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Old 12-10-2013, 06:22 PM   #346
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Seriously, any of you with kids should read this one.
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Old 12-11-2013, 10:44 PM   #347
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I just remembered I can make a contribution to this thread: my favourite book ever is actually Dr Seuss' Oh The Places You'll Go!
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Old 12-11-2013, 11:22 PM   #348
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Time to read another book, cobbler.
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Old 12-19-2013, 11:49 AM   #349
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Is it possible for a book to become your favorite book ever after reading it only once? Because I'm pretty sure Tender is the Night has become my favorite book.
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Old 12-21-2013, 08:24 PM   #350
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It's high up on my list as well. Not a perfect work like Gatsby but so beautifully detailed and felt.

Did you read the original edition or the version with the straightforward chronology?
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Old 12-22-2013, 02:01 PM   #351
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I agree. I found it very touching, particularly given the obvious autobiographical nature of the work. The characters of Dick and Nicole are so well crafted, with so much detail, that you can't help relating to both of their struggles. On a thematic level, I found it more interesting than Gatsby, and could identify to many of its emotional undertones.

I read the original version, with the flashbacks. I can't imagine how the chronological version adds anything. To me, the fascinating thing about Book I is identifying some of the subtle hints regarding the nature of their relationship (and of Dick's own professional struggle), which makes Book II and its flashbacks (especially the sections with Nicole's first person voice) so much more powerful. I don't know, maybe I'll try the other version at some point for curiosity's sake.
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Old 12-22-2013, 08:17 PM   #352
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You've inspired me to read this again, but since I can't find my copy of the original version I'm going to take a crack at the chronological one. Since the surprises can't be ruined for me now it might give me a different perspective on the story.

Regardless, Fitzgerald's strong suit isn't his plotting, but his beautiful language and characterizations.
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Old 12-22-2013, 08:58 PM   #353
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I would love to hear your thoughts on the chronological version when you're done.
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Old 12-29-2013, 08:24 PM   #354
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I'm reading Fahrenheit 451. There's some weird foreshadowing of iPods, drones, and social media/big-screen TVs. It was written in 1950.
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Old 01-01-2014, 04:22 PM   #355
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"Wave" by Sonali Deraniyagala.

True story of an economics professor who lost her parents, husband and sons in the 2004 tsunami in Sri Lanka. It's well written but I found it almost overwhelmingly sad and depressing. It's basically sheer grief, with no let up from cover to cover. Totally understandable but makes for a difficult read.
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Old 01-03-2014, 10:29 PM   #356
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I'm reading Fahrenheit 451. There's some weird foreshadowing of iPods, drones, and social media/big-screen TVs. It was written in 1950.
I need to re-read this again eventually... only read it once and thought it was amazing, but it was in middle school and I probably didn't get everything there was to get back then. I'm especially interested because the last time I read Ray Bradbury was two years ago, and his prose hadn't aged very well with me... He often broke the authorial rule of "show, don't tell," and that annoyed me. I love the plots of his stories thoguh. Always very intriguing.

I'm headed to dystopia-land as well with 1984, which I have to read for school, but I've already read it once and loved it. My second favorite book after The Great Gatsby.

I also might try to re-read U2 at the End of the World on the side for fun.
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Old 01-04-2014, 12:25 AM   #357
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Well ..... I gave up on Infinite Jest about a quarter of the way in. The sections that bored or annoyed me were outnumbering the ones that I actually enjoyed.
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Old 01-04-2014, 03:40 PM   #358
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My 2nd book of 2014:

"Indian Horse" by Richard Wagamese.

One of the most beautifully written books I've read in a long time. Absolutely heartbreaking, about a very shameful part of Canadian history (the residential school system) and a little Ojibway boy who went through it. The description of Saul Indian Horse's life in the bush with his family is just so lovely and realistic that it feels like you're really there. Can't recommend this enough.

10 books left for the year on my new year's resolution, heh.
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Old 01-05-2014, 03:46 AM   #359
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I've been house-and-cat-sitting for a lady who's got a bookshelf full of crime novels so I've read four of them over the last two weeks of holidays.

Kate Atkinson - Started Early, Took My Dog and One Good Turn
I kinda read these in the wrong order since they both feature the same character at different stages of his life but the first book I've read was written at a later date, but no matter. They're similar in that they both follow a bunch of varied and seemingly unconnected characters who of course turn out to be very much connected as the story unfolds. I thought they were unusual in that the main mystery is almost secondary to exploring the characters, their pasts and interior lives, often in a rather meandering and busy but quirky and entertaining way. For the books that have a lot of tragedy and bleakness in them they're also often quite hilarious.

Jo Nesbø - Nemesis and The Redbreast
These books again featured the same protagonist (even somewhat the same kind of protagonist - damaged and spiky but ultimately good-hearted), and again I read them in the wrong order. The sticker on the front claimed the author to be "the next Stieg Larsson", which IMO is a stretch, chiefly because this guy hasn't come up with a main character half as compelling as Lisbeth Salander. Still, both books were definitely page turners and they had the same Scandinavian alienness to them (for the lack of better word) that the Millennium trilogy did.

Before that I've read Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. Beautiful writing; the only part that didn't work for me was the very end where, after a major reveal, the characters end up having a conversation that sounds too much like the author taking over - it somehow felt too much like reading an essay.
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Old 01-05-2014, 02:59 PM   #360
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Well ..... I gave up on Infinite Jest about a quarter of the way in. The sections that bored or annoyed me were outnumbering the ones that I actually enjoyed.
I finished the book last year, having read 2/3 of the parts (I skimmed over the Quebec separatism portion--just could not do it) I did enjoy the other parts quite a bit. I fall right into the absurd and the accurate observations/truths therein.

It did feel like an accomplishment.

Now I'm alternating between Christopher Moore's "Fool" and Richard Burton's Diaries.

"Fool" is a light amusement about King Lear. I don't like this (or so far any of his others I've read) near as much as "Lamb". I really like the cover though.

I like diaries much better than I like autobiographies. It's always fascinating to me to see the day-to-day lives and less rewriting of history than the typical autobiography. (For example, I love Neil Young but really shrugged off his autobiography which was much less revealing than his biography "Shakey". " Richard Burton's Diaries" has been fun to read--he is intelligent, articulate, self-deprecating, blunt--not afraid to analyze himself where he often comes up lacking. And the day to day lives of him and Elizabeth Taylor (I'm still in the first half) are quite intimate even without much sex discussion in the diaries. The editor's footnotes are a little off-putting though. They don't explain a reference that would interest me, but explain a Blood Mary drink.

Next on the agenda is (contrary to above) Mark Twain's mammoth autobiography Part I. I have higher hopes for that than the usual autobiography.
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