What Are You Currently Reading?

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Re: What Are You Currently Reading?

Postby jbobsully11 » Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:39 pm

I finished The Psychopath Inside, and now I'm reading Walter Moer's A Wild Ride Through the Night, about a twelve-year old boy who has to perform six death-defying tasks. It's pretty good so far.
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Crimson847 wrote:In other words, transgender-friendly privacy laws don't molest people, people molest people.

(Presumably, the only way to stop a bad guy with a transgender-friendly privacy law is a good guy with a transgender-friendly privacy law, and thus transgender-friendly privacy law rights need to be enshrined in the Constitution as well)
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Re: What Are You Currently Reading?

Postby Aquila89 » Fri Feb 02, 2018 8:54 pm

I've recently read Philip Roth's novel Exit Ghost. It's set around the time of the 2004 presidential election, and narrated by an elderly writer, Nathan Zuckerman (Roth's recurring author avatar). Zuckerman is spending Election Night with a young liberal couple Billy and Jamie, and the way he describes how devastated they are when Bush wins struck me - change a few names and it could easily applied to the 2016 election.

As though to an ailing child, Billy said, "You're not going to be devastated. You're going to be dancing in the street."
"No," she replied, "no, this country is a haven of ignorance. I know—I come from the fountainhead. Bush talks right to the ignorant core. This is a very backward country, and the people are so easily bamboozled, and he's exactly like a snake-oil salesman..."


Each of their cell phones started ringing then—the cruelly disappointed friends calling, many of them in tears as well [...] this was their idealism's second staggering electoral shock and the dawning of the hard realization that they could not will this country back into being the Roosevelt stronghold it had been some forty years before they were born. For all their sharpness and articulateness and savoir-faire, and despite Jamie's knowledge of rich Republican America and the brand of ignorance bred in Texas, they'd had no idea who the great mass of Americans were, nor had they seen so clearly before that it was not those educated like themselves who would determine the country's fate but the scores of millions unlike them and unknown to them...


What conclusion to draw from this? I don't know.
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As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being.
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Re: What Are You Currently Reading?

Postby NathanLoiselle » Fri Feb 02, 2018 9:02 pm

The lyrics to Delerium's Karma. Why? 'Cause I'm listening to it on vinyl of course.


Now if you don't mind. I have to jump into my MGB and break down on the highway.
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Re: What Are You Currently Reading?

Postby cmsellers » Sat Feb 03, 2018 1:55 am

I just finished reading Dream Hoarders: How the American Upper Middle Class Is Leaving Everyone Else in the Dust, Why That Is a Problem, and What to Do About It, a very short book by a British Brookings bloke.

I got it out on Monday after being on the waiting list for a month, read up to "What to Do About It" while I was getting my brakes looked at, and then read the last twenty pages today.
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Re: What Are You Currently Reading?

Postby jbobsully11 » Sat Feb 03, 2018 9:41 pm

I finished Red Dragon, the book that introduced the character Hannibal Lecter, yesterday. I also read Jon Ronson’s So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed, mentioned a while ago in this thread. I liked both of them (in different ways, obviously). Now I've started The Line Between, a collection of seven short stories by Peter Beagle. The first one was pretty good.
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Crimson847 wrote:In other words, transgender-friendly privacy laws don't molest people, people molest people.

(Presumably, the only way to stop a bad guy with a transgender-friendly privacy law is a good guy with a transgender-friendly privacy law, and thus transgender-friendly privacy law rights need to be enshrined in the Constitution as well)
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Re: What Are You Currently Reading?

Postby jbobsully11 » Fri Apr 20, 2018 9:31 pm

2.5-month later double post: I finished The Tell-Tale Brain and read a short book about 3-D printing, as well as "A Modest Proposal." Now I'm reading Ursula Le Guin’s A Wizard of Eathsea, and I really like it. I'm almost done, and the next two books in the series should be here in a few days.

I also started Falling Into the Fire, by psychiatrist Christine Montross, with stories about some of her patients.
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Crimson847 wrote:In other words, transgender-friendly privacy laws don't molest people, people molest people.

(Presumably, the only way to stop a bad guy with a transgender-friendly privacy law is a good guy with a transgender-friendly privacy law, and thus transgender-friendly privacy law rights need to be enshrined in the Constitution as well)
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Re: What Are You Currently Reading?

Postby Marcuse » Wed Apr 25, 2018 8:59 pm

I read the new Eisenhorn novel, The Magos by Dan Abnett. It's a continuation of the series of books about the Imperial Inquisition in the 40k universe, which Abnett claims came about "by accident". He describes it as a novel, which is slightly misleading, because around half of the content is short stories, some of which were previously audio dramas, or were printed alongside the omnibus editions of the Ravenor and Eisenhorn series. The remaining half is a contiguous story using themes and characters (especially the Magos Biologis, Valentin Drusher who stars in two short stories) to tie them all together and cap it off sensibly.

Spoiler: show
So in general, I like Abnett's writing and I enjoy his style. Especially now he's older and doesn't engage in so much teenage wish fulfilment. Drusher is a really good foil to the ultra competent and successful Inquisition characters, being very much a normal guy whose life has gone a bit shit and he's not stupid or contemptible, but he's been dealt a shit hand and doesn't cope with it well. We don't see so many protagonists in stories like that, especially not in the 40k-verse so I have to hand it to him for that. My major complaints are that the story doesn't answer and even seems to contradict the major question I had which was why the fuck is Eisenhorn rolling with the fucking Alpha Legion??? and also that it seems like it's taken up space he really should have been spending writing the Bequin trilogy, of which only the first book has been published. He claims they're in the works, but shit I've waited for a damn long time.


I'm currently halfway through A History of the Byzantine Empire by George Finlay. If you're missing your fix of Winds of Winter, go check this out. It's like GoT on steroids and it really happened. Finlay is an Englishman writing in the 19th century, so he brings a lot of his own prejudices with him (like proclaiming Manuel I worthless then spending about 3000 words explaining all the shit he did right) but it's definitely worth it for 99p on Kindle.
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Re: What Are You Currently Reading?

Postby Doodle Dee. Snickers » Sat Apr 28, 2018 1:19 am

I'm reading Anna Karenina in the morning and The Golden Compass at night, both to review. I'm trying to do 20 pages of two books every day, on top of my writing.

The Golden Compass wasn't as good as I remember, though that could be because I'm more irritated by ardent antitheism that I used to be (here's looking at you, Dan Brown), or because it was a children's book.

As for Anna Karenina, it's kinda funny that the titular character and her lover are pretty unsympathetic characters, they're like the Russian version of Tom and Daisy Buchannon. The supporting characters of Levin and Kitty are far more likable. It is a much easier read than War and Peace, though that could be because there aren't so many samey-sounding characters to follow. It would help if I understood this societal system of this period of Russia, where roughly half the population seems to be either a prince or princess.

Aquila89 wrote:What conclusion to draw from this? I don't know.


That conservatives like to smugly be like "It's alright, what are you freaking out about?" when a Republican wins, then scream "BURN THE WITCH!!! GRAB YOUR GUNS AND AMMO AND FIGHT FOR YOUR COUNTRY!!!!" when a Democrat wins and vice versa. That paragraph encapsulates where the country is right now, though I assume without looking that the author probably is only portraying half the problem.
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