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Raak

What books are you reading or have recently read?

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The holidays have provided some time to dive into my backlog (Note - Most of this is LitFic):

 

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch was recently published and is just as fan-flippin-tastic as her other 2 novels. She'll probably be remembered as one of the era's great novelists. I'm a huge fan.

 

The Kindly Ones - Jonathan Littell - You know it's going to be good when it's 1)Billed as a new war & peace 2) Written by an American in french and received so well in France Littell was granted citizenship and several honors.

 

Money - Martin Amis - You either hate Amis or love him; no middle ground there really. He can be truly horrible but my god what a talent.

 

Zero History - William Gibson - What self-respecting geek wouldn't read everything Gibson has ever written? His new stuff is far from Neuromancer and in my opinion far better and this coming from someone who used the trilogy as a holy text though most of the late 80's and 90's :)

 

The Thing about December - Donal Ryan - Written before his success with The Spinning Heart but published after this one will have you sighing " 'ach, I need a wee dram if I'm to finish the chapter". Sad and poignant. Classic Man vs. world.

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One thing I got with my $5 credit for my nook was the entire Tarzan series for just under that. I have read the first 3. Pretty good so far for Burroughs. I will have to get the Barsoom books next as I never got past the first 5 or so in my younger years.

 

Flashman - George MacDonald Fraser - I got it out of the library as I didn't finish it when my spouse had it out. It is not at all anything close to politically correct  but considering when it takes place it works and Harry Flashman is complete and total rogue in the worst sense but it such wonderful fun to read about.

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Gibson's latest trilogy is great stuff. As much as I think the Neuromancer trilogy is a classic, I also think he just keeps getting better.

 

I've mostly just been re-reading old Lovecraft and Conan stories. The Call of Cthulhu, The Whisperer in Darkness, and Beyond the Black River most recently.

 

A little while back, I read In The Garden of Iden, by Kage Baker. Not great, but it was her first, and it was good enough that I'm going to check out some of the later books in the series, because even from the start, she had good basics as a writer, and the premise for the series is pretty cool.

 

I started The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, by N.K. Jemisin, but couldn't get through it. Too much of the main character getting dropped in the deep end and spun around without getting a chance to have any real agency, and I've got enough of that in my life as it is :P Also, it looked to be turning into one of those byzantine political stories where I can't even keep track of everyone's name, let alone all their agendas. Shame, because the world seemed really cool, and I wanted to know more about it.

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Just finished The Grey Prince by Jack Vance (may he Rest in Peace). Not one of his best novels, but nonetheless comes through with some really great ideas and a completely realized social structure.  Vance is great if you want to read speculative fiction that focuses more on culture than technology. 

 

I tried to read WOOL after Old Man Stark recommended it, but couldn't maintain my interest past the prologue.

 

I don't know what I'll read next.

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Continuing to read the Horus Heresy series and am really enjoying them.

 

Just received Of Dice And Men (about D&D players) for the holidays and so far it's enjoyable.

 

And got a barn-building book from wifey poo for the holidays as well so that appears to be what we in the business call "a hint."

 

Stay safe,

 

don

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Just received Of Dice And Men (about D&D players) for the holidays and so far it's enjoyable.

 

If you enjoy Of Dice and Men you might also enjoy Playing at the World by John Peterson. It's a history, of sorts, of wargaming from Chess to RPGs and Tabletop. It's a lengthy and not so linear so I enjoyed it piece by piece; a good tome for the throneroom.

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Bringing this back because I got some more Kage Baker, and after the first one, they do in fact get much better. The second, Sky Coyote, is my favorite so far, but Mendoza in Hollywood and The Graveyard Game were also good.

 

I also found Caves of Ice (the second Caiphas Cain book) for 50 cents at a library fundraiser, and that was one of the most fun 40K novels I've run across. Highly recommended.

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Just burned through New Watch and it as nice solid new story with Anton at the center of things and ties back into the scheming of Night Watch the first book of series. If you have not read the Watch books, then get out and read them. Described elsewhere as Harry Potter for grownups or Harry Potter meets Gorky Park. Both are good descriptions but mostly it is a very Russian take modern day fantasy and it is very good.

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Just burned through New Watch and it as nice solid new story with Anton at the center of things and ties back into the scheming of Night Watch the first book of series. If you have not read the Watch books, then get out and read them. Described elsewhere as Harry Potter for grownups or Harry Potter meets Gorky Park. Both are good descriptions but mostly it is a very Russian take modern day fantasy and it is very good.

Are there movies about these books?  I think I watched them lol

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They made movies covering a few of the stories from the series, but there's so much more in the books. I need to give them another try, I was in a place where they just weren't clicking for me and I only got like halfway through the second one.

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Finished up the Wool series.  Huh. Well, ok.  At least they started explaining some stuff.

 

Now into the 3rd book of the Peter Hamilton's Void series.  Hard to recommend these, but I am interested in where they are going.  Lot's of advanced tech, permanent death is almost unheard of, multiple levels of human transcendence.  I mean, what's after post-physical>>??  Almost anything...

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They made movies covering a few of the stories from the series, but there's so much more in the books. I need to give them another try, I was in a place where they just weren't clicking for me and I only got like halfway through the second one.

Seen both of them and actually before I read the books. They use elements of the first book only and do different things with the story. The 3rd book makes reference to the movies as dream by one of the minor characters. 

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I wasn't sure how many of them they'd made. I only ever saw the first one. And yeah, it kind of completely reversed the point of that story in the book as I recall.

You need to see the 2nd movie. It ties up the stuff that left going umm what? at the end of the first.

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I actually really liked the way the movie ended. I don't know that I'd call it better than the book, but it was definitely a cool way to go with it. That may be influenced by the fact that I saw the movie first. I did really enjoy both, tho.

same here

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Just finished up The Daylight War - the latest book (book 3) in Peter Brett's Demon Cycle. While some series seem to get worse and worse with subsequent books (Gentlemen Bastards, I'm looking at you!), the Demon Cycle just gets better and better. Original world, interesting characters, interesting cultures. Well worth it!

 

On another note, I also recently finished The Republic of Thieves. WTF, Lynch? WTF? Thin plot. None of those wicked twists and turns we love. Very little skulldruggery or shenanigans. One of the stupidist [big swear word]ing reveals in the history of literature. Boo.

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Kafka on the Shore - Comfort Read as I wait for the new Murakami to drop. If you haven't read this and you love surrealism or magical realism you're missing out

 

Simulating War - A must read if you enjoy wargaming

 

Spring Snow - The beginning of this amazing turn of the century saga! Then again I'd read any author who was ballsy enough to take over a building and commit seppuku....in the freakin' 70's no less.

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