Rate the last book you read Page 26

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  • Blaizefm 1 Oct 2012 19:33:43 232 posts
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    spindle9988 wrote:
    The Painted Man-Peter V Brett

    Started relly slowly but was a good way to build the characters. 2/3rds of the book do read like a prologue for the sequel but You really do get a great sense of what the characters are going through. Overall I really liked it and will definitely be getting the sequel. I am reading the secret footballer inbetween first though.

    8.5/10
    You will love The Desert Spear then. Great book, and a great series. If you are inclined I would suggest getting the audibook version from iTunes - the narration is excellent.

    The latest, The Daylight War, is due to land next Feb.
  • evild_edd 2 Oct 2012 08:40:46 3,148 posts
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    Couple read on hols:

    David Copperfield

    I recall being at school and prclaiming Dickens as "the worst, most boring writer to haver ever lived. Ever!" (or something along those lines; it was probably more vitriolic knowing my teenage self). Anyway, when they do finally invent time travel I'm going to have to go back and kick my 15-year-old self in arse for his ignorence! Brilliant, beautifully written, and emotional. You do know what to expect with Dickens, I suppose, but it's all in the telling, and after you acclimatise to the style you can't help but bathe in the sublime use of language, and amusing cast of characters. It is bloody long, mind.

    9/10

    Then...

    The Sisters Brothers

    Western told from the perspective of Eli Sisters, a hitman who begins to question his job and life, and begins to doubt and fear his ruthlessly ambitious elder brother Charlie's actions.

    This hit a spot after the wordy tome of Dickens' Copperfield, and I flew through it in a couple of days. Very interesting writing style. It played to a lot of (cinematic) western cliches which allowed for broad-stroke description that you could readily envisage in your mind's eye. It really did paint the picture of a corrupting, greedy world in which even the kindest hearts were spoiled by influences around them.

    My only slight criticism was that he seemed to wrap it up quite quickly. I found some elements of the ending (the despatching of the Commisar, in particular) to be almost perfunctory. Still, it did close its themes and it was nicely tied-up.

    8/10

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  • spindle9988 2 Oct 2012 08:53:47 3,629 posts
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    @Blaizefm

    Cheers mate. I am definitely going to give the 2nd book a go

    The Secret Footballer-Author unknown


    Not sure about this one. He is the guy who writes an article for the guardian which goes behind the scenes of football. He tries to defend the wages and attitudes of footballers for a lot of the book and ended up sounding like a bit of div. He states god knows how many times how good a player he is and wated too much of his career. Ther are a few good bits but nothing to strongly reccomend.

    5/10


    edit: Just to point out that if it wasnt for this great thread I wouldnt of read half the books I have this year

    Edited by spindle9988 at 08:55:11 02-10-2012
  • glaeken 8 Oct 2012 13:27:28 11,228 posts
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    Nausea by Jean-Paul Sartre - The toughest slog of a book to get through I have read in a long time and it's not even that long a book. The gist is a man contemplates the meaningless nature of existence. It does have its moments but it's far too concerned with navel gazing for the majority of the book. Possibly I am just too used to the general ideas of existentialism to now get this and when it came out it was probably more thought provoking.
  • TechnoHippy 9 Oct 2012 11:34:29 14,719 posts
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    Dodger by Terry Prachett

    While not as overtly funny as the Discworld novels, it does have its moments. The story is fairly simple, but well told and as with most of his writing, it is easy and a joy to read.

    8/10

    My books, contests, reviews and author interviews on my blog

  • Metalfish 9 Oct 2012 12:36:17 8,849 posts
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    Fear and loathing Hunter S Thompson

    Worth a read, but not the life changing event some had declared it to be. Out of its post-hippy historical context, a lot of the counter-culture hedonism comes across as more than a little bit sad. Still, a well written book and different enough from my recent readings to be a weird little palette cleanser.

    I give it: review likely to provoke reactions / 10
  • evild_edd 12 Oct 2012 10:13:46 3,148 posts
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    Just finished Michel Houellebecq's Atomised.

    A grand book asking fundamental questions of human nature and society, how the two evolved and coexisted over time, and where they may go in the future. The fact that these subjects are tackled in such a relxed, almost conversational tone in relation to the sex and love lives of two different (and evidently emotionally damaged) individuals is interesting and challenging.

    You have to admire any book that sets its sights on such grandiose subjects, however, and I couldn't help but find myself agreeing with some of his critique on modern life. But then I can be a depressive sod at times.

    An uncomfortable read at times, but recommended.

    8/10

    Why look, it's a blog:
    http://www.edwardlaven.blogspot.co.uk

  • Deleted user 12 October 2012 20:27:04
    Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling.


    It's...well, let's not beat around the bush, it's shit. Far, far too many characters, none of them likeable, centred around a drama so mundane and banal that when it reaches the inevitably depressing conclusion you're so far past caring.

    I get the feeling this may actually damage her reputation as an author somewhat, as it just feels like there's adult things thrown in for the sake of calling it an adult book - so you get fleeting references to paedophiles, child abuse etc, and there's even a rape scene thrown in - a rape scene that is utterly pointless. It happens, the girl involved runs out crying, and then it's never really mentioned again at all. It adds literally nothing to the plot.

    It's just a giant mess of a book that cannot decide what it wants to be. Is it a damning social critique? A hyperreal grotesquery? A comedy? It changes page to page.

    And yeah, not only are there far too many characters, but Rowling attempts to do some weird third-person subjective, but because she jumps around so much, sometimes midparagraph with no signaling, it's just confusing.

    In fact that pretty much sums up the whole book - confusing. Why it even exists is a bit of a mystery.

    3/10.
  • phAge 13 Oct 2012 00:48:38 24,387 posts
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    The Good Soldiers.

    An embedded, Pulitzer-winning, journo goes on an eight month tour in Iraq with a US infantry division, and tells the story of the soldiers, their families and the way the former slowly fall apart as they realise they're not really making any difference whatsoever.

    Very, very good.
  • Lotos8ter 14 Oct 2012 07:49:47 2,361 posts
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    The Garden of Evening Mists

    Definitely one of the best books that I've read, the story and characters stayed with me. It felt like a breath of fresh air after the thrillers and other general fiction that I normally read.
    The story has a bit of everything and is set over two or three different timelines that aren't immediately obvious as you read. Very beautiful and highly recommended - easy enough to read too if the "Booker" thing is putting anyone off.

    9/10

    Edited by Lotos8ter at 07:55:37 14-10-2012

    Fiat Lux

  • Toonster 14 Oct 2012 09:27:24 6,845 posts
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    Just finished A Clash of Kings - 7/10

    Full of great moments but a little more slow-paced than A Game of Thrones (which I'd probably give an 8). Kudos to George R.R. Martin though. There's so much imagination and attention to detail, that it's hard not get invested in the characters and the world they live in. I will say, though, I groaned every time I came to a chapter about Catelyn or Bran. Never look forward to them.

    3DS: 0361-6951-2609 (Tom)

  • cptjohnnycasino 14 Oct 2012 13:55:51 515 posts
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    The Dark Tower V: Wolves of Calla

    Not as enjoyable as the previous books in the series, but still entertaining enough.

    There is one thing that really turned me off this particular Dark Tower Stephen King has decided to include work from his other novels in there, which strikes me as a little lazy if I'm being honest. Going so far as to reference himself in the latter part of the book. If anything, it's going to distract and cheapen the fantastic world/worlds he's built within the series.

    7/10
  • dominalien 14 Oct 2012 19:54:27 7,024 posts
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    @cptjohnnycasino

    I fully agree. These parts were the weakest in what is, imo, an excellent series.

    PSN: DonOsito

  • Tom_Servo 16 Oct 2012 12:40:54 18,031 posts
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    Lotos8ter wrote:
    The Garden of Evening Mists

    Definitely one of the best books that I've read, the story and characters stayed with me. It felt like a breath of fresh air after the thrillers and other general fiction that I normally read.
    The story has a bit of everything and is set over two or three different timelines that aren't immediately obvious as you read. Very beautiful and highly recommended - easy enough to read too if the "Booker" thing is putting anyone off.

    9/10
    I read the first chapter of this last night, glad to hear it's good!

    Since you've mentioned the Booker, I might as well discuss the last book I read: Narcopolis (I had a look at the Booker shortlist and bought the two I thought sounded good).

    It was okay. I haven't thought about it since I finished it, which isn't really a good sign. The best part by far was the account of Mr. Lee's life, IMO. Apart from that, it occasionally felt like it was a trying a bit hard. The hallucinatory/dream sequences were imaginative and very vividly written though. 6/10, I guess.
  • RyanDS 16 Oct 2012 12:52:59 9,600 posts
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    The new Iain M Banks - The Hydrogen Sonata.

    His best book in years. Genuinely made me laugh out loud at points and as usual the Minds are AWESOME TO THE MAX!!!

    10/10
  • chopsen 16 Oct 2012 12:56:17 16,127 posts
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    Dune LB/10

    Quite good, weirdly low-key ending. Lots of Machiavellian shenanigans. Did tend to over-do this a lot:

    1. indicate something that Character A notices about Character B
    2. describe what character A thinks Character B is thinking, which is possibly a bit arbitrary, but apparently justified by 1.
    3. line of dialogue to move things forward.
    4. Consider repeat, with roles reversed.
  • andytheadequate 16 Oct 2012 13:10:28 8,281 posts
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    TechnoHippy wrote:
    Dodger by Terry Prachett

    While not as overtly funny as the Discworld novels, it does have its moments. The story is fairly simple, but well told and as with most of his writing, it is easy and a joy to read.

    8/10
    I agree with this. It's aimed at "younger readers" (which I didn't realise when I bought it) but there doesn't really seem to be a difference in writing styles.

    I've just finished The Fifth Elephant by Pratchett. Probably one of his best ones IMO, although I have always enjoyed the Sam Vimes ones the most.
  • spindle9988 16 Oct 2012 13:49:36 3,629 posts
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    I read loads of Pratchett back when I younger, I used to love the discworld novels until I read Jingo. Might go back to them soon though
  • spindle9988 16 Oct 2012 15:23:06 3,629 posts
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    @Metalfish

    After The desert Spear I will give The Lies of Loch Lamora a read after your reccomendation a few months back
  • Metalfish 16 Oct 2012 16:03:00 8,849 posts
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    It was less a recommendation than a list of minor moans followed by a sentence or two saying how much I enjoyed it. Good book, hopefully you feel the same way.
  • cptjohnnycasino 17 Oct 2012 07:01:59 515 posts
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    @dominalien

    I'm part-way through the next installment and it's about to get much worse (I think) They're on their way to meet Stephen King...

    I hope it doesn't completely undo all the fantastic story before these events.
  • drhcnip 17 Oct 2012 07:13:26 2,545 posts
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    fevre dream by george rr martin

    great deep south vampire story - really enjoyed this, easier to digest than game of thrones, too

    8/10

    now about halfway through alas, babylon which is definitely my cup of post-apocalyptic tea....

    Edited by drhcnip at 07:14:12 17-10-2012
  • sirtacos 18 Oct 2012 07:29:02 7,333 posts
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    The Haunting of Hill House

    Apparently, it's a classic. Deservedly so.
    It's not 'scary' in the traditional sense... there is tension - an an asphyxiating sense of foreboding, moar like - and never have I seen a simple house described so unsettlingly... but there are no "BOO" jump scares or cheap payoffs. Just an inexplicably twisted, fucked-up house and beautiful prose.

    7/10

    Edited by sirtacos at 07:54:48 18-10-2012
  • Deleted user 22 October 2012 16:32:56
    Pines.

    Starts off as a fairly taut and enjoyable thriller, then about 60% of the way through it utterly collapses into ridiculous sci-fi and monsters nonsense. A premise so implausible it actually requires characters to sit down and have detailed conversations of nothing but exposition at the end so you can even begin to work out what the fuck happened.

    It genuinely feels like it's an unfinished book that someone else found and decided to finish with their own "unique twist". Even the writing style seems to change, going from something relatively tidy to a format that presumes if every sentence is short it creates tension. And it suffers heavily from "hero seems to have superpowers" syndrome. He's starved, with no clothing, in the freezing cold wilderness, after being heavily sedated, beaten within an inch of his life, had his stomach sliced open, and even had his leg purposefully gouged open (which is now infected), and somehow manages to climb a hundred foot vertical cliff-face while being pursued by mutants (who are actually hyper-evolved humans because this is actually set a thousand years in the future, except they don't really explain why only a thousand years turns the entire human race into gigantic monsters with ten-inch razor sharp claws).

    I haven't spoilered any of this because you shouldn't be reading this utter shit.

    2/10
  • boo 22 Oct 2012 16:57:44 11,858 posts
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    Let The Right One In - John Ajvide Lindqvist

    Saw the Swedish film of this recently, which I thought was fabulous, so decided to give the book a whirl.

    Equally good. It's much like an 'extended cut' of a film. The main thread, concerning Eli and Oskar is pretty much as per film (well, vice-versa), but the book has significantly more about the group of drinkers, and the other kids at school etc.

    You also get a bit of Eli's backstory, concerning how s/he came to be, and more about Hakan, Eli's 'guardian'.

    If you liked the film, you'll like the book.

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  • SlippedDiscs_of_Tron 22 Oct 2012 21:10:54 23 posts
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    I finished Pines t'other day, and while it certainly had issues my opinion of it isn't quite as negative. The expository stretch that closes out the book felt clumsy, but until that point it's a nice little page turner that reads a bit like Twin Peaks as re-envisioned by JJ Abrams.

    A solid 6/10 from me. I will, however, concede that the protagonist being more durable than an adamantium cockroach was a little hard to swallow.
  • Deleted user 22 October 2012 21:15:26
    @RyanDS I liked the Mistake Not...'s revelation of it's full name :-) Not sure i'd give it a 10/10 though as the eventual revelation of the secret of the eyes fell a bit flat unless i missed some deeper meaning.

    i did notice the description of the actual number of strings vs apparent strings on the elevenstring matched the chapters in the book? i think?
  • Deleted user 22 October 2012 22:01:43
    Cloud Atlas

    A bit dissapointed with this. I just lost interest in it from about half way.

    It is certainly ambitious, and interesting, but not as clever as it think it us. Structually i found it awkward - some of the bits are really entertaining, but going back on them later on , i found i was just put out, spent far too long away from there stories to care. I did look forward to certain bits - actually the frosbisher, Miss Rey and Timothy cavendish stories i found really entertaining.

    Overall it came with a decent message - but structually the uses of repeat segements from previous passages was sometimes clunky - i understand his intentions (the use of music theory), it just lacked a bit in places, and i think his prose suffered for it as well.

    I loved thousand autumns, so i guess my hype for this was pretty massive!.

    6/10
  • drhcnip 23 Oct 2012 10:21:46 2,545 posts
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    alas, babylon by pat frank

    loved this, fulfilled my post=apoc needs
    reminded me a lot of death of grass, another fab book

    wouldn't be at all surprised if alas babylon, canticle for leibowitz & earth abides were the trinity that helped inspire the fallout games....;)
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