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cprmauldin

What are you reading?

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On 6/25/2019 at 3:09 PM, Slimeknight said:

I read the Bible before.

I, too, am working through the Bible, though I only progress at about three chapters a day (I'm in no rush). I'm also reading an anthropological study on ancient walls.

In the past few months, I finished, among other things, Man's Search for Meaning, Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, Murder on the Orient Express and Beren and Luthien. All told, it's been a productive few months for reading things.

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Top 10 books I’ve read this year (so far):

1. A Tale for the Time Being: Definitely ranks as one of my favorite books. It ostensibly follows a teenager’s journey in documenting her great grandmother’s life. This turns out to not be the case, in what can only be described as heartbreaking. I don’t want to give anything away however because I found it was more enjoyable when I had only the jacket cover telling me what it’s about.

2. My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward: The author’s memoir that specifically discusses what it was like for him when the love his life started suffering from mental illness. 

3. Buddha in the Attic: About a group of Japanese women in the early 1900s who come to America hoping for a better life. Every chapter follows a portion of their life (the boat ride, raising children, etc.) and is told from the perspective of the entire collective. There is no singular character. A paragraph could describe the experiences of one specific unnamed person and then would move onto the next. 

4. The Vegetarian: An unsettling (but not scary) novella set in South Korea about a woman who stops eating meat. Each part is from the perspective of someone involved in this woman’s life. I could practically picture the indie movie adaptation of this thing as I read it. I could see the images and hear the music.

5. The Heart’s Invisible Furies: I didn’t realize this was gonna be about a man’s entire life from beginning to end as he dealt with his homosexuality in 1940s-1980s Ireland. I just wanted to read a book taking place in Ireland at that point in time (it was almost St. Patrick’s Day) and I only briefly skimmed the description lol. I thought it was really interesting to see how people were treated back then in such a Catholic Christian nation.

No particular order from here ownward:

6. Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk: Meh. I’m gonna get this for my grandmother for Christmas because it just screamed “for Grandma” as I read it.

7. Valley of Amazement: Overly long but the ideas were interesting and it was well written. There was a solid, like 50 useless pages in this thing that just distracted and added characters that had no value by the end.

8. Empire Falls: No real sense of a story being told or having much of a conclusion. Obviously that was the point since it was more about the town itself than any one character but I didn’t take from it any sense of finality after I finished reading it.

9. Sharp Objects: Something about this book felt so hateful towards women. Every man in this book was portrayed as wholly good or at worst a bit of a guber, but not necessarily bad. Every woman was spiteful or manipulative or just shitty to other people in general. I guess her boss’s wife seemed nice? Otherwise well written and I’m sure Gillian Flynn has a fan base for a reason but it wasn’t to my tastes.

10. Bird Box: Much better than the movie it’s based on. Not much to say about it though.

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I’ve been reading Paperbacks From Hell because I love Grady Hendrix so I’ve been reading his Paperbacks From Hell non-fiction book that takes you through the history of trashy dime store paperback horror novels that you can find for $0.50 at a Savers or Salvation Army.

While very interesting overall, a couple interesting things popped out at me. First of all, he provides covers for a lot of these books, and I huge majority of them will have a pull quote from Stephen King, or occasionally Peter Straub. So much so that they seem ingenuine, the number of books Stephen King has given praise to. Like, at least a couple of these must be bad in his eyes, surely. Oftentimes, they’ll invoke Rosemary’s Baby or The Exorcist as comparisons to get you to buy them because those two books along with The Other helped set off the horror genre craze. He also goes out of his way to rarely even mention King himself, but oftentimes, when he talks about a specific trend in horror fiction, Stephen King has written something in that vein.

More funny then interesting is that I had been watching a Jenny Nicholson video where she reads a cringey, poorly written book called Trigger Warning. I stopped halfway through because it was pretty long and went on to Paperbacks From Hell. In the intro of the book, a very uncommon yet familiar name is mentioned as one of the people that pumped out horror novels in that time period (William W. Johnstone). And then  I realized that this guy is the author for Trigger Warning. What weird timing! Apparently the author is long dead but has written over 200 books and someone else has been writing books under his name, and he’s overall credited with over 400 books! I just thought that was a funny thing to mention.

It’s overall a pretty entertaining non-fiction book about an unusual subject matter so if you’re into dumb garbage like me, you should read it.

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Finished Book Four from Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time and Started Book Five, Fires From Heaven. 

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Anyone read the Star Wars: Infinities series? I'm looking into getting the trade of it which includes 8 issues of "The Star Wars" which is a rendition of the original screenplay for Star Wars. I can get them a bit cheaper separately but the site I'm ordering from has it listed as "special order" and they have to get it from somewhere else before they can ship it to me. I don't want to get 2 or 3 of the books and not be able to get one for whatever reason. Might just suck it up and buy the trade since they have it in stock at one of their stores. 

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7 hours ago, DrippySlimeStar said:

Anyone read the Star Wars: Infinities series? I'm looking into getting the trade of it which includes 8 issues of "The Star Wars" which is a rendition of the original screenplay for Star Wars. I can get them a bit cheaper separately but the site I'm ordering from has it listed as "special order" and they have to get it from somewhere else before they can ship it to me. I don't want to get 2 or 3 of the books and not be able to get one for whatever reason. Might just suck it up and buy the trade since they have it in stock at one of their stores. 

If you don’t care about having a physical copy, see if digital is an option. I know that might be tricky though considering Marvel has the Star Wars rights and wouldn’t be keen on other company’s sell their Star Wars books.

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14 hours ago, eal said:

If you don’t care about having a physical copy, see if digital is an option. I know that might be tricky though considering Marvel has the Star Wars rights and wouldn’t be keen on other company’s sell their Star Wars books.

It's actually about the same price digitally but I'd really prefer a physical copy. Digital stuff spooks me, man.

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On 12/5/2019 at 6:32 AM, DrippySlimeStar said:

It's actually about the same price digitally but I'd really prefer a physical copy. Digital stuff spooks me, man.

Haha!

 

I'm the same way for the most part. When it comes to games and books, I prefer them in physical form. 

 

I've never been able to enjoy e-reading as much. 

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Finished Fires of Heaven (Book 5, Wheel of Time)

Began Lord of Chaos (Book 6, Wheel of Time)

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Working through Ken Lozito's books.  Some good Sci Fi

The Ascension series started off strong with a First Contact situation.  Somehow I stopped in the middle of book 5 of 6.  Need to finish that up.

The First Colony series is quiet interesting. Just finished book 6 and there are 9 so far. Wish it wouldn't have jumped so quickly into "save the multiverse" but it's still pretty strong with its characters.

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3 hours ago, cprmauldin said:

Finished Fires of Heaven (Book 5, Wheel of Time)

Began Lord of Chaos (Book 6, Wheel of Time)

Are the Wheel of Time books good? I’ve gotten recommendations for them but not sure if I’d like them. Are they sci-fi?

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Are the Wheel of Time books good? I’ve gotten recommendations for them but not sure if I’d like them. Are they sci-fi?
I enjoyed them. High fantasy. Magic, swords, castles & the like.

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38 minutes ago, Plattym3 said:
50 minutes ago, YangustheLegendaryBandit said:
Are the Wheel of Time books good? I’ve gotten recommendations for them but not sure if I’d like them. Are they sci-fi?

I enjoyed them. High fantasy. Magic, swords, castles & the like.

Then they will probably be books I like then. I tend to like fantasy like that more than sci-fi in most cases.

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Then they will probably be books I like then. I tend to like fantasy like that more than sci-fi in most cases.

They're a slooooooooow burn. Like DQ7 being played by a sloth. I listened to them all via audio. Took almost 2 years. Some 500-600 hours of audiobooks. Haha

 

Actually 449, I just looked it up.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Plattym3 said:

They're a slooooooooow burn. Like DQ7 being played by a sloth. I listened to them all via audio. Took almost 2 years. Some 500-600 hours of audiobooks. Haha

Actually 449, I just looked it up.

Ok, because I like DQ7, I may need another comparison in terms of how slow it is.

Are we talking slow like Trails of Cold Steel where it takes time to establish characters, locations, and motivations in a chunk by chunk style, or are we talking Lord of the Rings slow where Tolkien describes all kinds of side #$*! that doesn’t need to be known and is there for a form of world building? Because while I like the latter, Lord of the Rings takes it sweet time actually getting started, and not in a good way.

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Well, Wheel of time is 14 books. 4 million words. Give the first a try and see. Each book is longer than any Tolkien one. 66fbbd0123b64ccea872cdb76c103cea.jpg698f04aab6712ce1ccca8f9081f32ccc.jpg

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22 minutes ago, Plattym3 said:

Well, Wheel of time is 14 books. 4 million words. Give the first a try and see. Each book is longer than any Tolkien one. 66fbbd0123b64ccea872cdb76c103cea.jpg

 

Wow. Ok, yeah, I’ll give the first one a go and see how that goes.

I’m guessing the Game of Thrones books are the same way? I heard those books have a lot of text to them. One of my uncles has all the books and he’s offered to loan me the first one.

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Wow. Ok, yeah, I’ll give the first one a go and see how that goes.
I’m guessing the Game of Thrones books are the same way? I heard those books have a lot of text to them. One of my uncles has all the books and he’s offered to loan me the first one.
Yeah. As long. I enjoyed them too!

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Currently reading A Ball of Beasts which is a fan project that combines the two final Song of Ice and Fire books into one.

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1 hour ago, Plattym3 said:
1 hour ago, YangustheLegendaryBandit said:
 
Wow. Ok, yeah, I’ll give the first one a go and see how that goes.
I’m guessing the Game of Thrones books are the same way? I heard those books have a lot of text to them. One of my uncles has all the books and he’s offered to loan me the first one.

Yeah. As long. I enjoyed them too!

 

YES!!!

 

I was so happy to return to the Den and find this conversation. 

 

I agree though, very slow burn, and sometimes you have to trudge through. But the good parts are ALWAYS worth the trudge. 

 

Read Eye of the World and let us know what you think!

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52 minutes ago, cprmauldin said:

 

YES!!!

 

I was so happy to return to the Den and find this conversation. 

 

I agree though, very slow burn, and sometimes you have to trudge through. But the good parts are ALWAYS worth the trudge. 

 

Read Eye of the World and let us know what you think!

I’m guessing that’s the first book of the Wheel of Time series. I’ll see if I can find it once the holidays are past us.

You guys are making me interested in reading the books. I don’t read books very much, but fantasy books are ones that I have a hard time putting down. I know the Eragon books have a mixed reputation, but when I read them I just couldn’t put them down. I would rush through homework just to get back to reading them!

Edited by YangustheLegendaryBandit
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Didn’t expect to love Spring Snow by Yukio Mashima as much as I did. I sat on it for about a week and my feelings for it haven’t changed. So basically, I had it sitting on my phone for like a year and I didn’t know what it was about when I decided to finally get to reading it. I just knew that it was about Japan in a past Era. I didn’t realize it took place in the 1910s, more recent then I expected.

What I found so fascinating was the descriptive text that lavishly described Kiyoaki’s emotional state at all times. This went a long way for me considering it’s basically about a guy who’s hot and cold on a girl and acts emotionally manipulative to her and has disproportionate reactions to perceived slights and basically screws himself over. She never stops loving him and the only one to blame for every ridiculous circumstance he gets into is himself.

There’s a sort of comedic element that may or may not have been intended but was amped up whenever I thought about how he’s acting the way a guy in the modern era, who’s moods are on-and-off, would act, but the 1910s Japan equivalent. There’s an entire chunk of story about a cringey letter he sends his crush that just reminded me so much of those ridiculously long texts guys send to girls that they regret 5 minutes later.

This all sounds bad but I promise it’s not, I was really enraptured. I swam through the thing. Some of the stuff about the rise of westernization in Japan was an interesting backdrop too.

It’s a part of a series (the Sea of Fertility), but I got everything I needed out of this book and, based on what I’ve read about the other three books, I feel Spring Snow is really all you need. I want to go and pursue some of his more romantic novels though.

Also, fun fact: just after finishing the last book of the Sea of Fertility, the author attempted to stage a coup of sorts and after it failed spectacularly, he committed ritual suicide.

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15 hours ago, YangustheLegendaryBandit said:

I’m guessing that’s the first book of the Wheel of Time series. I’ll see if I can find it once the holidays are past us.

You guys are making me interested in reading the books. I don’t read books very much, but fantasy books are ones that I have a hard time putting down. I know the Eragon books have a mixed reputation, but when I read them I just couldn’t put them down. I would rush through homework just to get back to reading them!

Yeah, I'm the same way with fantasy. 

It's my pure entertainment genre. I wanted to read Wheel of Time for years before I actually started reading it, but I was just overwhelmed at the thought of sticking to one series for 14 books that average between 900 and 1000 pages. But one day I said screw it. I started maybe 3 years ago. There are times when I can get through one of the books in a few weeks, other times it takes almost a year. But nonetheless, I'm satisfied so far. 

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Reading mostly philosophy these days, trying to shape up my emotional life while I still have time.

Though my favorite philosophy texts are the "________ and Philosophy books" of pop-culture essays (like "Star Wars and Philosophy" for one), I am reading the classic stoic text, "Meditations" by Marcus Aurelius.  He's one of the best emperors ancient Rome ever had, especially in terms of ethics, and ever since reading how much Star Wars' Yoda had in common with classic stoics has me pursuing a more stable and less turbulent emotional life.

Fun fact: True Stoics are not unmoveable, stone-faced, humorless people.  From my readings, they,  like Buddhists, embrace the impermanence of moods, both good and bad.  Stoics devote themselves to taking active control of their moods, and the challenges that face them, with a level, logical mind.  Yoda often does the same thing... but he's not above a bit of fun at his own expense either.  Look at how he greets Luke in Empire Strikes Back.  He's all too happy to play up to Luke's misconceptions of him as a doddering little old goblin at first.

 

WWAJD -- What Would A Jedi Do?

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