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  #4001  
Old 01-16-2018, 05:42 PM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vivisectus View Post
I found a really good sci-fantasy novel:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/...e-fifth-season

Written by NK Jemisin. A writer to watch, I reckon.

A Sci-fantasy novel that explores themes like racism, slavery, oppression and identity. It is pretty gritty stuff, full of deeply damaged characters and anti-heroes. I love how she uses world-building to tell a complex, layered story: this is not fantasy just for fantasy's sake, sci-fantasy is a form that has a function in these books. And then it is a damn good sci-fantasy romp at the same time.

Highly recommended.
This and Jemisin's other novels have been on my intended reading list for awhile, but I reckon she's long jumped off the "writers to watch" list, considering she already has two Hugos and several other major awards to her name. While she might not be a household name yet, her work has definitely made enough of a splash that she might already be her generation's Octavia Butler and Ursula K. Le Guin all in one. She'll probably be the next sci-fi writer I read. To be fair, though, I think your post may have made her stuff seem even more urgent to read, along with this post by Abigail Nussbaum - who also won a Hugo last year, incidentally (so now I can boast of personally knowing both an Oscar winner and a Hugo winner, though admittedly I know the Hugo winner only via the Internets).

Anyway, if you need more sci-fi reading material, Nussbaum's list seems as good a place to start as any. I've read Robinson before (though not that specific work) and he's incredibly realistic and detailed - arguably for better and for worse, but he's a good enough storyteller and writer that the arguable pacing flaws with his work don't bother me much. I'm familiar with most of the other works/authors on her list mainly by reputation, but those reputations are generally good, for whatever that's worth.

My reading has crashed to a halt thanks to my disorders. I restarted Pratchett and Gaiman's Good Omens (which I've already read like four times; it's one of the wisest commentaries on the human condition I've ever read) after watching a very good documentary on Gaiman, and in preparation for this year's Amazon Prime adaptation, but even that has stalled. I think my condition is improving in some respects, but some days are better for me than others.
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  #4002  
Old 01-17-2018, 08:22 AM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Quote:
My reading has crashed to a halt thanks to my disorders.
Damn! I hope that gets better soon The Man.

Quote:
I reckon she's long jumped off the "writers to watch" list, considering she already has two Hugos and several other major awards to her name.
True. I guess what I mean is "This writer has done interesting shit, and is bound to do some more!"
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  #4003  
Old 01-18-2018, 06:24 AM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Thanks. Some days I'm better than others. I actually managed to read about 70 pages today, so maybe I'm getting better again.

I also just read that David Simon is adapting Philip Roth's The Plot Against America into a six-part miniseries, so I guess that'll be next on my reading list. The Wire is undoubtedly the best television show I've ever seen, and if anyone can do justice to Roth's novel and its alarming parallels to the current age, it's Simon.
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  #4004  
Old 01-18-2018, 07:32 AM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

I picked up Octavia Butler - Kindred
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  #4005  
Old 01-19-2018, 10:17 PM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James. It is a historical novel based on an assassination attempt on Bob Marley in his house in Kingston in 1976, two weeks before a national election and the day before a planned 'peace concert' by Marley to protest the election violence.
Gangs were recruited by the 2 political parties to intimidate voters. The gang in Copenhagen City (an area in West Kingston) led by Papa-lo and his second in command Josey Wales (everyone has a nickname in Jamaica) is JLP (Jamaican Labour Party, actually a conservative party), while the gang in Eight Lanes (Central Kingston) led by Shotta Sheriff is PNP (Progressive National Party, which is social democratic but flirting with Cuba). The CIA is arming and training the pro-JLP gangs in order for them to win the elections against the incumbent PNP, though the CIA bureau chief doesn't seem to know about that.

There are a lot of characters who all get to tell part of the story, some of them gangsters, some of them Americans like the CIA bureau chief and a reporter from Rolling Stone, some of them (Jamaican) civilians and even the ghost of a politician. It helps to have some background info about Jamaican and/or at least a bit of the patois I suppose, but it's not strictly necessary. And at some point the story will move to New York as Josey Wales will move his operations there.

So far me really bloodcloth like it.
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  #4006  
Old 01-19-2018, 11:05 PM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kamilah Hauptmann View Post
I picked up Octavia Butler - Kindred
I read this last year and really liked it. :yup:
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  #4007  
Old 01-20-2018, 07:40 PM
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  #4008  
Old 01-22-2018, 06:10 PM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

This is really good so far.

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  #4009  
Old 01-24-2018, 08:17 PM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Working Nights: Health & Safety Guide, because, you see, I have exactly three more night shifts to work. That's it, three. I hope I never work another night shift. I'm not saying it won't happen though, because I might get a job as Senior Batman or something like that.
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  #4010  
Old 01-29-2018, 03:57 PM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

I'm reading this piece of poo right now. I am checking on my neighbour's cat while she is on holiday and it was on her bookshelf. So whenever I go over to hang out with "John", I read a chapter or two. :amethystpoop:


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  #4011  
Old 01-30-2018, 05:18 AM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Um...Has anybody stumbled across this:

The Resurrectionist: The Lost Work of Dr. Spencer Black

I'm curious, because it looks right up Yb's dark alley.
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  #4012  
Old 02-08-2018, 06:10 AM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

If i may interject a piece of miscellany:



No more library fines for most young readers in L.A. County
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  #4013  
Old 02-08-2018, 10:23 AM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

:cheerful:
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  #4014  
Old 02-16-2018, 07:22 AM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

I grabbed a book nearly at random at the bookstore a few months ago, "the city of the iron fish", trying to force myself to read something outside my comfort zone. My inner RNG chose well in picking something uncomfortable and it took me this long to finish.

Now that I have, the frustrating thing is the unifying theme of the book - "there is no meaning" - makes it damned difficult/pointless to discuss. It could be taken as a symbol for so many dozens of things but by fiat, theme, and content, it's not, just what it is. It's simultaneously the most obtuse and most subtle thing I've read.

It's also barely a fantasy novel at all, until you discover what's happening.

It's also pretty bleak, following the decline and turmoil of a depressed young man in a civilization of people who haven't had a vacation in living memory.

And now that it's over, I will say, I don't regret reading it. It was a bold idea, interesting setting, and concluded in a way I wouldn't have predicted. I also don't think I'll read it again.
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  #4015  
Old 02-20-2018, 11:11 AM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

We are but a few months from moving to a house located across the street from a library. I can't fucking wait.
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  #4016  
Old 02-20-2018, 04:28 PM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

I just finished Culture and Imperialism by Edward Said which is about how culture (mainly literature) helped to normalize imperialism and to a large extent still does (for the US empire). He treats only the British, French and US empires and shows how the empire permeates books like Great Expectations by Dickens and Mansfield Park by Jane Austen or books by Albert Camus (L' étranger, La Peste). It's a very interesting book and Said avoids the blame game and shows how formerly marginalized cultures or minorities in the West have now produced their own literature where they retake their land/culture back.
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  #4017  
Old 02-21-2018, 09:50 PM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Watser? View Post
A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James. It is a historical novel based on an assassination attempt on Bob Marley in his house in Kingston in 1976, two weeks before a national election and the day before a planned 'peace concert' by Marley to protest the election violence.
Gangs were recruited by the 2 political parties to intimidate voters. The gang in Copenhagen City (an area in West Kingston) led by Papa-lo and his second in command Josey Wales (everyone has a nickname in Jamaica) is JLP (Jamaican Labour Party, actually a conservative party), while the gang in Eight Lanes (Central Kingston) led by Shotta Sheriff is PNP (Progressive National Party, which is social democratic but flirting with Cuba). The CIA is arming and training the pro-JLP gangs in order for them to win the elections against the incumbent PNP, though the CIA bureau chief doesn't seem to know about that.

There are a lot of characters who all get to tell part of the story, some of them gangsters, some of them Americans like the CIA bureau chief and a reporter from Rolling Stone, some of them (Jamaican) civilians and even the ghost of a politician. It helps to have some background info about Jamaican and/or at least a bit of the patois I suppose, but it's not strictly necessary. And at some point the story will move to New York as Josey Wales will move his operations there.

So far me really bloodcloth like it.
This book (I finished it a couple of weeks ago and it is really very good), has given me a new light on this song:

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  #4018  
Old 02-27-2018, 03:10 AM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

Rhode Island An Inventory of Historic Engineering and Industrial Sites, from the US Dept. of the Interior's Historic American Engineering Record.

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  #4019  
Old 03-18-2018, 01:34 AM
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Default Re: What are you reading?

A little piece on Great Expectations:

Here's What Miss Havisham Can Teach Us About Grief - Signature Reads
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