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Up Topic General / Letters and Opinions / September BOOK-a-roo
- - By Tommeke Date 2018-09-04 3:22 AM
A new month a new thread to get your read on. Or muse about your reading... :hug:
Parent - By Tommeke Date 2018-09-04 3:48 AM
Just finished "Slapstick, or lonesome no more!" by Kurt Vonnegut.

Of all the books I've read from Vonnegut I would classify this as one of his lesser. I found the plot to be a bit lacking. Still a pleasant fun read if you're into Vonnegut, finished the book in a week which for me is considered fast (it's a fast read anyway).
You got to love some of his statements though:
- History is merely a list of surprises,' I said. 'It can only prepare us to be surprised yet again. "
- “I have had some experiences with love, or think I have, anyway, although the ones I have liked best could easily be described as "common decency". I treated somebody well for a little while, or even for a tremendously long time, and that person treated me well in return. Love need not have anything to do with it. "
- The museums in children’s minds, I think, automatically empty themselves in times of utmost horror—to protect the children from eternal grief.
- "Fascists are inferior people who believe it when somebody tells them they're superior."

Anyway, next up: "The Sirens of Titan" by Vonnegut as well :wink:
Parent - By george [us] Date 2018-09-05 2:52 PM
Just finished Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman. He is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. I really liked how certain aspects of the characters wasn't outright mentioned, and it was left up to the reader to make the realization on their own.
Parent - By Xtreme Taper Date 2018-09-18 12:13 PM
I am reading some old sci-fi from Orson Scott Card. The Ender's Game Series. I finished Ender's Game and Speaker for the Dead so far. On to Xenocide next.

Somehow missed these in my younger days.
Parent - - By Photocat [us] Date 2018-09-21 9:45 AM
I'm currently listening to SK Revival. It reminds me how I love his writing.

I'm thinking of going back and rereading all of his stuff. I've probably only read a third of his work.

Is there a specific order I should read it in or should I just read them as he wrote them, chronologically?
Parent - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-21 3:20 PM
I skipped around based on whatever caught my fancy at the time.

I’ve noticed that a lot of his later books are quicker reads overall and tend to be more hit or miss than his earlier books.
- - By noquitter [us] Date 2018-09-04 5:37 AM Edited 2018-09-04 5:52 AM
Just finished The Girl Before Some of the reviews (mostly from people who hadn't read the book) complained about the formula title, but it was recommended on the library website under the category "Two sides to every story" books.

This intrigued me.  (I am one one of those people who loves to see everything as complicated and nuanced and can easily argue both sides of any issue.) 

The book is set in a pristine upscale apartment and the characters appear to be enviable on the outside, but are damaged on the inside.This is much more interesting and scary to encounter in a story than the seedy settings and an unappealing characters that turn me off of so many books.  The current tenant (a young woman)learns a little about the former tenant (also a young woman) including her untimely demise. She becomes curious and as she learns more convinced that she too may at risk.  It's a mystery and there is a murder, but you really have to keep reading understand the full story. I liked it. Formula or not.
Parent - By Tommeke Date 2018-09-04 9:21 AM
The last book I read from Philip Roth "The Human Stain" was really good at getting into everyone's head and narrating their POV and motives.
Parent - - By brneydrnnr (barney cougar) [us] Date 2018-09-04 10:06 AM
we read that a few months ago for book club - no way I could have lived in that place (not that I would pass the test) :laugh:
it was interesting
Parent - By noquitter [us] Date 2018-09-04 10:10 AM Edited 2018-09-04 10:14 AM
Nor would I.  My DH might. :laugh:

I guess I should have mentioned there a A LOT of rules for living in the apartment and keeping it pristine.
Parent - - By donnasaur [us] Date 2018-09-05 11:42 AM
oh, I am very curious about that book, I may add that to my list.
Parent - By noquitter [us] Date 2018-09-06 5:30 AM
It's a trite expression, but I would call it. "a quick read".
Parent - By h3ather (Nice Tips) [us] Date 2018-10-02 2:21 PM
I liked this book.

And I like all the other "formula title" books that I've read (the girl...)
- - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-04 7:50 AM
I finished The Handmaid's Tale over the weekend. Yawn. Very slow moving first half followed by an only marginally interesting second half. I just didn't like Atwood's writing style. Her pacing was all over the board, long winded passages about unimportant things and rushed sections about things that could/should have been interesting. Her world building was awful with little to no explanation about how things got to the point that they were in the story, she obliquely hints at things throughout the book but none of it connects to a well fleshed out explanation about how the US could take such a drastic turn in such a short period of time. None of the characters had any depth and just served as devices to fill in a story. I didn't mind, even liked, the open ending but the information dump "Historical Notes" chapter at the end was high school creative writing bad.

Overall, I do not get the fuss. 

I'm now about 200 pages into Stephen King's Revival. It's entertaining but certainly not up to his early books. Not by a long shot.
Parent - By Tommeke Date 2018-09-04 9:34 AM :laugh:

I don't mind her non-explicit explanation of how things got this far in detail. I do feel like she gives enough clues in total, like how she lived together with her boyfriend and her child (in sin :shocker!:), the gradual take-over of a theocratic regime, etc...
Most trouble I had with her vocabulary and indeed the long winded descriptions.
Parent - - By blazer85 [us] Date 2018-09-04 10:43 AM Edited 2018-09-04 10:47 AM
I agree that Revival is not up to King's earlier books, but I enjoyed it none-the-less.

how the US could take such a drastic turn in such a short period of time.
Well, we are stepping backwards in time DAILY now, so it is not really a mystery to me as to how it could happen.  That said, when I read Handmaid's Tale in 1986 or so, the lack of explanation didn't bother me as it was supposedly fiction.
Parent - By oitsubob [us] Date 2018-09-05 6:47 PM
Parent - - By gadget girl Date 2018-09-04 11:53 AM

I couldn't disagree more about the book which I thought was chilling from start to finish.  The story is told completely from the perspective of Offred and that's sort of the point of living in a totalitarian regime -- they are not transparent and therefore you don't typically have a lot of information about what is going on.   The discomfort comes from the fact that you are living day to day with her, and seeing her limited world only.   

My husband's family is from Romania - they lived through the communist regime and tell stories somewhat like this.  Your neighbors were all informers for the regime, there were phone taps in your house.  You didn't have access to much information about what is going on, and you said nothing - even to your spouse in your own house. 

The last chapter is intended to give you a longer view of what has happened, with the added feature that it is analyzed much later in time -- which is another commentary about history and its "flattening" effect. 

If you like a more dramatic and easier to understand perspective on this story, watch the show on Hulu which is also exceptional but very different.  It definitely takes the viewer more by the hand and provides more information about the "backstory".
Parent - - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-04 12:53 PM
So I need an "easier to understand" perspective, do I? I'll "easily understand" you right upside the head!:mutmad::mutmad:

Seriously though, the point you make about Offred not explaining the decline in more detail because she really didn't know (because that's how totalitarianism works) is a good one that I hadn't thought of.
Parent - By gadget girl Date 2018-09-04 1:42 PM
: pbbt::laugh:

I didn't intend to patronize you.   I'm sure you know that. :cool:  I meant easier to understand in that the world is clarified from a more global perspective -- probably the producers of the show felt like you did, that the lack of  understanding of the world wouldn't work in the show.  I should add that Margaret Atwood consulted on the show too.
Parent - - By jennyO Date 2018-09-05 5:09 PM
I've got to agree with gadget girl here.  I also found the book chilling.  Not from personal experience with a totalitarian regime, but from personal experience living in the world as a woman.
Parent - - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-06 7:39 AM
Thanks for not insulting my intelligence.:hug:
Parent - - By gadget girl Date 2018-09-06 11:23 AM
she said she agreed with me, I'm sure that includes the insult to your intelligence.  : pbbt::wink:
Parent - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-06 12:02 PM
Parent - By noel (Kilotons of Honky Tonk Badonkadonk) Date 2018-09-07 5:35 PM
I agree, though I listened to the audio and it was fantastic. I like how the series is going beyond the book with more background on how they got where they are.
- - By gadget girl Date 2018-09-04 11:58 AM
I'm reading Wine of Solitude by Irene Nemirovsky.  This is her most autobiographical book and I am enjoying it.  I was volunteered to start a book club for my synagogue and this is the first book, so my reading process is super concentrated and I am treating this like a school assignment, complete with underlining important points and thinking about each chapter as I go through it.  Definitely less relaxing than my usual reading method.
Parent - - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-04 12:56 PM
That's why I've never joined a book club (despite having many well read and intelligent friends). I don't want reading to feel like an assignment. I even have that feeling about library books, the due date makes it feel too much like an assignment.
Parent - - By gadget girl Date 2018-09-04 1:46 PM
it's definitely a drawback.  In this case, there are other drawbacks, in that it is open to all the folks who go to the synagogue.  Each Jew = five opinions : pbbt:, so keeping the discussion on track will likely be challenging, not to mention there will be many different levels of experience with the book club format, which is likely to have unfortunate consequences.  And from just our little exchange above, it is likely that I will unintentionally piss of at least a handful of people, so I'll probably have to find another synagogue as soon as this fateful book club meeting ends.  :cry:
Parent - - By donnasaur [us] Date 2018-09-05 11:50 AM
I am in a book club and really enjoy it, but it has been hard to find the right fit. Some people want a just hang out and drink wine, some want to get really deep into discussion of the book, and some want to be in the middle somewhere. It took me some tries to get into a group that matches my interests and where the discussion is engaging.I love books and I love having a place to discuss them where I feel engaged and challenged.
Parent - - By gadget girl Date 2018-09-05 3:14 PM
:hug::hug:  I hear you.

I was in a book club several years ago and loved it because of the fit. We were really into discussing the book and not letting it devolve into kid talk (we all had young kids at the time).   We really wanted to maintain the grown up time and read some good stuff together.  I am pretty sure this upcoming group won't be as good, but who knows.
Parent - - By donnasaur [us] Date 2018-09-05 3:16 PM
I was in a group with other parents of young kids and it always devolved into mommy talk, and half the people didn't read the book. My group now is a range of ages and is the first one I have been in that also has men. I love it.
Parent - By gadget girl Date 2018-09-05 4:25 PM
Parent - By old turtle Date 2018-09-04 3:52 PM
My sister read all the time. Her first and only book club meeting made her feel like she was back In English class. She had joined for the wine and social time not remembered school nightmares. :laugh:
Parent - By Tommeke Date 2018-09-06 11:00 AM

> That's why I've never joined a book club

Also they wouldn't have you : pbbt:
- "But that guy has a beard !?" :shocker!::mutmad:
- "It says no BEARD(S), we can have one" : pbbt:
- - By insistor (needs a bigger dick) Date 2018-09-05 10:41 AM
Finished The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I didn't know it was listed as Young Adult until after I checked it out from the library but I thought it was still pretty good. I liked the perspective it was written from and it moved along well. It got me thinking that I have never read The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank so I picked that up now. It is so interesting and so sad. I'm amazed at how much it humanizes things for me. A lot of times when I picture WWII in my head I think of almost the dark ages but to hear about lamps, vacuums, movies and other things we have in our life now really hits home.
Parent - By blazer85 [us] Date 2018-09-05 11:13 AM
I read The Book Thief several years ago based on the recommendation of my then, 13-14 year old neighbor as she told me it was the "most important" book she had read.  In this case, I view the Young Adult classification as meaning it was a heavy topic written in a manner which a young adult could manage.  I think it takes a very talented author to write a book both grown-ups and teenagers can "enjoy", while telling such a horrific story.
Parent - By donnasaur [us] Date 2018-09-05 11:51 AM
The Book Thief is a very good book, regardless of YA or not!
Parent - By noel (Kilotons of Honky Tonk Badonkadonk) Date 2018-09-07 5:34 PM
its shelved in our library as Adult...but I guess it may differ. Most HS around here have it as one of their required readings, as well as The Kite Runner. I loved both!
- By donnasaur [us] Date 2018-09-05 11:54 AM
Let's see. I'm reading Robin, the biography of Robin Williams. It is good so far, but will be a long commitment. Next up will be Educated (for my book club) and then I need to find some fiction to mix in maybe Burial Rites or There,There.

I usually read a lot of fiction but this year I am reading much more non-fiction, and I am not entirely sure why.
- - By jennyO Date 2018-09-05 5:12 PM
Almost finished with the George Saunders essay collection The Braindead Megaphone.  One (terrific) essay on Huck Finn has got me thinking I need to reread that one.  I'd probably have a bit more insight than I did back in high school.  Let's hope, anyway!  Also almost done reading Pete Magill's Building Your Running Body.  Mostly stuff I already know, but it doesn't hurt to reinforce things with a little science.
Parent - - By jaszflamus (I like wool!) Date 2018-09-05 7:04 PM
I really liked Lincoln in the Bardo but mrs. flamus couldn't get into it, maybe because of the style or the paranormal aspect, and put it down halfway through. Are his essays similar? You got me thinking that I should reread Huck Finn/Tom Sawyer stuff to see if it's still funny and incisive or bordering on evil in today's age.

Waiting at some point for me is North by Jurek. I've been too engrossed by political and dog books to read anything remotely scientific but I'll get to that one soon. :laugh:
Parent - - By jennyO Date 2018-09-06 12:46 PM
The essays are a lot more straightforward.  He's like David Foster Wallace in that respect (in some others as well, come to think of it).  There are a couple of odd ones, but generally they are straightforward.  Thoughtful, but pretty easy reading.

Did you see the piece he wrote on Trump followers in the New Yorker, shortly before the election?  It's a good example of his humanism, his attempt to find common humanity even with those he/we initially find repellent:
Parent - - By jaszflamus (I like wool!) Date 2018-09-06 7:28 PM
I hadn't seen that piece but just read it...thanks for the link. :hug: Not only because of his humanism but for the imagery, lessons, descriptions, prescience, insights etc. etc. etc. He flat out can write! I suspect that particular writing largely holds true more than two years later, but I wonder if he'd write it differently today now that much of the humanity has devolved into fanaticism for the remaining base. :wtf: I do think he captured what was happening in 2016 and continues through today, the fear and divisiveness (ok divisiveness was Obama's word at McCain's word always has been hate), in current supporters. The focus on the supporters' fears in the Saunders article is a big part of recognizing the humanity in all of us.

In any event, I'll definitely read more from Saunders so thanks. :happy:
Parent - - By jennyO Date 2018-09-07 11:28 AM
I'm a HUGE Saunders fan.  He's just so down-to-earth and good.  Plus, like you said, the guy can write!
Parent - - By jaszflamus (I like wool!) Date 2018-09-07 4:42 PM
Indeed, on all of those things. :cool:

Related, albeit not related to this book thread, I've missed your and your hubby's writing on this forum...both of you can flat out write too! I've always loved listening to both of you in person or through your writings about running, family, social issues and the rest of life. :hug: I guess that's a gentle nudge to get you and s&f back here more. :blush::laugh:
Parent - By jennyO Date 2018-09-13 3:09 PM
Aw, that's sweet of you to say.  Thank you. :blush:  I'll try!
Parent - By jennyO Date 2018-09-06 12:49 PM
Instead of Huck Finn, I decided to make headway on my huge stack of unread books.  Starting Sarah Waters's The Night Watch.
Parent - - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-07 9:26 AM
Speaking of revisiting books from our school years: I thought about revisiting Ulysses this morning.  My impetus for doing this would be to see if human nature is radically different today from what it was then.
Parent - - By jennyO Date 2018-09-07 11:30 AM
That would be quite a project, at least for me!  Maybe an audio recording of Ulysses while running for 6-days around an indoor track ... then write a book about what a trippy experience the whole thing was. :cool:
Parent - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-07 1:19 PM
:laugh::laugh: :hug:
Parent - By jennyO Date 2018-09-13 3:11 PM
I'm reading Sarah Waters's The Night Watch and about to start listening to the Woodward book.
- By jaszflamus (I like wool!) Date 2018-09-05 7:13 PM
Started the month reading Unhinged by Omarosa, and am a little over halfway through now. I'm learning a lot, mostly about her since it's mostly about her so far. In any event, I had no idea she is so accomplished and went through so much. And also surprised that she's not bitter or vindictive or anything like that...she's self-absorbed for sure, but seems like a really decent human being in addition to being really smart and like I said, accomplished. A really good writer, too...I can't wait to finish this very engrossing book.
- - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-06 4:43 AM
Finished Eat & Run at work yesterday and I found it as good as North.  I had put the book down just before my trip to TN.  My race there ended on a "down" moment and I've been wondering "why?" and "what could I have done differently?"  I open up the book, and within a few paragraphs, I find Jurek struggling with fatigue during one of his Spartathlons.  The 4-pt checklist he used to work through it might have helped me at ARFTA.
- acknowledge and allow yourself to "feel" the issue
- take stock of what is really happening
- come up with some ideas on what you can realistically do about the situation
- pack the negative feelings away and start doing the "next thing" you have to do, and remember the "benefits" (goal?) of what you're doing.

Finished A Dog's Purpose just before going to bed.  Had to wipe a few tears from my eyes as I walked toward the bedroom, but I'm sure that was just the tequila :wink:

I've got some Philip Roth, Jon Meacham, and Kierkegaard stuff on deck, plus the new Murakami should be available to me soon.
Parent - - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-06 7:40 AM
Some of the recipes in Eat & Run are really tasty.:cool:
Parent - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-06 2:54 PM
Some of them do look tempting.
Parent - - By jennyO Date 2018-09-06 12:48 PM
That checklist sounds a lot like the list of what survivors do in life-or-death situations.  If you haven't read Laurence Gonzales's Deep Survival, I urge you to pick it up.  I think you'd like it.

And GREAT JOB at ARFTA!  You should feel very proud.  That was an incredible effort.  Do you think you'll do it again next year?  I'm interested in trying it sometime...
Parent - - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-06 2:54 PM
I won't be there next year, thanks to a six-day in Milwaukee that's created a conflict.  I hope I'm there the year you make it out this way, though.
Parent - - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-06 4:52 PM
Let me know when that Milwaukee race is. I’d like to help in any way that I can.
Parent - - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-07 9:28 AM
Thanks.  It's the last week of August next year.  It's on an indoor track.
Parent - - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-07 12:02 PM
If we aren't visiting Hilton Head that week, I'll be there!
Parent - - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-10 6:42 AM
Parent - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-10 7:44 AM
Hell, it's a 6-day race, I'm sure that our trip won't overlap with all of it.:laugh:
Parent - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-06 2:55 PM
I will look for that book.  SJ also mentions a book, or a study, that I plan on trying to find also.
Parent - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-07 9:27 AM
The book SJ mentions is Surviving the Extremes by Dr. Kenneth Kamler.  I have a hold on both.
Parent - - By jaszflamus (I like wool!) Date 2018-09-18 5:47 PM
And don't forget A Dog's Journey now. :wink:

I'm about halfway through North now. In fact about halfway on the trail since they are in PA as I read. This is an amazing book on all kinds of levels! :cool:

ps. the Jureks get it right about the PA trails. You know Laurel Highlands and probably others in PA but the AT in this state is JUST how they describe i.e. Rocksylvania. :laugh: Imagine LH x 5 or 10. One thing that bothers me about his descriptions is his fear of snakes, bears and ticks...sure they are there but shouldn't be anything to worry about. Maybe that was for dramatic effect, dunno. But this book is inspiring in so many ways that I can forgive Scott for that irrational wimpiness he expresses about critters.

pps. I've picked up a few ticks on the AT in PA, and run across bears in PA and VA but never have given it a thought. I always have been more nervous out west with mountain lions, coyotes and other critters I don't know. I remember one time running the desert mountain trails outside of Reno when a young woman hiker with a big dog stopped me, really worried, to question me why I didn't have a dog with me to fend off the coyotes. :laugh: My reply was something like hey I'm just running. Yeah lame response, and I think Jurek definitely understands that attitude, but I wish he hadn't verbalized his fears of spiders, snakes, bears and ticks. That fear might make his story better for a lot of readers, but it diminishes it a bit for me and maybe a lot of trailrunners. Critters on the trail would make a great topic of discussion somewhere sometime and it maybe has been done a few hundred times but I don't think here. :wtf: But so I'm clear, Jurek's fear of critters in no way lessens what he did and has done...this is just a little side trail from his incredible story.
Parent - - By SRoo Date 2018-09-18 7:24 PM
I saw a bear last week on my way home from work! :cool:  She galumped across the road in front of me.  :happy:

Also, I am afraid of ticks. :blush: 

Oh, was I supposed to be posting about books? : pbbt:
Parent - By jaszflamus (I like wool!) Date 2018-09-18 8:24 PM
:laugh: I guess i was supposed to be posting about books too. :blush:

We'll have a topic about bears and ticks and other critters at some point. :wink:
Parent - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-19 11:43 AM
I think we fear what we're not used to.  I would have some fears about running trails out west, not knowing as much as I think I should about the habits of grizzly bears and how their snakes behave compared to ours.
- By oitsubob [us] Date 2018-09-07 1:28 PM
Just finished "Peace, War and the European Powers: 1814-1914" by C.J. Bartlett. It is a very short read (180 pages) but walks you through in summary format much of the diplomatic BS and backstabbing that occurred in Europe from the defeat of Napoleon to the start of WWI.
- - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-10 6:41 AM
I'm really enjoying American Pastoral as well as some of Philip Roth's early essays in Why I Write: Collected Non-Fiction 1960-2013.  I'm looking forward to "Epstein," which I should be able to pick up this week.  His ability to defend his writing and go deep into the motivations and fears of his mostly Jewish critics is fascinating.
Parent - By Tommeke Date 2018-09-13 4:28 PM
Yes that dude is really a master in getting all the angles.
Parent - By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-19 11:34 AM
Finished American Pastoral.  I don't like books where I don't get some sort of resolution at the end.  I was frustrated.  I don't have to have a cradle-to-grave story, and Roth made what I believe to be his central point very well, but I was invested in the characters.  I think a tenth chapter would have been nice.  I don't see myself tackling the second book of the trilogy immediately.

"Epstein" left me flat.  I wish he would have explored the protaganist with the depth of insight he used to explore The Swede in AP.

The collected non-fiction continues to impress me.
- By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-09-18 9:05 AM Edited 2018-09-18 9:18 AM
I reread Chuck Dugan is AWOL by Eric Chase Anderson (Wes's brother). It's an okay story made entertaining by Anderson's illustrations.

Right now I'm rereading some Stephen King short stories from Skeleton Crew while I wait for a book to arrive. I ordered volume one of Karl Ove Knausgård's My Struggle after seeing Mark Z. Danielewski recommend it on his Instagram.

Book question - Has anyone ever read The Griffin and Sabine trilogy by Nick Bantock? It sounds interesting.
- - By triplejake (The Vampire Lestat) [us] Date 2018-09-18 4:40 PM
Ooh, I get to participate in one of these.  Finished my long slog through Our Mutual Friend, which I enjoyed in the end, and am now to I'll Be Gone in the Dark, which promises to be a quicker read.
Parent - - By brneydrnnr (barney cougar) [us] Date 2018-09-19 3:56 PM
where the heck have you been?! :mutmad:
Parent - By triplejake (The Vampire Lestat) [us] Date 2018-09-19 4:05 PM
Watching TV and working instead of reading, I guess.  :blush:
- By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-09-19 11:39 AM
Norman Mailers Advertisements for Myself, thanks to Philip Roth mentioning it in one of his essays or interviews.

Your Life As Story: Discovering the "New Autobiography" and Writing Memoir As Literature. by Tristine Rainer.  Recommended to me by a guy who came up to fish at the reservoir last week.  Learned he was a writer after helping up from the bank to a chair in the shade.  He has advanced COPD, a consequence of too many years of smoking and quitting too late.
- - By Beastie Girl [us] Date 2018-09-20 7:31 AM
Just finished The Store by James Patterson, which was just ok. It was about a guy who went to work for "The Store" which is basically Amazon and The Store tried to take over his life. Interesting premise but I didn't feel like there was climax to the story at all. :wtf:

Currently reading Haunted also by James Patterson. It's part of a series with detective Michael Bennett, and so far it's good, par for the course for this particular series.

I finished listening to Come Sundown by Nora Roberts last week. It was a good mystery, but I figured out the twist early in the story, so it wasn't as exciting as it could have been. Currently listening to I Let You Go by Clare Mackintosh, which is really good. There have been a few twists already, and I didn't see a big one coming until it was revealed. This one is really keeping my interest, and since I've been listening to it on my runs, I want to run some more to see how it ends! : pbbt:
Parent - By Beastie Girl [us] Date 2018-09-26 9:28 AM
Finished I Let You Go, and although I did see another of the twists coming, the final twist I did not see coming. Good book overall, but it was the unabridged version and I found that it dragged. I am currently listening to The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan, which is not something I'd usually listen to or read. It started out slow, and I wanted to bail, but now that it is finally getting into the actual story part, it's interesting.
- By insistor (needs a bigger dick) Date 2018-09-26 7:42 AM
Finished two recently that were both decent reads and hard to put down but weren't that great overall

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng. It almost felt as if this was written specifically to become an HBO series.

The Girl Before by J.P. Delaney. A mix of Fountainhead and Fifty Shades of Grey, I guess.
- By Tommeke Date 2018-10-02 6:41 PM
it's not September anymore but I'll float my boat.

Finished "Sirens of Titans" from Vonnegut. Again, not one my favorites. Lots of absurd science fiction in this one, although it was written in 1959 which is amazing as it definitely holds the test of time. I prefer his absurdity to be rooted more in reality.

However, I just love his thought provoking social ideas and experiments in the book. I don't want to give any spoilers but the whole setup of the story is pretty crazy.
There were again a couple of quotes that struck me (for 1959) and are sadly still very relevant.
When asking the protagonist where he wants to go:
“Indianapolis, Indiana is the first place in the United States of America where a white man was hanged for the murder of an Indian. The kind of people who'll hang a white man for murdering an Indian--that's the kind of people for me.”

The book also puts the idea forward of "The Church of God The Utterly Indifferent". It states that everything happens through a series of random accidents and it would be blasphemous to "Thank God" for their good fortune or to think that someone was in God's good grace. Basically God is so powerful that there is nothing mankind can do for him that he could do a trillion times better.
"Puny man can do nothing at all to help or please God Almighty, and Luck is not the hand of God."

Starting "Portnoy's Complaint" from Philip Roth now.
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