Author Topic: Fave Books / Currently Reading  (Read 721456 times)

Bryan

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1875 on: March 13, 2013, 10:40:38 AM »
I just started reading Gravity's Rainbow.

Hoo boy...

I cannot defend that WHOLE book but there are some AMAZING moments in it. Two sections in particular are favorites of mine. But as a whole...?



Eh.
Yeah. I read it, but I skipped about 200 pages of the middle because it was due back at the library. Skipping a fifth of the text didn't affect my comprehension of the book at all, which remained at or near zero throughout reading it. Much of my reading consisted of forcing myself to simply move my eyes across the text, hoping that it would mean something to my brain. It didn't.

And for what it's worth, I don't think I'm super stupid. I loved The Crying of Lot 49, and have enjoyed other avant-garde literary fiction.

So good luck, I guess?

fonpr

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1876 on: March 13, 2013, 10:50:35 AM »
I knew it! That was kid of a surreal moment really when we were in there and then Tom comes in, "What are you guys doing in here?!"

Hey FONPR...hope you are doing well.

Yes, that did happen.

I'm doing okay.  Well would be pushing it today.
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YuriDedman

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1877 on: March 15, 2013, 12:19:04 PM »
I'm pretty sure.
I knew it! That was kid of a surreal moment really when we were in there and then Tom comes in, "What are you guys doing in here?!"

I imagine a scene similar to Dave from Knoxville's profile picture.

cavorting with nudists

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1878 on: April 24, 2013, 03:58:41 PM »
I finally finished all 975 pages of The Kindly Ones, Jonathan Littell's novel told from the POV of an unrepentant SS officer over the course of WWII. It's one of the funniest fucking books I've ever read!

Wait, no, that's not right! Michael Kupperman's Tales Designed to Thrizzle, Vol. 2--that's one of the funniest fucking books I've ever read! The Kindly Ones is one of the most harrowing and disturbing! Sorry about that.
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ArchieFromPGH

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1879 on: April 29, 2013, 09:27:17 PM »
Just watched a pretty great 100 minute interview with William Gibson.

http://www.nypl.org/audiovideo/william-gibson

Gibson doesn't get enough credit for his late-period work. To the mainstream media, he will always be the writer who coined the term cyberspace. Since he did that in the early eighties he's gained a lot of subtlety and skill, bordering at times on the Pynchonian. There are some interesting bits about Springsteen, Burroughs, and Two Lane Blacktop in here.

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1880 on: May 11, 2013, 06:58:07 PM »
So speaking of Friend of the Show Michael Kupperman and Tales Designed to Thrizzle, Vol. 2: My GF, who has no sense of humor at all, found it strange and disturbing when, during my reading of the aforesaid book, I would at odd intervals say out loud, “I’m Bambiffpow Jackson — there’s a fistfight in my very name!” and then dissolve into fits of hysterical giggling. I could have used other standout lines, like "These sapphires in broth are simply delicious!" or "'Well, we've got superpowers now.' 'Yeah, but I'm a baby!'" but somehow it was always the Bambiffpow Jackson line I kept returning to. So last night I was Googling "Bambiffpow Jackson" to see whether anyone else was obsessed with that line. Let me just say I felt very vindicated to discover that in March, a blogger for the New York Times selected “I’m Bambiffpow Jackson — there’s a fistfight in my very name!” as Sentence of the Month--beating out writers like Roland Barthes and Rudyard Kipling.

http://6thfloor.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/03/18/onward-toward-sentence-of-the-month/
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Josh

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jbissell

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1882 on: May 13, 2013, 03:08:33 PM »
So speaking of Friend of the Show Michael Kupperman

check out his autobiography of Mark Twain, if you haven't already

ndmvhc

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1883 on: May 26, 2013, 12:33:04 PM »
I finally finished Demons. I thought it was good but not great.

I've moved on to Special Tasks.

RickInSaltLake

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1884 on: June 01, 2013, 05:34:41 PM »
I just started reading Gravity's Rainbow.

Hoo boy...


I cannot defend that WHOLE book but there are some AMAZING moments in it. Two sections in particular are favorites of mine. But as a whole...?



Eh.

Yeah. I read it, but I skipped about 200 pages of the middle because it was due back at the library. Skipping a fifth of the text didn't affect my comprehension of the book at all, which remained at or near zero throughout reading it. Much of my reading consisted of forcing myself to simply move my eyes across the text, hoping that it would mean something to my brain. It didn't.

And for what it's worth, I don't think I'm super stupid. I loved The Crying of Lot 49, and have enjoyed other avant-garde literary fiction.

So good luck, I guess?


Yeah, I read "Gravity's Rainbow" about ten years ago after two previous aborted attempts. I'll let you in on a little secret: get a hold of Steve Weisenburger's "A 'Gravity's Rainbow' Companion". It demystifies a huge chunk of Pynchon's language, references (which are mind blowingly vast), discusses the books structure, translates the German, and makes the experience much more pleasurable. And take it slow, Unless your reading it for a class there's no need to try to set one of these fifty pages a day regimens. That'll only piss you off...

http://www.amazon.com/Gravitys-Rainbow-Companion-Contexts-Pynchons/dp/0820328073/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1370122318&sr=1-1&keywords=gravity%27s+rainbow+companion

You might also enjoy having this handy: http://www.amazon.com/Pictures-Showing-Happens-Pynchons-Gravitys/dp/0977312798/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1370122318&sr=1-2&keywords=gravity%27s+rainbow+companion

RickInSaltLake

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1885 on: June 01, 2013, 05:37:49 PM »
I'm reading Lawrence Wright's book about Scientology (Going Clear). I am a fan of sci-fi, a bit of a fan of the non-fiction cult horror genre and have read a couple books about Scientology, but this one sheds even more light on the extent to which young L. Ron Hubbard was an unintentionally hilarious unreliable narrator. I had heard about him deciding to attack a Mexican island while commanding a naval ship, sure, but not about the day he spent blowing things up underwater and drawing the conclusion that he'd sunk a sub when he saw some bubbles. Nor the sea adventure he organized in college that he ran away from in the middle of the night when things went sour. Nor had I heard much about the sex magick. I probably would have been OK with not hearing about that. On the other hand he started a wildly successful global cult when he was a few years younger than I am, so who am I to judge?

I haveto read that. I fucking loved "The Looming Tower"...

Steve of Bloomington

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1886 on: June 03, 2013, 10:31:44 AM »
I'm reading Lawrence Wright's book about Scientology (Going Clear). I am a fan of sci-fi, a bit of a fan of the non-fiction cult horror genre and have read a couple books about Scientology, but this one sheds even more light on the extent to which young L. Ron Hubbard was an unintentionally hilarious unreliable narrator. I had heard about him deciding to attack a Mexican island while commanding a naval ship, sure, but not about the day he spent blowing things up underwater and drawing the conclusion that he'd sunk a sub when he saw some bubbles. Nor the sea adventure he organized in college that he ran away from in the middle of the night when things went sour. Nor had I heard much about the sex magick. I probably would have been OK with not hearing about that. On the other hand he started a wildly successful global cult when he was a few years younger than I am, so who am I to judge?

I haveto read that. I fucking loved "The Looming Tower"...

Likewise, the Scientology book was great (David Miscavige, now running the show, also had some interesting tales from his youth, but they were more about psycopathic violent tendencies (getting extremely angry about the boredom of fishing and expressing a desire to jump in the water and strangle them) unlike Hubbard's hapless forays into cult leadership and spirituality) so I want to read 'The Looming Tower' now.

After I finish Paul Myers' (FOT) book about Todd Rundgren's studio work, 'A Wizard/A True Star'. I'm learning a lot of interesting things about Rundgren and music of the 70s from it. It's highly entertaining.

fonpr

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1887 on: June 04, 2013, 09:29:24 AM »
extremely angry about the boredom of fishing and expressing a desire to jump in the water and strangle them
By "them" I assume you mean fish?
Personally, I'd rather be a cow wrangler than a fish strangler.
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Steve of Bloomington

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1888 on: June 04, 2013, 10:14:19 AM »
extremely angry about the boredom of fishing and expressing a desire to jump in the water and strangle them
By "them" I assume you mean fish?
Personally, I'd rather be a cow wrangler than a fish strangler.

Based on this book, for Miscavige 'them' would seem to mean all living things, but here, fish specifically. The contextual clue is the part about jumping in the water, although maybe that could refer to people on jet skis.

Greggulator

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Re: Fave Books / Currently Reading
« Reply #1889 on: June 04, 2013, 11:17:02 AM »
Currently reading:

THE POWER BROKER, ROBERT CARO -- I almost solely read non-fiction and love history. A lot of scholars and people I respect hail this as the best non-fiction book ever written. I finally got around to starting it. WOW! This is the most detailed book ever written. There are quotes from county-level zoning hearings from 30 years before the book was started. However, despite being this detailed, it never feels overwhelming with details. It will probably take me another two years to finish but I really don't mind.

It's also eerily timely today. Everything in Turkey started because they're taking away public park space in an urban area. Robert Moses' climb to power started because he wanted to provide park space for NYC's urban poor. His thirst for power didn't even have an Animal Farm slow-burn -- the second he had a taste of authority he used it in crushing manner. Demagogues and quasi-dictators who want to subjugate their citizens should all read The Power Broker to learn how to use public parks and other space to gain support to allow the oppressed masses to not mind suspension of freedom of speech and living under constant martial law.

TRUCKING COUNTRY, SHANE HAMILTON -- I also love books that tackle oddball economic subjects. I gave up that hobby for a while when I was writing about oddball economic subjects (oil markets) but am back after my mom got me a subscription to The Economist using airline points. I'm not too far into this yet (see: above) but I like it. Trucking is such an underrated part of US economic history. It allowed the urban masses to have refrigerated food. You can't have milk deliveries without trucks.
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