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2016 50 Book Challenge - Page 135

post #2011 of 3286
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geoffrey Firmin View Post

The problem with books is their patient they sit quietly on bookshelves

Mine don't. They glare at me sulkily demanding to know when they are scheduled to be read. The ones that I have started but put aside pout at me and snidely ask if they have done anything to upset me. The unread professional books on my desk look at me with supercilious condescension each night when I walk past and nod to each other saying "told you he wasn't up to it".

Any BS like that from my eBooks and, whoosh, Remove From Device.
post #2012 of 3286
More have arrived today The Children Act by Ian McEwan and Fourth of July Creek by Smith Henderson. The book depository is too easy to access it should be banned.
post #2013 of 3286
List (Click to show)
1. All Tomorrow's Parties
2. Undivided: Part 3
3. High Fidelity
4. Hard Boiled Wonderland at the End of the World
5. Polysyllabic Spree
6. Armageddon in Retrospect
7. South of the Border, West of the Sun
8. What we talk about when we talk about love
9. Norweigan Wood

10. The Master and Margherita

11. The Fault in Our Stars

12. Of Mice and Men

13.Fade to Black

14. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay

15. Watchmen

16. Captains Courageous

17. A Brief History of Time

18. The Trial

19. Wind up Bird Chronicle

20. A Visit from the Goon Squad

21. Neuromancer

22. Count Zero

23. Shadowboxing

24. Hell's Angels

25. Anansi Boys

26. Steelheart

27. A Hero of Our Time

28. Mona Lisa Overdrive

29. The Complete Collection of Flannery O'Connor

30. The Last Blues Dance

31. Gularabulu

32. The Glass Canoe

33. The Lies of Locke Lamora

34. Handmaid's Tale

35. Girt

36. Museum of Innocence

37. Neverwhere

38. The Ghost's Child

39. Picnic at Hanging Rock

40. Submarine

41. Name of the Wind

42. Wise Man's Fear

43. A Million Little Pieces

44. The Promise

45. Father's Day

46. Swan Book

47. Red Seas under Red Skies

48. Republic of Thieves

49. Labyrinths

50. Carpentaria

51. Snow

52. Straw Dogs

 

52. Straw Dogs

 

John Gray (a philosopher) goes on a rant about how absurd all forms of humanism are, praises nothing, and complains about the vast stupidity of humankind. There were some genuinely thought provoking points among this book, but it was almost banally nihlistic.

 

Some random sent me 4 books earlier this year - everyone I've asked says it wasn't them - this was the first random book I read.

post #2014 of 3286
Quote:
Originally Posted by LonerMatt View Post

List (Click to show)
1. All Tomorrow's Parties

2. Undivided: Part 3

3. High Fidelity

4. Hard Boiled Wonderland at the End of the World

5. Polysyllabic Spree

6. Armageddon in Retrospect

7. South of the Border, West of the Sun

8. What we talk about when we talk about love

9. Norweigan Wood
10. The Master and Margherita
11. The Fault in Our Stars
12. Of Mice and Men
13.Fade to Black
14. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
15. Watchmen
16. Captains Courageous
17. A Brief History of Time
18. The Trial
19. Wind up Bird Chronicle
20. A Visit from the Goon Squad
21. Neuromancer
22. Count Zero
23. Shadowboxing
24. Hell's Angels
25. Anansi Boys
26. Steelheart
27. A Hero of Our Time
28. Mona Lisa Overdrive
29. The Complete Collection of Flannery O'Connor
30. The Last Blues Dance
31. Gularabulu
32. The Glass Canoe
33. The Lies of Locke Lamora
34. Handmaid's Tale
35. Girt
36. Museum of Innocence
37. Neverwhere
38. The Ghost's Child
39. Picnic at Hanging Rock
40. Submarine
41. Name of the Wind
42. Wise Man's Fear
43. A Million Little Pieces
44. The Promise
45. Father's Day
46. Swan Book
47. Red Seas under Red Skies
48. Republic of Thieves
49. Labyrinths
50. Carpentaria
51. Snow
52. Straw Dogs

52. Straw Dogs

John Gray (a philosopher) goes on a rant about how absurd all forms of humanism are, praises nothing, and complains about the vast stupidity of humankind. There were some genuinely thought provoking points among this book, but it was almost banally nihlistic.

Some random sent me 4 books earlier this year - everyone I've asked says it wasn't them - this was the first random book I read.

Try Black Mass by John Grey I have a few podcast interviews with him which are interesting. Never found him nihilistic more a blunt realist given to moments of pessimism when speaking about the human condition.
post #2015 of 3286
List (Click to show)
1. All Tomorrow's Parties
2. Undivided: Part 3
3. High Fidelity
4. Hard Boiled Wonderland at the End of the World
5. Polysyllabic Spree
6. Armageddon in Retrospect
7. South of the Border, West of the Sun
8. What we talk about when we talk about love
9. Norweigan Wood

10. The Master and Margherita

11. The Fault in Our Stars

12. Of Mice and Men

13.Fade to Black

14. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay

15. Watchmen

16. Captains Courageous

17. A Brief History of Time

18. The Trial

19. Wind up Bird Chronicle

20. A Visit from the Goon Squad

21. Neuromancer

22. Count Zero

23. Shadowboxing

24. Hell's Angels

25. Anansi Boys

26. Steelheart

27. A Hero of Our Time

28. Mona Lisa Overdrive

29. The Complete Collection of Flannery O'Connor

30. The Last Blues Dance

31. Gularabulu

32. The Glass Canoe

33. The Lies of Locke Lamora

34. Handmaid's Tale

35. Girt

36. Museum of Innocence

37. Neverwhere

38. The Ghost's Child

39. Picnic at Hanging Rock

40. Submarine

41. Name of the Wind

42. Wise Man's Fear

43. A Million Little Pieces

44. The Promise

45. Father's Day

46. Swan Book

47. Red Seas under Red Skies

48. Republic of Thieves

49. Labyrinths

50. Carpentaria

51. Snow

52. Straw Dogs

53. Wrong about Japan

 

53. Wrong about Japan

 

Peter Carey (an Australian) takes his magna and anime loving son to Japan for a holiday/trip to meet anime/magna creators. The whole time, Japanese insist that Peter doesn't understand them, has no real insights into their creations, doesn't really appreciate what they are doing. The irony is almost palpable as Peter's experiences prove a certain understated sense of righteousness wrong (everyone says he'll never meet Miyazaki, and he does, for example).

 

I loved how this book was essentially an Australian (whom all Japanese assume is American) walking around a country essentially being told he's too foreign to understand the Japanese culture, while all the Japanese he meets can't even recognise he's not from the USA. Even the title smacks of some irony here: it seems that in his trip to Japan, everyone is wrong about everything no matter where they are from.

 

The interviews he conducts are amazing, and his frustration at certain practices, lack of communication, etc, is brilliant and I empathised a lot with that.

post #2016 of 3286
62 The Word Exchange by Alena Greadon

A dystopian cyber age metaphysical story with shades of detective noir, a touch of Orwell and Huxley. Their hand held devices, soon to be superseded, are so much smarter and multifunctional than the latest smartphone. Language is no longer a virus but a commodity available at an iTunes type store. Only 90 pages in, highly readable and recommended.
post #2017 of 3286
Quote:
Originally Posted by LonerMatt View Post

53. Wrong about Japan

The only book of Carey's I've not read, actually. I'd forgotten all about it.
post #2018 of 3286
Clockwise counting 66/50: Emily Bronte - Wuthering Heights (1847)

A true classic about a dysfunctional Yorkshire family, obsessive love and bitter jealousy. The dominant and domineering character of the vengeful and enigmatic Heathcliff makes this book extraordinary. Heathcliff is an orphan of unknown background, an outsider from childhood until his inexplicable death. His love for the strong willed Cathy, his violence and deep bitterness form the centre of this engaging narrative.

This gothic story holds up extremely well a couple of centuries later and it is one of the best 19th century novels I have read. Excellent!
post #2019 of 3286
Quote:
Originally Posted by California Dreamer View Post


The only book of Carey's I've not read, actually. I'd forgotten all about it.

 

Are the rest good?

post #2020 of 3286
Quote:
Originally Posted by LonerMatt View Post

Are the rest good?

Variable. My favourite is probably Illywhacker, but there have been a few other good ones. If you are into the Kelly Gang, True History of the Kelly Gang is very good. I have a soft spot for Bliss and The Unusual Life of Tristan Smith, too.
post #2021 of 3286
Quote:
Originally Posted by California Dreamer View Post

Variable. My favourite is probably Illywhacker, but there have been a few other good ones. If you are into the Kelly Gang, True History of the Kelly Gang is very good. I have a soft spot for Bliss and The Unusual Life of Tristan Smith, too.

Bliss is a great book and film adaptation is a good laugh. Oscar and Lucinda is a good read a lot of his recent work i have not found inspiring My Life As A Fake was a good read and The Chemistry of Tears. I believe he has another fiction book coming out soon.
post #2022 of 3286
Clockwise counting 67/50: Maurizio De Giovanni - Everyone in Their Place (2009)

Third instalment in the Commissario Ricciardi series, set in Naples in the early 1930s. Ricciardi is "seeing" dead people and capturing their last thoughts. He is a loner and completely unafraid of the fascist government, which he despises but serves in his role as senior murder investigator.

A sexually promiscuous beauty of the aristocracy is murdered in her home and there are a few candidates to consider as main suspects. Ricciardi proceeds to investigate in his typical methodical fashion, not afraid to ask inconvenient questions of those belonging to the political elite. At the same time, Ricciardi is struggling with love and jealousy, as he is simultaneously desired by two women of very different character. Entertaining and well-written "noirish" crime fiction.
post #2023 of 3286
Clockwise counting 68/50: Fritiof Nilsson Piraten - Buck in Herbal Garden (1933)

This classic in Swedish literature is a picaresque with colourful descriptions of countryside life in southernmost Sweden a century ago. The protagonist is Jon Esping - horse trader, farmer, illiterate local celebrity. In a state of drunken bravado, Esping promises to secure a position as local church warden, despite his irreligious and immoral way of life. Upon his success, he arranges a majestic wedding for a local couple who have been living in sin. Good fun!
post #2024 of 3286
Clockwise counting 69/50: Patrick Modiano - La Petite Bijou (2001)

Modiano is one of the leading stars of contemporary French literature. This book is about the search for identity and one person's loneliness in a big city. 18-year old Therese suddenly sees a woman in a Paris subway station and is reminded of the mother she lost 10 years ago. Her painful childhood with suppressed memories starts overwhelming her. An excellent low-key study in alienation.
post #2025 of 3286
Clockwise counting 70/50: Massimo Carlotto - At the End of a Dull Day (2011)

Giorgio Pellegrini, the amoral, psychopathic anti-hero of Carlotto's best book The Goodbye Kiss returns to action. Giorgio has lied low as the proprietor of a trendy bar / restaurant, with an escort service side-line, for the past 11 years. His political friends turn against him and he gets in trouble with the Calabrian mafia. Like a more violent version of Tom Ripley, Giorgio puts his creative criminal mind at work. Excellent hard-boiled Mediterranean Noir.
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