What Are You Reading?

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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Rob P » Thu Jun 28, 2018 10:58 pm

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.
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Rob P » Thu Jul 05, 2018 11:04 pm

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.
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Rob P » Sun Jul 08, 2018 12:31 pm

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.
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Therion » Sun Jul 08, 2018 9:53 pm

WARHAMMER IS FOR EVERYONE EXCEPT FOR ME
Last edited by Therion on Fri Jun 12, 2020 11:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
"There can be no bystanders in the battle for survival. Anyone who will not fight by your side is an enemy you must crush" -Scriptorus Munificantus
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Vivia » Wed Jul 11, 2018 3:45 pm

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-)
There is nothing gay about the Princeton fight song. "Oh, the men of Princeton are charging up the rear, holding all the balls..." Okay, I hear it now. – Jack, episode Queen of Jordan
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Chun the Unavoidable » Sun Jul 15, 2018 6:25 pm

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.
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Xisor » Mon Jul 16, 2018 2:50 pm

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.
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Vivia » Tue Jul 17, 2018 11:37 am

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.
There is nothing gay about the Princeton fight song. "Oh, the men of Princeton are charging up the rear, holding all the balls..." Okay, I hear it now. – Jack, episode Queen of Jordan
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Athelassan » Wed Jul 18, 2018 1:57 pm

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.

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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Rob P » Thu Jul 19, 2018 7:51 pm

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.
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Major Rawne » Mon Jul 23, 2018 12:57 pm

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.
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Therion » Tue Jul 24, 2018 11:43 am

WARHAMMER IS FOR EVERYONE EXCEPT FOR ME
Last edited by Therion on Fri Jun 12, 2020 11:31 am, edited 2 times in total.
"There can be no bystanders in the battle for survival. Anyone who will not fight by your side is an enemy you must crush" -Scriptorus Munificantus
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Vivia » Wed Jul 25, 2018 1:43 pm

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.
There is nothing gay about the Princeton fight song. "Oh, the men of Princeton are charging up the rear, holding all the balls..." Okay, I hear it now. – Jack, episode Queen of Jordan
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Therion » Wed Jul 25, 2018 2:04 pm

WARHAMMER IS FOR EVERYONE EXCEPT FOR ME
Last edited by Therion on Fri Jun 12, 2020 11:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
"There can be no bystanders in the battle for survival. Anyone who will not fight by your side is an enemy you must crush" -Scriptorus Munificantus
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Vivia » Wed Jul 25, 2018 8:56 pm

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
There is nothing gay about the Princeton fight song. "Oh, the men of Princeton are charging up the rear, holding all the balls..." Okay, I hear it now. – Jack, episode Queen of Jordan
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Chun the Unavoidable » Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:31 pm

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 !
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Vivia » Fri Jul 27, 2018 10:17 am

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.
There is nothing gay about the Princeton fight song. "Oh, the men of Princeton are charging up the rear, holding all the balls..." Okay, I hear it now. – Jack, episode Queen of Jordan
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Chun the Unavoidable » Fri Jul 27, 2018 8:19 pm

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.
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Chun the Unavoidable » Wed Aug 01, 2018 8:41 pm

And now it's James S A Corey's Babylon's Ashes (sixth in the Expanse series).
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Re: What Are You Reading?

Postby Athelassan » Tue Aug 07, 2018 7:44 am

Just finished The Remains of the Day. Wonderful.

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