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Book thread: what are you reading?


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#21 Futtocks

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 01:27 PM

The sad thing about Flashman is that the books contain references to adventures that George McDonald Fraser never got round to writing (Mexico, Khartoum, Wild Bill Hickok, The Boxer rebellion) etc.

 

According to his daughter, the novelist Caro Fraser, he did not leave behind any notes that another author could attempt to work from.


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#22 marklaspalmas

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 02:18 PM

The sad thing about Flashman is that the books contain references to adventures that George McDonald Fraser never got round to writing (Mexico, Khartoum, Wild Bill Hickok, The Boxer rebellion) etc.

 

According to his daughter, the novelist Caro Fraser, he did not leave behind any notes that another author could attempt to work from.

 

That is a shame. Mark of a great writer though, that 12 books seems so little.


 

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#23 marklaspalmas

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 02:19 PM

I'd love to get the entire serious in hardback version; sadly can't find any...

 

 

I'm not sure if that exists. Let me know if you find something. Im trying to collect at least a set of all the same paperback edition.


 

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#24 Leeds Wire

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 02:35 PM

I've just started Zimmer Men by Marcus Berkmann. Its an autobiogrphical story of an ageing village cricket team and follows his much earlier book about the same people, entitled Rain Men.  If you've ever played village cricket, Rain Men is really highly recommended - you'll laugh your socks off.

 

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#25 GeordieSaint

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 02:39 PM

I'm not sure if that exists. Let me know if you find something. Im trying to collect at least a set of all the same paperback edition.

 

Sadly, I think you may be right but will include you in the loop if I find anything!


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#26 Wolford6

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 02:50 PM

If the telly gets any worse, I might be reduced to reading a proper book for the first time in about 15 years.


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#27 Futtocks

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 03:04 PM

That is a shame. Mark of a great writer though, that 12 books seems so little.

He wrote some other stuff too, some of which is worth seeking out. Flashman's father appears as a secondary character in 'Black Ajax', the story of the first world boxing championship fight.

 

And his war memoirs - 'Quartered safe out here' is brilliant,  and the McAuslan stories are hilarious. 'Mr American' is another period piece, but a serious story, unlike the Flashman books.

 

Some of the other stuff should be approached with more care. 'Pyrates', for instance, piles on the silliness and slapstick until it's really not as funny as GMF may have thought. And 'The Light's on at Signpost' is pretty much unreadably bad.


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#28 Futtocks

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 03:07 PM

I've just started Zimmer Men by Marcus Berkmann. Its an autobiogrphical story of an ageing village cricket team and follows his much earlier book about the same people, entitled Rain Men.  If you've ever played village cricket, Rain Men is really highly recommended - you'll laugh your socks off.

Berkmann wrote 'Lenin of the Rovers' with Alexei Sayle, which is one of my favourite comedy series ever. I might give one of these books a go.


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#29 Bob8

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 06:18 PM

He wrote some other stuff too, some of which is worth seeking out. Flashman's father appears as a secondary character in 'Black Ajax', the story of the first world boxing championship fight.

 

And his war memoirs - 'Quartered safe out here' is brilliant,  and the McAuslan stories are hilarious. 'Mr American' is another period piece, but a serious story, unlike the Flashman books.

 

Some of the other stuff should be approached with more care. 'Pyrates', for instance, piles on the silliness and slapstick until it's really not as funny as GMF may have thought. And 'The Light's on at Signpost' is pretty much unreadably bad.

Indeed.  Pyrates and Reevers are dreadful, but everything else is very good. 

 

Black Ajax is an excellent book, Quartered Safe Out Here is strongly recommended and I am looking forward to McAuslan as I am reassured by your summary.

 

I introduced the Flashman books to some friends in the USA.  It is fair to say there was a good degree of shock.


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#30 GeordieSaint

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 07:43 PM

I'm not sure if that exists. Let me know if you find something. Im trying to collect at least a set of all the same paperback edition.

 

Sadly, I think you may be right but will include you in the loop if I find anything!

 

I was wrong; they do exist!

 

http://www.abebooks....ashman&sortby=1

 

I think 'ouch' is the first polite word that springs to mind...


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#31 gingerjon

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 07:58 PM

 I have all the Sharpe novels by Bernard Cornwell. You get the same problem with them as some of his later books are 'prequels' to his earlier ones. Makes arranging them on the bookshelf a quandary if, like me, you have slight OCD when it comes to these things. :)

 

My dad changed the order depending on which his mood took him.  But, never fear, he also had an index of the books that he would place next to them so you knew the alternative way of filing.


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#32 gingerjon

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 08:01 PM

The sad thing about Flashman is that the books contain references to adventures that George McDonald Fraser never got round to writing (Mexico, Khartoum, Wild Bill Hickok, The Boxer rebellion) etc.

 

According to his daughter, the novelist Caro Fraser, he did not leave behind any notes that another author could attempt to work from.

 

I'm not convinced that he ever worked through some of those ideas enough, even in his head, to create a novel from them although it would have been brilliant if he could have.

 

I've just finished The Shape of Water, the first Montalbano novel, and liked it enough to download the second.  I have a travelogue of Antarctica to read next though.


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#33 Wolford6

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 08:16 PM

 I have a travelogue of Antarctica to read next though.

 

Ice, snow, water, sun, frostbite, gangrene, not getting your Oates, penguin, killer whale, Norwegian flag. How can anyone make that stretch to a whole book?
 

 


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#34 Bigal02

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 08:32 PM

I enjoy thrillers.  If I watch a good film (usually on TV), I try to find out if it was based on a book, and if so, who wrote it.  Using this method I 'discovered' David Baldacci (Absolute Power) and Jeffrey Deaver (the Bone Collector).  I've gone on to get all of their books, which are brilliant. 



#35 gingerjon

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 08:32 PM

Ice, snow, water, sun, frostbite, gangrene, not getting your Oates, penguin, killer whale, Norwegian flag. How can anyone make that stretch to a whole book?
 

I'll let you know when I've either finished it or thrown it across the room.


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#36 distantdog

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 08:58 PM

Hearts in Atlantis by Stephen King, not for the supernatural stuff, but for the way he has captured the essence of lost childhood and of growing older. It becomes more relevant the older I get! (I have read it umpteen times)



#37 tim2

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Posted 24 January 2014 - 09:13 PM

The Return of Sherlock Holmes


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#38 marklaspalmas

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 11:33 AM

He wrote some other stuff too, some of which is worth seeking out. Flashman's father appears as a secondary character in 'Black Ajax', the story of the first world boxing championship fight.

 

And his war memoirs - 'Quartered safe out here' is brilliant,  and the McAuslan stories are hilarious. 'Mr American' is another period piece, but a serious story, unlike the Flashman books.

 

Some of the other stuff should be approached with more care. 'Pyrates', for instance, piles on the silliness and slapstick until it's really not as funny as GMF may have thought. And 'The Light's on at Signpost' is pretty much unreadably bad.

 

 

Indeed.  Pyrates and Reevers are dreadful, but everything else is very good. 

 

Black Ajax is an excellent book, Quartered Safe Out Here is strongly recommended and I am looking forward to McAuslan as I am reassured by your summary.

 

I introduced the Flashman books to some friends in the USA.  It is fair to say there was a good degree of shock.

 

Ta. Ive always shied away from his other stuff as I wasn't sure what I'd find.


 

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#39 marklaspalmas

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 11:36 AM

I was wrong; they do exist!

 

http://www.abebooks....ashman&sortby=1

 

I think 'ouch' is the first polite word that springs to mind...

 

I guess the price is because they're signed. But if you look at the editions of the books, there's a fairly odd collection of editions. I really don't like those old hardback covers. These are better:

 

andtheredskins.jpg


 

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#40 Phil

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Posted 25 January 2014 - 01:56 PM

Sword Song by Bernard Cornwell part of his series featuring the Saxon warrior Uhtred of Bebbanburg. set in King Alfred's time. The battle scenes are remarkably gory but also seem to me to ring very true (having been in a shield wall in my re-enactment days I can confirm its pretty scary).


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