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  1. #61
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    I'm going to have to get around to reading Dostoevsky one of these days.


    ATM, I'm about 300 pages into my second reading of American Gods by Neil Gaiman. Its probably my favorite book of his.

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    aka And Quiet Flows the Yawn.

    BTW, for those interested: this the translation of Master and Margarita I recommend.
    That's the translation I also read! It was awesome.

    And truth be known, I was somewhat familiar with Soviet history but not utterly. It was kind of hard to figure out the Jesus story at first, but it was entirely an absorbing and great read even though I found the Jesus parable somewhat of a hindrance to the flow of the book.

    Then I read it again and it finally clicked, and it was even better!

    ETA: so my current novel is The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Murakami. Strangely enough, between him, Oe and Mishima, Mishima's writing is the easiest to navigate. This (Murakami) is also interesting but not quite mind-blowing; A Wild Sheep Chase was a more simplistic but better laid out version of this book (so far from my impression). Then again, I'm the kind of reader who absolutely hated Soul Mountain and thinks Gao Xingjian got an award for being a poser.

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by jl View Post
    War and Peace killed me, but Anna Karenina was kind of interesting. Did you ever tried to read the Master and Margarita? I loved that book.
    No, that one I have not tried. I notice that there has been several positive comments about it, I will buy it as my next book in future. Thanks for the suggestion!

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by rjblue View Post
    Well. The Gathering Storm was the only book I had to re-read. I'm a new fan of the series, but from what I've read on the internet, I'd say the reaction to the book is 90% awesome, 8% adequate and 2% disappointed. Knowing that all the major plot points (all 485 of them) are all laid out and dictated by Jordan makes the transition to Branderson quite seamless.
    The bazillion plot points is why I need to reread. I started reading the series something like 17 years ago, and WoT is the reason I point blanc refuse to read any series that isn't finished. (had to wait a long time for Harry Potter).

    I liked Anna Karenina, although I haven't tried War and Peace yet. I love the works of Nabokov and Gogol that I've read so far, and I loved Master & Margarita too, despite probably not knowing enough of Soviet history to get all the finer points of it. I've still got the Brothers Karamazov sitting on my bookshelf unread though. :shuffles: I've read Crime and Punishment and The Idiot, but I just can't seem to make myself slog through BK...

  5. #65
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    You people are making me twitchy. I'm going to have to buy more fluffy smut to counter this. Gasp. I may have to buy something with a bare chested pirate on the cover.
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

  6. #66

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    We haven't truly succeeded until you've bought something with Fabio on the cover.
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club

  7. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
    You people are making me twitchy. I'm going to have to buy more fluffy smut to counter this. Gasp. I may have to buy something with a bare chested pirate on the cover.
    Pssst! Over here! I'm reading The Bitch Posse, Bryant and May on the Loose, and If Chins Could Kill: Confessions of a B Movie Actor.

    It's summer. I am off work until August. If you find a good book with a pirate on the cover, pass on the title.
    Trolling dates all the way back to 397 B.C. - People began following Plato around and would make fart noises after everything he said.

  8. #68

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    I'm with rfisher (and Prancie too)- give me trashy smut any day - or a blood-soaked mystery - or hot aliens from another galaxy. All those Russian novels bore me to tears; plus I waste too much time trying to figure out how all the names should be pronounced.

    I don't think Flabio's doing covers any more. There's some dark-haired Latin-looking guy turning up on everything "romantic" these days. Personally, I'm boycotting any book with "Dark" in the title. It's summer, people! Lighten up!

    I worked my church garage sale this weekend and broused the book flats (buck a bag!) in between customers. I had donated two copier paper boxes myself - and came home with two bags more. Mostly smut but with a few children's books (no, the chapter kind, not picture books!) that I had thought about but couldn't bring myself to buy new since Ihave no kids.

    I'm still on my Falco kick and just started the 3rd Women's Murder Club audio in the car. There's nothing like murder and mayhem to make slow traffic tolerable.
    "You just can't underestimate the power of positive underwear." 2013 Fruit of the Loom ad

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by zaphyre14 View Post
    I'm with rfisher (and Prancie too)- give me trashy smut any day - or a blood-soaked mystery - or hot aliens from another galaxy. All those Russian novels bore me to tears; plus I waste too much time trying to figure out how all the names should be pronounced.

    I don't think Flabio's doing covers any more. There's some dark-haired Latin-looking guy turning up on everything "romantic" these days. Personally, I'm boycotting any book with "Dark" in the title. It's summer, people! Lighten up!

    I worked my church garage sale this weekend and broused the book flats (buck a bag!) in between customers. I had donated two copier paper boxes myself - and came home with two bags more. Mostly smut but with a few children's books (no, the chapter kind, not picture books!) that I had thought about but couldn't bring myself to buy new since Ihave no kids.

    I'm still on my Falco kick and just started the 3rd Women's Murder Club audio in the car. There's nothing like murder and mayhem to make slow traffic tolerable.
    I love Falco and Helena. The author's other stuff doesn't have the same sense of humor and fun. I find it odd how the same author can write different series and I like one and hate the other. I call it the JD Robb (I like) and Nora Roberts (I hate) syndrome.
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

  10. #70

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    I've been reading Georgette Heyer mysteries lately. I like them, but there's one thing weird about them: I swear she incarnates the same two characters in every book and writes the exact same romance for them. I've just read my third one of hers, and right away I spotted them: arrogant young man with a carefully hidden heart of gold who likes to drive his relatives nuts, and sensible but deep young woman who is the only person who really gets him. And it's not that the characters are poorly done or uninteresting in themselves; it's just annoying that as soon as you spot them, two possible suspects are eliminated, because you know those two have to be left alone to have their romance!

    I may try one or two more of hers, but I hope the pattern doesn't continue. I hate it when mysteries get too formulaic. It's why I had to give up the Brother Cadfael series.
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club

  11. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post

    I may try one or two more of hers, but I hope the pattern doesn't continue. I hate it when mysteries get too formulaic. It's why I had to give up the Brother Cadfael series.
    I loved Brother Cadfael, but it wasn't for the mystery. It was the characters. I loved how they developed over time. I cried when I got to the last one and knew we'd never know more about Brother Cadfael's son since Ellis Peters was dead.
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    I've been reading Georgette Heyer mysteries lately.
    I don't know any fans of hers who bother much with her mysteries. I like Penhallow but other than it, I stick to her regency/historicals. They are in a class by themselves that others have tried to imitate unsuccessfully. Probably because most people try to copy them as romances and they are comedic romps, not romances.

    eta- I love her Georgians too. The Masqueraders was the first Heyer I read and it hooked me. It is my favourite of hers to try and cast for a movie. Sir Anthony is still Sean Bean for me. I don't care how old he gets.
    Last edited by rjblue; 06-28-2010 at 06:12 PM.
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  13. #73

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    Heyer's mysteries were written basically as pulp-fiction and not intended to be classics or great literature. They were what people expected from mysteries at the time (anyone remember the old old Harleguin novels - basically the same plot over and over and over?).

    Heyer's known for her regencies, but I've always liked her Georgians better. And "The Conqueror" is the book that got me hooked on William the Conqueror and the whole English medieval history genre. But the mysteries I can pass up.
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  14. #74

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    I've heard lots of praise for Heyer's historical romances, but I don't care for the genre much. Maybe I'll pick up one some day just to see what it's like. But I got interested in her mysteries because I heard that Dorothy Sayers liked them, and I adore Sayers.

    Actually, that era is widely considered the golden age of mysteries -- you had Sayers, Christie, Stout, Chandler, Hammett, Bentley, Allingham, and so many more greats. So I don't think pulp fiction was really the expectation. Heyer's a good writer, but that formulaic quality would lead me to put her in the second tier. And Ngaio Marsh as well. She was a good writer as well, but good grief, how many times can you hear about how perfect the detective was?
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club

  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    it's just annoying that as soon as you spot them, two possible suspects are eliminated
    I got that way with Christie--which character absolutely couldn't be the murderer? That's whodunnit. But at least I had a good time trying to figure out how it was done, which is not the case with mysteries I read now. The identity of the murderer, the motive AND the method are usually pretty obvious. The mystery is always secondary (if not tertiary) to the character, which works if the characters work.
    Trolling dates all the way back to 397 B.C. - People began following Plato around and would make fart noises after everything he said.

  16. #76

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post

    It's summer. I am off work until August. If you find a good book with a pirate on the cover, pass on the title.
    I haven't recently read any good books with a pirate on the cover, but in terms of well written romance novels, I'd suggest Joanna Bourne's books:

    http://productsearch.barnesandnoble....=Joanna+Bourne

    Nicely plotted with what appears to be great historic background details.

  17. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    I got that way with Christie--which character absolutely couldn't be the murderer? That's whodunnit. But at least I had a good time trying to figure out how it was done, which is not the case with mysteries I read now. The identity of the murderer, the motive AND the method are usually pretty obvious. The mystery is always secondary (if not tertiary) to the character, which works if the characters work.
    That's because mystery/thriller/suspense writer workshops or agents drill into authors that character driven stories are what sells and plot is somewhat secondary.
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

  18. #78

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    I got that way with Christie--which character absolutely couldn't be the murderer? That's whodunnit. But at least I had a good time trying to figure out how it was done, which is not the case with mysteries I read now. The identity of the murderer, the motive AND the method are usually pretty obvious. The mystery is always secondary (if not tertiary) to the character, which works if the characters work.
    The funny thing is Christie could never have done it that way, because a lot of her characters (though not the actual detectives) are like cardboard cutouts. It was a good thing she was so skilled at plotting!
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club

  19. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by jl View Post
    That's the translation I also read! It was awesome.

    And truth be known, I was somewhat familiar with Soviet history but not utterly. It was kind of hard to figure out the Jesus story at first, but it was entirely an absorbing and great read even though I found the Jesus parable somewhat of a hindrance to the flow of the book.
    I felt that way when I read it for the very first time--decades ago. But now it's hard to imagine one storyline without the other. The book is so iconic.

    BTW, I would be happy to try and answer questions about it if I can. I am no literary expert (although a doctorate in English was a possible career path , I even had a thesis topic all ready to go and dodged a bullet there) but am quite familiar with the history and culture being an ex-Soviet citizen and all.
    Quote Originally Posted by jl View Post
    Then I read it again and it finally clicked, and it was even better!
    Now I feel a strong urge to reread it.

    Quote Originally Posted by jl View Post
    . Then again, I'm the kind of reader who absolutely hated Soul Mountain and thinks Gao Xingjian got an award for being a poser.
    I tried and tried and tried to love One Man's Bible by Gao Xingjian and could not.
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  20. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    I've been reading Georgette Heyer mysteries lately...
    I **love** Heyer's romances so I was looking forward to her mysteries... found some at the thrift store and was so happy --- until I read them, lol! Her plots are so OTT, imo; I mean, how can the reader guess whodunnit when the whodunnit is so out there and crazy? I recycled them after reading which is something I never do (I keep all the books I read). I did however find a good use for the covers: on the new editions, there are a dozen small pictures of her romance books so I cut them out and made miniature books out of them.

    -Bridget

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