Books moral and immoral

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

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  1. Sofia Alexandra

    Sofia Alexandra Well-Known Member

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    I've just started reading Dmitry Glukhovsky's Metro 2033, in English. I'm kinda thinking I should see if my classmate's Swedish translation is better; I'm liking the book so far, but the English translation feels very direct, to the point where I find myself reading it in a Russian accent. :lol: There's also quite a lot of infodumping, and characters telling one another things they both already know, but I'm guessing that'll recede once the stage has been set? We'll see.

    It's funny though, it's gotten me thinking of all those book and films where the world itself it more interesting than the characters and their troubles. A tourist guide or history book of the Metro 2033 tunnels and stations, or the planet Pandora in Avatar, could be awesome. :)
  2. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Pink Bitch

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    Ha! I knew the moment described a book as "pretentious" that you would've read it. :p

    *wanders off to find some zombie lit*
  3. Matryeshka

    Matryeshka Well-Known Member

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    I hated Seating Arrangements. I wanted to smack everyone.
    I'm surprise I ever got my eyes back to their proper position after they rolled all the way to the back of my head at the whale scene.

    The whole thing was clunky and affected. I've read Harlequin romances that were less formulaic.
  4. galaxygirl

    galaxygirl Ma name's Beckeh

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    You two are making me glad I gave up on Seating Arrangements after the first few pages.
  5. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

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    I wouldn't have picked it up on my own. I had to read it and review it for work. My review went out with the press release. :p
  6. Prancer

    Prancer The "specialness" that is Staff Member

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    I have a Barnes and Noble.com gift card for $25, courtesy of my Barnes and Noble credit card points. This always makes me twitch, as I always want to get something special for my unearned cash and don't want to squander it on a book I won't like.

    Note, however, that I actually spend money on books all the time without hesitating. But that's beside the point.

    Any recommendations? I figure I can buy maybe two and half books.
  7. Nan

    Nan Just me

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    The Dig by Michael Siemsen. The follow-up book will be released soon.
  8. galaxygirl

    galaxygirl Ma name's Beckeh

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    I do the same thing. :lol:

    How about something by Mo Yan? I've had Life and Death are Wearing Me Out on my TBR for ages but since he just won the Nobel Prize, I've moved it up the list.
  9. Prancer

    Prancer The "specialness" that is Staff Member

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    That sounded familiar, so I checked my Nook. I have it already; I think I got it for .99 one day.

    So it's worth a read? :D Excellent.

    Hmm, well, according to the Library Journal review:

    the author liberally references a character sharing his own name who is very similar to himself throughout the story. These references seem unnecessary, narcissistic, and annoyingly disruptive to the narrative flow. Yan does manage to convey the difficulties of village life, complex character relationships, and occasional humor. But his work is not for the average reader and requires immense patience to follow through to the end. Academic and large public libraries with collections of translated works by Chinese authors will probably want to consider.

    That doesn't sound too promising. :shuffle:
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  10. galaxygirl

    galaxygirl Ma name's Beckeh

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    Hmm is right. The few pages that I read a few years ago were promising though.

    How about Silence by Endo? It's one of my all time favorites and Spinner liked it too. :)
  11. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

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    Yes, it was! But, it's very depressing, likely not something Prancer would want to spend fun money on. And sorry, but I'm :lol: :lol: :lol: that you gave her a link to Amazon when she has a B&N gift card. Nice. :p And on that note, I appreciate Prancer for supporting a bookstore. xox :D

    Other recommendations if you're curious:
    The Book of Jonas by Stephen Dau. One of my favorites this year, incredible story. Oleada also like this one a lot too!
    American Dervish by Ayad Akhtar. Another of my faves.
    The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D. by Nichole Bernier. A quick read, good story about friendship and loyalty. The author is a sweetheart!
    And take a chance on this FANTASTIC series for kids called Fablehaven by Brandon Mull. It's 5 books, fantasy and adventure. I TORE through all 5 in 8 days at the beginning of the year. SO MUCH FUN.
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2012
  12. galaxygirl

    galaxygirl Ma name's Beckeh

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    It's such a habit for me to use Amazon when I'm on my phone because they have a mobile site that I didn't even notice what I was doing. :rofl:
  13. zaphyre14

    zaphyre14 Well-Known Member

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    After finishing the Kathy Reichs (it was okay), I moved even lighter with Kate Carlisle's "Homicide in Hardcover" the first in a series of mysteries set around the bookbinding trade. The main character grew up in a Californian commune and feels compelled to investigate/snoop around when her mentor is found murdered. Of course, there's a mysterious hot security chief who sets her heart pounding and the usual cast of suspects she has to weed through but so far I'm enjoying it. I like finding a new-to-me series.
  14. Nan

    Nan Just me

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    I think there was some conversation about Justin Cronin's The Passage, but I suck at the search function and only found a reference to it in relationship to the following book by the same author. Is is worth reading?
  15. Prancer

    Prancer The "specialness" that is Staff Member

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    :encore:

    I quite lurve my Barnes and Noble credit card. I get a discount on all B&N purchases with the card in addition to my member discount, and I get points with all purchases that earn the gift cards.

    Not that the discount is great or anything or that the gift cards are for a lot (although every now and then I get one for $50, which is :cheer2:), but still. I usually use the gift cards to buy books for the family, but I decided that this one was mine, all mine!

    Off to check out Spinner's recommendations.....
  16. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    My take: lots of good stuff, but needed a serious edit. I was particularly ticked off because it was so obvious there'd be a sequel, I would have preferred a shorter and more focussed first book, and keep the rest of the material for the next book(s).

    But despite that, it is worth reading. I think a lot of people expected it to be more vampire lit than it is (and I would argue that it's not really vampire lit at all, it just has beings that share some vampire-like qualities ...), so that might be the basis of some criticisms. But as post-apocalyptic lit goes, pretty good. Not perfect, but good.

    The sequel, The Twelve, is out today. I think I'm going to have to find a recap website of The Passage to remind myself who everyone is.
  17. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    I finished The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared, by Jonas Jonasson. It was a pretty enjoyable read with lots of dry humour. I enjoyed the present-day material far more than the flashbacks to Allan's past Gump-like adventures, but even those were entertaining, if farfetched.
  18. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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  19. rfisher

    rfisher Satisfied skating fan

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    :lol: I totally understand. I will charge like there's no tomorrow, but if I have a gift card, I'm highly selective.
  20. PDilemma

    PDilemma Well-Known Member

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    A few things I have read recently:

    Shattered Dreams: My Life as a Polygamist's Wife--Irene Spencer.
    This was pretty good. Spencer was the second of an eventual ten wives. She was pushed but not completely forced into the marriage. The family lived in Mexico in a sub-sect of polygamous Mormons. It shows the emotional and financial wreckage that results when one man tries to support a small town's worth of women and children.

    Commencement by Courtney J. Sullivan.
    Again, okay. But not great. Four girls at Smith and after graduation. Sullivan may have tried to cram too much into it by telling about the entire lives and complex changes of four characters. It ends up not being in-depth enough about any of them.

    Some Girls: My Life in a Harem
    by Jillian Lauren.
    Author lived in the harem of Prince Jefri, brother of the Sultan of Brunei. Kind of a self-serving memoir in my opinion. I would have liked her to have addressed or at least acknowledge the very questionable things going on there in regard to very young SE Asian girls in the group. I suspect they had been trafficked. She never really acknowledges the issue.

    Attachments: A Novel
    by Rainbow Rowell
    I'm familiar with Rainbow's work as a columnist for the Omaha World Herald. That should have kept me from checking out this dreck. But I'd heard good things. Those people were wrong. My first issue was the character's names. They are named after towns in Nebraska. Not something you would notice if you aren't from here, but I am from here. Dumbest one is the married woman whose hyphenated last name with two towns is the name of a consolidated school district. But that is not the biggest problem. The biggest problem is the stalker creepy behavior of the romantic hero and heroine.
  21. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Pink Bitch

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    I will momentarily stop picking on Spinner for his taste in lit-ra-chur because he got me a copy of the new Agent Pendergrast novel. Which is currently unreleased.

    :encore:
  22. rfisher

    rfisher Satisfied skating fan

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    There is a word for you and it starts with a B and ends with an h.

    :wuzrobbed:

    Just for this, I hope that silly baseball team loses. And yes, I will be seething inside for two freaking months knowing you've read it and I haven't.
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  23. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Pink Bitch

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  24. Nan

    Nan Just me

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    Thanks, Artemis@BC. :)
  25. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

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    I haz connectionz.
  26. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Pink Bitch

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    Helen is still alive.

    Poop.

    ;)
  27. rfisher

    rfisher Satisfied skating fan

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    But, for how long? :sekret:
  28. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Pink Bitch

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  29. Prancer

    Prancer The "specialness" that is Staff Member

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    Dear Prancer

    We're pleased to tell you that you are eligible for gift certificate credits thanks to recent legal settlements between States Attorneys General and three eBook publishers. Barnes & Noble was not a party to the settlements but as a NOOK® customer, you can take advantage of the benefits agreed to by the settling publishers.


    More free books! :cheer2:
  30. jamesy

    jamesy Well-Known Member

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    I got that email too and meant to ask Spinner if it was a scam.
  31. rjblue

    rjblue Re-registered User

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    A friend at work is moving, and giving away most of her posessions, and she gave me a copy of The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I remember how many here loved it, and I've been planning to pick it up, but I've never seen it at bargain books or book sale, where I pick up most of what I read. And now I know why-

    People don't give up their copies- they save them to read again. What an engrossing and beautifully written book. It seems very odd that they shelve it only in the YA section, because it is an adult book about a child, that YA readers will probably also enjoy.

    I don't usually read Holocaust stories, because they are so unbearably painful, but the constantly spoilering narration of Death is making it so I don't have to worry about people's fate, I can just read along as events unfold.
  32. rfisher

    rfisher Satisfied skating fan

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    I was going to start :mitchell: but when I hurried off to check my email, I have one also. :cheer2:
  33. michiruwater

    michiruwater Well-Known Member

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    Funny, I was going to start The Book Thief tonight as well!
  34. Prancer

    Prancer The "specialness" that is Staff Member

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    No, I read about the lawsuit settlement a few days ago. Amazon sued some publishers for price fixing e-books; Amazon customers were given credits and I was thinking, "Too bad B&N isn't part of it," but it appears they are.

    I have a Kindle app, too, so wheeeeeeeee.
  35. Evilynn

    Evilynn ((Swedish skating dudes))

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    I read the Swedish translation and it was rather good. Loved the book as a whole. :) I think I ended up giving it 5 stars on Goodreads, although I'd probably give it 4½ if they did ½ stars. ;)

    :shuffle: One of the Swedish books I probably should've read.

    However, I have been reading Swedish UF (!?) by Nene Ormes, starting with Udda Verklighet, which is described as a sort of Swedish Neverwhere, taking place in Malmö. It's not as good as Neverwhere (which is still my favourite Gaiman book after all these years), but I was pleasantly surprised (in no small amount because Malmö is one of my least favourite cities :shuffle:) and picked up the second part right away. :)
  36. made_in_canada

    made_in_canada INTJ

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    It's been in my TBR pile for awhile too. Maybe I'll move it up a bit ;)
  37. Impromptu

    Impromptu Well-Known Member

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    I know earlier people were talking about The Rules of Civility by Towles. I'm in the middle of it at the moment. At first, the writing style annoyed me (lack of quotation marks and speaker attribution), but I've gotten past that and am really enjoying the story. I still think the book works better in the prose sections than in the dialogue though.
  38. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Pink Bitch

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    Three words: Sekret Nazi Island. :sekret:
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  39. Erin

    Erin Well-Known Member

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    Someone on this thread recommended Nell Freudenberger's The Newlyweds several weeks ago (or maybe even months ago) so I'd made a note on my wishlist and just started reading it now. I'm about 1/3 in and it's excellent so far. Freudenberger's writing style and character development reminds me a lot of Maeve Binchy, who is one of my favourite authors. It's a fairly quick read and I'm eager to see how it turns out, so I'll probably end up finishing it tonight...in fact, I really shouldn't have started reading it in bed last night, as I had a hard time putting it down to go to sleep even though it's not a suspense-genre novel.
  40. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    I'm about 100 pages into The Twelve by Justin Cronin. And I am now prepared to take back the criticisms I'd previously made about The Passage -- i.e., that it needed a structural edit. The Twelve makes the structure of The Passage make sense. And, so far, it is very, very good.
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