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What is it called and who is it by? The book talk thread


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On 11/01/2021 at 10:43, liamaldinho said:

Hello folks, thinking of getting a kindle or e-reader, where do I start? Not after anything expensive or fancy, what's basic?

Also if someone were to buy the above, could they purchase a couple of books from amazon and put them on there as a gift for someone else? Or will they need the readers account?

Thanks!

Edit - apologies the voyage is no more, meant the oasis.

Rumour has it there will be new kindles this year, go for the basic kindle and if you live it you can upgrade later

You can't go wrong with any model, from the basic 60 pound kindle through to the voyage. 

You can set up a family account to share books but the sharing process is not as simple as it should be

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2 minutes ago, gechal said:

You can't go wrong with any model, from the basic 60 pound kindle through to the voyage. 

You can set up a family account to share books but the sharing process is not as simple as it should be

Edit - apologies the voyage is no more, meant the oasis.

Rumour has it there will be new kindles this year, go for the basic kindle and if you live it you can upgrade later

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On 05/01/2021 at 13:11, Tikka Mezzala said:

Here's the question: Nineteen-Eighty-Four or Brave New World

I remember when reading BNW I did have some issues with some of the plot points in it, things that didn't really make sense. 1984 is certainly a better written and better structured work. I used to think BNW was the true terrible world out of the two of them, because with the population drugged up there was no chance of revolution but these days i mainly think **** it, give me some of that soma. 

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2 hours ago, Rafalution said:

I remember when reading BNW I did have some issues with some of the plot points in it, things that didn't really make sense. 1984 is certainly a better written and better structured work. I used to think BNW was the true terrible world out of the two of them, because with the population drugged up there was no chance of revolution but these days i mainly think **** it, give me some of that soma. 

I don't disagree. Orwell definitely strikes me as a better writer. But I do think the world created by Huxley better reflects the world today. 

There was a moment in BNW when two of the characters are in a helicopter way out over the sea, and one of them gets deeply uncomfortable because they feel alone with their thoughts, with no visual stimuli to distract them. It's almost as if Huxley predicted the smartphone and the addiction to the information matrix. You see people in cafes and on public transport reach for their phone when alone. If their friend goes to the toilet, out it comes. I think it was Erich Fromm who once said something like "take away television, live sports events, alcohol etc and see how sane society really is..." 

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Just finished reading From Partition to Solidarity by Ryan Hubbard. It's about the history of Polish football and how it's adapted throughout the years of being partitioned after WW1 to being occupied during WW2 as well as throughout the rise and fall of communism. Really interesting background in to a lot of the clubs, as well as history in to the country itself. Recently picked up Jonathan Wilson's Behind The Curtain for a bit more reading to the Eastern European football before/during/after communism.

My wife is Polish so I have a bit of a vested interest in reading more about Poland but it really does have a fascinating history.

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3 hours ago, Gizmo7 said:

Just finished reading From Partition to Solidarity by Ryan Hubbard. It's about the history of Polish football and how it's adapted throughout the years of being partitioned after WW1 to being occupied during WW2 as well as throughout the rise and fall of communism. Really interesting background in to a lot of the clubs, as well as history in to the country itself. Recently picked up Jonathan Wilson's Behind The Curtain for a bit more reading to the Eastern European football before/during/after communism.

My wife is Polish so I have a bit of a vested interest in reading more about Poland but it really does have a fascinating history.

Might have to give them a read as I’m a football nerd (sure I’m not the only one around here). Studied abroad for a year with some big Lech Poznań fans who were good lads 

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8 minutes ago, PleasedToMichu said:

Really want to read the Three Californias trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson but annoyingly only 2 and 3 are on Kindle and the paperback edition of all 3 refuses to come back into stock on Amazon. 

Have you tried World of Books for second hand copies? Used them a few times and they're really good. Often have deals on fiction books as well. Their books usually appear as third party sellers on Amazon but I like to go direct. 

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1 hour ago, ginnybob said:

Have you tried World of Books for second hand copies? Used them a few times and they're really good. Often have deals on fiction books as well. Their books usually appear as third party sellers on Amazon but I like to go direct. 

Cheers, just look at them and they have the 1st book available so might go down the route of first one paperwork, other 2 kindle :thup:

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9 minutes ago, leftback in the changing room said:

I was eyeing up a couple of @Tikka Mezzala's book recommendation but forgot to open the links in private browsing mode and I think my suggested items are going to be humming The Internationale for the foreseeable.

 

If we ever end up with a totalitarian government that has access to our online records, I may have gotten a lot of people in trouble...

I'm quite optimistic about you, @leftback in the changing room. I think the leap can be made from Liberalism to a libertarian form of Socialism/Communism. Just stay off of Twitter! The Twitter Left even make me despair. 

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Just now, Tikka Mezzala said:

If we ever end up with a totalitarian government that has access to our online records, I may have gotten a lot of people in trouble...

I'm quite optimistic about you, @leftback in the changing room. I think the leap can be made from Liberalism to a libertarian form of Socialism/Communism. Just stay off of Twitter! The Twitter Left even make me despair. 

We'll see. I like the principles of libertarian socialism, but I have serious doubts about its practical application (although maybe the books will help there). Whereas there is a lot about capitalism I despise, but I can see how it can be made to work better for everyone.

Anyway, I just want to live in Iain M Banks' Culture :brock:

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10 minutes ago, leftback in the changing room said:

Oh m9. I've had a mare.

image.png.5591ff7f69da913809e269ffbdbd1b18.png

Expect a knock on the door at 5 am :D

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1 hour ago, leftback in the changing room said:

The ironic thing is that I won't buy books from Amazon; I'll use Waterstones or https://uk.bookshop.org/ instead. Because all the decent places to buy them have shut I've no choice for CDs and DVDs.

I have never heard of that bookshop website but anything that isn’t Amazon I’m all for. Is it any good? It says it supports local bookshops - how does that work? Amazon are arseholes so I usually go with Waterstones, but always like having further options. 

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How do you find prices at other places compared to Amazon? I've used Book Depository a few times, but often prices can be quite a bit higher in a lot of cases. 

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4 minutes ago, ginnybob said:

How do you find prices at other places compared to Amazon? I've used Book Depository a few times, but often prices can be quite a bit higher in a lot of cases. 

Yeah that’s the thing, Amazon are pretty much always cheaper or at best the same price whenever I compare the prices elsewhere  :(

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Got through a few books already this year. 

Column of Fire by Ken Follett -

The 3rd book in the historical fiction Kingsbridge series, this time set around the time of Queen Elizabeth/Mary Queen of Scots and the scuffles between Catholics and Protestants in the U.K. and Europe. 

Up there with both of the other two and in terms of purely the characters possibly the best one of the trilogy for me. 

Looking forward to picking up the prequel that recently came out at some point. 

 

 

Sing Backwards and Weep by Mark Lanegan - 

Autobiography account of the life of the lead singer of the Screaming Trees. 

Sex, drugs and rock and roll, but in the least glamorous and miserable way you can imagine as Lanegan talks through his heroin addiction, failed relationships with his family and girlfriends, at times very bad relationship with his band mates and his struggles as many of his closest friends end up dying young as he survives and eventually ends up homeless due to his addiction. 

A very harrowing account and worth a read even if you’re not into him or his band. 

 

The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy - 

First time of reading this classic sci fi comedy. I’ll be honest and say at times the jokes and the humour weren’t really doing it for me, but overall worth a read and a solid 3/5 type affair. I have the trilogy so will get round to reading the other stories at some point. 

 

Out of Thin Air by Anthony Eaden - 

This is a true story about a series of murders in Iceland in the 70s and how an inexperienced police force and justice system dealt with their first murder investigations and the impact it had on the suspects.

A very interesting read, I won’t spoil it but worth picking up if you’re interested in Iceland generally or real crime stuff. 

 

 

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I used to read a lot, but as I've gotten older my eyes got worse so I read less. Rather than do what normal people do I struggled on, my reading rate slowed right down to the point where I could only read a few pages and eventually none.  So then I tried audiobooks but just couldn't get into them, I could only really listen in bed and would then fall asleep and miss most of it.  So I've finally bit the bullet, got some glasses and now I'm back reading again and finished a couple...

Killing Commendatore - Haruki Murakami  I've read a few of his books and really enjoy them but they are difficult to describe, of the ones I've read they are generally pretty mundane settings, something unusual happens and there's a surreal tangent where you just think 'what the hell' but you kind of just go with it.  This one is no different, a portrait painter ends up staying at his friends fathers house, he discovers a painting, characters from it start appearing, there's a mysterious pit, a bell that rings on its own.  This intertwines with him meeting a couple of his neighbours who have their own connections.  It's weird but also seems totally normal.  Not sure I would recommend, it's probably over-long and could have been significantly trimmed down but there's something about it I loved.

The Push - Ashley Audrain  Written from the perspective of a wife to her estranged husband about the difficulties she had in her life and in particular raising her children.  There's an assumption that it's post natal depression (and there probably is some element of that) but it takes a really sinister turn.  There are some light moments but overall it's quite sad, gripping and disturbing.  Possibly more aimed at a female audience but very good nonetheless. It's well written, really builds up the tension, keeps you thinking right to the end about what happened, it also has really short chapters which I find easy to read and finished this in a couple of days. 

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I am currently reading Black Leopard Red Wolf by Marlon James. The first 100 pages or so have been ****ing mad but it's begun to settle down now into an actual narrative I can follow.

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19 minutes ago, stephen_atk said:

Killing Commendatore - Haruki Murakami  I've read a few of his books and really enjoy them but they are difficult to describe, of the ones I've read they are generally pretty mundane settings, something unusual happens and there's a surreal tangent where you just think 'what the hell' but you kind of just go with it.  This one is no different, a portrait painter ends up staying at his friends fathers house, he discovers a painting, characters from it start appearing, there's a mysterious pit, a bell that rings on its own.  This intertwines with him meeting a couple of his neighbours who have their own connections.  It's weird but also seems totally normal.  Not sure I would recommend, it's probably over-long and could have been significantly trimmed down but there's something about it I loved.

I enjoyed Killing Commendatore, but as you said, it rambles on a bit too much, even for a Murakami book.  If it had been 30% shorter it would have been a much better read.  Stylistically it has all of his usual things but it struck me that it seemed like two  different plots crammed into one book rather than a coherent single narrative.

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26 minutes ago, The_jagster said:

The more I read Murakami the more I think he's a bit of a perv, he is obsessed with teenagers' breasts.

 

Yep, he certainly seems to enjoy describing them in this one

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52 minutes ago, liamaldinho said:

Hi folks I recently got an Acer android 10 tablet. Is there a way to buy and read ebooks on this? Or does it have to be a specific kindle/ereader? Thanks!

You can just get the kindle app for it

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For whatever reason reading just hasn't appealed recently, I've even tried to sit down and just can't concentrate. Part of this may be the ruined sleep pattern to get up earlier for the cricket but in January I just couldn't be bothered, this might just be too many bang average books as I was back reading this weekend. I have just finished Homo Deus by Yuval Noah Harari which I thought was quite good. More philosophy than fact and I disagreed with a couple of his approaches but he understood that economics is/will be the driver of change in medicine.

I also read We Need to Talk about Kevin recently and thought it was really good, which was unexpected as I generally dislike stuff that is American and wins Literary awards. I know this was popular so probably not truly literary but however creative writing is taught in America it generates dreadful novels. Popular stuff is done so well but the Jonathan Franzen-type subset is more often than not utterly tedious.

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17 minutes ago, The_jagster said:

For whatever reason reading just hasn't appealed recently, I've even tried to sit down and just can't concentrate. Part of this may be the ruined sleep pattern to get up earlier for the cricket but in January I just couldn't be bothered, this might just be too many bang average books as I was back reading this weekend. I have just finished Homo Deus by Yuval Noah Harari which I thought was quite good. More philosophy than fact and I disagreed with a couple of his approaches but he understood that economics is/will be the driver of change in medicine.

I also read We Need to Talk about Kevin recently and thought it was really good, which was unexpected as I generally dislike stuff that is American and wins Literary awards. I know this was popular so probably not truly literary but however creative writing is taught in America it generates dreadful novels. Popular stuff is done so well but the Jonathan Franzen-type subset is more often than not utterly tedious.

Yeah I've only read 6 books this year so far. And five came in the first two weeks of January.

Finished a re-read of a A Long Way to an Angry Planet last night which was a great comfort read to get me back into the flow. So hoping things will pickup now.

In fact I know a few of you said you were going to check out that book. Have any of you done so, so far? It really is a lovely optimistic book that helps you see the best in people and is just a very easy read. The chapters are episodic as well so it's a very easy book to read in smaller chunks.

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14 minutes ago, G-Man11 said:

Yeah I've only read 6 books this year so far. And five came in the first two weeks of January.

Finished a re-read of a A Long Way to an Angry Planet last night which was a great comfort read to get me back into the flow. So hoping things will pickup now.

In fact I know a few of you said you were going to check out that book. Have any of you done so, so far? It really is a lovely optimistic book that helps you see the best in people and is just a very easy read. The chapters are episodic as well so it's a very easy book to read in smaller chunks.

Had this in my kindle library for a LONG time. Maybe i'll make it my next read.

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My first Abercrombie books have arrived, i went directly for the trilogy, the blade itself, hope to start reading this week!

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1 minute ago, Goldy said:

My first Abercrombie books have arrived, i went directly for the trilogy, the blade itself, hope to start reading this week!

Awesome. I absolutely loved these books. Fantastic POV characters and great writing.

I wont give any spoilers but I'd love to hear your thoughts when you are finished.

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1 minute ago, G-Man11 said:

Awesome. I absolutely loved these books. Fantastic POV characters and great writing.

I wont give any spoilers but I'd love to hear your thoughts when you are finished.

Got them recommended by a friend of mine, this was never my kind of genre, then I read the King Killer Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss, loved it and based on that I was told about these. (Hope Rothfuss brings that 3rd book out!)

Don't expect me to post too soon though, my reading times can vary depending on how busy I am (and with corona i'm not on any business trips, which is usually where i could invest hours with reading whilst on my travels)

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1 minute ago, Goldy said:

Got them recommended by a friend of mine, this was never my kind of genre, then I read the King Killer Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss, loved it and based on that I was told about these. (Hope Rothfuss brings that 3rd book out!)

Don't expect me to post too soon though, my reading times can vary depending on how busy I am (and with corona i'm not on any business trips, which is usually where i could invest hours with reading whilst on my travels)

I'm going to be sat clued to this thread refreshing every five minutes! :D

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9 minutes ago, G-Man11 said:

I'm going to be sat clued to this thread refreshing every five minutes! :D

I can change that :D

 

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I want to read something about the Roman Empire, I literally know nothing other than the very basics (Julius Caesar, Brutus etc.). I've seen Mary Beard's SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome recommended in a couple of places, would that be a good place to start or is there another book I should go for?

Obviously looking for more of an overview before I dive in to deeper more detailed periods.

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4 minutes ago, Harryseaess said:

I want to read something about the Roman Empire, I literally know nothing other than the very basics (Julius Caesar, Brutus etc.). I've seen Mary Beard's SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome recommended in a couple of places, would that be a good place to start or is there another book I should go for?

Obviously looking for more of an overview before I dive in to deeper more detailed periods.

I read that last year and it was pretty good. Enjoyed it. It's probably a really good place to start. I don't know too much about Ancient Rome but I want to learn more. Being married to someone who studied classics probably helps me find books :D

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13 minutes ago, mark1985 said:

I read that last year and it was pretty good. Enjoyed it. It's probably a really good place to start. I don't know too much about Ancient Rome but I want to learn more. Being married to someone who studied classics probably helps me find books :D

Just ordered it :thup:.

I've seen The History of Rome podcast by Mike Duncan recommended a lot so will give that a listen too.

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3 minutes ago, Harryseaess said:

Just ordered it :thup:.

I've seen The History of Rome podcast by Mike Duncan recommended a lot so will give that a listen too.

I think I've heard of that but not sure. Let me know if it's any good as once I've worked through my current podcast backlog (once I start running again) I might give it a listen

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42 minutes ago, ginnybob said:

Mike Duncan is great. He has a book on the Romans as well - The Storm Before the Storm. 

That’s where I recognised the name from! Read that book as well last year and it was pretty good as well

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Read Animal Farm this week after getting free on my Kindle for phone thing. Amazing how relevant it still is. 

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Got through a few more books in recent weeks. 

The First Casualty by Ben Elton - The 2nd book by him that I’ve read and again this was a pretty enjoyable effort. The books follows a former police man lead a murder investigation in Ypres during WW1. There’s certain aspects of the book that give this a glass ceiling of a 4/5 for me, but I do enjoy Elton’s writing style and this was another decent effort about a period of history I find interesting. 

Just one damned thing after another by  Jodi Taylor - 

The first of the time chronicles series. Overall despite being a fan of the genre this did lean more towards not my thing in terms of the style it was written, although the passion the writer had for the subject and genre helped elevate it a bit more for me. I wouldn’t rule out ever getting the next few books in the series, but it certainly didn’t make me want to read them all straight away. Seemed decent enough to read as it’s own thing though. 

Arsene Wenger bio by John Cross - 

Posted a longer review of this in the Arsenal thread, but general gist is whilst not amazing, this was better than I expected it to be given it was John Cross who wrote it. 

Heir to the Empire by Timothy Zahn - 

Glad to have read this whilst still in the post-Mandalorian Star Wars high. Really enjoyed it and have already bought the next two books from the Thrawn trilogy. 

I found it quite interesting reading stuff about Jedis and the lore of Star Wars, Clone Wars, The Force etc given the context of this being written before the Prequels had been written or come out themselves. 

It does make it kind of annoying that Lucas didn’t get someone like Zahn in to help write and plan or even help draft the Prequel series, but it is what it is really. 

 

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On 21/02/2021 at 19:51, The_jagster said:

I also read We Need to Talk about Kevin recently and thought it was really good, which was unexpected as I generally dislike stuff that is American and wins Literary awards. I know this was popular so probably not truly literary but however creative writing is taught in America it generates dreadful novels. Popular stuff is done so well but the Jonathan Franzen-type subset is more often than not utterly tedious.

I tried to read that but I couldn't get over the completely unrealistic written style. In a series of "letters", there's pages and pages of word-for-word dialogue. That's not how people write letters. :mad:

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Worth a go at 99p but I started Mistborn a few weeks back and stopped after about 30%. I was keen to get into it as Sanderson is one of those fantasy authors that gets plugged all the time. It was really lacking for me. I found the prose simplistic and the dialogue to be dull and cheesy. And I must have read the phrase "[character] rolled his/her eyes" or some variation approximately 75 times. Once i'd noticed it I got more annoyed each time. :D

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