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Books moral and immoral

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

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  1. Erin

    Erin Well-Known Member

    Thanks for sharing about Dark Places - I bought it together with Sharp Objects but haven't gotten around to reading it. I'm not sure what to do now, though. I am fairly squeamish so the animal torture and graphic murders would be tough to get past, but the rest of the book sounds worth reading.
  2. zaphyre14

    zaphyre14 Well-Known Member

    I finished P.D. James' "Death Comes to Pemberley" during the blizzard and enjoyed it, even if I'm not the biggest Jane Austen fan. It was nice to get the postscript on the Darcys and the Bennett clan and get a sort of closure on all their stories.

    I'm now reading "Cut to the Heart" by Ava Dianne Day (who wrote the Fremont Jones mystery series I've been listening to in the car). This one feature Clara Barton tending an injured Colonel in South Carolina during the Civil War while a derragned serial killer stalks the area collecting body parts for his "experiments." Clara Barton was born in my hometown so I've always been interested in her life and family (her birthplace is a small museum). This is fiction, but Day used original sources in her research and so far she seems to have captured the characters well.
  3. my little pony

    my little pony war crawling into canada

    i havent been keeping up with the thread so i dont know if this has been mentioned, but i just finished former people: the final days of the russian aristocracy by douglas smith. i really enjoyed it. it focuses on a couple of families. the details are really sad. one of the amazon reviewers said people who like downton abbey will like it. :lol:
  4. Prancer

    Prancer Slave to none, master to all Staff Member

    Amazon is apparently planning to sell used ebooks.

    *blink* *blink*

    I find the concept mindboggling. And very bad. Because my experience with used textbooks has been that such things are, in the long run, very bad for the consumer.

    As is explained here: http://curtisagency.com/blog/2013/02/psst-wanna-buy-e-book.html
  5. michiruwater

    michiruwater Well-Known Member

    That's just... weird. I just can't get the concept of a piece of data being 'used', in the traditional sense. It's the exact same piece of data as a new one, in this case.
  6. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

    All the authors I've read/spoken with about this are "terrified" and "pissed". Yes, their words. It's not hard to imagine some crafty tech geek finding a way around protections, making a zillion copies of an ebook and reselling them all. This is such a strange concept, but Amazon wants to rake in the dough and this is another way to do it.
  7. modern_muslimah

    modern_muslimah Thinking of witty user title and coming up blank

    Selling a used e-book seems incomprehensible. I'm not sure how this benefits anyone except Amazon in the long run. Unfortunately, I'm not sure if many book buyers will realize this.
  8. Jenny

    Jenny From the Bloc

    This part of the article Prancer linked makes the most sense to me:

  9. Prancer

    Prancer Slave to none, master to all Staff Member

    Everything has already been done but the resale.

    Is there a business that doesn't want to rake in the dough? There are a lot of people in the book business who believe that Amazon's primary goal in all things book-related is to drive publishers out of business and corner the market themselves, and everything they do tends to be seen in that light, so it's very possible that a lot of the reaction is just paranoia. OTOH, a lot of the things that Amazon can be hard to see in any other light.
  10. jeffisjeff

    jeffisjeff Well-Known Member

    My husband and I were talking about this last night and he was wondering whether Amazon cared much about their book (regular and e) sales these days since it seemed to him that most of their profit must come from other stuff. Then I saw this today:


    But that doesn't really help me understand the concept of a used e-book.
  11. Spinner

    Spinner Where's my book?

    Yes, I think we all know this. Pirating abounds.

    I don't believe Amazon wants this at all, nor did I imply it. I just said they want to make money, which they do. If implemented, this is another way. But as Jenny astutely pointed out, it could all be just to make it go away.
    Prancer and (deleted member) like this.
  12. Prancer

    Prancer Slave to none, master to all Staff Member

    I didn't say that you said it, nor did I imply it. :confused:

    But the fact remains that a lot of people in the book business think Amazon wants to run book publishers out of business so they can corner the market for themselves, and see this as another step in that direction.

    That doesn't mean they are right, but the perception is certainly there.
  13. Cachoo

    Cachoo Well-Known Member

    "Sweet Tooth" by Ian McEwan was a good, breezy read. I didn't expect that as it is about Britain's MI-6 and thought it might turn tragic. I'm also reading Laurie King's "The Pirate King." She and Holmes are traveling with many actors and crew to a movie shoot in Lisbon. This mystery is fun.
  14. made_in_canada

    made_in_canada INTJ

    I found a Book Crossing book at work yesterday. It's "Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict" which isn't something I'd normally pick off the shelf but it literally fell into my hands so I feel I owe it a try anyway.
  15. dbell1

    dbell1 Well-Known Member

    Hardcovers arriving this week included "Firefly", a gorgeous hard cover full of series facts and screenplays - worth it for any fans of the show; also received my long lost copy of Massie's 'Catherine the Great' - it was shipping in September!! And the last one was a sequel to "The Forgotten King", called "The Broken Sword".

    Kindle wise, I'm reading "Swan Song" and love it. A bit gory in spots, but I guess anything written about the aftermath of a nuclear holocaust should be icky.
  16. Evilynn

    Evilynn ((Swedish skating dudes))

    The used ebook thing is extra interesting since Amazon does't even sell ebooks, they lease them. :p

    I finally finished Clean Code, which was very good but took me ages to read. I'm currently giving Lois McMaster Bujold a second try with The Warrior's Apprentice (from her Vorkosigan series), and it's a very easy read and is quite funny in places, but I'm just not compelled to pick it up and continue reading. I'm not sure what to read once I wrap that up either. I seem to be stuck in a bit of a rut.
  17. zaphyre14

    zaphyre14 Well-Known Member

    A very Eville friend introduced me and my Kindle to www.freebooksifter.com over the weekend. Appently it find several hundred new ebooks offered for free every day on Amazon and then sorts them by category for you. I've found several that look interesting. My locig is that while I might balk as spending real money for electronic literature, I can adjust to getting bits and bites for free.

    Meanwhile on the paper front, I finished the Clara Barton book - I'd give it a B; and started James Patterson's third Witch and Wizard YA "Fire". I also have Clive Cussler's "Atlantis Found" going on audio in the car. I like it a lot more than I expected to and it's great for long car trips.
  18. rjblue

    rjblue Having a great day!

    Have you read 1Q84 yet? I finished it a few weeks ago, and it's made it to my "know I'll re-read this one" pile. It's good if you're in the mood to question the nature of reality. Connie Willis's To Say Nothing of the Dog is a good choice if you are in the mood for another funny but well written book.

    I just finished the last of the Christmas stack my darling husband bought me. Here's the order I'd rate them in:

    #1. 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami- I don't know how I could find three pages of a character sitting and watching the moon so enthralling, but I did. I have to go read ALL his other books if they are this good.

    #2. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon - just the right mix of heartbreak and hope.

    #3. The Time Traveller's Wife- I liked this a lot more than I was expecting

    #4. Oryx and Crake- I liked this less than I was expecting. I forgot how annoying I find it when Atwood writes SF like this. She explains every single detail, as if her audience won't get it without it being spelled out.
  19. michiruwater

    michiruwater Well-Known Member

    I finished a couple books this week while on vacation. The Big Sleep was mostly what I was expecting, though as a person who knows little about cars/cigars/alcohol/etc. in the modern society, I feel like I missed a buttload of references of similar items from when the book was written. And it's hilariously politically incorrect, but that I definitely expected. I get that this detective is apparently quite famously popular in the hardboiled genre but I thought he was kind of an ass. Or is that part of the appeal?

    I also read Mariette in Ecstasy by Ron Hansen, which was just beautiful. The prose was amazing, poetic and lyrical. Again, as an atheist who has never gone to any sort of actual church ceremony except 1 wedding and 1 funeral, there were a lot of things about Catholicism I had to look up or which I'd never heard of before. I would highly recommend this book though. It's not at all as cliche as one would expect a stigmata story to be, and is mostly about the beauty of worship combined with the various nuns dealing with their feelings as a postulant in the convent experiences the stigmata, and the ways in which their reactions are Christian and un-Christian. Really, really beautiful book, and not very long.
  20. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    I've been on a major Henry James kick: Wings of the Dove, Portrait of a Lady, finally took on the Golden Bowl and the Golden Bowl won. It's the insufferable pointless circumlocution, devoid of beauty or literary value. You can sick a departmentful of English grad students on me, I don't care. The story is great, the characters are beautifully constructed, fascinating, complex 3D creatures who slog through the squelchy and quicksilvery mire of James' prose. So I put it aside for now, love the story and characters, hate the writing.

    Moved on to his buddy Edith Wharton and her Twilight Sleep which resulted in another love/hate relationship. Going through the interminable and stupendously boring daily to-do lists of one Pauline Manford, a wealthy New York matron, for the first 100 or so pages was inducing of real and not twilight sleep. Then things obtained shape and direction and I obtained perspective and so started pitying Mrs. Manford quite a bit. The Gothic, Northanger Abbey-ish denouement would have pleased Catherine Morland but I found it OTT. The book does have value though and I would recommend it to Wharton fans.

    And now I am reading To Marry An English Lord. My husband wanted to know if this is a manual :lol: No, just real life stories of wealthy American girls who bought themselves English titles and coronets. This book apparently inspired Downton Abbey and there was indeed and American heiress named Cora who married an Earl and became a countess. I deserve a little frivolity after all that James, although naturally, James references abound.
  21. Zemgirl

    Zemgirl Well-Known Member

    I read that a few years ago, and it was very entertaining as non-fiction books go... I knew about Jennie Jerome, but not the others.
  22. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    I did know about one of them, well sort of, a Flora from San Francisco. There is a Sherlock Holmes story about such an American heiress bride named Flora either standing up her aristocratic English groom at the altar or skadaddling with a rude Amerikan boyfriend shortly after the ceremony. The real life Flora did go through with the wedding though.
  23. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    Interesting, I have all of the above on my shelf, awaiting their turn. I did read TTTW a few years ago and her next book about the twins which was a lot less impressive, what is that book? :wall: Senior moment.

    Oh yeah, Her Fearful Symmetry, rather weak IMO. Thank you, Wiki.

    Also have Murakami's Hardboiled Wonderland and the End of the World. I have to keep reminding myself that this is not the work of Kanako Murakami. :duh:

    Does anyone know if Kate Atkinson has come out with anything since Started Early Took My Dog? I like her detective series quite a bit.

    Also, amazon is sending me The Human Stain. The movie made an incredibly strong, visceral impression on me--Anthony Hopkins was just outstanding and Nicole Kidman too, who knew? I do like me some Philip Roth occasionally and so am looking forward to that. If the book contains even a small part of the power of the movie, it has to be a masterpiece.
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2013
  24. emason

    emason Well-Known Member

    Another on a (sort of) Henry James kick. The same discussion leader who ran my Moby Dick group last fall is now doing a short 4-session class on The Portrait of a Lady. I found the first 12 chapters an awful slog, but then I went to the first meeting on Tuesday, and once we all started discussing and chiming in and debating certain points, suddenly I got hooked. I am hoping this will lead to a greater exploration of James on my part.

    The book that defeated me was The Spoils of Poynton. I had to throw in the towel; I remember not being able to make sense of anything.
  25. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I <3 Kozuka

    PeterG and (deleted member) like this.
  26. Artemis@BC

    Artemis@BC Well-Known Member

    Have you read Year of the Flood? It's a lot better, imo. It's not a sequel to Oryx & Crake, but it is in the same universe re: circumstances before and after. But the setting is very, very different. IKWYM about the over-explaining, and I agree -- I can't say that that doesn't happen in Year of the Flood, but I do remember not being annoyed in the same way ... so that has to be a good sign!
  27. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    Haven't attempted that one yet. I am currently on a low-James diet. :shuffle: The Portrait was fairly manageable and a great read overall, hang in there.

    Thanks! I did see the movie with Uma Thurman. About Wharton--yes, much less impressive than say, The House of Mirth but again, not entirely pointless. I ended up enjoying parts of it.
  28. PrincessLeppard

    PrincessLeppard Holding Alex Johnson's Pineapple

    I just finished Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffen. It was TERRIBLE. I waded through it, waiting for something to happen (it sort of does, near the end) only to find out this is the first of a trilogy. Are all YA novels these days freaking trilogies???

    And the love triangle. :wall: One of them is a manipulative drug dealer. :wall: :wall: The heroine is totally passive. :wall: :wall: :wall:

    I shouldn't hate a steampunk retelling of Poe this badly. It should've been awesome.

    Oh, and it was written by a high school English teacher. She might want to re-look at some of those lessons on characterization.
  29. Zemgirl

    Zemgirl Well-Known Member

    No. Some are part of longer series :p
  30. made_in_canada

    made_in_canada INTJ

    After finishing the dreck that is Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict, I decided to re-read for the zillionth time Where the Red Fern Grows. All grown up and that book still makes me bawl like a baby :wuzrobbed
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