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Old 08-07-2005, 05:53 PM   #1
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Read any good books lately?

The Prisoner of Zenda (Anthony Hope) - picked it up in a charity shop for 90 of my English pence (where I do all my shopping) based on the cover alone - two men with crossed swords over a drawbridge. The story was excellent too - a ginger haired man travels to Ruritania (a made-up European country) where he meets the soon to be coronated King who, to his suprise, looks exactly like the protagonist. The King ends up getting kidnapped so the main character takes his place and rules thye country whilst trying to rescue the real King from the evil Duke (who's also his brother). That, and he falls in love with the King's wife (who's also his cousin). Incest aside, it's a great book. A good fantasy adventure should fill you with inexplicable nostalgia which is exactly what this one does. The only other book I've read from this genre is The Princess Bride, which is funnier but less... effective than Zenda. Less effective in what? I couldn't say exactly... but Zenda has some ineffable quality to it that rises it above a lot of books. 4/5

Artemis Fowl: The Opal Deception (Eoin Colfer) - I honestly can't recomend the Artemis Fowl books enough. Here's a brief (and rubbish) synopsis of them: Artemis Fowl is a young teenage crime lord genius who runs his dead fathers empire with the help of a huge Eurasian butler called Butler. Artemis uncovers an underground civilsation of Fairies, Elves, Dwarfs, Goblins, Pixies and in the first book he attempts to exploit them for money. In the later books he is sort of on the same side. The fairies are technologically superior to the "mud people" (us humans) having been forced deep underground thousands of years ago after we populated the earth too fast and threatened their extinctions. Holly Short is an Elf armed with a blaster, robotic wings and camoflage armour as part of the LEP-recon (get it?) unit, with Commander Root (who smokes a fungi cigar) and Folly (a computing genius who's also a Centaur). In the middle is Mulch Duggums, a dwarf who digs by chewing earth with jaws he can unhinge, whereupon it passes through his system and comes out through a bum-flap in his trousers. The books themselves are written with a very quick, cinematic pace that's both hillarious and gripping. If you're looking for something that's a bit like Harry Potter but better, try this. 5/5

The Woman in Black (Susan Hill) - I've seen the movie, read the play and now read the book - and all are fantastic, but the book is the best. Very chilling ghost story about a lawyer who has to set a dead woman's affairs in order, which means he has to travel to her house where she lived in issolation for decades in the middle of marshland (which is tidal, meaning that it's cut off from the mainland for most of the day). Dripping with atmosphere and brilliantly written, this is a book for a cold winters night (or a hot Cretan day in my case, but whatever)

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Lewis Carol) - I was suprised by how funny and philosophical this book was, and how quickly it moves (Alice is in Wonderland on barely the second page). It grips you like a drowing sailor and doesn't let go until the very last word. 5/5

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (J K Rowling) - a very fun to read book with some excellent pacing and loveable characters. Can't wait for the next one. 4/5

Birdsong (Sebastian Faulks) - anyone who's starting to read this will say it's difficult to get into and a little dull. My advice is to stick with it - after the first 100 pages or so the pace picks up and the next 400 pages are excellence right down to their core. What's more, once you're in the midst of First World War trench life the first 100 pages of peace-time description take on new significance and you apreciate the horrors of war in context, something that few books manage to achieve. And then when it suddenly changes to the present day the effect is increased even more as you apreciate just how much we take for granted. I read half a dozen Great War novels and almost all the Great War poetry and this book was the best and most moving of the lot. This is a book that everyone must read. 5/5

Mostly Harmless (Douglas Adamns) - another utterly brillaint book from the late Douglas Adams that you can't help but marvel at for its wit and intelect. Everyone should at least try the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (though it helps if you like Sci-Fi) and if you liked the previous books then you'll like this one too. The ending has come to a lot of criticism, but, eh, I kinda like it. 4/5

So that's pretty much everything I've read in the past month. What about you?
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Old 08-07-2005, 06:18 PM   #2
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So obviously you can judge a book by it's cover.

You know, those Artimus Fowl books actually seem to appeal to me, I may buy one at some point to see if it's any good (in any sense, your synopsis seem to show that it's decent enough... humour?)

I also read the latest Harry Potter and whilst being left with a slight uneasiness at the end, I've since come around and now also can't wait for the last book. If you haven't read the first five, there's very little I can tell you, if you have, there's very little you'll want to know (because you'll probably have already read this or don't want it being spoiled).

Recently, I just re-read "Going Postal" by Terry Pratchett, partly because I had nothing else to read, partly because I didn't like it as much as I thought I would on first read and wanted to read it again to see if my opinion could change (one very good reason for re-reading books, you get a new perspecive on them, it's happened to me before and as it turns out, has happened again).

For a short synopsis, the story is basically about a young man called Moist Von Lipwig, a very notorious conman who after many years of successful swindling is finally facing the noose. Right after the last minute, he is given a choice by the ruling tyrant of the Discworlds largest city, he is to be put in charge of the City's ailing postal service, or face the noose...again. It's a tough decision and frankly, he doesn't even make it, but by and large, he is thrust into the decays of the Ankh-Morpork Post Office where he must not only get the post moving, but bring it back from the dead. Maybe it'll take a conman to succeed where honest men have failed.

All in all, a decent enough book, certainly up to Pratchett's usual quality and whilst it does have the feel of one of his previous books (The Truth) there's a uniquness that can't be matched.


Last edited by Joshi; 08-08-2005 at 02:12 PM.
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Old 08-07-2005, 10:15 PM   #3
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My housemate tried to push Artemis Fowl on me but oh man, I found it really unbearable. Cut from the same cloth as Harry Potter for sure, but that guy is not a good writer. So so awkward


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Old 08-07-2005, 11:49 PM   #4
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Other than the obligatory Harry Potter read, the most recent book I read was Chuck Palahniuk's "Haunted." Not Chuck's best book, but a lot of the short stories were really good.

Right now I'm re-reading "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." It made me go out and buy a candybar. I'm thinking the book was written as a propaganda tool for the candy companies.


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Old 08-08-2005, 03:28 AM   #5
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Hah, Jake! That suprises me as I think Colfer is a superb writer. He's possibly a tad over-cinematic, though, which may not be for everyone. I dunno.

At the moment I'm reading Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. It made me laugh in bed, which is always a good thing. I think I prefer Rum Diary, but this is still a brilliant book that is another must-read. And also Hunter S Thompson's writing style is one of the best and most unique ever.

I like Terry Pratchett, but I never properly got into Discworld. I read the Death trilogy, which I loved, and I've bought some other Discworld novels but I haven't finished any of them yet. Not sure why, apart from that they're a little dry and the plot seems second place to the characters (which some will like, no doubt). I do *love* Pratchet's childrens books though. The "Johny" series was brilliant and funny, with "Only you can save mankind" being the best book written about computer games ever (probably!). The Bromliad trilogy is also brilliant. Gnomes (or "Nomes") living underneath a shop escape by hijacking human veichales and fly to America to visit their God - the mysterious "Warner Bros." It's funny, it's action-packed and the Nome mythology is brilliant (quotes from "the book of gnome" and the fact that all the Nome families are named after things like "stationary"). It's a loveable story about people moving out of a sheltered existence into the big wide world. Pratchett's Discworld children's books are also worth reading... the Amazing Maurice is more tightly plotted than his adult novels and all the better for it in my opinion. I'm not writing off his main Discworld books, though, it's just that... they're saved for a rainy day.

And yes, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Would you recomend reading the book before seeing the film? I mean, having seen the other version I know the story, but maybe it would be nice to know how faithful the new film is to the book. Although having read the novel for War of the Worlds dampened the movie experience for me, so maybe it's not a good idea.

I've only read two Roald Dahl books, which aren't really books but are a collection of short stories. One for adults and for children (though I honestly don't know what the difference is). If you like Dahl you'll love his short stories as they all just as funny weird and original as his longer books (actually I tell a lie - I've read George's Marvelous Medicine too - I'd forgotten about that). Anyway, if you ever want to know how to write a good short story, pick up some of Dahls'; they're short, snappy, and with great *great* endings (the sting in the tail). His war stories were also in the, er, anthology, and are completely different from any of his other books but are equally brilliant.
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Old 08-08-2005, 10:58 AM   #6
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I think reading the book just before watching the movie might not be a good idea, as you probably inevitably would be comparing and contrasting the two more than you should. So unless you're waiting for the DVD, I'd actually recommend watching the movie first, then go with the source material.


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Old 08-08-2005, 01:47 PM   #7
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I'm reading Notes From A Small Island by Bill Bryson, which was pretty big when it was published about ten years ago. I didn't really want to read it because I assumed it would be American-guy-comes-to-UK-tells-us-things-we-already-know, but my girlfriend loves it and showed me a passage in which Bill describes the exact same confusion in catching a train from Manchester Piccadilly to Preston that I experienced, so I'm giving it a go. It's very funny

Speaking of Thompson, another genius work of his is Kingdom of Fear, which isn't so much a novel as a collection of memoirs, letters and stories. He was very anti-Bush, which he isn't subtle about revealing (whore-face and goofy-child-President) but his extended metaphors are so well constructed you'll marvel when he finally reveals the point of some of his passages. I'll miss him


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Old 08-08-2005, 01:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RemiO
I think reading the book just before watching the movie might not be a good idea, as you probably inevitably would be comparing and contrasting the two more than you should. So unless you're waiting for the DVD, I'd actually recommend watching the movie first, then go with the source material.
I made that mistake with The Hitchhikers Guide to the galaxy... I may have enjoyed it more had I not re-read the book about a week before it came out.

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Old 08-10-2005, 05:40 PM   #9
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Gabez, you must immediatly read every Dahl book ever in order to complete your apparently horribly sheltered childhood. Essentials include Matilda, The Witches, Boy and the Charlie books. I picked up Gulliver's Travels today from a charity shop. SOMEONE decided it would be a good idea to 'scrawl' all over it though, which displeased me initially! However, perhaps there'll be some juicy insights into Gulliver's adventures!

I'm a little bit into American Gods by Neil Gaiman. I thought 'Neverwhere' was a bit average, and I'm not that impressed so far. My attention span is pathetic, though. My reading will no doubt pick up when I go on holiday and remain consistent until I head to university, so I may pick up some of the Gabez recommended titles - I've always wanted to read the Alice books and I'd like to check out Artemis Fowl too. Any more recommendations for someone who enjoys the likes of Dahl, Rowling, Salinger, Italic tags, Palahniuk, Pullman, but not Pratchett?
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Old 08-10-2005, 06:18 PM   #10
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Ooh, you enjoy Pullman? I was just about to recomend him; definitely my favourite author ever. His Dark Materials is brilliant, the Sally Lockhart series is excellent too and last year I read The Broken Bridge which was also very very good. Oh, and Clockwork is the best short story written ever.

Other recomendations, let's see...

Haven't read Robin Jarvis for a long time, but I remember him being very good. Did the Depford Mice and Wyrd Museum series of books. The thing I loved most about these books was how dark they were, so they might appeal to a Dahl fan. Pretty soon all the characters end up diying in them, which is fun when they're talking birds and vermin. It's been a while but I'll give Jarivs 4/5.

And if you like Harry Potter then you might also consider Diana Wynne Jones's Chrestomanci series. Actually, those books are really good and I'd almost forgotten about them. Funny, well-written and well-plotted. Plus it has parralel universes, which are always nice. Again, it's been a while but I think I loved these books... I should read them again. 4.5/5

And I mentioned this briefly before, but I really liked reading The Princess Bride - a witty fairytale satire that's ingeniously written. If you're familiar with the film then the book is at least ten times as good and will appeal to anyone who likes a good adventure story. 5/5

In the mean-time I need to polish up on Dahl. ;
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Old 08-11-2005, 08:36 AM   #11
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Mostly Harmless is the best of the three Hitchhikers guide books I have read. But I have just finished 'The Sacred Art of Stealing' by Christopher Brookmyre. 5/5! (This isn't an impulsive score, I really do wish all books were like it.) Best described as Glaswegian satire, the first half is about an elaborate heist and the second half would be spoilt if I were to tell you about it.

Also, Carl Hiaasen is a Floridian version of Christopher Brookmyre, he's very good too. Characters range from a semi-crazed ex-governer turned wandering hermit to a violent and armed elderly woman who is fanatical about environmental causes. Not to mention a sexually deviant dolphin.


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Old 08-11-2005, 09:19 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabez
Haven't read Robin Jarvis for a long time, but I remember him being very good.
O-hoh. My mother threw one of his books into my christmas stocking for no good reason other than it being 50p and in the bargain bin or whatever. Straight onto the bookshelf! It's not cool to read ostentatiously-sleeved fantasy on a beach somewhere though. Unless it's the Princess Bride of course, in which case it's infinitely cool and sure to attract any scantily clad young women in the vicinity.
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Old 08-12-2005, 09:12 AM   #13
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Lets see...
I recently finished reading Terry Pratchett's Thief of Time. Whilst it wasn't as good as some of the others (it undermined the character of Death) it did help me understand Nightwatch, a book which I enjoyed but didn't really understand until I read it again, after having read Thief of Time. 4/5
I also re-read Equal Rites, purely because I can't be bothered to go out an buy a new book. I may go to a charity shop next time and pick up some literature in bulk. Good book, a vehical for the subtle humour of Pratchett and those metaphors of his. 4/5
In the attempt to avoid being a Pratchett fanboy, I also started re-reading the Red Dwarf novel Infinty Welcomes Careful Drivers. Its an astonishing read, with the humour flying left right and centre. Heres a carefully selected extract for the uninitiated.
(Saunders, the narrator in this piece, is a dead hologramatic simulation)

You can't stay married to a dead man. So even though she loved him dearly she would, eventually, have to start looking for someone else.
And..she would sleep with him.
She would go to bed with him. And, hell, she would probably enjoy it.
Even though she still loved Saunders.
She would wouldn't she? She would meet Mr Terrific and have a physical relationship.
Probably in his bed.
His bed! Their marital bed. His bed!
Probably using the three condoms he knew for a fact he had left in the bedside cabinet.
The ones he'd bought for a joke.
The flavoured ones.
His mind ran amok, picturing a line of lovers standing, strawberry-sheathed, outside his wife's bedroom.
'No!' scramed Saunders involuntarily.'Nooo!'
Hologramatic tears of rage and frustration welled up in his eyes and rolled hologramtically down his cheeks. He smashed his fist down onto the table.
The fist passed soundlessly through the grey metal desk top, and crashed with astonishing force into his testicles.


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Old 08-12-2005, 11:30 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Flibble
Lets see...
I recently finished reading Terry Pratchett's Thief of Time. Whilst it wasn't as good as some of the others (it undermined the character of Death) it did help me understand Nightwatch, a book which I enjoyed but didn't really understand until I read it again, after having read Thief of Time. 4/5
I also re-read Equal Rites, purely because I can't be bothered to go out an buy a new book. I may go to a charity shop next time and pick up some literature in bulk. Good book, a vehical for the subtle humour of Pratchett and those metaphors of his. 4/5[/i]
It personally took me a second reading of Night Watch (by far my favorite Pratchett book for numerous reasons) to realise what the lightning strike was in referance to. I also, personally loved Thief of Time, if anything because of the whole Time aspect and the characters (Lobsang, Lu Tze, and the progression of Susan), as well as the whole basis for the story. Pratchetts books have always had a cinematic quality to them and that's no more apparent than in this book.

As for Equal Rites, I liked it (I am infact a TP fanboy, but there are some of his books I didn't like...just for the record) although I'm surprised that one of his earlier Discworld book was actually liked so much (as is usually not the case). But it is a fun book to read, if anything.

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Old 08-12-2005, 01:34 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Flibble
I also started re-reading the Red Dwarf novel Infinty Welcomes Careful Drivers. Its an astonishing read, with the humour flying left right and centre.
I love the Red Dwarf novels - at least, the three that act as a single book (Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers, Better Than Life and Backwards.) In fact, as sad as it may be, I may have read those books more times over than any others. Brilliant humour throughout, and they totally compliment the TV show. You learn a lot more about Lister and co, and the characters motives are a lot more thought out than they appear in the sitcom. Fantastic!

Scabb - you should love Gullivers Travels. Absolutely hilarious, and real biting satire. One of my favourite classics


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Old 08-12-2005, 02:18 PM   #16
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Last Human, another Red Dwarf novel, seemed to reek ever so slightly of fanfic, even though it isn't, but meh, I still read it twice.
Todays visit to the local second hand bookstore revealed a multitude of books that I bought for under twenty of my English pounds. I'll admit that most of them were Pratchett (Come on, hard backed Pratchett? Like you wouldn't) but I did chance upon a copy of Robet Llewellan's (sp?) The Man In The Rubber Mask, which has proved to be a hilarious account of Red Dwarf trivia, and is partly auto-biographical (except without the boring, crying out for attention bits).
Among the Pratchett I scooped up for a few pounds each were the hard backed versions of Hogfather and The Last Continent (The guy had hard back versions of nearly all the Discworld books, and I was extremely tempted to pick up a 2nd copy of Nightwatch, but I didn't) The Truth, and Jingo.

(off topic)
Its actually a deliriously good bookshop. Not only does he have a copy of nearly every book you could want, he has videos and CDs and DVDs galore. I saw the two Discworld movies on VHS, along with every series of Red Dwarf and The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. He had South Park boxsets for a tenner each as well.


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Old 08-12-2005, 02:37 PM   #17
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Quote:
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I saw the two Discworld movies on VHS,
You mean the extremely bad cartoons that I just had to buy on DVD because I'm a moron fanboy? Those are bad, I urge people to never watch them.

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Old 08-12-2005, 03:32 PM   #18
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Thats why I didn't buy them. A while ago I regretted it slightly but your testimony has re-inforced my belief in that idea that Discworld cannot be tamed onto film.


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Old 08-12-2005, 04:09 PM   #19
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Oh it can, just not by the arthouse students who decided to make them.

"This is also a story about Death. Not death with a little 'd', but Death with a bid 'D'. I'm talking about Death the person." I really wish I'd switch the DVD off at that point. When all is said an done, it's okay to watch, not gut wrenchingly bad as I seem to have suggested, but whilst the books have a cinematic quality to them, these such cartoons...don't.

Although, if by any chance you are curious, they somehow got Christopher Lee to play the part of Death in 'Soul Music' (they may have also got him for Wyrd Sisters as well, I don't know), which could prove entertaining to some.

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Old 08-12-2005, 04:27 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elTee
Scabb - you should love Gullivers Travels. Absolutely hilarious, and real biting satire. One of my favourite classics
I should get that, too. My local Borders (I love Borders) has a section full of Penguin Popular classics books where they have all the "classics" (anything decent from the 19th century, basically) for a pound twenty five each. It's kinda weird how a new book set me aside six quid, yet it was about 1/10th of the size of Dracula which cost 1.25. And their version of Alice in Wonderland even has all the illustrations... bargain.

I still love second hand bookshops though, so I was annoyed when my local charity shop closed. I got some really really great finds there, like an awesome version of Kidnapped (I love Stevenson) and Around the World in 80 days. They're both readers digest editions which means that they're awesome. Full page colour illustrations, leather bound, great quality paper and print. All books should be made like that.

I'm reading 80 days at the moment, actually. So far it's pretty cool, and the little bits of English propaganda are great. Makes a change from American propaganda anyway!
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Old 08-13-2005, 03:41 PM   #21
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Stay away from the book Nimitz Class then. I don't know if it was taking the piss or not. But that was so heavy on the American propaganda an American Goebbels could have written it. (No loss, it wasn't very good.)


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Old 08-14-2005, 12:23 PM   #22
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I remember someone raving about Gulliver, which was partly why I snapped him up. It might have been you, Tones! I did read it when I was a whipper-snapper, but obviously I would have been too excited about the fact that this guy was both BIG and TINY to actually notice any sort of satire, even if I knew what the **** satire was back then.
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Old 09-15-2005, 12:39 PM   #23
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Every Discworld book from 1 to 11 (need ...more!)

and yes, artermis foul is brilliant, eoin is a great author. get the wish list, because that's even better, and try the supernaturalists.

back to discworld.
discworld inspired me to write my own books, he is one of the funniest people writing today. Pyramids was excellent, as was Moving Pictures, Colour of Magic, while simple is still one of his best, and Light Fantastic is another one of my favourites.
Also, the Wyrd Sisters is a scream too, making Macbeth into a golariously up to date story.


LeChuck>Vader.
'Nuff said.
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Old 09-15-2005, 12:44 PM   #24
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Well, there are almost 30 of them, take your pick

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Old 09-15-2005, 12:46 PM   #25
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Well, there are almost 30 of them, take your pick
Reaper Man is my favourite so far, Eric I was most disappointed with.
The next one is Witch's Aboard, which I am looking forward to.
I found Mort to be lacking, I haven't read Soul Music, or Hogfather, but The Reaper Man more than made up for Mort.


LeChuck>Vader.
'Nuff said.
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Old 09-15-2005, 02:53 PM   #26
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I read around the world in 80 days recently, and that was very good. Started out a little dull but really got going half-way through and had some great moments. Good light book to read especially if you're travelling. 4/5

Also read the ninth life of Louis Drax which is a brilliant brilliant book. Very hard to sum up though, without giving away spoilers so I'll just say that it's a thought provoking psychological thriller exploring the darkest sides of the human mind. Very different and very cool. 5/5
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Old 09-15-2005, 09:53 PM   #27
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I bought Three Musketeers not so long ago, inspired by my sister getting the old Dogtanian series on DVD. It took me a while to read through it all, but it was a good read, if a tad disillusioning in places, but I guess it wasn't really written for the same age group. 4/5
(The Dogtanian series, by the way, was entertaining, but made quite a few 'adjustments' to the story, and completely lost the plot in the middle for a while)

I'm also a big fan of Discworld, and have read all the books. Some of Terry Pratchett's other stuff is quite good too. I liked the Bromeliad Trilogy, and Strata was 'different but good', while I thought Dark Side of the Sun (cool title) was just 'different'. Maybe I'll get round to trying it again sometime.

Discworld-wise, I'd say my favourite either has to be Small Gods or Interesting Times.
Recently, Terry seems to be taking the series in a slightly different direction, focussing less on the old sets of characters and writing about completely new ones. I really liked Monstrous Regiment and Going Postal, and will be interested to see how things go from here.

ADDENDUM:
Just checked Amazon, seems a new one is on the way: "THUD!" - interesting title. I have to say, though, I'm slightly nonplussed to hear it's another Vimes book. I do like the Watch books, but I feel Vimes is getting more than his fair share of book time.


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Old 09-16-2005, 02:36 PM   #28
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I've read Lord Of The Flies by William Golding. It's about a group of kids crashing on an island. They develop a set of rules to live by and over time this goes way south. The book is quite obviously a study of social (and political) life.

I liked it a lot since it does a good job at describing the feeling of helplessness when you see something take a wrong turn and can't help it. You may try to convince others to do what is right, but in the end they may close their eyes and ears, and just do something that is fun or easier instead.

If you want to read another "deserted island" book, I can recommend Island Of The Blue Dolphins which has a different setup in sofar as the protagonist (a girl) is already accustomed to life in the wilderness. It's also more of an adventure story and thus closer to Robinson Crusoe.

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Old 09-22-2005, 08:08 PM   #29
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i finished the beach (alex garland) a while ago. really enjoyed it. the ending's great. yeah that's another deserted-island kind of book, so if you enjoyed lord of the flies (which i enjoyed immensely) i'd recommend it.

make your own damn movie (lloyd kaufman) is a surprisingly detailed, funny, and motivating book on the filmmaking process, written by an admittedly terrible filmmaker.

slaughterhouse five (kurt vonnegut) is probably one of my favorite books of all time.

currently i'm halfway through a scanner darkly (philip k dick) and i'm liking it so far.
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Old 10-04-2005, 09:10 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alien426
I've read Lord Of The Flies by William Golding. It's about a group of kids crashing on an island. They develop a set of rules to live by and over time this goes way south. The book is quite obviously a study of social (and political) life.
Spooky book twins. I didn't find Lord of the Flies as awesome as I thought I might, but it was very haunting, and perfectly evoked the helplessness as order slipped away. You can imagine that life would take the exact course depicted if kids were left to their own devices in reality. Scary. ¬

I also read Day of the Jackal by Frederick Forsyth recently. ACE. If you're not familiar with it, it follows an assassin (the Jackal) as he meticulously plans to assassinate President Charles de Gaulle of France, and the investigation that begins with only his codename and slowly closes in. I knew a lot of the story already thanks to the movie, which was a shame - although even contemporary readers would have known the ending for obvious reasons - but it's one of those books where it's not the destination that's important, but the journey. The Jackal is a fantastic character, his plans are intruiging, and the detail the book provides about the French security apparatus is fascinating.

Oh, and the Jackal goes into a Parisian, 1960s gay bar towards the end. The description given by Forsyth (he has a column in the Daily Mail, kids) is a particular highlight.

Heart of Darkness next, then Forsyth's "other" book, The Odessa File. Hooray!


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Old 10-05-2005, 08:54 AM   #31
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Haha, I've just read Lord of the Flies too... and totally loved it. I was familiar with the play but the book is so much better. Such a great book.

I also read Animal Farm which is equally brilliant... I love the documentary style narrative and the way that complex political ideas are presented through such a simple and accessible allegory.

And at the moment I'm reading The Excorcist (yep, the book of the film) which is surpisingly enjoyable. Recomended to anyone interested in the paranormal.
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Old 10-05-2005, 03:13 PM   #32
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The movie is based on the book, actually. ;

Edit: Though that might have been what you said in a less than elegant matter. ;-*


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Old 10-05-2005, 05:09 PM   #33
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Yeah, the book of the film... like the book is *of* the film. Like, I was just saying the book was of the film. Jesus, I know what I mean! Stop confusing me Remi. :~
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Old 10-06-2005, 01:27 AM   #34
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Say it with a link.

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Old 10-09-2005, 07:10 AM   #35
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Just finished reading Terry Pratchett's newest book "Thud" (with accompanying title "Where's my Cow?") so I thought I'd come along and tell you all about it. First of all, being the aforementioned fanboy that I am, I simply had to buy the £30 signed slipcase edition, something a lot of fans would enjoy, but if you’re not a fan, don’t bother, all it really is, is the book with Pratchett’s signature in it inside of a slipcase (albeit a rather professionally one, so, for me, well worth the money).

Now, onto the story. Short summary (which will probably turn into a long summary because I’ve never really been very good at this). It centre’s around and event called ‘Koom Valley’. This has been mentioned in many earlier books to describe the hatred and prejudice between Dwarfs and Trolls, it happened many thousands of years ago in a place called Koom Valley in which either the Dwarfs ambushed the Trolls, or the Troll’s ambushed the Dwarfs. No one is quite clear on who actually ambushed who, but either side is convinced the entire thing was started by the other side, thus why each species hate each other so much. Now, thousands of years later, on the anniversary on Koom Valley, it’s all looking to happen again, a Dwarf has been killed, blame has fallen on a Troll, and it’s up to Commander Sam Vimes of the City watch to figure out exactly what’s happening.

Well, those are the building blocks of the book anyway; it gets a lot more intriguing and complicated as it goes on, but never leaves the reader in the dark.

As for the story telling, well it’s done in the traditional Terry Pratchett way, although there is the new element of slight time jumping when it comes to the story telling, but it’s not done in any kind of awkward way and it all runs smooth in the end. There is the usual jokes, mixed in with socialistic views and a general Monty Python feel, although that has been toned down in recent books. The ending is just the tiniest bit anti-climactic, but still works pretty well, overall I’d give it a 4 our of 5. A decent enough book, and to be honest, better than his last book (although I’m sure a re-read with probably leave me feeling differently as they always do).

The accompanying book, “Where’s my Cow?” is worth a look, but considering you can read it in about 5 minutes, some may feel like just reading the whole thing in the book shop and then leaving it. That said, I am a fanboy, and therefore, I bought the signed edition of that too…

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Old 10-09-2005, 02:44 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabez
Haha, I've just read Lord of the Flies too... and totally loved it. I was familiar with the play but the book is so much better. Such a great book.

I also read Animal Farm which is equally brilliant... I love the documentary style narrative and the way that complex political ideas are presented through such a simple and accessible allegory.

And at the moment I'm reading The Excorcist (yep, the book of the film) which is surpisingly enjoyable. Recomended to anyone interested in the paranormal.
Animal Farm owned.
You can't go wrong with Communist piggies.


LeChuck>Vader.
'Nuff said.
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Old 11-17-2005, 07:34 PM   #37
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I just finished the book "Double Helix". It’s a terrific science fiction novel by Nancy Werlin. She narrates the story through the thoughts of the main character, and this gives us interesting insight on the story from his perspective. The dialogue is quite deep, and the plot is well fleshed with various twists and side steps, leading to a very intriguing climax. I recommend it to anyone who is a fan of the genre.

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Old 11-20-2005, 02:08 PM   #38
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I finsihed "The technicolor time machine" by Harry Harrison last week. A great book about a guy who travels back in time to make a moive, so he can save a film company. A great, twisted and original book, I really recommend it. 4/5

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Old 12-01-2005, 06:16 AM   #39
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I've been reading so many books for my course it hurts. From that list I can recomend Huck Finn and of course anything written by Poe.

But I also had time to read 1984 which is an utterly brilliant book that everyone should read.
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Old 12-06-2005, 02:21 PM   #40
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And then after you've read that, you can listen to "Ninteen Hundred & Eighty Five" by Paul McCartney & Wings, from the album Band on the Run.
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