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Thread: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

  1. #76
    Member SandyD's Avatar
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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    I guess it all in how you define "favorite." And how you define "book."

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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Quote Originally Posted by SandyD View Post
    I guess it all in how you define "favorite." And how you define "book."
    I actually had difficulty writing down 11, not because I had so many, but because I'm hard pressed to say anything is my "favorite." So I just went with a list of books I'd recommend to others.
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  4. #78
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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Yeah, I'm kind of the same way. I don't really do "favorites" too well.

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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Quote Originally Posted by RosieRed View Post
    I can't either. I've owned a copy for at least 12 years, have picked it up and started it at least 8 times.
    There's two types of people in the world: those who love James Joyce and those who find him to be beyond tedious. I'm decidedly in the latter camp.

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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Quote Originally Posted by Roy Tucker View Post
    The Stand - Stephen King
    That would top my list.

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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Quote Originally Posted by RosieRed View Post
    She's Come Undone -- Wally Lamb
    Forgot about that one.

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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Quote Originally Posted by pedro View Post
    I really liked the Stand too. Steven King was my first great literary love. W/out him I'd probably not be the reader I am today.
    Exactly. I come from a whole family of voracious readers. I never was. One day I picked up Salem's Lot and was hooked.

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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    If you've read "The Dead" by James Joyce and not been moved to tears, then you've never been in love.

    There's a cumbersome exterior to Joyce at times, but a soul like few others.

    (Plus, Joyce hates Tennyson [the death of English poetry--my least-favorite poet ever], and that's okay by me).

  10. #84
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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    If you've read "The Dead" by James Joyce and not been moved to tears, then you've never been in love.
    If you've read anything by Vonnegut and didn't laugh, then you're probably dead.

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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou View Post
    If you've read anything by Vonnegut and didn't laugh, then you're probably dead.
    I enjoy Vonnegut. I would never call one of his novels "great," but I've truly relished a few of his books.

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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Quote Originally Posted by Falls City Beer View Post
    If you've read "The Dead" by James Joyce and not been moved to tears, then you've never been in love.
    I hated Joyce until I read "Dubliners"...after that, I went back to "Portrait" and realized that it was a restatement of many of the same emotions except made more evocative by the author's use of language.

    I still prefer "Dubliners" but certainly see Joyce in a different light than when I was reading his stuff in HS/College.

  13. #87
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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Quote Originally Posted by Falls City Beer View Post
    If you've read "The Dead" by James Joyce and not been moved to tears, then you've never been in love.

    There's a cumbersome exterior to Joyce at times, but a soul like few others.

    (Plus, Joyce hates Tennyson [the death of English poetry--my least-favorite poet ever], and that's okay by me).
    I've been in love. I've read "The Dead", multiple times in fact (not my choice). I was not moved to tears, in fact I was bored out of my skull. Like I said, reading through a bunch of tedium waiting for some emotionally constipated character to actually feel something doesn't work me, at any level. Those who love Joyce, love him utterly. I can respect that. Joyce's universe and characters are just too narrow-band for my tastes. It comes across as didactic rather than lived to me.

    Oddly, I really like Andre Dubus, who also writes about complicated emotions, but those complications are present in his characters rather than suppressed past recognition.

    I'm with you and Joyce on Tennyson, though. He took English poetry into Candyland while the French had the good sense to go stark raving mad. World War I, and Wilfred Owen, dragged it out of its ornamental decline.
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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Quote Originally Posted by M2 View Post
    I've been in love. I've read "The Dead", multiple times in fact (not my choice). I was not moved to tears, in fact I was bored out of my skull. Like I said, reading through a bunch of tedium waiting for some emotionally constipated character to actually feel something doesn't work me, at any level.

    .
    So I suppose "Prufrock"'s a bust too?

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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    Quote Originally Posted by Falls City Beer View Post
    So I suppose "Prufrock"'s a bust too?
    Big bust.

    Don't even get me started on "Four Quartets".

    I recognize Joyce as a man and artist of depth, it just doesn't come together for me. I'm not sure Eliot ever gleaned anything about the human condition beyond how to paste images together.

    Joyce cares about the reader, that's where he's aiming to connect. I find that admirable. Eliot, far as I can tell, was trying to impress the literary community. He succeeded. Though, to be fair, I hate Milton too on many of the same grounds and future generations will be handed a poetic Mount Rushmore with both he and Eliot chiseled into it.
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  16. #90
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    Re: Your all time Top 11 favorite books

    11 favorite novels, in no particular order:
    1. "The Great Gatsby" by F. Scott Fitzgerald. One of the few novels that I have read several times. Its relatively short length makes repeated readings easier, but it is such a perfect jewel of a book.
    2. "The Winds of War" and "War and Remembrance" by Herman Wouk. Two novels but really one story. Of the two, I preferred "Winds." I can recall first reading the book while I was in law school. I stayed up until about 4 a.m. finishing the book.
    3. "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat. It took me a while to "get into" this classic tale of war on a British corvette in WWII, but it stuck with me.
    4. "A Piece of Cake" by Derek Robinson. A memorable novel set during the Battle of Britain. It made me laugh out loud, and it made me think. I've never been nearly as fond of his other novels for some reason.
    5. "All Quiet On The Western Front" by Erich Maria Remarque. Sad.
    6. "1984" by George Orwell. Sadder.
    7. "Johnny Tremain" by Esther Forbes. My favorite book as a kid.
    8. "Catch 22" by Joseph Heller. I laughed on almost every page, but it too made me think.
    9. "Lonesome Dove" by Larry McMurtry. I never wanted this book to end, and I hated it when Gus died.
    10. "The Eagle Has Landed" by Jack Higgins. I got bored with his books eventually, as he fell into a formula, but this one was a great page turner.
    11. Virtually all of Robert B. Parker's "Spenser" novels; always a fun read, and the dialoge between Spenser and Hawk, Spenser and Susan, really Spenser and anyone, makes me laugh.
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