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Thread: What are you reading?

  1. #2791
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    I just started Dr. No. It's my first James Bond novel, so I'm looking forward to it.
    My travel blog Mostly about riding a motorcycle across the US and Europe. Also has cool things that happen in between.

  2. #2792
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    The Madame Curie Complex: The Hidden History of Women in Science, by Julie Des Jardins. Among other things, it makes me dislike James Watson just that little bit more. (Apparently, he once wrote that he'd sit in on Rosalind Franklin's explanations of her research, and he'd think how pretty she'd be if she just took off her glasses and let down her hair--because apparently, she was lecturing in an '80s teen movie. The worst part? Rosalind Franklin didn't even wear glasses.) And respect Lillian Gilbreth.
    _____________________________________________
    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!"

  3. #2793
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    Thanks to Copernicus's threads, I am re-reading The Moment of Creation by James S. Trefil.
    Solfe

  4. #2794
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    Has anyone else read the James Bond books? I'm looking for advice on which ones are good. I just finished Dr. No and find it pretty amateurish. Of course they're supposed to be light reading, but I find 20 pages of dialog a bit too much. Plot holes are "fixed" by monologues, the characters are unrealistic, and the text could easily be reduced by half for a more enjoyable experience - think Sherlock Holmes.

    Those critiques aside, I like the idea of reading the series, so any suggestions on which ones are more enjoyable would be appreciated.
    My travel blog Mostly about riding a motorcycle across the US and Europe. Also has cool things that happen in between.

  5. #2795
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    Quote Originally Posted by crosscountry View Post
    Has anyone else read the James Bond books? I'm looking for advice on which ones are good. I just finished Dr. No and find it pretty amateurish. Of course they're supposed to be light reading, but I find 20 pages of dialog a bit too much. Plot holes are "fixed" by monologues, the characters are unrealistic, and the text could easily be reduced by half for a more enjoyable experience - think Sherlock Holmes.

    Those critiques aside, I like the idea of reading the series, so any suggestions on which ones are more enjoyable would be appreciated.
    I read Casino Royale, with a view to reading all the books in order, as they do have an internal chronology which is very different from that of the films. Then I decided to read the short story A Quantum of Solace so I'd know the original before the film came out. (I still haven't watched it!) I started Live and Let Die but got sidetracked. I might give it another go when I've finished reading The Passage, which is very long, and I'm not getting much reading time at the moment.

    I thought Casino Royale was surprisingly slim, even allowing for the short page count, and I thought it was odd that someone would be assigned to a mission that was largely about winning a card game, given how much that depended on luck. Quantum, by contrast, was a well-written story about a relationship; the secret agent stuff was sidelined.

  6. #2796
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    Thinking about reading "Glittering Images: A Journey Through Art from Egypt to Star Wars by Camille Paglia." http://www.publishersweekly.com/978-0-375-42460-1

  7. #2797
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    Quote Originally Posted by publiusr View Post
    Thinking about reading
    Good idea for a new thread!
    My travel blog Mostly about riding a motorcycle across the US and Europe. Also has cool things that happen in between.

  8. #2798
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    Quote Originally Posted by crosscountry View Post
    Has anyone else read the James Bond books? I'm looking for advice on which ones are good. I just finished Dr. No and find it pretty amateurish. Of course they're supposed to be light reading, but I find 20 pages of dialog a bit too much. Plot holes are "fixed" by monologues, the characters are unrealistic, and the text could easily be reduced by half for a more enjoyable experience - think Sherlock Holmes.

    Those critiques aside, I like the idea of reading the series, so any suggestions on which ones are more enjoyable would be appreciated.
    The short stories are a mixed bag, they were cobbled together to make a couple of the films.

    I enjoyed "Casino Royale". If you are going to read the entire series, there are a few which I would suggest reading in order. "Live and Let Die" followed by "Diamonds Are Forever" and "From Russia With Love". Read these, before reading in order: "Thunderball", "On Her Majesty's Secret Service", "You Only Live Twice" and "The Man With The Golden Gun". Some are better than others, but they basically are continuations. I read the series a year or two ago, mostly out of order.

    If you have seen the films, you'll find some scenes in the films, have been taken from different novels.

  9. #2799
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    Quote Originally Posted by Parrothead View Post
    The short stories are a mixed bag, they were cobbled together to make a couple of the films.

    I enjoyed "Casino Royale". If you are going to read the entire series, there are a few which I would suggest reading in order. "Live and Let Die" followed by "Diamonds Are Forever" and "From Russia With Love". Read these, before reading in order: "Thunderball", "On Her Majesty's Secret Service", "You Only Live Twice" and "The Man With The Golden Gun". Some are better than others, but they basically are continuations. I read the series a year or two ago, mostly out of order.

    If you have seen the films, you'll find some scenes in the films, have been taken from different novels.
    Thanks. We'll see how much I get to read. This semester I'm supposed to defend my thesis and write two more papers to publish. I'll still sneak some in just to maintain some sense of sanity.
    My travel blog Mostly about riding a motorcycle across the US and Europe. Also has cool things that happen in between.

  10. #2800
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    Just finished "The Algebraist", by Iain Banks. I am not crazy about the ending, but generally it was OK.

    Found a stack of John MacDonald paperbacks that I bought a while back, and got lost in the shuffle, so I'm going through those while I wait for the library to get the final book in the Wheel of Time series. (I am currently 34 on the list)

    TJ

  11. #2801
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    I started The Initiate by Louise Cooper. This is one of my favorites.
    Solfe

  12. #2802
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJMac View Post
    Just finished "The Algebraist", by Iain Banks. I am not crazy about the ending, but generally it was OK.

    Found a stack of John MacDonald paperbacks that I bought a while back, and got lost in the shuffle, so I'm going through those while I wait for the library to get the final book in the Wheel of Time series. (I am currently 34 on the list)

    TJ
    The Washington Post had a nice writeup on MacDonald just today: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinii...5c6_story.html
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

  13. #2803
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    Marvel Comics: The Untold Story, by Sean Howe. I didn't realize my respect for Stan Lee could lessen!
    _____________________________________________
    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!"

  14. #2804
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    I visited a friend in Oxford last week. He took me to the Eagle and Child pub where Tolkien used to pass time. I dropped my Sherlock Holmes (was visiting a friend that lived near Baker St) and reread the Hobbit. Now I'm almost finished with Holmes and thinking about Ringworld or another Bond book.
    My travel blog Mostly about riding a motorcycle across the US and Europe. Also has cool things that happen in between.

  15. #2805
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    and today NPR had this story about James Bond and a real life spy.

    I'll take her advice

    http://www.npr.org/2013/01/14/167439...ing-james-bond
    My travel blog Mostly about riding a motorcycle across the US and Europe. Also has cool things that happen in between.

  16. #2806
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    I seem to have a lot of free time on my hands. I started The Outcast today.
    Solfe

  17. #2807
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    Finished American Science Fiction, 1953-1956 yesterday, starting 1956-1958 today. Have to say Leigh Brackett's The Long Tomorrow and Richard Matheson's The Shrinking Man are both pretty darn depressing. Double Star leads off the second volume, followed by The Stars My Destination, so I'm hoping to improve my mood.
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

  18. #2808
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    The Good Girls Revolt: How the Women of Newsweek Sued Their Bosses and Changed the Workplace, by Lynn Povich. Alas, the foreword suggests that not enough has changed.
    _____________________________________________
    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!"

  19. #2809
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    Finished Mickey Spillane's The Mike Hammer Collection vol. 1 (The first three Mike Hammer stories).

    I'm now reading a couple of books from "The Adjusters" series, Doomsday Vendetta and The Glass Cipher (books 3 and 4 in the series). Counter-espionage fiction from the late 1960's.

  20. #2810
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    Quote Originally Posted by crosscountry View Post
    I visited a friend in Oxford last week. He took me to the Eagle and Child pub where Tolkien used to pass time.
    I was in Oxford a few years ago, and as a proper fan of Tolkien and Lewis, had to pay my respects to the Bird and Baby. I took a few pictures of the Inkling plaque and so forth, only to hear a voice call out in my direction "God, I hate tourists!". In a distinctly American accent.

  21. #2811
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    Finished off Nev Fountain's Mervyn Stone trilogy, about a former script editor of a low-budget 1980's BBC sf series who gets caught up in solving murders at a science fiction convention, a DVD commentary, and a location shoot. (Any resemblance to Doctor Who is purely coincidental, of course.) The satire is pretty good, taking on both the fans and the professionals from someone who has considerable experience with both, but the mystery part didn't do much for me.
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

  22. #2812
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    Visit Sunny Chernobyl and Other Adventures in the World's Most Polluted Places, by Andrew Blackwell. So far, I've read the chapters on Chernobyl, the Alberta oil sands, Port Arthur, and the Eastern Garbage Patch. There are also chapters about deforestation in the Amazon, coal mining in China, and the Ganges. It is extremely funny while also being more than a bit disheartening.
    _____________________________________________
    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!"

  23. #2813
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    The Whyte Harte - P.C. Doherty. The first of his Matthew Jankyn historical mysteries.

    I read it years ago - it was written in 1988 so it must have been not long after it was published - and have always remembered it fondly.

    Its opening hook, "I have always been a liar." endeared the book to me and I've often thought of it over the years, so I tracked down a copy and bought it. It just arrived from the US today.

  24. #2814
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    Finished those two novels from "The Adjusters" series. Secret agent fare, instead of gov't run, it's financed through multi-nationals with "untouchable" status for agents through "official channels". The featured agent in the stories would visit a section that had gizmos for the agent use. He favoured a Magnum, but holstered a Walther while in England and like most secret agent/PI stories, the lead is irresistable to women. The publishing company that put these out was likely cashing in on the genre at the time.

    I'm currently re-visiting Speer's memoirs Inside The Third Reich.

  25. #2815
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    This might be too nerdy for this forum, but I just received an updated pdf of "Ghost Tower of Inverness" from Wizards of the Coast. It is one of my favorite D&D modules.
    Solfe

  26. #2816
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    There's such thing as too nerdy for this forum?
    _____________________________________________
    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!"

  27. #2817
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    My Friend Dahmer, by Derf Backderf. He and Jeffrey Dahmer were both members of the Revere High School class of '78. I think "friend" may be stretching the point, but he did know him and hang out with him. Chilling and worth it.
    _____________________________________________
    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!"

  28. #2818
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    I finished Promised the Moon: The Untold Story of the First Women in the Space Race, by Stephanie Nolan. It talks about the first women who went out for astronaut testing, how well they did--and how little they could get anyone to care. At first, NASA had considered women, because they're lighter, but as soon as they shot up a man, the interest faded and it took literally decades for a woman to go to space, much less pilot the craft.

    Now, I'm reading The Violinist's Thumb and Other Lost Tales of Love, War, and Genius as Written By Our Genetic Code, by Sam Kean. This is the same guy who wrote The Disappearing Spoon, proving that, if nothing else, he has a knack for titles that make you look twice.
    _____________________________________________
    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!"

  29. #2819
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    Just started Dynamic Nymphingby George Daniel, a how-to book. Nymphing is a style of fly-fishing in which the flies are weighted and drifted below the surface to entice a trout. Doing it right is harder than it sounds so I hope the book will help, especially as it discusses various successful methods developed in Czechoslovakia and France, among other places. Best part is that Amazon was giving away an eBook version!

  30. #2820
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    Quote Originally Posted by schlaugh View Post
    Nymphing is a style of fly-fishing...
    Whew. I was imagining a different how-to book....

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