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Up Topic General / Letters and Opinions / May Book Club
- - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-05-01 7:46 AM Edited 2018-05-01 7:50 AM
I finished Pet Sematary last night. It was the last of the older Stephen King books that I hadn't read. I have not seen the movie so the story was new to me.

Like many King books I thought that it had a strong introduction and nice set up, a somewhat slow moving middle section and a rushed, predictable and frustrating end.

Still, it was entertaining.

8/10 compared to other King books.

Tonight I will be starting A Year in the Wilderness: Bearing Witness in the Boundary Waters by Amy and Dave Freeman. I've seen this husband and wife team speak at Canoecopia (large paddling expo) a few times and am always impressed with their spirit and accomplishments, just really cool people. They will be stopping on their Book Tour to Save the Boundary Waters in my town to speak at Rutabaga (a paddle shop near my house) on May 12th. I plan on having them sign my copy.:cool:
Parent - By Tommeke Date 2018-05-01 9:19 AM
I'm going all out on Kurt Vonnegut. Read Mother Night in 2-3 days, just bought Cat's Cradle and Galapagos.
Halfway through Cat's Cradle and enjoyed it thus far.

Somehow he manages to partition his books the way I like to read them. I'm not really a "40 pages chapter" person, and he usually has like 2 page chapters/sections so it's really easy to read 5 minutes here 10 minutes there. Also, 200 pages novels, the way I like 'em :wink:

His humor is very similar to Douglas Adams (hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy), although I would imagine the influence to be inverted, like Adams probably was influenced plenty by Vonnegut.
Parent - By Photocat [us] Date 2018-05-01 1:06 PM
I just started reading Wuthering Heights for the first time. I can only read in short stints but good so far. Better than expected. Though i've no clue how far in I am.

Had to give up the Dark Tower. Thoroughly bored after halfway through book 2.
Parent - By jaszflamus (I like wool!) Date 2018-05-02 4:55 PM
Finished Twelve Days by Steven Barnes, read mostly on the airplanes. This is a somewhat different kind of novel for Barnes who largely does sci-fi but this was set in current times with just a touch of sci-fi/paranormal with wonderful characters including the central autistic boy as well as a twisty plot, plenty of action and the rich descriptions which will keep me reading his books.
Parent - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-05-04 10:11 AM
I finished A Year in the Wilderness: Bearing Witness in the Boundary Waters yesterday. It was a quick read that borders almost into coffee table book. Amy and Dave Freeman are better speakers than writers. I've seen them talk about this same adventure and it was WAY more interesting. Their enthusiasm was contagious and they had a lot of interesting tales. The book was little more than, "We paddled from X lake to Y lake. A loon flew overhead and we saw a moose." There were many pictures but only a few of them were all that interesting, which is a shame because in their talks they present better pictures. It was also hard to follow because I don't know the names of landmarks in the Boundary Waters and they didn't include any easily readable maps.

I view the purchase of this book as a donation to their cause, and for that it is good.
- - By h3ather (Nice Tips) Date 2018-05-01 10:08 AM
Finished The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O by Neal Stephenson  I really liked it.

Had to put Boy's Life (Robert McCammon) down. It wasn't doing it for me.

Also finished We Need to Talk about Kevin by Lionel Shriver. This was pretty good too. The twist was so obvious, yet I didn't catch it until right before it happened (and TBH figuring it out beforehand doesn't detract from the story)

Now on The Fireman by Joe Hill.
Parent - - By insistor (needs a bigger dick) Date 2018-05-01 10:25 AM
I saw you finished We Need to Talk about Kevin on Goodreads and it looked interesting to me. I'm about 100 pages into it now. The writing is SOOO over the top (who would ever write a letter like the ones she is writing) so my guess is that POSSIBLE SPOILER her estranged husband is actually dead
Parent - - By h3ather (Nice Tips) Date 2018-05-02 9:53 AM
:wink:
Parent - - By insistor (needs a bigger dick) Date 2018-05-07 11:43 AM
I'm a little over half way through now and I hate every character in this book.
Parent - - By brneydrnnr (barney cougar) [us] Date 2018-05-07 11:57 AM
Have you seen the movie? I watched it last year I think, but haven't read the book. it was depressing
Parent - - By insistor (needs a bigger dick) Date 2018-05-07 12:40 PM
I'm pretty sure I have seen the movie but can't remember for sure. But I can't remember all of the people being total assholes in the movie so I'm not sure.
Parent - - By h3ather (Nice Tips) Date 2018-05-17 9:07 AM
I just watched the movie. The assholishness turned into naiveté on the part of the dad and helplessness on the part of the mom.
Parent - - By brneydrnnr (barney cougar) [us] Date 2018-05-17 1:41 PM
they should have given that kid balls to jungle instead of an archery set
Parent - By h3ather (Nice Tips) Date 2018-05-17 2:38 PM
ha.  the book was a lot better (as is always the case), but the characters therein weren't so likable....
Parent - - By h3ather (Nice Tips) Date 2018-05-07 12:00 PM
they're all assholes :laugh:
Parent - By insistor (needs a bigger dick) Date 2018-05-07 12:41 PM
There is no chance they would have stayed married in real life
Parent - By runnertype [us] Date 2018-05-19 9:41 AM
Would highly recommend Lionel Shriver's newest book. :hug:
- - By gadget girl Date 2018-05-01 11:18 AM
Just finished Annie Proulx's The Shipping News.   It was sort of wacky and parts of it were over the top but the prose was original and the story reels you in, so to speak. ahahahaha.

After watching the amazing series The Looming Tower on Hulu, I am reading Lawrence Wright's book of the same name.  It is gripping.
Parent - - By sideshowbob Date 2018-05-07 5:45 AM
Loved Shiping News . Did you try Brokeback Mountauin by the same author ? Worth a visit .
Parent - - By gadget girl Date 2018-05-07 10:57 AM
Hi SSB, yes I read Brokeback Mountain recently also and enjoyed it.   It was very well written and poignant, but in my opinion seems to be one of the very rare cases where the movie was better than the book.  If you haven't seen Ang Lee's masterpiece, you should.  :happy:
Parent - By h3ather (Nice Tips) Date 2018-05-22 9:13 AM
Brokeback Mountain is a movie I will always stop flipping channels to watch (regardless of where in the movie I land)
Parent - By Tommeke Date 2018-05-22 4:52 PM
Ah, the good old days when people were a bit upset over a president who couldn't utter a decent opinion about a movie :roll:
- - By blazer85 [us] Date 2018-05-02 10:51 AM
I'm about a third of the way into I'll Be Gone Into The Dark, the book about the Golden State Killer which was published recently, but before they caught the actual killer in the past week.  I am HUGE fan of true crime books and have a fascination with serial killers....don't ya want me to babysit your kids:laugh:.....so this book was right up my alley. This killer was so disgusting and disturbed.  The author had done years of research, but unfortunately, passed away before she finished the book.  As such, they note which sections of the book were composed based on her detailed notes or prior articles she had published, as those parts read a bit differently. So far, that is the only "downside" to the book.  While those parts are still good, her writing style and manner in which she presents details is so excellent, that I feel even more sad, the author died.
Parent - - By gadget girl Date 2018-05-02 3:05 PM
What seems most amazing to me was how they caught the Golden State Killer - using an open source geneology site in which people (including a relative of the Golden State Killer) post their DNA sequence online for what turns out to be unlimited use by third parties (including police detectives).  I wonder what privacy will mean ten years from now......
Parent - - By jennyO Date 2018-05-03 4:52 PM
It's wild, huh?  Pretty tricky issue, actually.  If he'd given his own DNA to the company, that would fall pretty squarely within the third-party doctrine, and the police obtaining it would not be a 4th Am search.  But it was a relative's DNA.  As someone said in the paper I was reading today, that means a relative who uses such a service "has effectively given away the genetic key to the entire family." :shocker!:  And yet ... could it really be argued that the GSK had a reasonable expectation of privacy in someone else's DNA? 

I can't see a court invalidating the search in this case.  But the issue is going to need to be addressed for sure, probably by legislation.
Parent - By gadget girl Date 2018-05-06 5:14 PM
I guess it depends how you phrase it, if someone else' DNA is effectively your DNA and you didn't release it, it seems somewhat tricky.  I am not a big privacy advocate myself and usually side with the police, but it is a very interesting issue and I can see where legislation would be needed to address this.
Parent - - By Quagmire [us] Date 2018-05-07 9:20 AM
Seems to me that if you can't stop your relatives from making their (and your) DNA profiles public...then that de facto removes any reasonable expectation of privacy anyone may have ever had in regards to DNA.  And now, if someone would be so kind as to inform the Supreme Court that I, Quagmire, have already decided the case, it might just save a lot of people a lot of time. 

So...what's a modern day serial killer to do?  Thinking (hypothetically) about that has given me the idea for a crime novel...an idea that any of you can use because I am too lazy to write a crime novel....anyway...the idea is that instead of futilely trying to prevent the inevitable shedding of one's own personal DNA at any given crime scene, a serial killer might be better served, instead, by completely saturating said crime scene with literally thousands and thousands of randomly collected DNA samples (hair, skin, blood, saliva, sweat) painstakingly gathered over time from various and sundry public places (restaurants, barber shops, gyms, toilets, subways, trash containers, etc...).  Gross...maybe...but brilliant nonetheless.  You heard it here first (unless, of course, you've heard it somewhere else...then you just heard it here again).
Parent - By jennyO Date 2018-05-07 10:55 AM
:laugh: That's a pretty funny idea.  I have seen a show recently, though, where the killer planted someone else's hair at the crime scene to throw suspicion on them.  Same idea, just lower tech.

I also have a hard time seeing how there's a privacy violation here, but, like GG, I'm also not one to get terribly worked up about privacy.  People's outrage over invasions of privacy, when they exhibit so much of themselves online, is just :roll::roll:
Parent - By gadget girl Date 2018-05-07 11:02 AM
great idea for a novel but you have to take all that time to write it, find an agent, publisher, negotiate a good contract, movie rights, blah blah blah.  Seems too time consuming.  Instead I have stolen your idea and will be mass producing the INSTA-DNA in a JAR! (patent pending).  The serial killer market seems to be growing and I can see a big demand for my jar of randomly collected DNA samples which comes in 8 oz and for mega crime scenes: the  32 oz size. 

thanks Quags! You may want to be more circumspect about your next great idea.      : pbbt:
Parent - By Tommeke Date 2018-05-22 4:28 PM
You would have to check for patterns on how they collect DNA though. And always use the same set of DNA with every crime because otherwise they can just eliminate single occurrences.
Like your DNA will leave other patterns on the scene than stuff you plant there.
However the saturation may work.
I heard on the radio a couple of days ago that they are training dogs to sniff for sperm traces. Because a lot of traces actually light up in black light, like snail trails. So to eliminate the many false positives and costly lab testing, it's more effective to use dogs.
Parent - - By Arimathea [us] Date 2018-05-18 9:53 PM
I am not sure that any of us have a justifiable expectation of the behaviour of distant relatives.

I agree, though, that the courts are going to need to address this at some point.
Parent - - By jennyO Date 2018-05-22 11:31 AM
You know, it occurred to me as I listened to the book that it's not just genealogy-crazed relatives we have to worry about.  If anyone in your family is a registered sex offender, or has even been arrested in CA in the last few years (regardless of whether charges were filed), that person's DNA is in the state's database.  And that database is only going to grow.

I know this makes me a bad liberal, but personally I'm just fine with that.
Parent - By blazer85 [us] Date 2018-05-22 2:52 PM
Yep....me too!!
Parent - By brneydrnnr (barney cougar) [us] Date 2018-05-03 11:37 AM
I finished that yesterday..holy cow!
Parent - By jennyO Date 2018-05-03 4:44 PM
Will be starting this (as an audiobook) this weekend.  Can't wait!
Parent - - By donnasaur [us] Date 2018-05-15 10:43 AM
i'm on a library waitlist for that-I can't wait to read it!
Parent - - By blazer85 [us] Date 2018-05-15 11:17 AM
I finished it this weekend.  I am SO disappointed she did not get to finish it as I am sure she wanted, but it is still  decent read.  At this same time, I am listening to Season 2 of the Criminology podcast which is about this guy.  There is a lot more info.....some just awful.....and it is really well done.
Parent - - By cowboyjunkie Date 2018-05-15 11:52 AM
Hah! I was just going to ask if you were listening to that podcast. I am almost done with season 1.
Parent - By blazer85 [us] Date 2018-05-15 12:04 PM
The second season has longer episodes and goes into so much more detail.  I have only listened to the first two so far and man-o-man, this guy was horrible.
Parent - By Beastie Girl [us] Date 2018-05-15 11:59 AM
I was halfway through the podcast when they arrested the guy. I haven't listened since. I want to get to the episode that talks about the suspects just to see who was actually on the radar since this guy actually wasn't.
- By sideshowbob Date 2018-05-07 5:44 AM
Finished my travel book, The Godfather by Marior Puzo . Yes, I know it’s been around awhile, but this was my first read. I’d say that the movie did justice to the novel , unlike most movie adaptations. The theme of a parallel culture/society that lives by it’s own rules sticks  in my mind. There are a number of other groups who do this ;I’m thinking of the ultra rich / politically powerful folks—too big  to fail and too rich to jail.
Now reading Lawrence Durrell’s Bitter Lemons of Cyprus that I found in the ship’s library and maybe I will purloin said book
- By mkh (Mr. Fashionista) Date 2018-05-07 1:12 PM
Reading Beartown about a small town and it's junior hockey team, but it's obviously moving to be about a lot more than just hockey.
- By Tommeke Date 2018-05-11 4:15 PM
Finished Cat's Cradle by Vonnegut. Fiction about a journalist who wants to write a book about the inventor of the atomic bomb. He embarks on a trip to a small island with a peculiar religion and a dictator to interview the son of the inventor. The usual Vonnegut cynical humor is present mixed with his social criticism and absurdity.
Somehow found this one a bit less than the ones I have read. Still a solid 7 for me though.

Next book is Galapagos from the same author .
- - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-05-15 8:20 AM
I'm nearing the end of Coyote America by Dan Flores. It's about coyotes and their treatment in the United States. I hadn't realized that the US government all but declared war on coyotes, and many other predator animals, in the past and were killing them by the thousands in very inhumane ways. This book details how despite human's best efforts, coyotes have not only survived, but thrived. It's an interesting read but parts are slow and there's a fair amount of repetition. I'm finding that after 15 pages or so I start dozing off.
Parent - - By h3ather (Nice Tips) Date 2018-05-17 9:08 AM
I ready this as coyote ugly and was like: "why would they make that into a book? and why would Bread be reading it?"  :laugh:
Parent - - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-05-17 10:51 AM
I can PM you some of my Coyote Ugly fan fiction if you'd like.
Parent - By h3ather (Nice Tips) Date 2018-05-17 10:52 AM
:laugh: hard pass : pbbt:
Parent - - By Arimathea [us] Date 2018-05-18 9:54 PM
Varmints.

I have lost cats to them. And while I appreciate coyotes' place in the ecosystem, I wish they weren't in my yard.
Parent - - By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-05-19 8:05 AM
Do you say Ky-ote (two syllables) or ky-o-tee (three syllables)?
Parent - - By runnertype [us] Date 2018-05-19 9:45 AM
The latter. (Answering for Arimathea, lol, although I don't know how she says it.)

For some reason I've always thought ky-ote sounded like the hillbilly version....
Parent - By Arimathea [us] Date 2018-05-26 7:32 AM
You are correct. In California it's a three syllable word.
- - By Beastie Girl [us] Date 2018-05-15 8:37 AM
I read Shift: Creating Better Tomorrows: Winning at Work and in Life by Michael O'Brien on my flight out to CA a few weeks ago. The author is my mentor in a work-related mentorship program, so I figured I should read his book. It was basically the story of how he was hit head-on by an SUV while cycling in New Mexico while he was there for a work conference and his subsequent recovery. He ended up quitting his pharma job (I work in pharma marketing) and became a mentor/life coach. I was a bit disappointed as it was light on the "winning in work" content, it just told how he ended up quitting pharma to pursue his dream, it didn't really give advice on how us regular people are supposed to pursue our own dreams, but hopefully I'll get that from the mentorship program.

I also finished Cold Moon by Alexandra Sokoloff on audiobook. It's #3 of a 5-book series, and I now have to go see if the other two books are available on audio yet. This is what I listen to while running. I am sure I have other audiobooks in my queue, but I'm kind of obsessed with this series now.
Parent - By blazer85 [us] Date 2018-05-15 12:19 PM
After working a full-time job for 32 years in an industry I never really cared for, doing a job I am reasonably decent at, but am nothing extraordinary, I will give you my thought on how you WIN AT WORK.....be lucky enough to work for a great manager who you enjoy personally, respect professionally and, they feel the same about you.  

I am SO looking forward to when I can retire (12-14 years?:cry:) as I really have no passion for my job.  But in the gig I have had the last three years, (which is basically the same gig I have been doing for 25 years, but at  different places), every single day, I feel liked and valued. I work for someone who is genuinely genuine, so I keep plugging away.  And THAT, is my life coaching lesson for today!  :laugh:
- - By jennyO Date 2018-05-16 10:57 AM
I'm reading Mary Gaitskill's Veronica and listening to Michelle McNamara's I'll Be With You in the Dark.  Both very good!  (Although I'm having a hard time getting into Veronica, I'malready halfway through it. :wtf:)
Parent - By jennyO Date 2018-05-22 11:35 AM
Once I got more than halfway through Veronica and decided I still didn't give a shit about the characters or story, even though the writing was beautiful, I put it down.  Now reading Ian McEwan's Amsterdam and listening to Jane Harper's Force of Nature.

The Michelle McNamara book was so well done.  It's going to stay with me a long time.
- By The Beard (is wearing Arm Panties) [us] Date 2018-05-17 10:52 AM
Coming Up For Air by George Orwell.  I read this one years ago and liked it so I'm giving it a reread.
- By insistor (needs a bigger dick) Date 2018-05-21 8:29 AM
The Light of the Fireflies by Paul Pen

This was another free one from Amazon on World Book Day. Wow, there was a lot going on in it; murder, incest, kidnapping. It was hard to keep reading at some points and there are not many likable characters but it is very well written. 4 out 5 and I would recommend it.
- By LDR (100 Mile Stud) [us] Date 2018-05-22 3:56 AM
It took me forever, but I finally finished Crossing to Safety by Wallace Stenger.  I found the book challenging, but every time I finished a chapter, I had to keep going, but there were days I let it sit.  I think it had a lot more to do with me and where my head is at, than the book itself.  The book is good, even edifying, and I plan on buying my own copy so I can underline some of the lines that really spoke to me. 

As with a lot of great books, I couldn't believe it ended as it did, but then, that's just me.
- - By insistor (needs a bigger dick) Date 2018-05-22 8:55 AM
Anyone rushing out to buy the new Stephen King book that's out today?
Parent - By brneydrnnr (barney cougar) [us] Date 2018-05-22 9:00 AM
Oh I pre-ordered that and totally forgot!
Parent - By jennyO Date 2018-05-22 11:32 AM
I'm planning to listen to the audiobook soon.
Parent - By blazer85 [us] Date 2018-05-22 2:53 PM
I think I am going to download it.
- - By h3ather (Nice Tips) Date 2018-05-22 9:22 AM
I've been all about the audio books lately because I can listen to them while I'm doing chores around the house or running.

I listened to Kevin Hart's I Can't Make this Up: Life Lessons and I highly recommend listening to it (rather than reading it). Funny and poignant.

I also listened to The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Gailbraith (J. K. Rowling's pseudonym),  I only read one Harry Potter book and found it entertaining, but meh and had no desire to read any more, but I really liked this book. It's the first in a series of crime novels with the same main character, so I'm now listening to the second book in the series (The Silkworm.)
Parent - - By donnasaur [us] Date 2018-05-22 3:07 PM
have you listened to Trevor Noah's book? It is amazing.
Parent - By h3ather (Nice Tips) Date 2018-05-22 3:17 PM
no, but only because it's too short. I feel like I need books over 10 hours to get my money's worth. :laugh::blush:
- - By donnasaur [us] Date 2018-05-22 3:07 PM
dipping a toe in here...
I just finished Grant by Ron Chernow. I typically read more than one book at a time so this one took a while since I was reading others concurrently. Like Chernow's other books it is comprehensive and extremely well written leaving me with a much richer understanding and appreciation for Grant than I had before.

Close to finishing The Oracle Year which is what I call a pringles book. I like it, I am going through it really quickly, it will satisfy me in the moment but isn't really a meal. I think the author writes comic books and it has a little bit of that feel <--not a bad thing. It is fast paced and twisty, I like that.

Since I finished Grant I am about to start "The Book of American Martyrs" Will see how that goes.

My DH travels a lot, when he is out of town I read instead of watch TV most nights.
Parent - - By Beastie Girl [us] Date 2018-05-22 3:26 PM
I am amazed at the amount of books you read! :shocker!::cool: I need to get back in the habit of reading, these days I only listen to audiobooks while running and only read when I am on a flight or something, which isn't very often. I miss reading! I definitely watch too much tv. :roll:
Parent - By donnasaur [us] Date 2018-05-22 7:36 PM
I really only watch tv if r and I are watching together. He is gone slot, so...
I also can’t sleep unless I read at night.
- - By Tommeke Date 2018-05-24 7:12 AM Edited 2018-05-24 7:18 AM
Philip Roth passed away a couple of days ago. I must admit I didn't really know him though read a bit about him on the various news sites.
Any suggestions as to where to start with this author :wtf:
Parent - By jennyO Date 2018-05-25 11:19 AM
American Pastoral would be my suggestion (and probably my favorite of his books).  It's the first in what's sort of a loose trilogy.  The second two are I Married a Communist and The Human Stain.  I found Portnoy's Complaint funny when I read it years ago, but kind of juvenile.

But don't take my word for it.  Here is a neat article on famous authors' favorite Roth books.
Up Topic General / Letters and Opinions / May Book Club

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