The Literature Thread

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ledfloyd
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The Literature Thread

Post by ledfloyd » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:15 pm

you know, for bookworms!

i decided yesterday i'd gone too long without having read anything by saul bellow, so i picked up herzog and henderson the rain king at the library. will report back.

recently finished 2666, which was kind of stunning.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Orpheline » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:22 pm

I'm reading The Yiddish Policeman's Union by Michael Chabon and just tearing through it. I love love love his style. His descriptions, particularly of people, are so full of humor and insight. I think next I'm going to pick up Mysteries of Pittsburgh.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Captain Oats » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:23 pm

I'm going to be starting Ulysses this weekend for upcoming classes.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Björn » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:23 pm

I don't do much readin!
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Blevo » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:24 pm

I have been reading Film as a Subversive Art by Amos Vogel. Lots o' pretty pictures too.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Orpheline » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:33 pm

Spengler wrote:I'm going to be starting Ulysses this weekend for upcoming classes.
That should be an adventure. The last "chapter," Molly Bloom's stream-of-consciousness, is still one of my favorite things I've ever read.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by JediMoonShyne » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:54 pm

Beau made me buy 2666 a while ago, but I still haven't plucked up the courage to open it yet.

I also tried reading Saramago's Blindness, but the English translation seemed pretty poor.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Sonechka » Thu Feb 18, 2010 6:57 pm

I just started "Scarlett", the sequel to "Gone with the Wind". Not sure it's going to stand up to its predecessor.
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ledfloyd
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by ledfloyd » Thu Feb 18, 2010 7:13 pm

Orpheline wrote:I'm reading The Yiddish Policeman's Union by Michael Chabon and just tearing through it. I love love love his style. His descriptions, particularly of people, are so full of humor and insight. I think next I'm going to pick up Mysteries of Pittsburgh.
chabon is probably my favorite writer right now. guys like delillo and mccarthy are probably technically better, but the only person that rivals chabon in terms of enjoyment and insight for me while maintaining a great style is jonathan lethem.

hope you dig mysteries as much as i do. just stay far far away from the film.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by JediMoonShyne » Thu Feb 18, 2010 7:15 pm

I've never read anything by Chabon, though I do own Cavalier & Clay.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by ledfloyd » Thu Feb 18, 2010 7:20 pm

JediMoonShyne wrote:I've never read anything by Chabon, though I do own Cavalier & Clay.
that's the best place to start. that and wonder boys are probably his best received novels. most of what he's done since kavalier and clay has gotten mixed notices. i don't think anything he's done since has been as good, but i've enjoyed them all, even if they seem a bit more slight than his first three books.

i need to read his new (non-fiction) book.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by HoboJoeBob » Thu Feb 18, 2010 8:44 pm

Currently reading Pynchon's Inherent Vice, though I may give up on it. Its good, and kind of like The Big Lebowski, but it lacks the thrill of the standard madhouse that is a Pynchon novel.

If I do, I'll probably start either Vonnegut's Galapagos or The Song of Fire and Ice series.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Beau » Thu Feb 18, 2010 9:33 pm

Currently reading Ulysses, The History of Western Philosophy, and The Arcades Project. I'm also reading The Dream of the Heroes by Adolfo Bioy Casares, but unlike The Invention of Morel, this one is pretty dull and I can't muster up the enthusiasm to actually finish it, even though I'm at the conclusion's doorstep. Well-praised, but asides from certain sociological and historical interest, it's like a bad morality tale and has exactly nothing of what I liked about Morel.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Beau » Thu Feb 18, 2010 9:41 pm

ledfloyd wrote:recently finished 2666, which was kind of stunning.
I know, right?

Jedi has read The Savage Detectives. I have not. I have read Distant Star and Nocturne of Chile. I recommend them. Not only are they incredible, but they're actually short. I mean, one-hundred-and-fifty pages short. Roberto is a great short-form writer as well. Nocturne of Chile is better, perhaps, if you want something different from 2666. I love, love Distant Star -- and I talk about it on an RT post that I will soon transfer over to my blog and thus to this website -- but in many respects it feels like a practice session for 2666. It's probably from comparing his work on Star with his work on 2666 that Roberto got the idea for that by-now famous passage about perfect small works versus unwieldy great works. Still worth reading, though. Nocturne of Chile is something different and self-contained, a beautiful little story.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by ledfloyd » Thu Feb 18, 2010 10:11 pm

Beau wrote: I know, right?

Jedi has read The Savage Detectives. I have not. I have read Distant Star and Nocturne of Chile. I recommend them. Not only are they incredible, but they're actually short. I mean, one-hundred-and-fifty pages short. Roberto is a great short-form writer as well. Nocturne of Chile is better, perhaps, if you want something different from 2666. I love, love Distant Star -- and I talk about it on an RT post that I will soon transfer over to my blog and thus to this website -- but in many respects it feels like a practice session for 2666. It's probably from comparing his work on Star with his work on 2666 that Roberto got the idea for that by-now famous passage about perfect small works versus unwieldy great works. Still worth reading, though. Nocturne of Chile is something different and self-contained, a beautiful little story.
i've read the savage detectives. i think by night in chile will be my next. only my library only has 2666 and the savage detectives. so i might need to actually pay for the next one.

apparently his works have alot of overlapping characters. just about everything he's written is being translated to english in the next few years.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Trevor » Thu Feb 18, 2010 10:23 pm

Currently reading some of The Tales of H.P. Lovecraft.

Will soon begin reading Palahniuk's Invisible Monsters.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by bubba » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:20 am

I'm reading The Melancholy Of Resistance, which is the novel Werckmeister Harmonies is based on. It's kind of like Moby Dick, except the whale is already dead and the author has never heard of paragraph breaks.
I think I'll read The Plague next, but I also have to get to As You Like It and Bright Lights, Big City for classes.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Leera » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:52 am

Just finished Queer by William Burroughs, which... meh... and I'm about halfway through Slaughterhouse-Five right now. Not entirely sure why it took me this long to read it.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Wolfy » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:54 am

900 pages into War & Peace. My goal is to finish it by the end of the month.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Sonechka » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:55 am

Wolfy wrote:900 pages into War & Peace. My goal is to finish it by the end of the month.
How many pages is it?
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Wolfy » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:56 am

Sonechka wrote: How many pages is it?
1450
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Sonechka » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:57 am

Wolfy wrote:1450
You're doing pretty well then. Are you actually enjoying it?
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Wolfy » Fri Feb 19, 2010 2:59 am

Sonechka wrote:You're doing pretty well then. Are you actually enjoying it?
Well I'm a Napoleon buff so yes. I love that Tolstoy actually made Napoleon a character.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by B-Side » Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:00 am

Leera wrote:Just finished Queer by William Burroughs, which... meh...
Aww. I wanted to read that as my first Burroughs.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Captain Oats » Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:01 am

I don't know how Wolfy fits everything in.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Sonechka » Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:01 am

Wolfy wrote:Well I'm a Napoleon buff so yes. I love that Tolstoy actually made Napoleon a character.
Do you think I will enjoy it, despite knowing nothing about wars or revolutions or Russians?
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by B-Side » Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:02 am

As for me, I'm currently bouncing back and forth between 2 Nietzsche books: The Antichrist and The Gay Science.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Wolfy » Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:11 am

Sonechka wrote:Do you think I will enjoy it, despite knowing nothing about wars or revolutions or Russians?
He spends time more on the lives of the people involved in Russia then on the war field but when he does he makes the reader clear on what happens. Each 'book' is all about a year in the wars. It just is a little hard to get into because you need to get all the characters and their political views right when 25 characters are introduced in the first book.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by ledfloyd » Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:11 am

bubba wrote:I'm reading The Melancholy Of Resistance, which is the novel Werckmeister Harmonies is based on. It's kind of like Moby Dick, except the whale is already dead and the author has never heard of paragraph breaks.
kind of like tarr has never heard of cuts.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Captain Oats » Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:13 am

ledfloyd wrote: kind of like tarr has never heard of cuts.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Sonechka » Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:17 am

Wolfy wrote:
I should be able to manage that. One day.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by bubba » Fri Feb 19, 2010 3:19 am

ledfloyd wrote: kind of like tarr has never heard of cuts.
Pretty much :D . I can't imagine a better combination of writer and director.
Of course, the author of the book did also write the movie (and Satantango, Damnation and Man From London).
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Neclord » Fri Feb 19, 2010 4:03 am

While on my protracted trip, I read Jeffrey Eugenides' Middlesex, which was good- Under the Dome, which was long- and I got within some 40 pages of the end of Anna Karenina, which was a relief. A good enough sequence to distract myself from the lack of video games.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Leera » Fri Feb 19, 2010 4:27 am

Smitty Werbenmanjensen wrote: Aww. I wanted to read that as my first Burroughs.
You may as well. It's not awful, by any means, but it's not what I expected. I mean, I knew what I was getting into as far as the subject matter and his style and his past and whatnot; it's just that it was almost... pointless, maybe? Inconsequential? A bit less substantial than I anticipated.

But it's a quick read, and interesting enough. I may try out Naked Lunch eventually.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Nanners » Fri Feb 19, 2010 1:57 pm

I don't do a lot of reading really. But I am reading the british detective series of books, which are Inspector Frost novels.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Malloy » Fri Feb 19, 2010 8:36 pm

Just finished reading "The Very Hungry Caterpillar"
I knew she wasn't English/cause she spoke it far too well/The grammar was goodly/the verbs as they should be/And the slang was bang on the bell/So as the language barrier clanged and banged/I couldn't hear--hear or see/England, London, and Bow/Crumbled into the sea.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Trevor » Fri Feb 19, 2010 8:39 pm

Malloy wrote:Just finished reading "The Very Hungry Caterpillar"
A classic.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by ledfloyd » Sat Feb 20, 2010 12:07 am

Malloy wrote:Just finished reading "The Very Hungry Caterpillar"
how long did that take you?
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Malloy » Sat Feb 20, 2010 12:11 am

You know that english is not my first language, don't be mean.
I knew she wasn't English/cause she spoke it far too well/The grammar was goodly/the verbs as they should be/And the slang was bang on the bell/So as the language barrier clanged and banged/I couldn't hear--hear or see/England, London, and Bow/Crumbled into the sea.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by ledfloyd » Sat Feb 20, 2010 12:28 am

Malloy wrote:You know that english is not my first language, don't be mean.
:D
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by YellowPages » Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:46 pm

Thursday, I finished reading Nineteen Eighty-Four for the second time (hence my avatar). Brilliant. The third part is still my favorite. And I hate Julia for some reason.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Leera » Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:54 pm

YellowPages wrote:Thursday, I finished reading Nineteen Eighty-Four for the second time (hence my avatar). Brilliant. The third part is still my favorite. And I hate Julia for some reason.
I really should read this sometime soon. The only problem is, I've had my fill of dystopian novels lately. After The Handmaid's Tale and Fahrenheit 451 (for the second time), both of which depict scarily plausible future societies, if I read one more, I may off myself.

I just started on Troia: Mexican Memoirs by Bonnie Bremser. It's regarded as one of the few books written by a female author who could be considered a part of the Beat movement. I'm not so sure how I'm going to like it; I'm finishing up Slaughterhouse-Five right now, and Troia seems to lope along at a snail's pace in comparison.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by MadMan » Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:02 pm

Despite my procrastinating nature, I will eventually finish Stephen King's 'Salem's Lot. I'm about halfway through it.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Shades. » Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:03 pm

I recently finished reading Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs by Chuck Klosterman and right now I have about 150 pages left of Pictures at a Revolution: Five Movies and the Birth of the New Hollywood by Mark Harris It's pretty incredible and a great kind-of-prequel to Easy Riders and Raging Bulls. It not as great as that book, but it is damn good.

I don't know what I will read next. I'm dying to read Devil in the White City but I think I want to read something that isn't non-fiction before I do.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by YellowPages » Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:18 pm

Leera wrote: I really should read this sometime soon. The only problem is, I've had my fill of dystopian novels lately. After The Handmaid's Tale and Fahrenheit 451 (for the second time), both of which depict scarily plausible future societies, if I read one more, I may off myself.

I just started on Troia: Mexican Memoirs by Bonnie Bremser. It's regarded as one of the few books written by a female author who could be considered a part of the Beat movement. I'm not so sure how I'm going to like it; I'm finishing up Slaughterhouse-Five right now, and Troia seems to lope along at a snail's pace in comparison.
I need to read this.
And you're right, these dystopian novels really make us wonder about future societies that could very well come into effect. With that said, Nineteen Eighty-Four made me a little bit paranoid. :P
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Leera » Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:26 pm

YellowPages wrote:
I need to read this.
And you're right, these dystopian novels really make us wonder about future societies that could very well come into effect. With that said, Nineteen Eighty-Four made me a little bit paranoid. :P
And it's especially asking for trouble if you're a paranoid, apocalyptic person to begin with, as I am. I actually heard someone say that 1984 isn't as terrifying today as it once was, but I think one can always find little connections from our own society to any fictional futuristic ones, if one is so inclined.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Frogtown » Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:34 pm

Shades. wrote:I recently finished reading Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs by Chuck Klosterman.
Love that one.

Have you read anything else from him?
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by HoboJoeBob » Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:40 pm

Decided to go with Song of Ice and Fire series, which is quite enjoyable. The prose is a bit bland, but that's to be expected.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Shades. » Mon Feb 22, 2010 9:51 pm

Frogtown wrote:
Love that one.

Have you read anything else from him?
It's the first thing I've read by him. I loved it and will be seeking out everything else he has written.
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Re: The Literature Thread

Post by Unreliable Narrator » Mon Feb 22, 2010 11:51 pm

I'm currently halfway through 100 Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez, and it may be the greatest novel I have ever read. The coalescence of delightful whimsy and blunt tragedy is unlike anything I have ever seen.

Amazing.
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