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What are you reading?

sensiblesue

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Might as well get one of my favorite threads going over here in the new place:

Continental Drift by Russell Banks. This fellow was the keynote speaker at the Kachemak Bay Writers' Conference several years ago. He was not a very likable guy--seemed aloof and sort of stuck on himself--but he writes with a confidence that few can manage. This is a remarkable novel of twentieth-century America.
 

dockeen

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Jun 27, 2010
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Florida Panhandle, USA
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Ex-Tian, now a general seeker
"Collision Low Crossers: A Year Inside the Turbulent World of NFL Football" by Nicholas Dawidoff.

A break from the time travel stuff I have been reading of late.
 

dendrast

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Mar 1, 2004
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Standing in my living room, yelling at the televis
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Greybeard loon
Just finished 'The Orenda', by Joseph Boyden. The story of the extermination of the Hurons by the Iroquois from the viewpoint of a Wendat headman, a captive Iroquois girl, and a Jesuit missionary. Harrowing, ends in tears. Not for the faint-hearted. Multiple prize winner in Canada.
 

sensiblesue

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Just finished 'The Orenda', by Joseph Boyden. The story of the extermination of the Hurons by the Iroquois from the viewpoint of a Wendat headman, a captive Iroquois girl, and a Jesuit missionary. Harrowing, ends in tears. Not for the faint-hearted. Multiple prize winner in Canada.
Well, now I'm dying to read this, but Amazon says it won't be released until May. :sorrow:
 

crazyfingers

Supermagnon
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Mar 15, 2001
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Massachusetts USA
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Secular Humanism
Nothing heavy. Going through the C.S.Forester, Horatio Hornblower adventures again. Otherwise Astronomy magazine when it arrives.
 

dendrast

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Greybeard loon
Well, now I'm dying to read this, but Amazon says it won't be released until May. :sorrow:

It's been out for a while in Canada, at least since before xmas. Can you get it from Indigo in Canada?

Next on my list: 'MaddAddam' by Margaret Atwood. It's the third in her environmental dystopian (Sci-fi) trilogy that started with 'Oryx and Crake', followed by 'The Year of the Flood'. My Mum (who gave it me) says it's just as good as the first two. Not that I've ever been disappointed by Margaret Atwood.

I'm just about finished 'Waging Heavy Peace' by Neil Young. A rambling autobiography, sort of like sitting around listening to him tell stories. Interesting to find out the backgrounds to some of his great songs. I didn't know he was a model train nut. He owns a significant amount of stock in Lionel Lines.
 

sensiblesue

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Into the Beautiful North by Luis Alberto Urrea. It's the Big Read book in my town this year. Pretty funny so far.
 

Underseer

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atheism, resistentialism
The System of Nature by Baron D'Holbach

It's in the public domain, so you can find free and legal copies all over the place, including your favorite eBook retailers. Pretty dry stuff, so this is slow going for me. Originally published under the name of someone who died ten years prior, this is arguably the first book in the western tradition to openly espouse atheism and naturalism.
 

Daioh

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My reading at the moment is just waiting for some new books
I'm currently going back through Worlds of Honor by David Weber while waiting for Cauldron of Ghosts to come out

And have been looking at Seanan McGuires book Rosemary and Rue while waiting for her next book Half Off Ragnarok to come out
 
Joined
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297
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SoCal
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Atheist
Just finished Child of God by Cormac McCarthy.

Very dark, disturbing, but a good, very artful read. By that I mean that McCarthy's writing is poetic but most of the time he manages to not get up his own ass with it. It seems like a lot of very critically acclaimed authors are loved by critics because they can pile up adjectives like bouquets at a florist's funeral. McCarthy flirts with that from time to time but for the most part it's story and character. At times the story becomes disjointed. There's a part that seems really important but is simply never explained--almost like he just forgot about it and when it came to revise he just said fuck it, my deadline's due.

Oh, it's about a mentally disturbed guy who was falsely accused of rape. Once out of jail he wanders the hills in Tennessee doing seriously weird and violent stuff.

It's a relatively short book too and I was glad for that. I'd read a lot of stuff about McCarthy via critical reviews and I was afraid of getting bogged down in a sea of over-description. I'm rambling...

Anyway, pick it up. You can finish it in a few hours. Good book.
 

Mageth

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Deep in the heart of mother-lovin' Texas!
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A couple of years ago I read through most of Cormac McCarthy. Unconventional and violent and yes, he leaves some things hanging for you to figure out. He doesn't fill in all the holes he digs; that's part of his style.

For brutal violence, Blood Meridian is by far his harshest book. I love the Border Trilogy; IMO his best work. Suttree is a good read as well.

Oddly enough, The Road, his best known book, is my least favorite.

Anyway, I recently finished Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre. Another book down in my 19th century lit effort. I've recently read a bit of Borges (Dreamtigers) and have been rereading some PK Dick; right now, The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch (the one with Perky Pat, Can-D, and Chew-Z).

If you've never read Dick and Borges, you're missing something!

And hey, look what I found online...

http://thefloatinglibrary.com/borges/
 

Godless Raven

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Oct 12, 2006
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Secular Humanist
Re-reading Michael Shermer's - Why people believe weird things on Kindle and Ted Kennedy's autobiography True Compass: A Memoir in hard cover. I've got Jackie Kennedy's secret service agent Clint Hill's book Five Days in November, but I haven't started it yet. Just waiting for a week or two with some free time and that baby is getting all my attention!
 

Daioh

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For lack of anything else to read I have gone back and re-re-re read Daughter of the Empire by Raymond Feist and Janny Wurts, and am about to go onto Servant of the Empire
 

Zeluvia

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Sep 7, 2005
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Thinking
I'm reading Zombie Economics: How Dead Ideas Still Walk among Us. It's interesting, because I know very little about the subject and I find this book quite readable.

Just finished it. I got the two Cartoon Economics books to go with it, just in case I needed a refresher on some concepts. I liked it, especially the history of the ideas.

Now I am reading:

The Ministry of Guidance invites you to not stay : an American family in Iran
Author Majd, Hooman.

Basically, I am going down the Daily Show book list, but just added some stuff from the Sci Fi thread on this forum
 

diana

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Aug 26, 2000
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Colorado, baby!
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secular humanist agnostic atheist
I've found that I'm a fan of writers who use crisp, original metaphors. If you're into that sort of thing, check out Ben Fountain's Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk.

Just finished reading Stephen Coonts's Liberty. Met the man at a fund-raiser last summer, spent the evening chatting with him, and he sent me a couple of his works along with a couple of other favorites. It was a fun read; I look forward to the next one.

I'm currently reading Patrick Rothfuss's The Name of the Wind, Part 1 of The Kingkiller Chronicles--on a well-read friend's recommendation.

d
 

bradw

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Stranger in a Strange Land (the original uncut version) by Heinlein.

I read the "cut" version in high school about 40 years ago. I didn't recall too much about it except grok, sex and cannibalism.

This version was published in about 1990 after Heinlein's widow discovered the orignal manuscript. This version contains an additional 60,000 words that supposedly expand upon Heinlein's views on woman, society, sexuality, politics, etc.

I'm about 360 pages into this 500 page work, and I've spent much of that time mentally screaming "Get on with it!"

There's too much dialogue before that juicy stuff even begins, and too much talking in between brief periods of good reading. And I'm not finding Heinlein's views of the world, if they are accurately expressed here, very enlightening.

I think I'm finding out why I continued to read Bradbury and Vonnegut after high school and have mostly skipped Heinlein. But I did buy a copy of "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress", too.

That's completely new material to me, and maybe it'll be a more enjoyable experience.
 
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sensiblesue

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Went to hear Luis Urrea, the author of the last book I posted in this thread, Into the Beautiful North speak last weekend. Very articulate speaker. Impressed me enough to buy two more of his books. Am now reading The Devil's Highway, his account of the Yuma 14, Mexican workers brought across the border by an unscrupulous coyote and left to die in the desert.

Also reading The Boy in the Suitcase by Lene Kaaberbol and Agnete Friis. Scandinavian noir fiction. Page turner. Lots of implausibilities, but keeps you reading anyway.
 

Zeluvia

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I still think Heinlein's best book was Job: A Comedy of Justice.

I just finished Atwood's Oryx and Crake, After the Flood, and Maddadam. She should have stopped with Oryx and Crake, it was a damn fine book with a good ending. The other two were meh.

I did not enjoy the Ministry of Guidance invites you to Not Stay.
 

dendrast

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Greybeard loon
Stranger in a Strange Land (the original uncut version) by Heinlein.

I read the "cut" version in high school about 40 years ago. I didn't recall too much about it except grok, sex and cannibalism.

I'm about 360 pages into this 500 page work, and I've spent much of that time mentally screaming "Get on with it!"

There's too much dialogue before that juicy stuff even begins, and too much talking in between brief periods of good reading. And I'm not finding Heinlein's views of the world, if they are accurately expressed here, very enlightening.



That about sums up all of his output from "Stranger" on. Prolix. The last one of his that was actually fun to read was "Glory Road". Looking back on his stuff, I find him too Libertarian, (Jubal Harshaw is ridiculous, the contortions he goes through), and too pro-gun. Not to mention sexist. I read it in High School too, about the same time. Apparently it was very popular amongst the Hippies and Acid-heads out west, but brain damage is not required before reading it.

Bradbury, great magic realism.

Vonnegut, a little too tied to the Second World War (but I can't blame him, after being a POW in Dresden during the bombings).

Asimov, great at 'nuts and bolts' SF as is Larry Niven. Although I don't care for the stuff co-authored with Jerry Pournelle, another libertarian type.
 

diana

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secular humanist agnostic atheist
A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier, Ishmael Beah.

Now reading A Wise Man's Fear, the second book of the Kingkiller Chronicles.

d
 

Infinite Monkey

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Aug 15, 2011
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"Rapture of the Nerds" by Cory Doctorow and Charles Stross. It's completely insane.

I've been reading sci-fi my whole life and this is the first book that's made me think, "Huh. This is way too futuristic for comfort."
 

Tars Tarkus

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Feb 18, 2005
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"The Battle for Spain: The Spanish Civil War 1936-1939" by Antony Beevor. My favorite 20th century history author by far.
 

bradw

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Charlatan by Pope Brock.

Non-fiction.

Story of John R. Brinkley, a man who made millions implanting goat gonads, selling sham medicines and running a million-watt radio station in Mexico.


Good read.
 

Daioh

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Sep 16, 2010
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Atheist
Re-reading Raymond E. Feists book Magician and hopefully this time I will actually read the sequels to it as well (I realised that I never actually read any of the other books with the exception of the Empire Trilogy which I have re-read 3-4 times)
 

James Brown

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Dec 29, 2005
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Texas
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Agnostic Atheist
Shogun by James Clavell

Storm of Swords by George R. R. Martin

The Virtues of Captain America by Mark D. White

Bad Things Happen by Harry Dolan

The Accidental Billionaires by Ben Mezrich

Enough by John C. Bogle

Nature Girl by Carl Hiaasen

Copperhead by Bernard Cornwell


A bit eclectic.
 

Daioh

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I have been reading through the books of Seanan McGuire recently
Read the Incryptid series (Discount Armageddon, Midnight-Blue Light Special, and Half Off Ragnarok) and loved them
Then decided to move onto her other big series the October Daye novels and loved them as well going through Rosemary and Rue and A Local habitation very quickly and am a long way through the third book An Artificial Night
 

MarkW

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Jul 6, 2001
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636
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Washington State
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Atheist
Current reading includes:

This Hallowed Ground, by Bruce Catton, a one volume history of the Civil War from the Union perspective. Read it previously over 20 years ago; still pretty good.
Looking for Rachel Wallace, by Robert B. Parker, from the Spenser series.
The Signal and the Noise, by Nate Silver.
 

spikepipsqueak

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Peter Rushforth A Dead Language.

Roddy Doyle Two Pints

Elizabeth Finkel Stem Cells

A Cadfael novel (The 15th, I think)
 

DBT

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Faith is a form of self deception.
Travels through France and Italy. Tobias Smollett, published in 1766.

Interesting study of the attitudes of the time. Tobias gives an account of a priest in France who committed murder and was sentenced to being broken on the wheel, but was pardoned. A citizen was so outraged by the pardon that he stabbed the priest. It was not a mortal wound but he was convicted and sentenced to being broken on the wheel for the stabbing. Upon the sentence being carried out he cried out at the injustice of he himself being executed for stabbing a worthless priest, while the priest, who murdered two people, walks freely around the town.

Broken on the wheel!
 

sensiblesue

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Oct 23, 2006
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The Stockholm Octavo by Karen Engelmann. A literary thriller set in 18th century Sweden. Fun.

Lovers at the Chameleon Club:paris, 1932 by Francine Prose. A novel based on the life of Violette Morris, French athlete, race-car driver, and Nazi collaborator.
 

Archimedes

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Oct 31, 2007
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Ireland
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V for Vendetta by Alan Moore.

I read if before, years ago, and decided to reread it recently. Great stuff. Forgot how good it was. I think I'll reread Watchmen.
 

GenesisNemesis

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Jul 25, 2006
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3,793
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California
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Super evil transhumanist communist
The New Testament. Will work on The Old Testament eventually. I haven't been able to get past Genesis yet.
 

spikepipsqueak

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My current bedtime reading, a Cadfael novel, has reminded me or 3 wonderful books by the same author but under another name.


The Heaven Tree (1960)
The Green Branch (1962)
The Scarlet Seed (1963)
.
I'm going to have to track down copies.
 

Archimedes

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Oct 31, 2007
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The New Testament. Will work on The Old Testament eventually. I haven't been able to get past Genesis yet.
The Old Testament was the most boring thing I ever attempted to read. I got through Genesis and Exodus before deciding it wasn't worth my while. I read bits and pieces afterward from various OT books but couldn't work up the will to read it all.

How do people read that shit and think it's divinely inspired?
 

bradw

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I gave up on reading The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Heinlein. The politics just didn't interest me.

Just finished The Penultimate Truth by Philip K. Dick.

Overly-convoluted plot lines. It was OK, not great.
 
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spikepipsqueak

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I gave up on reading The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Heinlein. The politics just didn't interest me.

I first read that as a teenager and learned a lot from it. It showed me where I stand on issues. I still enjoy the awakening and development of Mike.

When I found out just how into drugs Dick was, it helped explain both the good and the bad facets of his writing. Still love the underlying imagination.

Reading Yes, Prime Minister. There are things you can do on paper that are difficult onscreen. Lynn and Jay are wicked.
 

The Helmetmaker

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Aug 6, 2003
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Colorado
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Rationalism, Realism, Naturalism, atheistic
Among others:

The Information by James Gleick

Enemies Within: Communists, Socialists and Progressives in the US Congress by Trevor Loudon

Disinformation: Former Spy Chief Reveals Secret Stategies for Undermining Freedom, Attacking Religion, and Promoting Terrorism by Lt. Gen. Ion M. Pacepa and Ronald Rychlak

Knocking On Heaven's Door: How Physics and Scientific Thinking Illuminate the Universe and the Modern World by Lisa Randall

The Good Life: The Moral Individual in an Antimoral World by Cheryl Mendelson

The Folly of Fools: The Logic of Deceit and Self-Deception in Human Life by Robert Trivers
 

DBT

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Faith is a form of self deception.
The Martian - Andy Weir.
''Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars.

Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there.

After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue ...''
 

Infinite Monkey

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"Under the Dome" by Stephen King. The problem is that there is currently a TV series based on it as well, so if a promo comes on I have to walk out of the room plugging my ears, going "LALALALALALALA".

And that looks silly.

Good book, btw.
 

DBT

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Faith is a form of self deception.
Just bought "Under the Dome" by Stephen King. Bit doubtful, but I'll give it a go.
 
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