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What BOOK(s) are you reading?

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06 Oct 2011 01:41 #105122 by dysjunct
The Way of Kings I made it through, but I'm pretty done with epic fantasy stories of epic epicness. The other nine could come out or not; I'm done. There was a great review on goodreads:
www.goodreads.com/review/show/115178505

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06 Oct 2011 13:02 #105136 by jay718

San Il Defanso wrote: This is a 1200-page behemoth that Sanderson says is the first in a series of ten (10) books.


Jesus, just that sentence gives me a headache. Has he even finished Wheel of Time yet? I truly enjoy 'Epic Fantasy,' but I can't imagine starting a 10000+ page series at this point. I read Eye of the world when it came out and I absolutely loved it, I'm sure in no small part due to the fact that I was 15 or so. I've since read up to Lord of Chaos after which I gave up. How many effing books is it going to take until Rand fights the Dark One? Seriously. I know it's the journey not the destination and all that, but for christ's sake...

Now the guy tasked with finishing the series that Jordan couldn't in almost 20 years is embarking on his own epic journey? No thanks. I'm already worried enough that George double R's gonna crap out before he finishes his series which I still actually enjoy. This just feels like I'd be setting myself up for a fall.

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06 Oct 2011 13:05 #105137 by Sagrilarus
I'm reading The Emerald Planet by Beerling, a review of the evolution of plants through history. He brings an engineer's perspective to the subject, talking about how their designs increase energy yield, manage atmosphere composition changes and shed excess heat, really talking about them like machines. Only two chapters in so far and it's very eggheady, but an interesting read.

S.

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06 Oct 2011 13:12 #105140 by san il defanso

jay718 wrote:

San Il Defanso wrote: This is a 1200-page behemoth that Sanderson says is the first in a series of ten (10) books.


Jesus, just that sentence gives me a headache. Has he even finished Wheel of Time yet? I truly enjoy 'Epic Fantasy,' but I can't imagine starting a 10000+ page series at this point. I read Eye of the world when it came out and I absolutely loved it, I'm sure in no small part due to the fact that I was 15 or so. I've since read up to Lord of Chaos after which I gave up. How many effing books is it going to take until Rand fights the Dark One? Seriously. I know it's the journey not the destination and all that, but for christ's sake...

Now the guy tasked with finishing the series that Jordan couldn't in almost 20 years is embarking on his own epic journey? No thanks. I'm already worried enough that George double R's gonna crap out before he finishes his series which I still actually enjoy. This just feels like I'd be setting myself up for a fall.


Well, I know that Sanderson has actually put off doing the sequel to Way of Kings to finish Wheel of Time. He's a fairly prolific author, so we'll see what happens. The last Wheel of Time book comes out this year.

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06 Oct 2011 17:31 #105164 by Dair
Replied by Dair on topic What BOOK(s) are you reading?
I a little more than half way through Less Than Zero. I want to read American Psycho, but thought I would start with Ellis' first book since it is short and a pretty easy read. So far it is interesting, even if it is not as shocking as when it came out. Coked up teens having sex are much more a part of pop culture than they were in the early 80s.

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15 Nov 2011 13:21 #107946 by Dair
Replied by Dair on topic What BOOK(s) are you reading?
I finished Less Than Zero and decided to read the sequel, Imperial Bedrooms. Both were good not great. I just started Ellis' second book, Rules of Attraction. I figure I get to American Psycho next.

While waiting on RoA from the library, I picked up and read Carrie Fisher's Postcards from the Edge. I just happened across it at the library and decided to read it. More Hollywood stories and again a good read, but nothing earth shattering.

Finally, I am in the middle of listening to Philip K. Dick's A Scanner Darkly. I saw the movie a couple years ago and really liked it. So far the book is filling in some holes and has been a very good listen. I should finish it in the next couple days. Next up on the iPod is either Dracula or Ender's Game; I haven't decided which yet.

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15 Nov 2011 14:02 #107950 by Sagrilarus
Follow-up on Emerald Planet -- too short! I suppose he wrung out the subject pretty well and spent a fair amount of time on climate since plant history is pretty firmly tied to it. All in all a good use of the money. This was Kindle version Text-to-Speech.

I just finished April 1865 by Winik. In theory it's about that particular month in history and how it changed everything. (There's been a real run of that lately, you notice? History authors are all picking years or months or even days and talking about how everything changed. McHistory) April 1865 was a pretty interesting month in American history and his detail on Sherman and Johnston's negotiations at Bennet Place was very interesting. Appamattox less-so, but largely because it was about the fifth time I've read that part of the story. Bennet Place was much more complex since two fully actionable armies were in the field at the time and the two political leaderships were pressing down on the Generals in ways that didn't match conditions in the field.

Unfortunately the bulk of the book is biographical information on many of the players in the scenario. The section on Lee went on forever. Though the bio stuff is interesting it was an awful lot of review and frankly not really related to the subject matter at hand. It felt like someone padding a term paper. In a "normal" book I would have just skipped pages but with Kindle's text-to-speech that's a little harder, especially at 75mph in rush hour traffic. Still worth the read, but there was a lot of extra material.

S.

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15 Nov 2011 17:56 #107976 by iguanaDitty
Read Ready Player One a while ago. It was fun, but not really anything special. The references to all that are 80s are cute. Reminded me a lot of Snow Crash, not only superficially but also in the way it basically becomes a silly yet fun action movie, replete with fantastically over the top grand showdowns in cyberspace. But it's more superficial than Snow Crash.

The Brightonomicon is the most incredibly random book I have ever read. Sadly in this case it's not a good thing. Piles and piles of meaningless weirdness, really bogs down in the middle but worth a chuckle again at the end.

Reading Leviathan Wakes now. Supposed to be an epic space opera. It's a bit haphazard in character development and plot about halfway through. I'll probably finish it, which makes it at least decent. Feels kind of stitched together.

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15 Nov 2011 19:51 #107990 by jeb
Replied by jeb on topic What BOOK(s) are you reading?
Did I comment on READY PLAYER ONE here? I don't recall. Here's what I wrote at Shelfari: "The author isn't brave. He explains everything over and over again, missing a chance for the interested reader to bond and making the uninterested one smirk at how clever those nerds are." I thought it was obnoxious. SNOW CRASH is ten times the book this is.

I am about 1/2 way through A DANCE WITH DRAGONS. So far, waaay better than A FEAST FOR CROWS, but still not as good as A CLASH OF KINGS.

My Dad got me 11/22/1963, King's new one, which I am looking forward too. Probably start that soon.

Started poking at MOBY DICK (erf derf) and THE SATANIC VERSES, but nothing really grabbing me.

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15 Nov 2011 20:32 #107992 by MattFantastic
Just got the band new Vernor Vinge book, Children of the Sky, a follow up to A Fire Upon the Deep. Since Vinge is my favorite SciFi guy other than perhaps Herbert (and he's a lot more consistently awesome), I'm super stoked to dig in.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Notahandle

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15 Nov 2011 21:04 #107993 by iguanaDitty

jeb wrote: Did I comment on READY PLAYER ONE here? I don't recall. Here's what I wrote at Shelfari: "The author isn't brave. He explains everything over and over again, missing a chance for the interested reader to bond and making the uninterested one smirk at how clever those nerds are." I thought it was obnoxious. SNOW CRASH is ten times the book this is.


Yeah, that's a really good point. He keeps the reader outside the world looking in, whereas Stephenson invites you in, despite the fact that they both have to do a lot of explication.

Snow Crash also has hints of being about something by the end. Ready Player One is only ever about people playing a game.

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15 Nov 2011 21:16 #107995 by engelstein
Currently reading 1Q84. First book I've read by Murakami and really enjoying it - about 1/3 of the way through.

Also read Ready Player One, which was a real quick breeze - perfect for summer reading, and Boneshaker, which was disappointing (although I appreciated my trip to the Seattle Underground that much more because of it).

Decided not to bother with Dances with Dragons due to all the 'not much happens' feedback, which was my complaint with book 4.

Also recently finished Liar's Poker from Michael Lewis (who wrote Moneyball), which was particularly relevant given all the financial BS that's gone on over the last few years. The seeds were definitely planted in the 80's.

And finally read the fantastic Honeybee Democracy, which is a fantastic study of how bees make decisions, and hive dynamics in general.

As far as Stephenson goes, I could not get through the first book of the Baroque cycle, but I really enjoyed Anathem. Haven't decided on whether to pick up his latest (Read Me) or not.

Geoff

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15 Nov 2011 21:19 #107996 by Notahandle
MattLoter: Thanks, just pre-ordered it on amazon.co.uk . . . Only to find the ETA is 1st May! (Presumably because it's the paperback and you have the hardback.)

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15 Nov 2011 21:31 #107998 by Xlyce
Replied by Xlyce on topic What BOOK(s) are you reading?
Currently reading:
Reinventing Darwin: The Great Debate at the High Table of Evolutionary Theory by Niles Eldridge, a discussion about paleontology and genetics in evolution
I just finished:
The Illuminoids by Neil Wilgus for the fifth time and I still enjoy reading it. I loves me a good conspiracy book!
Next up is:
Black Helicopters Over America: Strikeforce for the New World Order by Jim Keith, maybe, depending on how weird I feel

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15 Nov 2011 22:11 #108003 by jeb
Replied by jeb on topic What BOOK(s) are you reading?

iguanaDitty wrote:

jeb wrote: Did I comment on READY PLAYER ONE here? I don't recall. Here's what I wrote at Shelfari: "The author isn't brave. He explains everything over and over again, missing a chance for the interested reader to bond and making the uninterested one smirk at how clever those nerds are." I thought it was obnoxious. SNOW CRASH is ten times the book this is.


Yeah, that's a really good point. He keeps the reader outside the world looking in, whereas Stephenson invites you in, despite the fact that they both have to do a lot of explication.

Snow Crash also has hints of being about something by the end. Ready Player One is only ever about people playing a game.

Contrast READY PLAYER ONE with NEUROMANCER. The former takes pages to explain a full body haptic rig. The latter starts talking about cyberspace as though you know what the fuck it is. The people reading READY PLAYER ONE shouldn't have to be told what a kill screen is, or how to play TEMPEST--we know. Get on with your story. These sections are for editors and the book suffers for it.

I am also looking forward to REAMDE (sic) from Stephenson.

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