Author Topic: What are you reading?  (Read 47198 times)

Sin Agog

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #660 on: April 26, 2019, 08:54:18 PM »
Been reading 900 pages of translations of Finnish writer Leena Krohn's stuff.  Total treasure trove.  I'd already encountered Tainaron before, which is a series of elegiac letters describing her encounters with the inhabitants of a city of giant insects, but I was psyched to find one big kindle file of all these other translations on amazon.  Most of her books are put together like an ant colony, short stories that work on their own, but which together form a much larger, unified collective.  Seem to remember Stanislaw Lem using that sort of style for a few of his works, and her boundless imagination and lurching between humour and wistfulness reminds me of him more than anyone else.  Maybe there's some of Tove Jansson's sense of space and economy in there, too, but I could just be dropping her name because she's another Finn.  Props to Jeff Vandermeer and his wife for putting this together.

Pingers

  • With the ill behaviour
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #661 on: May 01, 2019, 10:25:38 PM »


When I'm done with that Beryl Bainbridge's The Bottle Factory Outing.

Have you read this yet? I would be interested to hear your thoughts. It's just one of the oddest books I've ever read.

Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #662 on: May 01, 2019, 10:39:08 PM »
Not yet. Will let you know.

timebug

  • Father of Serge
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #663 on: May 02, 2019, 08:11:17 AM »
Having read a whole stack of books on related topics, I realised I had never actually read
'The Old Straight Track' by Alfred Watkins. So I am reading it now. Forget all the mystical
crap about 'the power of ley lines', all Watkins claims,is that these stretches of straight
tracks or paths, were aligned with landmarks (mountain notches, watercourses etc) to
assist the ancients find a way to wherever they were heading.
He devised the term 'Ley' and so far (about halfway through the book) never claimed they
were 'magnetic lines of force' or 'used the power of the earth' or any of that bollocks.
Given the age of the book,and the period when it was written, he seems to be a reasonable
bloke, with a theory in his mind, that he loosely backs up with a shit load of examples.
Maybe he was a bit of a wind-up merchant in his day, its hard to pin him down from his
writings; but an enjoyable read, so long as you are not expecting 'wow' revelations as per
some of the scumbag redtop dailies! An interesting diversion from my 'normal' sort of reading
and as I said, quite enjoyable, on its level!

buttgammon

  • You can't trust a man what's made of gas
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #664 on: May 02, 2019, 10:03:10 AM »
Currently reading Extinction by Thomas Bernhard, which may be his very best novel. The protagonist is a typical Bernhard character, a disillusioned Austrian exile in Italy who hates his country, his family and everything they stand for. When his parents and older brother die in a car accident, he finds he is the sole heir to their massive country estate, and what happens to it (and the remaining residents, his sisters) is at his mercy. His parents were enthusiastic Nazis who arselicked their way out of trouble after the war but clearly never lost their convictions, and used an annex on the property to house fleeing war criminals; this is constantly in the protagonist's mind as he thinks about what to do.

It has two chapters and no paragraph breaks, but it's caustically funny, beautifully angry and I'm loving it.

Twit 2

  • Cyclone par l'immobile habité
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #665 on: May 02, 2019, 07:04:22 PM »
Dammit, he’s high on my to-read list due to Ligotti loving him and that’s made me want to buy it. Trouble is my to-read pile is enormous and it will bump other stuff off that’s been patiently waiting for me...

buttgammon

  • You can't trust a man what's made of gas
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #666 on: May 02, 2019, 07:29:55 PM »
Dammit, he’s high on my to-read list due to Ligotti loving him and that’s made me want to buy it. Trouble is my to-read pile is enormous and it will bump other stuff off that’s been patiently waiting for me...

I've just finished this and suggest you bump it up the list!

chveik

  • it's summertime and all is fine!
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #667 on: May 02, 2019, 08:15:59 PM »
yeah that's a good one. I still prefer Old Masters though. the master of the misanthropic (well mostly anti-austrian) rant.

timebug

  • Father of Serge
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #668 on: May 08, 2019, 09:16:01 AM »
Two thirds of the way through 'After The Eclipse' a first novel from young Fran Dorricott, who worked with my son Marc in Waterstones here in Derby. A good story, about two young girls who are abducted at a sixteen year interval. The first girl is the younger sister of the narrator, a damaged journalist who has returned to her home town to look after her grandmother,who has alzheimers disease.
Reminiscent of ,but in no way copying, Stephen Booth's 'Fry and Cooper' novels, which are also set in a non-existant part of Derbyshire, as is this one. Derby itself is mentioned, but the action takes place in a smaller town 'some miles away' from the city. The prologue is very stilted and I guess, has been heavily rewritten and edited; I feared on reading it, that I may not complete the book. Once into the plot 'proper' though, it's plain sailing,if you like a mystery tale set against conflict and remorse, in a brooding atmosphere. So far so good, will report back in a day or two when I have finished it!
« Last Edit: May 08, 2019, 09:59:17 AM by timebug »

timebug

  • Father of Serge
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #669 on: May 08, 2019, 06:04:21 PM »
And faster than a speeding bullet..... I got an unexpected hour free today,so finished 'After The Eclipse' sooner than I anticipated.
If you like 'crime fiction' or a good mytery/whodunnit/whydunnit etc, this one is worth a shot. The climax when it came was a bit unexpected* and very dramatic.page turning stuff,indeed. Give it a go if you are into this sort of thing,its worth the journey!


*Not totally unexpected, if like me, you have read thousands of mystery/whodunwhat type books!

mothman

  • I don't know why
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #670 on: May 08, 2019, 08:11:24 PM »
I'm reading The Three-Body Problem by Liu Cixin. It's a bit mindbending SF, and it's the first of a trilogy. Not hard going as such, but it's not firmly lodged in my comfort zone. I may have to find a mindless space opera to read before I tackle the next book.

Sex Festival Organizer

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #671 on: May 10, 2019, 05:29:58 PM »
Hello. Long-time lurker here. Registered today basically to thank you guys for this thread, which I have scoured for new books to read, and have ended up with quite a few additions to my list.

Am currently reading Experimental Film by Canadian horror writer Gemma Files. Only about a quarter of the way through, but good stuff so far, even though nothing remotely horrific has happened yet. I’ve also read two of her short story collections, Kissing Carrion and The Worm in Every Heart, and she’s quite good at low-key horror that slowly fills you with a creeping sense of dread. A bit like Robert Aickman in that regard.

Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #672 on: May 10, 2019, 05:35:53 PM »
Your profile picture isn't visible at the moment, you need to copy and paste the "Direct Link" rather than the "Image Link" on imgur.

Sex Festival Organizer

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #673 on: May 10, 2019, 05:41:33 PM »
Ah, so that's why. Thanks!

Small Man Big Horse

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #674 on: May 10, 2019, 07:03:08 PM »
Ah, so that's why. Thanks!

It's good to have you onboard, and I love your name by the way!

FerriswheelBueller

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #675 on: May 10, 2019, 07:14:31 PM »
It's good to have you onboard, and I love your name by the way!

Must be ShitGoodNose’s mate.

Sex Festival Organizer

  • Tickets available now!
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #676 on: May 10, 2019, 07:53:09 PM »
It's good to have you onboard, and I love your name by the way!

Thanks! I was re-watching that episode last night, and suddenly, during the scene on Dan’s sofa, I heard God speak to me, saying, «Henceforth, you will be known as Sex Festival Organizer», and I could do nothing more than bow my head in quiet acquiescence.

Must be ShitGoodNose’s mate.

I’ve actually lurked long enough to get the reference, but I assure you I have nothing to do with that kind of depravity. Only real wood, no MDF!

Twit 2

  • Cyclone par l'immobile habité
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #677 on: May 12, 2019, 04:28:54 PM »
I haven’t read this biography of Rimbaud, but he really knew how to do debauchery. The anecdote about who was top/bottom and why is pretty eye-watering. One can only imagine the state of Verlaine’s arse. Rimbaud seems to be the original goatse too:

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2000/oct/01/biography.poetry

Not sure what it is about amazing writers and smut. Over in the shelf abuse smut thread I posted Joyce’s famous letters to his wife - total filth - and he wrote stuff like the ending to The Dead, as good as prose gets in the English language. Similarly, Rimbaud was no stranger to a spot of dirty buggering and I would say The Drunken Boat is perhaps the greatest poem ever written. By rights Rocco Siffredi should have won the Nobel Prize for Literature by now!

Now reading this biography. It’s brill.

gilbertharding

  • Not even the rudest man in the Beatles
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #678 on: May 15, 2019, 04:11:32 PM »
Re-reading Burmese Days, which last time I read it I remember being a kind of antidote to the Somerset Maugham/Graham Greene type stuff I'd just read a lot of (and still enjoy, let's be fair) - where 'the Natives' exist only in the same way as the heat, and the jungle, exists.

The story seems a bit thin, but the subtext is all present and correct. Empire is wrong and bad, and the colonial police are worse.

Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #679 on: May 18, 2019, 07:52:51 PM »
Re-reading Burmese Days, which last time I read it I remember being a kind of antidote to the Somerset Maugham/Graham Greene type stuff I'd just read a lot of (and still enjoy, let's be fair) - where 'the Natives' exist only in the same way as the heat, and the jungle, exists.

There's a review by Orwell of Greene's 'The Heart of the Matter' which makes a similar criticism, among others.

http://home.planet.nl/~boe00905/Orwell-C786.html

Pingers

  • With the ill behaviour
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #680 on: May 19, 2019, 08:08:23 PM »
Re-reading Burmese Days, which last time I read it I remember being a kind of antidote to the Somerset Maugham/Graham Greene type stuff I'd just read a lot of (and still enjoy, let's be fair) - where 'the Natives' exist only in the same way as the heat, and the jungle, exists.

The story seems a bit thin, but the subtext is all present and correct. Empire is wrong and bad, and the colonial police are worse.

"Some fool has said one cannot hate an animal. He should try a few nights in India, when the dogs are baying the moon"

Never a truer word written

Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #681 on: May 19, 2019, 09:55:24 PM »
Have you read this yet? I would be interested to hear your thoughts. It's just one of the oddest books I've ever read.

I'm on it but i only read when I go to bed and these days that means about two pages a night. They're not even on the outing yet!

Did you like it?

Pingers

  • With the ill behaviour
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #682 on: Yesterday at 08:22:52 AM »
I'm on it but i only read when I go to bed and these days that means about two pages a night. They're not even on the outing yet!

Did you like it?

I thought it was really odd, and kept wondering why someone would write this book. Why? It gets odder and odder as it progresses and the ending is bizarre. I did have one theory but I'll leave that until you've finished it.

JesusAndYourBush

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #683 on: Today at 02:56:36 AM »
I'm currently working my way through a whole load of 50's/60's Scifi paperbacks, my favourite era of Scifi.  With most books I find the words just flow off the page but the latest one which I just finished - Poul Anderson's "Trader To The Stars" I found it a real hard slog to get through it.  I should have taken it as a warning when I read one of his short stories in a compilation last year and had similar feelings.  Anyone else here read any Poul Anderson and had a similar experience?

timebug

  • Father of Serge
Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #684 on: Today at 09:38:37 AM »
Halfway through the last of Arthur C Clarkes 'Odyssey' series, which are an umpteenth re-read. The first two I have always liked; part three and four drop off in terms of quality and imagination, but are still readable! A happy(ish) blast from the past for me.