Books you're reading now

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Lord Chrusher
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Lord Chrusher » 02 Nov 2016, 17:44

Lord Chrusher wrote:I am now reading Marlon James' A Brief History of Seven Killings. So far it features gangsters, politicians, Bob Marley and the CIA in Kingstown, Jamaica in December of 1976.


Ten or so months later and I have finally finished reading A Brief History of Seven Killings. Given the number of characters, the range of locations and the time span covered by the book, this is not perhaps surprising. In some ways it is like Game of Thrones in its parallel but interlinked narratives and level of violence but A Brief History of Seven Killings is set in the all too real world of the ghetto in Jamaica and in New York in the 1970s and 1980s.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby KyrieEleison » 02 Nov 2016, 19:34

I'm reading Stephen Lawhead's The Endless Knot, which is the third book in his Song of Albion trilogy. The trilogy centers on Lewis, a weedy American grad student at Oxford who ends up traveling to Albion, an Otherworld that is part fantasy realm and partly based on Celtic Britain, and finds himself fighting to save it from his university flatmate Simon, all while their presence in Albion wreaks chaos and destruction upon the very existence of the Otherworld.

The books draw heavily from Celtic mythology, and Lawhead - a writer of Christian fiction - deftly and subtly weaves in Christian doctrine. Lawhead's writing is very detailed and immersive, and I highly recommend the whole series: The Paradise War, The Silver Hand, and The Endless Knot.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Bebop Man » 03 Nov 2016, 16:29

I'm reading Chuck Palahniuk's Beautiful You. It's... definitely heading towards weird places.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby bar room hero » 25 Nov 2016, 14:51

Hi guys, been a while since I've been on the forums, but I came up with an idea for a new years resolution and was hoping this thread could assist........

I came up with a new years resolution - to read 10 books I have never read recommended by my friends who I trust with good taste. On drafting my list of people to ask,I hit upon an ace idea - Get a book recommended by this thread! It will be a while before I get round to reading it but I will post a review of whats recommended. I'll keep an eye on the thread - any suggestions made that I have read I'll make sure you're aware. I have a few books already planned to read before I start - I like to keep a plan for my reading order. I've included this below so you know not to include, but do not use these as abase for my taste - I'll give anything a go, seriously. Hoping you guys can help me out!

Current back log:

Hella nation - Evan Wright
First Law trilogy - Joe Abercrombie
Watership Down - Richard Adams
Killing Pablo - Mark Bowden
Moby Dick - Herman Melville
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Hekla » 25 Nov 2016, 15:26

This isn't quite a book I'm reading now, but it's one I finished in the past month, and certainly one I'd recommend.

I'd only recommend this if you've got a high tolerance for misery, and miserable and somewhat frustrating characters. 'Tis:

Independent People - Halldór Laxness

This is a novel by, I believe Iceland's only Nobel Prize winner? And probably his most famous novel. I would go so far as to say it doesn't have all that much in the way of plot, but a lot of character, landscape, and pretty overt politics. It spoke to the Welsh side of me with its constant mention of sheep. Here's one of my favourite quotes from it:

"The little world of humans that eked out its existence there in the oblivion of the frozen wastes was once more its normal self"

If that sounds fun, give it a read!

EDIT: I didn't realise you're actually from Wales, bar room hero, until I posted this. So, as somebody that grew up in Ceredigion, the sheep really worked for me. Maybe they will for you too?
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby bar room hero » 25 Nov 2016, 15:43

I'm not one to play up to stereotypes - South of the M4 me, not the real Wales really, not like up North! Certainly bear that one in mind - sounds interesting if nothing else
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Hekla » 25 Nov 2016, 15:54

bar room hero wrote:I'm not one to play up to stereotypes - South of the M4 me, not the real Wales really, not like up North! Certainly bear that one in mind - sounds interesting if nothing else


Fair enough! My Welsh childhood was about as stereotypically Welsh as it gets while still having English(ish) parents, and I sometimes forget that most Welsh people didn't experience anything like that.

Good luck with finding some good books.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Lord Chrusher » 27 Nov 2016, 17:42

I just read the The Flame Bearer, the most recent of Bernard Cromwell's The Saxon Stories.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Bebop Man » 27 Nov 2016, 18:38

Reading Thomas Pynchon's The Crying of Lot 49.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Avistew » 27 Nov 2016, 22:41

Bar room hero, what kind of stuff do you like? It's a bit tricky recommending books blindly, a few hints might help.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby bar room hero » 30 Nov 2016, 15:09

In the interests of trying new things, just recommend a book you think is ace - Occasionally I like to step out of my comfort zone so don't really want to advise too much on my preferred disposition. I've given the same brief to some friends, and already have a pretty eclectic selection on the go
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby fantôme » 30 Nov 2016, 15:40

I'm half way into H is for Hawk by Helen Macdonald. It's devastatingly beautiful. I usually get through books quickly, and have a half dozen or so on the go at the same time - but this book has had the entirety of my attention for quite some time now. One of my all-time favourites.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Robo4900 » 30 Nov 2016, 18:21

After Pratchett died, my brother got a Kindle and stared reading the Discworld series. And on his recommendation, I've started reading The Colour Of Magic on my Kindle. Very much enjoying it; just finished the part in the temple where saying "Eight" brings bad things.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby bar room hero » 01 Dec 2016, 14:04

Thought I stipulated in the original thread but clearly didn't: I'll collate all recommendations, assign them a number and be picking which book based on a random number generator. I'll let you know which is picked around new years.

Funny you mention the Discworld series Robo, I decided to read all them in honour of the man the end of January and only finished The Shepherds Crown yesterday
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Avistew » 01 Dec 2016, 23:58

Hmm, then I recommend Empire of the Ants by Bernard Werber.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Saunabath » 02 Dec 2016, 10:30

I'm currently reading a short story collection Trigger Warning by Neil Gaiman. Shorter fiction collections have turned out to be a good substitute when I lack the time or energy for longer stories.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Bebop Man » 04 Feb 2017, 18:43

Three books so far this year:

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, which is about a kid with high-functioning Asperger's setting out to write a murder mystery novel after he finds the neighborhood dog dead. It's a bit like what I imagine a Wes Anderson novel would be like if Wes Anderson had quit filmmaking after Rushmore and taken to writing instead of set decorating. A pretty good book and apparently quite popular, for a change.

Everyman, a Philip Roth novel. It's a depressing brainstorm in the life of... I don't think he's ever named. It starts out with his funeral and Roth takes it from there, back and forth in time, going through two families, three wives and any number of surgeries and diseases. Reads like a chronicle of decay and disenchantment.

Elephant, Raymond Carver's final short story collection. It's brilliant and that's all I have to say about that. I recommend everybody try reading something by him. It's a nourishing experience.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Lord Chrusher » 05 Feb 2017, 15:37

I'm a little behind on updating you about the books I have been reading.

Before Christmas I read SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome by Mary Beard. Quite interesting, especially in light of the parallels between the fall of the Roman republic and a certain contemporary republic.

After Christmas I read Black Sea: Coasts and Conquests: From Pericles to Putin by Neal Ascherson which is a history of the lands around the Black Sea. Ascherson bemoans the end of the richly multicultural societies of the Black Sea that were destroyed by the nationalism that followed the collapse of the Ottoman and Soviet empires.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby virre » 06 Feb 2017, 02:55

I have finally caved in and started Pratchett/Baxters Long earth series that I avoded for a long time because I did not want to read out everything Pratchett.

I am surprised about how poltical and relevant to today the books are, but highly recommended.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Highlander » 16 Feb 2017, 11:49

So non-work reading is Fear to Tread by James Swallow. One of the Horus Heresy series that I heard was really good, so far it really is.

I'm also reading A modern history of Japan by Andrew Gordon. Fantastically engaging and compelling.

Work related reading is Old Norse Religion in long-term perspectives and a boatload of articles about Scandinavian Magnate residences.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby GlorySeer » 17 Feb 2017, 22:54

I've just finished "This Book is Full of Spiders: Seriously, Don't Touch It." It's interesting. I enjoyed John Dies At The End. But it felt like two books combined into one. It felt like the first and second half were separate not only by plot, but by a shift in the writer's maturity and skill. And that continued with this sequel. The characters tended to feel more real. Believable despite the situations being so fantastic. And the actual events felt more interesting and mature as well.

Overall it was a fun read. It still had problems. There are references to the first book, but not as many as I was hoping. There was only one reference to the big ending reveal from JDATE for example. And the references made typically aren't explained. This at least means the book can function on its own. But you will notice that you're missing information.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Jamfalcon » 19 Feb 2017, 20:52

Hey, question for audiobook folks: they aren't usually my thing, but I got an Audible trial because I had a bunch of cleaning to do and a book to read for a class (World War Z). I've got one more credit to use before I cancel the trial, so I thought I'd see if anyone has a good suggestion for another book that might be good to listen to on my commutes.

No strong feelings genre-wise, but it'd be cool to find one that's enhanced in some way by the format, since generally I'd prefer to read than listen. Like, for World War Z, since it has a couple dozen perspectives, there's a large cast of voice actors, and I'm enjoying that quite a bit.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby Tim_McM » 20 Feb 2017, 01:46

I've been working my way through the entire MTG fiction backlog, just finished Apocalypse. I have about half of them in paper and the rest on kindle, some of them are almost impossible to find now in either format.

Before that I read the first three books of The Faithful and The Fallen by John Gwynne. If you are into Fantasy I highly recommend them. I picked up the first one for a long train journey and have been waiting eagerly for new releases since. It does an excellent job of meeting and subtly subverting expectations and tropes and is long enough for some solid character development.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby MrPayneTrayne » 25 Feb 2017, 06:48

I'm reading through The Magician's trilogy. On the final book of the series. Would recommend it for an interesting world with an unlikeable protagonist.
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Re: Books you're reading now

Postby RoboNixon » 06 Mar 2017, 05:33

MrPayneTrayne wrote:I'm reading through The Magician's trilogy. On the final book of the series. Would recommend it for an interesting world with an unlikeable protagonist.

I agree that it is an interesting world, and I found the protagonist DEEPLY unlikable. Him cheating in the first book tilted me so much, I've never gotten that mad at a book.Barely finished, but was a good read.

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