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View Full Version : So Many Books, So Little Time (The Reading Thread)



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Nomad
09-29-2009, 06:02 AM
....
I'm so jealous of you guys. I'm in college and am being forced to take an early American literature class (it's for my major), so the only thing that I'm able to read right now is book after book on the Puritans (and not like The Scarlet Letter, which I love, but actual Puritan-written works like sermons and historical accounts from Plymouth, etc.). How you make something like sailing to the New World boring is beyond me, but they manage to do it.

My sympathy. I took a course like that. First quarter was stuff like Winthrop's written contract with God, Mather's "Sinners in the hands of angry God" sermon, Anne Hutchinson's trial transcripts...I think the prof could have made us read The Crucible instead and still achieved his goal of giving us a good intro to the early American mindset. It would have been more merciful, that's for damned sure. Second quarter was Hawthorne, Cooper, Irving, Brockden Brown. That wasn't so bad, considering what came before.

Glide2
09-29-2009, 11:54 AM
I was looking for a dvd which the store didn't have, and I turned a corner and looked over the books just because they were there. I picked one, The Luxe, because of the great dress on the cover and the description on the back. Turns out its a YA teen book. Oh well, an ezread. Nontaxing is good. I'm enjoying it. It's very Upstairs Downstairs or An Ideal Husband but set in New York in 1899. Very Gilded Age. gilded age lite. for YA.
Oh and I also got these fantastic sugar free cookies, fudge graham cookies. yum.

rjblue
09-29-2009, 02:27 PM
Overqualified by Joey Comeau (http://www.amazon.com/Overqualified-Joey-Comeau/dp/1550228587).

My daughter bought this on Amazon, and I picked it up last night when I wanted to read for a couple of minutes. This quote on the Amazon site is not positive enough, in my opinion:
"Joey Comeau's collection of real cover letters, Overqualified, is pretty much sui generis. Not to mention sweetly written, bitter and bitterly funny . . . One of the season's most remarkable books." —Macleans.ca

Fergus
09-29-2009, 03:06 PM
I have Ruth Downey's "Terra Incognita" on deck...

Soooooo good! Either by itself or as part of the entire series, she's excellent at portraying lower & middle class ancient folk.....and it has some ridiculously funny comic moments too!

zaphyre14
09-29-2009, 03:28 PM
Soooooo good! Either by itself or as part of the entire series, she's excellent at portraying lower & middle class ancient folk.....and it has some ridiculously funny comic moments too!

I've read the first two and enjoyed them so I'm looking forward to "Terra".

Oh, and the name Fergus reminded me: for anyone who's wondered about Jamie Fraser's adopted son, the pickpocket Fergus, we find out about his parentage in "Echo". Rfisher, that's one of the reasons not to skip the non-J&C parts - the little bits woven into the story from long-previous volumes. And Lord John Gray comes wandering in and out as well, which I like because he's probably my favorite character, after Jamie and Claire. If I skim anything, it's the bits with Brianna. I like Roger okay, but I've never liked Brianna and nothing so far is changing my opinion of her.

rfisher
09-29-2009, 04:31 PM
I've read the first two and enjoyed them so I'm looking forward to "Terra".

Oh, and the name Fergus reminded me: for anyone who's wondered about Jamie Fraser's adopted son, the pickpocket Fergus, we find out about his parentage in "Echo". Rfisher, that's one of the reasons not to skip the non-J&C parts - the little bits woven into the story from long-previous volumes. And Lord John Gray comes wandering in and out as well, which I like because he's probably my favorite character, after Jamie and Claire. If I skim anything, it's the bits with Brianna. I like Roger okay, but I've never liked Brianna and nothing so far is changing my opinion of her.

I don't like Brianna either. I get that she and Roger are the counterpoint to Jamie and Claire, but she's written with none of the humor that Jamie has. She's just annoying. I usually read the Fergus/Marsali bits. What I'm not buying is that Fergus' parentage is coming into play 30 years later! And people at the brothel remembered him after that length of time! I get that there's a suspension of believe in fiction, but come on.

I don't like Lord John. I read one of her LJ books and tried listening to another and didn't finish. DG is way too full of herself now and it shows in her writing. (But, I may be letting my personal opinion of her color my perception of the books.)

Prancer
09-29-2009, 06:10 PM
Sadly, I believe she is simply churning it out now to capitalize. I really don't think that even she likes her characters any more.

Authors who sell well are under tremendous pressure from publishers to crank out books, which has had a most unfortunate effect on a lot of writers.

Ask anyone here who reads series fiction.


Prancer: what new mysteries do I want to buy? Thrillers? Legal procedure? Really hot erotica?

Well, don't read The 7th Victim. :P Unless you want to compare notes.

I haven't read anything particularly memorable in a while. I keep saying that I'm going to give up on mysteries because I can always see the end coming, but I keep reading them anyway.

I did rather like Stalking Susan. I knew whodunnit fairly early on, but I liked the heroine and the investigative reporting setting; the writing is nice and crisp. I'm picking up the next one this afternoon--but from the library, not the book store. I don't really have time to read it right now, but needs must.

Twilight1
09-29-2009, 09:38 PM
I am picking up the The White Queen tomorrow. Is the Red Queen going to be about Marguerite of Anjou? I have read rumours of that being the case.

Jenny
09-29-2009, 10:02 PM
From Philippa Gregory's website:


Q. What books are to come in the future?
The White Queen will be the first in a series of books about The Cousins’ War. The next book will be The Red Queen, which will feature the ambitious Lancastrian Margaret Beaufort, mother to Henry VII, who spent her life determined to see him as King. Against all odds, she succeeded and lived long enough to see her grandson, Henry VIII inherit the throne. The third book will be The White Princess, which tells the story of Elizabeth, princess of York, Elizabeth Woodville’s daughter who I think, fell deeply in love with her uncle Richard III but must marry Henry VII after the defeat at Bosworth.

Twilight1
09-29-2009, 10:30 PM
WOW!!! Thanks Jenny!! Looking forward to reading them. :D

shells
09-30-2009, 12:06 AM
rfisher, my aunt recently suggested The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson to me. Someone at her local bookstore suggested them to her. There will be a third in the series which she is looking forward to as she blew through the first two.

rfisher
09-30-2009, 12:18 AM
rfisher, my aunt recently suggested The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson to me. Someone at her local bookstore suggested them to her. There will be a third in the series which she is looking forward to as she blew through the first two.

I have the Dragon Tatoo. It got put aside for a couple of others, but I will get back to it soon. The author died. I wasn't aware he'd written a 3rd book that was yet to be published. I'll probably add the 2nd to my shopping list for this week's sale. I'm addicted to buying books. Borders loves me.

IceAlisa
09-30-2009, 06:44 PM
Has anyone read Bel Canto by Ann Patchett? Peeps on Facebook mentioned it by I am wondering if I would like it--some of the amazon reviews seem pretty scathing.

Another question I have is about the Kay Scarpetta series--my mom is a fan and the movie is coming out. I know it's about an ME and murder mysteries (right?) so it could be entertaining. However, an amazon review caught my eye saying that the British murder mystery writers ask "why?" and their rude Amerikan counterparts ask "how?". IOW, the Brits concentrate on the intellectual unraveling of the motive, clues, etc while the US writers concentrate on how the victim died, the gory details. Ew.

The amazon poster said that the Scarpetta series is the example of the latter. If so, not my cup of tea. I don't do gore, period. But I luuuurve me some Christie-style murder mystery. What say you, oh wise FSU?

Prancer
09-30-2009, 07:23 PM
an amazon review caught my eye saying that the British murder mystery writers ask "why?" and their rude Amerikan counterparts ask "how?". IOW, the Brits concentrate on the intellectual unraveling of the motive, clues, etc while the US writers concentrate on how the victim died, the gory details. Ew.

TRADITIONAL British mysteries might have been all about the intellectual mysteries, but has that poster read anything written in the past, say, 20 years? And what sort of American mysteries is this person reading? The majority of them seem to me to be cozies, where there's no gore at all and the focus is on characters.


The amazon poster said that the Scarpetta series is the example of the latter. If so, not my cup of tea. I don't do gore, period. But I luuuurve me some Christie-style murder mystery. What say you, oh wise FSU?

I don't find Scarpetta gory at all. Yes, she does autopsies, but they are very clinical and they ARE all about the intellectual unraveling of the mystery, just from a forensic standpoint.

Having said that, I think Patricia Cornwell is one of the worst writers I have ever had the displeasure of reading. I know a lot of people love her, but I think they must love things other than her writing style.

emason
09-30-2009, 07:24 PM
Has anyone read Bel Canto by Ann Patchett? Peeps on Facebook mentioned it by I am wondering if I would like it--some of the amazon reviews seem pretty scathing.



I tried to read this but I gave up after about 50 pages. It just didn't interest me or draw me in at all. At this point I can't even remember what those 50 pages were like.