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Thread: What are you reading?

  1. #1171
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    Finished: “Black Dragon” by Victor Milán… obviously I took my sweet time reading it. Just wasn’t much in the mood… but we’re done now. It was a good book, lots going on. Can’t go wrong with a Princess Bride reference.

    Going to take a break from books for a bit while I do a deep dive into the comics I've collected for the past little while.

  2. #1172
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    @allegro @elevenism , my Christmas presents.


  3. #1173
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    I know what I will be reading.


  4. #1174
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    I started reading The Three-Body Problem - a science fiction novel written by the Chinese writer Liu Cixin. From the first sentences, from the first chapters, I understand that this is a masterpiece.

  5. #1175
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    Baron Wenckheim's Homecoming by László Krasznahorkai

    Who needs periods?

  6. #1176
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    Starting: "Exodus Road" by Blaine Lee Pardoe.... time to get back on that BattleTech absorption and see where that grand narrative ends up.

  7. #1177
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    Finished: “Exodus Road” by Blaine Lee Pardoe … I liked it. Looking forward to the rest of the “Twilight of the Clans” series.

    Starting: "Grave Covenant" by Michael A. Stackpole

  8. #1178
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    Finished: “Grave Covenant” by Michael A. Stackpole … took a bit for me to get into it but was aptly rewarded when I did.

    Starting: “The Hunters” by Thomas S. Gressman

  9. #1179
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    The Chain by Adrian McKinty. This is the first book of his that I've picked up, and so far I'm really liking his style and pacing, and the basic concept behind the thriller device is simple but intriguing. Hopefully it stays on target, but I'm pretty sure I'm going to pick up his new book after I finish this regardless.

  10. #1180
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    Finished: Starting: “The Hunters” by Thomas S. Gressman … enjoyed it but took my sweet time with it. Cover art depicted a scene in the novel.

    Starting: “Freebirth” by Robert Thurston

  11. #1181
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    re-reading The Fourth Hand by John Irving. Want some misanthropy up in this bitch?

    The story starts talking about a very handsome man, who was known for being handsome. Women loved him, and they said they definitely would love to have sex with him at least once. And then his arm gets bitten off by a lion, and his ex-wife mocks his explanation of his pain.

    Beyond that, no spoiler alerts.

  12. #1182
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    I know this sounds pretentious possibly, but I'm reading The Tibetan Book of the Dead. I bought this truly beautiful (and sadly expensive) copy of it, and I wasn't sure if this was going to be an ornament or something I'd actually consume... and it is hard. It is a challenging read. It has passages like this...

    "These [signs] may all indicate that one has fallen into the hands of the Lord of Death"

    And I'm really digging it.

  13. #1183
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    Ha! Speaking of pretentious, I'm starting the book Seven Types of Ambiguity by William Empson because of a mention in the short story by Shirley Jackson: Seven Types of Ambiguity.
    Revised twice since it first appeared, it has remained one of the most widely read and quoted works of literary analysis. Ambiguity, according to Empson, includes "any verbal nuance, however slight, which gives room for alternative reactions to the same piece of language." From this definition, broad enough by his own admission sometimes to see "stretched absurdly far," he launches into a brilliant discussion, under seven classifications of differing complexity and depth, of such works, among others, as Shakespeare's plays and the poetry of Chaucer, Donne, Marvell, Pope, Wordsworth, Gerard Manley Hopkins, and T. S. Eliot.

  14. #1184
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    Just finished Heat 2. Very good for first effort from Michael Mann. Hope they do a film of it. They'll have to get someone younger to play the Al Pacino part & the Val Kilmer part.

  15. #1185
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    I thought I read that it was already optioned? or maybe it was just Michael Mann manifesting it into being?

    https://www.empireonline.com/movies/...vie-exclusive/

    I really want to watch it but I also really want to watch Heat again first. oh darn.

  16. #1186
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    Quote Originally Posted by allegate View Post
    Ha! Speaking of pretentious, I'm starting the book Seven Types of Ambiguity by William Empson because of a mention in the short story by Shirley Jackson: Seven Types of Ambiguity.
    I fucking love everything Shirley Jackson ever wrote. Don't get me started there; I love everything. The Witch is probably my favorite. (it's, naturally, a short story)
    And I just assume you have read We Have Always Lived in the Castle, but... if not, big recommendation
    Last edited by Jinsai; 08-28-2022 at 01:44 AM.

  17. #1187
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    The short story collection I read was The Lottery and Other Stories by Shirley Jackson:
    I wish I could have liked this collection more but there were so many stories where two characters are in the same room as each other and talking at each other but not with each other. Two different conversations are happening and neither person seems that put out by it. Such a weird feeling reading those.

    There were some standouts for sure though. The Tooth for example was such a surreal experience that it put you on edge because it never gave you something secure to hold onto. Got a Letter From Jimmy was similarly disconcerting because you didn't know why Jimmy was so ostracized and to be honest I don't think all of the characters in the story did either.

    I feel like a cad because of the one thing I highlighted from the Introduction:

    Grace Paley once described the male-female writer phenomenon to me by saying, “Women have always done men the favor of reading their work, but the men have not returned the favor.”

    I read it but I didn't get it I guess. My fault more than hers, I just had issues with the way people talked. On that note there were at least two stories - the names of which escape me - where I was pretty sure if it were a play being performed it would have been perfectly fine because it would have sounded like people talking over each other but reading all the parts in a row it turns into a weird Cormac McCarthy of 'who's speaking now and why'.
    As for We Have Always Lived in the Castle, I read that last October (spooky month!):
    I'm not sure where to put this. It's not a horror story and if you read the afterward it's not considered one. It's a creepy story right up until you get to the part where you realise this is kind of just "The Good Son", which I hope isn't that much of a spoiler but come on, how many people are going to remember that movie unless they saw it - and there wasn't that many people who saw it, it only made $60M - so I'm good with the reference if you are.

    The story is very carefully plotted and the way information is given to you is through an unreliable narrator. But also she isn't? I mean the second sentence of the story is "I am eighteen years old, and I live with my sister Constance." That's clear from the jump and yet I spent the entire rest of the story imagining her much younger because of how she is shown and she's the one doing the showing. So how can you take her seriously when she is clearly addled in some way?

    I don't remember the moment that I thought to myself, "Ah ha, the underlying story/mystery that keeps coming up constantly in fits and spurts is actually _____" but I do know that suddenly a lot more things made sense. The fact that Constance had a weird agoraphobia though I never understood. The afterword says that it's one half of Shirley Jackson's life because she was diagnosed with it late in life but that's too easy, that's just weird story motivation and reading something in real life and making a leap to conclusions mat.

    You know, Office Space? ah well.

    The book has so much hiding around the corners that you are never given, only hinted at. I suppose this is what makes a compelling short story/novella, the ability to give you a world that feels lived-in in so few pages. It's not just the story that's happening to you at the moment but also the story that you can barely see at the edges. Kind of like in "The Ring" when they find the extra film on the film edge.

  18. #1188
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    Finished: “Freebirth” by Robert Thurston … oh those pesky Smoke Jaguars. Cover art reflected a scene in the book (always nice).

    Starting: "Sword and Fire" by Thomas S. Gressman

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