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Thread: What are you reading now?

  1. #361
    Member medford's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Quote Originally Posted by Strikes Out Looking View Post
    I'm working on Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace. You don't read it, you work it, it's 1000 plus pages with footnotes. I'm enjoying it and hope to finish it one day.
    I worked it over about a year, some of those 5 page paragraphs are really hard to get thru. W/o giving anything away, let me just say that I don't understand, even a little bit, all of the great reviews it received. Don't get me wrong, there are parts of it that are very entertaining, and thought provoking, but well I'll just leave it at that and let you come to your own conclusions. I'll admit, I may not be smart enough to appreciate its depth. Many of the reviews come off as pretentious after having read it myself, but to each their own. For the amount of work I know it takes to slug thru that thing, I hope you end up enjoying as much as many others have apparently have.

    I started it mostly based on C Trent's mention of the book and the forward by David Eggers who I read once and really enjoyed. I wish I hadn't.

    Good luck, I'd love to hear your opinions when you're done.
    Last edited by medford; 02-21-2012 at 03:42 PM.

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  3. #362
    Member medford's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    about 60% of the way thru 11/22/63 by Stephen King.

    I'll agree w/t the reviews posted prior on this thread, its very enjoyable so far, looking forward to seeing how it all comes together. Its been a long while since I read anything by Stephen King, much much longer since I regularly read his stuff (about the time needful things came out is around the time I stopped enjoying his new work, well until Green Mile came out). Its likely going to make me go back and read some of his older stuff, like The Stand that I never got around to when I was reading a lot of his work in late middle school/HS

  4. #363
    Titanic Struggles Caveat Emperor's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Quote Originally Posted by Spitball View Post
    I was okay with The Hunger Games. It was overhyped but enjoyable. Many of my students loved it, but kids/people get caught up in hype.
    I enjoyed the series quite a bit -- the books suffered from inconsistent pacing, though. Book 2 is lighter on material (though, probably the best written of the three), and it leaves Book 3 with a ton of exposition to get through in addition to wrapping up the character arcs.

    Most series end up being bloated messes, so I appreciate the attempt at a quick 3 book resolution. However, the series would probably have been better served by splitting the last volume into two parts. The ending of the book is so rushed that a lot of big-impact moments are blunted and a lot of the payoff to various plotlines ends up being a few paragraphs of resolution.
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  5. #364
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Quote Originally Posted by medford View Post
    I worked it over about a year, some of those 5 page paragraphs are really hard to get thru. W/o giving anything away, let me just say that I don't understand, even a little bit, all of the great reviews it received. Don't get me wrong, there are parts of it that are very entertaining, and thought provoking, but well I'll just leave it at that and let you come to your own conclusions. I'll admit, I may not be smart enough to appreciate its depth. Many of the reviews come off as pretentious after having read it myself, but to each their own. For the amount of work I know it takes to slug thru that thing, I hope you end up enjoying as much as many others have apparently have.

    I started it mostly based on C Trent's mention of the book and the forward by David Eggers who I read once and really enjoyed. I wish I hadn't.

    Good luck, I'd love to hear your opinions when you're done.
    Yeah, it's certainly a unique book and I find the heaping praise a bit confusing myself. I do know there is a crowd of devoted DFW fans out there who love his hyperliterate, neurotic prose. I think that's the only way you enjoy Infinite Jest, enjoying the process and not necessarily a neat plot. I suppose it's about savoring his language and tone.

    That said, not a huge fan of Infinite Jest and you couldn't pay me to read The Pale King (his style and accountants, I'd rather be bludgeoned with a fence post), but his essays and Brief Interviews with Hideous Men are phenomenal, which is to say, he's great in smaller doses.

  6. #365
    A Little to the Left Redsfaithful's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    I've never read Infinite Jest, but DFW was a great non-fiction writer. Such a loss just in that area.
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  7. #366
    Member Strikes Out Looking's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Infinite Jest update, after the comments so far. I'm about 65% of the way through it and I like it -- the 3 page footnotes can be tough, but I'm also getting alot of the humor that is in it.

    I also find that I'm going back to early pages and re-reading them at certain points, that helps my understanding. This, of course is why I say you work this book, you don't just read it.

    The one book that was is supposedly great that I couldn't get through was Ulysses.
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Quote Originally Posted by Strikes Out Looking View Post
    The one book that was is supposedly great that I couldn't get through was Ulysses.
    Me neither. I loathe putting a book down after starting, but I don't think I made 25 pages. It pains me because it's atop so many all-time lists and I'm oblivious and incapable. I've come to realize I will never know the mysteries of Leopold Bloom and I'm okay with that.

  9. #368
    Be the ball Roy Tucker's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Quote Originally Posted by BillDoran View Post
    Me neither. I loathe putting a book down after starting, but I don't think I made 25 pages. It pains me because it's atop so many all-time lists and I'm oblivious and incapable. I've come to realize I will never know the mysteries of Leopold Bloom and I'm okay with that.
    As I've mentioned in these threads before, that book for me was Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon. It was praised to high heavens as a post-modern classic and one of the great American books. I found it inpenetrable. I must have started it 5-6 times thinking I was missing something. Even once, I sat down and thought "OK, I'm going to read this blankety-blank book if it kills me". Well, it must of killed me because that effort lost momentum quickly. As they say, I just didn't get it. Still sitting in a box in the basement. Maybe one day I'll try again.

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  10. #369
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Started re reading The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan. Great book. The last time I read this series there were only 8 books... now there are like 80. I am gonna power through the whole series this time. It might take some time.
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  11. #370
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Just finished 11/22/63 by Stephen King, great book.

  12. #371
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Quote Originally Posted by izzy's dad View Post
    Started re reading The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan. Great book. The last time I read this series there were only 8 books... now there are like 80. I am gonna power through the whole series this time. It might take some time.
    Books 1-4 were amazing, page-turning reads.

    Books 5-8 were decent, at times good, reads

    Books 9-10 were soul-crushingly boring and mostly annoying.

    I stopped at that point. I'm told they got much better once Robert Jordan died and they hired the other guy to finish the series off.

    There are lots of book series that I read and think to myself "Man, I wish there was another 10 books I could read about these characters" and then I remember the Wheel of Time. Jordan clearly fell in love with the characters he was writing and the world he had created and, somewhere along the way, forgot that he was telling a story. The things that makes the first few books so special (a truly torrid pace, danger nipping at the main characters' heels, intrigue all around them, big revelations along the way) are completely absent as the series progresses.

    With more self discipline and a 6-7 book "limit," I really think Jordan could have written a series to rival Lord of the Rings or Song of Ice and Fire. Instead, he died with the plot at a 3-book standstill. Sad, really.
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  13. #372
    A Little to the Left Redsfaithful's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Quote Originally Posted by Caveat Emperor View Post
    Instead, he died with the plot at a 3-book standstill. Sad, really.
    I think he discovered they were cash machines, so why move things along? He'd probably still be writing about Nynaeve's braid and everyone's clothes if he were still alive, I doubt he ever had any intention of finishing the story.

    Starting a new series is tough, especially when the current one is a New York Times Bestseller even when you barely move the story.

    I read these books when I was a teenager, and they were pretty thoroughly terrible after the first few. That's time I'll never get back, so I'm a little bitter.
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  14. #373
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Just about finished with Gray Ghost, The Life and Times of Col. John Singleton Mosby by James Ramage.
    This book was published in 1999 and I just bought it from the Military Book Club. A very good biography about John Mosby who was a guerilla fighter for the Confederacy. He lead a group throughout Northern Virginia that caused a lot of havoc with the Union. This book is of particular interest to me since I live in what was called Mosby's Confederacy. When you know most of the places and areas where things happened it makes it that much more interesting. In fact a couple of his battles took place very close to where I live. If you like Civil War biographies this is very good one about someone who certainly had an impact on that war.
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  15. #374
    We Need Our Myths reds1869's Avatar
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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Quote Originally Posted by cumberlandreds View Post
    Just about finished with Gray Ghost, The Life and Times of Col. John Singleton Mosby by James Ramage.
    This book was published in 1999 and I just bought it from the Military Book Club. A very good biography about John Mosby who was a guerilla fighter for the Confederacy. He lead a group throughout Northern Virginia that caused a lot of havoc with the Union. This book is of particular interest to me since I live in what was called Mosby's Confederacy. When you know most of the places and areas where things happened it makes it that much more interesting. In fact a couple of his battles took place very close to where I live. If you like Civil War biographies this is very good one about someone who certainly had an impact on that war.
    That is a very good book about a very interesting man. Mosby's post-war support of Grant for President made him an enemy of the state throughout much of the south.

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    Re: What are you reading now?

    Quote Originally Posted by brad1176 View Post
    Just finished 11/22/63 by Stephen King, great book.
    I'm almost through with it. I'm on page 683 of 800 something pages. I have a theory on how it will end because he keeps giving clues through foreshadowing. Though, I suspect the clues will change course as I near the end.
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