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Thread: Read Anything Good Lately?

  1. #201
    The Lost Prophet CashMoneySoviet's Avatar
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    The Stand - Stephen King, Deception Point- Dan Brown

  2. #202
    FORT Fan Lemon's Avatar
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    Does anyone read Italo Calvino?
    He's relatively unknown in USA, but is a big literary figure in Italy. I have read 4 of his books so far (Cosmicomics, The Cloven Biscount, The Baron in the Trees, and the Nonexistant Knight). To read him is a strange and wonderful experience - no literary parallels suggest themselves. He is said to be undoubtedly among the most original, imaginative writers of the 20th century (From the cover blurb... I can't agree more). His books are unlike anything that are currently being published in USA.

    For example, Cosmicomics is a series of stories about the evolution of the universe. Calvino makes characters out of mathematical formulae and simple cellular structures. A constant guide throughout the itineraries spanning billions of light years is old Qfwfq - a sort of an omnipresent cosmic particle. Through the span of the stories Qfwfq confesses the nature of his affectionate tie with the moon, explores the belt of a galaxy, recalls the Universe as it was before its expansion when all of space was condensed into a singularity, the seeing of the first sunrise ever, the agony of being the last existing dinosaur and his never-ending ache for a primordial unity. The characters that are introduced throughout the stories range from abstract chemical compositions, brightly colored mollusks, gases and so on, with names like (k)yK and Mrs.Vhd Vhd,. And all of these beings seem very real and human. It is at once surreal, philosophical, humorous and entertaining, without slipping into pretentiousness. Never would I have thought that a story about, say, an atom could be so memorable and reveal so much about human emotions. Try him if you want to swerve off from American mainstream books like 'The Da Vinci Code' hero - heroine adventure for a while, the book is pretty thin. I never knew a book could be written like this.

  3. #203
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    I liked Lovely Bones...Creepy subject matter but good book.

  4. #204
    FORT Regular TeenQueen's Avatar
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    I read - I was a Teenage Fairy it was good I guess
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  5. #205
    Wonky snarkmistress Lucy's Avatar
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    Finally finished Carl Hiaason's latest, "Skinny Dip." Wonderful as all of his are, although the ending seemed a bit overly tidy and quick.
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  6. #206
    FORT Newbie iloveclaykin's Avatar
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    Re:

    I just finished 'The Beach' by Alex Garland last week. It was really great. If you didn't like the movie don't worry. The movie was only loosely based on the book, with the American director portraying the French as losers and the American as the hero.

  7. #207
    CCL
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    Climbing Solsbury Hill CCL's Avatar
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    Ok I didn't read this book recently but it it is a good read so I'm going to recommend it. Anyways, it is called Juno & Juliet and is about two twins and their first year at university in Galway, Ireland.

    Oh, and I agree that Jasper Fforde rocks. The new book(Something's Rotten) was really good. His next book (the Humpty Dumpty one) is coming out fall 2005 and is to be called Nursery Crimes apparently. Will be waiting impatiently.
    Last edited by CCL; 09-13-2004 at 06:01 PM.
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  8. #208
    Best Buddies Gutmutter's Avatar
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    My new favorite book is "The Day Laid on the Altar" by Adria Bernardi. It is set in plague-era Italy and starts with an artistic shepard. Every chapter features a character related to the previous one (like 6 degrees of separation) and circles back to the original character. Brilliantly written. My old favorite is "Shell Seekers" by Rosamunde Pilcher. I've read it every year for almost a decade now.

  9. #209
    Culture slut geek the girl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iloveclaykin
    I just finished 'The Beach' by Alex Garland last week. It was really great. If you didn't like the movie don't worry. The movie was only loosely based on the book, with the American director portraying the French as losers and the American as the hero.
    Surprisingly, the director is British: Danny Boyle, who also directed the brilliant Trainspotting and Shallow Grave. I absolutely hated the movie version of The Beach though; I was reading book at the time they announced the casting and when I found out they'd cast Leonardo DiCaprio as Richard I just wanted to scream. I still like the book though, it is well written and plotted. I also quite liked Garland's second book, The Tesseract. After that he got major writer's block and emerged last year as the screen writer of British zombie flick 28 Days Later. I also saw a new collection of short stories (or was it a novelette? Can't really remember) in the bookstore a couple of days ago, so I guess he's recovering from writer's block now.
    "There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more" (Morrissey)

  10. #210
    Culture slut geek the girl's Avatar
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    While I'm posting, I might as well share some of the best reading I've done lately:

    - The American Boy by Andrew Taylor

    Beautifully written and atmospheric, it is part historic novel, part detective novel. It takes place in early 19th century London and The American Boy the title alludes to is no other than Edgar Allan Poe, who was staying in London at the time. I have a soft spot for historic novels set in poverty-stricken 19th century London and I'm loving the Dickensian trend in British literature right now, with books like The Crimson Petal and the White and Sarah Water's novels.

    - Doghouse Roses by Steve Earle

    Yep, he can write too! A gritty and touching collection of short stories echoing of Raymond Carver and John Steinbeck. I love Earle's compassion for his characters and the fact that he can't stop namedropping Gram Parsons in every single story :-)

    - Illumination Night by Alice Hoffman

    I'm a big fan of Hoffman's; she writes absolutely compelling stories about smalltown life and mixes it up with a bit of magic realism. This one is no exception. A very pleasurable read.
    "There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more" (Morrissey)

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