Books moral and immoral

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by Artemis@BC, Sep 6, 2012.

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  1. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Pink Bitch

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    It's been a long time since I've thought about the murder of JonBenet, but I did read a book about it (also a long time ago). I think the main evidence against the parents was the ransom note was in Patsy's handwriting (or they were nearly certain it was) and where JonBenet was found in the house could only be accessed by someone who knew the house well.

    I always thought it was the brother, personally. But I have no evidence upon which to base that.
  2. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

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  3. Evilynn

    Evilynn ((Swedish skating dudes))

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    I finished Sharp Objects last night, and I have to say I saw both twists coming a mile away, so that was a little disappointing. The writing was also a little sloppy and disjointed in places, so not as good as Gone Girl.

    I've moved on to Jeanette Winterson's Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit (finally :shuffle:) and I'm reading Towers of Midnight on the subway, because Oranges is a borrowed book.
  4. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    Don't beat yourself up: I still haven't read that one, and I've been meaning to ever since I saw the movie 20 years ago. :shuffle:
  5. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

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    Anyone ever read any Annie Dillard? I have a fellow booknerd who raves about her.
  6. Prancer

    Prancer Ray Chill Staff Member

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    I've read quite a bit of Annie Dillard because her work is often included in writing textbooks, usually as examples of fine essay writing (or as advice for essay writing). She won a Pultizer in the 1970s. I've never read her poetry or fiction, just her nonfiction essays. She writes in a conversational, easy style that is very student-friendly (although some of them complain that she--gasp!--curses in her writing) but is also insightful.
  7. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    Nothing about Dillard ... I just wanted to :cheer: at your used of "booknerd" as a closed compound. :D
  8. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    Aww, sad news: just heard that Bryce Courtenay died, of stomach cancer. He was 79.

    I haven't read everything he wrote, but what I have read I enjoyed very much.

    RIP, Bryce.
  9. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Port de bras!!!

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    Thanks, I was never really interested in this particular child murder more than others until this book. Will check it out.
  10. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Port de bras!!!

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    I read it--I know nothing about police protocol but am not sure if this was proper not to secure the whole house vs. just the JonBenet's bedroom. I also think it's unusual to find the body in the house with the time of death being estimated to be so much earlier. And the ransom note--it was determined that it wasn't John Ramsey who wrote it and that his wife Patsy was a candidate but was not definitively ruled in. I've also read something about a pubic hair found on JonBenet's blanket that didn't belong to a family member. And then there are those stun gun marks which may not be stun gun marks. And the DNA on the panties is that of a male not belonging to the family but then it could be just someone who packaged the panties at the manufacturing site (were the panties brand new straight out of packaging or did they go through several washing/drying cycles, in which case would that DNA sample survive?) Still not sure what happened. What would the Ramsey's motive be? Was there evidence of prior abuse, physical or sexual?
  11. rjblue

    rjblue Re-registered User

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    The final Wheel of Time book comes out January 8th. I'm taking the day off to read it cover to cover in one sitting. Towers of Midnight wasn't quite as satifying as The Gathering Storm, but it left me really anticipating the final battle.

    I just gave in and crossed Captain Vorpatril's Alliance by Lois McMaster Bujold off of my Christmas list and bought it myself. I want to read some well written escapist literature, and I've enjoyed every book in the Vorkosigan Saga.
  12. michiruwater

    michiruwater Well-Known Member

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    The police were heavily criticized for the handling of that case - justifiably so, IMO.
  13. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

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    Good info, thanks! :)
  14. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

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    One theory is that her death was accidental, at the hands of someone in the immediately family or a very close friend of the family, and that the parents tried to make it look like an intruder/sexual offender to protect that person.
  15. made_in_canada

    made_in_canada INTJ

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    I found a For Better or For Worse collection at a book sale the other night and am thoroughly enjoying it :D I found out that Lynn Johnston used to baby-sit my mom when she was really little too. It's a small world.
  16. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Port de bras!!!

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    Yes, that theory is explored as well. Not sure how much actual evidence it received. It's hard to figure out what happened but JCO makes it absolutely definitive. This is the worst book of hers I've read to date, by far. Who talks of skaters wearing stockings, pancake makeup and little girls named Mildred in the late 1990's? There are a number of other anachronisms straight out of the 50's that got past the editor. I suppose when you are JCO at this point of your writing career, you can do whatever you want.
  17. Lara

    Lara Well-Known Member

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    Every so often I'll go to fbofw.com and relive the comic strip again. :) It was such a constant growing up. Pretty cool about your Mom!
  18. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

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    When Farley died... :wuzrobbed
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  19. made_in_canada

    made_in_canada INTJ

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    Oh I know :fragile: Kills me every time. Apparently, Charles Schultz threatened to kill off Snoopy if Farley died :lol:
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  20. Evilynn

    Evilynn ((Swedish skating dudes))

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    I'm 1/3 through it now and it is a lot funnier than I expected (and surprisingly easy to read). That'll teach me to put off the recommendations of my friend. :lol:

    I can't quite decide whether to try to hold off for the e-book of AMOL or not. I'm guessing I won't be able to wait until April, so I guess I'll end up buying the hardcover anyway. I can't quite believe I've spent over 20 years reading WOT!

    I've been meaning to read a Bujold as well (another recommendation I haven't gotten around to. :shuffle:), although I might start with Curse of Chalion since that's an upcoming read in one of the groups I'm in on Goodreads.
  21. Marge_Simpson

    Marge_Simpson Well-Known Member

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    That's a really good read. I own the book AND the play (because I am weird and love to read plays. :lol:)
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  22. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Port de bras!!!

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    Finally finished My sister, my love, the biggest collection of clichés in a JCO novel. It's as if she was afraid to leave at least one out.

    On to A First Rate Madness by Nassir Ghaemi. The subtitle is: Uncovering links between leadership and mental illness.
  23. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

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    I have a co-worker who really like that one. She got lots of people to read it.
  24. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Port de bras!!!

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    I like it so far. I've heard the theory back when I was an undergrad in psychology. My neuroscientist friend says that the theory of positive biases that "sane" people maintain is still going strong today.
  25. Zemgirl

    Zemgirl Well-Known Member

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    Were there any additional ones between the previous update and the end of the book? ;)

    I think, based on what you've described here, that either JCO should have further distinguished her book from the JonBenet Ramsey case, or just written a non-fiction work about it, if it so interested her.
  26. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Port de bras!!!

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    Lets see. There was a girl whose prominent athlete father was accused of murdering his wife, the wife's boyfriend and a pair of poodles (Yin--white and Yang--black, which really should be the other way around). The poodles' final expression was described as "Master, no!"

    There was a ex-con who was drunk-driving and got into an accident which killed his young wife and young son and who after doing time became a priest and started helping lost souls like himself and Skyler. In an interview JCO said she doesn't consider the book to be satire. :shuffle:

    Additional references to peekaboo lace panties, more than I care to remember. I really started to worry about her own mental health at some point. Sanctimonious mentions of "tabloid hell." I am so done with that book.

    I recalled a few more: everyone in the affluent suburb drives a huge gas guzzler SUV. Also, the more affluent, the more aloof.

    Despite expensive and exlusive schooling, almost everyone's (save for a few obligatory miserable and ostrasized geniuses) grammar and reasoning skills are poor. The murderous mummy writes her confession on scented, peach-colored stationary without using syntax and dadday speaks in malapropisms and mispronounces foreign expressions. Mummy ends up cashing in on the murder of her daughter by setting up a company Heaven Scent, hawking beauty products, books and CDs. The crown jewel of the Heaven Scent collection is a Bliss doll, complete with skating outfits, skates and you guessed it, pekaboo panties. She (mummy) also goes on TV a lot up until her death from liposuction that her PR team spins as ovarian cancer.
    I believe she did write an article on JonBenet which in turn gave her the unfortunate idea to write this book. But I agree with you.
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2012
  27. Prancer

    Prancer Ray Chill Staff Member

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  28. zaphyre14

    zaphyre14 Well-Known Member

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    I read Gregory's "The Kingmaker's Daughter" over the weekend and found it disappointing. The first-person present-tense style is my least favorite format, especially when there's no explanation for it. I kep wondering who Anne was telling her story to, and how she was recording it, especially over the span of twenty years. Was I supposed to be reading her mind? It was jarring, at best. I don't really feel as if I came to know the characters very well either. It was also hard to keep all the Elizabeths, Richards and Edwards straight. Even though I got it on sale, I feel short-changed.

    Shifting Continents and Eras, I'm now reading "Rhett Buttler's People" by Donald McCaig. It's supposed to be "authorized" whatever that means, and has started out pretty dramatically, 12 years before the Civil War begins, with Rhett riding to a duel over a neighbor's "sullied" daughter, and then goes back further to Rhett's youth. Some of the prose is a little choppy and there are a lot of characters introduced quickly but I'm liking it enough to contemplate hauling the big hardback around with me. I also have Alexandra Ripley's "Scarlett" in the bargain bag.
  29. made_in_canada

    made_in_canada INTJ

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    I did not like Rhett Butler's People at all. I found it quite tedious.
  30. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

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    I recently read The Carpetbaggers by Harold Robbins - skandalous in 1961, tamer than a typical Monday night sitcom today. I hadn't read a Robbins since I was a teenager, and really enjoyed this book.

    So, I thought I'd continue the genre and reread Scruples by Judith Krantz, circa 1978. I read it perhaps 30 years, and remember there was a mini series back when there was always a mini series, and it was a must-read book that every girl and woman I knew read. So far, meh. I love all the Jackie Collins-style glitz, glamour, sex and general trashiness, but this is missing the mark. The characters are unlikeable, and the sexual content is unfortunately more crass than sexy (do we really need to have women using the C word to prove their sexual modernness? Maybe in the 70s, but now I think it just makes the characters a bit sad.).

    I shall continue to see if it gets better, but otherwise I'm moving on to the latest Peter Mayle, The Marseille Caper. Love his novels and non-fiction - well written, fun and sexy, great settings, enjoyable characters. A few years ago I spent a cold winter reading 4-5 of his books in a row.

    Also have The Ex-Pats by Chris Pavone (anyone read this?), and Grisham's The Litigators, which I may save as a beach read in Feb. I also have the latest William Boyd - have read many of his books in the past, but need to be in a more literary mood than post-Robbins :lol: and the latest from Giles Blunt, Until the Night. The latter is an excellent Canadian author, featuring a police detective in northern Ontario. For his books, it must be dead of winter as they are more fun to read curled up with a cup of tea and snow falling outside. :)
  31. flyingsit

    flyingsit Well-Known Member

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    I read it last month. It was a fun, entertaining book but nothing deep by any means.
  32. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

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    As you can see by my other choices, I'm not always looking for deep :)

    I like thrillers, and this one caught my eye as I find the idea of people living in other places and cultures interesting.
  33. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    Chapters/Indigo in Canada has their new mini Kobo for $49 today as one of their big Cyber Monday deals. I was sorely tempted ... but I have faith that I will eventually get my new Windows phone to work as an e-reader the way I want it to!

    I was pleased, though, to get Diana Krall's new CD for $7.
  34. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    I finished Jonathan Tropper's new book, One Last Thing Before I Go. It took a while to get going, but once it did I thoroughly enjoyed it. It didn't have as much LOL humour as This Is Where I Leave You, but the humour it did have was more real. As were the characters (I found that some of the characters in This ... Leave You were quirky for their comedic value alone). And One Last Thing has much more of an emotional centre. So. Big thumbs up from me.

    I'm now about 1/4 way through The Woman Who Went to Bed for a Year by Sue Townsend. It's the first non-Adrian Mole book of hers I've read, though I've been meaning to read The Queen and I. I'm not sure what I think yet. I like the premise, and the general style, but I'm having a hard time connecting to any of the characters so far. We'll see.
  35. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

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  36. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Port de bras!!!

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    Have been reading Frist-rate Madness and while I buy the argument, I wish he'd spend more time fleshing out exactly how mental disease affected the leaders' decision-making. I feel the chapters are short and skimpy on details but still think the argument has validitiy. The positive bias of non-depressed subjects has been verified and replicated lots of times in many settings.
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2012
  37. TygerLily

    TygerLily Well-Known Member

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    So tempting, I know!

    I think I'm going to splurge on the Kobo Glo, though. Has anyone had experience with those? I need one that's compatible with my library system, so that limits my options (no Kindle, for example). I also prefer e-ink, but love the idea of being able to read at night with the lights out. Advice?

    Also. Urgent advice needed. Someone mentioned Susan Elizabeth Phillips as a good romance writer with protagonists who are active rather than passive. So anyway. I'm almost done all of her books now. (I'm glad I gave her a second chance after Ain't She Sweet, which was unfortunately the first book of hers I picked up. There's just no getting past a false accusation of sexual assault. Then, I went on to love almost all of the rest.) The point: does anyone have other recommendations for authors of contemporary romance who are in a similar vein? I'm also a huge fan of Jayne Ann Krentz, even though her characters are beginning to morph into the one feisty red-headed heroine. Help!
  38. Prancer

    Prancer Ray Chill Staff Member

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    Your library doesn't have Kindle loans? I thought they all did now.

    I think the Nook Simple Touch with GlowLight is the highest rated of the e-ink readers with lights.

    Kristin Higgins, maybe? I don't know that her heroines are feisty, exactly, and they are also all morphing into one somewhat confused, warmhearted, over-generous woman who gives people food all the time, but I think there are some similiarities in style.
  39. Impromptu

    Impromptu Well-Known Member

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    Julie James? or Louisa Edwards? Maybe Shannon Stacey? I don't know that any of them are all that similar to SEP, but all three have contemporary series with extremely interesting and individual characters. Julie James' books are mostly set in the Chicago area and are Lawyers; Louisa Edwards writes about chefs in New York City (with pretty awesome food porn), Shannon Stacey's books are in New England and her characters are generally blue collar / small business owners.
  40. star_gazer11

    star_gazer11 practising choreo

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    Not outside the USA; I think Tygerlily is in Canada.

    I think Kobo is the only option for canucks who want a lighted eink reader, until Sony comes out with a model. I believe the Kindle Paperwhite is not sold in stores here, and Barnes & Noble does not sell to non-American credit cards and addresses.

    I don't need another ereader, but I'm coveting the Kobo Glo. I read in bed so it seems like the perfect upgrade.

    Ditto the Julie James recommendation for fun banter and lawyer characters. Her first two books are less racy than her current series, if that matters to you. Of her first two books, I preferred Practice Makes Perfect.

    Maybe Simply Irresistible by Jill Shalvis? (It's the first book in the Lucky Harbor series; first three are a trilogy with sisters, second trilogy with friends as the heroines, more books forthcoming).

    I'm not sure what it is about Kristan Higgins books, but they don't even feel like romances to me. In the ones I've read (not her whole backlist, maybe four or five), the heroines seem to never actually get with the hero until the end of the book, and they're usually dating someone else (not the hero) in the meantime. I dunno, her stuff to me feels like... chick fic? Meatier than chick lit, not really women's fiction either, and not really straight romance. I think she writes families well. Her books have pretty consistently made me cry. Which is both :lol: and :(
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2012
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