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What have you been reading recently?


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Originally Posted By: Iffy
Hey, has anyone read/reading the Keys to the Kingdom series by Garth Nix?

I'm on Lady Friday right now.


Stopped at three because I couldn't find the others. frown
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Based on the fact that this topic has over 1.5 million views, everyone's answer should be "What have you been reading recently?"

The topic is dead! Long live the topic!   —Alorael, who will throw in The Ringmaster's Daughter, a relatively normal and therefore still quite unusual novel by Jostein Gaarder. Unlike Sophie's Wor

It was in one of the introductions for a book. Part of the problem was he had a few children and was trying to save for their future educations.   The figure I've seen is that a basic paper back

In case anyone still cares about the question of why I don't like Stephen King, it's not really King's fault. I just lack some masochistic gene that makes people enjoy scary books, along with enjoying exercise, roller coasters, and jalapeno sauce. The reason why I'm even reading an example of said genre now is that the book in question seems to have more to it than violent deaths and such. (So far I'm at the bit where

Click to reveal..
something has just killed a guy by burrowing out his rear end, then climbed into a toilet.
Let's see if I make it all the way through.)

 

Edit:

Regarding Garth Nix: should I give him another chance too? What I could find of the Seventh Tower series was pretty good, but I couldn't stand much of his other work I tried (most notably that one about the necromancer; I think it's called Abhorsen.

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This may seem apropos, but did you like the movie the Shawshank Redemption? How about Stand By Me? They were both written by Stephen King, and neither have an abundance of violence or gory deaths.

 

I suggest Bag of Bones, or maybe Hearts in Atlantis. You might even enjoy The Talisman (written with Peter Straub) or The Eyes of the Dragon. You could even read The Green Mile (which was also a movie). There is a book with four novellas in it called "Different Seasons" which you might also enjoy.

 

Not all of King's works are violent and gory. Some build quietly, dreamily even; while others expound upon life and people just living their lives.

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Originally Posted By: Goldenking
I Me Mine, an autobiography/anthology of songs by George Harrison, edited by Derek Taylor; Inside Out: A Personal History of Pink Floyd, by Nick Mason; Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency, by Douglas Adams.

Simultaneously.


By the way, now I'm done with two out of three, so I might as well put in my reviews.

I Me Mine was a pretty pitiful autobiography, lacking any real chronological. And, what's more, the last bits of his life, his later solo career/work with the Travelling Wilburies to his death, etc. aren't edited in. Instead, Derek Taylor basically just transferred a few of his interviews with Harrison on to a book. The result is nice, but lacking.
What I really like about I Me Mine is it's anthology, though. It's incomplete, but it contains just about everything from "Don't Bother Me" to the stuff on the George Harrison album. Covers a wide array of topic, from silly love songs, to Formula One racing, to Hinduism. Very introspective.

Inside Out, meanwhile, is awesome. Lots of pictures, lots of talking about the band from, basically, an outsider-insider's POV. Sure, Nick was the drummer, but he wasn't a lyricist, he wasn't the schizophrenic genius, he wasn't the guy who split the band up. He was just sort of along for the ride, which gives the book a really good bend. And while I'm commenting on this, RIP Rick Wright.

I've added Ticket to Ride, by Larry Kane, or somewhat, to the mix. It's about an American who was on every single stop of the Beatles American tours of '64-'65. Seems good, well written, with character building moments. So far, I'd recommend it to anyone bored and looking for a good read.
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Currently reading "The Complete Plays" of Sarah Kane. Really interesting stuff. I suggest everybody dig in, if you can find it. (I had to special-order this copy, from my library, through the state-wide ILL service rather than local service.)

 

That's Sarah Kane, everyone. Check her out. Support your friendly literary crazy people!

 

Also, somebody recently emailed me about a serial work he's writing, and a new website for it (I rather like the way the site looks, actually)... I couldn't list it on the G.L. site, but some of you might be interested; it's fantasy fiction, with some nods to Celtic folklore... but he says he's planning on making it a more audio-visual affair, which sounds really interesting to me (I love that stuff). Anyhow, here it is:

 

Winternight Productions : Lifting of the Veil, by Jared Michaud

 

The PDF-self-publishing movement still seems very small, but it also looks like it's gradually growing, which is nice to see.

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I'm finally up through the Age of Apocalypse (1995) in the X-Books. Most of the major series (Uncanny X-Men, X-Men, Cable, X-Force, even X-Factor) have been pretty great in the early '90s, but Excalibur really tanked after it stopped being funny around #60 or so. I'm hoping that a series with Nightcrawler and Shadowcat can't be boring for long, though.

 

Age of Apocalypse is quite enjoyable, and I have high hopes for the X-Man series. Nate Grey seems pretty cool, though you probably need the Cable/Cyclops/Jean Grey/Sinister context to get why.

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Currently reading The Sky People by S.M. Stirling, about an alternate universe where life exists on Venus and is almost completely identical to Earth (except with dinosaurs still being alive and all that).

The Sky People

 

Also, just finished The Scourge of God, also by S.M. Stirling, the 5th book set in a universe where all high-energy reactions stopped working all of a sudden in one instance sometime in 1998. Humanity basically gets thrown back to the middle ages, just with (a little) supernatural thrown in. Parallel to the Nantucket series.

Emberverse Series:(Universe The Scourge of God is set in): Emberverse Series

Nantucket Series: Nantucket Series

 

 

Also, finished Brisingr. Still not quite as good as the first.

 

And, last but not least, just reread The Hobbit for about the umpteenth time.

 

-_-

 

Edit: Punctuation error.

Edit #2: Added links.

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Reread The Scarlet Letter for school. It really was as irritating as I remembered it. (I hate most of Hawthorne's works, for reasons of both philosophy and simple taste.)

 

P.S. I think we need to start a new topic again. This one's getting long enough that the buggy UBB might start randomly deleting posts.

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We'll have to rename it. To justify our action.

 

Of course, if the software doesn't actually possess such a bug as mentioned above, I'll say what I always say: There's no reason to put your eggs in 5 different baskets if you can fit them all in one.

 

I'm also re-reading Ingeborg Bachmann's Malina.

 

As for Hawthorne... his style really is pretty tedious. But he did write a few interesting pieces... well, maybe three, so far as I remember.

 

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I've finished Passage at Arms, and while Glen Cook is something of a one-trick pony (well, two) as an author, it's still interesting to read. It has many, many holes, but I think most are deliberate.

 

—Alorael, who mostly likes submarine warfare in space. At least its a change from gritty fantasy soldiers and a hard-boiled private eye in a city something like Ankh-Morpork with more seriousness to it.

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Neb has finished reading the sixth book in the Dragonlance series.

 

Yes, he knows that's "like twenty years old".

 

Neb however, does not care, in fact he would like to attach several rusty spears to these people's large intestines.

That is all.

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If your trying to build a case of 'Why Neb shouldn't like you" that's a poor place to start.

Neb does not see why he says this. Most likely somthing that was in one of the 12 gigantic pages he doesn't want to read through, another plus of starting a new thread.

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I posted . . . then realized how rude I just sounded. I scrambled to delete the post . . . then found that it had already been read. I humbly ask repentance . . . and await your answer.

 

Oh, and Neb? A clarification: just because I hate the books doesn't mean I have anything against you. After all, given how much I hate, I'd have to have something against the whole world. Again, I'm sorry.

 

P.S. Actually, when I was younger these were my favorite books ever written, if it counts for anything. I shifted to the opposite upon rereading.

 

P.P.S. Also, if it counts for anything, I tend to offend everyone around me. I just screw these things up.

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Nebulan actually cannot get offended, although he is dissapointed you didn't give it much of a chance.

 

Neb also does not see the correlation between a magic ring and well, everything else.

Perhaps someone would like to inform him of the similarities so he won't have to look throught miles of text. And so we can stop editing our posts to death.

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Dragonlance really isn't a blatant plagiarism of Tolkien (for that, see Dennis L. McKiernan's Mithgar series). It's the archetypal D&D adventure-turned-novel series, and its Tolkien influence is visible only in how D&D took Tolkien's world and ran with it.

 

—Alorael, who can see plenty of reasons to hate Dragonlance. It's low brow genre fiction. It's D&D modules as fiction. It also happens to be fairly fun reading. And hey, there's always R. A. Salvatore to look down on!

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The thing that I liked about Dragonlance (at least the Weis and Hickman books) is that, while the characters were obviously designed by committee to be certain archetypes, they were not shallow. Raistlin Majere, for instance, clearly comes from the "sympathetic villain with a good streak" and "mysterious dark mage" archetypes, but simply knowing that doesn't tell you who Raistlin is.

 

I think a lot of people just see that the characters are drawn from archetypes and immediately think that they are cliche, and then their brains shut off and they don't notice any of the subtleties. I started with the Legends series, which meant that I was immediately faced with stuff that was not archetypal or cliche (Caramon's drunkenness, etc.).

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Nebulan was sad when he got to the end of the sixth one, or the third of the legends series, that it was over. Of course, with nearly everyone dead by this time it had to end sooner or later. Neb was depressed Tas wouldn't just stay dead. Yes, Raist was his favorite character. He also pronounces it without the first "i", sue him.
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You know that the Dragonlance series is far more massive than six books, right? Even if you're sticking just with the ones by Weiss and Hickman, you've got at least one more trilogy.

 

—Alorael, who relies on Wikipedia for this information. Your mileage may vary, especially if you are measuring books in miles.

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I guess if anyone cares what I was talking about, this was stuff I said during an argument about ethics. I described "the stuff that ripped off Tolkien" as having a strong us-versus-them element, in which that "them" cannot be negotiated with and must instead be destroyed. Example: "I don't consider myself a murderer. Goblins don't count." Just seems a little like not considering yourself a murderer for killing blacks or something.

 

P.S. Not that I am comparing blacks to goblins, thankyouverymuch.

 

And a little note to Evynissen (I am spelling that correctly, right?): when Hecate posted and said hi to everyone, someone else provided a link to a list of unofficial Spiderweb rules. One of them said that the UBB tends to randomly eat posts after about 20 good-length posts on a single topic. If this has somehow been fixed, then never mind.

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Originally Posted By: Alorael
You know that the Dragonlance series is far more massive than six books, right? Even if you're sticking just with the ones by Weiss and Hickman, you've got at least one more trilogy.

—Alorael, who relies on Wikipedia for this information. Your mileage may vary, especially if you are measuring books in miles.


Neb was refering to the origninal characters.
Oh yes he know, his friend counted all his books (including artwork books ect.) and came out with somthing like 114 items.
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If you just finished The Test of the Twins, you need to read The Second Generation. It's not quite as good as some of the others, but it does help set up the next book Dragons of Summer Flame, which is, in my opinion, the best Dragonlance book of them all. Btw, don't worry. You haven't seen the last of Raistlin.

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Finished reading the George R.R. Martin books so far in the "Song of Ice and Fire" series a while back, which although pretty solid, fell into the cliched poor-sex-scene trap that so many otherwise solid fantasy novels fall into (GRRM has just *a bit* of a breast fixation). Recently finished "His Majesty's Dragon" by Naomi Novik, which was okay (unfortunately though I've heard the subsequent novels are much worse) and "Gentlemen of the Road" by Michael Chabon, which was very fun and cleverly written, if brief. Working now on "The Yiddish Policemen's Union," which is taking some warming up to, though I like the alternative historical concept involved.

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Originally Posted By: Nebulan
Originally Posted By: Drew
"His Majesty's Dragon" by Naomi Novik
Hated that, but gave it to my sister, who liked it very.


I that is a really great series. But lets not start a flame war and get this thread locked. I am just trying to say that I like them, although the fourth one was a *little* tedious.
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Yeah, but the rest of the parts of Song are fine, although I will admit that A Feast for Crows was kinda whacked... and Jon Snow just happens to be my favorite character... hopefully A Dance of Dragons will be better.

 

And also, the other Termeraire books are ok, if kinda repetitive (in the main plots of the seperate books (go to A, fight, go to B, etc)) And the fourth one was a little too politicy for my taste.

 

Edit: Ignore that last comment, or take it in a new context. (Got pre-empted)

Edit2: Changed last comment

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Oh, and I forgot to say that I am currently reading:

 

Bolo Strike - William H., Jr. Keith

Guardians of the West - David Eddings

Steel City Magic - Wen Spencer

 

Edits don't work when 3 people have posted tongue

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feo: Tolkien hardly holds a monopoly on us-versus-them in fantasy. Which reminds me, I still have to read Goodkind's latest.

 

Last book I bought was Democracy Derailed, by Kevin Taft. I've only read the few couple chapters. Clearly lays out what is wrong with the effectively one-party state in Alberta. I'm looking forward to the end where he'll make his pitch that the Liberals are the answer. If Alberta will ever change, it'll come from the Big Tent being split up, not from another being set up next to it. That, or maybe the SoCreds will come back or something.

 

But right now, most of my reading is Hebrew flash cards.

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Originally Posted By: Ephesos
I've mostly been reading for classes, sadly.
Same here. I'm taking a class on preparing income tax returns. If you think you've left your sanity at the door, try deciphering the U.S. tax code. crazy
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Originally Posted By: Yelbis Eceer Nalyd
What is that, the Dark Disciple series(Or something to that effect)? Nalyd hasn't heard anything about a return of Raistlin there, but he hasn't read the last book.

Mina, however, does become a god(dess).


I have not had a chance to read the Dark Disciple series yet, actually. I was actually referring to Dragons of Summer Flame, since Nebulan has apparently not yet read that.
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Feo:

Considering the length of some of the threads on these forums, and the fact that I haven't noticed any problems yet... I'd guess that if 20 long posts was once the point where that bug kicked in... it's probably no longer the case. ...But I'm not the one, obviously, to answer that question.

 

Anyhow...

 

As for the Dragonlance series, wow... I actually do remember reading the original trilogy when I was a kid. I loved that series. But when I picked up the first book of the second trilogy... honestly, I hated it. Elastic metaphors featuring dwarves and hammers wielded carelessly in order to illustrate a certain unpleasant quality of our protagonist's hangover was not really something that drew great interest from me... nor was the same protagonist's newly-found drinking problem of much interest, and... weren't there marital problems in there as well? They were "poorly matched", I think, right? A beautiful and delicate young woman attracted to a brutish and highly masculine man? I think I was longing for the days of adventure that they'd left long behind.

 

I never got through enough of the book to find out if it ended up evolving in a manner that might've made me clap my hands in glee.

 

EDIT: I was just a kid... what can you expect? I wanted Adventure, man.

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Ev: Sounds as though you gave up too soon. The beginning of Legends is somewhat agonizing, and I think the only reason I was able to survive it was that I was too busy trying to figure out what was going on to be too embarrassed for Caramon. You need to get to Istar before it gets good, and when it gets good, it gets significantly better than Chronicles ever was.

 

Pitchblack: Whew, the War of Souls trilogy. Not their best effort.

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*Pitchblack does some quick mental arithmetic...

 

Wow. This thread is almost 350 posts long...

 

Jeez.

 

Someone should make it go explody and start a new one.

 

Thinks awhile...

 

Suddenly jumps up and raises hand. While jumping up and down, I shout "Me! ME! I wanna make it go explody!"

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Originally Posted By: pitchblack
*Pitchblack does some quick mental arithmetic...

Wow. This thread is almost 350 posts long...

Jeez.

Someone should make it go explody and start a new one.

Thinks awhile...

Suddenly jumps up and raises hand. While jumping up and down, I shout "Me! ME! I wanna make it go explody!"


How about this: post that you're reading a book whose title will get the topic locked. The question is what would work. I think this forum would even let us get by with admitting to having read "Dwarf Rapes Nun, Flees in UFO."

P.S. Real book. It's about the tabloid industry.
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