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What Are You Reading? Part 15 [September]

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What Are You Reading? Part 15 [September]

Old 09-09-03, 08:25 AM
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I'm re-reading Lies and the Lying Liars that Tell Them. I enjoyed the book that much. I'm going to go to Austin on the 13th to see Franken at the book signing there. I would love an autographed copy of this great book.
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Old 09-09-03, 01:15 PM
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The Blind Watchmaker: Why the Evidence of Evolution Reveals a Universe Without Design by Richard Dawkins

and

Refiner's Fire: The Life and Adventures of Marshall Pearl, a Foundling by Mark Helprin

Good stuff.

Next will be rereading these two titles:

The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression by Andrew Solomon
I Am Legend by Richard Matheson
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Old 09-09-03, 07:49 PM
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I am now working on Last of the Mohicans by Cooper. Heck of a change from contemporary writing.
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Old 09-11-03, 01:14 PM
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Just finished the Harry Potter books. time to find something new.
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Old 09-11-03, 06:24 PM
  #30  
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I ended up getting "Clear and Present Danger" by Tom CLancy at the library. i havent seen the movie or read any of his novels so i figured i'd givei t a try. atleast its short.
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Old 09-11-03, 10:40 PM
  #31  
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Bleachers - John Grisham
Shadow Puppets - Orson Scott Card
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Old 09-12-03, 08:33 AM
  #32  
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Now:
Mystic River--Dennis Lehane
Angels & Demons--Dan Brown

Next:
Adventures of Kavalier and Klay--Michael Chabon
Angel of Darkness--Caleb Carr
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Old 09-12-03, 02:13 PM
  #33  
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Originally posted by PalmerJoss
Now:
Mystic River--Dennis Lehane
I'm reading this now as well. A little over half-way through. What do you think thus far?
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Old 09-12-03, 02:21 PM
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It's good so far, but nothing terribly special IMO. I'm a little more than halfway through it also and it seems to be picking up now. The thing I love about the book, though, is the dialogue--it's very realistic. You can actually see people having having these conversations in real life. Everyone says how excellent the book is so I'm expecting a real bang of an ending. I just hope it pays off.
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Old 09-12-03, 04:31 PM
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Right now i'm reading
Fat White Vampire Blues
by Andrew Fox.
Great read so far, anyone else had a chance to read this.
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Old 09-12-03, 05:30 PM
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Originally posted by DaveNinja
I ended up getting "Clear and Present Danger" by Tom CLancy at the library. i havent seen the movie or read any of his novels so i figured i'd givei t a try. atleast its short.
The first one I read and still my favorite Clancy novel. The movie's good, but doesn't even compare (of course). Good choice.


I'm really flying through Gingrich and Fortschen's Gettysburg right now. This book is fantastic - I should be through w/ it by the end of the weekend when I have time to finish reading it.
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Old 09-14-03, 09:38 PM
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Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
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Old 09-15-03, 06:06 AM
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I just finished a New Zealand novel called The Book Of The Film Of The Story Of My Life by William Brandt. I was surprised to see it is listed at Amazon.com. I found an enjoyable read. It had some similarities to a Chuck Palahniuk book but was more light hearted. As a New Zealander I enjoyed the nods to the country and some of its cultural aspects.

I just started the revised and expanded edition of The Dark Tower Volume One: The Gunslinger. In the bookshop I noticed Volume two said "new introduction by the author" but its the same new introduction as in Gunslinger. Seems a bit of a cheat to me.

So far I'm enjoying The Gunslinger. The only other King I've read is The Stand which I didn't think was very good. This seems to be better so far.
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Old 09-15-03, 11:42 AM
  #39  
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Originally posted by NZ_DVD_Freak
I just started the revised and expanded edition of The Dark Tower Volume One: The Gunslinger. In the bookshop I noticed Volume two said "new introduction by the author" but its the same new introduction as in Gunslinger. Seems a bit of a cheat to me.
As a heads up, this series doesn't get "rolling" until volumes II & III. If you like the first, you'll LOVE the rest!
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Old 09-15-03, 11:54 AM
  #40  
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Re-reading my Lovecraft collection and Cthulhu books by other authors, warming up for Halloween.
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Old 09-15-03, 02:43 PM
  #41  
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Reading Richard Stark's Breakout. I'm so glad Stark (aka Donald E. Westlake) revived his Parker character. One of the best anti-heroes around.
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Old 09-15-03, 04:06 PM
  #42  
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I just finished reading The Star Fraction by Ken Macleod last night.

Honestly, it felt like huge chunks of the book were missing important information that would have helped make the setting and plot more believable. The sheer number of political groups and "movements" in the book were, in my opinion, ridiculous. Sure, its possible, but at times it gets to be way too much, especially the various "micro-states", fragments and factions that are fighting against one another. I mean, there are socialists, communists (Trotskyists, Bolsheviks, Neo-Stalinists), libertarians, greens, feminists, christian fundamentalists/creationists, rationalists, atheists, the space movement, capitalists, nationalists, internationalists, AI-Abolitionists, rejectionists, technologists, postfuturists, etc....

I also had a difficult problem identifying with the characters. In some books, that isn't important, but this wasn't one of them.

Perhaps there is a greater meaning to the book, as the possibility definitely exists, but I just didn't see it. I also found myself rather disappointed with the last 1/4 of the book or so too, but I won't spoil it for anyone who decides they do want to read it.

Has anybody else ever read it? I'd like to know what other people think. I think it had great potential, but it seriously lacks the information and background needed to make it feasible.

Last edited by muggins; 09-15-03 at 04:09 PM.
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Old 09-15-03, 04:34 PM
  #43  
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muggins, I read it some years ago and recall enjoying it. I've got the sequel so I must have liked something about it!

The "joke" about all the political groupings is that the Left is reknowned (at least in the UK) for dividing into slightly different factions that waste their energies fighting against each other: do you remember that scene concerning the "Judean People's Liberation Front" from Monty Python's Life of Brian?

Anyway, if you had trouble with that book I'd try instead Peter Hamilton's "Mindstar Rising. " which presents a kind of flipside to McLeod's vision.
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Old 09-15-03, 05:07 PM
  #44  
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Thanks, benedict, for the insight. I remember the Judean People's Liberation Front very well ...or is it the People's Liberation Front of Judea?

The joke about the left does make quite a bit more sense now, especially with regards to Moh Kohn, and how everyone was unsure about his actual political membership.

I think the biggest problem with the book is that it is seemingly very UK centric. I read in one of his interviews that the first book of his Fall Revolution series published in the U.S. was not The Star Fraction, but the third book in the series, as the others were deemed to be a little too UK-centric for U.S. readers.

I actually enjoyed parts of the book, but there seemed to be big holes around those parts that seemed to be based on the premise that the reader had previously knowledge of what the author was describing.

I did also like how there was quite a bit of tie in that briefly touched upon various events or literary pieces in European history that (I imagine) would mean almost nothing to the common american.

I probably will end up buying the rest of his Fall Revolution series somewhere down the road, as I really hate to leave a series unread. Perhaps with further reading more pieces will fall into place.

Last edited by muggins; 09-15-03 at 05:10 PM.
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Old 09-15-03, 09:37 PM
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After 4 months, I finally finshed Shelby Foote's 14 volume Civil War: A Narrative. It was very good. Tons of detail and very readable.

I'm starting Good Omens by Gaiman and Pratchett.
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Old 09-16-03, 10:18 AM
  #46  
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Finished Memnoch The Devil and The Vampire Armand by Anne Rice.

Started The Da Vinci Code By Dan Brown,
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Old 09-16-03, 02:37 PM
  #47  
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Originally posted by B.A.hist
I'm really flying through Gingrich and Fortschen's Gettysburg right now. This book is fantastic - I should be through w/ it by the end of the weekend when I have time to finish reading it.
Well, I finally finished. Great book, imo. I recommend it for fans of alternate-histories. I liked the "what if" Lee had done something differently at Gettysburg story-line and the first person p.o.v. from several different figures on both sides.

Now I am probably on to another WWII history book.
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Old 09-16-03, 10:26 PM
  #48  
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Finished Dennis Lehane's Mystic River today and was quite impressed. I wasn't sure I'd like it all that much, but I turned out to really enjoy this haunting story of 3 old friends.

Next up, John Grisham's The Runaway Jury.
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Old 09-17-03, 03:52 AM
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Reading The Policy , by, Bentley Little.

It's definitely a horror novel. It's about insurance, and small print.

Creepy stuff.
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Old 09-17-03, 05:15 AM
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Originally posted by Geofferson
Finished Dennis Lehane's Mystic River today and was quite impressed. I wasn't sure I'd like it all that much, but I turned out to really enjoy this haunting story of 3 old friends.

Really? I didn't think it was all that great. I mean, it's good, but there's just one part that nags the hell out of me. Lehane does a good job of painting a picture of South Boston and the characters are good, but....

Spoiler:
I thought the discovery and motive of the killers was REALLY lame. I mean, the whole storyline revolves around this killing that brought these 3 childhood friends together and then when we learn who the killers are and the reason for the killing, it was a HUGE letdown. Besides that, though, the relationship between the 3 friends is really good.


I guess if you tell yourself that this isn't a mystery/suspense/thriller and more of a character study of 3 old friends whose lives are changed one fateful day during their childhood, then the book is much better.

Still, I couldn't get past the issue that I spoilered, so I guess that kind of ruined the book for me. I'm looking forward to the movie, though, since it has a great cast and a good director.

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