Following Rate the last book you read Page 96

  • TechnoHippy 24 Aug 2020 10:48:24 17,847 posts
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    Red_Bool wrote:
    One question comes to mind: The Nac Mac Feegle, on what dialect is their language based on (if any)? Me being a non-native English speaking person (Dutch), how do you read it? Phonetically? Of course I get the general gist of what they're saying, but still I'm curious (I know, I should probably google it, but I've already typed it here now :))
    I hear it in my head as Scottish, more specifically the Highlands.
  • creepiest-lizard 24 Aug 2020 10:52:11 2,162 posts
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    Definitely scottish. I'm thinking Billy connolly.
  • souvlaki 24 Aug 2020 11:36:47 1,069 posts
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    I always think it is specifically Scots which is different from English in a Scottish Accent etc
  • Red_Bool 24 Aug 2020 12:48:45 2,069 posts
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    souvlaki wrote:
    I always think it is specifically Scots which is different from English in a Scottish Accent etc
    That's great! I like the travel phrases cheat sheet :D
    I've always read it in a Scottish accent (or at least the way I've heard it on TV), but quite often the individual words were a bit lost on me. Or sentences like "Ach, yon weezit fash' deveel!"

    But at least I was reading it in the right accent :)

    And now I have the urge to start reading The wee free men again...
  • taskmaster-dr-com 27 Aug 2020 13:42:21 19 posts
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    9/10

    Last night I worked my way through a bit of a classic “Goldilocks and the Four Bears”. Later i kicked back and watched Terminator 3: Judgment Day. All in all, not a bad evening.
  • Tonka 27 Aug 2020 14:06:05 31,190 posts
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    Vagabonds by Hao Jingfang
    Classic set-up. Mars have had their war of independence and has developed an entirely different culture compared to earth. A few decades(-ish) after the war a bunch of Martian kids are sent to earth for some years in a cultural exchange. This is the story of what happens when they come back.
    At first it felt like a really obvious allegory comparing Communist China (Mars) with the decadent west (earth) and yes, there's plenty of that. But then things start changing and nothings black and white and there are some side stories. Waaaaaayyyy to long though. At 250 pages this might have been good.

    Roadside Picknick by the Strugatsky brothers
    The new translation of the uncensored version. It's good, but I don't enjoy anti-heros. Main character is an asshole. That was apparently the big thing back in the day. SciFi where the hero isn't an ubermench in the Space Marines or a genius scientist. But since I love Zone type narratives this is still a good read.

    Hard to be a God also by the Strugatskys
    I tried to watch the film and only lasted 20 minutes. Will try again. The book is an Odyssey through an alien planet stuck in the middle ages, and regressing. Felt rather fitting due to the absolute shit show that america is becoming.

    Mona Lisa Overdrive
    Final entry in the original cyberpunk trilogy from William Gibson. It's fascinating to see how some of the threads he's picking at in this, ends up in The Peripheral and Agency. The weakest of the trilogy but still a really fantastic cyberpunk book.
  • Tonka 15 Sep 2020 15:21:03 31,190 posts
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    Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland
    by Patrick Radden Keefe

    As a swedish person I only had a vague idea about what went on in Northern Ireland. I bought this book to get a better understanding, and I did. It's basically a very long, very well researched sunday news paper long read.

    My only criticism is that it focuses very heavily on the Provos (see, I can say Provos and it actually means something to me) andBritish Arnmy, and leaves the Loyalists and the RUC mostly out of it.

    Utterly crushing depiction of what's basically a civil war. MAkes me wonder if something similar isn't brewing in the US.
  • RichDC 20 Sep 2020 23:44:52 8,930 posts
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    Fall of Hyperion - Dan Simmons

    It's OK, just nowhere near as good as the first one. The overall story is interesting but the pacing is all over the place. Frequent large amounts of padding followed by what then feels like rushed major events and clumsy exposition towards the end.

    I'm interested to see where things go in the next books though so will give them a read at some point in the future.

    6/10
  • Tonka 21 Sep 2020 10:43:10 31,190 posts
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    I loved Hyperion but I didn't feel compelled to read the follow up. I think I might just re-read the first one tbh. I think back on it a lot.
  • TechnoHippy 24 Sep 2020 10:52:55 17,847 posts
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    Speaker for the Dead - Orson Scott Card

    I realised a week or so ago that I'd only read the first book in the series (Ender's Game) and so decided to remedy that and it was a damn fine choice. It's a different beast to Ender's Game, more thoughtful and well put together. So straight onto the next one :-)

    9/10
  • JoeBlade 24 Sep 2020 11:01:21 5,318 posts
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    @RichDC I thought the first one was by far the best. I actually still liked the second quite a bit as well but I wasn't as convinced by the Endymion ones.
    It didn't feel like a real continuation of the story as much as a new story set in the same universe and mostly with the same characters. Some of it didn't seem to fit with what happened in the first two books.

    That said, the two times I've read them I did so back to back so perhaps I was suffering from too much exposition past some point.
  • Tonka 1 Oct 2020 08:36:08 31,190 posts
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    A Queen in Hiding
    The solid first entry in a series of four books (all have been published). Classic fantasy with magic, court shenanigans, evil empire on the march and a big fleshed out world.

    No elves, dwarves or magical creatures so far.

    The main plot is the , ehhh... plot, agains the ruling queen of Weirandale, who flees and hides her daughter among commoners. Then there's a boy that leaves his pottery family to go to university, and the loyal up and coming sergeant in the starving and militaristic country Oromondo.

    There are a lot of characters and some story threads that are started but then left to later books. There's this wonderful relaxing mix of familiarity and irreverence to the genre that I just love.

    The only negative is that I was a bit late in ordering the sequel so now I don't know what to do for the next three days...

    Top marks, reminds me of a non cynical The Blade Itself.
  • creepiest-lizard 1 Oct 2020 09:56:00 2,162 posts
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    The only good Indians Stephen Graham Jones.

    A horror novel, more or less, about a group of four native american friends who commit an atrocity ten years previously in the woods of their reservation.
    They each begin to believe they're being stalled by something related to their actions in the woods ten years later.
    It's great and quite unusual in that it's about being a native American in modern America as much as anything horrific in the story but for a horror fan there's plenty of the requisite gore.
    Jones has a stream of consciousness style prose that reminds me of Joe Lansdale.
    Pretty good.
  • dmj 1 Oct 2020 10:37:40 1,032 posts
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    The Trouble With Peace - Joe Abercrombie

    The second part of his latest trilogy. Less epic in scale than the First Law trilogy (so far) but no less interesting. Lots of death, obviously.

    There’s far less of the First Law characters in this one and a few mentions of The Bloody-Nine but still no appearance. No idea if we’ll get him in the next part. Only a few scenes with Bayaz, the massive prick. Doesn’t bode well for everyone trying to change the world in this.

    The only negative is having to wait until September 2021 for part three.

    Edited by dmj at 10:39:00 01-10-2020
  • creepiest-lizard 1 Oct 2020 10:51:58 2,162 posts
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    @dmj
    I completely forgot this was out. I wasnt blown away by the new characters in the first one though.
  • dmj 1 Oct 2020 10:56:38 1,032 posts
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    @creepiest-lizard
    Me neither, though a couple of them do come into their own in this one. I had no time for Orso in A Little Hatred, for example, but enjoyed his chapters the most this time.

    Edited by dmj at 10:57:14 01-10-2020
  • Daddy-Doom-Bar 4 Oct 2020 15:28:43 2,950 posts
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    Got a few off the to-do list...

    The Silmarillion:
    Holy shit. It's like if the bible was written by JRR Tolkien. A slog, but worth it. Totally different to LotR, but then it wasn't meant to be the same sort of thing.

    The Hobbit:
    It's just shit. I hate it. Still haven't managed to read the whole thing and I've tried several times now. I know its meant to be more of a children's book than a LotR-type epic, but it's just so...boring and condescending. The style is so different to LotR it's jarring and just plain badly written.

    The Lord of The Rings:
    Possibly my favourite books of all time. I read them all once every few years and never tire of them.

    Currently reading:
    Dune by Frank Herbert. It's ok. A bit of a slog but it's keeping me reading, despite its obvious age.
  • Mola_Ram 12 Oct 2020 12:49:14 24,598 posts
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    Just read Red Pill, by Hari Kunzru

    It's about a mid-life crisis-ey, well-meaning liberal author who goes to a writers' retreat in Germany to sort himself out, but instead meets a red-piller (shh Tonka), and quite literally gets triggered into insanity. It's not really meant to be a takedown of well-meaning liberals (the actual author is one himself!), it's more of a deep, introspective dive into gazing at the lint of his figurative navel.

    Which is not to say that it was bad! It's just a product of the exasperated, insane horror that many of us find ourselves in, like the author is trying (and not really succeeding) to exorcise his demons by writing flowery prose about them.

    Dunno if I'd recommend it, depends if you've had your fill of the abyss or not.
  • Tonka 12 Oct 2020 13:13:34 31,190 posts
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    :)
  • Tonka 12 Oct 2020 13:37:22 31,190 posts
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    Devolution by Max Brooks (of WWZ fame)

    The synopsis for this is hilariously silly. A bunch of libtards in a remote eco village are attacked by a troop of bigfoot.

    But, the book turned out to be a great romp. Actually scary at times, sort of believable as well. It's definitely in the "this would wor great as a movie" genre. The one where the films then turn out to be really dire.. like WWZ.

    But if you want a breezy schlock horror then this is a must read
  • brokenkey 12 Oct 2020 18:06:22 10,610 posts
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    Tonka wrote:
    Devolution by Max Brooks (of WWZ fame)

    The synopsis for this is hilariously silly. A bunch of libtards in a remote eco village are attacked by a troop of bigfoot.

    But, the book turned out to be a great romp. Actually scary at times, sort of believable as well. It's definitely in the "this would wor great as a movie" genre. The one where the films then turn out to be really dire.. like WWZ.

    But if you want a breezy schlock horror then this is a must read
    Reading the acknowledgements at the end of the book, it started out as a film synopsis.
  • Tonka 13 Oct 2020 08:55:52 31,190 posts
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    Oh? I skipped those, but that makes sense.

    I'd definitely watch it if it ever was made. I guess releasing it as a book could be the first move to turn it into a film.
  • Mola_Ram 13 Oct 2020 08:57:34 24,598 posts
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    If World War Z is any indication, here are the things that a film adaptation will have in common with the book:

    -the title
  • rice_sandwich 13 Oct 2020 10:14:00 6,541 posts
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    Two big doorstops for my latest reads:

    The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)

    The Tale of Genji (Murasaki Shikibu)

    These are both books that sacrifice deep characterisation for plot. Monte Cristo has many, many twists and turns and unlikely coincidences but it's almost always entertaining and is an easy reading page turner. Recommended if you're looking for a book that will last a few weeks.

    Genji is a much more difficult read due to the sometimes oblique way that characters are referred to. It's not always clear who is speaking and there is a cast of thousands. It is reputedly the world's first novel. It would be fair to say that the main character is a man of his time (1000 years ago) and he gets up to a fair bit of stuff that is very much frowned upon these days. Still, if you can get over the language it's an entertaining epic about the goings on of aristocrats during Japan's Heian era. Lots of cool poems too. Hundreds of them.
  • TechnoHippy 13 Oct 2020 11:31:34 17,847 posts
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    A few books read recently:

    Surface Detail by Ian M Banks

    An interesting look at how technology and religion can mix when you're advanced enough as a species. Som good interactions with the Minds as always.

    8/10

    Hydrogen Sonata

    It's so sad there'll never be any more Culture books :-( But this isn't a bad one to conclude with - I've always been interested how the Sublime fit with the world, and while I wish this had gone deeper into that aspect, it's still a fascinating read.

    9/10

    Daughter of the Empire

    I've previously enjoyed this trilogy, so fancied a re-read. Some fun politics and expands the world nicely. Feist remains one of the few fantasy authors I still read.

    8/10
  • Mola_Ram 16 Oct 2020 05:27:33 24,598 posts
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    The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle

    It's a murder mystery, meets Groundhog Day, meets a video game (specifically the Zero Escape series, which I imagine the author has played).

    Basically, there's a murder that will play out every day in a loop, repeating until it's solved. There's a guy who's been asked to stop it, and every time he goes to sleep he wakes up inhabiting the body of a different witness/suspect to the murder, and will be trapped in the loop until he figures it out.

    It's a brilliant concept, and a great, twisty read. Very recommend.
  • Roddy100 16 Oct 2020 05:37:46 1,063 posts
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    @Mola_Ram I've just finished this too, and I agree, it was a great read. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

    I believe the author's new book has just been released. 'The Devil and the Dark Water'.
    I'm keen to read that one now.
  • Mola_Ram 16 Oct 2020 05:47:40 24,598 posts
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    Yeah, I've read reviews of his next one, it sounds good too.
  • TechnoHippy 16 Oct 2020 07:42:00 17,847 posts
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    Reaper Man by Terry Prachett

    One of my favourite Discworld novels and centred around my favourite character.

    One stalk at a time is the only way :-)

    10/10

    Xenocide by Orson Scott Card

    The third in the Ender series and like the previous book it's heavy on the philosophy and makes a fascinating read. It does get a little odd towards the end though.

    8/10
  • f00b_inc 18 Oct 2020 09:29:04 808 posts
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    Roddy100 wrote:
    @Mola_Ram I've just finished this too, and I agree, it was a great read. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

    I believe the author's new book has just been released. 'The Devil and the Dark Water'.
    I'm keen to read that one now.
    Also just finished this (after a recommendation in this thread) and enjoyed - echo the above thoughts!
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