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The "What Are You Reading" Thread

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  • KanaKana Registered User regular
    Generally the further away from the original Battle Royale novel you get, the more it misses the point

    History is an account, mostly false, of events, mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers, mostly knaves, and soldiers, mostly fools.
  • chrisnlchrisnl Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    Kana wrote: »
    Generally the further away from the original Battle Royale novel you get, the more it misses the point

    I have only seen the first (only? not sure) Battle Royale movie, and that was years ago. Is there in fact a point beyond horrific violence and maybe some teen rebellion?

    -edit- extraneous apostrophe and bad spelling, whoops

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  • BlazeFireBlazeFire Registered User regular
    Kana wrote: »
    Generally the further away from the original Battle Royale novel you get, the more it misses the point

    There are more than one? Or do you mean language wise? I see now there is a manga as well. I don't think I need to see this stuff happening. The Walking Dead is gross enough for me sometimes.

  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Uee Citizen Record #2051 Über Star CitizenRegistered User regular
    The manga is really gore porn.

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  • lonelyahavalonelyahava One day, I will be able to say to myself "I am beautiful and I am perfect just the way I am"Registered User regular
    Tomanta wrote: »
    Turkson wrote: »
    And Book 10 of Wheel of Time is done.

    I think I may skip this one in any future rereads that I do. Only one thing of significance happens in this book and it's in the very last chapter.

    Come on,
    Spoiler:

    You should keep going!

    It gets better! Seriously! so much better!

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  • CaptainNemoCaptainNemo Ascension. Ascension. Hallelujah. Registered User regular
    Oh man, oh man, the next Dark Tower book comes out Tuesday.

    Raoul Duke wrote:
    There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. Some kind of high powered mutant never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.

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  • setrajonassetrajonas Registered User regular
    BlazeFire wrote: »
    I'm reading Battle Royale now. I read the Hunger Games because of well, everyone. The movie didn't really do it for me though the book was entertaining enough. I had heard how similar Battle Royale was and all that.

    I'm going to just spoiler this whole thing but note that I might spoil the Hunger Games as well as Battle Royale.
    Spoiler:

    The important thing to keep in mind re:Battle Royale vs. Hunger Games is that the two works were spawned by entirely different cultural values, and need to be examined as such, ie in broad strokes, Battle Royale is more a critique of the Japanese educational system whereas Hunger Games was written as a response to the similarities between reality shows and media coverage of war.

  • TurksonTurkson Near the mountains of ColoradoRegistered User regular
    Tomanta wrote: »
    Turkson wrote: »
    And Book 10 of Wheel of Time is done.

    I think I may skip this one in any future rereads that I do. Only one thing of significance happens in this book and it's in the very last chapter.

    Come on,
    Spoiler:

    You should keep going!

    It gets better! Seriously! so much better!

    Actually, it really does. I'm halfway through Book 11 and it's much, much better. I'm not sure if I ever made it this far into the series before.

    "You. Poet. Be sure to write this down."
  • MegaMan001MegaMan001 CRNA Boston, MARegistered User regular
    I've been reading the Nightside series by Simon Green, which I got into from reading the Dresden Short Stories in Mean Streets.

    It's, uh, okay. The story isn't actually all that interesting, but the 'world building' and uh, I don't know, 'rules' of the universe are supremely interesting.

    I am in the business of saving lives.

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  • HandgimpHandgimp Registered User, SolidSaints Handgimp regular
    MegaMan001 wrote: »
    I've been reading the Nightside series by Simon Green, which I got into from reading the Dresden Short Stories in Mean Streets.

    It's, uh, okay. The story isn't actually all that interesting, but the 'world building' and uh, I don't know, 'rules' of the universe are supremely interesting.

    The Nightside series kept me entertained, but it's not exactly domineering. It's like cotton candy for the brain.

  • CaptainNemoCaptainNemo Ascension. Ascension. Hallelujah. Registered User regular
    Kinda like the Dresden Files. It's a fun pulpy read, good for long trips or dull afternoons.

    Raoul Duke wrote:
    There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. Some kind of high powered mutant never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.

    I have a tumblr.
    Check it out.
  • BobCescaBobCesca Registered User regular
    Picked up a copy of Ash: A Secret History for not many pennies and shall be using that to make me feel better during the job hunting.

  • MegaMan001MegaMan001 CRNA Boston, MARegistered User regular
    Handgimp wrote: »
    MegaMan001 wrote: »
    I've been reading the Nightside series by Simon Green, which I got into from reading the Dresden Short Stories in Mean Streets.

    It's, uh, okay. The story isn't actually all that interesting, but the 'world building' and uh, I don't know, 'rules' of the universe are supremely interesting.

    The Nightside series kept me entertained, but it's not exactly domineering. It's like cotton candy for the brain.

    Yes, okay, that's how I wanted to describe it. I read it before bed and it's good enough.

    I really, really like the whole idea of Powers and Dominations being as powerful as people's belief in them (similar to Dresden, I guess?). And the other dimensions and time travel stuff is well done.

    On the other hand, that dude repeats himself a lot just like Butcher does in the Dresden files.

    Every 10 or so pages is a description of the Nightside, that at some point will explain that some person 'controls the Nightside inasmuch as anyone can.' That dude loves the word 'inasmuch'.

    Oh and the introduction of Suzie Shooter every time. Jesus, give that up.

    It's the same way how I can skip entire pages of the Dresden files cause it's the same description of his car, or his apartment I read in the last five books.

    I am in the business of saving lives.

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  • CroakerBCCroakerBC YorkRegistered User regular
    edited April 2012
    BobCesca wrote: »
    Picked up a copy of Ash: A Secret History for not many pennies and shall be using that to make me feel better during the job hunting.

    Ash is a very good book, and I'm always delighted to see it on someone else's reading list, but I'm not convinced it will make you feel better! Mind you, Mary Gentle does strong female protagonists very well, in both Ash and some of her other work, as well as solid plotting and rather a lot of swearing but it's...not exactly cheery throughout. That said, the medieval world seldom was. So hopefully you'll enjoy it.

    By the by, it has interstitital chapters which aren't necessary to the central narrative, but do provide a structure around it. I thought they were enjoyable and brought somethnig to the story, but I've talked it over with other people who actively hated the interstitials, and skipped them entirely. It didn't seem to cut into their enjoyment of the central text at all, so if you find the interstitials aren't for you, you've still got a (fairly huge) book to go through.

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  • Katsuhiro 1139Katsuhiro 1139 Dublin, IrelandRegistered User regular
    Know no Fear by Dan Abnett.

    He's a genius. He's a fucking genius. The entire book is written in the present tense, and against all odds it actually works. The immediacy of everything is brilliant.

    My favourite authors are George R.R. Martin, Phillip Pullman and Abnett, and of the three Abnett writes the best action by far. If you like military sci-fi, you need to read something of his.

    The Eisenhorn trilogy is a good start.

  • JacobkoshJacobkosh Gamble a stamp. I can show you how to be a real man!Super Moderator, Moderator mod
    Nothing against Abnett, but lots of books are written in the present tense.

  • Mike DangerMike Danger "Diane..." a place both wonderful and strangeRegistered User regular
    Polished off my reread of A Clash of Kings, was surprised by how much I'd forgotten (I remembered
    Spoiler:

    Onwards to Storm of Swords, which will be entirely new content!

  • Katsuhiro 1139Katsuhiro 1139 Dublin, IrelandRegistered User regular
    Jacobkosh wrote: »
    Nothing against Abnett, but lots of books are written in the present tense.

    I was drunk and enthusiastic when I posted this, ahem.




  • EchoEcho very gravitas Super Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited April 2012
    Now try a book in second person present tense with multiple characters.

    I'm looking at you, Charlie Stross.

    Echo on
  • poshnialloposhniallo Registered User regular
    Echo wrote: »
    Now try a book in second person present tense with multiple characters.

    I'm looking at you, Charlie Stross.

    What's that one with the MMO? Halting State? That was good.

    I get Charles Stross, Vernor Vinge, and Cory Doctorow mixed up, so I'm not sure which other ones of his I've read.

    I know I don't like Cory Doctorow and I can't remember much about the other two.

    I figure I could take a bear.
  • poshnialloposhniallo Registered User regular
    Just read The Meaning of Liff and Last Chance to See by Douglas Adams.

    The Meaning of Liff is hilarious observational comedy pretending to be a dictionary. But I think you have to be older, British, and educated to get a lot of the jokes.

    Thankfully...

    I figure I could take a bear.
  • pyromaniac221pyromaniac221 Registered User regular
    Just finished On Stranger Tides by Tim Powers. I enjoyed it a lot, and I'll probably look into more of his work in the future.

    Moving on to Hyperion now.

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  • ZedarZedar Registered User regular
    Been on something of a reading binge lately, managed to finish four books last week. First Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City, More Tales of the City and Further Tales of the city, which were all very strange but very entertaining. There are apparently four more books in this series but I needed to take a break before I overdosed. Then I read Daryl Gregory's The Devil's Alphabet which was even stranger, and had some very interesting ideas. I found the conclusion rather unsatisfying but otherwise an entertaining read. Now I've started on Clive Barker's Imajica (about 10% in, sort of starting to make some sense of what's going on).

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  • lonelyahavalonelyahava One day, I will be able to say to myself "I am beautiful and I am perfect just the way I am"Registered User regular
    So, after finally finishing my read through of WoT, I've decided to take a small break from fantasy.

    I'm finally starting "The Family" by Jeff Sharlett. The book about the Christian fundamentalism that is running our nation.

    Fun!

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  • EVOLEVOL Registered User regular
    I'm reading through A Scanner Darkly by Phillip K. Dick now. (Thanks, H/A!) It's pretty brilliant. The paranoia of the protagonist is portrayed really well and the drug trips are deliciously surreal.

    On the non-literature side, I finished Bad Samaritans By Ha-Joon Chang. I liked how it was written so that the average Economics noob like myself could understand it without making the reader feel like he/she is being treated like a 6 year old child.

    I'm about to get started on Raymond Chandler's The Big Sleep too. I love me some Film Noir. It's high time I started reading literature that influenced it.

  • EchoEcho very gravitas Super Moderator, Moderator mod
    Started a Banks re-read, and just now I saw this in my news feed. Glad I have a decent cover. :P

    playerofgames.jpg

  • RohanRohan Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    CroakerBC wrote: »
    BobCesca wrote: »
    Picked up a copy of Ash: A Secret History for not many pennies and shall be using that to make me feel better during the job hunting.

    Ash is a very good book, and I'm always delighted to see it on someone else's reading list, but I'm not convinced it will make you feel better! Mind you, Mary Gentle does strong female protagonists very well, in both Ash and some of her other work, as well as solid plotting and rather a lot of swearing but it's...not exactly cheery throughout. That said, the medieval world seldom was. So hopefully you'll enjoy it.

    By the by, it has interstitital chapters which aren't necessary to the central narrative, but do provide a structure around it. I thought they were enjoyable and brought somethnig to the story, but I've talked it over with other people who actively hated the interstitials, and skipped them entirely. It didn't seem to cut into their enjoyment of the central text at all, so if you find the interstitials aren't for you, you've still got a (fairly huge) book to go through.

    Ash is one of the weirder books that I've ever read - a resurgent group of Visigoths who took the name Carthage under a "permanent darkness", golems, "wild machines", eugenics, psychic powers and "living" pyramids amid an alternate version of Medieval Europe. Wtf. I haven't read it in years, a decade perhaps since it began it's first run on paperback, and though I enjoyed it I couldn't really wrap my head around it.

    Currently reading through the Hornblower series for the first time, and enjoying it (especially as a fan of Ioan Gruffudd in the shows). I know that Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey-Maturin series has mostly surpassed it now, but I'll read Hornblower first then move onto them.

    Other books read recently include -
    Commodork - Sordid Tales From a BBS Junkie by Rob O'Hara (good)
    Spying on Ireland: British Intelligence and Irish Neutrality during the Second World War by Eunan O'Halpin (good if a little dry)
    Catherine The Great by Robert K. Massie (very interesting account of a fascinating woman)
    Love and Louis XIV: The Women in the Life of The Sun King by Antonia Fraser (absolutely love Fraser's writing, another very good book).

    Rohan on
    ...and I thought of how all those people died, and what a good death that is. That nobody can blame you for it, because everyone else died along with you, and it is the fault of none, save those who did the killing.

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  • EggyToastEggyToast Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    CroakerBC wrote: »
    Sure, the plot rambles all over the place - as does that of Anathem - but I can get lost in it for days at a time, and this isn't a bad thing. Whilst I've certainly heard that for specialists in the various fields (philosophy, cryptography, etc) that his discussions can be wrong, I think the average reader doesn't have that level of expertise. And even where it's wrong, I appreciate a book that is trying to make me think about why things are the way they are.

    Snow Crash, I am coming to like less and less as I get older. At 15-18, it was a great rip-roaring sci-fi novel with some fun pseudo-historical-lingual connotations. Now it's...quite silly. And the
    Spoiler:
    , which I barely blinked over as a teenager, is now actually a little creepy.

    It's the pseudo-historical-lingual stuff that puts me off of really enjoying Stephenson, though. He seems to do these kinds of info-dumps in all of his books, and the part that distracts me is that he incorporates them into works of fiction, and often with the implication that he's altering it somewhat to support his plot. If you change history or facts in order to make your plot work, that's fine (and usually to be expected). However, when you veer off into using 30% of your book to explain history and facts with one slight change, I can't tell if I'm learning something or if the author is just opening Wikipedia and doing some selective editing, and that doesn't really interest me.

    I've read a fair number of novels that successfully reference past events and do so factually, and leave some open-ended elements in place that can support the plot in an entertaining way. But when the author intentionally blurs the line between facts of a past event, I feel cheated -- and I say that as a geek who enjoys learning about that kind of minutiae. I guess what bugs me about Stephenson is that it feels like he betrays my trust, which is bad form as an author in my book.

    And I agree with you on the spoilered bit, since it's a little more than creepy, especially with its odd lack of resolution.

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  • CroakerBCCroakerBC YorkRegistered User regular
    edited April 2012
    ET has sorted the quote out above.

    More book stuff tomorrow.

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  • mere_immortalmere_immortal So tasty!Registered User regular
    Echo wrote: »
    Started a Banks re-read, and just now I saw this in my news feed. Glad I have a decent cover. :P

    playerofgames.jpg

    I know the culture are big on changing their genetics, but I think Gurgeh went a bit overboard on his stomach there.

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  • DracomicronDracomicron Registered User regular
    Echo wrote: »
    Now try a book in second person present tense with multiple characters.

    I'm looking at you, Charlie Stross.

    I can't remember if Rule 34 did this or not.

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  • EchoEcho very gravitas Super Moderator, Moderator mod
    Echo wrote: »
    Now try a book in second person present tense with multiple characters.

    I'm looking at you, Charlie Stross.

    I can't remember if Rule 34 did this or not.

    It's the sorta-sequel to Halting State, so it wouldn't surprise me. Haven't read it yet.

  • EntriechEntriech Registered User regular
    Finished off The Warded Man by Peter V. Brett. What started out as an interesting set of shifting viewpoints with some good world building shifted into bad fantasy cliche territory for the last third of the book. I can now understand why someone in this thread was trying to steer me away from the next book in the series, which I'm all too happy to avoid. It was an alright read, but there was a clear direction for the quality of writing, and it wasn't up.

    Popped over to the library and came away with The handmaid's tale by Margaret Attwood. Folks say it is a classic.

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  • chrisnlchrisnl Registered User regular
    Entriech wrote: »
    Popped over to the library and came away with The handmaid's tale by Margaret Attwood. Folks say it is a classic.

    I've seen that book mentioned a lot in political threads, and I've been contemplating reading it. I think I'll finish Nuklear Age first because it's silly and fun (mostly), and maybe at some point I'll get back to slogging through Atlas Shrugged because I hate not finishing books (though this one may deserve to be left unfinished).

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  • lonelyahavalonelyahava One day, I will be able to say to myself "I am beautiful and I am perfect just the way I am"Registered User regular
    chrisnl wrote: »
    Entriech wrote: »
    Popped over to the library and came away with The handmaid's tale by Margaret Attwood. Folks say it is a classic.

    I've seen that book mentioned a lot in political threads, and I've been contemplating reading it. I think I'll finish Nuklear Age first because it's silly and fun (mostly), and maybe at some point I'll get back to slogging through Atlas Shrugged because I hate not finishing books (though this one may deserve to be left unfinished).

    Yeah. My current choice was between "the Family" or "Handmaid's Tale".

    I'm sure both will be equally upsetting to me.

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  • DashuiDashui Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    I suspect I may be an idiot. I just finished Fall of Hyperion and all the wibbly wobbly timey wimey has made my head hurt.
    Spoiler:

    Dashui on
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  • RaekreuRaekreu Registered User regular
    Tomanta wrote: »
    Turkson wrote: »
    And Book 10 of Wheel of Time is done.

    I think I may skip this one in any future rereads that I do. Only one thing of significance happens in this book and it's in the very last chapter.

    Come on,
    Spoiler:

    After book...6, I want to say, I basically read them just to say that I had. And by 'read' I mean 'I thumbed through the chapters and if the characters involved weren't Rand or Mat I skipped to the next chapter and repeated the process'.

  • joshgotrojoshgotro Bloat much? Registered User regular
    Raekreu wrote: »
    Tomanta wrote: »
    Turkson wrote: »
    And Book 10 of Wheel of Time is done.

    I think I may skip this one in any future rereads that I do. Only one thing of significance happens in this book and it's in the very last chapter.

    Come on,
    Spoiler:

    After book...6, I want to say, I basically read them just to say that I had. And by 'read' I mean 'I thumbed through the chapters and if the characters involved weren't Rand or Mat I skipped to the next chapter and repeated the process'.

    @Raekreu Have you made it to the books written by Sanderson?

  • RaekreuRaekreu Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    joshgotro wrote: »
    Raekreu wrote: »
    Tomanta wrote: »
    Turkson wrote: »
    And Book 10 of Wheel of Time is done.

    I think I may skip this one in any future rereads that I do. Only one thing of significance happens in this book and it's in the very last chapter.

    Come on,
    Spoiler:

    After book...6, I want to say, I basically read them just to say that I had. And by 'read' I mean 'I thumbed through the chapters and if the characters involved weren't Rand or Mat I skipped to the next chapter and repeated the process'.

    @Raekreu Have you made it to the books written by Sanderson?
    @joshgotro
    Yessir, I've actually read all of the books and have to admit that I didn't have high hopes for the conclusion when I heard that Robert Jordan had died. I haven't read any of Sanderson's non-WoT work, but I have to say that if he'd worked with Robert Jordan as co-author at an earlier point in the series, the dozens of meaningless characters, long-winded and largely pointless chapters, and creeping emo-ness of the main characters would have been mitigated tremendously.

    Raekreu on
  • TurksonTurkson Near the mountains of ColoradoRegistered User regular
    Raekreu wrote: »
    and creeping emo-ness of the main characters would have been mitigated tremendously.

    Almost done with Book 13. Going to spoiler this:
    Spoiler:

    "You. Poet. Be sure to write this down."
This discussion has been closed.