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BS: Read any good books lately?

dulcimer42 27 Feb 08 - 11:50 AM
Amos 27 Feb 08 - 11:52 AM
GUEST,Nigel Spencer (cookieless) 27 Feb 08 - 12:03 PM
BuckMulligan 27 Feb 08 - 12:11 PM
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Subject: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: dulcimer42
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 11:50 AM

I just finished Alleluia America! An Irish Journalist in Bush Country. Fun reading about the perspective of an Irish lady as she travelled across America.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 11:52 AM

I am partway through an explorer's narrative book on early discoveries in the country of the Masai, East Africa, north and east of Mombasa, written in the mid-1800's.

Unfortunately I do not recall the name at present.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Nigel Spencer (cookieless)
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 12:03 PM

Finally got round to reading Ian McEwan's 'Atonement' ... which I'd definitely recommend. I've avoided McEwan for years because I didn't get on with his early books. Just finished a secondhand copy of Bob Pegg's 'Rites and Riots' - a history of folklore rituals in Britain and Europe (seasonal rituals, mumming, begging rituals etc). Excellent stuff!

Cheers

Nigel


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: BuckMulligan
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 12:11 PM

My son, a junior at UNH, gave me a copy of Revolutionary Road (1961) by Richard Yates, at Hanukkah. We share a love of good writing and he was "blown away" by Yates's first novel - I hadn't read it, shame on me. It's well worth reading if you're at all interested in the evolution of modern American fiction, particularly the "novelists of angst" of the second half of the last century. Yates inspired the whole school of writers from the last decades of 20th century american fiction - Dubus, Carver, Ford, etc. It's tough sledding emotionally, but Yates is a master - reading a collection of his short stories now.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rapparee
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 12:15 PM

Yes.

Oh, you want titles!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Art Thieme
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 04:12 PM

refresh


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 04:58 PM

Do you have the author's name, Art?**BG**


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Giant Folk Eyeball (inactive)
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 06:48 PM

Richard Yates was a phenomenally good writer - especially of short stories: 'Eleven Kinds of Loneliness' is one of the best short story collections I've read - it's up there with Carver and Larry Brown's 'Big Bad Love and Chris Offutt's 'Kentucky Straight'. I think its now available as part of 'The Collected Stories of...'

What I want to know, though, is what the hell has happened to Harry Crews?

Cheers

Nigel


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rapparee
Date: 27 Feb 08 - 06:52 PM

James Kilts "Do What Matters". It's a book about business. It's not the only thing I'm reading, however. I'm also reading "Gentlemen's Blood," a book about dueling; "Irish Murders"; "Irish Ghosts"; "The Truth About The Leprechaun" by John Curran, and a few others.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: John O'L
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 01:21 AM

I almost had to force myself to keep reading Tim Winton's Cloudstreet, but was rewarded because the further I went the more I enjoyed it.

Before that I read Steven Carroll's The Gift of Speed, an excellent read with some truly exceptional moments, marred only by the misery being spread on unnecessarily thick at times. It has a brilliant ending. I like good endings.

At the moment I am reading a not-very-memorable book, but I've got Martin Cruz Smith's Stalin's Ghost on the bedside table lined up for next. I'm looking forward to that. Gorky Park was another very good book with a very good ending.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: open mike
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 02:09 AM

I am reading a book by a non-native woman who was welcomed into the tribal sweat lodge and pipe smokeing ceremonies (or sermonies as she calls them) This was written in the early 70's.

Recently i read one (by Diane Smith?) about a woman who was a botanist in Yellowstone in the 1880's. Letters From Yellowstone is almost entirely comprised of postal communications between the characters.

I am also reading about Sarah Winnemucca, daughter of a tribal chief
who travelled to Washington to speak for her people.

Oh yes and a story about Belle Starr...


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,wordy
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 04:24 AM

"Arthur and George" by Julian Barnes. A masterpiece of storytelling based on a true life investigation by Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: The PA
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 04:45 AM

'My Booky Wook' - Russell Brand. Couldnt stand the chap until I read his book (pressie from husband). Now I must say I see him in a whole new light, don't think I could have survived that type of childhood. Still not a great fan but I do have a bit more respect for the chap.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 06:24 AM

I have read a large number of books on World War 2, from the German perspective, I would strongly recommend, The forgotten soldier by Guy Sajer, this book describes in gory detail the war on the Russian front.
I would desribe this book as the best I have read on this subject,worth a visit to Amazon for a review.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: kendall
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 10:01 AM

The Street Lawyer by John Grisham. Hard to put down.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 11:19 AM

I'm finishing the fifth Harry Potter book. Order of the Phoenix. I read the earlier books out loud to the kids when they were younger, but this book came out after we had finally put an end to bedtime reading (they could both read very well, in middle school and high school, but we still all really enjoyed reading out loud every evening.) I also have a Nero Wolfe mystery on the bedside table, and several scholarly books in my "must read" stack in my office. But I haven't done any recreational reading for quite a while, so I'm enjoying kicking back with Harry, Ron, and Hermione.

SRS

(I have the last two Potter books that I'll eventually get to, hopefully before the films come out)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: beardedbruce
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 04:53 PM

Let me see...

I reread "Alas, Babylon", "Level Seven", "A Canticle for Liebowitz", and saw the film version of "On the Beach". I also am ( still) reading the collection of Heinlein short stories that are not part of his Future History.

Just brushing up for July, 2009...


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: dulcimer42
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 10:18 PM

I agree with the comment that John Grisham's books are hard to put down. I've read them all. Street lawyer was probably my favorite.

I'd be interested in knowing the title of the book about the lady accepted into the native sweat lodges, etc.   Sounds interesting.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amos
Date: 28 Feb 08 - 11:02 PM

Oh, here it is: "Through Masai Land", by Joseph Thomson, 1885, republished 1968 by Frank Cass &Co., Ltd. London.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Gulliver
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 12:51 AM

The Death of Achilles, by Boris Akunin, was one of the best reads I've had in years. That was the first of his books that I've read, and I'll be popping downtown at the weekend to buy another.

Don


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Georgiansilver
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 02:20 AM

Questions of Life by Nicky Gumbel


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 04:33 AM

I'm just reading 'Fifty Degrees Below', the second volume in Kim Stanley Robinson's trilogy on global warming; the other two are 'Forty Days of Rain' and 'Sixty Days and Counting'. Most of the characters are based in Washington DC and are involved in the science and politics of climate change. 'The Weather' makes ominous appearances throughout.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 05:44 AM

Gulliver, I've read several of that series & they're great fun. Boris Akinin also has another series of books about a (Russian Orthodox) Nun that I enjoyed.

Lining up all the books ready to go back to the library - all crime (& most of them Large Print - I do like being able to see the text clearly!)

Inspector DeKok series by A C Baantjer - Dutch police procedual. (speck Press, Denver)

Deacon Theodora Braithwaite series by D M Greenwood - murders in Anglican clergy circles! I've certainly learnt more about High Anglican church ritual than I ever I ever thought I'd know.

Gifts from the Pharaohs - How Egyptian civilization shaped the Modern World by Christiane Desroches Noblecourt (Flammarion)

Good Omens - Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaimon (first & hopefully last Terry Pratchett I'll buy - I just don't have the room for all his books, but I love this one)

sandra


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 08:05 AM

"A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian", and "Two Caravans", both by Marina Lewycka and both hilarious. (And my claim to fame is that we were in the same class at school).

"The Kite Runner" and "A Thousand Splendid Suns" by Khalid Hosseini, great storytelling and some wonderfully poignant moments.

"The Bookseller of Kabul" by a Swedish lady journalist whose name I forget. Factual and insightful.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Irish sergeant
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 04:01 PM

A Gallant Little Army by Thomas Johnson and I am re-reading Danse Macabre by Stephen King. Neil


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Wesley S
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 04:28 PM

Still reading "Lonesome Dove"


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Becca72
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 04:50 PM

Currently reading "Mortal Causes" by Ian Rankin.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Bee
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 05:05 PM

Just finished rereading One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel garcia Marquez. Hadn't read it since about 1973. It is a lot darker than I remembered, but the beautiful, dreamlike imagery is intact, and i was unable to put it down until the end.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 05:27 PM

Out Stealing Horses


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Georgiansilver
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 05:53 PM

'About Faerie Tales' by Alison Wanda Land was pretty good as was "Cannibalism" by Henrietta Mann.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 06:03 PM

Did I say good? I should have said extraordinary. Just typing the name has placed me into twenty minutes of reflection about the amazing aspects of that book. Short and seemingly simple, but complicated and powerful. Best book I can remember in years.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Zhenya
Date: 29 Feb 08 - 11:54 PM

Heric - Thanks for mentioning Out Stealing Horses, which I wasn't familiar with. But the title and your comments made me curious, so I looked it up on Library Thing and a few other places to see various reviews. It got very good comments everywhere I looked, and I read enough about it to decide I'll probably like it too, so I've added it to my future reading wish list.

As for my current reading, this year I've settled into a pattern of, at any given time, being in the middle of one classic book and one contemporary book. This approach has finally solved my dilemma about which type to choose. This way, I just pick up whichever one I'm in the mood for when I have a chance to read.

So I'm almost finished right now with a 19th century novel, The Moonstone, by Wilkie Collins. I somehow had missed his writing altogether, but started reading it on dailylit.com (books in email installments) because the title looked interesting. I've been enjoying the book immensely, and ended up buying my own copy of the book. A friend told me it was a movie as well, so I've bought the DVD, but won't watch it until I finish the book. I now plan to read other books of his as well. This seems to be billed as the first detective novel – it also has wonderful characters, a suspenseful story, and quite a bit of sly humor along the way.

The contemporary book I'm reading, and well into, is In the Country of the Young, by Lisa Carey. I discovered that book and author based on readers' comments on LibrayThing.com, and I'm enjoying that one as well. It starts off with the shipwreck of an Irish famine ship off the coast of Maine, and the death of a young girl, who shows up 150 years later to continue on with her life, officially as a ghost, but soon enough as a live person. It's got a nice touch of magic in it, which I tend to like in books. It switches back and forth between 3 different time periods and places while tying the stories together. And there's even a wee bit of Irish fiddle playing in the book!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 01 Mar 08 - 12:57 AM

One thing I'll bet the reviewers didn't mention is this: It had a river that flowed in a semi-circle. It flowed in from Sweden and into his life - then it flowed back into Sweden. Extraordinary.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 01 Mar 08 - 01:40 AM

Those who are reading One Hundred Years of Solitude and The Kite Runner are enjoying two excellent novels.
I just completed Updike's The Centaur and found his writing fascinating. The story is a re-telling of the myth of Chiron the Centaur who was mortally wounded by a poisoned arrow, and of his son Prometheus, who brought fire to mankind, set in rural Pennsylvania in 1947. If that sounds bizarre, it is. The novel impresses me as also somewhat biographical concerning the boy, who may be Updike as a youth, and his schoolteacher Father.

Here is Updike's description of a snow storm

"The cars on the pike travel slower, windshield wipers flapping, headlight beams nipped and spangled in the ceaseless flurry. The snow seems only to exist where light strikes it. A trolley car gliding toward Alton appears to trail behind it a following of fireflies. What an eloquent silence reigns! Olinger under the vast violet dome of the stormstruck night sky becomes yet one more Bethlehem. Behind a glowing window the infant god squalls. Out of zero all has come to birth. The panes, tinted by the straw of the crib within, hush its cries. The world goes on unhearing. The town of white roofs seems a colony of deserted temples; they feather together with distance, go gray, melt. Shale Hill is invisible. A yellowness broods low in the sky; above Alton in the west a ruby glow seeps upward. From the zenith a lavender luminosity hangs pulseless, as if the particular brilliance of the moon and stars had been dissolved and the solution shot through with a low electric voltage. The effect, of tenuous weight, of menace, is exhilarating. The air presses downward with an unstressed sibilance, a pedal note, the base C of the universal storm. The streetlights strung along the pike make a forestage of brightness where the snowfall, compressed and expanded by the faintest of winds, like an actor postures- pausing, plunging. Upward countercurrents suspend snow which then with the haste of love flies downward to gravity's embrace; the alternations of density conjure an impression of striding legs stretching upward into infinity. The storm walks. The storm walks but does not move on."


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Cluin
Date: 01 Mar 08 - 01:59 AM

Rumpole and The Reign of Terror


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Zhenya
Date: 01 Mar 08 - 04:33 PM

Heric - No, none of the comments mentioned the river. Now I'll really have to check this out for myself!

By the way, have you (or anyone else here) read Popular Music From Vittula by Mikael Niemi? That one takes place in Northern Sweden, near the Finnish border. I read it about 2 years ago, and really liked it.

I don't think I've read much literature from Scandinavia - all that immediately comes to mind is Isak Dinesen. Yet another thing to explore...

LonesomeEJ - I read The Centaur in a high school English class. I remember liking it, but not that much about it, so, considering how long ago that was, I think it's time for a re-read. Thanks for bringing it to mind.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: wysiwyg
Date: 01 Mar 08 - 05:11 PM

Audiobook classic:, Treasure Island and its companion prequel, The Adventures of Ben Gunn. Room for a third in the group if anyone wants to write it. PM me for details.

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: RangerSteve
Date: 02 Mar 08 - 12:59 AM

If being on dialysis has a good side, other than keeping me alive, it's that I get to read alot. I discovered Elmore Leonard - no particular book of his - they're all good. Mostly, though, I read histories, currently one called American Mafia, a history of organized crime in the US from the 1800's to the present. I also re-read Salem's Lot by Stephen King. In my opinion, it's his best.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: fat B****rd
Date: 02 Mar 08 - 03:48 PM

'Strange Loyalties' by William Mcllvanney.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Art Thieme
Date: 03 Mar 08 - 12:07 AM

I recently finished Exit Ghost by Phillip Roth.

He says it's his last book in the Nathan Zuckerman series of books he has written. And I can see how that would be so. The book highlights the enigma and the illusions of aging and losing ones youthful powers to the passing years. Terry Gross on NPR interviewed Roth and she didn't seem to get it at all. But she, of course, is a young woman, and not a declining, aging, ailing, elderly man. Here Zuckerman is a man who still can get an absolutely huge "crush" on a younger woman! As delusional as that is, he knows full well that on so many levels he can't live up to his desires! But it feels so f.....g good to feel those desires and emotions once more. Eventually, reality seeps slowly in---and then HE KNOWS. Joseph Campbell used to talk about the eyes being the scouts for the more carnal side of us. I can vouch for that. Even us old men like "looking" and hoping for the actual insanity of the feeling one gets that you are embarking on the lovely path of love --- even though nothing actual can be accomplished. I think the "ghost" of the memories and the actualities of youthful adventures is what is departing as a ghostly presence in the title of this recent book by Roth.

It is a fine read---if you are ready for it.

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Art Thieme
Date: 03 Mar 08 - 12:27 AM

Also---The Road by Cormac McCarthy. It concerns holding onto family values (a father and a son) in the face of the ultimate desolation and bleakness of the ashes of America.

Also, along those same lines, albeit, this time a desolation caused by a nearly total plague --- EARTH ABIDES by George R. Stewart. It, too, focuses on the few survivors.
It is only the best science fiction book ever written me thinks.

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 03 Mar 08 - 12:57 AM

Your comments on Exit Ghost are remarkable, Art. I'm putting it on my list.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Mar 08 - 01:01 AM

There was a long review of the Roth book in The New Yorker a few weeks back. You might want to look it up, it gave an overview of the series.

I finished Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Now on to some Rex Stout before I hit some serious reading again.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 03 Mar 08 - 06:25 PM

Mommy, what's a book?
Be quiet sweetie and just keep pressing flowers.

Do people really use books for what they were intended...to be read?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Art Thieme
Date: 03 Mar 08 - 07:28 PM

Not on the Sunset Coast it seems!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 03 Mar 08 - 07:54 PM

gimme a book anyday, especially one with large print.

As much as I love my iMac & the world it opens for me (especially Mudcat!) I can't do a lot of reading on screen. My eyes don't particularly appreciate small black letters on a screen, but give me a book propped up on my reading stand & my fantastic 'Daylight' desklight (it's a brand which uses tubes which give good light that's just like natural light) & I'm happy. Especially when I'm surrounded by books, including 20 from the library.

sandra (soon off to the Library to replenish my supply)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 03 Mar 08 - 09:29 PM

Sorry, Art, I thought I had my tongue in cheek, but apparently I had my foot in my mouth.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Art Thieme
Date: 03 Mar 08 - 11:04 PM

No, John, I'm sorry. I overreacted. But I do wonder how good things get away from us so easily -- like books, the 8-hour day, drinking tap water, and so many millions of passenger pigeons that their numbers made afternoon seem like night. On our watch, they slipped away from our grasps so easily. Where are Maxwell Perkins and Thomas Wolfe when we need them so badly? Some folks who might fill their shoes are probably surfing Ebay or creating a new penultimate virus.

Art


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 12:41 AM

Oh how I do agree with you, Art!
About fifty years ago I, as a member of the UCLA Daily Bruin, had the assignment of interviewing English Dept. faculty regarding their research projects. One--I forget who--was publishing the correspondence of and between Wordsworth and Coleridge (I think that's who). I marveled that such would have been saved, collected and commented on two centuries later. In the age of the telephone and Skype, I'd be surprised if such personal correspondence of today will be retrievable in another two hundred years.
But on the bright side--and I know this is a long digression--last week I did come across, on a blog, six exchanges between two authors
discussing a topic of mutual interest about six years ago. Interestingly, it began with some antagonism on the part of the initiator, but by the last posting they had reached mutual respect for the other's position, while yet disagreeing with each other on many points [ah that that could happen at Mudcat more often!]. I printed it out because I was intrigued both by the topic, and by their literate arguments So, maybe such correspondence can be available for future study.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 03:55 PM

Over summer:
Jasper Fforde's The Eyre affair sequelae
Patrick O'Brian's Master and Commander ditto
John Wyndham's Chocky and Jezzle

On Sunday last:
Geraldine Brooks' People of the Book


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 04:39 PM

Rowan, I found Fforde's, 'The Big Over Easy,' really entertaining. I'll never quite think of nursery rhymes in the same way. I quit on 'The Eyre Affair' about 50 pages in. But I must confess to having never read nor seen Bronte's original, so it I did not have a feel for the satire.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Kim C
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 04:54 PM

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 05:03 PM

All I can suggest, John, is that you persevere with The Eyre affair. I didn't find it a satire but the literary jokes and references definitely come thick and fast and there is a fair amount of lampooning going on. You're right about The big over easy but. although it and The fourth bear stand outside The Eyre affair sequelae there are crossreferences made.

If you've seen Jane Eyre on film or telly you've already got enough to pick most of the references in Fforde's books. And you should see what he does with Miss Haversham.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Jim Martin
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 08:38 PM

Just started re-reading 'The Boy at the Swinging Lantern' by Patricia Lynch (an internationally popular Cork, Eire author) which I originally read and enjoyed very much when a child 50 odd years ago. It tells of the fortunes of a boy on leaving school in the 1950's rural Ireland, very nostalgic! Sure sign of getting old, I suppose!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Jim Martin
Date: 04 Mar 08 - 09:10 PM

Patricia Lynch:
http://www.catholicauthors.com/lynch.html


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Jim Martin
Date: 06 Mar 08 - 06:51 AM

Refresh


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Jim Martin
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 05:00 AM

refresh


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 08:13 AM

The Tale of Genji - Legends & paintings. intro by Miyeko Murase

One of Japan's greatest literary masterpieces is brought to life through 54 colorful and detailed images that each illustrate one chapter of the novel.

It's a very beautiful book - & much easier to read that the 1168 page translation I have owned for at several years & not yet started.

sandra


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: autolycus
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 04:59 PM

Recently started Flat Earth News by journalist Nick Davies.

it's a criticism of the failings of the Anglo-American media.

The media criticise all and sundry. But does dog eat dog. If the mass media are criticised, where would you expect to know about it? In the mass media? You see the problem.

So the book is discussing the source of most of our info,much of our opinions. So that source must, itself, be examined.

Early on, he says, to the effect, most journalists don't usually know what they're talking about.


Ivor


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: fat B****rd
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 05:24 PM

Docherty by William Mcllvanney.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Becca72
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 05:42 PM

Almost finished with "Chance" by Robert B. Parker. It's one of his Spenser books. I love his stuff because it's an extremely easy read and very entertaining.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: fat B****rd
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 05:47 PM

I love the Spenser books, in fact I've read 'em all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Becca72
Date: 11 Mar 08 - 07:36 PM

I've not read anywhere near all of them...but I'm working on it!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amergin
Date: 12 Mar 08 - 12:43 AM

The best of Penthouse Letters....


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: autolycus
Date: 15 Mar 08 - 09:32 AM

Also been enjoying dipping into a splendid dictionary - Grumpy Old Wit, assembled by Rosemarie Jarski.

Samples

If you don't like the way I drive, stay off the sidewalk. (Joan Rivers)

These days, I favour older men. They don't have such awful taste in music.   (Jerri Hall)

Don't trust anyone whose job was created after 1990. (anon)

(Oscar Levant justifying a speeding ticket) You can't possibly hear the last movement of Beethoven's 7th Symphony and go slow.

The devil must be an optimist if he thinks he make people meaner. (Karl Kraus)

One of the b i g weaknesses of the male sex is just being completely unable to see through beauty.   (Candace Bushnell)

President Nixon's motto was if two wrongs don't make a right, try three.   (Norman Cousins)

Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes,working jobs we hate,so we can buy shit we don't need. (Chuck Palahniuk)


   Ivor


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 15 Mar 08 - 10:11 PM

"Almost finished with "Chance" by Robert B. Parker. It's one of his Spenser books. I love his stuff because it's an extremely easy read and very entertaining."

                     I can read anything by Robert B. Parker, but I've never been able to figure out just what his appeal is. I think it has a lot to do with the pace of the novels. Each chapter starts out with a new setting, so all of the narrative that would be devoted to getting from one place to another is bypassed. And he can be funny; that helps. I finished reading "Now and Then," a while back.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Thomas the Rhymer
Date: 16 Mar 08 - 03:19 AM

Recently put "Pillars of the Earth" safely out of reach after swearing through 250 pages... I've seen kids do more realistic character studies with cardboard cut outs pasted onto popsicle sticks...

Enjoyed about half of "An Unfinished Life" a JFK biography... I'll get back to it soon.

Just finished "Robinson Crusoe"... and loved every word... even though many of them are considered 'archaic'...;^) After I had finished it I happened to glance at the back cover, and noticed it said "...has been praised by such writers as James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, and Samuel Johnson as one of the greatest novels in the English language".

Rousseau happened to like it heartily too.

Just got a biography of Aldous Huxley... and I'm going to start reading it in about 5 minutes.

ttr


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Flash Company
Date: 16 Mar 08 - 12:14 PM

Just finished 'London in the 20th Century' by Jerry White, Excellent , the man has a marvelous turn of phrase and produces some very pithy comments on folk we all know.
Think I may start all the Discworld books from the beginning again.

FC


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 05:53 AM

The Book of Lost Books, An Incomplete History of All the Great Books You'll Never Read, by Stuart Kelly, a look at the works of notable authors that have been lost, destroyed, or never completed over the course of history.


from Homer to Shakespeare to ....

I loved it, tho some professional reviewers didn't

sandra


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: kendall
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 07:27 AM

100 years of solitude bored me to tears. On the flip side, I liked the Tale of two cities, the Illiad, the Oddysey and Moby Dick.

Anyway, I just finished "Eaters of the Dead", and found it to be a very poor version of the Beowulf saga.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 10:29 AM

"100 years of solitude bored me to tears."


                        Me too!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 11:46 AM

Oh, I do love these threads. Lots of new titles to explore, ones I've read recalled and reminders of things to re-read. I have just finished Embers by hungarian author Sandor Marai, it is a wonderful exploration of love and friendship, among other things. It is also beautifully written. Have also recently read the following The Orament of The World by Maria Rosa Menocal, it is about the meshing of cultures, Jewish, Christian and Muslim, in early Spain. Also reading some old fashioned travel Books.The Road to Oxiana by Robert Byron, written in the 30's about a journey to Afghanistan. A short Walk In the Hindu Kush by Eric Newby, great read and My Journey to Lhasa by Alexandra David Neel. and a grand old victorian ripping yarn, Lady Audley's Secret by Mary Elizabeth Bradon. And finally a wee Edwardian Gem by Ivy Compton Burnett, A House and it's Head.
   Thanks again to all, a very enjoyable thread.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 12:03 PM

I have just read over again an old book im my collection called `The long march of everyman`, the book was adapted from a BBC radio series with extracts from peoples lives from 1750 to 1960.
Some of the stories are heart-rending, at the height of the British Empire poverty was at its height,and the suffering of the poor is told by those who were on the verge of starvation. An enlightening but also a harrowing read.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: irishenglish
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 12:08 PM

Just finished The Historian, which I found pretentious, and very undramatic. Currently reading a funny travel book called Narrow Dog to Carcassonne about an English couple taking a canal boat across the Channel and travelling through the French canals. Funny at times, but a little too clipped at the same time-just when you think he has found a topic to expand upon, he stops right there, and he's on to something else. Best book I read this year so far though is Kate Atkinson 's Case Histories.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 12:20 PM

Hen Harrier, can you provide a bit of information regarding the Patricia lynch book, Boy At The Swinging Lantern ? It sounds intriguing. Is it still in print..ISBN No? Publisher. I can find no trace at my Public Library nor on Amazon. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Mrs.Duck
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 01:41 PM

Just finished the second in Philip Pullmans trilogy. Read 'Northern Lights' (made into a film under title Golden Compass) and second is called 'Subtle Knife'. Plan to get the third 'Amber Spyglass' out of the library this weekend.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: john f weldon
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 06:42 PM

Well, Mrs Duck, i just finished the series. It starts out fun, but seems to get lost.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 06:51 PM

sorry to be so low brow

A Killing Frost - the latest RD Wingfield. I loved it.

Inspector Frost at his naughtiest, and penpusher Inspector Mullet in an unholy alliance with the new Chief Inspector look like they might do for him this time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 07:19 PM

I'm trying to read a Vince Flynn book. I don't know why they sell so well.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: jacqui.c
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 07:40 PM

I liked the Dark Materials and thought the ending was quite interesting, considering the age group at which it is aimed.

I'm onto 'Pale Horseman', the second of the Saxon Chronicles by Bernard Cornwell. This guy is one of my favourite authors, although I haven't been tempted with the Sharpe books at all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 07:48 PM

The Book of Lost Books reminds that I did read a good book in The Book of Lost Things though it is certainly not for everyone (kind of a fairy tale gone bad), which further reminds me of Black Swan Green (yet another adventure of a ten year old) which I really loved. (yes these threads are fun and useful.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: kendall
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 07:51 PM

Some years ago I read one titled "Way of the lanturn" It was a novel set in the midst of the French revolution. Excellent story.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Gulliver
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 09:48 PM

I'm reading, firstly, A Perfect Spy by John le Carré. It's interesting enough but far from being the "best novel since the war", as is trumpeted all over the cover, IMO.

Also reading Cruel Way by Ella Maillart about her trip overland with Anna Schwarzenbach to Afghanistan in 1939. I find it particularly interesting because I followed almost the same route (though a good deal later). It's well-written with feeling and she certainly knows her history.

And finally, the Destruction of Dublin by Frank McDonald, about the planning shenanigans that went on in the 60's and 70's.

Don


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amos
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 10:26 PM

I second LEJ's recommendation of The Kite Runner, the best picture of recent Afghanistan I have ever read.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 25 Apr 08 - 01:09 AM

HiLo, here's some info on the author the Boy With the Swinging Lantern: Click Here. It was published in 1952. I checked for it at www.addall, which searches a bunch of bookseller databases and nothing came up. Seems it may be a bit rare?

Loved Alexandra David Neel's My Journey to Lhasa.

wld, no worries. I've been doing tons of murder mysteries lately, too! Anything by John Lescroart, Stephen White, Michael Connelly...and, of course, the British authors, too. Any "inspector" novel I can find!:-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 25 Apr 08 - 11:13 AM

Thank you katlaughing, I did find that site and have since found that the book is currently out of print. If you enjoyed My journey to Lhasa, you may also enjoy The Valley of The Assasins by Freya Stark.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Gulliver
Date: 25 Apr 08 - 03:08 PM

Funny you should mention The Valley of The Assassins by Freya Stark--I was reading one or two chapters of it last night as Ella Maillart mentions the Old Man of the Mountain in Cruel Way. A favourite of mine is Trespassers on the Roof of the World by Peter Hopkirk, who also wrote the Great Game.

Don


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 25 Apr 08 - 04:05 PM

I liked Bill Wyman's book about the blues also - some great pictures


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 25 Apr 08 - 10:53 PM

A couple of weeks ago I read the latest of Alexander McCall Smith's No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency series; I forget its name but it follows its predecessors' gentle path.

A week or so ago I reread Chris Cunningham's The Blue Mountains Rediscovered, a shafting of the myth attributing the first crossing of the Blue Mountains (west of the penal colony at Port Jackson, the site of Sydney) to Blaxland, Wentworth and Lawson in 1813, instead of to John Wilson in 1798, let alone uncounted generations of the local Aboriginal peoples.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 25 Apr 08 - 11:06 PM

Thanks for the recommendation, HiLo. I am going to the used bookstore tomorrow so shall look for it.

I am about half-way through Dixie City Jam a murder mystery by James Lee Burke featuring a detective "Dave Robicheaux." I've not read any others by this author. His portrayal of New Orleans and other southern Louisiana areas is very interesting and colourful. It was written pre-Katrina, so I keep thinking I wonder if this landmark and that still exist. So far it's pretty good. Not a favourite, yet, but worth picking up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 26 Apr 08 - 06:35 AM

Gulliver,I bought a hardback re-print of The Assassins by Bernard Lewis, a very detailed read of the fore-runners of to-days suicide bombers, nothing stood in their way in pursuit of their appointed victim.
First published in 1967.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: dulcimer42
Date: 26 Apr 08 - 05:18 PM

Three fascinating, revealing, horrifying books of life, as a female in Saudi Arabia: Author: Jean Sasson. Books are : Princess,    Princess Sultana's Daughters, and Princess Sultana's Circle. Read them in order, to receive the best understanding.    I could scarcely lay them down until I finished reading them!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: dulcimer42
Date: 26 Apr 08 - 05:29 PM

For those of you who love to read:   I've discovered a great website: Paperbackswap dot com.   You list 10 or more books which you would trade. For every book you trade, you get a point.   You can get a book from someone else for the cost of a point. Only cost is postage. I hear of a good book and head to this site , and it generally is available. I now have a backlog of about 8 books setting beside my recliner "to be read!" This was a real find for me. Current bestsellers seem to move rapidly. I receive it from the list, read it and relist it, and receive another point for another book........


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Padre
Date: 26 Apr 08 - 08:54 PM

"A Blessed Company"- Parishes, Parsons and Parishioners in Anglican Virginia, 1690-1776. A wonderful book describing the Anglican Parishes in Colonial Virginia

Great Factoid: Beginning in 1696, Anglican clergy in Virginia were paid a salary of 16,000 pounds of tobacco, which was never increased until clergy salaries were discontinued in 1776. That's a long time between pay raises!

Padre


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 26 Apr 08 - 10:06 PM

dulcimer42, THANK YEW!! I can hardly wait to start using the paperback swap site. What a nifty idea. The only thing is it makes me feel badly for our local used bookstores. I will probably still try to support them now and then. BUt, I've already found several book on that site which are never available at the bookstores here.

Thanks!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 26 Apr 08 - 11:13 PM

Just read an old copy of "Forty Lashes Less One". It's an Elmore Leonard western about some convicts in Yuma prison in the late days of the American West. Damn good story...and quite funny in places too. I recommend it if you can find it at the used book store or the library.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: dulcimer42
Date: 26 Apr 08 - 11:37 PM

Katlaughing, I still support the stores. Because with each new book I read, and then post...... it continuously builds. It allows me to order another, which I read and post, allowing me to get another.....   And membership is free. They say it might be necessary, in the future, to have a memb. fee. But I think it will still be well worth it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: john f weldon
Date: 27 Apr 08 - 07:53 AM

A long bout of pneumonia, with not much I could do but lie abed and read. First the Xmas Books:

Phillip Pullman's Dark Materials trilogy: Starts out fun, but gets confused later.
The Rum Diaries (Hunter Thompson): Aimless drifting, but entertaining.
A Deepness in the Sky (Ventnor Vinge): Not as good as the wonderful Fire in the Deep.

...and then I ran out of new stuff, and started to plumb the mustier shelves of my library, and found....

Philosophical Dictionary (Voltaire): which holds up very well after 250 years! Witty, wise and strangely current!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: kendall
Date: 27 Apr 08 - 03:34 PM

I wish C.S. Forrester could still write.I loved his Hornblower series.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: freda underhill
Date: 27 Apr 08 - 05:13 PM

I'm reading The Death of Dalziel by Reginald Hill. I love his Dalziel and Pascoe books, he writes with humour and great social understanding and insight. this one explores attitudes to terrorism, and white anglo fascism. Reginald Hill is a very warm, witty and evocative writer. his book Underworld was set against the background of the mining industry and is as a great novel as you can wish for.

freda


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: jacqui.c
Date: 27 Apr 08 - 10:00 PM

I'm now onto the third book in the Saxon series - Kings of the North. Difficult to put down.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 28 Apr 08 - 01:29 AM

I tried the Philip Pullman trilogy. The first one was great. I didn't like the second one much. Decided not to read the third installment. I don't think I like whatever it is that he believes about life very much at all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 28 Apr 08 - 05:34 AM

Little Hawk - I love children's/young adult fantasy so I eagerly read Vol 1 of the series & stopped half way thru Vol 2.

I've read lotsa' books where heroes die, who hasn't (& DON'T ANYONE TELL ME WHO DIED IN THE FINAL VOL. OF HARRY POTTER as I really must get around to reading it) but I didn't like the way characters were killed off & I think your response says it for me, too.

sandra


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amergin
Date: 28 Apr 08 - 05:55 AM

Ron dies in the last one....


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 28 Apr 08 - 06:23 PM

Amergin, that was nasty

And untrue


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: john f weldon
Date: 29 Apr 08 - 09:01 AM

LHawk & Sandra in S:
A good decision. Part 3 has the dreariest vision of the Universe since Kurt Vonnegut, but without the humour. It would drive you to suicide, except that his afterlife is even worse!

The most notable quality of Pullman is the total lack of humour, quite the opposite of JKRowling.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 29 Apr 08 - 12:24 PM


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 29 Apr 08 - 12:30 PM

Sorry, hit the wrong thingy. I just finished one of the best travel book I have read; The Road to Oxiana by Robert Byron, excellent. written in the 1930's abiut his travels from Tehran to Oxiana. It certainly reminds me how much the world has changed in a very short time. Also finished a mystery Called The Janissary tree by Jason Goodwin. It introduces inspector Yashim in 1830's Istamboul. He is excellent at re creating the atmosphere of time and place. There is now a sequel, which I have not read as yet, it is called The Snake Stone.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 29 Apr 08 - 12:40 PM

"the dreariest vision of the Universe since Kurt Vonnegut"

Yes, I figured that was where it was going. The overall impression I got was that Philip Pullman's personal philosophy is that of some kind of zealot with a big hate on for something (Organized religion, I presume?) and that his general view of life has been so poisoned and compromised by that one big hate that he's become downright depressing to listen to...so why even bother? His nihilistic attitude stirs loathing in me, frankly.

After finishing book 2 I had no intention of contributing further to his income by buying the 3rd book. Pity, considering that the first book was an excellent adventure story.

Whatever Philip's view is of his personal universe, I definitely don't want to be there.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Jim Martin (Hen Harrier)
Date: 29 Apr 08 - 05:11 PM

'The Boy at the Swinging Lantern' is a wonderful story, I managed to get a 2nd hand copy from:

http://www.childrensbookshop.com


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Gulliver
Date: 29 Apr 08 - 05:47 PM

Another book on South Asia, now reading: From Kashmir to Kabul, the Photographs of John Burke and William Baker, by Omar Khan. Great photos from the 1860s/1870s done by two Irishmen of humble origins in Afghanistan and Northern India, with an extensive commentary on the history and geography of the area, the prevailing political situation, personalities of the time, etc. Don


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 30 Apr 08 - 10:33 AM

thank you hen harrier, I shall check out the site.
   I have just begun to re-read Eric Newby, A Short Walk In The Hindu Kush. Great read.
    I did read all three of Pullman's book, and although I found them troubling, I did not think them malicious in any way. It is very clear that he has an axe to grind, but the story drove me on in spite of it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Folk Form # 1
Date: 01 May 08 - 02:09 AM

I have just finished The God Delusion by Richard Dawkin and God Is Not Great by Christopher Hitchins. If you believe in God now, you wont after reading these books.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: paula t
Date: 01 May 08 - 06:00 PM

Kathryn and I are really into the Michelle Paver books (young adult/teenage),"Wolf Brother" and the others in the series.We are eagerly waiting for the next one to be published.
I actually enjoyed reading the "Dark Materials" trilogy, although I felt rather flat by the end.Guess I'm a bit old fashioned.
I love the Discworld novels by Terry Pratchett. I have been known to laugh out loud or occasionally sniffle at some of the clever and touching moments. I love Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 01 May 08 - 06:04 PM

Am now about half way through The Rudesky March by Jospeh Roth. A wonderful read. Kept me up til 2am last night. Also re read Precious Bane by Mary Webb..I do love that old stuff.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,bflat
Date: 02 May 08 - 05:25 PM

I recently finished A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle. I read it four times consecutively because of its powerful insights. I know I'll read it again soon. I keep picking it up, randomly opening it and refreshing myself. Now reading, The Good Book by Peter J. Gomes.

Ellen


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Gulliver
Date: 03 May 08 - 04:56 PM

HiLo, I have Joseph Roth's Radetzkymarsch (the German version of Radetzky March) on my bedside table and hope to start it shortly. I'm glad you think it's a good read. One of my favourite books is by Roth, called in English (I think) The Weights and Measures Inspector (Das Falsche Gewicht in German). It was made into a great film in the 70's, starring Helmut Qualtinger and Evelyn Opela.

Don


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: BK Lick
Date: 03 May 08 - 08:27 PM

I'm surprised no one's yet mentioned E. Annie Proulx who won the 1994 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, among other major awards, for The Shipping News. Her wonderful story collection Close Range: Wyoming Stories contains "Brokeback Mountain." (Both these titles have been adapted into award winning movies.) The current issue of The New Yorker (where "Brokeback Mountain" first appeared) contains a new story titled "Them Old Cowboy Songs." I do purely love this lady's writing.
—BK


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 04 May 08 - 10:03 AM

I love her stuff as well. Have you read Postcards . I have finished the Joseph Roth book and have just begun The Emporors Tomb which sort of follows the same family. I just love his writing, there were many passages that I read several times. I am going to the second hand shop to look for more.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: fat B****rd
Date: 04 May 08 - 02:20 PM

Ms. Proulx "Accordion Crimes" IMHO is a great read. I've had to cherry pick the main points from books about the British Suffragette Movement for my college work recently but right now it's time to relax with Spenser (Robert B. Parker not Edmund) and Widow's Walk. Read a couple of books about the late Linda Smith's life and work not long ago. She's sadly missed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 05 May 08 - 12:48 AM

Rant on:

A lot of folks in Wyoming don't like her stuff. I tried, I really tried, based on Mudcatters' recommendations. I recently had a copy of her Wyoming stories, read them aloud to my Rog, as much as he could stand. We are both very open-minded and like to share good stories. He made me stop, each time I tried to read one of her stories, because he couldn't stand it. We both detest her writing. I think one of the reasons is, Rog nailed this one, she does not love Wyoming. When she writes of it, she portrays an ugliness, a negative side which she sees and none of its beauty. She is a user, a usurper, and imo a lousy writer. I would put my descriptive writing about Wyoming up against hers any day and feel confident folks would prefer mine. Rant off

Just read Sabbathday River by Jean Hanff Korelitz. Also had a great, good time reading Kinsella's Undomestic Goddess. What a hoot!

I am reading a Gemma James mystery right now, by Crombie.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 05 May 08 - 06:19 PM

Ms. Proulx "Accordion Crimes" IMHO is a great read.

When I read it I found it interesting as narrative but redolent of 'decay' rather than of 'life'. I was amused, however, by her confusion of graphics wherein she included a concertina (a Jeffries as I recall) among all the various versions of accordions and melodions.

Accordion Crimes was my first exposure to her writing and it didn't inspire me to explore her further. Perhaps that is a pity.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 09 May 08 - 08:59 AM

I have just finished reading Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks. It got glowing reviews and I was urged by my book reading friends to reaf it as it is considered a twentieth century classic. I would bwe very interested to know what others think. I thought it was a very flawed and unrewarding book. Am I missing something ? It cannot compare, IMO, with Joseph Boydens book Three Day Road, when it come to WW1 stories. Any thoughts ?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Mr Red
Date: 09 May 08 - 09:07 AM

go to bed with a good book........









or a friend who's read one.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Becca72
Date: 09 May 08 - 09:25 AM

I'm most of the way through "Violets are Blue" by James Patterson. It's one of his detective Alex Cross books and he never fails to entertain. This one's got vampires in it, too so it's right up my alley! :-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: dulcimer42
Date: 28 May 08 - 07:14 PM

"The Shack" by William P. Young.   A MUST READ!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 28 May 08 - 09:10 PM

"Invasion Of The Bible Thumpers," by Skookum Maguire


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Donuel
Date: 28 May 08 - 09:21 PM

I did a graphic poster "Bible Thumper"

It was a Bible with the Disney character Thumper giving it a thump with his hind foot.

In the background other bunnies were doing what bunnies do.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 May 08 - 10:47 PM

Donuel, I'd love to see that one!

Just finished a re-read of Louis L'Amour's Walking Drum. Still just as excellent as the first time, twenty years ago or so. And, now, with the internet, I can look up some of the intriguing places of which he wrote and learn so much more.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 29 May 08 - 02:27 AM

just reading a sight for sore eyes by Ruth Rendell.

i sometimes feel she sees everybody not earning a hundred grand a year as halfway to being an unfathomable inarticualte psychopath.

maybe she's got a point.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 03:25 PM

Among the several I've read recently, I really enjoyed Fannie Flagg's Standing in the Rainbow and think every American baby boomer should read it.

Also Randy Lee Eickhoff's novel about Wild Bill Hickok, And Not To Yield. Made me want to read a lot more non-fiction about him.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Becca72
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 04:26 PM

I finished Cradle And All by James Patterson a short while ago and LOVED it.

Now I'm reading Widow's Walk by Robert B. Parker. You just can't go wrong with a Spenser novel.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 04:38 PM

I'm a sucker for submarine warfare stories, so I just finished "Send Down A Dove" by Charles MacHardy about a British submarine and her crew in the waning days of WWII.

An excellent read, it was recommended to me by Tom Lewis, chanty singer and writer extraordinaire, who also happens to be an ex-RN submariner.

Seamus


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Big Mick
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 04:59 PM

Your life should not end until you have read

Clean Cabbage in the Bucket


and Other Tales from the Irish Music Trenches

By Frank Emerson

Seamus Kennedy


Robbie O'Connell
Harry O'Donoghue
Dennis O'Rourke

Edited by Dennis O'Rourke



Especially if you are a musician, but fans will love it as well.




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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Peace
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 08:22 PM

I am presently reading a collection of short stories by Skookum Maguire entitled "Invasion of the Bible Thumpers." It is wonderful writing and very entertaining reading by an accomplished author named . I will provide the how and where to get it info tomorrow when I have the book in hand.

"SHORT STORY - FICTION

WINNER:

Invasion of the Bible Thumpers, by Skookum Maguire (iUniverse)"


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 09:48 PM

dulcimer42 - I listed my first batch of books at the swap site and have ordered my first two in exchange. Couldn't have been easier! Thanks, again.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Art Thieme
Date: 11 Jun 08 - 12:36 AM

The Ponga Jim Mayo stories by Louie Lamour are great to read over and over again. Pure noir action dramas---each and every one!

Art


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 11 Jun 08 - 02:10 AM

Wow, Mick!
Now I know how Alison feels.

Thanks.

Seamus


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 11 Jun 08 - 09:43 AM

I just wrapped up the last 100 pages (I read the rest of the book, too!) this morning of Kitty Kelley's "The Family: The Real Story of the Bush Dynasty".

Compelling reading; explains a lot.

Linn


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Lowden Jameswright
Date: 11 Jun 08 - 10:09 AM

"The State We're In" - a great insight into the wasted Thatcher/Tory years by Will Hutton

"Robinson Crusoe" - always worth a re-visit now and again.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Acorn4
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 09:01 AM

"The Rise and Fall of Merry England" by Ronald Hutton -OUP 1994.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 20 Jul 08 - 07:58 PM

Can't find the reference, now, but to whomever recommended (one of our Australian members, if i remember rightly) Alexander McCall Smith's "No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency," thank you! Have just finished it and found it to be delightful! I am now off to see if anyone on bookswap has the next one in the series.

Also, just finished The Illuminator which was really good, though I would have preferred a different ending. Really well worth the read, though.

Also, enjoyed a couple of James Doss books; he does for the Southern Ute Indians, what Tony Hillerman did for the Navajo and Hopi, ala mysteries. Good reads!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 20 Jul 08 - 08:12 PM

Can't find the reference, now, but to whomever recommended (one of our Australian members, if i remember rightly) Alexander McCall Smith's "No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency," thank you! Have just finished it and found it to be delightful! I am now off to see if anyone on bookswap has the next one in the series.

Mea culpa, kat; glad you liked it. The same standard is maintained through all of the series.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 20 Jul 08 - 08:16 PM

Thanks, Rowan!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,number 6
Date: 20 Jul 08 - 09:21 PM

"Water for Elephants" by Sara Gruen

biLL


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Alice
Date: 20 Jul 08 - 10:08 PM

Just finished The House Without A Key, by Earl Derr Biggers, the first Charlie Chan mystery. Then started an Ellery Queen, The Roman Hat Mystery.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: jacqui.c
Date: 20 Jul 08 - 10:56 PM

I'm most of the way through The Road To McCarthy, by Pete McCarthy. It's a shame he died before writing a third book.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Volgadon
Date: 21 Jul 08 - 02:39 AM

Sabatini's Historical Nights Entertainment. Some of the stories are a little innacurate, but they are really fun to read. I only have volume two and in it everyone seems to die, almost as bad as trad ballads.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 21 Jul 08 - 07:35 AM

biLL, i recently read Water for Elephants - i really liked it.

The Book Thief was WONDERFUL - but prepare to cry. A lot.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 21 Jul 08 - 11:19 AM

I see that Guest bflat has mentioned Eckhart Tolle. I have tried reading his books but I find them infuriating. I must be missing something..it seems he has latched on to the art of the obvious..or perhaps I am looking for more than he is offering. I know that millions are enthralled..but he leaves me.........puzzled.
I have just finished The Uses and Abuses of History by Margaret MacMillan. very thought provoking read.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 21 Jul 08 - 09:01 PM

_The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil_ (Random House, 2007) by Philip Zimbardo, who recruited a bunch of nice Stanford undergraduates, put them in a fake jail, randomly assigned some to be guards and the rest to be prisoners, and watched them degenerate into cruelty & despair, dragging him along with them. Eventually his girlfriend, horrified after a tour, induced him to call a halt.

Power corrupts the powerful and the powerless.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Skivee
Date: 22 Jul 08 - 03:02 AM

Neal Stephenson's Crytonomicon. It's not some crappy book about priests bringing the dead back to life.
It's a well written, multi timeline, 1,000 page sci-fi brick. It stretches across the globe, from WWII to a near future where people and industries are building towards more into an intensely more digital life.
A hefty amount of cryptograpghic and ramdomness theory is thrown in as narrative. At one point one of our heroes is bicycling in the Pine Barrens with Alan Turing. He notices that Turning chain pops off periodically. There's a 4 page discussion on the calculus behind the chain popping of. It's backed up by numerous complex formulas. Along the way, you learn stuff about random things that aren't. This should have made me want to stab my eyes out with my reading light, but it was totally engrossing.
Code theory and calulus as entertainment reading !! Who knew?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 22 Jul 08 - 10:01 PM

A friend of my son's is in prison for holding up a gas station. It was a Texaco gas station, so who could blame him. I don't think he has much formal education, but he seems to read pretty well. He likes to have me send him books. I have to have them sent directly for Amazon.com or Barnes&Noble, or etc., or the guards think there's something in the book and take them apart to investigate, ruining the books.
                      He's in his mid-fifties, he's a Native American--West Coast--and he's led a really tough life.
                      What should I send him?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: bobad
Date: 22 Jul 08 - 10:35 PM

Here's one that might come in handy "How To Break Out Of Prison"


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 22 Jul 08 - 11:11 PM

Great! I'm not trying to get the guy killed!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 22 Jul 08 - 11:31 PM

Anything by Sherman Alexie. Here's his site: Click. I esp. liked Indian Killer and Smoke Signals. The latter was made into an excellent movie.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 12:03 AM

Kat - Thank you so much!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 12:41 AM

He's in his mid-fifties, he's a Native American--West Coast--and he's led a really tough life.
                      What should I send him?


Being from Oz I may have missed a vital piece of context and I'm trying to avoid any sense of disparagement; are you requesting a preferred or limited set of topics for your friend?

If variety is what you're looking for, a quick scan through the thread should give you a host of recommendations with only the occasional critical comment. If your friend likes reading but has a limited ability/vocabulary/etc I suspect you could still pull out quite a few suitable books from the ones listed in the thread.

Best of luck!

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 01:52 AM

That is so true, Rowan. I have found some wonderful reads just by perusing this thread, as you know.:-)

Just finished Nuala O'Faolain's "My Dream of You". Quite good, esp. with the true life divorce case from 1849 which is included, some of its duocuments verbatim. Some of her descriptions of Ireland are breathtakinginly, achingly beautiful.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: quokka
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 03:25 AM

I've read Nuala O Faolin's 'Are You Somebody?' which was very good.
Just finished 'Unstrung Heroes'by Franz Lidz - hilarious. Mudcateers who enjoy puns will love this memoir.
Recently re-read Joan Baez 'And a Voice to Sing With' and Woody Guthrie's 'Bound for Glory'. Pure gold!
I've usually got three or four different books on the go, depending on what I'm in the mood for.
Am right in the middle of a Richard Thompson biography called 'Strange Affair' by Patrick Humphries. It's pretty good.
Nearly forgot! Yesterday I read 'Lady Sings the Blues' !!! Wow. This is a re-release with CD attached. It is well worth a look.

Cheers,
Quokka


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: quokka
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 05:27 AM

Oh and also Felicity Kendal's autobiography 'White Cargo'. Fascinating read. What a life she's had!

Cheers,
Quokka


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 08:03 AM

"Nuala O Faolin's"


               Is that Sean O'Faolin's daughter?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 08:12 AM

"Being from Oz I may have missed a vital piece of context and I'm trying to avoid any sense of disparagement;"


                      It's funny how I just assumed everyone would know the context of being in prison in America. It's all about racial identity, so this fellow is segregated into a small group of Native Americans. There are far more Mexicans, Blacks, and Neo-Nazi Whites. If there are Asians, I don't think they distinguish between Chinese and Koreans, or whatever, but they have to be a member of a group to survive.
                      In any event, untill he gets out, he'll be wrapped up in whatever it means to be Native American.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Quokka
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 08:57 AM

Yes, Nuala is Sean O'Faolin's daughter.
Cheers,
Quokka


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Gulliver
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 09:57 AM

Reading Bill Bryson's "A Short History of Nearly Everything". Excellent!

Don


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 10:21 AM

I loved Nuala O'Faolins Book Are You Somebody and so bought her novel My Dream of You. I have not read it yet and in fact I'd forgotten I owned it. Thanks for the mention of it, I will start it tonight.
Have recently read The Towers of Trebizond by Rose McCaulay. Just grand and one of the best opening lines of any novel ever.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: SharonA
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 11:35 AM

"Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why" by Bart D. Ehrman.

This is a kind of a beginner's book for people who are interested in the ways that New Testament manuscripts were altered and modified, intentionally and unintentionally, by copyists and translators before the invention of the printing press (and the interpretations of those different versions up to the present day). It's written in a much simpler style than many other scholarly works on the subject of early-Christian research and exegesis (including other books by the same author).

As with most works of this type, Ehrman has a bias in his interpretation of the available data, but Ehrman makes his opinions quite clear and explains in his introduction the unexpected path his own belief has taken that has led him to form those opinions. He was "saved" during the evangelical push of the early '70s and attended the ultra-evangelical Moody and Wheaton colleges, but his research and even his education caused him to question and finally to reject the fundamentalist agenda.

If you too have come to the realization that not every word in the Bible is literally true, if you wonder whether the Gnostics were really so heretical after all, if you're not ready to slog through a tiny-fonted tome by Elaine Pagels or Bruce Metzger, then try this book!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: irishenglish
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 12:05 PM

Been catching up on Paul Auster-Oracle Night, Travels In The Scriptorum. Currently reading Michael Palin's Diaries 1969-1979, The Python Years. Very good read for anyone interested in Python.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: quokka
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 12:44 PM

Also just re-read Paulo Coelho's 'The Alchemist'. This is one book I can read over and over, although if you haven't guessed by now I'm a wee bit of a bookworm...I haunt libraries and second-hand bookshops. Rarely buy a 'brand-new' book - I figure there's so much to read, so little time, plus I can usually get it from the library if it's newish. I read fiction, biographies, oh heck I think this topic needs a new thread! Fave authors, perhaps...ooh I just remembered, I absolutely LOVE Jonathon Livingston Seagull. I guess I'd better stop before I get too carried away...
Cheers,
Quokka


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 12:54 PM

We've had a few other threads like this and that: click here. Not to say there shouldn't be another.:-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Mike789
Date: 23 Jul 08 - 08:06 PM

Reading William Gibson is a hoot. He coined the word "Cyberspace".

Neuromancer -- Early work, very cool.

Pattern Recognition -- More recent, cool, though tamer.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Neil D
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 01:35 PM

I am 2/3 through "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close" by Jonathan Safran Foer. Its protagonist is 9 year old Oskar Schell, trying to make sense of things after losing his father in the World Trade Center collapse, but this is not a childrens book. At times funny and touching and often very sad (to borrow a phrase from Oskar, it makes me wear heavy boots) this book is quite profound. Mr. Foer's first novel, "Everything Is Illuminated" was made into a movie which two years ago was THE movie that I told everyone was a must see. I now recommend this novel just as highly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 07:22 PM

I read Louis Sachar's book "Holes" a while ago and found it an interesting read, even though I gather it is aimed at teenagers. Both my daughters liked it and were a trifle peeved when I donated it to the school library. After they'd read it, of course.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 09:59 PM

I have boys coming to visit--9 and 10 years old. Any suggestions on good bedtime stories?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 11:12 PM

I just read "Flush" on the strong recommendation of my daughter, and I liked it, too. It's a good choice. (She really did say "strongly recommend.")


From School Library Journal
Grade 5 Up–In Flush (Knopf, 2005), Carl Hiaasen's ecological concerns focus on illegal dumping of raw sewage from a floating casino. Noah Underwood's dad has sunk the gambling ship, the Coal Queen, in protest. Now the elder Underwood is launching a media campaign from his jail cell to raise public awareness since the sewage-spewing ship will soon be back in operation. Though Noah and his younger sister Abbey believe in their father's cause, they also fear their mother will file for divorce if he continues to react so outrageously to environmental issues. After a few false starts and run-ins with the casino owner's son and the ship's hired goon, the siblings come up with a plan . . . .


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 07:29 AM

I didn't even know things like that were out there!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: jacqui.c
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 07:39 AM

i'm most of the way through 'Marley and Me' by John Grogan.

It's nice to know that our Seamus is an almost normal yellow lab in comparison to this one - this is a book that has made me laugh out loud a number of times and that is causing me to become sleep deprived!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 07:36 PM

G'day Riginslinger,
On another thread (about whether kids read anymore) Sandra from Sydney mentioned the NSW Premier's Reading Challenge, which was originally a program encouraging students from Years 5-8 to get reading. Years 5 & 6 are the last two years of primary school (called Grade School, I believe, in the US) and Years 7 & 8 are the first two years of secondary (or High) school. I noticed at the URL below that it's now expanded to cover from Kindergarten (preschoolers) to Year 9.

The separate booklists are seachable by title, author or category. Although the URL is an https: site I had no trouble accessing it.

Lots of luck.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 31 Jul 08 - 10:50 AM

Thanks again, Rowan!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 31 Jul 08 - 09:13 PM

I am most of the way thru _The Confession_ by James E. McGreevey, a former governor of New Jersey. It might be subtitled Love, Lust, & Politics: Their Vile Interactions. Highly educational for me at least.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Ebbie
Date: 01 Aug 08 - 11:48 AM

I just finished 'Lost Horizon', which I borrowed from the used-book store where I work part time.

I had certainly heard of the book - published in the early 30s, and claims to be the first book ever printed in paperback - and most certainly knew the shangra-la concept but my question is: Is this where the concept of Shangra La came from? Or did it only pick up a much earlier allusion?

Interesting story, I must say.

When I first picked it up I thought it was a different book, different subject. What is the name of a movie done early on- 50s or maybe 40s - about, among other things, miscegnation, passing for White, and consequent family conflicts? "Lost" something, I know. Maybe with Dorothy Dandridge in it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 Aug 08 - 02:46 PM

Something rather interesting: Bookfinder's out of print book trends, i.e. most sought after out of print books...I used to have one of them. Now, I'll have to see if I can find it!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 27 Aug 08 - 03:16 PM

How could a Nora Roberts title become a sought after book, or am I reading it wrong?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 27 Aug 08 - 03:46 PM

Must be a specific version, Rig. I went to www.addall.com and did a search on that title and it came up with tons of them, so good question.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: MAG
Date: 28 Aug 08 - 12:13 PM

Just finished *Yiddish Policemen's Union* -- stayed up most of the night to finish it.

How can I not go look for something called *Undomestic Goddess*?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Aug 08 - 12:18 PM

MAG, I just sent out my copy of it, or I'd send it to you. You can join www.paperbackswap and request a copy from there. There are PLENTY available. It's a fun read!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: MAG
Date: 29 Aug 08 - 11:29 AM

I'll get it from the Library, Kat. Our copy was out yesterday, so I'm rereading *Pattern REcognition* instead for now. In between doing what I listed on the declutteri g thread, of course!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: John Hardly
Date: 29 Aug 08 - 08:05 PM

Interesting writer I just finished off four books. Jodi Picoult


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: olddude
Date: 29 Aug 08 - 08:45 PM

Multivariable Calculus by Bruce H. Edwards


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 29 Aug 08 - 10:47 PM

So I'm reading the "The Best American Short Stories of 2007," obviously, 2008 ain't over yet. And in this one story, this guy and his wife decide to commit suicide, so they pull into the garage in a late modle Toyota, close the garage door and leave the engine running.
                   The obvious problem is, a late model Toyota with a catalytic converter produces almost no carbonmonoxide, the thing what kills you.
                   The story was written by a PHD from Johns Hopkins University, and vetted by the editors of the publication that is was originally published in, plus the editors of TBASS of 2007.
                   An out of work coal miner from West Virginia with a 6th grade eduation would have spotted this right away--if he'd been inclined to read it--but it slipped right by all of those folks with advanced degrees from Harvard to UC Berkeley.
                   The out of work miner would have voted for Hillary Clinton. The PHD's would have voted for Barack Obama, and they'd have been wrong.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Michael Harrison
Date: 30 Aug 08 - 03:22 AM

Well, I am just finishing up, "The Dublin Saga" by Edward Rutherfurd, which consists of two books, "The Princes of Ireland," followed by "The Rebels Of Ireland" and I couldn't put them down.
It is the history of Ireland intertwined with a novel, and, for me, at least, it was a most excellent read. Now I'm told that I need to read "The Green Flag" by Robert Kee - the real stuff, I guess.

My sweet missus has not been able to put down the Scottish historical novel series by Diana Gabledon (sp?) that started with the book, "The Outlander." So there's a few to consider. Cheers.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Beer
Date: 30 Aug 08 - 07:57 AM

Michael,
Read the first one of the Dublin saga and can hardly wait to get my hands on the second novel. Read all of Diana's Outlander series and found them truly fascinating. my next book is titled Gondar by Nicholas Luard. A friend just gave it to me. Hope it is enjoyable as the last few I've read.
Beer (adrien)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 30 Aug 08 - 09:09 AM

I just finished a very good novel by Trish Cohen called "The Townhouse". It is the story of the son of an iconic rock star who leaves his only son a decaying townhose and not much else.The story revolves around the son's struggle to hang on to his fathers only legacy. Great read, sad, funny and very well written.
I am also reading a grand non fiction book by Judith Flanders called " Consuming Passions". She writes wonderful social histories (The Victorian House) and this is a fascinating look at the rise of consummerism. Loads of interesting detail. Although is pertains exclusively to England, it is none the less, a great read. Some of the subject areas are ; the rise of shoping and department stores, Popular Music and Theatre, Books and Publishing, the advent of railroads and travel and it ends with a look at the ultimate consumer binge..christmas and what consumerism has done to it. Just a great book.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: john f weldon
Date: 30 Aug 08 - 10:21 AM

Currently reading that 50s pulp-master Mickey Spillane. The hero Mike Hammer is a racist, homophobic, sexist, right-wing thug. It's total garbage and I don't recommend it to anyone. But sometimes I just looove a little garbage!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: john f weldon
Date: 30 Aug 08 - 10:34 AM

A search reveals no mention of Martin Amis' "The Information". It's been a few years but this tale (by Chaim's brother-in-law) is about two rival authors. One has managed to become popular while the other writes books that absolutely no-one can read without becoming ill. The latter repeatedly attempts to sabotage the former. It's very funny, and for an animator seems very familiar. I suspect some folkies will find these guys recognizable, too.

Less junkie than the aforementioned Mickey S.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 30 Aug 08 - 10:58 AM

Michael Harrison well worth a read is Sean O`Callaghan`s book on Cromwells time in Ireland, entitled `To hell or the Barbados`, an insight into a period of hidden history, well researched by O`Callaghan.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 30 Aug 08 - 05:40 PM

ard macha, that one sounds interesting....I had ancestors who went to Barbados as bigwigs...thanks for mentioning the book.

Michael, thanks to you, too. I have just ordered the Outlander from www.paperbackswap and look forward to the series.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 30 Aug 08 - 08:12 PM

Just finished Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See. As her memoir, On Gold Mountain, this was excellent. Equally as interesting are her notes, afterwards, about the travels and research she went through to write it, esp. the info about the secret women's writing known as "nu shu." You may read more about the book at her wbsite: Lisa See dot com.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Michael Harrison
Date: 31 Aug 08 - 01:50 AM

Beer - you should find "The Rebels Of Ireland" at amazon.com or at
half.com at very good prices. Reading is a fine pastime - until they drop the puck again. GO RED WINGS!

ard mhacha - thanks for the tip on the Cromwell book I will most certainly be looking out for a copy of that one. Cheers.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 31 Aug 08 - 06:29 AM

Michael and Kats I got O`Callaghan`s book from Amazon.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: wysiwyg
Date: 03 Oct 08 - 04:01 PM

The Sea Wolf, by Jack London. OK, some of the sailing and sealing stuff could not quite happen that way-- but what a character study/buddy epic. Theological, too.

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: freda underhill
Date: 03 Oct 08 - 09:05 PM

I read Edward Rutherford's books Dublin - Foundation, an account of Dublin from pre-Christian times to @ 17th century, and haven't yet started his next book Ireland the Awakening which continues on. (they sound like the two books referred to above, maybe a different name in Australia?) He's a historian as well as a writer, and also checks his writing with other historians for accuracy in details of the era. The first one was engrossing.

Ducks on the pond by Australian journalist Anne Summers is a fascinating autobiography which is also a rich social history of women in Sydney and social change in the 70s and 80s.

It is similar to Nuala O'Faolain's "are you somebody" in it's frankness and honesty. Any woman can learn from and identify with the writings of these two women.

freda


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: bobad
Date: 03 Oct 08 - 09:15 PM

Rereading JD Salinger's "Franny and Zooey" after more than forty years, surprisingly some recollection remains and appreciation is enhanced by four decades of living.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 03 Oct 08 - 09:57 PM

_Army Life in a Black Regiment_, by Thomas Wentworth Higginson (1869, reprinted by Penguin, 1997). Interesting contemporary memoir. He liked their songs, among other things. His hopefulness is sometimes heartbreaking.

_Giovanni's Room_ by James Baldwin. Bisexuals in Paris, 1950s. Rather dreary IMO. I liked _Another Country_ a lot better.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,number 6
Date: 04 Oct 08 - 12:26 AM

"Che Guevara: A Revolutionary Life" by Jon Lee Anderson

biLL


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 04 Oct 08 - 09:28 AM

I just finished "speak Memory" by Nabokoff. It is the best Biography I have read in a long time. Excellent. On the other hand, I also recently read "Pillars of The Earth" by Ken Follett;one of the worst books I have ever read..so you wine some, you lose some.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 26 Oct 08 - 04:51 PM

Michael, thanks to you I have been reading nothing but Diane Gabaldon this month! Devoured Outlander, went on to Dragonfly in Amber and am getting close to finishing Voyager and have a copy of the next one on its way to me. THAT one will likely have to wait a bit as I am committed to writing a 50,000+ word novel of my own in November!:-)

In between I am up to the 6th book in the No. 1 Ladies Detective Series and have a new John Lescroart to read. All else waits for Gabaldon!

ard, I've just finally ordered a copy of that book from Amazon. If you have a hardback of it, I'd suggest hanging on to it; they are pricey! I am really looking forward to reading it, even if I find some of my ancestor's slaves may have been Irish. (It would be ironic as we've a mix of all three, Irish, Scottish, and English, in my heritage.) The records say he left Barbados to be the governor of the Carolinas and took several hundred slaves with him.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 26 Oct 08 - 05:01 PM

I have just finished reading book one of Henry Morris`s trilogy on the British Empire,Heavens Command, beg borrow or steal this trilogy, Pax Britannia, a brilliant account.
Try your local library, I got mine from Folio, a must read.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 26 Oct 08 - 05:09 PM

Kats my copy of To hell or the Babadoes is a paperback, dont forget my advice on Henry Morris`s trilogy, his account is the fairest I have ever read on this period.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 27 Oct 08 - 04:29 PM

"The Aught-Sixers"


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amos
Date: 27 Oct 08 - 04:33 PM

HIghly recommended first-hand account of the tribulations of the Gemini and Apollo space programs, and their ultimate, extraordinary successes: Last Man on the Moon by Eugene Cernan (who was indeed the last man to walk and drive on the Moon). A humdinger.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: kendall
Date: 27 Oct 08 - 04:40 PM

I haven't finished it yet but Seamus Kennedy's book "Clean Cabbage in the Bucket" is a very interesting read. It's a series of short stories about the life of traveling Irish singers. Also included are Robbie O'Connell, Frank Emerson, Dennis O'Rourke and Harry O'Donoghue.

Poignant and funny is a combo hard to beat.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 27 Oct 08 - 07:49 PM

Picked some more or less random old ones off my shelves to browse in today:

Edward Gibbon, _The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire_ (1776-1781). One can pick a chapter at random & escape from present to ancient wickedness & foolishness.

Elizabeth Hawes, _Men Can Take It_ (1939). An extended complaint, by a well-known fashion designer, that the clothing of respectable men in the U.S. is unnecessarily uncomfortable. Amusing, temperate, and amazing when one considers how many other things people had to worry about in 1939.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Alice
Date: 27 Oct 08 - 07:56 PM

Sherlock Holmes: The Montana Chronicles


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 27 Oct 08 - 10:09 PM

Well tell us about it, Alice. It sure sounds interesting to me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: alison
Date: 28 Oct 08 - 02:07 AM

Lamb - by Christopher Moore - think Hitchiker's Guide meets the missing bits in the New Testament. Not for the easily offended - but it is an absolute hoot.

another vote for Diana Gabaldon - re-reading Crosstitch for the umpteenth time.

slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Folk Form # 1
Date: 28 Oct 08 - 04:04 AM

I am reading Asimov's New Guide To Science at the moment. A massive book which I will probably read in stages to stopmy brain exploding withall the infomration overload.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: quokka
Date: 28 Oct 08 - 09:13 AM

Just finished John Grisham's 'The Testament'. Very good.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 28 Oct 08 - 10:20 AM

"The Sea Wolf, by Jack London. OK, some of the sailing and sealing stuff could not quite happen that way--"

                      I remember reading this when I was a kid, and everytime they had a storm and the water got rough, they would simply put out a "sea anchor." I came away wondering how any ship could ever sink at sea. Why didn't they just put out a sea anchor?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 29 Oct 08 - 03:08 PM

For those enjoying the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency books, there is a neat video of the author Sandy McCall Smith in Scotland and Botswana, as well as a short bit with Ian Rankin HERE. Well worth watching with a lot about his motivation for writing the books, etc.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: akenaton
Date: 29 Oct 08 - 06:02 PM

When I was young, I was in a really bad accident at work.
Confined to bed, someone gave me a copy of "Time and again" by an American author called Jack Finney. It was about travelling back in time, a fictional project funded by the US Govt and based in the Dakota building overlooking Central Park in New York City.

Over the years, the story stayed in my mind, although I forgot the book title and author's name, but a couple of weeks ago, I found the book at a car boot sale and I have read it again with much pleasure.

It still has the same effect on me that it had all those years ago


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Cluin
Date: 29 Oct 08 - 10:08 PM

Reading a hard cover H. Rider Haggard compilation I picked up at a book sale for a buck. Contains the stories "King Solomon's Mines", "She", and "Alan Quatermain". Good old adventure stories, if a bit dated, imperialistic, geographically impossible and politically incorrect.

I am most of the way through the 2nd one, "She", now and it occurs to me to contain bits that Tolkien might have adapted/borrowed. The English gentleman's gentleman Job has an attitude and dialogue that sounds quite a bit like Sam Gamgee. And "She" reminds me of Galadriel in spots, with her longevity, powers, and psychic ability; she also has a container of water that lets her view things clairvoyantly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 30 Oct 08 - 05:53 PM

Galadriel in spots?

Now, that's a concept that'd exercise some lads' minds.

Cheers, Rowan
Whose daughter #1 has developed a taste for Agatha Christie so I've been collecting for her at the monthly Sunday Markets 'til she gets back from swanning around Europe with her mum. And I have to check out their plots before I give them to her. Of course!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 30 Oct 08 - 06:40 PM

Loved King Solomon's Mines, years ago! Also loved Razor's Edge. Another of my favs, by Talbot Mundy is King of the Khyber Rifles. I started out with a Classic Illustrated comic of it and went on to the book. Great, fun stuff, long before Indiana Jones was a spark in his daddy's eye.:-)

Just finished In the Company of Cheerful Ladies. Another great No. 1 Ladies' Detective.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: DougR
Date: 30 Oct 08 - 07:18 PM

Yep. BUFFALOed, by Fairlee Winfield. It's available at Amazon.com and I wrote a review for it on Amazon.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 06 Jan 09 - 07:26 PM

A new author, to me: Barry Lopez. I've read two of his, recently: Winter Count and Crow and Weasel. I highly recommend both, but preferred the latter which also has brilliant illustrations. Beautiful, incredible writing and stories.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: LilyFestre
Date: 06 Jan 09 - 07:37 PM

Just about finished with Pillars of the Earth by Follett. Excellent.

Michelle


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: maire-aine
Date: 06 Jan 09 - 07:54 PM

Conscience of A Liberal by Paul Krugman,

and

The Second Bill of Rights: FDR's Unfinished Revolution and Why We Need It More Than Ever by Cass R. Sunstein

Regards,
Maryanne


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: robomatic
Date: 06 Jan 09 - 11:29 PM

I'm trying like hell to get into "Anathem" by Neal Stephenson. I find it slow going. So was easily diverted to Tony Hillerman's "Fallen Man" which is delightful as is almost everything he's written, and plan to be diverted next to "State Of Fear" by Crichton since it relates to a class I'm attending, re: Global Warming.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Janie
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 12:24 AM

Currently reading A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini, who also wrote The Kit Runner. It is as good and insightful, if not even better.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 08:53 AM

I have just come off my annual Jane Austen binge and am now reading The End of History and The Last Man by Fukyama. It is a very thought provoking book and I will have to re-read much of it as I find it very complex in places. However, it does make one take a long look at the concept of liberal democracy and why so many people aspire to it as a national state of being.
   I have also re read North and South by Mrs. Gaskell and find an amazng parralell between it and the Fukyama book, although they are a hundred years apart and one is non fiction and the other a novel.
    I am always pleased when someone reactivates this thread..lots of interesting opinions and many suggestions for good reads. Thanks all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Bee
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 12:06 PM

Just finished reading Gregory Maguire's Son of a Witch, sequel to Wicked, both of which my brilliant 19 year old neice gave me. Not for everyone, but I really enjoyed both books, and they really helped me come to terms with my deep-seated distaste for the 'heros' of the original Wizard of Oz.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amos
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 01:20 PM

IF you can get your hands on a 2001 novel called The Forger,by Paul Watkins do so. It is beautifully written and brilliantly conceived.
Preview available here.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amergin
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 01:43 PM

I am reading a book called Recalling the Good Fight, an autobiography of the Spanish Civil War by John Tisa, who was a member of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Bee
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 01:52 PM

Amos, that preview hooked me. Isn't the plotline based on a true story; a real forger who claimed (when charged with forgery, if I recall rightly) to be forging art to fool Nazis?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Big Mick
Date: 07 Jan 09 - 01:55 PM

The Guards followed by The Killing of the Tinkers written by Galway man, Ken Bruen. Dark, edgy, and very well written.

Mick


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Catherine Jayne
Date: 08 Jan 09 - 08:41 AM

I've just finished reading Dawn French's autobiography and it's excellent and very funny. I got load of books for xmas including Nation by Terry Pratchett who has to be my favourite author. Also got The Folklore of the Discworld and The wit and wisdom of the Discworld on the pile to be read.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Midchuck
Date: 08 Jan 09 - 10:19 AM

Robomatic: I just finished Anathem. I hear where you're coming from. The first half or so took a long time to get through. I read the second half in a couple of evenings. It's worth the work, IMO.
Peter


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 08 Jan 09 - 11:05 AM

For the curious, like me: Review of Anathem. Sounds challenging and good!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 08 Jan 09 - 10:21 PM

Novella - Re-read Joseph Conrad "Heart of Darkness," starting on "Secret Agent." It works very well in today's society, maybe because he was Polish.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amos
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 12:00 AM

Bee, I did not know it at the time, but if so, truth is as strange as fiction. The novel creates the scene most skillfully.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Ruth Archer
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 03:33 AM

I've just noticed the negative responses above to Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy. I have to disagree. I think it's an absolutely wonderful series which presents real moral dilemmas and an alternative view of "God" which probably works better for those of a more agnostic bent. Someone said they felt he had an axe to grind. I didn't think that at all, though he clearly feels strongly about some of the deeper messages of the books. But I thought the stories were beautifully conceived and absolutely magical. Anyway, proselytising through children's literature is accepted in something like Narnia, which is one long Christian allegory - no one accuses CS Lewis of having an axe to grind. If anything, Pullman is the anti-Lewis; he undermines certain ideas about Christianity through the same medium that Lewis promoted them. Oooh, a battle for our children's souls! To be honest, my daughter loved Narnia when she was litte, but didn't really get on with His Dark Materials. But she's still an agnostic. :)

"The most notable quality of Pullman is the total lack of humour, quite the opposite of JKRowling."

Actually, the most notable quality of Pullman in comparison to JK Rowling is his ability as a writer. His Dark Materials is far more sophisticated writing, both conceptuially and in execution, than Harry Potter. I find a lot of Rowling's writing creaky and forced, especially after the third book. The overall story arc often works very well indeed, but there are too many convenient plot devices, and predictable twists, and, perhaps most importantly, I stopped believing in the characters (and especially a lot of the dialogue) from about book 5 - 7. She seemed to do better with them when they were little kids.


Aaaaanyway, someone reccommended William P Young's The Shack earlier. I could not disagree more. Absolutely cringeworthy, dreadful stuff. Grade-school theology - patronising, contrived, exploitative...as one of my friends was wont to say, the book contains "hidden shallows". IMHO.

So - on to the reason I came onto this thread! Has anyone read Affluenza, by Oliver James? They were discussing it on Book Club on Radio 4 last week and I thought it sounded really interesting. I thought I'd see whether anyone here has any views about it...


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 05:24 AM

Just finished, Liberation: Europe 1945 by William Hitchcock, Hitchcock`s 446 pages read exposes the Allies as no better in lots of cases than there foes.
The countless thousands of eastern refugees who were handed over to the Soviets the majority of whom disappeared into forced labour camps to die in there thousands. Well worth a read,it is all there, the unnecessary bombing of the German cities when the war was coming to an end, the author opens a hidden chapter in the liberation of Europe.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 08:22 AM

It works very well in today's society, maybe because he was Polish.

??????

...................

I've just read Barack Obama's first book, Dreams from My Father. I think that must be the first time I've ever read a whole book by a politician.    of course he wasn't quite a politician when he wrote it. A pretty remarkable book - I can only hope he lives up to what it seems to promise.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 12:35 PM

ard mhacha, I recently read the book you recommended, To Hell or the Barbados. Opened up my eyes. I knew things were bad in Ireland, but I did not know some were sent to slavery in the Caribbean. Not so sure I want to claim my old ancestor after reading that! Thanks for telling us about it.

I am re-reading Bundori by one of my fav. authors, Laura Joh Rowland.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Becca72
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 12:39 PM

Just starting "Double Homicide" by Jonathan and Faye Kellerman. Should be an interesting read as I usually love his stuff and hate hers. We'll see how this one goes. :-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 10:10 PM

I have recently been browsing in Norbert Wiener's _Cybernetics_, which warped my mind when I was in highschool 55 years ago. It is a very uneven book, and I still find the mathematical parts largely incomprehensible. However, the first chapter, "Newtonian and Bergsonian Time", is a charming comparative history of philosophy & technology, and the last, "Information, Language, and Society", contains the following timely remark:

"There is a belief, current in many countries, which has been elevated to the rank of an official article of faith in the United States, that free competition is itself a homeostatic process: that in a free market, the individual selfishness of the bargainers, each seeking to sell as high and buy as low as possible, will result in the end in a stable dynamics of prices, and [will] redound to the greatest common good. This is associated with the very comforting view that the individual entrepreneur, in seeking to forward his own interest, is in some manner a public benefactor, and has thus earned the great rewards with which society has showered him. Unfortunately, the evidence, such as it is, is against this simple-minded theory...."

His technological prognostications are sometimes quaint, but the following one in the introduction, on the likely consequences of what we now call automation, seems more sensible to me than it does to most people:

"...Of course, just as the skilled carpenter, the skilled mechanic, the skilled dressmaker have in some degree survived the first industrial revolution, so the skilled scientist and the skilled administrator may survive the second. However, taking the second revolution as accomplished, the average human being of mediocre attainments or less has nothing to sell that it is worth anyone's money to buy.

The answer, of course, is to have a society based on human values other than buying or selling...."


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 09 Jan 09 - 11:11 PM

Fifty-five years ago would be 1953. Reaganomics and the supply-side buffoons hadn't happened yet. I think the GI Bill was passed in 1954--could be wrong--but it seems like the last time that mode of thinking was in vogue would have been prior to the crash of 1929. All of that taken into account, it seems like the writer was thinking way ahead of his times.
                Of course, now we are living with the reality of the failure to heed the warning.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 10 Jan 09 - 07:11 AM

Kats, It will be a lesson to anyone who ever doubted England`s role in Ireland, a horror story, an eye-opener for the doubters.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 10 Jan 09 - 08:21 PM

Riginslinger: The book was written in 1947 and published in 1948; it was already (in)famous by the time I got hold of it. The laissez-unfair religion from which Wiener was dissenting was a good deal older than the Reagan's economic geniuses.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 10 Jan 09 - 08:53 PM

Joe - Googling "laissez-faire" one gets this Wikipedia entry. I guess all the Reagan people did was to bring it back from the dead.

    "The exact origins of the term "laissez-faire" as a slogan of economic liberalism are uncertain. The first recorded use of the 'laissez faire' maxim was by French minister René de Voyer, Marquis d'Argenson, another champion of free trade, in his famous outburst:[1]...."

    "According to historical folklore, the phrase stems from a meeting c. 1680 between the powerful French finance minister Jean-Baptiste Colbert and a group of French businessmen led by a certain M. Le Gendre. When the eager mercantilist minister asked how the French state could be of service to the merchants, Le Gendre replied simply "Laissez-nous faire" ('Leave us be,' lit. 'Let us do').[2]"


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: john f weldon
Date: 11 Feb 09 - 11:29 AM

Fresh off the press: "Payback" by Margaret Atwood. Not a novel this time, a lecture on the subject of debt, defined very broadly. As usual, she's a humourous, charming, knowledgeable, fun read. Her discussion about Millers in folk songs will ring true for many folkies.

I'm in the middle of a graphic novel about Staggerlee, a semi-fictional, semi-factual treatment. Most interesting are the notes which talk about the actual known characters involved in Lee Shelton's shooting of Billy Lyons in St Louis, Christmas Eve, 1895.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 11 Feb 09 - 03:40 PM

I just finished Revolutionary Road which I had to buy because of the enormous critical acclaim insisting he's the best author since sliced bread. Didn't work for me, but that's how it goes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Wesley S
Date: 11 Feb 09 - 04:07 PM

I've just finished "Band of Brothers' and started "The Wild Blue" - both by Stephen Ambrose. Both are about Americans experiences in World War 2.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 11 Feb 09 - 04:20 PM

Second reading (ten years after the first - and it is almost spooky scary how the past decade has confirmed her observations) I have gotten much, much more out of it this time

God Has Ninty-Nine Names: reporting from a militant Middle East by Judith Miller, Simon and Schuster, 1996.

As a professional newspaper reporter she interviewed the highest of levels of Islamic leadership from Israel, Iran, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Algeria, Libya, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan. This is her recounting of the fanaticism that fans the flames of the mid-east.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 11 Feb 09 - 09:03 PM

Taken with me today for subway reading: _The Practical Cogitator: The Thinker's Anthology_ by Charles P. Curtis, Jr., & Ferris Greenslet (1950; first browsed in by me, ca. 1957). A great variety of stuff.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 05:20 PM

An entertaining book by Jeffrey Archer (first one I've ever read of his. Didn't know he was such a political etc. animal!) called As the Crow Flies.

Also, just finished Sign of the Labrys by Margaret St. Clair. An extraordinary book!

Just started Jackie's Nine about Jackie Robinson, written by his daughter. VERY inspirational.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 05:31 PM

I'm reading Mawson's Will again - an Antarctic expedition in 1912. It keeps occurring to me that this would be great escapist reading for our Australian kin these days.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 06:41 PM

heric, I see they have reprinted Douglas Mawson's own book The Home of the Blizzard. Have you read it, too? If so, which would you recommend of the two? The one Mawson wrote sounds as though it covers much more of his time, in general, there, than the other. I might wind up reading both. Thanks for posting about it!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 07:43 PM

No, kat, I wish I'd known about it and had it handy. I don't usually re-read stuff. Those polar guys tended to be broadly educated Renaissance types, capable of powerful prose. There are only sparse quotes:

"The actual experience is something else. Picture drift that blots out the world, that is hurled, actually screaming with energy, through space in a 100 mile an hour wind. When the temperature is below freezing. Those are the facts. But then shroud these infuriated elements with polar night and a plunge into such a black-white writhing storm is to stamp on the senses an indelible, awful impression seldom equalled in the whole gamut of natural experience. [The world became a void], fierce, grisly appalling; a fearful gloom in which the merciless blast was an incubus of vengeance that stabbed, froze, and buffetted intruders with the stinging drift that choked and blinded."

From that, I would guess that the book in Mawson's own words is a good risk.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 11:23 PM

Thanks, heric. From that, I may give them both a try. There were times, in Wyoming, when it felt as though we came close to those conditions, though, of course, we never had the all-out blackness of night and day and the wind chill only brought it down to fifty below.:-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 11:45 PM

Mawson's own writings are not to be missed. I'm currently getting though the verion of his diarising and field-note-taking edited by Fred Jacka and his missus (I apologise for not remembering her name.

As an aside, Mawson made it back to Commonwealth Bay just as the ship disappeared back to Oz and wasn't able to return until the following spring. Mawson and those who stayed and waited for him lived on hard rations for that extra winter. Even now mainland ANAREs take down a year's supply of food, stash the nonperishables and then consume the noperishables brought down by the previous group. And, in my 14 months there, there were no "Use by" or "Best before" dates to keep us from getting stuck into good tucker.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 16 Feb 09 - 01:27 PM

(My son was supposed to return today from snow camping, but he is trapped in a storm. This is southern California. (No worries).)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 16 Feb 09 - 02:15 PM

Yikes, heric. I hope he knows to remain put and not try to hike out or anything, if applicable.

Rowan, thanks for the further information. Now, when you spend 14 months there??!!! Do tell!? Pretty please? Separate thread? I'd love to hear more!

Just finished the Jackie's Nine book. It was very inspiring and a quick read. I learned more about him, not just in baseball, but also how he helped the Civil Rights movement, etc. Good, good man!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: open mike
Date: 16 Feb 09 - 02:39 PM

book on tape (c.d.) School Days by Robert Parker...about a school shooting

also a c.d. ... Tony HILLERMAN....Skinwalkers-- i love Tony's books.
he passed away this year.

now on Tyranosaur Canyon, by Douglas Preston a mystery involving moon rock samples and new mexico desert prospectors and treasure hunters.

also plan to soon read (or listen to) Three Cups of Tea by Greg MORTENSON. Thhis has been designated the "book in common" in this county and many classes, and groups are reading it...see here for more:
www.threecupsoftea.

also am reading Libery Falling by one of my favorite authors...Nevada Barr.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 16 Feb 09 - 02:56 PM

Oh thanks open mike I had forgotten I was told to read Three Cups of Tea already, and will go get it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 16 Feb 09 - 03:01 PM

IT looks really good. I shall go get it, too. Thank om!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 15 Mar 09 - 04:47 PM

Kidnapped (Being Memoirs of the Adventures of David Balfour in the Year 1751.) It's brilliant and suspenseful, so I'm already distraught it's going to end. Sequels don't sound equal, so I guess I'll go get Weir of Hermiston.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 Mar 09 - 02:21 PM

Amos, I just recently read The Forger. Thanks for recommending it!

I've read several others, recently, and esp. liked Forty Words for Sorrow by Canadian author Giles Blunt; well-written and suspenseful. Also just finished a novel, By A Spider's Thread, by Laura Lippman, a former journalist. I enjoyed it, too.

I am looking forward to one on order: Daisy Bates in the Desert : A Woman's Life Among the Aborigines (Vintage Departures) by author Julia Blackburn. "In 1913, at the age of 54, Daisy Bates went to live in the deserts of South Australia. Brilliantly reviewed, astonishingly original, this "eloquent and illuminating portrait of an extraordinary woman" (New York Times Book Review) tells a fascinating, true story in the tradition of Isak Dinesen and Barry Lopez."

Speaking of Barry Lopez, I've now read two of his books and really LOVED Crow and Weasel!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 18 Mar 09 - 02:32 PM

Hey slow down! Not fair.

Kidnapped ended and I'm reading The Wild Trees.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 18 Mar 09 - 03:23 PM

Well, it was over the whole past month.:-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 19 Mar 09 - 02:40 PM

Two Penguin classics by Patrick Kavanagh, - Tarry Flynn - and -The Green Fool-, two wonderful books by the writer of Raglan Road, and -Borstal Boy- by Brendan Behan, the great wit at his best.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 19 Mar 09 - 04:32 PM

I read The Green Fool on your recommendation here many years ago Ard. Great stuff.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Janie
Date: 19 Mar 09 - 08:30 PM

In going through a box of books in storage, I came across "Hanta Yo" (Ruth Beebe Hill). I first read it almost 30 years ago, and am about half way through this second reading. Although Hill took a sound, and apparently deserved, drubbing from Native American critics regarding her misrepresentation or misunderstanding of an archaic Sioux culture, it is still a mighty good read.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 19 Mar 09 - 11:06 PM

Rowan, thanks for the further information. Now, when you spend 14 months there??!!! Do tell!? Pretty please? Separate thread? I'd love to hear more!

and

Daisy Bates in the Desert :

Somehow I've missed this thread for a while (must have been all the stuff on the fires sidetracking me) so please accept my apologies, kat.

Second things first:
Daisy Bates was indeed a remarkable woman and the book on her was recently accompanied by a half hour program on Radio National (Oz ABC); you might find a podcast still there. At one stage she was married to Harry "Breaker" Morant who was a horse breaker who wrote quite a lot of "bush verse" as it's known in Australia. Kit Denton (the father of Andrew Denton, for those into Oz TV) wrote Breaker Morant's biography and it is a good read in itself. Morant was part of the Australian military contingent to the Boer War in South Africa (then formally known as the "U of SA", just to confuse you States-siders) and was courtmartialled by the British for following Kitchener's orders with more zeal than ethics. He was shot for it and Australians military forces personnel were never since allowed to be courtmartialled by the British. The events were made into a cracking film about 30 years ago.

First things second:
About my stay at Mawson,I can say, with a completely straight face, that I'm a sixtyniner. Our team left Oz before Christmas in 1968 and returned late in February 1970. There were lots of books in the station library and it was where I first encountered Shackleton's description of his "Endurance" expedition and the voyage from Elephant Island to South Georgia. Coincidentally, the trip across South Georgia, from west to east, which Shackleton and co did in three days with no proper gear, was repeated during 1969 by a special contingent of Royal Marines, who had the very latest of lightweight gear; they took three weeks to replicate Shackleton's three-day trip. And they had maps!

And, kat, whenever anyone asked "What was it like?" I'd reply, "Not in any particular order, it was cold, windy, isolated and celibate! And I would recommend anyone jump at the chance to go!"

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 20 Mar 09 - 05:38 AM

Good man Heric, and I am sure you are much the wiser regarding the great man, Kavanagh.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 20 Mar 09 - 09:01 PM

I recently read _Dreams from My Father_ by Barack Obama. A remarkable example of hybrid vigor. I downloaded his family tree & used it for a bookmark.

I am now working on _What Have You Changed Your Mind About?_ (John Brockman, Ed.), which I bought because I have not changed my mind about anything recently. 1- to 3-p. snippets by "150 high-powered thinkers" (it says). Some of them, IMO, have changed in the wrong direction.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amos
Date: 21 Mar 09 - 01:46 AM

I am greatly enjoying The Black Swan by Nassim Nicholas Taleb--a meandering set of essays on the intricate traps we set for our own ways of thinking, well communicated with an easy nipping sense of humor I enjoy greatly.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: DougR
Date: 21 Mar 09 - 01:53 AM

No, but I'm looking forward to reading George W. Bush's book.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 17 Apr 09 - 08:00 PM

Nothing earth-shattering, but The Hum Bug by Harold Schechter was a fun read this week.

Also read another Brother Cadfael...The Holy Thief.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ranger1
Date: 17 Apr 09 - 08:07 PM

Just finished two really good books. Bone Rattler by Eliot Pattison and Asta in the Wings by Jan Elizabeth Watson. Very different books, but both hard to put down. Of the two, I think I liked Bone Rattler best.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 17 Apr 09 - 08:27 PM

Harvey Pekar, _Another Day_ & _Another Dollar_. Good old-fashioned Pekar, writing about himself, none of that serious stuff, just everyday misery in Cleveland. In the immortal words of A. Lincoln, for those of us who like this kind of thing, this is just the kind of thing we will like.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 17 Apr 09 - 10:15 PM

Speaking of that, who's the mystery writer who sets his stories in Cincinnati? They drive down Ezard Charles Boulevard from time to time, which is how I figured out they were in Cincinnati.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amergin
Date: 17 Apr 09 - 11:14 PM

I recently reread a series by Harry Turtledove....all based on the premise of the Confederacy winning the war....it starts in How Few Remain....in the Civil War....then in a second war that takes place twenty years later.....the next set in this series involve the great war....the trenches are all along the usa/csa border....and then the next set takes place between world wars, and shows the rise of fascism, then comes world war two....a great series for anyone who likes history...and alternative history.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Emma B
Date: 18 Apr 09 - 06:04 AM

I've been addicted to the charming books about The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, a series of ten novels by British author Alexander McCall Smith set in Gaborone, capital of Botswana, and the indomitable Mma Precious Ramotswe, who features as the stories' protagonist.
Just reading the most recent book 'Tea Time for the Traditionally Built'

A continent and 60 years apart, I'm also reading 'Idle Women' a book I bought at the Inland Waterways museum on a trip on the Grand Union Canal last week.
Originally published in 1947, it recounts the experiences of the IW women (nicknamed the Idle Women although very from it) who were the volunteers who manned the cargo boats that ran from London to Birmingham in world War 2


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 18 Apr 09 - 06:15 AM

Back in January Ruth Archer asked if anyone had read 'Affluenza' by Oliver James. Well, yes, I read it last year (and I've come late to this thread) - and do you know, I can't remember very little about it - except, possibly, that wanting and having a surfeit of things is bad ... ?

The style rather reminded me of those womens' magazines like 'Cosmopolitan' that I occasionally encounter in dentists' waiting rooms: "Jill, a marketing consultant from Weybridge, had so many designer handbags that her arm fell off" - that sort of thing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 23 Apr 09 - 10:47 AM

I am presently reading the sequel to The Meaning of Night by Michael Cox, it is called The Glass of Time. An excellent yarn which takes place in Victorian England and is written in that style. I have also recently re re read three minor classics...Brat Fararr by Josephine Tey, Crewe Train by the wonderful and undervalued Rose Macaulay and Random Harvest by James Hilton. I enjoyed them all/ Thanks for this thread, lots of good suggestions here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Becca72
Date: 23 Apr 09 - 12:05 PM

Currently reading "I'll Sleep When I'm Dead: The Dirty Life and Times of Warren Zevon". Excellent read, but I suppose only if you're a Warren Zevon fan...


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Neil D
Date: 23 Apr 09 - 12:27 PM

I've been reading Jeff Shaara's military historic novels about the American Revolution and WWII. Quite well researched.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 23 Apr 09 - 09:38 PM

Does everybody receive those e-mails from Amazon.com? They research what you've ordered in the past, and then they try to interest you in what they think you might want to read. I got one the other day for a book they were hyping as "just out." When I looked into it, it was published in 2005.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 19 May 09 - 11:36 AM

I have not read this yet, as I haven't received my copy, but I did do a little editing when my friend was first writing it. Anyway, I'd like to introduce her murder mystery series Paws for Love Mystery and encourage folks to support her. There's a pretty slick trailer for her first novel, Murder with a View, on youtube.

Thanks,

kat


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 19 May 09 - 09:09 PM

Browsing in my 50-yr-old copy of von Neumann & Morgenstern's _Theory of Games and Economic Behavior_. Game theory is much mentioned these days, often by people who don't know the first thing about it. To learn the first thing about it (utility theory), read Chapter 3.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 20 May 09 - 05:40 PM

I recently finished reading a hardbound book I got from the library called "Damned Rebels" (a sort of humorous title). It's a very thorough study of the American Revolutionary War from the British point of view, but it's quite even-handed. Absolutely fascinating! I recommend it as good reading for anyone, American, Canadian, or British...it would hardly matter. It's an old book, so you might have some difficulty finding it, specially in the USA, I expect. It was written by an Englishman in the 1940s or 1950s (don't remember exactly).

I am now about 1/3 of the way through "Pillars of the Earth" by Ken Follet. It's very good. It's a novel about the building of an English cathedral in the medieval period, and the lives of various individuals of that time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Little Hawk
Date: 20 May 09 - 06:01 PM

Correction: I think the first book was called "Those Damned Rebels!"

I have since returned it to the library. It's great because it clearly explains the mistakes both sides made, the courage and efficiency they both showed, and the things they both did right. Either side might have won. It was a very close thing, that war.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 20 May 09 - 11:41 PM

I LOVED Pillars of the Earth, LH!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Lin in Kansas
Date: 21 May 09 - 12:04 AM

Kat: If you're looking for an author that loves Montana, have you tried Peter Bowen? His books are wonderful, about the Metis Indians, fiddle music, and mysteries to boot.

Also: Anything by James Lee Burke is good. I noticed, way back up there, that you had read one of his and was wondering if the New Orleans landmarks were still there. His latest novels are post-Katrina. He also has a series set in Texas, about a Texas Ranger called Billy Bob (only JLB could get away with that for a hero's name) that's pretty good.

We've been packing the house to move, so all my hardbacks are in storage. I made John leave one box of paperbacks out so I would have something to read--I lucked out and found it full of old Elizabeth Peters novels, so I've been enjoying re-reading her stuff the last couple of weeks.

Would also recommend Charlaine Harris, Kim Armstrong, James Crumley, and too many more to remember without the books to look at. I miss them already!

Lin


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 24 May 09 - 09:56 AM

I've just finished Crewe Train by Rose MacCaulay... very good. I seem to keep going back to read some older things..Read Random Harvest by James Hilton..another great read.The Meaning of Night by Michael Cox is a great yarn as is the sequel, The Glass of Time. And Last but by no means least, The Complete Molesworth...what fun that is, great laughs all the way through.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 24 May 09 - 12:07 PM

Lin, moving??? Good luck and I hope that is what you wanted?! THANKS for the recommendations. I will definitely look into those. May you soon unpack and get your hands on your books, again! luvya!

HiLo, thanks, too, for your recommendations.

I am reading Peace Like A River by Leif Enger, also recommended by a Mudcatter. Wow, what an incredible book; I can't put it down.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 24 May 09 - 12:23 PM

I also found Peter Bowen's book sheer delight! I managed to read them in the order written to get the "life story" straight. That makes a difference to me.
Loved Elizabeth Peters also but would not do a reprise.
Ellis Peters, Brother Cadfael (sp?) series, with all its wonderful herbal references, are fun.
Lately: Water for Elephants, Snow in August, Last Night I Dreamed of Peace (marvellous to me but others could not read it).


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,quokka
Date: 25 May 09 - 10:04 AM

I'm discovering some Canadian authors...Alistair McLeod's 'The Island', David Adams Richards:'Mercy Among the Children' and Ann-Marie McDonald:'Fall on Your Knees'. All amazing books. Now I just need to put them DOWN so I can do some damn work!!!!!
Cheers,
Quokka (who's meant to be finishing an essay)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: olddude
Date: 25 May 09 - 10:17 AM

Kendall was kind enough to give me a copy of his book
I laughed on every page. What a great book ....


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 25 May 09 - 10:36 AM

I have just finished Coventry By Helen Humphries..what a wonderful writer she is. The Best of all Canadian writers is Alistair MacCleod, especially "No Great Mischief".


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Neil D
Date: 26 May 09 - 06:18 AM

"Delta Blues" by Ted Gioia


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 27 May 09 - 09:29 PM

The recent posts reminded me of Elizabeth Bowen and "The Last September." The current economic situation reminds me of it as well.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: robomatic
Date: 28 May 09 - 02:33 AM

Just started "Every Man Dies Alone" by Fallada, a book written during the war by a German author and published in 1947. It's about a grieving German who protests the war in Germany by sending flagrant postcards in the mails and relying on their anonymity to keep him safe, yet there is an official trying to track him down. It is supposedly based on an actual case, but I'm freshly into it. This latest publication is very recent.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 28 May 09 - 02:49 AM

Just finished 'The Shack' - excellent.
Halfway through 'The Gargoyle' - also excellent (but for different reasons).


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: robomatic
Date: 02 Jun 09 - 04:39 PM

Finished: "Every Man Dies Alone" from the 1947 book by Hans Fallada: Jeder Stirbs fur sich allein. The author had spent several months in a German asylum toward the end of the war, and as the East German government took form under the Soviets, a friend of his loaned him the dossier on the Hampel case, which he fictionalized by entering the minds of the participants.

An unusual story, very readable translation.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Ebbie
Date: 02 Jun 09 - 06:26 PM

As usual I'm reading several books but one is a disappointment to me. It is the highly acclaimed 'The Kite Runner'. If it were a true story I'd be a lot more forgiving but this way...

At this point I am where 'Amir' is setting Hassan up as a thief. I may not even finish it which for me is a rare thing.

He presents Amir as evil, even if he doesn't label it as such. The story is so bleak with no redeeming bits of humor that to me the boy is just not believable.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Ebbie
Date: 02 Jun 09 - 06:28 PM

I just realized - it's kind of like "Lord of the Flies". Both books present themselves as revealing human nature but since they are fiction they lack credibility. IMO


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 02 Jun 09 - 08:29 PM

Agree on the Kite Runner Ebbie. So simplistic in the good/evil split - in the honor/dishonor, pride versus shame etc. that it forces you away to stand outside of it and think - oh, I see what he's doing - with all the subtlety of forced sodomy or a rock to the head. Kites good. Stadium executions bad.

I'm reading An Exploding Case of Mangoes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 02 Jun 09 - 08:49 PM

I wish you hadn't triggered that. No doubt there are many people upthread who liked as so many millions do - and it's all subjective. The guy presented it as heartfelt rendering of his homeland with his personal shame exposed - so it's got lots of good qualities as well. But, yeah - I still agree with you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: wysiwyg
Date: 09 Jun 09 - 09:35 AM

Lot of public-domain history books recently added at Librivox. Roman, Irish, Scottish, early church history...

John Muir books also just added.

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 09 Jun 09 - 09:41 AM

Persevere, Ebbie. It ends satisfyingly well.
Try also 'A Thousand Splendid Suns' by the same author.
And, 'The Bookseller of Kabul' (by a female Swedish author, based on her real-life experiences living with a family in Kabul). A real insight into the oppression of women in that region.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 09 Jun 09 - 10:31 AM

The first Inspector Lynley mystery post the murder of his wife and unborn son: Careless in Red and also the next to latest of the No. 1 Ladies Detective series: The Good Husband of Zebra Drive. Great reads, both of them!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Rowan
Date: 09 Jun 09 - 08:30 PM

A post I put on a thread about the Kokoda track elicited a riposte from a 'catter that I was sure contained some misinterpretations, so I went and read "Kokoda", by Peter FitzSimons; he compiled it from official histories, published information and interviews he conducted with survivors. It's a great read and goes into details relevant to Australians and Japanese who have (or had) relatives who were involved. Those interested in the Australian aspects of Douglas MacArthur's WWII activities might also find it interesting.

I'm gratified that it confirmed the substantive issues of my post but, more importantly, refamiliarising myself with the graphic details of that campaign was excoriating; much of it had me in tears.

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Slag
Date: 09 Jun 09 - 10:08 PM

I recently read "Marley" which was better than the movie by the same name, which is not to say that the book was good. It was ho-hum and predictable, mediocre writing and really, a waste of time.


I also read Lis Wiehl's "Face of Betrayal". This was the FOX news lady 's first attempt at writing a novel. It has had a lot of publicity and heavy promotion on the network. She is supposed to be writing from her "wheelhouse" about things she knows of the legal profession and FBI. If I could sum up the opus in one word, it would probably be "YAWN". Predictable, not great literature, no force of language, self-serving and pretty much, a "rabbit-out-of-the-hat" ending. I think the ending was supposed to be a "twist". The misdirections were very apparent as she tried to clutter up the landscape and hide the culprit. A lot of the events were too, too similar to many recent headline stories in the news of late. Not much imagination. Save yourselves time and money and avoid these books


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Slag
Date: 09 Jun 09 - 10:10 PM

My apologies! The title of David Frankel's book and the subsequent movie is "Marley and Me". My opinion still stands.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Diva
Date: 10 Jun 09 - 02:33 AM

Have finished the first two of the Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer. Complete change from my usual kind of read; mind you I did describe them to a friend as Mills and Boon with blood!!!!

The Nineteenth Wife got that to read on the train when going to Girvan at the begining of May. Can't remember the the author

Picked up a history of the Kennedy Family that has been languishing on my bookshelf for years but it is quite out of date.

Am re reading Queen Amang the Heather by Sheila Stewart, about the life of her mother Belle. It is a wonderful read.

Dipping into the new edition of The Merry Muses of Caledonia


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 13 Jul 09 - 02:27 PM

There are 400 British ships in New York harbor. Hessien mercenary and British regular reconnaissance teams are astounded at the material and agricultural wealth around them, completely mystified as to what motivates these people to invite such destruction. The suspense is killing me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: fat B****rd
Date: 13 Jul 09 - 02:40 PM

I'm happily reading my way through everything by George Pelecanos. Inspired by his connections to "The Wire"


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,Hi Lo
Date: 17 Jul 09 - 11:53 AM

I have just finished two great books.."Out Stealing Horses" by a Norwegan writer and a VERY funny book called rancid Pansies by a British Author who's name I cant recall..Hamilton-Peterson, I think. Great fun and very clever.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Ebbie
Date: 17 Jul 09 - 02:41 PM

In March 08, Art Thieme mentioned a book I just finished 'The Road', a chilling (literally)novel about what one assumes describes a nuclear winter. I suppose everyone else has already read it - I don't get around to reading much fiction - butI understand they are making a movie about it with Robert Duvall in it. I think the movie is due to come out in October.

I don't know that I'll go see it when it comes out. The story line is of a father and young son who are making their way for hundreds of miles without food or water except by happenstance through terrain choked in ash that dims the sun and blackens the night. There are bad guys out there - capturing and killing other emaciated people - for food.

That's all I'll say about it, just in case someone has not read ithe book. It is well worth the read. What I like in reading is well-written subject matter that gives me lots to reflect on and this book certainly does that.

I'm now reading 'Mr. Jefferson's Women' (Thomas Jefferson, of course) and 'The Speckled People', "A Memoir of a Half-Irish Childhood'- oh, and I'm also reading a futuristic novel, 'Stand on Zanzibar', published in 1968. It is interesting to see what the author projects for the future, even including today.

A month or so ago I had given up on 'The Kite Runner' as too guilt-ridden and humo(u)rless but several Mudcatters' opinions encouraged to continue so I did. Glad I did.

*************************
Back in last July Riginslinger asked for suggestions on what books he could have Amazon send his son's friend in prison. May I suggest anything by Adrian Louis?

"Adrian Louis is a poet, novelist, and former newspaper editor who has also served as a professor of English at the Oglala Lakota College on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. He is a member of the Lovelock Paiute tribe."

*************************
And of course I have - and have read - 'Clean Cabbage in the Bucket'. I hope they publish it as a series. hint, hint, Seamus
**************************
Oh, DougR, (March 09)I understand that Sarah Palin is going to help George W write his book and in return he will help her write hers. :)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 17 Jul 09 - 03:13 PM

Have just read several of James Lee Burke. I love his descriptions of Louisiana and Montana and his characters. He wrote one of the best observations about Katrina that I have read in the last few pages of White Doves At Morning.

Just finished Blood Work by Michael Connelly. His stuff is always good.

Child of My Heart by Alice Mcdermott was wonderfully beautiful.

I am just about to read A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains by Isabella Lucy Bird. She was English and came through on horseback, alone, through the rocky Mountains of Colorado in the 1870s!

Also, just getting ready to read Notes from a Small Island by Bill Bryson. I loved his "The Mother Tongue" and expect we will enjoy this as well.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amos
Date: 17 Jul 09 - 03:33 PM

I have had the recent joy of downloading to my iPhone a bookshelf of forty-five classics for 99 cents and have delighted in reading or re-reading many of them since then. Kidnapped and A Tale of Two Cities are among the best. Others that have delighted me include Siddartha, Silas Marner, The Call of the Wild, Candide, Little Lord Fauntleroy, Pride and Prejudice, Little Women, The Picture of Dorian Gray, Crome Yellow, Daisy Miller, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, The Four Million, The Girl on the Boat, The Hound of the Baskervilles, The Invisible Man, The Island of Doctor Moreau, The Jungle Book, Miss Lulu Bett, Maggie--a Girl of the Streets, Little Women, The Prisoner of Xenda, The Red Badge of Courage, and The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.

Just imagine!! Such wonderful, rich, thoughtful, colorful, human entertainment--hours and hours worth--for 99 cents!!!


I love my iPhone.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Ebbie
Date: 17 Jul 09 - 04:02 PM

Two questions, Amos: 99 cents for the whole thing? Not per? and how large is the type?


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Ebbie
Date: 17 Jul 09 - 05:24 PM

Oh, by the way, in the science fiction Stand on Zanzibar' one of the world leaders is named 'Obomi'. :)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 07 Aug 09 - 11:50 AM

Just finished A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains which is comprised of letters written by Isabella L. Bird to her sister as she travelled, alone for much of the time, throughout the eastern slope of the Rockies in 1873 by horseback, climbing to the lofty heights of Long's Peak even, well over 14,000ft. Fascinating book, very well written, not at all boring or stodgy, incredible woman making her way home to England, from the "Sandwich Islands" (Hawaii)via the Rockies which she wanted to *see*. I am now off to find more of her books as she continued to travel, all over the globe, and to write about it. And, she got down in the nitty-gritty living with the real people with no putting on of airs/agendas other than to see and learn. Extraordinary woman!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: bankley
Date: 07 Aug 09 - 01:10 PM

"A Man Without a Country"... Kurt Vonnegut.... funny, but he gets crabby toward the end


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: beardedbruce
Date: 07 Aug 09 - 01:16 PM

Amos (et al)

You paid 99 cents?

Most of us get them for free.


( I have had a copy of the LOTF (Library of the future) for many years- texts no longer under copyright, and freely available for electronic distribution.)

Try this, and stop wasting your money.

http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Main_Page


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Joe_F
Date: 07 Aug 09 - 08:44 PM

I have been browsing once again in _The Impossible H. L. Mencken_, a fat collection of his journalism as it originally appeared. Aside from the continuing joys of escape to the follies of yesteryear, this book offers the amusing opportunity to compare some of his well-known work as it appeared in the newspapers and as he revised & expanded it for book publication. His classic obituary on Valentino is a good example -- each version has its charms. It is also interesting that the wonderful section in "The Sahara of the Bozart" in which he explains why southern blacks are racially superior to southern whites (which inspired some legislators to make speeches advocating his lynching) was not in the original.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Janie
Date: 07 Aug 09 - 09:15 PM

Recently read The Promise of Rest, the last book of the Mayfield family trilogy written by Reynolds Price - one of my favorite authors.

Had started reading Generation Kill, by Evan Wright before my son absconded with it to read on his 3 week trip with his dad. Evan Wright is a "Rolling Stones" reporter who was embedded with a special forces Marine troop at the beginning of the Iraqi war. He wrote a series of articles for "Rolling Stone" that he turned into a book, published in 2004. Very intriquing and thoughtful. Focuses not on the war, but on the men, their experiences, and their personalities and reactions. We had stumbled across the HBO mini-series on-line and had been watching it, then went and bought the book. From what I have read so far, very thoughtful.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: heric
Date: 07 Aug 09 - 10:20 PM

Common Sense, Thomas Paine, 1776

"By a plain method of argument, as we are running the next generation into debt, we ought to do the work of it, otherwise we use them meanly and pitifully. In order to discover the line of our duty rightly, we should take our children in our hand, and fix our station a few years farther into life; that eminence will present a prospect, which a few present fears and prejudices conceal from our sight."


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 07 Aug 09 - 10:25 PM

My airplane book for my vacation was "The Whiskey Rebels" by David Liss. It is a novel set at the end of 18th century U.S.A. Certain folks are trying to wreck the Bank of the United States, and perhaps the nascent US. At the same time Congress imposes a tax on the distilling of whiskey. This being the major source of income in the West (Pennsylvania at that time), the locals act against the Federal government.. The story is told from two separate perspectives which, in the final chapters prove to be two paths which have been crossing the entire time. Great read! This is the third book--or maybe fourth--by author Liss. All of them have had to do with finance, commodities or stock speculation, and such convelution. None-the-less, they are all terrific stories.

I am currently at the last chapter or two of "1491". This is something of a misleading title, as the book covers thousands of years of civilization(s) in the Americas, and the early years of Spanish conquest. Some parts get bogged down in anthropological data, while others go by rather quickly. If the scholars the author, Charles C. Mann, cites are correct in their analyses and interpretations, there is a lot of rethinking to be done about the civilization of the Americas concurrent with that in ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, not that there was ever any contact between the two worlds, but that it is about as old.

JotSC


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST
Date: 07 Aug 09 - 11:50 PM

I just finished, and highly recommend, "Shannon", Frank Delaney's latest novel. It weaves the tale of an American priest who had served heroically as a chaplain at Belleau Woods during WWI and come home shattered by shellshock. A few years later he has a severe relapse, somehow involving a scandal in the Boston Archdiocese. Tentatively recovering from the relapse, and at the Cardinal's recommendation, he undertakes a journey to Ireland to search for his ancestral roots along the grand river that bears his family name. Ah, but the year is 1922 and he lands in the middle of Civil War. An authentic, poetic evocation of time and place.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Neil D
Date: 07 Aug 09 - 11:54 PM

That last was me. This is the first time I've ever had to reset my cookie. That was easy enough.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Janie
Date: 20 Sep 09 - 09:07 PM

Have recently discovered "the Dresden Files," a series by Jim Butcher that is a load of fun. A modern day wizard/private eye in Chicago. Have finished the first two books, and am just starting on the third. Not great literature by any means, but well-written and entertaining.

Also just finished listening to "The Time Thief", the 2nd book in "the Gideon Trilogy", by Laura Buckley-Archer.   Haven't read or listened to the 1st or 3rd book of the trilogy. It is a fantasy about time travel geared toward adolescent readers. (Because of my now 15 year old son who loves fantasy and sci-fi, I read or listen to a lot in this genre.) Again, not great literature, but entertaining. Not the best of the genre either, but still pretty good - in the middle of the pack, I would say.

If you are in a part of the USA where Cracker Barrel restaurants are common, they offer books on CD that rent for just under $4.00 per week, and I nearly always will rent one to listen to on the 6 hour drive to my parents. A tendency toward too many Nora Roberts and Danielle Steele, but nearly always there is something worth a listen. Usually good biographies are available and some good fantasy fiction that Mom, Dad and the kids can enjoy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Riginslinger
Date: 20 Sep 09 - 09:14 PM

Does anyone read the Dan Brown books? I tried reading "The Da Vinci Code," and found it written in a prose style that prevented me from finishing it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Janie
Date: 20 Sep 09 - 09:40 PM

I haven't read any Dan Brown, though both Barnes & Noble and Border's are flooding my e-mail now with promo on his newest release.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: katlaughing
Date: 21 Sep 09 - 12:47 AM

I haven't read any of his, either; just don't appeal to me.

Janie, thanks for the info re' Butcher. I will have to look at those books.

I'll post some new titles tomorrow.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Amergin
Date: 21 Sep 09 - 01:07 AM

I have been reading the Night Watch series by Sergei Lukyanenko....English transations from the original russian....but very interesting....detective/fantasy stories....


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 21 Sep 09 - 04:47 AM

Two 2nd hand buys from Amazon resulted in two great reads, The Springing of George Blake by Sean Bourke and The Blake Escape by Michael Randle and Pat Pottle. I read the books when they were first published, Bourkes in 1970 and Randles and Pottles in 1990.
The two books will hold you to the finish, both books are amazing tales of Blakes escape from Wormwood Scrubs Prison and the twists and turns on the road to East Berlin.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 21 Sep 09 - 09:17 AM

Just on the second of the Malazan books by Steven Erikson - Very complex plots and masterful characterisations. I would recommend them to anyone who enjoys fantasy or lovers of polital intrigue.

DeG


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Micca
Date: 21 Sep 09 - 09:56 AM

I would recommend "The Girl with the dragon tattoo" by Stieg Larsson non-traditional fiction translated from the Swedish, For the first time in years I stayed up until 4 am to finish it!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Micca
Date: 21 Sep 09 - 09:59 AM

insert word "detective" between traditional and fiction


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: wysiwyg
Date: 21 Sep 09 - 10:13 AM

Audiobook just finished, MARVELOUS: The Lost Prince (free, at Librivox)

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 21 Sep 09 - 11:21 AM

I have read quite a lot lately..lovely to read out side..I read The Cruise of The Snark by Jack London, Loving Monsters by James Paterson Hamilton, loved it. He is a very good writer. Also, Bonjour Tissteste by Francois Sagan, odd but enjoyable. Am now reading Among The Believers by V.S. Naipaul, very enlighteing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: keberoxu
Date: 13 Aug 16 - 05:15 PM

Well, the publication release date is about two weeks away....

for Louise Penny's latest in her Quebec murder mystery series, which switches between Montreal and the Surete, and a fictitious town called Three Pines near the Canada/US border. The series bears comparison with Elizabeth George's England series, for a number of reasons. One is that both series have gone on for some time, and been adapted to television. Another is that both series, several books in, developed and changed in ways that shocked and alienated many readers.

Louise Penny's next Chief-Inspector Gamache book has had advance-reader reviews already, and most are not only positive but reassuring, as in, the author is back on form.

I just want to make sure that the bistro owners, the poet, and the duck are still all right.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 14 Aug 16 - 06:06 AM

Just finished the remarkable 'The Angel's Game. by Carlos Ruiz Zafon, a follow-up to his equally remarkable, 'The Shadow of the Wind'
Would highly recommend both.
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Stu
Date: 14 Aug 16 - 09:45 AM

Thursbitch by Alan Garner

Hawksmoor by Peter Ackroyd

Both stunning and profound and both invoking English mysticism and a sense of... the other.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: keberoxu
Date: 14 Aug 16 - 05:01 PM

Janie, from the Cracker Barrel rentals, I found one that I really liked, but it wasn't popular fiction.

"Kitchen Privileges" is the name of a volume of memoirs by suspense writer Mary Higgins Clark. She grew up in the Bronx amongst Irish Americans, and she traveled a long and rocky road before she started writing her suspense novels. It's the kind of life story that is really entertaining if you don't have to live through it yourself. And Ms. Clark narrates her memoirs in the audiobook, giving it a sense of authenticity. I loved listening to it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: keberoxu
Date: 07 Oct 16 - 03:37 PM

For some years now, Susan Hill has been publishing a detective/mystery series in a fictional cathedral town, with protagonist Simon Serrailler. She took him on a really long built-up multi-story arc at the climax of which, the higher-ups concluded that he was the only man for the near-suicide mission of tackling a ring of wealthy and aristocratic pedophilic fans of juvenile-snuff film footage. Serrailler cracked the ring by story's end, although the beating he got nearly killed him.

Now Ms. Hill, who is genuinely senior-citizen aged, is not going to publish any more full-length Serrailler, although there is some sort of e-book novella with a promise of other novellas and short stories to come.

Maybe Ms. Hill is being shrewd and quitting while she is ahead, with this series. Character development over the books of the series has been done with loving attention to detail and consistency, and there is a world of possible futures ahead for the detective and his loved ones. So she leaves us wanting more. Oh, that last novel is called "The Soul of Discretion."


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ChanteyLass
Date: 07 Oct 16 - 09:58 PM

I've read two good books lately, one for each of my book clubs. One was Still Life with Bread Crumbs; the other was The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry. Both novels are about people whose generally good lives have been on a downhill slide when their circumstances change for the better. A few months before that, both clubs chose interesting nonfiction books about maritime disasters--Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania and In the Kingdom of Ice: The Grand and Terrible Polar Voyage of the US Jeannette.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: mrdux
Date: 08 Oct 16 - 12:07 AM

i just finished the best thing i've read in a long time: The Master and Margarita, by Mikhail Bulgakov, wherein the Devil and his entourage wreak some serious -- and some not-so-serious -- havoc in Stalinist Moscow over a few days in the 1930s. And interwoven into it is a story of Pontius Pilate and his relationship with one Yeshua Ha-Nozri. Quite an amazing book, unpublished until 1965, 25 years after Bulgakov died. the Pevear and the Burgin translations seem to be preferred.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: ranger1
Date: 08 Oct 16 - 01:04 PM

In the middle of Trespasser, the second book in the Mike Bowditch series by Paul Doiron. It's a mystery series with a young Maine Game Warden as the protagonist. I'm enjoying them a lot.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: mkebenn
Date: 09 Oct 16 - 01:11 PM

A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms, fantasy by G R R Martin while waiting soooo long for his next book in his extra ordinary series " A Song of Ice And Fire" Mike


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: keberoxu
Date: 06 Jan 19 - 06:41 PM

Update on author Susan Hill and her
crime-fiction protagonist, Simon Serrailler:

Ms. Hill, after a hiatus of a few years, is busy again, and so is her detective inspector in a cathedral town.

Two novellas, shorter works on Serrailler, are being promoted.
One has been out for a little while: it is titled "Hero."
The other has yet to be released, but promotion is online already;
it is titled "Old Haunts."

Both revisit memories Serrailler has of his youth early in his career.

Very recently, Ms. Hill let it be known
that two more full-length Serrailler books could be expected,
and one has just been published.

The one just released is called "The Comforts of Home."
Reviews are decidedly mixed. This is one of those books
which has a great deal happening all at once,
and readers have complained of the lack of resolution.
Not the first time this has happened in the Serrailler series.

There was a mystery much earlier for Serrailler, in which the perpetrator of murders of small children was apprehended and locked away for life. It took two books to play it all out, and the first book got criticized; all build-up, much unpleasant detail, and an ending frustrating for many readers. That was because the earlier book set everything in place, and the book that followed, brought about the conclusion.

I am optimistic -- having yet to read these -- that Susan Hill is doing the same thing this time. After all, "The Comforts Of Home" is due to be followed, by the end of 2019 (we hope), by a Serrailler full-length mystery called
"The Benefit of Hindsight." We shall see.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: KarenH
Date: 06 Jan 19 - 10:55 PM

"The 7 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle". Sort of Groundhog Day meets Agatha Christie. Gripping.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 07 Jan 19 - 04:46 AM

Just finished Conn Iggulden's War of the Roses series of 'faction' books. Very enjoyable and, since I knew very little of that period, very informative too.

mkebenn, I'm a Martin fan too. If you look at the War of the Roses you can see where some of his ideas were born!


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Jack Campin
Date: 07 Jan 19 - 04:47 AM

Gerard Russell: "Heirs to Forgotten Kingdoms: Journeys into the Disappearing Religions of the Middle East". Looks at first sight as if it's going to be a simple travelogue, but he builds up a surprising and systematic picture of hidden relationships between the belief systems of that part of the world for the last 3000 years or so, with groups that are now utterly marginal given far greater historical importance than you'd think. (One limitation is that he didn't know about the much older Göbekli Tepe site, which has to change the way we think about all these religions; but that's rather speculative as yet).

I would love to have seen an Essene community on the Sabbath. They had to go the whole day without taking a shit.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 07 Jan 19 - 01:20 PM

Got Jonathon Bardon's 'A Narrow Sea' The Irish-Scottish Connection in 120 episodes, for Christmas
A fascinating series of small chapters, making it possible to read, leave and return to whenever the mood takes you
Learn and enjoy
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Neil D
Date: 10 Jan 19 - 01:20 AM

I've been enjoying the Nordic Noir mysteries of Jo Nesbo. If you're a fan of Rankin, Bruen, Conelly, you'll probably enjoy these.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Senoufou
Date: 10 Jan 19 - 04:36 AM

I very much liked Susan Maushart's 'Wifework'. She's a sociologist and the book examines very fairly the lives of working wives in comparison to that of their menfolk. (feminist, obviously)

I recently bought a copy of her sequel, 'What Women Want Next' which is thoughtful and balanced. It examines where Women's Rights has brought women now, and whether we are actually happier.
She refers at all times to recognised research studies and her conclusions are most interesting.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: rich-joy
Date: 10 Jan 19 - 11:42 PM

Due to some issues with LUE (Life, the Universe and Everything), I have recently escaped into the worlds of literary historical fantasy and been working my way through :

anything and everything by NZ writer, JULIET MARILLIER
(IMHO, she writes great characters and stories and many are set in ancient Ireland and Scotland).

However, other favourites where I have devoured most everything they have written are :

CHARLES DE LINT, Canadian fantasy writer
(esp love his Urban settings);
JOANNE HARRIS, English-French writer
(she of Chocolat fame);
DIANA GABALDON, American writer
(she of Outlander fame);
KATHLEEN O'NEAL GEAR & W. MICHAEL GEAR, American writers
(particularly like their 1st Americans prehistory novels);
SHARON KAY PENMAN, American writer
(loved her Welsh mediaeval history series);
PHIL RICKMAN, English supernatural/mystery writer
(he of the Merrily Watkins fame, set in the English-Welsh Border);
STEPHEN BOOTH, English mystery writer
(he of the Cooper & Fry Peak District detective novels.

A few years back, due to being caught up in (the younger!) Sean Bean's SHARPE DVDs, I also read and enjoyed the entire Sharpe series (mostly Napoleonic era) written by English writer, Bernard Cornwell!

Yeah, that's enough for now!
R-J (Down Under)


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Jan 19 - 12:36 AM

Rebecca Solnit's Men Explain Things To Me. Extremely timely and very well considered and written.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: keberoxu
Date: 11 Jan 19 - 12:02 PM

Jo Nesbo rewrote, in prose form, Macbeth, publishing it recently as a crime novel. It's a cracker.

Come to see what he does with Macbeth's Lady
(so that's why she's walking in her sleep);
stay for the updated Witches and Hecate,
who are drug traffickers.

And wait until you see what takes the place
of the moveable forest.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: keberoxu
Date: 12 Jan 19 - 04:17 PM

The public library just got the latest John Rebus/Ian Rankin mystery,
which says to me that
the latest book has been released some time ago already.

I liked it a lot.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Neil D
Date: 14 Jan 19 - 06:50 AM

His "Macbeth" retold was my introduction to Nesbo. I enjoyed it enough to look further and have really enjoyed his series featuring his protagonist, Harry Hole.

Speaking of Bernard Cornwell, I've been enjoying a series on Netflix called "The Last Kingdom" based on his Saxon Series, which I had previously read.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 14 Jan 19 - 07:16 PM

The BBC2/Netflix adaptation of the last kingdom was great. I gave up on the books after number 3 though. Just didn't seem to be Cornwell's usual standard.


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Subject: RE: BS: Read any good books lately?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 Jan 19 - 07:27 PM

Hutton's Arse by Malcolm Rider. Its claim is, I quote:

"3 billion years of extraordinary geology in Scotland's Northern Highlands. This book takes you through those 3 billion years, shows you the rocks, visits the places, introduces some of the famous researchers and presents the geological theories that have been inspired by the Highlands."

It's an astonishing and riveting book. Despite the title, it's a serious though very approachable read, and poor old James Hutton, despite the title, doesn't get many mentions!


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