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Thread: What are we reading right now? (Planning related or not)

  1. #1326
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    Started Anne Rice's new book. She's through with vampires and now into angels.

  2. #1327
    Dear Sarah: Letters Home from an Iron Brigade Soldier is the Civil War correspondence of John H. Pardington to his wife Sarah. Pardington answered the call of Abraham Lincoln for more three-years enlistments and joined the 24th Michigan Regiment United States Volunteers from his hometown of Trenton, MI. The 24th was attached to the Iron Brigade (2nd, 5th, 6th, Wisconsin and 19th Indiana) -- and they would go on to become the 1st Army, 1st Corps, 1st Brigade of the Army of the Potomac (Which is survived today as The Big Red One).

    The correspondence covers the period from his enlistment in August 1862 until June 1863, and is a fascinating look at the life of a Union soldier during the war. Corporal Pardington was killed at the battle of Gettysburg, 1 July 1863. His remains were never identified and the family believes he rests in an unmarked grave on the field of fighting from the first day. While that's entirely possible, I prefer to hope that he is in the "unknown" Michigan section at the Gettysburg National Cemetery. The 24th Michigan suffered more than 80% casualties 1 July, highest of any Union regiment during the war.

    He left behind his beloved wife Sarah and 13-month old daughter Maria among other family and friends.
    Last edited by Gedunker; 16 Sep 2010 at 10:15 PM.

  3. #1328
    Cyburbian RPfresh's avatar
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    Life and Death of Great American Cities all over again - as mindblowing as the first time. Jacobs is a genius.

  4. #1329
    maudit anglais
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    Just starting into "The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim" by Jonathan Coe. He's one of my favourite writers and so far the book has not disappointed.

    The only problem with his work (for me) is that I tend to get a bit depressed reading his novels as I inevitably end up identifying strongly with his protagonist and their various mental issues/fantasies.

  5. #1330
    Cyburbian WSU MUP Student's avatar
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    I just started reading Elmore Leonard's new book Djibouti. After an hour or so of reading it on Friday, I had already gotten through about 100 pages. It's a great, fast read!

    Leonard actually lives just a couple of streets over from my house and is giving a writer's workshop at one of the local libraries in a couple of weeks. I am not going to pay the $75 for the workshop, but I may try to ambush him outside of the library on his way in get my book autographed.
    "Where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost." - 1980 Republican presidential candidate Ronald Reagan

  6. #1331
    Cyburbian Plus Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    I got up this morning and the new John Grisham book was on my Kindle! That's what I'm reading!

  7. #1332
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    Every year the county library picks one book to showcase - The Big Read under the Big Sky - this year it is The Maltese Falcon. The author - Dashiell Hammett was a Pinkerton detective and was involved in some union busting in Butte, Montana. His novel Red Harvest is inspired by that experience. I love Hammett's The Thin Man, as well.

    So I read The Maltese Falcon last week. It is a great story that almost everyone is familiar with, having seen the movie with Bogie. What I came away with after reading the book is how closely the movie stays true to the book. The dialogue is much the same - actually mostly lifted straight out of the book. The book lays out the direction of the movie almost step by step. The movie omits one character of the book who really is unimportant to the story anyway. The book's tone is the movie's. The movie only implies the sexual relationship between Spade and Brigid O'Shaunnessy and also only infers that Joel Cairo (Peter Lorre) is a homosexual, while the book makes it very clear.

    You couldn't really say the book is better than the movie or vice versa. They are virtually the same.

    Now I am reading The Last Picture Show. I've been reading a lot of Larry McMurtry lately.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

  8. #1333
    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by otterpop View post
    Now I am reading The Last Picture Show. I've been reading a lot of Larry McMurtry lately.
    Also reading a lot of McMurtry. Read all of the Lonesome Dove series (Lonesome Dove, Dead Man's Walk, Comanche Moon, & Streets of Laredo) this summer. Now looking at either Anything for Billy or Buffalo Girls as possibilities. I may take a break from McMurtry and go back to Michener though. Just ran across The Drifters which is one that I've never read.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

  9. #1334
    Cyburbian Howard Roark's avatar
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    "The Alternative Hero" if you were in to alternative music in the late 80's early 90's it does a good job of bringing back memories and tries to capture that moment when alterntive went mainstream after Nirvana
    She has been a bad girl, she is like a chemical, though you try and stop it she is like a narcotic.

  10. #1335
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by ofos View post
    Also reading a lot of McMurtry. Read all of the Lonesome Dove series (Lonesome Dove, Dead Man's Walk, Comanche Moon, & Streets of Laredo) this summer. Now looking at either Anything for Billy or Buffalo Girls as possibilities. I may take a break from McMurtry and go back to Michener though. Just ran across The Drifters which is one that I've never read.
    Keeping my McMurtry string going - with Texasville - the sequel to The Last Picture Show.

    I read Buffalo Girls recently. I enjoyed it but it is awfully sad throughout. Guess themes running through McMurtry's work are sadness and loss. The only character who seems to get a kick out of life was Gus McCrea.

    Lonesome Dove was an interesting story in so many ways, but I was most struck by McMurtry killing off the most interesting characters - Gus, Deets and Jake.Spoon.

    I read Ned and Zeke this summer. I would recommend that one.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

  11. #1336
    NIMBY asshatterer Plus Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Okay, we're not reading this yet, but ZG order the 736-page "Autobiography of Mark Twain" and it arrives Wednesday.

    Here's a link to a review.

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...MNRQ1GAU2C.DTL

    We're Twain fans. This is the first of three volumes.
    RJ is the KING of . The One

  12. #1337
    Cyburbian fringe's avatar
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    Lucky to have a Harcourt rep as a friend. He hands out samples.

    Almost done with "The Four-PerCent Universe" by Richard Panek. Very accessible tracing of the history of discovery of "dark matter" by astronomers, and an explanation of why particle physics and astronomy are two sides of the same coin.

  13. #1338
    Cyburbian Plus
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    The book Secret Santa sent to me -
    Empire of the Summer Moon: Quanah Parker and the Rise and Fall of the Comanches, the Most Powerful Indian Tribe in American History
    by S. C. Gwynne
    Oddball
    Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves?
    Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here?
    Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?
    From Kelly's Heroes (1970)


    Are you sure you're not hurt ?
    No. Just some parts wake up faster than others.
    Broke parts take a little longer, though.
    From Electric Horseman (1979)

  14. #1339
    Cyburbian TexanOkie's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by JNA View post
    The book Secret Santa sent to me -
    Empire of the Summer Moon: Quanah Parker and the Rise and Fall of the Comanches, the Most Powerful Indian Tribe in American History
    by S. C. Gwynne
    Off-topic:
    Having lived in Oklahoma, I have a huge interest in the Plains Indians and others who were resettled to reservations in then-Indian Territory. If you're ever in Lawton, Oklahoma, you should go to Ft. Sill and check out the Ft. Sill Museum and the Ft. Sill National Cemetery. Parker and other prominent Native Americans are buried there (including Geronimo, Kicking Bird, et. al). You can also visit the Comanche Nation Cultural Center and the Museum of the Great Plains in town. They're one of the few worthwhile things in Lawton aside from the Wichita Mountains. (Apologies to any Lawtonites who might be lurking around.)

  15. #1340
    Cyburbian ThePinkPlanner's avatar
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    Hunger Games.
    The first in a series of 3 by Suzanne Collins. I'm about halfway through, though I couldn't put it down after page 2. The main theme (post-apocalyptic America complete with treacherous rule, add in a little bit of The Running Man and The Most Dangerous Game) has been done time and time again, but the perspective is unique. So far I find it is very well done and quite gripping. Plus, I love a good female protagonist. The library shelves it as young adult, but I find it to be quite mature.

  16. #1341
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    Reading two at the moment, Passage to India by E.M. Forster and The Image of the City by Kevin Lynch. Ironic (or not) that many of the same issues with urban design Lynch wrote about are still repeated today.

  17. #1342
    Cyburbian Plus dandy_warhol's avatar
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    Working on my life's goals...

    Currently reading The Awakening by Kate Chopin

    Carson McCullers is up next, followed by The Hobbit and then the LOTR trilogy.

  18. #1343
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    My son, who is 9, decided he wanted me to read Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley, to him before bed. Written nearly 200 years ago, much of the language is almost foreign. Occasionally I come upon a word rarely used today or even extinct. It is not always easy to read out loud, but it is fun.

    The other night I had a good laugh. The book starts with a series of letters written by the narrator to his sister. In the letters he explains how he meets Frankenstein and the "demon". The narrator's effusive devotion to and admiration of Victor Frankenstein, which was not uncommon in literature of that time but unusual in modern literature, caused my son to remark, "That guy is so gay."

    It is difficult to school your son on tolerance when you are laughing so hard.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

  19. #1344
    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by otterpop View post
    Keeping my McMurtry string going - with Texasville - the sequel to The Last Picture Show.

    I read Buffalo Girls recently. I enjoyed it but it is awfully sad throughout. Guess themes running through McMurtry's work are sadness and loss. The only character who seems to get a kick out of life was Gus McCrea.

    Lonesome Dove was an interesting story in so many ways, but I was most struck by McMurtry killing off the most interesting characters - Gus, Deets and Jake.Spoon.

    I read Ned and Zeke this summer. I would recommend that one.
    Read Anything for Billy and didn't think that it was up to McMurtry's usual standards. Then re-read The Last Picture Show in anticipation of reading Texasville. May take a McMurtry break before going there.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

  20. #1345
    Cyburbian fringe's avatar
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    Lorrie Moore's novel, "A Gate at the Top of the Stairs".

    2009, this is current, excellent fiction by a prose stylist whose work shows up in the New Yorker a lot.

  21. #1346
    Cyburbian Masswich's avatar
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    Just finished "A City So Grand" by Stephen Puleo. Its about the growth of Boston from 1850-1900. Its a good read and reminds me that Boston wasn't always so closed-minded.

  22. #1347
    Cyburbian ThePinkPlanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by ThePinkPlanner View post
    Hunger Games.
    The first in a series of 3 by Suzanne Collins. I'm about halfway through, though I couldn't put it down after page 2. The main theme (post-apocalyptic America complete with treacherous rule, add in a little bit of The Running Man and The Most Dangerous Game) has been done time and time again, but the perspective is unique. So far I find it is very well done and quite gripping. Plus, I love a good female protagonist. The library shelves it as young adult, but I find it to be quite mature.
    I wanted to update my post and say that I finished all three books in the trilogy. I highly recommend them all. I couldn't put them down.

  23. #1348
    Cyburbian HomerJ's avatar
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    Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins

  24. #1349
    Cyburbian Plus Salmissra's avatar
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    Rereading the Elenium series from David Eddings, to be followed by the Tamuli series. Each is a three-book series, and are classified as fantasy.

    Checked out The Omnivore's Dilemma from the library. I like Michael Pollan's work, and have read several other books of his. The Botany of Desire is on my wait list, too.

    I really should try to read more classics/school standards/similar. However, I just can't seem to force myself to read them, since there's no report or presentation due. I read to be entertained or informed. I don't read to get bogged down on literary turns of phrase, or metaphors that mean something that I can't understand.
    "We do not need any other Tutankhamun's tomb with all its treasures. We need context. We need understanding. We need knowledge of historical events to tie them together. We don't know much. Of course we know a lot, but it is context that's missing, not treasures." - Werner Herzog, in Archaeology, March/April 2011

  25. #1350
    Cyburbian ursus's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Salmissra View post
    Rereading the Elenium series from David Eddings, to be followed by the Tamuli series. Each is a three-book series, and are classified as fantasy.
    I read a bunch of David Eddings a long time ago. Belgariad, I think? Same author, but newer stuff? I remember I liked it.
    "...I would never try to tick Hink off. He kinda intimidates me. He's quite butch, you know." - Maister

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