So. . . What Are You Reading? (2012 Edition)

Discussion in 'Books' started by Ismitje, Jan 1, 2012.

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  1. Atouk

    Atouk BigSoccer Supporter

    DC United
    Apr 16, 2001
    Arlington, VA
    Club:
    Queens Park Rangers FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
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    Henry James -- English Hours
    (from the above Library of America collection of James' travel writings on Britain and America)

    I'm about 1/4 through this collection of portraits of English places. Very enjoyable thus far.
     
  2. Dr. Wankler

    Dr. Wankler Member+

    May 2, 2001
    The Electric City
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    Some light reading..

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    For the first time since trying (and failing) to get through Kierkegaard in college, I'm making pretty good headway. Also...

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    R.E.M. | Fiction: an Alternative Biography, by David Buckley. Strange parallels to the Kierkegaard book. For one thing, Kierkegaard created characters to give voice to his philosophy. REM, from the beginning, would mythologize and fabricate details of the band's trajectory just for the hell of it. So with book books, it's not clear what is to be taken as true in a factual sense and what is to be taken as true in a fictional sense, and what is supposed to be understood as, in Kierkegaardian terms, outright bullshit (it sounds better in Danish).
     
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  3. NER_MCFC

    NER_MCFC Member

    May 23, 2001
    Cambridge, MA
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    [​IMG]
    1493 by Charles Mann
    I absolutely loved 1491, and this is shaping up to be every bit as much fun.
     
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  4. Val1

    Val1 Member+

    Arsenal
    Mar 12, 2004
    MD's Eastern Shore
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    imagesCAUXLQXG.jpg

    Macbeth William Shakespeare

    My daughter was in Romeo and Juliet this last weekend. Not my favorite play, but a new director at the high school. Made my son attend, he wasn't too happy. We've watched Kenneth Branagh's Henry V and I want a tragedie for my son. And Macbeth is the most accessible, I think. We're going to read this as a family, to much wailing and gnashing of teeth, I'm sure. But, we've got the Patrick Stewart Macbeth on Netflix to follow up with, and both my kids have a love affair with Stewart's Jean Luc Picard....
     
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  5. Val1

    Val1 Member+

    Arsenal
    Mar 12, 2004
    MD's Eastern Shore
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Romeo and Juliet jpeg.jpg

    Romeo and Juliet Michael Rosen and Jane Ray

    I read this version with my son prior to his attending his sister's performance.

    If you are looking for an easily-accessible version of Shakespeare to present to younger readers, or non-readers like my son, this is flat out, the best version I have ever seen. The two-page summary of Shakespeare's time and setting leads seemlessly into the play. The retelling is excellent, but insterspersed with the summary narrative are Shakespeare's lines, so the reader gets all the famous lines, soliloquoys, and a flavor for the text. And, very subtly, the text "interprets" Friar Laurence's motives. And he has long been one of my least-favorite characters on the stage.

    I know I post mostly juvenile literature here, but this, along with Brian Selznick's Hugo Cabret, are the two most significant works I've posted. It is really a stunning interpretation.
     
  6. Atouk

    Atouk BigSoccer Supporter

    DC United
    Apr 16, 2001
    Arlington, VA
    Club:
    Queens Park Rangers FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    [​IMG]

    P.G. Wodehouse -- The Pothunters

    An early Wodehouse "school story."
     
  7. jfcule

    jfcule Moderator
    Staff Member

    Aug 4, 2005
    Club:
    FC Barcelona
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    Starting this book. Found it hard to get past the first two chapters, but got hooked after that. Liking it so far
     
  8. Dr. Wankler

    Dr. Wankler Member+

    May 2, 2001
    The Electric City
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    Two books going on, both published within the last several weeks:

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    Both Flesh and Not, by David Foster Wallace. Essays from the mid-90s until about a year before DFW's death. Some really good stuff, though much of it dated. Good essays on fiction, a couple really good essays on tennis, and an entertaining reading of the Termintor movies as "f/x porn." Damn shame his publishers didn't include his Kenyon College commencement address, since it would only be 12-15 pages, but rather they put it out separately at a rip off cost with only about 20 words per page. Luckily, "This is Water" is pretty easy to find on the internet.

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    Athanasius Kircher: A Man of Misconceptions by John Glassie. A jesuit of the renaissance era, Kircher was one of the smartest people of his time. He was practically a Leonardo da Vinci in terms of the breadth of his knowledge. Unfortunately for him, his speculations didn't work out quite so well, so if he's remembered at all, it's as a crackpot. Too bad, because in spite of getting pretty much everything wrong, he's still an interesting character.
     
  9. CrewArsenal

    CrewArsenal Member

    Feb 23, 2007
    Pickerington, Ohio
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    Picked up the audio version from the library, and I was disappointed somewhat. I know all Dunham's characters and their voices, but without the visual of Dunham with Walter, Achmed, and the like, when he injects his character's voices into the book, it all just seemed a little off. The voices all sounded too much like Dunham just trying to be funny.
     
  10. Dr. Wankler

    Dr. Wankler Member+

    May 2, 2001
    The Electric City
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
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    Jorge Luis Borges, Collected Fictions. I haven't read J.L.B. In decades. The ones I remember are better than I recalled, and most of the ones that are new to me kick ass, too. These translations are noticebly better than the older ones, too. I've read about half the pieces so far. Only at lunch did I read the Note from the translator. When he said that JLB's first appearance in an English language magazine was in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, which doesn't sound quite likely, for a second I thought Borges was putting another one over on me.
     
  11. YankBastard

    YankBastard Na Na Na Na NANANANAAA!

    Jun 18, 2005
    Estados Unidos
    Club:
    AS Roma
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Pretty interesting

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  12. Dr. Wankler

    Dr. Wankler Member+

    May 2, 2001
    The Electric City
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    Sorry, David McRaney, I don't need your book to know that I spend most of my day deluding myself.
     
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  13. Ismitje

    Ismitje Super Moderator
    Staff Member

    Dec 30, 2000
    The Palouse
    Club:
    Real Salt Lake
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Finished the terrific sixth Aubrey/Maturin book, and then came my old nemesis the kidney stone. This makes four in 12 months. Trouble sleeping plus trouble concentrating combined with no patience for television led me here, and a nice interlude it was:

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    And now, back to O'Brian with The Surgeon's Mate.
     
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  14. YankBastard

    YankBastard Na Na Na Na NANANANAAA!

    Jun 18, 2005
    Estados Unidos
    Club:
    AS Roma
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
  15. Dr. Wankler

    Dr. Wankler Member+

    May 2, 2001
    The Electric City
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
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    Music By Philip Glass: A Professional Autobiography, by Philip Glass (1987)

    I'll probably finish this tonight. Repetitive in spots (kidding). It's actually an interesting narrative of his apprentice years as a composer, through the successful staging of his opera trilogy. He's making ends meet at this stage of his life by working as a cab driver (he has a couple of people see his hack license and tell him he has the same name as a famous living composer) and a plumber (he's recognized by Time Magazine's art critic when's trying to install said critic's new dishwasher, and the aforementioned critic tries to through Glass out of his house because artists shouldn't have to work as plumbers. Glass succeeds in throwing the critic out of the critic's own kitchen, because sometimes artists do have to work as plumbers, and besides, this artist/plumber had more jobs to get to that day). But most of the book is talking about how the music gets composed and how the show gets on the stage.
     
  16. Ismitje

    Ismitje Super Moderator
    Staff Member

    Dec 30, 2000
    The Palouse
    Club:
    Real Salt Lake
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I saw Calvin Trillin on The Daily Show discussing his "2012 election in verse" book called Dogfight. Our local library doesn't have that but did have the 2008 version, Deciding the Next Decider.

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  17. CrewArsenal

    CrewArsenal Member

    Feb 23, 2007
    Pickerington, Ohio
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    The 14th (and final, according to the author), adventure in the Crowner John series, other than the prequel Crowner's Crusade, to be published in January. The author has now embarked on a couple of other series set in times closer to the present, and is ending the Crowner John stories. While the Crowner was a hard-to-like main character, he was always a stickler for honesty, even when it was not always in his best interest.
     
  18. spot

    spot Member+

    Nov 29, 1999
    Centennial
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    [​IMG]If you've read and liked Norman Mclean's "Young Men and Fire," you'll probably like this short book about training with the 10th Mountain Division.
     
  19. Dyvel

    Dyvel Member+

    Jul 24, 1999
    The dog end of a day gone by
    Club:
    Leeds United AFC
    Nat'l Team:
    Ireland Republic
  20. NER_MCFC

    NER_MCFC Member

    May 23, 2001
    Cambridge, MA
    Club:
    New England Revolution
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    [​IMG]
    The Worst Journey in the World by Apsley Cherry-Garard
    As a teenager I was fascinated by polar exploration with a particular focus on Robert Scott, so this author's name was already familiar. He was one of central figures in Scott's second expedition, outside of the party that actually went to the pole, which means he lived to tell the tale, and tell it very well from what I've read so far.
     
  21. guignol

    guignol Moderator
    Staff Member

    Apr 28, 2005
    mermoz-les-boss
    Club:
    Olympique Lyonnais
    Nat'l Team:
    France
    a long time ago i read scottt's journal of the last expedition and it was very good. when i went to find a pic of the book all i found was :

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    !

    but no trace of scott's journal in the same penguin 2/6 edition (the cover was however blue)... meaning it would likely be worth a pretty penny if i had held on to it.
     
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  22. Atouk

    Atouk BigSoccer Supporter

    DC United
    Apr 16, 2001
    Arlington, VA
    Club:
    Queens Park Rangers FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    [​IMG]

    Charles Dickens -- The Haunted Man and the Ghost's Bargain

    The fifth and last of Dickens' Christmas Books
     
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