New now reading

in reality, all of this has been a total load of old bollocks
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Darkness_Fish
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Re: New now reading

Postby Darkness_Fish » 11 Mar 2019, 09:45

^ Those look really interesting. Must remember to look out for them. "^" obviously indicating previous page.

Anyway, now reading:
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Which I'm worried will turn into too much of an Angela's Ashes style melodrama. It's an absolute doorstop of a novel, fairly miserable so far, and it's not even tackled its main theme of Alzheimer's disease yet.
Like fast-moving clouds casting shadows against a hillside, the melody-loop shuddered with a sense of the sublime, the awful unknowable majesty of the world.

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Penk!
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Re: New now reading

Postby Penk! » 11 Mar 2019, 10:22

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Struggling a bit with this. Lots of "he was taking loads of coke and having sex with so-and-so", not enough on what was really in his head and what inspired the music. Unless all the music was inspired by taking loads of coke and having sex with so-and-so. And a lot of the major events and records are brushed past and not really considered, or mentioned out of chronological order: for example, there's absolutely nothing about when 'Space Oddity' hit even though you'd expect that having a first big single and getting famous for the first time would be worth discussing a bit.

I guess you can get most of that from a conventional biography, just a lot of this feels dull and salacious. I don't really need 500 pages of gossip, no matter if it's from first-hand talking heads who were there at the time.
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Penk!
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Re: New now reading

Postby Penk! » 14 Mar 2019, 12:42

... though actually it gets more involving once you get past the COKE AND SEX years* and away from his peak period, oddly enough.

The Roger Moore anecdote gave me a laugh on the metro this morning.



*OK, those were actually 1970-1995 or something but mainly the mid-70s
fange wrote:One of the things i really dislike in this life is people raising their voices in German.

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Jimbo
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Re: New now reading

Postby Jimbo » 18 Mar 2019, 02:32

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On to book 4. This new Flashman series is a winner!
Cold War Number One: 70 years of daily national stupidity. Cold War Number Two: Still in its youth, but just as stupid. - William Blum

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Snarfyguy
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Re: New now reading

Postby Snarfyguy » 18 Mar 2019, 17:42

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This edition, as it happens. Four bucks, what the hell - these guys deliver.
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Polishgirl
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Re: New now reading

Postby Polishgirl » 28 Mar 2019, 19:13

I made my usual mistake at the library and checked out a ridiculous number of books at once, so I only made a start on the Rebecca Makkai before I had to return it, and I've had to reserve it again... :x

In the meantime:

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Another of her Poirot novels. The stylistic tone of it is very convincing but, as with her own thrillers, the plot becomes a bit bizarre and silly. I got fed up with it and didn't make it to the end, partly because the bit where HP gathers them all together to reveal the solution goes on for about 473 pages.

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Patricia Gibney is new to me - police procedurals set in Ireland, featuring a scatty but determined female DI. Overall, they're pretty good - the main characters are well-drawn, and the pacing is deftly handled. My only criticism is that she can be a bit lurid- graphic doesn't necessarily mean hard-hitting - but I'll carry on with them.

Just started this:


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Minnie the Minx
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Re: New now reading

Postby Minnie the Minx » 02 Apr 2019, 03:02

Have you read that Eleanor Olliphant thing PG? I think you would like that.

I can't remember what I have already written but recently I read The Gallow's Pole by Ben Myers which was fucking superb.
I have never read much Philip Roth so after Portnoy's Complaint (which was fantastic) I read The Ghost Writer which was enjoyable but different. I'm currently about twenty pages into American Pastoral which has me going back and reading some pages again just because they are so beautiful to read.
Last week I read my first Joseph Conrad - The Secret Sharer, which was magnetically intimate and gripping, and then Heart of Darkness. After I read the latter, I announced to the room that the plot was really "very much like Apocalypse Now" and wondered why they all looked at me funny.
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Jimbo
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Re: New now reading

Postby Jimbo » 02 Apr 2019, 03:50

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And now book five! Unfortunately this is the last available book but Thomas Flashman at Waterloo is in the works.

This really is a good series and original Flashman fans will not be disappointed.
Cold War Number One: 70 years of daily national stupidity. Cold War Number Two: Still in its youth, but just as stupid. - William Blum

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Re: New now reading

Postby Diamond Dog » 02 Apr 2019, 08:11

Minnie the Minx wrote:Last week I read my first Joseph Conrad - The Secret Sharer, which was magnetically intimate and gripping, and then Heart of Darkness. After I read the latter, I announced to the room that the plot was really "very much like Apocalypse Now" and wondered why they all looked at me funny.


:lol:

I found the book a difficult read to be honest - but probably because I was trying to match it up with the film, when - in reality- you really should do them the other way around.
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Re: New now reading

Postby Powehi » 02 Apr 2019, 10:07

Jimbo wrote:Image

And now book five! Unfortunately this is the last available book but Thomas Flashman at Waterloo is in the works.

This really is a good series and original Flashman fans will not be disappointed.



Having run out of Flashman books with which to divert you from your various "sources", the sinister forces behind world publishing will do their best to try and muzzle you by releasing the late Philip Kerr's final Bernie Gunther book on Thursday...

Not to keen on reading the older Flashman books as the author has apparently shied well clear of George McDonald Frasers's un-PC attitudes and terminology. As a result, I'd far rather go back and read the incredibly rich and very, very funny originals one last time

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Jimbo
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Re: New now reading

Postby Jimbo » 02 Apr 2019, 13:22

caramba wrote:
Jimbo wrote:
And now book five! Unfortunately this is the last available book but Thomas Flashman at Waterloo is in the works.

This really is a good series and original Flashman fans will not be disappointed.



Having run out of Flashman books with which to divert you from your various "sources", the sinister forces behind world publishing will do their best to try and muzzle you by releasing the late Philip Kerr's final Bernie Gunther book on Thursday...

Not to keen on reading the older Flashman books as the author has apparently shied well clear of George McDonald Frasers's un-PC attitudes and terminology. As a result, I'd far rather go back and read the incredibly rich and very, very funny originals one last time


The oldies may well be the most re-readble books ever because they are so much fun but I'm telling you man, these new ones are fun as well. Right now Flashman has got himself embroiled in the War of 1812 as a liaison between the British and the Iroquois while hitting up this shapely Mennonite sweetie up river from the Indian village where he is encamped. And I never learned so much about this rarely discussed war.

And to be sure I will keep a sharp eye out for the new Bernie Gunther when it comes out in audio - which is the only way I do books in 2019.
Cold War Number One: 70 years of daily national stupidity. Cold War Number Two: Still in its youth, but just as stupid. - William Blum

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echolalia
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Re: New now reading

Postby echolalia » 03 Apr 2019, 17:45

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I’m sure someone else posted this recently (with a different cover). It’s newly re-published after being out of print for ages. It has all kinds of affinities/symmetries with The Erasers by Alain Robbe-Grillet, and one of them – besides the obvious Oedipal reverberations and a “missing corpse” thing – is their location in dreary towns on opposite sides of the English Channel. Berg is set in Brighton in winter, although there are hardly any references that explicitly identify the town as such. Pier and beach and station etc. are largely generic and rarely specific, so you wouldn’t really call it a Brighton novel, as the actual place is more backdrop than protagonist. Any low-season coastal town will do (as long as it has a seedy bedsit quarter where termagant landladies fulminate savagely from threadbare landings through flimsy bolted doors at cowering feckless tenants who’ve fallen behind on the rent). It’s definitely closer to France than Hampstead anyway, in spirit if not in geography. Whether Quin had read Robbe-Grillet is unknown. Or Henri Bergson for that matter. Not that it’s all café-crème and soixante-neuf and Pastis 51! It’s quite Ortonesque and the farce gets high in places. There’s one scene between Berg and his father that’s so appalling the only possible reaction is horrified laughter. I thought it was excellent!

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Minnie the Minx
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Re: New now reading

Postby Minnie the Minx » 16 Apr 2019, 03:02

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It's a simultaneously annoying and fantastic feeling to find an author (or a band, whatever) late in life and to think hurray, I have so much more of their work to explore! Fantastic because you know there will be more pleasure to come, and annoying because you think bloody hell, I could have been enjoying this much sooner. American Pastoral was my third Roth. I don't know how anyone can sit and write a book like this without going stark staring mad - the scale of it - like grouting the Hoover Dam. What an absolute joy to absorb those words, personalities and adventures. The dinner party at the end of the book was so painful and funny and recognizable that on the last page I could almost smell the kitchen. An amazing work.
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Diamond Dog
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Re: New now reading

Postby Diamond Dog » 16 Apr 2019, 03:59

On the recommendation of a friend I decided (against my better judgement) to try this :

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It details the expose by Truman Capote of his cast of intimate female friends ( his 'swans') back in 1975, via a magazine article(s). The background of Capote's life, and how they became friends, is also detailed. Then his inevitable demise after the Swans shunned him- somewhat predictably- for the last 9 years of his life, after the article was published.

It's a litany of name dropping on an epic scale and the lives of the super rich and establishment elite is recounted, mainly via the women and how they became Capote's inner circle.

I'm sure it has some literary merit and some of Capote's acerbic wit does shine through rather vividly on occasion - but, first impressions are that it's just one massive catalogue of society tittle-tattle (some fiction, some not) and the characters themselves are pretty difficult to warm to (especially Capote himself).

I'm not sure I'll make it all the way through, to be honest!
"Excuse my dust."
"On mellow blue, birds curve and glide, Through shadows of grief she slides,"
"It put me back in my place and made me realize, yes I'm just a cunt in a clown suit."