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Pontius Pilate
Jul 25, 2006

Crucify, Whale, Crucify

Thought this would make a good addition, pretty much the title of the forum, what did you just finish and how did you like it?

For myself, I just finished Alice in Wonderland and I liked it a lot more than I was expecting. It's a very fun and short read.

Just thought of this, if you'd like feel free to add what you plan on reading next, for myself it is The Trial.

Pontius Pilate fucked around with this message at 01:15 on Nov 16, 2006

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SHARIA LAW SCHOOL
Aug 25, 2005

By Crom! These instruments are AMAZING!



Bleak Gremlin

The Great War series by Harry Turtledove. Alternate history providing a look at how World War I might have looked had the south won the Civil War. Turtledove is kind of repetitive but he is quickly becoming my favorite author. I've read about 10 books of his and I'm always looking forward to the next one.

http://www.sfsite.com/~silverag/greatwar.html

El Axo Grande
Apr 2, 2005

by T. Finn


Just finished a few books

On the Road by Jack Kerouac, thus making me the first American male to have read this book AFTER turning 21.

The War of the End of the World by Mario Vargas Llosa which was probably the best historical fiction novel I ever read.

and

The Death of Artemio Cruz by Carlos Fuentes which was a little slow, but fascinating for how it varies between all three types of narrators. Yes, you heard me right. A third of the novel is second person.

Mr.Mojo
Sep 11, 2001

Nascita di Venere

I just finished Chronicles Volume 1 by Bob Dylan. It was pretty good, but I wouldn't reccomend it if you're not a huge fan of Dylan. He doesn't really say anything about his music, or feelings on it. The book also skips around randomly each chapter, and for some reason doesn't mention certain things (what exactly was the crash, the name of the album he spent a chapter describing). If you don't know about Dylan, you won't get much from it.

Now I'm reading Bob Dylan: Essential Interviews by Jonothan Cott and it's great. The interviews really show what he was like in person, how he prepared for concerts, and what he was thinking at the time.

bazooka_tooth
Jul 8, 2004

The police can't catch you if you were never there

I just finished Colson Whitehead's The Intuitionist. A very good book which I wouldn't hesitate to recommend. I didn't like it as much as John Henry Days, but that's by no means a slight.

Bubbletime
Jul 1, 2006

by Ozma


I just finished The New York Trilogy by Paul Auster and it was really good. Three surreal and well written detective stories.

Scott Forstall
Aug 16, 2003

MMM THAT FAUX LEATHER


I just finished Heart of Darkness, by Conrad and The Wasp Factory, by Banks.

Well, those were for fun. I have tons of school-assigned reading on the side.

uggy
Aug 6, 2006

You must leave the World Series at Game 6. For that is when the spell ends and your coach becomes a pumpkin.


I just finished The Life and Extraordinary Adventures of Private Ivan Chonkin. The Russian version of Catch-22, I think it's extremely well written and very funny. Voinovich was able to make me laugh more than I ever have for a book, which is awesome. Every single part of it was good, and now I want to read the sequel.

GrandmaParty
Jan 31, 2003

Last seen trapped on Hell Island with only a flintlock, 8 pellets, and no pants.


Biscuit Hider

I'm always reading 3 or 4 books at a time.

I just finished Bangkok Babylon, an anthology of short narratives chronicling 25 of Bangkok's most famous ex-patriates. While the beginning of the book was awesome (they interview the basis for Colonel Kurtz), some of the ex-pats he declared as "infamous" actually turned out to be quite mundane and boring.

And on the heels of that, I finally finished Double Billing, a mishmash of several lawyers' experiences in a big firm environment into one life. It gave me a good idea of what a big firm litigator does but the story as a whole just doesn't feel believable.

In about two days, I'll be finishing A Nontechnical Introduction to Game Theory.

reflir
Oct 29, 2004

So don't. Stay here with me.

I haven't finished anything in a while. I've been reading "The wind-up bird chronicle" by Haruki Murakami but I only read like 2 or 3 chapters a day, while I usually finish books in a day or two. "Hard-boiled wonderland and the end of the world" (which I read a while ago) definitely had a more intriguing plot.

WET BUTT
Mar 11, 2005

Wet butt is cool dude man, check him on tumblr @ tlgrmsiam - Marc Bolan at a rap concert


I just finished The Sailor Who Fell From Grace With The Sea by Yukio Mishima and I'll have to check out more of his books. "Spring Snow" has been on my to read list forever.

Speaking of which, I have a worn out copy of Temple of Dawn(#3 in the series) I haven't read. Is it ok if I read that before Spring Snow or should I just pick up Spring Snow and finish that first?

nnamaste
Jun 15, 2005

by elpintogrande


I just finished The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac, and I just about found my new favorite author. It really relates to me, and reminds me of my adventures in the woods as a kid.

The New Black
Oct 1, 2006

Had it, lost it.

reflir posted:

I haven't finished anything in a while. I've been reading "The wind-up bird chronicle" by Haruki Murakami but I only read like 2 or 3 chapters a day, while I usually finish books in a day or two. "Hard-boiled wonderland and the end of the world" (which I read a while ago) definitely had a more intriguing plot.
I read this a little while ago, but it didn't really make any sense to me.

I just finished Crime And Punishment. It was a good read, although a little heavy going at times. Just before that it was Huxley's Brave New World. Distopian futures are awesome.

Edit: Oh and to the guys discovering Kerouac, I'd like to recommend one of his less well known works, Lonesome Traveller, which I also recently finished.

fritz
Jul 26, 2003



I just got done with Soldier of Sidon, by Gene Wolfe, the long-delayed sequel to Soldier of the Mists and Soldier of Arete (also published as Latro of the Mists).

It was disappointing, especially as compared to the first two books. Wolfe did a pretty good job portraying classical Egypt but the whole thing seemed pointless. I'll re-read it in about six months to see if I pick up anything new.

vivisectvnv
Aug 5, 2003


White Noise by Don DeLillo

Excellent first 150+ pages, but then it sort of wanes off and the real meat of the book shines through, which is unfortunate because i loved the little vignette structure that preceded it, mostly because i'm a sucker for character driven novels.

But i was pretty happy with the read, especially since i'm slowly getting my feet wet with contemporary fiction. I can imagine this book being pretty good fodder for a screenplay...

207-563-5532
Oct 20, 2004



I just finished Bridge of Birds, a re-read of Drawing of the Three, Son of a Witch, and The Prestige.

Bridge of Birds was good, kind of like a noir detective novel set in ancient china where magic and gods and ghosts are real. Very fun and fast.

Drawing of the Three is the second of Steven King's Dark Tower series, and if you are going to read it start with the first book. It happens to be my favorite out of all of them, where not enough is specified to make the mystical aspect corny, and there is enough that is not known about the characters that you can see how they are being developed.

Son of a Witch is a sequel to Wicked! which is a retelling of the wizard of Oz from the witch's point of view. It is very socio-political just like the first one, but I liked it less, mostly because it seems like the finer points of the book whiz by, and all of a sudden you are somewhere else trying to get an impression of the state of mind of the main character.

The Prestige was a very good book, told in sections from the different characters' points of view, usually in the form of a memoir or a diary. It is about magicians and recently was adapted to a film with Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman, but I didn't see that so I have no idea how true to the book it was. The language is dry and matter-of-fact, and but I felt that it made the fantastic things they talked about more impressive rather than less. It reminded me of the mundane way some of the things in Journey to the Center of the Earth were referred to.

207-563-5532 fucked around with this message at 23:21 on Nov 15, 2006

Romper Billson
Jul 14, 2005

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volley'd and thunder'd

The last three books I read for pleasure, in reverse order, were:

Slaughterhouse Five, which as I mentioned in the classics thread was the first Vonnegut I ever read only because since it was such a 'classic' I thought it would be inaccessible. I thought it was great, and was kicking myself for not getting to it earlier.

Dracula, by Bram Stoker, the Penguin Critical Edition. Turns out I didn't like it nearly as much as I did when I was younger, because I got irritated by nearly all of Van Helsing's dialog and the epistolary nature of the book. I found the climax of the book extremely unsatisfying, too.

Red Storm Rising, by Tom Clancy. I'm not a huge Tom Clancy fan but this is an early book that's really about the process of fighting a war rather than espionage or anything that's politically high-stakes but very small-scale. As such there isn't really a strong main character and it's extremely straightforward (mindless, even). I enjoy it only because I read so much dry academic text that I love the cheap thrill of alternate histories in which there are massive tank battles, air raids on American carrier groups and submarine chases all in the same book.

bazooka_tooth
Jul 8, 2004

The police can't catch you if you were never there

vivisectvnv posted:

White Noise by Don DeLillo

Excellent first 150+ pages, but then it sort of wanes off and the real meat of the book shines through, which is unfortunate because i loved the little vignette structure that preceded it, mostly because i'm a sucker for character driven novels.

But i was pretty happy with the read, especially since i'm slowly getting my feet wet with contemporary fiction. I can imagine this book being pretty good fodder for a screenplay...

Not enough to make a discussion thread about, but did you interpret the Airborne Chemical Event as a mid-life crisis?

Also, Professor of Hitler Studies, and the Nuns who worship JFK, were both hilarious, and in tune with the mid-life crisis theory.

Modern Life Is War
Aug 17, 2006

I'm not just eye candy

Casino Royale by Ian Fleming. Introduces sex, gambling, and tobacco addicted MI6 spy James Bond as he goes after KGB spies across Europe.

Eustace Tilly
Jul 2, 2006

Title text (up to 250 chars before image tag)

vivisectvnv posted:

White Noise by Don DeLillo

Excellent first 150+ pages, but then it sort of wanes off and the real meat of the book shines through, which is unfortunate because i loved the little vignette structure that preceded it, mostly because i'm a sucker for character driven novels.

But i was pretty happy with the read, especially since i'm slowly getting my feet wet with contemporary fiction. I can imagine this book being pretty good fodder for a screenplay...

This was actually in the preliminary stages of being made into a movie, but was derailed because of various problems (including the title being taken by that stupid Micheal Keaton movie).

vivisectvnv
Aug 5, 2003


bazooka_tooth posted:

Not enough to make a discussion thread about, but did you interpret the Airborne Chemical Event as a mid-life crisis?

Also, Professor of Hitler Studies, and the Nuns who worship JFK, were both hilarious, and in tune with the mid-life crisis theory.

Yes to the first question, although i guess it could be seen as the mere fact of facing one's mortality and the sum of your life

I'm not completely in agreement with the last two comments, especially since he started his career during a timeline before the book was written.

I loving loved Heinrich though...

Penguin Patrol
Mar 3, 2005

I feel Euphoric!




I've been going through Philip K. Dick's novels recently and I just finished The Man in the High Castle. There were some outstanding individual scenes in the book, but it was very disappointing as a whole. The ending just leaves everything hanging without resolving the plot, and while I guess that's okay for some books, I didn't really think it worked for this one. After reading some of his other stuff, I'm definitely starting to see a pattern in his storytelling approach where he has lots of great individual chapters with some of the best characterization I've ever read, paired with an overall plot that's considerably less entertaining.

maxnmona
Mar 16, 2005

if you start with drums, you have to end with dynamite.

The Young Homer posted:

I just finished Bridge of Birds, a re-read of Drawing of the Three, Son of a Witch, and The Prestige.

Bridge of Birds was good, kind of like a noir detective novel set in ancient china where magic and gods and ghosts are real. Very fun and fast.

Ah, one of my favorite books. I'm glad you liked my recommendation

SHARIA LAW SCHOOL
Aug 25, 2005

By Crom! These instruments are AMAZING!



Bleak Gremlin

Penguin Patrol posted:

I've been going through Philip K. Dick's novels recently and I just finished The Man in the High Castle. There were some outstanding individual scenes in the book, but it was very disappointing as a whole. The ending just leaves everything hanging without resolving the plot, and while I guess that's okay for some books, I didn't really think it worked for this one.

There was supposed to be a sequel and in fact it was started but was never finished.

Penguin Patrol
Mar 3, 2005

I feel Euphoric!




perceptual_set posted:

There was supposed to be a sequel and in fact it was started but was never finished.

I bought The Shifting Realities of Philip K. Dick which is a collection of essays he wrote about a bunch of different stuff. There are two very short writings on The Man in the High Castle, and it also has the two completed chapters from the sequel. I haven't read them yet, but I'm scared to start just because of my obsessive desire for closure.

EndOfTheWorld
Jul 22, 2004

I'm an excellent critic! I automatically know when someone's done a bad job. Before you ask, yes it's a mixed blessing.

Cybernetic Crumb

The Two Deaths of Christopher Martin by William Golding of Lord of the Flies fame. A challenging but fulfilling piece of literature about a man's life in retrospect, and of how his mind reacts to adversity. Pretty darn good twist at the end too.

The Neon Wilderness by Nelson Algren. A collection of short stories by one of America's most undervalued writers. Stories about criminals, hustlers, thugs, druggies... Algren's characters are familiar while avoiding cliche.

stawk Archer
Jun 19, 2004

by angerbot


I also just read Harry Turtledove's first Great War book. It was okay.

Also read Ivan's War, which is kind of a soldier's eye view and social history of the Eastern front from THAT side. It was okay.

Young Al Capone
Feb 1, 2006

All I've got is this zip gun.

Killing Yourself To Live by Chuck Klosterman was fantastic. The guy drove all over America to see the spots where rock legends died. This guy has an AWESOME writing style.

Broken Summers by Henry Rollins was also very good. It chronicles the making and touring of the "Rise Above" compilation, which was a benefit for the West Memphis Three. If you ever wanted to know what Henry would do if he hung out with Lemmy, this is the book for you.

Morgenstern
Sep 11, 2001
Ich bin allein zur Nacht gegangen
Die späten Vögel nicht mehr sangen
Sah Sonnenkinder im Gewimmel und so
rief ich in den gestirnten Himmel.


I just, well not just since I finished it in late August and have been on Les Miserables ever since, finished Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut. That was a great book. Before that I read The Odyssey and The Iliad, the author of which I should hope everyone here knows. Both were real good.

Vermain
Sep 5, 2006




I just finished Salvatore's Road of the Patriarch. He's a good fantasy author, but the ending feels horribly tacked on and excessive. I get this feeling he's finally reached the point in his writing career where he finishes off a book, looks back at it, and says, "I should really put a socially relevant message into my novel." That's not a bad thing, but he needs to weave it into the actual story more.

Don Quixote is probably next on my list. I got really near to the end five or six months ago and just stopped for some reason.

SNAKES N CAKES
Sep 6, 2005

DAVID GAIDER
Lead Writer


I started Laurence Sterne's The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy in late 2005, and I finally finished it about a month ago.

I thought it worked great as a historical as well as a literary experiment - the storytelling is based on constant digression, so there's actually not much of a plot in there, and rather a string of anecdotes.
But this works well with the generally playful tone of the writing, and the end result is an extremely entertaining and enjoyable book

goatmouth
Oct 24, 2005


Soon Mr. Moon will be shining bright so the best day ever will last all night.


SYlvia plath

goatmouth fucked around with this message at 20:21 on Jul 7, 2009

the black husserl
Feb 25, 2005



I just finished Thomas Pynchon's V and now I have to read it a couple more times just so I can fully understand it.

Debbie Metallica
Jun 7, 2001



Marie Antoinette: The Journey: Antonia Fraser. Sophia Coppola's movie was based on it and while I have no intention of seeing that movie until it's out on video I was at least interested in the book itself. I'd read another version of Antoinette's life, To the Scaffold, by Carolly Erickson and wanted to see how it measured up. Both seem pretty good though I prefer Fraser's work. I'm into historical stuff and am looking around for a book about Josephine Beauharnais next.

jklfdsa
Oct 30, 2006
blah

Acts of Faith by Philip Caputo. It took me forever (I've had it since before it won the Pulitzer!), but I finally did, and it was wonderful. Incredibly satisfying and informative about the Sudan crisis... Must give money to Amnesty International...

Crow Enthusiast
Feb 5, 2002



I recently read Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe which I liked a lot. It's set in Nigeria around the early 20th century (I think) and it's about the clash between the traditional way of life and the encroaching of Western civilization. Very interesting look into a culture that is totally unknown to me.

Frog Teeth
Sep 7, 2006

u laugh because im different i laugh because ur all the same

Last book I finished was The Stranger by Camus. I really liked it despite wanting to punch Meursault a few times. His character did grow on me a bit towards the end though. May have to reread it someday.

Reading The Shining by Stephen King right now. I'm about halfway through it.

Lawnie
Sep 5, 2006

That is my helmet
Give it back
you are a lion
It doesn't even fit


Grimey Drawer

Finished Closing Time by Joseph Heller. The sequel to Catch-22. Oh, by the way, it was so bad, I'm considering making a smiley. Please, never read it. Ever. No matter how much you loved Yossarian the first time, he's just a creepy old man in Closing Time.

CUM CURMUDGEON
Feb 6, 2004

by DocEvil


Naked Lunch by Burroughs. Great read, but I was slightly put off by it starting off more structured and then spiraling into chaos.

Reading My Education now (pretty short, will only take me a few days) and I've requested The Adding Machine and Cities of the Red Night from my school's library.

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SHARIA LAW SCHOOL
Aug 25, 2005

By Crom! These instruments are AMAZING!



Bleak Gremlin

stawk Archer posted:

I also just read Harry Turtledove's first Great War book. It was okay.

If you're still interested, I promise it gets better. The first one was pretty slow.

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