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Read a [book].

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  • tynictynic PICNIC BADASS Registered User, ClubPA regular
    Ach. That one really hurts.

  • ZonugalZonugal (He/Him) The Holiday Armadillo I'm Santa's representative for all the southern states. And Mexico!Registered User regular
    If I had a home of my own, I would happily collect medical textbooks.

    I'd collect almost every textbook.

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  • PeenPeen tw1tch0rz occasionallyRegistered User regular
    It's a good idea to call your local library before you haul a bunch of your books over there to try to donate them, policies vary!

    I'm reading the newish N.K. Jemisin collection of short stories and she's a pretty good write you guys, I don't know if anyone told you.

    Mayabird
  • HobnailHobnail Registered User regular
    le Carrés last novel was quite good too, recommned

    tynic
  • MegaMan001MegaMan001 CRNA Rochester, MNRegistered User regular
    I called the library, not interested, but not surprising given how many medical / nursing schools are around here.

    He said he would get back to me about maybe getting into a drop off for bulk recycling later, so they'll just sit in the garage for now.

    I am in the business of saving lives.
  • JacobkoshJacobkosh Gamble a stamp. I can show you how to be a real man!Moderator mod
  • QuantumTurkQuantumTurk Registered User regular
    Peen wrote: »
    It's a good idea to call your local library before you haul a bunch of your books over there to try to donate them, policies vary!

    I'm reading the newish N.K. Jemisin collection of short stories and she's a pretty good write you guys, I don't know if anyone told you.

    My one regret with her was reading the inheritance trilogy before the broken earth trilogy. And I just straight up prefer the first in a number of ways that make the latter a bit paler, like a less good version of itself. Had I reversed that order I think I'd have loved them both. But hey, 6 great books is alright. I guess. Maybe. If you aren't trying too hard.

  • MadicanMadican No face Registered User regular
    There's another Inheritance trilogy? I only know of the one by Paolini.

  • tynictynic PICNIC BADASS Registered User, ClubPA regular
    Peen wrote: »
    It's a good idea to call your local library before you haul a bunch of your books over there to try to donate them, policies vary!

    I'm reading the newish N.K. Jemisin collection of short stories and she's a pretty good write you guys, I don't know if anyone told you.

    My one regret with her was reading the inheritance trilogy before the broken earth trilogy. And I just straight up prefer the first in a number of ways that make the latter a bit paler, like a less good version of itself. Had I reversed that order I think I'd have loved them both. But hey, 6 great books is alright. I guess. Maybe. If you aren't trying too hard.

    I read Broken Earth first, and I liked it a lot, so this is kind of an inverted stellar recommendation for the Inheritance trilogy.
    Excellent!

  • PeenPeen tw1tch0rz occasionallyRegistered User regular
    Peen wrote: »
    It's a good idea to call your local library before you haul a bunch of your books over there to try to donate them, policies vary!

    I'm reading the newish N.K. Jemisin collection of short stories and she's a pretty good write you guys, I don't know if anyone told you.

    My one regret with her was reading the inheritance trilogy before the broken earth trilogy. And I just straight up prefer the first in a number of ways that make the latter a bit paler, like a less good version of itself. Had I reversed that order I think I'd have loved them both. But hey, 6 great books is alright. I guess. Maybe. If you aren't trying too hard.

    I feel exactly the same way! I'm so glad I'm not the only one!

  • QuantumTurkQuantumTurk Registered User regular
    I had to look it up and it is WILD to me that she wrote inheritance first. It's just a much more mature set of books with some similar ideas. Mature in terms of writing more so than content. Though it still has some of her unflinching, "no, people are super shit sometimes, and you need to face that."
    Though I could see some being put off by the gods stuff but that was super my jam! Very roman/greek/anybody with a pantheon but my knowledge is euro centric gods as ciphers for human traits.

    PeenTynnanMayabird
  • EnigmedicEnigmedic Registered User regular
    So I'm obviously playing cyberpunk like a lot of people, but thought to myself that I've never really read any cyberpunk books. Would neuromancer still be a good read? Or are there better books that have been written since? It's not a genre I've heard much about.aq

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  • ChicoBlueChicoBlue Registered User regular
    Neuromancer is still good.

    I read the other two books of the The Sprawl Trilogy earlier this year.

    Still good.

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  • JedocJedoc Bringing the past to life so we can beat it to death with a shovelRegistered User regular
    Yup. Read Neuromancer, Count Zero, Mona Lisa Overdrive, The Difference Engine, and Snow Crash, in that order.

    All good reads, and you've completed the entire arc of a genre in like 1500 pages.

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  • JacobkoshJacobkosh Gamble a stamp. I can show you how to be a real man!Moderator mod
    Enigmedic wrote: »
    So I'm obviously playing cyberpunk like a lot of people, but thought to myself that I've never really read any cyberpunk books. Would neuromancer still be a good read? Or are there better books that have been written since? It's not a genre I've heard much about.aq

    Start with Burning Chrome, Gibson's short story collection. The stories in there are what actually kicked off cyberpunk, which was already a thing when Neuromancer came out a few years later. The title story "Burning Chrome," "Johnny Mnemonic," and "New Rose Hotel" are a) really fucking good and b) what introduced the Sprawl setting and Neuromancer is effectively a sequel to two of those stories, so you'll get a bit more out of it if you've read them, and it's not like they're long (and again, they're absolute bangers).

    The other stories in Burning Chrome, some of which are non-Sprawl cyberpunk and others of which are more experimental fiction or even just regular sci-fi, are also all really good, particularly "The Gernsback Continuum", a non-sci-fi story about an art photographer becoming obsessed with the 40s sci-fi art deco aesthetic to the detriment of his mental health, which serves as kind of a meta-critique of traditional SF and a mission statement for why the cyberpunk movement happened in the first place.

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  • JacobkoshJacobkosh Gamble a stamp. I can show you how to be a real man!Moderator mod
    My personal cyberpunk curriculum would be (in reading order not quality order):
    • William Gibson - Burning Chrome ("New Rose Hotel", "Johnny Mnemonic", "Burning Chrome")
    • William Gibson - Neuromancer
    • William Gibson - Count Zero
    • William Gibson - Mona Lisa Overdrive
    • Bruce Sterling - Crystal Express ("Green Days in Brunei", "Spook")
    • Bruce Sterling - Islands in the Net
    • Bruce sterling (ed.) - Mirrorshades: The Cyberpunk Anthology ("Snake Eyes", "Rock On", "Freezone")
    • Pat Cadigan - Synners
    • Walter Jon Williams - Hardwired
    • George Alec Effinger - When Gravity Fails
    • William Gibson - Virtual Light
    • William Gibson - Idoru
    • Neal Stephenson - Snow Crash
    • William Gibson - Pattern Recognition

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  • tynictynic PICNIC BADASS Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited December 2020
    Cyberpunk innovation kind of stalled out in the 90s, and now as a society we've caught up with the era it's meant to be describing. Which means the older stuff is still hyper-relevant, but has kind of put a dampener on it as an SF subgenre. But then again, most modern SF writers have grown up on that stuff, so I don't think it's gone away so much as it's diffused into the wider speculative-fiction genre.

    Tad William's Otherland series, for example, has extremely strong cyberpunk influences, even though as a writer he'd usually be considered absurdly far from that milieu.

    tynic on
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  • JedocJedoc Bringing the past to life so we can beat it to death with a shovelRegistered User regular
    edited December 2020
    He really nailed how people would use the internet for pretending to kill each other, getting their rocks off, and lying about who they really are.

    Plus: porn-based malware and governments generally turning the shittiness up to 11.

    Jedoc on
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  • KanaKana Registered User regular
    I feel like cyberpunk didn't so much die as just kind of branched out into a lot of mainstream sci-fi

    Like the beginning of The Expanse has a lot of cyberpunk-y elements, just not the clothes

    A trap is for fish: when you've got the fish, you can forget the trap. A snare is for rabbits: when you've got the rabbit, you can forget the snare. Words are for meaning: when you've got the meaning, you can forget the words.
    tynicMahnmut
  • Grey GhostGrey Ghost Registered User regular
    It's still wild to me they made a movie of New Rose Hotel

  • JacobkoshJacobkosh Gamble a stamp. I can show you how to be a real man!Moderator mod
    Grey Ghost wrote: »
    It's still wild to me they made a movie of New Rose Hotel

    it's not bad, or at least the first like 25 minutes aren't bad

    but minutes 26-75 are just the main character hiding in a coffin motel remembering the first 25 minutes over and over again, it's excruciating and has to represent the movie running out of money ten days into shooting, or something

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  • Grey GhostGrey Ghost Registered User regular
    Jacobkosh wrote: »
    Grey Ghost wrote: »
    It's still wild to me they made a movie of New Rose Hotel

    it's not bad, or at least the first like 25 minutes aren't bad

    but minutes 26-75 are just the main character hiding in a coffin motel remembering the first 25 minutes over and over again, it's excruciating and has to represent the movie running out of money ten days into shooting, or something

    That'll happen when you get Walken and Dafoe

    JacobkoshtynicMidnite
  • knitdanknitdan Registered User regular
    I am really bad at figuring out whether cool author names are actually pen names

    Case in point: did not know John Le Carre was a pen name

    But Louis L’Amour? Sounds like a pen name, but It’s only a slightly different spelling from the guy’s actual name

    “I was quick when I came in here, I’m twice as quick now”
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  • tynictynic PICNIC BADASS Registered User, ClubPA regular
    Jacobkosh wrote: »
    Grey Ghost wrote: »
    It's still wild to me they made a movie of New Rose Hotel

    it's not bad, or at least the first like 25 minutes aren't bad

    but minutes 26-75 are just the main character hiding in a coffin motel remembering the first 25 minutes over and over again, it's excruciating and has to represent the movie running out of money ten days into shooting, or something

    oh hmm that sounds exactly like something I would enjoy hate-watching

  • MahnmutMahnmut Registered User regular
    Kana wrote: »
    I feel like cyberpunk didn't so much die as just kind of branched out into a lot of mainstream sci-fi

    Like the beginning of The Expanse has a lot of cyberpunk-y elements, just not the clothes

    *points at Murderbot* That’s cyberpunk

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  • JacobkoshJacobkosh Gamble a stamp. I can show you how to be a real man!Moderator mod
    To me, cyberpunk isn't so much about specific imagery or a checklist of, like, does this have cyberarms, does this have hacking, does this have neon cities and street crime. Blade Runner isn't cyberpunk to me, because while the imagery is there, Blade Runner's story is fundamentally the same kind of "what if robots had human feelings" stuff that classic, regular-ass sci-fi has been mining since the 1930s.

    And cyberpunk's also not this very new, very prescriptive idea (which frankly only seems to have come into vogue so that people can have another stick to beat CP2077 with) that it should be some kind of how-to guide to the most cutting-edge revolutionary praxis or some shit. I mean, that's fine if someone wants to do that, but the foundational cyberpunk texts are about career criminals, street gangs, corporate mercs, drug addicts, and a guy moping over an old hologram of his ex. Those stories weren't failing to be cyberpunk. That would be absurd.

    What does make cyberpunk feel like cyberpunk to me is its approach to story construction, texture, theme and style:

    - A bottom-up instead of top-down approach to the world. This doesn't just refer to social class (although it can and often does), but to...trying to convey the lived experience of being in the fictional world, instead of telling you about it. American science fiction - whether left or right or just politically-mute genre entertainment - had spent 50 years telling stories from the point of view of captains, presidents, soldiers, scientists, academics, and the like. Bruce Sterling (who began as a rock critic and was kind of the intellectual backbone of the cyberpunk movement) described traditional SF protagonists as "that hoary archetype, Ralph 124C41+, gazing upon his world from the penthouse of his skyscraper, showering the blessings of super-science upon a grateful hoi polloi."

    Cyberpunk tried to switch that up and depict life in a setting as it was actually lived. People's things have brand names, they wear recognizable clothes and fashions. Their concerns are narrower, more personal; they often don't have a bird's-eye-view of how their world works or why things are the way they are. Maybe there was a big war recently as part of the setting, but a cyberpunk protagonist can often tell you no more about how the war happened than a random Dairy Queen employee can tell you about where ISIS came from.

    - A stronger prose style, influenced by authors outside of SF. American science fiction has been haunted by its legacy as a pulp magazine genre where authors were paid by the word. Good, bad, or indifferent, nearly every major US SF author between 1930 and about 1970 took it for granted that the best prose was the plainest, the least ornamented, the most devoid of adjectives or clear visual description. And forget about any sort of style or rhythm. You were there to tell a story, and if you tried to get fancy - well, what are you, some kind of snob?

    All of the founding cyberpunk writers - Gibson, Sterling, Rudy Rucker, Pat Cadigan, Lewis Shiner, Richard Kadrey - were people who had grown up with science fiction in their formative years but had since branched out to hard-boiled crime, or the Beats, or serious literary fiction, or poetry or pop music. They were like, why can't this shit sound good? And they used this newfound mysterious power of adjectives and prose style to paint clearer, more vivid pictures of their worlds, which in turn helped the genre catch on.

    - A rejection of polemics in favor of an earnest attempt at extrapolation. Seventies science fiction, whether it came from the left or the right, was kind of uniquely shrill, often postapocalyptic, with a world ravaged by climate change/overpopulation/the youth revolution gone too far/etc etc. Cyberpunk wanted to get away from that, to create a fictional future that felt more naturalistic. In his intro to Burning Chrome, Bruce Sterling described cyberpunk authors as "bored of the apocalypse." So some things suck, or are in imminent crisis, but other things don't suck, and not every detail in the setting is intended to pull you toward some thesis. I've seen a few of the hot takerati express confusion about this, that books like Neuromancer have "cool stuff" in them. Shouldn't this dystopia be all-bad all the time? Well, no. Gibson wasn't writing 1984, he was trying to do reportage, trying to guess where the world outside his window was headed, good and bad.

    As I mentioned in another thread, this makes cyberpunk as a genre difficult to hammer into a mold recognizable to the shit-stupid politics of 2020. Like, Gibson gave an interview in The Paris Review a couple of years ago where he said, I paraphrase, "I wrote a book in 1983, at the height of the Cold War, about a 21st century where the Cold War had ended, humanity wasn't extinct by nuclear war or catastrophic climate change, and America was no longer the dominant power, and people called it a dystopia."


    I feel like while cyberpunk's specific science fiction ideas have largely been digested and incorporated into the wider genre, so you can read about cortical chips or whatever in your regular-ass space opera now, the genre's approach is still somewhat frustratingly hard to find for me. I still have the thing happen where a bunch of people recommend a book and I pick it up and the prose is just kind of there, it's not electric or compelling in its own right, and the world is vaguely-described and hard to see in my mind's eye.

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  • KandenKanden Registered User regular
    For anyone who's finished up Rhythm of War Sanderson is doing a live, full-spoiler Q&A on his YouTube tonight, starts at 8pm EST I think

    Tofystedeth
  • BaidolBaidol I will hold him off Escape while you canRegistered User regular
    edited December 2020
    Kanden wrote: »
    For anyone who's finished up Rhythm of War Sanderson is doing a live, full-spoiler Q&A on his YouTube tonight, starts at 8pm EST I think

    Ah shit it is Thursday today, isn't it?

    Baidol on
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  • twotimesadingotwotimesadingo Registered User regular
    edited December 2020
    Kanden wrote: »
    For anyone who's finished up Rhythm of War Sanderson is doing a live, full-spoiler Q&A on his YouTube tonight, starts at 8pm EST I think

    Oh God, I hate how "Shallan"'s name is pronounced, according to the Brando. It should not rhyme with "salon."

    *Edit*: I gotta get out. The name pronunciations are going to kill me. It's like hearing someone say "gif" with a soft 'g.'

    twotimesadingo on
    PSN: twotimesadingo
  • webguy20webguy20 I spend too much time on the Internet Registered User regular
    I always pronounced it like Shall-an.

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  • MalReynoldsMalReynolds The Hunter S Thompson of incredibly mild medicines Registered User regular
    Sha-lawn for me.

    "A new take on the epic fantasy genre... Darkly comic, relatable characters... twisted storyline."
    "Readers who prefer tension and romance, Maledictions: The Offering, delivers... As serious YA fiction, I’ll give it five stars out of five. As a novel? Four and a half." - Liz Ellor
    My new novel: Maledictions: The Offering. Now in Paperback!
  • KandenKanden Registered User regular
    State of the Sanderson popped up.

    Skyward 3 next year, Wax and Wayne 4 Fall 2022, Skyward 4 and Stormlight 5 Fall 2023, he's hoping to have Mistborn era 3 completely done in the bigger break between Stormlight 5 and 6.

    https://www.brandonsanderson.com/state-of-the-sanderson-2020/

  • MalReynoldsMalReynolds The Hunter S Thompson of incredibly mild medicines Registered User regular
    I have stress dreams about plotting one book, good lord

    "A new take on the epic fantasy genre... Darkly comic, relatable characters... twisted storyline."
    "Readers who prefer tension and romance, Maledictions: The Offering, delivers... As serious YA fiction, I’ll give it five stars out of five. As a novel? Four and a half." - Liz Ellor
    My new novel: Maledictions: The Offering. Now in Paperback!
  • NaphtaliNaphtali Null Registered User regular
    I sure hope Wax and Wayne 4 is good because honestly, it does not feel that storyline is going to finish in the span of a single book successfully, or even satisfactorily

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  • MadicanMadican No face Registered User regular
    I'm waiting for Wax and Wayne to be done so I can have my futuristic Mistborn

  • KandenKanden Registered User regular
    edited December 2020
    Isn't era 3 modern day? Futuristic won't be for a good long while

    Edit: Apparently it's a 1980s spy thriller.

    Kanden on
  • EnigmedicEnigmedic Registered User regular
    I have not really enjoyed the wax and Wayne books, but liked the mistborn ones. I probably like elantris and warbreaker more though. I'm like 60% of the way through rhythm of war and some strands are interesting, but not interested at all for others. I think it's probably the worst way of kings book to far. Also my bro brandon needs to learn to just print shorter books. My Kindle has fits trying to load it. It kicks me to the chapter list every few pages.

    I thought about getting skyward but would need some glowing recommendations for that since I haven't been thrilled with other recent stuff.

    I've been reading shallan like Jimmy fallon.

    I don't usually care about author intended pronunciation though. Except for in 4th grade our teacher was reading Redwall to us and kept saying math-ious and my friend who went to a live reading with Brian Jacques tried to correct her that it was pronounced Muh-thigh-as and she ignored him. That was clearly an important day in my life because it was like 20+ years ago and vividly remember it. That was probably the day I learned there were bad teachers and lost a lot of trust in adults.

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  • Brovid HasselsmofBrovid Hasselsmof [Growling historic on the fury road] Registered User regular
    My nephew had a kid in his nursery named Matthias and it always reminded me of Redwall.

    I've just finished Lady of the Lake. I was very surprised by
    Geralt getting killed. I knew that would happen because the games tell you but I assumed that was how the series ended, so it would be the end of book six, not five.

    All this time I thought the books finished with Geralt's death and now I have no idea what to expect for the last book. Which is really nice. Thanks Sapkowski!

  • Grey GhostGrey Ghost Registered User regular
    edited December 2020
    Spoilers for Witcher book chronology, no plot details
    Lady of the Lake is the last one chronologically before the games. Season of Storms is set during the time period of the Last Wish collection

    Grey Ghost on
  • Brovid HasselsmofBrovid Hasselsmof [Growling historic on the fury road] Registered User regular
    Ooh

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