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Futtocks

Book thread: what are you reading?

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Bounces along quite quickly and everything is resolved by killing someone

The Saga of the Volsungs By Jesse L. Byock


Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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John Irving - The Hotel New Hampshire. I'd seen the film years before I read the book, so I can't help picturing the book's characters as the cast. Happily, it is a good cast and a very decent adaptation.


Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. (Susan Ertz)

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Unknown Pleasures, Inside Joy Division by Peter Hook. Very funny although I am dreading the sequel as the New Order version is about 4 times as thick. I read Bernard Summers version of events, and you can detect a frision of opposition in the 2, as Hook does go into more details about the divisions in the group, especially in the early days.


RESURGAM

Non solum autem Leones

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I've started on one of the books I've got for Christmas.

Rush Hour by Iain Gately is a social history of commuting and transport in Britain. Ive only read 40 pages so far but am really enjoying it. Commuting is something we can all relate to and it's fascinating to see the connections between modern day and Victorian travel. From the descriptions of an everyday Victorian railway station scene, it really seems as though not a lot has changed and its gonna be interesting to see how closely modern day commuting relates to the past as the book progresses. 

As I say, interesting read so far. 

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I got a fascinating looking book of photographs of Bangkok in the late 50s by an Italian photographer called Fabrizio La Torre (who incidentally served in Buster Crabb's divers unit in the war).

Also got the third volume of Jonathan Sumption's history of the 100 years war. By total coincidence I had been flicking through the Weatherspoons magazine when in one of their branches at lunchtime and there was the lovable Tim Martin penning an article attacking Mr Sumption as a white middle class elitist for stating his pro EU views in a newspaper 

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Recent reads:

Jonathan Swift - A Modest Proposal. A satirical essay in which he lays out the sound economic sense of having poor people sell their infants as food for the wealthy.

Jonathan Meades - An Encyclopaedia of Myself. An autobiography of (mostly) his early life.

Both very good, and the former can be had free from the Project Gutenberg website.


Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. (Susan Ertz)

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On 13/12/2019 at 13:03, Futtocks said:

John Irving - The Hotel New Hampshire. I'd seen the film years before I read the book, so I can't help picturing the book's characters as the cast. Happily, it is a good cast and a very decent adaptation.

Resist resist resist... I hate tv/film adaptations trampling over my excellent imageination casting/executive production

E. G. When I need a cheap thrill and read a Jack Reacher I point blank refuse to cast Tom Cruise...... Hugh Jackman gets my starring role

The one exception is Gemma Arturton usurping my original Tess from Tess of Durbeyvilles... I still have a very clear mental image of her in that low cut and very tight dress at the end in the BBC production ....... . very clear

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On 26/12/2019 at 00:31, Futtocks said:

Proposal. A satirical essay in which he lays out the sound economic sense of having poor people sell their infants as food for the wealthy.

Blimey. Are things really that bad with the northern economy? 

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4 hours ago, Bedfordshire Bronco said:

Resist resist resist... I hate tv/film adaptations trampling over my excellent imageination casting/executive production

E. G. When I need a cheap thrill and read a Jack Reacher I point blank refuse to cast Tom Cruise...... Hugh Jackman gets my starring role

The one exception is Gemma Arturton usurping my original Tess from Tess of Durbeyvilles... I still have a very clear mental image of her in that low cut and very tight dress at the end in the BBC production ....... . very clear

The movie version of 'Tess' I remember starred Nastassja Kinski... 💘


Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. (Susan Ertz)

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I'm going to don my tin hat now.

Regardless of the panning given by the likes of the "clever" folk on BBC "comedy" shows such as HIGNFY*, I've been reading a few of Jeffrey Archer's novels.

I've found them very entertaining so far, particularly "First Among Equals" and "Kane and Abel".

I'm currently reading "As The Crow Flies", which is somehow reminiscent of R.F. Delderfield's "Dreaming Suburb".

Recommended.

*The BBC should be sued under the Trades Descriptions Act for the unfunny drivel that they put out as comedy nowadays, it's pathetic. 

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3 hours ago, BryanC said:

I'm going to don my tin hat now.

Regardless of the panning given by the likes of the "clever" folk on BBC "comedy" shows such as HIGNFY*, I've been reading a few of Jeffrey Archer's novels.

Some cheesy author stuff is all good now and again in my opinion

I've admitted reading Clancy novels today on here  so I wouldn't worry too much about admitting reading Archer

I have even read a Janet Evanovich novel this year courtesy of the missus.... Truly truly awful but funny because of it

I draw the line at James f****ing Patterson though.... As we all should 

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2 hours ago, Bedfordshire Bronco said:

Some cheesy author stuff is all good now and again in my opinion

I've admitted reading Clancy novels today on here  so I wouldn't worry too much about admitting reading Archer

I have even read a Janet Evanovich novel this year courtesy of the missus.... Truly truly awful but funny because of it

I draw the line at James f****ing Patterson though.... As we all should 

Well said. It isn't necessary to read really highbrow things all the time, if you find something entertaining and enjoyable then that's all that matters.

As I've mentioned on here before I am a massive sci-fi fan and have shelves of classic sci-fi novels. A lot of them are pretty average but enjoyable but a lot of them also base themselves are ideological theory, politics and world affairs. It's amazing the amount of things that sci-fi writers have predicted will happen in their fictional future worlds which have then come true. There are some really intelligent works amongst all that popular sci-fi but because people turn their noses up at it they will never get to experience it. 

As I say, it doesn't matter what you read as long as you enjoy it. There's a reason writers like Tom Clancy have sold so many books, because it's enjoyable. 

I agree about James Patterson though.... 

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I've read 120 books in 2019 which I am very surprised by! There's probably less than 10 days I haven't read on in the full year which is pleasing as one of my goals for this year was to read more. 

My top 10 books of the year (in no particular order):

Quiet - Susan Cain - A book on introversion in an extrovert-dominated world. It changed my mind, having previously always seen introversion as a disadvantage.

Lost Connections - Johann Hari - A book on the societal causes of depression. I don't agree with all of it and I've since read other books that contradict it, but thought-provoking regardless.

In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts - Gabor Mate - A book on addiction and how it typically stems from faulty coping mechanisms. My favourite book of 2019.

Natives - Akala - A book looking at race and class in the UK which I learned a lot from.

Endure - Alex Hutchinson - A book about the limits of human endurance and the various theories about why people tire, with lots of science and sport context to the debate.

Range - David Epstein - A book about the issues with early specialisation, why generalism often triumphs and the value of diverse experiences.

The Secret Barrister - A book about the legal system in the UK and how it is alarmingly damaged.

The Last Lecture - A book written by a college professor diagnosed with a terminal illness, with the lecture titled  'Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams'. The only book I cried at in 2019. 

Can't Hurt Me - David Goggins - A book written by a guy who went from being an overweight, borderline illiterate man to a Navy Seal and an ultra-marathon runner.

Why We Get the Wrong Politicians - Isabel Hardman - A book written about the flaws of the politician system in the UK, from the structure of the legislative process to the selection of Parliamentary candidates.

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On 29/12/2019 at 05:02, Bedfordshire Bronco said:

Some cheesy author stuff is all good now and again in my opinion

I've admitted reading Clancy novels today on here  so I wouldn't worry too much about admitting reading Archer

I have even read a Janet Evanovich novel this year courtesy of the missus.... Truly truly awful but funny because of it

I draw the line at James f****ing Patterson though.... As we all should 

Nowt wrong wi Clancy. Reading the latest Jack Ryan affair at the minute.

Stephen Hawkings big questions and the latest Bill Bruson about the body are queued up waiting to go

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I recently dipped in to the complete H.Rider Haggard collection (Kindle) and have read a couple of the stories featuring Umslopogaas, plus (of course) King Solomon's Mines. Yes, some uncomfortably outdated attitudes do jump out at you, but they are still good adventure tales.


Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. (Susan Ertz)

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I’m currently reading the final book of William Mcilvanney’s trio of tartan noir novels, Strange Loyalties.

Being an avid fan of Ian Rankin’s Rebus novels I’m amazed it’s taken me so long to discover Mcilvanney 

Rankin said it was because of Mcilvanney that he himself became a crime writer. Whereas Rankin writes about the Edinburgh underworld all three of Mcilvanney’s are set in Glasgow and the Borders region.

 

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Before I dive into something more serious, I am enjoying the TV Cream website's free PDF book of the best of their updates, anecdotes and factsheets. Available here: http://doczz.net/doc/608416/here---tv-cream 

There's a particular bit about a contributor being in the audience for the game show Win, Lose or Draw, where the between-shoot conversation turned to other broadcasters.

Sample: The highlight of the day was, strangely, Jenny Powell being on the panel. Her remarks on Nicky Campbell were most enlightening: “Nicky Campbell doesn’t have any private parts - just a large flat, smooth flap of skin... He tried to stick the tongue in me once when we were drunk - he’s disgusting - I hate him.’

The rest of the ‘celebrity’ panel’ then proceeded to do impressions of Nicky Campbell, to varying degrees of success. The consensus from the ‘celebs’ seemed to be that Campbell was a #### - it was the only time all day that the studio audience clapped without prompting, as if to agree in some strange way. (Liza) Tarbuck suggested phoning Watchdog to complain about Campbell - ‘every call is logged.’

:kolobok_biggrin:

Edited by Futtocks

Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. (Susan Ertz)

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