good friends, good books, and a sleepy conscience - new book thread

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by Artemis@BC, Jan 12, 2014.

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  1. A.H.Black

    A.H.Black Well-Known Member

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    Is that the Ayn Rand Anthem? If so have you read 1984 and/or Brave New World? As for memoirs, there's Road From Coorain or The Glass Castle. Neither are new at all, but both are good books.
     
  2. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    Hoping for some help here from all you lovely book people: I'm looking for book recommendations for my dad, titles that are popular enough that he'd be able to get them as ebooks from the library. He has macular degeneration so I got him a Kobo last Christmas to make reading easier for him. (He also gets the large print ones from the library but their selection is somewhat limited.)

    He's a former English teacher and in his retirement has been tending to read more escapist stuff. Especially mysteries. Favourite authors include Ian Rankin, Alexander McCall Smith (particularly the Scotland Street series), Alan Bradley, Peter Robinson, Deborah Crombie, Peter Robinson, Tony Hillerman, Elizabeth George, and JK Rowling. He also really enjoyed the Horatio Hornblower series, and the Jack Whyte books. (ETA: he's also read all the older "classics" of British mysteries: Sayers, Francis, Wingfield, Christie, Dexter, etc.)

    I do have an ebook copy of The Wife of the Gods to give him, and if he likes that there are two more in that series to follow.

    Any other ideas? TIA
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2014
  3. A.H.Black

    A.H.Black Well-Known Member

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    Dick Francis. Start with the older books. There's about 40-50 titles so there is plenty to read if he likes them He should be able to find large print titles too. Also Dorothy Sayers - The Lord Peter Wimsey books. P. D. James - Inspector Dalgliesh. I have also found Micheal Innes (not the best plots, but likeable.) Rex Stout - He might love the Nero Wolfe books. I'll think of more, but others will have good suggestions.

    If he likes Horatio Hornblower, he might enjoy Patrick O'brian - the master and commander books. Also the Sharpe books by Bernard Cornwell. The Poldark Books by Winston Graham.

    All these are older authors with a well established fan base and should be easily available.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2014
  4. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, I should have also listed the older authors he's liked in the past -- he's already read all the Dick Francis & Dorothy Sayers -- as well as Agatha Christie, PD James, RD Wingfield, and Colin Dexter. It's newer authors that I'm hoping to "discover" for him. (And me too -- I'm a mystery lover myself.)
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2014
  5. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

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    If he likes Elizabeth George he might like Martha Grimes. She writes a lot of mysteries with a similar cast of characters. Her books are popular and should be easy to find on an e-reader.
     
  6. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

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    I pass a lot of books on to my 70-something FIL, and we both really enjoy Giles Blunt. They are more crime novels than mystery, but they are excellent, and as a bonus, they are very Canadian - all take place in northern Ontario, and the stories make me think of so many of the Canadian authors I studied in school. They can get a bit brutal at times, but for the most part I think they are exactly what an older former English teacher would enjoy.

    Would he like Jack Reacher? Not exactly literature, but escapist, and a character that I think men can get into. I only discovered him a year ago, so my FIL and I went through the entire series last year, and are counting the days until the next one comes out in September.

    Another good author with a lot of books if you get into him is Michael Connelly - most of his books are around an LA detective, and handful are about an LA defense lawyer (notably The Lincoln Lawyer, which was made into a pretty good movie). Well written books with solid central characters, although don't start with the newest as I thought it was a bit weaker than the rest.
     
  7. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    Giles Blunt and Martha Grimes are definite possibilities -- thanks for those suggestions (tho he might already be familiar with them). And Giles Blunt is one I've been meaning to try for a while myself, so thanks for that reminder!

    My instinct says no on Jack Reacher, and maybe on Michael Connelly, but definitely pass both suggestions along.

    In the meantime I see that my library now has ebook formats of the Aline Templeton series, so that will make both of us happy -- previously they'd only had the hard copy and only at one branch. She's fantastic, btw, I highly recommend her books: they're set in a fishing & farming region of western Scotland, with a great female DI as the lead. There are 8 in the series so far, reading in order recommended but not mandatory.

    And speaking of reading "in order" -- has anyone read the Jo Nesbo books, and if so does the order matter? I'm thinking that might be a possibility, and I've been meaning to read him myself for a while but haven't gotten around to it.
     
  8. star_gazer11

    star_gazer11 practising choreo

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    Available through my local BC library, in ebook form - how about the Ava Lee series by Ian Hamilton? She's a forensic accountant, she kicks ass with a rare martial art form, books take place in several different cities/countries.
     
  9. rfisher

    rfisher Satisfied skating fan

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    For Reacher fans, you might want to try Taylor Stevens' Vanessa Michael Munroe series. There are 3 books out along with a brand new novella and a 4th book comes out in July. Munroe is a fascinating character and Stevens is very interesting herself. She was raised in a religious commune, forced to beg on the streets to support the commune and only received an 8th grade education. She and her then husband ran away when they were 17. They had no idea how to support themselves, but managed. The 2nd book in the series features a similar compound. Stevens has a very interesting blog where she discusses her childhood, how that influenced her writing of Munroe, although she says the character is not based on herself, and how she managed to start writing and get published. She says she didn't know enough to know that writing and publishing was really difficult so she wasn't afraid to try.
     
  10. my little pony

    my little pony snarking for AZE

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    were the inspector ian rutledge mysteries mentioned? by charles todd. sorry if it is a duplicate.
     
  11. aarroyo

    aarroyo New Member

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    His tastes sound similar to mine. How about Quintin Jardine? He's a Scotland author who spends part of the year in Spain, and has one series set in Scotland and two in Spain (though they're connected - first the husband, then the wife). I like Scotland best. Definitely start at the beginning for each series.
     
  12. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    ^ He's read at least some of the Jardines -- I know he liked the Skinner ones a lot, at least the earlier ones, but the Oz Blackstone ones not as much. Not sure if he's read the Primavera Blackstone ones.

    Thanks for the suggestions, everyone, keep 'em coming!
     
  13. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

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    Has he read any Christopher Fowler? I recently read the first book in the Peculiar Crimes Unit series and really enjoyed it. I like the classic mystery authors myself (Sayers is one of my all-time favorite writers, period!), and Fowler's work has some of the same feel to it, especially since the first book is set partly in the WWII area.
     
  14. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    ^ Ooh, another good suggestion, thanks.

    BTW, has anyone read the Vera Stanhope series by Ann Cleeves? I've read the Shetland ones but not those.
     
  15. cygnus

    cygnus Liberal Furry

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    I can second this series. I read them out of order, as they came out in a different order when they were reprinted, but it didn't matter much. Lots of humour (in a wry British way), and some of them are really gripping.
     
  16. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

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    :cheer2: Thirteenth Tale! :cheer2:

    If you're interested in Amanada Knox's story, check out Cartwheel by Jennifer duBois. It's a novel loosely-based on her story and supposedly really well-written.
     
  17. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Pink Bitch

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    I finished Ally Brosh's Hyperbole and a Half book on my domestic flight. I think there are only a couple new pieces in the book for those who follow her blog, but it was a funny, fast read. It also includes her two amazing pieces in depression.
     
  18. rfisher

    rfisher Satisfied skating fan

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    I've mentioned her before, but I want to promote Taylor Steven's Vanessa Michael Monroe series. The 4th of a 5 book publisher contract comes out in July. She's hoping she'll be picked up for another contract, but that depends on sales. They are part mystery and part thriller. You can read them in order, but each book stands alone. If you like the genre and are looking for a new author, give them a try.
     
  19. immoimeme

    immoimeme my posts r modded

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    Of all things, "looking for mr goodbar" was sitting there for a quarter so why not. Was it really such a big deal way back when? Trailblazing and all that? Because I read it twice and still don't quite get it, mainly because I have no real idea of who the main character is. Or was that the point.

    Next up: choice between "the odyssey" translated by t.e. Lawrence or "a thousand splendid suns."
     
  20. immoimeme

    immoimeme my posts r modded

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    "A thousand splendid suns" was breathtaking, maddening, wild emotional journey. I very very VERY highly recommend it.
     
  21. Prancer

    Prancer Jawwalking Staff Member

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    A little something for my fellow smut romance readers: 10 Romance Reader Problems

    My favorite: In the romance world, the handsome, mysterious, inexplicably single forty-something doctor has a dark secret: he’s great with children! In the real world, the handsome, mysterious, inexplicably single forty-something doctor also has a dark secret: three disgruntled ex-wives, a ceramic clown collection, and a freezer full of dead birds.

    But this one is revealing: People are openly judgmental toward your reading material. You rarely hear anyone say, “True crime novels? You read those?” or “Literary fiction? Ugh.”

    Clearly the author is missing out on this thread. :p
     
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  22. Nan

    Nan Just me

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    I think I put a check mark after most of these. My daughter turns her nose up at romance novels but will read anything with a vampire in it. Now, I have nothing against vampires, but some of the stuff out there is just :rolleyes: . I know there is good and bad in every area of fiction, so I cut her some slack, I just wish she would do the same with me.
     
  23. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

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    Seriously? She thinks vampire books are somehow "better" than romance novels? I'd tell her to suck it. ;)

    I started rereading Irwin Shaw's Rich Man Poor Man this week. I read it very young (around the time of the popular TV mini-series) and I don't think since, so I'm surprised at how much of it I'm remembering, right down to the tiniest details. He's a great writer, but it's a long book and I have a short attention span these days, so I'll need a couple of good long afternoons in the backyard or my sleepy few pages before bed will never get me through this.
     
  24. Prancer

    Prancer Jawwalking Staff Member

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    Er, aren't most vampire novels also romance novels?

    People always assume that I read literature all the time, so they try to hide their romances and other genre fiction from me because they think I will sneer at them. And what kills me is, if I say "Oh, I've read that," they are often not only surprised, but they also sneer at me. :lol:
     
  25. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

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    Why is it that people can watch sitcoms, see action movies, play video games, surf popular blogs, eat fast food, read fashion magazines and listen to pop music, and yet somehow we're only supposed to read books that are Serious Works of Literature and Scholarship instead of books that interest and entertain us? And is it me, or does this form of judgement often come from people who don't actually read many books themselves?
     
  26. Southpaw

    Southpaw Saint Smugpawski

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    We'll be partners in the endless Irwin Shaw because I'm having the same issue with The Young Lions. I mean, if I didn't have a job then it would be a quick read, but...

    Just 500 more pages to go! :cheer:
     
  27. Grannyfan

    Grannyfan Active Member

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    Are these books the basis for the brief series "Vera" that I've watched on Netflix? Brenda Blethyn played Vera. I like her anyway, and I enjoyed the program. Have not read the books though.
     
  28. modern_muslimah

    modern_muslimah Thinking of witty user title and coming up blank

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    I'm currently reading The Orphans of Race Point. I'm 177 pages in but the book is 524 pages. Honestly, I'm not sure if I should continue or move on. It's sort of interesting but my attention span isn't long and the book moves at a slow pace. It's got the typical elements of literary fiction: abusive parents, love turned sour, protagonists looking for redemption, protagonists getting stopped on path to redemption, some "philosophy" about life and navel gazing by many of the characters. I am curious to see what happens to one protagonist but I'm trying to decide if I'm curious enough to actually continue.
     
  29. Nan

    Nan Just me

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    I tried to point that out to her once. I got the "I'm rolling my eyes at my mother" look. It wasn't worth the energy to press the point. ;)
     
  30. PDilemma

    PDilemma Well-Known Member

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    The people I know who yammer about only reading super serious literature are the same ones who claim not to do any of those other things you listed either.

    I don't believe them.
     
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