Books you're reading now

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Thysane
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Thysane » 15 Apr 2016, 03:23

Currently about two thirds of the way through Foucault's Pendulum by Umberto Eco. Kind of the ultimate conspiracy theory book - it's mostly about how, if you try hard enough, you can pretty much connect any one fact to any other and have it be compelling. Lots of stuff on the Templars, the Rosicrucians, the Masons, the Comte de Saint Germain, hermeticism, kabbalah, the syncretic religions of Brazil, and on and on. References and quotes left right and centre, but also a really involving story at the centre with fantastic characters. Rather complex, and a lot of stuff can go over my head sometimes, especially when the characters' wild sessions of free-association and numerology get going, but the writing is incredibly deft and full of wit. Loving it.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Mums » 15 Apr 2016, 07:32

Reading "The Shadow of the Wind" by Carlos Ruiz Zafón. Part mystery, part nostalgia and part love for litterature. I really like it, it's about a young boy falling in love with a book called The shadow of the wind and he starts trying to find out the mystery about the author which leads to a lot of twists and turns. Very well written with beautiful and colourful language.

Can't wait to finnish it though since I just got Salman Rushdies "The Satanic Verses" and want to start that.
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viscomica
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby viscomica » 25 Apr 2016, 17:28

I've just started reading "pigs have wings" by Wodehouse and so far so great! He never disappoints!! :)
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby RoboNixon » 30 Apr 2016, 05:44

I was reading The Magicians by Lev Grossman. Was. I just got to Book III, and I hate the main character so much right now that I don't think I can finish it. Maybe someone here can convince me otherwise. I made a goal to read a book a month at least this year. Most months I've read 2-3. This will be the first month I don't finish. I put this one down for a few days, but got even madder when I read more. Any good scifi/fantasy recommendations?

Edit: So I went back later and tried reading it. The main character had resonated so strongly with me that what he did at the end of Book II made me sick. I figured any book that could make me love it, then want to chuck it out the window while driving to punch the author must have some value. Quentin does seem to grow up a lot in the last part of the book and the ending did have a redemptive quality, while leaving it open for the sequel.

I'm not sure if I want to read those sequels though. Based on the Magician King synopsis, I'm not sure he really learned his lesson permanently. I think I like my fantasy more in the Jim Butcher or Neil Gaiman vein.
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Kapol
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Kapol » 01 May 2016, 21:18

It's been a while since I've posted here. Though that's thanks to the last book I listened to, which was A Clash Of Kings: Book two of the A Song And Ice And Fire series. Listening to it made me deeply regret watching the show first. It's so much more interesting to be in the characters' heads and to really experience what they're doing. I found the show to be kind of a bore, honestly. But the books have managed to keep me interested the entire time. Also, the narrator did an amazing job, giving each character a unique voice and helping sell the emotions of each scene.


Beyond finishing that, I've also finished "Spell Or High Water," the sequel to Off To Be The Wizard of the Magic 2.0 series. It was good. There was solid character development. But... it felt weird. Like the fact that half of the book is devoted to the big bad of the last book, and there's some weird character turns. Not to mention that only three protagonists are really relevant for most of the book.

It just felt kind of... disconnected. Like the author wanted to tell a story in the same world, but felt the need to have it connected to the first book. And didn't have enough material to actually have it be long enough by itself. Not that the side-story wasn't entertaining. It just felt weird.

Overall though, I had a lot of fun listening to it. It was kind of book candy though, much like the first had been.


Currently, I'm listening to John Dies At The End. And... I'm not impressed. I'm not sure why, but it's not really clicking with me. I don't like John. I don't like Dave. I don't really like any of these characters. I don't dislike them, mind you. They just exist in this bubble of "I don't give a fuck" that also seems to accurately sum up their lives. It doesn't feel fully commited to being a comedy or a horror, and tries to strattle the line between the two. I don't think it really works.

That's not to say it's bad. It's just... there. We'll see if it manages to recover or not.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby RoboNixon » 02 May 2016, 09:07

This is a general question but Kapol or someone might be able to answer. Does anyone use Audible or a similar service? I listen to a lot of podcasts and wondered if audio books services are worth it. I have a very short commute but like jogging so could listen maybe an hour a day. I really enjoy having physical books, but intrigued by having a narrator's perspective instead of my internal voice.

Also, burned through What If? by Randall Munroe (creator of xkcd) on a boring Sunday. If you like silly physics questions then you'll enjoy this book.
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Kapol
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Kapol » 02 May 2016, 12:18

I use audible myself. I have issues sitting down and reading through a book for whatever reason, and audio books generally allow me to actually focus on the book. I generally listen to them when I'm driving or doing something that doesn't allow me to watch a video. Books are much more dependent on the narrator for audiobooks. But I've yet to run into one that's actually bad.

Personally, I've been very happy with Audible. Especially their mobile app. If you want to try it, you can get use the free trial offer they have. I believe it includes a credit for basically any audiobook on their site. This month you can also get Pride and Prejudice free through Amazon with a free version of the audiobook as well.

The monthly service is nice, and can be a decently cheap way to get audiobooks depending on what you get. I used a few months of credit to get three of the Song of Ice and Fire books. And there's a way to get some audiobooks for $2 if you buy the kindle book first. That can be a lot cheaper than just buying the audiobook by itself. Though I'm not sure that's something they've continued, as I can't find any examples. It just seems to be generally cheaper to buy kindle editions of books straight from Amazon and add the audible narration.

Alternatively, check out your local library. They sometimes have the physical copies of audiobooks available to check out.

If you have any other questions that you're curious about, feel free to ask. Hopefully that helps a bit. Also, this is all from the US. I'm not sure if it's different in other countries.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby RoboNixon » 02 May 2016, 13:01

Thanks for the info. I may give Audible a shot with a free trial :)
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Kapol
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Kapol » 02 May 2016, 13:14

Not a problem. Personally, some of my favorites from audible have been A Game Of Thrones, Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, The Martian, and maybe Mogworld. All of them have narrators who do a good job of bringing the characters to life.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Jamfalcon » 02 May 2016, 15:00

Another thing to consider for audiobooks, is that your library might offer them digitally, as well as physical ones like Kapol mentioned. I know my local library has a section on their site for audiobooks, and lets you download some amount (maybe three) at a time. There's DRM to lock you out after the borrowing period, of course, but I imagine especially for shorter books or someone who listens a lot, that'd be a good option.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby RoboNixon » 03 May 2016, 04:17

Both great posts from Kapol and Jamfalcon. Thank you both very much! I actually never considered a public library would have digital content, but mine does apparently. Not a whole lot (mostly romance and westerns, plus GoT of course) but apparently a library membership in my county is free, so no harm in taking a look.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby DennyR » 03 May 2016, 04:18

I'm currently reading the Iron Warriors omnibus by Graham McNeill. I'm looking at heading up to Dublin to maybe pick up a few more 40k books (I love the books, but nowhere near me stocks them so I have to travel)
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby handsongammer » 14 May 2016, 22:56

i have been reading though orson scott card's ender's game saga as of late, just finished the last one, and they were interesting to say the least, still feel like ender's game is the best, though i enjoyed all of them. am currently reading the companion series and am on shadow puppets which is generally enjoyable to me thus far, though the books are almost certainly not for everyone.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Bebop Man » 15 May 2016, 19:56

Read today Martha and Hanwell by Zadie Smith.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby GaProgMan » 17 May 2016, 09:42

Currently reading through a few (at least one of which will show off what I do for a living):

Musashi by Eiji Yoshikawa
Code Complete 2 by Steve McConnell
Naze Besto Tsuku sa nail no ka? Why Don't You Do Your Best? By "Ueda Jiro"

Musashi is a really well written (in my opinion) fictional biography of Miyamoto Musashi. It's really detailed, but super long at around 1000 pages. I'm reading an electronic copy of it, so I can't give you an exact page count.

Code Complete 2 is one of those modern classics in Computer Science, right up there with The Gang of Four and the Pragmatic Programmer. It's my 2nd time through, and I'm picking up of things that I'm not sure I picked up the first time through. Definitely worth a read if you're a software engineer, developer, programmer, or anything of that ilk.

Naze Besto is a Japanese parody of self help novels. It was produced "in universe" for the Japanese TV show Trick (which is totally worth watching, by the way) by one of the characters. Shortly after it debuted in the show, it was released in the real world. It's really absurd and has life tips like (and I'm paraphrasing here):

Eat your food on the toilet, and you'll save 15 minutes a day. This will aggregate to decades adding to your life.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Elomin Sha » 17 May 2016, 10:54

I'm going to make a start on Arthur Keostler's Acts of Creation tonight.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Gap Filler » 10 Jun 2016, 14:08

An English translation of Maguerite Duras' The Malady of Death off the back of a Cantonese translation picked up in Hong Kong. Might have to grab an original French ed at some point but it's novel to see the basic thrust of the story make it through both translations.
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Bebop Man
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Bebop Man » 10 Jun 2016, 18:00

Started the historical biography of Saladin. Some parts feel straight out fantasy ficiton...
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby JustAName » 11 Jun 2016, 05:12

I recently read through a whole series of (semi) trashy urban fantasy novels, and now I'm working on John Dies at the End myself. Turns out the Los Angeles Public Library has an incredible selection of ebooks, and my library card doesn't expire for another year yet!
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby RoboNixon » 15 Jun 2016, 06:40

With the Fourth of July fast approaching, I decided to read 1776 by David McCullough. The title is slightly misleading, as half the book is about 1775, but covers Washington's campaign and some of the politics of the time. I enjoy reading Civil War and WW2 history, but this was a bit dull, probably because I am not as invested in the period. The illustrated edition is beautiful, and if you like this time period it might be worth a read, as I did learn a few things.

I also started The Ruins by Scott Smith, but put it down half way. When characters act dumb to get stuck in crazy situations, I tend to lose interest.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Prospero101 » 15 Jun 2016, 09:29

I recently picked up a Comixology Unlimited subscription and got myself hooked on "The Sixth Gun," a weird west comic about six mythical revolvers, supposedly fashioned by the Devil himself, and how the sixth one, the most powerful, winds up in the hands of a (relatively, this is one of those morally-gray narratives) innocent teenage girl.

Plot suffers from a little Fashionably Late Syndrome, but the characters are well-rounded. I'm really hooked on the lore; I like how often weird west fiction explores things like Native American mythology and folklore.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby RoboNixon » 18 Jun 2016, 13:32

Thysane wrote:Currently about two thirds of the way through Foucault's Pendulum by Umberto Eco.

This sounds interesting. Ordered a copy from Amazon.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Avistew » 23 Jun 2016, 21:17

My boyfriend Fox mentioned his favourite author, Mercedes Lackey, and he talked about her with so much enthusiasm that when I got a $5 off coupon from Google Books, I had to use it on one of her books. She's written something like a hundred books so far so it was pretty impossible to choose (and not end up in the middle of a series or something), fortunately he helped me pick and I ended up getting the Arrow Trilogy, the first of which was apparently her first published novel and the one that made her famous.

It's called Arrow of the Queen, and so far I'm enjoying it a lot! Now I'm super excited because I have about 100 books to look forward to reading :D I'm glad I went with the whole trilogy and not just the first book.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Bebop Man » 28 Jun 2016, 09:48

Reading Making Movies by Sidney Lumet. Great director, great book. They should teach this in film school, not that semiology crap.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Jenelmo » 14 Jul 2016, 07:03

I have been to stressed to read most of this semester, but having vacation i finally have time to read. Have been reading The long earth series by Terry Pratchett and Steven baxter, and i am enjoying them. But this also means that i am also done with all the works by Pratchett and with his death last year it is going to be sad when i have read All of his works that i can
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