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Author Topic: So what have you read lately  (Read 964275 times)
rebelgirl
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« Reply #3045 on: April 16, 2012, 4:46:15 PM »

I was greatly disappointed by The Dressmaker of Khair Khana.

Spork, why?  I was thinking about picking it up, but your post is giving me pause. 
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tinyzombie
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« Reply #3046 on: April 16, 2012, 4:56:18 PM »

I am about halfway through DFW's (Pulitzer-snubbed) The Pale King. I've also got some Raymond Carver going on (hooray), and James Franco (bleh - cute but can't write).
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dr_alcott
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« Reply #3047 on: April 16, 2012, 5:05:42 PM »

I am about halfway through DFW's (Pulitzer-snubbed) The Pale King. I've also got some Raymond Carver going on (hooray), and James Franco (bleh - cute but can't write).

I'd like to read The Pale King someday--definitely not during the semester, though. What do you think of it, TZ?

I can't believe there's no Pulitzer winner for fiction this year.
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larryc
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« Reply #3048 on: April 16, 2012, 8:15:17 PM »

I am a few chapters into The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family by Annette Gordon-Reed. There are some good insights but damn it takes her a lot of words to say things.
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prof_smartypants
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« Reply #3049 on: April 16, 2012, 8:25:39 PM »

I am a few chapters into The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family by Annette Gordon-Reed. There are some good insights but damn it takes her a lot of words to say things.

A colleague of mine just started reading this - she's trying to get permission to do some analysis of the trees on the estate.
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tinyzombie
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« Reply #3050 on: April 16, 2012, 9:53:11 PM »

I am about halfway through DFW's (Pulitzer-snubbed) The Pale King. I've also got some Raymond Carver going on (hooray), and James Franco (bleh - cute but can't write).

I'd like to read The Pale King someday--definitely not during the semester, though. What do you think of it, TZ?

I can't believe there's no Pulitzer winner for fiction this year.

I like it, although as always with DFW, as much as I love him, I worry that I am not reading closely enough. I tend to prefer his nonfiction -- but I'd recommend this. It's easier going than IJ, and has some heartbreakingly beautiful phrases. I'm also very interested in thinking through how his editor put it together, and what other configurations DFW might have imagined for the book.
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I think we have three of them, but the smallest one seems to be the leader.
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Who needs real life when Sandra Bullock is around?
Quote from: systeme_d_
You are all my people, and I love you.
spork
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« Reply #3051 on: April 16, 2012, 10:08:29 PM »

I was greatly disappointed by The Dressmaker of Khair Khana.

Spork, why?  I was thinking about picking it up, but your post is giving me pause. 

The writing style is insipid. The account lacks crucial details. I find it hard to believe the author is a journalist with a Harvard MBA.

If you want something of quality from this genre, I highly recommend Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo.

I've given up on Civilization by Niall Ferguson. His argument, if it can be called that, is incoherent and unpersuasive. I'm wondering if the historical anecdotes that compose the book were compiled by Ferguson's graduate students.
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rebelgirl
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« Reply #3052 on: April 16, 2012, 11:21:57 PM »

I was greatly disappointed by The Dressmaker of Khair Khana.

Spork, why?  I was thinking about picking it up, but your post is giving me pause. 

The writing style is insipid. The account lacks crucial details. I find it hard to believe the author is a journalist with a Harvard MBA.

If you want something of quality from this genre, I highly recommend Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo.

I've given up on Civilization by Niall Ferguson. His argument, if it can be called that, is incoherent and unpersuasive. I'm wondering if the historical anecdotes that compose the book were compiled by Ferguson's graduate students.

Thank you!  I did some "read inside" in Boo's book on Amazon and ordered it.  It sounds like what I'd hoped would power Mukherjee's 2011 novel Miss New India, which I had so much wanted to admire, but couldn't.
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I blame all of our problems on that frikkin' Timmy. Lassie should have left his lazy @$$ in the well.
mickeymantle
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« Reply #3053 on: April 17, 2012, 7:40:41 PM »


I just mentioned two of my favorites on a thread concerning this year's lack of a fiction Pultizer Prixe, but I will add some more since I haven't contributed to this thread in a long time:

Laura Hillebrand's Alive--I liked Seabiscuit, but this thoroughly gripping and moving book justifies her reputation.

Edith Wharton's The Custom of the Country--I finally got around to reading this book after Jonathan Franken's review of Wharton's work in The New Yorker.  A witty, entertaining look at divorce, very interesting because of Wharton's own experiences.

Thomas Mallon's Watergate: A Novel--Like anyone who grew up during the early 1970s, I thought I'd had enough of this situation.  But Mallon provides an interesting, if fictitious, angle on this scandal.
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llanfair
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« Reply #3054 on: April 17, 2012, 7:48:23 PM »

I've just started Daughters of the Witching Hill by Mary Sharratt.  It's a novel about a true witch-hunting event in Lancashire, and it's delicious.
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Stop looking for zebras when the horse is already standing on your foot.
prof_smartypants
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You're getting hosed by small minds with no game.


« Reply #3055 on: April 17, 2012, 7:48:54 PM »

I had to give up on The Forsyte Saga. This semester is being a b!tch, and I just couldn't dedicate the time needed to get into the story. I'm going to try it again once the summer begins.

I am enjoying A Discovery of Witches. I don't normally like witchy supernatural stuff, but this is just the level of light-hearted ease that I need right now.

I have two non-fiction books on my immediate to-read list:

The Warmth of Other Suns and The Promised Land - one new and one more classic work on the subject of the "Great Migration" of African Americans during the first half of the 20th century. I just need some time to dedicate to them.
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mickeymantle
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« Reply #3056 on: April 18, 2012, 10:01:15 AM »


Galsworthy can be trying, and a bit dry, but he is worthwhile. 

I liked the first book you mentioned on the Great Migration and may use it in one of my upper-level courses.
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bioteacher
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« Reply #3057 on: April 18, 2012, 11:10:05 AM »


I am enjoying A Discovery of Witches. I don't normally like witchy supernatural stuff, but this is just the level of light-hearted ease that I need right now.


There is a sequel due out soon, too.
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arizona
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« Reply #3058 on: April 18, 2012, 12:18:53 PM »

I just finished Gary Schmidt's YA novel Okay for Now, which was absolutely lovely, and Eileen Myles's Inferno: A Poet's Novel, which I admire but didn't exactly enjoy getting through. She did, however, have a chapter on her youthful obsession with Hart Crane which brought back fond memories of my own youthful obsession with Hart Crane.

Just started Michael Cunningham's By Nightfall and it's giving me a little deja vu. I can't decide if it's similar to something else I read recently or if little bits of the reviews I read became lodged in my brain.
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marlborough
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« Reply #3059 on: April 20, 2012, 11:38:47 PM »

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« Last Edit: April 20, 2012, 11:40:02 PM by marlborough » Logged
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