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Take the plunge! Okay!
Feb 24, 2007



Death Hamster posted:

"Gilgamesh in the Outback" by Robert Silverberg

That's the one, thank you

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Mister Kingdom
Dec 14, 2005

And the tears that fall
On the city wall
Will fade away
With the rays of morning light

Just a tip for everyone:


Try to give a timeframe of when you read the story/book you're asking about. Just saying "I read this when I was a kid" doesn't help if we don't know how old you are.

ErisEsoteric
Oct 25, 2005
Einmal ist keinmal.

I'm looking for a book that I would have read in 6th grade, around 1996. All I remember is a pretty vague plotline. It took place in a dystopian future affected by global warming so that it was really hot and everyone wore air conditioned suits. One of the main characters had a weed problem in his front yard, and he sprayed the weeds with radioactive pesticide and then the weeds came to life and killed his whole family. Another character died and went to some sort of earth-like afterlife, and she just wanted to have sex, except no one had any genitalia in the afterlife. Another character in the afterlife is fixated on going back in time- the original afterlife consisted of the 80's generation, then he killed himself and went back to the 50's generation, killed himself again, went to the 20's, and so on until he tried to find God.

Sorry I don't know more and it sounds completely ridiculous, but it is driving me crazy.

ActionPhilosopher
Apr 7, 2006

It's hard to hold the hand of anyone, who is reaching for the sky just to surrender.

I recently saw the movie "I Am Legend", and it reminded me of a book I read in high school (but not the book by Richard Matheson). It might just be a short story or novella. Anyways, its about a man, who is locked/sequestered in a garden. He is allowed to request, and will receive any book or material he wants, but he isn't allowed any human contact. He is totally isolated. The story follows the various stages the man goes through as he goes insane from the lack of human interaction. I think the story was written around the turn of the century, but I could be wrong about this. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Action Jacktion
Jun 3, 2003


ActionPhilosopher posted:

I recently saw the movie "I Am Legend", and it reminded me of a book I read in high school (but not the book by Richard Matheson). It might just be a short story or novella. Anyways, its about a man, who is locked/sequestered in a garden. He is allowed to request, and will receive any book or material he wants, but he isn't allowed any human contact. He is totally isolated. The story follows the various stages the man goes through as he goes insane from the lack of human interaction. I think the story was written around the turn of the century, but I could be wrong about this. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
"The Bet" by Anton Chekhov?

RyanNotBrian
Nov 28, 2005

Always five, acting as one. Dedicated! Inseparable! Invincible!

This has been killing me for years... the book is about a family, and an alien somehow comes to live with them and is their friend. The oldest daughter in the family is named 'Yolanda'. I would have read this around '82 - '83.

I specifically remember a sequence in the book where the mother took the alien to see a train, hoping to impress it with earth technology, but the alien pointed out things about the train that the mother didn't know.. however the alien didn't understand why people needed to use tissues.

At the end the alien had to leave the family, but left a glowing energy sphere with Yolanda, that could be used to contact him in the future or something.

anyone?

GrumpyMan
Nov 26, 2002
Big, fat party animal

I read this maybe 3-4 years ago, but it may be much older, and quite possibly a sci-fi classic. I can't remember the name or author for the life of me, and it is killing me.

Two scientists on a remote planet research station (one a murderer?) fall into a hole or gateway of some sort, and awake in a new universe, where they are given new bodies. This world is divided into different sectors, which have different physics/creatures etc...

I seem to remember centaurs in one, elves in another, and some sort of evil plant or flower in another. A giant bat is one of the characters, and is revealed at the end to be someone known the protagonist. Anyone?

Runcible Cat
May 28, 2007

A post? Never!!

Pillbug

GrumpyMan posted:

I read this maybe 3-4 years ago, but it may be much older, and quite possibly a sci-fi classic. I can't remember the name or author for the life of me, and it is killing me.

Two scientists on a remote planet research station (one a murderer?) fall into a hole or gateway of some sort, and awake in a new universe, where they are given new bodies. This world is divided into different sectors, which have different physics/creatures etc...

I seem to remember centaurs in one, elves in another, and some sort of evil plant or flower in another. A giant bat is one of the characters, and is revealed at the end to be someone known the protagonist. Anyone?
Jack Chalker, Midnight at the Well of Souls. First in a series.

GrumpyMan
Nov 26, 2002
Big, fat party animal

/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

As soon as I read your answer I felt even dumber for not having remembered that was it.

Merry New Year to you!

cyrenacius
Aug 13, 2004


We'll see if anybody recognizes this:

It's a short story about New York in the early 1900s where some young suitor is in love with some girl but she's leaving that night for Europe and he won't be able to propose to her. He talks with his rich dad who tells him there's no such thing as fate but the son disagrees and they bet that he won't be able to marry her. But then when he's going with the girl to the docks there's a massive traffic jam and they spend the whole night in the cab and he finally gets the chance to propose. Then the next day the father concedes that fate brought him the wife of his dreams but it ends with him paying his friends for deliberately setting up the traffic jam to give his son the chance to propose.

I read this in a high school English class and I want to say it's O. Henry but maybe that's just from the setting.

Cosmik Slop
Oct 9, 2007

What's a hole doing in my TARDIS?




Yeah, that sounds like O. Henry all right. A little research turns up "Mammon and the Archer"-- seems spot on.

XenoWolf
Apr 26, 2003
Mr. Sotch

Ok, here's an oddball one. When I was in Middle School (around 1991-1992) I remember reading a sci-fi trilogy that revolved around a dying out group of "blood knights" or something, and the things I remember from the book series was about a sword that was enabled by blood - it ran off of the wielder's blood. If you were one of the ones able to wield it, things worked fine. If you weren't it would kill you instead of operating properly.

cyrenacius
Aug 13, 2004


The Tao Jones posted:

Yeah, that sounds like O. Henry all right. A little research turns up "Mammon and the Archer"-- seems spot on.

Thank you very much, kind sir!

XenoWolf
Apr 26, 2003
Mr. Sotch

XenoWolf posted:

Ok, here's an oddball one. When I was in Middle School (around 1991-1992) I remember reading a sci-fi trilogy that revolved around a dying out group of "blood knights" or something, and the things I remember from the book series was about a sword that was enabled by blood - it ran off of the wielder's blood. If you were one of the ones able to wield it, things worked fine. If you weren't it would kill you instead of operating properly.

Another thing I remember is the story was revolving around a last child able to wield the sword, and how he was hidden away. The character was said to have "flame red hair and ice blue eyes" - anyone else ever read them?

fritz
Jul 26, 2003



XenoWolf posted:

Ok, here's an oddball one. When I was in Middle School (around 1991-1992) I remember reading a sci-fi trilogy that revolved around a dying out group of "blood knights" or something, and the things I remember from the book series was about a sword that was enabled by blood - it ran off of the wielder's blood. If you were one of the ones able to wield it, things worked fine. If you weren't it would kill you instead of operating properly.

Star of the Guardians by Margaret Weis?

palatka
Apr 4, 2003

by Ralp


I've got a story that I have been wondering about for years. I vaguely remember reading it in school.

It goes like this: a guy finds a race of humanoids and these humanoids are traveling through time and planting weapons throughout human history. These weapons cause war and violence so the protagonist removes them and humanity becomes a lot more peaceful. Then after a few years, alien invade and humans are helpless to stop them.

Anyone know what that's from?

Edit: I read it about 8-9 years ago. I think it was a short story maybe.

palatka fucked around with this message at 18:15 on Jan 5, 2008

XenoWolf
Apr 26, 2003
Mr. Sotch

fritz posted:

Star of the Guardians by Margaret Weis?

Wow! That's it! For a while I thought I was the only one to ever have heard of let alone read this series. I also didn't know of the 4th book.

Ulalume
Mar 2, 2007

The only hope you have is to accept the fact that you're already dead.


This is a fairly recent book. It's based off the idea that so long as someone alive remembers you, you still exist in some way. After people died, they went off to have a sort of second life in this typical city. Suddenly, they start disappearing, as does the city, at a rapid rate.

Meanwhile, in the world of the living, this plague is killing off every living thing. There's a group of three people in Antarctica but they are totally cut off, supplies are dwindling and so are they. I think it's two men and a woman and I'm pretty sure her name is Amy. I cannot for the life of me remember the name of the book, so if anyone can help, I'd be much obliged.

Runcible Cat
May 28, 2007

A post? Never!!

Pillbug

Ulalume posted:

This is a fairly recent book. It's based off the idea that so long as someone alive remembers you, you still exist in some way. After people died, they went off to have a sort of second life in this typical city. Suddenly, they start disappearing, as does the city, at a rapid rate.

Meanwhile, in the world of the living, this plague is killing off every living thing. There's a group of three people in Antarctica but they are totally cut off, supplies are dwindling and so are they. I think it's two men and a woman and I'm pretty sure her name is Amy. I cannot for the life of me remember the name of the book, so if anyone can help, I'd be much obliged.
The Brief History of the Dead by Kevin Brockmeier. Thanks for reminding me of it; I'd meant to get hold of a copy and forgot!

Ulalume
Mar 2, 2007

The only hope you have is to accept the fact that you're already dead.


LittleSunshine posted:

The Brief History of the Dead by Kevin Brockmeier. Thanks for reminding me of it; I'd meant to get hold of a copy and forgot!

Thank you so very much!

McNutty
Feb 25, 2007

Forum cheer squad sez: "Cheer the fuck up your avatar is depressing you left-wing commie ass-smoker. For fuck's sake. Jessus."

I read this book about a decade ago. It seems like the book could have been old even then though. I believe it is young adult fiction.
A small group of children are locked in some remote location with a machine. If they dance or perform for the machine it releases food. All sorts of mini-Machiavellian conflicts ensue. This description sounds crazy now that I have written it down. Any suggestion?

Runcible Cat
May 28, 2007

A post? Never!!

Pillbug

McNutty posted:

I read this book about a decade ago. It seems like the book could have been old even then though. I believe it is young adult fiction.
A small group of children are locked in some remote location with a machine. If they dance or perform for the machine it releases food. All sorts of mini-Machiavellian conflicts ensue. This description sounds crazy now that I have written it down. Any suggestion?
House of Stairs by William Sleator. drat I'm on a roll here! (It's based on Skinnerian conditioning, hence the "dancing".)

McNutty
Feb 25, 2007

Forum cheer squad sez: "Cheer the fuck up your avatar is depressing you left-wing commie ass-smoker. For fuck's sake. Jessus."

LittleSunshine posted:

House of Stairs by William Sleator. drat I'm on a roll here! (It's based on Skinnerian conditioning, hence the "dancing".)

You do fine work and I thank you.

Technogeek
Sep 9, 2002

by FactsAreUseless


Back when I was in elementary school (late 1980s), I read a children's book that revolved around various mythological figures fighting to save Earth from an alien invasion. The only part I remember clearly was that Baba Yaga was a fan of Star Trek. I've been trying to remember what book that was for a while; it keeps bugging me.

Also, there was a book recommendation I came across on SA some time ago -- a fantasy novel (possibly series) revolving around some turn-of-the-century scientists who wind up in a world where magic is real, and manage to figure out the underlying laws that govern it. If anyone knows what I'm talking about, I'd kind of like to find the book(s) and see if it's any good.

NJ Deac
Apr 6, 2006


Here's mine, posted on another thread that sorta died out:

It's a sci-fi type series I read in jr. high or so in the mid 90s. It's about a guy who ends up in a world of the dead when some ghost girl saves him from being killed by a robber. The girl died in like the 70s or so, and used to live in the bedroom the guy lives in now, so she's way out of touch, and the series revolves around them trying to get him back to the living.

The world is inhabited by dead people who are trying to get to their final rest, and there are some bad guys who are somehow harvesting this mist stuff to force their way into the after-afterlife. The only scene I clearly remember is the live guy and the dead girl falling in a river, and they have to sorta give each other mouth-to-mouth underwater so he can avoid drowning. I thought the series was called Ghostworld or something, but that doesn't bring anything up on the internet search engines.

Been bugging me for a while now - any ideas?

dumby
Oct 25, 2007


I read a short story a few years ago written as an incredibly convoluted recipe for a traditional, and fictional, french dish. I can't remember the name or author, and hours of googling has been proven fruitless.

I could've sworn the title was 'The Recipe' and was written by a traditional and well know European author, but if this were the case, you'd think the search would have been easier.

In short, the story described a traditional feast prepared in a french village that included most of the population in a detailed, complex, and epic recipe. It may have also had a copious amount of references and footnotes, but that may be another short story I can't think of at the time.

Does anyone know the story in question? I don't know much more about it, but feel free to ask questions and it may jog my memory.

AuntieJem
Jan 12, 2008

Hey guys!
I talked a manically depressed man into SUICIDE over a game of MONOPOLY on CHRISTMAS-
FUCKING-EVE!

Guys?

In a futuristic society people are made to be 100% average. Anyone with higher than average IQ is shocked every time they think complex thoughts, skinny people wear weights, etc. At the end of this short story, a couple break into a news broadcasting station, kill everyone during live TV and do some sort of dance before blowing their brains out. Any ideas? Appreciate the help.

Runcible Cat
May 28, 2007

A post? Never!!

Pillbug

AuntieJem posted:

In a futuristic society people are made to be 100% average. Anyone with higher than average IQ is shocked every time they think complex thoughts, skinny people wear weights, etc. At the end of this short story, a couple break into a news broadcasting station, kill everyone during live TV and do some sort of dance before blowing their brains out. Any ideas? Appreciate the help.
Harrison Bergeron by Kurt Vonnegut.

AuntieJem
Jan 12, 2008

Hey guys!
I talked a manically depressed man into SUICIDE over a game of MONOPOLY on CHRISTMAS-
FUCKING-EVE!

Guys?

LittleSunshine posted:

Harrison Bergeron by Kurt Vonnegut.

Thank you, like all the other posters I really appreciate your help.

DeimosRising
Oct 17, 2005

íHola SEA!




Seksiness posted:

I'm looking for some help finding a piece of prose.

It was a long time ago so some of my descriptions may be incorrect but the poem was written about (two?) towers in a field of wheat/soya in a dystopian society. All I can clearly remember was part of the poem being written from within a canteen in one of the towers. I believe it was part of an anthology of prose (called Brave New World) that was part of the GCSE cirriculum, although we never studied that particular piece

okay are you looking for a poem or a piece of prose? your post is extremely confusing in that regard.

Reverend Werewolf
Aug 14, 2004
I got a fevah

This was a story from a collection of short horror stories for children, published in the nineties (Note: It was NOT one of the Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark series)

The story I am trying to find is set in the Appalachians or Ozarks, an isolated part of America. it's told from the perspective of a little girl whose mother has just died of a wasting disease, but returned as a vampire and is draining the children of the community. One night, her father and the rest of the townspeople go out to find and stake the vampire, leaving the girl alone with her baby sister. Her mother returns to the house and the girl has to spend the night trying to resist the call of her mother, who scratches at the window, begging to be let in.

The name of the story might be something like "Mama" or "Momma" and is written in dialect.

If it helps, I think the book also had another story about a vampire looking for a cure, and ending up being turned into a werewolf.

Seksiness
Aug 24, 2006
I screwed your grandma and all I got was this lousy custom title... and herpes

DeimosRising posted:

okay are you looking for a poem or a piece of prose? your post is extremely confusing in that regard.

To be quite honest I am not entirely sure. It was in an anthology with work by Betjemin, Owen and Sassoon (amongst others) so I would have thought poetry, but I have a feeling it read more like a story without the rhythym I would attribute to poetry. I was kind of hedging my bets as my memory is very blurry and it's not helped that this has been bugging me for a few years now.

The anthology in question was split into sections. Of which the war poetry was the section we studied and this other piece was in another section called Brave New World that contained material of a utopian/dystopian slant. (It would have been part of the GCSE syllabus in the year 2000, I think edexcel). I know it had Inexpensive Progress by Betjemin in that section. All I remember for certain about the piece was the towers in a field of some crop and there being a canteen, possibly with a PA system telling people what to think.

Unkempt
May 24, 2003

Sexual Air Supply




Seksiness posted:

I know it had Inexpensive Progress by Betjemin in that section. All I remember for certain about the piece was the towers in a field of some crop and there being a canteen, possibly with a PA system telling people what to think.

John Betjeman posted:

The Planster's Vision
(by Sir John Betjeman)

Cut down that timber! Bells, too many and strong,
Pouring their music through the branches bare,
From moon-white church-towers down the windy air
Have pealed the centuries out with Evensong.
Remove those cottages, a huddled throng!
Too many babies have been born in there,
Too many coffins, bumping down the stair,
Carried the old their garden paths along.

I have a Vision of The Future, chum,
The worker's flats in fields of soya beans
Tower up like silver pencils, score on score:
And Surging Millions hear the Challenge come
From microphones in communal canteens
"No Right! No wrong! All's perfect, evermore."

Seksiness
Aug 24, 2006
I screwed your grandma and all I got was this lousy custom title... and herpes

Unkempt posted:

Putting my mind at rest

Excellent, I didn't recognise the first verse initially but it is most definitely the right one. Thank you.

Harkano
Jun 5, 2005



A trilogy I got from my local library maybe a decade ago. A fantasy world where the main character was a lawyer of some sort - except trials were sword duels either to first blood or to death. I think the guy was really old and relatively successful (You had to be to live long in the profession).

Later in the trilogy he taught himself how to be a bowyer and ended up doing something really creepy like make a bow out of the thigh bones and flesh of his own dead nephew. There was also a lot of talk about siege weaponry.

I think the main city was populated by a certain race and ended up being attacked by the surrounding savage tribes. One of this tribe entered the city and eventually ended up working on their siege weaponry and then either did or didn't take it back to his tribe (I forget).

Anyone help?

Runcible Cat
May 28, 2007

A post? Never!!

Pillbug

Harkano posted:

Anyone help?
Me again; I love the chance to show off! I reckon you want KJ Parker's Fencer trilogy; Colours in the Steel, Belly of the Bow and, um, something else.

Ninja edit: The Proof House is the 3rd, I think.

calandryll
Apr 25, 2003

Ask me where I do my best drinking!



Pillbug

Not really a book but a show about books. This was probably the mid to late 80s. There was a show on PBS, at least in Maryland, of a guy that drew scenes from different books. I remember he did The Dark is Rising and if I'm not mistaken the image that he did was one of the covers for it. I read one of the books he did, I can't remember too much detail since it was such a long time ago. For some reason time travel and a cellar are involved, but I could be wrong.

If anyone knows the name of the show that would be awesome.

Nrapture
Feb 8, 2007


calandryll posted:

Not really a book but a show about books. This was probably the mid to late 80s. There was a show on PBS, at least in Maryland, of a guy that drew scenes from different books. I remember he did The Dark is Rising and if I'm not mistaken the image that he did was one of the covers for it. I read one of the books he did, I can't remember too much detail since it was such a long time ago. For some reason time travel and a cellar are involved, but I could be wrong.

If anyone knows the name of the show that would be awesome.

More Books from Cover to Cover, hosted by John Robbins

calandryll
Apr 25, 2003

Ask me where I do my best drinking!



Pillbug

Nrapture posted:

More Books from Cover to Cover, hosted by John Robbins

I thought there was Robin somewhere in the name. Thanks.

Edit: The Root Cellar was the book I was thinking of.

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Harkano
Jun 5, 2005



LittleSunshine posted:

Me again; I love the chance to show off! I reckon you want KJ Parker's Fencer trilogy; Colours in the Steel, Belly of the Bow and, um, something else.

Ninja edit: The Proof House is the 3rd, I think.

I both love and hate you for getting this so fast.

Also HOLY CRAP

Wikipedia posted:

In reality, Parker is a pseudonym of the British writer Tom Holt

I read these books years ago and just got into Holt in the last year or so and I love him. My mind is broken. Damned authors and their psuedonyms.

Thanks so much

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