Recommended Books

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This topic contains 23 replies, has 13 voices, and was last updated by Caers 9 years, 3 months ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 24 total)
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  • #8195

    Martin Reed
    ★ Admin

    I thought it would be fun to talk about books we've read and really enjoyed – regardless of their subject.

    One of my favourite books is 'Pillars of the Earth' by Ken Follett. Set in the middle of the 12th Century it documents the building of a cathedral in a fictional town in England. Regardless of how I describe this book, it may sound dull – but I can assure you it’s anything but. It was both fascinating and insightful at the same time. There's a sequel that came out a couple of years ago that I've been meaning to read for a while.

    I'd also recommend ‘The Kite Runner’ by Khaled Hosseini – set in Afghanistan it follows the life of a boy whose close friendship with another child is changed forever after an unspeakable event. Living with the guilt, an opportunity arises many years later for him to atone for his guilt. Incredibly moving and powerful.

    'English Passengers' by Matthew Kneale is also a cracking yarn if you enjoy reading about exploration and colonisation.

    At the moment I'm reading two books – Les Miserables (I try to read one classic every year) and Stephen King's 'Under the Dome'. I've never managed to finish a Stephen King book before (I prefer Graham Masterton when it comes to horror writing), so we'll see how I get on with this one!

    Right, now it's over to you!

    #9740

    IvanAleisterMesniaa
    ✘ Not a client

    One of my favorite books was 20,000 leagues under the sea, The God Delusion, Whitley Striebers book Communion are good books.

    A Movable Feast by Ernest Hemingway, another favorite of mine Ham on Rye. It is a 1982 semi-autobiographical novel by American author and poet Charles Bukowski, he is a heavy inspiration for my writing.

    #9741

    LindsayK
    ✘ Not a client

    Oh, I adored The Kite Runner! So sad.

    I have read all the Sookie Stackhouse novels, and they were pretty good if you're into the vampire/supernatural/odd kind of character thing. The show does not do the books any justice.

    A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini was excellent, too.

    And Child 44, (can't remember the author offhand), was one of the best mysteries I've read in a long time. I just got 1984, and I love any classics, with Shakespeare being my favorite. I also just finished Precious, an excerpt from Push, and it was magnificent though hard to stomach sometimes.

    #9742

    IvanAleisterMesniaa
    ✘ Not a client

    I read 1984 when I was 11, and the complete works of Shakespeare by 13, I just helped my girlfriend on her 1984 exam, I helped her via webcam chat.

    I also enjoyed Journey to the center of the earth by Jules Verne as well as 20,000 leagues as I said before.

    #9743

    LindsayK
    ✘ Not a client
    'IvanAleisterMesniaa' wrote on '05:

    I read 1984 when I was 11, and the complete works of Shakespeare by 13, I just helped my girlfriend on her 1984 exam, I helped her via webcam chat.

    I also enjoyed Journey to the center of the earth by Jules Verne as well as 20,000 leagues as I said before.

    Nice! I never got around to 1984 until now, unfortunately. I was more into horror and mythology as a kid. Read Dracula at 8, much to my Mom's dislike, and I absorbed everything I could about Greek mythology between 9 and 14.

    Recently dug up my copy of Dante's Inferno, I think that'll be a good one to finish this week. 😀 I love reading!

    #9744

    IvanAleisterMesniaa
    ✘ Not a client
    'LindsayK' wrote on '06:

    Nice! I never got around to 1984 until now, unfortunately. I was more into horror and mythology as a kid. Read Dracula at 8, much to my Mom's dislike, and I absorbed everything I could about Greek mythology between 9 and 14.

    Recently dug up my copy of Dante's Inferno, I think that'll be a good one to finish this week. 😀 I love reading!

    divine comedy you mean? Inferno(Dante) was bloody epic.

    As a whole the Divine Comedy was amazing.

    #9745

    LindsayK
    ✘ Not a client
    'IvanAleisterMesniaa' wrote on '05:

    divine comedy you mean? Inferno(Dante) was bloody epic.

    As a whole the Divine Comedy was amazing.

    Yes, I did indeed mean Divine Comedy. My brain is out of the loop this evening.

    #9746

    primaryantagonist
    ✘ Not a client

    Shakespeare by 13! How funny! I did that too! I got into F Scott Fitzgerald pretty young, too, and I think that affected my tastes more than I realized at the time.

    The best book I've read in ages was Nick Cave's new novel, The Death of Bunny Munro, which is a disturbing and hilarious story following a sex-addicted travelling salesman's decline into madness and spectacular demise. And it takes place in Brighton! It's not so much what happens as how it's written. But if smack addicts and gratuitous sex freak you out, you might want to skip this one.

    One of my all time favourites is The Virgin Suicide by Jeffrey Eugenides. The movie was pretty faithful to it, but the book was like a prose poem in four chapters. Just beautiful!

    and my third and final favourite book of all time in Venus in Furs by Leopold Von Sacher Masoch. It's the “erotic novel” the Velvet Underground based the song on. Now, to say it's smut is just wrong. It's more of a philosophy and a treatise on love and pain. It was written in the nineteenth century, but it's still as engaging as it would be had it been written today. The main character, Severin, believes that the best way to show his love is by letting his lover, Wanda, torture him because loving her through the pain would justify and sanctify that love. Wanda Von Dunajew, however, isn't so keen, and gets crueller as the story progresses. I really can't recommend it enough.

    I also love Chuck Palahniuk. Beautiful Monsters was amazing and so, so sick. I'm finding it harder to get into Diary, but he's still a fantastic writer. And any Hunter S Thompson. He only wrote the one novel (The Great Shark Hunt) but a lot of his work is public and his journalism is very narrative. I have a copy of the Proud Highway, which is just a collection of his correspondences — everything from personal letters to letters to bill collecteors and publishers, etc — and that's really good. He kept everything he ever wrote. Thank God! LOL

    #9747

    primaryantagonist
    ✘ Not a client

    AHH! Abundant typos!

    #9748

    Martin Reed
    ★ Admin
    'primaryantagonist' wrote on '06:

    AHH! Abundant typos!

    They're not typos, you're just 'keeping it real' 😉

    #9749

    emmaree
    ✘ Not a client
    'Martin' wrote on '05:

    I thought it would be fun to talk about books we've read and really enjoyed – regardless of their subject.

    One of my favourite books is 'Pillars of the Earth' by Ken Follett. Set in the middle of the 12th Century it documents the building of a cathedral in a fictional town in England. Regardless of how I describe this book, it may sound dull – but I can assure you it’s anything but. It was both fascinating and insightful at the same time. There's a sequel that came out a couple of years ago that I've been meaning to read for a while.

    I'd also recommend ‘The Kite Runner’ by Khaled Hosseini – set in Afghanistan it follows the life of a boy whose close friendship with another child is changed forever after an unspeakable event. Living with the guilt, an opportunity arises many years later for him to atone for his guilt. Incredibly moving and powerful.

    'English Passengers' by Matthew Kneale is also a cracking yarn if you enjoy reading about exploration and colonisation.

    At the moment I'm reading two books – Les Miserables (I try to read one classic every year) and Stephen King's 'Under the Dome'. I've never managed to finish a Stephen King book before (I prefer Graham Masterton when it comes to horror writing), so we'll see how I get on with this one!

    Right, now it's over to you!

    I love 'the kite runner' but at presently have turned my attention towards Janet Evanovich Stephanie Plum adventures currently reading 'Ten Big Ones' her books are light and I can't get enough of her writing it just makes me laugh so much.

    #9750

    yamerias
    ✘ Not a client

    Ah yes…books..

    I have issues with concentration so reading books is something I miss a lot, I used to read books all the time, but gave up when I tried reading a book and somehow achieved reading the same page 12 times!

    I used to read a lot of horror, and the best books I read in that genre was the Rats, Lair and Domain by James Herbert. As you can guess by the title of the first book the stories are based on …well..rats, who develop a taste for flesh, and also one bite spreads a disease that will kill in 24 hours. I remember when I was training as a chef reading all 3 books back to back, and I was constantly checking under my bed!

    Other books I have read and recommend are The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy..read all the books in this series, they are brilliant, in fact read anything by Douglas Adams, a very clever and funny man…so sadly missed.

    I have read a few biographical books too…Mick Foley's books Have A Nice Day and Foley is Good are great reads if you are interested in wrestling and Gordon Ramsay's Humble Pie is a good read too.

    #9751

    Martin Reed
    ★ Admin
    'yamerias' wrote on '11:

    I have issues with concentration so reading books is something I miss a lot, I used to read books all the time, but gave up when I tried reading a book and somehow achieved reading the same page 12 times!

    I used to read a lot of horror, and the best books I read in that genre was the Rats, Lair and Domain by James Herbert.

    When I was a kid I could never finish a book. The first book I ever managed to get through was one of Roald Dahl's – I guess he got me into reading. Quite an amazing legacy when you think about it – he got thousands of kids reading.

    Anyway, I digress – I'm a lover of horror too and I think I've read the book you just mentioned. Have you ever read any of Graham Masterton's books? I think he is one of the most underrated horror writers of all time.

    #9752

    ravenize11
    ✘ Not a client

    What a well read group! Orwell is one of my favorites now (not so much in HS when I was forced to read him). 1984, Animal Farm and Down and Out in Paris and London are classics!

    My favorite genre of books is the mystery/thriller. James Patterson used to be one of my favorites until he started to ascribe to the “quantity not quality” philosophy of writing. However, his earlier stuff from the Alex Cross series is great, as well as the Women's Murder Club series. Everything else lately is a quick read with no substance.

    The Alienist by Caleb Carr is a great book of this genre. The Profiler meets Jack The Ripper in turn of the century NY. Has everything I love: rich history, the application of forensic science to track a serial killer, the chase. A definite must read.

    The Innocent Man: Murder & Innocence in a Small Town by John Grisham. Prefer his fiction, however, this true crime story was written well enough to paint a very disturbing look at our (in)justice system. Defense attorneys have their work cut out for them if they face prosecutors who are truly as crooked as the alleged defendants they represent.

    Going outside the mystery/thriller genre – My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult. Very well written book, exploring morals vs. ethics vs. emotions, with a shocking ending. Quick read, you won't be able to put it down. I understand a lot of Ms. Picoult's work is like this but this is the only book of hers that I have read. Do not watch this movie!

    I used to be a teacher's assistant in an expository writing class at NYU and in this capacity was exposed to the following which I highly recommend:

    The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho is one of my favorite spiritual reads. An inspired read every time I pick it up, it illustrates the power of dreams and the importance of following them.

    The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien is a collection of short stories that are set in the time of the Vietnam War, but they are not war stories as much as they are life stories. An illustration of the tangible, physical baggage people carry as well as the intangible that affect our lives.

    Disgrace by J.M. Coetzee. This story is about a self-indulgent man who finds himself the hard way, via the crimes against him and his daughter in the newly-Apartheid abolished South Africa.

    That's it for now……

    #9753

    littlespy
    ✘ Not a client

    Books are a topic I could go on for years about…I have a monumental collection and many many influential books.

    Top three for starters:

    Everything is Illuminated – Jonathan Safran Foer. A beautiful story about history, memory and identity set against the backdrop of a young man searching for a village lost in the holocaust to reconnect with his family's past. Highly recommend, and his other book Extremely Loud and Incredibly close. Made me cry in public because it was so breathtaking.

    If on a Winter's Night a Traveller… Italo Calvino Hard to discribe, stories within stories within stories.

    Gormenghast – Mervyn Peake Insane fantasy about a crumbling castle civilisation. Fantasy with lots of savy and no bloody dwarfs or elves or busty maidens. Brilliant.

    A Clockwork Orange – Anthony Burgess. A classic. Twisted, hard to get in to and if you crack it, the scary thing is you'll have to think like Alex – the most fascinating anti-hero ever.

    Also I've just finished reading Snow Crash – Neale Stephenson – Cyberpunk ironic goodness & Handling the Undead by John Ajvide Lindqvist an unnerving story of the dead coming back to life, but not a horror novel per se. Big focus on grief/life/death and it's meaning. If you've seen or read Let the Right One in you'll love it.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 24 total)

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