Author Topic: What are you reading?  (Read 66149 times)

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BobismyRhino

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Re: What are your reading?
« Reply #40 on: August 30, 2008, 08:04:29 AM »
I just read Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think. I have to say, it was a great book. Really taught me how the US is one of the fattest country on Earth. This is now one of the few books that changed how I go about my daily life.
See, I'm gunna go with Tshern on this one.  The trick is just not to be fat.

A somewhat recent study mentioned that naturally skinny people (people with low subcutaneous fat) can be more at risk for things like heart disease etc because they can have high levels of organ fat (visceral fat) without even realizing it. People who are overweight are aware of their increased risk of fat related diseases, but skinny bastards can be skinny while still at an increased risk for those diseases... and they don't really know it since they're appear to be thin and healthy.

Just thought I'd throw that in there, skinny boys. :P

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Re: What are your reading?
« Reply #41 on: August 30, 2008, 08:31:56 AM »
I just read Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think. I have to say, it was a great book. Really taught me how the US is one of the fattest country on Earth. This is now one of the few books that changed how I go about my daily life.
See, I'm gunna go with Tshern on this one.  The trick is just not to be fat.

A somewhat recent study mentioned that naturally skinny people (people with low subcutaneous fat) can be more at risk for things like heart disease etc because they can have high levels of organ fat (visceral fat) without even realizing it. People who are overweight are aware of their increased risk of fat related diseases, but skinny bastards can be skinny while still at an increased risk for those diseases... and they don't really know it since they're appear to be thin and healthy.

Just thought I'd throw that in there, skinny boys. :P
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altpersona

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Re: What are your reading?
« Reply #42 on: August 30, 2008, 08:43:54 AM »
I am actually reading a bunch of stuff right.

At work I have Heart of Darkness that I have already read four times, but I never get bored of it. Joseph Conrad's best book and one of the best in the world.

Here at home I am going through a bunch of comics I bought a few days ago. I think I've got some 700 pages of X-men to go.

Whenever I have my backbag with me (every time I go to work that is) I have something to read with me. At the moment Sandra Cisneros The House on Mango Street. I've read the English version and I want to know how good the Finnish translation is and so far it is quite good.

Yeah, I need to buy some more books and I intend to do that some time this week. No new books to read, I've finished even all the stuff I got for Christmas.

Conrad rocks, or he did when he was alive and writing.. or when i was reading... I liked The Secret Agent best... I didnt make it 5 pages into Heart.. I did enjoy Apocalypse when I watched it for the first time a couple months ago..

I havent been able to get into any real reading in years..

when I was reading I like the short russian stuff.. im not down with the mega epics, but The Brothers K was a nice romp.. and some of the short stories are great..


dude needs to hurry on the last WoT book, how hard can it be to say 'rand lives' 'morraine comes back' 'lan regains his throne and Ny lets him wench around all he wants' geez..  :wall and TOR books needs to learn how to keep a paperback book cover attached to the friggen book..

The last book I nearly enjoyed was by Cheerah (?) i forget her name... something about slow space travel and how people become isolated and xenophobic, its not asimov but not bad... it has a line i really liked 'the deep was wide' but it lost me about 3 chapters later..

I tried to do the whole set of Asimov Robots books chronologically, made it most of the way... eventually the foundations got old..

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Tshern

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #43 on: August 30, 2008, 01:46:43 PM »
Tshern: Ahh, Heart of Darkness. I loved that book until I had to write a paper on it for a HumSci course. Hardest paper I've ever written, and as a philosophy major, that's saying something. I must've read the whole story ten times, and finally churned out a paper about how my attempt to analyze Heart of Darkness had itself become a maddening journey into the heart of darkness. Still, great book, even if I never want to see it again (at least until I've got my degree).
It was one of our final exam books. I actually opened it for the first time three weeks after the finals and I couldn't let it go. Too bad I never actually read it for my finals...

But yes, it is an excellent book.
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Irthos Levethix

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #44 on: August 30, 2008, 04:49:58 PM »
I hated Heart of Darkness.  Seriously, I dropped an English class purely based on not being able to stomach that book.  I tried, but after about 7 sentences I would fall asleep.  And I'm not just a retard, I've been reading at a college level since 6th grade.  So, to you guys that actually read the book, and enjoyed it, um... wow.

The Art of Seduction, by Robert Greene, was pretty good though.  Highly recommend that to anyone.
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Cyrocloud

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #45 on: September 02, 2008, 01:37:49 AM »
Isn't the Heart of Darkness considered to be possibly the greatest book written in the english language. 

Personally I feel most of the so called greatest books are just piles of steaming shit.  The only reason the recieve this fame is because they deal with some social issue at the time, but current events and social issues should not decide that a steaming pile of shit is a 5 star meal and have you eat it gagging on it the whole way down, until you throw it up and then you are forcefed your own shit filled throwup.  This is caused do to some deranged fuck heads decided shit tasted like fillet and force you to read it so you'll enjoy the so called arts.

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #46 on: September 02, 2008, 05:57:35 AM »
But how do you REALLY feel about it ?  :clap
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Arcane-surge

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #47 on: September 02, 2008, 07:15:20 AM »
Cyro, I'm gonna have to disagree with you there. There are old books that are pieces of shit, no doubt about that. But proportionally, most of those are modern, usually dimestore John Grisham Danielle Steele shite. Pre-20th century, if you wanted to get a book printed, it took some serious cash. You wanted it to be famous? It had to be fucking good. This becomes more true the farther back you go. 19th century, Herman Melville with Moby Dick. 18th century, Henry Fielding with stuff like Tom Jones and Joseph Andrews. All the way back to epic poems like the Iliad and the Odyssey. I read a ton of classical literature, and I very rarely find a book that's bad. Boring? Maybe. Dry? Sometimes. But flat out bad? Naah. I realize that yes, they don't deal with current events and social issues from now. Sadly, Moby Dick has no speedboat chases, and Tom Jones doesn't sing "She's a Lady" once. Since the popular classic in this thread is Heart of Darkness, I'll use that as an example.

As I said before, I have a love/hate relationship with Heart of Darkness. It beats me sometimes, but I know that deep down it loves me back. The whole book is about the dark and mysterious shit that goes on in people's heads, set around a trip to Africa. The author, Joseph Conrad, was polish. English wasn't even his first language, but he took his giant literary cock and fucked the English language so hard that it screamed for more. The headboard was banging so hard in his room that Samuel Taylor Coleridge couldn't keep his mind on Kubla Khan. While Coleridge was decreeing stately pleasure domes, Conrad was banging out lines like “Going up that river was like traveling back to the earliest beginnings of the world, when vegetation rioted on the earth and the big trees were kings. An empty stream, a great silence, an impenetrable forest. The air was warm, thick, heavy, sluggish. There was no joy in the brilliance of sunshine.” and “…As I stood on this hillside, I foresaw that in the blinding sunshine of that land I would become acquainted with a flabby, pretending, weak-eyed devil of a rapacious and pitiless folly.”

A lot of classical works are the same way, and I feel no shame in admitting that this particular book kicked my ass. All I can say Cyro, is that you are either reading the wrong books, or that you need to develop more patience with your literature. Classical books certainly don't read like most books today. Dickens would happily spend his first three chapters just establishing a setting, and Cooper had no bones about having a character draw an arrow, only to fire it three pages later after all kinds of introspection. That said, neither of these are bad, though they might not be for you.
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Elennsar

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #48 on: September 02, 2008, 10:31:27 AM »
Currently? Ummmm. Nothing. Well, reading some GURPS books while making a character technically, but not in any sort of commited way.

Been meaning to actually read Desert Raiders (by Lucien Soulban) for a while, may actually start.

There's something about the style of some older books that manage to hit the spot for description and newer books don't often hit that. This passage in Call of the Wild, for instance:

"They were all terribly footsore. No spring or redbound was left in them. Their feet fell heavily on the traill, jarring their bodies and doubling the fatigue of a day's travel.  There was nothing the matter of them except that they were dead tired. It was not the dead-tiredness that comes through breif an excessive effort, from which recovery is a matter of hours; but it was the dead-tiredness that comes of months of toil. There was no power of recuperation left, no reserve strength to call upon. It had all been used, the last least bit of it. Every muscle, every fibre, every cell was tired, dead tired."

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Sirperry

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #49 on: September 02, 2008, 06:00:30 PM »
The problem with classic literature is that the older it is, the farther removed from current life.  Most people just can't relate (or sometimes understand).  Lots of folks can read Twain and enjoy it.  A few can get into Shakespeare.  But it is a rare bird who can actually enjoy Homer, nowadays. 
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Arcane-surge

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #50 on: September 02, 2008, 06:43:56 PM »
True enough. It reminds of of my cousin who, upon finding out she had to study Shakespeare in high school, brought her copy of Julius Caesar home to her mom and complained about how they were studyng it, but it wasn't even real english, so it didn't make sense to do it en english class...Her mother agreed, and lobbied (thankfully unsuccessfully) the schoolboard to take it out.
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Ubernoob

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #51 on: September 02, 2008, 09:03:44 PM »
Cyro, I'm gonna have to disagree with you there. There are old books that are pieces of shit, no doubt about that. But proportionally, most of those are modern, usually dimestore John Grisham Danielle Steele shite. Pre-20th century, if you wanted to get a book printed, it took some serious cash. You wanted it to be famous? It had to be fucking good. This becomes more true the farther back you go. 19th century, Herman Melville with Moby Dick. 18th century, Henry Fielding with stuff like Tom Jones and Joseph Andrews. All the way back to epic poems like the Iliad and the Odyssey. I read a ton of classical literature, and I very rarely find a book that's bad. Boring? Maybe. Dry? Sometimes. But flat out bad? Naah. I realize that yes, they don't deal with current events and social issues from now. Sadly, Moby Dick has no speedboat chases, and Tom Jones doesn't sing "She's a Lady" once. Since the popular classic in this thread is Heart of Darkness, I'll use that as an example.

As I said before, I have a love/hate relationship with Heart of Darkness. It beats me sometimes, but I know that deep down it loves me back. The whole book is about the dark and mysterious shit that goes on in people's heads, set around a trip to Africa. The author, Joseph Conrad, was polish. English wasn't even his first language, but he took his giant literary cock and fucked the English language so hard that it screamed for more. The headboard was banging so hard in his room that Samuel Taylor Coleridge couldn't keep his mind on Kubla Khan. While Coleridge was decreeing stately pleasure domes, Conrad was banging out lines like “Going up that river was like traveling back to the earliest beginnings of the world, when vegetation rioted on the earth and the big trees were kings. An empty stream, a great silence, an impenetrable forest. The air was warm, thick, heavy, sluggish. There was no joy in the brilliance of sunshine.” and “…As I stood on this hillside, I foresaw that in the blinding sunshine of that land I would become acquainted with a flabby, pretending, weak-eyed devil of a rapacious and pitiless folly.”

A lot of classical works are the same way, and I feel no shame in admitting that this particular book kicked my ass. All I can say Cyro, is that you are either reading the wrong books, or that you need to develop more patience with your literature. Classical books certainly don't read like most books today. Dickens would happily spend his first three chapters just establishing a setting, and Cooper had no bones about having a character draw an arrow, only to fire it three pages later after all kinds of introspection. That said, neither of these are bad, though they might not be for you.
Dude, that's a really good perspective.  I have to agree.

Sidenote: When flipping through ancients (cough the art of war/emperor's handbook cough) I am often inspired by key lines.  Older literature can have some wonderful language in it.  It's just a fricken bitch to understand the language and the story at the same time.
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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #52 on: September 02, 2008, 09:06:59 PM »
Cyro, I'm gonna have to disagree with you there. <snipped a lot of really good commentary>
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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #53 on: September 03, 2008, 01:46:57 AM »
...and Cooper had no bones about having a character draw an arrow, only to fire it three pages later after all kinds of introspection. That said, neither of these are bad, though they might not be for you.

You might like Anne Rice then. Only writer I know who can make "she comes down off the ladder" last 40 pages...

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #54 on: September 03, 2008, 02:00:55 AM »
I went out of my way to read things like The Art of War, Paradise Lost, and The Aeneid. I liked em.
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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #55 on: September 03, 2008, 04:56:00 AM »
I went out of my way to read things like The Art of War, Paradise Lost, and The Aeneid. I liked em.
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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #56 on: September 03, 2008, 06:05:45 AM »
Yeah I overreacted a bit, and my opinion strong (due to a mix of boredom and undirected hate).  That said I did enjoy the Illiad, Huck Fin, Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, Moby Dick (didn't finish it the books pages were coming out of the binding and while I liked it I couldn't coop with missing 5-20 pgs at a time in a book a little over my head while in 6th grade), and parts of 1984 (a little to predictable, hell I even guessed the approximate emotional and physical state of the author through the book, and I'm not that good at reading), but the books that get forced down my throat a school, and called classics by my teachers boor me to tears.  I hated Uncle Toms Cabin (the movie was so-so), the Scarlet Letter and the Last of the Mohicans among others which I failed to enjoy and grew a loathing for (fuck Number the Stars I read it every god damn year from 5th grade to 10th, I got the the book the first time through :wall :wall). 

I haven't read the heart of Darkness, and I have heard about how the author spoke english as a second language and I do give him mad props for that.

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #57 on: September 03, 2008, 02:39:45 PM »
Yeah I overreacted a bit, and my opinion strong (due to a mix of boredom and undirected hate).
I can dig that. 

the Last of the Mohicans among others which I failed to enjoy and grew a loathing for
In complete agreement. Seriously, this is a case of the movie (I'm a fan of the Michael Mann Last of the Mochicans) being better than the book.

I haven't read the heart of Darkness, and I have heard about how the author spoke english as a second language and I do give him mad props for that.
I am constantly in awe of Conrad's mastery of English when I read his stuff. It may be that as English was his second language, he was so careful at crafting it.

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #58 on: September 03, 2008, 08:54:33 PM »
That wasn't so much an argument as a statement of my opinion, I never watched the film of the Last of the Mohicans and I only read the book (my parents did force me to read it in a weekend so that it would be done before summer, which didn't realy help in my enjoyment)

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Re: What are you reading?
« Reply #59 on: September 03, 2008, 11:32:00 PM »
You know, that was what I thought about Last of the Mohicans too. The film was way better.

Another classic which I thought the TV/movie was better than the book was Lorna Doone. The one with Amelia Warner was well done, but let down by an overswaggering villian.

The Three Musketeers were almost totally different genres altogether. The book was much more gritty, with intrigue and betrayal and loss and all that. The movie was more a humour-filled romp of a period piece. I have to say that Oliver Platt was really good as Porthos. Can't really compare the two, though.

The Man in the Iron Mask book was better than the movie, if only because... well, Leo was badly miscast...