Page 552 of 555

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Thu Jun 28, 2018 10:58 pm
by Rob P
Read All My Friends are Superheroes in less than 24 hours. It's novella length and a nice little break from some of the stuff i've been reading lately. Is quirky and in many ways brilliant. I just wish the ending had more punch.

I'm contemplating reading Sleeping Beauties, which i've had since xmas.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2018 11:04 pm
by Rob P
I didn't read Sleeping Beauties.

Instead, I read through Ursula's Le Guin's writing book - Steering the Craft. It has some potentially useful exercises in it.

I'm now on Wolfsbane. I like the plot so far. 1/3 in and i'm enjoying more than i'm not enjoying.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 12:31 pm
by Rob P
Finished Wolfsbane.

This is one of those weird books where you know you're not going to get any massive shift in the big story arc.

It has a strong story A and reasonably strong story B which interweave a little and which focus almost exclusively on a narrow protagonist pov.

The plot, pacing and protagonists (only 3 really) were all handled fairly well.

A wanted a little more from story A in terms of the impact on the Horus Heresy as a whole; I felt the story B was too wordy (i've made this complaint about the other author's work before so maybe I just don't like his style) - which screwed the flow for me as you need decent attentive (rather than relaxed) reading comprehension; and I found some of the battle bits too long/boring.

In terms of complaint (2), if you like Guy Haley's style, you will enjoy this book. Like Matt Farrer I just don't find him a relaxing read.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Sun Jul 08, 2018 9:53 pm
by Therion
Finished reading:

Angels of Darkness - enjoyed dialogues and stuff a lot, including using various Wh40k sayings. Messed up, especially the conversations of Boreas with his underlings XD . And of course the Tale of Astelan. "Great Crusade isn't an event but a state of mind", joins the list of my favourite sayings.
Oh and portrayal of naval warfare was surprisingly decent. Like for example distances and times clearly being huge and attack by assault boat taking 30 minutes to arrive to enemy ship.
Gav Thorpe quickly became one of my favourite if not my favourite of BL writers because he combines ability to write characters and their psychology with ability to write combat on many levels. He clearly knows his fluff and has interest in military history.

Reading:
The Flowers Of Evil - Complete 1 - Shuzo Oshimi - awesome manga. Very messed up.

Thinking about re-reading Know No Fear.

Started re-reading Shadows of Heresy. Realised I haven't read most of the stories - only Crimson Fist and Prince of Crows and that there's a story by Gav Thorpe, which I started reading.

Reading as a part of my internship:
HTML and CSS: Design and Build Websites - really good textbook. Full colour. Helps me a lot. I'm about 3/4 in into it. Sadly a bit outdated as it was written when HTML5 specification was still developed and has some stuff that wasn't implemented after all, for example hgroup tag. Lacks info on CSS animations too, I think.

The Artist’s Guide to GIMP, 2nd Edition: Creative Techniques for Photographers, Artists, and Designers - Meh. Most of projects in it look horribly cheap and tacky. Look at the crushing shittiness of the gallery on the book's archived site and despair! Teaches how tools work, though, so maybe I'll improve my understanding of the program significantly, though.
The first edition was in 1998, which means the author was making these horrible graphics for at least 14 years D: .
Oh, it turns out that he's an embedded systems developer so it's a persistent case of programmer art XD .
Why is it called The Artist's Guide to GIMP, then XD ?

The Principles of Beautiful Web Design: Designing Great Web Sites is Not Rocket Science! - I'm halfway through. Finished the Colour chapter mid-June. Will continue it once I get to the part of The Artist's Guide to GIMP that covers textures because the next chapter is about textures in web design.

Major Rawne wrote:
Therion wrote:What kind of marines is it about, when it comes to abilities, casualties, etc? Is it another supermarine book like Siege of Castellax or whatever or is it something more realistic like Purging of Kadillus?

I always find the question of realism in 40k an odd one as i'd strongly argue that it's all a load of made up nonsense set forty thousand years in the future for the express purpose to entertain the reader.

I strongly disagree here. You have stuff ranging from mechanics of various games (which is where made up nonsense applies the most - though for example in BFG it's the opposite - rules are much more setting-realistic than novels - if relation between rules and novels would be like with Wh40k, we'd get at least Newtonian movement in naval scenes and 3rd dimension which would bog the game down/make it very difficult to play instead of the whole close range ship fights thing), through stuff that pretends to be realistic like Imperial Armour, then authors who write Wh40k as if it really existed, then authors who take strong liberties for sake of teh cool (like Aaron Dembski-Boweden), then authors who are completely out there (which again do made up nonsense things).
Also, usually, you have varying degrees of realism - like in Soul Hunter you have Marines ranging from reasonable Marines (usually on boarding scenes) to ridiculous super marines (in larger battle) and then you have ship combat which is absolute made up nonsense.

Like, ship combat in novels and on illustrations is almost always made-up nonsense. Like you have illustrations and descriptions where ships are fighting on space of size of a stem of a cruiser base (which is one of the rare cases where game makes more sense than writing and illustrations.) because authors ignored that, like, 15000km is point-blank range in Wh40k starship combat and you do short range boarding actions from few 1000s kilometres, not from few kilometres or even hundreds of meters, etc.

Then you have various stuff in setting-design that can be measured and compared like armour thicknesses with stronger and weaker areas, armour penetration, ammo capacity, ammo load-outs, etc.
Just because setting is made up, it doesn't mean these don't count.

Knowledge like this can be used to determine risk levels, casualties, descriptions, how many shots units can fire, how long they can stay in combat, what amount of forces is necessary to achieve a goal, what logistics are used, etc.

Major Rawne wrote:Anyway the first question is easy enough, it's about the mysterious silent type who are comparative to the Night Lords in their predatory nature, some of whom die. The book doesn't hugely go into statistical detail on numbers if memory serves.

Well, I ordered it because after all I wanted it since I heard about it. I hope I'll not regret it when it will finally arrive.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 3:45 pm
by Vivia
Since it's summer I'm getting back to my usual tradition of horror and murder mysteries.

Recently discovered A Podcast to the Curious: An MR James Podcast. He was one of the first I read in terms of ghost stories, but I could never get into them because of the Christian themes and church life that I knew nothing about. Listening to Will and Mike explaning things and they suddenly make a lot of sense. He wrote some seriously creepy stuff. Love this podcast.

Through them I went on to theH.P Lovecraft Literary Podcast. They're great, but they're also grating at times.
They love really sleazy pulp fiction like The Were-wolf of Paris (hurk), but they find some of the old tales in Gothic tradition to be "impenetrable". Hmm, whatever. :roll: I'm getting a vibe of cultural differences there.
I'm sorry, but werewolves are the least scary to me, they're like The Exorcist. Werewolves and devils, I couldn't care less.
They discuss the August Derleth thing here and there, and I can't help feeling really great about it.

Anyway, they got me back on the impenetrable Wuthering Heights! HP Lovecraft thought it was a mighty fine weird tale. What? So that got me hooked. Catherine's ghost! I totally missed that little detail. (Kate Bush's song is a big favourite of mine.)
I agree with everything they say about it, and more. Not much has changed, Heathcliff and Cathy are despicable characters, but there's enough that's really interesting, especially concerning Heathcliff, there's some fascinating theories of what he was. Then I went and read some articles about the incestual and abusive aspects in the Gothic tradition. I must admit, Wuthering Heights is a fascinating Gothic novel, I tried to read other big novels in the genre and they're ridiculous at best, exploitation fiction of the old days. I got my mum into rereading the novel as well!
Best from the episode: "Old Catherine is dead." That's one of best part of the novel. 8-)

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Sun Jul 15, 2018 6:25 pm
by Chun the Unavoidable
I enjoyed Wuthering Heights, too. As to other Gothic novels, have you read any Victor Hugo? The Hunchback of Notre Dame drips Gothic, as does his lesser known (but favourite of mine), Toilers of the Sea. Much longer, and somewhat less Gothic, is the incredible Les Miserables, which almost had me in tears at the end.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2018 2:50 pm
by Xisor
Speaking of French & Gothic, I'd reiterate Schaefer & others' high praise for Aliette de Bodard's work; her "House of Shattered Wings" is terrific.

And if you wanted not-French, not-Gothic, her Obsidian & Blood trilogy are excellent historical Aztec murder mysteries!

Or perhaps Sherlock Holmes in space? (I've not yet read that one though.)

----

Anyway, finished the first half of Rumo. As it's gargantuan, I'm gonna break for a bit before the second half. Started listening to the next Elizabeth Peters' "Amelia Peabody" book on audiobook too.

So far, so excellent.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:37 am
by Vivia
Chun the Unavoidable wrote:I enjoyed Wuthering Heights, too. As to other Gothic novels, have you read any Victor Hugo? The Hunchback of Notre Dame drips Gothic, as does his lesser known (but favourite of mine), Toilers of the Sea. Much longer, and somewhat less Gothic, is the incredible Les Miserables, which almost had me in tears at the end.

I read both Notre Dame and Les Misarables. They're so bleak, the only bad thing about the Notre Dame novel are the chapters that are so thick on the history of Paris, other than that it's the novel I prefer the most. Les Misarables is too melodramatic, it's Hugo after all, it has some potent themes, like the way criminals were looked upon. It doesn't stick the same way Notre Dame does. But after listening to the HP Lovecraft and MR James podcasts I must say I understand what Victor Hugo was trying to do, his use of outcasts in society is remarkable for his time. James and Lovecraft come across as a couple of snobs. I've also found a better understanding for Poe, his LIgea is super creepy and I finally understood The Fall Of the House of Usher, I was right about the sister being buried alive.

Xisor wrote:Speaking of French & Gothic, I'd reiterate Schaefer & others' high praise for Aliette de Bodard's work; her "House of Shattered Wings" is terrific.

And if you wanted not-French, not-Gothic, her Obsidian & Blood trilogy are excellent historical Aztec murder mysteries!

Or perhaps Sherlock Holmes in space? (I've not yet read that one though.)

I need to check her out! Historical Aztec murder mysteries sounds just like my thing.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2018 1:57 pm
by Athelassan
Among other things, the Aubrey-Maturin series. My dad has been obsessed with these for years and he's finally induced me to borrow them.

I'm up to Treason's Harbour, which I think is about halfway through. I had slowed to a crawl but I was given jury service and that gave me two full days to crack on with them until they decided they didn't need me after all.

They are not easy, by the standards of historical fiction: they are rather dry, the shifts of PoV and "scope" can at times be jarring, and they are full of nautical jargon. But they are good, and surprisingly funny, too.

Ath

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2018 7:51 pm
by Rob P
Started Jane Eyre but gave up early on. Seems very readable but i've picked up and dropped 5-6 books this week. Just can't get a groove and work is so busy.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2018 12:57 pm
by Major Rawne
Still slowly plodding away with Soul Wars. It started off really well but it seems do have ended up somewhat directionless, hopefully it all comes together in the last quarter.

As that's taking me a while to get through I've decided to pick up Trollslayer to read over my lunches. Despite being utterly convinced that I never really got round to it, the dirty thumb marks on the page edge suggests I may have gotten as far as halfway through before abandoning it. The first story as well is also feeling rather familiar. Anyhow i'll be sticking with it to the end.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2018 11:43 am
by Therion
EDIT:
Found my older post that I was writing and couldn't find it, so I edited to put in better written parts of that post:

I finally got The Red Tithe a few days week two weeks ago. Finished reading in a few days. Wow, what a bloodbath XD ! I liked it a lot. Got a bit too excited, though.
Obvious complaint is that it's not illustrated. XIXth century engraving (?) style or generally dark pen and ink illustrations would suit it perfectly.

Finishing Finished The Flowers Of Evil - Complete 1, I hope the second volume will arrive soon got the second volume just before I finished it. Messed up XD . Delightfully twisted XD .

I've read a Raven's Flight and Death of a Silversmith from Shadows of Heresy. Found the latter quite delightful. tfw getting represented en-masse in the beginning of Horus Heresy but then the representation is killed off XD .

Graham McNeil - Mechanicum. It got published her and saw that it has pictures. Unfortunately just four - in comparison Verne's novels tended to have tens in each novel. Like, it's such an epic subject with massive potential for visuals but for some reason there's that modern rule that novels should be about "imagination", whatever it is supposed to be.

I find Graham McNeil's writing in it somewhat annoying - the description of landing of the Emperor's ship made me cringe. Like, I remember when I first read the first trilogy of HH and it getting progressively worse when it comes to writing. Reminds me of my own attempts at writing from 2009-2012 A LOT (not the stuff I posted on the Faith and Devotion forums - other stuff.). tfw I have a well off clone out there and he's one of the guys I wished wouldn't be writing Horus Heresy novels XD .
Though it seems he sometimes writes well? Didn't have problems with Death of a Silversmith. Or Storm of Iron.
Delia seems to be a quite likeable protagonist and easy to identify with.
It gets somewhat more enjoyable when he's not describing scenes and starts throwing in allusions to history, religion and stuff, though XD . I'll need to re-read Fulgrim to see if I found the writing more enjoyable or if it's just the whole thing where he parodied post-modernist (?) art. Was even funnier because when I was reading it, I was still listening to stuff like Power Electronics, Death Industrial, etc. XD

Henry and June: From A Journal of Love: the Unexpurgated Diary of Anaïs Nin (1931–1932) - It's... fascinating because it happens at the same time as the diary of 1931-1934. It details her cheating on her wagecuck banker husband with multiple men, especially Henry Miller. *cringes*

This is What I Do by Lynsey Addario. Very interesting. About a war photographer. She seems to have a Lovecraftian facial expression XD .

Started reading Mobility, Shock and Firepower: The Emergence of the U.S. Army's Armor Branch, 1917-1945.

Read a bit of FM 100-30 Nuclear Operationsfrom 1971. Pretty interesting look at tactical/operational level warfare with use of tactical nuclear weapons. Sadly, my ebook reader messes up the two column format of the book which makes reading it a bit disjointed. I'll probably have to abandon it.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2018 1:43 pm
by Vivia
Rob P wrote:Started Jane Eyre but gave up early on. Seems very readable but i've picked up and dropped 5-6 books this week. Just can't get a groove and work is so busy.

What are the odds, I got me a copy of Jane Eyre just the other day! My mum will get the ebook after she finishes Wuthering Heights, I found it in the Spanish translation, I was so suprise that she didn't know much about the novel. I finally got her to read ebooks, the trick was getting her the classics.

I bought a few of Sheridan Le Fanu's collection, the Gutenberg ebooks are too annoying to read. There 's a mega-collection, but the quality is dodgy and the cover looks rather gross.
I have always liked his writing, but I had no idea he was the father of the vampire tale and the supernatural detective! One thing that I enjoy is the use of Irish folklore like faeries in his stories (one of my life goals is to visit the faerie trails in Ireland). His stories are bleak, which I prefer than some of the Victorian stories that go on about spiritualism and other nonsense of its time. I love it so much.
His story An Episode in the History of a Tyrone Family was written before Jane Eyre, that's so interesting. He seemed to have created many of the modern horror tropes. Super impressive resume.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2018 2:04 pm
by Therion
Vivia wrote:I bought a few of Sheridan Le Fanu's collection, the Gutenberg ebooks are too annoying to read.

Too annoying to read?

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2018 8:56 pm
by Vivia
Oh right, so I got the mega-collection of Le Fanu because I'm weak. On top of that, I got the Carnacki collection for some ironic reading. I have a memory of a ghost horse. I can't wait!
The HPPodcraft and MR James podcasts has teached us that detectives of the supernatural are some of the worst people to ever walk the Earth. I want to read all of the stories for the laughter. :mrgreen:
Found this article on the James podcast, hilarious stuff:
[Haunted Holidays: The Terrible Occult Detectives

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:31 pm
by Chun the Unavoidable
Athelassan: I love those books. I've been reading one a year for the last ten or eleven years. I've never found them dry, but I know what you mean about the POV changes.

Vivia: I read the Carnacki the Ghost Finder stories years ago. There not my favourite Hodgson, to be honest. It was the last story that had the most impact on me - mainly because it had more special effects than those that preceded it :D !

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2018 10:17 am
by Vivia
Chun the Unavoidable wrote:Athelassan: I love those books. I've been reading one a year for the last ten or eleven years. I've never found them dry, but I know what you mean about the POV changes.

Vivia: I read the Carnacki the Ghost Finder stories years ago. There not my favourite Hodgson, to be honest. It was the last story that had the most impact on me - mainly because it had more special effects than those that preceded it :D !

I presume that's The Hog. :) I don't remember much of the story. There's so much I need to reread, but most of the stuff I read was in the Swedish translation.
I was looking forward to Algernon Blackwood's detective since I love his stories (The Empty House, best story ever), but that one is the most racist of the bunch. Yikes.

Just when I tought I hadn't much new stories to read I came across this on the Haunted Holidays, Haunted Holidays: Scary Lady Writers
Vernon Lee's Hauntings is looking really good so far, I'm in weird tale heaven. And I know what might had inspired Tanith Lee, this is the one. The style is so what Tanith Lee tried to do. The weird vibe is very strong with Vernon Lee's story, they're disturbing stuff.
My iBooks bill will be so high.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2018 8:19 pm
by Chun the Unavoidable
Tanith Lee is another I like. I completed her Flat Earth series last year. This year it's a werewolf one, when I get to it.

For now I'm reading Alan Dean Foster's Midworld - an old paperback that smells its age.

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2018 8:41 pm
by Chun the Unavoidable
And now it's James S A Corey's Babylon's Ashes (sixth in the Expanse series).

Re: What Are You Reading?

PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2018 7:44 am
by Athelassan
Just finished The Remains of the Day. Wonderful.

Ath