Books Thread

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Shakespeare
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Re: Books Thread

Post by Shakespeare »

Shakespeare wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 12:37 pm

halfway through this now:
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reserving full judgment for now but its sure easy to read
this remained true but thats about it. i get why it became such a massive seller but beneath all the sex and drugs and i didnt find it all that compelling a story. i read it in basically two 200 page chunks and in between it was hard to muster the enthusiasm to get back into it.

beantownbubba
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Re: Books Thread

Post by beantownbubba »

Shakespeare wrote:
Mon Oct 12, 2020 6:44 pm
this remained true but thats about it. i get why it became such a massive seller but beneath all the sex and drugs and i didnt find it all that compelling a story. i read it in basically two 200 page chunks and in between it was hard to muster the enthusiasm to get back into it.
Were the "good parts" any good? I don't remember the deets, but it was pretty hot stuff back in the day; I imagine it's fairly tame by current standards.
RIP sweet jimmy c.

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Shakespeare
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Re: Books Thread

Post by Shakespeare »

cant speak to its period but it all seemed definitely tame by todays standards. the drugs were almost perfunctory, despite giving the book its title, and the sex was generally more implied than anything

more of an interesting time capsule than a great book but still glad i read it

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Flea
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Re: Books Thread

Post by Flea »

Shakespeare wrote:
Thu Oct 15, 2020 9:32 am
cant speak to its period but it all seemed definitely tame by todays standards. the drugs were almost perfunctory, despite giving the book its title, and the sex was generally more implied than anything

more of an interesting time capsule than a great book but still glad i read it
That could also describe "Catcher In The Rye". Read it again a year or so ago, time has not been its friend.
Now it's dark.

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Shakespeare
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Re: Books Thread

Post by Shakespeare »

ive been curious how that would read a second time. ive only read it once, several years out of peak-salinger fandom age, so it was pretty easy to take it warts and all without needing it to mean the world or whatever. i enjoyed it then and probably still would to some extent now but its at the very least a protagonist that could do with some time off in todays world

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Shakespeare
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Re: Books Thread

Post by Shakespeare »

speaking of time capsule books
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went back and forth on this a lot while reading but ultimately i think i liked it with some substantial reservations. some of it hasnt aged all that well (the upper class navel gazing mostly, which became so much so fast i read like 30 pages then paused for three weeks before ultimately finishing the rest in a day) and it sure could have used tighter editing. that said, it managed to be a deeply psychological novel set to a fairly good story and that's not a simple line to toe. im no prude but ill say i found it most interesting when it toned down some of the explicit sexual talk, which in places felt a bit too shock value heavy for the actual content it had to offer

probably still more important than good but definitely a perspective i could stand to explore further in my reading. glad i read it at any rate

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Shakespeare
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Re: Books Thread

Post by Shakespeare »

i also finished this over the weekend but wouldnt say i enjoyed it much at all
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good writer and im sure the satire in here (its a barely veiled commentary on some literary peers) is sharp for its goals, but it all just felt kinda empty. just not the kind of book that hits me on any level at all

beantownbubba
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Re: Books Thread

Post by beantownbubba »

From distant memory I think you're dead on re both Jong & Maugham. You seem to be aware of the sensation Fear of Flying was on its release so I won't belabor the point. I've never really gotten Maugham, fwiw.
RIP sweet jimmy c.

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Shakespeare
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Re: Books Thread

Post by Shakespeare »

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Loved stoner but not sure I'll finish this. It's well written but between its story (basically a history of the roman empire post-caesar) and it's format (short letters and observations to and from a ton of different characters) it's proving to be a bit much to get a handle on. not at all what I want to read right now. I'll keep at it for a bit before giving up, as it's not even that long

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Premise was interesting (bio of the titular character, more known as a historical footnote to her husband and father, both notable writers) but I didn't find her story itself all that notable so it kinda fell apart in a hurry for me. Hard to rate something that clearly does exactly what it set out to do but I didn't care for it. Might have been better served as part of an anthology on such figures rather than a whole book of it's own

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I loved the fixer but that's the extent of my malamud exposure so far. 100 pages in and this is great. A surreal sci-fi/religious fiction mashup about the last man on earth and a chimpanzee on an island.

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Re: Books Thread

Post by John A Arkansawyer »

Shakespeare wrote:
Mon Oct 26, 2020 6:43 pm
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Loved stoner but not sure I'll finish this. It's well written but between its story (basically a history of the roman empire post-caesar) and it's format (short letters and observations to and from a ton of different characters) it's proving to be a bit much to get a handle on. not at all what I want to read right now. I'll keep at it for a bit before giving up, as it's not even that long
Always nice to see a local boy's books! This one has never come to hand for me. I'm totally with you on Stoner.
The sooner we put those assholes in the grave&piss on the dirt above it, the better off we'll be

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Shakespeare
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Re: Books Thread

Post by Shakespeare »

took about two weeks but i finished this on saturday:
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where to even begin!

ive found his movies hit or miss (most recently a miss on im thinking of ending things) but i did actually like this a lot. its absolutely charlie kaufman, a jumbled mess of painfully meta neuroses, but generally lands on the right side of self aware and genuinely hilarious in places. it could have very easily been edited down to a more manageable length (one of its subplots in particularly was very cringer and immediately dated satire) but i never felt like it totally dragged, at least not for long enough that i ever doubted id finish.

plot concerns an insufferable film critic that stumbles upon a 3 month long animated masterpiece no one has seen, and in bringing it back to NYC to share with the world it catches fire and leaves just a single frame. cue a series of attempts to jog his memory and reap the rewards of someone elses work.

oddly it was the parts where the narrator tries to mentally piece together the film he saw and lost that are least interesting for me. sorta like thats where it starts to feel too much like the books just a big jab at kaufmans day job. the plotlines around that were much more interesting.

certainly not for everyone but im very curious to see if he'll attempt another novel, especially if he does so with less veiled (or blatant) criticism of his own work and critics.

blew through this as a sort of breather afterwards:
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thought it was ok but like a lot of sci fi leaning stuff it just rings a bit empty for me when it gets into its wider point. concerns a fugitive hiding on a deserted island that a bunch of tourists come to visit.

next up:
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little over 400 pages so not antkind epic but still something to settle into for a few days. really high hopes for this based on his the edge of sadness, which is one of the more reasonable and sympathetic presentations of faith i think ive ever seen. only got through 20 pages last night but seems like another slow burning character study, this time based more around politics. stoked!

jr29
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Re: Books Thread

Post by jr29 »

Cole Younger wrote:
Thu Jul 05, 2012 10:05 am
Just finished My Cross To Bear by Gregg Allman. Pretty entertaining read. In an odd twist of fate, I got to meet Chuck Levell a few days later. Good guy.
I just read Gregg's book. It was very, very entertaining.
I'd kinda love to hear Dickey's response to some of the stuff Gregg said but I believe they semi-patched things up near the time of Gregg's death so it's probably better left alone.

I do follow Duane Betts on instagram and he's posted pics of he and Dickey camping with Gregg and one of his sons in the mid-1980's. None of that kind of stuff was in the book. You'd never know anything like that ever happened if you judged by the book.

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Flea
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Re: Books Thread

Post by Flea »

Perhaps the most beautifully illustrated erotica I've ever seen.

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Now it's dark.

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