1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

Which book are you reading now? Volume XI

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by NedimNapoleon, Apr 19, 2012.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. cardgame

    cardgame Sensual Kitten

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2009
    Messages:
    13,148
    Location:
    Misery
    Robert A Heinlein – The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress

    Isn't aging too well but entertaining nonetheless.
     
  2. Kozmos

    Kozmos Jew Detective

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2004
    Messages:
    13,123
    Location:
    Sitka District
    Well it depends entirely on content. What's the difference between reading one huge book or several of them that are a part of a series? If you don't find it interesting just drop it and move on to something you like.
     
  3. Smellincoffee

    Smellincoffee Trekkie At Large

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2003
    Messages:
    5,933
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Heart of Dixie
    I just finished The South Since the War, consisting of a northern journalist visiting the South five months after the war and complaining about hotels, trains, poor people who don't take baths, and the power of the aristocracy.
     
  4. Perfection

    Perfection The Great Head.

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2002
    Messages:
    49,785
    Location:
    Salisbury Plain
  5. Ajidica

    Ajidica High Quality Person

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2006
    Messages:
    19,429
    In the Footsteps of Mr. Kurtz: Living on the Brink of Disaster in Mobutu's Congo by Michela Wrong.
    Good 'slice of life' book on life in Zaire, with a focus on the early 90's. Not the greatest as far as in-text citations go, unfortunately. Quite readable and interesting.

    Britain's War Machine: Weapons, Resources, and Experts in the Second World War by David Edgerton.
    I haven't really started this one yet, and it seems to be the British counterpart to Tooze's Wages of Destruction. Some of the Amazon reviews seemed to have a negative opinion of the author, saying the book felt unfocused with a few glaring holes. Any CFC opinions?
     
  6. Miroslav I

    Miroslav I Warlord

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    111
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Belgrade, Serbia
    "A Sunday at the Pool in Kigali" by Gil Courtemanche (1943–2011) published in 2003.
    (first published in 2000. with the original French title: "Un dimanche à la piscine à Kigali")
    Translator (french to english): Patricia Claxton

    also made a movie on that book:
    "A Sunday in Kigali" (2006)
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0463385/
     
  7. Smellincoffee

    Smellincoffee Trekkie At Large

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2003
    Messages:
    5,933
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Heart of Dixie
    The Americans: the Colonial Experience, Daniel Boorstin
     
  8. EgonSpengler

    EgonSpengler Doctor of Funk

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2014
    Messages:
    5,312
    Gender:
    Male
    So Annihilation just won the Nebula Award for Best Novel 2014. Although I haven't read any of the other 5 nominees, I liked John Scalzi's Lock In and James Corey's Cibola Burn better, and while I haven't read Andy Weir's The Martian yet, it's gotten a ton of positive attention; and none of those were even nominated for a Nebula. Looking back at previous years' awards, I can see a lot of books I thought were just alright. I think the people who vote for the Nebula Awards just have a different take on things than I do.
     
  9. Borachio

    Borachio Way past lunacy

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2012
    Messages:
    26,698
    Gravity's Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon.

    According to Vogue: "This stunner is already classed with Moby Dick and Ulysses". I can understand that. I've read the former and gave up half-way through the latter. Gravity's Rainbow is not an easy read by any means.

    Vogue goes on: "Set in Europe at the end of WWII, with the V2 as the White Whale, the novel's central characters race each other through a treasure hunt of false clues, disguises, distractions, horrific plots and comic counterplots to arrive at the formula which will launch the Super Rocket... Impossible here to convey the vastness of Pynchon's range, the brilliance of his imagery, the virtuosity of his style and his supreme ability to incorporate the cultural miasma of modern life".

    Umm.

    I wonder if I'll finish this 902 page door-stop of a book.
     
  10. JollyRoger

    JollyRoger Slippin' Jimmy Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2001
    Messages:
    42,963
    Location:
    Chicago Sunroofing
    Ulysses is a nice warm-up for Gravity's Rainbow. Appears you gave up on Ulysses right before it started getting good.
     
  11. Borachio

    Borachio Way past lunacy

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2012
    Messages:
    26,698
    Sadly, I'm just not that intelligent to persist against an overwhelming tide of incomprehensibility.

    But intelligence isn't immutable. So maybe in another 50 years I'll give it another go. I'll only be 112 and, you never know, I might find it a breeze.
     
  12. JollyRoger

    JollyRoger Slippin' Jimmy Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2001
    Messages:
    42,963
    Location:
    Chicago Sunroofing
    It is still fairly incomprehensible, but more in a more entertaining way. Gravity's Rainbow was kind of the opposite for me - it got less entertaining as it went.
     
  13. Borachio

    Borachio Way past lunacy

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2012
    Messages:
    26,698
    Oh? I must say it's got me tickled a little bit in the first 100 pages or so. But it definitely doesn't make life easy for the reader.
     
  14. Cheezy the Wiz

    Cheezy the Wiz Socialist In A Hurry

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2005
    Messages:
    25,238
    Location:
    Freedonia
    All That is Solid Melts into Air: The Experience of Modernity - Marshall Berman
     
  15. SS-18 ICBM

    SS-18 ICBM Oscillator

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2006
    Messages:
    15,230
    Location:
    Here and there
    Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy, translation by C.H. Sisson and annotations by David Higgins. Almost the perfect copy, only missing Gustav Doré's illustrations.
     
  16. JohannaK

    JohannaK Careless Whisperer

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2011
    Messages:
    14,272
    Location:
    Last Christmas
    Roland Barthes' Writing Degree Zero, with that mid-century French intellectual verbosity that makes books so needlessly dense yet somewhat attractive and ever pulling you forward.
     
  17. Snerk

    Snerk Smeghead

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Messages:
    7,327
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Norway. You'll never leave
    Napoleon: A Life by Andrew Roberts.

    The author is clearly a great admirer of Napoleon, not that that is necessary a bad thing. For the book is very well written.
     
  18. Miroslav I

    Miroslav I Warlord

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    111
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Belgrade, Serbia
    "Losing Nelson" (1999) by Barry Unsworth.

    Was Nelson really such a hero people want to believe?
     
  19. Smellincoffee

    Smellincoffee Trekkie At Large

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2003
    Messages:
    5,933
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Heart of Dixie
    About to finish The Terrorist Next Door, about Bill Gale and the Posse Comitatus movement. More broadly it's about the farm/rural crisis and the upsurge of violent right-wing activism in the 1970s and 1980s. The Comitatus seems like the KKK with no robes, but even more obsessive about racism and fixated on fighting the government.
     
  20. Ajidica

    Ajidica High Quality Person

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2006
    Messages:
    19,429
    Finished the book, wasn't a big fan of it. The author couldn't seem to decide if he was writing a popular history (in the Niall Ferguson style of "aren't white people awesome") or a scholarly history. Besides to odd shifts in tone, it often felt like he contradicted himself. For example, he spent several pages illustrating how the British scientific advances that won the war (like radar) weren't the result of some lone scientists toiling away in a lab, but rather the product of sustained government support. What then does he spend the rest of the chapter talking about? He spends the rest of the chapter talking about individual scientists and their personalities.
    The feeling of contradiction continues elsewhere. The author clearly emphasized the fact that the UK was not some pokey little island, but rather the focal point of an empire that spanned 1/4 of the globe and ruled 1/5 of its people. He illustrated the immense economic might and sprawling trade networks of the UK, but then never went back to the role the colonies or the dominions played, beyond the odd mention.

    Also, the author would occasionally call out the political affiliation of certain individuals in what often felt like partisan bickering; with Labour and academics being portrayed as hypocritical and counterproductive compared to the 'Mighty Whitey' of the Conservatives and Peers. It could very well be true, but the way the author went about it left a bad taste in my mouth.

    All in all, not a great book. I didn't really learn anything I hadn't already learned about the UK during WWII that I hadn't already learned the broad strokes of.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page