can't acquire the next Michael Slade book in the next few days.

I'm just getting into the home stretch of Ghoul, where all the various story threads come together. You'd probably enjoy it, Circus. A late-80s setting (present-day when it was written), a Lovecraft-obsessed serial killer in the London sewers, and a heavy metal band somehow tied to the crimes.

Cheers Andy, I will make sure I check that one out.  :smile:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on May 12, 2009, 04:53:10 PM
Harry Turtledove
The alternate history writer

What if . . .
If the earth, during World War II, had been invaded by space aliens.

What if . . .
If the South had won the Civil War, then several decades later, had become involved with another war with the North. This time the South being supported by England and France, and the North being supported by Germany and Russia.

What if . . .
The island of Atlantis had really existed in the Atlantic Ocean and had been settled by England and France.

And his latest what if . . . the one I'm reading now . . . "After the Downfall."

What if . . .
A Wehrmacht officer, during the fall of Berlin, had fallen out of our world and into a world of magic, dragons, and unicorns, and inhabited by two types of people: one tall, blond, and blue-eyed and the other short, dark haired, and dark-eyed, and our hero used what he knew from fighting the Russians to support first one side then the other in their constant struggle for superiority.

The book does two things well. It shows how complex life can sometimes be, as there is some bad in the best characters, and some good in the worst characters. And as the hero questions almost everything he has learned up to that point, the book also gets the reader to question his or her beliefs.

Try it. You'll like it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 12, 2009, 04:57:19 PM
Turtledove is an absolute genius.  He knows his history and is also an engaging writer.  The alternative versions of WWI and WWII he envisioned are so plausible as to be almost frightening!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: WingedSerpent on May 12, 2009, 05:16:35 PM
Currently reading The Terror by Dan Simmons.  It's a Historical fiction meets Supernatural monster novel.  Its about the crews of two ships that got trapped in the ice looking for the North West Passage in the Artic. Both crews were lost. (That parts true).  The books says a lot of them were lost to some sort of spirit creature.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on May 12, 2009, 08:43:16 PM
Still reading Fahrenheit 451.  It's a pretty scarey universe they live in.  It's like a creep episode of the Twilight Zone.  Interesting enough, I heard the author worked on some episodes of that series and Alfred Hitchcock Presents.

I'm now also reading Ghost Hunt, another Japanese comic.  Very interesting and it is the first book I ever bought on a wim.  The detail for the ghosts and supernatural are quite good and the book provides a proper feeling of dread for the horror in it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Pilgermann on May 13, 2009, 01:05:31 AM
Recently read 2001: A Space Odyssey by Arthur C. Clarke.  It's certainly a little less abstract than the film version, but still conjures up the awe inspiring feeling of one's littleness (I don't think I've ever used that word until now) in the universe.

I've begun to tackle Moby Dick.  So far it's actually pretty engaging and often amusing, but I'm not too far in and have a while before I get to the dreaded Guide to Whaling section.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 13, 2009, 07:09:17 PM
Turtledove is an absolute genius.  He knows his history and is also an engaging writer.  The alternative versions of WWI and WWII he envisioned are so plausible as to be almost frightening!


Ah yes. I read the whole Worldwar series a few years back, followed by the Colonization and Homeward Bound books that continued the story. Worldwar was an amazing piece of work. This cover pretty much jumped off the shelf at me:
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/5/5e/In_the_balance.jpg)
My brother is an even bigger fan of Turtledove, having read pretty much everything he's written. But then, his taste in books is far more focused.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Neville on May 14, 2009, 03:20:17 PM
I'm always reading something, most of the times obtained through my local library. I always keep like six books piled up in my nighstand, and finish each in a week or two.

Last week I picked up a novel by Michael Connelly starring Harry Bosch. I've already read a bunch of them and enjoyed them all, although only a few struck me as particularly great.

Right now I'm reading Tom Clancy's Teeth of the tiger. I enjoyed The hunt for Red October a lot, but I've hated every single novel he's written since then, save for Red Rabbit. Too much jingoism going on, and the cardboard characters are laughable, they all come with "love me" and "hate me" crudely written post-its in their foreheads. This one isn't exactly memorable, but I found it slightly less bad than, say, Patriot games or The bear and the dragon.

Just don't ask me why I keep reading his books. It might be some kind of morbid fascination with how Clancy's mind works, but I'm not even sure of that.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on May 15, 2009, 06:08:45 AM
Still reading Fahrenheit 451.  It's a pretty scarey universe they live in.  It's like a creep episode of the Twilight Zone.  Interesting enough, I heard the author worked on some episodes of that series and Alfred Hitchcock Presents.

I'm now also reading Ghost Hunt, another Japanese comic.  Very interesting and it is the first book I ever bought on a wim.  The detail for the ghosts and supernatural are quite good and the book provides a proper feeling of dread for the horror in it.

I read many of Bradbury's books years ago. Try SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES,the MARTIAN CHRONICHLES,the ILLUSTRATED MAN or for someting different-DANDOLION WINE. Bradbury also wrote the short story 'the Lighthouse'-which the film BEAST from 20,000 FATHOMS was based. Some of his prose is a little syrupy at times...and some reads almost like poetry.

 Almost done with BELA LUGOSI:DREAMS and NIGHTMARES by Gary Don Rhodes and Richard Sheffield. Rhodes is an exhaustive researcher. An amazing piece of work about Lugosi's final years. Sometimes sad,always interesting-a wonderful book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Neville on May 15, 2009, 06:24:44 AM
InformationGeek, if you haven't read The Martian chronicles yet and you are enjoying Fahrenheit 451, put that one in your list. It's even better than Fahrenheit, and, simply put, one of the most wonderful things I've ever read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on May 17, 2009, 11:45:08 PM
Still taking my time with The Stand.  I only ever seem to read when I'm at work, on a slow day.  I've only got something like 120 pages left, so it shouldn't be too much longer.  :cheers:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 18, 2009, 08:47:57 AM
Just starting on "It" while I wait for the next Michael Slade book (Cutthroat) to arrive on interlibrary loan.

Of the Stephen King books I've read, I have to say that It starts out pretty interesting, rather than taking a while to set everything up. Kind of encouraging, what with the length of the book. It's very Lovecraftian, which I like.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on May 18, 2009, 11:52:06 AM
Just starting on "It" while I wait for the next Michael Slade book (Cutthroat) to arrive on interlibrary loan.

Of the Stephen King books I've read, I have to say that It starts out pretty interesting, rather than taking a while to set everything up. Kind of encouraging, what with the length of the book. It's very Lovecraftian, which I like.

I'm just at the bit where Bill is having a flashback, just before they all get back to Derry. I've had a hard time reading it this time round, as I've just been completely exhausted after work.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 18, 2009, 01:06:32 PM
I'm at the part where Stanley's wife is recalling their years together, leading up to his recent bath. The significance of the bath has only been hinted at, but having seen the miniseries two or three times, I know what's coming.

What I'm really enjoying is the extra detail. I don't think the miniseries gave quite the same feeling that Derry itself is a bad place, that there is an evil shadow hanging over the whole town that some people can sense and most locals have learned to ignore. That really comes through in the book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on May 18, 2009, 01:14:11 PM
I'm at the part where Stanley's wife is recalling their years together, leading up to his recent bath. The significance of the bath has only been hinted at, but having seen the miniseries two or three times, I know what's coming.

What I'm really enjoying is the extra detail. I don't think the miniseries gave quite the same feeling that Derry itself is a bad place, that there is an evil shadow hanging over the whole town that some people can sense and most locals have learned to ignore. That really comes through in the book.

Wait 'til you get to Mike Hanlon's compiling of the town history. The whole backstory King has written for Derry in that section is superb, not to mention very creepy.  :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Derf on May 18, 2009, 06:18:15 PM
I just finished Gregory Maguire's Wicked. I HATE THIS BOOK! It is even worse than Philip Jose Farmer's Barnstormer in Oz, which I thought had to be the worst take on Oz I would ever see. I grew up with the Oz books (both the Baum series and the Thompson series after that). They hold a very special place in my heart, even though they are dated and cheesy. Wicked takes the mythos, throws it out, makes the bad guys the good guys and the good guys the bad guys, ignores well established facts (okay, fictions) in the books, and just does its best to ruin the story.

I don't have a problem with someone trying to flesh out the characters a bit, or even with making the Witch more of a misunderstood person than someone truly wicked, but to make her the heroin and the Wizard into an evil despot was just unnecessary. I bought the sequel, Son of a Witch before I bought the original, and I was so disappointed with the first that I don't think I will even read the second. I know I'm overreacting a bit, but the Oz mythos is a sacred part of my childhood. Oz was my Harry Potter, and I was every bit as big an Oz fan as any rabid HP fan has ever been (well, I never wrote fan fiction; I wouldn't sink that low  :twirl:).


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 18, 2009, 09:22:35 PM
I just finished Gregory Maguire's Wicked. I HATE THIS BOOK! It is even worse than Philip Jose Farmer's Barnstormer in Oz, which I thought had to be the worst take on Oz I would ever see. I grew up with the Oz books (both the Baum series and the Thompson series after that). They hold a very special place in my heart, even though they are dated and cheesy. Wicked takes the mythos, throws it out, makes the bad guys the good guys and the good guys the bad guys, ignores well established facts (okay, fictions) in the books, and just does its best to ruin the story.

I read Wicked a few years ago and thought it was a really interesting book. I can't say I liked everything in it, but I thought it was fun to approach the story from the point of view that history is written by the victors. And I don't think it reversed the good guys and bad guys as much as it blurred the lines between the two, and made things a little less black and white. And to be fair, Dorothy and her friends were still the good guys. Of course, I don't have any special attachment to the stories, apart from memories of watching the movie on TV at least once a year as a kid.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Derf on May 18, 2009, 10:18:01 PM
I just finished Gregory Maguire's Wicked. I HATE THIS BOOK! It is even worse than Philip Jose Farmer's Barnstormer in Oz, which I thought had to be the worst take on Oz I would ever see. I grew up with the Oz books (both the Baum series and the Thompson series after that). They hold a very special place in my heart, even though they are dated and cheesy. Wicked takes the mythos, throws it out, makes the bad guys the good guys and the good guys the bad guys, ignores well established facts (okay, fictions) in the books, and just does its best to ruin the story.

I read Wicked a few years ago and thought it was a really interesting book. I can't say I liked everything in it, but I thought it was fun to approach the story from the point of view that history is written by the victors. And I don't think it reversed the good guys and bad guys as much as it blurred the lines between the two, and made things a little less black and white. And to be fair, Dorothy and her friends were still the good guys. Of course, I don't have any special attachment to the stories, apart from memories of watching the movie on TV at least once a year as a kid.

To me, it's a bit like the movie Titanic: a mediocre story that wouldn't have made it had it been set anywhere else. And while it did leave Dorothy and her friends as the good guys, it most definitely made the wizard out to be hateful, and it also very clearly made Elphaba the only honest and truthful character outside of Dorothy and her immediate friends (who play a very small part in the story). Elphaba's friends and family are presented as either weak-willed, weak-minded, or corrupt in some way. Glinda has become a society dame and general airhead (not stupid, but one who refuses to use her intellect whenever possible). Ozians in general are weak followers, and the Oz society is presented as cruel or indifferent. This just isn't Oz, any more than Australia is the Oz of Baum's imagination.

I don't really mean to argue with you, AndyC, but, as I said, the Oz mythos does have significance to me, and I tend to get a little worked up over bastardizations like this. Wicked is more an exploitation of Oz than a rethinking of it; it seems that Maguire couldn't sell the story on its own, so he set it in Oz to give it a "hook."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: sideorderofninjas on May 18, 2009, 10:42:47 PM
While back, I have read Wicked and wasn't impressed with it.  Taking the Oz ideas and standing them upside down is one thing but having all the characters changed completely is a totally different thing. 

I just finished the Looking Glass Wars which was an alternate take on Alice in Wonderland.  This alternate take on Wonderland doesn't leave the bad taste like Wicked's take on Oz. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Pilgermann on May 25, 2009, 11:40:30 PM
Just finished Cormac McCarthy's The Road.  I started it Sunday morning and I've read it in a few long sittings.  Quickest I've gone through a book in a while, and now tha I've gotten a taste of his writing I need more!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on May 26, 2009, 02:38:24 AM
Just finished Cormac McCarthy's The Road.  I started it Sunday morning and I've read it in a few long sittings.  Quickest I've gone through a book in a while, and now tha I've gotten a taste of his writing I need more!

I'd go straight to Blood Meridian.

I checked out Pilgermann on interlibrary loan due to your recommendation on this board from quite a while back. Hopefully I'll get to it soon. I'm currently trying to finish up The Satanic Verses (so-so), Memoirs of My Nevous Illness (interesting), the Letters of John and Abigail Adams (oddly fascinating), and the Living Dead (zombie stories!).

Also I'm halfway done with George R.R. Martin's fourth book in his Song of Ice and Fire. Great series, but can we be done with this Cersei character already?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on June 03, 2009, 05:38:56 PM
Did you know that we got the word teetotal because of a speech impediment?

One of the first founders of the teetotal movement stuttered, so when he said "totally abstain," it came out as "t-t-totally abstain," and so the word was born.

From Iain Gateley's "Drink" subtitled "a cultural history of alcohol."

The Good
It's a fairly complete history of the 10,000 year history of alcohol from China in 7000 B.C. to the United States in 2006.

The Bad
It's a Westernized history of alcohol. While the author does cover the history of alcohol in Asia and Africa, most of the book is given over to its history in North America and Europe. And by that, I mean western Europe.

The Ugly (or, what is neither good nor bad.)
The author is English, so you get a viewpoint of America that might be a little bit different from that of an American. Which viewpoint I always enjoy.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on June 04, 2009, 06:34:20 PM
I've wrapped up my reading on Fahrenhiet 451, but I am still working my way through Ghost Hunt and The Drifting Classroom.  I've also just read Case Closed Vol. 28, which was a pretty good mystery comic book.  It's a very long series, but I enjoy it none the less.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Torgo on June 05, 2009, 08:49:28 AM
I have began to re-read Clive Barker's "The Great and Secret Show".   I just finished up "Baal" by Robert R. Mccammon.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: flackbait on June 06, 2009, 01:28:35 AM
Finished re-reading Catch 22... man I never knew a book that could depress a guy and make hime laugh at the same time.

I think next I'm going to try to read Nam-a-rama, from what I hear its an interesting book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on June 06, 2009, 09:32:16 AM
Lives of the Saints


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on June 06, 2009, 10:04:33 AM
(http://www.footballaudio.com/podcasts/185/goat2.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on June 06, 2009, 11:05:26 AM
The name of the wind~ Patrick Rothfuss


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on June 07, 2009, 11:47:22 PM
Taking a break from IT to read another Slade thriller that arrived on interlibrary loan earlier than expected. So far, Cutthroat is a good read. A series of brutal murders in Vancouver and San Francisco, which are somehow connected to Custer's last stand, Charles Darwin, an Asian gang, the Wendigo legend, the Zodiac Killer and a Chinese pharmaceutical company. I'm not even a third of the way through. Slade can really pull together some wild stories.
(http://www.specialx.net/specialxdotnet/images/cthroat2nd.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on June 08, 2009, 03:34:23 PM
(http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/ee71/HammockRider/nourish.jpg)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Javakoala on June 10, 2009, 09:07:06 PM
The Searchers by Alan LeMay (after watching the movie recently)

U.S. History For Dummies  My girlfriend is taking a history class and I realized I'm no whiz on history. Time to read up!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Moreau on June 23, 2009, 03:05:24 PM
'daemonomania' by john crowley. it's part three in a series of magic realist, esoteric genius


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BeyondTheGrave on June 25, 2009, 03:04:55 PM
(http://www.cersc.org/events/blackwater/book-cover.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on June 27, 2009, 07:11:01 PM
A little over halfway through Weaveworld by Clive Barker at the moment.  Hoping to start Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde afterward.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on June 27, 2009, 10:38:56 PM
I just finished NERO'S KILLING MACHINE: THE TRUE STORY OF ROME'S FOURTEENTH LEGION.  It was an excellent read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on June 28, 2009, 12:08:58 PM
Finished Cutthroat and resuming IT.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on June 29, 2009, 04:29:45 PM

Franz Wisner's "How the World Makes Love" subtitled ". . .And What It Taught a Jilted Groom"

After the writer's bride-to-be leaves him at the altar, he and his younger brother travel around the world and try to make some sense of what happened to him.

Besides "The World's Worst Pickup Lines," there is some good news (No. That's not the good news) he finds his future wife. An TV actress in southern California with a four-year-old son, with whom he bonds.

He may be one of the few writers to marry someone more famous than he, as his bride turns out to be Tracy Middendorf. Trakers may remember her as Ziyla on "Star Trek: DS9."

While this is a work of non-fiction, if you read a book, even if it's fiction, you'll become personally acquainted with the author. Maybe more personally acquainted than you want. For a good author always puts something of themselves into a book, even if subconsciously. His hopes. His fears. Her likes. Her dislikes. Etc.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on July 01, 2009, 09:28:44 AM
Lucky You - I've fallen in love with the main character...JoLayne Lucks, man, what an awesome name !


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on July 01, 2009, 01:03:50 PM
The traveler~ john twelve hawks


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Pilgermann on July 02, 2009, 02:31:51 PM
(http://www.geocities.com/rayharry_2000/necroscope.gif)

Recently started Necroscope by Brian Lumley.  I have a short story collection of his and I really enjoyed it so I thought I'd give this a go.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: sideorderofninjas on July 02, 2009, 10:44:08 PM
"Wind Rider's Oath" by David Weber and trying to slog through "Quicksilver" by Neal Stephenson...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on July 03, 2009, 10:38:05 AM
"Hunger" by Knut Hamsun... about a writer who starves himself and goes mad, for no good reason.  Hamsun wrote in the late 19th century and is supposed to be a forerunner to Kafka.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on July 03, 2009, 05:13:07 PM
Well, its the usual manga for me, while sneaking in The Andromeda Strain to read as well.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 04, 2009, 10:27:31 PM
Well, its the usual manga for me, while sneaking in The Andromeda Strain to read as well.

The Andromeda Strain is a good book. I read it back in the early 90s, along with some of Crichton's other earlier books. I think reading Jurassic Park prompted me to check out some of the other stuff. Didn't care much for Crichton's later work. Toward the end, it seemed like he was pretty much writing with movie deals in mind, with books that read like movie novelizations.

But early Crichton is good stuff. The Andromeda Strain, The Terminal Man and Sphere are all books I'd highly recommend.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Neville on July 05, 2009, 05:01:21 AM
It's ben a while since I last read something really absorving, but Ann-Marie McDonald's "The way the crow flies" has kept me awake for a couple of weeks. Beware, it's like 1,000 pages long and the plot doesn't really kick in until the final 500, but it's a terrific book.

It's set in the early 60s, in an American airbase in Canada. It focuses on a small family who moves in there right before the Cuban missiles crisis. The father has an administrative job in the base and the daughter makes friends with the adopted kids of another family. Later on some other subplots start gaining importance. The daughter is sexually abused at school and the father is asked by a British friend to babysit an Eastern German scientist that seeks asylum in the USA. And that's just the beginning.

It's a terrific book, as I said, easily the best I've read in the past six months, but it's not an easy read. The style is extremely literary, with most chapters written with a 9 year old kid POV, and some of its passages, given the themes explored, are vey disturbing.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Monster Jungle X-Ray on July 05, 2009, 05:36:42 AM
Well, its the usual manga for me, while sneaking in The Andromeda Strain to read as well.

The Andromeda Strain is a good book. I read it back in the early 90s, along with some of Crichton's other earlier books. I think reading Jurassic Park prompted me to check out some of the other stuff. Didn't care much for Crichton's later work. Toward the end, it seemed like he was pretty much writing with movie deals in mind, with books that read like movie novelizations.

But early Crichton is good stuff. The Andromeda Strain, The Terminal Man and Sphere are all books I'd highly recommend.
I couldn't agree more, his early stuff was pretty good up until around Jurassic Park, and The Lost World. A few of his later novels (especially that nanobyte swarm one which I've forgotten the title of) do seem like by-the-numbers affairs which is sad as the man definitely had talent. Timeline may be a crime against humanity, at least the film was.

The last novel I read is World War Z by Max Brooks, it is pretty good I thought even if some of the accounts were somewhat repetitive in places. How they handle the inevitable movie adaption will be interesting to see, as it comes off more like a war story.

I just finished Love, Sex, Fear, Death by Timothy Wyllie about the Process Church of the Final Judgment psychotherapy cult of the '60s-70s. Pretty enlightening read written by ex-members who don't shy from showing their experiences warts and all. The Process was most infamously linked to the Manson Murders with some researchers suggesting that they were behind it all. In actuality it turns out that they were only peripherally connected when two members went to visit Manson in jail after he was arrested for a magazine interview. I'd recommend it to any of you who are interested in weird cults, and the like.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on July 05, 2009, 09:14:23 AM
Well, its the usual manga for me, while sneaking in The Andromeda Strain to read as well.

The Andromeda Strain is a good book. I read it back in the early 90s, along with some of Crichton's other earlier books. I think reading Jurassic Park prompted me to check out some of the other stuff. Didn't care much for Crichton's later work. Toward the end, it seemed like he was pretty much writing with movie deals in mind, with books that read like movie novelizations.

But early Crichton is good stuff. The Andromeda Strain, The Terminal Man and Sphere are all books I'd highly recommend.

I own and read Sphere.  It was pretty good, but hard for me to follow.  (I read it when I was 14, very complicated).  I haven't read much of his later works outside of Prey, which was pretty good to me.  I'll probably read his final book that comes out later this year in honor of his memory.

Also, I'm almost finished with The Drifting Classroom, a story about an entire grade school in Japan being transported into the distant future where the whole world has turned into a desert.  They must learn to survive in the harsh wasteland filled with unseen dangers and a food and water supply that is constantly running low.  Worse of all, some of the students aren't that nice when pushed to the extremes.  Made back in 1975, it combines The Lord of the Flies with Battle Royale.  It is my most favorite horror/science fiction comic I have ever read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on July 05, 2009, 09:34:04 AM
info G-  it was a movie too.  it got horribly panned in the latest Shock cinema but i've never seen it.



I'm reading "introducing machievelli" from the introducing books series.  I really dislike his philosophy but he is referenced rather alot in political sort of writing so I wanted to get a better handle on what he actually said rather than just what he "represents".  I read the introducing marx one for the same reason.  don't like marx but wanted to know what he actually talked abuot.

if I'm going to read a REAL book it will be about murray rothbard or someone I like



also reading "jerusalem 1913" about how the palestinian israeli conflict started.  It talks about the original zionists back in the late 1800's and how basically the whole thing was doomed to become what it has indeed become


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 05, 2009, 03:04:27 PM
I own and read Sphere.  It was pretty good, but hard for me to follow.  (I read it when I was 14, very complicated).  I haven't read much of his later works outside of Prey, which was pretty good to me.  I'll probably read his final book that comes out later this year in honor of his memory.

Ah, Prey. That was the nanobot swarm book that Monster Jungle X-Ray couldn't put a name to. Funny, I was thinking of the same book as the ultimate example of post-JP Crichton and couldn't remember the title either. Not a bad book. An easy read with interesting ideas, but I didn't think it measured up to the earlier work. It felt like Crichton was trying to repeat past success, cranking out a sci-fi thriller based around a current hot science topic, throwing in some stock characters and setting it all up so it would be easy to film. Seemed like he was just going through the motions. Again, not a bad book, but not on the same level as Crichton's earlier books.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Monster Jungle X-Ray on July 05, 2009, 08:41:28 PM
I own and read Sphere.  It was pretty good, but hard for me to follow.  (I read it when I was 14, very complicated).  I haven't read much of his later works outside of Prey, which was pretty good to me.  I'll probably read his final book that comes out later this year in honor of his memory.

Ah, Prey. That was the nanobot swarm book that Monster Jungle X-Ray couldn't put a name to. Funny, I was thinking of the same book as the ultimate example of post-JP Crichton and couldn't remember the title either. Not a bad book. An easy read with interesting ideas, but I didn't think it measured up to the earlier work. It felt like Crichton was trying to repeat past success, cranking out a sci-fi thriller based around a current hot science topic, throwing in some stock characters and setting it all up so it would be easy to film. Seemed like he was just going through the motions. Again, not a bad book, but not on the same level as Crichton's earlier books.


Yes Prey, it wasn't a bad read it did just seem like Crichton was going through the motions on that one, a quickie. As far as his non sci-fi efforts I enjoyed Airframe, and Rising Sun. The Great Train Robbery with Sean Connery, and Donald Sutherland for which he also wrote the screenplay based on his book and directed is an enjoyable film.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 05, 2009, 11:30:18 PM
I think MIchael Crichton's last book, STATE OF FEAR, was incredibly well-written and prescient, given current political trends.  At least he ended on a solid note.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Monster Jungle X-Ray on July 06, 2009, 04:15:57 AM
I think MIchael Crichton's last book, STATE OF FEAR, was incredibly well-written and prescient, given current political trends.  At least he ended on a solid note.


Thanks I'll have to check that one out.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 08, 2009, 04:12:11 PM
David Thomason's "Have You Seen . . . ?" Subtitled: "A Personal Introduction to 1000 Films." Actually, I counted 1009 films, but who's counting.

Alot to like about this one.

1. He knows his earlier films, but he also knows his later films (1895-2007)

2. He knows it is not only the stars, but also the other actors who make up a film.

3. He knows it is not only the acting, but also the writing, sets, music, costumes, etc. which make up a film.

4. He knows his camera angles.

5. It's not only the usual suspects, but also some more obscure films.

6. He likes not only the critical successes/popular flops, but also the popular successes as well.

7. He likes generas (horror, westerns, etc.) sometimes slighted by other critics.

8. He likes remakes and sequels.

9. He likes films that were hated by both critics and audiences. And he dislikes films that were loved by both critics and audiences.

10l. He has some interesting things to say about films. For example: Elsa Lanchester based her character in "Bride of Frankenstein" upon the swans she saw in Hyde Park.

And at an early read through of "Sparatcus," Olivier came in a three-piece suit. Ustinov came in a lightweight summer suit. Laughton came in a bathrobe. And Douglas . . . Douglas came in period costume, which sent the other three men into giggbles, but says more about their different approaches to acting than most books.

11. Unlike some critics, he seems to have a life outside of films. He is--was--married and seems to have a family.

12. Unlike some critics, even in the films he likes, he points out what is wrong with the film.

13. And he writes well.

But, with so much that is right, why can't I recommend it wholeheartedly?

Because, there is so much wrong with it. To whit . . .

1. While there is an useful film chronology, it needs another list. A list of films listed by the director.

2. The profanity must go. He drops in the "f-bomb" ever now and then, which has no context within the revieww.

3. He understands alot about films. More than I do. But, like alot of people, he has no understanding of action sequences. He says "El Cid" has the best action sequences, when in all actuality the action sequences in "The Fall of the Roman Empire" are better shot and lit, and the action seuences in "55 Days at Peiking" make better use of the extras and are more exciting. Thus, of the three, "El Cid" is not the best, but the worst.

4. You'd think, if you'd wanted to introduce films to your friends and neighbors, you'd pikc films you'd like. He does, but he also picks films he dislikes, without an explanation as to why he picked them, which doesn't make sense. Thus, what is needed is a clear explanation as to why the films were picked, which we don't get.

5. He comes across as an intellectual. And Lord protect me from intellectuals and films. Films are not for intellectuals, but for the masses. The masses may be right, or they may be increasingly wrong, but films were made for the masses and not for intellectuals.

6. Which is why he is wrong so much. Not only when we disagree, and we disagree 27% of the time, but even when we agree, I think he/we/I are wrong. What this book needs is a companion volume to point out where and why he is wrong.

Thus, I'd read this book, but I wouldn't use it as a guide as to what to see. As there are better guides out there for that, including this website.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: bladerunnerblues on July 10, 2009, 01:44:18 AM
Mere Anarchy by Woody Allen
Creepy #11
Judge Dredd #3(Eagle Comics)
Savage Sword of Conan volume 1


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sister Grace on July 11, 2009, 08:15:56 PM
Barbara Gowdy- Mister Sandman (so far its been pretty good).


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on July 12, 2009, 09:54:21 AM
Clive Barker's Books of Blood Volume 2
So far, not as good as volume 1 but I'm only half way, so there's hope yet.
Only two stories are memorable...and I was dissapointed with The Forbidden.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: PhilosophyMixtapes on July 14, 2009, 08:27:33 AM
Just finished Ayn Rand's The Fountainhead (9/10), Rob Sheffield's Love is a Mixtape (6/10) and Robert Kirkman's The Walking Dead vol 3 (9/10).


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 14, 2009, 05:59:08 PM
Nevada Barr's (Now, there's a name for you.) "Borderline." Subtitled: "a Novel." The 16th in the Anna Pigeon mystery series, but the first one I've read. Maybe because it takes place in an area, where I've been. Big Bend National Park. One of the few national parks in Texas, and as about as far west as you can get, before you hit the river than Mexico.

That is the hook of the series. Anna Pigeon is a National Park Service ranger, so each of the mysteries happens in a different national park.

Anyway, we are along way from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Dame Agatha Christie, and Erle Stanley Gardner, where you reaped the clues and weeded out the red herrings to find out who did it, before the last page. Now, as in this series, it is more about the personalities of the people involved, than the puzzle of who did it.

And anyway, the best story in the book is not one of the fictional stories, but a true story used to illustrate a fictional point. It seems that a number of years ago, a bush pilot landed on a deserted beach in a National Park and picked up a load of contraband and tried to take off. Well, he was spotted by a National Parki Service ranger, who was determined to stop him. Well, the pilot was equally determined he was going to take off, and, as both men were armed, they pulled their six shooters on each other and opened fire. Now, the incredible thing is, that after both men had emptied their guns, they both stopped, reloaded, and opened up again.

Total shots fired: 24
Hits: 0
Misses: 24

And both men were only fifty feet apart, when they shot at each other. At that distance, they probably could have done more damage by throwing their guns at each other. Thus legends are made.

Enjoy this book or another one in the series.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 19, 2009, 01:35:04 PM
Okay. Finished that one and began Joan Rivers' (Yes, that Joan Rivers) "Murder at the Academy Awards," subtitled: "a Red Carpet Murder Mystery."

It's the story of Joan Rivers (I mean Maxine Taylor) and her daughter Melissa Rivers (I mean Drew Taylor.)

Joan Rivers is a published author, but all her books have been in the non-fiction category. The mystery comes in part because of Jerrilyn Farmer, who has written eight mysteries, excluding this one.

Her name is in smaller print and comes beneath Joan's, but at least she gets credit as co-writer, which is more than I can say for some celebrity authors.

But, she lets Joan's voice through, for when you hear Maxine speak, you hear Joan.

There are actual people in the book. (More name dropping than you can shake a stick at.) Most of whom are well enough known you'll recognize them.

There are the totally fictional people

And there are the real people whose names have been changed to protect their identities. Those are the ones I find interesting, but I don't know Hollywood well enough to know who they are.

There is one more thing about the book. Each chapter title begins with the word "Best."

Whether this is only an one shot thing or will develop into a series of books, only time will tell.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on July 23, 2009, 04:20:16 AM
Finished Weaveworld and began Lonesome Traveler by Jack Kerouac today. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 23, 2009, 08:25:16 AM
I am in the middle of THE ZOMBIE SURVIVAL GUIDE.

Preparations are underway. The zombies are coming.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on July 23, 2009, 01:58:35 PM
(http://images-eu.amazon.com/images/P/1845291115.02.LZZZZZZZ.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on July 23, 2009, 02:14:04 PM

Preparations are underway. The zombies are coming.

I've lived in Eastbourne.

Trust me, the zombies are already here.  :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on July 23, 2009, 03:36:44 PM
I'm reading "jerusalem 1913"  it describes how the jews began returning to what was then palestine en masse and the arabs pretty much knew what was going to happen and were powerless to stop it and remain so to this day


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on July 23, 2009, 03:42:56 PM
I'm still working on the 100 Greatest Books collection from the Easton Press.  I'm currently reading 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA and THE LEGEND OF SLEEPY HOLLOW AND OTHER STORIES by Washington Irving.  Today, TESS OF THE D'URBERVILLES arrived in the mail.  And, yes, I will read it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 23, 2009, 04:04:36 PM
Still reading Stephen King's IT. Thanks to a rainy camping trip, I'm nearly halfway through it. It's been getting steadily more interesting.

I'm actually trying to convince my wife that it would be something she'd like. What I've read so far is mostly about misfit kids growing up in the 50s, brought together by a higher power, who discover their own hidden strengths and defeat an evil in their town. She absolutely refuses, because it's "that story about an evil clown in the sewer." I can't seem to convince her it's more than that.

Oh well, gotta keep reading. The final book of Dean Koontz's Frankenstein, which I preordered, has finally arrived. Read the first two books (tight, fast-paced and interesting) nearly four years ago. The third was due to come out in the summer of '06, but seeing as it involves all hell breaking loose in New Orleans, it was postponed indefinitely after Katrina, then Koontz rewrote it, and here it is, three years later than expected. Reading the back cover, it looks like Katrina might have been incorporated into the story. I've already interrupted IT once to read another book, so I think I'll wait until I finish it, but I'm looking forward to wrapping up the Koontz trilogy.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on July 26, 2009, 10:24:17 AM
I've never read any dean Koontz novels but I belive he wrote "demon seed" which is one of my favorite movies and a very demented one at that


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 26, 2009, 10:38:17 AM
I actually haven't read much Koontz either. I just picked up the first Frankenstein book in a grocery store when I needed something to read, and I liked it. Mind you, I've tried reading Darkness Comes since then, and found it had little of what I enjoyed in Frankenstein.

Actually, Koontz has a few interesting sci-fi/horror books I might try. Demon Seed, the book, actually sounds quite different in tone from the film.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on July 26, 2009, 11:30:05 AM
it was an incredibly strange movie. not strange like abstract or surreal, strange like it's about a woman who is sexually dominated by her computerized house, sorry for the slight spoil


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 26, 2009, 02:39:51 PM
Finished the Zombie Survival Guide; now I am reading WORLD WAR Z to see what the future holds.




It's bleak.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 26, 2009, 03:53:19 PM
it was an incredibly strange movie. not strange like abstract or surreal, strange like it's about a woman who is sexually dominated by her computerized house, sorry for the slight spoil

Apparently, the story was heavily altered for the movie. The original book was set in a future where artificial intelligence was already commonplace, and had only two characters, Proteus and a rich, reclusive woman living alone in an automated house. Proteus accesses the house from a nearby university, and sets about terrorizing this woman as he learns more about what makes her tick. There's the same plan to impregnate her, but it's apparently more about breeding an improved human race than about the poor computer wanting to feel the sun on his face. The husband, the backstory, all the stuff about proteus rebelling against its creators, all added later. The book is apparently just a battle of wits between a woman and a computer.

Koontz himself rewrote the book a few years back, telling the story from the computer's point of view, and turning it into something of an allegory on the objectification of women.

Haven't read either book, although I've seen the movie a few times. I should actually give both versions a try.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on July 26, 2009, 05:50:21 PM
Did you like the movie?  I thought it was pretty awesome and pretty edgy for a movie that normal people went and saw


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on July 27, 2009, 08:14:20 AM
AndyC: keep trying; 'IT' indeed is very much more than an evil-clown-in-a-sewer.

I just finished "Unidentified" by Matthew Costello.  Quantum physics, evil incursions from the multiverses...nicely creepy, if perhaps a bit too understated, all considered.  I cannot shake the impression that I have seen the final chapters as film/TV somewhere.  I have not found reference to anything being made based on the book - it seems to have been pretty minor in impact - but the scenes I am recalling are annoyingly persistent.  Arrgh!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 27, 2009, 05:31:39 PM
Did you like the movie?  I thought it was pretty awesome and pretty edgy for a movie that normal people went and saw

I liked it. It's one of those dark, intelligent (if slightly cheesy), high-concept sci-fi films that were practically a genre in their own right in the 70s. It's the sort of movie I'd watch anytime it happened to be on TV when I was a kid.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on August 01, 2009, 11:14:54 AM
The family~ Jeff Sharlet     :buggedout:   


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on August 01, 2009, 01:54:56 PM
About to dive into "A Clockwork Orange" by Anthony Burgess.  Wish me luck.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on August 01, 2009, 01:56:32 PM
About to dive into "A Clockwork Orange" by Anthony Burgess.  Wish me luck.

Good luck  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on August 02, 2009, 09:04:45 AM
AndyC: keep trying; 'IT' indeed is very much more than an evil-clown-in-a-sewer.

I'm well into the adult Losers' exploration of Derry. King does an amazing job of conveying that feeling of returning to your hometown after many years. It's a different town, but still familiar, and the combination can be kind of disturbing. I feel it when I visit my hometown, so it really strikes a chord.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on August 02, 2009, 02:06:24 PM
I'm about halfway through a biography of William Lloyd Garrison, the famous American abolitionist, entitled ALL ON FIRE.  It's a pretty good read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on August 03, 2009, 06:44:20 PM
I'm currently reading the UFO ENIGMA : A new Review of the Evidence by Prof.Peter Sturrock. No sensationalism here-but a scientific study of the evidence...it's fascinating!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on August 04, 2009, 11:30:45 AM
I just read and would recommend "The stewardess is flying the plane!!"  about 70's movies. mainly lots and lots of really great pics and trivia

(http://www.bookgasm.com/wp-content/images/082125751X.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on August 08, 2009, 09:22:44 AM
various defences of market anarchy (http://blogofbile.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/06/chaos-theory.pdf)  ("won't the mafia take over?")


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on August 08, 2009, 09:29:55 AM
(http://www.nexternal.com/dreamland/images/1sh1.jpg)

One of my faves ! :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on August 08, 2009, 10:21:25 AM
doggett- that looks awesome


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on August 08, 2009, 02:37:38 PM
I've been reading The Club Dumas by Arturo Perez-Reverte. Its the book that The Ninth Gate was based on, although the film cut out most of the stuff about Dumas and the Three Musketeers. The more I read, the more I want to start an Antiquarian book library of my own (yeah right, I can barely afford to spend 20 bucks on a new book, and thats on a good week). The closest I've come is having some reprints of old grimiores. The insides are nice to look at, but the cheap paperback bindings are no substitute for gilded leather.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on August 08, 2009, 10:01:23 PM
fAUSTO - I have several 100 year old books for sale on EBay right now . .  . sellername indianasmith1, and they're cheap . . .  Kipling, Byron, Churchill among others.  Picked em up in an estate sale last weekend.


Now that the entire series is finished, I am reading Stephen King's THE DARK TOWER in its entirety.  Finished THE GUNSLINGER and am nearly done with THE DRAWING OF THE THREE.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on August 09, 2009, 06:49:26 PM
fAUSTO - I have several 100 year old books for sale on EBay right now . .  . sellername indianasmith1, and they're cheap . . .  Kipling, Byron, Churchill among others.  Picked em up in an estate sale last weekend.

Cool, I'll check it out.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on August 09, 2009, 09:37:13 PM
They expired this afternoon with no bids, but i'm gonna re-list for another week and see what happens.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on August 10, 2009, 01:25:17 AM
Finished Lonesome Traveler the other day and have now begun Frankenstein by Mary Shelley.  It's pretty interesting so far.  Too bad I haven't had time to read much, what with work and moving.   :bluesad:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on August 10, 2009, 04:06:40 AM
([url]http://www.nexternal.com/dreamland/images/1sh1.jpg[/url])

One of my faves ! :thumbup:


Dan Slott's run on She-Hulk is great! If you like that, I highly recommend finding his GLA (Great Lakes Avengers) stuff. Very funny stuff.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on August 10, 2009, 08:36:55 AM
They expired this afternoon with no bids, but i'm gonna re-list for another week and see what happens.

Okay, I placed bids on Byron and Kiplyng, username srow6109.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on August 17, 2009, 07:58:02 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51P6XMGQJCL._SS500_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BeyondTheGrave on August 24, 2009, 11:48:12 AM
(http://bookpeopleblog.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/pride_prejudice_zombies1w11.jpg)

This book rocks. Simply as that.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on August 24, 2009, 12:33:24 PM
([url]http://bookpeopleblog.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/pride_prejudice_zombies1w11.jpg[/url])

This book rocks. Simply as that.


I wish I'd thought of that.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on August 25, 2009, 07:39:59 PM
"Swim the Fly" a teen comedy by first time novelist Don Calame.

It has all the gross things that teenage boys supposedly like. Flatulence jokes. Jokes about diarrhea. Vomiting into the swimming pool during a swimming meet. Having involuntary erections. Well, maybe not the last.

A two goal novel.

The hero of the novel and his two best buds, each year, set a goal for themselves to accomplish over the summer. Last year, they saw a girl's naked breast. So, this year their goal is to see a girl totally naked. Of course, all their attempts to do so end in disaster.

But the hero also has a more individualistic goal. To impress the hot new girl on his swim team, he volunteers to swim the butterfly. Even though he has never swam the butterfly before, and it is the hardest swimming stroke to learn. This goal ends in a way he did not expect, but it does not end as disasterly as the other goal.

Recommended for the comedy and the reality of it.

And anyway, it'd make a great film.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on August 25, 2009, 10:59:41 PM
(http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c375/fausto963/TheNeverendingStory1997Edition.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on August 26, 2009, 01:49:34 AM
([url]http://bookpeopleblog.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/pride_prejudice_zombies1w11.jpg[/url])

This book rocks. Simply as that.


I'm reading that and a book called A Living Revolution: Anarchism in the Kibbutz Movement


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on August 28, 2009, 03:12:46 AM
I just got done reading the third Solomon Vs Lord book, "Kill All the Lawyers" by Paul Levine.  It was a good read, the SvL series is really funny, you guys should check it out.  What was nice about this one is Bobby, Solmon's nephew, finally gets some chapters from his perspective and becomes a bigger character in the series, something I think is great. 

Also just got done reading Master of Lies by Graham Masterson.  First book by the guy, and I guess it was okay, nothing really exciting or inventive, I thought. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on August 28, 2009, 11:13:26 AM
I just started WATCHMEN. 

You guys may find this hard to believe, but I'd never even heard of it before someone started a topic on the board about it a year ago.  Then I saw the movie and was intrigued enough to order the graphic novel.  Good stuff!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Bargle5 on August 28, 2009, 07:50:29 PM
Profiles in Murder by Russ Vorpagel.

Book version of the lectures and scenarios he used to teach to Law/Legal types to learn when to call in a profiler.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on August 29, 2009, 08:59:44 AM
fAUSTO - I have several 100 year old books for sale on EBay right now . .  . sellername indianasmith1, and they're cheap . . .  Kipling, Byron, Churchill among others.  Picked em up in an estate sale last weekend.

Dude, where are you getting all these arrows heads?  Did you loot a burial ground or something?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Cthulhu on August 29, 2009, 09:18:09 AM
I've just read Animal farm.
Good.

Good.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on August 29, 2009, 01:40:06 PM
I'm not currently reading, but I will be in the future.  I'm back in school and my English teacher gave us the list of things we will be reading.  Here's what I'll be reading in the future:

The Tell Tale Heart, The Birds, The Lottery, Frankstein, 1984, Lord of the Flies, and Brave New World.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on August 29, 2009, 08:53:48 PM
I'm not currently reading, but I will be in the future.  I'm back in school and my English teacher gave us the list of things we will be reading.  Here's what I'll be reading in the future:

The Tell Tale Heart, The Birds, The Lottery, Frankstein, 1984, Lord of the Flies, and Brave New World.

Man, you lucked out.  You could have got a lot worse assignments than those.  No Jane Austen is always a good thing.  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on August 31, 2009, 04:25:49 PM
I just finished reading the Lottery in class and I really have to ask, "What happened?"  I am just confused at how everything was told and explained.  From what I could gather, it seemed like it was an early verison of the Wicker Man.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on September 05, 2009, 08:37:52 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41coZqaQqGL._SS500_.jpg)

I'm not currently reading, but I will be in the future.  I'm back in school and my English teacher gave us the list of things we will be reading.  Here's what I'll be reading in the future:

The Tell Tale Heart, The Birds, The Lottery, Frankstein, 1984, Lord of the Flies, and Brave New World.


Man, you lucked out.  You could have got a lot worse assignments than those.  No Jane Austen is always a good thing.  :thumbup:


When I was in high school, I had to read 1984, Of Mice and Men, Mayor of Casterbridge, Macbeth, Midsomer Nights Dream and A Christmas Carol.


All pointless because I was asleep when the exams took place*. So I did all that reading for nothing. In fact, as I never took the English Lit exam...every English Lit lesson I ever had was pointless !
Don't worry, I did turn up for me English Lan exams !



*There was an error printed on the exam timetable I was given. I wasn't deliberately trying to avoid exams. I'm still a little bitter about it...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on September 05, 2009, 03:25:05 PM
Over four years of high school and five English courses, I can barely remember all the books I was required to read. The ones that stood out were Lord of the Flies, In the Heat of the Night, The Ox-Bow Incident, A Tale of Two Cities, Fahrenheit 451, Animal Farm, as well as an assortment of Greek myths and several Shakespeare plays, the most enjoyable of which was Twelfth Night, although Julius Caesar and "the Scottish play" were both good as well. That's just what was enjoyable enough to remember. I have to say, there is something nice about so many people all having a few books in common, thanks to high school English. My friends and I used to quote lines out of Lord of the Flies for years afterward. I could probably call any of them up today and say "sucks to your assmar" in my best approximation of an upper-class British accent, and they'd know exactly what it meant. Probably get all nostalgic too.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on September 05, 2009, 03:48:30 PM
Since you are talking about those stories, my class is currently on the short story unit.  We have just read Jumping Frogs (By Mark Twain, can't remember the full story) and The Lady or The Tiger.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Saucerman on September 05, 2009, 05:58:51 PM
I just started David J. Skal's The Monster Show: A Cultural History of Horror and my mind has already been blown. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on September 08, 2009, 05:41:37 PM
Two mysteries.

The first is "The Crack of the Lens" by Steve Hockensmith.

The 4th in the "Holmes on the Range" series.

The others being . . .
"Holmes on the Range"
"On the Wrong Track"
"Black Dove"

Two brothers, ex-cowboys, who pattern themselives on Holmes and Watson, roam the Old West, just  before the turn of the century, solving crimes.

In this one, they have to solve the mystery of who's killing the town's prostitutes. Is it another prostitute, the county sheriff, the preacher, the newspaper editor, the photographer, the town marshal, the pimp, or a stranger?

The second is "The Second Death of Goodluck Tinubu" by Michael Stanley (i.e. Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip.)

The second in the "A Detective Kubu Mystery" series.

The other being . . .
"A Carrion Death"

What sets this one apart from most mysteries is its location. The mystery series takes places in Botswana.

In this one, police detective Kubu, or "Hippo," as he is also known for his great size, has to solve a string of murders at a bush camp in northern Botswana.

And, actually, both mysteries are better than I make them out to be.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: El Misfit on September 08, 2009, 08:22:19 PM
Cirque Du Freak
Batman: No Man's Land 1-5 and Hush :thumbup: :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on September 09, 2009, 12:30:00 AM

Just got done reading Isaac's Storm by Erik Larson.  It's a VERY interesting account of the 1900 hurricane that really did a number on Galveston, Texas. We're talking about four thousand or so dead.  The book really gets into details on the lives of the people in the town and what happened.  A very good read!

Larson also co-wrote the novel Devil in the White City, another very good historical read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: schmendrik on September 09, 2009, 09:30:40 AM
Since you are talking about those stories, my class is currently on the short story unit.  We have just read Jumping Frogs (By Mark Twain, can't remember the full story) and The Lady or The Tiger.

Why do we make kids read stuff in high school and college which is too advanced for them? I know, I know, it's good for us. Probably sets up good habits.

Every once in awhile I feel guilty about my junk reading and get something "good for me", some classic which I either didn't read when I was supposed to or somehow never had assigned in school. So I recently got a book of Hawthorne out of the library and read Scarlet Letter and House of the Seven Gables. Also an early novel that Hawthorne disowned and nobody knew it was his till after his death.

I admit it was slow going at first, but I started getting into it, and then started realizing that Hawthorne actually had a sense of humor and inserted a number of cynical little comments in there. I was actually chuckling out loud sometimes. Plus I got this whole fascinating perspective on the culture of circa-1850 that I'd never paid attention to first time around.

However, I've tried Dickens in the same spirit and never managed to finish one.

Twain is great. Very modern. I've read a bunch of his stuff. It always surprises me how modern he sounds, when contemporaries writing at the same time sound like they're about 1000 years older.

Anyway, right now I'm back to the junk food. Got a bunch of sci-fi out of the library and I'm currently reading The Alien Years, an invasion story by Robert Silverberg.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on September 09, 2009, 12:21:04 PM
(http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/n0/n1421.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on September 09, 2009, 01:19:33 PM
Still reading IT. Holy smokes, this is a long book, but it hasn't failed to hold my interest. And the end is finally in sight.

Of course, to be fair, I've been really busy lately and haven't had much time for reading.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on September 10, 2009, 05:34:58 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41Ta5-vOB2L._SL500_AA240_.jpg)

I'm nearly at the end of the first book !
It's taken me nearly a year...I'm hoping the plot gets a little more exciting in the second book. There's only so much singing and walking I can take before I want to scream !!!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: schmendrik on September 10, 2009, 08:11:47 AM
([url]http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41Ta5-vOB2L._SL500_AA240_.jpg[/url])

I'm nearly at the end of the first book !
It's taken me nearly a year...I'm hoping the plot gets a little more exciting in the second book. There's only so much singing and walking I can take before I want to scream !!!


I gobbled these up when I first read them.

But even so the second book is deadly dull. The problem is the section with the talking trees called the Ents. O... M... G... that was deadly. I wanted to go out and set forest fires before I was halfway through it.

So you may want to do some skipping.

I highly recommend "Bored of the Rings".


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on September 10, 2009, 03:08:34 PM
Continuing on in our Short Story Unit in English class, we have justed finished reading A Rose for Emily.  It was rather interesting and I see it as a story that had another hidden story within it with how it is all set up.  Also, I have just dived into The Birds as well.  I finished reading it and I thought it was pretty good, though a couple of my friends said it was too long for a short story.  Anyways, we might be able to even watch the movie once the whole class is all done reading it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: venomx on September 10, 2009, 03:21:19 PM
Bruce Lee - Jeet Kune Do

Goonies by James Kahn

Ninja Mind Control by Ashida Kim


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on September 10, 2009, 10:40:28 PM
Did someone just criticize the brilliance that is LotR???

Surely not.  I would hate to have to break out my Dwarven mace and mithril body armor . . . . .  :teddyr:

I finally finished King's THE DARK TOWER series.  Incredible, dark, brilliant, and also, after seven long books, NOT ENOUGH!!

There is so much about Gilead and the Gunslingers that we never know.

Great series!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Ash on September 10, 2009, 10:44:57 PM

I finally finished King's THE DARK TOWER series.  Incredible, dark, brilliant, and also, after seven long books, NOT ENOUGH!!

There is so much about Gilead and the Gunslingers that we never know.

Great series!


I started the Dark Tower series years ago and have yet to finish it.
So far I've read the first 5 books and got bogged down in "Song of Susannah" about a yer ago.
Man, that book is awful!  By far the worst of Roland's adventures in my opinion.
Still haven't finished it yet.

My all time favorite book out of that series is the one that people seemed to dislike the most: Wizard and Glass.

As for what I'm reading now...
I picked up this book for $1 at the nearby Dollar Tree.

(http://img15.imageshack.us/img15/23/084395958401lzzzzzzz401.jpg) (http://img15.imageshack.us/i/084395958401lzzzzzzz401.jpg/)

It's a hard-boiled pulp crime novel about a porn star named Angel Dare who's shot and left for dead in the trunk of a car.
She survives and comes back for revenge.
It's pretty good so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: schmendrik on September 11, 2009, 10:46:26 AM

As for what I'm reading now...
I picked up this book for $1 at the nearby Dollar Tree.

([url]http://img15.imageshack.us/img15/23/084395958401lzzzzzzz401.jpg[/url]) ([url]http://img15.imageshack.us/i/084395958401lzzzzzzz401.jpg/[/url])

It's a hard-boiled pulp crime novel about a porn star named Angel Dare who's shot and left for dead in the trunk of a car.
She survives and comes back for revenge.
It's pretty good so far.



I'm not sure what the deal is with those "Hard Case Crime" books. They're new, they seem to have solicited new stories from a bunch of well-known authors, and they're deliberately packaged to look like old pulp stories whether they read that way or not.

Stephen King did one:
(http://img225.imageshack.us/img225/579/coverbig.jpg)

It's not at all a hard-boiled story. The girl on the cover ("Would She Learn the Dead Man's Secret?") is an intern at a small-town Maine newspaper, hearing a yarn from a couple of old-timers on the paper. If you like King's storytelling style even without supernatural monsters (I do), this is a decent read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mr. DS on September 11, 2009, 10:56:49 AM
(http://i69.photobucket.com/albums/i56/rockerbaby39/lastolympian1.gif)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on September 11, 2009, 04:23:31 PM
Just textbooks and stuff for school, I started my 4th year of university yesterday :thumbup:

*100th post


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on September 15, 2009, 07:47:00 PM
(http://www.now.org/store/images/items/bk-hh2.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: jimmybob on September 15, 2009, 09:54:29 PM
(http://www.getscottkellettout.com/images/Pics/Desperation.jpg)

Spooky stuff.

-Jimmybob


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on September 16, 2009, 08:16:18 AM
The Golden City: A Novel~ John Twelve Hawks.. Its the third book in the fourth realm trilogy and so far its pretty good. Not as good as the traveler or the dark river though.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on September 16, 2009, 04:12:00 PM
I recently finished 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA.  Decent book, but too many paragraphs describing undersea plants and creatures using long, Latin words.  Not enough danger and excitement for my taste.  I also read SHE STOOPS TO CONQUER, a humorous play from the late 1700s that involves social classes and mistaken identities.  These are part of the 100 Greatest Books Ever Written collection from Easton Press.  Right now, I'm in the midst of two other Easton Press books: I'm about 40 pages into THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME (one of my favorites . . . I read it several times when I was younger).  Also, I'm about 120 pages into a book of short stories by Washington Irving.  I read one of the stories every now and then when I don't feel like reading whatever novel I happen to be in the middle of.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on September 16, 2009, 10:38:50 PM
(http://img188.imageshack.us/img188/1645/zombiemovies.jpg)

And for school I'm reading:
Social Problems: An Introduction to Critical Constructionism
At War With Metaphor: Media, Propaganda, and Racism In The War on Terror
Contemporary Political Issues


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on September 24, 2009, 04:01:43 AM
(http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/n0/n734.jpg)

I'm just over 100 pages into it.  It's pretty good so far.  I've seen the movie, and so far the book is better.  Even though Ben Affleck is supposedly "da bomb" in the movie. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on September 24, 2009, 10:44:42 PM
That is my favorite Dean Koontz book!   

"OUR ANCIENT ENEMY" - Timothy Flyte


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Allhallowsday on September 25, 2009, 08:45:03 PM
Continuing on in our Short Story Unit in English class, we have justed finished reading A Rose for Emily.  It was rather interesting and I see it as a story that had another hidden story within it with how it is all set up.  Also, I have just dived into The Birds as well.  I finished reading it and I thought it was pretty good, though a couple of my friends said it was too long for a short story.  Anyways, we might be able to even watch the movie once the whole class is all done reading it.
A Rose For Emily is quite a fine story.  What do you suppose FAULKNER meant when he described her face as being "like an old flag"?  :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on October 03, 2009, 10:25:20 AM
I downloaded "the sacredness of questioning everything" by david dark.  it's about spirituality and how to overcome the sort of fear based image of God to see the loving sort of God, if that makes any sense.  He calls the former "uncle Ben" for some reason

http://bit.ly/ii7mu


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on October 03, 2009, 10:39:27 AM
(http://www.1journey.net/stdavids/SD/BookStudy/support/godDelusionUK200.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on October 03, 2009, 11:56:59 AM
I am currently rereading Congo.  It was a pretty interesting story the first time around so I am giving it another shot.  My English class just finish reading Teenage Wasteland and The Old Man with Enormous Wings.  As for my manga collection, I am still reading through Black Lagoon and Oishinbo.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on October 03, 2009, 01:18:41 PM
I am reading "Thank You For Smoking" by Christopher Buckley and I am almost finished.  It's pretty good. The movie that is based on it is pretty good too but they are vastly different.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on October 03, 2009, 01:57:59 PM
(http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c375/fausto963/ZMG9005_360.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on October 03, 2009, 03:03:01 PM
I just finished reading BECAUSE THEY HATE by Brigitte Gabriel.  A Lebanese Christian, Gabriel was 12 years old when the Lebanese Civil War began . . . she saw many of her country's Christians slaughtered by Islamic radicals before finally fleeing to sanctuary with her aged parents to Israel.   She had been raised to hate the Israelis, as all Lebanese, both Christian and Muslim, had been.  But when she saw what that country was like as opposed to the nightmare that Lebanon had become, she threw off her blinders and rejected Islamic propaganda forever.   She wrote this book after 9/11 to warn Americans of the very real danger she sees coming from the Middle East - not that a few fanatics have hijacked a noble, peaceful faith and turned it into an excuse for mass murder, but a rather more unpleasant truth - that Islam is, by its very nature, hateful and intolerant of all other faiths, bent on the forcible conversion of the whole world, and that the command to wage jihad is taken very seriously by most of its adherents. 

Obviously, the author is exceedingly biased.  But she backs every assertion she makes with quotations from the Q'uran and from leading Islamic clerics, as well as the words of the most dangerous radicals themselves.  For example, did you know that Hamas' charter dedicates the organization not only to the desctruction of Israel and the overthrow of the U.S. government, but also singles out Freemasons, Kiwanis, and Lions Club members as "agents of Zionist oppression" that must be rooted out and destroyed?  This is a VERY disturbing book.  I don't agree with all Gabriel's assertions or her proposed solutions, but at the same time, ignoring what she has to say may be a dangerous alternative.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jack on October 03, 2009, 06:55:56 PM
I read the newsletter from my golf course today.  They're having lots of end-of-the-season deals on golf clubs and stuff.  Other than that, not much of interest.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on October 06, 2009, 01:04:38 PM
The Devil you know~ Mike Carey~ It took a little bit to really get going but im enjoying it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on October 08, 2009, 12:07:08 AM
Finished Phantoms.  It was pretty good, especially towards the end. 

I recently bought a huge book of HP Lovecraft stuff called "Necronomicon."  Because of this, the two small Lovecraft books I have are pretty much obsolete, save for about five or so stories between the two that aren't in Necro.  So, I'm planning on read Celephais, The Temple, and The Moon Bog before plowing into anything else. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on October 08, 2009, 12:51:19 PM
indiansmith-  the christians of lebanon aren't so innocent either

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sabra_and_Shatila_massacre


reading "The Jesus Myth" http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=1286423

it's a misleading title, it's not saying Jesus is myth but its about how the image of Jesus was created by the people of his time using whatever symbols were available.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on October 08, 2009, 04:22:01 PM
Reading through Congo like I said before, but I am also started on Frankenstien.  With my manga, I am still reading through Black Lagoon, Oishinbo, Children of the Sea, and Vagabond.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on October 09, 2009, 02:06:19 AM
(http://img7.imageshack.us/img7/9053/5548popup.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on October 09, 2009, 04:30:56 PM
My English class just finish reading Teenage Wasteland and The Old Man with Enormous Wings. 

AN OLD MAN WITH ENORMOUS WINGS was made into a movie that has been recommended to me, but it's out of print and unavailable.  It would be cool if your English teacher showed you a copy. 

As for me, I am reading THE ANNOTATED WIZARD OF OZ and 1,000 RECORDINGS TO HEAR BEFORE YOU DIE.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on October 09, 2009, 06:42:51 PM
indiansmith-  the christians of lebanon aren't so innocent either

[url]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sabra_and_Shatila_massacre[/url]


reading "The Jesus Myth" [url]http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=1286423[/url]

it's a misleading title, it's not saying Jesus is myth but its about how the image of Jesus was created by the people of his time using whatever symbols were available.


She actually refers to those massacres in her book - her explanation was that hatred breeds hatred, and atrocities breed atrocities.  But the Lebanese Christians did not respond in kind until thousands had been massacred.

As far as THE JESUS MYTH goes, I am familiar with the premise, but unfortunately it totally ignores historical reality.  The authors treat Jesus as a blank slate on whom the NT writers built whatever legendary embellishments they wanted, but they ignore the fact that the books were written very soon after Jesus' actual earthly life, by people who either knew him in person or had easy access to eyewitness testimony.  That makes overt mythologizing rather difficult!

After you finish it, may I recommend Lee Strobel's THE CASE FOR THE REAL JESUS?  That book is a real eye-opener.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on October 11, 2009, 07:14:16 AM
Finally finished IT. Wow. Aside from all the action, the b-movie references and the cool metaphysical stuff, which I enjoyed, it was a story I could really relate to. That idea of growing up and losing touch, forgetting the kids you used to hang out with and the things you did, and the weird sensation of visiting a hometown that is familiar but so different. Was just in my hometown last week, and it's very unsettling. And I haven't been away all that long. Four or five years.

Now, I suppose Dean Koontz's Frankenstein is next, and I might see about getting another Michael Slade thriller from the library.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on October 11, 2009, 10:44:00 AM
indiana- I think you may be thinking of a different "jesus myth".  this guy is a priest and not at all prone to bashing the early church.  It's not one of those new testament revisionist things


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on October 11, 2009, 05:05:50 PM
I need to check it out then.  In my defense, there was an identically titled book that came out in the 1980's.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on October 12, 2009, 06:36:17 AM
(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_7pjkLSzqzAg/SgSwbLkjATI/AAAAAAAAAKE/pqB-55vqoOk/s320/n81047.jpg)

Started reading this today.  Slow to start, but feels like it'll pick up soon.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on October 16, 2009, 03:42:16 PM
Yes, two new ones: the manga version of "Star Trek" and the "Star Wars" omnibusses.
And frankly, I'm enjoying the manga more than the omnibusses for a number of reasons, which we'll enumerate. And we'll also keep up a running score.

Storytelling
* Wars: Tells a complex story, but it tells it so complicatedly, that I often find it frustrating and lose interest.
*Trek: Also tells a complex story, but tells it simplely. As simplely as a rif on "The Wizard of Oz" with Wesley having to play all the parts and Worf having the best lines.
* Wars 0 * Trek 1

* Wars: Talks about fear, but it relates it to nothing which I can relate.
* Trek: Also talks about fear, but it relates it to something which I can relate. The fear oi going insane, as insanity runs in my family.
* Wars 0  * Trek 2

*Wars: Extraneous material which does nothing to advance the story, unless they are setting up for the next story.
* Trek: Also extraneous material, but less of it.
* Wars 0 * Trek 3

* Wars: It takes itself so seriously, that's there little humor.
* Trek: It also takes it self seriously, but there's more humor.
* Wars 0 * Trek 4

Characters
* Wars: Uninteresting characters.
* Trek: Interesting characters. That might because I'm more familiar with them, or for the following reasons.
* Wars 0 * Trek 5

* Wars: unrecognizable aliens.
* Trek: : recognizable humans, as a human being, it might be easier for me to recognize a fellow human being than a humanoid alien.
* Wars 0 * Trek 6

* Wars: more characters. 12 Jedi council members. 9 X-wing Rogue pilots.
* Trek: fewer characters. "The Original Series" 7 major characters. "The Next Generation," depending upon how you count them, 7 or 8 eight  major characters.
* Wars 0 * Trek 7

And this is shallow, but . . .
* Wars: Looks. Homeliness.
* Trek: Looks. The men are more handsome. The women are more beautiful.
* Wars 0 * Trek 8

* Wars: They have a good idea for a new character, but--seemingly--because they have no idea how this character relates to the other characters, he becomes uninteresting.
* Trek: Seemingly, they have a better idea how a new character relates to the other characters.
* Wars 0 * Trek 9

* Wars: Incredible characters. Some of the abilities of the characters are so incredible, they they verge into the unrealistic. Thus (IMHO) they become less interesting.
* Trek: Credible characters. At least more credible abilities than some of the "Star Wars" characters.
* Wars 0 * Trek 10

Miscellaneous
* Wars: Violent.
* Trek: Non-violent, or, at least less violent than "Star Wars." And as I get older and closer to my own demise, violence bothers me more and more.
* Wars 0 * Trek 11

Now for something "Star Wars" does better and a couple of things they do equally well or poorly.

Miscellaneous
* Wars: Consistency. The characters look the same as the characters in the films, and they look the same from story to story.
* Trek: Inconsistency. Not only do the characters sometimes not look like the characters in the films and TV shows, but depending upon the artist, they vary from story to story.
* Wars 1 * Trek 11

* Wars: Action. Confusing.
* Trek: Action should be realistically confusing, but it should be also clear enough to tell what is going on. The action sequences in both are just confusing and not clear.
* Wars 1.5 * Trek 11.5

Characters
* Wars: Death.
* Trek: When a character dies, I should feel something, but I fell nothing, because I
have nothing invested in the characters in both.
* Wars 2 * Trek 12

And in the battle of "Star Trek" manga vs. "Star War" omnibusses, manga wins.

Next time: an author who really understands men.








Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on October 20, 2009, 11:57:03 PM
Almost done with The Resort.  The first few chapters are a bit slow, but after about the third or fourth it really picks up.  Towards the end, though, begins to crash a little.  We go from demon worship and torture to... a hotel that brainwashes people into playing brutal games of basketball, golf, and volleyball.  Awesome.  I guess I get what Little is saying, the way he's subtly comparing cult mentality to high school popularity.  The book is very creative, but nowhere near as good as the other novel I read by him, Dispatch.  That one was real mind-f**k. 

I'm planning on reading The Shining by Stephen King when I'm done.  Guess I figured I just finished reading one book about a haunted resort, I might as well read another.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on October 21, 2009, 02:24:54 AM
Believe it or not, I'm reading Twilight.  Not particularly interested in it, but I was semi-coerced into reading it.  It's OK, honestly, but if I'd read it without the social context of what has happened with the series I'd never have guessed it'd become so popular.

After that, I'll be reading a werewolf novel.  I forget the name.

Quote
After you finish it, may I recommend Lee Strobel's THE CASE FOR THE REAL JESUS?  That book is a real eye-opener.

At one point in my life, I had intended to become a journalist.  Thus, it annoys me when Lee Strobel makes this big deal about being one and then never bothers to look at both sides.  He doesn't even attempt AT ALL to talk to people on the flip side of the subject.  At least, not in the Case for Faith and the Case for Christ.  This makes the entire concept a deception at best.

It'd have bugged me less if they were advertised as what they are - a religious man seeking out scholars (as I recall, quite well-informed and intelligent ones) to confirm his own beliefs.  It'd have been a much more interesting book if he had gotten some opinions from the other side - perhaps even taken points from each side, and worked them into the book against each other.

From what I can gather, The Case for the Real Jesus follows this same path as his other books, so my thoughts apply.  I must admit to not having read it though.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on October 21, 2009, 09:46:13 PM
That is a fair criticism - but in his defense, the title of the book is THE CASE FOR CHRIST, not THE CASE FOR AND AGAINST CHRIST.  As a Christian, I see the case against Christ being argued all the time.  It's nice to have some things to cite back in return.  But in THE CASE FOR FAITH, his first interview was with a former evangelical turned atheist who raised 8 very powerful challenges to the Christian faith, and Strobel then sought out scholars who could refute those questions.  So I think he is a little more even-handed than perhaps you give him credit for.

But yes, he is an evangelical Christian and makes no bones about it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on October 22, 2009, 02:51:54 AM
That is a fair criticism - but in his defense, the title of the book is THE CASE FOR CHRIST, not THE CASE FOR AND AGAINST CHRIST.  As a Christian, I see the case against Christ being argued all the time.  It's nice to have some things to cite back in return.  But in THE CASE FOR FAITH, his first interview was with a former evangelical turned atheist who raised 8 very powerful challenges to the Christian faith, and Strobel then sought out scholars who could refute those questions.  So I think he is a little more even-handed than perhaps you give him credit for.

But yes, he is an evangelical Christian and makes no bones about it.

Really?  I think my version of The Case for Faith is missing this first interview.  It was like a "student" edition or something, it was only around 70 pages.  Been a while since I read it, too.  I do feel the Strobel books are worth looking at due to the people he interviews, I just feel those going in should be fully aware of what they're in for. 

On another note, if it sounded like a criticism with my bit about confirming beliefs and such, that's not how I meant it.  I mean, I'm non-religious, and occasionally enjoy reading stuff from atheist writers like Sam Harris, and remember enjoying a book called the Happy Heretic years back.  I like to be able to, at least in theory, argue both sides.   :tongueout:



I finished Twilight.  Meh.

Just started reading Lonely Werewolf Girl, by Martin Millar.  Good so far, but it seems to take its time to get where it is going.  Enjoyable journey though.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on October 22, 2009, 03:25:28 PM
the jesus myth was really good.  one interesting thing he brought up was how "irrelevent" jesus was in his own time.  the big issues of the day were when is the end of the world coming,  the roman occupation, and various issues about torah law and which is the right interprettation.  Jesus really didn't have much to say on any of these subjects, he mainly was about announcing that the kingdom of God was at hand.  and he called god Abba which is aramaic for "daddy" or somehting which further freaked people out. 

I took out two books and returned them on time which is more a testament to how good they are rather than how fast or studius a reader I am.  the other was Tom Woods "meltdown", the only good book I've seen about the crash last fall.  it tells you how it happened using austrian busines cycle theory and so forth, rather than just going over a soap opera like thing with these idiots on wall street .  It's the definitive statement on the crash  in my opinion


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on October 22, 2009, 03:27:19 PM
Outside of the usual Black Lagoon and Real, I have started to read What A Wonderful World.  The same author behind solanin did this series.  I've only read one chapter so far, but it seems good so far.

Continuing with my English class, I am still reading through Frankstein and will soon enough behind A Brave New World.  Also, for the fun of it, I am reading Congo and for Halloween, I've decided for the first time to read Dracula.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on October 22, 2009, 03:30:12 PM
The State in Capitalist Society: The Analysis of the Western System of Power- Ralph Miliband

(http://img12.imageshack.us/img12/4909/millibandbookcoverweb.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on October 22, 2009, 03:31:24 PM
HOw to s**t round the World (http://bit.ly/3hDVV1) 

 I have a gift certificate to a local bookstore, but I thik I'd be a little embarassed to order this and I really doubt the library has it


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BeyondTheGrave on October 25, 2009, 05:57:41 PM
(http://images.seekbooks.com.au/9780349118857.jpg)

Guerrillas: Jounerys Into The Insurgent World


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on October 27, 2009, 02:17:41 PM
On my trip to Brazil, I read the following trashy Doc Savage pulp novels:

* THE ANNIHILIST
* DUST OF DEATH
* THE TERROR IN THE NAVY

I also started reading an Avenger novel (similar to Doc Savage books) titled THE SKY WALKER.

On the serious side, I'm working my way through THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME (one of my all-time favorites).  I just received UNCLE TOM'S CABIN in the mail . . . I might read that one next.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on October 28, 2009, 03:44:32 PM
"Toughest broad there is alive. Wears clothes made from a vampire's hide."

The Anita Blake series. Picked it up and started reading it again.

What is unusual about this, is that usually I'll come upon something on my own, but this was introduced to me by a fellow employee at the place where I use to work. I read most of the early ones, then someplace, as much as I like Laurell K. Hamilton, and she is one of my favorite authors, I found her books increasingly unreadable, so I gave up on the series. But I picked up one of her later ones, "Blood Noir," and found it as enjoyable as her earlier ones. The next one after that, "Skin Trade," also looks good, and I might give it a try.

If someone is interested in starting the series, it's hard to tell that someone where to begin. While her latest ones are better written than the earliest ones, and can be read as a stand alone novel, the earliest ones do provided needed information. And the less said about her middle period, the better.

Anyway, as I said, whatever one thinks (IMHO) she understands her male characters better than most female writers. Heck! I'll even say she understands her male characters better than most male writers. There is a scene of a deathbed reconciliation between a father dieing of cancer and his illegitimate stripper werewolf of a son, in "Blood Noir," that is the nearest thing to a tearjerker, that I've seen in many a day.

Next time: "Graphs and Novels."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on October 30, 2009, 01:29:08 PM
I'm starting "Koko" again for the 3rd time. Yes, it's that good.  :thumbup:

(http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/n0/n1256.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Derf on October 31, 2009, 03:02:28 PM
Just finished Michael Chabon's The Yiddish Policeman's Union. It was pretty good, though I thought the ending could have been stronger. It's set in a slightly alternate time line, where Israel lost the Six Day War and was temporarily granted some land in Alaska. That lease is ending, and the Yiddish police force is about to be disbanded and all the people evicted. One policeman, on the skids, takes on a case that has been officially closed (a murder that happened in his building). He wrestles with his faith (or lack thereof), his nation's identity, and his failed marriage while he investigates. I plan to read Chabon's Pulitzer Prize winning novel The Adventures of Kavalier and Klay in the near future. Right now, I'm getting into Terry Pratchett's Nation, one of his non-DiscWorld novels.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on October 31, 2009, 09:12:24 PM
I'm starting "Koko" again for the 3rd time. Yes, it's that good.  :thumbup:

([url]http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/n0/n1256.jpg[/url])


After IT and From a Buick 8, there's another recommendation from Circus I'm determined to check out. I remember seeing the cover on store shelves, but hadn't looked into it until now. So far, the clown's taste in horror/thriller novels has been impeccable. Anyway, still have some of Koontz's Frankenstein and a Slade thriller to finish before I get around to it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on November 11, 2009, 09:21:14 PM
(http://img692.imageshack.us/img692/130/mythmakers.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on November 11, 2009, 09:46:31 PM
Just finished Louis Freeh's MY FBI, a memoir of his troubled years as head of the Bureau. A good read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on November 11, 2009, 09:52:44 PM
My English Class is now reading Tuesdays with Morrie.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on November 11, 2009, 10:56:39 PM
About halfway through the conclusion of Koontz's Frankenstein, and it's proving to be a good read. Very interesting and fast paced.

Waiting on the next Slade thriller to arrive. Believe it or not, the cheapest way to buy a copy was to get a used one from England on eBay. So far, I've read about half his dozen Special X thrillers. There's apparently a new one coming out soon, with grisly murders at the Winter Olympics. I'm trying to avoid reading them out of order, but I discovered Slade around the 11th book, and I do get the new ones when they come out.

While I'm waiting for that, I have a new book on deck - Frozen Beneath, by Brian Horeck. Apparently, he's local, or at least in the general area. I see a display of these books every time I'm in the supermarket, and after about a year of wondering if I should, I finally bought a copy. It's actually a brilliant bit of marketing to have his books in grocery stores along a major tourist route. People are constantly going through there in the summer. They stop in to grab some supplies before moving on to wherever, quite a few will want something to read, and there's an eye-catching display of these books, promising "Blood, Gore and So Much More!" I've managed to avoid learning too much about the story, except that two guys make a horrifying discovery while ice fishing. I'm looking forward to it.
(http://www.frozenbeneath.ca/images/book_frozen_sm.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on November 12, 2009, 01:14:32 AM
"Toughest broad there is alive. Wears clothes made from a vampire's hide."

The Anita Blake series. Picked it up and started reading it again.

Anyway, as I said, whatever one thinks (IMHO) she understands her male characters better than most female writers. Heck! I'll even say she understands her male characters better than most male writers. There is a scene of a deathbed reconciliation between a father dieing of cancer and his illegitimate stripper werewolf of a son, in "Blood Noir," that is the nearest thing to a tearjerker, that I've seen in many a day.

Here's the thing, I used to LOVE the series, especially the older ones.  I preferred her early attitude of, "I don't date vampires, I kill them."  Then somewhere along the way, the novels starting sliding downhill, becoming less about her and her cases and more about her increasingly complicated love life.  Now a lot of the later novels are pretty one sex scene after another, interspersed with loooooooooooooooong conversations about vampires, werewolves, monsters, their powers, her powers, and the new powers she gains every time she has sex with someone (I'm not joking.)

At some point in series she's gotten to where she HAS to have sex or she'll literally go insane or die or some stupid nonsense.  This has lead to her doing whatever guy's available, regardless of whether she even likes the guy, or in some cases, has even meet him before.  Seriously, if a MAN wrote a story like this, he'd be accused of writing some adolescent fantasy.

As for the knowing males part, she knows some things a lot of women don't, I'll give her that, but I find it REALLY unrealistic that all these handsome guys are willing to share ONE girl, and don't seem to mind that fact that she doesn't want them getting tail on the side (unless it's with each other.)  I can't think of many guys I'd know that'd be happy with that arrangement.  It kind of comes across as more LHK's fantasy than anything based in reality.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on November 12, 2009, 08:53:17 AM
Horror Show~ Greg Kihn~ yep, the Greg Kihn that brought us the song jeopardy   :smile:  Its pretty good so far


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on November 12, 2009, 07:36:36 PM
I just read The Children's Book by A.S. Byatt.

Contrary to its billing as the latest installment of her fiction set in Victorian England (Angels and Insects, Possession, etc.) when I was finished I was left feeling she had actually pulled a cunning slip on her readers by writing what was essentially a novel about World War One: even though that event comes in only in the final four-score pages of the book itself. Only by spending six-hundred pages giving us such carefully rendered characters could Byatt do the near impossible and make a twenty-first century person care deeply about the tragedy of a long-ago war. As one by one the likable, complex individuals we'd spent so much time with, first as Victorian children and then as Edwardian adults, were shredded on the battlefields, Byatt's prose became powerful in a way most war fiction is not. I've long thought A.S. Byatt among the most clever of genre authors active today, and now I'm even more certain of that.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on November 13, 2009, 01:56:03 AM
I just got done reading the first three Nightside books by Simon R Green.  

(http://i404.photobucket.com/albums/pp128/jackofbree/nightside.jpg)

The books center around John Taylor, a detective who works in the Nightside, an alternate dimension in London that, as its name suggests, exist perpetually in a state of night (3am to be exact.)  The series combines everything from gumshoe noir, to fantasy, horror, and sci-fi.  The Nightside is a sort focal point for all types of beings, including the usual stock and trade like vampires, werewolves and shape changers, but other things as well, like living cars, incarnated gods, even cybernetic beings.  John left the place five years ago because he was being relentlessly pursued by various enemies.  As the first novel (Something From the Nightside) starts he's living a rather miserable, if ordinary, existence in London.  Against his better judgment, he takes a case to find a wealthy woman's daughter who's gone missing.

Anyway, it's a very interesting series, although so far but the books have been oddly short concerning the depth of things that can be explored with the setting.  Still, it the synopsis sounds interesting, I recommend picking them up.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on November 13, 2009, 06:48:05 AM
I've read the first three Nightside books.  I've also read some longer books by Simon Green, like The Man With the Golden Torc.  He does a great job with world building stuff, but he seems to get lost a bit in his own plot threads in longer works.  Seems like he is better at the short novel than the full-length novel.

BTW, The Man With the Golden Torc series is in the same universe as the Nightside books.  I think the later books have some characters cross over.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on November 13, 2009, 09:40:41 AM
Just finished reading Haggards She as part of a world history class. I've read better, but I've read worse, as well. Somehow, reading it as part of a school assignment kind of kills the enjoyment factor.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on November 13, 2009, 09:00:28 PM
I've begun reading Alex Ross's Justice and DC's Infinite Crisis.  Very good comics.  I hope to get Kingdom Come and 52 soon.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on November 13, 2009, 10:20:16 PM
(http://img109.imageshack.us/img109/9049/cellstephenking.jpg)

(http://img5.imageshack.us/img5/2811/fundamentalist.jpg)

(http://img689.imageshack.us/img689/4867/waronmetaphor.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on November 14, 2009, 06:43:28 AM
([url]http://img109.imageshack.us/img109/9049/cellstephenking.jpg[/url])


How are you finding that one Jesse? I thought it was one of SK's worst books.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on November 15, 2009, 11:50:28 PM
([url]http://img109.imageshack.us/img109/9049/cellstephenking.jpg[/url])


How are you finding that one Jesse? I thought it was one of SK's worst books.


Eh, I like it just because I'm a sucker for apocalypse or zombie stories and the idea of wiping the brain clean like a hard drive and have it reboot at our primal instinct level was pretty interesting. Definitely not his best, but far from one of his worst IMO. I found this very similar to Brian Keenes book The Rising, which is about a man trying to find his son during the apocalypse but instead of the phone thing people are possessed by demons released by government experiments with other dimensions. I just checked and Keenes was written first......


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on November 16, 2009, 07:32:34 AM
I am most of the way through Stephen King's newest book, UNDER THE DOME.  It is a very solid piece of work, as good as anything he has done in 20 years.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on November 16, 2009, 08:55:34 AM
I am most of the way through Stephen King's newest book, UNDER THE DOME.  It is a very solid piece of work, as good as anything he has done in 20 years.

I stopped reading King for a lot of years, picked up the cell and remembered why... Maybe I will give him another shot and pick up under the dome. I read a little bit of it in a magazine and I might actually like it.

I finished horror show last night. I read a lot of books and this is the first one that I can remember that was really, really good and then lost it in the last 10 freaking pages. Instead of closing the book and saying damn, that was good all I could say was WTF! How disappointing.  :hatred:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on November 16, 2009, 05:44:09 PM
Yes.

The local library has a section dedicated to graphic novels, and I've been perusing those recently, and it surprises me how many there are out there.

Stories based . . .
. . . on film characters
"Indiana Jones"

. . . on TV characters
"Angel"
"Buffy"

Collections . . .
. . . of old comics
"Modesty Blaise"
"The Spirit"

. . . of original comics
"Disney"

Prequels to films
"Jim Henson's 'The Dark Crystal'"

Sequels to films
"Jim Henson's 'Labyrinth'"

Graphic adaptations . . .
. . . of historical events
The United States Constitution

. . .of historical personages
Nat Turner

. . . of computer games
"The Prince of Persia"
This has been made into a film and should be out in May, 2010. How close the film will be to any of the computer games, is anybody's guess.

Picture novelizations . . .
. . . of books I've read
"The Dragonlance" series

. . . of books I haven't read
"The Artemis Fowl" series

The last two are in what is known as "limbo hell," but if they ever come out, we may see "Dragonlance: the Movie" and "Artemis Fowl: the Movie." No idea how far along "Dragonlance: the Movie" is, but, at least, "Artemis Fowl: the Movie" has reached the script stage.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on November 23, 2009, 04:29:49 AM
Finished The Shining, and started...

(http://a2.vox.com/6a00e3989eb38f000200e398cc85f20005-500pi)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on November 23, 2009, 08:41:55 AM
I'm currently reading Crisis on Infinite Earths and for the fun of it, The Dilbert Principle.  I don't work in the business world... yet, but I do enjoy learning about the secret truths of that world.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on November 23, 2009, 10:37:00 AM
http://mises.org/media.aspx?action=category&ID=139


some guy sat down and read the entirety of Ludwig Von Mises' 912 page economic treatise "Human Action" so I figure I have no choice but to listen to it.

it's sort of like 9 deaths of the ninja


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on November 23, 2009, 03:38:49 PM
I started reading the Grossman translation of Don Quixote.  I think I might end up buying this.  I got it from the library and the thousand page length means it'll be tough to finish in two weeks, especially around Thanksgiving.

And, more importantly, I'm surprised at how readable this is.  It's an EXTREMELY good translation.  At least, in the way I like it to be.  It reads like modern english, but at times you can tell sentences are clunky to better mimic the original writing.  It's also genuinely funny.  I mean, I know Quixote is SUPPOSED to be funny, but my experience has been that older books that are supposedly hilarious find their humor destroyed by aging language and other impediments.  Not this one.

The storyline is incredibly modern, as well.  I'm not too far into it, but I hope I find the whole book as enjoyable as the first few chapters have been.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on November 23, 2009, 11:27:27 PM
I just finished Stephen King's newest work, UNDER THE DOME.
The master has his mojo back.  This is one incredible work.  Just when you think the plot can't get anymore twisted . . .


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on November 23, 2009, 11:43:20 PM
I just finished Stephen King's newest work, UNDER THE DOME.
The master has his mojo back.  This is one incredible work.  Just when you think the plot can't get anymore twisted . . .

I'll add that one to the list, after Michael Slade's Ripper, Frozen Beneath and Koko. :teddyr:

Not much time for reading, so I'm still on Koontz's Frankenstein but I highly recommend the series, and I think the final book is turning out to be the best. Koontz managed to make a subplot about a pair of psychotic artificial humanoids on a door-to-door murder spree into some really hilarious comic relief. It sounds weird, but it works surprisingly well.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on November 25, 2009, 11:52:32 PM
Still reading HHGTTG series, but I did get a whole bunch of new books today.  I think I found one of my favorite mom n' pop stores ever.  It's a small used bookstore in Spokane proper simply called Book Traders.  The place has mountain and mountains of used books like something out of a movie, plus they give you good deals on the ones you bring in.  I took a whole bunch in and walked out with a whole bunch.  Of course, you still have to pay a small trade fee, but it's worth it, especially since paperbacks there are dirt cheap. 

Books I got:
The Policy by Bentley Little
Bag of Bones by Stephen King
Nightwing by Martin Cruz Smith
The Surgeon by Tess Gerritsen
The Andromeda Strain by Michael Crichton
In the Night Room by Peter Straub
Midnight Voices by John Saul

Great place.  They even take books that are over twenty years old.  I had some paperbacks older than I am, and no other bookstore will take them.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on December 01, 2009, 11:00:33 AM
Don't laugh, but I'm about 60 pages into TESS OF THE D'URBERVILLES by Thomas Hardy . . . and I'm enjoying it . . .


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on December 01, 2009, 11:03:50 AM
I just got a case of need by michael crichton. haven't started it yet


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on December 01, 2009, 08:56:44 PM
Don't laugh, but I'm about 60 pages into TESS OF THE D'URBERVILLES by Thomas Hardy . . . and I'm enjoying it . . .

I just finished reading Pride and Prejudice. Of course, I really only read it so I could read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Derf on December 01, 2009, 09:27:03 PM
I just started on The Dresden Files series by Jim Butcher. It was recommended to me by a friend, and so far (I'm on book 3), it's been pretty good. I've never seen the TV show, though I've heard good things about it.

And Mofo Rising, I just bought Pride and Prejudice and Zombies; not sure when exactly I'll get to it.

I also just recently finished Terry Pratchett's Nation. It's not one of his Discworld books. It's more of an alternative history book, with some familiar things mixed in with fantastic things. It has touches of Pratchett's wit, but overall it is a much more serious story than his usual stuff.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on December 02, 2009, 01:12:36 AM
I just started on The Dresden Files series by Jim Butcher. It was recommended to me by a friend, and so far (I'm on book 3), it's been pretty good. I've never seen the TV show, though I've heard good things about it.

And Mofo Rising, I just bought Pride and Prejudice and Zombies; not sure when exactly I'll get to it.

I also just recently finished Terry Pratchett's Nation. It's not one of his Discworld books. It's more of an alternative history book, with some familiar things mixed in with fantastic things. It has touches of Pratchett's wit, but overall it is a much more serious story than his usual stuff.


Thing that's most amazing about the Dresden Files is that each book is better than the last for quite a while.  Then White Knight came out and is by far the weakest book in the series..  It's been getting better again (the last book in particular was solid) but I'm a little worried the series has peaked.  They're all worth reading though.

I just read The Sword Edged Blonde by Bledsoe.  Cross between hard-boiled detective fiction and a medieval fantasy.  So, you've got a main character named Eddie LaCrosse and bad guys with names like Frankie and Jimmy...  Who are running around with swords and riding on horseback.  It's a little strange, but it works.  The ending was terrible, utilizing a genre cliche I've always hated.  This book is the second in the series, and from what this one implies, the original book ended in a similar way.  Solid book, but because of the endings I'm not going to read any more of them.

Dragon Rule just came out.  

(http://img1.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/n62/n311869.jpg)

Bought it today.  I don't remember the details of the previous book in the series that well, so I'm going to reread it before getting to it.  I quite enjoy the Age of Fire series though.  Fantasy fans should enjoy it, as long as you can deal with some grim material (they're pretty dark and gory at times).  And, of course, if you love dragons few books are better.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on December 04, 2009, 05:46:39 PM
Yes. "People of the Thunder" by Gear and Gear.

He is an archaeologist that specializes in Native American archaeological sites, and she is a Native American, in part, so they really know their stuff.

This is a continuation of their earlier book "People of the Weeping Eye," which I have also read, but, I like "People of the Thunder" better. Because most of the characters were introduced in the first book, this one has less exposition, and because we are over half way to the conclusion, this one has more action in it.

These are not the only books they have written. They have written sixteen books in total about the Native Americans. While not written in any chronological or geographical order, they do cover the history of the Native Americans from 13,000 B.C. to 1300 A.D. and an area as far north as Alaska, as far south as Florida, as far east as Chesapeake Bay, and as far west as the Pacific Coast.

While I may not go back and pick up any of their previous books, I am interested in their next two books: "People of the Longhouse" and "People of the Forest."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Allhallowsday on December 07, 2009, 05:22:09 PM
I just finished Reel Tears a memoir of BEVERLY WASHBURN here she sings her Top 40 hit:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P441MSnDEYE&feature=PlayList&p=C0E35A8F2874B12F&playnext=1&playnext_from=PL&index=78


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on December 08, 2009, 03:21:55 AM
Still reading HHGTTG.  Currently on the third book: Life, the Universe, and Everything.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on December 08, 2009, 09:24:13 AM
I'm re-reading Michael Moore's Stupid White Men.  :smile:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 08, 2009, 09:28:17 AM
I'm re-reading Michael Moore's Stupid White Men.  :smile:

His autobiography?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on December 08, 2009, 09:34:08 AM
I'm re-reading Michael Moore's Stupid White Men.  :smile:

His autobiography?

 :teddyr: :bouncegiggle: :bouncegiggle:

I bought this paperback at the Frankfurt Airport in 2003 ~ my first and so far only trip overseas. I asked the lady at the airport bookshop for something funny that would keep me sane during the 12 hour flight to Johannesburg and she said that I should buy this. She said that it was very funny, even "the German translation is funny".  :smile:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on December 08, 2009, 10:00:58 AM
chris elliots "shroud of the thwacker" is hilarious


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on December 10, 2009, 09:18:57 PM
(http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c375/fausto963/house-of-leaves.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 10, 2009, 11:24:35 PM
Finally finished Koontz's Frankenstein. The third book is not nearly as intense as the first two, but it has a lot of dark humour. The ending, however, was a letdown. A few really interesting ideas were developed earlier in the story, then very little was actually done with them. The book built up expectations until it reached what should have been the big, climactic confrontation, then suddenly wrapped itself up in a neat little package without much of anything happening. No suspense, no real twists, just a straight line to the end. It's like Koontz got about two thirds of the way through the book, said "f**k it" and tied up all the loose ends in a couple of chapters. I enjoyed most of the book, but everything resolved itself far too easily in the end, and quite a few good ideas just seemed to get discarded along the way. But I suppose this book is heavily rewritten from the original that was completed around the time of Hurricane Katrina (the story is set in New Orleans), so maybe the weak story and general unevenness of the book is due to that.

I've just started Michael Slade's "Ripper" which starts out with a satanic ritual in the 1920s, vividly described, with lots of masked naked people dancing about in a big, old mansion with a thunderstorm going on outside. So far, so good.

Oh, and one of the activities described, involving a large statue of Old Nick, bears a striking resemblance to the one depicted in this pic from the Humorous Captions board. It's called the osculum obscenum and it's exactly what it looks like.
(http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c375/fausto963/PDVD_028.jpg)

One thing I can say about Slade books - the author does his research and he delivers the freakiness.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on December 11, 2009, 11:08:53 AM
FAIRY TALES OF THE BROTHERS GRIMM


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on December 11, 2009, 11:50:30 PM
Just re-read Jack Brooks' THE ZOMBIE SURVIVAL GUIDE.  Can't be too prepared.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SPazzo on December 12, 2009, 12:02:47 AM
I'm reading Michael Crichton's State of Fear.  I finished reading Next a week or so ago.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on December 13, 2009, 05:59:20 PM
Speak Russian In 30 Days.

I want to tell this guy named Andrei off in his native language.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on December 14, 2009, 08:37:34 PM
Completed Life, the Universe, and Everything and started So Long, and Thanks For All the Fish.  I've decided after I've finished the HHGTTG series that I'll start reading Farewell to Arms by Hemmingway.  Yeah, strange shift, I know.   :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on December 17, 2009, 07:30:46 PM
Christian fiction for Christians and non-Christians who might not read fiction.

Specifically, Ted Dekker's "The Lost Book Series." At least six books in the series.

Chaos
Infidel
Renegade
Chaos
Lunatic
Elyon

At least the first four in the series have been adapted into graphic novel format, and I've been the second and third in the series.

While Christian and Christianity are never mentioned in the series, the parallels to Christianity are quite obvious, at least in the ones I've read.

But, I should have known what I was reading, when I saw it was published by Thomas Nelson Publishers, who are a big Christian publishing house, publishing both Christian non-fiction and fiction.

He apparently has another series, using some of the same characters, his "Circle Trilogy," which is now a quadrilogy, with the publication of at least a fourth book.

Black
Red
White
Green

The "Left Behind series" by Tim LaHaye, John S. Lyman, and Jerry B. Jenkins has also been adapted into a graphic novel series, but Dekker is a much better author than those three. But, none of them are as good as C. S. Lewis, but we'll probably never see his like again.

I've got another graphic novel series I've read at about the same time, but we'll take up that one at a later date.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on December 19, 2009, 04:18:17 AM
Still reading So Long, and Thanks For All the Fish.  I'm having a hard time finishing it.  It's just so.......boring.  I guess I'm part of that small percentage that doesn't like the book, but I loved the first three.  This one is driving me nuts.  It just doesn't have the feeling that the first one did.  After reading some reviews for Mostly Harmless, I'm afraid to even start that one. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on December 21, 2009, 06:30:45 PM
About a decade ago, Cross Generation Comics published a series of six original comics. The company may no longer be extant, as their website is no longer extant, but the comics were . . .

Mystic for those who like stories about magic and mysticism.

Sigil for those who like "pure" science fiction.

Meridian for those who like romantic fairy-tale fantasy.

The First for those who like stories about larger than life gods.

Crux for those who like both apocalyptic science fiction and fantasy.

Sojourn for those who like high fantasy with a Tolkien-esque twist.

I've read the first fourteen chapters of "Sigil," which I didn't like at all, but then I mostly prefer fantasy to science fiction.

I also read the first seven chapters of "Meridian," which I liked better, but like many stories, it fell into the trap of making the villains more interesting than the heroes.For example: most of the enemy soldiers are mere boys. Some of them not even out of their mid teens yet. And I think it also goes to the fact that villains are drawn as being more complex and complicated, than the heroes, who come across as being more simple. Not simple minded, but simple in almost every other way.

Something else about "Meridian." It was written to appeal to teen-age girls.

I'm interested in finishing "Meridian" and reading the other four series, to see if I like them better or not than the two I've already read.












Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on December 21, 2009, 08:01:14 PM
Just finished the Princess of landover~Terry Brooks~  and I gotta say Im a little disappointed. It just didnt do it for me like  magic kingdom for sale, the black unicorn and wizard at large did. Granted I read those years ago but this addition just felt out of place to me.

Im starting on.. Devices and desires by K.J. Parker now. So far, so good.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on December 22, 2009, 10:27:43 PM
I just finished Dinesh D'Souza's WHAT'S SO GREAT ABOUT CHRISTIANITY.

He does a magnificent job of responding to the wave of assaults on the faith in recent years by the likes of Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchins . . . . intelligent, logical, and appealing far more to reason than to Scripture, this is one of the best defenses of Christianity I have ever read.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Allhallowsday on December 23, 2009, 10:38:38 PM
I just finished HELLRAISERS by Robert Sellers.  It was an entertaining and enlightening read.  I bought it for my alcoholic brother who is now so incapacitated by his own drinking, he can't get out and get his own booze.  He wanted it and I know he will love it, but it is disgusting, sad, and disturbing... and quite amusing. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on December 27, 2009, 05:47:25 PM
Actually, yes.

Groo

Sergio Aragone's Groo

About two decades ago, it was a series of comics published by Marvel Comics. Then about a decade later, it was repackaged and republished by Dark Horse Comics, which is the format I read.

Groo is the stupidest man in the world, but he continually gets the better of people who are smarter than him, which is everybody, because he is the stupidest man in the world.

It also features his enemies, friends, and relatives. Some of whom are one and the same. Also his faithful dog Rufferto, who might be the only creature in the world more stupid than Groo, as the dog continually misinterprets Groo's actions.

Two of the most interesting characters, other than Groo and Rufferto, are the Minstrel, who always speaks in rhyme and the Sage, who started out speaking normally, but as the series progressed, began to speak in adages.

There are at least 18 books in the series. Of which I have read 5. 14 which include a letter of the alphabet in the title and 4 other titles.

It started out as a rather lighthearted series, but as it progressed it became darker in tone, as it dealt with subjects of death, war, and ecological disasters by the score.

But, that is not the only reason it is not for children. While there is no bad language or sex, there is a surprising amount of nudity and semi-nudity in the series. Most of which, again surprisingly, is male. It is also violent, as Groo loves nothing more than charging into a fray, slaying both friend and foe, with his trusty swords. And while most of the violence is of the comedic nature, it is still there.

A number of years ago, there was suppose to be a movie version with Chris Farley as Groo, but that idea ended with Farley's death. And while I regret his premature death, he'd be wrong for the character.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on December 27, 2009, 06:22:32 PM
I'm just starting in on White Night by Jim Butcher.  Then I have The Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman and And Another Thing by Eoin Colfer waiting.  After those I will likely try for something 'heavier'.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: El Misfit on December 27, 2009, 06:24:50 PM
pride and pred, and zombies


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on December 29, 2009, 11:42:13 PM
(http://img13.imageshack.us/img13/1782/clockworkorangeo.jpg)

(http://img707.imageshack.us/img707/400/parralaxview.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on December 30, 2009, 12:20:59 AM
(http://store.exploratorium.edu/prodimg/17931.jpg)

An excellent book! If you are at all interested in chemistry, or material science, or just curious about what the world around you is made of, this is a great book. It's full of big, beautiful pictures of each element, along with a quick discussion of its properties and applications. Plus, it's pretty funny.

If you like that, I also recommend Theo Gray's Mad Science.

(http://www.ebooknetworking.com/books/157/912/big1579127916.jpg)

That one is full of actual experiments you can perform at home, but only if you have a really good machine shop set-up. If you don't, it still has bunch of pretty pictures and practical information.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 30, 2009, 06:36:29 AM
Still reading Slade's "Ripper." Thanks to the Christmas holidays, I got half the book read in a couple of days. As always, Slade combines horror, psycho thriller, mystery, police procedural and real history. This one has a killer who makes a Jolly Roger out of his victims by painting crossbones on the chest and skinning the face. And the investigation requires extensive study into the occult and Jack the Ripper, and a number of real historic people connected to both. Fascinating stuff. The research that goes into these books is amazing.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on December 30, 2009, 11:45:39 AM
Richard Dawkins' "The Selfish Gene."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on December 30, 2009, 12:05:08 PM
jim powell "bully boy"  it's position is that TR was a bad president


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Time_Signature on January 02, 2010, 05:41:44 PM
Erik W. Hansen and Hans Frede Nielsen "Irregularities of Modern English"
Erik W. Hansen "Om Histore og Sproghistorie"

Both are books on historical linguistics.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on January 03, 2010, 01:01:47 AM
About done with A Farewell to Arms.  Planning to read Cell pretty soon. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on January 05, 2010, 12:00:29 AM
(http://img686.imageshack.us/img686/6665/gutstein.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on January 05, 2010, 07:21:16 AM
I just finished A MAGNFICENT CATASTROPHE, the story of the turbulent 1800 Presidential election that ended in the only tie in U.S. history.  A nice piece of  political history.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on January 08, 2010, 05:03:29 PM
Fowl and Montag.

Fowl is, of course, Artemis Fowl from Eoin Colfer's "Artemis Fowl" and adapted into graphic format by Andrew Dunkin, which is how I read it.

Something of a reverse, as I read the sequel "Artemis Fowl: the Arctic Incident," before I read the original, which, actually, may be the best way to read them, as I thought the sequel was better than the first one. Maybe, because the sequel seemingly has more humor in it.

The characters are also seemingly reversed. As what would normally be the villain is the hero, and the what would normally be the heroes are the villains.

This is also one of the few books in which both sides scared the s*** out of me.

Fowl
1. intelligent
2. amoral
3. ruthless
4. fearless

Elves
1. intelligent
2. amoral
3. ruthless
4. nasty

And what really scares the s*** out of me, is that both sides like to "cut it close," which leaves little margin for mistakes.

Next time: Montag


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on January 09, 2010, 07:55:35 AM
Peter Stiff's See You In November ~ an account of the Rhodesian war as seen through the eyes of an ex-SAS soldier turned operative for the government and codenamed "Taffy".  :question:

I liked the book up until the part where "Taffy" goes to the SPCA to buy a dog to see how long a certain poison will take to kill it.  :bluesad:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SPazzo on January 11, 2010, 12:37:03 AM
Oscar Wilde's a Picture of Dorian Grey.  Everyone knows what that is.

Also, the Bone Parade by Mark Nykanen.  It's about a serial killer who turns families into bronze statues.  I'm having second thoughts about it actually.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on January 11, 2010, 04:32:50 PM
Finally started reading Don Quixote again.  On a classics of lit note, I'm thinking about reading the Count of Monte Cristo.  Anyone suggest a translation?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on January 11, 2010, 07:12:08 PM
I just finished 30 QUESTIONS YOU AREN'T SUPPOSED TO ASK ABOUT AMERICAN HISTORY.  Lester would have loved it.  Very opinionated, and passionately libertarian, and almost as obnoxious as Lester on his better days . . . .  :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: El Misfit on January 11, 2010, 07:13:01 PM
The Kite Runner


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on January 11, 2010, 09:12:55 PM
1984: I finished it and like Animal Farm, I dislike the unhappy ending.  It's brutally honest and understand the point the writer is getting across, but still.

What I learned from this book is this: 2 + 2 = 5 and the following phrase:

"Peace is War
 Freedom is Slavery
 Ignorance is Strength."

Nothing like backwards thinking.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on January 14, 2010, 02:56:13 PM

I just got done reading In the President's Secret Service: Behind the Scenes with Agents in the Line of Fire and the Presidents They Protect, which, in addition to having one of the longest titles of any book I've ever read, is about the Secret Service.  It gives a quick overview of its history, they training and exercises they go through, how the investigate threats on the President's life, and then various stories about Presidents,  and their familes they've protected.  The last half of the book is how a lot of corner cutting, lack of funding, and just overall mismanagement has lead to some near disasters and a lot of agents leaving for better paying (and better treating) jobs in the private sector.

It's a fascinating book, but I did think it was a little short though, wish they had went into more details on some of the stories about various figures.  We get some interesting stories and insights though, some more surprising than others.  For instance, Kennedy had the secret service set up an "alarm" system for in case his wife would abruptly return to the White House without notice (no real surprise there).  Carter was pretty much considering a dick to the agents and considered them all the be guy who could get "a real job" (which is kind of surprising considering his humble beginnings as a peanut farmer.)

Clinton, according to agents, was a decent enough fellow, although he was constantly on "Clinton time" which meant being about two hours late for everything.  Hillary (again, no surprise here) was a bit of a b***h to all the agents.  Neatly enough though, of all the kids they've guarded they said Chelsea Clinton was the easiest to work with.  She would always let the agents know in advance her schedule and, unlike some (the Bush and Carter kids) wouldn't try to ditch the agents. 

One of the disturbing things though is the book insists that with all the craziness going on with management and lack of funding, that many inside the agency insist it's only a matter of time before someone manages to take out the President.

Anyway, it's a good book, and I recommend it for those interesting in a behind the scenes look at Washington and it's politics. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on January 14, 2010, 03:09:00 PM
1984: I finished it and like Animal Farm, I dislike the unhappy ending.  It's brutally honest and understand the point the writer is getting across, but still.

What I learned from this book is this: 2 + 2 = 5 and the following phrase:

"Peace is War
 Freedom is Slavery
 Ignorance is Strength."

Nothing like backwards thinking.

I remember when I finished 1984 basically thinking "That was probably the most powerful book I've ever read.  And I'll never, ever read it again."

Also, the best bit from either of those books has got to be "All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others."

I might suggest seeing the cartoon version of Animal Farm (or the live action TNT version) as both have different endings.




Anyway, I just read Green Dragon Codex.  Probably the best of the "Codex" books, but still just a decent young adult fantasy book.  It also reminded me why I don't like the current version of D&D dragons as much as the old ones..  They're too far removed from a "normal" life these days.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on January 14, 2010, 04:07:14 PM
Slade's "Ripper" is turning out to be a great read. Besides a pretty disturbing pair of serial killers, the investigation covers Satanism in the late 19th/early 20th century, Jack the Ripper, radical feminism, owls, Tarot cards, taxidermy and detective novels. I've got about a quarter of the book left, and it's turned into an homage to "And Then There Were None." Lots of fun.

I've started finding more time to read again, which is good, because I've also built up a backlog of books I want to read. Next up is Brian Horeck's "Frozen Beneath," followed by another Slade Book, "Evil Eye," after which I might skip ahead temporarily and read the new Slade Book, "Red Snow." Murder and mayhem at the 2010 Winter Olympics. Can't wait to read it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on January 14, 2010, 04:34:38 PM
Has anyone read "The death of Bunny Munro"? I received a very nice hardcover, limited edition copy yesterday but its so nice I dont really want to open it.   :teddyr:  I may buy a copy to read if its good. anyone?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on January 14, 2010, 07:54:10 PM
Fowl and Montag.

Montag is, of course, Guy Montag from Ray Bradbury's "Fahrenheit 451" and adapted into graphic format by Tim Hamilton, which is how I read it.

I must admit, the only book I have read by Bradbury is his "Something Wicked this Way Comes." Thus, I know "Fahrenheit 451," not from the book, but by the 1966 film version w/ Oskar Werner, Julie Christie, and Cyril Cusack, which I saw only once than over thirty years ago, but has stuck with me ever since.

Unlike a Chandler, whose strength lies in his poetic images, Bradbury's images are rather prosaic. Thus, the film may be one of those rare films that is actually better than the book, as I can remember the film taking Bradbury's images and expanding on them and even improving on them.

I also remember Montag being more likable in the film than he is in the book. Which is not a surprise. As a film requires more people to be a success than a book. The rough edges of a book's character are often toned down to make him or her more liable for the film.

And unlike a Verne or Wells, Bradbury was not good at predicting the future. I will credit him with predicting the flat screen TV mounted on the wall, or its '50's equivalent. But he failed to see the mandatory use of seat belts in cars. Even though the seatbelt was invented in 1949. He failed to see the demise of the billboard. And he failed to see that firemen might get a raise between the some forty years between when the book was written, and when it takes place. And the one thing he predicted, the hound which can find one person in the midst of a whole city. It never came to be.

No, like Orwell, Bradbury's strength is in his ideas. Indeed, there are a number of parallels between this book and Orwell's "1984."

Both books were written about the same time.
"1984" 1949.
"451" 1953.

Both books take place about the same time.
"1984" 1984
"451" Less than a decade later.

Both books deal with the subject of censorship.

In both books, the hero is a member of a government organization, who backslides, when he begins to question almost everything he knows.

Book books deal with the subject of "What is the truth?" The truth is what we tell you, even though it may be a lie.

In both books, the characters deal with almost constant warfare.

Both books deal with the corruption of children.

In both books, the ending is rather bleak. Though, "Fahrenheit 451" has a somewhat happier ending than "1984."

The book was made into one film in 1966, and it is scheduled for another film version in 2012. Just shoot me now.

As for the title "Fahrenheit 451," I heard it is the temperature at which a book will burn.

Next time: Weiss' and Hickman's "Bones of the Dragon."






Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on January 14, 2010, 11:13:56 PM
One other thing Bradbury got right: The live broadcast of the manhunt and the use of television to get everyone looking for Montag. I think of COPS, America's Most Wanted, and even the OJ chase. Bradbury had TV entertaining people with sensationalized real-life drama long before anyone knew what a reality show was. He was also spot on about people popping in their earbuds and tuning out the world around them. And he gave a very accurate description of the kind of political correctness that did not yet exist in 1953. And then there were the wars going on overseas, that the populace were somewhat aware of, but not overly concerned about. Family members being isolated from one another, taking drugs to manage the stress they feel but don't know how to communicate, and basically suffering sensory overstimulation at the same time they're suffering a lack of emotional stimulation from human interaction. Overall, I think the book is one of the most prophetic SF stories I know.

The robot dog, as a whole, was not a great prediction, but he was right about police using robots in some situations, and about portable chemical detection equipment that can do some of the work only dogs could do in the past. There's just no real device that comes anywhere close to the dog in the book.

But you're right. Bradbury wasn't aiming to predict the future. He was commenting on the society that existed when he wrote it. Television was rapidly catching on, and he was seeing the effects of mass media and easy entertainment in your home on people who are generally prone to following the crowd and doing what's easiest. Something that requires effort, imagination and individual thought, like a good book, was threatened by the easy, homogenized pap on the boob tube that any idiot could just sit and stare at. That's been the concern with TV from the beginning, and I think it's justified. And of course, the Cold War, the bomb, McCarthyism, etc. were looming over everything. Bradbury did a pretty good job of carrying it to a possible extreme.

Man. It's been close to 25 years since I read that book, and it's stuck with me that well. I'd say that's a pretty good sign of a good book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Time_Signature on January 15, 2010, 04:41:39 PM
Holger Steen Sørensen: Word-classes in Modern English with Special Reference to Proper Names with an Introductory Theory of Grammar, Meaning and Reference from 1958.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on January 15, 2010, 10:36:33 PM
(http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c375/fausto963/TraitortotheCrownbyFinlay.jpg)

The Traitor to the Crown series by CC Finlay. I started with the second book, A Spell for the Revolution, by accident. At the moment I'm in the middle of the first, The Patriot Witch. The plot centers around a male witch, a member of the local militia, who discovers that an evil cult of witches is using the british government as a means of controlling the world. He and a group of like-minded American witches have to use their powers to ensure the Colonists win. The supernatural plot acts as a pretext for a "tour of the war" so to speak. The main character, Proctor Brown, finds himself convieniently interacting with real life heroes, including George Washington and Thomas Paine, and takes part in many of the major battles and incidents.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Cthulhu on January 17, 2010, 03:36:38 AM
Has anyone read "The death of Bunny Munro"? I received a very nice hardcover, limited edition copy yesterday but its so nice I dont really want to open it.   :teddyr:  I may buy a copy to read if its good. anyone?
Nick Cave wrote that, right?

Anyway, no, I haven't read it. :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on January 18, 2010, 02:50:11 AM
Been reading my bank statements.....  :buggedout: :buggedout: :buggedout: :buggedout: :buggedout:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on January 21, 2010, 04:35:30 AM
Finished reading Cell and started Offspring by Jack Ketchum. 

(http://www.dreadcentral.com/img/reviews/offspringbookbig.jpg)

I read and loved the previous book, Off Season, and am hoping to enjoy this one as much.  I was sad to find that there is already a straight-to-video movie for Offspring, and the Off Season movie isn't even out yet (and it looks like it may have fallen to the wayside, since there's no longer an IMDb page for it). 

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1262413/

In any case, I've heard the movie blows.   :tongueout:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on January 21, 2010, 07:35:26 AM
I just finished ALL ON FIRE: WILLIAM LLOYD GARRISON AND THE ABOLITION OF SLAVERY.
An incredible work about one of the true heroes of the 19th century.  He never compromised his commitment to equality; he simply stood his ground until, gradually, the country came to agee with him.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Time_Signature on January 21, 2010, 05:02:39 PM
Niels Danielsen: An Essay on Nomos and Human Language

Oh, and to those who think I should read more comics, I am also reading Cerebus the Aardvark by Dave Sim:

(http://www.comicwiki.dk/images/Cerebus.jpg)

;-)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on January 21, 2010, 05:24:06 PM
The History of the Science Fiction Magazine Vol. 1: 1926-1935 edited by Michael Ashley. Just finished the first short story by G. Peyton Wertenbaker entitled "The Coming of the Ice", a terrific little sci-fi story about the end of man.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on January 21, 2010, 07:20:59 PM
Finished Ripper (another great read), and moved on to Frozen Beneath. Got a couple of chapters into that before the lifeless writing and the stilted dialogue made me put it down and grab the next Slade thriller, Evil Eye. I suppose a lot of self-published books are probably self published for a reason, even if they have a cool cardboard standee in the supermarket. Seriously, the first two chapters took place at NORAD and Area 51, and it still managed to be dull. I was left wondering how somebody could write that many words without describing anything.

Evil Eye shows a lot of promise. One of the things I like about Michael Slade is he doesn't waste any time getting the ball rolling. Chapter One, and we're already flashing back to the Anglo-Zulu War, because something that happened at the Battle of Rorke's Drift will connect to the present-day crimes. Then whoosh, to present-day (the 90s) Vancouver, where a bats**t-insane skinhead stomps a couple of sheriff's deputies to death while they're taking him for a psych evaluation. Meanwhile, an unknown party is skulking around outside a formal RCMP dinner, hearing voices that tell him to kill mounties. And around the same time, yet another of the recurring characters has a close relative murdered (seems to happen to somebody about every second book). All this is in the first couple of chapters, and all very vividly described, in spite of being so densely layered into the story. I can't wait to read how everything fits together.

I'm thinking I should give Frozen Beneath another chance, but I've got two more Slade books waiting on the table, and a copy of Koko that should be arriving soon.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on January 22, 2010, 04:40:09 AM
Ordered some more books from AbeBooks. 

(http://www.clivebarker.info/bob5usp1emb.JPG)

(http://www.petdance.com/perl/great-non-oreilly-books/elements-of-style.jpg)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/71TF9GRS54L._SL500_AA240_.gif)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on January 22, 2010, 04:46:33 AM
I just finished 1812, an Eric Flint alternate history novel.  Pretty interesting point of change - Sam Houston, in a battle, takes a minor wound instead of a serious one.  So, he doesn't sit out much of the rest of the War of 1812.  This snow balls into him changing history, and leads in a variety of ways to the Cherokee moving voluntarily early to Arkansas and basically forming their own country.

Looks like the sequel will have this new country fighting the US of A. 

Well written novel, good characters, and actually quite informative about real history (much of the book follows the real stuff). 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on January 22, 2010, 11:17:10 PM
Read the second short story "The Machine Man of Ardathia" by Francis Flagg. Pretty weird little story about a meeting between a machine man of the future unrecognizable as a descendant of the example of 1930s man to whom he pays a visit in his time machine. Liked it almost as much as "The Coming of the Ice" although it lacks a bit of the emotional punch that story had.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on January 23, 2010, 02:52:58 PM
The next story selected was "Out of the Sub-Universe" by R. F. Starzl. It's a short little tale about a journey into a microscic world with an unexpected twist at the end. It rather reminded me of an old EC Comics Weird Science or Weird Fantasy story. Nowhere near as good as the previous two stories in terms of getting across the real human loss involved but a fun little time waster nonetheless.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on January 25, 2010, 05:04:29 PM
Yes. Weiss' and Hickman's "Bones of the Dragon."

The first in their six-book series "Dragonship."

Heroic Vikings, villainous Romans, and dragons, druids, fairies, gods and goddesses, orges, werewolves, etc.

Not the best thing they've ever done, but not their worst neither.

There are two unique things about it.

(1st) Normally, you can tell who is telling the truth and who is not telling the truth, but the characters are so complex and what they say is so contradictory, you can't tell who is telling the truth or who is not telling the truth.

(2nd) I've seen books where some of the villains were just as "good" as some of the heroes. I've seen books where the heroes and villains were so intertwined, you couldn't tell one from the other, but this is the first time I've seen where some of the villains were actually "better" than some of the heroes.

This one was published last year. The next one, "Secret of the Dragon," will be published in March, 2010. At that rate, the final book will be published in 2014.

And I do hope this does not turn into their "Deathgate Cycle" series. The first two or three books in that series was some of their best writing, but they tried to stretch too thin of a story over too many books, and by the end of the series, the books were almost unreadable.

Next time: "The James Bond Omnibus: vol. 001"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on January 26, 2010, 04:32:58 PM
"The Eternal Man" by D.D. Sharp which first appeared in the magazine Science Wonder Stories in 1929 (the August issue). I really enjoyed this somewhat dark, twisted short story that warns one to be careful when it comes to eternal life, you just might get what you wished and the results might not be at all as you hope. Gets to the heart of what science fiction is all about, warning against the consequences of blindly committing to scientific advancement. This story is almost as good as "The Coming of the Ice" but not quite. Still recommended.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on January 26, 2010, 05:27:21 PM
"The Eternal Man" by D.D. Sharp which first appeared in the magazine Science Wonder Stories in 1929 (the August issue). I really enjoyed this somewhat dark, twisted short story that warns one to be careful when it comes to eternal life, you just might get what you wished and the results might not be at all as you hope. Gets to the heart of what science fiction is all about, warning against the consequences of blindly committing to scientific advancement. This story is almost as good as "The Coming of the Ice" but not quite. Still recommended.

Made me think of "Cautionary Tales" by Larry Niven, probably my favourite short story on the quest for physical immortality. Really puts things in perspective.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on January 27, 2010, 03:26:17 AM
Finished Offspring yesterday.  Started Wolfsbane.

(http://img1.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/n12/n60548.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on January 27, 2010, 07:31:16 AM
Re-reading BURY MY HEART AT WOUNDED KNEE by Dee Brown.

(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/12731.jpg)

Everyone should read this. It's a real heartbreaker.

"The white man made us many promises-but kept only one. They promised to take our land-and they took it."

Red Cloud

(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/RED_CLD.gif)

Black Elk

(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/BlackElk.jpg)


Young Man Afraid of His Horses

(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/414px-young_man_afraid_of_his_horse.jpg)

(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/wndknee.jpg)

Big Foot in death


(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/img_66_648_26.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on January 27, 2010, 08:05:14 PM
"The Eternal Man" by D.D. Sharp which first appeared in the magazine Science Wonder Stories in 1929 (the August issue). I really enjoyed this somewhat dark, twisted short story that warns one to be careful when it comes to eternal life, you just might get what you wished and the results might not be at all as you hope. Gets to the heart of what science fiction is all about, warning against the consequences of blindly committing to scientific advancement. This story is almost as good as "The Coming of the Ice" but not quite. Still recommended.

Made me think of "Cautionary Tales" by Larry Niven, probably my favourite short story on the quest for physical immortality. Really puts things in perspective.

I'll have to try and keep an eye for that. Sounds interesting.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Allhallowsday on January 27, 2010, 09:03:27 PM
Re-reading BURY MY HEART AT WOUNDED KNEE by Dee Brown.
([url]http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/12731.jpg[/url])
Everyone should read this. It's a real heartbreaker.
Agreed.  I lost my own copy many years ago, for I'd surely be re-reading every year or so. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on January 30, 2010, 08:14:04 AM
Last night I started reading LAST OF THE MOHICANS.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on January 31, 2010, 06:43:46 PM
Just finished "The Power and the Glory" by Charles Willard Diffin (First appeared in ASTOUNDING STORIES July 1930 issue). I was a little disappointed with it overall although it moved well enough and was easy to read and deserves a bit of credit for a slightly unpredictable ending. Still it paled next to the previous stories I've read in this collection.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on February 01, 2010, 09:29:29 PM
Putting off reading "The Demon Redcoat"  for the time being. Instead, I'm starting on Oishinbo a la Carte: The Joy of Rice. It sounds like a cook book, but its actually a set of manga volumes collected and translated from a 1983 series (its as old as I am). It centers on a food critic and his attempts to come up with the perfect japanese meal. No giant robots, no magical girls, no shinto spirits, just food and culture. There's also other volumes besides Joy of Rice, including Sake, Vegetables, and Fish (the title reflecting the type of food the main character will work with, apparently). The english translation has gotten great reviews, even from gourmet food sites that otherwise have nothing to do with manga or comics.

(http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c375/fausto963/oishinbo-rice.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on February 01, 2010, 09:35:12 PM
Putting off reading "The Demon Redcoat"  for the time being. Instead, I'm starting on Oishinbo a la Carte: The Joy of Rice. It sounds like a cook book, but its actually a set of manga volumes collected and translated from a 1983 series (its as old as I am). It centers on a food critic and his attempts to come up with the perfect japanese meal. No giant robots, no magical girls, no shinto spirits, just food and culture. There's also other volumes besides Joy of Rice, including Sake, Vegetables, and Fish (the title reflecting the type of food the main character will work with, apparently). The english translation has gotten great reviews, even from gourmet food sites that otherwise have nothing to do with manga or comics.

([url]http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c375/fausto963/oishinbo-rice.jpg[/url])


I know that series.  I own all the current volumes, except the last one, Pub Food.  It's a pretty good series, but I do wish they would go beyond just making 7 collection volumes.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SPazzo on February 01, 2010, 09:51:02 PM
I'm about to start The Razors Edge by Somerset Maugham.  Also, Linus Torvald's autobiography.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on February 01, 2010, 09:52:46 PM
I know that series.  I own all the current volumes, except the last one, Pub Food.  It's a pretty good series, but I do wish they would go beyond just making 7 collection volumes.

Yeah, in Japan there's like 100 different volumes, not to mention an anime series. No export for us, I guess.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on February 02, 2010, 12:52:55 PM
Incarceron~ Catherine Fisher.. so far im really liking it.

(http://img109.imageshack.us/img109/6052/9780803733961l.jpg) (http://img109.imageshack.us/i/9780803733961l.jpg/)

And..

Attila~ William Napier.. Its interesting.

(http://img97.imageshack.us/img97/364/35490.jpg) (http://img97.imageshack.us/i/35490.jpg/)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on February 02, 2010, 12:57:22 PM
I'm listening to the quran in english!  so far it's very old testamenty


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on February 04, 2010, 02:32:06 PM
(http://i672.photobucket.com/albums/vv84/KevinTarot/ZEO.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on February 06, 2010, 11:23:05 AM
David Bowie: Living on the Brink by George Tremlett.  I'm only 35 pages in, but it looks good.

Also picked up biographies of George Takei, Richard Burton, Gene Roddenberry and Hume Cronin, as well as a couple of cartons-worth of assorted SF, fantasy and other interesting stuff, so I am set for a while.  Got to love the indoor yard sales this time of year!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on February 07, 2010, 03:37:01 PM
Yes.

"The James Bond Omnibus: vol 001."

If you are looking for an adaptation of the films, you'll be disappointed, but if you're looking for an adaptation of the novels and stories, you'll be appointed. Since it is a graphic adaptation of the novels and stories and not the films.

All the novels and stories are there.

vol. 001 has "Casino Royale," "Live and Let Die," "Moonraker," "Diamonds are Forever," "From Russia with Love," "Dr. No," "Goldfinger," "From a View to a Kill," "For Your Eyes Only," "Thunderball," and "Risco."

vol. 002, which will be published this year, has "The Man with the Golden Gun," "On Her Majesty's Secret Service," "You Only Live Twice," "The Living Daylights," "Octop***y," and "The Spy Who Loved Me."

I can remember reading "From Russia with Love" in the comic section of the local paper and thinking how closely it followed the book.

If the good news is how closely they follow the books, the bad news is that it is an extremely dated series, and the graphics don't help any.

It is a series based on the politics and social mores of the '50's and '60's, when the books were written, or, at least, the politics and social mores filtered through the likes and dislikes of Ian Fleming, the author.

And being a man of his time and background, his dislikes are long and alphabetical, While he does like individuals of certain races, just on principle he seems to dislike . . .

Albanians, Bulgarians, the Chinese, Cubans, Germans, the Japanese, Koreans, Russians, and blacks from any country.

And he has mixed feelings for Italians, Gypsies, the French, and Americans. His mixed feelings toward Americans come out clearer in the books than they do in the graphic adaptations of the books.

The only people he seems to like wholeheartedly are Turks and Canadians.

Next time: the "Alex Rider" series.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sister Grace on February 09, 2010, 08:07:02 PM
Aldous Huxley- Brave New World.
I had just finished his Doors of Perception. Brave New World is good and one of him more well-known works, but i'm not enjoying it as much as Doors of Perception. Still good food for the soul....


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on February 13, 2010, 10:14:01 AM
I've decided to put my lecture things i listen to here because I cannot figure out where to put them


http://bit.ly/6Vj3fG


^this was good.  "economics for high school students."  granted I'm 35 and have read most of the works of these authors but it was still fun, especially robert murphy and Jeff tucker.

It doesn't give you any theory, just shows in geneal guys who call themsevles economists look at the world.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on February 16, 2010, 05:14:09 AM
Still struggling through Son of a Witch.  The only thing keeping me from shutting the book and starting another one is that my fiancee wants to talk about this one, as she read it and has no one to talk with about it.  It feels to me like Gregory Maguire is far too in love with his language and voice.  He spends far too much time dwelling on events and minor details that most writers would either underscore or leave out all together.  I understand that there's supposed to be some kind of metaphor or allegory behind even the blandest scenes, but dammit Greg, you're not Ralph Ellison. 

Hopefully I can finish this torture device within a week or so and start my next book, Soon To Be a Major Motion Picture.  It's got promise.  Every review I've read for it has been a good one. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on February 16, 2010, 09:10:08 AM
More than halfway through Evil Eye. It was kind of moving along at a nice pace and then hit with a couple of serious action chapters. I don't want to spoil it for anybody who might want to read the book, but it was pretty wild. I'll just say the book has two separate crazies - a paranoid psychotic who sees police as living skeletons in uniforms, and a sociopath out to avenge some as-yet-unrevealed injustice. Both are interested in killing a lot of cops in one go. The psychotic just made his play in a suitably crazy yet unexpected manner.

Apart from that, the book is about one of the regulars getting framed for his mother's murder, which is somehow connected to everything. I don't know why Michael Slade (or rather Jay Clarke and partners) is so hard on his heroes, but this is the fifth Special X book and at least four members of his elite team of cops have lost at least one person close to them in a really horrible manner. One of them also finished the last two books by getting shot and stabbed, respectively.

And each Slade book usually has some kind of subtext, and Evil Eye deals with racism and political correctness. It came out in 1993, when PC had really gotten out of hand, and it's written against a backdrop of the Rodney King beating and LA riot, the end of apartheid, and white cops getting crucified for shooting black suspects, along with flashbacks to the Anglo-Zulu war, which has something to do with the events of the story.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on February 17, 2010, 03:42:07 AM
I just bought and started reading the collection of Solomon Kane stories.  Pretty entertaining.  He's the other famous character Robert Howard, the creator of Conan, made in the 1920s.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on February 18, 2010, 05:45:19 PM
The Voice From the Ether by Lloyd Arthur Eshbach (Amazing Stories July 1931)

A clever, original and terrifically twisted little tale of revenge. Earth receives its first communication with Mars and learns of a mad scientist's diabolical twisted plot of vengeance against his home Martian world. I was enthralled by this one which feels part sci-fi, part disaster epic. Lots of horrific details included too. Very, very good IMO...right up there with The Coming of the Ice and The Eternal Man.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on February 20, 2010, 05:56:05 AM
I'm reading Soon to be a Major Motion Picture by Warren Dunford, and I realized before long that it's target audience is gay males (a gay mystery, no less).  It's not that I have a problem with homosexuality, but I feel out of place reading it. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on February 20, 2010, 05:44:16 PM
Yes.

"The Alex Rider" series by Anthony Horowitz.

Bond. James Bond, jr. But a Bond who can go where no adult Bond can go.

7 books in the series. Which I have not read.
The first three being converted into graphic novels. Which I have read.
The first one being made into a film. Which I have not seen.

Like the "Artemis Fowl" series there are scenes of high intensity in the series, which makes you wonder why Europeans seem to be better at writing such scenes than any American author writing for teens.

It is an apt comparison with "Artemis Fowl," even though the "Alex Rider" series is more violent, and the "Artemis Fowl" series comes across as being the more realistic. Even though that series is populated with centaurs, dwarfs, fairies, goblins, trolls, etc.

One similiarity between the two series is that just as I liked the second book in the "Artemis Fowl" series better than the first book, so I liked the second book in the "Alex Rider" series better than the first book. Maybe because the second book skips all the character introductions and gets right to the action. And the second book also has a more plausible villain than the first book.
 
If Ian Fleming was a man of his time and background and seemingly disliked everyone on principle, so Anthony Horowitz is a man of his time and background who seeminly likes everryone. Who does he like?

Russians
Germans
French
Dutch
Cubans
Canadians
blacks
And Americans, even though both national spy agencies are still at loggerheads. Though, there seems to be more coooperation between them than there was fifty to sixty years ago.

And who does he dislike, and Trevor is going to love this.

White South Africans
and for some strange reason Mexicans. There is a Mexican villain in one of the books, and a nasty piece of goods he is, too. Without any redeeming features of some of the other villains. And the author hates politicans, considering them all to be blowhards.

There is one similiarity between Fleming and Horowitz. Both see drugs as corrupting the children of England. But while Fleming saw a political motive behind it, Horowitz sees greed behind it. But both consider drugs as corrupting.

As I said, the first book in the series "Stormbreaker" was made into a film, which I have not see, but now wish I had. For even though the author produced the film, wrote the screenplay, and pikced the actor who appears as Alex, apparently something went wrong with the film. Before it went wrong, there were plans to turn all the books into film. Whether that is still true, I don't know. Or maybe the who series is going to get a reboot, as there is a film called "Storembreaker" coming out in 2011.

Nest time: "Queen and Country"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on February 20, 2010, 08:45:42 PM
Finished Evil Eye. Lots of action in the second half, and a couple of twists I honestly did not see coming. There's a big trial, which is filled with a lot of insight, as the author is an experienced criminal lawyer. The cop killing goes up another notch. Africa comes into the story more, and the history turns more toward European colonialism and all of the turmoil of the Twentieth Century as that period came to an end. Gave me a much better understanding of the politics in Trevor's part of the world.

And although nothing has been said specifically, I get the impression one of the recurring characters (the guy who has been shot, stabbed, lost his mother, son and fiancee, gotten romantically involved with a psycho, been framed for murder, developed epilepsy from his head wound, and had another love interest dropped down an elevator shaft, in addition to childhood abuse by an alcoholic father) might well have contracted AIDS from knifing an African mercenary who had done a little too much raping with his pillaging over the years. Can't remember if it's come up in the two or three later books I read out of order, but I imagine it will come into the next one if there's anything to it. I can't help but be reminded of the scene in Last Action Hero, when Slater meets Schwarzenegger and tells him "You've brought me nothing but pain." In spite of what Stan Lee would have us believe, if heroes could actually meet the people who create their adventures, instant hatred would be the most likely result.

Now, on to the next book, Primal Scream. It apparently ties up a loose end from the first book, Headhunter, that has been dangled in front of readers a number of times. Can't wait to read it, as Headhunter is definitely in the top two or three Slade books I've read so far.
(http://img1.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/n5/n29408.jpg)

If anybody wants to check out these books, the author's site is at http://specialx.net


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on February 21, 2010, 04:28:37 AM
I decided Soon to be a Major Motion Picture wasn't for me.  As such, I've started reading something else:

(http://images.amazon.com/images/P/088038901X.01.LZZZZZZZ.jpg)

Now I can finally finish the trilogy.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: El Misfit on February 21, 2010, 11:38:56 AM
Batman: Hush Vol. 1 and 2 (again)
X/1999 Prelude


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on February 21, 2010, 10:00:07 PM
Batman: Hush Vol. 1 and 2 (again)
X/1999 Prelude

Hey!  I have all of those, but I haven't gotten around to reading them.  How are they?

Anyways, I'm reading Bamboo Blade, Eyeshield 21, School Rumble, and Case Closed. 

I just finished Sand Land, which was interestingly enough done by the same author as Dragon Ball.  I'm not a fan of Dragon Ball, but I caught the book since it was only one volume and I could buy it for 50 cents.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on February 22, 2010, 10:57:45 AM
Just started 'Reborn' by F. Paul Wilson - the sequel to 'The Keep'.  It does not have to be too too good: I need a change of pace from the biographies I just finished.   :tongueout:

AndyC: I will be looking for 'Evil Eye' and 'Primal Scream' - thanks!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on February 22, 2010, 01:34:51 PM
Just started 'Reborn' by F. Paul Wilson - the sequel to 'The Keep'.  It does not have to be too too good: I need a change of pace from the biographies I just finished.   :tongueout:

AndyC: I will be looking for 'Evil Eye' and 'Primal Scream' - thanks!

Cool. Have you read any of the other Slade novels?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on February 22, 2010, 07:10:57 PM
Cool. Have you read any of the other Slade novels?

Oh yes: I got hooked instantly when I received a copy of 'Swastika' for Christmas a few years back.  Since then I have read 'Headhunter', 'Cutthroat', 'Ripper' and 'Burnt Bones'.   I am glad to have your assessment of the ones you have read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: El Misfit on February 22, 2010, 07:46:00 PM
Batman: Hush Vol. 1 and 2 (again)
X/1999 Prelude

Hey!  I have all of those, but I haven't gotten around to reading them.  How are they?

Anyways, I'm reading Bamboo Blade, Eyeshield 21, School Rumble, and Case Closed. 

I just finished Sand Land, which was interestingly enough done by the same author as Dragon Ball.  I'm not a fan of Dragon Ball, but I caught the book since it was only one volume and I could buy it for 50 cents.

Hush is AWESOME! I'm still trying to cope with the fact that i need to read from right to left.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on February 22, 2010, 10:35:24 PM
Cool. Have you read any of the other Slade novels?

Oh yes: I got hooked instantly when I received a copy of 'Swastika' for Christmas a few years back.  Since then I have read 'Headhunter', 'Cutthroat', 'Ripper' and 'Burnt Bones'.   I am glad to have your assessment of the ones you have read.

Swastika was the first one I read as well. The cover caught my attention, and the synopsis on the back was enough to make me buy it. Loved the book. Headhunter was amazing, and I'm glad to be starting the follow-up, since Sgt. Spann has been in the background of a few books. Ripper was fun. Cutthroat was so dark and disturbing, but hard to put down. I notice you haven't read Ghoul. If you liked Cutthroat, that one almost matches it for dark and disturbing, and introduces Zinc Chandler as the main hero. It's one I think Circus would enjoy, with much of it set in England (in the 80s) and a plot that involves H.P. Lovecraft and heavy metal.

Burnt Bones was great, especially with some of my own family history in it. You'll be pleased to know that Mephisto is back in two more books, one of them being Death's Door, which is a pretty entertaining book from the first page on. Swastika, Burnt Bones and Death's Door were the ones I read out of order before deciding to start the series from the beginning. I also couldn't resist reading Kamikaze, and will probably give in and read Red Snow out of order as well.

It's good to know somebody else on the board is a Slade fan.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on February 27, 2010, 02:36:00 PM
The Asteroid of Gold by Clifford D. Sidmak (Wonder Stories November 1932). A pair of prospecting brothers having just struck a rich vein of gold on a distant asteroid find their good luck suddenly changed very much for the ill when a notorious space pirate sets his sights upon their hard-earned findings.

This story is very much in the vein of two-fisted pulp action heroics as our leads, two strong-willed space miners, fight back as best they can against a powerful and prosperous nefarious space pirate determined not only to rob them of their gold but to also break them of their very wills. It makes for fun and enjoyable reading experience but is definitely more in the realm of action Sci-Fi than hard Sci-Fi. The fight and attack scenes are described in all their harsh brutality in this story of a battle of wills.

The Island of Unreason by Edmond Hamilton (Wonder Stories May 1933) . In the Earth's not so distant future, a man finds himself sent to an isolated island as punishment for not acting "reasonable". This future Earth is a world that provides for everyone in utmost comfort as long as they act "reasonably" which means they go along with whatever they're instructed by their governing supervisors to do or act upon. If they should defy any of these instructions, they are deemed unreasonable and brought to an island offshore far away from civilization, there left to fend for themselves as punishment. At first our lead is horrified by his plight, thrown out of his comfortable predictable existence into a place where threats loom around every corner and he actually has to fend and think for himself. There he meets a young woman named Lita, who is being pursued by others on the island, and in coming to her aid and her befriending and helping him adjust to his plight, he suddenly finds a purpose....on the island of unreason.

This is a very intriguing little story. In fact, it won the Jules Verne Prize as the best story of the year. It really is quite good and thoughtful. After reading this, it makes one realize that reason (and conformity) alone isn't always enough in this world. Freedom (ironically achieved in this tale after one has been arrested), purpose, individuality, emotions, even  unpredictably seem to truly be things to be valued after all. Definitely one of the best stories (and it's in pretty fine company with "The Coming of The Ice", "The Eternal Man" and "The Voice From the Ether") in this collection (A History of the Science Fiction Magazine 1926-1935 edited by Michael Ashley).


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on March 01, 2010, 03:12:39 AM
Downloaded and read The Damned Thing by Ambrose Bierce on my Kindle.  Good idea for a story.  I think it was adapted into an episode of Masters of Horror with Sean Patrick Flanery.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: joejoeherron on March 02, 2010, 06:13:42 AM
started reading THE EXECUTIONER #3  Battle Mask again

already read everything in the house this winter

mack bolan is a good way to pass the time


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on March 02, 2010, 02:14:40 PM
I finally finished reading the collection of stories in The History of the Science Fiction Magazine Part 1: 1926-1935 edited by Michael Ashley. The last two stories in it were One Prehistoric Night by Philip Barshofsky (real name M.M. Kaplan) and Davy Jones' Ambassador by Raymond Z. Gallun.

One Prehistoric Night (Wonder Stories November 1934) feels kind of like a EC Comics style Weird Science or Weird Fantasy tale, with a kind of surprise ending or is it? Basically it has an advanced invading Martian colony landing on prehistoric Earth in the Jurassic period. The Earth as described here then is filled with giant, lumbering monsters, themselves locked in a seemingly constant violent, bloody, endless  battle for survival. Can even these advanced aliens stay outside the realm of this constant conflict? It's a fun little story but plays out pretty much the way I expected it would in truth.

Davy Jones' Ambassador (Astounding December 1935) is quite different. It basically focuses on a human who has been captured by bizarre, intelligent undersea creatures, described as a cross by crustacean and shark-like creature with tentacles, who in turn study him while he himself plots and plans for any hope, any potential for his escape and continued survival. It's an interesting read and is definitely rather unique in this anthology as it focuses on a completely different kind of alien than the usual. Where it falters though for me personally is it goes on a bit too long in terms of its MacGyver-isque qualities what with the human constantly improvising out of the scattered elements the undersea intelligent monstrosities provide him with. Still I quite liked it and it deserves recognition as being somewhat unlike any of the stories provided in this anthology. I also quite liked the surprise twist towards the end.

Overall this collection of stories was intriguing to read. There really seemed to be little to no limits in terms of imagination of the era of storytelling involved here . Stories could be told of aliens, monsters, future civilizations quite unlike anything that might well be imagined today. It makes for fun and surprisingly imaginative reading although many of these stories seem more akin to fantasy than out and out science fiction although all have elements true to the science fiction genre as well and most seem still just as plausible now and hold up surprisingly well (particularly The Coming of the Ice and The Eternal Man) as they probably did back when they first appeared, in some cases perhaps even more so strangely enough.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on March 02, 2010, 07:10:05 PM
Yes.

Greg Rucka's "Queen & Country."

As of 2007, there were seven books in the series, but, so far, I've only read the 3rd one, "Crystal Ball."

If James Bond and Alex Rider are the schoolboy fantasy version of the British spy business, then this is closer to the real thing.

What makes it odd, if the other two series are written by Englishmen, then this one is written by an American.

And, yes. Greg Rucka also wrote "Whiteout."

If they ever do a film version of his "Queen & Country," I hope they do a better job of adapting it, then they did with "Whiteout."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on March 05, 2010, 06:53:43 AM
Finished reading the third Icewind Dale book and started The Cellar by Richard Laymon.  Decent so far, although I could do without the pedophilia.  Also started reading UR by Stephen King on Kindle. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on March 05, 2010, 06:57:04 PM
(http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/isbnthumbs/033/042/0330420151.jpg)

I've begun reading Red Tide by G.M. Ford. It's pretty good so far, easy to read and moves well building up its suspense. I actually found it in a dollar store.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 05, 2010, 08:37:02 PM
I just finished  a biography of Francis Drake, the famous Elizabethan sea dog.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on March 12, 2010, 05:48:32 PM
Yes.

"Emma."

But this is not Jane Austen's "Emma," but Karou Mori's "Emma."

Time: the 1870s and 1890s

Place: London and the surrounding countryside. With side trips to America and India.

A story about the social divide between the upper and lower classes.

Thus, a little bit Romeo. A little bit Juliet. And the characters are very Dickensian.

One of the neatest things about this story is all the neat information it. For example, not only did the people of that time and place divide along the lines of upper and lower, but they also divided along the following lines.

Servants and servants. Even the servants had a pecking order.
The rich and the poor.
Public school and non-public school.
Parents and children.
Older siblings and younger siblings.
The old and the young.
Mothers and daughters
Men and women.
Masters and servants.
Locals and non-locals.
Husbands and wives.
Fathers and sons.
English and non-English.
City and country.
Aristocracy and non-aristocracy.

If we had been communicating in that time and place, we'd have to communicate through an ouija board, as the average life expectancy was only 50, so I'd have been dead for almost a decade.

Maybe the life expectancy was so low, because the average banquet consisted of . . .

seaturtle soup
followed by . . .
lobster and flounder in orange sauce
followed by . ..
chicken topped with supreme truffle
followed by . . .
pureed snow grouse
followed by . . .
roast duck
bollowed by black thrush
and topped off by a rich souffle.

All washed down by glasses of port, hoch, claret, sherry, and madera.

And, of yes, throw up afterwards.

The story was firs serialized in a Japanese magazine betwee 2002 and 2006. Then it was translated into  English and published in 7 volumesbetween 2006 and 2008, which is how I read it.

There is also 3 more volumes in the magna series of side stories dealing with some of the side characters in the first 7 volumes. The authoress also has another magna series called "Shirley" of stories about other English maids None of which I've read.

But, if you want to read a story that realistically depicts that time and place, "Emma" is that realistic depiction.

Next time: "The Indiana Jones Omnibus"




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on March 13, 2010, 01:32:48 PM
I just finished Red Tide by G.M. Ford. It was quite an involving book as we follow several different characters in Seattle as the city is basically taken under siege due to a terrorist threat - one involving germ warfare and a potential airborne virus capable of wiping out most of the world's populace if not contained in time. The most entertaining character here is perhaps Ford's continuing character Frank Corso, a detective/true crime story writer, who gets tangled up in this whole affair, himself becoming a suspect for having his nose in the wrong place at the wrong time. I also quite liked the different local Seattle detectives and the police captain Harry Dobson who are determined to get to the bottom of things and clean up this mess in their own city and set out to do it in much better fashion than all the outside intrusive government agencies that also show up in town including the CDC, the FBI, the CIA, etc., etc..

It basically gives us the perspective of many different characters and eventually the narrative weaves into an whole that makes sense and builds and builds a terrific sense of suspense. I really couldn't put it down as I reached the climax. I just had to see how it would all play out. Very good book IMO :thumbup: ...kind of a mix of Outbreak meets Pulp Fiction meets Cold Case but completely unique too.  


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on March 13, 2010, 02:31:07 PM
http://www.jeffvandermeer.com/2008/12/23/60-in-60-9-gibbons-the-christians-and-the-rise-of-rome-penguins-great-ideas/

the christians and the fall of Rome.  I'ts good and interesting but a little slow going unless your preferred style is 18th century formality including page long sentences with 11 commas


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on March 14, 2010, 03:13:26 AM
[url]http://www.jeffvandermeer.com/2008/12/23/60-in-60-9-gibbons-the-christians-and-the-rise-of-rome-penguins-great-ideas/[/url]

the christians and the fall of Rome.  I'ts good and interesting but a little slow going unless your preferred style is 18th century formality including page long sentences with 11 commas


I just read two more of the Repairman Jack books.  Very good and entertaining.  Lester, think you might like some of the title character's viewpoints on a few things (which appear to be author F. Paul Wilson's as well). 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on March 14, 2010, 11:22:59 AM
(http://images.andrewsmcmeel.com/media/2393/medium.jpg)

The title speaks for itself.  A collection of movies reviewed 1.5 stars or less.  Lots of fun.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on March 15, 2010, 09:24:45 AM
rev- that looks awesome.  there's one called "hollywood talks turkey" that is really good. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on March 18, 2010, 02:23:08 AM
Finished reading UR by Stephen King on Kindle.  Decent, but not as good as some of his other works.  It somewhat felt like a forced effort. 

However, I have decided to start reading Lair of the White Worm by Bram Stoker.  Hopefully it won't disappoint.  [Sidenote: I hated the movie]


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on March 18, 2010, 01:00:11 PM
rev- that looks awesome.  there's one called "hollywood talks turkey" that is really good. 

I have to scale back my enthusiasm after reading it a bit.  In fact, there are several 2 star reviews in here, which are films he didn't "hate" at all, just sort of "blah" films.  Yet, he put out a companion volume called "You Movie Sucks" with more bad reviews.  It's a bit of a ripoff to stretch the bad reviews over two volumes by putting mediocre ones in with the truly awful.   


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on March 18, 2010, 02:55:33 PM
that's too bad.  Hollywood talks Turkey, I haven't read it in like 15 years, but it was from the golden age of Hollywood and it delt with real stinkers.  I think it might have been Jane Russell I can't remember, some other actor goes to visit her on the set and she is drinking vodka from a jar and going "get me out of here,please!"  :cheers:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on March 18, 2010, 11:59:38 PM
rev- that looks awesome.  there's one called "hollywood talks turkey" that is really good. 

I have to scale back my enthusiasm after reading it a bit.  In fact, there are several 2 star reviews in here, which are films he didn't "hate" at all, just sort of "blah" films.  Yet, he put out a companion volume called "You Movie Sucks" with more bad reviews.  It's a bit of a ripoff to stretch the bad reviews over two volumes by putting mediocre ones in with the truly awful.   

That's too bad. Ebert's very negative reviews are often pretty amusing.  I recall enjoying his Rollerball (remake) review. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 20, 2010, 08:29:37 AM
I just finished Conrad Black's masterful biography of President Nixon, entitled RICHARD NIXON: A LIFE IN FULL .   It is a very detailed, unflinching, but fairly sympathetic chronicle of the remarkable life and career of the most maligned President in U.S. history.  Black is a great storyteller, and was also personally acquainted with Nixon.  As a Brit, he has no "dog in the hunt" when it comes to American politics, and so he does not hesitate to indict Nixon, his aides, or his many critics when he finds them guilty of falsehood or self-serving hypocrisy.  His comments on the turbulent relationship between Nixon and Kissinger alone make the book worth the time it takes to read . . . . which is quite a bit, since it runs about 1000 pates.  Highly recommended for history buffs and those who are interested in the lives of our Presidents.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 20, 2010, 09:37:25 AM
I just finished Conrad Black's masterful biography of President Nixon, entitled RICHARD NIXON: A LIFE IN FULL .   It is a very detailed, unflinching, but fairly sympathetic chronicle of the remarkable life and career of the most maligned President in U.S. history.  Black is a great storyteller, and was also personally acquainted with Nixon.  As a Brit, he has no "dog in the hunt" when it comes to American politics, and so he does not hesitate to indict Nixon, his aides, or his many critics when he finds them guilty of falsehood or self-serving hypocrisy.  His comments on the turbulent relationship between Nixon and Kissinger alone make the book worth the time it takes to read . . . . which is quite a bit, since it runs about 1000 pates.  Highly recommended for history buffs and those who are interested in the lives of our Presidents.

Black is no Brit. He's a Canadian who gave up his citizenship to get himself a title. Now, after badmouthing the country for years because we wouldn't let him have his cake and eat it too, he's trying to get his citizenship back, because it suits his purposes.

I'm not at all surprised he'd be sympathetic to Nixon, being a powerful man who considers himself above the law. Black is a crook, currently serving 6-1/2 years for fraud and obstruction of justice. His history as a businessman in Canada is mostly about buying companies to dismantle them and trying to steal from employee pension funds. He's filth.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 20, 2010, 12:31:28 PM
That may be, but he's still a fine writer.  His work on Franklin Roosevelt, CHAMPION OF FREEDOM, is probably going to be the definitive Roosevelt biography for our generation.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 20, 2010, 05:15:54 PM
That may be, but he's still a fine writer.  His work on Franklin Roosevelt, CHAMPION OF FREEDOM, is probably going to be the definitive Roosevelt biography for our generation.

Of course, and Michael Jackson might have molested a few children, but he was a heck of a showman.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 21, 2010, 12:40:10 AM
Ouch!!  I get the feeling you really hate this guy!  I looked up his bio, and I still can't figure out exactly what it was he went to jail for.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on March 21, 2010, 12:34:07 PM
Finally got into reading The Demon Redcoat. I think I'll go outside to read today, its too nice to stay indoors.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on March 22, 2010, 06:24:03 AM
I'm currently digging into Michael Slade's Ghoul, which was sent to me by AndyC! So far, so good...  :smile:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 22, 2010, 10:28:20 AM
I'm currently digging into Michael Slade's Ghoul, which was sent to me by AndyC! So far, so good...  :smile:


Great. It didn't take long to get there.

I've finished Primal Scream and jumped out of order for the newest, Red Snow. I'm already halfway through, and the story is full of surprises. Slade brings back characters from a few earlier books, kills off a couple of regulars, and has a criminal mastermind attack the Olympics at Whistler, BC. with both large-scale terrorism and more intimate homicide.
(http://www.specialx.net/specialxdotnet/images/Slade_RedSnow_TPB.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on March 23, 2010, 12:41:35 PM
Just started UNCLE TOM'S CABIN by Harriett Beecher Stowe



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on March 24, 2010, 06:01:59 PM
I have 76 pages left in The Chosen by Chaim Potok.

I'm really enjoying it so far!     


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 24, 2010, 06:23:06 PM
Just finished ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER.  A fascinating look into a little-known aspect of the life of our 16th President, based on his recently discovered journals.  By the editor of PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES.  It is an amazing tale of heroism, and the REAL meaning behind America's Civil War!  Best line so far, from Lincoln's journal:

"I cannot escape the conclusion that as long as this nation is cursed with slavery, it will likewise be cursed with vampires."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Ozzymandias on March 25, 2010, 08:48:11 PM
Ozzymandias speaks: I just finished Dangerously Funny. It is about the Smothers Brothers and their late 60's TV show. It starts with their rough childhood and go thorugh to present day. However, much of the focus is on the problems with network over their TV show. It clears up many misconceptions about the show and the ultimate termination of the show.

Ozzymandias has spoken!!!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 25, 2010, 10:40:07 PM
Finished Red Snow in just a few days. Very easy read. I must say that the title is very apt. It's as if Slade decided by the 13th Special X book to cull some of the supporting characters he's accumulated since the early 80s. I mean, he's killed off one or two before, but he totally cleans house in this book. I can imagine it must get hard to write a taut thriller with an army of minor characters who continue to multiply as their backstories get longer and longer.

This was the third appearance of the criminal mastermind Mephisto, who aside from being an insane genius with lots of ill-gotten money and a penchant for seeking out other maniacs to do his dirty work, is also very concerned about global overpopulation. He'd like to get that number back to a nice, comfortable 700 million people. And after being foiled in two previous books, he has a real hate on for the RCMP.

Now, I can't decide whether to start another Slade book, since I only have two left in the series, or get into Peter Straub's Koko.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on March 26, 2010, 04:17:45 PM
Ye-es.

The Indiana Jones Omnibus

In the early '80's, as a movie tie-in, "Raiders of the Lost Ark" was published as a monthly comic book over a period of three months by Marvel Comics.

Then, some fourteen months later, a demand was seen to publish the further adventures of Indiana Jones as a monthly comic book.

Some of the adventures lasting only one issue. Some two issues. And some three issues.

Then just recently both the comic book version of "Raiders of the Lost Ark" and the further adventures was repackaged and republished by Dark Horse Comics. Which is how I read 'em.

I don't know how long the series lasted, as I've only read the first dozen issues, but it lasted at least one more issue after the first dozen.

Next time: Rick Geary's "A Treasury of Murders"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on March 27, 2010, 03:06:36 AM
I'm still reading The Beast House by Richard Laymon.  Not nearly as good as The Cellar.  It feels like he had a quota to make and decided to do a sequel to The Cellar, but also padded it out with romance.  I'm almost 200 pages into this 334 page book and there has yet to be much of anything scary in it at all.  Just a lot of raunchy sex and powder puff nonsense between characters.  I'm hoping the last 100 pages will make up for it.  I enjoyed The Cellar because it was fresh, well written, and succinctly narrated.  There was a little romance and some screwing now and then, but he at least kept the ball rolling. 

It's one of those books that pretty much isn't good, but I have to finish it.  I'm still reading the next book in the series next, that being The Midnight Tour, and I'm hoping that one will not disappoint like this one has. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on March 27, 2010, 06:11:00 PM
 http://mises.org/daily/4183 - lord acton on the american revolution




 audio version:  http://mises.org/media/4758 (mp3) 27 mins


Basically, once the french threat to the colonies was gone, england was useless to them and The American Revolution was inevitable


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 28, 2010, 12:29:19 AM
I read a British history of the Revolution a few years ago - I think it was called A FEW BLOODY NOSES - that adopted that same premise, and also insisted that it was actually the French that won the Revolution, which I feel is stretching things a bit.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on March 28, 2010, 10:36:20 AM
IS- I agree. It's his pro liberty sentiments that got it reproduced on that site and they are very nice


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on March 28, 2010, 12:16:41 PM
I've started reading a compilation of time based short stories in a book named Time After Time edited by Denise Little. So far it's been kind of disappointing.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BeyondTheGrave on March 29, 2010, 10:44:56 AM
(http://img.infibeam.com/img/0157adf6/942/0/9781608190942.jpg)

Love military history and this ones a good one so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on April 04, 2010, 09:19:49 PM
(http://images.contentreserve.com/ImageType-100/0293-1/%7BA68DFBC3-743D-42BC-93BE-7B6B4E312515%7DImg100.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on April 04, 2010, 09:25:50 PM
I've been reading Oishinbo: Japanese Cuisine again.  It was good book for a collection of stories from the series.

I'm going to be rereading When They Cry: Cotten Drifting Arc soon for a review on my blog.  I had already read it before hand and it was really good.  Hopefully, it is still good after I do a hard examination of it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on April 04, 2010, 10:37:44 PM
Just finished the latest in the Special Agent Pendergast series by Doug Preston and Lincoln Child - it's called CEMETERY DANCE and is a rollicking good read.  The novel begins with the brutal murder of one of the series' recurring characters, NYT journalist William Smithback.  He is brutally stabbed in his apartment by a man who apparently committed suicide two weeks before.  Then the story rolls on to an exciting adventure involving voodoo, zombies, a mysterious, ancient cult operating out of a park on Manhattan Island, and angry animal rights protesters.

I finished it in a single day!!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on April 04, 2010, 11:20:52 PM
Reading Promise to a Dead Man.  Fast moving and short western story.  Pretty enjoyable.

I also just read a big chunk of the Enemy Papers.  This has the novella, Enemy Mine, which the film of the same title is based on.  It also has a lot of the Talman, the alien bible, in it, as well as two followup stories.  Worth checking out for anyone who likes hard sci-fi.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on April 07, 2010, 10:26:06 AM
I checked this book out from the school libray: Social Reform Movements: The Civil Rights Movement.  We are getting close to that in our history and since it is one of the most interesting parts of U.S.'s history, I wanted to know more about it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on April 08, 2010, 06:47:38 PM
Ye-es.

Rick Geary's "A Treasury of Murder"

Some from the 19th century. Some from the 20th century. Some in the U.K. Some in the U.S. Some well known. Some lesser known, but all seemingly have the . . .

Who: people involved.
Where: maps provided to show location
What and When: the events, as can be best determined, in chronological order.

As of 2008, there were nine books in the series. I've only read two of them so far. The Borden murders and the Lindbergh kidnapping.

The others . . .

Jack the Ripper
"The Fatal Bullet." From the cover, it looks like the murder of President Garfield.
Mary Rogers., which gave rise to Edgar Allan Poe's 'The Mystery of Marie Roget," one of the first detective short stories in American literature.
"The Beast of Chicago" aka Herman Webster Mudgett aka H. H. Holmes. Regarded as being one of the first serial killers in American crime.
The murder of President Lincoln.
Madeleine Smith, who was tried for the poisoning of her blackmailing lover.
The Bloody Benders, who ran a boarding house in the Midwest, during the 19th century. A boarding house where their boarders checked in but did not check out.

If you are interested in the subject of murder, there are a good introduction, as the author and illustrator is apparently totally neutral about the guilt or innocence of the murderers. In the case of the Borden murders, he provides reasonable evidence, as to why she was guildty. And in the case of the Lindbergh kidnapping, he provides reasonable evidence as to why the kidnapper might have been innocent.

Next time: "Graphic classics"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on April 09, 2010, 04:27:48 AM
I just started reading Showdown in the Show-me State: The Fight Over Conceal-and-Carry Gun Laws in Missouri.

Yeah, what a title, huh?  For those not aware of the issue, and those outside the country, concealed carry had a long and arduous process of being passed in Missouri, and in fact Missouri was one of the last states to pass it.  Took about 14 years, with many failed efforts.  This sort of political book I often find interesting, as Missouri is often divided more regionally than by party.  That is, numerous democrats were very important in getting concealed carry past, and there were also republicans who fought against it.   It's more rural VS urban, than democrat VS republican. 

The book is also dated in several aspects (as it came out when passage was still new).  And considering how recent this history is, it seems a shame there's no new research conducted for the book (it's all newspapers, etc).  But, as a basic and mostly correct chronology, it's still interesting reading.  So are the amazon reviews, where a couple of the important politicians/people involved in the story comment very negatively.

http://www.amazon.com/SHOWDOWN-SHOW-ME-STATE-CONCEAL-CARRY/product-reviews/0826215874/ref=cm_cr_dp_all_helpful?ie=UTF8&coliid=&showViewpoints=1&colid=&sortBy=bySubmissionDateDescending (http://www.amazon.com/SHOWDOWN-SHOW-ME-STATE-CONCEAL-CARRY/product-reviews/0826215874/ref=cm_cr_dp_all_helpful?ie=UTF8&coliid=&showViewpoints=1&colid=&sortBy=bySubmissionDateDescending)

I'm not through with it yet, but in a lot of ways it's interesting reading.  Sometimes it's actually inspiring, as it's nice to read about political action and government workers fighting, debating, and working hard (on both sides) to do something they obviously believe in. 

It's refreshing after seeing so much cynical political posturing at a more national level.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on April 09, 2010, 06:33:04 AM
I'm currently re-reading John Wyndham's The Day of The Triffids ~ I haven't read it since high school and the BBC series in 1981 with John Duttine, Emma Relph and the late Maurice Colbourne was great.  :smile:

Now the Beeb have gone and remade it: is nothing sacred?  :buggedout:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on April 09, 2010, 04:51:12 PM
Now the Beeb have gone and remade it: is nothing sacred?  :buggedout:

No Trevor. Please come over here and help me murder absolutely everyone.  :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on April 12, 2010, 01:53:59 PM
How to make friends with demons by Graham Joyce.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Torgo on April 13, 2010, 08:50:11 AM
I'm currently working my way through "Peter Jackson: A Filmmaker's Journey".  Got it for my birthday this past March.

 (http://tolkiengateway.net/w/images/thumb/4/40/Peter_Jackson_-_A_Film-maker%27s_Journey.jpg/250px-Peter_Jackson_-_A_Film-maker%27s_Journey.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on April 13, 2010, 09:45:45 AM
Figured with only two more left in the series, I'd keep going with Slade's Special X thrillers. The one I'm on right now, slightly out of order, is Bed of Nails, which happened to be at the local library. Funny, they have about three of the books from ten years ago, but nothing before or since. I might donate a set of paperbacks.

Anyway, The Ripper returns, having been locked up following his tribute to Agatha Christie's "And Then There Were None" a couple of books ago. He's completely broken with reality at this point, and he's directing a similarly delusional killer from within a high-security mental hospital. Pretty good so far. It digs further into the occult and the story of Jack the Ripper, which were explored in the earlier book, "Ripper."

(http://www.specialx.net/specialxdotnet/images/bedofnails.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BeyondTheGrave on April 14, 2010, 02:39:22 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51jQcX84qyL._SL500_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on April 15, 2010, 05:52:22 AM
Still reading Lair of the White Worm, and it's failing to impress.  :bluesad:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on April 15, 2010, 11:57:56 AM
I just started reading Alice in Wonderland + Alice Through the Looking Glass.  Never read them before.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on April 15, 2010, 06:47:42 PM
A few days ago I read Robert Englund's memoir/autobiography Hollywood Monster.
It took me about 2 days to read it. 
It was very interesting and Robert seems like he is a very nice and down-to-earth person.

I borrowed it my from my local public library.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on April 15, 2010, 08:11:16 PM
"The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Other Famous Tales" by Robert Louis Stevenson

I've never read "Dr. Jekyll" or any Stevenson at all, so this should be interesting.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on April 20, 2010, 04:55:35 PM
Edward Hollis' The Secret Lives of Buildings which discusses about a dozen famous landmarks, from the Parthenon to Notre Dame to Gloucester Cathedral to the Las Vegas Strip and talks about, well, their sometimes shocking hidden histories. Sounds better than it is because except for the part about Manchester's Hulme Crescents*, which always fascinated me, the book is a letdown.

*I went a couple years ago to where the Crescents used to stand and was asking a gentrified local we met what would've happened if I'd wandered in there back in the day. He told us, "They used to eat Americans alive in there." So I said, "What if I'd said I'm Irish?" He said, "Then they'd kill you first, then eat you." Heck of a place....


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on April 20, 2010, 05:16:05 PM
Ye-es.

The "Graphic Classics"

As of 2004, there were . . .

bierce, doyle, london, lovecraft, poe, stevenson, stoker, twain, and wells.

I read . . .

bierce, lovecraft, poe, stevenson, and twain.

A short intro. A brief bio. And then the author's short stories, poems, novels, etc.

And while the author's works are sometimes abbreviated and/or adapted by the illustrator, you always get the gist of the author's writings.

And, having tried to read many of these, without the illustrations, believe me, the illustrations help immeasurabely in trying to understand what the author is trying to say.

Also while each author's best known works are included, some of each author's lesser known works are also included. And these, I often find, are as interesting or even more interesting than the author's better known works.

A good introduction to each author.

Next time: "Rod Serling's 'The Twilight Zone'"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on April 21, 2010, 03:22:40 PM
(http://gagasisterhood.com/wp-content/uploads/Water-for-Elephants.jpg)

I was reading this excellent book until I found out they're making a film adaptation with that jackass from Twilight. It's about a 90+ year old man, who is wheelchair bound recounting important parts of his life, mostly from his time spent in the Benzini Bros. travelling circus. There's plenty of romance and revenge, violence and a fascinating insight into the circuses of America's past. Water is a big recurring theme within the book, used as a metaphor for many situations.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on April 22, 2010, 01:56:30 PM
([url]http://gagasisterhood.com/wp-content/uploads/Water-for-Elephants.jpg[/url])

I was reading this excellent book until I found out they're making a film adaptation with that jackass from Twilight. It's about a 90+ year old man, who is wheelchair bound recounting important parts of his life, mostly from his time spent in the Benzini Bros. travelling circus. There's plenty of romance and revenge, violence and a fascinating insight into the circuses of America's past. Water is a big recurring theme within the book, used as a metaphor for many situations.


My fiancee has that book, and I've wanted to read it for a while.  I'll probably do that and just ignore the fact that there's a film being made.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on April 22, 2010, 02:35:00 PM
([url]http://gagasisterhood.com/wp-content/uploads/Water-for-Elephants.jpg[/url])

I was reading this excellent book until I found out they're making a film adaptation with that jackass from Twilight. It's about a 90+ year old man, who is wheelchair bound recounting important parts of his life, mostly from his time spent in the Benzini Bros. travelling circus. There's plenty of romance and revenge, violence and a fascinating insight into the circuses of America's past. Water is a big recurring theme within the book, used as a metaphor for many situations.


My fiancee has that book, and I've wanted to read it for a while.  I'll probably do that and just ignore the fact that there's a film being made.


My wife read that one a while ago. Sounded interesting, but not really my cup of tea. I'll be interested in hearing what you guys think.

By the way, Circus, how was the Slade?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: jimmybob on April 22, 2010, 03:12:03 PM
The Shining. Finally read it.

It makes the movie look like it sucks.

-Jimmybob


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on April 25, 2010, 06:44:18 AM
By the way, Circus, how was the Slade?

Great Andy, and thanks again. It was nice to be able to read one of those creepy short stories each night. Slade's got a really interesting way of putting images into the mind and building good suspense even when there's not much of a real conclusion to each story. I found myself creating a whole backstory to one short in my head and further endings to others.

 :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on April 25, 2010, 07:19:56 AM
Sure you've got the right book? I don't remember any short stories. Or do you mean the different scenes where he switches from one killer to another? Those are kind of self-contained.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on April 25, 2010, 07:27:41 AM
Sure you've got the right book? I don't remember any short stories. Or do you mean the different scenes where he switches from one killer to another? Those are kind of self-contained.

That's what I meant. Everything is cut up at the start before Chandler is introduced fully. I got a bit confused and treated it mostly as seperate stories that were slowly interlinked.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on April 25, 2010, 08:10:19 AM
Sure you've got the right book? I don't remember any short stories. Or do you mean the different scenes where he switches from one killer to another? Those are kind of self-contained.

That's what I meant. Everything is cut up at the start before Chandler is introduced fully. I got a bit confused and treated it mostly as seperate stories that were slowly interlinked.

That's the way a lot of his books are. They follow a few different threads, past and present, that all gradually come together. Half the fun is trying to figure out how they fit. The style has evolved somewhat over the years, and Jay Clarke has written with a number of different partners under the Slade pen name.

If you liked Ghoul, you'll probably like Headhunter. A little less complicated than Ghoul, not quite as dark, but still an amazing book. It was actually the first of the series, although it and Ghoul were written as self-contained stories. Headhunter introduces Chief Superintendent Robert DeClercq, who then gets teamed up with Chandler in the third book, where it starts to focus on Special X, which becomes sort of the elite branch of the mounties. Chandler settles in as DeClercq's subbordinate, and continues to be the action guy.

If you want, I'll keep an eye out for a copy of Headhunter.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on April 26, 2010, 02:30:36 PM
this (http://mises.org/store/We-P5642.aspx)  looks interesting. 1984 type dystopian novel written in 1921. new translation

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/We_(novel)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on April 26, 2010, 05:03:12 PM
I just read Maus: A Survivor's Tale.  It's biographical/autobiographical comic book by Art Spiegelman.  Most of it is his father's true account of surviving the Holocaust.  To say the least, his father had a rather harrowing tale - as all survivor's did, of course, but his is one of the most detailed and filled in I've read.  It's also one of the few where the person telling the story ever had any control of what was going on around him - in a limited way, of course.  This story is interspersed with bits where Art deals with his father, who is aging and in failing health, and how their relationship struggles.  The whole thing is illustrated in a simple style, with all Jews depicted as mice, Germans as cats, Americans as dogs, Poles as pigs, and so on.  It works remarkably well.

Well worth a read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on April 29, 2010, 02:23:05 PM
I'm "reading" this. listening to it anyway at this moment

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VU3c7Qfb1jY

describes how central banks inflate currency to pay for wars while also hiding those costs.  inflation shuld rightly be seen as synonomous with debt and taxation, instead it's seen as this bizarre naturally occuring phenomenon.  It's just printing too much money, always and every time: too much money chasing too few goods


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on May 01, 2010, 01:35:29 PM
Ye-es.

Rod Serling's "The Twilight Zone." or to be more specific a graphic novel based on one of the classic TV show's episodes.

As of 2009, there were eight titles in the series . . .

The After Hours
The Big Tall Wish
Deaths-Head Revisited
The Midnight Sun
The Mosters Are Due on Maple Street
The Odyssey of Flight 33
Walking Distance
Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?

So far, I've only read "Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?" That was not the first episode I saw, but the second, but it was the last one I saw for a long time, as frankly, that is one of the few things I've ever seen on TV that scared the s*** out of me.

Except for the twist ending, which has to be one of the best twist endings ever seen on TV, I don't remember too much about it, but I do remember that it was supposedly set sometime in the early '60's, when the episode was first shown on TV.

On the other hand, for some strange reason, the graphic novel is set some thirty years on, or sometime after the '80's. Which doesn't really make any sense, because an alien invasion from space made more sense in the '60's, as by the '90's not only did we know that there was not life on Mars or Venus capable of interstellar space travel, but if there was life out there capable of it. How difficult it'd be to travel millions of light years to reach earth.

I don't know whether there are plans to turn the other episodes of "The Twilight Zone" into graphic novels, or whether the plans stop with these eight. Still, if there are plans to convert the other episodes into graphic novels, they have 148 more to choose from.

Next time: Backwards, sidewards, and forwards


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on May 06, 2010, 08:44:55 PM
Lots of good stuff:

1. A paperback collection of the comic series Planetary. I'm not a regular follower of any comic series, but I do enjoy comics.  This one was great!

2. I took a break from the great book The Chosen by Chaim Potok. I definitely need to finish.

3. My English class is about halfway through Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. I am enjoying it.

4. I picked up The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty today at my school's used book sale. I'm already halfway through! It's very good! I have not seen the movie yet, but now I want to even more so I can compare the movie with the novel. I know I will feel freaked out when I go to bed soon...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 06, 2010, 09:55:55 PM
I am almost done with LONE SURVIVOR: THE STORY OF THE HEROES OF SEAL TEAM TEN by Marcus Luttrell.  Four of our Navy Seals, ambushed by nearly 200 Taliban fighters in the remote mountains of Afghanistan.  The Taliban killed three of the four, plus shooting down a helo sent to rescue them, but the Seals took down nearly 100 Taliban fighters.  I tell you, I almost cried when I read just how brave our men truly are.  This is an incredible story of courage, heroism and sacrifice! 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on May 07, 2010, 01:53:49 AM
1. A paperback collection of the comic series Planetary. I'm not a regular follower of any comic series, but I do enjoy comics.  This one was great!

Planetary was amazing. Probably the best work both Warren Ellis and John Cassaday have done yet. Let me know when you finish. I've got some observations, but I don't want to ruin anything for you.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on May 07, 2010, 07:20:30 AM
1. A paperback collection of the comic series Planetary. I'm not a regular follower of any comic series, but I do enjoy comics.  This one was great!

Planetary was amazing. Probably the best work both Warren Ellis and John Cassaday have done yet. Let me know when you finish. I've got some observations, but I don't want to ruin anything for you.

I've finished book 1 of a paperback collection. It took a while to start coming together, but not in an annoying way. I actually got it for free from a raffle held by my local comic store on Free Comic Book Day (a national annual event held by comic stores). I definitely want to finish the series! The stories so far have been lots of fun and the artwork is great. I will definitely alert you when I finish!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on May 11, 2010, 06:06:31 PM
Ye-es.

Actually, several under what I call "Backward, Sideward, and Forward.

Backward
Dekker's "The Lost Books"
Having read volumes 2 and 3, I went back and read volume 1 in the series "The Chosen."
While it provides useful information, one need not read the graphic novels in order, nor is it necessary to read all of them, as each one is a more or less self-contained work of fiction. Of course, now I'm looking to read volume 4 and thereafter.

Sideward
"Graphic Classics"
Finally, read the one based on Bram Stoker's works of fiction. While he is best known for writing "Dracula," he did write several other novels and short stories, which are included with their illustrations.

Forward
The Indiana Jones Omnibus
Having read volume 1, I then read volume 2, which includes the 12 monthly issues for 1984 and the three issues which make up the official comic book adaptation of "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom." His adventures occuring sometimes in 1, sometimes in 2, and sometimes in 3 issues, before they are completed. It may have taken them an year, but it looks like they finally got the hang of it. While the villains in volume 1 are mostly simple and/or stupid, the villains in volume 2 are more complex and smarter, and a hero is only as good as the villains  he faces.


Mori's "Emma"
Having read volumes 1 to 7, I then read volumes 8 to 10. These being side stories about some of the side characters in the first 7 volumes. The stories running from a half page to 102 p. with the average being 34 p. The longest story being Emma and William's marriage.

This does allow me to talk about two problems I have with Japanese manga. (1st) Alot of the characters have a tendency to look alike, which makes them hard to identify and differenate. And (2) while translated into English, they are often published in the Japanese manner, which means the pages read from right to left, and I have a hard time trying to remember that.

And at least for the American publishing company that published the series, there is a rating system. Everyone = G rating. Teen = PG or PG-13 rating. Teen Plus = R rating. And Mature = NC-17 rating.  The "Emma" series received a Teen Plus rating for nudity and suggestive situations (i.e. sexual situations.)

Next time: Miyazaki's "My Neighbor Totoro"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on May 12, 2010, 10:04:27 AM
Sarah Silverman "the bedwetter". It's  good but it's a biography not a bunch of jokes so really more for people who are already fans


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BeyondTheGrave on May 12, 2010, 08:30:20 PM
(http://images.filedby.com/bookimg/1410/9781410414137.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on May 12, 2010, 10:52:57 PM
I finished reading The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty. It was very good and made me feel creeped out!

Today I finished reading Legion by William Peter Blatty. It was also very good!

I plan on re-reading Legion eventually because although I understood the story, there were some ideas presented in the story that I did not totally grasp. 

My English class is about halfway through Frankenstein by Mary Shelley.  I'm enjoying it.

I still need to finish The Chosen by Chaim Potok. It's a very enjoyable book, but I just need to get back into it.  I took a break and got distracted.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 12, 2010, 10:56:52 PM
I just finished a book called INSIDE THE REVOLUTION: HOW THE FOLLOWERS OF JIHAD, JEFFERSON, AND JESUS ARE TRANSFORMING THE MIDDLE EAST.

It is a fascinating account of the emergence of the modern jihadist movement, the moderate Muslims who are trying to counter it and regain control from the thugs they feel have hijacked their religion, and the rapid growth of evangelical Christianity in the Middle East despite ferocious persecution.  It is written from a strongly Christian perspective, but still is quite fascinating, and the author presents all three perspectives from the words of their practitioners.  Alternately frightening and hopeful, it's the best book on the region I've read in awhile. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on May 13, 2010, 12:24:42 AM
I just finished a book called INSIDE THE REVOLUTION: HOW THE FOLLOWERS OF JIHAD, JEFFERSON, AND JESUS ARE TRANSFORMING THE MIDDLE EAST.

It is a fascinating account of the emergence of the modern jihadist movement, the moderate Muslims who are trying to counter it and regain control from the thugs they feel have hijacked their religion, and the rapid growth of evangelical Christianity in the Middle East despite ferocious persecution.  It is written from a strongly Christian perspective, but still is quite fascinating, and the author presents all three perspectives from the words of their practitioners.  Alternately frightening and hopeful, it's the best book on the region I've read in awhile. 

How does Jefferson fit in?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 13, 2010, 06:23:38 AM
The Reformers - deeply religious Muslims who are also interested in seeing democracy and freedom come to the Middle East - are considered followers of Jefferson.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on May 14, 2010, 12:41:10 PM
my search for the Yeti by reinohld messner. with a title like that written by a guy with a name like that you figure it would be completely awesome and so far it really is.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: oxode on May 14, 2010, 02:29:22 PM
Lots of good stuff:


3. My English class is about halfway through Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. I am enjoying it.


One tip:
Check if Your copy bases -as I guess when You read it at school- on the censored second edition. If it is so, try to get a copy of the reprinted first edition. It was republished a few years ago. And I promiss You'll see Mrs. Shelly with totally new eyes.
And if You want to torment Your teacher ask him/her about the changes Mrs. Shelly had to make. I bet my hat he/she will twitch like a worm.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: oxode on May 14, 2010, 02:31:53 PM
I am almost done with LONE SURVIVOR: THE STORY OF THE HEROES OF SEAL TEAM TEN by Marcus Luttrell.  Four of our Navy Seals, ambushed by nearly 200 Taliban fighters in the remote mountains of Afghanistan.  The Taliban killed three of the four, plus shooting down a helo sent to rescue them, but the Seals took down nearly 100 Taliban fighters.  I tell you, I almost cried when I read just how brave our men truly are.  This is an incredible story of courage, heroism and sacrifice! 

Navy Seals? Must be hard to fight in mountans with flippers on . . . :twirl:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on May 14, 2010, 07:01:37 PM
Lots of good stuff:


3. My English class is about halfway through Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. I am enjoying it.


One tip:
Check if Your copy bases -as I guess when You read it at school- on the censored second edition. If it is so, try to get a copy of the reprinted first edition. It was republished a few years ago. And I promiss You'll see Mrs. Shelly with totally new eyes.
And if You want to torment Your teacher ask him/her about the changes Mrs. Shelly had to make. I bet my hat he/she will twitch like a worm.

Actually, my teacher made sure to get the original version. She told us the history of why it was changed


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 14, 2010, 10:09:52 PM
I just finished a reather neat volume called GEORGE WASHINGTON ON LEADERSHIP.  A fascinating look at how the Father of Our Country dealt with his problems, and how his solutions can be adapted and used by today's business and civic leaders.  Really well done and quite historically accurate.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on May 15, 2010, 10:58:59 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/517o2doOo4L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg)

She was a great writer, but it's remarkable how few movies she actually liked


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on May 18, 2010, 06:40:56 PM
Thank You For Smoking by Christopher Buckley

It's a great book and very funny!  I almost finished it once, but got distracted. I now plan to finish it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on May 18, 2010, 06:57:11 PM
(http://www.2000adonline.com/books/assets/covers/judge_dredd_vs_aliens_incubus.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on May 18, 2010, 09:57:17 PM
I just read Monkey Girl.  It's about Intelligent Design and the Dover case which basically trashed its hopes of being taught in the USA.  What's probably most fascinating about the book is the incredible amount of ignorance on display by the people on the Dover schoolboard who were involved in adding ID.  All of them, quite literally, know next to nothing about evolution, intelligent design/creationism, and even the bible.  Yet, of course, they're the ones deciding what to put in the science classroom.   :lookingup:

The book is clearly on the side of the evolutionists, but I'd question seriously anyone who isn't in this case.  Not only is ID not science (I mean, proponents want to REDEFINE science to fit ID in, how anyone can take the "It's science!" bit seriously after that is beyond me), the school board also lied, manipulated, bullied and threatened to get what they wanted.  The way the school board acted was atrocious - and of course, they ended up costing the tax payers over 1 million dollars.

They should be ashamed.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on May 22, 2010, 03:57:52 PM
Ye-es.

Hayao Miyazaki's "My Neighbor Totoro"

A graphic adaptation of the film, using stills from the film, in four volumes.

The Good
What draws me to these types of films is not so much the animation, as the characters. Seldom in an animated film do I see such complex characters.

The Bad
The story. Not much happens in the film. At least in comparision to his other films which I've read or seen.

The Interesting
It's an interesting look at how some Japanese live in modern Japan, as seen through the eyes of someone who is Japanese himself.

It is interesting to note how many times in his films, the hero is actually a little girl. Which in this aspect is similiar to the animated films made by Walt Disney. No wonder some people call Hayao Miyazaki the Walt Disney of Japan.

Next time: Lois H. Gresh's "The Twilight Companion"



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on May 22, 2010, 09:53:11 PM
Hayao Miyazaki's "My Neighbor Totoro"

A graphic adaptation of the film, using stills from the film, in four volumes.

I have something similiar to that, but it the Princess Mononoke one instead and it is in five volumes.

Anyways, I'm currently reading through Batman Hush.  It's pretty good and the artwork is great!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 23, 2010, 07:11:11 PM
Still reading Slade's "Bed of Nails." A bit past the halfway point. Pretty good so far. The central theme is cannibalism, and goes into some detail with regard to past customs in the South Pacific, as well as some psychos of the last century or so. The investigation has thus far centred around a multiple murder at the World Horror Convention in Seattle, which Slade attended in real life as a guest of honour prior to writing the book. And the two chief suspects are a couple of feuding lawyers-turned-authors from Vancouver, much like the author himself.

I think I will take a break from Slade after this one. I've got just one more in the series to read, and I'm in no hurry, since he's probably not going to have anything new on shelves for a year or two, having a new book out just last year. I have a copy of Peter Straub's Koko waiting on the night stand.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 23, 2010, 07:49:20 PM
I just read DAVE BARRY TURNS 50 .  Barry is always funny, and even though the book is a bit dated (written in 1998, that means Dave is about 15 years older than I am), as a 46 year old adolescent, I can identify with much of what he is saying.  His "history of the boomers" is pretty hilarious.  Not as good as DAVE BARRY'S COMPLETE GUIDE TO GUYS or my favorite, DAVE BARRY HITS BELOW THE BELTWAY, but still good for some nice hard belly laughts.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on May 23, 2010, 07:52:58 PM
I just read DAVE BARRY TURNS 50 .  Barry is always funny, and even though the book is a bit dated (written in 1998, that means Dave is about 15 years older than I am), as a 46 year old adolescent, I can identify with much of what he is saying.  His "history of the boomers" is pretty hilarious.  Not as good as DAVE BARRY'S COMPLETE GUIDE TO GUYS or my favorite, DAVE BARRY HITS BELOW THE BELTWAY, but still good for some nice hard belly laughts.

Dave Barry is great! He is one of my all-time favorite writers.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on May 24, 2010, 03:48:08 AM
I just read DAVE BARRY TURNS 50 .  Barry is always funny, and even though the book is a bit dated (written in 1998, that means Dave is about 15 years older than I am), as a 46 year old adolescent, I can identify with much of what he is saying.  His "history of the boomers" is pretty hilarious.  Not as good as DAVE BARRY'S COMPLETE GUIDE TO GUYS or my favorite, DAVE BARRY HITS BELOW THE BELTWAY, but still good for some nice hard belly laughts.

If you haven't read it already, check out Dave Barry Slept Here: A Sort of History of the United States. It's a funny book and it got me in trouble at work. Well, sort of.

At one point in the book, Barry starts talking about Samuel Gompers, one of the leaders of the Labor Movement. He freely admits he knows nothing about Samuel Gompers, but thinks Gompers would be a great name for a large dog--something I've stored in my brain for years.

At any rate, I was at my place of employment, a public library, and one of my coworkers began discussing thinking of a name for her new dog. So, loudly, I said, "You know what would be a good name for a dog? Gompers!" My coworker cringed and all of a sudden I had stepped into a minefield.

See, unbeknownst to me, there is a school for the developmentally disabled in Phoenix known as the Gompers Habilitation Center. Apparently, the term "gomper" has arisen to refer to the mentally challenged in a quite hurtful manner. So basically I had just loudly used a very negative epithet. Did I mention I was in a very public part of the library?

Insert foot directly in mouth.

Anyway, it's a great book, especially if you're a fan of U.S. history.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 24, 2010, 06:17:49 AM
That one is funny - I read it several years ago.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on May 25, 2010, 04:23:02 AM
Finished reading the last two books in the Beast House series, The Midnight Tour and Friday Night in Beast House.  Now that I'm done with that affair, I've decided to kick myself in the nuts and read four things at one time:

-Dominant Species by Michael E. Marks (sadly, it's the Kindle edition with tons of conventional mistakes)
-Horus Rising by Dan Abnett
-Complete Kick-Ass graphic novel
-Complete (at least I think it's complete) Scott Pilgrim

I have a lot of work to do...  :buggedout:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Joe the Destroyer on May 27, 2010, 06:04:13 PM
Well, I finished Kick-Ass and the first Scott Pilgrim book.  On to the next one. 

Also got a start on Dominant Species and Horus Rising.  The Kindle edition of Dominant Species is kind of annoying.  I don't know if it's in the hardcover version, but there are a lot of conventional errors (i.e. someone says, "Your on."  or it's instead of its). 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on May 29, 2010, 01:17:46 PM
I finished reading Thank You for Smoking by Christopher Buckley

This book was hilarious! I want to read more by the same author now.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: 3mnkids on May 30, 2010, 12:17:55 PM
The name of the wind~ Patrick Rothfuss

This is the 3rd maybe 4th time I have read this book. Its my favorite book of the last few years. Its just amazing.   :smile:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on May 30, 2010, 11:48:22 PM
I just read DAVE BARRY TURNS 50 .  Barry is always funny, and even though the book is a bit dated (written in 1998, that means Dave is about 15 years older than I am), as a 46 year old adolescent, I can identify with much of what he is saying.  His "history of the boomers" is pretty hilarious.  Not as good as DAVE BARRY'S COMPLETE GUIDE TO GUYS or my favorite, DAVE BARRY HITS BELOW THE BELTWAY, but still good for some nice hard belly laughts.

DAVE BARRY'S BOOK OF BAD SONGS is one my prized possessions  :teddyr:

Recently purchased/finished The Killing Joke.  Still not sure how I feel about slapping a backstory on The Joker, but it's one of the most gorgeous-looking graphic novels I've ever seen.
I'm about halfway through AJ Jacobs' THE KNOW-IT-ALL.  The author decided to read the entire Encyclopedia Britannica and the book is kind of his "journal" of the experience.   I'm enjoying it so far; it's pretty funny and I'm picking up all kinds of ridiculous trivia.   I just picked up HOUSE OF LEAVES too, interested to see if it lives up to its hype.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on June 01, 2010, 08:01:13 PM
Batman: No Man's Land The Novel

Man!  What a story!  The premise just sucked me in from the beginning!  Gotham City is abondeon by the U.S. after a 7.6 earthquake and leaving over hundreds of billions in damages.  Now, only the police, Batman, and a few of his allies are left in town and have to face down a city overrunned by gangs, cannibals, and many dangerous villians still left in the city, like Two-Face and the Joker.

So far, so good!  I'm on chapter 8 now and I am just eating this story up!  I cannot wait to see how this all ends!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on June 03, 2010, 09:36:33 AM
I just finished Laura Bush's memoir, SPOKEN FROM THE HEART.

She is an all-around classy lady, whatever you may think of her husband, and this inside story of their life and marriage, and the ups and downs of his political career, is very, very interesting.  I wish some of the knee-jerk Bush-haters would read it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on June 03, 2010, 11:51:59 AM
I just finished The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

I started reading yesterday afternoon and finished at about 9:15 this morning.
 My thoughts:
Wow! This book was hilarious! I loved the goofy humor and I finally understand all the quotes people use from it. I don't know how to put into words exactly why it's so funny, but I loved every second of it. I will definitely finish the entire series.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on June 05, 2010, 02:29:13 PM
Ye-es.

Lois H. Gresh's "The Twilight Companion"

Actually, the fact that I read this is something of a misapprehension. I saw "Twilight" on the cover and thought "The Twilight Zone," but it is actually about the other "Twilight." Still, if one wants to understand the "Twilight" phenomena, without reading any of the books or seeing any of the films, this is the book for that.

The Good
As a heterosexual female, she really gets down as to why this series appeals to people like her.

And she gives a good explanation on how both vampire and werewolf, both literature and films, have morphed from their beginnings to the "Twilight" series."

The Bad
She is a heterosexual female. So, if you are looking for the viewpoint of the heterosexual male, the lesbian female, the gay male, or the bisexual male or female, you aren't going to get it in this book.

The Interesting
She doesn't treat the characters in the series as fictional, but as actual people. Thus, she has figured out, if you are a vampire and active, then you need to feed every night.
But, if you are a more sedentary vampire, then you need to feed only every other night.

This is not the only one she has written. She has also written books on Dragonball Z, Eragon, Indiana Jones, James Bond, Lemony Snicket, the Spiderwick Chronicles, and the world of Phillip Pullman. And she has n upcoming book on Artemis Fowl coming out this year. All written in the same manner as "Twilight," I presume. Treating the characters not as fictional, but as actual people. Or, you can see the movie, as they've all been made into movies, except for Artemis Fowl.

Next time: a double review. Nicholas Sparks' "The Last Song" and "The Simpsons."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on June 06, 2010, 07:07:58 AM
I might have to check out some of Gresh's other books. Sounds interesting.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Raffine on June 06, 2010, 09:44:55 AM
I'm currently reading the 'Peculiar Crimes Unit' series by Christopher Fowler. While these novels are fun reads, his short fiction is superb - very darkly humerous and disturbing.

EDIT: I've just discovered Fowler's blog.

http://www.christopherfowler.co.uk/blog/ (http://www.christopherfowler.co.uk/blog/)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on June 07, 2010, 12:59:28 AM
I just finished my last batch of books, which unfortunately featured a few stinkers. Luckily, I can move on to the next batch, with the sole holdover of Gravity's Rainbow and it's annotations, which is a very long, but wonderful, project.

So here they are:

The Savage Detective by Roberto Bolano - A peculiar trip through Mexican literature of the latter half of the 20th century. We follow two disreputable "poets" through their travels in the world over the course of thirty years through recollections of the people they knew him. Very good, but halfway through I'm not really sure what this book is about.

American Sphinx: The Character of Thomas Jefferson by Joseph J. Ellis - This is not a history of Jefferson, but more of an exploration of why he was the person he was. I am not a fan of Jefferson. To simplify Ellis' simplification, he is America's eternal adolescent. But, agree with him or not, Ellis has some interesting things to say. Not a good place to start if you want to know Jefferson, but interesting nonetheless.

The Great Derangement by Matt Taibbi - I like Taibbi, he's fearless in his excoriation of both parties in the sordid world of American politics. He's strongest when he is the court jester mocking the palpable fallibility of our elected officials, less so when he tries to figure out the lost state of Americans. I can admire that he never fails to include himself in his indictments.

Biological Inorganic Chemistry by Robert Crichton - An introductory book to the role of transition metals in biologic systems. Not bad, but it doesn't really work as an introduction. If you weren't familiar with both the chemical and biologic concepts he introduces, this book wouldn't help you. If you already are familiar, the book is too basic. Might serve better as a supplemental to a course, which may be why he wrote the book.

Songs of a Dead Dreamer by Thomas Ligotti - A collection of short horror stories. Pretty damn good so far. Ligotti is clearly influenced by Lovecraft, but he also treads on the territory of psychological and philosophical dread. This is exactly what I'm looking for in a writer. An unholy mishmash of Lovecraft and Philip K. Dick, I'm pretty excited to see what he does with the rest of the book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Moreau on June 07, 2010, 01:25:35 PM
quote]I just read Monkey Girl.  It's about Intelligent Design and the Dover case which basically trashed its hopes of being taught in the USA.[/quote]

i'll have to check that out. i'm a religion and philosophy teacher and it always disappoints me how uninformed people are about the great science vs. faith non-debate. at my last school, the science department didn't go near evolution because they were so unconfident about discussing its alternatives.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on June 07, 2010, 05:57:20 PM
Going through the comics I checked out at the library, I have been reading the following:

Power Girl:  It is a collection of all her origin stories.  She really have a confusing past that is hard to follow admittedly.  Although, she is still a fun character and I like her.  Not for the obvious reasons mind you...

Batman: Long Halloween:   Another pretty darn good story that actually kept me guessing on who was the real killer.  Still a little confused in the end though...

The Dark Knight Returns:  Just started reading and I am really sucked into the story.  Frank Miller sure knew how to write some great stuff back in the day.  Not so much now a days.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on June 07, 2010, 06:12:35 PM
quote]I just read Monkey Girl.  It's about Intelligent Design and the Dover case which basically trashed its hopes of being taught in the USA.

i'll have to check that out. i'm a religion and philosophy teacher and it always disappoints me how uninformed people are about the great science vs. faith non-debate. at my last school, the science department didn't go near evolution because they were so unconfident about discussing its alternatives.
[/quote]

Highly recommended then - the book also covers the history of evolution and creationism in the world in general and the US in particular, both legally and socially.  It's not flawless, but it's a very good and very well-written overview.  It does get into how very few science teachers are willing to get deeply into evolution because of all the trouble it leads to in the US. 

I found it particularly interesting that evolution and other science was taught much more strictly in the Cold War days - you know, to compete with the Soviet Union.  In other words, when science was on the line and was felt to be truly important to the country as a whole, in large part the country allowed evolution to be taught.  It was only when we felt it wasn't as big an issue that religion intruded so strongly into the science classroom.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on June 07, 2010, 08:00:23 PM
I just started on the Tao Te Ching.  I haven't really read any Eastern religious/spiritual/philosophical texts before, and this one is the shortest and easiest!  :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on June 10, 2010, 04:55:12 PM
I just started on the Tao Te Ching.  I haven't really read any Eastern religious/spiritual/philosophical texts before, and this one is the shortest and easiest!  :wink:

I'm reading an introductory book on Buddhism, as I just started attending a Buddhist group at the UU Church. Unfortunately, I'm having trouble following it. They gave me it and another book, although the second is just a loan. Unfortunately, the loaner was lying facedown in an awkward position on the floor of my truck when I noticed the back said something to the effect of "this book contains sacred Buddhist teachings and should be treated with respect." Crap.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on June 12, 2010, 11:27:15 AM
^ a cool and also small book on a similar topic is "there are no secrets" about the great tai chi guy chen man ching

and I'm rereading "Everyone's asking who I was" it's a compilation of crazy quotes a guy working at an old folks home compiled.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Allhallowsday on June 12, 2010, 11:39:34 AM
I'm rereading Severed The True Story of the Black Dahlia 
(http://i239.photobucket.com/albums/ff259/allhallowsday/SEVERED.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on June 12, 2010, 12:06:10 PM
Finished Bed of Nails. Pretty good book. The second half had more of a focus on the Cook Islands and their cannibal history, with the climax taking place there. The killer's agenda involves indulging in some old-school cannibalism, going as far as to lure the intended victim to the appropriate setting. One of the things I liked about this book is that it is one of only two or three Special X thrillers that revolve almost entirely around Insp. Zinc Chandler. Of all the recurring characters, he's the one most likely to engage in a high-speed chase, nearly get himself killed and score some tail, usually in the same book.

With only one Slade book left in the series, I'm going to take a break from Special X. Just started Peter Straub's Koko, based on a recommendation from Circus a while back. Looks good so far, although switching authors after reading the same one for several books in a row always requires a little time to shift gears. Takes me a couple of chapters to get used to a different style of writing.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on June 12, 2010, 12:47:37 PM
Just started Peter Straub's Koko, based on a recommendation from Circus a while back.


So, you've finally got round to it after you're Michael Slade marathon. I actually read Koko again last week, still the best novel I've ever ploughed through.  :thumbup:

Just finished reading this:
(http://blisstree.com/files/2010/04/n61831764125_3376.jpg)

The former guitar player of failed Sunset Strip band Onyxx recalls his wild days as a 16 year old rockstar. Totally my kind of read, short and sweet, packed full of hair metal madness and embarressing memories.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on June 12, 2010, 02:38:20 PM
52 Vol. 1-4: After the events of Infinite Crisis, all DC comics jumped ahead one year in comics.  So what happened during that odd and missing year?  Well this comic breaks down what happened every week from the rise of the Religion of Crime, the cult of Superboy, Lex Luther's Everyman Project, to return of the Multiverse.  It is one of the most interesting and well put together stories I have ever read.  Of course four of my favorite writers were in on the story: Mark Waid (Kingdom Come), Grant Morrison (All Star Superman), Greg Rucka (Gotham Central), and Geoff Johns (Green Lantern: Rebirth).

The Killing Joke: The short comic by Alan Moore about the possible origin of the Joker and his quest to drive Comissioner Gordon insane.  To sum it up in one word: Wow


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on June 17, 2010, 09:50:37 PM
This week I finished two books:

THE CRUSADER: RONALD REAGAN AND THE FALL OF COMMUNISM by Paul Kengor

Using many recently declassified documents from the 1980's and earlier, the author shows how the fall of the Iron Curtain on Reagan's watch was no accident of history but rather the result of a policy that Reagan was formulating as far back as the early 1960's.   Reagan's lifelong hatred of Communism was based on two things: its militant atheism, which stood opposed to his own Christian faith and the Judeo-Christian principles he believed to be the bedrock of Western Civilization, and its cruel denial of human rights, something he witnessed firsthand on a visit to East Germany in 1978.  I make no bones about believing that Reagan was the greatest President of my lifetime, and this book confirmed a lot of things I've suspected for years about Reagan, with very heavy documentation and use of primary sources to back it up.

WORLD WITHOUT END by Ken Follett.  This is the long awaited sequel to THE PILLARS OF THE EARTH, his epic tale of the building of Kingsbridge Cathedral in  12th century  England.  Set in the same village, and beginning about 150 years later, it describes a sworl of events that started when four children from Kingsbridge witness a swordfight between a weary, wounded knight and two men-at-arms.  It spans the beginning of the 100 Years' War and the devastation of the Bubonic Plague.  While not as original or compelling as PILLARS, it was still a very entertaining read.  I devoured its 1000 pages in three days!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on June 17, 2010, 09:53:24 PM
Dracula by Bram Stoker

Only about 30 pages in, it's pretty good so far!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on June 17, 2010, 10:26:52 PM
Once again, I continue through my comic books checked out from the library and here's where I am now:

Nightwing: Year One
Green Lantern Corps: Recharge
Batman: Haunted Knight
Superman: Secret Identity (If you can find a copy, it is an aboslute must read!)
Ultimate Spider-Man: Ultimate Collection Vol. 1
Batman: Year One (A must read for any Batman fan!)

Next up to read: Batman R.I.P.!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on June 20, 2010, 03:54:35 PM
I just got done reading the first two books in the Aleron Codex series by Jim Butcher.  It's a pretty good series!  It's a fantasy story set in a world where people can control various elementals (called Furies).  It's sort of like Avatar The Last Airbender.  I highly recommend it.  

I also recommend Butcher's other series The Dresden Files.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on June 20, 2010, 05:51:40 PM
KWAIDAN: The collection of Japanese ghost stories on which the movie was based.  I'm going to see the film after I've read the stories first.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on June 21, 2010, 06:06:40 PM
Voodoo: Strange Tales and Fascinating Lore, edited by John Richard Stephens. In the intro, the editor does a good job of sorting out the facts and rumors surrounding voodoo (along with other African diasporic religions), and then the stories (including those by Robert Louis Stevenson, H  Rider Haggard, and HG Wells, among others) take all the misinformation and run with it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on June 22, 2010, 04:38:01 AM
(http://img1.fantasticfiction.co.uk/images/c4/c22922.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on June 22, 2010, 11:17:33 AM
 I started but got bored with "crunchy cons" which is a book about the "alternative" right: republicans who are into organic food co ops and paying lip service to various ideas you think of as left wing like the evironment and ...you know good wines and stuff.

It's a good phenomenon but not one I am a part of. I hate vegatables organic or regular and don't really hae any ethical concerns with anything.

So I started rereading "the discovery of freedom" by rose wilder lane. I'ts one of my favorite books. Basically, her  belief is what we know as progressive is actually very regressive and doesn't look to the future but back to our ancient pagan past where we worshipped inumerable gods and believed heavily in fate and predestination.  

It was written in he 40's and it's interesting because it's right when the government was starting to become huge and she was cautioning people that you know, it wasn' long ago when we had no sort of free market and great populations of people starved to death and their were eras when really nothing of interest happened because everyone was so paranoid about offending the various gods.  No one listened to her of course.

Her mother was Laura Ingalls Wilder and she actually sort of ghost wrote alot of the Little House books


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on June 22, 2010, 07:50:40 PM
I just read WORLD WAR Z again today.  Awesome book, kind of like what might have happened if ALL Romero's zombie flicks came true at once.  Max Brooks is a genius.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on June 23, 2010, 08:29:47 PM
AMERICAN ON PURPOSE by Craig Ferguson.  Plenty of sordid stuff, like any entertainer's memoirs, but also very wry and funny.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on June 24, 2010, 11:04:13 AM
Finished Comfort to the enemy, great fast read.
I just got a bunch of screenplays I'll be reading next. ( Good Will Hunting, Invaders from Mars, The Thing, Evil Dead II, Natural Born Killers (original by Tarantino)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on June 24, 2010, 01:36:01 PM
Finished Comfort to the enemy, great fast read.
I just got a bunch of screenplays I'll be reading next. ( Good Will Hunting, Invaders from Mars, The Thing, Evil Dead II, Natural Born Killers (original by Tarantino)

Ooooh.  Let us know how that one is.  I'm quite curious what is different, as I've heard Stone changed it A LOT.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on June 30, 2010, 05:14:54 PM
Between Silk and Cyanide: A Codemaker's War, 1941-1945 by Leo Marks.  It's an autobiography of his days with the Special Operations Executive.  A unique perspective on the 'inside' of the war.  Reads like a spy novel and has many fascinating moments.  Marks' style is engaging and his subtle (mainly self-deprecating) humour makes an enjoyable read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on July 01, 2010, 02:34:40 AM
Caught In The Crossfire: The Stevie Ray Vaughan Story

Basically 35 years crammed into 275 pages, his early life upto gaining international recognition as one of the greatest guitar players and bluesmen of all time until his untimely death. It's told by various friends and family along with two co-authors filling in the rest. It's been a very interesting and enjoyable read so far...  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 01, 2010, 03:25:37 PM
Finished Comfort to the enemy, great fast read.
I just got a bunch of screenplays I'll be reading next. ( Good Will Hunting, Invaders from Mars, The Thing, Evil Dead II, Natural Born Killers (original by Tarantino)

Ooooh.  Let us know how that one is.  I'm quite curious what is different, as I've heard Stone changed it A LOT.

I got the script yesterday, and finished reading it yesterday. It's seriously great and would of made an awesome movie. I'm a big fan of Stone's film, but I'm really not sure if he changed it for the better.
Great read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Flick James on July 01, 2010, 04:58:19 PM
The user's guide for my new Droid phone. This thing does everything but iron my shirts.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 02, 2010, 06:58:59 AM
Just finished reading the ' Invaders from mars (1986)' script. I haven't seen the movie though, the script was alright, but the ending was absolutely stupid. I hate the 'it was all a dream' endings.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on July 04, 2010, 04:02:13 PM
Superman: Red Son

This is part of the Elseworld series, where certian superheroes are changed or the world is changed in order to tell a new story that wouldn't work with the regular continuity of the certain series.  This is a huge what if story if I have ever seen one.  What would happened if Superman's rocket land in the Soviet Union instead of in America?  Well apparently by 1953, Lois would marry Lex, Lex himself is actually trying to help America, Jimmy Olsen is apart of the government, Jonathan Kent (Superman's adoptive father in America) would pass away sooner, and Superman would become the poster boy for Communism.

There's more, but that would be spoiling things.  I'm on issue one of three so far, but I really like what I am seeing here.  It is a well written story that isn't an American propaganda story, but a story that protrays both America and Soviet Union as good and bad countries and an interesting look at communism vs. captialism.  The story has a lot of references to things happening during the 50s and everything feels just like the time period, with even President Eisenhower being called Ike and the old classic propaganda posters of Russia.  There's even more stuff, with appearances from other superheroes including Wonder Woman before she became who she is.  The art style is also very good as well.

This is one of the best Superman stories I have ever read, especially along side the already fantastic All Star Superman.  If you even like the character or even curious about the premise, you just have to see this.  I highly recommend this even when I'm only a third of the way in.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 05, 2010, 06:51:00 AM
Screenplays can be fun to read. Back around the time Freddy vs. Jason came out, maybe just before, I read a few rejected screenplays that had gotten leaked, any one of which would have been much better than what they actually made.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 05, 2010, 09:48:28 AM
Screenplays can be fun to read. Back around the time Freddy vs. Jason came out, maybe just before, I read a few rejected screenplays that had gotten leaked, any one of which would have been much better than what they actually made.
Any chance you still have them ?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 05, 2010, 09:53:09 AM
It was years ago, and I never had hard copies of them.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on July 05, 2010, 11:48:25 AM
"Basketball and Philosophy."  This is part of a series teaching philosophical concepts in the context of popular culture: there are books on the Lord of the Rings, film noir, science fiction films, and the X-Files, among others.  I've read two essays so far---one touching on the vanished community spirit of Indiana high school basketball, the other on the ethics of the "hack-a-Shaq" strategy---and they were both interesting, clearly written for laymen.  It's a good idea and I might pick up some other books in the series.

But the coolest thing about this volume is the foreword (called the "power foreword"  :lookingup:) by none other than Dick Vitale.  Sample: "...who would ever think to associate basketball with the term 'communitarianism'? That's a mouthful, baby!"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on July 06, 2010, 08:05:55 PM
SILAS MARNER


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on July 08, 2010, 04:07:17 PM
(http://i268.photobucket.com/albums/jj23/tectech/tourist.gif)



(http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc133/tonyisabella/DocSavage8.jpg)

   This is one of the Nostalgia Venture reprints which include full uncut adventures plus additonal information, usually interviews or essays by pulp historians. They put out The Shadow adventures too and I highly recommend them all.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 08, 2010, 04:20:12 PM
(http://www.nickpage.co.uk/Reading/bird.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 08, 2010, 05:34:58 PM
Ye-es.

And since I haven't posted any reviews in a while, and since I have several more I can post in the future. this will be a double post.

Nicholas Sparks' "The Last Song"

Sometimes you just have to read something you wouldn't normally read.

I see that he's listed on the cover of the paperback, that he's the #1 Romance Author in America.

Which surprises me in a couple of ways. (1st) It has always been my opinion that while men write the best action, women write the best romance. Thus, there's that. And (2nd) he uses his own name. While there are not many male romance writers out there, there are more than one supposes, as they are often forced to use a female pseudonym to get their work published and read.

As for the book itself, not an unpleasant surprise, but a surprise how much religion is in the book, which may be why he is the #1 Romance Author in America.

And he is definitely a product of the old South, as the calls it The War Between the States. Not many people call it that, not even in the South, as if calling it that makes it less than a civil war, which it was.

Simpson Comics by various authors

A republishing and repackaging by HarperCollins of five or six issues first published between 1999 and 2008.

When did the Simpson stop being funny? Were they ever funny, but certainly, the lack of humor could be note at least a decade ago, when the first of these were published. I can see their attempt to be funny, but it doesn't work. At least for me.

Next time: Lewis Caroll's "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on July 08, 2010, 07:14:20 PM

When did the Simpson stop being funny?


1998.  Brad Bird (who was a creative consultant and occasional episode director) left, Phil Hartman died, the writing staff started taking their cues from "hip" new shows like South Park and, later, Family Guy.  Many fans of the show cite the "Homer's Enemy" ep as the turning point, as it is the first episode where Homer's oafish tendencies are viewed as an amusing thing to be tolerated, rather than a character flaw that he has to try to overcome; and the quality does begin to drop off from there.  Seasons 9 and 10 had a few bright spots but once they killed off Maude Flanders they entered a dimension of suck that they've never come back from.

Anyway, back on topic....
I'm about halfway through The Passage by Justin Cronin.  So far it's really really good, reminds me a little of The Stand.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on July 08, 2010, 07:48:25 PM
I've been through Grant Morrison's works recently.  Here's how I rank them in order from best to worse:

+ Batman and Son (I certianly wasn't confused when reading it, unlike the rest of the works this guy did...)
+ Batman: R.I.P. (VERY CONFUSING, but it was a blast to read with some great twists and pure moments of awesome)
+ Batman: The Black Glove (Very interesting mystery, but I certianly need to read more in the Batman mythos more)
+ Final Crisis (Oh my god.  I've never been so confused and lost at the same time.  There's some great moments here for characters, fights looked great, and I liked it a bit.  However, this is ultimately just purely crazy and hard to follow)

These are all fun to read, but you seriously need to do a lot of research to follow all of these stories and even then, these comics are pretty hard to understand.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on July 09, 2010, 01:37:25 AM
I've been reading Grant Morrison for almost 20 years now. It's a weird tick of fate that he has become DC's go-to guy. He's a great writer, but he's a die-hard counter-culturalist whose personal philosophy is colored by lots and lots of drug use. Final Crisis is split amongst so many comics, even I can't make sense of it.

His recent Batman stuff is great, though. Especially the Black Glove, but that may have to do with the phenomenal work of J.H. Williams.

I am currently reading:

Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace. I finally finished up my second reading of Gravity's Rainbow (with annotations), so a new 1100 page novel is right up my alley.

Medical Biochemistry. Yet another textbook.

Brain Thief by Alexander Jablokov. Just a sci-fi book I picked up for fun.

Information: The New Language of Science by Hans Christian von Baeyer. I got interested in information theory. I don't think this book will be very illuminating, but you have to start somewhere.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on July 09, 2010, 05:43:11 AM
([url]http://i268.photobucket.com/albums/jj23/tectech/tourist.gif[/url])



([url]http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc133/tonyisabella/DocSavage8.jpg[/url])

   This is one of the Nostalgia Venture reprints which include full uncut adventures plus additonal information, usually interviews or essays by pulp historians. They put out The Shadow adventures too and I highly recommend them all.


I have the entire collection of Doc Savage paperback books from Bantam Books and I've been reading them over a period of years.  I recently finished #34 MAD EYES.  Next up is #35 THE SQUEAKING GOBLIN.  (Of course, the books aren't numbered in the same sequence as the stories were originally published).  These are great books to read on airplanes because you can usually finish an entire book on one flight (more than one if the flight is long enough).  I also have all but one of THE AVENGER paperbacks.  The last one I read was #3 THE SKY WALKER.  Up next is #4 THE DEVIL'S HORNS.




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 09, 2010, 08:37:26 AM
Just finished IMPEACHED: THE TRIAL OF ANDREW JOHNSON AND THE FIGHT FOR LINCOLN'S LEGACY.

Johnson was once portrayed as a heroic martyr who was persecuted by the vicious radicals who wanted to further punish the broken, bleeding South after the Civil War, and his impeachment as an unconstitutional assault on the executive branch by the Congress. Now he is seen more as a brooding racist, a "hater when the nation needed a healer," who was determined to let the Rebels in the South regain power and do nothing to stop the mass murder and violence committed against the newly freed slaves.

This is an excellent book, well worth the legalese you have to wade through, to get a picture of the country at the end of the Civil War and the beginning of Reconstruction.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on July 09, 2010, 11:18:39 AM


Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace. I finally finished up my second reading of Gravity's Rainbow (with annotations), so a new 1100 page novel is right up my alley.


An impressive and imposing book.  My advice is to consider each segment as a short story; if you expect all the different threads Wallace creates to come together in the end in a satisfying way, you may be disappointed.  I did like the entire Don Gately arc a lot.  Another tip: once you reach the end of the book (which should occur sometime in 2014), go back to the beginning and re-read the very first segment. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 13, 2010, 09:12:21 AM
I'm done with Bird by Bird. It's great non-fictionnal, funny book on writing. If you're into writing I definately recommend it, it has some good advice.
I'm gonna read some quick screenplays now, ( Juno, John Carpenter's The Thing, Arcade, From Dusk till Dawn ) when I get them. I'm also planning on reading ' Mary Mary ' by James Patterson.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 13, 2010, 09:42:33 AM
Still reading Koko. I'm enjoying it a lot, but it's longer than it seems. I'm not nearly as far along as I would have expected for the time I've spent reading.

Not that I mind. It's a good book, and my usual complaint with thrillers is that they're over too quickly. This is one I can savour a bit.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on July 15, 2010, 09:34:22 PM
"Altered States: Creativity Under the Influence."  Not so much about artists and drugs as it is about the author's belief in paranormal phenomenon and his interest in any kind of fringe, New Agey spiritualism.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on July 15, 2010, 11:57:59 PM

I just NOW (as in five minutes ago) got down reading The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. 

It tacks place sometime in the future where the United States has been divided up into the Capital and twelve districts.  As continual punishment for a long ago rebellion, the rulers make each district send two participants, a boy and girl chosen by lottery, to compete in The Hunger Games, a battle royale where there can be only one survivor.  When her younger sister's name gets drawn, Katniss volunteers to take her place.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41An3EkuVCL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg)

The book is a bit like Battle Royale and Death Wish 2000, only not as graphic.  It's a great read, and I'm looking forward to reading the next two books in the trilogy.

http://www.amazon.com/Hunger-Games-Suzanne-Collins/dp/0439023483/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1279255848&sr=8-1 (http://www.amazon.com/Hunger-Games-Suzanne-Collins/dp/0439023483/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1279255848&sr=8-1)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 16, 2010, 02:22:30 AM
After a couple of screenplays I started reading ' Mary Mary ' by James Patterson yesterday.
(http://i641.photobucket.com/albums/uu133/measter99/marymary.jpg)
It's good so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BeyondTheGrave on July 16, 2010, 07:10:39 PM
(http://traversa.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/2007/07/28/largeanimepaperscans_planetes_nic_2.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on July 28, 2010, 11:17:43 AM
GULLIVER'S TRAVELS


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 28, 2010, 04:30:33 PM
Ye-es.

But, first I want to thank Chaos Theory for answering my question, as I now see I'm not missing anything by not watching "The Simpsons."

Lewis Carroll's "Alice's Adventures In Wonderland."

I had read it before, but after seeing the film, I thought I'd read it again. And while there was nothing like it before, there's been nothing like it since.

Not only is it a children's book, but it is also . . .

a book of puns and puzzles . . .
a poetry book . . .
and a book of parodies.

I had forgotten how short it was, as it runs only about 100 pages.

And while I read an unannotated version, I'd recommend "The Annotated Alice" by Martin Gardner, as it explains alot of what is going on in the book.

Next time:  "A. V. Club's Inventory"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on July 28, 2010, 08:25:39 PM
Ye-es.

But, first I want to thank Chaos Theory for answering my question, as I now see I'm not missing anything by not watching "The Simpsons."



(Merlin voice) "You're welcome!"  :cheers:
 
Finished The Passage, got a little muddled in the third act but still quite good; am just starting A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again, a collection of essays by David Foster Wallace. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 28, 2010, 08:40:44 PM
I read a biography last week entitled GOEBBELS, by Georg Reuth.  A fascinating look at the life of Hitler's Minister of Propaganda, and one of the most loathsome hatemongers of all time. He was the most anti-Semitic of the Nazi leadership, after Hitler himself, and poured out his venom on the radio, movie screen, and in print.  He packaged and sold Hitler to the German people as if "Der Fuhrer" was a new brand of soap, and was rewarded with many honors once Hitler seized power.   Goebbels was the most loyal of the Nazis, however - after Hitler's death, while the others were scrambling to get out of Berlin while the getting was good, he supervised the burning of the Fuhrer's body, then he and his wife poisoned their 6 children and killed themselves, giving orders for their bodies to be burned in the same courtyard as Hitler's.



And they burn together to this day!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on July 28, 2010, 08:58:35 PM
am just starting A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again, a collection of essays by David Foster Wallace. 

What is it with folks on this board suddenly deciding to read D.F. Wallace?  Anyway, that's a good essay collection.  The title essay and the one where he goes to the state fair are hilarious.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on July 30, 2010, 01:28:36 AM
I started reading Paradise Lost.  Yeah.  It'll probably take me a while, but for some reason I actually like epic poetry.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on July 30, 2010, 01:52:28 AM
am just starting A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again, a collection of essays by David Foster Wallace. 

What is it with folks on this board suddenly deciding to read D.F. Wallace?  Anyway, that's a good essay collection.  The title essay and the one where he goes to the state fair are hilarious.

I've had a coworker, who is aware of my Pynchon fascination, pushing Wallace on me for a while. It just happened to come up on my reading list. It's a long list that I perversely attack in a sequential order.

On the other hand, I threw in a couple of hardcore chemistry texts that I will have to explore before I can move onto something else.

Lastly, I was going to put off this book, "James Madison: The Founding Father," but somebody else put it on hold. I'm reading it now, but how did a book on James Madison become the most sought after book on my reading list?

Apparently I'm not the only dude interested in James Madison.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 30, 2010, 08:14:33 AM
'Eyes of the Dragon' by Stephen King
(http://rgr-static1.tangentlabs.co.uk/images/ar/97803409/9780340952726/150/0/plain/eyes-of-the-dragon.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 31, 2010, 09:53:37 AM
I just finished 1864: LINCOLN AT THE GATES OF HISTORY by Charles Flood.  One of the best Lincoln books I have ever read, second only to TEAM OF RIVALS, this book looks at the incredible hardships and looming disasters that Lincoln faced as he tried to manage the Civil War and run for re-election at the same time, with the fate of the Union hanging in the balance.  Very well done, this book shows all sides of Lincoln - the master politician, the political dealer, the tortured soul,  and the idealistic hero that was our 16th President.  A very worthwhile read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on August 01, 2010, 11:51:51 AM
re reading "where the right went wrong" by patrick buchanan. it's great but some of these issues, the wmd in iraq was the war justified things, it's too early to want to hear all that stuff again. they were on every pundit show every day for years.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on August 01, 2010, 02:10:47 PM
(http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c375/fausto963/RedChurch.jpg)

Interesting and very researched work on PA Dutch folk magic, specifically healing. My only complaint is that its badly edited, with major spelling mistakes and grainy photos. Both the author and the material deserve better.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on August 01, 2010, 02:24:28 PM
I hit an out of town comic book shop in search of the latest issue of Green Lantern Corps when I discovered the following series to read:

Gotham Central:  Only managed to find the first issue, but it was pretty good and has put this series on the radar for me.  I will try to find some of the other issues when I can.

Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane: This is techincally the only Marvel series I have (Not many series from that company makes me want to read them outside of Ultimate Spider-Man.) and it is pretty good.  The art style is pretty decent and it is strongly written.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on August 01, 2010, 02:35:23 PM
Gotham Central:  Only managed to find the first issue, but it was pretty good and has put this series on the radar for me.  I will try to find some of the other issues when I can.


Thats a great comic series !  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on August 03, 2010, 06:16:42 AM
Finished 'The eyes of the Dragon' and it's one of the best books I read in a while.
Now I started reading 'Salem's lot'
(http://images.contentreserve.com/ImageType-200/1535-1/%7BC336087D-CC8E-4A58-9A34-5A68C3C700E0%7DImg200.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on August 03, 2010, 08:07:21 AM
Gotham Central:  Only managed to find the first issue, but it was pretty good and has put this series on the radar for me.  I will try to find some of the other issues when I can.


Thats a great comic series !  :thumbup:

Of course.  Greg Rucka is behind it!  He wrote 52, the novel version of Batman: No Man Land, for Wonder Woman, and really awesome Batwoman: Elegy for Detective Comics.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on August 08, 2010, 03:35:57 AM
Salem's Lot was quite good. I think I'm gonna start reading 'Running Man' next.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on August 10, 2010, 04:29:05 PM
In addition to GULLIVER'S TRAVELS, I've been reading quite a few comics lately.  I recently subscribed to about 15 titles (mostly Marvel, but a few DC . . . and I even subscribed to MAD MAGAZINE), plus I've been reading Silver and Bronze Age back-issues.  Last night I read X-MEN #47.  Not one of the best X-MEN stories, but you still gotta love those books from the 1960s.

(http://images1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20100708170127/marveldatabase/images/thumb/6/67/X-Men_Vol_1_47.jpg/300px-X-Men_Vol_1_47.jpg)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Derf on August 11, 2010, 08:34:18 AM
I just started reading Fart Proudly, a collection of essays by Benjamin Franklin that don't normally get read in schools. It shows more of the mischievous side of Franklin. It includes portions of Poor Richard's Almanack, which he shamelessly used to lampoon marriage, morality, the Crown, and often, even the almanac itself (he wrote his own letters to the editor when he felt like it). The book also contains essays that Franklin published elsewhere, many of which have to do with farting. Apparently Franklin never killed off his inner 8-year-old. Ya gotta admire that in a man.  :tongueout:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on August 11, 2010, 09:27:42 AM
(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_uE0wtsbZdVk/SP-HejlKWpI/AAAAAAAABuc/ydop3C7G6A8/s320/IncredibleShrinkingManBook.jpg)


includes "nightmare at 20,000 feet" short story


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on August 11, 2010, 10:04:34 AM
I just read through all three big volumes of DC's Blackest Night.  The Blackest Night one that has the main story, the Green Lantern one, and the Green Latern Corps one as well in order to complete and make the story at very least understandable.  Very good work.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Gravekeeper on August 11, 2010, 04:33:26 PM
"Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper Case Closed" by Patricia Cornwell as part of some research for an upcoming project.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on August 11, 2010, 04:35:16 PM
Do you think she really closed the case?  I'm not so sure, although it was a good read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Gravekeeper on August 11, 2010, 05:20:19 PM
Do you think she really closed the case?  I'm not so sure, although it was a good read.

For the purposes I'm using the book for, it's a moot point. I'm just doing some general research on the Victorian era and reading a few horror stories from that period in order to get a good feel for how to write a pseudo-gothic horror story.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on August 11, 2010, 05:52:36 PM
Ye-es.

The A.V. Club's "Inventory"

A book of 100 pop culture lists.

As with all such books, it has the normal faults.

Inclusions
"The Simpsons"

Exclusions
In a list of movie drunks who sobered up enough to save the day, they forgot the classic Kid Shelleen played by Lee Marvin in "Cat Ballou," who not only sobered up enough to saye the day, but then fell off the wagon, only to save the day again.

Uptodateness
In a list of TV animated series loved by both adults and children, they forgot "Phineas and Ferb," which is loved by children for the title characters, and adults for the jokes, most of which go right over the heads of the children in the audinece.

Still, I like to see another edition of the book. If only because the last list is a list of pop culture items that did not make the first book. For me "Heady Entertainment: 11 Memorable Beheadings Not Found in Horror Films." And for everyone else 'Going Postal: 5 Uwe Boll Films That Are Actually Good."

Nex time: The Vampire Archives


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on August 12, 2010, 07:24:49 AM
The Running Man was really good. I'm now reading a few other screenplays and I've been reading the 'Preacher' comics. They're awesome. I also ordered 'Batman: The Dark Knight Returns' of Amazon  :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on August 12, 2010, 12:35:57 PM
"Moviemakers' Master Class: Private Lessons from the World's Foremost Directors."  Advice from 20 top directors, including Tim Burton, the Coen Brothers, David Cronenberg, David Lynch, Martin Scorcese, John Woo.... should be very interesting.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on August 12, 2010, 03:09:00 PM
"Moviemakers' Master Class: Private Lessons from the World's Foremost Directors."  Advice from 20 top directors, including Tim Burton, the Coen Brothers, David Cronenberg, David Lynch, Martin Scorcese, John Woo.... should be very interesting.
Sounds like something I need to read  :teddyr: Let us know how it is.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on August 21, 2010, 11:42:49 AM
THE STRANGE CASE OF DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE by Robert Louis Stevenson


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on August 22, 2010, 08:42:31 PM
THE STRANGE CASE OF DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE by Robert Louis Stevenson

I read that for the 1st time not very long ago.   :thumbup:

Wanted to tell Vik that the Moviemaker's Master Class book is a definite must read if you're at all interested in filmmaking.  I'm about halfway through, and some of the directors are starting to repeat themselves... which suggests they're all onto something.  Topics include philosophy in dealing with actors, planning vs. spontaneity, what kind of lens or shot to use to get an effect.  Very interesting for anyone who loves movies.  :thumbup:   


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on August 25, 2010, 04:37:23 PM
Ye-es.

"The Vampire Archives"

81 of the best vampire stories as selected and edited by Otto Penzler.

Vampire stories fall into three categories: pre-Stoker, Stoker, and post-Stoker.

Pre-Stoker, we get stories from . . .

Ambrose Bierce
Lord Byron
Von Goethe
John Keats
Sheridan LeFanu
Edgar Allen Poe

Stoker
"Dracula" was the first vampire novel he wrote, but his first vampire story was the short story "The Fate of Fenella," which was published some five years before "Dracula."

Post-Stoker, we get stories from the normal suspects . . .

Clive Barker
Robert Bloch
August Derleth
Stephen King
Richard Laymon
H. P. Lovecraft
Brian Lumley
Richard Matheson
Anne Rice
Dan Simmons

And maybe because science fiction is so close to horror, we get stories from writers who are better known for their science fiction, such as . . .

Ray Bradbury
Harlan Ellison
Fritz Leiber
Roger Zelazny

And then we get stories from people you don't suspect to write a vampire story, such as . . .

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
D. H. Lawrence
Guy de Maupassant
Gahan Wilson.

The collection also contains a one page short bio on each of the writers, and for some of the writers their bio is stranger than any piece of fiction they could write.

And there seems to be an inclusive bibliography containing every vampire story ever published. Chronologically it ranges from Dr. John William Polidori's "The Vampyre" from 1819, which is considered the first vampire story ever written, to vampire stories published as late as 2008. And alphabetically it ranges from Tony Abbott's "Trapped in Transylvania" to Susan Zoon's "Vampire Lover."

Next time: "This is not your father's omnibus."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on August 26, 2010, 09:03:24 AM
THE STRANGE CASE OF DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE by Robert Louis Stevenson

I read that for the 1st time not very long ago.   :thumbup:

Wanted to tell Vik that the Moviemaker's Master Class book is a definite must read if you're at all interested in filmmaking.  I'm about halfway through, and some of the directors are starting to repeat themselves... which suggests they're all onto something.  Topics include philosophy in dealing with actors, planning vs. spontaneity, what kind of lens or shot to use to get an effect.  Very interesting for anyone who loves movies.  :thumbup:   
Awesome, I'm going to check that one out  :teddyr:
Right now I'm reading 'The Mist' by Stephen King and a bunch of other short stories out of 'Skeleton Crew'


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on August 26, 2010, 11:54:06 AM
Needed to put Koko down for a while. It kind of started to drag as the guys were wandering around Singapore. Give it a week or so, and I'll be able to pick it up again.

Right now, I'm about halfway through Watchmen. I remember seeing it in comic shops in the 80s, I remember hearing a little bit about it, but I never actually read it, and until the movie came out, I didn't really know what it was about. The whole graphic novel thing was something I never got into when I was reading comics. I just assumed it was some new, edgy team of heroes and forgot about it.

So far, it's very interesting. Well thought-out and well written. Very dark and grim though, but I suppose that's part of the premise that a world with real superheroes might be worse, not better. The alternate history is very good, and the psychological analysis of the characters is interesting, if depressing at times. Visually, it's excellent.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on August 26, 2010, 12:55:51 PM
http://mises.org/books/lessons_for_the_young_economist_murphy.pdf

anarchist economist Roberty Murphy's new econ textbook. I don't really like reading PDF files but I have nothing else to do


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on September 06, 2010, 08:28:49 PM
I've been reading the owner's manual for my new Libre e-reader, although it's kind of sparse.  I probably figured out more of the functions just playing with it.

Also reading Under The Dome, almost halfway through.  I have mixed feelings about it.  The story's good but the characters are pretty cliche (or maybe they just seem that way b/c I've read a lot of King.  He likes his tropes.)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on September 06, 2010, 09:40:55 PM
I've been thinking about getting a Libre, when I can justify the expense. I've been getting a lot more reading material in electronic form, and reading books off a monitor can be a pain.

Is the Libre any good? The reviews seem positive, the specs look good and the price is right.


As for what I'm reading right now, I finished Watchmen. I can certainly understand why fans were disappointed with the revised ending of the movie. The scheme in the comic was much cooler.

I'm back on Koko, and wouldn't you know the story picks up steam within a few pages of where I put it down. It's also gotten more complicated, which I like in this kind of thriller.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on September 07, 2010, 06:58:09 PM
Ye-es.

This is not your father's omnibus.

Apparently, there were two omnibuses based on the film Character Indiana Jones.

The first one was subtitled: "The Further Adventures," and was published by Marvel Comics as a monthly between January, 1983, and March, 1986, except for the months of June, August, October, December 1985; and February 1986.

They also published special illustrated editions of "Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark," "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom," and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade."

The second one was not subtitled and was published by Darkhorse Comics between 1991 and 1996 and was meant for an older audience than the first omnibus.

In comparison to the first omnibus, there are both ++ and -- to the second omnibus.

++
The artwork is better.
The stories are more complex.
The characters are more colorful.
And it references characters and events from the past.

--
It is more violent.
The stories are more confusing.
The characters are more unlikable.
The evens are more illogical.
And there is less comedy.

One of the strangest differences I found between the two ominbuses is that in the first omnibus, as in the films, Jones teaches at Marshall in Connecticut, but in the second ombibus he teaches at Barnett in New York State.

Next time: "Robin: Year One"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on September 07, 2010, 07:43:30 PM
I've been thinking about getting a Libre, when I can justify the expense. I've been getting a lot more reading material in electronic form, and reading books off a monitor can be a pain.

Is the Libre any good? The reviews seem positive, the specs look good and the price is right.


I've only had mine a couple days but I'm liking it so far.  I hear ya on the price thing; what sold me on the Libre was, it has an SD slot so you can really expand the holding capacity.  It's a little smaller screen but you can rotate it to read vertically or horizontally.  It's compatible with epub, pdf and text files and the 100 free books it comes with are actually legit classics like Frankenstein, Dracula, The Iliad, Plutarch's Lives.  There's no backlight on the screen and no glare if you read outside.  The only bad things, it loads a little slow when you select your books (although transfering from the computer to the reader is fast) and the battery life isn't great, but it does come with a charger.  Overall it seems to be a good reader for the price.  If you're looking for lower-priced readers, I would advise not getting a Kobo, at least not yet.  The Borders where I work has had to return at least half a dozen due to bugginess.    Hope that's helpful!  :cheers:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Gravekeeper on September 07, 2010, 07:47:53 PM
I just picked up "Frankenstein" again. So yeah, I'm among the few people who get annoyed when people call the monster "Frankenstein" and when they assume that the monster was this lumbering, dumb creature. Maybe people just assume that because it's an old book that it will contain lots of flowery language that they don't understand. I personally don't think the general use of language in the novel is that different from what we'd hear today (except that there are few contractions and slang is pretty minimal, though that's likely because the writer was associated with poets and whatnot). As for coming across words you don't understand: it's called a dictionary.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on September 10, 2010, 03:56:37 PM
I just picked up "Frankenstein" again. Maybe people just assume that because it's an old book that it will contain lots of flowery language that they don't understand.

I recently finished reading THE STRANGE CASE OF DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE and I think your FRANKENSTEIN comments apply to this one, too.  I anticipate reading both FRANKENSTEIN and DRACULA in the near future as they are included in the 100 Greatest Books Ever Written by the Easton Press, which I'm currently working my way through slowly but surely.  I started reading both books when I was much younger, but didn't finish either of them.  I probably made 2 or 3 attempts at each.  They were library books and I always ended up returning them before I finished.  I thought DRACULA was brilliant, so I'm not sure why I never finished it.  I was less enthusiastic about FRANKENSTEIN.  But I was probably only 12 or 13 years old when I tried to read them and I'm sure I'll have a much better appreciation now.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on September 10, 2010, 04:03:05 PM
I just picked up "Frankenstein" again. Maybe people just assume that because it's an old book that it will contain lots of flowery language that they don't understand.

I recently finished reading THE STRANGE CASE OF DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE and I think your FRANKENSTEIN comments apply to this one, too.  I anticipate reading both FRANKENSTEIN and DRACULA in the near future as they are included in the 100 Greatest Books Ever Written by the Easton Press, which I'm currently working my way through slowly but surely.  I started reading both books when I was much younger, but didn't finish either of them.  I probably made 2 or 3 attempts at each.  They were library books and I always ended up returning them before I finished.  I thought DRACULA was brilliant, so I'm not sure why I never finished it.  I was less enthusiastic about FRANKENSTEIN.  But I was probably only 12 or 13 years old when I tried to read them and I'm sure I'll have a much better appreciation now.



That reminds me I need to finish Dracula! It was really good. I only got about 30-50 pages in so I might as well re-start the book since it's been so long.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on September 16, 2010, 03:14:52 PM
I've been reading several of the trade paperbacks from the series Astro City.  It's a really good series!  It's about a city where lots of superheros dwell, but it focuses more on the various human aspects of their lives rather than super battles and stuff.  What's really unusual is that in many of the issues a regular person, rather than a superhero, is likely to be the main character (some stories have even centered around villains of various types.)

The series is written by Kurt Buseik who also wrote Thunderbolts, another great series.

If you like comics, I'd recommend you check it out!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: metalmonster on September 16, 2010, 03:22:13 PM
I Have Read A Few Books In The Past Week


SCOOBY DOO AND THE ZOMBIE'S TREASURE
BEAUTY IS A BEAST
FAWN AND THE MYSTERIOUS TRICKSTER
BEEZUS AND RAMONA


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on September 16, 2010, 05:30:29 PM
"A Mencken Chrestomanthy" ("Chrestomatthy" is an obscure, pretentious word Mencken chose because he didn't want to put out yet another book title "anthology" or "omnibus"). These are short pieces, mostly newspaper column length, and I'll be picking it up and putting it down for a while. 

"Labyrinths" by Jose Luis Borges.  Philosophical fantasy. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BeyondTheGrave on September 16, 2010, 06:02:38 PM
"War" by Sebastian Junger


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on September 16, 2010, 07:07:20 PM
I recently finished reading THE STRANGE CASE OF DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE and I think your FRANKENSTEIN comments apply to this one, too.  I anticipate reading both FRANKENSTEIN and DRACULA in the near future as they are included in the 100 Greatest Books Ever Written by the Easton Press, which I'm currently working my way through slowly but surely.  I started reading both books when I was much younger, but didn't finish either of them.  I probably made 2 or 3 attempts at each.  They were library books and I always ended up returning them before I finished.  I thought DRACULA was brilliant, so I'm not sure why I never finished it.  I was less enthusiastic about FRANKENSTEIN.  But I was probably only 12 or 13 years old when I tried to read them and I'm sure I'll have a much better appreciation now.

I made the mistake of trying to read a few classics at too early an age, and it's actually made me wary of reading them now. Moby Dick springs to mind. I tried reading that when I was 9 or 10, and found it too long, too slow and too hard to follow. But Ishmael wasn't even on the ship yet when I gave up. I think he'd just encountered Queequeg for the first time. I've probably read plenty of books more challenging than that, but I still remember Moby Dick as it seemed to me at that age.

Had a similar experience with War of the Worlds when I was maybe a bit younger than that, but I picked it up around the time the Tom Cruise movie came out and almost finished it in a sitting. Not a long book at all, and for being over a century old, the language was surprisingly similar to the present day. A few odd turns of phrase, but other than that, it could have been a period story written today. Although, if it were, it would probably come off sounding more archaic.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on September 16, 2010, 08:59:35 PM
"Labyrinths" by Jose Luis Borges.  Philosophical fantasy. 

I wanted to pick that up the other day, but the only edition I could find was a mass market paperback with a shiny silver cover which I cannot stand. A case where the book is the selling point trying to make up for the cover.

I made the mistake of trying to read a few classics at too early an age, and it's actually made me wary of reading them now. Moby Dick springs to mind. I tried reading that when I was 9 or 10, and found it too long, too slow and too hard to follow. But Ishmael wasn't even on the ship yet when I gave up. I think he'd just encountered Queequeg for the first time. I've probably read plenty of books more challenging than that, but I still remember Moby Dick as it seemed to me at that age.

But... spooning with Queequeg is the best part of the book!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on September 20, 2010, 07:58:35 PM
This morning it was slow at work so I read "This Is Water", the commencement speech David Foster Wallace gave at Kenyon College (I've been on a Wallace kick lately).  It was really beautiful, not like most commencement speeches  :teddyr:; I'll have to get my sister a copy when she graduates.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on September 23, 2010, 07:19:39 PM
Ye-es.

Robin Year One. Chuck Dixon, Scott Beatty, Javier Pulido, Marcos Martin, and Robert Campanella. DC Comics. 2002.

The first meeting of Robin and Batman. It has its moments, but alot of it doesn't make much sense, so Bob Kane did it better, as well as first, in 1940.

So what are the moments. It allows Alfred Pennyworth and Commissioner Gordon, here Captain Gordon, to step out of Batman's shadow and into the limelight.

The villains, such as Hatter and Killer Moth, are such ditzs, for example: Hatter is captured, when he hits the back of his head against a pipe and knocks himself cold, that I find them more entertaining than some of the better known villains.

The humor works surprisingly well. For example the Joker's and Batman's discussion of nuts and bolts. "I disposed of the nuts by swallowing them, and you really really don't want to know how I disposed of the bolts."

As for what doesn't make sense.

p. 132-139. Robin locks four of Mr. Freeze's goons into a room, but five break out.

p. 146-148. Why was Robin jumped by Shrike, Boone, and their junior ninjas?

p. 168. Why didn't they escape the same way from the museum?

p. 192. Why did Dent shoot Louis?

p. 194.  How did Shrike fall upon his blade without falling upon Boone at the same time?

p. 194. Why did Robin and Batman walk away from Boone?

p. 197.  After all that has happened, Dent's capture reduced to one page.

And the usual not limited to this.: confusing fight scenes and poorly differentated minor characters.

Next time: Sherlock Holmes







Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: metalmonster on September 23, 2010, 10:44:32 PM
I Started Reading The Book DRAGON'S KEEP , I'm About A Third Of The Way Through It And It's Pretty Good So Far


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on September 24, 2010, 08:36:43 AM
Still reading Koko, at a much more accelerated pace. Everything's starting to come together about two thirds of the way through. It's just flashed back to its fictionalized version of the My Lai massacre, which is apparently where the killer completely snapped 15 years earlier. Feels like there are lots more revelations to come.

Great book. Another fine recommendation from Circus.

It's kind of put me in the mood for military themes, so I've got Joseph Heller's Catch 22 on deck for after I finish this one. Been meaning to read it for years.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on October 03, 2010, 01:44:58 PM
Against Intellectual Property-Stephan Kinsella . argues against patents, trademarks and copyrights.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on October 03, 2010, 08:20:29 PM
I'm rereading the entire Monster manga series.  It's a pretty good serial killer thriller.  I would recommend it to all of you, but a bunch of the books are now out of print.  Don't know why the company is still having ads for the books if they are oop though.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: El Misfit on October 03, 2010, 08:43:28 PM
Grendel: Behold The Devil- It's a good start for a noir type graphic novel, it's my first non-DC Graphic novel


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on October 04, 2010, 12:36:08 AM
Grendel: Behold The Devil- It's a good start for a noir type graphic novel, it's my first non-DC Graphic novel

That's a great series. Matt Wagner was really at the top of his game when he was putting it together. Pay attention to the form of the comic--the art and words and page layout. The technical artistry at work was great, especially when so many are tied to comic panels that simply show the scene.

I actually met Matt Wagner at a comic convention when he was writing this. He held a panel talking about his covers.

Grendel's a series that has changed massively over time. My favorite is probably War Child, which is one of the best action comics I've ever read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on October 04, 2010, 09:21:22 AM
I recently read 'Sophie's World', very very interesting.  :thumbup:
At the moment I am reading 'Million Dollar Baby' which has really good written stories.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on October 04, 2010, 10:34:14 AM

I just finished reading Mockingjay, the final book in the Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins.  It's a really good series, and I highly recommend it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: metalmonster on October 05, 2010, 07:55:09 PM
THE PRINCESS AND THE UNICORN - By Carol Hughs

I'm About 170 Pages Into It And It's Getting Pretty Interesting


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on October 05, 2010, 09:51:25 PM
A couple of comics: The Dark Knight Returns, Green Lantern: Secret Origin, and Green Lantern: Rebirth.

For my latest college paper on the fast food industry, I am currently reading through Fast Food Nation.  Strangely enough, I still want to go to Burger King after reading it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Gravekeeper on October 05, 2010, 10:53:41 PM
Re-reading "Good Omens." I've barely had time to do my share of the chores and get my groceries, let alone go out and buy/borrow a new book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on October 06, 2010, 09:02:13 AM
Re-reading "Good Omens." I've barely had time to do my share of the chores and get my groceries, let alone go out and buy/borrow a new book.
:thumbup: I really enjoyed that one!  Pratchett and Gaiman make a great writing team.  :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on October 06, 2010, 10:25:14 AM
LES MISERABLES . . . my most ambitious book-reading experience since I read THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO a couple years ago.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on October 06, 2010, 11:13:29 AM
I got these from the library today:
To have and have not by Ernest Hemingway
The old man and the sea by Ernest Hemingway
Dreams by Carl Jung (collection of 5 articles of his)
and 'Sin City' by Frank Miller (graphic novel)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SkullBat308 on October 06, 2010, 03:57:53 PM
The Book Of Negroes- Lawrence Hill
Frankenstein Book 1- Dean Koontz
The Shock Doctrine- Naomi Klein
The Body and Social Theory- Chris Shilling
Where Race Does Not Matter: The New Spirit of Modernity- Cecil Foster
Sociology of the Body: A Reader


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on October 07, 2010, 02:27:41 PM
The Vampire economy - it's about the latter not the former. an insiders view of the demented economic system of the nazis


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on October 09, 2010, 07:22:34 PM
"The Complete Poetry of Cesar Vallejo."  No, I do not like modern poetry.  I'm only reading it because I'm about to review SONGS FROM THE SECOND FLOOR and the director says it inspired him to make the movie.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on October 10, 2010, 03:30:45 PM
Ye-es.

Sherlock Holmes. v.1. The trial of Sherlock Holmes in 5 chapters. Published by Dynamite Entertainment and including one of the lesser known Holmes short stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

If anything, this proves Doyle was a better writer than most of his imitators.

Plot
Doyle: unique
Imitators: old hat

Story
Doyle: clear
Imitators: confusing

Characters
Doyle: memorable
Imitators: unmemorable

Descriptions
Doyle: Colorful
Imitators: Colorless

Details
Doyle: that add to the story
Imitators: that add nothing to the story

Still, I have a certain amount of sympathy for anybody that tries to come up with something new in a graphic format, as because, almost as soon as the first Holmes story was off the presses, there were graphic adaptations, original stories in graphic format, and even graphic parodies.

Actually, my first introduction to Holmes, almost fifty years ago, were the stories in graphic format. Both adaptations of the stories and original stories.

And, while I'm not impressed by this, I did hear that the authors are working on a v. 2, which I would be interested in reading.

And finally, one thing about doing a graphic version of the story, one can draw the characters to reflect what you think they should look like. When one does a film version, one is stuck with whatever the actor looks like. And I doubt if many people think Holmes would look much like Robert Downey, jr.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on October 14, 2010, 06:48:06 PM
Just finished A Journey: My Political Life by Tony Blair.  Boring title, interesting book.

This morning at the library I picked up The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency by Alexandar McCall Smith.  I'd seen the show but never read any of the books so I figured I should give it a try.  Also picked up Urban Gothic by Brain Keene, b/c it's time for some Halloween reading  :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: metalmonster on October 16, 2010, 04:30:36 PM
LET ME IN - By John Lindqvist Ajvide

After Reading The Book I Went Out And Saw Both Movie Versions The Swedish And The American , Both Movies Were Pretty Good But Neither One Was As Good As The Book Wich Was Awesome!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on October 23, 2010, 07:45:32 PM
I'm currently reading through Stephen King's It.  This will certianly take quite a while being that the book is over 1,000 pages!  So far, it's pretty good, but not enough It.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on October 23, 2010, 09:04:03 PM
So far, it's pretty good, but not enough It.

Wait for It.  :twirl:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on October 23, 2010, 11:14:30 PM
I'm currently reading through Stephen King's It.  This will certianly take quite a while being that the book is over 1,000 pages!  So far, it's pretty good, but not enough It.

I read that a few years ago and I really enjoyed it, but it was also very confusing to me. I think part of that is due to my ADHD... Still the parts that I totally understood I really liked! Now of course I don't remember them very well... I'll just have to re-read it someday!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on October 28, 2010, 08:53:49 AM
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v298/Wildcardgal/wadebook.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on October 28, 2010, 09:46:49 AM
I'm currently reading through Stephen King's It.  This will certianly take quite a while being that the book is over 1,000 pages!  So far, it's pretty good, but not enough It.

I read that a few years ago and I really enjoyed it, but it was also very confusing to me. I think part of that is due to my ADHD... Still the parts that I totally understood I really liked! Now of course I don't remember them very well... I'll just have to re-read it someday!

I read it a little over a year ago myself. What I liked best was the way King conveyed the idea of growing up in a pre-1980s small town, and returning years later to find it changed, yet disturbingly familiar. I can relate to that.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on October 28, 2010, 05:30:53 PM
Ye-es.

The sublime and the ridiculous.

The sublime. They're back and they're in hard cover.  Classics illustrated.  Deluxe edition. "Wind in the Willows." "Tales from the Brothers Grimm." and "Frankenstein." Regular edition. "Great Expectations" "The Invisible Man" "Through the Looking Glass' "The Raven and Other Poems." "Hamlet" and forthcoming "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde."

I read "Hamlet," which is not only regarded as being Shakespeare's greatest play, but one of the greates plays ever written. It is not my favorite of his plays, but I did study it in college, and I've seen umpteeneth versiions of it, and this, while an abbreviated version, is a fairly decent version, as it gets at the gist of the story. Adapted by Steve Grant and Tom Mandrake.

The ridiculous. "Twilight: the Graphic Novel" Stephanie Meyer and Young Kim. It starts out well enough. While the plot has been done multitude times before, it is passable. And the early writing is decent, but as the writing continues it seemingly--unintentionally--becomes increasingly bizarre. They sparkle. She'll never live that down. And as the story becomes increasingly bizarre, it becomes increasingly laughatble and increasingly illogical. Here's a vampire family that doesn't want to draw attention to itself, so it lives for--apparently--generations in the same town without growing older or changing. Yeah, that makes sense.

Next time: "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies"



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on October 29, 2010, 09:12:25 AM
I just got David Alexander's Gene Roddenberry: Star Trek Creator from the library.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on October 29, 2010, 12:27:15 PM
Trevor- read it quickly enough so you can return it on time, otherwise you will receive a fine.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on October 30, 2010, 11:44:24 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51OKyPzo9NL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)

Its a victorian adventure !

Why am I reading it ?
Erm... No idea. I was in the libarary and felt guilty that I wasn't taking any books out so I took out the above book's sequal too:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/519NjGuKo5L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)

And I took out this:
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51G9RmnIsdL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)

Which is part of a series of books, only it doesn't mention that on the cover. So I'm in the middle of a bunch of characters and situations I don't understand. I'm determined to finish it though.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on November 09, 2010, 02:13:31 AM

I just got done reading Changes by Jim Butcher, the latest in the Dresden Files series.  A pretty good book, but I have to admit, I didn't care for the ending, as it pretty much ends on a bit of a cliff-hanger.  Gotta feel sorry for Harry though, he goes through a lot of crap in this book. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on November 09, 2010, 09:29:03 AM
Finished Koko. Overall, a good book. It dragged in a couple of places, and I found myself taking a break from it more than once, but very interesting. I did, however, find the ending to be something of a letdown. I liked the way it ended, as well as the epilogue, but I found the confrontation with Koko to be a little less tense and exciting than I'd expected. Not to mention that we begin to get a clearer picture of what a bona fide monster one of the other characters (Beevers) is, just in time for him to get shoved into the background. Admittedly, irrelevance was the most fitting fate for him. We get some idea of Koko's motives, but he's still largely a mystery, although we do learn a lot about the forces that shaped him into a psycho killer.

Weird how the ending can be disappointing, but on close examination, be exactly how the story should have ended.

Anyway, I haven't quite decided what to read next. I was thinking of Catch-22, but I also have Darkly Dreaming Dexter waiting on the Kindle. I think I'll probably peruse some non-fiction before starting another novel. I've got an idea for a home automation project that I'd like to do some research for.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on November 09, 2010, 08:21:39 PM
Ye-es.

"Pride and Prejudice and Zombies"

Not much to say about this one.

The Good
The perfect Jane Austen parody, but . . .

The Bad
I found the graphic novel confusing as heck. Hard to know who to blame, as there are so many suspects: Jane Austen, who wrote the original novel, Seth Grahame Smith, who adapted Jane Austen for this novel, Tony Lee, who adapted Seth Grahame Smith for the the graphic novel, or Cliff Richards, who did the illustrations for the graphic novel.

The Interesting
Jane Austen herself. Ever since we studied her in college for English Lit., I've always found her unreadable, but her novels are some of the oldest in the English language that are still studied and read. Maybe because the themes of her novels are timeless. And in a day when most English writers were men, she was one of the few English writers who was a women.

"Pride and Prejudice and Zombies" is to be a film released sometime in 2011, as in the author's "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter," which is also scheduled for release in 2011. And the author is working on the script for "Dark Shadows," which should be released sometime in 2012.

Next time: It's not the movie. It's the movie tie-in.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on November 09, 2010, 11:21:24 PM
I'm starting to try to read Watchmen.  I read the first chapter in August, but I never continued after that.  Don't know why.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on November 10, 2010, 11:32:57 AM
I'm reading The Tartan Sell by Jonathan Gash. It's a Lovejoy mystery. Lovejoy is a bit of a shady character, part hero, part rogue who deals in gray market antiques. This one has him pulling off a huge scam with the McGunn clan in Scotland. If you like antiques, British mysteries or charming, witty rogues, then you can't go wrong with Lovejoy.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on November 14, 2010, 09:37:49 AM
I'm starting to try to read Watchmen.  I read the first chapter in August, but I never continued after that.  Don't know why.

Because its a bit dull and self important only no-one has got the guts to say so.

V for Vendetta is a much better book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on November 14, 2010, 10:33:19 AM
The True Gen: An Intimate Portrait of Ernest Hemingway by Those Who Knew Him - Denis Brian
Brian arranges snippets of multiple interviews and deftly arranges them to resemble a group conversation with a minimum of elaboration.  It's quite effective and interesting: the portrait that emerges seems well-rounded (differing views are presented: it's a true 'discussion') and brings some life to reality behind the Hemmingway myth.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Cthulhu on November 14, 2010, 02:25:20 PM
I'm reading And the Ass Saw the Angel by Nick Cave.

It takes place in the deep south, and follows Euchrid Eucrow, a mute boy with an alcoholic mother, and a father who is the sole survivor of an inbreeding mountain clan.
He lives next to a town of religoius fanatics, who made his life a misery. And he is planning to exact his vengeance upon them.

Great book. It has an atmosphere you can drown in.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on November 21, 2010, 03:29:35 PM
Ye-es.

I said, "It's Not the Movie, It's the Movie Tie-in," but that has to wait till next time, as I have to return the following to the library, before it's over due, so . . .

John Byrne's "Superman & Batman : Generations 2 : an Imaginary Tale"

77 years in the life of Superman and Batman and their friends and families and foes. Beginning in 1942 and continuing to 2019 in 11 years inclements.

Superheroes are not immortal. They grow old and die, but before they do, the women become pregnant and have children. And the children grow up and take their parents' place. And as the children grow older, they have children, who take their place.

But, darn! It was simpler when there was only one Superman and one Batman. In 77 years, we get Abin Sur; Atom; Batgirl; Batman I-III; Blackhawks; Blackhawk II; Cyborg; Deadman: Doctor Occult; Flash II, IV, and V; Flying Fox; Green Arrow; Green Lantern I-III; Hawkman; Kid Flash; Knightwing; Robin I-III; Spectre: Superboy; Supergirl; Superman; Wondergirl I-II; and Wonderwoman I-II.

I'm impressed by all the research that went into this. As all the automobiles, buildings, cosutmes, furniture, and telephones reflect the appropriate decade in which they appear.

The thing about the future is that it quickily becomes the past. Published in 22003, 2008 was five years in the future. But now 2008 is two years in the past.

No Verne or Welles to predict what the future brings, even a person totally guessing gets some things right. He was only off by an year, but in 22008, he predicted a black man would be president.

Next time: "it's Not the Movie, It's the Movie Tie-in."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on November 21, 2010, 07:17:19 PM
I'm starting to try to read Watchmen.  I read the first chapter in August, but I never continued after that.  Don't know why.

Because its a bit dull and self important only no-one has got the guts to say so.

V for Vendetta is a much better book.

I just got through reading it and it was... alright.  I wasn't blown out of the water by all the hype surrounding it.  I think that is the ultimate weakness in most hyped movies, games, and books for me, they never seem to knock my socks off.  Psycho, Blade Runner, Jaws, and Bonnie & Clyde for example are all good movies (B.R. is confusing as hell though), but they never live up to that hype.

V for Vendetta I saw at the library and I might look into that.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on November 26, 2010, 01:05:18 AM
I'm starting to try to read Watchmen.  I read the first chapter in August, but I never continued after that.  Don't know why.

Because its a bit dull and self important only no-one has got the guts to say so.

V for Vendetta is a much better book.

I just got through reading it and it was... alright.  I wasn't blown out of the water by all the hype surrounding it.  I think that is the ultimate weakness in most hyped movies, games, and books for me, they never seem to knock my socks off.  Psycho, Blade Runner, Jaws, and Bonnie & Clyde for example are all good movies (B.R. is confusing as hell though), but they never live up to that hype.

V for Vendetta I saw at the library and I might look into that.

Now that you've read it once and gotten the superficial story, I suggest you go back and read it again.

Watchmen is incredibly dense, probably too dense for it's own good, but there isn't a single superfluous moment in the entire book. Every single piece of the book relates back into itself to dig a deeper groove (even the pirate story).

I think what a lot of people overlook is the importance of visual motifs throughout the book. On your first read they may just seem like story-telling gimmicks, but Watchmen is one of the first comics that actually used words and images in synchrony to tell a story that you could not create without an intimate discussion between the two.

Look at it this way, there are a couple of easily deciphered symbols. Rorschach sees things in black and white, the happy face with a blood stain is a symbol of the essential dysfunction in humanity.

But here's another example: every chapter ends in an image of a clock approaching midnight. You could take that as the story tells you to, as the "nuclear clock" approaching Armageddon. But did you notice that Dr. Manhattan chooses the hydrogen atom as his personal symbol (and if you know chemistry you know that symbol is as meaningless as the one he argues against). Dr. Manhattan's symbol is the clock at midnight.

Bit silly, there, but I hope it relates to you that there is a lot more to the book than the bare bones of the plot provide. I didn't even mention the eternally recurring motif of man trying to assert his dominance over woman, often violently.

In comparison, I've always thought that V for Vendetta is one of Alan Moore's weaker works. Don't get me wrong, I like it a lot, but it's quite a lot of wish fulfillment for the angry young anarchist upset with the hypocrisy of human society.

Then again, I think Alan Moore's most complete and literary work is From Hell. Not a big audience for what Alan Moore was selling there, though. Great book, no audience.

Take another look at Watchmen, preferably with some annotations. There's an entire world in that book you may not have even suspected.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on November 26, 2010, 09:55:13 AM
I only read Watchmen recently myself, but I agree, it is a story that can be examined in many different ways. Symbolically, psychologically, philosophically, politically.

I enjoyed the alternate history of the story, and its presentation of a 20th Century that aims to be realistic in every way except for the existence of superheroes. You have the big stuff, like the victory in Vietnam, Nixon holding onto power, and the Cold War worsening due to the end of mutual assured destruction (until America's advantage decides to leave). But then there are the little things, some of them specific to the comic book industry, like pirates becoming the main focus of comics, since superheroes aren't fantasy. Superman comics help to inspire the first masked vigilantes, then fade into obscurity. And comics are far more violent and gruesome, because the Comics Code Authority never comes into being, thanks to support for violent comic-inspired vigilantes.

For me, the backdrop of Watchmen was at least as interesting as the story, and possibly more.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Neville on November 29, 2010, 06:00:59 PM
I'm reading "Devil may care", by Sebastian Faulks. Don't let the name of the author confuse you: it's a James Bond novel! Seriously, somehow Faulks has been allowed to use the James Bond universe and he has written a book much in the vein of Ian Fleming's novels about 007. Faulks nails the writing style, but the plot is a bit disjointed. One scene seems right out of "From Russia with love", then another one from the newer Bonds starring Moore or Brosnan. It's not entirely a bad feeling, it's similar as when you watch a Bond film from the 80s onwards.

I can't say it's any deep, but sure it's fun to read, and a great homage to Fleming.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on November 29, 2010, 06:27:39 PM
(http://lh6.ggpht.com/_MqYsHWQ7fo4/S8OOxAaOeHI/AAAAAAAAArE/auYdm2Zogvo/s800/anderson-psi-files.jpg)

Can't go wrong here.  :smile:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on November 29, 2010, 10:28:33 PM
I'm reading a crap ton of graphic novels from the local library, from Justice League of America to Ultimate X-Men.  I'm getting more hits then misses, but occasionally get the confusing and strange.  Reading Tornado's Path arc of Justice League is quite confusing towards the end.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on November 29, 2010, 11:16:11 PM
Ended up taking a diversion from fiction for a while. Currently reading this:
(http://books.mcgraw-hill.com/authors/predkorbb3/Images/cover2.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on November 30, 2010, 12:15:17 AM
Just read a book called John Dies at the End by David Wong, which was previously available as an online novel.

(http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1283620272l/8017585.jpg)

Here's an excerpt from my Goodreads review.

"The book opens with a deliriously off-kilter parable and follows it up with a chapter that suggests the banality of evil is nothing compared to its outright stupidity. I caught that bit when it was still a fledgling online novel, and it was enough to hook me to buy the book.

This book promises to deliver a terrifying sermon on true insanity, as filtered through the incredibly crude viewpoint of its narrator. Well, it starts off strong in that direction, but ends up trading insanity for a coherent plot.

If you're not a fan of sci-fi and are put off by puerility, well, stay away from this book. However, if you can appreciate the craftsmanship it takes to describe existential angst in the crudest, most joke-laden from possible, check it out."

Also read Horns by Joe Hill, which was pretty good. Not a huge stretch from his previous novel, but an engrossing story.

(http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1275832291l/6587879.jpg)

I cleared out all the other books I was reading, too. The only thing I'm still hammering away at is Infinite Jest (it's long).


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on November 30, 2010, 08:54:29 PM
Just ordered this....got in the mail yesterday...

(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/9781410418197.jpg)

I've always been fasinated by the Depression era outlaws. So much so that my son Eddies middle name is Clyde....my first name in Ronny...as in Ronny and Clyde!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on December 03, 2010, 12:24:26 PM
I've been into the Lovejoy mysteries lately.

I must be going thru some kind of British kick because I'm also reading the Brother Cadfael novels.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: voltron on December 03, 2010, 12:42:19 PM
(http://i434.photobucket.com/albums/qq64/voltron_014/GHR2.jpg)

Great book. Lotsa cool recording tips and tricks.  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on December 03, 2010, 05:06:46 PM
voltron- the Tape OP book is good


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on December 03, 2010, 06:35:38 PM
Ye-es.

It's not the movie. It's the movie tie-in.

I use to remember a time that when a film was released to theaters, a paperback tie-in, based on the script, would also be released. Those times are fewer now, and I regret that for the following reasons.

(1) The tie-in would add further depth to the characters.

(2) The tie-in would often fill in plotholes in the film.

(3) The tie-in would be based on an early script, so you could see the changes made in the script.

So . . .  I was glad to find Justin Mechner's "Prince of Persia: Before the Sandstorm."

5 characters from the film. 5 prequel tales. 5 artist renderings, which range from cartoonish to photographic realistic.

What impressed me also was the way the rulers were depicted in the stories, even the evil ones. Ever since 1940's "Thief of Bagdad" the rulers have been depicted as both incompetent and fools. But here they are not incompetent and fools, but competent and wise.

I was also impressed with Sheik Amar. Not only by the way he was played by Alfred Molina in the film, but also by how well he was written as a character in the book.

Next time: "A Triple Dose of King" or something else.




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 03, 2010, 07:36:46 PM
Yeah, there was a time when I used to read a lot of movie novelizations. That was back when I needed my parents to drive me to the city for a movie, and thus only went a couple of times a year. Before home video took off, you had to see the movie in the theatre or wait at least two or three years for it to possibly reach television. Reading the book was often the best available option.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on December 03, 2010, 07:49:59 PM
Reading through a bunch of graphic novels I got at the library:

Ultimate Fantastic Four Vol. 8-11 (Vol. 11's artwork is shocking not finished at all.  You can still see the pencil lines that were not inked over)
Ultimate Galactus (Contains all of the mini-series)
Justice League of America Vol. 1-4 (The new series starting with Tornado's Path)
Justice Society Vol. 3-5
Ultimate X-Men Ultimate Collections 2-3


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 15, 2010, 01:27:50 PM
My wife read Ro a bedtime story last night, without really knowing the details, other than it was a classic tale by Hans Christian Andersen.

The Little Match Girl.

That has got to be the saddest story I've ever heard. I was somewhat familiar with it, but I didn't remember the specifics - like it being about a little girl's series of near-death experiences as she froze to death, because she was afraid to go home to her abusive father.

Fortunately, Ro had no idea, and was simply delighted at this poor girl having visions of a Christmas tree and a feast and her beloved dead grandmother. I was only half listening, but when the girl has a vision of going with her grandmother, I got very uneasy. And then we got to the illustration that Ro loved best, of the little girl "sleeping" peacefully in the morning after all her wonderful visions (as my wife silently mouthed to me "she's D-E-A-D.")

Between Ro's innocent enjoyment, the beautiful illustrations, and the contrast between the joyful visions and the bleak reality of the story, it was enough to make me teary and haunt my thoughts for the rest of the evening. I'm just thankful Ro didn't figure it out. That kid has so much empathy for fictional characters, it would have devastated her. Hell, I'm getting all weepy again just writing this.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on December 15, 2010, 01:34:58 PM
Just ordered this....got in the mail yesterday...

([url]http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/9781410418197.jpg[/url])

I've always been fasinated by the Depression era outlaws. So much so that my son Eddies middle name is Clyde....my first name in Ronny...as in Ronny and Clyde!


I've got that one sitting on my table downstairs waiting to start it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on December 15, 2010, 01:48:12 PM
I used to absolutely love reading like crazy for many years. Now I can barely focus my attention on a few sentences. I'm thinking of setting a goal for 2011 to read at least 4 books.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on December 15, 2010, 10:15:28 PM
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/d/dd/Supermanredson.jpg/250px-Supermanredson.jpg)

This is an Elseworld's story from DC.  A sort of What If story.  In this case, the what if tale is this: It is early 50s and America is dealing with the Cold War with the U.S.S.R.  Then in one news announcment, the tide of war changes when the Soviets announces their new weapon, a super human or Superman if you will.  From here on in, this is the story of Superman and his rise in the Soviet Union while in America Lex Luthor, the world's smartest man apparently, tries to find a way to kill him.  It's a 3 issue story (Part 1 in the 50s, Part 2 in the 70s, and Part 3 in the 00s) and I won't spoil anymore of it because there is so much in it crammed into the 3 issues.  You will be seeing Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Batman, and other recongizable characters in this story, but in ways you might not imagine.

This story is written by Mark Millar, who you may remember as the man behind The Unfunnies which I brought up, and I have to say, this is probably the best comic I ever read by him.  It's a fasincating story with a very gray morality, which no character being that heroic or evil when you look at both viewpoints.  I cannot highly recommend this enough to people, you got to give this one a look.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on December 16, 2010, 09:00:42 PM
I just finished Ron Charnow's biography of George Washington.  It is the best book on the Father of our Country I have ever read; Charnow does a great deal to humanize the "marble man" that Washington's contemporaries strove so hard to turn him into.  This is better than Joseph Ellis' HIS EXCELLENCY and Willard Sterne Randall's WASHINGTON:  A LIFE.  As good as anything David McCullough has written, I think this one is a must have for any fans of the Revolutionary generation.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on December 17, 2010, 04:03:29 AM
I am very looking forward to reading Chernow's Washington biography. I loved his biography of Alexander Hamilton, but you'd be pretty hard-pressed to make Hamilton non-interesting. Volatile guy, that Hamilton.

Washington's a hard nut to crack. There's a man who knew exactly his place in history and conducted himself better than probably anybody else will ever be able to. He knew that 200 hundred years later we would be scrutinizing his every move, and he made so very little mistakes. He may have been too successful. We can all relate to the spitfire John Adams and the relentless idealism of Thomas Jefferson. Washington, not as easy to read.

I've read "The Indispensable Man," but I'm curious to see what Chernow can say.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: theedinburghbteam on December 17, 2010, 05:29:47 AM
(http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/P/0451195086.01._SX220_SCLZZZZZZZ_.jpg)


I started reading this a few weeks ago, and it's pretty damned good. Always been interested in the Vietnam War, but these stories of secret missions is pretty mindblowing.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 17, 2010, 10:24:08 AM
Reading a couple of books at once, kind of alternating back and forth.
(http://www.jrhackett.net/images/EGcover200.jpg)
A nice introduction to Picaxe microcontrollers. It does a very thorough job of explaining how to use and program the chips. I'm reading it for a couple of separate ideas that converged when I saw how simple and versatile microcontrollers are.

I want to do a little robotics project with my daughter over the winter. I'd like to involve her in designing and building a little wheeled critter that will explore the house while avoiding furniture. Apart from a few components, I should be able to scavenge the materials from broken toys and the usual bunch of plastic and wood scraps, assorted hardware and junk I keep around. That in itself should be educational. If that works well, we might move up to a hexapod and scare the s**t out of Mom.

The other reason is I wanted to install a zone controller and dampers on the HVAC system in my shop, so the two rental units and I can have separate temperature control. My commercial tennant is only in half as much as I am, and the whole building currently has to be heated 24-7 because of the apartment upstairs. I figure I can put a serious dent in my heating bill, and make everybody more comfortable, but a commercially available zoning system could cost me over $1000. I figure for under $200, I can build my own controller with a microcontroller, write my own software to control the furnace, AC and dampers, and use RC servos as actuators.

The other book I'm reading is this one.
(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_RB_3EFu9s-8/TMv0-ZHqCQI/AAAAAAAABLo/b-2Txq1CFYw/s1600/Blatchford.jpg)
It's about a recent and particularly nasty native occupation of a housing development in Caledonia, Ontario. My wife's family has roots there, so it's been of particular interest. It's also just up the road from Newt. I knew it was bad down there, but this book is shocking me with the kind of anarchy they had, thanks to the government and the police leadership totally screwing up in the name of political correctness and covering their own asses. Imagine a situation where the police have lost so much credibility with the public that a cop tries to write somebody up for a seatbelt infraction, and the guy tells him to f**k off and do his job, then leaves as bystanders applaud. And that was the townspeople, not the occupiers.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on December 17, 2010, 10:55:53 AM
... It's also just up the road from Newt. I knew it was bad down there, but this book is shocking me with the kind of anarchy they had...

Thanks for that, Andy.  It is a shocking situation.  We have had some 'spillover' effects here too - we're only 45 minutes away and within the original disputed zone.  People outside the area obviously have have no idea what it has been like to have two-tier justice in effect.  It is amazing to me how little of the true situation was allowed to 'leak out' - and what did just made the non-occupiers look bad in the media.  It especially got a bit hard to take, having busloads brought in from far outside (Toronto and other centres) to tell the locals how wrong (and evil) they are, based on incomplete and biased information.  The current atmosphere of distrust is distressing.  (Won't get into the astonishment that the former OPP Chief is being lauded as an upholder of "law and order" :buggedout: and in line for a cabinet post!  :buggedout: ) "Helpless" it is; and a horrible feeling to live with.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on December 17, 2010, 12:07:12 PM
(http://books.google.com/books?id=Ew4hQAAACAAJ&printsec=frontcover&img=1&zoom=1&l=220)

Simpsons/Futurama Crossover Crisis.  Bought it as a present for my nephew, but I'm trying to finish it before I wrap it up for him!  :bouncegiggle:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: trekgeezer on December 17, 2010, 01:27:12 PM
Reading my first William Gibson novel (Spook Country).    I should say I'm wading through it, the guy's style not exciting me much.  I guess it will help things out when I figure out what the story is about. 

I will finish it though, I like to always finish what I start.  Never know what will happen if you don't finish. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on December 17, 2010, 04:51:57 PM
Ye-es.

A triple dose of King. All in graphic format.

"The Stand"
Just the 1st vol. so far. The least confusing, but also the least interesting, so far, of the three. Actually, (IMHO) this one has the least interesting story of all the King novels I've seen. And the so-called government cover-up stretches credulity to the breaking point, if not pass it.

"The Talisman"
 With Peter Straub. Again, just the 1st vol. so far. The most confusing, but also the most interesting, so far, of the three.

"The Dark Tower"
In 5 vols. Read 'em out of order. Vol. 4, then vol. 1, and then, finally, vol 5. Yet to read vols. 2 and 3. Actually, I found vols. 4 and 5, a better read than vol. 1. Vol. 4 slightly better than vol. 5, because the humor works better in vol. 4. Of course, these 5 vols. then leads to the graphic series "The Dark Tower: the Gunslinger," which I have yet to read.

Of course, "The Stand was a TV miniseries." "The Dark Tower" is to be a theatrical film released in 2013. And "The Talisman" is to be a TV miniseries for airing on TV in 2012.

Next time: ?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Neville on December 17, 2010, 05:06:05 PM
I loved "The talisman" and its sequel, "Black House". Peter Straub is a hell of a writer, but sometimes his writing is just too hard to follow. His works with King are easily his most accesible.

If you feel tempted to check out Straub's books after reading "The Talisman", my favourites are "Mystery", "Shadowland" and "Ghost Story". "Ghost Story" is maybe his best-known book, but of the three I mentioned it's the one I had more trouble reading it. Too many dry spots, but in the end it's worth the effort.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on December 17, 2010, 05:34:40 PM
I just got done reading John Dies In the End by David Wong.

A very interesting, but often surreal book.  And, since it's the one written by the main editor of Cracked we're talking here, so the word "penis" and variants thereof are mentioned about 100 times.  All in all it's a pretty entertaining book, more creepy than outright scary IMHO, and there's a couple of twists near the end I certainly didn't see coming.  


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 18, 2010, 01:35:32 PM
... It's also just up the road from Newt. I knew it was bad down there, but this book is shocking me with the kind of anarchy they had...

Thanks for that, Andy.  It is a shocking situation.  We have had some 'spillover' effects here too - we're only 45 minutes away and within the original disputed zone.  People outside the area obviously have have no idea what it has been like to have two-tier justice in effect.  It is amazing to me how little of the true situation was allowed to 'leak out' - and what did just made the non-occupiers look bad in the media.  It especially got a bit hard to take, having busloads brought in from far outside (Toronto and other centres) to tell the locals how wrong (and evil) they are, based on incomplete and biased information.  The current atmosphere of distrust is distressing.  (Won't get into the astonishment that the former OPP Chief is being lauded as an upholder of "law and order" :buggedout: and in line for a cabinet post!  :buggedout: ) "Helpless" it is; and a horrible feeling to live with.


Getting a little farther into the book, I really understand what you mean about the true situation not making it outside. In the papers, it just seemed like the trouble was in and around an empty subdivision. Right now, I'm reading the accounts of people with homes between the reserve and town who were living under what amounted to an occupation by a hostile paramilitary force. And I'm amazed that it wasn't a big worldwide news story when OPP riot and tactical units were forced to retreat after the badly planned raid that basically escalated the whole thing. Just totally insane that something like that was allowed to happen in Canada, and all because cops weren't allowed to do their jobs in the normal way. I'm blown away by this book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on December 18, 2010, 02:45:52 PM
Reading through a bunch of graphic novels I got at the library:

Ultimate Fantastic Four Vol. 8-11 (Vol. 11's artwork is shocking not finished at all.  You can still see the pencil lines that were not inked over)
Ultimate Galactus (Contains all of the mini-series)
Justice League of America Vol. 1-4 (The new series starting with Tornado's Path)
Justice Society Vol. 3-5
Ultimate X-Men Ultimate Collections 2-3


I just got done reading Marvel Masterworks Fantastic Four Vol 1 and Vol 2! Great Kirby artwork! Ever notice how the Thing looks like John Agar in HAND OF DEATH?

(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/10353766215043173656_610w.jpg)

 tink Stan and Jack were B movie fans! The story line for BEAST OF YUCCA FLATS mirrors the HULK origin!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on December 22, 2010, 04:47:01 AM
It's about a recent and particularly nasty native occupation of a housing development in Caledonia, Ontario. My wife's family has roots there, so it's been of particular interest. It's also just up the road from Newt. I knew it was bad down there, but this book is shocking me with the kind of anarchy they had, thanks to the government and the police leadership totally screwing up in the name of political correctness and covering their own asses. Imagine a situation where the police have lost so much credibility with the public that a cop tries to write somebody up for a seatbelt infraction, and the guy tells him to f**k off and do his job, then leaves as bystanders applaud. And that was the townspeople, not the occupiers.

You might want t post a review of the book on Amazon.  There's only a single one star review and that's just because the idiot was bithcing about how much the kindle version of the book costs (and he makes no mention of rather or not he actually READ the book in question.)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on December 22, 2010, 08:58:03 AM
I'm blown away by this book.

There was a general feeling of relief and even celebration when this book came out.  I have only one problem with it: from what I have seen, people in general are taking away the impression that the conditions described in the book have been resolved as of 2010. That it all ended in 2010. Nothing has been resolved; nothing has changed; the situation is on-going.  There simply has not been much recent activity.  Local expectations are that there certainly will be more 'incidents'.  It is very scary how quickly the rumor mill gears up and that cannot be good for anyone.  :bluesad:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 22, 2010, 09:44:51 AM
I'm blown away by this book.

There was a general feeling of relief and even celebration when this book came out.  I have only one problem with it: from what I have seen, people in general are taking away the impression that the conditions described in the book have been resolved as of 2010. That it all ended in 2010. Nothing has been resolved; nothing has changed; the situation is on-going.  There simply has not been much recent activity.  Local expectations are that there certainly will be more 'incidents'.  It is very scary how quickly the rumor mill gears up and that cannot be good for anyone.  :bluesad:

There is definitely that impression, even halfway through, although a recurring theme is that every time things start to seem hunky-dory, some new violence breaks out. There's no way that amount of resentment can be allowed to build up without it poisoning the community for years. All the fault of law enforcement for turning it into something it didn't have to be.

Are you planning to read the book? Seemed like everybody down that way was rushing out to buy it. My mother-in-law was here for a visit last week. She grew up in Caledonia (she's a Douglas, in fact, so the history is kind of personal), and was kind of surprised I was already reading the book. I almost bought her a copy for Christmas, but I can't be sure she didn't go out and buy one already. I do regret getting the Kindle version, only because my wife will want to read it too, and a paper copy would be much easier than lending her the whole Kindle.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Flick James on December 22, 2010, 12:42:10 PM
Just starting The Revolution: A Manifesto by Ron Paul. Yes, I'm a bonafide supporter of this man.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on December 22, 2010, 01:48:56 PM
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's "Faust."  I wanted to read the play that inspired THE APPLE.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on December 28, 2010, 11:51:59 AM
(http://podularity.com/wp-content/images/siege.jpg)

re released/ translated book from my favorite author. about the foibles of governments and so forth. this one is set in the dark ages.  His book "The Pyramid" is insane.

flick james- when you are done with that check out my 7 part play (http://www.youtube.com/user/lesterhalfjr#p/c/FC0967FBEDE53CC1/0/xGkZxgzxTlk) based on Nock's "Our Enemy the State". done with xtranormal cartoons which no one likes and bad jokes.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on December 29, 2010, 12:34:14 AM
In the last week I finished GOD DOWN TOGETHER: THE STORY OF BONNIE AND CLYDE (which is first-rate; I have a vested interest since they operated in my neck of the woods and my Dad can remember his father reading all their exploits to him from the newspaper when he was a boy).  Then I got Stephen King's FULL DARK, NO STARS for Christmas and gobbled it up in two days . . . it is like DIFFERENT SEASONS in that it features four different novellas, all first-rate.  King on his worst day is more entertaining than many more critically acclaimed authors are in their mose celebrated works . . .  I love the way the man writes!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 29, 2010, 11:24:28 AM
Finished Helpless, which I highly recommend. Now reading Darkly Dreaming Dexter. I'm still not sure if I'll like it, having seen five seasons of the TV series. I'm aware that the series deviates rather quickly from the books, and there are already some interesting differences in the characters and the plot. The first-person style is also great, since the reader is inside Dexter's head for the entire story, instead of just bites of narration. The only problem is that for the first novel at least, all the major surprises are blown.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on December 29, 2010, 11:30:31 AM
(http://i228.photobucket.com/albums/ee71/HammockRider/phanchron.jpg)


 I'm halfway through it and it's pretty good. I picked it up after re-watching the Billy Zane Phantom and I'm glad I did.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on December 30, 2010, 05:37:14 PM
Ye-es.

Sinclair McKay's "The Man with the Golden Touch."

The first Bond film (Dr. No) for the cinema came out in 1962, and Ian Fleming was writing and publishing the Bond books a decade for that. So, that's almost fifty to sixty years of Bond, and McKay covers that as he writes how the real world influenced Bond, and the Bond world influenced . . .

the real world and world of fiction
the U.K. and the U.S.
films and literature
the cinema and TV
and attitudes toward women, minorities, homosexual and homosexual women.

But despite all the serious topics covered, the author  keeps a light touch on his subject and makes the book an easy read. Highly recommended for any Bond fans out there.

Next time: Stan Lee's "The Silver Surfer"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Allhallowsday on December 30, 2010, 10:43:19 PM
Just finished Father Does Know Best the shocking memoirs of LAUREN CHAPIN.  I have already started Life by KEITH RICHARDS which spurred my recent interest in middle period ROLLING STONES


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on December 30, 2010, 10:57:06 PM
Marvel Masterworks: the Fantastic Four Vols. 1 and 2!!!!

Vol 1 has issues 1-10 and vol.2 has 11-20 plus the first annual.
And all the art is vintage Jack Kirby! Some guest stars-Sub Mariener! the HULK! Dr.Doom (of course)! Ant Man!Spiderman! And MORE! MORE! EXCELCIOR!

( I plan on getting the Marvel Masterworks SGT FURY AND HIS HOWLING COMMANDOS when I get the pennies...kinda in a hole now....)

(http://i490.photobucket.com/albums/rr264/luciddreamer1780/comic%20book%20covers/fantastic_four_10.jpg)

side note-ever notice that in the old FF's the Thing looked like John Agar in HAND OF DEATH? That film came out shortly before FF #1. Coincidence? Hmmmm...I wonder...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ImaginaryFoot on January 01, 2011, 03:04:22 AM
Yes


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on January 03, 2011, 04:59:37 PM
I'm almost finished with the entire James Bond series.  I have about 70 pages remaining in YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE.  Then it's on to MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN (which I read several times many, many years ago).  One more book after that and I will have finished the entire series.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on January 08, 2011, 06:46:22 PM
THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on January 08, 2011, 06:58:38 PM
shock cinema magazine


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on January 08, 2011, 08:43:21 PM
I just finished Laura Ingraham's THE OBAMA DIARIES.
A pretty funny piece of right-wing political propaganda; I wouldn't have paid money for it, but since it was a gift, I did enjoy it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on January 09, 2011, 03:09:50 PM
Ye-es.

Stan Lee's "The Silver Surfer"

If you want to see the sheer genius of the incredible mind of Stan Lee, then look no farther than his "The Silver Surfer."

If "The Fantastic Four" is represntative of the early '60's, then "The Silver Surfer" is representative of the late '60's, which shows what a momentous decade it was. For one thing, Afro-Americans start to appear in major roles in the stories of Stan Lee.

The Silver Surfer also almost becomes a Christ like figure. For if the New Testament tells us that Christ was tempted while in the Wilderness, then The Silver Surfer is also tempted by one of Satan's minions in one of the stories.

But darn, Lee sure lays the philosophy on with a trowel in the stories. Which does lead to a great parody called "The Simple Surfer," which starts with the origins of the Simple Surfer and ends with a surf off between the Simple Surfer, Archie and Jughead, Little Orpahn Annie and Sandy, and Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello.

Next time: "The Men Who Would Be King" by Nicole LaPorte.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Couchtr26 on January 12, 2011, 07:26:42 PM
Various collections by Clark Ashton Smith, HP Lovecraft and Robert E. Howard.  I enjoy Smith's writing more then the other two.  However, his subject matter seems less varied except for poems. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on January 12, 2011, 08:21:12 PM
Next week I'm ordering The Works of SHIRLY JACKSON-which includes all her short stories,and the two novels THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE and WE HAVE ALWAYS LIVED IN THE CASTLE. If you have never read any of Miss Jacksons writing-change your life.  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on January 12, 2011, 08:45:43 PM
Got in the mood for something Lovecraftian, so I picked up Cthulhu 2000. It's an anthology of Lovecraft-inspired stories, published around 1995. Pretty good so far.
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/f/fc/Cthulhu_2000.jpg/200px-Cthulhu_2000.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on January 12, 2011, 10:53:35 PM
I've started reading The Big Book of UFOs by Chris A. Rutkowski. Cool so far...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on January 13, 2011, 06:41:10 PM
I've started reading The Big Book of UFOs by Chris A. Rutkowski. Cool so far...

That sounds like something I would enjoy. Im a big UFO buff.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on January 13, 2011, 11:15:18 PM
The book is like a general overview of the complete history of UFOs...so far there's been little in it I hadn't heard about before somewhere or another along the line but it does mention many Canadian sightings in there which are of particular interest to me. The author Chris A. Rutkowski is Canadian and he's put out several previous UFO books. The cover art is excellent.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on January 14, 2011, 02:27:47 AM
Still making my way through Infinite Jest, only 300 or so pages to go.

Also reading:

The Time Dweller by Michael Moorcock, a collection of short stories. Not all that great.

Pygmy by Chuck Palahniuk. First book I've read by him. A couple of chapters in and I don't think I'm going to like it very much.

The Cunning Man by Robertson Davies. Part of my Modern Library reading list. Not far enough in to make any statements.

The Penultimate Truth by Philip K. Dick. Alright so far. I'm guessing it isn't the greatest Dick book. (Get your mind out of the gutter.)

Comic Books and Other Necessities of Life by Mark Evanier. A collection of columns written by Evanier (half of Groo) written for a magazine I can't place at the moment. A joy to read. Evanier has been working in the comic and animation industry for forever now, and he has plenty of warm-hearted and enlightening anecdotes about the unsung creators of comicdom (also a bunch of stories about his wayward youth as a comic fan). A great picture of a pre-Internet era when comic fans had only the letters page as an outlet. He's got a website, POV Online (http://www.povonline.com/), which I highly recommend to anybody interested in either comics or animation.

(http://d1466nnw0ex81e.cloudfront.net/iss/450w/963/19009632/19009702_1.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Used Meathook on January 16, 2011, 01:50:00 PM
The I-5 killer by Ann Rule.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on January 16, 2011, 09:50:31 PM
Just hours away from starting on

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31lo2wHhirL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)

The original "Cult Movies" is one of my favorite movie books.  I need to track down volume 2 someday as well.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on January 20, 2011, 05:33:46 PM
Ye-es..

Nicole LaPorte's "The Men Who Would Be King"

Subtitled: "An Almost Epic Tale of Moguls, Movies, and a Company Called Dreamworks"

The Goods
(1) She makes the business side of Hollywood very interesting.
(2) What good have been a hard slog, she makes into an easy read.
(3) She's fair to everyone, pointing out both their good points and theri bad points, and everyone in the tale has both their good and bad points.
(4) And she even makes the unsympathetic sympathetic.

The Bads
(1)The epilogue at the end helps, but its a confusing tale, which is as confusing at the beginning of the book as it is at the end of the book. Part of it is . . .
(a) The nature of Hollywood, which is a place you can be born, live all your life, and on the day you die, you'll still not know all the ins and outs.
(b) Her emphasis. While she does go somewhat into the psychological movtivations of the players, she should have done more of it, because that's the only way you are going to understand the story.

The Interestings
(1)The prime demographic of Hollywood is the 13-year-old boy. If you can get their seats into the seats then you'll probably have a hit.
(2)Why some liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans have a love/hate affair with Washington. It's the mirror image of Washington, D.C. So much so, you could call Washington, D.C. the Hollywood of the Potomac and Hollywood the Washington, D.C. of the Pacific.
(3) Maybe because she was a member  of the Hollywood Press, it comes off badly in the book. As being unable to ask the big question, as being vindicative, as blaming others for their mistakes, wanting to fan the flames of a story instead of dousing the flames,  and taking sides in a story.
(4)Why Eisner and Katzenberg had an acrimonious breakup. They were more alike than different. When one looked in the mirror, one saw the other one.
(5) But probably the most interesting fact coming out of the book was that Eisner was right. He could have handled the situation better. He could have handled the situation alot better, but in 1994, Katzenberg was unqualified for the job he wanted at Disney.  You only need to see how he ran Dreamworks into the ground to see that.

Next time: Stud Terkel's "Working"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on January 20, 2011, 10:32:44 PM


Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace. I finally finished up my second reading of Gravity's Rainbow (with annotations), so a new 1100 page novel is right up my alley.


An impressive and imposing book.  My advice is to consider each segment as a short story; if you expect all the different threads Wallace creates to come together in the end in a satisfying way, you may be disappointed.  I did like the entire Don Gately arc a lot.  Another tip: once you reach the end of the book (which should occur sometime in 2014), go back to the beginning and re-read the very first segment. 

Finished, and three years ahead of schedule!

You're right about that first chapter, seems to be a void at the heart of the book. A darkness, if you will.

Well, since the current literary fad is to appropriate old text and insert b-movie elements into it, I plan to fill that void. Expect my novella Infinite Jest and Zombies to come out sometime in 2014.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SPazzo on January 21, 2011, 09:13:26 AM
I'm reading The Piano Man's Daughter right now for English class.  I'm really enjoying it, although the in-class essay on it next week is looming over my head.
(http://images.amazon.com/images/P/0060936436.01._SX140_SY225_SCLZZZZZZZ_.jpg)
Oh, and don't watch the Whoopie Goldberg produced made-for-TV movie based on it.  My professor laughed when I asked about it. :tongueout:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: metalmonster on January 25, 2011, 04:18:54 PM
CIRQUE DU FREAK : BOOK 1 A Living Nightmare


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on January 25, 2011, 10:21:22 PM
DECISION POINTS by George W. Bush

I realize the former President doesn't have a lot of fans on this board, but he wrote a good memoir, discussing the most important decisions in his life and Presidency.  The book is a lot like the man himself: simple, straightforward, and easy to understand - but not stupid.  I really enjoyed it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on January 25, 2011, 11:42:51 PM


Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace. I finally finished up my second reading of Gravity's Rainbow (with annotations), so a new 1100 page novel is right up my alley.


An impressive and imposing book.  My advice is to consider each segment as a short story; if you expect all the different threads Wallace creates to come together in the end in a satisfying way, you may be disappointed.  I did like the entire Don Gately arc a lot.  Another tip: once you reach the end of the book (which should occur sometime in 2014), go back to the beginning and re-read the very first segment. 


You're right about that first chapter, seems to be a void at the heart of the book. A darkness, if you will.


Someone said the narrative structure is like a circle that's three-quarters complete.  A crucial part of the story is left untold.  I found it frustrating, needlessly so.  But I loved a lot of the individual incidents.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Nukie 2 on January 26, 2011, 01:00:35 AM
Super Freakonomics- Levitt & Dubner

It's just like applying economics principles to everyday things, it's interesting but they seem to go off on tangents--rather informative tangents.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on January 27, 2011, 10:54:05 AM
I'm re-reading volume 2 of Sherlock holmes: The Complete Novels and Short stories. Apparently I somehow have missed the Adventure of the Lion's Mane, which is told first person by Holmes! Wow!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on January 27, 2011, 12:51:59 PM
Got in the mood for something Lovecraftian, so I picked up Cthulhu 2000. It's an anthology of Lovecraft-inspired stories, published around 1995. Pretty good so far.
([url]http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/f/fc/Cthulhu_2000.jpg/200px-Cthulhu_2000.jpg[/url])


About halfway through this book, and having mixed feelings about it. The stories are good, some more so than others, but most seem to suffer from the same problem. The authors use the mythology of Lovecraft, but they can't resist giving blatant nods to the stories that inspired them. It's fine to refer to the events and characters of Lovecraft's stories, or even create a fictionalized equivalent of Lovecraft if it serves the plot, but it gets kind of lame if Lovecraft and his stories actually exist exactly as they do in the real world. For me, it just wrecks a story to have a character praise the works of Lovecraft and his contemporaries for no reason other than fanboy self-indulgence on the part of the author. In one case, an actual copy of At the Mountains of Madness provides clues for the protagonist, when the story would have worked better without it.

It's all the more annoying, because the stories are generally good, and manage to evoke a Lovecraftian mood in a variety of settings. That mood suffers every time I get jerked back to reality by a direct reference to Lovecraft. Especially so when the story is treating Lovecraft's fiction as real events at the same time as it's referring to Lovecraft's fiction as works of literature.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on January 31, 2011, 11:28:56 PM
Just finished Edmund Morris' last installment of his biograhical series on Theodore Roosevelt, entitled COLONEL ROOSEVELT.  He chronicles the last decade of TR's life, from his exiting the White House to go on an African safari, his grand tour of Europe, representing the U.S. at the funeral of Edward VII, and his doomed run for the Presidency in 1912.  Then it covers his disastrous expedition to the Amazon, in which he developed a severe infection in his wounded leg that nearly killed him, his return to the USA.  The last section of the book covers his reaction to World War I and his frantic desire to fight in that conflict.  When he was not allowed to form his long-dreamed of volunteer division and go to the front himself, he sent all four of his sons off to fight.  Three were wounded, two severely, and his youngest son Quentin was shot down flying a Nieuport fighter plane over the Western front.  This loss nearly killed the former President, but he hung on long enough to help the Republicans win huge majorities in the fall of 1918 mid-term election, and to see his name rise to the top of the list for the 1920 Presidential contest.  But, in January 1918, his great heart gave out at last, and the old lion left his cubs desolate.

A magnificent book about a magnificent man.  I have read many books on America's presidents, and this one is near the top of the list.  Roosevelt packed more living into the last decade of his life than most men do in a lifetime.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on February 14, 2011, 06:32:57 PM
Ye-es.

Studs Terkel's "Working"
in graphic format, w/ Henry Pelker as adapter and Paul Buhle as editor.

Not a balanced account of working, as he talks to alot of union people, but--apparently--no one from management in an unionized company. And while not every union is good, the stories do show what a good union can do for its members

Nor do the stories represent that profession, but solely the person telling the story.

But . . . Studs has an ear, eye, and nose for an interesting story, which most of these are. Even though the original book was--apparently--written some 37 years ago.

Not all the stories are told by people unknown. Actor Rip Torn tells his story, and if you are a denizen of the sports world, one should recognize the names of baseball player Steve Hamilton and jockey Eddie Arroyo.

Each story is done by a different artist, so you get different layouts and fonts. Some of which are better than others.

Next time: Miscellaneous


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on February 17, 2011, 10:20:04 AM
(http://acomicbookblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/supermanlastsongif.jpg)

I recommend this story to everyone and sole reason that Richard Donner helped wrote.  It's the closest we'll ever get to a Superman 3 by him.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on February 17, 2011, 05:17:58 PM
ANIMAL FARM


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on February 17, 2011, 07:23:50 PM
FELTON AND FOWLER'S BEST, WORST, AND MOST UNUSUAL.
If you love trivia, bizarre facts, and having a large volume of useless but utterly fun information to flip through during boring meetings, flights, waiting in the doctor's office, or marathon sessions on the porcelain throne, this book is awesome.  A bit dated - the hardback edition is simply a combination of the two paperbacks, one written in 1975 and one in 1976 - but in a wide variety of categories, both human, animal, and natural, the authors have compiled a list of the Best, the Worst, and the Most Unusual.  It is hard to turn a single page without finding a conversational gem.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: bob on February 18, 2011, 09:06:37 AM
I've been reading The Catcher and the Rye for the last 2 weeks and enjoying every second of it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on February 18, 2011, 04:10:53 PM
I've been reading The Catcher and the Rye for the last 2 weeks and enjoying every second of it.

One of the best books I ever read.  I think I finished it in 2 days.  I need to read it again . . . it's been almost 30 years!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on February 28, 2011, 02:48:20 AM
I recently read Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov. (SPOILERS follow.)

I loved the book. I got so swept up I read most of the book in one marathon session until I got so tired I had to go to sleep. I then woke up and finished the book.

At the same time, it was a troubling and deeply untrustworthy book. In looking up discussion on the book (and if there's one thing the internet is sorely lacking, it's decent discussions on literature), it shocked me how many people take Humbert Humbert's narration at face value. One of the not-so-hidden aspects of Lolita is Humbert's craven and self-serving view of life. If you trust his side of the story, he's a desperate romantic who just happens to have a penchant for young girls. You may even excuse his pedophilia as a broad metaphor about Europe and America.

Hogwash, of course. Humbert is a truly detestable human being, and only at several crucial points in the narrative does he let slip the true damage he has done. I watched the Kubrick film, and it's a pretty good movie, but it also lets Humbert present his side of the story.

However, as a work of literature, Lolita is a masterpiece. In Humbert, Nabokov created a wordsmith nonpareil. The embedding of Quilty into the narrative was as good a mystery (with an obvious answer) as any potboiler.

I own the annotated version, but since this was the first time I read the book, I didn't read them. I plan on going back, but I want to put some distance between me and the book first.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on March 03, 2011, 08:30:01 PM
Ye-es.

Several miscellaneous and short graphic novels.

"Kickass"
In graphic format. One of the few graphic novels I actually found unreadable. Once I started it.

The prequel to Jim Henson's "The Dark Crystal" and the sequel to Jim Henson's "Labyrinth." As "The Dark Crystal" had fewer characters that looked alike, had fewer characters in double roles, and no two worlds with the characters traveling back and forth between them, I found it alot more readable than "Labyrinth."

Joss Whedon's "Buffy, the Vampire Slayer." Some people need to be on a short leash and a tight budget. The TV show lasted seven seasons, but Whedon had an idea for an 8th season, which he made into a graphic novel, and if he had gotten the money to do it, it would have just sucked (IMHO.)

"The Unwritten" subtitled "Tommy Taylor and the Bogus Identity" w/ words and art by Miles Carey and Porter Gross.

There are three ways to do a fantasy novel. One world that is all fantasy such as Tolkien's Middle Earth. Two worlds: one reality based and one fantasy based, but separate from each other, such as Carroll's Wonderland or Lewis' Narnia. One world where reality and fantasy are based together, such as Hamilton's Anita Blake series.

These are all great fantasy series. "The Unwritten" is none of these, as while it is readable, it is no where near being a great fantasy series.

Next time: "The Star Wars" omnibus.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on March 03, 2011, 10:08:32 PM
"Kickass"
In graphic format. One of the few graphic novels I actually found unreadable. Once I started it.

Best to stick with the movie adaption which is actually enjoyable and isn't as bad.

Anyways, I just finished reading Fables: Deluxe Edition Vol. 1  DAMN!  That was awesome.  Probably one of the best comic series I ever read.  It's just awesome.  You got to read this!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: bob on March 04, 2011, 12:18:38 AM
I've been reading The Catcher and the Rye for the last 2 weeks and enjoying every second of it.

One of the best books I ever read.  I think I finished it in 2 days.  I need to read it again . . . it's been almost 30 years!

Wow, that makes me feel kind of young as i'm not even 30.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on March 04, 2011, 11:58:55 AM
I've been reading The Catcher and the Rye for the last 2 weeks and enjoying every second of it.

One of the best books I ever read.  I think I finished it in 2 days.  I need to read it again . . . it's been almost 30 years!

Wow, that makes me feel kind of young as i'm not even 30.

I did a book report on it in high school.  That's the last time I read it!



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Gravekeeper on March 04, 2011, 07:18:00 PM
Reading through Poe's works (including his non-horror short stories and poems; yes, he wrote for other genres!) and some key Lovecraft stuff.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on March 05, 2011, 11:07:01 AM
I recently read Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov. (SPOILERS follow.)

I loved the book. I got so swept up I read most of the book in one marathon session until I got so tired I had to go to sleep. I then woke up and finished the book.

At the same time, it was a troubling and deeply untrustworthy book. In looking up discussion on the book (and if there's one thing the internet is sorely lacking, it's decent discussions on literature), it shocked me how many people take Humbert Humbert's narration at face value. One of the not-so-hidden aspects of Lolita is Humbert's craven and self-serving view of life. If you trust his side of the story, he's a desperate romantic who just happens to have a penchant for young girls. You may even excuse his pedophilia as a broad metaphor about Europe and America.

Hogwash, of course. Humbert is a truly detestable human being, and only at several crucial points in the narrative does he let slip the true damage he has done. I watched the Kubrick film, and it's a pretty good movie, but it also lets Humbert present his side of the story.

However, as a work of literature, Lolita is a masterpiece. In Humbert, Nabokov created a wordsmith nonpareil. The embedding of Quilty into the narrative was as good a mystery (with an obvious answer) as any potboiler.

I own the annotated version, but since this was the first time I read the book, I didn't read them. I plan on going back, but I want to put some distance between me and the book first.

My favorite novel.  Personally I prefer to accept Humbert's assertion that he is redeemed. The story has less impact if you don't allow yourself to trust him a little, despite all the warnings not to.

Dying, dying, Lolita Haze,
Of hate and remorse, I'm dying.
And again my hairy fist I raise,
And again I hear you crying.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: bob on March 05, 2011, 12:04:22 PM
Reading through Poe's works (including his non-horror short stories and poems; yes, he wrote for other genres!) and some key Lovecraft stuff.

I'm a big fan of his. I've liked his work since I was in gradeschool. In fact a class I took in college was litereally a 20 page paper on how events in his life influenced his works.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on March 08, 2011, 05:03:55 PM
I'm reading / listening to Human Action again. just like I was a year ago.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on March 08, 2011, 05:38:24 PM
"The Ascent of Mt. Carmel" by St. John of the Cross. 

It's supposed to be one of the inspirations for THE HOLY MOUNTAIN, which I'll be reviewing soon.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on March 08, 2011, 09:07:22 PM
Also reading:

(http://static.letsbuyit.com/filer/images/uk/products/original/209/50/the-official-razzie-movie-guide-enjoying-the-best-of-hollywood-s-worst-20950375.jpeg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on March 09, 2011, 06:38:55 AM

For the millionth time...
(http://www.isfdb.org/wiki/images/d/de/JRSSCPRKZH1993.jpg)
Still my fave book after all these years...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 09, 2011, 09:58:40 AM

For the millionth time...
([url]http://www.isfdb.org/wiki/images/d/de/JRSSCPRKZH1993.jpg[/url])
Still my fave book after all these years...


Probably the last really good book Crichton wrote.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on March 09, 2011, 10:04:14 AM
Oh, I think Timeline was pretty good !  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on March 09, 2011, 03:43:30 PM
I loved PREY by Michael Crichton.  It would make a really good movie, but they'll probably screw that up.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RD on March 10, 2011, 02:32:12 PM
Finished Blood Meridian recently. Now halfway through Spook Country. Any other William Gibson fans here??


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on March 14, 2011, 04:53:45 PM
Ye-es!

The "Star Wars" omnibus.

Over 40 titles.
Over 100 volumes, as some of the titles are multi-volumed works.
Covering over 5000 years of history in the Star Wars Universe.

Many of them I find almost unreadable, because I find so many of the characters totally unlikable, but these I'm reading now are the earliest Star Wars adventures, which were published monthly between July, 1977 and August, 1986 in 111 issues. Some of them being comic book adaptations of the films. Others being original adventures of characters from the films and original characters. Thus, while I may find the characters uninteresting, I don't find them unlikable. The unlikable characters would come later.

And since they are the earliest adventures, they do show some of the changes that have taken place over time. For example, originally, Luke's father and Darth Vader were to be two separate characters. Another change between the comic books and the films is Jabba the Hutt's appearance. He's almost unrecognziable in the comic book.

Other surprises, both pleasant and unpleasant. Pleasant: I'd forgotten what a strong part religion played in the early Star Wars adventures. Unpleasant: how violent the early adventures were. Nothing particularly graphic, but alot of people are killed off in the stories.

I've only gone through the first two volumes, and I'm less than half way through, so I have more volumes to come.

Of the first two volumes, while the adventures are more complicated and complex in volume two, the better stories are actually the earlier ones in volume one. And I also like the android's desire for equality with humans which is found in volume one, but was dropped in volume two.

And volume one also features one of the greatest in-jokes I've ever seen in a comic book format. One of the characters in one of the adventures is a six-foot rabbit, who prefers hambones to carrots, but bears a certain resemblence to a certain cartoon rabbit, who shall remain nameless, but who's initials are BB. So, what are the names of two more of the characters in the adventure? Dafi as in Daffy Duck and Fud as in Elmer Fudd. ROTFL!

Next time: More miscellaneous or short reviews of recently read graphic novels.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Couchtr26 on March 14, 2011, 05:17:12 PM
New work manual.  Don't you love them like the old Be sure all pubic places are clean for the customers. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 14, 2011, 06:26:16 PM
I loved PREY by Michael Crichton.  It would make a really good movie, but they'll probably screw that up.

I found Prey kind of disappointing for basically the same reason. Seemed like Crichton was writing a screenplay in novel form, as though he was fishing for a movie deal with it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on March 14, 2011, 11:09:58 PM
New work manual.  Don't you love them like the old Be sure all pubic places are clean for the customers. 

I ALWAYS make sure all pubic places in work are clean for the customer's enjoyment. Well, some customers at least.  :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on March 15, 2011, 05:06:39 PM
(http://www.comicbookmovie.com/images/users/gallerypictures/9900L.jpg)

I just got done reading the first two volumes of Y: The Last Man.  

A mysterious plague has hit the earth and wiped out all male mammals except for Yorick Brown, amateur escape artist and his pet monkey.  Yorick sets out to try and find his family (and eventually reunite with his girlfriend who's in Australia) in a world that's been literally unmanned.  

It's an interesting read, although Yorick does come off as a bit of an idiot at times, especially in a few scenes where he's not very good at keep his identity a secret.  

Anyway, if you get a chance, check it out.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Flick James on March 16, 2011, 01:07:31 PM
Just started reading The Revolution: A Manifesto by Ron Paul. I adore that man.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on March 16, 2011, 07:23:15 PM
([url]http://www.comicbookmovie.com/images/users/gallerypictures/9900L.jpg[/url])

I just got done reading the first two volumes of Y: The Last Man. 

A mysterious plague has hit the earth and wiped out all male mammals except for Yorick Brown, amateur escape artist and his pet monkey.  Yorick sets out to try and find his family (and eventually reunite with his girlfriend who's in Australia) in a woman that's been literally unmanned. 

It's an interesting read, although Yorick does come off as a bit of an idiot at times, especially in a few scenes where he's not very good at keep his identity a secret. 

Anyway, if you get a chance, check it out.


I shall.  I've trying to read nonsuperhero comics.  Fables, which is awesome and you should be reading, is the only one I've tried besides The Walking Dead.  That was a bit disappointing, so I'll give this one a try.  Thanks for the recommendation.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Killer Bees on March 18, 2011, 06:46:21 AM
I'm usually an avid reader but I've been really slack and uninterested lately.  But I did pick up Dean Koontz's Breathless the other week.  I started reading it yesterday and so far so good.

I know he's not considered high brow by the purists, but books to me mean entertainment, especially fiction.  So if I'm entertained, I'm happy.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on March 19, 2011, 09:26:46 PM
It was a gift
(http://static.letsbuyit.com/filer/images/uk/products/original/59/56/coldheart-canyon.jpeg)

So far, so good.  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sister Grace on March 20, 2011, 06:53:17 AM
I'm usually an avid reader but I've been really slack and uninterested lately.  But I did pick up Dean Koontz's Breathless the other week.  I started reading it yesterday and so far so good.

I know he's not considered high brow by the purists, but books to me mean entertainment, especially fiction.  So if I'm entertained, I'm happy.

i completely agree on your outlook when it comes to books. yes, books are important and many make great statements about the human condition, social unrest, ect. ect. However, if you aren't entertained then you are less than likely to gain anything from it. I like many different genres. I've been in a bit of a slump when it comes to reading lately though. I read Paluniuk's Snuff, then someone gave me a copy of Thank You For Smoking. Everybody talks about how great Christopher Buckley is, however i haven't been able to make it through the second chapter...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Killer Bees on March 21, 2011, 04:31:14 AM
I know what you mean Sister Grace.

I read Richard Matheson's I Am Legend and I disliked it immensely *ducks at bricks being thrown*

I saw the movie with Will Smith and I enjoyed it.  So I borrowed the book.  Matheson wrote well.  He was clear and concise and I enjoyed Hunted Past Reason, but I Am Legend really failed to live up to the....um....legend of him.

I found out about him via this site many years ago and finally gave him a go last year.  I will read all his other stuff and I will probably buy I Am Legend in hardcover just to have in my collection.  But I really was disappointed.  Maybe because it was written in the 50s and things were different then, I don't know.

I didn't understand Robert Neville's actions or motivations.  Maybe if Matheson had written it today I would have enjoyed it more.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on March 22, 2011, 08:49:23 PM
I've been raiding the local library's manga section and trying almost any series that has a volume one available.  Here's what I've been reading:

xxxHolic
Fairy Tail
Amnesia Labyrinth
Future Diary
A Distance Neighborhood
Chobits
Nana


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on March 23, 2011, 12:55:46 AM
I am currently reading:

The Near Complete Essential Hembeck Archives Omnibus by Fred Hembeck - You may or may not be familiar with Hembeck, his goofy art style used to be the "in-house" humor for Marvel. This giant 900+ page collection is currently sitting in a place of honor on the back of my toilet. At this rate, I will probably never finish this book.

Hembeck example (comic not in omnibus):
(http://www.hembeck.com/Images/FHDesMU/FHMUCover.jpg)

A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn - As an introduction for a dialogue, it's okay. As a history book, it's pretty annoying. Interesting exercise; I'm only partially through it.

Voice of the Fire by Alan Moore - So far, his only novel. I'm really liking it, once I slogged through the first "ur-man" chapter. Seems more of Moore's idiosyncratic views on life, but with some awful decent stories thrown in.

Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs - Infamous novel of obscenity. Occasionally brushes with brilliance, too often mires down in some admittedly very imaginative muck. I like some of Burroughs' other work much better than his most famous novel.

Mars by Ben Bova - Was in the mood for some good "hard" sci-fi, so I thought I'd make my way through Bova's "Grand Tour." This was the first published, and though I've read it before, I'm starting here again.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Sleepyskull on March 23, 2011, 01:04:28 AM
I'm usually an avid reader but I've been really slack and uninterested lately.  But I did pick up Dean Koontz's Breathless the other week.  I started reading it yesterday and so far so good.

I know he's not considered high brow by the purists, but books to me mean entertainment, especially fiction.  So if I'm entertained, I'm happy.

i completely agree on your outlook when it comes to books. yes, books are important and many make great statements about the human condition, social unrest, ect. ect. However, if you aren't entertained then you are less than likely to gain anything from it. I like many different genres. I've been in a bit of a slump when it comes to reading lately though. I read Paluniuk's Snuff, then someone gave me a copy of Thank You For Smoking. Everybody talks about how great Christopher Buckley is, however i haven't been able to make it through the second chapter...



I really enjoyed Thank You For Smoking, but it was defintely different than how many people seemed to describe it... Also word of advice for anybody interested based on the movie: They are very different.  Lots of fun, but in different ways.



I really want to get back into pleasure reading... It seems like I've had a very hard time focusing on pleasureable things for the past 2 years or so... I love books and movies, but can barely read or watch... My goal is to read at least 4 books this year.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Zapranoth on March 23, 2011, 01:12:07 AM
I read the first 2/3 of _The Road_.. then couldn't finish it.   Dark, dark.  :(

Gotta say, re-reading Pohl's Heechee books recently on vacation was fun.

If you like big and bad space opera, read _Revelation Space_ by Alastair Reynolds.  That book is awesome.  its sequels are variable but also quite good. 

I have here a copy of _Velvet Elvis_ (Bell) that I'm just starting.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on March 23, 2011, 09:18:58 AM
In addition to a few books I'm in the middle of, I just started reading:

(http://pics.livejournal.com/dr_hermes/pic/007dfqhe/s640x480)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on March 25, 2011, 04:06:18 PM
Ye-es.

More miscellaneous, or a couple of short reviews of graphic novels.

"Noir" subtitled "a Collection of Crime Novels." One story with illustrations and twelve sets of illustrations with stories. Each with a twist at the end. But all it does is make me long for a Dashiell Hammett, a Raymond Chandler, or even a Mickey Spillane, all of whom were far better noir authors than the ones in this collection.

Well, if Lincoln could do it, then I guess Pinocchio can do it.

"Pinocchio Vampire Slayer" in two volumes. The second volume subtitled: "And the Great Puppet Theater." Unlike alot of graphic novels, where I find the first volume being better than the second volume, here the second volume is better than the first. The characters are more complex, and the storyline is more complicated, and for once complex and complicated comes off being better than simple and straightforward. And there is more humour in the second volume, which humour is also better intergrated into the story. And I presume there will be more volumes after the first two, as at the end of the second volume we left Pinocchio and his surviving puppet friends in the middle of the sea. Just be aware, when you start to read this, this is the Pinocchio of the original story and not the Pinocchio of the animated film.

As for "Y: the Last Man," I can and will read almost anything once it's in graphic form, but after one volume I just found this unreadable. It's an interesting idea behind the story, but just be aware the whole story goes on for ten or more volumes. Some of which are filled with some fairly graphic lesbian sex. But, what did you expect in a world of almost all women and no men.

Next time: Darren Shan's "The Thin Executioner"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: SpringZhang on March 30, 2011, 03:24:59 AM
I've read Charles Dickens' Hard Times and Little Dorrit. l like Dickens' works very much, though nearly all are very very long.

Bleak House in on my shelf, but I haven't started yet.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 30, 2011, 08:18:32 AM
Kind of lost interest in the Lovecraft-inspired circle jerk, and after a couple of weeks of trying to get back into it, I put it down and picked up Roger Ebert's book, Your Movie Sucks. It's an interesting collection of past reviews, but I'm a little disappointed that relatively few are movies Ebert really skewered. Those reviews are funny, but most of the others are just negative reviews. They're interesting, and I usually agree with them, but they aren't really what the book promised. And I keep running across movies that are so notoriously bad, I expect Ebert to rake them over the coals in a humorous fashion, but the review reads as almost a straight critique.

I'm about halfway through, and so far, nothing has topped the beginning of the book, and the Rob Schneider review from which it takes its title. That one is a classic, but it would be nice if it wasn't the high point of the book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on March 30, 2011, 08:36:44 AM
I've read Charles Dickens' Hard Times and Little Dorrit. l like Dickens' works very much, though nearly all are very very long.

Bleak House in on my shelf, but I haven't started yet.

Over the past couple of years, I read A TALE OF TWO CITIES and GREAT EXPECTATIONS.  Dickens is my favorite author of all time. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on March 31, 2011, 06:52:31 PM
Right now I'm reading Fritz Leiber's Our Lady Of Darkness. If you're familiar with Argento's Three Mothers Trilogy (which includes Suspiria, Inferno and Mother Of Tears) or the De Quincey poem on which they were based, then you'll be interested in this. It came out the same year that Suspiria was released, and sort of involves Mater Tenebrarum, the Mother of Darkness. The book and films aren't related, though I have a sneaking suspicion that Argento read it before he made Inferno, as they have a few thematic simularities. There's also a ton of references to HP Lovecraft and Clark Ashton Smith (part of the story involves a journal owned by Smith), and various real life occultists. The prose isn't the greatest (Leiber sure loved commas) but the story is really engrossing.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on April 01, 2011, 03:44:31 AM
I've just finished reading Catcher In The Rye after years of meaning to get round to it. I absolutely loved it, couldn't put the damn thing down and I was totally not expecting the language or writing style considering it was a book first published in 1951. It just seemed like it could have been written this year and for a book that's quite short where nothing of any note really happens, it had me engrossed. Don't know whether to be worried that I found alot of similarities with myself in Holden Caulfield though....


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Zapranoth on April 03, 2011, 10:28:42 AM
@Circus, be afraid.  Be very afraid.  :)

I'm re-reading _Neverwhere_  (Neil Gaiman).   I love his writing style!  (If you love short stories that are grim, read _Fragile Things_, look up the story "We Can Get Them For You Wholesale.")  He has a truly wicked sense of humor, grim and capable of taking the oldest fairy tale concepts and twisting them to his own ends.

An example:  the protagonist is preparing to leave to London to seek his fortune, and he's sitting outside the pub during his send-off party, not feeling well.  A little old lady stops and talks with him, and reads his fortune (it is a disturbing fortune).  He thanks her by giving her his umbrella, as it's a stormy night:

The old woman took the umbrella, gratefully, and smiled her thanks.  "You've a good heart," she told him.  "Sometimes that's enough to see you safe wherever you go."   Then she shook her head.   "But mostly, it's not."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on April 07, 2011, 05:27:14 PM
Ye-es.

Darren Shan's "The Thin Executioner" Perhaps best known for his "Cirque du Freak" series, but if that is by an author who has yet to reach his full potential, then "The Thin Executioner" shows the reader, what he can do, when he has reached his full potential.

Ashes to ashes
Dust to dust
If the animals don't get ya,
then the weather must.

For not only are the horrors more numerous in "The Thin Executioner," but more realistic. Beginning with a bloody execution and ramping up the horrors from there. Not only animal attacks, but freezing weather as well, and . . .

beheadings -- brandings -- cannibalism -- dismemberments --graverobbings -- lewd violence -- self-mutilations

And unlike the other series of books, it is not only a horror novel, but also an adventure story, a dark comedy, a political treatise, and a religious epic.

And the villains are more dangerous in this one. You don't underestimate the villains in "Cirque du Freak," but you do the ones in this book, which several characters do to their regret. And that's what makes them dangerous. The underestimation. Which is the kind of villain that gets you killed. Which may be why the author named two of the chief villains Bush and Blair. Yes, that Bush and that Blair.

An estimable piece of writing, which will not lead to a sequel, as the author has said it is a stand alone novel.

Next time: Still more miscellaneous or more brief reviews of recently read graphic novels.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on April 07, 2011, 06:10:23 PM
I am just about to give up on The Last Templar by Raymond Khoury.  I don't usually quit a read I have started, but one more egregious error and I am outta there.  He started losing me by page 10.  I have not seen the movie, but as Khoury is first and foremost a screenwriter I am sure it is very similar - and no doubt works better.  The writing style is OK but the flaws in his factual research are too glaring to ignore (and he insists on tossing tidbits in there on stuff he does not know well enough :lookingup: ) and I am afraid that spoils it for me.   :bluesad:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on April 11, 2011, 03:08:11 PM
BILLY THE KID: THE ENDLESS RIDE by Michael Wallis.  Pretty interesting because Wallis starts out by saying a lot of what has been written about Billy the Kid is conjecture and there isn't a lot of evidence to back up the stories.  I'm only about 50 pages into the book, but so far Wallis has done a nice job presenting information about Billy and describing things that may or may not be accurate (such as exactly when and where Billy was born and who his father was).  Prior to reading this book, I always thought Billy's real name was William Bonney.  But that was just one of his aliases.  His birth name was Henry McCarty.   


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on April 13, 2011, 12:28:05 PM
I'm reading Young Men in Spats. I've never read Wodehouse before and I have to say it's better than I expected.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on April 15, 2011, 04:28:50 PM
Ye-es.

Some "still more miscellaneous" or short reviews of some recently read graphic novels.

James Patterson's "Daniel X: Alien Hunter" and James Patterson's "Daniel X." Both graphic versions of the teen novel series about an teenage alien, who after his parents are killed, takes over their job of hunting down all the alien criminals on earth. The first takes place in Japan, and the second takes place on the West coast and then on Danel's home planet in outer space.

I like the first one better even though, the second one points out the credibility problem of a teenage boy running around earth without attracting attention to himself, and as the aliens can be seen by humans, the explanation of everyone who sees the aliens, having hallucinations, only goes so far.

Also the second graphic novel in Dean Koontz's Odd series "Odd Is on Our Side," which I actually liked better than the first graphic novel in that series, as the second one has a villain who seems to be guilty, but is actually innocent, and a villain who seems to be innocent, but is actually guilty, and alot of nice unexpected twists and turns in the story.

Also the first volume of Dean Koontz's "Fear Nothing" in graphic format. Which shows with a good adapter, how a novel, as in this case, can be stripped now to its bare essence. For example: any descriptive passages can be stipped out, as the illustrations in the graphic novel serve the same purpose. Thus, I'm looking forward to the other volumes in the story.

Next time: Hal Butler's "Abandon Ship" and John Rousmaniera's "After the Storm"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on April 15, 2011, 04:42:44 PM
Sandman by Neil Gaiman.  I'm up to the second volume now and well, it's alright.  I'm not entirely into it.  It's good and all, but it's like Watchmen to me.  It just doesn't live up to this hype that surrounds it.  The only comic to ever live up to its hype for me was The Dark Knight Returns.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Siren on April 19, 2011, 09:39:30 PM
Started re-reading Hitch Hikers Guide forget where I left off and this time im determine to find out the potted plants story!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: WilliamWeird1313 on April 21, 2011, 03:00:14 AM

Zombie Holocaust: How The Living Dead Devoured Pop Culture, by David Flint

I picked it up because, as the title implies, it's not a review or reference tome, nor an academic analysis of the zombie-as-metaphor, but rather a history of the zombie in pop culture in general, from their roots in voodoun to the early poverty row chillers a la' White Zombie and Revenge Of The Zombies to their predominance in E.C. and E.C.-esque pre-code horror comics, to the Romero reinvention, and on and on and on, covering literature, gaming, advertisements, etc. ...to Michael Jackson's "Thriller" and the Resident Evil video games to the modern phenomenon of Zombie Walks and the now-staggering number of low budget/no-budget zombie flicks on the market, to the point where we are now where zombies are mainstream and the culture, one might argue, is oversaturated.

Bummer. The book sucks. I really thought that it would be an interesting read, especially as I've been a diehard zombie fan ever since I glimpsed the NOTLD remake on TNT MonsterVision when I was a kid (the first zombie flick my innocent, prepubescent mind was ever exposed to, and a moment that also turned me into a full-blown horror fan for life). But it's more like Zombies 101, or Zombies For Dummies. The author gives himself too little room for the breadth of subjects he covers, which means that the book ends up moving too fast and discussing topics too superficially and vaguely. It's just a step away from being one big list of zombie appearances in pop culture and nothing more.

On top of that, the guy's tastes just clash really nastily with my own, to the put where I find it off-putting. You all know I'm a big Fulci fanatic, and any book where Doom (yes, the movie starring The Rock) gets more kind words said about it than The Gates Of Hell is a total turn-off to me.

Bah.

Oh well. I'm much more looking forward to reading Teenage Wasteland: The Slasher Movie Uncut by J.A. Kerswell (the same fella who runs the excellent Hysteria Lives website).


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on April 21, 2011, 10:28:05 AM
Fiasco: A History of Hollywood's Iconic Flops, by James Robert Parish. Just getting into the first of 15 expensive bombs Parish discusses in this book, Cleopatra (1963).

The book's introduction was long, and a bit heavy on dry facts, but explained very well the changes in the film industry since the late 40s, and the factors that contribute to a big-budget cinematic disaster. Now that the book is dealing with an actual movie, I'm enjoying the way Parish follows the production from the first ill-conceived idea through every major misstep, while putting it all into the context of what was happening in the industry at that time, and what was motivating the people involved. Also nice that Parish adjusts the costs for inflation, since it really puts the numbers in perspective. Cleopatra, for the time it was made, was a more expensive movie than Waterworld.

Enjoying it so far, and looking forward to reading about the other movies. I know some of the story behind movies like Ishtar and The Last Action Hero, but nothing that goes as deep as Parish has been going in this book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: bob on April 21, 2011, 11:06:03 AM
I finally finished The Catcher in the Rye two days ago.  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: WilliamWeird1313 on April 21, 2011, 10:34:45 PM
Fiasco: A History of Hollywood's Iconic Flops, by James Robert Parish. Just getting into the first of 15 expensive bombs Parish discusses in this book, Cleopatra (1963).

The book's introduction was long, and a bit heavy on dry facts, but explained very well the changes in the film industry since the late 40s, and the factors that contribute to a big-budget cinematic disaster. Now that the book is dealing with an actual movie, I'm enjoying the way Parish follows the production from the first ill-conceived idea through every major misstep, while putting it all into the context of what was happening in the industry at that time, and what was motivating the people involved. Also nice that Parish adjusts the costs for inflation, since it really puts the numbers in perspective. Cleopatra, for the time it was made, was a more expensive movie than Waterworld.

Enjoying it so far, and looking forward to reading about the other movies. I know some of the story behind movies like Ishtar and The Last Action Hero, but nothing that goes as deep as Parish has been going in this book.

Sounds good, and right up my alley. I'm going to have to check that out.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mr_Vindictive on May 07, 2011, 02:00:58 PM
Recently I read through the Old Mans War series by John Scalzi. The man seems to be the next Heinlein. Superb hard science fiction. The books are a hell of a good read.

I'm currently reading Hard Magic by the same author of the Monster Hunter International books. Pulpy, early 1930s detective novel with some magical elements thrown in. Excellent book so far, and is really taking the idea of alternative history and running with it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on May 07, 2011, 04:00:56 PM
The Pillow Book of Sei Shonagon.  This was a diary/collection of miscellaneous observations by a 10th century lady-in-waiting in the Japanese empresses court.  It's one of a couple of primary sources that reveal what life was like in medieval Japan.  It is interesting, because Sei's world is so different from ours or even from medieval Europe, but its very dry reading.  There are a ton of footnotes and lots of detail to catch up on, like the incredibly complicated Japanese calendar and the almost impenetrable system of ranking for nobles (I forget, does the Great Minister of the Right outrank the Chancellor?)

Also re-reading through this for the 3rd or 4th time:

(http://media.us.macmillan.com/jackets/258H/9780312131494.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on May 07, 2011, 08:30:41 PM
J Michael Straczynski's run on Spider-Man and Thor, which is rather apporiate since he also wrote Thor the movie.  What a concidence!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 08, 2011, 12:38:51 AM
Just finished James McPherson's TRIED BY WAR: LINCOLN AS COMMANDER IN CHIEF.
Very interesting look at President Lincoln's military skills, and his role in shaping the
President's military status.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: crackers on May 15, 2011, 05:01:10 AM
I Just bought The Secret Diary Of Laura Palmer i can't wait to get stuck into it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on May 15, 2011, 05:50:33 AM
Currently reading Dean Kootz's "Lightning"

(http://www4.alibris-static.com/isbn/9780747231646.gif)

I think Mr. Koontz is fast becoming my favourite author, I just seem to be flying through book after book wanting more. Having recently finished Strangers, Hideaway and The House Of Thunder, I've began Lightning, which has some lightning in and so far, a woman dying in childbirth and an alcoholic doctor held hostage by a mysterious intruder. Dean's got a pretty damn good knack of getting you hooked right from chapter one.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 15, 2011, 08:28:28 AM
His books are my favorite mental junk food - I plow through them in a single day and enjoy every minute of it!!  BTW, PHANTOMS is my all time favorite by him.  It is one genuinely creepy work!!

I just finished GAME OF THRONES and now I am reading CLASH OF KINGS.
Good stuff!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 16, 2011, 04:56:19 PM
I might have to give Koontz another try. I liked his Frankenstein trilogy up until the second half of the third book, where it seemed he didn't so much end the story as stop it as efficiently as possible. Seemed kind of hastily thrown together, which it probably was. That volume was delayed a couple of years and totally rewritten after Hurricane Katrina, what with it being about monsters wreaking havok in New Orleans and all.

The only other Koontz I've read was Darkfall, and I didn't make it halfway through before tossing that one aside.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on May 17, 2011, 12:00:41 PM
I might have to give Koontz another try. I liked his Frankenstein trilogy up until the second half of the third book, where it seemed he didn't so much end the story as stop it as efficiently as possible. Seemed kind of hastily thrown together, which it probably was. That volume was delayed a couple of years and totally rewritten after Hurricane Katrina, what with it being about monsters wreaking havok in New Orleans and all.

The only other Koontz I've read was Darkfall, and I didn't make it halfway through before tossing that one aside.

Andy, read Watchers or Intensity and I guarantee that you'll change your mind on 'ol Mr. Koontz. You know I'm always right...  :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on May 17, 2011, 01:51:16 PM
I Just bought The Secret Diary Of Laura Palmer i can't wait to get stuck into it.


  This is a fun read. The Diary of Agent Dale Cooper is excellent too. As kids we had a lot of fun reading these and trying to figure out Who Killed Laura Palmer?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on May 17, 2011, 07:52:53 PM
I just got done reading Dc Universe by Alan Moore,  To quote Tvtropes (and God, have been reading that site waaay too much), it's pretty much what it say on the tin: a collection of stories set in the DC Universe written by Alan Moore.  It's a rather interesting collection, especially if (like me) you're mainly just familiar with Moore from Watchmen.  You can see some of the lighter side of his works.

Neatly enough, when I was heavily into comics (back when I had extra money and no computer to spend it on) I never really read much DC stuff, but even I found a lot of the stories to be good reads, as you don't have too know too much "background" info to "get it" (although there's is one or two where being familiar with the characters would have probably lent more of a "punch" to the story.)  For example, one story centers around Clayface, but apparently not THE Clayface, I'm familiar with from the cartoon series. I think Batman mentions in the story there's been three different guys to go by that nickname. (You think the writers would have just called them something else, but hey, how many "Goblins" have there been over at Marvel?)

We start out with, "For the Man Who Has Everything", a story where Batman, Robin, and Wonder Woman arrive at the Fortress of Solitude to deliver some "birthday" gifts to Superman, only to find him standing frozen in place with a bizarre plant-like thing growing into his chest. 

Also in the book are a Superman/Swamp Thing crossover, "Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?" which is basically a "possible future" story about how the saga of Superman comes to an end, a story further detailing the death of the alien (can't recall his name) who possessed the Green Lantern ring before Hal Jordan found it, and, probably one of Moore's most famous DC stories, "The Killing Joke." 

Neat enough, one of my personal favorite stories is, "In Blackest Night" which is about one of the female Green Lanterns (can't remember her name, she has red skin though) goes to a sunless solar system to find someone worthy of becoming a Green Lantern.  She find a suitable candidate in a silicon based lifeform, but a problem comes when she can't explain exactly what the Green Lanterns are.  You see, although her ring translates his (it's?) musical notation language to hers, there are NO words in his for "color", "light", "green", "lantern" etc.  The solution she comes up with is rather clever and I just think the whole story has a neat idea on Moore's part.

Anyway, if you like DC or Moore, it's a decent pick up!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on May 18, 2011, 08:23:47 AM
I'm reading Young Men in Spats by PG Wodehouse.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on May 18, 2011, 02:02:14 PM
Ye-es.

Hal Butler's "Abandon Ship," published in 1974, but part of it written in 1959, and John Rousmaniara's "After the Storn," published in 2002.

Between them, they cover two dozen shipwrecks that occurred between 1809 and 1996 with no duplications in their stories.

They have some good news and some bad news about shipwrecks for you. Using their examples, you have a 79% chance of surviving a shipwreck. The bad news is, if you want a better than 50% chance of surviving a shipwreck, your odds are now 37%. And if you want an 100% chance of surviving a shipwreck, your odds are now 4%.

What else is interesting is how the thought processes of two white American males can differ so much between the older generation (Butler) and the younger generation (Rousmaniara.)

Butler: seemingly sees everything in shades of black and white.
Rousmaniara: seemingly sees everything in shades of gray.

Butler: seemingly uninterested in any aftermath of the shipwreck.
Rousmaniara: seemingly interested in any aftermath of the shipwreck.
Even years later.

Butler: seemingly uninterested in the why?
Rpis,amoara: seemingly interested in the why?

While man has always been reflective and introspective. It only seems to have come more permissible for the younger generation.

Next time: And still more miscellaneous (in graphic fromat)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Criswell on May 23, 2011, 11:18:03 PM
Reading Lord of the Rings. Halfway through the Two Towers.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on June 01, 2011, 09:22:34 AM
The Destroyer #122-Syndication Rites . The Mafia gets involved in the stock market and Chiun discovers the joys of country music. Nothing but the classics for me!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on June 01, 2011, 10:31:53 PM
Just finished George R.R. Martin's FEAST OF CROWS, the last available volume in the SONG OF ICE AND FIRE series (GAME OF THRONES, for HBO watchers).  I began to suspect, and finally saw those suspicions confirmed by the end of the book - THE STORY ISN'T OVER!  I hate getting sucked into a fantasy series and then realizing it isn't complete yet!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on June 02, 2011, 03:29:39 AM
Just finished George R.R. Martin's FEAST OF CROWS, the last available volume in the SONG OF ICE AND FIRE series (GAME OF THRONES, for HBO watchers).  I began to suspect, and finally saw those suspicions confirmed by the end of the book - THE STORY ISN'T OVER!  I hate getting sucked into a fantasy series and then realizing it isn't complete yet!

I love A Song of Ice and Fire.

George R.R. Martin is taking his sweet time. Don't get me wrong, I want him to take the time to really finish his story right. I'm just hoping he doesn't pull a Robert Jordan.

My brother is reading the series right now, and he's about halfway through the third book. I can't talk to him about it at all, because Martin is one of those writers who is not afraid of the actual consequences of a full scare war. It's a lot like the comic book The Walking Dead.

"Yeah, I'm hoping you're not really attached to that character."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on June 02, 2011, 08:12:13 AM
I KNOW!!!  I actually wanted to punch the author in the face after I read about the "Red Wedding!"  But at least one of the victims came back from the dead . . . . kind of.

My wife is reading it now, and I have given her no  spoilers whatsoever.  She's gonna be TICKED!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on June 06, 2011, 01:24:10 PM
Ye-es.

And still more miscellaneous, or, short reviews of several graphic novels recently read.

Janet and Alex Evanovich's "Troublemaker" in 2 vols.

Best known for her Stephanie Plum series, she has another mystery series about a race car driver named Hooker and his female mechanic Barnaby. This is the 3rd book in the series, but the 1st in graphic format.

I was surprised at how much humor there was in it, but the humor worked well within the story.
Living in south Florida, the author seems to have the flavor of Miami and Key West down pat.
And, surprising, what happens in the story is alot more plausible than what happens in alot of other stories. I was impressed.

Orson Scott Card's "Ender's Game" and Ender's Shadow" in grapic format. Each in 2 vols. v.1. "Battle School." v.2. "Command School."

I know Card has his adherents, including some on this board, but I was singularly unimprssed. Maybe it's the graphic format, but . . .

I found none of the characters to be credible.
The boys' by-play was unbelievable.
And I found the profanity grating to my ears.

Next time: the "Fantome," the "Kursk,", the "Medusa," and the "Titanic."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Hammock Rider on June 13, 2011, 11:57:57 AM
I KNOW!!!  I actually wanted to punch the author in the face after I read about the "Red Wedding!"  But at least one of the victims came back from the dead . . . . kind of.

My wife is reading it now, and I have given her no  spoilers whatsoever.  She's gonna be TICKED!


  This series blows me away. And Dance of Dragons is coming out next month!


   Right now I'm reading Upriver & Downstream. It's a collection of short stories and articles about fishing originally published in The New York Times.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on June 13, 2011, 05:39:59 PM
"early economic thought"  I am kind of shocked by Aristotle. It's really barbaric and awful in many respects, yet for his time it was probably pretty forward thinking.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: El Misfit on June 13, 2011, 06:19:11 PM
eh, I should start reading Blink sometime soon. If I finish it soon, I could start reading Dark Star


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on June 13, 2011, 07:30:01 PM
For my philosophy class, I had to sit down and read The Subjection of Women.  Damn, that was a hard one to read and get through.  The paragraphs just never seemed to end!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on June 17, 2011, 05:41:14 PM
Ye-es.

The Fantome, The Kursk, The Medusa, The Titanic

4 ships sank.
2 civilian. 2 military.
1 American. 1 British. 1 French. 1 Russian.
1 Aground. 1 Collision. 1 Internal explosion. 1 Storm.
1 west African. 1 north Atlantic. 1 Caribbean. 1 Murmansk.

You think there'd be no similiarities between them. But . . .

1. Politics played a large role in all four. If not before the loss, then after the loss.

2. Everyone forgets the all for one and one for all. As everyone starts looking out for number one. The lines being drawn along the lines of age, class, politics, and race.

3. All the losses were due to lack of knowledge.

4. Almost no one was punished for the losses. And if someone was punished, it was often the wrong person.

5. All the losses brought out the best and worst in human behavior.

And the four books . . .

Jim Carrier's "The Ship and the Storm"
Robert Moore's "A Time to Die"
Jonathan Miles' "The Wreck of the Medusa"
Jay Stevension's "The Complete Idiot's Guide to the Titanic"

Next time: Even more miscellaneous



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Cthulhu on June 26, 2011, 02:35:53 PM
I just read Just after Sunset by Stephen King. It had a few lame short stories, but also some pretty good ones. N. kicked ass, for example.
I'm also about to read The 3 Stigmata of Palmer Eldricht by Philip K. Dick.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on June 26, 2011, 09:43:39 PM
My continuing adventure through my public library's comic collection continues forward.  I am now reading the following:

American Vampire (Best damn vampire anything in the past few years, expect possibly Let Me In)
Dragon Drive (It's a new form of Digimon apparently)
Hunter X Hunter (Not too bad for the first two volumes)
Moonphase (More vampire stuff.  Not too bad, nothing special)
Emma (Who knew romance and British maids from the late 1800's made such a compelling story?)
K-On! (A pretty good comedy about a group of girls and their music club.)
Hikaru No Go (A very surprisingly good sports comic about the game of Go.  Makes me want to play it!)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Criswell on June 26, 2011, 11:15:46 PM
I'm currently about halfway through The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan. Its pretty good so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Cthulhu on June 27, 2011, 12:45:42 PM
Should I buy Dragons of Winter Night? (Second book in the Dragonlance series.) I've heard that the series is really good, but the first one just seemed allright. I was kinda p**sed off at some points, too:(SPOILERS for example, a few characters die, only to be brought back pages later. You can't do that.)
So I was wondering:Will it get better? Because I kinda feel like there is no weight to it.  feel like characters dying doesn't have any consequences.
So, should I buy it?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on June 29, 2011, 04:48:36 PM
Should I buy Dragons of Winter Night? (Second book in the Dragonlance series.) I've heard that the series is really good, but the first one just seemed allright. I was kinda p**sed off at some points, too:(SPOILERS for example, a few characters die, only to be brought back pages later. You can't do that.)
So I was wondering:Will it get better? Because I kinda feel like there is no weight to it.  feel like characters dying doesn't have any consequences.
So, should I buy it?

The series (IMHO) gets better as it goes along. And I really like the series and the authors. What you must understand is that the book you read was the first one written by the team of Weis and Hickman, and like most first time collaborations by somewhat inexperienced writers their first novel is normally not their best work. But as they become more experienced with their second novel and so on, their writing skills improve as do the books. But, I must add, I love the character of Fitzban in the first novel. A character that just makes me ROTFL!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on June 29, 2011, 05:00:48 PM
Ye-es.

Even more miscellaneous or short reviews of several graphic novels.

Two in the Halo series. Peter David's "Helljumper" and Fred van Lente's "Bloodline." I actually found the 2nd one to be the better of the two, as it is the more complex of the two graphic novels. Which is somewhat of a surprise as Peter David is one of my all-time favorite authors. But on the downlow, "Bloodline" is also the more confusing of the two, and when the characters get into their armour, it is almost impossible to tell one from the other. And both graphic novels suffer from overly confusing fight scenes.

Peter S. Beagle's "The Last Unicorn" A writer of over 30 books. Both fiction and non-fiction. Children's and adult's. This is probably his best known work. And if you read it, read it also for the interview with the author. A great ranconteur who has some great stories about the great people he has known, including Marilyn Monroe and her then husband Arthur Miller, who he knew when he was still in high school.

Terry Brooks' "Dark Wrath of Shannara." One of my favorite fantasy series. Supposedly written originally as a graphic novel. Maybe. But I swear I read it also in a  print version at sometime.  The only problem is that the artist's interpretation of the characters never match up with your interpretation of what the characters should look like.

Next time: Gary Corley's "The Pericles Commission"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Cthulhu on June 29, 2011, 06:26:11 PM
Should I buy Dragons of Winter Night? (Second book in the Dragonlance series.) I've heard that the series is really good, but the first one just seemed allright. I was kinda p**sed off at some points, too:(SPOILERS for example, a few characters die, only to be brought back pages later. You can't do that.)
So I was wondering:Will it get better? Because I kinda feel like there is no weight to it.  feel like characters dying doesn't have any consequences.
So, should I buy it?

The series (IMHO) gets better as it goes along. And I really like the series and the authors. What you must understand is that the book you read was the first one written by the team of Weis and Hickman, and like most first time collaborations by somewhat inexperienced writers their first novel is normally not their best work. But as they become more experienced with their second novel and so on, their writing skills improve as do the books. But, I must add, I love the character of Fitzban in the first novel. A character that just makes me ROTFL!
Thank you for the advice! :teddyr: :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 04, 2011, 09:26:51 AM
Nearly finished Boneshaker, by Cherie Priest. It's the first steampunk novel I've tried, and it's very good.

Yesterday afternoon was nice and sunny, so I took my boat out on the lake with my book and a few cans of pop, and just kind of drifted and gently rocked, and read in near perfect peace and quiet. I hate being interrupted when I'm reading, so it's hard to beat being surrounded by water, far enough from anything that the loudest noises are only faintly heard.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Cthulhu on July 04, 2011, 09:51:25 AM
I'm reading Neuromancer by William Gibson.
I also bought some books on Amazon.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 05, 2011, 08:57:24 AM
Finished "Slaughterhouse-Five" by Kurt Vonnegut the other day, liked it a lot. Currently reading "The Definitive book on Body Language" which is very interesting.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on July 05, 2011, 07:37:09 PM
Currently reading The Unwritten by Mike Carey (who wrote Lucifer, the spinoff of sorts to Sandman).  The series is about Tom Taylor, the son of a famous author, who was the basis for the main character of a fantasy series more popular than Harry Potter.  One day at a convention, it is discovered that he may not be the real Tom Taylor and rumors go around about him being the main character of the series, Tommy, turned flesh.  However, there is much more to this then what it seems.  Excellent series that sold me on everything from the very first issue.  I highly recommend this to almost anyone here.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 06, 2011, 05:07:14 PM
Ye-es.

Gary Corley's "The Pericles Commission"

We have all see this one before. As it'd be centuries before a public police force would be established, a private citizen is asked to investigate a murder, and see if he can find the murderer and the motivation for the murder. Of course, almost everyone, including his employer has a motive for the murder, so the only people the hero can trust are his own family and his girlfriend, who just happens to be the daughter of the murder victim.

I've seen them for ancient Rome, ancient Egypt, and even ancient Babylon, but this is the first one I've seen for ancient Greece.

What the author does right.

He keeps present ideas out of the ancient past, which is harder to do than it looks.

He includes alot of people who actually existed, so if you have any knowledge of ancient Greek history, you should have some idea of what is going one.

What the author does wrong.

He includes a second murder later on in the book, which is not well intergrated into the book, which makes everyone's motives, especially the murderer's motive, a bit murkier than they should be.

What is odd or maybe not.

From an era that is regarded as being one of the friendliest for gays, there are no homosexuals in the book.

Maybe there'll be in the next book, as the author is suppose to be wriing a sequel to this one.

Next time: And even more miscellaneous or short reviews of graphic novels read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on July 07, 2011, 08:20:45 PM
"Selected Tales of Edgar Allen Poe (Norton Critical Edition)" - I've read most of these, but this edition contains a few stories and pieces that aren't in my other Poe collection.  I also want to read the critical essays. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on July 16, 2011, 02:33:15 AM
As usual, I've got nine books I'm reading concurrently.

I'm just going to talk about three, because they kind of play off each other.

The first is The People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn, which I was reading the last time I chimed in. The book purports to be a trek through American history from the point of view of the down-trodden and the under-represented. It is, in parts. But as the book progresses, it very clearly becomes a history of the United States through a pro-Socialist, pro-Communist agenda. I am in sympathy with the book's originally stated goal, but it is very clear that the author, Zinn, is committing the primary political sin of equating "the people" with his own agenda. Note: Every single political party believes that they represent "the people." This book is very poor history. The author cherry-picks the arguments the viewpoints that best suit his point of view. He very rarely ventures into actual research, instead relying on the thoughts of third-parties and, please help me, poems. There's a point in the book where he mentions the mid-20th century Communist revolution in China as a positive. Zinn, I know the history of China. Were you one of those teenagers wandering around public parks handing out Mao's Little Red Book? That did not end well.

(Listen to Zinn praise Eugene V. Debs, the one true hero I've managed to find in his book. Did I mention this book won the Eugene V. Debs Award?)

Second, Straw Dogs: Thoughts on Human and Other Animals by John Gray. The gist of this book is that many of the beliefs we hold dear are outmoded. The sense of free will, of our own identity, of our belief that we are separate "special creatures" from the rest of life, is all attacked here. More properly, this book should have been called "Paper Tigers," as the author reduces all arguments into something he can easily refute.

It truly bugs me, because these are viewpoints I can sympathize with, but the books here are slapdash, easily argued against, just poor excuses for arguments.

The last is an anomaly, because I picked it up because it seemed such a weird historical artifact. Cannibals All! by George Fitzhugh is a defense of slavery written pre-Civil War by a man who did not only view the enslavement of Africans as alright, but thought most of humanity deserved to be enslaved. His viewpoint was that owning slaves was not only natural, but desirable. He attacks capitalism for being a form of slavery where the masters have no obligation to their workers, as opposed to that wonderful slice of life that was the Southern plantation. The attack on capitalism he elicits is probably the least offensive to me of these books. I think his criticisms are pretty valid today. Unfortunately, he gives himself a complete blind-eye to the horrors of antebellum slavery. It's hard to imagine a book more antithetical to most of the ideas the United States prides itself on.

I'll finish all these books, but they are tiresome to the extreme. There are kernels of ideas I agree with (slavery is not one of them), but these horrid attempts at explaining them are awful. Dear World, stop priding your dumb ideas and try to make a sad song better.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 16, 2011, 07:16:32 PM
Kind of drifting from one thing to another right now, trying to figure out what I feel like reading. Been re-reading a little Lovecraft, a little Poe.

Figured I would finally read the only Michael Slade thriller I haven't read so far, "Hangman." It was at the public library in town for a while, but when I went to sign it out, it wasn't there. Seems they've been culling titles that haven't been signed out for a while. It's a tiny library, and this book has been around for 11 or 12 years, so it makes sense. Of course, older books in the series are still there. I suspect that's because I signed them out a couple of years ago. Oh, the irony.

Noticed Dean Koontz has continued the Frankenstein series, and I'm tempted to check that out, but I didn't care much for the third book. Don't know if it's worth picking up the fourth and fifth.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 16, 2011, 10:12:27 PM
As usual, I've got nine books I'm reading concurrently.

I'm just going to talk about three, because they kind of play off each other.

The first is The People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn, which I was reading the last time I chimed in. The book purports to be a trek through American history from the point of view of the down-trodden and the under-represented. It is, in parts. But as the book progresses, it very clearly becomes a history of the United States through a pro-Socialist, pro-Communist agenda. I am in sympathy with the book's originally stated goal, but it is very clear that the author, Zinn, is committing the primary political sin of equating "the people" with his own agenda. Note: Every single political party believes that they represent "the people." This book is very poor history. The author cherry-picks the arguments the viewpoints that best suit his point of view. He very rarely ventures into actual research, instead relying on the thoughts of third-parties and, please help me, poems. There's a point in the book where he mentions the mid-20th century Communist revolution in China as a positive. Zinn, I know the history of China. Were you one of those teenagers wandering around public parks handing out Mao's Little Red Book? That did not end well.

(Listen to Zinn praise Eugene V. Debs, the one true hero I've managed to find in his book. Did I mention this book won the Eugene V. Debs Award?)

Second, Straw Dogs: Thoughts on Human and Other Animals by John Gray. The gist of this book is that many of the beliefs we hold dear are outmoded. The sense of free will, of our own identity, of our belief that we are separate "special creatures" from the rest of life, is all attacked here. More properly, this book should have been called "Paper Tigers," as the author reduces all arguments into something he can easily refute.

It truly bugs me, because these are viewpoints I can sympathize with, but the books here are slapdash, easily argued against, just poor excuses for arguments.

The last is an anomaly, because I picked it up because it seemed such a weird historical artifact. Cannibals All! by George Fitzhugh is a defense of slavery written pre-Civil War by a man who did not only view the enslavement of Africans as alright, but thought most of humanity deserved to be enslaved. His viewpoint was that owning slaves was not only natural, but desirable. He attacks capitalism for being a form of slavery where the masters have no obligation to their workers, as opposed to that wonderful slice of life that was the Southern plantation. The attack on capitalism he elicits is probably the least offensive to me of these books. I think his criticisms are pretty valid today. Unfortunately, he gives himself a complete blind-eye to the horrors of antebellum slavery. It's hard to imagine a book more antithetical to most of the ideas the United States prides itself on.

I'll finish all these books, but they are tiresome to the extreme. There are kernels of ideas I agree with (slavery is not one of them), but these horrid attempts at explaining them are awful. Dear World, stop priding your dumb ideas and try to make a sad song better.



I've heard of Zinn, he is typical of the Marxist/leftist professors that crowded the halls of academia in the 1970's thru the 1990's - guys who stayed in college and got their advanced degrees so they could get deferments and avoid Vietnam, and spent their careers bashing the country that enabled them to live better than 90% of the world, while praising governments that routinely executed intellectuals like themselves.  Not that America is flawless, but academics like Zinn should have been deported en masse to the Soviet Union before they could corrupt an entire generation of American youth!

Fitzhugh was one of slavery's most eloquent defenders, but he was very typical of the antebellum Southern intellectual who was absolutely blind to the real horrors of the institution that was the foundation of Southern society.  His "Sociology of the South" was another soaring assertion of the "positive good" theory of slavery.  I wish I could go back in time and take him, John C. Calhoun, and a few others, dye their skins black, and sell them to a cotton plantation in Alabama for a year or so.  Let's see how they feel abou the "peculiar institution" then!!!! :hatred:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 17, 2011, 09:35:14 AM
(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_ILi5pjUAbZY/R0ymPMuWGpI/AAAAAAAAADY/c5JTKi8sLfs/s320/NeedfulThingsBookCover.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 17, 2011, 01:50:02 PM
Ye-es!

And still even more miscellaneous . . . [in graphic format form]

Darren Shan's "Cirque du Freak"

v.4. Vampire Mountain -- v.5. Trials of death -- v.6. The vampire prince -- v.7. Hunters of the dusk.

The best thing in these next four volumes are the villains.

Ted Dekker's "The Lost Books"

Finished the series. It takes a special author to move the same characters between different worlds. He's special, but not that special. He should have stuck with future day earth, where he does the better job, and skipped present day earth, where it just gets confusing.

Rod Serling's "The Twilight Zone"

"The After Hours" -- "The Big Tall Wish" -- "Deaths-head Revisted" -- "The Midnight Sun" -- "The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street" -- "The Odyssey of Flight 33" -- "Walking Distance"

Stick with the ones you've seen, or see the episode before reading the graphic adaptation. You're get more out of the adaptation that way.

Matt Groening's "The Simpsons Futurama Crossover Crisis"

The best thing is that it is filled with a ton of in-jokes. See how many you can recognize?

"A Long Time Ago . . ." v.3.

Issues 50-62 and Annual #2 in the comic book adaptation of the "Star Wars" series of films.

They seem to want to expand their readership beyond the "Star Wars" fanboys and fangirls as you get more romance and more science in these comics. There also seemss  to be an effort to individualize the heroes and humanize the villains.

To be coninued . . . But first, Paulo Coelho's "The Alchemist" and et al.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RD on July 17, 2011, 02:19:34 PM
I'm reading Neuromancer by William Gibson.
   
:cheers: I just cracked open Burning Chrome by gibson for the first time in nearly 10 years. I realized I had only a read about three of the shorts in it, and finished the rest. Date, but still fun stuff. Especially enjoyed Dogfight and the winter market.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on July 17, 2011, 02:46:20 PM
Just starting this tonight:

(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_eP-TQH6WbX0/SVr20tJ2tfI/AAAAAAAAGm8/6kuZuPEnl00/s1600/George%2BOrwell%2Bx%2BObey%2BGiant%2BPrint%2BSet%2B-%2B1984%2BCover%2Bby%2BShepard%2BFairey.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on July 17, 2011, 03:17:49 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41OqASbcreL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)

The Russian Anarchists


It's okay but these anarchists are anti private property and also ignorant of economics.  At the same time, Russia was pretty bleak under the tsars plus the anarchists criticized Marx in some good ways. Alot of the book is just about inter organiziational disagreements and bomb throwing.

I think I prefer "Defending the Undefendable" and other modern far out libertarian stuff.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on July 18, 2011, 01:34:57 AM
([url]http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41OqASbcreL._SL500_AA300_.jpg[/url])

The Russian Anarchists


It's okay but these anarchists are anti private property and also ignorant of economics.  At the same time, Russia was pretty bleak under the tsars plus the anarchists criticized Marx in some good ways. Alot of the book is just about inter organiziational disagreements and bomb throwing.

I think I prefer "Defending the Undefendable" and other modern far out libertarian stuff.


I read that book. It struck me as historical retelling of the people involved during that time, rather than an exploration of the ideas they were expounding. Interesting, but very dry.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on July 18, 2011, 09:58:41 AM
100 Bullets by Brain Azzarello

I picked up the first volume at the library to read.  The artstyle is a bit different and strange for my taste.  Kind of reminds me of Frank Miller's Dark Knight Strikes Back for some reason.  On the other hand, the story is pretty good.  I won't say much to spoil it, but I think I could seriously find myself enjoying all of this.  I'll be picking up volume 2 soon enough to read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Criswell on July 20, 2011, 09:59:52 PM
Currently working on - The Hobbit, The Great Hunt, and the Drawing of the Three.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 20, 2011, 11:43:25 PM
Just finished George R. R. Martin's latest installment in A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE, entitled A DANCE WITH DRAGONS.  It is totally engrossing from start to finish, and - without giving away any specifics - he maintains his annoying habit of killing off truly admirable characters and allowing some that are total b*****ds to go one maiming and killing their merry way along!  That being said, you never quit caring about the story.    The man is truly one of the greats of our time.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on July 21, 2011, 05:33:52 PM
mofo rising- yeah, I would have preferred more ideas and less info.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: sideorderofninjas on July 23, 2011, 11:10:06 PM
I'm working on Asmiov's "Foundation" series for the first time in years...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 26, 2011, 04:47:29 PM
Ye-es.

The Monteparts' "Around the World on the 'QE2'" or 29 countries in 80 days and Paul Coelho's "The Alchemist" in graphic format.

While one masquerades as a travelogue, and the other masquerades as a work of fiction, both are on the subject of philosophy.

They, at least, get one thing right and one thing wrong.

What they get right. If you want to say something profound, then keep it simple.

And what they get wrong. "Change happens." In the 30 years since the Monteparts have sailed around the world . . .

The Panama Canal has become obsolete. It is now so obsolete, they are either building another canal along side it, or seriously consdering building another canal along side it.

Hong Kong is no longer part of the British empire, but part of mainland China.

Ceylon has had a name change to Sri Lanka.

Yalta is no longer part of the Soviet Union, nor is it part of Russia. It is part of the Ukraine, which became its own independent country, when the Soviet Union became Russia.

And Romania is no longer a communist country.

What has not changed are the natural and manmade wonders featured in the book. Of the 29 listed, only . . .

The World Trade Center in New York City, New York, of course, no longer exists.

The replica of the "Santa Maria" in Barcelona, Spain was destroyed in an arson fire.

And the Sky Parachute Jump was removed from Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, California.

Next time: Weis and Hickman's "Secret of the Dragon" and et al.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Criswell on July 27, 2011, 10:13:58 PM
The Way of King - Really good read so far, but as Ambrose Bierce once said, "The covers of this book are too far apart".  Still the first 75 pagers point to it being a good book.

The Dragon Reborn - 3rd book in the Wheel of Time series. I'm really enjoying these so far, and its likely some of the best fantasy iv'e read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on July 28, 2011, 12:34:29 PM
Currently reading "The Shimmer" by David Morrell after I finished 1984 (which was very good). It's been quiet at work, so I've managed to read about 200 in the last two days, 200 to go. It's pretty good so far, as there's some weird lights in this Texas town that cause people to go apes**t and kill each other. A pilot's wife disappears and he has to go and track her down in said town.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 28, 2011, 12:51:11 PM
The first book of Stephen King's The Dark Tower series.  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on July 28, 2011, 02:09:16 PM
The first book of Stephen King's The Dark Tower series.  :thumbup:

What a concidence!  I'm reading that too... in comic book form.   :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on August 02, 2011, 02:45:51 PM
(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_YhrLAYLQ8So/SsQemJdG-jI/AAAAAAAAIyc/zyA2JrsFuKE/s400/The+Sad+Tale+of+the+Brothers+Grossbart.jpg)

Half-way through this entertaining yet foul piece of adapted fiction. I bought this book basically because the cover caught my eye (it looked very intriguing) and because it had a lot of mixed reviews based on the nature of the content. This book is absolutely diabolically disgusting that it will turn the stomach of most casual readers. There's baby's being burned, horses being spat on, dogs having their throats chewed out, demons, appalling language and that's just the first 15 pages! It tells the tale of two brothers travelling (and being hunted) across Europe in the thirteen hundreds seeking their fortune and always finding trouble. I am loving this book as it is genuinely engaging, shocking and even funny. 100/10 so far....


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on August 02, 2011, 06:27:57 PM
Bed of Nails by Michael Slade.  Somehow I missed this one.  I have read just over 100 pages and it has already been pretty odd.  Which is just fine as that is at least half the reason I like Slade's work.   :wink:   Jack the Ripper, cannibals, Cthulhu, cannibals, a Viking biker, cannibals, Goths, the World Horror Convention in Seattle, cannibals, an island in the South Pacific - with cannibals - and the RCMP (of course).  What's not to love?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on August 02, 2011, 07:33:04 PM
Bed of Nails by Michael Slade.  Somehow I missed this one.  I have read just over 100 pages and it has already been pretty odd.  Which is just fine as that is at least half the reason I like Slade's work.   :wink:   Jack the Ripper, cannibals, Cthulhu, cannibals, a Viking biker, cannibals, Goths, the World Horror Convention in Seattle, cannibals, an island in the South Pacific - with cannibals - and the RCMP (of course).  What's not to love?

What a coincidence. I finally got around to reading Hangman, which is the one Slade book I'd managed to miss. And I'm about 100 pages into it. Weird.

The story itself is not so weird at this point, at least by Slade standards. Victims being hung from a noose in their homes, each with one more limb sawed off, and a word puzzle scrawled in blood on the wall. As Slade goes, that's a pretty straightforward detective story. Still plenty of pages left for things to get weird though.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Zapranoth on August 02, 2011, 08:37:55 PM
Re-reading all original Lovecraft.  Have re-read many of the greater classics ("At the Mountains of Madness,") for example.   Thoroughly enjoyable.  :)

Also am reading _A Game of Thrones_ for the first time.  Rip-roaring soap opera for men.  :)  Brutal books too.  Enjoying.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on August 03, 2011, 02:21:23 PM
Currently reading "Does the Noise in my Head Bother You?", the autobiograpy of Aerosmith's Steven Tyler. Some funny stuff but it's been a bit of a chore to get through because he writes the same way he talks -- lots of stream-of-consciousness, rapid fire rambling. Some chapters are coherent, while others remind me of the homeless guys I'd see in the Staten Island Ferry terminal wandering around talking to themselves.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: HarlotBug3 on August 03, 2011, 02:36:53 PM
http://www.cracked.com/blog/8-hilarious-moments-from-otherwise-terrible-movies/


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on August 05, 2011, 09:14:54 PM
The first book of Stephen King's The Dark Tower series.  :thumbup:

What a concidence!  I'm reading that too... in comic book form.   :teddyr:

Just got through it.  Man, I could not keep focused while reading it.  It just didn't engage in the storyline or characters at all.  That sucks because I was hoping to really enjoy it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on August 06, 2011, 02:58:33 PM
Ye-es.

Weis and Hickman's "The Secret of the Dragon."

The second in that series. As in the first they keep up the trend of creating "villains" that are "better" than some of the "heroes." But even the "worst" of the "heroes" and "villains" gets a moment when you can feel some sympathy for them.

And again they continue with their being more than two sides in the story. If done right, as here, that adds complexity to the story, for yesterday's enemy can become today's ally, and today's ally can become tomorrow's enemy.

The story should wrap up in the third and last volume, which I have yet to see.

Also Clive Cussler's "The Wrecker."

The second one in that series, and why sophomore efforts are normally regarded as being weaker than the freshman effort.

More villains and heroes this time, but that only diffuses the conflict between the main hero and the main villain. Though, some of the villains are complex enough, that one can actually have some sympathy for them.


Both books feature a climatic chase between the hero and the villain. But the chase in the first book is more exciting.

Unlike the first book, where you know the villain from the get go, this time the villain is introduced more slowly. An introduction which I don't think works that well. But, there is a second secret villain, who is also introduced slowly, and I think that introduction works better.

I do cred both the hero and author with, even at the end, seeking justice instead of revenge, when the hero can quite justifiablely seek revenge.

There is a third in the series after this one, in which the hero goes after international villains instead of the previous national villains, as several international spy rings seek the plans for a super secret American submarine. The third I have yet to read.

Next time:  Warcraft" and "Starcraft" in graphic format.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Criswell on August 11, 2011, 11:07:48 PM
Trying to re-get into the Star Wars expanded universe by re-reading Heir to the Empire.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on August 12, 2011, 12:57:03 PM
Also re-reading through this for the 3rd or 4th time:

([url]http://media.us.macmillan.com/jackets/258H/9780312131494.jpg[/url])


I have read this and THE PSYCHOTRONIC ENCYCLOPEDIA OF FILM over and over again.  I look up movies in them just about every day.  In fact, I read my original copy of THE PSYCHOTRONIC ENCYCLOPEDIA OF FILM so may times, the spine split in half and I had to buy a new copy. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on August 12, 2011, 12:58:12 PM
This, among other things:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51bds20m9bL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on August 12, 2011, 02:07:09 PM
Finished Hangman, which I'd have to say is Michael Slade's weakest book. Good, very readable, some interesting facts mixed with the fiction and one twist I didn't see coming, but his other books are much better in terms of creepiness, surprises and overall weirdness. Probably didn't help that I already knew the book's biggest shock, which is referenced in the later books I'd read previously.

Once again reading bits and pieces while looking for another book that really appeals to me. More Lovecraft, and the first couple of chapters of Cinderella Ate My Daughter, Peggy Orenstein's analysis of the "girly-girl culture" that has exploded in recent years, and the effect it's having on children. Interesting, but not quite what I'm looking for right now.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on August 13, 2011, 08:15:41 PM
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/6e/FrameBreaking-1812.jpg/275px-FrameBreaking-1812.jpg)

Kirkpatrick Sale "Rebels Against The Future: The Luddites And Their War On The Industrial Revolution: Lessons For The Computer Age"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on August 14, 2011, 04:31:54 AM
(http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_5H4qCwZQFT0/TFzuEfo0jNI/AAAAAAAAAD4/x_-GjQFVrWU/s320/Beyond+Good+and+Evil+(Nietzsche).JPG)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on August 14, 2011, 09:27:00 AM
Weirdness  continues...picked up a copy of Nietzsche yesterday at the bookstore.  :buggedout:

Finished the Slade: found I had predicted the outcome at about half way through.  Too much familiarity perhaps.  :tongueout:

Went to my favourite 'antiquarian' book shop in Toronto yesterday: confined myself to purchasing three books, all on fairly technical aspects of horseback riding and training.  Two of them are by famous "ODGs" - Old Dead Guys - written before I was born, and I am having SO much fun reading them.  They support my own observations for the most part and (by current standards) are delightfully outspoken doing it!  :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on August 14, 2011, 12:38:36 PM
Finished the Slade: found I had predicted the outcome at about half way through.  Too much familiarity perhaps.  :tongueout:

Both Bed of Nails and Hangman seem to be weaker books in the series (although I think Bed of Nails was better than Hangman), and both seem to be between really awesome books. Hangman sits between Burnt Bones and Death's Door, two really disturbing and interesting Mephisto stories. Bed of Nails falls between Death's Door and Swastika, the book that hooked me on the series. There just seems to be a little stretch in there where Slade knocks it out of the park in one book, follows it with something that's just OK, then puts out another great book, and another weaker book. It stands out for me because the first seven books, up to Burnt Bones, are consistently great. I think it might be mostly due to changes in the writing team over the years, and perhaps also the growing cast of characters, with all their increasing backstory and assorted baggage. I thought they were starting to weigh the books down after a while, and it seems Slade might have thought the same, since the latest, Red Snow, killed off so many characters in what seemed to me like he was culling the herd.

I'm very eager to see the next Slade book, just to see how everything shakes out in the aftermath of that, and what he does with the story now that the cast is whittled back down to DeClercq, Chandler and some of the more distinctive and functional supporting characters.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Cthulhu on August 16, 2011, 08:22:12 AM
I just finished Elric of Melniboné.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: wickednick on August 19, 2011, 07:58:34 AM
The first book of Stephen King's The Dark Tower series.  :thumbup:
The first three are awesome books after that they just kinda drop off. I haven't even finished the last book because it was just kinda boring.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: wickednick on August 19, 2011, 08:00:53 AM
Just finished A Game of Thrones, that was such a good book! Now i've got to catch up on some philosophy. I got a book about cynic philosophers and Plato's The Republic.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on August 22, 2011, 03:47:20 PM
Ye-es!

"Warcraft," or I should say graphic novels based on the video game. "Legends" are the short stories, that come four to the volume, but there are some longer stories, such as "Death Knight," "Shaman," "Shadow Knight," and "The Sunwell Trilogy," some of which I have read, and some of which I have not read, that cover two or more volumes.

The good is that many of the stories are by authors that I have read and enjoyed before, such as Richard A. Knaak and Christie Golden..

The bad is like in most graphic novels, the fight scenes are needlessly confusing, so you cannot tell what is going on. And as in some graphic novels, the characters are poorly defined, both in the drawings and the writings, so it is hard to tell one character, from the other. And for the first time, some of the captions for the stories are basically unreadable.

The interesting is that for some reason minotaurs are now called taurens, and zombies are called the undead. And such fantasy villains as goblins, ogres, and orcs can now be the heroes in some stories.

And I am also reading "Starcraft," or stories based upon the video game, which is the science fiction counterpart of "Warcraft."

"Frontline" is the series of short stories, and there is at least one longer story called "The Ghost Academy."

"The Ghost Academy" has a good concept, ten academy students, who have some extrasensory powers, including the power to become invisible, but it is poorly executed in both the drawings and the writing, so it is sometimes hard to tell one student from the other students.

The good is that many of the stories are written by David Gerrold and Keith R. A. DeCandido, or authors who I have enjoyed reading before.

The bad is much the same faults as that can be found in the "Warcraft" graphic novels. Still whatever the faults, I found the stories to be better than the graphic novels based on "Halo" or Orson Scott Card's "Ender."

The interesting. In worlds where everyone seems to have become heterosexual, there are seemingly two bisexual characters in one of the stories. One male and one female.

Next time: Douglas Ward's "Berlitz's Complete Guide to Cruising and Cruise Ships."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on August 22, 2011, 08:59:10 PM
Reading a little Edgar Allan Poe, while I decide on a novel to read. Just read The Cask of Amontillado for the umpteenth time. It's been a favourite since I first read it in Grade 10 English.
(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4020/4633976043_ffc539534f.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on August 22, 2011, 11:37:33 PM
I'm about halfway through FORTUNE'S FAVORITES, the third in Colleen McCullough's Masters of Rome series.  I love the way she takes what we know of the history of the late Roman Republic and fills in the gaps in ways that are so plausible that it is often hard to tell where history ends and historical fiction begins.

If you are fascinated by Rome, this series is an absolute must!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on August 23, 2011, 02:55:10 AM
My calendar.

Only 16 working days left until I go on long leave.

Long leave at the beach?  :thumbup: :teddyr: :teddyr:

Away from here?  :thumbdown: :bluesad: :bluesad:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on August 23, 2011, 04:07:24 AM
Also re-reading through this for the 3rd or 4th time:

([url]http://media.us.macmillan.com/jackets/258H/9780312131494.jpg[/url])


I have read this and THE PSYCHOTRONIC ENCYCLOPEDIA OF FILM over and over again.  I look up movies in them just about every day.  In fact, I read my original copy of THE PSYCHOTRONIC ENCYCLOPEDIA OF FILM so may times, the spine split in half and I had to buy a new copy. 


Mine split too. My copy of the VIDEO GUIDE fell completly apart. I did replace that one!

Just reread Rosemary's Baby by Ira Levin.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: bob on August 23, 2011, 10:29:48 AM
Also re-reading through this for the 3rd or 4th time:

([url]http://media.us.macmillan.com/jackets/258H/9780312131494.jpg[/url])


I have read this and THE PSYCHOTRONIC ENCYCLOPEDIA OF FILM over and over again.  I look up movies in them just about every day.  In fact, I read my original copy of THE PSYCHOTRONIC ENCYCLOPEDIA OF FILM so may times, the spine split in half and I had to buy a new copy. 


Mine split too. My copy of the VIDEO GUIDE fell completly apart. I did replace that one!

Just reread Rosemary's Baby by Ira Levin.


is that what the movie of that same name is based upon?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on September 08, 2011, 05:23:22 PM
Ye-es!

Douglas Ward's "Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising and Cruise Ships." 2001 edition.

That may be an odd thing to read. Why? I'll get to that in the weeks and months ahead, but of all such guides out there, both on and off the worldwide web, it is the only one I'd recommend, if one can find a later edition. The 2001 edition, unfortunateley, is the second newest one I can find in the local library. But "hats off to the real nicky picky." That is one of the reasons I like it. He and the Maritime Evaluation Groups or MEG, which hed heads, are real nicky picky as to what they take points off for. Such as . . .

points off . . . accomodations
intrusive announcements
polyster sheets
uninteresting ceilings
worn carpeting
poor room service menus
no cabin TV
no bell push outside suite
exposed plumbing in bath
illogical numbering system (I hate decks that are assigned a name instead of a number.)

points off . . . dinner
baked alaska (Which I quite like.)
paper cups and plastic glasses at any time
no fish knives (What is it about Europeans and their fish knives?)
poor selections of cheeses and fruits
tap water instead of mineral water

points off . . . ship
no forward observations lounge
no fresh flowers in public areas
no library
no balconies (I only get a cabin now if it has a balcony.)
no wraparound promenade deck
no spa at all
ligthing is too bright or too dark
too much artifical grass (There are ships that now have real grass and trees.)
artwork is of poor quality
dull passageways
restrooms need better decor
dated decor
plastic deck lounge chairs (They must be teak.)
no cushioned pads for deck lounge chairs

points offf . . . other
smokers (A big no no.)

Next time: something from TV

And the time after that: the above, but the 2004 edition

 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on September 08, 2011, 08:59:23 PM
(http://peterdsmith.jmdentand.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/05/doomsday-men-cover.jpg)

Doomsday Men: The Real Dr. Strangelove and the Dream of the Superweapon, by P.D. Smith. Very interesting book. The Doctor Strangelove character and Leo Szilard's hypothetical cobalt doomsday bomb are recurring themes in the book, but it's about much more.

I'm not very far into the book, but it's already covered a lot of history. Going back to the discovery of X-rays, radium, radioactivity and breakthroughs in physics, it not only discusses these things in scientific terms, but also explores them from a cultural perspective - the media coverage, the fads, the effect on fiction, and speculation about the possibility of atomic weapons all the way back in the late 1800s. It goes further in showing the effect of those cultural influences on people who would make great discoveries decades down the road.

And throughout, there is this dream of science creating a weapon so unbeatable it would put an end to war, which the book follows through the discovery of radioactivity, the development of chemical and then nuclear weapons. And alongside this, it explores the popular image of the scientist, and how that image went from the noble "savior scientist" of the 1800s to the familiar mad scientist of the 20th Century, again using the example of Doctor Strangelove.

Very interesting book all around. I especially liked the descriptions of what people used to do with radioactive materials before they knew about the dangers involved. X-ray tubes being used as a parlor trick, people drinking health tonics with radium in them, and the shocking amount of harm the Curies were doing to themselves in the course of their research.

I'd recommend this book to anybody who likes a mix of science, history and popular culture.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on September 08, 2011, 09:48:39 PM
The Punisher by Greg Rucka

(http://insidepulse.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/punisher1-329x500.jpg)

Brand new series this year and I picked up the first two issues.  I never read the Punisher before (I heard Garth Ennis' run on it was incredible, but since I'm not a fan of him, I ignored it), but hearing that Rucka was on it and the praise it has been getting made this an instant buy.  It is awesome and I will be picking up the first story arc at least.  Any Punisher fans who haven't checked this out yet must do so now.

Currently waiting on my copies of Swamp Thing & Animal Man to show up and waiting for Batgirl to actually appear on the shelf in my book store.  I'll be back later once I read them.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on September 09, 2011, 08:38:44 AM
(http://img810.imageshack.us/img810/603/christiner.jpg)

Loving it!

 :cheers:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on September 09, 2011, 08:51:13 AM
(http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-68bEbQPCU4g/TY5dD910zpI/AAAAAAAAAGs/LH7UYyE5n5s/s320/wasp%2Bfactory.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: tracy on September 09, 2011, 02:30:44 PM
I just finished this and I liked it a lot...

(http://www.harpercollins.com/harperimages/isbn/large/8/9780061959158.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Gravekeeper on September 10, 2011, 09:25:37 PM
"The Invention of Murder." You know how the typical view of Victorian England is that everyone (aside from street urchins) was polite, that social standards were expected of everyone, and society was just better all around? Yeah, no. These were the same people who not only went to public executions, but sold souvenirs, sometimes kept the rotting corpse in a cage (sometimes on tours!), were known to attempt lynchings when they felt the justice system let them down, romanticized at least a couple of murderers, were heavily influenced by the period's equivalent of tabloids, etc. Higher society than us? Not really. But they did have a generally killer sense of style.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on September 13, 2011, 07:59:25 PM
Just finished JUST MISSING by Chevy Stevens.  It was terrible - like if Jodi Picoult wrote a torture porn.  I should've known better when I saw the kind of hype it was getting.  I think maybe it's time to break into one of the Lovecraft books I nabbed at Borders' going out of business sale......


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Couchtr26 on September 13, 2011, 11:08:41 PM
The forum here.   :question:  What it doesn't count?   Alright, I'll comeback and post again when I'm reading something better. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on September 20, 2011, 01:42:35 PM
(http://i43.tower.com/images/mm113300471/heat-lightning-john-sandford-paperback-cover-art.jpg)

     I've read just about everything Sandford's written, particularly the Prey series, of which this is a spin-off.

     Supposedly, there's a film in the works, based on one of the Prey novels....

http://www.deadline.com/2011/03/usa-to-do-movie-starring-mark-harmon/


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on September 20, 2011, 01:49:27 PM
(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_Tbi9tVixcTM/Sr2nbOVG2pI/AAAAAAAACvc/a6zaUdyPy2A/s400/Hideaway+by+Dean+Koontz.jpg)

300 pages in. Not his best work, but pretty good so far...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on September 21, 2011, 04:25:07 AM
I've heard of Zinn, he is typical of the Marxist/leftist professors that crowded the halls of academia in the 1970's thru the 1990's - guys who stayed in college and got their advanced degrees so they could get deferments and avoid Vietnam, and spent their careers bashing the country that enabled them to live better than 90% of the world, while praising governments that routinely executed intellectuals like themselves.  Not that America is flawless, but academics like Zinn should have been deported en masse to the Soviet Union before they could corrupt an entire generation of American youth!

While I'm not defending Zinn's book, I think it should be mentioned that Howard Zinn did serve in the Air Force during WWII, something he volunteered for as a young man, eager to join the fight against facism. He was a bombardier in the 490th Bombardment Group. He only went on to his higher education after he had served his time in WWII. In this case, Zinn does not fall under the stereotype of the "draft-dodging leftist professor."

As for A People's History, I finally finished it, annoyed as I was with it. When Zinn focuses on the dispossessed and voiceless, his book manages to achieve some level of historical importance. Unfortunately Zinn is very clearly in the pro-Socialist camp, and views the entirety of history through the eyes of dissent. Don't get me wrong, I view dissent in the highest light. It's important. But Zinn's approaches dissent through his Socialist filter and gives an inordinate amount of "screen-time" to those who share his view.

I'm not attacking socialism here, especially not in the way it has become a political epithet recently. But Zinn's book clearly has an agenda, and it corrupts what otherwise could have been an important and valuable book about the under-represented parts of American history. I'm still waiting for a book that truly is a people's history, and not just another mouthpiece for a political point of view.

There's a lot I don't like about American foreign policy and the ridiculous fervor for ultra-capitalism that seems to have gripped our nation. But don't tell me you're standing up against tyranny and then gloss over the atrocities done by socialist/communist nations (Cuba, China) because they sort-of agree with your economics.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on September 21, 2011, 07:32:24 PM
Armchair Reader: Vitally Useless Information: A Incredible Collection of Irrelevance.

Yeah kind of pointless stuff but still oddly fascinating in parts.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on September 21, 2011, 08:20:16 PM
Finally got my issues I preordered for the DC 52 Relaunch, so I've been reading the following:

Swamp Thing #1: If you are even a little bit of a fan of this character, then seek this comic out admittedly.  Heck, check it out even if you are not one.  Probably one of the best new comics to out recently.  Just fantastic.

Batman #1: Same author as Swamp Thing and same thing with what I said.  Any comic book reader should be reading this.

Batgirl #1: Great story, but it will put off older readers if they are too attached to Barbara as Oracle.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on September 25, 2011, 12:39:17 AM

I just got done reading Ghost Story, the latest Dresden novel by Jim Butcher.

A few months before that I read Ex-Kop by Warren Hommand.  It's a pretty good sci-fi/noir novel.

http://www.amazon.com/Ex-KOP-Warren-Hammond/dp/B003D7JV1Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1316928143&sr=8-1 (http://www.amazon.com/Ex-KOP-Warren-Hammond/dp/B003D7JV1Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1316928143&sr=8-1)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on September 25, 2011, 12:27:17 PM
Borrowed "Enter Night: A Biography of Metallica" by British rock journalist Mick Wall from the library a couple of days ago. I'm about 1/3 of the way through it and I'm enjoying it immensely.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on September 25, 2011, 05:38:59 PM
resumed "The Vampire Economy" it's too bad it's a dry econ heavy analysis because it's message is really interesting.

It's about the Nazi's economic policies. They were not very different from the commies that Hitler so disdained and certainly didn't do much to uplift the people of Germany. It says alot about the nazi ideology that the state was so powerful and led to higher prices, lower quality and engaged in so many abhorrent practices.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on September 25, 2011, 10:21:51 PM
Finished Doomsday Men. It got even more interesting as it progressed through the 1930s, 40s, 50s and 60s, and continued to illustrate the effect of nuclear weapons on fiction and popular culture, as well as the influence of science fiction on the real scientists. Goethe's Faust and The World Set Free by H.G. Wells are of particular significance. A good analysis of the growing link between scientists and the military, and the radically different approach to war that came as a result of the large-scale technological warfare of the 20th century. Quite a bit on the creation of Dr. Strangelove, and an interesting analysis of the character as compared to the most probable influences - Edward Teller, Wernher Von Braun, Herman Kahn, John Von Neumann, etc. Very good book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on September 26, 2011, 08:16:44 PM
My manga library raiding continues and now I'm reading:

20th Century Boys
Kekkaishi
Black Cat
Hikaru No Go
One Piece
Vampire Knight
Last Vampire
Fullmetal Alchemist


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on September 29, 2011, 07:09:32 PM
Ye-es!

Joss Whedon's "Buffy: the Vampire Slayer" Tales. A graphic series of tales. Though the best tales are not by Whedon. Nor do the best tales feature any of the characters from the TV series. Nor are the best tales the vampire tales. The best tale is a non-Whedon slayer tale, occuring in a time before the TV series, but it does have a double twist in it.

Laurell K. Hamilton's "Circus of the Damned" in graphic format. Or the third in the Anita Blake series. So far, only volume 1.

Also Laurell K. Hamilton's "Skin Trade" in paperback. The 17th in the Anita Blake series.
If you can get past the sex scenes, there are a number of reasons to read it.

(1) From the 14-year-old weretiger she accidentally sleeps with to the centuries old vampire she deliberately sleeps with, Hamilton understands men better than most female authors.

(2) Heck! From those who walk the lawful side of the street to those who walk the lawless side of the street to those who walk both sides of the street, she understands men better than most male authors.

(3) Individualized characters. Every character in the book stands out from all other characters.

(4) Unlike some writers, she can create real hardcases. The type if they really existed, would make you sweat as soon as their name were mentioned.

(5) While somewhat rushed, a nice suspenseful climax.

(6) And it doesn't hurt that one of the heroes is a person of your own religious faith.

Next time: Ward's Berlitz's . . . the 2004 edition.

And the time after that: Something from King.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on September 30, 2011, 09:39:10 AM
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/d/dc/Real_frank_zappa_book_front.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Gravekeeper on October 02, 2011, 12:29:58 AM
Reading a ton of stuff for research purposes. I've got a big paper coming up, two presentations this month, and I have to constantly be on the lookout for material to illustrate by midnight every Friday.

At the moment, I've got bookmarks in:

The Best of American Comics Criticism

Johannes Cabal the Necromancer

Happily Ever After (anthology)

Maus

Urban Fantasy (anthology)

The Thackery T. Lambshead Cabinet of Curiosities

Cult Cinema (Ernest Mathius and Jamie Sexton)

Horror (Brigid Cherry)

And that's not even getting started on scientific literature and world mythologies. If you guys could send any great short (better yet, micro) stories my way, it'd be very much appreciated.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on October 02, 2011, 06:57:54 PM
Reading The World Set Free, by H.G. Wells. It was one of the works heavily cited in Doomsday Men, and it is very interesting. Published in serial form in 1914, before the outbreak of WW1, this story deals with the discovery of nuclear power and its possible financial, social and political implications. In the middle section, Wells describes a war with aerial combat and atomic bombs. His idea of an atomic bomb is interesting, with a large chunk of radioactive material that is kicked into an accelerated decay that doesn't stop until the fuel is exausted. Bright light, lots of heat and wind, just like nukes as we know them, but Wells' nukes keep on "exploding" for weeks, months or even years. They become something like a meltdown, sinking into the ground to create a molten pit that continues to belch fire, brimstone and radiation. Very interesting.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on October 04, 2011, 10:11:14 PM
The Man Who Was Thursday by G.K. Chesterton


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Zapranoth on October 05, 2011, 12:49:15 AM
Just finished reading a large heap of Green Lantern comics, ROM the Space Knight, a heap of Hulk comics, and now am happily reading my way through the Chris Claremont days of X-Men. 

I also am partway through _A Dance With Dragons_ but I sorta petered out and need to re-boot my reading efforts.  Kinda hard to get too stoked up when i know it'll be YEARS before the next comes out.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on October 05, 2011, 04:32:47 AM
Just finished HIROSHIMA by John Hersey.
Now re-reading BURY MY HEART AT WOUNDED KNEE by Dee Brown.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on October 13, 2011, 01:58:31 PM
The Secret Diary of Laura Palmer by Jennifer Lynch. I recently started watching Twin Peaks on Netflix streaming, and found a pdf file of the diary on a fan site. It gets pretty disturbing, but it really helps put some pieces together about what's going on.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on October 13, 2011, 02:03:41 PM
(http://www.qbd.com.au/products/l/4195/9780552124195.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on October 13, 2011, 03:07:29 PM
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Familiar with the story, seen any number of derivative works, homages, parodies, etc., but never actually read the book. I like it so far, even knowing what's going on. It must really have been something when it was first published. The relationship between Jekyll and Hyde is a mystery that is only hinted at for much of the book. All we know is that Jekyll is discreetly supporting a younger man of poor reputation. The openly-discussed theory is that Hyde is blackmailing the doctor, but there are moments when I think Stevenson subtly suggests that a homosexual relationship is suspected. That Jekyll and Hyde were the same person must have been a shocking plot twist in its day.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on October 13, 2011, 07:47:27 PM
Fearful Majesty: the Life and Reign of Ivan the Terrible by Benson Bobrick.

After reading several biographies of actors and musical groups and ending up feeling disappointed and unimpressed with the subjects, I thought I'd tackle one that could not possibly make the person look any worse than my expectations.   :bouncegiggle:  I am only 60 pages in and I am enjoying this immensely!  Bobrick does an outstanding job of pulling together all sorts of information - there are twelve pages of bibliography  :buggedout: - and making it very readable.  Much of what Bobrick writes goes toward explaining the whys and wherefores of Russian attitudes and perspectives: a great deal is making more sense to me now.  It is both fascinating and entertaining.  I am not sure if the humour that keeps arising is Bobrick's, or is inherent to the material.  For example: (discussing the Moskovite legal system under Ivan III)  "...Though the Mongolians had introduced torture into Russian legal procedure, it was High Church enthusiasm for the methods of the Spanish Inquisition that apparently contributed to its wider adoption."  I'm looking forward to the next 280 pages.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on October 13, 2011, 09:27:14 PM
I love Russian history, and that one sounds awesome!

If you've never read it, Robert K. Massey's PETER THE GREAT is one of the finest biographies ever written, about one of the most fascinating men who ever lived.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on October 16, 2011, 04:29:09 AM
On a new cycle of books after finishing the last ones, which were not so good (see above).

The Riddle of Gravitation by Peter G. Bergmann - Having a difficult time with this one. It's a slim volume. The first few chapters are the obligatory recap of the already understood basics before he gets to the good stuff. I'm not a physicist, and I have a tenuous understanding of relativity. This book does not do a good job of explaining the basics. I really just need to sit down and spend some time with these equations...

Truman by David McCullough - Fantastic so far. McCullough is really the go-to guy for popular history. In depth with out sacrificing readability. I'm several hundred pages in, and I haven't even got to Truman as a Senator. Really, a great read.

Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray - Pretty good so far. Thackeray is a sly observer of humanity, and his text makes it sound like he is being straightforward while he is actually saying the exact opposite thing. Amusing, but I'm not very far in yet.

A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin - Love this series. This book hasn't really grabbed me yet, but this is probably the best fantasy series I've ever read.

Dagon and Other Macabre Tales by H.P. Lovecraft - The third book in the seminal Arkham House collections. These are clearly Lovecraft's lesser works, but still well worth reading.

People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks - History of a singular copy of the Holy Bible. Seems decent enough so far. Interesting structure.

The Savage Sword of Conan, Volume II by Various - You know what you're in for with Conan comics. These are really some fantastic '70s comics. I love the artwork, I'd read it solely for that reason. Luckily, the stories aren't too shabby either.

Cycle of Myths by John Smelcer - A fairly slim volume of Alaska Native mythology. I'm Tlingit. This is a bit better than his last book, in that it provides some background to the cultures which provide the stories he presents. Not amazing, but a decent enough effort.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on October 16, 2011, 07:10:58 AM
I love Russian history, and that one sounds awesome!

Indy, every few pages I hear the closing line from that Boney M song in my head:  "Oh, those Russians!"   :wink:

Thanks for the suggestion of the Peter the Great bio. I'll keep it in mind.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on October 17, 2011, 08:40:40 AM
*Prepares to duck shoes* I bought a copy of Bill O'Reilly's Pinheads and Patriots last week: most entertaining and very funny too. I'm going to try and get hold of his book Killing Lincoln next.  :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on October 17, 2011, 09:31:15 AM
Finished Jekyll and Hyde. Interesting to get the story from Utterson's viewpoint, then Lanyon's and then finally the doctor's. Reading Jekyll's motives, what he wanted to accomplish vs. what he actually achieved, why he continued as he did and how it all worked, I see that most of the stories derived from this do not do it justice at all. Jekyll is a great study of the contrast of a man's public image and his private pleasures, and the tragedy caused by refusing to own and acknowledge and take responsibility for that part of his nature that embarrassed him.

What really makes it effective is that the reader never specifically finds out what Hyde has been up to for most of his existence, spent fulfilling the secret fantasies of Jekyll. He might be a sadist or have some peculiar fetish. He might enjoy the company of prostitutes. He might be gay. He might like to drink or do drugs or maybe just get rowdy. It could be anything, which invites readers to supply their own secret desires and put themselves in Henry Jekyll's position. What would you do if you could have a whole other identity with which to enjoy your wildest fantasies without any risk to your reputation or any personal responsibility?

And what would happen when your chickens finally come home to roost? Jekyll did not separate Hyde from himself. Hyde was always part of him when he was himself, and he'd made Hyde stronger, bolder and more eager to be set free. Not to mention that Hyde without Jekyll's influence had indulged himself far more than the good doctor would ever have imagined. It reminded me of a quote from Lovecraft, to the effect that when you hide things out of shame, there is no limit to how shameful they can become. By pushing that part of himself away, Jekyll lost control of it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on October 23, 2011, 04:16:31 PM
Ye-es!

Douglas Ward's and MEG's (Maritime Evaluation Group) "Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising and Cruiseships." 2004 edition

One  tends to think change happens slowly, but change can happen quickly as this book shows the changes that occurred in cruise lines and cruise ships in only three years, between this edition and the last edition in 2001, which I read.

And it shows that not all decreases are bad, and not all increases are good.

Decrease in . . .
speed
service
age of ship
age of passengers
libraries
smoking
aesthetics
fares
cuisine
amenities
visits to the bridge
guests on board
tables for 2
dancing
midnite buffest

Increase in . . .
size of ship
number of passengers
cost of ship
balconies
handicap accesibility
cabin TVs
self-service laundrettes
cinemas
safety concern
children
entertainment
"nickel 'n' diming"
casualness
enviromental concern
standardization

Next time: Something from King

Next next time: another guidebook to cruise lines and cruise ships


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on October 23, 2011, 04:24:23 PM
(http://images.mobilism.org/?dm=6GNE)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on October 24, 2011, 05:01:52 AM
([url]http://images.mobilism.org/?dm=6GNE[/url])


I thought that this was a picture of Steve Coogan: just for a minute there.  :smile:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on October 24, 2011, 05:18:56 AM
I thought that this was a picture of Steve Coogan: just for a minute there.  :smile:

It is.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on October 24, 2011, 08:35:56 AM
The Rum Diary by Hunter S. Thompson


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on October 24, 2011, 12:33:58 PM
     Just finished this....

(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_P1aSfh7IEUE/S_U8q75AojI/AAAAAAAAAjQ/_QDt3A5Bng8/s1600/storm+prey.JPG)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on October 25, 2011, 10:58:59 AM
Animal farm by George Orwell


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on October 25, 2011, 11:02:31 AM
Animal farm by George Orwell

I just read this a few months ago.  Interesting story and I really liked the ending.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on October 25, 2011, 11:04:40 AM
I'm about 2/3 of the way through THE FROSTED DEATH.  If you're a fan of The Avenger and Doc Savage pulp novels from the 1930s and 40s, this is one of the best.

(http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRUAoKvhJNlRRWwNKN-wClOQt8ml4sv5jU3u97-Kcw998dr3gOEKb1P7K0k)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on October 25, 2011, 02:02:23 PM
Continuing with the literary classics, I've been reading The Picture of Dorian Gray, another story I know from its influence but have never actually read. Interesting book, but getting a little tiresome. We had Dorian Gray and the picture, and the wish that it could age instead of him all the way back in the first chapter. Then page after page of Oscar Wilde being clever. Not that it isn't interesting in spots, but I'm getting impatient for the story to go somewhere.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on October 25, 2011, 02:26:18 PM
Animal farm by George Orwell

I just read this a few months ago.  Interesting story and I really liked the ending.


You should definitely read 1984 also by Orwell if you liked Animal Farm. Awesome book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on October 25, 2011, 03:27:59 PM
Animal farm by George Orwell

I just read this a few months ago.  Interesting story and I really liked the ending.


You should definitely read 1984 also by Orwell if you liked Animal Farm. Awesome book.

I have read 1984 . . . and I liked it more than ANIMAL FARM!




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on October 25, 2011, 03:29:14 PM
Continuing with the literary classics, I've been reading The Picture of Dorian Gray, another story I know from its influence but have never actually read. Interesting book, but getting a little tiresome. We had Dorian Gray and the picture, and the wish that it could age instead of him all the way back in the first chapter. Then page after page of Oscar Wilde being clever. Not that it isn't interesting in spots, but I'm getting impatient for the story to go somewhere.

I read about 1/2 or 2/3 of this book when I was about 12 or 13 years old.  Never finished it.  I think I was hoping it was more of a horror story.  I should give it another try.





Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on October 29, 2011, 05:59:58 AM
East of Eden by John Steinbeck


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on October 29, 2011, 12:16:22 PM
I just finished AGAINST ALL THINGS ENDING, by Stephen R. Donaldson.  It's part of THE LAST CHRONICLES OF THOMAS COVENANT.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on October 29, 2011, 12:19:09 PM
I just finished AGAINST ALL THINGS ENDING, by Stephen R. Donaldson.  It's part of THE LAST CHRONICLES OF THOMAS COVENANT.

My friend reads those and say they are excellent. Not for the faint-hearted but good. I've been meaning to get copies of the first 2-3 at least. What do you think of that series Indy?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on October 29, 2011, 12:25:15 PM
The First Chronicles are a masterpiece = LORD FOUL'S BANE absolutely captured me when I was about 16 or so, and I have read it many times since.  I only read the Second Chronicles once, when I was in college, and no longer have my copy.  I remember liking it but not being as impressed with it as I was with the first one.  The current series is excellent, and the climax of the book I just finished was heartrending.

He also wrote a series called MORDANT'S NEED, which is only two books long - MIRROR OF HER DREAMS and A MAN RIDES THROUGH.  Both those books left me absolutely aching for more stories set in that world.

Donaldson is a master.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on October 29, 2011, 10:00:49 PM
Arkham Asylum: A Serious House on Serious Earth by: Grant Morrison

One of Grant Morrison's first big tales and his first big Batman story and it's... okay.  Due to artwork with it sometimes being nearly impossible to follow at some points, it makes reading the story really difficult.  It's good, but it makes it hard to identify what is going on in the scene unfolding.  Though it is nice to flesh out the background for the asylum.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on October 29, 2011, 10:16:09 PM
Continuing with the literary classics, I've been reading The Picture of Dorian Gray, another story I know from its influence but have never actually read. Interesting book, but getting a little tiresome. We had Dorian Gray and the picture, and the wish that it could age instead of him all the way back in the first chapter. Then page after page of Oscar Wilde being clever. Not that it isn't interesting in spots, but I'm getting impatient for the story to go somewhere.

I read about 1/2 or 2/3 of this book when I was about 12 or 13 years old.  Never finished it.  I think I was hoping it was more of a horror story.  I should give it another try.

The picture finally started changing almost halfway through the book, and it has been getting more interesting since. Much as I found with Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, there is more to this strange phenomenon in the book than what I had understood from other sources. For one thing, the portrait not only ages, but also reflects the development of Gray's personality. The first change he notices is that the expression on the face goes from boyish innocence to something harder and more cruel. It doesn't just get uglier, it lays a guilt trip on him by reflecting whatever corruption, depravity or evil takes hold of him. And, much like Dr. Jekyll, Dorian Gray starts treating his discovery as a licence to indulge himself without consequences, and a means of turning his back on darker aspects of himself that make him uncomfortable. He's beginning to lead a double life.

I'm starting to really enjoy this book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on October 31, 2011, 10:29:57 PM
The Nobody by Jeff Lemire

It's a retelling and modern look at the story of the Invisible Man.  It's much more tragic and much sadder than the original story and rather good.  Glad to read it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on November 01, 2011, 08:32:29 AM
Dorian Gray is a very uneven book. Just when it starts to get good, Wilde launches into some kind of imagery that goes on for pages before I realize none of it is even making sense to me. My mind actually wandered while reading it. Then a few chapters of tapestries, jewels and such - descriptions mostly. Then, just as it's getting intolerably tedious, the plot starts moving again, in a big way, and it draws me back in. I wonder if this is intentional, or whether Wilde just had trouble writing a tight, well-paced story.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on November 01, 2011, 09:21:37 AM
The Pink Triangle. It's about how homosexuals were put in concentration camps along with jews, gypsies and other non aryans.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on November 02, 2011, 09:32:06 PM
Picked up my issues of Swamp Thing and Animal Man #3:

Swamp Thing: The story continues its slow pace towards the eventual the confrontation between Alec Holland and Sethe, the creature of The Rot (the force that brings death where it goes, like all major plagues throughout the ages).  We are also introduced to more of the history of Arcane family.  Also, we get some more messed up images as we see another force of The Rot decide to its powers against a hospital.

Animal Man: Buddy (Animal Man) and Maxine, his daughter, finally meet the Totems, the caretakers of The Red (the source and connection between all animal life in the world), who want to make Maxine their new Avatar.  The reason is that they'll use be needing her is because The Rot (There will be a crossover between these two titles) has declared war on them.  Speaking, the horrific monsters known as The Hunter 3 have targeted the family and want to wipe them, attacking Buddy's wife and son.

Both of these titles are extremely good and utterly scary.  You must be reading them if you are a fan of comics.  You won't be disappointed.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on November 04, 2011, 04:53:24 PM
The Ramayana. The most genuinely entertaining religious epic I've ever come across!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on November 04, 2011, 07:50:00 PM
The Ramayana. The most genuinely entertaining religious epic I've ever come across!

Even more than "Battlefield Earth?"  :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on November 05, 2011, 02:51:31 AM
Toussaint Louverture: A Biography (http://www.amazon.com/Toussaint-Louverture-Madison-Smartt-Bell/dp/0375423370) by Madison Smart Bell.

Fascinating stuff. During a point when America was a new nation and the French Revolution was wreaking havoc across the civilized world, here is a man who was leading a slave/black uprising to gain control of a nation. Imagine slaveholder's worst fears made real, just miles away from their stronghold. Their worst possible fears realized.

Toussaint Louverture is a truly mysterious man, pathologically averse to recognition while he creates a secret empire that eventually controls the whole island. That empire goes on to create the sole slave uprising that actually succeeds in creating a new nation.

Don't get me wrong, it's a bloody, bloody business.

Well, we all know how Haiti ended up, but it's a great story. Toussaint Louverture is either a great man or an evil genius. Either way, he is a force of history.

I'm really enjoying this book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on November 05, 2011, 09:20:25 AM
That does sound very interesting.  Shame Haiti is what it is today.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on November 07, 2011, 04:02:13 PM
Dorian Gray is a very uneven book. Just when it starts to get good, Wilde launches into some kind of imagery that goes on for pages before I realize none of it is even making sense to me. My mind actually wandered while reading it. Then a few chapters of tapestries, jewels and such - descriptions mostly. Then, just as it's getting intolerably tedious, the plot starts moving again, in a big way, and it draws me back in. I wonder if this is intentional, or whether Wilde just had trouble writing a tight, well-paced story.

I find the same to be true of LES MISERABLES.  When Victor Hugo actually spends time on the story, it is captivating.  But he keeps veering off into historical interludes and/or descriptions of convents and things that really slow down the pace.  He did the same thing on a much smaller scale in THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME (one of my favorite books).  There's a fairly long chapter in that book where Hugo describes Paris . . . up and down various streets, describing the architecture and stuff.  It's as dull as all hell.  I've seen some abridged versions that cut out this entire chapter.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on November 09, 2011, 12:23:45 AM
My Life in France, by Julia Child


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on November 10, 2011, 12:12:19 AM
Re-reading American Gods.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on November 10, 2011, 09:06:02 AM
Re-reading American Gods.

Oh, that's next on my "to read" list!  :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on November 10, 2011, 05:30:29 PM
iZombie Vol. 1: A story about a young gravedigger who is sort of a zombie, but still alive and normal looking in some sense.  She has to eat the brains of someone (in this case, someone dead and recently buried) in order to avoid turning into a shambling corpse.  However, whose ever brain she eats, she gains that person's memories.  She's also friends with a young woman ghost from the 60's and her boyfriend is a wereterrier.  The first story arc is set up and her deciding to solve a murder of a recent deceased person after she ate his brains.

I like this story, but I especially like the dialogue between the characters.  It's some of the best I've seen, with good charactizeration and plenty of witty humor.  I bought the first volume on a spur of the moment and I'm glad I did.  Just recently got volume 2 in the mail so I'll be digging into that later.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on November 11, 2011, 12:19:25 PM
About 2/3 through Infinite Jest.  It's....hard to describe.  There's a storyline (several, actually, all interconnected), but it doesn't feel like a novel so much as a manifesto on the nature of addiction.  And Wallace's addiction was words.  Brilliant but also exhausting.
Alternating between that and The Memory Keeper's Daughter (something a little more "bestsellerish" to counter D.F. Wallace).  In 1964 a woman delivers twins, and the girl has Down's Syndrome.  The dad shuffles her away with the nurse, under the assumption she'll put the baby in a home, and tells the mother that she died in childbirth.  The nurse instead leaves town and raises the girl on her own, and everyone spends the next couple decades dealing with the aftermath.  It's soapy, but not bad.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on November 12, 2011, 09:50:01 AM
Just read Shrine by James Herbert which was a great horror book. Now reading The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brook, which is really entertaining and clever.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on November 12, 2011, 09:58:28 AM
Just read Shrine by James Herbert which was a great horror book.

 :thumbup: :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on November 12, 2011, 11:43:24 PM
Hey Newt!  Nice to see ya!

I'm over halfway through THE OCTOBER HORSE by Colleen McCullough.  Julius Caesar has just been murdered, and Mark Antony, a complete boor, is looting the Roman treasury as Consul while young Gaius Octavius Caesar is positioning himself to claim his Great-uncle's legacy as First Man in Rome.

What an incredible series!  If Caesar was even half the incredible person that McCullough paints him to be, he was truly one of the most remarkable men in history, and those who slew him were a crowd of losers and wannabes. If I could step back in time with an AK-47, I'd waste the lot of them and then join Caesar on his campaign to crush the Parthians!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on November 14, 2011, 03:08:25 PM
Women by Charles Bukowski. It's the only novel of his I haven't read yet, I'll be sad when it's done. Best writer ever.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on November 18, 2011, 05:08:10 PM
Ye-es!

Somethings from Stephen King.

While I read 'em out of order, the last two volumes in his "Dark Tower" series, or, I should say the prequel to his "Dark Tower" series: "The Long Road Home" and "Treachery."

There is also a graphic version of his "Dark Tower," but I haven't got around to starting that one as of yet.

The next three volumes, after volume 1,  in his "The Stand" in graphic format.

v.1.
v.2. American Nightmare
v.3. Soul Survivor
v.4. Hardcases

They remind me of the "Star Trek" films, because just as the even numbered films were suppose to be better than the odd numbered films, so I find the even numbered volumes to be better than the odd numbered volumes. For example, I find the horrors in volume 2 more realistic than the horrors in volume 1, so I like volume 2 better than volume 1.

Volume 3 has a good shootout between the good guys and the bad guys, which is depicted second by second, but it also has one of the worst characters I have ever found in one of King's novels. Mother Abigail, who is so good and so perfect, that she becomes ever more uninteresting and boring. A much better character is that Stephen King clone, Harold Lauder, who is so complex and complicated, that you never know what he is going to do next.

Mother Abigail does become more interesting in volume 4, as she begins to develop a sense of self-doubt.

But the problem with the whole series so far, is that there are too many extraneous events and characters that add little if anything to push the story forward. King also seems to have a problem of, once his characters leave the story, of not being able to bring them back in an effective manner.

I will credit King with being able to do one thing well, and that is being able to create a credible child character. As I have found most authors, though they were once all children, unable to create a credible child character if their life depended upon it.

Next time: another guidebook to cruise ships/cruise lines.

Next next time: A few somethings from Star Wars.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on November 18, 2011, 05:41:41 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41SZK2VFADL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)

Pretentious analysis.  It's the kind of film criticism where you think "I'm glad the director didn't actually think like this guy, or his movies would have been unbelievably boring."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on November 19, 2011, 01:31:00 PM
    Found a copy of this at the DAV yesterday, read it years ago....for a quarter, why not?

(http://cb.pbsstatic.com/l/02/2702/9780553282702.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on December 08, 2011, 01:20:05 PM
     I'm just finishing this....

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/7/76/World_War_Z_book_cover.jpg/200px-World_War_Z_book_cover.jpg)

     I was pleasantly suprised; rather than  being a literary gorefest, it was a fictional account of the Zombie War years, told through the eyes of the survivors.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 08, 2011, 01:30:23 PM
Picked up a copy of The Running Man, by Stephen King (as Richard Bachman). It's a very good book so far. I'm about a third of the way through, and it is nothing at all like the movie. The movie used the title, a couple of character names and the basic premise of a deadly game show in a dystopian future, and that's it. Suits me fine, because I always liked the movie, and I can also enjoy the book for what it is, without anything spoiled.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on December 08, 2011, 09:55:36 PM
Speaking of Stephen King, I just started Pet Semetary. Haven't seen the movie yet either.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 09, 2011, 10:34:51 AM
Almost to the end of The Running Man. As Stephen King goes, it's a surprisingly tight little book, and a very easy read.

Found one other similarity to the movie. As the story progresses, Ben Richards meets people willing to stand up for their beliefs, becomes more of a revolutionary and starts getting public support. Of course, it's a little more complicated, and part of a whole journey of discovery. The Running Man (which is a nationwide manhunt in the book), gets Richards out of his little slum apartment and lets him see more of the big picture. At the same time, he's surprised at the qualities he finds within himself.

Oh, and one other similarity between book and movie - Richards is a smartass. Not the cheesy Arnie type of smartass, but a much more deadpan, subversive kind. There's a lot of contempt for authority in the Ben Richards of the book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on December 17, 2011, 02:09:47 PM
Ye-es!

Kay Showker's "The Unofficial Guide to Cruises"

Another guidebook to cruise lines and cruise ships and part of the "Unofficial Guide" series, but, other than that, a book that totally escapes my mind as to what it was about.

So, let's have Jane Yolen's "Foiled," which is a much more memorable book, and a book that shows what an experienced authoress, almost 100 books to her credit, can do with the printed page.

Life in New York City. Check.
Life of a teenage girl in New York City. Check.
Life of a teenage girl in New York City who fences. Check.

Everything is down pat and realistic, and the heroine is so likable, you wish her to find some happiness, but you know she is destined to find only unhappiness.

The only thing I can wish for from this graphic novel is a better explanation as to how her foil and fencing mask allows her to see not only the people who live in New York City, but also the fae who live in an alternate New York City.

I haven't seen anymore, if this is meant to be a series, or whether it is just an one shot story.

Next time: a compare and contrast of two "Star Wars" graphic novels.
and next next time: a compare and contrast of two guidebooks to cruise ships.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 17, 2011, 09:55:43 PM
Reading Magnificent Desolation, by Buzz Aldrin. Interesting autobiography that starts on the morning of the Apollo 11 launch, with Aldrin suited up and waiting his turn to be strapped in. The first few chapters are his personal account of the mission, which is very interesting. I've just finished that part, which is kind of a setup for the bulk of the book, dealing with what happened to Buzz in the 40 years since. At this point in the book, the excitement has settled down, and Buzz is haunted by the thought that he's only 39 and he's just done the greatest thing he will ever do. He ponders this between sips of scotch.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on December 18, 2011, 10:49:29 AM
(http://mises.org/store//Assets/ProductImages/SS424.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on December 23, 2011, 11:39:21 PM
Almost to the end of The Running Man. As Stephen King goes, it's a surprisingly tight little book, and a very easy read.
I read that about two years ago, I found it surprisingly good as well. Loved the ending.

Recently read 'The Men Who Stare at Goats', which was okay I guess. It felt kind of pointless. And 'Into the Wild' by Jon Krakauer which I really liked, even having seen Sean Penn's film first.

I went to a book convention last week and got a bunch of stuff for only 16 euros in total (the classics were particularely cheap):

H.P. Lovecraft - Collected stories: Volume one
Leo Tolstoy - The Death of Ivan Ilyich & Other Stories
Jules Verne - Journey to the Centre of the Earth
Jules Verne - Twenty Thousand Leages under the Sea
Mary Shelley - Frankenstein
Fyodor Dostoevsky - Death and Punishment
Isaac Asimov - Foundation
And a The Hills Have Eyes comic book.

I've read a couple of H.P. Lovecraft stories: Dagon, The Festival, The Hound, The Call of Cthulhu, and The Case of James Dexter Ward. I liked all of them, very atmospheric, though I find them hard to read at times.

Right now I'm about 1/4th through Foundation, which is really good so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: the Rev. J. Darkside on December 26, 2011, 07:03:07 AM
I recently finished Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and How Few Remain, both very well researched books.
(http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/.a/6a00d8341c630a53ef0147e2f3711a970b-500wi)
(http://images.wikia.com/turtledove/images/e/eb/HowFewRemain.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on December 26, 2011, 10:18:26 AM
I got Stephen King's new book, 11/22/63, for my birthday and read it in three days.  It's the best thing he has written in years, and thoroughly enjoyable - even if he did give Dallas a bit of a rough treatment.  Then again, I live 50 miles from the place and ain't that fond of it myself!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on December 26, 2011, 11:21:31 AM
I'm in the middle of Roger Ebert's second collection of his most brutal bad revews, titled "YOUR MOVIE SUCKS."

After that I've got Stephen King's "11/22/63" on hold for me @ the library (I will be picking it up this afternoon sometime) and I got Ace Frehley's autobiography, "No Regrets," for Christmas yesterday.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on December 26, 2011, 06:28:37 PM
@FatFreddysCat: If you like that book by Ebert you should also check out "Awake in the Dark" also by Ebert. It has some good interviews and reviews in it.

I started reading The Stand by Stephen King. 180 pages in right now, but it's only just starting. Enjoying it so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on December 27, 2011, 10:22:32 AM
@FatFreddysCat: If you like that book by Ebert you should also check out "Awake in the Dark" also by Ebert. It has some good interviews and reviews in it.

Cool, will look into it. I just read his other collection of bad reviews, "I HATED, HATED, HATED This Movie" -- it was a hoot. I rarely agree with Roger when it comes to films but I love the way he writes, always have. Sometimes I'll just go to his web site and flick through the review archive.

...and now in addition to the books I mentioned in my last post, one of my co workers just loaned me "White Line Fever," the autobiography of Motorhead's Lemmy!! Sweet.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on December 27, 2011, 08:35:04 PM
Just finished SEAL TARGET GERONIMO, the story of the Seal Team 6 operation that took out Osama bin Laden last spring.  Very well written piece of work; Navy's high command dissed it, which means it probably has a high percentage of truth.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on December 27, 2011, 10:56:32 PM
I got Stephen King's new book, 11/22/63, for my birthday and read it in three days.  It's the best thing he has written in years, and thoroughly enjoyable - even if he did give Dallas a bit of a rough treatment.  Then again, I live 50 miles from the place and ain't that fond of it myself!

I want to read that one. Just waiting until I can get it cheaper.

Finished Magnificent Desolation over the holidays. While I was always a fan of Buzz Aldrin, reading this book gave me an even greater respect for the man. The battles with depression and alcoholism, going public with mental illness back when it carried much more of a stigma, joining expeditions to the north pole and the wreck of the Titanic as a senior citizen, loads of work put into promoting space tourism and private-sector space travel, continuously pushing to get space exploration moving forward again, and just generally trying to put the adventure back into space.

Now reading "Knots and Crosses" by Ian Rankin. Was looking for some more crime thrillers, having read every Michael Slade book, and decided to give this Scottish writer a try after reading some good things about his work. Still too early to say much about the book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on December 29, 2011, 05:10:18 AM
This is now makes seven books that I have on the go!

(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_LTgGvDJTo9g/Rvgqb-8f9fI/AAAAAAAAAmw/avfXKSGRvl4/s400/Tpbridebook.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on December 29, 2011, 10:50:31 AM
BioShock: Rapture

The original story/prequel to the events that happened in BioShock 1 & 2 from the point of view of many different characters.  It pretty cool so far.  I'll get back to you after I finish it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on January 03, 2012, 02:01:37 AM
On King books too (must be something in the air...)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51tn4xOHDqL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41W0JzCYDQL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)

and this one...

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51kSAoBRtAL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on January 03, 2012, 10:43:36 PM
On King books too (must be something in the air...)


If you are still into some King's book, I recommend this one (Comic, yes, but I must spread the word.  Other must see a vampire tale done very right):

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/3/3e/American_Vampire_Cover_-1.jpg/250px-American_Vampire_Cover_-1.jpg)

One of the best modern day horror comics ever and probably the best vampire tale in a very long time.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on January 04, 2012, 10:49:48 AM
Ghosts And Others I Have Met, by John Kendrick Bangs. Written about 1898, this recounting of famous and little-known ghost stories from a number of regions is at times satirically funny, at others almost a little spooky. More or less faded from the public mind today, this book was wildly popular in its time (Mark Twain loved it). In a lot of the cases, Mr. Bangs, who had a gift for language, retells these tales in a tongue-in-cheek first-person perspective, as if it is he, like some unflappable Gilded Age X-File researcher, who actually experienced them.


"Who are you?" I cried, starting back, the physical symptoms of a ghostly presence manifesting themselves as usual.

"I am the ghost of one long gone before," was the reply, in sepulchral tones.

I breathed a sigh of relief, for I had for a moment feared it was a burglar....


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Pilgermann on January 04, 2012, 01:01:02 PM
Geek Love by Katherine Dunn.  I read it several years ago but I recently found a copy for a buck and decided to revisit it.  It's basically about a family who run a traveling circus and sideshow.  The freaks are the children of the couple who own the show, but they're the result of experimentation with drugs and poisons during each pregnancy.  The story is told by one of the children, now an adult, and she's been anonymously trailing her own daughter who was given up for adoption in a part of the novel that bookends the circus bits.  I really don't want to give much away but it's pretty gruesome and bizarre stuff, dealing with murder, cults, incest, love, hate, and the moral complexities of all these things, but it's so well-written and compelling that the ugly details don't feel like they're simply there for shock value.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on January 04, 2012, 01:27:37 PM
Geek Love by Katherine Dunn.  I read it several years ago but I recently found a copy for a buck and decided to revisit it.  It's basically about a family who run a traveling circus and sideshow.  The freaks are the children of the couple who own the show, but they're the result of experimentation with drugs and poisons during each pregnancy.  The story is told by one of the children, now an adult, and she's been anonymously trailing her own daughter who was given up for adoption in a part of the novel that bookends the circus bits.  I really don't want to give much away but it's pretty gruesome and bizarre stuff, dealing with murder, cults, incest, love, hate, and the moral complexities of all these things, but it's so well-written and compelling that the ugly details don't feel like they're simply there for shock value.

First thing I saw was "Greek Love" and I thought "What kind of book is this?" Then I read the title again. :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on January 05, 2012, 01:09:28 PM
I just finished The Stand today. It was really good but not great. In my opinion, King's written better things. It was very easy to read for a book that's 1300 something pages in length, with parts ranging from OK to pure excellence. The characters I thought were a mixed bag. Some were sublime like Tom Cullen, Nick Andros, Harold Lauder, ... while certain others we were supposed to like I just couldn't stand (e.g. Frannie Goldsmith). The final chapter was also anticlimatic in many ways. With 1000 pages build-up, it seemed to end very abruptly. But despite those complaints, it was still an awesome read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on January 06, 2012, 02:02:06 AM
Just finished Pet Sematary - pretty darn solid, creepy, unsettling little horror story. Really grabs you and involves you in places and ways you don't want to be involved. I found it really gripping the more I read into although the Wendigo described doesn't entirely match my own experience although it some ways it does.

Getting set to read Wrath of the Lion by Jack Higgins next.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on January 06, 2012, 10:20:26 AM
"A History of Experimental Film and Video."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on January 06, 2012, 10:39:37 AM
Started "Rebel Without A Crew" by Robert Rodriguez today. It's really interesting and inspiring so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on January 07, 2012, 08:15:02 PM
Scalped: Indian Country by Jason Aaron

The story of Dashiell Bad Horse who returns his old home on the Prairie Rose Indian Reservation or the "Rez" where corruption and violence runs rampage, especially under the crime boss, Lincoln Red Crow.  It's a very gritty and dark series, but a very well written and fasincating crime drama.  Of all the comics I read, I think this series would make a great TV series.  People, check this bad boy out!

(http://www.dccomics.com/media/product/7/7/7722_400x600.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on January 09, 2012, 05:50:51 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/510CemFn5lL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on January 09, 2012, 10:16:27 AM
Got a couple of chapters into Knots and Crosses and felt like something else. Seems like a good book, just can't get going on it right now. Might also be because I was expecting something similar to Michael Slade, who dishes up the weird and disturbing and violent right away. Rankin is still in introductions at this point. Mind you, it is the first book of a series, and I believe it is only Rankin's second book overall, as well as his first crime thriller. I'm sure the series gets better as everything becomes familiar, and as it reflects Rankin's developing skill as a writer.

Have spent several days reading at least a dozen Kindle samples in search of something that will scratch my reading itch. Mostly non-fiction, because I appear to be in that kind of mood.

Topics have included:

- Adult ADHD
- Essays on the mythology of Doctor Who
- Model rocketry
- Sexual fetishes
- The history of space travel

And more. So far, I've found each book either isn't what I'm in the mood for, or it costs more than I want to pay.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on January 10, 2012, 04:09:13 PM
I recently read Monster Hunter International and Monster Hunter Vendetta, and I think a lot of you guys would LOVE this series!

It's about a former pit fighter (long story) turned accountant who, after his boss turns into a werewolf and tries to kill him, discovers that monsters are REAL, and there's an organization out there who makes it there mission to fight them.  The guy takes a job with the group and finds himself embroiled in a fight involving vampires, elves, and a plot to end the world. 

It's a really fun series, combining a lot of humor with lots of b movie elements.  Among other things, the writer is obviously a huge gun nut (er, excuse me... enthusiast), most of the tech details in that department went over my head, but he's also big into b movies, and stuff getting blown up! 

So, yeah, check it out!

http://www.amazon.com/Monster-Hunter-International-Larry-Correia/dp/1439132852/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1326229692&sr=1-1 (http://www.amazon.com/Monster-Hunter-International-Larry-Correia/dp/1439132852/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1326229692&sr=1-1)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on January 23, 2012, 09:36:36 AM
Controversial Cinema: The Films That Outraged America

A book that discusses films that, obviously, had tons of controversy surrounding them on the themes of sex, violence, race, and religion.  The book centers on four differrent films, one for each catergory: The Silence of the Lambs, Natural Born Killers, Do the Right Thing, and The Passion of the Christ.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on January 23, 2012, 12:28:23 PM
Finally found a book that's hooked me, and I'm already halfway through it. Moondust: In Search of the Men Who Fell to Earth, by Andrew Smith. About ten years ago, Smith travelled around America, tracking down the nine surviving Apollo moonwalkers, to see what they were doing and how their experience might have changed them. He manages to interview most of them, as well as some command module pilots, and also adds in some stories about the missions from other sources, as well as some biographical information and historical context. It's a very well researched book.

It's very interesting so far. Smith's interview with Buzz Aldrin was very fortunately timed - the day after Buzz punched a hoax theorist. He caught up with d**k Gordon signing autographs at a Star Trek convention, and being virtually ignored in favour of make-believe space heroes. There was a funny and kind of sad account of Neil Armstrong dodging fans at a reunion in Reno, before beating a hasty retreat. And Smith describes the mildly unsettling feeling of meeting these guys and finding them familiar, but.... old.

What I like about this book so far is that Smith not only shows the differences and similarities in what the astronauts have done in the previous 30 years, he really captures them as human beings, looking at the emotional and psychological side, their relationships with each other, and little observations he makes while talking to them. And he goes beyond repeating the same stories that have been told many times already. There is a lot in this book I didn't know.

A very good book so far.

(http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-NWPyHwRdrsA/TiioaPx1mBI/AAAAAAAAALQ/zxZFQa9LkQM/s1600/moondust.gif)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on January 23, 2012, 02:36:08 PM
(http://www.epubbud.com/uploads/1/7/3/1737267/images/The_Ship_Who_Searched___Anne_McCaffrey_and_Mercedes_Lackey_epub/Anne%20McCaffrey%20-%20Tsw%202%20The%20Ship%20Who%20Searched.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on January 23, 2012, 08:44:58 PM
(http://paradisecomics.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/u/n/unwritten_ontogenesis_vol5.jpg)

The Unwritten Vol. 5: Onto Genesis by Mike Carey

The Cabel takes the battle against Tommy Taylor up a notch and more of the past of Tommy's father is shown.  Sort of the slow period besides the first two issues in this volume, it's the build up into the big storm in War of the Words (currently happening at this moment, but no where near being collected into a volume now).  It's not as good as the past volume, but still an important and fasincating part.  I really like the flashback scenes and the use of a different artist for those points.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on January 23, 2012, 08:57:02 PM
(http://images.betterworldbooks.com/193/Reclaiming-the-American-Right-9781933859606.jpg)

 :thumbup:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on January 24, 2012, 02:38:53 AM
The Unwritten Vol. 5: Onto Genesis by Mike Carey

The Cabel takes the battle against Tommy Taylor up a notch and more of the past of Tommy's father is shown.  Sort of the slow period besides the first two issues in this volume, it's the build up into the big storm in War of the Words (currently happening at this moment, but no where near being collected into a volume now).  It's not as good as the past volume, but still an important and fasincating part.  I really like the flashback scenes and the use of a different artist for those points.

The Unwritten is great. Certainly one of the most ambitious titles currently being released.

I'm a sucker for these "story as super-reality" tales, and I think it's one area where comics have really shined. They seem to do it better than anybody else. You can see the same thread in the works of Alan Moore, Grant Morrison, and probably most notably Neil Gaiman's Sandman.

The Unwritten has got my brother wound up something fierce. Fantastic series.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on January 24, 2012, 07:45:43 AM
(http://www.bazillionpoints.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/01/9780979616310.jpg)

Cost me £23!!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on January 24, 2012, 02:50:55 PM
(http://redditorschoice.com/img/necronomicon_2636_500.jpg)

It's been on my shelf for a while, am just now starting it.  Set up as a translation of Lovecraft's "forbidden text", has a lot of details about the Sumerian gods and it's a lot of fun so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on January 24, 2012, 04:02:21 PM
The Unwritten is great. Certainly one of the most ambitious titles currently being released.

I'm a sucker for these "story as super-reality" tales, and I think it's one area where comics have really shined. They seem to do it better than anybody else. You can see the same thread in the works of Alan Moore, Grant Morrison, and probably most notably Neil Gaiman's Sandman.

The Unwritten has got my brother wound up something fierce. Fantastic series.

Interestingly enough, the writer of The Unwritten, Mike Carey, has been involved with Neil Gaiman's work in the past.  He did the comic adaption of Neverwhere and wrote the entire Lucifer series, neither of which I actually like.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on January 28, 2012, 03:27:36 PM
Ye-es!

Nine graphic stories of Boba Fett as the hero gathered into one volume.

We have talked about George Lucas' skill as a writer, or the lack thereof, but what about the other writers in the world of Star Wars? Or, has ever so little produced so much of so little, or not so much. These being an example of what is wrong in the writings of Star Wars.

(1st) A good writer can turn the villain into anything, but (IMHO) not the hero, as the differences between the hero and the villain are too great to overcome.

(2nd) None of the stories have any suspense to them. The ending is foreseen in everyone.

(3rd) I know that Boba Fett has his adherents, but for me, he is one of the most uninteresting characters in fiction. And none of these stories makes him interesting.

(4th) Poor storytelling.

(5th) Confusing illustrations.

(6th) Humor that does not work.

But, sometimes in the world of Star Wars, you get a writer who can really write such as Henry Gilroy's "Star Wars: the Clone Wars: Slaves of the Republic."

And what is right with this one.

(1st) The author realizes that not everyone can be saved, so people die.

(2nd) Heroes are not immortal. So they die.

(3rd) He writes the villains as being smart and not stupid.

(4th) He writes the heroes as not always being right, which they admit.

(5th) He has the hero have a romantic affair with the villainess, which adds a touch of complexity to both characters.

(6th) He writes humor that works.

(7th) The villain never becomes the hero.

(8th) He writes one of the ultimate moments in literature. The moment when a character realizes that they are dieing, and that up to this moment their whole life has been a lie, but a that same moment they finally realize what is the truth, and the turth shall make them free, so they can die free and at last happy.

(9th) There are more than two sides to the story, which adds complexity to the story.

(10th) Even when a character seemingly does something uncharacteristic, it is presented in a believeable way.

It is too bad that more of the writers in the world of Star Wars do not write as well as Gilroy.

Next time: Something different.




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on February 01, 2012, 08:32:16 PM
Picked up my latest comics...

Aquaman #5: In a strange turn of events, Aquaman is found lost and wandering the desert.  Why?  Oh you have to read to find out.

Animal Man #6: After the gigantic and epic ending to the first story, writer Jeff Lemire takes a breather for an issue.  In this one, we get to see the mysterious indepent film Animal Man acted in it.

Swamp Thing #6: HOLY S**T!  Really!  Things have gotten very serious and in a very horrific way.  Hope you aren't queasy, but this series just got very nasty.  I feel we finally gotten to the root of horror in this series as the Rot begins its utter destruction of the Green and its take over of Abbey.

Remember that scene from Troll 2 where that girl turns into plant food for the trolls?  Well, this comic has sort of a similiar scene, but less hammy and actually done right!  My god, I'm going to have nightmares after see this.  Are you fan of Swamp Thing?  If you are and you are not reading this, get your butt in gear and starting this thing!  You got to see one of the best horror comics on the markets in years!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on February 06, 2012, 10:18:25 PM
Sweet Tooth Vol. 4: Endangered Species by Jeff Lemire

(http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-VkBZ2bHFsvw/Tx5bXfotMpI/AAAAAAAAAHc/XFjYyAY162o/s1600/SWEET_TOOTH_volume4.jpg)

After finally breaking Gus and the rest of the animal kids out of their captivity, Jeppard and a small group head north to Alaska to see if they finally discover the truth of the plague that killed the world and the origin of Gus.  Along the way, they discover an old dam with a mysterious crippled man named Walter Fish living in it.

The series starting off as a very slow series for me when I first read the first volume of it, but overtime, it has gradually grown into a dark and fasincating tale of survival in a hostile and dying world, much like The Road.  The artwork by Jeff Lemire is rather ugly, but matches well with the tone of the story.  I especially like the sequences where everything is done with water colors.

Sweet Tooth I find to be a very underrated and a lot of the times, overlook comic in the grand scheme of things.  With Jeff Lemire finding more and more success as he currently writes Animal Man, Frankenstien, and later on Justice League Dark; I hoping those runs can encouraging people to check out this work.  It's a slow burn, but the characters and mystery are so worth the journey.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: bob on February 07, 2012, 12:22:11 AM
I started reading my copy of 1984 which I bought 3 years ago.......I'm 7 chapters in and love it


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Snivelly on February 07, 2012, 02:05:05 PM
I just finished A Dance with Dragons...I had waited to buy it because I'd read so many bad reviews, but I enjoyed it greatly.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BTM on February 07, 2012, 02:06:21 PM
Not to long ago I read all of Stieg Larson's books (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire, The Girl Who Caused a Bit of a Ruckus, The Girl's Who's Only In Half the Book Yet Still Gets a Title Mention, etc).  

I have to say, while I thought they were good, I'm not sure they're 65 million copies sold good.  I suppose certain parts (especially dealing with various historical events) carry more weight if you're from Sweden, but to me, I think the biggest problems is Lisbeth Salander, by far the most interesting character in the three novels, is not even really the focus.  I mean, she's only in about half the first book, and the next two books, while a direct result of her actions, she's missing for big chunks as we go around seeing what other characters are doing.  (I often kept thinking, "Come on, let's get back to Sally!")


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on February 07, 2012, 04:32:23 PM
I think the biggest problems is Lisbeth Salander, by far the most interesting character in the three novels, is not even really the focus.  I mean, she's only in about half the first book, and the next two books, while a direct result of her actions, she's missing for big chunks as we go around seeing what other characters are doing.  (I often kept thinking, "Come on, let's get back to Sally!")

Have you ever read LES MISERABLES?  Jean Valjean disappears for huge chunks of the book while they talk about historical events and introduce new characters. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on February 08, 2012, 02:27:10 PM
     For the fifth time since I was thirteen....

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/d/de/A_wrinkle_in_time_digest_2007.jpg/200px-A_wrinkle_in_time_digest_2007.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on February 08, 2012, 07:24:36 PM
Just picked up a goodie from the library today... Roger Corman's autobiography, "How I Made a Hundred Movies in Hollywood and Never Lost A Dime." Can't wait to start reading it!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on February 09, 2012, 02:45:57 PM
(http://wndbooks.wnd.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/wndb.Lindsey.THE_EVERLASTING_HATRED.Front_Cover.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on February 09, 2012, 02:58:25 PM
Just picked up a goodie from the library today... Roger Corman's autobiography, "How I Made a Hundred Movies in Hollywood and Never Lost A Dime." Can't wait to start reading it!


     Really fun  book! If you can find them, I'd recommend....

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Z54P3EVHL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51tSNVzAX3L._SL500_AA300_.jpg)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51HsjWHrRvL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31NZcQJQ3AL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on February 10, 2012, 08:43:24 AM
Right now I'm in the midst of Roger Corman's autobiography, "How I Made a Hundred Movies in Hollywood and Never Lost a Dime." Very entertaining read!!!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on February 11, 2012, 02:36:17 PM
Not to long ago I read all of Stieg Larson's books (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire, The Girl Who Caused a Bit of a Ruckus, The Girl's Who's Only In Half the Book Yet Still Gets a Title Mention, etc).  

I have to say, while I thought they were good, I'm not sure they're 65 million copies sold good.  I suppose certain parts (especially dealing with various historical events) carry more weight if you're from Sweden, but to me, I think the biggest problems is Lisbeth Salander, by far the most interesting character in the three novels, is not even really the focus.  I mean, she's only in about half the first book, and the next two books, while a direct result of her actions, she's missing for big chunks as we go around seeing what other characters are doing.  (I often kept thinking, "Come on, let's get back to Sally!")

That was my reaction too.  Might not have mattered so much if Blomkvist wasn't such a giant nothing of a character (& I love how literally every woman under the age of 80 can't wait to have marathon sessions of no-strings sex with him just b/c he isn't a nazi or a rapist.  Projecting much, Larsson?) 
But if you like Swedish potboilers, Herman Mankell's Wallander series is pretty OK.

Currently reading Make Love! The Bruce Campbell Way - loving it, even better than If Chins Could Kill.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on February 11, 2012, 08:41:44 PM
Fatale #1 by Ed Brubaker & Sean Philips

(http://comicsmedia.ign.com/comics/image/article/120/1200439/nycc-brubaker-gets-fatale-20111014024831342-000.jpg)

After the death of his story writing godfather, Nicolas Lash discovers an old manuscript for a novel his godfather wrote back in the 50's before he ever wrote his first novel.  Apparently, whatever is written in it is very important to a mysterious group of people.

The story from there flashbacks to the 50s to Dominic Raines during the time and investigating a dirty cop named Walter with the help of Josephine, the cop's lover who never ages.  Meanwhile, a mass and brutal series of murders has happened and the dirty cop is investigating what seems to be a cult involvement.


Fatale is a noir horror comic, that takes its inspirations from H.P. Lovecraft.  If that isn't obvious, please refer to the variant cover of the first issue to make that all clear.  The story has set up tons of mysteries, in the present and in the past, that are quite engaging and interesting.  Not much in the work of character development, but only two issues have been released at this point and this minor detail will soon be resolved.  The art work is very good, looking very much like an old school detective comic, but with far more grisly details to it.

Fatale #1 is an interesting start to what seems like a very promising series.  Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips (the men behind Criminal, Sleeper, and Incognito) have spun a tale here that hopefully keep up the intrigue as it goes along.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on February 12, 2012, 06:46:19 AM
Recent reading:

How not to write a screenplay - Denny Martin Flin
Story Engineering - Larry Brooks
Carrie - Stephen King
Ubik - Philip K. Dick

Right now I'm reading Direct your own damn movie! by Charles Kaufmann, which is interesting so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on February 12, 2012, 10:22:17 AM
I just finished Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child's newest Agent Pendergast story, COLD VENGEANCE.  It is a direct follow  up to the last Pendergast story, FEVER DREAM, and the story will be concluded in the next volume. 

Agent Pendergast discovered in the last novel that his wife, Helen, had been deliberately murdered instead of dying in a tragic hunting accident 15 years before.  He spent the previous story trying to discover the reason for the murder, which involved a giant pharaceutical company, a lost painting by John James Audobon, and several daring chases.  At the end of the tale, he discovered that his wife's brother, Judson Esterhazy, may have played some role in her death.

COLD VENGEANCE begins with Pendergast attempting to lure Esterhazy deep into the Scottish moors to confront him about his sister's death, and then embarks on a wild chase story that eventually links both Helen and Judson to a top secret group of neo-Nazis called the Covenant.

I absolutely DEVOURED this novel!  The Pendergast stories are irresistably compelling, and I highly recommmend them.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Cthulhu on February 14, 2012, 10:23:17 AM
I just read  Night in the lonesome October by Richard Laymon.
It rocked.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on February 14, 2012, 01:36:58 PM
Listened to the audiobook of 'Catching the Big Fish: Meditation, Consciousness, and Creativity', by David Lynch. It was very interesting.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on February 15, 2012, 05:49:17 PM
Ye-es!

Budnick's and Baron's "Ticket Masters: the rise of the concert industry and how the public got scalped."

Despite the subtitle, it is a fairly even handed look at how electronic ticketing came to be, as they point out, if you want to know why tickets are so high, everybody's hands are dirty. Even the audience. For if the audience did not pay such high prices for tickets, the tickets might not be so high.

Anyway, the authors do a couple of things right. They seemingly talked to anybody who might have some knowledge on the subject. According to the directory of names in the book, that is over 200 people. They also let the people talk, without interjecting their opnions in there. Which is hard to do.

But, probably the best thing about the book is that the authors cover the early history of electronic ticketing, which dates back to the '60's, or the time that computers really started becoming available to the public.

Also Roger Ekirch's "Birthright: the true story that inspired 'kidnapped.'"

And about four or five other fiction books on the most notorious legal case of the 1st half of the 18th century. Besides the legal and literary history, the book also covers the military, political, religious, and social history of that time in Ireland and in what is now Pennsylvania, where the plaintiff wound up after being kidnapped.

As for the results of the case, while the actual case was fairly rapidly settled, the appeal process just dragged on and on to both the plaintiff and defendant were deceased.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on February 16, 2012, 10:44:01 AM
Batman #1-6 by: Scott Snyder

Beware the court of owls, that watches all the time,
Ruling Gotham from a shadow perch, behind granite and lime.
They watch you at your hearth, they watch you in your bed,
speak not a whispered word of them
or they'll send the talon for your head.


A discovery of a body one day and a message that Bruce Wayne is marked for death brings to light that an old nursery rhyme may actually be true.  A Court of Owls may exist and they want Bruce dead.  Batman doesn't believe they exist, but what comes next may make a believer out of him.

There are no words to properly describe how incredible this current run on Batman is.  Scott Snyder, writer of American Vampire and Swamp Thing, is just knocking it out of the park with one of the best runs  to date.  Probably one of the most mysterious and scariest stories I ever seen told about Batman.  If you are a fan, you must be reading this.

(http://i.newsarama.com/images/bm_cv6_02.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on February 17, 2012, 05:38:00 AM
As always, I'm reading something like 10-12 books concurrently, but the one that has really got me at the moment is Truman by David McCullough.

It's a great book, McCullough is fantastic writer who really brings alive any subject he puts his mind to. The first couple hundred pages were a bit dull (it's a long book), since it focuses on Truman's early life; he was a regular farmer for the first three decades of his life. However, now that I have gotten to the point where he gets to the Senate and starts heading the Truman Commission the book has become fascinating.

I just got through the chapter wherein he was nominated to the Vice Presidency of the not-long-for-this-world FDR. It's a sad and befuddling chapter involving some of the worst instances of political insiderism and people being horrible to each other.

But it is very compelling stuff. A lot of writers manage to make American history boring, McCullough is not one of those. History, real history, is alive and meaningful for anybody who wants to understand the world. I'm really enjoying this book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Trevor on February 17, 2012, 06:38:33 AM
I just bought a copy of Let Freedom Ring by Sean Hannity. *Ducks flying shoes*  :twirl: :wink:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on February 17, 2012, 11:46:57 AM
The Mind at Work by: Mike Ross

It's a book I've been assigned to read in one of my classes.  Only read the introduction so far, so I can't say much about it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on February 18, 2012, 11:04:15 AM
'The Art of War' by Sun Tzu


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on February 20, 2012, 05:23:35 AM
'The Art of War' by Sun Tzu
which was really good.
Started reading 'Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry into Values' by Robert M. Pirsig this morning.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on February 20, 2012, 10:26:58 PM
Batgirl #1-6 by Gail Simone

(http://fc00.deviantart.net/fs71/f/2011/355/3/c/batgirl_cover_5_by_adamhughes-d4jrik9.jpg)

The first complete story arc to Barbara Gordon's return as Batgirl, after recovering from the gunshot  wound in The Killing Joke (In the new 52 DC universe, she wasn't paralyze).  Barbara is back in action, but still quite rusty  since it has been years since she has been a superhero.  However, she's going to have to get back  into the game quick to face off against The Mirror, a killer going after survivors of near death experiences, and Gretel, a hair coloring changing woman who hypnotizing men with the number 338.

How does this series work?  Well, it's rather average to say the least.  The writing is fine, but suffers from an overabudence of internal monologue and a rush conclusion with the second villian.  The art is fine, but has issues with some of the movement of the characters and sometimes the artist forgets or draws poorly one of the eyes on a person (coloring was good though).  On the plus side, there is a ton of set up and ground work being laid down for future issues, with plenty of interesting mysteries being developed.  The story gets better goes on, so prehaps it is better to skip to issue 7 or issue 5.

Regardless, it is a fun, but nothing special first story arc for Babs first outing in quite a while.  It's better to buy cheap instead of paying full price for these comics or when the first trade comes out.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on March 05, 2012, 05:04:18 PM
Ye-es!

"Marvel's 70th Anniversary Collection"

A full day of lessons--art, economics, geography, history, science, sociology--in one collection.

Art
30s-60s. 4 decades of artwork which remained basically the same.
70s-mid 80s. minor changes in the artwork.
late 80s. major changes in the artwork.
90s-00s. major changes in the artwork every decade.

Economics
1939 to 1960 or 1961. 10 cents per comic book.
1962. price increase of 2 cents, which price continued to at least 1967.
1975. by . . . the price had doubled to more than a quarter.
1979. by . . . the price had gone up another 15 cents to 40 cents. It'd remain the same price for the next year.
1981. by . . . the price had gone up to 50 cents.
1987. by . . . the price was now 75 cents.
A price increase of 750% in almost 50 years or more than 15% per year.

Geography
Unlike Batman or Superman, the Marvel Superhero Universe clearly takes place in New York City, as you get the following New York City landmarks in some of the comic books.

Broadway, Brooklyn, Central Park, Columbia University, Coney Island, the East River, 5th Avenue, Gracie Mansion, the Lower East Side, Manhattan, Roiker's Island, Rockerfeller Center,Washington Square, etc.

History
Some 20 years after the "hot" war with the Nutzis ended, we were still at war. It may have been a "cold" war, bt we were now at war with the Commies.

Science
Almost 100 years later, we still do not know what struck Siberia, early in the last century, but unlike in 1963, we know it was not a meteorite, for no meteorite fragments were found in the area. Unlike other areas we know where a meteorite has struck.

Sociology
The science of human progress.

We have become a less violent society, or, at least, a society less tolerant of violence. For, as pointed out by the editors, today's readers would not condone the violence seen in the early Submariner comic books.

Whereas, most of the early superheros were white heterosexual males, today, we are not only seeing more female superheroes, but Asian, black, Hispanic, and Native American superheroes. And superheroes that are lesbian, gay, and bisexual.

We have gotten past our hatreds. If in the '40's, the Germans were the bad guys, by 1980, at least, a German could be a good guy. Nightcrawler.

Next time: the problems


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 05, 2012, 10:52:57 PM
As always, I'm reading something like 10-12 books concurrently, but the one that has really got me at the moment is Truman by David McCullough.

It's a great book, McCullough is fantastic writer who really brings alive any subject he puts his mind to. The first couple hundred pages were a bit dull (it's a long book), since it focuses on Truman's early life; he was a regular farmer for the first three decades of his life. However, now that I have gotten to the point where he gets to the Senate and starts heading the Truman Commission the book has become fascinating.

I just got through the chapter wherein he was nominated to the Vice Presidency of the not-long-for-this-world FDR. It's a sad and befuddling chapter involving some of the worst instances of political insiderism and people being horrible to each other.

But it is very compelling stuff. A lot of writers manage to make American history boring, McCullough is not one of those. History, real history, is alive and meaningful for anybody who wants to understand the world. I'm really enjoying this book.

I'm actually re-reading this one right now - I first read it shortly after it came out.  I just got to the part where Truman is suddenly elevated to the Presidency.  It's odd, since I am a lifelong Republican, but Harry S Truman is, to me, one of the most admirable men in the history of American politics.  He had courage, character, and a lot of good old common sense.  America was blessed with the right man at the right time.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 06, 2012, 12:34:17 AM
Just finished a fun thriller called Red Moon, By David S. Michaels and Daniel Brenton. An international lunar mission in 2019 visits the landing site of the Soviet Luna 15 probe that launched three days before Apollo 11. Instead of the unmanned probe, they find a Soviet lander with evidence of a human pilot. As the characters get to the bottom of the mystery, the story alternates between three main settings - the moon and Moscow in 2019, and the Soviet Union in the late 1960s. Of course, there are people who don't want the mystery solved.

What I especially liked about the book is the authors' research into the Soviet lunar program, and the way fictional events and characters were woven into real events, with Soviet secrecy accounting for their absence from history. And they use a couple of popular "lost cosmonaut" legends as part of the basis for the story. The part in 2019 Moscow has sort of a Dan Brown feel to it, as one of the protagonists digs into the history and finds himself in danger, while the crew on the moon are dealing with the revelation that at least one of them is under secret orders from some very powerful and mysterious people.

Just a real page-turner all around.

(http://www.variancepublishing.com/images/breakneck_titles/REDMOON_big.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on March 06, 2012, 03:00:34 AM
As always, I'm reading something like 10-12 books concurrently, but the one that has really got me at the moment is Truman by David McCullough.

It's a great book, McCullough is fantastic writer who really brings alive any subject he puts his mind to. The first couple hundred pages were a bit dull (it's a long book), since it focuses on Truman's early life; he was a regular farmer for the first three decades of his life. However, now that I have gotten to the point where he gets to the Senate and starts heading the Truman Commission the book has become fascinating.

I just got through the chapter wherein he was nominated to the Vice Presidency of the not-long-for-this-world FDR. It's a sad and befuddling chapter involving some of the worst instances of political insiderism and people being horrible to each other.

But it is very compelling stuff. A lot of writers manage to make American history boring, McCullough is not one of those. History, real history, is alive and meaningful for anybody who wants to understand the world. I'm really enjoying this book.

I'm actually re-reading this one right now - I first read it shortly after it came out.  I just got to the part where Truman is suddenly elevated to the Presidency.  It's odd, since I am a lifelong Republican, but Harry S Truman is, to me, one of the most admirable men in the history of American politics.  He had courage, character, and a lot of good old common sense.  America was blessed with the right man at the right time.

Truman's story is really weird. For all intents and purposes, he is the very model of a straight-shooting middle American. And yet every entry into his path to power was paved by the worst of insider politics. Somehow this eminently competent man became the go-to guy when the country needed him most. And then he became the only man to utilize the atomic bomb in wartime, a decision we're still reeling from.

It's almost Shakespearean. I respect and admire Truman, but man alive, being Truman must have been horrible.

"You've got to be a good man, because there's way too many of the bad ones."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 06, 2012, 07:05:04 AM
Truman commented later on that he "never lost a night's sleep" over his decision to use the bomb.  I don't know if that is true or not, but he wasn't noted for his falsehoods.  We were in a war where over 50 million had already died, and they brought him a way to end it.  It was a horrible way.  But war is horrible.  So he used it.  It couldn't have been easy, but I'm glad he did.  Because one of the American boys preparing to storm ashore on the beaches of Japan that fall was my Dad.  He was supposed to hit the beach with the second wave - and they were told that their survival rate would be about 1 out of 132.  I'm just glad it never came to that.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on March 06, 2012, 03:14:59 PM
     Just finished this....

(http://images.amazon.com/images/P/0553587900.jpg)

     Enjoyable, although I'm a Koontz fan no matter what.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on March 06, 2012, 06:11:10 PM
Marvel's 70th Anniversary Collection

As I said in my last post at this thread, the collection does bring out problems. Not so much problems from past days, but problems from the present day.

In the past, superheroes were clearly defined, so you could tell one from the other. Today, while some superheroes are still clearly defined, such as Spiderman, and others can be recognized from their names, such as Antman, who is no bigger than an ant, and the Scarlet Witch, who wears, scarlet apparel, what with . . .

The Avengers, the Fantastic Four, Heroes for Hire, the Junior League, the New Avengers, the New Warriors, X-Force, X-Men, the Young Avengers, etc.

They are not as clearly defined as they once were, so it is becoming harder and harder to tell one superhero from another.

Nor does it help, that superheros often have two names, one a superhero name and one a non-superhero name, such as Spiderman and Peter Parker, which are often used interchangablely, which only adds to the confusion.

Then, for many years, basically from the '30's to the mid-'80's, the stories were clear and concise, but after the mid-'80's, when there started to be major changes in the artwork, the stories started becoming less clear and concise. So, now you not only have confusing characters, but confusing stories as well.

It is as if, where once the artwork served the story, now the story started serving the artwork.

And where the illustrations once served to clarify any minor confusion in the story, now the illustrations only increased the confusion.

Next time: Zombies, Zombies, Zombies, edited by Otto Penzler.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on March 07, 2012, 03:38:09 AM
Truman commented later on that he "never lost a night's sleep" over his decision to use the bomb.  I don't know if that is true or not, but he wasn't noted for his falsehoods.  We were in a war where over 50 million had already died, and they brought him a way to end it.  It was a horrible way.  But war is horrible.  So he used it.  It couldn't have been easy, but I'm glad he did.  Because one of the American boys preparing to storm ashore on the beaches of Japan that fall was my Dad.  He was supposed to hit the beach with the second wave - and they were told that their survival rate would be about 1 out of 132.  I'm just glad it never came to that.

I didn't mean to reduce Truman to the decision to use the atomic bomb on Japan. I kind of view that now as a fact of history that happened. We can debate morality and the consequences, but it was a decision that was made, and now here we are.

Do I think it saved lives? Yes. More importantly, I think the sole use of a nuclear weapon during wartime was so traumatic to the entire world that nuclear weapons have not been used since. We are approaching 70 years where nuclear weapons have not been used again during wartime.

I hope to hell we can keep that up for as long as possible.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on March 07, 2012, 12:32:50 PM
Rereading Story Structure by Larry Brooks as I prepare my new screenplay, and also reading Foundation and Empire by Isaac Asimov.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: theblooblob on March 07, 2012, 02:27:21 PM
Currently reading The Dark Tower Series (currently Wizard & Glass). Second time around which must mean I like them as I never normally re-read books (I'm good at remembering the story's well). Halfway through Woman in Black too. An okay book. There is something wrong about the book which stops it from being brilliant, but I really can't put my finger on what it is....


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Andrew on March 07, 2012, 05:25:19 PM
"The Thirty Years War:  Europe's Tragedy"

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Dwz21ooHL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 07, 2012, 06:13:31 PM
That looks very interesting - I don't know much about that conflict.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Flick James on March 07, 2012, 06:15:46 PM
Black & Decker's The Complete Photo Guide to Home Repair.

I like books with lots of pictures.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Andrew on March 07, 2012, 06:45:34 PM
That looks very interesting - I don't know much about that conflict.

1618-1648.  It was a political and religious war that savaged most of the Habsburg empire, meaning quite a bit of Germany.  France, Spain, Sweden, Bavaria, Denmark, and other countries all deployed armies that ravaged the countryside.  Quite a lot of progression in military tactics, including artillery and pike and shot.  It's estimated that about the same number of people died as died in Germany during WWII - and this was centuries earlier.  The best guess is that about 33% of Germany's population was killed.  The area that became Prussia was largely spared, setting it up to become what it did (passing a lot of itself onto Germany).

This book goes into a lot of the political, personal, and religious background.  There are two other books that cover the battles in depth, which are amazing resources.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Flick James on March 07, 2012, 07:23:30 PM
That looks very interesting - I don't know much about that conflict.

I'm surprised, as the Thirty Years' War represents a lengthy and significant step in the progression of Protestant/Catholic adversity. For a short time, the Peace of Augsburg was looking like it might work to provide a peaceful coexistence between Protestants and Catholics. The rise of Calvinism is an important aspect of that time, as it lent to the growing tensions that cut that peace short.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on March 07, 2012, 08:07:31 PM
(http://mises.org/store/Assets/ProductImages/SS360.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on March 07, 2012, 11:03:52 PM
Reading my comic picks for the week...

Animal Man #7: After a quick filler issue, we get back to the main plot as Buddy and his family travel the country to find Alec Holland, Swamp Thing, the one person or plant to help them defeat the Rot.

Not much happens this issue and we have a new artist start to take over as main artist for the series, Steve Pugh (An artist who use to draw for the original Animal Man back in the 90's).  While the plot is slow, the character interaction and development is just as great as always.

Swamp Thing #7: It's official.  Swamp Thing by Scott Snyder is now going to become one of the best runs for the character ever.

The Rot as cornered Alec and all seems to be lost.  All that is left now is for the Parliment of Trees to finish burning and Alec to go down with them.  However, is that really it?

The writing is as sharp as ever, the artwork is just utterly beautiful as ever, the scope of it continues to grow, and it has one of the more chilling and strong endings I have seen in a long time.  Read this book.  Read it now!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on March 12, 2012, 01:52:40 PM
(http://i191.photobucket.com/albums/z77/alandhopewell/PrimalScream.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on March 12, 2012, 04:34:54 PM
iZombie Vol. 3: Six Feet Under and Rising

(http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1320489875l/12137592.jpg)

As Gwen continues unliving as a zombie and trying to hide her real self from her monster hunter boyfriend, a new threat rises: a plague of zombies that start appearing all over the city.  Why are they there and what secret is wrapped around them?

Meanwhile, a secret government group called The Dead Presidents, a super agent monsters, hunts down a Russian doctor whose brain is inside of a coffee pot and is guarded by a gigantic solider zombie.  Their trail leads them to the same town where Gwen and her friends are at.  What will happen when everyone collides?

iZombie is a very enjoyable series, have a rich mythology and history while also having really fun and well written characters to boot.  This latest volume is brings new characters and starts woving in different plot threads, bringing in, easily, the best volume of the series yet.  The art is also enjoyable with a nice guest artist for a filler issue that dives into one of the side characters and expanding on who they are.

This series started off to me as a random book I just grabbed off the shelf to see what it was like.  After two solid volumes of build up and expanding everything, the series has hit a very highpoint and I cannot recommend this series enough.  You got to give it a try if you like monsters and fun characters.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 13, 2012, 10:04:02 AM
([url]http://i191.photobucket.com/albums/z77/alandhopewell/PrimalScream.jpg[/url])


Great follow-up to Headhunter. Have you read many other Slade books?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Frank81 on March 13, 2012, 11:24:50 AM
I'm  always  reading, sometimes several  books  at the same time. I'm a  huge book collector. I reading  these  two books, at this moment,  in the evening.  Iommi is a new one, the other  one I'm reading again.

(http://images.popmatters.com/news_art/b/book-ironman-cvr.jpg)

(http://www.stanford.edu/group/sreview/Archive/XXIVno1/images/blackbookofcommunism.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on March 13, 2012, 01:28:03 PM
([url]http://i191.photobucket.com/albums/z77/alandhopewell/PrimalScream.jpg[/url])


Great follow-up to Headhunter. Have you read many other Slade books?


     GHOUL, HEADHUNTER, and another whose title escapes me.
Have you read the Sonja Blue series by Nancy A. Collins?

(http://i191.photobucket.com/albums/z77/alandhopewell/51-pfCBrnvL__SL500_AA300_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 13, 2012, 03:17:52 PM
Ghoul and Headhunter are certainly at the top of my list, and either makes a great start to the series, being written as stand-alone stories before deClercq and Chandler come together in Special X.

My introduction to Slade was Swastika, which was about ten books into the series, but he recaps so much in each book that you get the gist of the backstory. Swastika is a really wild book, combining Nazi wunderwaffen, the Roswell conspiracy and the Robert Picton pig farm murders, among other things.

If you want to read the background of the stories, and even discuss them with Slade himself, check out http://specialx.net (http://specialx.net)

Haven't read any Nancy A. Collins books. Are they similar to Slade? Having read everything of his so far, I've been searching for something similar to scratch that itch. Not having much luck finding the same mix of police procedures, history, thriller, horror and far-out craziness.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on March 14, 2012, 02:14:11 PM
Ghoul and Headhunter are certainly at the top of my list, and either makes a great start to the series, being written as stand-alone stories before deClercq and Chandler come together in Special X.

My introduction to Slade was Swastika, which was about ten books into the series, but he recaps so much in each book that you get the gist of the backstory. Swastika is a really wild book, combining Nazi wunderwaffen, the Roswell conspiracy and the Robert Picton pig farm murders, among other things.

If you want to read the background of the stories, and even discuss them with Slade himself, check out [url]http://specialx.net[/url] ([url]http://specialx.net[/url])

Haven't read any Nancy A. Collins books. Are they similar to Slade? Having read everything of his so far, I've been searching for something similar to scratch that itch. Not having much luck finding the same mix of police procedures, history, thriller, horror and far-out craziness.


     SUNGLASSES AFTER DARK, and the other four books in the series, deal with Sonja Blue, a young woman who was raped and fed upon by a vampire at the age of fourteen.Rather than dying, she becomes a hybrid, similar to Blade.

     Rex Miller wrote a really intense series about a serial killer named Chaingang, back in the 90's. Of course, there's the Prey series by John Sandford, which are quite good. Joe R. Lansdale has done some great, balls-out murder mysteries, particularly those starring Hap Collins and Leonard Pine.
 




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on March 14, 2012, 03:21:15 PM
'Lullaby' by Chuck Palahniuk.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on March 14, 2012, 05:39:36 PM
Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child have authored an amazing series of books about an eccentric FBI Agent named Aloysius Pendergast.  THE RELIC was the first (please ignore the TERRIBLE movie made from it), followed by RELIQUARY and STILL LIFE WITH CROWS.  The most recent was entitled COLD VENGEANCE.  Not as edgy and gross as Slade's stuff, but still very fascinating.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 14, 2012, 10:03:03 PM
About two thirds of the way through The Right Stuff, by Tom Wolfe. Always liked the movie, but the book goes so much deeper into the people and events, and makes clearer just what "the right stuff" is. I'm also very much in agreement with Wolfe's interpretation of the space race as a substitute for war between two nuclear superpowers, with the astronauts and cosmonauts as champions in the old tradition of single combat.

I'm looking forward to rewatching the movie. No doubt I'll notice things I hadn't before.

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/5/58/The_Right_Stuff_%28book%29_2.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on March 15, 2012, 09:48:49 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41W2QD1QE1L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg)

"The Cinema of Werner Herzog: Aesthetic Ecstasy and Truth" by Brad Prager

Much better than the last two film books I've read. It's actually comprehensible.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on March 15, 2012, 12:38:37 PM
Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child have authored an amazing series of books about an eccentric FBI Agent named Aloysius Pendergast.  THE RELIC was the first (please ignore the TERRIBLE movie made from it), followed by RELIQUARY and STILL LIFE WITH CROWS.  The most recent was entitled COLD VENGEANCE.  Not as edgy and gross as Slade's stuff, but still very fascinating.

     I LOVE Preston and Child!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: spongekryst on March 16, 2012, 11:51:33 AM
Love in the Time of Dinosaurs by Kirsten Alene

Slaughterhoue 5 by Kurt Vonnegut


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on March 20, 2012, 02:48:37 AM
'The doors of perception and heaven and hell' by Aldous Huxley.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Frank81 on March 20, 2012, 07:42:43 AM
Slaughterhoue 5 by Kurt Vonnegut

I feel  like Billy Pilgrim more every day, unstuck  in time, place and culture.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on March 20, 2012, 12:57:04 PM
([url]http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41W2QD1QE1L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg[/url])

"The Cinema of Werner Herzog: Aesthetic Ecstasy and Truth" by Brad Prager

Much better than the last two film books I've read. It's actually comprehensible.


I'm not much of a Herzog fan, but that photo is BADASS. 

Currently reading "The Phantom of the Opera" by Gaston Leroux


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on March 20, 2012, 09:33:57 PM
Been going through some new comic books recently.  I'll go into more details when I finish one of them:


Batgirl Vol. 3: The Lesson by Bryan Q. Miller
Bone: Complete Edition by Jeff Smith
Gotham Central Vol. 1: In the Line of Duty by Greg Rucka & Ed Brubaker
John Constantine: Hellblazer Vol. 1: Original Sins by Jaime Delano
Resurrection Man Vol. 1 by Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning
Scalped Vol. 2: Casino Boogie by Jason Aaron


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on March 21, 2012, 12:38:31 PM
(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-GcmBHnI2hF8/TlNLIX9GcdI/AAAAAAAAABg/Wn3V5o-srDU/s1600/V_Flynn_Memorial_Day.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on March 21, 2012, 03:29:39 PM
([url]http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41W2QD1QE1L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg[/url])

"The Cinema of Werner Herzog: Aesthetic Ecstasy and Truth" by Brad Prager

Much better than the last two film books I've read. It's actually comprehensible.


I'm not much of a Herzog fan, but that photo is BADASS.


The expression seems to say "Yeah, whatever. I've worked with Kinski."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on March 22, 2012, 07:47:22 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/514gJOBiqLL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Frank81 on March 22, 2012, 07:59:43 AM
([url]http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/514gJOBiqLL._SL500_AA300_.jpg[/url])


You don't need that  book in NYC, here people  are  used  to p**sing ON the public.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on March 22, 2012, 04:42:34 PM
Ye-es!

"Zombies! Zombies! Zombies!" edited by Otto Penzler.

Something of a companion volume to his short story collection "Vampire Archive."

The stories in this one contain action, horror, humor. Are commentaries on the political, religious, and social issues of the day. And contain everything that makes life worth living, namely, nudity, profanity, sex, and violence.

What they do not contain is the quality of the stories in his previous volume on vampires. That is not Penzler's fault, as he includes the best zombie stories he can find in the pulps, but the quality of the writers does not reach the level of the other volume.

Also you do not get the variety of locations you get in the other volume, as vampires seem to be universal. Here the locations mostly seem restricted to Africa, Haiti, the U.S., and for some strange reason the U.K.

This volume does contain the first zombie story "Dead Men Working in the Canefields," which was published in 1929. There were zombie stories before that, but the zombies were called "the lving undead." This story seems to be the first time in a story that zombies were called zombies.

And there is an 1-page bio on each author, which I enjoy reading, unlike some people.

Now, I'd like to see a collection of wereanimal short stories. Not only werewolves, but also, as there are . . .

werehyenas and wereleopards in Africa.
weresnakes and weretigers in Asia
weredingos in Australia
werebears and wereboars in Europe
werecoyotes and wereeagles in North America
werejaguars in in South America
and weresharks in the South Pacific.

Only Antarctica, which was uninhabited much of the time, seems to lack wereanimals. And, frankly, werepenguins do not seem to cut it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on March 24, 2012, 09:45:43 PM
Animal Man Vol. 1 by: Grant Morrison

(http://www.vegetus.org/vegtoon/animalman.jpg)

Buddy Baker is a former c/d list superhero known as Animal Man who decides to get back into the game.  However, things won't be easy, even on his first assignment involving a research lab and a bunch of monkeys.  Even as he has to deal with those things, his family also deals with their own issues as well.

When DC relaunched 52 brand news titles in September 2011, one of them was Animal Man.  Out of curiousity, I decided to head to the character's first series and most iconic run ever.  It's a solid superhero story, with some mystery that is hiding itself in the background at first and very solid character development.  Heck, I don't even mind the flat coloring in this comic like I normally due with old comics from the past.  The only problem I find with this is that it feels very heavyhanded and trying to push an agenda, that while is good, comes off as very annoying (even to some of the characters in the book).

It's an interesting start to a famous run, but has yet to revealed what make it so special so far in my eyes.  I'll keep reading, but it's going to have impress me more than it did so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on March 24, 2012, 10:38:32 PM
Animal Man Vol. 1 by: Grant Morrison

([url]http://www.vegetus.org/vegtoon/animalman.jpg[/url])

It's an interesting start to a famous run, but has yet to revealed what make it so special so far in my eyes.  I'll keep reading, but it's going to have impress me more than it did so far.


It, um, changes considerably after the first paperback collection.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: RCMerchant on March 25, 2012, 07:38:08 AM
Shirly Jackson-Novels and Stories

(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/art11015nar.jpg)

I can't think of any authour that I like better...maybe Charles Fort.

GO DOWN TOGETHER

Wow.

Just f**king wow.


(http://i93.photobucket.com/albums/l79/RCMerchant/Go-Down-Together-The-True-Untold-Story-of-Bonnie-and-Clyde-Novel.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on March 25, 2012, 10:53:32 AM
Finished reading 'The Alchemist' by Paulo Coelho today. It was pretty good? Not sure what the big deal is, honestly.

Now reading this:

(http://zazenlife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/BC_dmt_spirit_molecule_0.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on March 25, 2012, 03:31:46 PM
Animal Man Vol. 1 by: Grant Morrison

([url]http://www.vegetus.org/vegtoon/animalman.jpg[/url])

It's an interesting start to a famous run, but has yet to revealed what make it so special so far in my eyes.  I'll keep reading, but it's going to have impress me more than it did so far.


It, um, changes considerably after the first paperback collection.


Oh I know.  The Internet has sadly spoiled a lot of the run already for me so I know already of what is to come.  Volume 3 is going to be much different.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on March 26, 2012, 03:14:52 AM
Animal Man Vol. 1 by: Grant Morrison

([url]http://www.vegetus.org/vegtoon/animalman.jpg[/url])

It's an interesting start to a famous run, but has yet to revealed what make it so special so far in my eyes.  I'll keep reading, but it's going to have impress me more than it did so far.


It, um, changes considerably after the first paperback collection.


Oh I know.  The Internet has sadly spoiled a lot of the run already for me so I know already of what is to come.  Volume 3 is going to be much different.


Yeah, you really lose a lot in not being there when it happened. At the time, this was really revolutionary stuff, but now it's normal. One thing, if you can ignore what you know now, pay attention to what an incredibly tight narrative Morrison accomplished. Remember, there was nothing out there like this when he was originally writing it.The next two volumes of Animal Man are fantastic.

"The last enemy that shall be defeated is Death."

It's really a great run, and you don't need the meta-fiction stuff, it's really good.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Frank81 on March 26, 2012, 11:24:47 AM
Animal Man Vol. 1 by: Grant Morrison

([url]http://www.vegetus.org/vegtoon/animalman.jpg[/url])

Buddy Baker is a former c/d list superhero known as Animal Man who decides to get back into the game.  However, things won't be easy, even on his first assignment involving a research lab and a bunch of monkeys.  Even as he has to deal with those things, his family also deals with their own issues as well.

When DC relaunched 52 brand news titles in September 2011, one of them was Animal Man.  Out of curiousity, I decided to head to the character's first series and most iconic run ever.  It's a solid superhero story, with some mystery that is hiding itself in the background at first and very solid character development.  Heck, I don't even mind the flat coloring in this comic like I normally due with old comics from the past.  The only problem I find with this is that it feels very heavyhanded and trying to push an agenda, that while is good, comes off as very annoying (even to some of the characters in the book).

It's an interesting start to a famous run, but has yet to revealed what make it so special so far in my eyes.  I'll keep reading, but it's going to have impress me more than it did so far.


I'm not a  Grant Morrison fan, mainly cause of his animal 'rights' views in tis series.


Title: Re: (re) Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on March 26, 2012, 02:27:17 PM
(http://ia600809.us.archive.org/zipview.php?zip=/26/items/olcovers654/olcovers654-L.zip&file=6541361-L.jpg)

     I first read it in '76.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on March 26, 2012, 08:48:24 PM
I'm not a  Grant Morrison fan, mainly cause of his animal 'rights' views in tis series.

I think the he is pretty good and definitely nowhere close to as preachy as he was in this run.  However, I suspect of him taking lots of drugs.  There is no way he wasn't on something while writing Arkham Asylum and Batman R.I.P.

Yeah, you really lose a lot in not being there when it happened. At the time, this was really revolutionary stuff, but now it's normal.

That's probably why I'm not in love with like Watchmen or Sandman either, both series being very meh for me.  On the plus side though, Hellbazer by Jamie Delano is pretty damn awesome so I suppose there is a classic series from the past that I can love.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on March 28, 2012, 08:52:08 AM
Im just following the cool kids...

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51piuUu%2B1hL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)

Its great.
Books with female leads should be more like this and less like Twili... Ah, that other popular female lead teen book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on March 28, 2012, 11:43:59 AM
Carrying over my current James Bond obsession from films to books, I'm currently reading Roger Moore's autobiography, "My Word Is My Bond"


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on April 01, 2012, 01:36:48 PM
Ye-es!

Darren Shan's "Cirque du Freak" (in graphic format)
v.08 Allies of the Night
v.09 Killers of the Dawn
v.10 The Lake of Souls
v.11 Lord of the Shadows
v.12 Sons of Destiny (final volume)

There are beginnings of a good writer here, but this isn't yet. You need to be a good writer to cover the time span in this 12-volume series, and he wasn't that good yet. He needed to tighten up the time covered for it to be better. But you can see what he was to become.

Robert K. Elder's "The Film that Changed my Life"

There are few better at disecting a director's film, then another director. And here's proof of that.

The only name you need to know is Edward Rowe Snow for books on the subjects of the sea and/or New England. And here's his . . .

"Tales of Terror and Tragedy"

He had almost a hundred books published on those subjects, and maybe because he was so successful, because many of the stories he tells began on his radio program, where you had to be clear, concise, and interesting. And this continues into his books.

William Hoffer's "Saved the Story of the 'Andrea Doria' the Greatest Sea Rescue in History"

Another sea story and probably next to the sinking of the "Titanic," the greatest passenger ship disaster of the 20th century. For a number of reasons.

(1) The passengers included actress Ruth Roman, songwriter Jerry Stoller, the mayor of Philadelphia, etc.

(2) It happened just outside New York City, or the media capital of the world at that time.

(3) And I believe it was one of the first sinkings captured on film and broadcast on TV.

It does have a number of other similiarities with the "Titanic."

(1) A ship going to fast for the weather conditions.

(2) Passengers left to their own devices by the crew, which led to a needless loss of life

(3) And lifeoboats, too few in number, or could not not be lowered because of the list of the ship.

Fortunately, there were a couple of reasons the loss of life was not as great as the "Titanic."

(1) The weather and seas were calm.

(2) Because it happend just outside New York City, there were alot of other ships that came to the rescue with their own lifeboats. Freighters, naval vessels, other passenger ships, tankers, etc. From many countries.

(3) And it took along time for the ship to sink, which gave time to get everyone off that was still alive. Actually, everybody was surprised at how long it took the ship to sink.

Next time: because this is the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, a couple of books on the subject with a slightly different slant on the subject.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on April 01, 2012, 04:16:54 PM
Finished McCullough's TRUMAN last night.  A great book about a great man.  They just don't cut them from that mold anymore.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Mofo Rising on April 02, 2012, 01:59:16 AM
Finished McCullough's TRUMAN last night.  A great book about a great man.  They just don't cut them from that mold anymore.

I'm still halfway through the book, but I have to say that I don't think Harry S. Truman will ever be duplicated in American politics. Maybe even any politics.

He's such a weird case. A straight-forward American shooter, yet elected due to insider politics. Rose to prominence during one of the most vital periods of world history, WWII. Insane that the consummate politician FDR was followed by the Midwest farmer Truman was, and it was all sanctioned by party politics.

I really admire Truman, because I think he is the last principled guy who will ever be elected. It's to Truman's credit that he (eventually) found his own backbone and buckled down for some truly difficult decisions.

The game changed after that. Nobody like Truman will ever be elected again; not in this atmosphere of endless vetting and public opinion. For better or worse? Almost meaningless to contemplate because it just won't happen.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on April 02, 2012, 06:52:11 PM
Just finished Roger Moore's autobiography, My Word Is My Bond, today.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on April 02, 2012, 07:46:18 PM
Reading "The Dig," by Michael Siemsen. Pretty good so far.

The main character is Matthew Turner, a 20-something psychic with the ability to read imprints left on objects by other people who have touched them at times of great emotion. He actually experiences the events as if he were those people, right down to their thoughts. Being kind of an anxious sort, Turner keeps his power a secret from all but a handful of people, but does some consulting work for a museum, analyzing artifacts and antiques.

The story surrounds an object found in Kenya, at a dig site run by a paleontologist who is clearly using it as a front for something illegal. A scrap of metallic fabric is removed from rock dating back about 150 million years. Matthew is reluctantly recruited to go and do what he does, and you can imagine where that might lead.

Very good book so far. A few interesting plot threads to follow, and I'm finding it hard to put down.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51hchB5Am8L._SS500_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on April 04, 2012, 09:37:26 PM
Fables Deluxe Edition Vol. 4 by Bill Willingham

(http://media.dcentertainment.com/sites/default/files/book-covers/20909_900x1350.jpg)

Following the events of March of the Wooden Soliders; we see the fallout among several characters, the results of the election between Old King Cole and Prince Charming, and Snow White delivers her babies.  During all of this, Blue Boy sneaks off and heads back to the Homelands to find his lost love, Red Riding Hood.

This volume also contains 1001 Nights of Snowfall, a seperate book that tells the tale of Snow White's trip to the Middle East a long time ago and having to tell tales to a sultan in order stay alive.  Probably one of the greatest comics I have ever read in my entire life with fantastice tales and great artists to go with each one.

The story collected in this volume is sort of the slow arc that resides between the heavy March of the Wooden Soliders and the Blue Boy's journey arcs, but still provides a solid story and explores a bit more of the characters in the series.  Not much else to say, but read this book.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on April 04, 2012, 09:46:27 PM
Selina's Big Score by Darwyn Cooke

(http://26.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_llknqd00SS1qg1iejo1_500.png)

Having gone underground for awhile after pretending to be dead, Selina Kyle returns to the thieving business to gain some more cash.  To pull herself out of the hole, she's going to have to pull off one huge score and she'll need a big team for it, including reuniting with the person who taught her all of her theiving skills.  However, the target is Falcone family and there is no garantee that this will end well for her and team of crooks.

Darwyn Cooke writes a mean Selina Kyle story (I would say Catwoman, but she really isn't in her outfit at all in this comic) with strong likeable anti-heroes and a great setup.  What I really love about it is the artwork, which reminds me heavily of the Batman Animated series and really works with it, despite the heavy violence of this story.

This story is collected alongside a 4 part story staring Slam Bradley (also in the story) and the first 9 issues of the Catwoman series from the past in the new Catwoman collection: Catwoman Vol. 1 Trial of the Catwoman.  If you like Selina Kyle even a little bit, I highly recommend this comic strongly.  It doesn't work in the new contiunity DC set up recently, but don't let that stop you reading this one.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on April 04, 2012, 09:59:16 PM
Reading "The Dig," by Michael Siemsen. Pretty good so far.

The main character is Matthew Turner, a 20-something psychic with the ability to read imprints left on objects by other people who have touched them at times of great emotion. He actually experiences the events as if he were those people, right down to their thoughts. Being kind of an anxious sort, Turner keeps his power a secret from all but a handful of people, but does some consulting work for a museum, analyzing artifacts and antiques.

The story surrounds an object found in Kenya, at a dig site run by a paleontologist who is clearly using it as a front for something illegal. A scrap of metallic fabric is removed from rock dating back about 150 million years. Matthew is reluctantly recruited to go and do what he does, and you can imagine where that might lead.

Very good book so far. A few interesting plot threads to follow, and I'm finding it hard to put down.

([url]http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51hchB5Am8L._SS500_.jpg[/url])

I love this kind of fiction.  I'll have to pick it up at Hasting's!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on April 08, 2012, 11:50:26 AM
Reading all the LitReactor craft essays. A lot of interesting articles if you are a writer: http://litreactor.com/essays


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on April 10, 2012, 04:50:50 PM
Ye-es!

Last time, I said I talk about a couple of books about the Civil War, which I had read, but I think I'll put those off to next time, and instead talk a little "Star Wars." From best to worst.

Star Wars Omnibus: a Long Time Ago
Star Wars in a comic book format. 107 monthly issues plus annual issues. From Marvel Comics and gathered together in 5 volumes. Excluding the 1st volume, volume 5 probably contains the best stories for a number of reasons.

More humor.
A littlle humor, that works well, as it does here, really makes a story more enjoyable.

More kids.
Kids change the tone and mix of a story from an all-adult story.

But, mostly, more interesting characters, especially the villains.
While since the 1st film there has been an attempt to make the villains more human, and thus more realistic, everyone was fettered by the pre-conceived notion of what was a villain. But here we bring in totally new villains that have never been seen before, so with no pre-conceived notions of villainy, everyone, including writers, readers, and evern the characters are constantly reaccessing who is and who is not a villain. It makes for a better story.

The volume also stops at a good stopping point, but what if they had continued with a dozen characters from the last issue.

A couple of ex-Imperial space jockeys, a male Nagai and a female Zeltros, who have a love-hate relationship going on, a Correllian/Nagai half breed, and his Nagai half brother, who hates everyone, including himself, and one of the last Mandalorians still alive plus Luke, Leia, and Han plus C3P0 and R2D2.

On a mission that looks increasingly suicidal.

On a planet, where they are outnumbered about a hundred to one by the villainous Tofs, who like to take prisoners, so they can enjoy clubbing 'em to death afterwards.

Nothing one hasn't seen before, but a good writer can go great things with that set up.

The volume does have its faults.

Did you hear the one one about Leia's 4 teenage attaches and the governor's 5 daughters. Well, the governor certainly heard about it, so when he puts in an appearance at the party to welcome Princess Leia to the Planet Zeltron, the 4 boys think it is healtheir, if they were somewhere else.

Thus, while we do not need a prono version of "Star Wars"--though, that is possible--the stories would be better with a little more sex and nudity in 'em.

Thhe stories would also be better, if if they could have found an illustrator who could draw teenagers that looked like teenagers, instead of some 20-something.

And drew characters that did not change in appearance from issue to issue. Oh, what the heck. Even within the same issue, some of the characters change appearance.

Star Wars Omnibus: Quinlan Vos
A collection of stories about one of the most interesting Jedi Knights. And an omnibus that has a better ending than most of the other omnibuses. Which brings up a gripe I have with "Star Wars." I think it is the characters that are most interesting that are killed off, leaving the uninteresting characters to survive.

Star Wars Omnibus: the Complete Saga
All 6 films in comic book format. Plays out much as one expects. The best films are the 1st 3 films, but of the last 3 films, I think the best story comes with the 1st or 4th films.

Which brings up another criticism of "Star Wars."  The weakes part has always been the writing. And that continues from the films to any of the novels or graphic novels based on the films.

Star Wars: at War with the Empire
In 2 volumes, Stories that take place between the 1st and 2nd films. Typical stories. Readable, but mediofcre writing. But still better than . . .

Veitch's Star Wars: Dark Empire Trilogy
Leaves a number of questions asked, but unanswered. Why were the 2 teens--brother and sister--tied to the tree? And the best villain they could come up with is a revived empror clone. Whoa! That is original.

Next time: two books on the American Civil War.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on April 10, 2012, 11:02:54 PM
I just finished Alice Cooper's autobiography, "Golf Monster" ...a very entertaining read

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51SBnVujliL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Flangepart on April 12, 2012, 05:15:48 PM
NEPTUNE'S INFERNO The U.S.Navy at Guadalcanal.
By James D. Hornfischer.
http://www.historynet.com/book-review-neptunes-inferno.htm

This book is a perfect blend of historical overview, and the human experience of war.
I had never know the extent of the sea war at Guadalcanal, and it's a major piece of the little known the should be known.
And if they ever found a way to do what Band of Brothers/The Pacific did on HBO...yeah, that would go with those two titles on my list of classics.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on April 12, 2012, 05:16:59 PM
Just finished THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO.  Now I want to read the rest of the series.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on April 12, 2012, 08:27:45 PM
Finished The Dig, which was an easy read. Always something interesting going on.

Now, I've just started Eclipse. Not the Twilight Eclipse, but a weird story by an author named Briane Pagel. I stumbled across it on the Kindle for 99 cents and thought what the heck.

Not sure where it's going at this point, because it's entirely the thoughts and recollections of the main character, an astronaut hurtling through deep space after the breakup of his spacecraft. His mind drifts between his present predicament, his abusive childhood, high school, a mental hospital and other settings. It's still early in the book, but I'm already guessing as to what's real and what isn't. This guy seems to be coming unglued, or already is.

Not at all what I expected, but I wasn't really sure what to expect. An engaging read so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Frank81 on April 13, 2012, 08:07:52 AM
Finished McCullough's TRUMAN last night.  A great book about a great man.  They just don't cut them from that mold anymore.

Trumans  dropping the bomb at the end of  WW 2, fighting Communism and addressing  the Civil  Rights of Americans on a  national level  made him one of the greats, as opposed  to what we have now.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: InformationGeek on April 13, 2012, 09:25:24 AM
Resurrection Man Vol. 1 by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning

(http://media.dcentertainment.com/sites/default/files/book-covers/20874_900x1350.jpg)

Mitch Shelly has a problem.  He can't remember who he is outside of his name.  He also has the problem of dying a lot, but coming back with a different super power everytime.  In his quest to discover who he is, he takes it on himself to help out whoever he meets along the way, becoming the urban legend known as Resurrection Man.  However, this trip won't be an easy ride.  Hot on his trail is a man named Hooker who like Mitch cannot die, but never heals or recovers from any wounds he gets.  Also following him are the Body Doubles, two former strippers turned crazy killer bounty hunters hired to bring him in for a special group to study.

This is just a great comic.  I love the characters, I love the high concept, I enjoy the art even though I'm not a big fan of the coloring, I enjoy the action, I dig the crossovers with Batman and Hitman, and I just enjoy finding out where this story will go to next.  I got this book on recommendation from other comic fans who said to check out and I have been enjoying it since.

This is the perfect kind of comic for us b-movie fans.  A high ridiclous concept with a fun character and hilarous to amusing characters.  I mean we got strippers turn psychotic bounty hunters, how does that not want you to read this comic?  I highly recommend it and I hope you guys check it out.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on April 15, 2012, 01:02:19 PM
Rereading 'The Eyes of the Dragon' by Stephen King.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on April 21, 2012, 01:08:54 PM
Ye-es!

David Williams' "Bitterly Divided: the South's Inner Civil War'

and

Andrew F. Smith's "Starving the South: How the North Won the Civil War"

Some differences, but more similiarities than differences.

Smith: the Northerner from New York State.
Williams: the Southener from Georgia.

Smith: college professor.
Williams: same.

Smith: covers agriculture and food distribution in both the North and South.
Williams: same, but also the draft in the South, and the violence that occurred in the South, between Southeners, during the Civil War.

Smith: covers both North and South.
Williams: covers primarily the South.

Smith: food hoarding and food speculation in the South, which lead to food shortages, which lead to widespread food riots.
Williams: same.

Smith: harshly condemnatory of Southern leadership in the South during the Civil War.
Williams: same, if somewhat less harshly.

Smith: provides summary.
Willliams: same.

Also covers . . .
Smith: military maneuvers during the Civil War.
Williams: the role of African-Americans and Native Americans in the South during the Civil War.

Biggest disagreement.
Support for the North by Southeners due to lack of support for Southener leadership.
Smith: little
Williams: lots

Biggest agreement
Despite the subtitle of Smith's book, the North did not win the Civil War, the South lost the Civil War, and the South lost the Civil War, because it loss the support of the people living in the South at that time, and the support of the people was lost, because the Southern leadership was incompetent, or, at least more incompetent than the Northern leadership.

Something few people North or South have faced up to, even within the last 150 years.

Next time: Brandon T. Sniders' "D.C. Comics: the Ultimate Character Guide."


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on April 21, 2012, 01:12:39 PM
An interesting analysis, and one I would enjoy reading.
However, I think I would disagree with the conclusion.  Between the North's population advantage, its enormous advantage in manufacturing capacity, and the military leadership it had in the form of Grant, Sherman, Sheridan, and Thomas, I think that, even if Southern troops had been better fed and supplied, the result would have been the same. Irresistible application of overwhelming force.

However, I will read both tomes, if I can find them.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Flick James on April 21, 2012, 01:39:04 PM
An interesting analysis, and one I would enjoy reading.
However, I think I would disagree with the conclusion.  Between the North's population advantage, its enormous advantage in manufacturing capacity, and the military leadership it had in the form of Grant, Sherman, Sheridan, and Thomas, I think that, even if Southern troops had been better fed and supplied, the result would have been the same. Irresistible application of overwhelming force.

However, I will read both tomes, if I can find them.

The South quickly identified Grant as a butcher who won by brute force, but I'm not so sure. I think he was a fine military leader. I also think that his heart was in the right place as President. Unfortunately I don't think he really knew what he was doing and is well known for his corrupt appointees.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: lester1/2jr on April 21, 2012, 01:40:44 PM
book of old master paintings of biblical scenes


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on April 21, 2012, 02:15:28 PM
Back to Knots and Crosses, by Ian Rankin. This time, it seems I'm more in the mood for a detective story, so I'm already halfway through. A bit light on the thrills so far, but the characters and situations are interesting enough to keep me reading. There are several subplots that keep things moving while the murder mystery is not much more than a backdrop for the first half. It makes sense. The police know nothing, so the reader is not given much more information than is known, and exhaustion from long hours of boring legwork kind of drives some of the other events.

Interesting to read a Scottish police procedural for a change. I've gotten used to reading about mounties.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on April 21, 2012, 02:56:24 PM
Flick - Jean Smith wrote an excellent biography of Grant a few years back; it is definitely worth a read!
I may read it again this summer.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on April 21, 2012, 03:02:43 PM
'The Dark Tower II: The Drawing of the Three' by Stephen King.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Flick James on April 21, 2012, 03:07:01 PM
'The Dark Tower II: The Drawing of the Three' by Stephen King.

I haven't read any of the final three volumes. However, out of the first four, The Drawing of the Three is my favorite.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on April 22, 2012, 06:44:45 AM
'The Dark Tower II: The Drawing of the Three' by Stephen King.

I haven't read any of the final three volumes. However, out of the first four, The Drawing of the Three is my favorite.
Besides the great ending, I was disappointed with Volume I. This one is great so far, though, and I'm only 60 pages in.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on April 24, 2012, 06:07:45 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51x6JuT8V2L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on April 24, 2012, 09:08:13 AM
Dress Your Family In Corduroy and Denim by David Sedaris. 
I prefer ...Engulfed in Flames but this one's good too.  I love when he writes about his childhood; specifically when he portrays Amy as having been a deviant straight from the cradle  :bouncegiggle:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on April 26, 2012, 11:21:32 AM
Girlfriend bought me these. Dunno when I'll get to read them.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41PVdlnBM-L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA278_PIkin4,BottomRight,-70,22_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51RTP8vHRgL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA278_PIkin4,BottomRight,-70,22_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51Qloeff2xL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA278_PIkin4,BottomRight,-70,22_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51IBeJ6ZnEL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA278_PIkin4,BottomRight,-70,22_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41dLkiqR83L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA278_PIkin4,BottomRight,-70,22_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41aNn%2BcKkXL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA278_PIkin4,BottomRight,-70,22_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on April 27, 2012, 08:50:23 AM
^ Avoid "The Dark Half", it starts off quite interesting and then gets proggressively more ridiculous, plus it's actually poorly written.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on April 27, 2012, 04:05:54 PM
^ Avoid "The Dark Half", it starts off quite interesting and then gets proggressively more ridiculous, plus it's actually poorly written.


I'm determined to finish all, no matter how bad.
Its 'The Tomnmyknockers' I'm dreading, it huge. You could beat a zombie unconscious with it. I'm a big fan of 'Needful Thing's and 'The Dark Half' is the precursor to it so I figured it's worth a shot. The film wasn't too awful.

And if that wasn't enough king, I found this in hardback for £4.99.
I'd be a fool to not buy it.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51CkYkGCNSL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)

I seriously think I have enough for a while...  :buggedout:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on April 27, 2012, 05:10:24 PM
Read 11/22/63 FIRST.  It is an amazing piece of work!
(I live an hour from where Kennedy was shot.  I have walked Dealey Plaza and been to the Sixth Floor Museum more times than I can count.)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Flick James on April 27, 2012, 07:33:10 PM
Read 11/22/63 FIRST.  It is an amazing piece of work!
(I live an hour from where Kennedy was shot.  I have walked Dealey Plaza and been to the Sixth Floor Museum more times than I can count.)

My wife picked that up for me because she thought I would find it interesting. I haven't picked it up yet. Since I've finished my MBA, however, I might actually have a little time to crack it. The evening weather is gorgeous in Arizona and it looks like just the book to settle into the hammock with along with a nice cold beverage.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on April 27, 2012, 08:36:04 PM
I'm nearly done with THE GIRL WHO KICKED THE HORNET'S NEST.
It's a fascinating trilogy, although I'll admit some aspects of Swedish culture are very  . . . . foreign!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Frank81 on April 30, 2012, 11:46:47 AM
Read 11/22/63 FIRST.  It is an amazing piece of work!
(I live an hour from where Kennedy was shot.  I have walked Dealey Plaza and been to the Sixth Floor Museum more times than I can count.)

UhOh, You're  an hour  away  from Dealy and  been to the sixth floor many times.. folks, we've  found the second  gunman, call  Oliver  Stone. :teddyr:  Seriously, It is  an ongoing tragedy  that  the Kennedy  assassination has become  a  cottage  industry  for every  raving mad person who can write  any theory and present it as  fact. It's a  Closed Case  to me. It's  just sad it'll never  go away. :bluesad:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on May 01, 2012, 04:57:02 AM
And I bought this...


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51zn22IcaoL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 01, 2012, 06:19:18 AM
Read 11/22/63 FIRST.  It is an amazing piece of work!
(I live an hour from where Kennedy was shot.  I have walked Dealey Plaza and been to the Sixth Floor Museum more times than I can count.)

UhOh, You're  an hour  away  from Dealy and  been to the sixth floor many times.. folks, we've  found the second  gunman, call  Oliver  Stone. :teddyr:  Seriously, It is  an ongoing tragedy  that  the Kennedy  assassination has become  a  cottage  industry  for every  raving mad person who can write  any theory and present it as  fact. It's a  Closed Case  to me. It's  just sad it'll never  go away. :bluesad:

I was a serious conspiracy buff in college, as I have grown older I can see that Oswald may indeed have acted alone, but there are just enough odd pieces of evidence that point to a second gunmant that I never can completely buy it. That is what makes the whole thing so fascinating to me - there is so much we will never know.

BTW, I was born three weeks afterward, so unless my mom let me play with guns in utero, I am absolved as a suspect!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Frank81 on May 01, 2012, 07:40:59 AM
Read 11/22/63 FIRST.  It is an amazing piece of work!
(I live an hour from where Kennedy was shot.  I have walked Dealey Plaza and been to the Sixth Floor Museum more times than I can count.)

UhOh, You're  an hour  away  from Dealy and  been to the sixth floor many times.. folks, we've  found the second  gunman, call  Oliver  Stone. :teddyr:  Seriously, It is  an ongoing tragedy  that  the Kennedy  assassination has become  a  cottage  industry  for every  raving mad person who can write  any theory and present it as  fact. It's a  Closed Case  to me. It's  just sad it'll never  go away. :bluesad:

I was a serious conspiracy buff in college, as I have grown older I can see that Oswald may indeed have acted alone, but there are just enough odd pieces of evidence that point to a second gunmant that I never can completely buy it. That is what makes the whole thing so fascinating to me - there is so much we will never know.

BTW, I was born three weeks afterward, so unless my mom let me play with guns in utero, I am absolved as a suspect!

Oh, You mentioned the name? Oswald is completely innocent, a patsy, remember, rinse and repeat. :twirl:

Yeah, I was a baby. But, I could have pulled a trigger. :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on May 02, 2012, 06:59:18 AM
I just bought Under the Dome in hardback. It was cheap so I had to buy it. I don't have a King addiction. I don't. I don't have to justify my book buying choices to you or anyone!

I can stop reading King anytime I want.

Anytime.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on May 04, 2012, 03:27:48 PM
Ye-es!

Brandon T. Snider's "DC Comics: the Ultimate Character Guide" featuring the 201 most important individual characters and groups of characters from DC Comics.

The groups range from the villainous Crime Syndicate to the heroic Teen Titans. Some of whom also get their own individual entry.

While written for teens, it can be used by anyone as an introduction to the DC Comic characters.

Each entry consists of one page and includes a color illustration of the character, their powers, a brief bio-history, their real name, their heighth-weight, their occupation, a list of friends-foes, and their base of operations.

Now I like to see one for the next 201 most important characters from DC Comics and one for the characters from Marvel Comics.

And Alan Villiers' "Posted Missing: the Story of Ships Lost without Trace in Recent Years," as it was first published in 1956, recent years are 1909 to 1956, with a preface taking the book up to 1973.

The title is something of a misnomer, as they have found wreckage and even the occasional body from some of the wrecks. Experts just want to know what caused the ships to go missing. And here, even they can make an educated guess. If there were storm in the area, then the ship sank in a storm. If the ship was in an area of icebergs, then it most likely struck an iceberg and sank.

And editor Laura Manske's "Family Travel: the Farther You Go, the Closer You Get." A travel book containing essays on traveling with the family.

It is one of those situations, where you think the last two books have nothing in common, but . . . Awe. Respect. Children.

As many times as the writer has put to see, every time he puts to sea, he still is in awe of it. And the writers are in awe of the countries they visit.

The writer has respect for whoever sails upon the sea. No matter what their nationality is. And the writers have respect for the people who live in the countries that they visit.

A loss at sea is always a tragedy, but a loss of a child, whether as passenger or member of the crew ia always a greater tragedy. And the writers like the children they encounter on their travels.

And, perhaps, it is time to say, that the writer being British, I have yet to find a British writer who dislikes children. Well, maybe one or two, but they are mighty thin on the ground.

Next time: Henry A. Giroux's "The Mouse That Roared," or how to win, when the facts are not on your side.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on May 11, 2012, 03:41:05 PM
Ye-es!

Henry A. Giroux's "The Mouse That Roared,"
or how to win, when the facts do not support your case, by using "bad thinking."

When I was in school, we were taught not only what was "good thinking," but what was "bad thinking," as well. And, probably, while I have used what I was taught, many times since then, never have I used it to the extent that I used it while reading this critique of the Walt Disney Company. While it is not meant to be, it comes across as a classic textbook of "bad thinking," as there are so many different samples of it in the book. For example . . .

01. Use outdated facts that no longer apply.
02. Use facts that are totally wrong.
03. Cherry pick your facts. Only use facts that support you. Ignore all facts that do not support you.
04. Make assumptions without providing proofs for said assumptions.
05. Tar your opponent at every opportunity.
06. Make statesments that are hyperbolic and/or hypocritical.
07. Always show your subject in the worst possible light.
08. State that only your opinions are right. Anyone else that states an opinion is wrong.
09.Never use a neutral or positive word, when you can use a negative word.
10. State something, then later totally contradict yourself, as you believe your  audience has no memory of what you said earlier.
11. While showing no precognizance yourself, criticize your subject for not being precognizant.
12. Reduce what is complex to the simplistic.
13. And never associate your subject with anything positive or neutral, but always with something that is negative.

Next time: William H. Miller's "S.S. United States" and etc.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on May 14, 2012, 10:36:33 AM
'Film' by Ronald Bergan.

Rudimentary, but decent.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on May 15, 2012, 03:57:46 PM
I recently purchased the entire WAR OF THE WORLDS comic book run that appeared in AMAZING ADVENTURES during the 1970s.  I have only 4 issues remaining.  Overall, an enjoyable series with only 2 or 3 stories that were duds.

(http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSXAwwq3WoPz4Xk10nCGWei53zwMqz4x2Ck2qOfHInv_RkrOAo0p8IAdKnn)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 15, 2012, 05:30:50 PM
Reading two novels concurrently. I'm a little over halfway through reading The Hobbit to my daughter at bedtime. She's really enjoying it.

A little bit different from my first introduction to the story, watching the Rankin-Bass animated movie that creeped me out as a little kid. The story itself is not as disturbing as that late-70s animation made it.

For myself, I'm exploring novels I can find on the Kindle for 2.99 or less, and I've found a couple of decent ones so far. Right now, I'm reading Dome City Blues, by Jeff Edwards. Kind of a William Gibson, Philip K. Dick, film noir type of thing. Burned-out private eye in a cyberpunk future, solving a bizarre murder case for a beautiful woman. Standard stuff, but entertaining so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on May 16, 2012, 02:56:48 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/514S4JHHQ7L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on May 16, 2012, 04:33:20 PM
([url]http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/514S4JHHQ7L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg[/url])


Wait a minute . . . we all know you can't read!



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Pacman000 on May 16, 2012, 05:48:30 PM
Speaker for the Dead by Orson Scott Card, a sequel to Ender's Game, also by Orson Scott Card.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 16, 2012, 10:25:08 PM
Speaker for the Dead by Orson Scott Card, a sequel to Ender's Game, also by Orson Scott Card.

I liked that one. Didn't much care for the books that followed, but Speaker wasn't a bad follow-up to Ender's Game. I thought it was pretty cool that the setting jumped forward a few thousand years, with Ender spending so much (greatly slowed) time traveling around at near-light speed. People curse history's greatest mass-murderer and revere the original Speaker for the Dead, while having no idea they're the same guy, he's still alive and he's standing right there.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: tracy on May 17, 2012, 03:55:27 PM
A trilogy of 3 Xanth novels:

(http://profile.ak.fbcdn.net/hprofile-ak-snc4/277060_240310682679071_2793623_n.jpg)

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/8/88/N4883.jpg/200px-N4883.jpg)

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/8/87/Roogna.jpg/200px-Roogna.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 17, 2012, 04:55:36 PM
I am about 3/4 done with MY THOUGHTS BE BLOODY, a history of the Booth brothers, Edwin and John Wilkes, and their talented, tragedy-ridden father, Junius Brutus Booth.  The author's thesis is that the lifelong rivalry between the two brothers is what drove Wilkes Booth to murder Abraham Lincoln, a shame that Edwin spent his life trying to atone for.  It is a wonderful read!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JoeTheDestroyer on May 17, 2012, 06:57:43 PM
Just finished Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins.  So I'll resume my other projects:

Go Rin no Sho by Miyamoto Musashi
Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan
The Wind Through the Keyhole by Stephen King

Also planning on starting a few other books, particularly Defiant Light by Jason Venter.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: bob on May 22, 2012, 10:46:38 AM
1984 and I'm loving every word of it.  :cheers:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 22, 2012, 12:33:08 PM
Nearing the end of The Hobbit with Rowan, and trying to think of another book we'll enjoy just as much. I don't think she's quite ready for Lord of the Rings yet, and it would be a heck of a commitment to read LOTR in 15-minute bites at bedtime.

I'm thinking about introducing Ro to some of the easier books I enjoyed as a kid - Encyclopedia Brown, The Mad Scientists' Club and the like.

I've kind of stalled out reading Dome City Blues. Just not in the mood for it. Might also be that I've been trying to pick up a cyberpunk detective thriller right after reading The Hobbit, when my imagination is still in Middle Earth.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: tracy on May 22, 2012, 12:35:55 PM
I am about 3/4 done with MY THOUGHTS BE BLOODY, a history of the Booth brothers, Edwin and John Wilkes, and their talented, tragedy-ridden father, Junius Brutus Booth.  The author's thesis is that the lifelong rivalry between the two brothers is what drove Wilkes Booth to murder Abraham Lincoln, a shame that Edwin spent his life trying to atone for.  It is a wonderful read!
That reminds me of an episode of "Branded",with Chuck Connors,we were watching a short while back. The  brother of John Wilkes Booth was out to find and execute the man responsible for falling asleep so Lincoln could be shot. He blamed him for the death of Lincoln and also his brother. Interesting episode.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on May 22, 2012, 04:59:58 PM
Ye-es!

William H. Miller's "S.S. United States: the Story of America's Greatest Ocean Liner"

In three parts.

pre- 1952
1952-1969 or from the S.S. United States' first trans-Atlantic voyage to its last.
1970-1991 or from its mothballing to the date the book was published.

The title might be slightly hyperbolic, but several superlatives stick to the ship.

(1) The largest and still the largest American ocean liner ever built in an American shipyard.
(2) For many years, the fastest ocean liner ever to cross the Atlantic. Winner of the much coveted Blue Riband.
(3) And then there were three. One of the last ocean liners to make regularly scheduled trips across the Atlantic. Only the S.S. France and the S.S. Queen Elizabeth lasted longer on the Atlantic crossing.

No idea what happened to the ship after 1991 or when the book was published. All kind of ideas were advanced, including making it into a seaside hotel, but none came to fruition.

And . . .

Dave Madden's "The Authentic Animal: Inside the Odd and Obsessive World of Taxidermy"

While the business of taxidermy may fly under the radar, it still is a big business. There are taxidermy classes, taxidermy competitions, taxidermy conventions. Though now what mostly gets the stuff is the family pet Spot and Puff.

I will also say, that while the book starts out as a straight history of taxidermy, and here we are talking about the subject of the book and not the author's sexual orientation, the books morphs into a discussion of the relationship between man and animal.

"Encyclopedia Brown" I can remember when the first book in that series came out, and that was over 50 years ago. AndyC, if your daughter likes mysteries and/or puzzles, that'd be a good series to read to her. And see if she can solve the mystery, before you read the solution to her.

Next time: a he said/she said.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 22, 2012, 05:03:39 PM
Nearing the end of The Hobbit with Rowan, and trying to think of another book we'll enjoy just as much. I don't think she's quite ready for Lord of the Rings yet, and it would be a heck of a commitment to read LOTR in 15-minute bites at bedtime.

I'm thinking about introducing Ro to some of the easier books I enjoyed as a kid - Encyclopedia Brown, The Mad Scientists' Club and the like.

I've kind of stalled out reading Dome City Blues. Just not in the mood for it. Might also be that I've been trying to pick up a cyberpunk detective thriller right after reading The Hobbit, when my imagination is still in Middle Earth.

Not sure how old she is, but my girls LOVED "A Series of Unfortunate Events" by Lemony Snicket.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 22, 2012, 05:12:25 PM
Nearing the end of The Hobbit with Rowan, and trying to think of another book we'll enjoy just as much. I don't think she's quite ready for Lord of the Rings yet, and it would be a heck of a commitment to read LOTR in 15-minute bites at bedtime.

I'm thinking about introducing Ro to some of the easier books I enjoyed as a kid - Encyclopedia Brown, The Mad Scientists' Club and the like.

I've kind of stalled out reading Dome City Blues. Just not in the mood for it. Might also be that I've been trying to pick up a cyberpunk detective thriller right after reading The Hobbit, when my imagination is still in Middle Earth.

Not sure how old she is, but my girls LOVED "A Series of Unfortunate Events" by Lemony Snicket.

She's six, going on seven. I'm not familiar with A Series of Unfortunate Events, beyond the movie adaptation, and my memory's fuzzy on that. I assume the book is much better than a Jim Carrey movie.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ulthar on May 22, 2012, 05:24:52 PM
Nearing the end of The Hobbit with Rowan, and trying to think of another book we'll enjoy just as much. I don't think she's quite ready for Lord of the Rings yet, and it would be a heck of a commitment to read LOTR in 15-minute bites at bedtime.

I'm thinking about introducing Ro to some of the easier books I enjoyed as a kid - Encyclopedia Brown, The Mad Scientists' Club and the like.

I've kind of stalled out reading Dome City Blues. Just not in the mood for it. Might also be that I've been trying to pick up a cyberpunk detective thriller right after reading The Hobbit, when my imagination is still in Middle Earth.

Andy, my almost 7 yo loves the dickens out of "The Magic Treehouse" books. He got 1-28 as a set for Christmas and blew through them.



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 22, 2012, 05:34:59 PM
There are 13 books in the series, and they are delightfully fun to read.  My girls enjoyed them starting about age 9.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: HappyGilmore on May 23, 2012, 08:33:08 PM
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith.

Pretty delightful reading.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on May 23, 2012, 10:09:54 PM
Nearing the end of The Hobbit with Rowan, and trying to think of another book we'll enjoy just as much. I don't think she's quite ready for Lord of the Rings yet, and it would be a heck of a commitment to read LOTR in 15-minute bites at bedtime.

I'm thinking about introducing Ro to some of the easier books I enjoyed as a kid - Encyclopedia Brown, The Mad Scientists' Club and the like.

I've kind of stalled out reading Dome City Blues. Just not in the mood for it. Might also be that I've been trying to pick up a cyberpunk detective thriller right after reading The Hobbit, when my imagination is still in Middle Earth.

Andy, my almost 7 yo loves the dickens out of "The Magic Treehouse" books. He got 1-28 as a set for Christmas and blew through them.

Ro has brought some of those home from the library. I didn't realize that there were so many of them, or that they covered so many settings and situations. And they're at a level she can read for herself. I might have to look at that 28-book set for her birthday or Christmas.

I'm still pondering what I can get in the way of a novel I can read to her over a couple of weeks. The Hobbit worked out amazingly well. My wife has been reading Ro some Laura Ingalls Wilder - Little House in the Big Woods, Farmer Boy, etc. - which is her thing. I'd like to find some novels or novellas in fantasy, adventure, science fiction or mystery that are at about that same level. Enjoyable for a first-grader, but a little more advanced than what she can handle reading on her own.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Fausto on May 23, 2012, 10:38:59 PM
(http://i31.photobucket.com/albums/c375/fausto963/0914732145_01_LZZZZZZZ.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on May 28, 2012, 03:11:47 PM
Getting back into comics. Finished reading the 12 issues of Marvel's 'Secret Wars', which was very enjoyable. Now reading 'Watchmen'.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: HappyGilmore on May 28, 2012, 04:40:55 PM
They were great, Pillow.

They now have an ongoing book: Avengers vs. X-Men.

Decent.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on May 31, 2012, 12:37:46 PM
WATCHMEN was awesome. Great artwork, intricate story, interesting characters. I just wish I hadn't seen the film beforehand. It was over 2 years ago, but still.

Now reading the first book of AKIRA. Pretty good so far.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on May 31, 2012, 01:28:53 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41z6MRuwAiL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU02_.jpg)

I honestly dont know whats wrong with me...


 :teddyr:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on May 31, 2012, 01:55:13 PM
That one is pretty awesome!  You need to read the companion volume,


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Doggett on May 31, 2012, 03:26:17 PM
You need to read the companion volume,

Whats that?

 :question:


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Rev. Powell on May 31, 2012, 04:24:09 PM
Books on

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/411a2-Z-naL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)

Jan Svankmajer and

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51T3END86TL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)

David Lynch


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on June 01, 2012, 05:35:32 AM
(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_8hsiH4qGYOM/TJS0PXonlNI/AAAAAAAAAPo/vALmprM6tKU/s1600/relentless.jpg)

About to start this today. Managed to finish the other 3 books I had been reading last October and gave up on the awful "Less Than Zero". Hoping Relentless is good, should be as Koontz has yet to disappoint me...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on June 01, 2012, 11:45:06 AM
Just finished "Feed" by Mira Grant - book one of the "Newsflesh" trilogy, detailing the adventures of a group of young journalists forty years after a zombie apocalypse. (Got book 2 on deck, the title slips my mind at the moment...)

Currently reading: "The Simpsons: An Uncensored, Unauthorized History" by John Ortved


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Allhallowsday on June 01, 2012, 01:43:43 PM
I just finished FRANK LANGELLA's "Dropped Names"
(https://encrypted-tbn0.google.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQZacjsQHMgQZS-ExvuhgWx6rWBm01L78VQZzRWqJYitso7Dlxq)

Then I read SCOTTY BOWER's "Full Service"  Disgusting. :bluesad:
(http://i239.photobucket.com/albums/ff259/allhallowsday/FULLSERVICEbyScottyBowers.jpg)

Now I'm reading "Is Paris Burning?" 
(http://i239.photobucket.com/albums/ff259/allhallowsday/ISPARISBURNING.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on June 03, 2012, 01:47:14 AM
Reading V FOR VENDETTA by Alan Moore.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on June 05, 2012, 04:27:21 PM
Ye-es! More or le-ess!

A he said/she said comparison.

He: Douglas Ward
She: Kay Showker

Both have published guidebooks to cruise ships and cruise lines. If you want to see the individual titles, then look at some of my older posts on this thread, but, as I said, this is a comparison of the two writers and their guidebooks.

Facts included for each review
He: 36 from size of ship to classification society that classified ship
She: 14 from age of ship to space ratio per passenger
Winner: He

Standard features for each ship
He: 17
She: 18
Winner: She

Ships rated
He: 256
She: 456
Winner: She

Value (?)
He: No
She: Yes
Winner: He

Explanation of ratings
He: 6 p.
She: 2 p.
Winner: He

Ratings form included
He: No
She: Yes
Winner: She

Maximum passengers per ship (only)
He: No
She: Yes
Winner: He

Repetitive reviews
He: Yes
She: No
Winner: She

Length of review
He 1-5 p.
She: 1-29 p.
Winner: Tie

Arrangement of reviews
He: by ship
She: by cruise line
Winner: She

Readability (Humor)
He: Yes. On one ship's disco "For the young at heart or the hearing impaired." ROTFL!
She: None
Winner: He

Rating scale
He: 2000 points
She: 130 points
Winner: He

Introduction
He: 118 p.
She: 140 p.
Winner: Tie

Alternative cruises
He: 13 p.
She: 86 p.
Winner: She

Cruises for special people (families, honeymooners, romantics, singles, etc.)
He: Yes
She: Yes
Winner: Tie

Cruises for the physically challenged
He: Yes
She: Yes
Winner: Tie

Trivia
He: Yes
She: No
Winner: He

Illustrations
He: Yes. Many and some in color
She: Yes. Few and none in color
Winner: He

Maps
He: Yes
She: Yes
Winner: Tie

Indexes
He: 1 (Subject)
She: 4 (Cruise line, cruise ship, place, subject)
Winner: She

Latest edition found
He: 2004
She: 2011
Winner: She

Print size
He: Same through out
She: Reviews 10% smaller print. Indexes 10% smaller print than reviews.
Winner: He

Price
He: $23.95 (2004)
She: $23.99 (2011)
Winner: Tie

Miscellaneous
He: "A man of the sea"
She: Biased
He: Adaptive
She: Accepting of unacceptable excuses
Winner: He

Thus, by a score of 10 (He) to 8 (She) with 6 ties, He wins. With the big proviso, that you can find an edition of his guidebook that is not older than 2 years. Otherwise, she is better than nothing.

Next time: a mystery from "You betcha!" land.




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on June 11, 2012, 03:27:51 PM

(http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1223172886l/4918621.jpg)





Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on June 11, 2012, 04:45:53 PM
I just finished "An Artist in Treason: The Secret Life of General James Wilkinson."
It was a wonderful account of one of the most colorful characters in American history - Wilkinson served as the Commanding General of the U.S. Army under our first four Presidents, and was also "Secret Agent 13" in the Imperial Spanish Secret Service.  He actively betrayed his country for nearly 30 years, but was never punished for it.  He survived four Congressional inquiries and three courts-martial without a conviction, earning him the nickname of "the General who never won a battle or lost a court martial."  A very good read.  The author's last name was Linklater.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on June 11, 2012, 06:02:01 PM
(http://navythriller.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/dome-city-blues1.jpg)

Got back into Dome City Blues, and it's turned out to be quite an engaging detective story. It takes some dystopian paranoia and cyberpunk in the style of William Gibson and Philip K. D!ck, and blends it with old-fashioned hard-boiled private eye fiction. Retired P.I. David Stalin is pulled back into the business by a beautiful blonde who insists her brother was framed for murder. Thing is, her brother confessed on video to a string of brutal killings, describing them in detail, then blew his brains out.

It takes a while for the story to get going, but it actually does pay off.

It's interesting how the story sometimes seems predictable, but always has more questions to be answered. It's pretty easy for the reader to figure out how the killer did it, but then you still don't know who did it or why. Then when the who seems very clear, the why remains unclear. Add to that the growing sense that there is more than just murder going on, and bits of subplot that start to seem more important as the story progresses.

I'm about 85% of the way through the book, and it appears things are just about to come to a head.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on June 12, 2012, 03:51:17 AM
([url]http://navythriller.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/dome-city-blues1.jpg[/url])

it appears things are just about to come to a head.


Not to a boob?


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on June 12, 2012, 03:27:38 PM
I'm not even sure what that cover has to do with anything. There are a couple of sex scenes in the book, and that's about it. Nothing nearly as salacious as that cover would suggest.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on June 15, 2012, 03:25:54 PM
Ye-es!

A couple of mysteries.

Joanne Fluke's "Devil's Food Cake Murder" 14th in the (Hannah Swanson mystery series)

From "You Betcha!" Land. One of the characters in the book even says: "You Betcha!"

One can understand why Swedes settled in that part of America, when they first came to America. The land and weather must have reminded them of their old home in Sweden.

The highlight of the book is not the mystery, but the more than a score of recipes in the book. Mostly cookie recipes, but there are other recipes as well.

With an average of 23 recipes per book, I thought the authoress ought to publish a cookbook, and she has.

Margaret Coel's "The Spider's Web" 15th in the (Wind River mystery series)

Almost every character in the book has been damaged in some way or the other. From the Irish-American priest who once had problems with the bottle to the Native American lawyer who once had problems with her ex-husband. Some of the damage being self-inflicted, and some of the damage being inflicted by others.

While there could be a great number of villains in the story, the authoress has such empathy for her "walking wounded," there are only one or two "true" villains in the story.

Next time: why the Brits are the funniest people on this earth.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on June 15, 2012, 06:04:11 PM
Finished Relentless by Dean Koontz. I did enjoy it even though it was one of his most far fetched plots, but the ending was terrible. Completely absurd, rushed and a total let down. Has by no means put me off the guy though, at least his worst stuff is better than a certain Mr. King's passable output these days.

Just started reading American Gods by Neil Gaiman. It's very well written, although I'm nearly 150 pages in and I still have no idea what it's about...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on June 15, 2012, 10:13:49 PM
Reading The Hellbound Heart, by Clive Barker. Very good book. I have the added benefit of not having seen the original Hellraiser since the 80s. I get the greater depth of the novel without remembering enough of the movie plot to really spoil anything.

Interesting that Pinhead was not originally written as the leader of the Cenobites, and had a female voice.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Jim H on June 17, 2012, 01:24:20 PM
I just read Zombies VS Robots, a comic.  It's friggin' weird, but it was fairly entertaining.  Pretty good art too.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: retrorussell on June 18, 2012, 01:57:35 AM
The Hagakure.  A collection of feudal-era stories, sayings, wisdom, etc.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on June 23, 2012, 12:50:12 AM
Shopgirl, by Steve Martin. This would have been a better read either compressed as a short story or fleshed out to a novel, but as a novella it lacked something. I do think Steve Martin is a genius though.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on June 23, 2012, 01:02:04 AM
I just finished Karl Rove's memoir of his years working for George W. Bush, COURAGE AND CONSEQUENCE.  It is a well written and fascinating inside look at some pretty consequential years for our country by a man who helped shape public policy during that time.  Love Bush or hate him, this book is a good read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on June 23, 2012, 08:21:34 AM
Read "Batman The Killing Joke" yesterday, which was awesome. Also read this short "Sigmund Freud in 90 minutes" book today, and now halfway through a collection of short stories by a Flemish writer.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on June 25, 2012, 12:05:59 AM
Today a friend gave me the manuscript for the writing portion of a graphic novel he's collaborating on, and it was darn good. They haven't ironed out the title but the plot is about a war on earth between Heaven and Hell, set in the 1960s with some flash-forwards into the 1980s, and the main character is this badass archangel whose violence toward demons on earth isn't particularly angelic. Not a religious work in the slightest, filled with twists and tips of the hat to some influential figures in the GN field, like Gaiman and Moore and McFarlane. I hope they find a publisher, as they did on a less ambitious work of theirs from a couple years ago. I was pleasantly surprised by how good this thing was!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on June 27, 2012, 03:44:30 PM
Ye-es!

"The Mammoth Book of Great British Humor." Michael Powell, editor

Or the best of British humor from the past 500 years from the 16th century to today.

Did you hear the one about the father who used his teenage son's bum-hole as the family doorbell, because it had a nice ring to it?

When the Brits say something risque it sounds funny. When we Americans say something risque it just sounds embarrassingly unfunny.

When the Brits say something absurd it sounds funny. When we Americans say something absurd it just sounds stupid.

British humor is relatively subtle. It comes at you sideways. American humor is relatively unsubtle. It comes at you straight-on.

Most Brits know that "Brevity is the soul of wit." Most Americans don't.

Alot of Brits like jokes that contain hyperbole, non-sequiteurs, and wordplay. Alot of Americans don't.

Alot of British jokes contain irony, put-downs, satire, and sacrcasm. Alot of American jokes don't.

And that is why Brits are the funniest people on earth, or, at least funnier than most Americans.

One thing did surprise me. The lack of ethnic humor. Except for the people who live in the U.K., the only people who got their own section of jokes were we Americans. Which probably says something good about us. We can take it, but can we dish it out? Probably not, for when it comes to ethnic humor Americans tend to be politer, more sensitive, and less courageous.

When asked why he had asked for a raise, the actor replied: "It is because I can't eat my notices." Who ever knew Claude Rains had a sense of humor.

Next time: a book from a man who goes where most men fear to tread.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on June 28, 2012, 12:30:15 PM
Read the 6 issues of "Infinity Gauntlet" yesterday, which were great. Now reading "Writing Short Films" by Linda J. Cowgill, which has some interesting things to say, but it generalizes a lot and gives advice that's not necessarily true, in my opinion.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: El Misfit on June 28, 2012, 12:36:50 PM
Some Grendel graphic novels, I believe I got 6 graphic novels plus 5 comics.
The novels are:
Behold the Devil
Devil's Quest
God and the Devil
Devil's Reign
Devil Child
Devil Deed

and for the comic book versions, they are the ones set in New Orleans. I'm missing the last issue of that series. (I actually didn't now that at the time, I just picked them up because I like Grendel :teddyr:)

I also picked up some Stephen King novels, the big ones:
Dream Catcher
Insomnia
and another one that slipped my mind.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on June 28, 2012, 01:58:21 PM
Mrs. Robinson's Disgrace.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on July 06, 2012, 03:24:24 PM
Just finished: "Carnivore" by Leigh Clark - pulpy horror nonsense about scientists at a remote Antarctic outpost being menaced by a recently-thawed-and-hatched Tyrannosaurus Rex they found in the ice. (Does that plot line sound familiar to anyone else? Hmmm...) Gory nonsense that would probably make a great SyFy Channel movie.

Started: "The Grays" by Whitley Strieber - alien abductions 'n' weird genetics experiments, oh my!!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 06, 2012, 04:04:33 PM
Ye-es!

Piers Brendon's "The Decline and Fall of the British Empire, 1781-1997."
or from the end of the American Revolution to the War in the Falklands.

First, what must be understood is that the British Empire was fertilized with the bodies of the dead and watered with their blood. Just in those 216 years, in the Colonial Wars alone, some 3903 Brits (military and civilians: men, women, and children) and 124,896 natives (again military, some fighting for the British, and civilians: men, women, and children) died. And both of those figures are lowball figures.

Other than that there are a number of reasons to read the book.

(1) He has something good to say about most of the people in the book.
(2) But he is not adverse to point out their shortcomings, and everyone has shortcomings.
(3)Which means his writing is remarkablely evenhanded in how he treats the subject.
(4) Unlike some writers, he talks about what makes life worth living. Sex. Profanity. Sex. Nudity. Sex. The bodily functions. Did I mention sex?
(5) There is no accounting for some people's tastes, but for some odd reason, he seems to like Americans.
(6) He has a good eye for the humorous quote, which makes the subject more enjoyable.
(a) Some original. "The only test he ever passed was his test for VD." On one British colonial official who was notorious for his stupidity.
(b) Some not. "Dickie, you're so crooked, if you swallowed a nail, you'd s**t out a corkscrew." And the guy said it to Mountbatten's face.

People had courage then. They were also greedy racists, and if they had been a little less greedy and a little less racist, their problems would have been fewer, but some problems were inherent in the Empire itself. Two reasonable sides can come to a reasonable compromise, but throw in one or more other sides, who are uncompromising in any compromise with another side, and you have problems. What I found interesting was the number of countries and the number of different sides involved.

Sudan - Arabs and Africans
Rhodesia - whites and blacks
Palestine - Jews and Arabs
Malaya - Malays, Indians, and Chinese
Ireland - Protestants and Catholics
India - Hindus, Muslims, and Sikhs
Cyprus - Greeks and Turks
Canada - French and English

Next time: a book with 151 reasons to check it out.




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on July 09, 2012, 04:48:01 PM
While I was keeping inside during our recent heat wave (109 at its worst) I read my own diary from 1991. Fifty-two pages of the politics of 7th grade society, with an aside into the apparently life threatening effects of not getting this tape I wanted at the crack of dawn on the morning of its release. Makes me smile to see how little things seemed so ridiculously important back then, but also, as I read through all those lists of homework, how hard school really could be. It was also the year of the Persian Gulf War, Magic Johnson's HIV announcement, and South Africa repealing apartheid laws, all of which I wrote about from my young perspective. It actually wasn't a bad read as well as a trip down memory lane.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on July 09, 2012, 06:19:56 PM


Started: "The Grays" by Whitley Strieber - alien abductions 'n' weird genetics experiments, oh my!!

I recently purchased that one as well.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 10, 2012, 12:02:04 AM
Ye-es!

Piers Brendon's "The Decline and Fall of the British Empire, 1781-1997."
or from the end of the American Revolution to the War in the Falklands.

First, what must be understood is that the British Empire was fertilized with the bodies of the dead and watered with their blood. Just in those 216 years, in the Colonial Wars alone, some 3903 Brits (military and civilians: men, women, and children) and 124,896 natives (again military, some fighting for the British, and civilians: men, women, and children) died. And both of those figures are lowball figures.

Other than that there are a number of reasons to read the book.

(1) He has something good to say about most of the people in the book.
(2) But he is not adverse to point out their shortcomings, and everyone has shortcomings.
(3)Which means his writing is remarkablely evenhanded in how he treats the subject.
(4) Unlike some writers, he talks about what makes life worth living. Sex. Profanity. Sex. Nudity. Sex. The bodily functions. Did I mention sex?
(5) There is no accounting for some people's tastes, but for some odd reason, he seems to like Americans.
(6) He has a good eye for the humorous quote, which makes the subject more enjoyable.
(a) Some original. "The only test he ever passed was his test for VD." On one British colonial official who was notorious for his stupidity.
(b) Some not. "Dickie, you're so crooked, if you swallowed a nail, you'd s**t out a corkscrew." And the guy said it to Mountbatten's face.

People had courage then. They were also greedy racists, and if they had been a little less greedy and a little less racist, their problems would have been fewer, but some problems were inherent in the Empire itself. Two reasonable sides can come to a reasonable compromise, but throw in one or more other sides, who are uncompromising in any compromise with another side, and you have problems. What I found interesting was the number of countries and the number of different sides involved.

Sudan - Arabs and Africans
Rhodesia - whites and blacks
Palestine - Jews and Arabs
Malaya - Malays, Indians, and Chinese
Ireland - Protestants and Catholics
India - Hindus, Muslims, and Sikhs
Cyprus - Greeks and Turks
Canada - French and English

Next time: a book with 151 reasons to check it out.




MEMO TO SELF: Must read this!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on July 11, 2012, 11:02:39 AM
TREASURE ISLAND



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 11, 2012, 12:57:17 PM
Currently re-reading (for the third time!) WORLD WAR Z.  Why I don't know, except that the history it envisions is so compelling and horrifying I can't get enough of it!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on July 12, 2012, 08:52:09 AM
Recently read the first two WALKING DEAD books which were awesome. Better than the show, imo. Also read SECOND FOUNDATION by Isaac Asimov, which is the most amazing, intricate and clever piece of science fiction I've ever read/seen.
Now reading a beginners-psychology book which is poorly written.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Psycho Circus on July 12, 2012, 06:12:28 PM
Currently re-reading (for the third time!) WORLD WAR Z.  Why I don't know, except that the history it envisions is so compelling and horrifying I can't get enough of it!

That's exactly what my girlfriend is reading and for the second time.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 18, 2012, 03:52:42 PM
Ye-es!

Leonard Maltin's "151 Best Movies You've Never Seen"

Of which I have seen only 6 or 4%, but I liked 5 of the 6 or 83%, so pick out 1 or 2 titles from the book, and you may like them as much as I liked the ones I saw.

But, the strength of the book is not only in the movies listed, but the reasons they failed at the box office. Which are . . .

Wrong direction -- Wrong promotion -- Wrong release date -- Wrong star -- Wrong subject -- Wrong title.

Too ambitious -- Too atypical -- Too clever -- Too complicated -- Too dark -- Too foreign -- Too honest -- Too intelligent -- Too much story -- Too nice -- Too offbeat -- Too similiar -- Too stylized -- Too subtle -- Too unique -- Too whimsical.

Non-condescending -- Non-explosive -- Non-linear.

Bad luck -- Confusing tone -- Emotionally draining -- Ends unsatisfacorily -- Heavy handed -- Hostile reviews -- Isn't edgy -- Little promotion -- Multi-episodic --Out of touch -- Poor distribution.

One looks at the reasons they failed at the box office, and one realizes the problem is not so much with the films, they may not be out there in the number they once were, but they are out there. The problem is with today's audiences. Of which I am one. And till this problem is solved, we will continue to have problems.

The strength of the book also lies in the fact like most good books it serves as a mirror to the reader. I look at the book, and I see the 145 films I have not seen, and I see that I am part of the problem.

He is also one of the few film critics to take on his fellow critics, stating . . .

(1st) Critics are for the most part powerless. Whereas, a negative review can cause someone NOT to see a film. A positive review canNOT, for the most part, cause one to see a film.

(2nd) Critics often disagree about a film.

(3rd) And when they disagree, they are sometimes wrong, especially, if they disagree with him.

And I am sure the lst is a mutual feeling from his fellow critics.

Next time: 2nd verse. Same as the 1st.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on July 18, 2012, 04:25:20 PM
I like Maltin's reviews. I don't always agree with him but still he often likes a lot of the same stuff I do.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on July 20, 2012, 04:43:10 PM
I like Maltin's reviews. I don't always agree with him but still he often likes a lot of the same stuff I do.

Same here.  He can usually justify his opinions pretty well even when I don't agree with him. Plus, he was a pretty good sport with the MST3K crew, so that's in his favor.  I'll have to check that book out  :cheers:


Just started CRISSCROSS by F. Paul Wilson, book 8 (I think?) in the Repairman Jack series.  I started reading the series a while back but it fell by the wayside, so I'm returning to it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Zapranoth on July 21, 2012, 10:15:01 PM
I'm playing through the Steve Jackson Sorcery! series again.

Ah, such middle school memories.  :)  What an awesome set of game books these are.  Awesome, awesome. awesome.     If you never played them, they're a takeoff on the Choose Your Own Adventure type story, but with the twist of some basic RPG elements (combat scores, stamina, dice rolling, spellcasting).   Ingeniously done, great story, excellent and creepy art.  Many ways to be just abruptly snuffed out. 

There's an actual spellbook for the game system that details the spells -- which have three-letter codes.  You can study the book until you start the adventure, then you are supposed to not refer to it (because your character would not risk taking the book into enemy lands).  There are material components for some.  There are bogus spell entries as choices in the book, and if you choose a false spell you just lose stamina for no reason.

I most highly recommend them if you're into this kind of simple game at all.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sorcery!


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on July 27, 2012, 03:21:44 PM
Ye-es!

Nathan Rabin's "My Year of Flops"

Is Leonard Maltin Jewish?

This author's Jewishness bleeds into his reviews, but, of course, there is not much you can do, when your name is Nathan Rabin.

More problematic is that his politics also bleed into his reviews.

He does say at least one thing that makes sense. That the more profanity is used, the less impact it has. I just wish he had practiced what he preached. The profanity he uses in his reviews just grates on my ears.

But, he does confirm a couple of things Maltin said.

(1st) That just because a film is a financial failure at the boxoffice, and here a critical failure as well, does not make that film a bad film.

(2nd) Also that critics are sometimes wrong in their opinions, but he puts a more personal spin on it than Maltin. At one time and place he gave a negative review to a film, but at a later time and place, looking at the exact same film, he thought it was not so bad after all and gave a positive review to the exact same film.

Also . . .

The first two volumes, in graphic format, in the "Daniel X" serues by James Patterson.

Earth has become a haven for alien criminals, and two alien bountyhunters are sent to earth to capture or kill these criminals. But, when they themselves are killed by one of the criminals they are seeking, their son decides to take over for them.

In. v. 1. he goes after #6 in the Pacific Coastal area.
In v. 2. he goes after #5 in the midwest.
In v.3., which I have not yet read, he goes after #3 in London, England.

The lower the number, the more difficult and dangerous his task becomes.

Next time: a book 7 years in the making.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on July 27, 2012, 08:21:10 PM
I just finished Candice Millard's THE DESTINY OF THE REPUBLIC, a history of the unlikely nomination, election, and assassination of James Garfield by certified nut job Charles Giteau.  Garfield sounds like a thoroughly decent fellow who had the potential to be a truly exceptional President, as well as already being a thoroughly decent, quality human being, and a loving husband and kind father.  The fact that a man as crazy as Giiteau was able to get as close to the President as he did as often as he did when everyone who knew him realized he was unbalanced is a testament to what an innocent, trusting place this country once was.  This is a fine piece of history, well-written and compelling, and the indictment of the sheer ignorance and incompetence of Garfield's doctors - who were more responsible for his death than the assassin's bullet was - is a reminder of how far medicine has come in the last 131 years.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: JaseSF on July 27, 2012, 08:46:08 PM
Streiber's The Grays is a surprisingly gripping piece of fiction that deals with a lot of the known UFO "mythology" out there.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Newt on July 28, 2012, 07:12:02 AM
I have several on the go.  Right now the front-runner has been "A History of British Secret Service" by Richard Deacon.  It's a brief overview (477 pages) starting with Throgmorton and Walsingham and ending in the 1980's.  The part about the agent with no arms and no legs hunting tigers in India after the rest of his party had died was a high point (thus far)!  :buggedout:

Also nibbling at Temple Grandin's "Animals in Translation", a book of Robert Silverberg stories and another on forensic detection through history ("Written in Blood" maybe?).


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: A.J. Bauer on July 29, 2012, 07:49:12 AM
I got the complete works of H.P. Lovecraft. I have a LOT of reading to do.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Allhallowsday on July 29, 2012, 09:03:38 PM
I have a hardback copy of this, sent to me by the author and inscribed by him, I've finally gotten around to reading it. 
Room Full Of Mirrors A Biography of JIMI HENDRIX by CHARLES R. CROSS
(http://i239.photobucket.com/albums/ff259/allhallowsday/JIMIHENDRIXRoomFullofMirrors.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: AndyC on July 30, 2012, 12:01:02 AM
Recently finished Death Has a Name, by Jerry Hanel. Interesting book about a psychic named Brodie Wade who assists police departments. Wade spent several years in a mental institution as a boy, because he suffered from weird delusions and apparently harmed himself. In fact, Brodie is able to interact with The Truth. Not the subjective truth, but rather an intelligent supernatural force that resides in a world just a little bit out of phase with ours, and incorporates things such as ghosts and psychic imprints of past events. People are aware that Brodie is a very nervous person who exhibits strange behaviour and talks to things other people don't see. The Truth always has things it wants known, and if Brodie is in the right place when the right questions are being asked, some strange apparition appears that only he can see. It can't communicate clearly, so he has to figure out what it wants. The Truth is desperate to make its information known, and when it knows someone can see and hear, it becomes quite forceful, to the point of doing real physical harm. The cops think he's crazy, but he comes up with useful information, which scares most of them but also buys him some tolerance and earns him a living. So, into this situation, the book introduces a couple of grisly and bizarre murders and an unusual theft that kick off a whole series of events. Not bad for a bargain ebook.

I'm currently about halfway through the second Detective Rebus book by Ian Rankin, Hide and Seek. Starts with a dead junkie, some suspicious circumstances and possible connections to the occult and male prostitution. Unfortunately, despite all the weirdness and his own gut instincts, Rebus is thus far having a hard time defining an actual case that would make sense to anyone. Pretty good so far, and if it's anything like the previous book, the pace of the story will pick up in the second half, and questions will start getting answered, which will make it very hard to put down.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Pilgermann on July 30, 2012, 12:40:24 AM
I got the complete works of H.P. Lovecraft. I have a LOT of reading to do.

Nice!  I picked up a complete collection a couple weeks ago myself.  Don't think I could manage to read it all straight through, but it's great to have everything at my fingertips when I'm in a Lovecraft mood.

Just started Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy.  It's gonna be rough and gruesome but so far I dig it.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on August 06, 2012, 04:07:54 PM
Ye-es!

Sam Brower's "Prophet's Prey : My Seven-year Investigation into Warren Jeffs and the Fundamentalist Church of Latter Day Saints"

The subtitle is self-explanatory.

A p.i., process server, bounty hunter, bail bondsman, but not a writer, as one can see if one reads his book, but it is still good enough to be both readable and enjoyable. Basically, a man not to mess with, which they found out, much to their regret, when they started messing with him, as he had the knowledge and contacts to do what was needed to be done, and the patience to take all the time it needed.

As to why it took so long . . .

Money
The wealth of the church could be measured not in the millions of dollars, but in the hundreds of millions. Some of it earned legitimately . . .

Hard workers -- Successful businesses -- Tithing

Some of it not . . .
Business fraud -- Ignoring child labor laws -- Money laundering -- Tax fraud -- Welfare fraud

But that is just the tip of the illegal iceberg. While not all members were criminals, and no one member was guilty of all these. They were believed guilty of . . .

assault and battery -- attempted murder -- breaking and entering -- child abandoment -- child abuse -- child neglect -- conspiracy -- contempt of court -- extortion -- falsifying records -- harboring a fugitive -- incest -- kidnapping -- obstruction of justice -- racketeering -- rape -- sex trafficking -- sexual assault -- sexual misconduct -- smuggling -- soliciting prostitution -- unlawful sexual conduct -- violating the Mann Act.

The only thing they seemed not to be guilty of, was murder. And there is some idea they might have tried that, if they could have gotten away with it.

Ignorance, Ifluence, Indifference of . . .

the local, county, state, federal . . .

judicial system, law enforcement, legal system, politicians.

Misunderstanding by . . .

the press and public.

It had nothing to do with polygamy, but the abuse of children: sexually, physically, and emotionally.

And again money . . .

If it was spend the money and do what was right, and not spend the money, not spending the money trumped spending the money.

Nex time: 932 films. 101 years. 1 man's opinion.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on August 17, 2012, 04:06:19 PM
Ye-es!

John Landis' (yes, that John Landis) "Monsters in the Movies."

There is alot right with it and little wrong, so we will start with what's right.

The Author
He knows his stuff.
He's a good writer, but if one has any of the scripts he has written, one already knows that.
He has a wide taste in movies, but what do you expect from someone who's first movie was called "Schlock."
Though he ids himself as an atheist Jew, he is not adverse to talking about the politics, the religion, the sexuality inherent in horror movies.
He knows the importance of music in horror movies.
Maybe because of his own kids, he is one of the few to talk about the importance of kids and teens to the horror movies. Both in the audience and on the screen. There are . . .

Space babies -- Teenage zombies -- Vampire children -- Teen werewolves (It's puberty I tell ya!)

The Book
It's all there or almost all there.
From "A.I." to "Zombies on Broadway"
From 1904's "Barbe-Bleue" to the movies of last year.
From atomic mutations to zombies.
From vampires to werewolves.
From scary children to scary older women.

There is alot of obscure titles
"Flight of the Living Dead: Outbreak on a Plane" (It's like "Snakes on a Plane," but with zombies.)
"Gay Zombie" (It's like "Harry Met Sally," but with zombies.)
The Japanese "Big Tit Zombie" (it's like . . . It's like nothing you've ever seen before.)

And the last chapter deals with the unseen . . .

animators -- artists -- designers -- directors -- painters

who brought you all these horror movies.

Trivia
It is full of trivia. Does the name Richard Wordsworth, who starred in "The Creeping Unkown," mean anything to you? It should. His great-great-grandfather was the poet laureate Williams Wordsworth.

Posters
There are some great pictures of old movie posters in the book.

The Interviews
He gets Christopher Lee to talk about what Lee hates to talk about. Dracula.
He has one of the last interviews that Ray Harryhausen has given.

But, the highlight of the book is . . .

The Pictorial Essays
As they allow one to scan several movies at once. Some of the essays are on . . .

Actors who have played Dracula
Vampire stakings (Have you ever staked a motorcycle?)
Actors who have played the Devil.
Dystopias (or, you wouldn't want to live there.)
Actresses who have played a wicked witch.
Killer Dolls.
Actors who have played Jekyll and Hyde. (I should say actresses, too, as a couple of them have been played by women.)
But, the best one is the "Monster Carry." That one has to be seen, but I can say in all 28 cases the monster is male and the carry is female.

I did say there were a few things wrong with it.

The author has a tendency to toot his own horn.
Both the interviewer and the interviewee allow the interview to wander.
There are a few mistakes. For example the book says "Son of Frankenstein" was Karloff's 2nd appearance as the Monster. It was his 3rd.
I wish the title had been something else. When it says monsters, I think horror monsters, but as the author points out there are also fantasy and sci fi monsters, but I still think in terms of horror monsters.
And he picks some odd titles. For example, he sees Steven Spielberg's "Duel," as a horror film. Though, to give the author his due, he is not the first one to do that.

Thus, if there is any book so far this year, that I recommend. It is this one. Expecially for anybody who posts to this board.

Now, if the events of 1983 had never happened.

Next time: 1919, or the year Chicago went up in fire and flame.




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Ed, Ego and Superego on August 17, 2012, 04:39:55 PM
"just my Type" by Simon Garfield.  A history of fonts and an introduction to font and typography design,

Just finsihed re-reading Sex Lives of Cannaibals by J. Maarten Troost


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on August 17, 2012, 06:44:52 PM
Just finished:

I Want My MTV: The Uncensored Story of the Music Video Revolution by Craig Marks and Rob Tannenbaum. Faaaaan-tastic book about the first 10 years of the channel (y'know, when it was actually cool) and explores its impact not only on television and the music industry, but pop culture in general. There are tons of great behind-the-scenes stories in here.

Now in the middle of:

Black Sabbath - Doom Let Loose by Martin Popoff - an album by album pictorial history of Black Sabbath, loaded with tons of geek trivia about the band, behind the scenes photos, and tons of fascinating pix of vintage concert advertisements, magazine covers, weird foreign 45s and EP covers, etc., etc.





Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on August 25, 2012, 09:25:34 PM
I tried to read the first book of The Wheel of Time series, approaching it with excitement and high hopes because it sounds like a great collection of novels, but I could not get into it at all and finally shelved it. I'm bummed.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on August 25, 2012, 09:34:36 PM
I read the first five, and found out the series wasn't finished, and never came back to them.  I know that the series has a huge following, but I found them drawn out and boring (this from a guy who has read THE SILMARILLION about 20 times!!).

I just finished CATCHING FIRE, the second volume in THE HUNGER GAMES series.  I cannot recommend these books highly enough.  You will NOT be able to put them down!!!!

(The movie ain't bad either!!)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on August 26, 2012, 01:50:35 PM
Dreamcatcher by Stephen King. About halfway through, really, really good. Also reading 'Striking Thoughts' by Bruce Lee, which is very interesting.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: FatFreddysCat on August 26, 2012, 07:11:28 PM
It's So Easy and Other Lies by Duff McKagan of Guns N Roses/Velvet Revolver fame.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on August 27, 2012, 01:47:21 PM
The Diary of Ralph Josselin. Available online, this 17th century Puritan minister kept a diary for almost half a century.

A frequent theme:

Sunday August 12, 1649
"...the lord in mercy keep me in his fear continually..."

But he was also a first-person witness to several civil war battles:

Friday 29 March 1644
"Waller victorious over Hopton , near Alsford; and turned back the forces of Rupert that we feared would have come on after they had routed our forces at Newarke..."

It's a window on rural England 350 years ago, and an insight into the mind of a Puritan clergyman. Dry but filled with small bits of unique information.

Available in full at:
http://linux02.lib.cam.ac.uk/earlscolne/diary/index.htm


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on August 27, 2012, 11:11:35 PM
Sounds interesting, but I am not sure I could wade through it.  At least not right now.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on September 04, 2012, 11:13:00 AM
Amy, My Daughter by Mitch Winehouse.

Poor Amy...


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on September 04, 2012, 04:12:34 PM


(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4073/4943998698_4796a2623d.jpg)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on September 05, 2012, 07:00:35 PM
Except for Ray Bradbury, a couple of the big name writers, a subscription I used to have to Asimov's, and the occasional dabbling in anthologies here and there, I don't read a lot of science fiction, but I often enjoy the little bit I do get into. I discovered Michael Swanwick 3-4 years ago and thought his work was absolutely great. Does anyone know of any sci-fi writers who are like Michael Swanwick? I feel the urge to get lost for a while in something escapist and any recommendations would be highly appreciated.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: indianasmith on September 05, 2012, 11:16:17 PM
Have you read any of the GAME OF THRONES series? (Technically it's called A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE, but most folks know it by the title of the first book).  Very compelling read!

I've started re-reading my Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child collection.  Finished RELIC monday and am now reading CABINET OF CURIOSITIES (my copy of RELIQUARY somehow got ruined, I bought a replacement copy on EBay).  Great series.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on September 06, 2012, 08:24:50 AM
Yeah, I did read those, indy. I sort of picked up the first book and ended up reading right through all five last year. That was the first time since LOTR in eighth grade I'd read that genre. I thought the series, A Song of Fire and Ice, not LOTR, ranged from absolutely great to not bad at all, and I hope the writer lives long enough to finish the remaining books. It must have been sucky to have been a fan waiting for years between the release of each title, and I wish he'd hurry.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Andrew on September 06, 2012, 12:04:47 PM
Currently reading "A Military History of the Western World Vol 2, from the Defeat of the Spanish Armada to the Battle of Waterloo."

Dreamcatcher by Stephen King. About halfway through, really, really good. Also reading 'Striking Thoughts' by Bruce Lee, which is very interesting.

So it is much better than the movie?  Obviously, the book seemed marketable enough to make into a movie, but being popular fiction is not equal to an enjoyable book.  I haven't read any new King books in a long time. 


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on September 08, 2012, 02:17:27 PM
Ye-es!

Gary Krut's "City of Scoundrels : the 12 days of Disaster That Gve Birth to Modern Chicago."

Chicago figuratively and literally exploded the summer covered in the book, as a blimp flying over the city crashed into down, killing 13 and injuring dozens. The first civilian air disaster in American aviation history.

Then a few days later, the city once more exploded into fire and flame, as whites started attacking blacks and blacks started fighting back. Up to that time, the worst race riot of the 20th century and with 38 dead and 537 injured, still one of the worst race riots of the 20th century.

That was the worst divide in the city, but there were other divides, as Chicago was a bitterly divided city in 1919.

Democrats vs. Republicans

Ethnicity vs. Ethnicity
(As the animosties that gave rise to the recently concluded WWI continued to be played out in the streets of America.)

"Good government" vs. current government

Jews vs. Jews
(or the assimilatred, educated Jews of northern and western Europe vs. less assimiliated, less seducated Jews of eastern and southern Europe.)

Jews vs. Poles
(Continuing the pogroms then on going in Poland.)

Labor vs. Labor
(See Black vs. White)

Labor vs. Management
(or, inflation vs. a business downturn.)

Lithuanians vs. Poles
(See Ethnicity vs. Ethnicity)

Local officials vs. State officials


Police (both black and white) vs. rioters (both black and white)

Politicans vs. the Press barons

The poor and the middle class vs. the Rich

Republicans vs. Republicans
(See Local officials vs. State officials)

The book, besides pointing out all the differences in the city, made  several other points.

(1) History is not the simple subject, they tried to teach us in school.

(2) The more things change, the more they stay the same.

(3) Which means, when people complain, maybe they should look in the mirror, because people often bring their complaints down on themselves.

(4) Though, even though they brought it down upon themselves, they deserved better.

(5) Unfortunately, the honest proved incompetent at running the city, while the dishonest proved competent, they also proved themselves to be venal.

(6) If you want to hear the good, then you must hear the bad, but to see only the good is to miss the bad.

(7) And most importantly, the effects of history today, do not end the next day or the next week or the next month or even the next year. Indeed, the book has a chapter that shows how the events of that year reverberated into the next decade. But, if one knows one's history, one realizes that the events of 1919 continue to reverberate even today and will continue to reverberate till the earth is a blackened cinder orbiting a burnt out star.

One last point. If anything good can be said for Chicago in 1919, it was that year it was the home of some some of the most influential Americans of the 1st half of the 20th century.

Jane Addams -- Clarence Darrow -- Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis -- Ring Lardner -- Charles Macarthur -- Carl Sandburg -- Ida B. Wells-Barnett.

Next time: something from that other great American city New York City.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Vik on September 09, 2012, 09:19:16 AM
Currently reading "A Military History of the Western World Vol 2, from the Defeat of the Spanish Armada to the Battle of Waterloo."

Dreamcatcher by Stephen King. About halfway through, really, really good. Also reading 'Striking Thoughts' by Bruce Lee, which is very interesting.

So it is much better than the movie?  Obviously, the book seemed marketable enough to make into a movie, but being popular fiction is not equal to an enjoyable book.  I haven't read any new King books in a long time. 
I haven't seen the movie, but the book's awesome. Finished it a couple of days ago. The first 300 pages are arguably better than the rest, and it's definitely not perfect, but I really enjoyed it. Recently read 'The Book: On the taboo against knowing who you are' by Alan Watts which was extremely interesting. Now reading 'Stick' by Elmore Leonard. Enjoyable crime novel.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: Andrew on September 09, 2012, 06:36:27 PM
Currently reading "A Military History of the Western World Vol 2, from the Defeat of the Spanish Armada to the Battle of Waterloo."

Dreamcatcher by Stephen King. About halfway through, really, really good. Also reading 'Striking Thoughts' by Bruce Lee, which is very interesting.

So it is much better than the movie?  Obviously, the book seemed marketable enough to make into a movie, but being popular fiction is not equal to an enjoyable book.  I haven't read any new King books in a long time. 
I haven't seen the movie, but the book's awesome. Finished it a couple of days ago. The first 300 pages are arguably better than the rest, and it's definitely not perfect, but I really enjoyed it. Recently read 'The Book: On the taboo against knowing who you are' by Alan Watts which was extremely interesting. Now reading 'Stick' by Elmore Leonard. Enjoyable crime novel.

Thanks, I'm going to put Dreamcatcher on my list of books to read.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on September 19, 2012, 10:42:42 AM

As I continue to work my way through the entire Doc Savage paperback collection from Bantam Books:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51d9Hr0YBfL._SL500_AA300_.jpg)



Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ER on September 19, 2012, 12:26:56 PM
Read today that the sequel to The Shining is to be released next September. Despite my better judgment I can't help but be excited about that.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on September 19, 2012, 04:16:36 PM
Ye-es!

The story of a city that morphs into a story of a man and a city.

Richard Zacks' "Island of Vice : Theodore Roosevelt's Doomed Quest to Stop Sin Loving New York."

The author's 5th non-fiction book and a native New Yorker, for only a native New Yorker could give you that feel for the city at the dawn of a new century--the 20th.

He also gives you a good feel for Theodore Roosevelt, who was a remarkable man with many remarkable strengths, especially for that time in American history.

a.) He was not a racist.
b.) He was not an antisemitic.
c.) He did not believe in the "double standard," when it came to marriage.
d.) And he hired one of the first women to work for the NYPD.

But, the author is fair enough to point out for all of Teddy's remarkable strengths, he also had a number of remarkable weaknesses.

a.) He could be condescending.
b.) He often wore blinders. If he did not see it, then it did not exist.
c.) If something went wrong, he blamed everyone but himself.
d.) He saw everything in shades of black and white, but never shades of gray or grey.
e.) He saw no contradiction in shutting down the working man's bar, but leaving open the upper class drinking clubs.
f.) He believed if a woman was virtuous enough, she would never fall into vice. We now know it is a little more complicated than that.
g.) You were either for him or agianst him. There was no middle ground.
h.) And he was an utopian in a job that required a realist.

Which is why he started off well, but in two short years alienated almost everyone in New York City.

The politicans. Both . . .
a.) Democrats and Republicans.
b.) Reformers and Tammany Hall.
The public
The press
The police
And his fellow police commissioners.

The author also gives you a good handle as to why Teddy did what he did, during that time. For example: his zealous pursuit of Demon Rum may have been due to the fact that his feloved younger brother died an alcoholic.

Where the author fails is giving you an handle on why Teddy's opponents, and they were many, did what they did.

Next time: continuing the historical vein, but this time something mysterious and fictional.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on September 30, 2012, 02:25:20 PM
Ye-es!

If the invading Angles gave their name to England, then the fleeing Britons gave their name to the Breton area of France. Which makes that area linguistically interesting, as the local dialect spoken there is closer to the dialects spoken in certain areas of England, such as Cornwall, then the rest of the French dialects.

Peter Tremayne's "The Dove of Death : a Mystery of Ancient Ireland." 19th in the Sister Fidelma of Cashel series.

The subtitle is a bit of a misnomer, as the story like the last one, which I have not read takes place in France. The next one, which I have read and hope to review later, does take place in Ireland. But while it does not take place in Ireland, the author continues to delve in the linguistics, military tactics, politics, religion and social mores of the 670s A.D., but in that area of France.

Politically, it was a divided time. Not only did you have the continuing struggle between the Angles and the Britons, but in France you had the struggle between the Bretons and the Franks, and Ireland was divided between 5 kings. One of whom was the brother of the heroine of the story.

As for religion, while I knew about the split in the Christian church between East and West, I did not know that the Christian church in the West was split between the Church in Rome and the Celtic Church. The author being one of those who think the wrong side lost in that split.

Next time: a miscellaneous array of books


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: alandhopewell on October 06, 2012, 12:21:43 PM
(http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-BGcyj3RKaRw/Tbizn4YPstI/AAAAAAAADdo/Y1q003XCa4g/s1600/4-24-2011%2B10%253B09%253B37%2BPM.JPG)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on October 06, 2012, 03:31:22 PM
Ye-es!
Miscellaneous.

Orson Scott Card's "Ender in Exile" (in graphic format)
The sequel to "Ender's Game" and one year after.
As a followup, a film version of "Ender's Game" is coming to theaters in November of next year.

Laurell K. Hamilton's "Circus of the Damned" (in graphic format)
The 1st 3 volumes.
v.1. The charmer -- v.2. The ingenue -- v.3. The scoundrel.

Ray Bradbury's "Something Wicked This Way Comes" (in graphic format)
One of the times the film version is better than the book, and I have read the book. For a couple of reason.
1.) I have always found horror better presented visually than verbally. And . . .
2.) Whereas the book is presented in the present, the film is presented in the past, and the story just seems to work better in the past than the present.

Ray Bradbury's "The Martian Chronicles" (in graphic format)
While there never seems to have been a film version of the story, there was a TV miniseries version of the story, which was on TV a number of years ago, and which I remember as being a fairly faithful adaptation of the book. At least, the first parts of the book.
What I think most interesting about the book is that the present is interpreted as being from 1946 to 1958, while the future is interpreted as being from 1999 to 2026. Some of which is already our past.

Next time: More miscellaneous


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on October 06, 2012, 04:07:58 PM
(http://www.fictiondb.com/coversth/th_0553587196.jpg)

Piccirilli is a very strange  man.



Also just picked up  vol. one of the Complete Bloom County.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on October 19, 2012, 04:47:04 PM
Ye-es!
Miscellaneous mysteries.

Graham Moore's "Sherlockian"

Nothing particularly original, but what is unoriginal is pretty prime.

A present problem can only be solved by resolving a problem in the past.
Past: When Sir Arthur Conan Doyle died, he left a multi-volume diary to posterity. Unfortunately, the diary is not complete, as there are several volumes missing. This tells what happened to one of those volumes.
Present: Who took it. When it was taken. Why it was taken. Where it was hidden. And what happened to it after it was rediscovered is quite logical.

Doyle as detective. Bram Stoker in a work of fiction. These always work, as does the writer's description of the pain of violence, and the emotional sense of betrayal one feels, when one is betrayed by someone one thinks one can trust. The writing also comes across as being remarkablely self-assured for a writer who has only written one previous novel.

What does not work is the villain the past, who comes across as being gay. (And we really, really must talk about gays in mysteries sometime in the future.) That is not why it does not work. It does not work, because we never really get to know the villain, so he never really comes across as being credible.

Next time: more miscellaneous mysteries, but first Ebert's lates, but far from greatest.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: spongekryst on October 22, 2012, 12:24:08 AM
Re-reading these, because they're short.

(http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-y3diyDsgtCM/TeGO-nR0gdI/AAAAAAAAAJI/8vnXSoTuRug/s1600/KingscratchCover.jpg)
(http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1330389466l/13503084.jpg)


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: The Burgomaster on October 28, 2012, 09:19:28 AM

(http://ca.pbsstatic.com/l/60/0360/260360.jpg)




Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: BoyScoutKevin on October 28, 2012, 01:50:33 PM
Ye-es!

Roger Ebert's "A Horrible Experience of Unbearable Length: More Movies that Suck."

Ebert's latest, but far from greatest.

A couple of things that are good. A couple more that are ugly (i.e. neither bad nor good), but mostly just bad. So, we'll start with the bad.

Total films = 211
Films seen = 12 or 6%
Films liked = 10 or 83%

A sequel to "Your Movie Sucks," which I have not read, but I did read the one previous to that "I Hated, Hated This Movie."

Total films = 247
Films seen = 51 or 21%
Films liked = 33 or 65%

I. His ability to differentate between what sucks and what does not suck is in decline.

On the other hand . . . On the other hand . . .

"Ebert's the Great Movies"

Total films = 100
Films seen = 40 or 40%
Films liked = 25 or 62.5%

II. Roger, the films that you dislike are not the ones that suck. The films that suck are the ones you like.

Except for his ex-partner, the late Gene Siskel, which is understandable, he does not think much of his fellow film critics.

III. They are idiots, at least some of them, and their opinions, at least some of them, are idiotic, too.

IV. And, oh yes. Fanboys are idiots, as well.

Some time ago, there was an exercise on the world wide web, maybe more than one, as to which film generas Ebert should go nowhere near. At least near enough to write a review. I don't know whether there was any concensus, but I wonder it it wasn't action films. He likes the action film "The Mummy: the Tomb of the Dragon Emperor." It is watchable. I have seen it, but it is not a good film, but more importantly there are no good action scenes in it. On the other hand, there are four films listed in his latest book, that have some of the best action scenes I have seen. All, of which, he, of course, dislikes.

V. He does not know action as well as he thinks he does.

As he rightly points out, there is nothing worst than a comedy that thinks it is funny, but is not. He should have taken that to heart.

VI. He is not as funny as he thinks he is.

He decries the lack of realism in a film, but when a film tries to be a bit more realistic, he decries the lack of unrealism in the film.

VII. He contradicts himself.

He thinks Abilene is the prettiest town he has ever seen. He must not get out much. I have been to Abilene. It is not the prettiest town in the U.S. It is not even the prettiest town in Texas.

VIII. He shows his ignorance, when he talks about something besides films.

Okay. What is ugly?

IX. He talks about himself constantly. Normally, that is bad, as ht detracts from your subject, but as I do it, too. I can't critize him too much.

X. His reviews are at most two pages. Good if you want a quck read. Bad, if you want some fine detail about a film.

And what is good?

XI. He is a braver man that I am. Some of his reviews are hard enough to read, but he not only had to write the review. He had to see the film.

XII. He is knowledgable about films.

Next time: More miscellaneous mysteries.


Title: Re: Reading anything?
Post by: ChaosTheory on October 28, 2012, 05:18:02 PM
Ye-es!


Except for his ex-partner, the late Gene Siskel, which is understandable, he does not think much of his fellow film critics.


Ironic, considering those two genuinely hated each other when Gene was alive, and his replacement co-critics were constantly kissing Roger's butt (at least in the episodes I saw).

I hadn't really thought about it, but you're right, Ebert's not a good judge of action.   Fair enough if that's just not your thing, and I realize most critics believe themselves to be "above" the genre in general, but when you watch as many movies as he does, you should be able to at least objectively tell the difference between action that's well-presented and what isn't.  (I mean, he didn't even like DIE HARD! Siskel at least liked DIE HARD!)
Ebert always struck me as taking a little too much, unwarranted pride in his own intellect.   But his reviews are often entertaining, I'll give him that.





As for my reading, I