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Cafe Doom  |  The Critique Crypt  |  General writing chat  |  What are you reading? (apart from this)
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Author Topic: What are you reading? (apart from this)  (Read 91068 times)

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Offline jsorensen

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #120 on: December 21, 2010, 10:31:30 AM »
My wife got me Joe Hill's 2oth Century Ghosts for the holiday (a bit early).  Read through the first two shorts and am finding it a good read.  Horror?  To a degree, but its the subtle absurdity in the stories and a mild sense of humor that is keeping me reading.  Can't vouch for the rest of it, but so far excellent...

Reminds me a bit of Mark Richards' collection of shorts or even his novel Fishboy.
He had something to say. He said it. . . . He had summed up—he had judged. ‘The horror!’

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #121 on: December 21, 2010, 10:56:09 AM »
I've started reading David Brin's "Sundiver". About seventy pages in, and I'm seriously unimpressed. Only reading it because a pal at my writing group raved about it and lent me her copy. I wish she hadn't. I feel duty bound to finish it. I lent her the Strugatsky brothers' "Roadside Picnic". She'll probably hate it if her preferred style of sci-fi is David Brin. Oh well.

Offline desertwomble

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #122 on: December 21, 2010, 12:06:34 PM »
I'm reading 'A Christmas Carol' - again.

It's interesting how the author intrudes on the story - something that would be a definite no-no these days, but which makes the story the classic that it is.

Also interesting is some of the turns of phrase that I thought were modern but are anything but, i.e. a character 'cracks a joke'.

A magic read.

DW :cheesy:

Offline Rook

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #123 on: December 21, 2010, 01:28:11 PM »
I love 'A Christmas Carol'.  :smiley:

I'm a hundred pages into Gabriel García Márquez's 'One Hundred Years of Solitude'. It has some wonderful ideas so far, and lovely prose.
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Offline Grillmeat

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #124 on: December 21, 2010, 03:03:27 PM »
Just finished Duma Key by Stephen King. Moving on to From a Buick 8 by him as well.
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Offline Rook

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #125 on: December 21, 2010, 06:14:50 PM »
I really enjoyed Duma Key; it isn't The Stand, but it was a good read. King has some cool things going on inside his head... Haven't read From a Buick 8, though.

I read Salem's Lot a few months ago, and in the foreword he mentions how it's a little dated, and I could tell it was written in the '70's, but it was still pretty good. Now, Cujo, though... I don't know... :idiot:
« Last Edit: December 21, 2010, 06:17:43 PM by Rook »
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Offline Grillmeat

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #126 on: December 21, 2010, 08:18:56 PM »
'Salem's lot was a cool book. I enjoyed Duma Key as well. He did some nice work. I'm hoping From a Buick 8 is good. I wasn't that impressed with Christine when I read it years ago but hey, I guess you can't hit a home run every time.
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Offline starktheground

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #127 on: December 21, 2010, 11:33:06 PM »
Oh, I love A Christmas Carol too. Didn't he sell that story for only a penny so that more people could have access to it?

Duma Key was one of my favorite recent ones by King.

Right now I'm on a poetry kick. Trying to talk my husband into naming the baby Tennyson.  :afro:

Offline Pharosian

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #128 on: December 22, 2010, 01:51:10 AM »
I just finished an audiobook called Blood and Smoke by Stephen King. It was only 4 discs, which contained three short stories. All of the stories involved men who had quit smoking and were tempted to start again due to the events in the stories. They were pretty good, but not as captivating, somehow, as the stories his son writes as Joe Hill.

One thing I notice about King's style (at least in these short stories) is to stop the action with observations or similes that go on for a while. It's not badly done, and the observations are interesting... but I find myself getting a little impatient with him sometimes: Never mind that, what happens next?!

Offline Ed

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #129 on: December 22, 2010, 02:24:36 AM »


One thing I notice about King's style (at least in these short stories) is to stop the action with observations or similes that go on for a while. It's not badly done, and the observations are interesting... but I find myself getting a little impatient with him sometimes: Never mind that, what happens next?!

I've noticed that, too. I think the idea is to create more suspense, but it backfires on him with me, because I tend to skim until I get to what I want. :afro:
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Offline Caz

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #130 on: December 22, 2010, 05:09:36 AM »
I read From a Buick 8 a few years back and thought it good, same for 'Salem's Lot and Christine. Didn't go a bundle on Duma Key though.
I guess I should have a go at some of Dickens's stuff but I can't seem to get my head around these old tales. It was hard work to read Frankenstein and The Ghost Pirates And I gave up half way through on The Great God Pan. I'm pretty much okay with anything from the 1950s onward but any earlier than that and the story seems not to flow, not for me anyway.

Nearly finished Lee Child's Bad Luck and Trouble, a cracking read it is too, so I went to the library to pick up a couple of books to read over Christmas. Thought I'd pick up another of the Jack Reacher novels, I really did start in the wrong place with them, and what should fall off the shelf whilst I rummaged...The Big Sleep. Published in 1939 so I could be in dangerous waters with this one, still got the graphic novel The Crow as a back up.       
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Offline JonP

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #131 on: December 22, 2010, 08:01:57 AM »
The Big Sleep is fab, as is anything by Chandler. The first film of it is one of the best ever. The Michael Winner one, however, is utter pants.

Offline jsorensen

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #132 on: December 22, 2010, 01:33:03 PM »
I guess I should have a go at some of Dickens's stuff but I can't seem to get my head around these old tales. It was hard work to read Frankenstein and The Ghost Pirates And I gave up half way through on The Great God Pan.        

Sorry about all that--I'm not much of a fan with Dickens (no reason, just one of those things).  Shelly's Frakenstein is one of those great "in theory" books I think.  I love the novel, but often I just read a section or a two nowadays and call it even.  Too bad on The Great God Pan--one of my favorites, but then again its one that I would only recomend to horrror buffs interested in the development of the genre.  I suppose its a bit of snore by today's standards. 

Noticed a lot of interest in King on the board--I tried to read The Girl Wo loved Tom Gordon over the summer but switched back to rereading Lovecraft (please don't groan--Lovecraft I think is a terrible "writer" but great in ideas).

Lee Child seems pretty good from what I read--although Still Life With Crows became a bit of a disappointment.  However, if you like Child, have you tried any of Caleeb Carr's stuff?
He had something to say. He said it. . . . He had summed up—he had judged. ‘The horror!’

Offline Rook

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #133 on: December 22, 2010, 02:06:19 PM »
Even though I went into it with skepticism, I loved Frankenstein-- though I found it more sad than 'horror'.

I read 'The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon'-- god, what a snorefest! It was dead dull, at least for me. I'd have given up on it, but it was short enough I figured I'd finish it in the hopes it would get better... it didn't.

King has some great stuff; he has some utter trash, too. Guess that's the great thing about being a best seller; you get published no matter what.

I read the first of the 'Dark Tower' series, and it was genius. (I think I already said that about 'The Stand') I don't have the funds right now to buy the rest at full price, but I look for them at the secondhand store. I hope the rest are as good.

I haven't read any from Child, or Caleeb Carr, though. Or 'The Great God Pan'; I'll have to look at it.
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Offline delboy

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Re: What are you reading? (apart from this)
« Reply #134 on: December 22, 2010, 04:07:46 PM »
King, Dickens, Chandler - some fine choices indeed. Well done everyone!

I'm a huge Stephen King fan. Totally agree that he's not always on the money, but when he is he is right up there with my favourite authors. The early books tend to be the best (IMHO) - imagine starting one's career with Carrie, Salem's Lot, The Stand, Night Shift, and The Shining! You could put your feet up and never write another thing and still be one of the greatest horror writers ever. But instead you go on and produce Different Seasons (which includes King's best ever piece - again IMHO - The Body. This remains one of my all time favourite stories), The Mist, The Dead Zone, The Talisman, The Green Mile, Pet Sematary, and probably a bunch more that I don't recall at the moment. On top of all that his non-fiction is also stunning - Danse Macabre, On Writing, and all the scores of forwards and afterwards in his own and other's book have done more to inspire me to actually put bum on seat and write than anyone else has. Everything King writes is infused with the sheer joy of being a writer. Now clearly anyone who writes the sheer number of novels and stories that King does is going to produce a few that don't reach the heights of all the aforementioned books, but even when writing something like Cell he still knows exactly what to do, exactly where to put his characters, exactly how to produce tension and must-read-on moments.

Derek
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