Author Topic: books to read  (Read 247765 times)

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AnotherHardDayAtTheOffice

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2640 on: November 13, 2016, 12:33:47 AM »
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.

Not exactly. I only read Sputnik Sweetheart by Murakami (supposedly one of this weaker novels) a couple of weeks ago, but I loved his style. I love surrealist imagery and melancholy dripping from the pages, so Murakami is right up my alley.

I get your point though. I can totally see why Murakami - just based on my reading of one of his books - can come off that way.

Gay Imp Sausage Metal

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2641 on: November 14, 2016, 04:09:41 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.
Do keep in mind that his works are mostly translated so it's not always easy to do his writing justice. Having said that I much prefer his short stories.

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matta

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2642 on: November 14, 2016, 07:06:46 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.
Do keep in mind that his works are mostly translated so it's not always easy to do his writing justice. Having said that I much prefer his short stories.
ive considered that, but, ive read a pretty sizable amount of authors in translation, some i'm sure a great deal more "nuanced" than murakami and therefore more of a challenge to 'capture', and none of them have been particularly marred.

secondly, though murakami's writing pretty uninspired in my opinion, its more of the content that bothers me rather than the actual prose, and the translator would have to be taking some massive liberties to inject his writing with a buncha bad similes and contrived magical realism

Gay Imp Sausage Metal

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2643 on: November 15, 2016, 05:00:21 PM »
I guess you just don't like Murakami then :-\
*shrugs*

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Alan

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2644 on: November 16, 2016, 09:24:28 AM »
Currently reading this for a change of pace. I like it. And a lot of it is still relevant today regarding British society.

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SFblah

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2645 on: November 17, 2016, 07:12:47 PM »
About to start this. She broke the story on Baylor hiding rape charges on a football player. Fuck Penn State, Art Briles, and Baylor.


7 year old

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2646 on: November 18, 2016, 10:25:27 AM »
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.
Do keep in mind that his works are mostly translated so it's not always easy to do his writing justice. Having said that I much prefer his short stories.
ive considered that, but, ive read a pretty sizable amount of authors in translation, some i'm sure a great deal more "nuanced" than murakami and therefore more of a challenge to 'capture', and none of them have been particularly marred.

secondly, though murakami's writing pretty uninspired in my opinion, its more of the content that bothers me rather than the actual prose, and the translator would have to be taking some massive liberties to inject his writing with a buncha bad similes and contrived magical realism
how would you know?

oyolar

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2647 on: November 18, 2016, 01:01:35 PM »
About to start this. She broke the story on Baylor hiding rape charges on a football player. Fuck Penn State, Art Briles, and Baylor.



Is this more about her investigation process/history of working on the stories or does it look into systems/structures and how this stuff occurs and is allowed to take place?

Regarding Murakami, I'm not a fan Gabriel Garcia Marquez/magical realism so even though I have yet to read any of Murakami, I'm worried I won't like it.

matta

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2648 on: November 18, 2016, 06:29:11 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.
Do keep in mind that his works are mostly translated so it's not always easy to do his writing justice. Having said that I much prefer his short stories.
ive considered that, but, ive read a pretty sizable amount of authors in translation, some i'm sure a great deal more "nuanced" than murakami and therefore more of a challenge to 'capture', and none of them have been particularly marred.

secondly, though murakami's writing pretty uninspired in my opinion, its more of the content that bothers me rather than the actual prose, and the translator would have to be taking some massive liberties to inject his writing with a buncha bad similes and contrived magical realism
how would you know?

because the writing was still good (though im sure better in the original language). unless of course the originals were bad and were improved in translation, which seems ridiculous.

7 year old

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2649 on: November 18, 2016, 07:39:09 PM »
good is relative. i'm not trying to be a dick, but the truth is you don't know.
this is something that frustrates me because there are a bunch of authors i like that i feel i've never really read, because i can't read the language they wrote in. voices are incredibly specific.

SFblah

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2650 on: November 18, 2016, 08:56:15 PM »
About to start this. She broke the story on Baylor hiding rape charges on a football player. Fuck Penn State, Art Briles, and Baylor.



Is this more about her investigation process/history of working on the stories or does it look into systems/structures and how this stuff occurs and is allowed to take place?

Regarding Murakami, I'm not a fan Gabriel Garcia Marquez/magical realism so even though I have yet to read any of Murakami, I'm worried I won't like it.

It's more of the latter.

oyolar

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2651 on: November 18, 2016, 09:08:01 PM »
 Nice. That's what I was hoping it would be like.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2016, 11:52:35 AM by oyolar »

AnotherHardDayAtTheOffice

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2652 on: November 19, 2016, 04:20:32 AM »
good is relative. i'm not trying to be a dick, but the truth is you don't know.
this is something that frustrates me because there are a bunch of authors i like that i feel i've never really read, because i can't read the language they wrote in. voices are incredibly specific.

It's a complicated question. I think you're right... to a point. If you read an author in translation, you're not only judging the author's writing, but also the translation. There's good translations and there's horrible translations and they can totally change your perception of a book. However, while the language of a book is totally affected by the quality of a translation, the plot and the characters aren't as much. And no matter how good or bad a translation is, it still went through enough editing to make sure it hits kinda close to home. It's not like you're reading a totally different book.

At the end of the day, I think it's really important to be aware of the fact that we're reading translations of Murakami's original writing. It's funny though: Murakami is way more popular outside of Japan than he is inside the country. This might also be due to his "Western" style, but it also means that the translations can't be all that bad, can they?

As for Murakami, even though he's considered a "magical realist", his magical realism is very different from Gabriel Garcia Marquez. I would even say that he's more surrealist than they are "magical realist". Murakami creates dream-like worlds, in which the boundaries between reality, dreams and imagination aren't all that clear. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, on the other hand, writes modern fairytales where, for example, a baby with a tail is born like it's no big deal.

twinskates

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2653 on: November 19, 2016, 05:36:14 AM »
Finshed reading "Pic" from Jack Kerouac, really worth read it. Refreshing book
« Last Edit: November 19, 2016, 05:44:21 AM by twinskates »

7 year old

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2654 on: November 19, 2016, 07:41:24 AM »
good is relative. i'm not trying to be a dick, but the truth is you don't know.
this is something that frustrates me because there are a bunch of authors i like that i feel i've never really read, because i can't read the language they wrote in. voices are incredibly specific.

It's a complicated question. I think you're right... to a point. If you read an author in translation, you're not only judging the author's writing, but also the translation. There's good translations and there's horrible translations and they can totally change your perception of a book. However, while the language of a book is totally affected by the quality of a translation, the plot and the characters aren't as much. And no matter how good or bad a translation is, it still went through enough editing to make sure it hits kinda close to home. It's not like you're reading a totally different book.

At the end of the day, I think it's really important to be aware of the fact that we're reading translations of Murakami's original writing. It's funny though: Murakami is way more popular outside of Japan than he is inside the country. This might also be due to his "Western" style, but it also means that the translations can't be all that bad, can they?

As for Murakami, even though he's considered a "magical realist", his magical realism is very different from Gabriel Garcia Marquez. I would even say that he's more surrealist than they are "magical realist". Murakami creates dream-like worlds, in which the boundaries between reality, dreams and imagination aren't all that clear. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, on the other hand, writes modern fairytales where, for example, a baby with a tail is born like it's no big deal.
I definitely get what you and matta are saying, it is a nitpicky point I'm making and ultimately not all that helpful unless you plan on spending your life learning the native language of every author you come across that interests you. and I guess I should be honest and say that I was mainly thinking of poets when I wrote that.

Pic is rad twinskates, cool to see someone else on here read that. I have the double book that has Satori in Paris with Pic and I was worried because Satori in Paris was terrible. all I could hope reading Satori was that Pic wouldnt suck and was pleasantly surprised!

7 year old

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2655 on: November 19, 2016, 07:44:26 AM »
and since I'm supposed to be recommending books not dissecting them, Devil in the Flesh by Raymond Radiguet is a killer book in translation from french.

AnotherHardDayAtTheOffice

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2656 on: November 19, 2016, 11:29:32 AM »
good is relative. i'm not trying to be a dick, but the truth is you don't know.
this is something that frustrates me because there are a bunch of authors i like that i feel i've never really read, because i can't read the language they wrote in. voices are incredibly specific.

It's a complicated question. I think you're right... to a point. If you read an author in translation, you're not only judging the author's writing, but also the translation. There's good translations and there's horrible translations and they can totally change your perception of a book. However, while the language of a book is totally affected by the quality of a translation, the plot and the characters aren't as much. And no matter how good or bad a translation is, it still went through enough editing to make sure it hits kinda close to home. It's not like you're reading a totally different book.

At the end of the day, I think it's really important to be aware of the fact that we're reading translations of Murakami's original writing. It's funny though: Murakami is way more popular outside of Japan than he is inside the country. This might also be due to his "Western" style, but it also means that the translations can't be all that bad, can they?

As for Murakami, even though he's considered a "magical realist", his magical realism is very different from Gabriel Garcia Marquez. I would even say that he's more surrealist than they are "magical realist". Murakami creates dream-like worlds, in which the boundaries between reality, dreams and imagination aren't all that clear. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, on the other hand, writes modern fairytales where, for example, a baby with a tail is born like it's no big deal.
I definitely get what you and matta are saying, it is a nitpicky point I'm making and ultimately not all that helpful unless you plan on spending your life learning the native language of every author you come across that interests you. and I guess I should be honest and say that I was mainly thinking of poets when I wrote that.

Pic is rad twinskates, cool to see someone else on here read that. I have the double book that has Satori in Paris with Pic and I was worried because Satori in Paris was terrible. all I could hope reading Satori was that Pic wouldnt suck and was pleasantly surprised!


No, I think you're definitely onto something. At a certain point, one's gotta be a little pragmatic though... As mentioned before, I think it's really important to be aware of the fact that some works are translations. It's interesting... I feel like in the States, readers are more conscious of that. That's why people sometimes say "I'm reading a translation of The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle" instead of just "I'm reading The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle." I feel like over here in Germany nobody gives a shit. It's common for people, even literary critics, to criticize authors for their language, even though they were reading a translation.

Point in case: I'm about to read The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle and it turns out the German translation is a translation from English; hence, the translation of a translation. I mean, how ignorant is that? I'm definitely gonna read the English translation now.

oyolar

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2657 on: November 19, 2016, 11:54:37 AM »
People were probably worried they'd be put on some watch list for being fluent in both German and Japanese.

twinskates

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2658 on: November 19, 2016, 05:17:52 PM »
Pic is rad twinskates, cool to see someone else on here read that. I have the double book that has Satori in Paris with Pic and I was worried because Satori in Paris was terrible. all I could hope reading Satori was that Pic wouldnt suck and was pleasantly surprised!

I'm a big fan of Kerouac, just started reading Big Sur right now.
It's also sick that I had some of the same feelings that had Pic from going to the city from the countryside. I'm from Sicily, an island located in the south of Italy, and about last year I made it to Philadelphia. Usa is a very different reality from Italy and I really enjoyed reading some of the same feelings that I had experienced there!
« Last Edit: November 19, 2016, 05:22:19 PM by twinskates »

7 year old

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2659 on: November 19, 2016, 07:35:48 PM »
Big Sur is a good one too, nice. Desolation Angels is my favorite of the ones ive read, you should check that one out at some point too.

(if you haven't already, that is)

twinskates

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2660 on: November 20, 2016, 05:59:47 AM »
Haven't read that one yet, do you have other books to advice me other than Kerouac's ones anyway?


7 year old

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2661 on: November 20, 2016, 06:37:00 AM »
there is a book called Ringolevio by Emmett Grogan which is amazing if you're interested in NYC in the 1940s - 50s or San Francisco in the 60s. a bunch of the same people from Kerouac's books turn up in it, Allen Ginsberg, Neal Cassidy, Gregory Corso etc.. if you like Kerouac you'd probably like it.

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2662 on: November 20, 2016, 06:52:14 AM »
'you can't win' by jack black. he was a yegg which wwf doesn't let me play as a word but it meant safecracker back then. also, like a solid dude, not a snitch, willing to escape prison and so on. he did some hoboing, participated in some high crimes and misdemeanors before ulitmately trying to play it straight as a sort of secretary as i recall [haven't read it in close to a decade and i poured whiskey on the first 4 yrs of said decade].
scott bourne and william burroughs both recommended it to me and my roomies when i lived in sf.
jean genet's books were fun to read, theives journal is the only one i remember the name of. i found 'portrait of dorian grey' in a laramie dumpster, dug that one ok.
i hope i am not repeating posts i made 2 yrs ago, i've read a few books recently but i mostly look back on older books for recommendations.
are there any decent italian books we need to find translations of?

7 year old

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2663 on: November 20, 2016, 11:13:26 AM »
wait, what? you met William Burroughs? how?

twinskates

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2664 on: November 20, 2016, 11:53:14 AM »
are there any decent italian books we need to find translations of?
I haven't read anything from an Italian autor yet. I'm into reading from just some months..
And I don't know why but they don't get me stoked that much ahah

shark tits

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2665 on: November 20, 2016, 02:04:23 PM »
wait, what? you met William Burroughs? how?
nah, i meant scott bourne to me through skateboard media and william burroughs, through whatever media to my hippie sorta roommates. we each had an interest in the book independently of each other and there was a bookstore on the richmond side of the sunset w/ a 'hobo' section. hope they're still in business next to all the pho shops.

7 year old

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2666 on: November 20, 2016, 06:48:43 PM »
hobo section sounds rad, more bookstores need to have that.

AnotherHardDayAtTheOffice

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2667 on: November 21, 2016, 07:29:13 AM »
People were probably worried they'd be put on some watch list for being fluent in both German and Japanese.

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rfox

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2668 on: November 21, 2016, 11:34:31 AM »
a great book about an extended road trip.  such a good writer.


Alan

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Re: books to read
« Reply #2669 on: November 22, 2016, 04:40:03 AM »
That looks interesting. I've been thinking about reading something in the vein of "Travels with Charley", and this looks like it might be it.
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