What are you reading?


The Master
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How's Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, dc20? I've been meaning to get that.

Currently rereading Milgram's Obedience to Authority; had to read it for Freshman Studies two years ago, came back to read it because I haven't in a while, and it's a real good read. It's just incredibly depressing, especially in the findings.

Also reread Haruki Murakami's Underground, which consists of interviews with the victims of the Tokyo sarin gas attacks, and members of Aum (though not those who carried out the attacks). Absolutely fascinating read, originally read it for my Ethnography of Japan class, interesting insight into the Japanese psyche, especially around the time of these events, which kind of destroyed the Japanese worldview.

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Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is good from the first two chapters I read in the bookstore. I've been saving the rest for when I take the trip. Having read it for 19th Century British Lit, it blends the original pretty well with the new material. There are a few times where it seems like they shoehorned in the new but you get over it by the end of the first chapter.

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Time's Arrow and The Information by Martin Amis

Nice! Yellow Dog is a personal favorite.

I'm reading several books right now:

-Dillon and the Voice of Odin by this board's very own Derrick Ferguson: easily the best action movie never made. Think James Bond if Bond was a 6'2" black guy who doesn't fuck around with all the romancin'. Lovin' it!

-Stan's Soapbox: beyond being $100 for a good cause that is HC and signed by Stan and John Romita, it is a cool little slice of history veen thoguh it is painful to read. Stan just shat these out in about sixteen seconds. Some are hilarious. Most are pretty terrible and non-sensical.

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Been re-reading the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Books, and two things struck me.

One: I used to be of the opinion the "So Long and Thanks for All the Fish" was the weakest book, but upon re-read, I'm a bit older, and a bit more seasoned in life, and part of me just adores the romance that Arthur and Fenchurch develop. I used to think it was plodding, but it's really well nuanced and some of the insights are totally worth it.

Two: The development of Ford Prefect as an utterly unlikeable prick is something I never caught before, but it's so brilliant. Ford was trapped on Earth, the backwoods redneck of the galaxy for fourteen years. Then, a few months later, he's stuck on pre-historic Earth for four fucking years. Ford had wasted twenty years of his life out of reasonable society, so by the time Slartibartfast is whining about saving the universes from the Krikkit Robots, I'm kind of on Ford's side i.e. "Fuggit, let's go get a drink."

Working through 'Mostly Harmless' at the moment. Hate the ending, so I probably will take my time with it.

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Been re-reading the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Books, and two things struck me.

One: I used to be of the opinion the "So Long and Thanks for All the Fish" was the weakest book, but upon re-read, I'm a bit older, and a bit more seasoned in life, and part of me just adores the romance that Arthur and Fenchurch develop. I used to think it was plodding, but it's really well nuanced and some of the insights are totally worth it.

I'll second that, I realised it mights be one of the best romances I've read after going through the series earlier this year. I was devastated by the turn of events in Mostly Harmless.

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I lied.

Finished 'Mostly Harmless.' A thoroughly depressing read, through and through. A few bright spots, of course. Ford in the Guide's Offices, the appearance of a certain king of Rock and Roll, and Arthur finally snapping, and telling Ford to back off, because he has "had a fucking bad day." It just seems like Adams had something else in store. There's no way this was meant to be the end.

But, fuck Trillian. Fuck Random. And Fuck Zaphod barely being in the last two books.

Edit: And Fuck Colin, piss poor excuse for a replacement for Marvin that he was.

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I lied.

Finished 'Mostly Harmless.' A thoroughly depressing read, through and through. A few bright spots, of course. Ford in the Guide's Offices, the appearance of a certain king of Rock and Roll, and Arthur finally snapping, and telling Ford to back off, because he has "had a fucking bad day." It just seems like Adams had something else in store. There's no way this was meant to be the end.

It wasn't. The Salmon of Doubt, the Dirk Gently book he was working on when he died was going to be scrapped and reworked into a new Hitchhikers book.

The problem with Mostly Harmless is that its not one narrative. Arthur spends half the book looking for a home and then once he finds it and he's been there ages he gets involved in the action. These books have always been his story and this directionless, deliberate or not, hurts this instalment. Plus I missed Fenchurch.

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Reading Stepehen King on writing.

When I started and he was talking about his life, I was saying "I just want to learn about writing" but when he got down to writing I said "No, go back to the storys!"

About half way through and still enjoying it, in between getting through Teen Titans: Terra Incognito, so going back and forth.

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  • 3 weeks later...

On Writing is one of my all-time favorite non-fiction books. Though, his talk about the cocaine days walk the line. He's not even sure that's real.

Not sure if I mentioned whether or not I'm rereading the Repairman Jack books by F. Paul Wilson or not but I just finished Conspiracies again and goddamn is that a great fucking book. I think it's my favorite to date. All The Rage is next. Just picked up By The Sword (a book he named on Dread Media almost two years ago!!!) and added to the RJ books I have yet to read on my list. It's up to three now.

Also have Writer's Workshop of Horror I'm looking forward to get into. Just reminded me from the On Writing post.

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Also, people impressed by King's Dark Tower immersion of universe should read Wilson. I think he's a better writer and his RJ books, his Adversary cycle, and other miscellaneous books all tie together in his "Secret History of the World." For example, Jack is on the trail of the mystic katana sword from Black Wind in the latest By The Sword. Did I mention he scooped me the title on Dread Media? He did.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just finished All the Rage by F. Paul Wilson last night. It is the first of the Repairman Jack books I haven't read. It might tbe the longest but it is also one of the quickest paced. It adds depth to the books before it and after it in the series.

I will take a one book break before continuing on with Hosts. I'll probably pick up Flesh Gothic by Edward Lee next.

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Rereading American Gods for the I don't even know how many-th time. Love this book, so much, if only for trying to figure out as you go through which god/goddess and mythologies they're referencing. And actually knowing the areas of WI they're talking about (and I'm pretty goddamn sure I know where Lakeside is).

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  • 3 weeks later...

Read "Darkly Dreaming Dexter" by Jeff Lindsay, and I'll admit that it's because I love the show so much. Sad to say, I was really let down. Lindsay does have a strong command of the English language, and there are some really cool ideas in there, but it just seems so poorly plotted, in that the main antagonist is introduced and disposed of in about thirty pages. I'll always thank Lindsay for creating some of my favorite characters in recent memory, but I won't be picking up another one of his novels.

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Rereading American Gods for the I don't even know how many-th time. Love this book, so much, if only for trying to figure out as you go through which god/goddess and mythologies they're referencing. And actually knowing the areas of WI they're talking about (and I'm pretty goddamn sure I know where Lakeside is).

I must have stopped and re-started that book a half dozen times. I'll always get to the part where Shadow talks to his wife at the hotel, then I just have to stop for whatever reason. Months later, when I go back, I have to start the whole thing over again.

One of these days, I'll finish the damn thing.

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  • 1 month later...

Finished Kirby: King of Comics tonight. I knew almost every detail of his life mentioned in that book before reading it but Evanier writes with such a familiarity and closeness to Kirby that i was moved to tears, four times...in the last fourteen pages!!!

I don't mean a little moisture out of the corner of my eye. I mean ugly bawling. The kind when your face turns downward and you sob incessantly. The fucking callback to how he got the "King of Comics" nickname was astoundingly awesome.

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  • 2 months later...

Books I read this semester (Sept.-Dec.):

- The Unvanquished, William Faulkner

- The Dew Breaker, Edwidge Danticat

- Lost in the City, Edward P. Jones

- The Gangster We Are All Looking For, lê thi diem thúy

- Miles from Nowhere, Nami Mun

- A Good Man is Hard to Find and Other Stories, Flannery O'Connor

- How to Breathe Underwater, Julie Orringer

- Lush Life, Richard Price

- "Bounty" a novella from CivilWarLand in Bad Decline, George Saunders

- Pimp, Iceberg Slim

- Miss Lonelyhearts, Nathanael West

and between 75 and 100 short stories.

Books I will read/finish over break:

- The Lazarus Project, Aleksandar Hemon

- Tender as Hellfire, Joe Meno

- I Am the New Black, Tracy Morgan

- Portnoy's Complaint, Philip Roth

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I read the following while vacationing in Texas:

Sense of Wonder: A Life in Comic Fandom by Bill Schelly

The Ten Cent Plague: The Great Comic Book Scare and How It Changed America by David Hajdu

Pressure by Jeff Strand

The first two I would recommend to anyone who is a comic book history nut like I am, especially The Ten Cent Plague. Both provide in-depth looks into different aspects of comic books, through personal experience in the former and a more historical approach in the latter.

Pressure is easily the best novel I've read in the past several years. The basic plot involves the main character being pressured throughout his life by an old friend to become a murderer, through means both verbal and physical. It's twisted, brutal, and keeps you in suspense the entire time. The way it begins, you know that things will just get worse and worse for the main character as the book goes on. Anytime something bright happens, you're in constant wait for the other shoe to drop. A brilliant book, and it's put Jeff Strand on my list of must read authors.

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Bump.

*crickets*

No one wants to talk about books :shakehead:

I would but classes start tomorrow and the only book I got around to reading since break had begun was Blood Rites by Jim Butcher which I technically had started back in August. Maybe I'll get something outside of a textbook read before the quarter is over. I only have about twenty books sitting around I still need to read. I Blame having a Half-Price book right next door. Maybe if I make a list it'll be easier.

Okay, by 2010, I swear half the books in the following list will be read. If not, then, I dunno, I'll post a video to YouTube of me lipsynching Poker Face dressed as something absurd. Maybe Rape Whistle Ronald.

Small Gods by Terry Pratchett

The Sign of Haruhi Suzumiya by Nagaru Tanigawa

When You Are Engulfed in Flames by David Sedaris

The Illuminatus Trilogy by Robert Shea and Robert Anton Watson (Counts as Three Books)

Official Book Club Selection by Kathy Griffin

Casino Royale by Ian Flemming

Peter & Max by Bill Willingham

The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe

Miles From Nowhere by Nami Mun

A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

Straight Man by Richard Russo

The Great and Secret Show by Clive Barker

Straight Man by Richard Russo

Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf

The Big Over Easy by Jasper Fforde

Snuff by Chuck Palahnuk

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon

The Gunslinger by Stephen King

So yeah, if I can't get at least ten books on this list read in 12 months, I'll make a Rape Whistle Ronald costume and lip sync "Poker Face". I think that's good motivation.

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