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Thread: Official Book Thread

  1. #1

    Default Official Book Thread

    i just suscribed to an old book recommendation thread and started scrolling through it and it was mostly arguing about something unrelated so then i went searching for a different thread and it's just annoying and difficult. can we have this thread stickied and kept clean to have a reference for book recommendations, pretty please?



    a couple recent ones i really enjoyed:

    giovanni's room - james baldwin
    the prophet - kahlil gibran

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    Exits, pursued by a bear. Animal's Avatar
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    I love The Prophet. It's one of the books I like to open up in rough times. I've only read Go Tell It On the Mountain by Baldwin. I don't remember anything about it. I just remember thinking it was weird, lol.

    Right now I'm reading Les Misérables by Victor Hugo before the new film version comes out. It's the longest novel I've read at over 1,460 pages, but it's a very fast 1,460 pages. The last time I'd read it was in high school and it made a huge impact on me. Retreading it now though I realize a lot of it went over my head. Hugo's writing is dense, didactic, and devastating (alliteration!). It's a very modern novel for being exactly a century and a half old. Most of the didactic sections are still topical today. I was reading the chapters on Fantine on the Metro a few weeks ago. In many ways, she's the typical "abandoned woman" archetype that was so popular in the 19th century. But Hugo turns her into something completely different by the end. It's full of lines that hit you like a freight train out of nowhere. This was one of my favorite novels ten years ago. Reading it again has only made me appreciate it much more. If you want something dense that will stick with you, give it a shot. (Be sure to get the Signet Classics edition translated by McAfee and Fahnesrock. The newer translation by Julie Rose for Modern Library just doesn't have the same impact.)
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    Killer of DJA's Fun fen's Avatar
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    Wow, okay. I'm gonna go find The Prophet in the library now---which is where I am! Hah.
    Seems super interesting.

    Books I Loved:
    - The Hobbit
    - The Three Musketeers
    - The Legend of Drizzt series
    And I would hide my face in you and you would hide your face in me, and nobody would ever see us any more.


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    cunnilingus epilepsy inducer
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    Right now I'm finishing off The Narrow Road to the Deep North and Other Travel Sketches by Basho and I'm planning on reading (I already have the book) Prometheus Bound and Other Plays by Aeschylus. Two comparatively short and light books as I don't feel like getting into anything too technically complicated right now. I'm also in the process of reading Montaigne's Essays but I've been reading that for months in no particular order, sometimes re-reading essays.

    The last two books I read are Philosophy as a Way of Life by Pierre Hadot and The Birth of Tragedy by Nietzsche.

    With my next choices I feel like going into either a poetry, mysticism or mythology direction; I'm thinking The Conference of the Birds by some Persian poet, The Aeneid or something by Jung.
    Last edited by leckysupport; 10-02-2012 at 05:20 PM.

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    I'm reading Venus in Furs at the moment. I didn't realize that I had such pedestrian ideas about masochism.
    "[Scapegrace,] I don't know how anyone can stand such a sinister and mean individual as you." - Maritsa Darmandzhyan

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    I highly recommend "The Venturesome Ventures of Rocket Horse & Jet Chicken".

    Don't hate.

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    Books I have read in my adult life:

    Snow Crash
    A Canticle for Leibowitz
    Valis
    Faggots
    Redwall
    The Giver
    Mossflower

    Titles in bold are ones I've seriously enjoyed.
    "And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it." -Roald Dahl

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    This thread died fast, lol. Maybe it needs pictures. For a short read (~130 pgs.) that might change your life, Man's Search for Meaning by Victor Frankl was one of the most moving books I've ever read. It's based on the author's experience as a psychotherapist trying to keep his fellow prisoners alive in a Nazi concentration camp:

    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    Ti centric krieger's Avatar
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    books? this is the 21st century... books are a barbaric relic.

    oh well i'm guilty to being inexcusably sentimental and reading Hedge Fund Market Wizards in print form.

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    cunnilingus epilepsy inducer
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    Just so everyone knows I'm currently reading Spiritual Verses by Rumi and I've just finished re-reading Consolation of Philosophy by Boethius.
    Last edited by leckysupport; 10-27-2012 at 09:27 PM.

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    Just finished reading Forbes' Guide to the Markets; reading mostly books on investing. Um...I think it should become fairly useful.

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    most recent books i've read:

    jack and jill by james patterson
    i was looking for a new go-to author for light reading, and i got lucky right away because it was really good and i'm definitely sticking with patterson.

    stranger in a strange land by robert heinlein
    it was pretty decent and sort of compelling for the first half. i like themes where the main character is from a different time or place and the story provides a look at stuff that is normal in a fresh and different way. but after about halfway through it became this really bizarre and annoying preachy orgy fantasy like the author gave up on trying to hide his penis or something.


    currently reading pere goriot by balzac (its got a emotionally compelling flavor so far but the french names and era-relevant stuff is kind of hard to keep track of, which always happens to me with old, foreign books) and man and his symbols by jung (a lot of it is rehash of stuff i already knew from stuff people have discussed here, and it goes more into specific symbolic meanings than i would expect for a theory that says dream symbols are individual, but the specific interpretations are interesting regardless and i like the case studies. oh, and i'm reading a version with pretty pictures in it).

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    Feel God's Thunder Azure Flame's Avatar
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    books fuel my campfires adequately
    Perfect<------------------------------------------------------------------------------>Loops and Tings



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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ Arendee View Post
    books fuel my campfires adequately
    you're pretty cool. have you seen idiocracy?

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    lol, I'm smart as fuk
    Perfect<------------------------------------------------------------------------------>Loops and Tings



    Ambivert / Aggressor / Trailblazer / Nomad / Alpha Caretaker / Free Spirit / Kevlar Speed Demon / Ninja

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    but seriously, I read a book once
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    Ambivert / Aggressor / Trailblazer / Nomad / Alpha Caretaker / Free Spirit / Kevlar Speed Demon / Ninja

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    moving along

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    Haikus Beautiful sky's Avatar
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    check my amazon wish list

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    Let's go to fairyland Minde's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by leckysupport View Post
    Just so everyone knows I'm currently reading Spiritual Verses by Rumi and I've just finished re-reading Consolation of Philosophy by Boethius.
    !! I've never met anyone else who has read that! Or even heard of it, for that matter. Then again, I haven't actually read all of it and what I have read has been from King Alfred's "translation." And my motives for reading it were probably different from yours.



    Recently I've read tech books, some books on typography and design, but the other day I started a book from my favorite sci-fi/fantasy author, Andre Norton, called Dragon Blade. It's one of the few of hers I haven't yet read, and even so she only co-authored it. But it's nice to read fiction again.

    I want to get some sort of e-reader, so I can take books with me. My life is busy (probably too busy), but I do have quiet, still moments where I could read if I had books handy. I miss reading. I used to do it a ton, especially in my teen years. When I was a kid, I got in trouble sometimes for reading and forgetting to do my chores.
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    "Fairy Tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten." - G.K. Chesterton

    "Have courage and be kind." - Cinderella's mom

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    My favourite book of all time is Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke. The reviews I've seen of it online have been quite split - it seems people either love or hate this book. If you are unusually fond of words, you will probably adore it.

    Currently I'm reading Stuart: A Life Backwards by Alexander Masters, which I can definitely say is something everyone should read. It is brilliant, comical, touching, political, provoking. And based on a true story. It's just a really good exploration of what makes human beings the way they are.

    I'm also perpetually reading an introduction to biolinguistics, but though it's interesting, it is also fairly complicated. And the book is in my third language, so reading it is going rather slowly.
    The worst thing that can happen is it goes to Hell...

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    http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7...-died-laughing

    Hall, Tarquin - 'The Case of the Man Who Died Laughing'
    Hardback: 352 pages (Feb. 2011) Publisher: Hutchinson ISBN: 0091925657

    http://www.eurocrime.co.uk/reviews/T..._Laughing.html

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    Ahead:

    Patricia Churchland - Neurophilosophy
    Kurt Rudolph - Gnosis: The Nature & History of Gnosticism1
    The Penguin Dictionary of Psychology
    Jean Piaget - Epistemology and Psychology: Towards a Theory of Knowledge
    Edward O. Wilson - Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge
    Aristotle - The Metaphysics
    Immanuel Kant - Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals
    P.D. Ouspensky - A New Model of the Universe2
    Lao Tzu - Tao Te Ching (translated by Jonathan Star)3
    Nikolai Gogol - Dead Souls
    Claude Levi-Strauss - Structural Anthropology
    Radhakrishnan & Moore - A Sourcebook in Indian Philosophy1
    Chuang Tzu - The Way of Chuang Tzu (translated by Thomas Merton)3
    The Upanishads vol. I1 & II (translated by F. Max Müller)
    Eliot Wiggington - Foxfire Books4:
    Vol. 1: Hog Dressing, Log Cabin Building, Mountain Crafts and Foods, Planting by the Signs, Snake Lore, Hunting Tales, Faith Healing, Moonshining, and Other Affairs of Plain Living
    Vol. 2: Ghost Stories, Spring Wild Plant Foods, Spinning and Weaving, Midwifing, Burial Customs, Corn Shuckin's, Wagon Making and More Affairs of Plain Living
    Vol. 3: Animal Care, Banjos and Dulcimers, Hide Tanning, Summer and Fall Wild Plant Foods, Butter Churns, Ginseng, and Still More Affairs of Plain Living

    1. Partially read, starting over to take proper notes
    2. Partially read
    3. Mostly read in another translation
    4. Read as a kid and recently re-acquired

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    The End of Mr Y by Scarlett Thomas. Synopsis under the cut.

    Ariel Manto is fascinated with an obscure nineteenth-century book called The End of Mr. Y, by Thomas Lumas—a book that no one alive has ever read. When she meets Saul Burlem, a professor whose interest in Lumas matches her own and whose knowledge of the book is greater, she signs on for postgraduate work with him in the field of thought experiments. But as soon as Ariel arrives at the university, Saul disappears.
    On the way home from work one day, Ariel stumbles into a used bookstore and across the one thing she never expected to find--a copy of The End of Mr. Y. Should she read it? The book is believed to be cursed: Anyone who has ever read it has either disappeared or died. Is that what happened to Saul Burlem? Will Ariel disappear, too? Despite Mr. Y’s sinister history, Ariel’s curiosity proves too great to resist.
    What she reads is the ostensibly fictional story of Mr. Y and his detailed instructions on how to enter the "Troposphere," an alternate world where the visitor can travel through time and space by entering other people’s minds and accessing their thoughts and memories. When Ariel uses the instructions to follow in Mr. Y’s footsteps and visit the Troposphere, she discovers a strangely enchanting, strongly addictive world.
    But she is quickly attacked by two menacing ex-CIA agents who also know the secrets of the Troposphere, men who are determined to enter her mind and destroy her memories. Shaking off her pursuers with the help of an errant Jesuit priest and a mouse-god named Apollo Smintheus, who becomes her guide and protector on this journey through consciousness, Ariel sets out to find Saul Burlem, who may be the only person left who can save her.
    But staying alive means delving deeper into the Troposphere—and if Ariel stays there too long, she may never come out.

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    finished pere goriot. i'm glad i stuck with it even though remembering the french names was a struggle. it was pretty emotionally intense and melodramatic which was funny to me since the author being the benchmark ili was what piqued my interest in the first place. at a couple points i was like "omg just give the characters a break already." thoughtful and cynical and heartbreaking. i'd recommend it.

    i'm currently trudging through the importance of being earnest by oscar wilde even though its only a little over a hundred pages (which is why i'm intent on just getting it over with). there are some really clever moments but the whole tone of the thing is so proud and "ho ho look how witty and cute i am, wink wink!" that its just kind of annoying.

    when i wrap up that one i've had love in the time of cholera by gabriel marcia marquez on the backburner for awhile.

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    cunnilingus epilepsy inducer
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    Right now I'm finishing off Dostoyevsky's The Double and I'm half way through The Varieties Of Religious Experience by William James.

    A few weeks ago I finished Seeking Wisdom: From Darwin To Munger by Peter Bevelin which is the first business-y book I've read in years. Although it wasn't annoying since it repeated and expounded on topics I was already aware of from reading a lot of the sources the author had read and personal experience. Anyhow a decent no bullshit book on worldly wisdom - I recommend it for anyone who wants to have any measure of material success.

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    You concur with Dostoyevsky that to be able to write well, one has to suffer, leckysupport?

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    . willekeurig's Avatar
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    Haruki Murakami is pretty awesome
    Quote Originally Posted by 1981slater View Post
    Axis of Evil: Iran, Iraq, North Korea and Agarina
    Quote Originally Posted by Maritsa Darmandzhyan
    Agarina does not like human beings; she just wants a pretty boy toy.
    Johari Nohari

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    cunnilingus epilepsy inducer
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    Quote Originally Posted by Absurd View Post
    You concur with Dostoyevsky that to be able to write well, one has to suffer, leckysupport?
    Yes, to some extent.

    Although Dostoyevsky can be extremely painful to read, so maybe he exaggerates the suffering aspect.

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    Quote Originally Posted by leckysupport View Post
    Although Dostoyevsky can be extremely painful to read, so maybe he exaggerates the suffering aspect.
    In fact, he doesn't. By suffering he means not only his personal suffering (physical and moral), the suffering of his people and all of humanity. Moreover he claims that a person must always be in a state of suffering not to mention that he had a "fear of knowledge" thinking it might kill faith, the knowledge.

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    Capitalist Pig's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lungs View Post
    stranger in a strange land by robert heinlein
    it was pretty decent and sort of compelling for the first half. i like themes where the main character is from a different time or place and the story provides a look at stuff that is normal in a fresh and different way. but after about halfway through it became this really bizarre and annoying preachy orgy fantasy like the author gave up on trying to hide his penis or something.
    yeah, unfortunately a lot of Heinlein's books end up like this. If you want to avoid it, stay away from the Lazarus Long books (wiki them to find out the titles), it gets really way more bizarre in certain passages than anything from Stranger.

    My absolute favorites of Heinlein's would have to be Starship Troopers and The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. Highly recommended.

  31. #31

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    still reading love in the time of cholera.
    it is
    going
    very...
    ...........
    slowly.

    its okay. it just doesn't have a lot of forward momentum. there's enough reason for me to enjoy it while i'm reading it but not enough reason for me to keep wanting to flip the pages. so i end up reading it not because i'm really into it but because its around and i just happen to be in the mood to read. which hasn't been often.


    what have you guys been reading lately?

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    cunnilingus epilepsy inducer
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    Quote Originally Posted by lungs View Post
    what have you guys been reading lately?
    The Conference of the Birds by Farid Attar and Antifragile by Taleb.

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    Capitalist Pig's Avatar
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    I'm finally getting around to finishing up Heinlein's Friday.

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    Fuck books.

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    killer wolf lemontrees's Avatar
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    proust.

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    killer wolf lemontrees's Avatar
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    also michael ende, lloyd alexander

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    epheme's Avatar
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    Last novel I read that I really liked was 'Red Earth and Pouring Rain' by Vikram Chandra.

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    Alan Dean Foster => IEE, ENFp

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    Am currently reading "The Simulacra" by Philip K. Dick.
    You need chaos in your soul to give birth to a dancing star. - Friedrich Nietzsche.

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    "History of My Life"
    -Giacomo Casanova

    for the third time ... <3
    Amber casts infinity of shadows, and my Avalon had cast many of its own, because of my presence there. I might be known on many earths that I had never trod, for shadows of myself had walked them, mimicking imperfectly my deeds and my thoughts.

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