What are you reading?

Literature and creative ramblings.

Re: What are you reading?

Post by CJ+ @ Fri Jan 29, 2016 9:34 am

Disastrous wrote:I got one of those free Kindle things called 'The Mentor' and I'm now scared to start it.

I love bad writing-it amuses me greatly.

Get yourself some Chambers, then, dis. You'll laugh yourself to death.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Rod Rammage @ Fri Jan 29, 2016 10:00 am

Well listen to THIS!

I like the works of Philip K Dick, right? Most of them. Not his really trippy stuff.

Yes indeed, I enjoy Dick.

And then I saw this Man In The High Castle thing on Amazon Prime and I thought "ooh that's weird, why haven't you read that Roddy?"

So I bought the book and as I started reading it I realised that I had already read the fcuker!

Anyway, before that I read Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones. I liked the film, and I liked the book!

So now I am reading Castle in the Air which is the next book in the same series!

It's a children's book fcuk you!
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Disastrous @ Fri Jan 29, 2016 10:05 am

CJ+ wrote:
Disastrous wrote:I got one of those free Kindle things called 'The Mentor' and I'm now scared to start it.

I love bad writing-it amuses me greatly.

Get yourself some Chambers, then, dis. You'll laugh yourself to death.



I can't get over the 'as good as' brag.

'Chambers is almost at the level of the Fiesta letters page'

'Chambers doesn't have far to go until she's knocking at Dan Brown's door (to ask for lessons in writing convincing dialogue)'


Brilliant.


Talking of Dan Brown, I read Inferno over Christmas (I chucked some money at a shopping centre charity book stall for Bramble's dog home) and the nice lady wouldn't let me just donate and insisted I took a book and that's all there was) and it's genuinely one of the worst things I have ever read.

Apart from the pre-school prose, it contains the most poorly-written dialogue I have ever seen. It is almost entirely expositional with zero attempt made to pretend that even the tiniest effort has gone into actually thinking about how people talk.

Add to that, Dan Brown's astonishing need to show off his cultural knowledge while simultaneously being unable to resist patronisingly explaining his own cleverness a few lines later for those who may have missed it makes it near unreadable.

At one point he actually writes:

Renowned Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon addressed the assembled crowd. "Wilkommen, bienvenue, welcome!" He paused for a moment, pleased that a ripple of laughter signified at least some of the crowd had recognised his opening from the musical 'Cabaret'

(Or words to that effect, I've paraphrased slightly, and probably improved it slightly)

It's fcuking excruciating. Firstly, because it's irrelevant whether the reader got that or not. Those who did can smile inwardly and those who haven't seen it can pass blissfully by, safe in the knowledge it adds nothing to the story. Secondly, if you did get it, it's unbearable having Dan Brown shout "I've seen cabaret, have you?? I'll never know or care as I gave the answer to you because I don't believe you've seen it and now you can't prove it ahahahahahahahahahaha" and thirdly, because he does it on almost every page. fcuking cnut! I grew to hate him as a man during this book.

Utterly risible in every way. 0/10.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Damien Thorn @ Fri Jan 29, 2016 10:42 am

I read a Dan Brown book once, but I can't remember what it was called or about. I do remember the odd feeling that grew as I Read it though, something I couldn't quite put my finger on until the climactic scenes when there was some sort of chase around in the basement of a supercomputer complex - and suddenly I realised I had been reading a straight to DVD action movie.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by CJ+ @ Fri Jan 29, 2016 10:49 am

A marvellous opportunity to re-spam this.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Disastrous @ Fri Jan 29, 2016 11:10 am

CJ+ wrote:A marvellous opportunity to re-spam this.



Haha, I love that! So true.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Disastrous @ Sun Jan 31, 2016 11:37 am

Disastrous wrote:I got one of those free Kindle things called 'The Mentor' and I'm now scared to start it.

I love bad writing-it amuses me greatly.



Ceej's post inspires me to download and begin The Mentor. So far on page one and quite enamoured with the very first line of the book. It opens with:

A jet of my mother's blood struck me in the face.


It's not going to improve on that, is it?
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Strawman @ Tue Feb 02, 2016 6:32 pm

Possibly the worst opening line in the history of literature.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by minimoog @ Tue Feb 02, 2016 8:02 pm

Strawman wrote:Possibly the worst opening line in the history of literature.


Can I refer you back to The DaVinci Code and invite you to reconsider.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Strawman @ Tue Feb 02, 2016 8:41 pm

The DaVinci Code is truly abominable but my decision remains.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Strawman @ Wed Feb 03, 2016 11:53 am

1599 a year in the life of William Shakespeare. What was happening in England and London and his life at the time and how that is reflected in the plays he wrote that year. Half way through but it is interesting.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Dirk @ Wed Feb 03, 2016 5:04 pm

Strawman wrote:The DaVinci Code is truly abominable but my decision remains.

Despite the fact that he always* starts his book with an anarthrous use of an occupational noun to introduce a character who will die within a few pages in a horrible way? And in all cases they break the first rule of fiction ("Don't tell, show")

Renowned curator Jacques Saunière staggered through the vaulted archway of the museum's Grand Gallery.

Physicist Leonardo Vetra smelled burning flesh, and he knew it was his own.

Geologist Charles Brophy had endured the savage splendor of this terrain for years, and yet nothing could prepare him for a fate as barbarous and unnatural as the one about to befall him.


* Ok it may not be all his books. But has anyone wanted/managed to read all of his books?
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Strawman @ Wed Feb 03, 2016 5:38 pm

Dirk wrote:
Strawman wrote:The DaVinci Code is truly abominable but my decision remains.

Despite the fact that he always* starts his book with an anarthrous use of an occupational noun to introduce a character who will die within a few pages in a horrible way? And in all cases they break the first rule of fiction ("Don't tell, show")


Yes I read the link CJ 2.0 posted but while shit I think the reason people harp on about Dan Brown so much is because he is incredibly bestseller list successful. Barbara Cartland wrote 100+ "novels" of turgid shitness that I have never read either, but still that opening line Dis quoted is offensively worse than the one in the Da Vinci code IMO.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Disastrous @ Wed Feb 03, 2016 7:03 pm

Strawman wrote:
Dirk wrote:
Strawman wrote:The DaVinci Code is truly abominable but my decision remains.

Despite the fact that he always* starts his book with an anarthrous use of an occupational noun to introduce a character who will die within a few pages in a horrible way? And in all cases they break the first rule of fiction ("Don't tell, show")


Yes I read the link CJ 2.0 posted but while shit I think the reason people harp on about Dan Brown so much is because he is incredibly bestseller list successful. Barbara Cartland wrote 100+ "novels" of turgid shitness that I have never read either, but still that opening line Dis quoted is offensively worse than the one in the Da Vinci code IMO.



Agreed. Also, digging further, the author is Italian and it is set in London but translated by an American.

Hence the characters walking along the sidewalk to the Arsenal stadium.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Doctor Congo @ Thu Feb 18, 2016 2:03 pm

No strictly reading but have been listening to an audiobook of Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari. It's an awesome piece of work and very very interesting to chart the development of Homo sapiens since the beginning of time. 9/10
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Hooli @ Wed Mar 02, 2016 1:18 pm

A short history of England, it's free on Kindle.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Damien Thorn @ Wed Mar 02, 2016 1:29 pm

I am reading I Am Pilgrim, which is a breath of fresh air after finally wading to the end of Dark Places by Gillian Flynn. That was arduous, tedious, and boring.

IAP is the opposite, and immediately felt thrilling and interesting. Although now I'm 100(?) pages in I'm starting to fear it's going to be like one of those books that pretend to be by James Patterson but is actually secretly written by his over-excited schoolboy apprentice.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Clown Ice Skater #4 @ Wed Mar 02, 2016 1:36 pm

I really enjoyed IAP, Damo. The uber spy lead character comes across as a bit of a humourless self-aggrandiser but I guess if you were literally the best spy in the whole world you might be a bit up yourself too.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Turntable @ Wed Mar 02, 2016 1:43 pm

Damien Thorn wrote:I am reading I Am Pilgrim, which is a breath of fresh air after finally wading to the end of Dark Places by Gillian Flynn. That was arduous, tedious, and boring.

IAP is the opposite, and immediately felt thrilling and interesting. Although now I'm 100(?) pages in I'm starting to fear it's going to be like one of those books that pretend to be by James Patterson but is actually secretly written by his over-excited schoolboy apprentice.


I loved every moment of that book from start to finish. There is nothing original or clever about it, it is just a very good page-turner.
I forced 2m to read it and he hated every moment of it thinking it was unrealistic and cheesy, which I suppose it is but like any one of those type of books I just didn't care.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Otto Sump @ Wed Mar 02, 2016 2:19 pm

I have been lent "The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists" by the Stepson.

Should I bother?
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by minimoog @ Wed Mar 02, 2016 3:00 pm

Otto Sump wrote:I have been lent "The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists" by the Stepson.


Tell your stepson nice try but he's rumbled - it's actually by Robert Tressell.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by spast1kunt @ Wed Mar 02, 2016 3:51 pm

I'm reading a shitload of Ian Rankins.

He seems to have published at least a thousand new Rebus books since I last read any. They get a bit samey after a while but they're well written so I don't mind too much.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by spast1kunt @ Sat Mar 26, 2016 10:04 am

I just read a book called The Forgotten by an American thriller author named David Baldacci.

The main character of the book in a US Army crime investigator called John Puller. Puller is a steely-eyed bear of a man who has no understanding of the concept of fear and no sympathy whatsoever for wrongdoers.

If devotees of Steven Segal films could read they would love David Baldacci's books but I thought it was shit.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Damien Thorn @ Thu May 05, 2016 2:27 pm

I meant to tell you, I finished reading I Am Pilgrim and liked it a lot in spite of my initial reservations. Then I started The Bone Clocks, so now I am reading that. And liking it a lot.
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What are you reading?

Post by Doctor Congo @ Thu May 05, 2016 2:31 pm

Damien Thorn wrote:I meant to tell you, I finished reading I Am Pilgrim and liked it a lot in spite of my initial reservations. Then I started The Bone Clocks, so now I am reading that. And liking it a lot.


I read The Bone Clocks too. Good book.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by DaveBowman @ Thu May 05, 2016 2:38 pm

Just finished The Emperor series, by Conn Iggulden. A lot like Bernard Cornwell, or C. S. Forester.

It's an historical series, based on historical facts, intermixed with fictional stuff, a bit like Sharpe, or Hornblower. It covers Julius Caesar from yoof up to Octavius taking over his mantle. Really enjoyed it.

Read 'The Fist of God', and 'The Afghan' by Freddy Forsyth afterwards, and am now starting 'Harlequin', by Bernard Cornwell.

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Re: What are you reading?

Post by spast1kunt @ Thu May 05, 2016 5:28 pm

^ I read a bunch of those Conn Iggulden books not long ago but I got annoyed with the liberties he takes with the history. He strays too far from the known facts for my liking.

I'm currently making my way through a load of Len Deightons. Not the most heavyweight of reading but they are well written, if a little dated.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by DaveBowman @ Thu May 05, 2016 5:32 pm

he fills in stuff, but to be fair he does say in his historical notes where he takes liberties, assumptions, etc. Still an interesting read. Would make a good TV show, akin to 'Rome'.

Shall add that chap to my list. Nothing wrong with lightweight reading. I enjoyed 'The martian', and that was very easy, done in a day type stuff.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Damien Thorn @ Sat May 21, 2016 1:43 pm

I've finally finished The Bone Clocks. Books take me a while to get through as I only really sit and read at gymnastics. But this one was wonderful: for the second time in recent months I'm genuinely dismayed to get to the end of a book - I could happily keep reading about Holly Sykes, just like I wanted to keep reading about Patrick when I reached the end of Rubbernecker.

Books can be so brilliant.
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Re: What are you reading?

Post by Hooli @ Wed May 25, 2016 1:18 pm

Finished Daniel Defoe's History of the Plague in London the other day.

Rather interesting to read a nearly first hand account of the period, turns out he did live through it but was four years old. So the book is fiction but based on first hand accounts.

It's surprising how many damn good books are free on Kindle, read most of Sir Walter Scott's the same way along with loads of others.
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