Author Topic: books to read  (Read 246943 times)

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Jumping Beans

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2610 on: September 30, 2016, 04:45:14 PM »
Recently finished re-reading What Is The What by David Eggers.  Recommended by the NY Times, and Jason Dill.  Very well written, very sad, very long, very glad to be done with it. 

Just blew through Catcher In The Rye for the first time.  Honestly had no idea what it was about beforehand.  Didn't expect it to be glaringly similar to Ham On Rye (which I'm aware came out later).  Glad to finally check it off the list, but it's one of those that when you relate to it, it scares you a bit.

Next up, Dharma Bums by Kerouac.  I remember feeling somewhat invigorated while reading On The Road, so I hope this one is more uplifting than my recent bummer selections.

Abyss1

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2611 on: September 30, 2016, 04:46:27 PM »
just finished 48 Laws of power.

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2612 on: September 30, 2016, 04:54:24 PM »
just finished 48 Laws of power.

Is it worth  it? I feel like it's mandatory for hip hop intelligencIA.

Abyss1

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2613 on: October 01, 2016, 01:20:34 PM »
just finished 48 Laws of power.

Is it worth  it? I feel like it's mandatory for hip hop intelligencIA.
yea its simple book finished it in 4 days
it basically breaks down how to use power and to see how power is abused.  Its a shit ton of history lessons too which got me digging off topic.

20matar

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2614 on: October 01, 2016, 06:17:08 PM »
Just blew through Catcher In The Rye for the first time.  Honestly had no idea what it was about beforehand.  Didn't expect it to be glaringly similar to Ham On Rye (which I'm aware came out later).  Glad to finally check it off the list, but it's one of those that when you relate to it, it scares you a bit.

I couldn't relate to Holden, and pretty much gave up on the book already. Maybe I'll finish it someday.

just finished 48 Laws of power.

Is it worth  it? I feel like it's mandatory for hip hop intelligencIA.
yea its simple book finished it in 4 days
it basically breaks down how to use power and to see how power is abused.  Its a shit ton of history lessons too which got me digging off topic.

Maybe I'll pick it up, especially if it's simple.

The last book I finished was How to Win Friends and Influence People. It was kinda nice, but it teaches nothing extraordinary. It's all stuff that SHOULD be common knowledge. Still, I needed the reminder.

AnotherHardDayAtTheOffice

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2615 on: October 05, 2016, 05:25:47 AM »
Recently finished re-reading What Is The What by David Eggers.  Recommended by the NY Times, and Jason Dill.  Very well written, very sad, very long, very glad to be done with it.  

Just blew through Catcher In The Rye for the first time.  Honestly had no idea what it was about beforehand.  Didn't expect it to be glaringly similar to Ham On Rye (which I'm aware came out later).  Glad to finally check it off the list, but it's one of those that when you relate to it, it scares you a bit.

Next up, Dharma Bums by Kerouac.  I remember feeling somewhat invigorated while reading On The Road, so I hope this one is more uplifting than my recent bummer selections.

Dil recommended What is the What? That's a really odd choice for a narcissist like Dill. I'd expect him to be into Burroughs, Vonnegut, that kind of stuff... you know... whatever "edgy" artists dig. What is the What is a really important book though. I second your thoughts.

Yeah, Catcher in the Rye is a strange one. Many people - me included - think it's just overrated. In my eyes, it's just one of those novels you can only appreciate before a certain age. For Catcher in the Rye, that'd be like... 20? On the Road - no offense! - is kinda similar I think, just that the threshold is a bit higher (25-ish maybe?).

Just finished Ferrante's A Brilliant Friend and I really liked it. It's definitely not everyone's cup of tea and all the hype around the book just annoys the hell out of me, but it's obvious why so many readers love it. First of all, it's a real page turner. I read all 420 pages in about 3 days, which is kinda fast for me. At the same time, the novel remains complex enough to interest a more academic audience. While you can totally enjoy the plot if you're just reading for entertainment, Ferrante addresses a wide array of key themes of contemporary literature - love, friendship, women's struggles for independence, violence, life in slums, organized crime, class and education, you name it. It's also a fascinating portrait of life in Naples, even though 90% of the plot is set in the Rione - one of the slums at the edge of the city. Unless you're all about Bukowski and Hemingway, I can definitely recommend Ferrante. I'll get copies of the sequels as soon as the German translations come out.

On a related note, some Italian "journalist" just uncovered Ferrante's identity yesterday. For those who don't know, Elena Ferrante is just a pseudonym. Similar to authors like Pynchon, S?skind or even Salinger, the "real" author wanted to maintain her privacy. She gave written interviews and commented on her prose, yet some people were obsessed with finding out who she "really" is. Long story short, some Italian paparazzi (even though he prefers the term "literary critic") did enough stalking (mostly by looking into people's finances) to come up with a name (which is probably true) and a photo. The whole affair has been nothing but cringeworthy and in my eyes, literary criticism just hit rock bottom. If a writer wants to keep away from the light, she (or he) has every right to do so.

http://www.newyorker.com/culture/cultural-comment/the-unmasking-of-elena-ferrante

Question of authorship and its relationship to fictional content has been a topic of hot debate for decades, but it doesn't give the public any right to delve into someone's personal life against their will. Personally, I think biographical details of the author's life are irrelevant for an understanding of a novel, poem, or short story. Who gives a fuck which crippled aunt a writer named a secondary character after?! I never understood why people analyzed fiction to find out about its relationship to the author's life - especially, if the author clearly doesn't want you to do that. The work of fiction itself gives you everything you need to know.
« Last Edit: October 05, 2016, 05:30:07 AM by AnotherHardDayAtTheOffice »

oyolar

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2616 on: October 05, 2016, 09:41:26 AM »
Yeah, I agree completely. I still have yet to read Ferrante but it's super fucked to try and figure out her "real identity."

Abyss1

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2617 on: October 05, 2016, 09:09:19 PM »
Just blew through Catcher In The Rye for the first time.  Honestly had no idea what it was about beforehand.  Didn't expect it to be glaringly similar to Ham On Rye (which I'm aware came out later).  Glad to finally check it off the list, but it's one of those that when you relate to it, it scares you a bit.

I couldn't relate to Holden, and pretty much gave up on the book already. Maybe I'll finish it someday.

just finished 48 Laws of power.

Is it worth  it? I feel like it's mandatory for hip hop intelligencIA.
yea its simple book finished it in 4 days
it basically breaks down how to use power and to see how power is abused.  Its a shit ton of history lessons too which got me digging off topic.

Maybe I'll pick it up, especially if it's simple.

The last book I finished was How to Win Friends and Influence People. It was kinda nice, but it teaches nothing extraordinary. It's all stuff that SHOULD be common knowledge. Still, I needed the reminder.


Been reading a bunch of books like that.  I also started Outlier by Malcom Gladwell.  It's a pretty dope book too

20matar

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2618 on: October 14, 2016, 05:26:58 PM »


It. Is. Done. What an experience. I took my sweet time, my lunch breaks and other moments of quiet idleness and finally finished the damn thing. It's definitely not something to read on the bus. My second read-through will be the last for quite a while. If you've ever considered to try reading Infinite Jest, and have access to it, don't hesitate and just pick it up without trying to make sense of it.

It was definitely an enriching experience that made me take a hard look at myself. A lot of fun, too, especially if you're good with details. Not really the case with me. I have to wonder how accurate the book is about a number of things, though. Wallace's insight on depression and mental disease speaks to me, which makes his death even more of a downer. But I'd love to see the perspective of a reader who has experiences with addictions and with AA/NA groups. On an upbeat note, I know tennis buffs who loved the book!

Also, I finished up Catcher in the Rye. The translation could be WAY better. It felt dated and not in a good way, not like a snapshot of a certain time's slang, but with a "greetings, fellow kids" style that was awkward and took away from the story. So far, I've yet to decide that it's for better or for worse that I didn't read the book as a teen. It's nice that I've finished it, though, one more for the essential canon. Maybe I should see the original later on.

Since I finally figured out a good e-book reader for my shitty cellphone, I decided to pick up something else to read once I was through with Salinger's book... I had The Road saved, and since I've had nothing but good experiences with Cormac McCarthy, I decided to see what's what, especially because it's a short book. What a page turner. The sparse prose helps a lot. It's a thrilling read, especially if you like post-apocalyptic stories. I definitely recommend it.

AnotherHardDayAtTheOffice

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2619 on: October 15, 2016, 11:52:18 AM »
Nice! I know that feeling of finishing a monster of a book. Your review made me really interesting in Infinite Jest again. It's a book that's been popping up in a lot of conversations I had recently.

I also liked The Road. It's a page turner as you say: a very limited set of characters, plain style, and mostly dialogue make it easy to read, while still giving you something to reflect on.

I'm about to finish Sputnik Sweetheart by Murakami in a minute. While reading up on candidates for the Nobel Prize the other day, I figured out I hadn't ever read anything by him; went to the bookstore and got a copy. I know that Sputnik Sweetheart isn't exactly considered his masterpiece, but I still like it a lot. I guess that's mostly due to subject and characters though. Similar to the narrator, I'm a young teacher and I've been a little frustrated with my love life recently, so the novel hits pretty close to home... kinda. I generally like Murakami's style though. Since I plan on picking up another Murakami novel soon, which one would y'all recommend? So far, I'm leaning towards either Norwegian Wood or The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. I know some of you have been reading some Murakami lately, so I'd really appreciate some suggestions.

Jumping Beans

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2620 on: October 15, 2016, 03:01:02 PM »
Just picked up Man In The Iron Mask by Alexandre Dumas from the library today.  I didn't realize it was the concluding novel of the Three Musketeers series.  I could've borrowed the book that has all of them, but not trying to speed read all that in 3 weeks.

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2621 on: October 15, 2016, 09:12:40 PM »
Just finished Camus' The Fall which I enjoyed alot. Next up is The Soccer War by Ryszard Kapuscinski who was a Polish war journalist covering conflicts in Africa, Latin America, and Middle East.


Can of Soup

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2622 on: October 17, 2016, 07:36:13 AM »
Since I plan on picking up another Murakami novel soon, which one would y'all recommend? So far, I'm leaning towards either Norwegian Wood or The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. I know some of you have been reading some Murakami lately, so I'd really appreciate some suggestions.

Personally, I liked The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle a little more, but Norwegian Wood is absolutely worth reading.
My copy of Norwegian Wood (Jay Rubin translation) has a translator's note at the very end that gives a bit of background that may help you make your decision:



Once you read those two you will be well on your way to being able to play Haruki Murakami bingo  :D

oyolar

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2623 on: October 17, 2016, 01:54:17 PM »
Taking me forever to get through this Lispector book.  Not because of it really but more so because I haven't felt like reading anything.  I think I need to take a break from fiction once I finish her for a book or two.

I also joined Audible because I thought I was using a code for a free book but it caught me because I enrolled in a free trial earlier this year.  I listened to this:



I'm a fan of Cracked, especially Robert Evans's work on it.  This was a fun listen where I learned some cool tidbits without falling into what a lot of the traps that pop academic/non-fiction books tend to where it becomes so distilled and simplified that it's useless.

Does anyone else have any other recommendations for non-fiction/educational books with humor that would make for a good audiobook?  I kinda already have a feeling that I couldn't do fiction audiobooks.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2016, 08:19:00 PM by oyolar »

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2624 on: October 22, 2016, 06:03:09 PM »
Rusty's mom sent me a box of his books. Sad/neat how many I've read but we never got to discuss but for anyways, plowing through 'the wu tang manual' by rza. I'm digging it, you can tell he did some reading coming up. Feel like we're a dying breed

oyolar

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2625 on: October 22, 2016, 08:23:07 PM »
That is sad man, but it's awesome you got them and have something else to remember him by.

Finally finished The Passion According to G.H. by Clarice Lispector.  It took a while and is not solely her fault as I haven't felt like reading a lot lately, but this is the third novel of her that I've read and I really do think she's a much better short story writer than novelist.  The introspection she works within is hard to sustain over time and it just becomes plodding.  She's not bad, but her short stories consistently blow me away whereas her novels have moments that are amazing interspersed with just confusing/frustrating ones.

Starting book 5 of Knausgaard.  I've read the first ten pages and am already into it.  I know he's pretty divisive, but I really like his work for some reason, even though I always take some time between volumes.

AnotherHardDayAtTheOffice

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2626 on: October 23, 2016, 02:21:40 AM »
Since I plan on picking up another Murakami novel soon, which one would y'all recommend? So far, I'm leaning towards either Norwegian Wood or The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. I know some of you have been reading some Murakami lately, so I'd really appreciate some suggestions.

Personally, I liked The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle a little more, but Norwegian Wood is absolutely worth reading.
My copy of Norwegian Wood (Jay Rubin translation) has a translator's note at the very end that gives a bit of background that may help you make your decision:



Once you read those two you will be well on your way to being able to play Haruki Murakami bingo  :D


Thanks man! I really appreciate your help and input. It sounds like I'll end up reading both, but I might just start with The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. Haha, having read Sputnik Sweetheart, I can already see what Murakami Bingo is all about. Seems like I should put that image on a chessboard as soon as I get to my next Murakami novel.

However, it will probably take a little while until I pick up another Murakami, for the sole reason that I finally started reading 2666. It's the only major Bolano work I haven't read so far. I'm already 130 pages in and I hope to power through all 1200 pages until about Christmas. I've been thinking about the perfect time period to read 2666 ever since I finished The Savage Detectives and last week I just walked into my local bookstore, read a couple of pages and figured I might as well do it now. I got exams coming up, winter is approaching and I kinda felt like reading a book that would take me down a rabbit hole. They didn't have copies of Norwegian Wood or The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, so I just stuck with good ol' Bolano. So far, I'm really liking 2666. I'm halfway through the first of five parts and it already feels very Bolanoesque. We'll see if that changes as soon as I get to the infamous part about Juarez murders.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2016, 03:07:07 AM by AnotherHardDayAtTheOffice »

cookieboy

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2627 on: October 24, 2016, 09:04:40 AM »
Had an extra credit assignment where our teacher asked us to read Out of Mao's Shadow: The Struggle for a Soul of a New China. I found the book cheap online so I figured I'll order a few extra books. Got another Murakami book (Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the Word which was recommended by someone on here), 2 books on mathematics, a book on oil painting, a book on drawing, a book on mindfulness meditation, 1984, Fight Club, Siddhartha, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, and The Doors of Perception. Pretty pumped on the selections and intend to wait till the new year before I go for another batch of books.

Grind King Rims

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2628 on: October 24, 2016, 04:55:22 PM »
Finally finished "The Unbearable Lightness of Being". Jeez, I'm a very lazy reader, but that was almost a year of me meaning to get through a 300 page book... Polished off the last hundred pages in like 2 evenings though, which is a lot for me.

A friend gave me some introductory books on Post-Modernism, which I know nothing about. Might flip through them next, otherwise it might be Frankenstein, the Elephant Man, One Hundred Years of Solitude or something old and well out of my range of comprehension, like James Joyce or Charles Dickens...

These threads are the best for recommendations.


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shark tits

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2629 on: October 26, 2016, 12:43:05 PM »
Finished the RZA book & another called 'tiger in a trance' about a kid following the dead, selling acid & getting much ass the whole time. Dece read if that's your bag. Started guerrilla warfare by che Guevara, book report by the wkend.

20matar

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2630 on: October 26, 2016, 04:11:09 PM »
Finally finished "The Unbearable Lightness of Being". Jeez, I'm a very lazy reader, but that was almost a year of me meaning to get through a 300 page book... Polished off the last hundred pages in like 2 evenings though, which is a lot for me.

A friend gave me some introductory books on Post-Modernism, which I know nothing about. Might flip through them next, otherwise it might be Frankenstein, the Elephant Man, One Hundred Years of Solitude or something old and well out of my range of comprehension, like James Joyce or Charles Dickens...

These threads are the best for recommendations.


A personal favorite... I gotta read it again.
Right now, I'm reading "What is Literature?", by Jean Paul Sartre, and feeling downright enlightened by it. I've read his Nausea before, didn't really enjoy it as I've been told I would. But that was as I was just starting college. That about covers it. I've been pretty mentally off this week.

Gay Imp Sausage Metal

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2631 on: October 26, 2016, 05:31:57 PM »
Finished the RZA book
I'd be down to read a RZA book.

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reread "Hell's Angel: The Life and Times of Sonny Barger and the Hell's Angels Motorcycle Club" on a recent business trip and enjoyed even more the second time round.

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shark tits

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2632 on: October 26, 2016, 06:12:33 PM »
Finally finished "The Unbearable Lightness of Being". Jeez, I'm a very lazy reader, but that was almost a year of me meaning to get through a 300 page book... Polished off the last hundred pages in like 2 evenings though, which is a lot for me.

A friend gave me some introductory books on Post-Modernism, which I know nothing about. Might flip through them next, otherwise it might be Frankenstein, the Elephant Man, One Hundred Years of Solitude or something old and well out of my range of comprehension, like James Joyce or Charles Dickens...

These threads are the best for recommendations.


A personal favorite... I gotta read it again.
Right now, I'm reading "What is Literature?", by Jean Paul Sartre, and feeling downright enlightened by it. I've read his Nausea before, didn't really enjoy it as I've been told I would. But that was as I was just starting college. That about covers it. I've been pretty mentally off this week.
I dug nausea, te-read it a few times. Once upon a time I had a crush on this Lesbo (who had a baby girl) & I audited philosophy class w/ her & borowed her 'sartre for dummies" & got hooked. Remember making out w/ her in boston, dropping in on the giant volcano at city hoapital, wallriding (bank riding) down stairs & sipping Sunday wine (back when couldn't buy package alcohol on sunday).
Went on sartre binge behind that, age of reason trilogy is my favorite, check those out & short stories. Never finished 'being & nothingness' but battled w/it til it got wet on a gainer (freight train).
To gism, if you weren't overseas & refered to me by my real name (shark tits) I'd totally lace ya w/ RZA

Gay Imp Sausage Metal

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2633 on: October 26, 2016, 06:32:45 PM »
To gism, if you weren't overseas & refered to me by my real name (shark tits) I'd totally lace ya w/ RZA
okay, you're shark tits from here on in (sorry I wasn't around when you posted under that account). I'd be down for that lacing but yeah, you got the book from Rusty's parents too no? That's some treasure right there

"This is untrue, my client has not been attacked in every country" #yearoftheeagle

shark tits

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2634 on: October 26, 2016, 07:23:10 PM »
Yes suh, they're only 2 hours away so I've got so much memorabilia. I'm the type to give everything away & regret/resent afterwards (right now i wish i had all my honey back except rusty's folks & mike Leslie) but I'm ahead currently. Proximity & cost prohibitIve shipping being only issues. I'd love people to swoop by & I'd share it all but a few items

Gay Imp Sausage Metal

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2635 on: October 26, 2016, 07:50:42 PM »
you're a legend mate!
(and I'd love to try your honey too)

"This is untrue, my client has not been attacked in every country" #yearoftheeagle

botefdunn

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2636 on: November 11, 2016, 12:16:08 PM »
Written in the early 90's,  it's interesting to read this now and remember the shape of things back then.


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Re: books to read
« Reply #2637 on: November 11, 2016, 12:22:25 PM »
Written in the early 90's,  it's interesting to read this now and remember the shape of things back then.


oh shit! that book kinda ruled. that and no more prisons were tight.
danny hoch [my avatar flipp dogg] did one called 'jails, hospitals and hiphop' which is more short stories of fictional characters than facts but gets the message across.

botefdunn

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2638 on: November 11, 2016, 12:35:22 PM »
Danny Hoch, I'll try and keep an eye out for it. Bomb the Suburbs struck me in some weird way like that book "Evasion", the Crimethinc one about the kid squatting and stealing bagels. It's corny and naive  and uncomfortable at moments, but it captures something about the spirit of things and you can tell the writer has the passion.

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2639 on: November 12, 2016, 06:17:31 PM »
Does anyone else think Murakami is a horrible writer whose books are full of cringeworthy cliches, embarrassing cultural references, and shitty attempts at profundity or is that just me? kafka on the shore was PAINFUL.