books, books, books

This is for all non-EC or peripheral-EC topics. We all know how much we love talking about 'The Man' but sometimes we have other interests.
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miss buenos aires
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Postby miss buenos aires » Thu May 27, 2004 11:53 am

I just finished reading L'arrache-coeur, by Boris Vian. I doubt I'm going to ruin it for anyone here, so here's a brief synopsis:

Clémentine gives birth to triplets (which she names Joel, Noel and Citroen) the day a stranger (named Jacquemort) comes to town. Jacquemort was born a few months ago, as a fully formed adult with no memories, so he goes around trying to psychoanalyze everyone and steal their experiences and emotions. Jacquemort meets La Gloire, an old man who has to take on the shame of the whole village--they throw rotten things in the river and La Gloire has to fetch them with his teeth. He gets paid in gold, but no one in town will accept his gold, so it's useless. What does the town have to be ashamed of? Well, for one thing, they sell their elderly at auction. And they crucify horses, and lots of other nasty stuff. Clémentine gets more and more obsessed with all the dangers that might befall her sons, so she doesn't let them leave the garden, but they find these blue slugs that give them the power of flight. At the end of the book, La Gloire dies and Jacquemort has to take his place, and Clémentine decides to build an iron room to keep her sons in, so that there's absolutely no chance they'll hurt themselves.

I'm really trying hard to make this come together in some kind of coherent way, but that's not working out for me right now.

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Poppet
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Postby Poppet » Thu May 27, 2004 1:51 pm

miss b a, i'd find the cliff notes for that one. they sound necessary.

allegory? but what does it all MEAN?????
... name the stars and constellations,
count the cars and watch the seasons....

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Boy With A Problem
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Postby Boy With A Problem » Fri May 28, 2004 4:33 am

I read the Wreckless Eric autobiography, "A Dysfunctional Success" this week. I've been recommending it to everyone. It's is all about mundanity of growing up in a lower middle class English family in the 60's - falling in love with rock n' roll, not quite fitting in, falling in love with booze - a series of awful jobs, learning to play guitar, playing in covers bands, playing in original bands, drinking more and more, moving up to London, seeing the Clash, more dismal jobs, getting signed to Stiff Records, not getting on with Elvis Costello, making fast friends with Ian Dury and Nick Lowe, getting increasingly drunk, not being backed entirely by Stiff (at one point being teamed against his will with the songwriting duo who would eventually write, "We built this city on Rock n' Roll") drinking himself out of a career, at one point working as a roadie for George Hamilton IV, unreliable cars, having a daughter and quiting drinking...the book stops in about 1983. It's extremely well written, funny, self depreciating...I think most of the folks on the board would really like it...I'm deliberately not going to post his thoughts on Elvis....they're the only part of the book that I thought came off as petty and not without a little bit of jealousy.
Everyone just needs to fuckin’ relax. Smoke more weed, the world is ending.

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mood swung
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Postby mood swung » Fri May 28, 2004 7:21 am

that self-depreciating is really hard on the assets. I'll be looking for this book, BWAP, thanks.
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lapinsjolis
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Postby lapinsjolis » Fri May 28, 2004 7:41 am

I've abandoned 'Three to Get Married' (I'll pick it up again) for 'Under the Sun of Satan' and 'The Prince of Darkness'. Out of print books seem the most rewarding.
"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken."

ice nine
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Postby ice nine » Sat May 29, 2004 9:15 pm

After seeing a documentady on PBS about Langston Hughes I went to B&N and picked up Selected Poems of... He sure can paint a picture with words. If you are a neophyte to poetry Langston is your man.

For all of those fans of Hitchiker's Guide.... I understand they are making a movie of it.
It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think that you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt
- M. Twain

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miss buenos aires
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Postby miss buenos aires » Tue Jun 01, 2004 8:17 am

Just read a very good book called Reading Lolita in Tehran. About literature and the oppressive Islamic revolution in Iran and its effect on everyday life.

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so lacklustre
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Postby so lacklustre » Tue Jun 01, 2004 9:09 am

Now reading Vernon God Little
signed with love and vicious kisses

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miss buenos aires
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Postby miss buenos aires » Tue Jun 01, 2004 9:36 am

I read a few reviews of that, so lack. English reviewers all seemed to say, "Look at what America is really like!" and American reviewers all seemed to say, "This is ridiculous, and the worst part is that other people are going to think that this is what America is really like!"

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BlueChair
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Postby BlueChair » Thu Jun 10, 2004 9:30 am

Yesterday I was trying to decide what to read next, and decided to pull Breakfast Of Champions by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. off the shelf since I should read it already.
This morning you've got time for a hot, home-cooked breakfast! Delicious and piping hot in only 3 microwave minutes.

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RedShoes
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Postby RedShoes » Thu Jun 10, 2004 9:36 am

I'm currently reading <i>Black Like Me</i> by John Griffin. I've been meaning to for awhile, but only now that I don't have required school-related reading bogging me down have I found time for it. It gives you a lot to think about, even if it is 45 years old.

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so lacklustre
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Postby so lacklustre » Thu Jun 10, 2004 4:03 pm

I read a few reviews of that, so lack. English reviewers all seemed to say, "Look at what America is really like!" and American reviewers all seemed to say, "This is ridiculous, and the worst part is that other people are going to think that this is what America is really like!"


Are you saying that America ain't like that? What about To Kill A Mocking Bird is America really like that?
signed with love and vicious kisses

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mood swung
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Postby mood swung » Fri Jun 11, 2004 12:35 pm

so lack, you've just got to explain that last remark. I mean, of course, at least for me.
Like me, the "g" is silent.

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miss buenos aires
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Postby miss buenos aires » Fri Jun 11, 2004 1:48 pm

To Kill a Mockingbird...is a sin. I mean, To Kill a Mockingbird was written years and years before I was born, in a part of the country that I've never been to, so unfortunately, I find myself unable to answer your question, which I am sure was intended with the utmost seriousness.

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so lacklustre
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Postby so lacklustre » Fri Jun 11, 2004 2:08 pm

Mood, I was just being flippant and intending to be facetious. Comparing novels to real life is the sort of shit that you get in book reviews and I'm sure that only journos (and the incredibly thick) with column inches to fill would really believe that a novel accurately portrays the whole of a country. VGL reminds me a bit of TKAMB, I did not mean anything deep and do not wish to start an argument, I'm just here to be 'ronic.

I've read about 100 pages and so far [/i]Vernon God Little is fucken brilliant and would recommend it to all. However I know that only Carl Hiaasen writes about what America is really like (doesn't he?).
signed with love and vicious kisses

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taz
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Postby taz » Thu Jun 17, 2004 4:47 pm

Currently re-reading a great two volume biography of Winston Churchill by William Manchester. Takes you from his birth up to 1940. There was supposed to be a third volume but I believe Manchester got ill and wasn't able to finish it...very sad because what he did get in was amazing.
A lot of Christians wear crosses around their necks. Do you think when Jesus comes back he ever wants to see a fuckin' cross? It's kind of like going up to Jackie Onassis with a rifle pendant on.

johnfoyle
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Postby johnfoyle » Wed Jul 14, 2004 4:40 pm

Just finished The Narrows by Michael Connelly and Hidden Prey by John Sandford ; Connelly just about redeems himself after last years awful effort , Sandford is as excellent as ever. I'm now reading Ann Patchett's Truth and Beauty ; a stunning, absorbing and truly heart wrenching read.

see
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/ ... 20-4792149

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BlueChair
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Postby BlueChair » Thu Jul 15, 2004 11:58 am

I'm reading The Stone Raft by Jose Saramago. Excellent.
This morning you've got time for a hot, home-cooked breakfast! Delicious and piping hot in only 3 microwave minutes.

johnfoyle
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Postby johnfoyle » Thu Jul 15, 2004 2:25 pm

I'm reading The Stone Raft by Jose Saramago


I was reading Blindness by Saramago for a book club meeting but it got put off for a few weeks so I postponed finishing it until closer to the time . What I've read is hypnotic in its tone of continuous horror , helped by its punctuation free , stream of thought presentation. As always with a translation I find myself wishing I understood the original language , wondering how much the translation dilutes the writers original vision.

invisible Pole
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Postby invisible Pole » Thu Jul 15, 2004 3:26 pm

I have just finished reading Ben Elton's "Blast From The Past".
Not recommended. I found the plot way too improbable and the solution not surprising at all.
I wonder if Elton's "Popcorn" is any better.
If you don't know what is wrong with me
Then you don't know what you've missed

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so lacklustre
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Postby so lacklustre » Wed Jul 21, 2004 5:26 pm

I'm now reading Let Them All Talk (the music of Elvis Costello), as well as an old Jonathan Coe novel, and I must get round to the pile of short stories that board members keep sending me!!
signed with love and vicious kisses

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Otis Westinghouse
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Postby Otis Westinghouse » Wed Jul 21, 2004 6:19 pm

Which Coe? Have only read the brilliant What A Carve Up, must pick up House of Sleep too, and Rotters Club.
There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more

Goody2Shoes
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Postby Goody2Shoes » Wed Jul 21, 2004 7:05 pm

Blue Chair and Mr. Foyle: have you read Saramago's All The Names? Also excellent. I was on a serious Saramago jag about a year ago and came to love his work. It made me think, also, that I need to learn Portuguese to fully appreciate it. But since I can barely handle English....
It's a radiation vibe I'm groovin' on

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miss buenos aires
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Postby miss buenos aires » Thu Jul 22, 2004 9:15 am

Ooh, yes, What A Carve-Up! is excellent, though I hear it's called something boring like The Winshaw Legacy over here in the States.

Currently reading Maurice, by E.M. Forster. Very tasteful. So far, no gay sex at all (a few "embraces")--and it was still banned (or maybe just not published) until 1971!

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Otis Westinghouse
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Postby Otis Westinghouse » Thu Jul 22, 2004 1:34 pm

Surely a few man-on-man embraces were enough to warrant the ban? You'll need to get the Forsterian video sequel 'Maurice Mounts Manchester' if you want some more overt bare-back action.
There's more to life than books, you know, but not much more


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