/ What are you reading?
I'm just finishing "Blood River" by Tim Butcher - I've read a bit about the Congo before but his mixing of the history with his own adventure really has me hooked
(in the right forum this time)
Just started 'In the Country of Men' by Hisham Matar, which is set in Libya in the seventies. I read his 'Anatomy of a Disappearance' earlier this year and can honestly say it's one of the best books I've read in years. Again, it's broadly Libyan. That man really knows how to craft his words.
Karen Darke's Boundless - very good it is too.
I finished Shantaram. It proper took off after the first couple of hundred pages - excellent!
I'm working my way through the Emperor series by Conn Iggulden at the moment and quite enjoying it. I prefered his books on Genghis Khan though.
I don't have the patience to stick with things for 200 pages if I'm not sure - I've just sent a Julian Barnes novel back to the library after 70 pages of tedium!
Hoping to pick them up this weekend, then look on my book pile and see what takes my fancy...
2 books on the go at the moment. This:
(Which might interest you as I seem to recall that you liked 'Stasiland'; there's also a fair but about Czechoslovakia. You can download the introduction from the website.)
So far it's not as good as Gulag, by the same author, but it's interesting enough.
Read it many years ago and reading it again. Really enjoying it - I love Neil M. Gunn.
Oo - will look up that first one. Sounds right up my street.
> I finished Shantaram. It proper took off after the first couple of hundred pages - excellent!
But was about 200 pages too long imo!
I am on New York by Edward Rutherford...also a little long but very good especially as i have just been there
I'm reading the absolutely astounding 'The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared' by Jonas Jonasson. It's by far the best fiction book I've read for years, indeed I can't remember EVER having enjoyed a novel so much. I'm only halfway through it, so hope it doesn't flag, but I very much doubt it. A wonderful imagination combined with a wickedly dry humour.
Jack Kerouac's "on the road".
> I'm just finishing "Blood River" by Tim Butcher - I've read a bit about the Congo before but his mixing of the history with his own adventure really has me hooked
Excellent book that. Just had a clearout so there's probably a copy at Harrogate Oxfam!
Reading "Somebody's Husband, Somebody's Son", about Peter Sutcliffe. I was googling a street in Leeds (behind Headingley Arndale) and his name came up. I remember the arrest on the news when I was a kid but not much else. A lot of my colleagues now in Bradford were young women in the 70s and early 80s, I can't really imagine how it would have felt for them back then.
I've just finished Neil Gaiman's 'Neverwhere', which was wonderful, and I'm now alternating between John Hunt's 'Ascent of Everest' and Trollope's 'The way we live now'. I may get bored with them and find something else by Neil Gaiman.
> But was about 200 pages too long imo!
Anyway, I'm reading Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robson. Anybody read it? I've only read about 10 pages and I'm not gripped...does it get better? I thought it sounded interesting ( I don't really read too much Sci-fi...)
I seem to recall that the beginning was a bit hard to follow, because it starts with what I can only describe as a "flashforward" (as opposed to a flashback) and you don't really know what's going on. It does get better. My favourite part is when the first hundred are building their colony. It has a lot of politics in it for SF.
I'm reading Tattoo by Manuel Vazquez Montalban which is a quality bit of foodie detective escapism from Spain (in a very similar vein to Camilleri's Inspector Montalbano novels who I believe is so named in honour of the former author)
I've got "Fiva" by R Gordon and "A Hero of Our Time" by Lermontov queuing up behind it.
> 2 books on the go at the moment. This:
> (Which might interest you as I seem to recall that you liked 'Stasiland'; there's also a fair but about Czechoslovakia. You can download the introduction from the website.)
> So far it's not as good as Gulag, by the same author, but it's interesting enough.
Which reminds me that I've got a book called "Revolution 1989" by Sebastyen to read.
> Yeah, I thought that too. A good book, but I can't believe it is all true....
Me neither ^^^^
I'm between books at the moment. Just finished the very amusing "Diary of a Nobody in the 21st Century" by Charles Pooter V (a surprisingly subtle re-imagining of the original but set in the present day).
Not sure what to read next, but it's going to have to be contemporary. I've read enough verbose Victorian novels for one year!
Try 'The 100-Year-Old Man' I mentioned above.
I noticed it in Waterstones the other day--certainly a catchy title! I'll check it out.
With loads of time on my hands at the moment I have five or six books on the go at the same time. Mostly old classics that I am rereading, such as W.Somerset Maugham's "Of Human Bondage" and Paul Theroux's railway adventures "The Old Patagonian Express" and "The Kingdom By The Sea".
Has anyone else managed to get through it?
> Has anyone else managed to get through it?
Through it, yes; but I can't say that I particularly enjoyed it !
Better to hear it being read at "Sweeney's" in Dublin !
I couldn't get into that when I started reading it, maybe I'll try again.
Just finished The Meadow by Adrian Levy and Cathy Scott-Clark: Read mainly for personal reasons, one of the main figures in the book was a close friend, as such found it tough but a fascinating read.
just about to finish " no easy day" by Mark Owen , a very non hyped up account of Osama Bin Ladens death
Nearing the end of the trilogy "Hunger Games", "Catching Fire" and "Mockingjay".
Riviting reading and incredibly immaginative.
I was pleasantly surprised by the film and have been considering reading the books
Demanding the Impossible, A History of Anarchism by Peter Marshall
Albion, The Origins of the English Imagination by Peter Ackroyd
Vanished Kingdoms, The History of Half-Forgotten Europe by Norman Davies
German Genius, Europe's Third Renaisance by Peter Watson
The Wars of the Roses by Michael Hicks
well I'm kinda reading the "complete works of josephus" but "the hittites" has taken over.
I got properly hooked on ancient history after reading tom hollands "persian fire" but I'm realy looking forward to the
new iain m banks, if you want a book thats unpredictable i'd recommend iain m banks,
the 'm' means science fiction without the 'm' means terrestrial fiction (still unpredictable though)
The Passage and The Twelve were both books I finished not too long ago, I would highly reccommend them, even if they are basically The Stand.
I just finished (before I started "on the road") "No Man's river" by Farley Mowat which is a slightly disturbing account of life in the northern tundra of Canada amongst the inland Innuit just after the 2nd WW.
Mowat has been critisised in the past for being a little imaginative with his descriptions so I can't comment on the book's accuracy but I suspect that the racism and child abuse did exist.
Also several work related titles &...
That's one of my favourite books. Glad you're enjoying it.
Flowers for Algernon
That's a great book.
> Hoping to pick them up this weekend, then look on my book pile and see what takes my fancy...
Jings! you must be really poor, reading glasses are sold in the pound shop these days, or dirt cheap in any Chemist.
Just finished, this morning, "A Line in the Sand" by James Barr - subtitled "Britain, France and the struggle that shaped the Middle East". A very interesting book with references that would keep even TobyA happy for months. The last sections about the way Israel was born, the level of terrorism by the Irgun and Stern gangs, a murder on every page, is sobering reading, even for someone who has red a few books on the subject. The intrigues between British and French over the period make most conspiracy theories look like child's play.
The book was suggested by a poster on ukc but I can't remember who to thank him, Tony maybe?, he also suggested "Afgantsy" by Roderick Braithwaite which I read just before, about the Soviet intervention in Afghanistan - an interesting book too. Both available at the click of a mouse from Amazon for the price of a couple of pints of beer.
William Boyd The Ice Cream War - very readable as usual
Banks' The Hydrogen Sonata - good so far
And will shortly be reading The Fractal Prince by Hannu Rajenemi - hoping that it will be as good as The Quantum Thief.
Excellent book but very depressing. Made me blood boiling angry and the only way I could calm down was to accept that the actions of the people were "of the time".
these threads are great. Filled up my amazon wishlist in time for christmas!
I've just finished 'The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared' by Jonas Jonasson, that I mentioned above. In my opinion, it's a masterpiece. As I said before, I cannot remember ever having enjoyed a work of fiction so much. What's more, it never flags; in fact, the story builds and converges wonderfully towards the end. Not only is it dazzingly clever, it is relentlessly entertaining and yet not remotely shallow. I was almost crying with laughter at times towards the end, so much did I like his exceptionally dry humour. It is a wonderful, surreal satire on life, yet extremely good-natured. Warning: it needs to be read quite closely and carefully, so finely wrought are some of the plot points. If you skim-read it you will miss some of the key cross references.
> these threads are great. Filled up my amazon wishlist in time for christmas!
Reading world war Z atm (good.) Have Hunger Games in the pile and am interested to here that there are sequels.
Really interested in the Montalban books as I am a huge fan of Camilleri and I'll be interested to see what they do to my cooking.
That's cos its bollox ;-)
Seriously, though, I found it very underwhelming. Perhaps you need to be a teenager?
> That's cos its bollox ;-)
> Seriously, though, I found it very underwhelming. Perhaps you need to be a teenager?
I loved it!
I wasn't a teenager when I read it (just) but I guess I was in the right frame of mind to read it.
Now finished the trilogy (see my above post) and really recommend them to anyone looking for a unique and imaginative read.
Just started the "Hundred Year Old Man"
We had it at school for O level, I wouldn't bother if I were you :-)
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