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2016 50 Book Challenge - Page 205

post #3061 of 3281
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1. Paper Towns - John Greene

Something quite easy to read, I enjoy coming of age novels. I got through it rather quickly, but enjoyed it nonetheless.

2. Shogun - James Clavell

Took me quite some time to read, but amazing book. I read a solid chunk(60-70%) whilst I was hoping around Japan, and went to some of the locations in the book which was really quite amazing.

It also seemed to be quite historically accurate, however I feel that it just ends abruptly, but at peace. If travelling Japan I can't recommend it enough, but be warned, it is very, very long.

3. The Man in the High Castle - Phillip K. Dick

Advertisements for the television show is what got me interested in this, so I picked it up. Dick paints a really interesting world, and conveys how bleak life would have been. It was quite short, and not much really seemed to happen in the book, a few promising ideas, but it was more about individuals lives. I would have liked to see some of the different story arcs that are briefly introduced develop.  I believe the television show expands on it.

 

4. Meditations - Marcus Aurelius

My first real look into philosophy. I enjoyed it, however I feel that I got about 40% of his message clearly, but a lot of it went over my head. I will be going back to it shortly. The stoic philosophy is really great, and there are many principles I will apply to my life.

post #3062 of 3281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxhound View Post

Previous (Click to show)
1. Paper Towns - John Greene
Something quite easy to read, I enjoy coming of age novels. I got through it rather quickly, but enjoyed it nonetheless.
2. Shogun - James Clavell
Took me quite some time to read, but amazing book. I read a solid chunk(60-70%) whilst I was hoping around Japan, and went to some of the locations in the book which was really quite amazing.
It also seemed to be quite historically accurate, however I feel that it just ends abruptly, but at peace. If travelling Japan I can't recommend it enough, but be warned, it is very, very long.
3. The Man in the High Castle - Phillip K. Dick
Advertisements for the television show is what got me interested in this, so I picked it up. Dick paints a really interesting world, and conveys how bleak life would have been. It was quite short, and not much really seemed to happen in the book, a few promising ideas, but it was more about individuals lives. I would have liked to see some of the different story arcs that are briefly introduced develop.  I believe the television show expands on it.
4. Meditations - Marcus Aurelius
My first real look into philosophy. I enjoyed it, however I feel that I got about 40% of his message clearly, but a lot of it went over my head. I will be going back to it shortly. The stoic philosophy is really great, and there are many principles I will apply to my life.

"To a reasoning being, an that accords with nature is an act that accords with reason."

Fox

Check out A Guide To The Good Life;The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy by William B Irvine very informed and practical guide to Stoic philosophy for todays world. Also check out CBC Ideas there is a pod cast interview with him that I'd recommend.
post #3063 of 3281

I'll add it to my ever growing list. Just picked up Bleeding Edge.

post #3064 of 3281
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Originally Posted by California Dreamer View Post

21. Sing Fox To Me
Sing Fox to MeSing Fox to Me by Sarah Kanake

My rating: 2 of 5 stars


Tedious.


View all my reviews

Check this out biggrin.gif

post #3065 of 3281
51. The Drop- Michael Connelly

Bosch solves the case of a murder/suicide of a city councilman's son, and also that of a grisly serial sexual predator/murderer.

Good Book
post #3066 of 3281
List (Click to show)
1. Hicksville
2. Slaughterhouse 5
3. Firefight
4. Snow Leopard
5. The Rehearsal
6. Lagoon
7. Solo Faces
8. Breath
9. The Internet is Not the Answer
10. A Sport and a Past Time
11. White Teeth
12. The Bell Jar
13. The Invisible Man
14. The Subtle Knife
15 Consider Phlebas
16. The Amber Spyglass
17. The Liar's Key
18. 1000 Splendid Suns
19. The Windup Girl
20. Fire Colour One
21. The Player of Games
22. The Buddha of Suburbia
23. Prince of Thorns
24. King of Thorns
25. Emperor of Thorns
26. Oryx and Crake
27. Use of Weapons
28. The long way to a small angry planet
29. Heart goes last
30. Generation A

 

30. Generation A

 

I got this book because I wanted to read another by Douglas Coupland but the library didn't have it. Generation A follows 5 characters who are stung by bees in a bee-less world. Quickly their lives are transformed by a period of isolation and experimentation followed by fame and expectations - society is hoping that they can help bring back bees and reverse the hideous environmental condition of the world. They all congregate together and the novel gets a bit bizarre.

 

Some aspects of this book were quite cool (the 5 distinct narrative voices rotating through made the book great plane/train reading), others were a bit weak (the ending was rushed, which is becoming a pet peeve of mine). I didn't really understand what this book was trying to get at - there's so much laden meaning in terms of environment, internet, community, isolation and yet at the end I walked away with, well, no real idea what the author was trying to get at. Which means either the meaning was beyond me or that the author wrote about serious subjects with no intention on commenting on them. I'm ok with the former, but find the latter cheap.

post #3067 of 3281
52. The Black Box- Michael Connelly

Bosch solves the murder of a photojournalist that occured during the L.A. riots 20 years before.

Only fair.
post #3068 of 3281
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
0. Asterix and the Missing Scroll
1. The Whisperer
2. The Vanished Ones
3. Quarterly Essay: Political Amnesia
4. From the Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant
5. The Lost Girls of Rome
6. Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?
7. Never Mind
8. The Vegetarian
9. Man on Fire
10. Comfort Zone
11. The Invisible man From Salem
12. Red Light
13. Balancing Act
14. Crimea: The Last Crusade
15. Misterioso
16. The Lost Sailors
17. Black Run
18. The Natural Way of Things
19. Piano Lessons
20. Pedigree
21. Sing Fox To Me
22. Mister Roberts

23. Talking To My Country
Talking To My CountryTalking To My Country by Stan Grant

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Stan Grant is an award-winning Australian journalist; in a lot of ways he is similar to Ta-Nehihi Coates, whom he references a couple of times.

Talking To My Country is a frank and direct statement of what it is like to be Aboriginal in today's Australia. Grant makes the point that the abuses and depredations that so horrify us now and not that far in the past that his family can forget them. He reminds us that we have whitewashed our history, pretending that there was nobody here when the British arrived, glossing over the massacres our forebears committed and writing them out of our Constitution.

Formal apology for these depredations are just the start of what this country needs to do to face up to and rectify our appalling relations with the original occupants of this land. Reading Grant's book leaves one in no doubt as to the need for us to do that.


View all my reviews
post #3069 of 3281
25 Stasi Child by David Young East Berlin Noir at first I thought it would be reminiscent of the Martin Cruz Smith Arkady Renko books.But no the main protagonist Oberleutnant Karin Muller from Kripo is totally sold on the mind set of the DDR. Good story and what appears to be the first book in the series. One item in the narrative was telegraphed too soon or was it just my powers of deduction working? Good story and look forward to the next one.

26 HOW DID WE GET INTO THIS MESS;Politics, Equality,Nature by George Monbiot A Guardian UK journalist delivers a devastating critique and a huge censored.gif you to the ideological blight known as neo-liberalism.

27 The Violent Century by Lavie Tidhar Just started it but hooked in on the ride of a dark brooding alternative reality superhero saga spanning seventy plus years. Moves at a great pace and makes reference to Le Dictionnaire Biographique des Surhommes by Stanley Lieber, the French editon is the standard text as the British have banned it and The Superman; His Myth, His Iconography by Siegel and Shuster. Clever and engaging.
post #3070 of 3281
53. The Burning Room- Michael Connelly

Bosch has a new Latina partner and together they solve cold cases involving a fire in a day care center, and a 10 year old complicated murder case.

good read
post #3071 of 3281
List (Click to show)
1. Hicksville
2. Slaughterhouse 5
3. Firefight
4. Snow Leopard
5. The Rehearsal
6. Lagoon
7. Solo Faces
8. Breath
9. The Internet is Not the Answer
10. A Sport and a Past Time
11. White Teeth
12. The Bell Jar
13. The Invisible Man
14. The Subtle Knife
15 Consider Phlebas
16. The Amber Spyglass
17. The Liar's Key
18. 1000 Splendid Suns
19. The Windup Girl
20. Fire Colour One
21. The Player of Games
22. The Buddha of Suburbia
23. Prince of Thorns
24. King of Thorns
25. Emperor of Thorns
26. Oryx and Crake
27. Use of Weapons
28. The long way to a small angry planet
29. Heart goes last
30. Generation A
31. The Medium is the Message

31. The Medium is the Message

 

This seminal book is incredibly interesting - it's short but very dense. To the point where every sentence reads like it's own title for an essay - so many phrases have weight and exploration behind them. Yet it's short, brief. States without explaining. Or maybe just explains in a way that's savagely on point, such that it's as short as it can be. I'm sure many of you are familiar with the work, but if you're not it's pretty important to read - it's a point that resonates in all walks: we are shaped by our tools.

post #3072 of 3281
Matt

Have you read Simulacra and Simulation by Baudrillard? Highly recommend.
post #3073 of 3281

I have it on my BD wishlist but have never read it. Part of me is scared that it's too dense and I'd only have enjoyed it if I were still studying arts.

post #3074 of 3281
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
0. Asterix and the Missing Scroll
1. The Whisperer
2. The Vanished Ones
3. Quarterly Essay: Political Amnesia
4. From the Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant
5. The Lost Girls of Rome
6. Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?
7. Never Mind
8. The Vegetarian
9. Man on Fire
10. Comfort Zone
11. The Invisible man From Salem
12. Red Light
13. Balancing Act
14. Crimea: The Last Crusade
15. Misterioso
16. The Lost Sailors
17. Black Run
18. The Natural Way of Things
19. Piano Lessons
20. Pedigree
21. Sing Fox To Me
22. Mister Roberts
23. Talking To My Country

24. The Bricks That Built the Houses
The Bricks That Built the HousesThe Bricks That Built the Houses by Kate Tempest

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Award-winning rapper, award-winning poet, collaborator with the Royal Shakespeare Company, all before turning 30. Whatever Kate Tempest produced by way of a first novel, it was bound to attract attention.

Derived in part from songs on her album Everybody Down, The Bricks That Built The Houses is a rattling yarn centred on Harry, a petite gay drug-dealer, and Becky, an aspiring dancer. Harry encounters Becky at a rave and surprises herself by opening up to Becky on her secret life. Becky in turn shares a secret of hers. The two part with Harry wondering what just happened.

Tempest spins a plot that depends on a complicated set of relationships, and I'm reluctant to go into it too much. Similar to a song on an album, Tempest shifts the focus to a character, gives the backstory and then gradually starts to reveal unexpected connections. In doing so, Tempest pulls off a few terrific plot twists.

This book works as a taut crime novel, but Tempest's writing lifts it out of the ordinary genre novel. There is tenderness and empathy for her characters, and at times there is a rhythm and syncopation to the writing that remind one of her music and poetry. I'd happily give this book five stars, except that I did feel a bit let down by the ending.




View all my reviews
post #3075 of 3281
28 WHAT ABOUT ME? THE STRUGGLE FOR IDENTITY IN A MARKET BASED SOCIETY by Paul Verhaeghe A psychoanalyst takes on the issues of social constructed identity and the impact of Neo-Liberalism both on the individual and societal level to deliver a critique of our current society,its changes and the impact of these on the human condition.
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