New Book Thread because somebody' has got to do it

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by rfisher, May 14, 2013.

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  1. immoimeme

    immoimeme my posts r modded

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    Garage sale finds: "the psychopath test" was funny and "kitchen confidential" simultaneously makes you hungry yet never wanting to eat out ever again lol.
     
  2. Grannyfan

    Grannyfan Active Member

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    I recommend Major Pettigrew's Last Stand. I think it fits the criteria you listed. It really is a wonderful story.
     
  3. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

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    I'd add Colin Firth. His reading of The End of the Affair was magnificent. I heard recently he won an award for it.

    Have you read The Night Circus yet? If not, you might find it a refreshing change of pace. I did.
     
  4. immoimeme

    immoimeme my posts r modded

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    Hey I just remembered I downloaded the Victorian slang dictionary from publicdomainreview.org
    V interesting reading!
     
  5. zaphyre14

    zaphyre14 Well-Known Member

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    I finished Shreve's "Light on Snow" this morning. Very dissaatisfying. No real change in the characters that I can see and the resolution seemed too fast and too pat. I'm really glad I got this one for almost-free (came in a bag of audio tapes that I got for $3 at a church sale) because I'd feel really ripped off if I'd paid full price for it.

    So I immediately started Clive Cussler's "Trojan Odessey" to counter Shreve's cloying sentimentality with pure action-adventure. :)

    In paper, I'm contuing with Teresa Grant's historical mysteries, "Imperial Scandal" which centers on the days leading up to Waterloo and the spying and counter-spying going on between the Allied armies and Napoleon's forces. I'm having a bit of trouble keeping up with all the relationships and affairs and past affairs going on amid the miriad main characters - and now four-fifths of the way through, they've just introduced yet another scandalously-pregnant young female who's killed herself in shame - but might have been murdered instead; as a plot device, it's getting rather tired.
     
  6. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    The Giller Prize longlist was just announced.

    Unlike some other literary awards I could name :shuffle:, I find most of the Giller nominated & winning books to be extremely readable. I haven't yet read any on this year's list, though several were already "on my list," and I have read other books by the same authors (Lisa Moore, Joseph Boyden, Lynn Coady, Dennis Bock, Wayne Grady).
     
  7. Nan

    Nan Just me

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    Absolutely seen and heard. :swoon:
     
  8. modern_muslimah

    modern_muslimah Thinking of witty user title and coming up blank

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    Thanks for the suggestions! I downloaded both books. I started Major Pettigrew today. It is a much welcome change from a badly written "new adult" novel I started but likely will not finish.

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk 2
     
  9. zaphyre14

    zaphyre14 Well-Known Member

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    I'm now back into medieval mystery mode with Susannah Gregory's "A Deadly Brew." Someone is poisoning people in Cambridge with bottles of wine that are popping up seemingly at random and it's up to Brother Michael and Dr. Bartholomew to identify the poison and track it to its source before war between town and gown explodes. I really enjoy this series. It's fascinating to see how mysteries are solved just through obervation and questioning, without fancy forensics and lab tests. Matt and Michael are perfect partners in crime-solving and the settings are so vivid, I feel as if I am walking the streets of Cambridge with them.
     
  10. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    I finished MaddAddam, the third in the trilogy by Margaret Atwood. Meh. I quite liked the first one (Oryx and Crake) for its originality, really liked the second one (Year of the Flood) for its characters and story ... but this one missed the mark for me. As a conclusion to the trilogy it wasn't entirely unsatisfying, but the plot was all over the place. Although I enjoyed reading Zeb's backstory, I thought there was already more than enough "before" told in the previous two books, and wanted more "after."

    The best parts of the story were
    the "cultural interactions" between the MaddAddamites and the Crakers. That was really well done.

    And the pigoons. The pigoons were awesome.
     
  11. rfisher

    rfisher Satisfied skating fan

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    I got the new JD Robb and for a first, I don't really like it. This is one of her throw away books. You know who done it, how and why right away. The problem with that means you get a lot of repeated prose of Eve's history (I just skip forward now) and a lot of rumination from Eve and team rather than problem solving. I'm skipping through that as well. I'm skipping a lot and am bored. Nora didn't have much plot this time and just cranked out her semi-annual book. The last one was much better. But, I do admire how she's kept a very long series (I think we're up to 22 or 23 books now) interesting by moving Eve, Roarke and friends along life's pathway. That in itself is an accomplishment that few authors have managed to do with their serials. So, if you're a big fan get the new book, otherwise wait for the library or the paperback.

    I've spent most of the book looking at how she's changed things over this long series (almost 20 years) which takes place in about 3 years of literary time. The characters didn't have tablets and smart phones "3" years ago and now they do. I've been amusing myself comparing this book to the first one and looking for the technology that's evolved.
     
  12. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Épaulement!!!

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    Great find! I am reading Kitchen Confidential now and am loving it. Excellent snark. :respec:
     
  13. jadingirl

    jadingirl Member

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    Ian Rankin has a new Rebus book coming out - guess he missed Rebus too! I put a hold on it at the library but I may buy it instead if I can't take the wait.

    Currently reading Kate Morton's The House at Riverton which has a Dowton Abbey feel to it for those that like that time period.
     
  14. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the heads up! (Tho not quite quick enough -- there were 9 holds ahead of me, on 3 copies, at my library.) I really enjoyed the "return of Rebus" in Standing in Another Man's Grave (did you read that one?), so this is definitely one to look forward to. Though I was expecting it -- it was pretty obvious after that book that we'd have more Rebus to come.

    It was interesting how he (Rankin) morphed Fox in that book though. In the two Fox books, he was dry and perhaps even cold at times, but not unlikable. In Standing he became obsessive, petty, and vindictive. I almost felt sorry for him! A good foil for Rebus though.
     
  15. Erin

    Erin Well-Known Member

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    I read this a few weeks ago and loved it. I've also read Morton's other two books (The Distant Hours and The Forgotten Garden) and enjoyed them, although not as much as The House at Riverton. Just started her most recent novel, The Secret Keeper, which is also very good so far.
     
  16. jadingirl

    jadingirl Member

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    Yes I really liked Standing in Another Man's Grave too. I had tried to warm up to Fox but he made it difficult so I was glad to get Rebus back.
     
  17. jadingirl

    jadingirl Member

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    I bought this online from the Bargain Book section in the spring with no idea what it was about and now just finally decided to give it a try and can't put it down. I look forward to my lunch break at work just so I can read and ending up losing track of time - hope I don't get in trouble!
     
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  18. LilJen

    LilJen Well-Known Member

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    Ever read any of the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency books? Also last year my book club read The Marriage Bureau for Rich People by Farahad Zima. Delightful book (and I believe there are 2 or 3 more that continue the series).

    Right now my brain is so fried I'm just reading through our Asterix collection. :shuffle:
     
  19. modern_muslimah

    modern_muslimah Thinking of witty user title and coming up blank

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    I haven't read the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency books. I remember when the miniseries came on HBO. I should check it out. I'm also going to check out Zima's book as well.
     
  20. RockTheTassel

    RockTheTassel Well-Known Member

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    Has anyone here read The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood? I'm about fifty pages in, and it's not as intriguing as I'd hoped. It seems sort of pretentious and implausible.
     
  21. Zemgirl

    Zemgirl Well-Known Member

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    I read it and really liked it, but that was a long time ago. I don't know how well it has aged and how it would compare to more recent dystopian fiction if I read it again.
     
  22. oleada

    oleada Well-Known Member

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    I love it :shuffle: To me, it's absolutely chilling and I can see something like that happening so easily.
     
  23. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Épaulement!!!

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    An iconic book by Atwood. :respec:

    Read on, RockTheTassel. *wags finger*
     
  24. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

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    I've read every single one of Atwood's books and although I don't think Handmaid's Tale is necessarily the best ... it is undoubtedly an iconic classic. Implausible? Well, perhaps, but it's speculative fiction, a look at the role of men in power and the decisions they make about women's bodies -- remarkable still relevant today, particularly in the US.

    Pretentious? Not at all.

    But I haven't re-read it for 15 or more years so I couldn't say how well it holds up.
     
  25. Prancer

    Prancer The "specialness" that is Staff Member

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    I have, and I'll be the dissenting voice here and kind of agree with you. It may be that I just put off reading it for too long and no book could live up to the hype by that point, but I was very disappointed. I generally find Atwood pretentious and I thought the execution was implausible, even if the premise maybe was not. All I could think was, Mary McCarthy was right.
     
  26. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Épaulement!!!

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    I don't disagree. They are all "bricks in the wall," so one has to wonder if this lack of depth and 3D in characterization was intentional. It works for me because the state ground your identity down to the prescribed role. I also feel that the male characters were intentionally interchangeable. Of course, I cannot be certain if that really was her intent.
    I feel the opposite. I feel that Offred's outward lack of pathos and casual narrative voice makes the situation all the more horrific and makes me feel for her.
     
  27. Prancer

    Prancer The "specialness" that is Staff Member

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    To each her own. I took Offred's character as Atwood's slap at mainstream women.
     
  28. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa Épaulement!!!

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    Really? Why? I have to admit it's been ages since I've read it.
     
  29. A.H.Black

    A.H.Black Well-Known Member

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    I know there are several posters here that like Margaret Atwood's books. I am not one of them. I read The Handmaid's Tale, didn't like it and I choose other authors to read now. I found other "post apocalyptic society" books (for want of a better term) to be more enjoyable and with more impact. Maybe it's a generational thing.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2013
  30. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Pink Bitch

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    I teach it in my Dystopian Lit class. You have to look at the time it was written as well; it was in response the "Moral Majority" rising up and failure of the Equal Rights Amendment.

    She is. She represents what happen when women don't continue to fight for their rights and become complacent. I think this also explains her complacency with what happens to her when she becomes a Handmaid.
     
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