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Thread: What is your favorite book?

  1. #1

    What is your favorite book?

    Watching an episode of a PBS series called the Great American Read and I don't really have a favorite over all them there a probably favorites in different categories.

    Best Sci-fi series would be Foundation by Asimov.
    Best Sci-fi comedy would be Hitchhikers guide to the Galaxy.
    Best stand alone Sci-fi book would I, Jedi.
    Best non fiction would be Demon Haunted World: Science As A Candle In The Dark.

    What your favorites?
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
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    Non-fic: Douglas Hofstadter's Metamagical Themas.
    Fic: Larry Niven's Protector

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    Can't pick one. I can't even narrow it down to a few. I have widely eclectic tastes in fiction, I don't read much nonfiction.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

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    For poetry, I'd pick The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran.
    Fiction: Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.
    Fantasy: I listed 3, then six then thought of six more. I can't pick. Maybe, The Last Unicorn. But only for today.
    Non-Fiction: Cosmos.
    Pop Science: Chaos by James Gleick (I know, I know. You'd think I'd pick Brain Green's Elegant Universe.)
    Hard(ish) Science: Six Easy Pieces/Six Not So Easy Pieces
    Poly-Sci: How to Make War
    History: Same problem as Fantasy. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire was the last thing I reread and if I am rereading that one it must be a favorite.

    Edit - What no Sci-Fi? Hitchhiker's Guide to The Galaxy for sure.
    Solfe

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    Literary fiction: Moby Dick
    SF/F: Hyperion
    Non-fiction (technical): Art of Computer Programming
    Non-fiction (non-technical) Battle Cry of Freedom
    Information about American English usage here. Floating point issues? Please read this before posting.

    How do things fly? This explains it all.

    Actually they can't: "Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible." - Lord Kelvin, president, Royal Society, 1895.



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    Yeah, no way I could choose one.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

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    And of course, there could be a complementary list of stuff you hate (that will get you burned at the stake).

    I tried to read Asimov's Foundation. After ten chapters, I concluded the whole book was going to be one long preamble to a story that never got started. Couldn't finish it.

    Tried to read Herbert's Dune abut six times. Feel asleep by Chapter 3 every time.

    : runs away :

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    it is tough to choose, but "historically" I've told people who insist I pick one, it'd be Candide, by Voltaire. I'm partial to the Penguin Classics translation by John Butt (yes) from 1950. Other translations that I've read over the years don't seem to have the same kind of humor.

    CJSF
    "The sun is a quagmire
    It's not made of fire
    Forget what you've been told in the past
    Electrons are free
    (Plasma!) Fourth state of matter
    Not gas, not liquid, not solid"

    -They Might Be Giants, "Why Does The Sun Really Shine?"


    lonelybirder.org

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    Yeah, no way I could choose one.
    Ditto

    I've thought, along the lines of Fahrenheit 451 (spoiler alert), that if I was to become a book, it would probably be Alice in Wonderland.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

    All moderation in purple - The rules

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    I'd be the instruction manual to an old land-line phone.
    Misplaced and no one looking for it anyway

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    I loved Catch 22..

    re-read HHGTG a few times.

    For some reason I really liked Darkness at Noon, by Arthur Koestler.

    difficult to really say.....I wish I read more. Recently bought The Wasp Factory to read again....
    ................................

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    One of my favorite science books of all times was Jupiter, by Isaac Asimov (1975 edition). It thrilled me with details and equations and good stuff like that.
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    Do good work. —Virgil Ivan "Gus" Grissom

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    Another one who couldn't pick a favourite one. Even with the threat of an unexpected visit from the Spanish Inquisition. It all depends on what mood I am in.

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    SF: Titan, Wizard, Demon (John Varley)
    Poetry: Four Quartets (T.S.Eliot)
    Classic Fiction: Middlemarch (George Eliot)
    Fantasy/Comedy: The Diskworld series (Terry Pratchett)

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    If I had to pick one--it would be THE DREAM MACHINES

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    Quote Originally Posted by Solfe View Post
    For poetry, I'd pick The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran.
    Fiction: Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.
    Fantasy: I listed 3, then six then thought of six more. I can't pick. Maybe, The Last Unicorn. But only for today.
    Non-Fiction: Cosmos.
    Pop Science: Chaos by James Gleick (I know, I know. You'd think I'd pick Brain Green's Elegant Universe.)
    Hard(ish) Science: Six Easy Pieces/Six Not So Easy Pieces
    Poly-Sci: How to Make War
    History: Same problem as Fantasy. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire was the last thing I reread and if I am rereading that one it must be a favorite.

    Edit - What no Sci-Fi? Hitchhiker's Guide to The Galaxy for sure.
    Months later and I am still good with The Last Unicorn. Hmm.

    I could change history to SPQR by Mary Beard... or is that The Storm Before the Storm by Mike Duncan. Or The Defense of Duffer's Drift... Oh, geeze, that one is fantasy and military history. Naw, I stick with what I said the first time.
    Solfe

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    I enjoy all David Ickes books. They really taught me a lot about the world and how it works.

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    Non-fiction: Blood Horses by John Jeremiah Sullivan, and Lost in the Cosmos by Walker Percy
    Fiction: Play it As it Lays by Joan Didion

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    The dictionary, it's got everything in it...

    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

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    Fiction: The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant - Stephen Donaldson
    Non-fiction: Code Complete - Steve McDonnell

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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    The dictionary, it's got everything in it...

    Favorite dictionaries: Origins by Eric Partridge, and Fowler's Modern Usage by, uh, Fowler


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    Quote Originally Posted by Sp1ke View Post
    Fiction: The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant - Stephen Donaldson
    Non-fiction: Code Complete - Steve McDonnell
    I like Donaldson. He has elegantly crafted worlds destroyed by "What the Hell Heroes". Most of his books are like watching a train wreck. I know. I have them all and I've read them several times. It slightly traumatic. It's like watching a tra... I think I said that before. Beautiful scenery, though. With a train wreck...
    Solfe

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    Started reading Thomas Covenant, but That Scene just made the character irredeemable to me.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    Started reading Thomas Covenant, but That Scene just made the character irredeemable to me.
    That is the point. He has several opportunities to redeem himself and can't or won't. He is irredeemable. (But the other characters aren't.) He starts with a horrible, incurable, intractable disease and his life merges with it. He is on a trajectory of doom from the start. He doesn't get better, even when he tries. He is opposite of "better lucky than good". He is not unlucky, he's the definition of being bad at everything. He can't even get punished properly and he is aware of it all.

    It's a good thing they didn't print that on the cover, because they wouldn't have sold a book.
    Solfe

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    My late, lamented and usually quite discerning friend Brian was very much into the first trilogy of Thomas Covenant, but I found them an unrelenting grind--both because of the ghastly protagonist, and because of Donaldson's writing style. So I greatly enjoyed Nick Lowe's concept of "Clench Racing" when it was first published, back when there were only two trilogies:
    This is a social and competitive sport, that can be played over and over with renewed pleasure. Playing equipment currently on the market restricts the number of players to six, but the manufacturers may yet issue the series of proposed supplements to raise the maximum eventually to nine.

    The rules are simple. Each player takes a different volume of The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, and at the word "go" all open their books at random and start leafing through, scanning the pages. The winner is the first player to find the word "clench". It's a fast, exciting game – sixty seconds is unusually drawn-out – and can be varied, if players get too good, with other favourite Donaldson words like wince, flinch, gag, rasp, exigency, mendacity, articulate, macerate, mien, limn, vertigo, cynosure.... It's a great way to get thrown out of bookshops. Good racing!
    Grant Hutchison

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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    Started reading Thomas Covenant, but That Scene just made the character irredeemable to me.
    A Man Rides Through and The Mirror of Her Dreams are much better.

    The Gap series is much worse. It's like someone who didn't know how humans interact tried to describe them interacting. It's very ugly.
    Solfe

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    1st Book Of "The Damned" Trilogy

    Call To Arms Alan Dean Foster
    Last edited by John Mendenhall; 2020-Oct-23 at 03:33 AM. Reason: typos

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