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Book club 📖 What are we reading right now? (Planning related or not)

Zoning Goddess

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My fave high school forced to read it book was Alas Babylon about a town in FL after a nuclear war. Dated now, but horrifying back then.

I'm now reading the Lemony Snicket series about the Baudeliere orphans.
 

Hceux

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To take a break from a heavy week of school, I decided to take up a cool reading break by drooling at the beautiful pictures in "Hip Hotels in USA" by Thames and Hudson.

Oh, cool, there's a wigwam hotel in Arizona....oh, there's a ultra-super-luper modern hotel twisted with 70s taste in Downtown LA (yep, you read that right...not at the beach or in OC)...sigh, boy do I wish I could stay in Chicago and check out the city...excuse me, gotta daydream about travel journeys...

Now, I'm back to earth - I just wish that there's an equivalent for those in Canada - after all, Canada is getting some raps for being cool, right? (Sorry, gotta being a lil' overly Canadian here as I'm Canadian)
 

donk

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BKM said:
Neil Gaiman's last novel, American Gods, has a similar theme. The main character basically trapises around the rural parts of the United States with Odin. The interesting twist is that the "old gods" are battling the new "gods" (forces/powers/whatever) spawned by technology, the media, and the like. A somewhat weak ending, imo, but an interesting book overall.

I'll have to check out his Sandman graphics novels, too.

As I mentioned before , I can't stand gaiman. It seems like he is being weird just for the sake of being weird. The art work in the comics is grat, but the stories just seem "off "to me.

Robbins can be weird for the sake of being weird, but somehow tempers it with misfits that are easy to identify with.

Stopped reading "villa incognito" and picked up "About a Boy" and the new Lance Armstrong book.

Please don't laugh at me for "about a boy", "high fidelity" and "how to be good" where really good stories.
 

nerudite

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Why would someone make fun of you for High Fidelty? That was an awesome book... I really like the book more than the movie, although some of the english slang was difficult if I recall correctly.

After watching Band of Brothers on dvd a few times (my god, it's probably the best war movie/series I've ever seen), I have been really interested in D-Day and the fighting in ETO. So I picked up some Ambrose books from the library yesterday and I started reading Citizen Soldiers last night. I had a hard time putting it down.... it's awesome. I can't wait to read some of his other books!
 

donk

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nerudite said:
Why would someone make fun of you for High Fidelty? That was an awesome book...

it is more the other two. Most of my friends are not readers so they see movie titles only on my bookshelves.

I'll share teh warning here I gave in the NEBT.

The new armstrong book is crap. enough said.

Will sit down tonight and start reading a stack of will eisner graphic novelsI just picked up.
 

JNA

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?Has anybody read any or all of Patrick O'Brian's
The Aubrey/Maturin Series?

before you see the movie?
 

The Irish One

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Solaris
by Stanisaw Lem

I haven't read a scifi book in a while, I'm told this book will not disappoint!
 

JNL

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Hey TIO, I would be interested to hear what you think of Solaris, had it recommended to me recently.

Just finished 'The Bride Stripped Bare' - Anonymous.

I'm currently browsing 'SafeScapes - Creating Safer, More Livable Communities Through Planning & Design'.

Going to try to pick up a copy of 'Love's executioner and other tales of psychotherapy' by Irvin D Yalom this week. I've heard it's similar to 'The man who loved a polar bear and other psychotherapist's tales' which I really enjoyed.
 

Tranplanner

maudit anglais
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nerudite said:
After watching Band of Brothers on dvd a few times (my god, it's probably the best war movie/series I've ever seen), I have been really interested in D-Day and the fighting in ETO. So I picked up some Ambrose books from the library yesterday and I started reading Citizen Soldiers last night. I had a hard time putting it down.... it's awesome. I can't wait to read some of his other books!

His books are good...I've enjoyed reading BoB, Citizen Soldiers, and D-Day. Got the BoB DVD box set too...

Currently reading the latest issue of Granta, entitled "This Overheating World".
 

Hceux

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Still reading in the new year!

Now, I'm reading on "The Mercantile-Industrial Transition in the Metals Towns of Pictou County, 1857-1931" by L.D. McCann for my Historical-Geographical Perspectives on the Modern City course...

Also reading "Social Geographies" by Gill Valentine, "Gay New York: Gender, Urban Culture, and the Making of the Gay Male World 1890-1940" by George Clauncey, and "The House of Difference: Cultural Politics and National Identity in Canada" by Eva Mackey for other classes.

Is anybody else reading lots these days?
 

nerudite

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Tranplanner said:
His books are good...I've enjoyed reading BoB, Citizen Soldiers, and D-Day. Got the BoB DVD box set too...

Sweet... I would love to have the DVDs. I'm reading BoB right now as a matter of fact. It focuses on a lot of different things than the tv series, so its kind of cool. It is a little slow-going because I'm a map freak and I have to look up every village, river, mountain range, etc. on my atlas. :)
 

NHPlanner

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Trojan Odyssey by Clive Cussler....almost done....
 

ludes98

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NHPlanner said:
Trojan Odyssey by Clive Cussler....almost done....

OOOO nice. Almost picked it up over the weekend, but no time for personal reading in the immediate future. PM me with a review.
 

JNA

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NHPlanner said:
Trojan Odyssey by Clive Cussler....

Finished reading it - nice quick enjoyable read.

Sister gave me for Christmas reprint of the 1948 Cheaper by the Dozen
by Frank Gilbreth and Ernestine Gilbreth Carey.
and 7 other books.
 

SlaveToTheGrind

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Just finished The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara

Now reading For Cause and Comrades, Why Men Fought the Civil War, by James McPherson
 

JNL

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Currently reading 'The Commodore' in the Horatio Hornblower series by C.S. Forester - very entertaining.

Also reading the course readings for a local university course in Environmental Criminology with the aim of learning a bit more about crime mapping.

And a book on Neuro-Linguistic programming.

Loved 'Love's executioner and other tales of psychotherapy' by Irvin D Yalom (I mentioned it above) - has inspired me to learn more about psychotherapy and start keeping a dream journal.

Next is 'Brave New World'

Yup, I'm reading lots at the moment!
 

BKM

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Let' s see.

Andrew Vachs: "Strega" A hard-to-describe ultra-noir "mystery" written by an eye-patch sporting New York Attorney who specializes in representing children who have been abused. There is nothing like the "Burke" novels I have ever read. Somewhat depressing, but gripping. I found a quality paperback with three of his novels on one of my walks in the City yesterday.

Brian Stableford: Just finished "The Angel of Pain" about to start the thrid volume in the "Werewolves of London" trilogy, the Carnival of Destruction, -one of the most fascinating sci-fi/fantasy books I've ever read. The protagonists in Victorian England have been coopted by a race of "angels" who exist outside of the standard "material" universe and are using the humans to understand the universe. They (the angels) have awoken from a 10,000 year sleep, and they are confused. A fantastic speculation on the nature of the universe and reality-a little difficult to read at times, but the ideas remain fascinating. http://freespace.virgin.net/diri.gini/werewolv.htm
 

mendelman

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recently read:
"The Actual" by Saul Bellow - very good novella
"Timeline" by Micheal Crichton - pretty good but slowed down and dragged toward the end, had some good stuff about parallel universes, quantum computing, and archeology.
"They All Fall Down" by Richard Cahan - a biography of Richard Nickel, a reluctant early architectural preservationist in Chicago. Very good story of a devoted man

off and on reading:
"The Simarillion(sp?)" by JRR Tolkein - cool for those that are into Tolkein Middle-Earth stuff

currently fully reading:
"Building Suburbia" by Dolores Hayden - good and insightful, but written more for the less-initiated, but still a good read with a slightly different perspective on the origins and delevopment of suburbia

On deck:
"Pelendra" by CS Lewis - cool sci-fi fantasy with a sprinkle of Catholic allegory
 
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Quail64

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JNL, I just finished Brave New World - it is an excellent book.

Books currently being scanned through brain: Green Architecture by James Wines, Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse, and The Things They Carried by Tim O' Brien

Recently read: Why Architecture Matters by Blair Kamin, The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran, and Suburban Nation, by Duany and co.

Plan to read soon: Survivor by Chuck Palahniuk
 

donk

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I'm reading Phillip Jose Farmer's "Classic Short Stories (1954-1963), once I am done that I'll be onto "Blown" and "Flesh" by the same author.

I am also rereading the Cerebus "telephone books" in sad anticipation of the last issue in March.

As usual, books on ethics and religious thought are also being skimmed.

Not really reading, but kind of of planning related, a really cool Frank Lloyd Wright pop up book.
 

Tranplanner

maudit anglais
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Going through a bit of a dry patch reading-wise right now. Budget constraints are preventing me from buying any new books.

Re-reading "Churchill's Generals", edited by John Keegan right now. Also have a copy of the Jan. 12/04 "New Yorker" magazine in the commuting bag - apparently there is a good article on SUV culture in there.
 

Tom R

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books

A lot of good books mentioned; To Kill a Mockingbird, Alas Babylon. To these I would add On the Beach and Brave New World. Right now I'm reading A Tale of Two Cities. I'm trying to catch up on a few classics that I should have read in the past. I find Dickens somewhat difficult to keep interested in and in general to read. Sometimes I like to force myself. Recently I've read The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Hugo) and a collection of Mark Twain essays. I've made it a goal to read everything Mark Twain has written. He's becomming my favorite author. When I was young I read The Call of the Wild probably 7 or 8 times and later I read a lot of John Steinbeck and Hemmingway. One book everyone should read is The Jungle by Upton Sinclair.
 

Cardinal

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Tom R said:
I've made it a goal to read everything Mark Twain has written. He's becomming my favorite author.

I did the same thing. It is a shame that some of his later work really varied in quality. A good deal of it has been published, but there are still a few works that are hard to find. Have "The Personal Reflections of Joan of Arc" or "The American Claimant" be printed recently? I managed to find old copies in secondhand book stores.
 

Budgie

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This years books

Read in the last 2 months:

Tin Drum - Gunter Grass
A Hero of Our Time - Lermontov
Cannery Row - Steinbeck
Chronicle of a Death Foretold - Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Currently Reading:

The Possessed (The Demons) - Dostoyevsky

Waiting in the wings:

The House of the Dead - Dostoyevsky
War and Peace - Tolstoy
Invisible Man - Ellison
Mrs. Dalloway - Wolfe
Clockwork Orange - Burgess

Does anybody give a $h!t?
 

el Guapo

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In the non-fiction arena I'm reading the ipd spring catalog & the Bentley Bible.

In fiction I'm reading The Odyssey by a gent named Homer and The Virgin Blue by Travy Chevalier (huge disappointment after the Girl with a Pearl Earring).

I'm also re-reading the The Bhagavad Gita According to Gandhi by Mohandas K. Gandhi.

Next up on my nightstand is Ninety Three by Victor Hugo.

Budgie - I care. :)

MOD NOTE If you are looking to buy a book click through Dan's link to Amazon.com on the front page of this site. Your purchase will help keep Cyburbia free of pledge weeks and totebags.

BTW - Dan How do I change my links in this post to give you the credit if any one purchases a book?
 

Gedunker

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SlaveToTheGrind said:
Just finished The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara

Now reading For Cause and Comrades, Why Men Fought the Civil War, by James McPherson

STTG: what did you think of Killer Angels? I am not a big fan of historical novels, so I'm debating whether to give it a go. I'm looking for a used copy of the history of the 19th Indiana, one of the "western" regiments of the famous Iron Brigade. I have always felt that the Iron Brigade never has gotten the respect they deserve for the first day at Gettysburg.

I just finished Diana Preston's Lusitania: An Epic Tragedy. A breezy, even-handed examination of the tragic torpedoeing of the Cunard ocean liner in May 1915 and the sad aftermath.
 

Planderella

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Lord of the Rings - J.R. Tolkein

I won't watch the movies until I've read most, if not all, of this book. At the rate I'm going, it's going to take a while.
 

el Guapo

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Gedunker said:
STTG: what did you think of Killer Angels? I am not a big fan of historical novels, so I'm debating whether to give it a go. I'm looking for a used copy of the history of the 19th Indiana, one of the "western" regiments of the famous Iron Brigade. I have always felt that the Iron Brigade never has gotten the respect they deserve for the first day at Gettysburg.

I just finished Diana Preston's Lusitania: An Epic Tragedy. A breezy, even-handed examination of the tragic torpedoeing of the Cunard ocean liner in May 1915 and the sad aftermath.

Killer Angels was a hands-down Top-10 book of my life. It is a must read for anyone wanting to understand the sacrifice some men made to keep our nation whole and free a people. My biggest reward from reading it was learning about Joshua Chamberlin. He is the pinacle of the Citizen-Soldier in my book.
 

SlaveToTheGrind

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EG and Gedunker:

I thought The Killer Angels was a great book, and deserved the Pulitzer Prize in 1974. It is also the book the movie Gettysburg was based on - for those who don't know. The interesting thing about seeing the movie and then reading the book was that the movie was filmed at Gettysburg National Military Park and in Adams County, PA and putting the visuals from the movie while reading the book was helpful.

Pulitzer Prize winner (1988's Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era James McPherson's recent book For Cause and Comrades: Why Men Fought the Civil War is fascinating because he uses thousands of personal letters from both sides for his research. Contrary to what many people think, a vast majority of the soldiers in the Civil War were educated enough and that writing letters home was a common practice and probably helped keep them sane.
 

el Guapo

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Killer Angels was almost word for word the script for Gettysburg. I have never seen a movie follow a book as closely.
 

Tom R

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jungle

biscuit said:
Just not right before going out for a big steak dinner. ;-)
Right!

I just found out my reply was too short. Story of my life.
 

Gedunker

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el Guapo said:
Killer Angels was almost word for word the script for Gettysburg. I have never seen a movie follow a book as closely.

EG and STTG: You guys would like the three-part history of Gettysburg written by Harry W. Pfanz (Gettysburg: The First Day; Second Day; Third Day -- UNC Press). Pfanz was the Park Service historian at Gettysburg for many years and has probably written the definitive account.

EG: I strongly agree with you, but for every Joshua Chamberlain there is a Daniel Sickles, the anithesis of the Citizen-Soldier.
 

Bangorian

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el Guapo said:
My biggest reward from reading it was learning about Joshua Chamberlin. He is the pinacle of the Citizen-Soldier in my book.

Now for my obligatory cheer for Mr. Chamberlain (lived about 8 miles from here) and the 20th of Maine! :c:


Hey Donk:
donk said:
Favourite Tom Robbin's book are Jitterbug Perfume (Portions take place in a bicycle shop) or "Even Cowgirls get the Blues"(lesbians) ;) Really favourite is "Jitterbug Perfume" and the idea that gods only exist as long as people believe in them and some other concepts in the book are great.

I'm about 20 pages from the end of Jiterbnug Perume. What an Epic! I can't wait to read more of Robbins' stuff. Reminds me of Vonnegut in a way - odd asides, blue humor, impossible storylines, and quirky characters. But thet's where the comparison stops . ;-)
 

donk

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MaineMan said:
I'm about 20 pages from the end of Jiterbnug Perume. What an Epic! I can't wait to read more of Robbins' stuff. Reminds me of Vonnegut in a way - odd asides, blue humor, impossible storylines, and quirky characters. But thet's where the comparison stops . ;-)

I find with Robbins, that if you can accept the crazy premise of the story then everything is fine. I've enjoyed his newer works less than his older stuff. I liked "Half Asleep in Frog Pajamas", but struggled reading "Fierce Invalids Home From Hot Climates" and pretty much have given up on "Villa Incognito" (tried to read it 5 times, and could not get into it).

Favourite Vonnegut book is definitely Jailbird. (And the weather sympathized- favourite line ever in a book). Also liked the short stories in "welcome to the monkey house" and "foma and granfalloons". I like vonnegut so much I bought one of his silkscreens, and would buy more if I could afford them.

I was also going to recommend to everyone to read "On the Beach" great story.

I need to find some new authors. Any suggestions? My favourites, in no particular order, are as follows:

Phillip Jose Farmer (Sci-fi)
Robert A Heinlein (Sci-fi)
Spider Robinson (Sci fi)
Frederick Pohl (Sci Fi)

Kurt Vonnegut (Jailbird, Sirens of Titan)
Tom Robbins (Jitterbug Perfume)
Tom Wolfe (Hooking Up, Man in Full)
Hunter Thompson (Rum Diaries, Curse of Lono, Hells Angels)
Douglas Coupland (Generation X, Shampoo Planet, Hey Nostradamus)
Mordecai Richler (Duddy Kravitz, Barney's Version, Jacob Two-Two)
Daniel Richler (Kicking tomorrow was great)
Daniel Pinkwater (Alan Mendelsohn-Boy From Mars)
Nick Hornby (About a Boy, High Fidelity, Being Good)

Know I don't like

Gibson (neuromancer, cyber punk etc)
Robertson Davies (Fifth Business)
F Scott Fitzgerald (Great Gatsby)
Tolkien (Have tried repeatedly to read, but get bored)
Irvine Welsh (Porno was tough reading, pretty much had to read it out loud and sound out every word)
 

Tom R

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Gedunker said:
EG and STTG: You guys would like the three-part history of Gettysburg written by Harry W. Pfanz (Gettysburg: The First Day; Second Day; Third Day -- UNC Press). Pfanz was the Park Service historian at Gettysburg for many years and has probably written the definitive account.

The last time I was at Gettysburg I picked up a set of 3 topo maps, one for each day of the battle. They show all the troop placements etc. I think they were done in 1883. They combine my interest in history and geography.
 

Budgie

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donk said:
Know I don't like

F Scott Fitzgerald (Great Gatsby)

The Great Gatsby is an easy little read. What do you not like about F. Scott Fitzgerald? I'm not a fan of his or anything. Just wondering.

My favorite authors:

Fyodor Dostoyevsky
George Eliot (Sarah Ann Evans)
Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Isaac Asimov
John Steinbeck
James Howard Kunstler
Molly Ivins
 

mendelman

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Planderella said:
Lord of the Rings - J.R. Tolkein

I won't watch the movies until I've read most, if not all, of this book..

Wise decision!

The movies are about as good as the book(s), but you get extra depth from the book(s) then you get in the movies.
 

JNA

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el Guapo said:
Joshua Chamberlin. He is the pinacle of the Citizen-Soldier in my book.

Having read the book, seen the movie, been to Gettysburg (when I was at emmitsburg for FEMA training)
I agreed with eG on that point.
 

Gedunker

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The last time I was at Gettysburg I picked up a set of 3 topo maps, one for each day of the battle. They show all the troop placements etc. I think they were done in 1883. They combine my interest in history and geography.

It's one of my frustrations with battle histories: typically the maps are of horrific quality -- too small, too cartoonish, too vague. I wish I was enough of a digithead to create an electronic map from those topos so I could "fly" the battlefield and truly understand how the topography effected the events, and ultimately, the outcome.
 

BKM

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Gedunker: You seem to like quirky, socially aware science fiction. I'm amazed that Phillip K. Dick is not on your list! A definite recommendation.
 

donk

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Budgie said:
The Great Gatsby is an easy little read. What do you not like about F. Scott Fitzgerald? I'm not a fan of his or anything. Just wondering.

I found it difficult to identify or understand the characters and the story seemed way to contrived and trying to be deep for deepnesses sake.

I've gone back and tried to read it as an adult and just given up after 20 pages or so. Maybe too many bad memories from that rotten english teacher/class.
 

Tom R

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Gedunker said:
It's one of my frustrations with battle histories: typically the maps are of horrific quality -- too small, too cartoonish, too vague.

The ones you get from the NPS are topo sheet size and very detailed.
 

bocian

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"Oil in troubled waters" the book compares different approaches to offshore oil extraction/mining in Louisiana and California. Recommended.
Also Harvey's "New imperialism." Good one as well.
 

Bangorian

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donk said:
Favourite Vonnegut book is definitely Jailbird. (And the weather sympathized- favourite line ever in a book). Also liked the short stories in "welcome to the monkey house" and "foma and granfalloons". I like vonnegut so much I bought one of his silkscreens, and would buy more if I could afford them.

I was also going to recommend to everyone to read "On the Beach" great story.

I'm going to go with the crowd and say that my favorite from Vonnegut is probably either Slapstick or Cats' Cradle. Have you seen the move for "Breakfast of Champions"? A lame attempt at best. Well, perhaps his books just don't lend well to movies...

I have a hard time keeping all the vonnegut books straight - I managed to read all his books over the course of about 6 mos. my sophomore year in college, so to be honest, I don't particularly remember much of Jailbird. I need to re-read those books!


"On the Beach" is an excellent read, and a quick and easy one at that. One of my faves. They made a movie out of that one too, and boy is it horrendous! :-c :-#
 
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I just finished the Charter of the New Urbanism, almost finished with The Death and Life of Great American Cities,
 

donk

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MaineMan said:
I have a hard time keeping all the vonnegut books straight - I managed to read all his books over the course of about 6 mos. my sophomore year in college, so to be honest, I don't particularly remember much of Jailbird. I need to re-read those books!

Jailbird is about the poor guy whose office was in the basement of the crooks who caused watergate and his life after being released from prison. Plus the crazy old lady (richest in the world) who had acquired so much wealth because she was a socialist.
 

Budgie

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RockChalk said:
I just finished the Charter of the New Urbanism, almost finished with The Death and Life of Great American Cities,

About once every 3 months we have a debate about some of Jane Jacobs observations.
 
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