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Old 06-01-2017, 08:57 AM   #1326
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Wow really that good eh? I keep bumping those in favour of other books, guess I'll have to make time for them.
Yeah, they're great. Start with Shadow & Claw then Sword & Citadel, then Urth of the New Sun. Like I said they're tough reads, though. Don't think of it as normal sci-fi/fantasy. Its definitely literary sci-fi. Lots of allegory, connections to greek mythology, christian/jewish symbolism, philosophy.

I loved the ancient/surreal vibe that the world gave off and Wolfe uses something interesting called the "unreliable narrator". I don't think the narrator outright lies but he doesn't tell you the whole truth and assumes you know certain things. Awesome use of language, too. Have google ready. You can't find a lot words he uses in a dictionary. Here's a couple of articles on him:

https://litreactor.com/columns/prime...-subtle-master

https://www.sfsite.com/fsf/2007/gwng0704.htm

EDIT: He also invented Pringles.

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Old 06-01-2017, 11:49 AM   #1327
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I have been on a Hunter S Thompson kick. I read The Rum Diaries, Hell's Angels: A Strange and Terrible Saga of the Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs, Fear and Loathing on the campaign trail 72, and of course Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.

The guy was a loon but one hell of a writer.
I was on the same kick last summer, not sure why I waited so long to read him.
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Old 06-01-2017, 11:53 AM   #1328
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I am reading Tom Sawyer to my 9 year old son. I read the Little House series to my daughter when she was his age and didn't have a comparable boys series to read to him about history.

I consider myself well read but the verbiage Twain uses confounds even me. I had to google some of the words.

Both of us are enjoying it, I read Life on the Mississippi in HS but never got around to Sawyer or Finn.

Have to stop and explain the use of the N word when we encounter it, sometimes I just replace it. Depends on how late it is and if I want to stop and explain.
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Old 06-01-2017, 02:32 PM   #1329
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Hillbilly Elegy by JD Vance
Andrew Jackson by HW Brands
Take Your Eye Off the Ball by Pat Kirwan
Mere Christianity by CS Lewis
Merchants of Doubt by Naomi Oreskes and Eric Conway
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Old 06-01-2017, 04:17 PM   #1330
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Listening for an hour and a half each way to work and an eight hour day driving a desk. With breaks, meetings, the occasional time when I actually have to focus, I usually get in 8-9 hours/day. I get through most books somewhere between six hours and a day and a half. I usually listen at 1.7:1.
I'm an accountant, and I rarely even listen to music at work because it is too distracting.

How do you manage to listen to something that demands your full attention while doing anything other than data entry?
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Old 06-01-2017, 07:28 PM   #1331
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I'm an accountant, and I rarely even listen to music at work because it is too distracting.

How do you manage to listen to something that demands your full attention while doing anything other than data entry?
I'm an electrical designer in the petroleum industry. Most of what I do doesn't require much thought after over a decade doing it. It's a lot of spatial reasoning, much like putting together a 3D puzzle. I've also gotten very good at dividing my attention over the years. Occasionally I'll have to do some calculations or research new parts on the web, and for that I'll have to shut the book down. Otherwise I'll either lose the thread of the story, or fail to run the calcs/research the parts correctly. I started "Leviathan" by Scott Westerfeld this morning. I was listening to "Behemoth" (second in the trilogy) on the way home from work.

I probably miss some details along the way, but I miss details when reading e-books as well. That's what re-reads are for.
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Old 06-01-2017, 07:39 PM   #1332
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Yeah, they're great. Start with Shadow & Claw then Sword & Citadel, then Urth of the New Sun. Like I said they're tough reads, though. Don't think of it as normal sci-fi/fantasy. Its definitely literary sci-fi. Lots of allegory, connections to greek mythology, christian/jewish symbolism, philosophy.

I loved the ancient/surreal vibe that the world gave off and Wolfe uses something interesting called the "unreliable narrator". I don't think the narrator outright lies but he doesn't tell you the whole truth and assumes you know certain things. Awesome use of language, too. Have google ready. You can't find a lot words he uses in a dictionary. Here's a couple of articles on him:

https://litreactor.com/columns/prime...-subtle-master

https://www.sfsite.com/fsf/2007/gwng0704.htm

EDIT: He also invented Pringles.
Like A Canticle for Leibowitz level?
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Old 06-01-2017, 07:39 PM   #1333
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Yeah, I ended up loving it. REALLY dark and depressing, though. Heavy stuff. The sequel, Echopraxia, was awesome as well. Watts posts on the sci fi subreddit and says he's working on a third.
Thanks for the reminder about "Echopraxia." I've been meaning to get that one. Of course, out of the 11 library consortiums that a Denver Metro resident can join, not frickin' one has it. Recommending it to them though.

Hav you read his "Rifters" series/trilogy?

For anyone else interested in reading "Blindsight," the e-book is currently available (100% legally) for free at feedbooks.com.
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Old 06-01-2017, 08:55 PM   #1334
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Thanks for the reminder about "Echopraxia." I've been meaning to get that one. Of course, out of the 11 library consortiums that a Denver Metro resident can join, not frickin' one has it. Recommending it to them though.

Hav you read his "Rifters" series/trilogy?

For anyone else interested in reading "Blindsight," the e-book is currently available (100% legally) for free at feedbooks.com.
That is insane you can't get it from a library outside of your group. I have had our library here in IL get me musical scores from college libraries well outside their connections. I thought any public library in the area was supposed to provide materials to any other library requesting it?

Maybe it is a media restriction?
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Old 06-01-2017, 10:08 PM   #1335
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Like A Canticle for Leibowitz level?
Haven't ever read it, actually. A lot of it is veiled in TBOTNS but it's definitely there.

Severian is very Apollo/Christ-like, one scene resembles the execution of St. Catherine, another resembles Christ being tempted by Satan in the desert, the sword he carries is reminiscent of the cross, greek tragedies are told with the names/events slightly changed, there's a quote from Marcus Aurelius thats slightly changed but not attributed to him, certain characters have the names of Greek gods or Catholic saints, certain connections between characters are only apparent if you know a certain Greek story.

Stuff like that. Its a giant puzzle. You'll miss a lot of it if you aren't familiar with Roman/Greek/Catholic history. He uses a lot very old words and expects that you know what they mean, too. The Gene Wolfe subreddit helped me decipher a lot of it.

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Old 06-01-2017, 10:10 PM   #1336
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Thanks for the reminder about "Echopraxia." I've been meaning to get that one. Of course, out of the 11 library consortiums that a Denver Metro resident can join, not frickin' one has it. Recommending it to them though.

Hav you read his "Rifters" series/trilogy?

For anyone else interested in reading "Blindsight," the e-book is currently available (100% legally) for free at feedbooks.com.
The Rifter trilogy is sitting on my bookshelf but I haven't gotten to it yet. Its on the short list after I finish the rest of the Solar Cycle. You should definitely make time for Echopraxia. Its just as good as Blindsight, IMHO.

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Old 06-02-2017, 06:35 AM   #1337
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Yeah, they're great. Start with Shadow & Claw then Sword & Citadel, then Urth of the New Sun. Like I said they're tough reads, though. Don't think of it as normal sci-fi/fantasy. Its definitely literary sci-fi. Lots of allegory, connections to greek mythology, christian/jewish symbolism, philosophy.

I loved the ancient/surreal vibe that the world gave off and Wolfe uses something interesting called the "unreliable narrator". I don't think the narrator outright lies but he doesn't tell you the whole truth and assumes you know certain things. Awesome use of language, too. Have google ready. You can't find a lot words he uses in a dictionary. Here's a couple of articles on him:

https://litreactor.com/columns/prime...-subtle-master

https://www.sfsite.com/fsf/2007/gwng0704.htm

EDIT: He also invented Pringles.
Unreliable narrator! GRRM always burns me with that.
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Old 06-02-2017, 11:16 AM   #1338
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Listening for an hour and a half each way to work and an eight hour day driving a desk. With breaks, meetings, the occasional time when I actually have to focus, I usually get in 8-9 hours/day. I get through most books somewhere between six hours and a day and a half. I usually listen at 1.7:1.
Wow, that's a lot of audio books. Where do you get your books from? At that rate it could get pricey real quick.
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Old 06-02-2017, 11:39 AM   #1339
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That is insane you can't get it from a library outside of your group. I have had our library here in IL get me musical scores from college libraries well outside their connections. I thought any public library in the area was supposed to provide materials to any other library requesting it?

Maybe it is a media restriction?
I've switched almost exclusively to e-books which are not, as far as I know, eligible for inter-library loan. I'll give 'em a while and if no one picks it up, then I'll get it from one of the online booksellers. About the only time I do ink and paper books any more is when they simply aren't available in e-format.

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Old 06-02-2017, 11:47 AM   #1340
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Wow, that's a lot of audio books. Where do you get your books from? At that rate it could get pricey real quick.
Across Colorado Digital Consortium, Arapahoe Libraries, Aurora Public Library, Anythink Library Consortium, Douglas County Libraries, Poudre River Public Library, Denver Public Library, Front Range Downloadable Library, High Plains Library District, Jefferson County Public Library, the Marmot Library Network (all the libraries that only require that I be a Colorado resident) and on the rare occasion that all 11 of those fail Amazon frequently has the book on MP3 CD for $5.99 to $9.99. I also buy used from Amazon and E-bay and have payed as little as $1.00 for audio books.

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Old 06-02-2017, 11:51 AM   #1341
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The Rifter trilogy is sitting on my bookshelf but I haven't gotten to it yet. Its on the short list after I finish the rest of the Solar Cycle. You should definitely make time for Echopraxia. Its just as good as Blindsight, IMHO.
I think I enjoyed Rifters even more than "Blindsight," though both were incredibly good.

"Echopraxia" has moved up my short list. Just giving the libraries time to decide if they're buying or not. If not, I'll pick up a copy online.
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Old 06-02-2017, 05:19 PM   #1342
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I think I enjoyed Rifters even more than "Blindsight," though both were incredibly good.

"Echopraxia" has moved up my short list. Just giving the libraries time to decide if they're buying or not. If not, I'll pick up a copy online.
Nice. I'll make sure not to put it off for too long. Blindsight/Echopraxia are probably close to being in my top 5 list. Is it as dark as Blindsight is?

Have you read Too Like the Lightning by Ada Palmer? I've heard good things about her and was thinking about moving her up the list as well. I haven't read a whole lot of recent novels lately outside of I Banks, C Mieville, A Reynolds, and Watts.

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Old 06-02-2017, 05:48 PM   #1343
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Nice. I'll make sure not to put it off for too long. Blindsight/Echopraxia are probably close to being in my top 5 list. Is it as dark as Blindsight is?

Have you read Too Like the Lightning by Ada Palmer? I've heard good things about her and was thinking about moving her up the list as well. I haven't read a whole lot of recent novels lately outside of I Banks, C Mieville, A Reynolds, and Watts.
I don't think Watts knows how to write "light."

I've not read anything by Ada Palmer, but it sounds like I should.

On the topic of Dark fiction. Have you read the Low Town trilogy by Daniel Polansky? I put it top five of all fantasy fiction I've read, ever. There are no "good guys" or "bad guys." Just people making choices and the consequences they entail. Grimdark fantasy at it's absolute best.
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Old 06-02-2017, 05:55 PM   #1344
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I don't think Watts knows how to write "light."

I've not read anything by Ada Palmer, but it sounds like I should.

On the topic of Dark fiction. Have you read the Low Town trilogy by Daniel Polansky? I put it top five of all fantasy fiction I've read, ever. There are no "good guys" or "bad guys." Just people making choices and the consequences they entail. Grimdark fantasy at it's absolute best.
I haven't but it sounds like I might like it from the amazon blurb. Sounds noir-ish like the Kovacs Trilogy by Richard K Morgan. Altered Carbon was awesome. Another series for me to toss on my massive "to read" pile.

You would like China Mieville's "New Weird" I bet. Perdido Street Station and The Scar were fantastic.
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Old 06-02-2017, 07:33 PM   #1345
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I haven't but it sounds like I might like it from the amazon blurb. Sounds noir-ish like the Kovacs Trilogy by Richard K Morgan. Altered Carbon was awesome. Another series for me to toss on my massive "to read" pile.

You would like China Mieville's "New Weird" I bet. Perdido Street Station and The Scar were fantastic.
The Daniel Polansky stuff may be hard to find. I actually had to log in to a British bookseller through a proxy in Scotland to get the second and third e-books thanks to the draconian DRM being foisted upon us. Why in the hell can I buy the British versions of Harry Potter hardback from from a British book bookseller without breaking any laws but it's not ok to buy the same freakin' books in electronic format?!? But I digress...

It seems we have a lot of the same tastes. Richard K. Morgan's stuff is the ****! I've not yet read Mieville's New Crobuzon series, but it is on my short list and I've read a good portion of his other works. "Railsea" was particularly good. Like Mad Max and Pirates of the Caribbean had a love child.

Have you read any of Richard Kadrey's stuff?!? He can be a bit blasphemous, but holy god he can tell a good urban fantasy tale. The Sandman Slim books are great, but "Butcher Bird" is truly exceptional!
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Old 06-02-2017, 08:12 PM   #1346
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The Daniel Polansky stuff may be hard to find. I actually had to log in to a British bookseller through a proxy in Scotland to get the second and third e-books thanks to the draconian DRM being foisted upon us. Why in the hell can I buy the British versions of Harry Potter hardback from from a British book bookseller without breaking any laws but it's not ok to buy the same freakin' books in electronic format?!? But I digress...

It seems we have a lot of the same tastes. Richard K. Morgan's stuff is the ****! I've not yet read Mieville's New Crobuzon series, but it is on my short list and I've read a good portion of his other works. "Railsea" was particularly good. Like Mad Max and Pirates of the Caribbean had a love child.

Have you read any of Richard Kadrey's stuff?!? He can be a bit blasphemous, but holy god he can tell a good urban fantasy tale. The Sandman Slim books are great, but "Butcher Bird" is truly exceptional!
The City & The City is another good one by Mieville.

I've heard of Kadrey but haven't read him yet. The New Weird/Urban Fantasy/ Neo-Noir Cyberpunk scenes are all fairly new to me. Geez, I need to start a goodreads account to keep track of my TBR pile. Thanks for the recommendations.
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Old 06-02-2017, 08:39 PM   #1347
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The City & The City is another good one by Mieville.

I've heard of Kadrey but haven't read him yet. The New Weird/Urban Fantasy/ Neo-Noir Cyberpunk scenes are all fairly new to me. Geez, I need to start a goodreads account to keep track of my TBR pile. Thanks for the recommendations.
Well, if urban fantasy is new to you...

Jim Butcher: The Dresden Files
Kim Harrison: The Hollows
Patricia Briggs: Mercy Thompson and the related Alpha and Omega
Seanan McGuire: October Daye

The above five series (along with Sandman Slim) are the best in the genre that I've encountered so far.

Thanks to you as well for the tips. You've led me to some authors I've not yet heard of who will in turn (via the "Ada Palmer recommends:" section of their fantasticfiction.com author pages) lead me to others. I read widely and voraciously so I am always looking for more and new despite the incredibly long "to read" list that I will never live long enough to finish but keep adding to anyway.
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Old 06-02-2017, 09:09 PM   #1348
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Well, if urban fantasy is new to you...

Jim Butcher: The Dresden Files
Kim Harrison: The Hollows
Patricia Briggs: Mercy Thompson and the related Alpha and Omega
Seanan McGuire: October Daye

The above five series (along with Sandman Slim) are the best in the genre that I've encountered so far.

Thanks to you as well for the tips. You've led me to some authors I've not yet heard of who will in turn (via the "Ada Palmer recommends:" section of their fantasticfiction.com author pages) lead me to others. I read widely and voraciously so I am always looking for more and new despite the incredibly long "to read" list that I will never live long enough to finish but keep adding to anyway.
Yeah, I went ahead and started a goodreads account to keep track of everything. After about thirty minutes of goofing around I have 87 books on the "to-read" shelf. And that was just off the top of my head.

EDIT: And for the record I haven't read Palmer yet. Just heard great things about her. No clue how good she actually is.
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Old 06-03-2017, 08:35 PM   #1349
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I've had John Fowles suggested to me. Specifically, A Maggot and The Magus. Anyone read them?
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Old 06-08-2017, 07:34 PM   #1350
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Finished a very good legal thriller today at work. "Dead Even" by Brad Meltzer. Started a re-read of the Alex Benedict series by Jack McDevitt, one of my favorite sci-fi authors. I'd recommend most anything from him, not because they're groundbreaking or brilliantly written (though "Ancient Shores" is near brilliance) but because he's so consistently good. His best books are fantastic and his worst are still pretty darned good.

Also reading through the Foreigner series by C. J. Cherry. It's a very long series (18 and counting) but worth every minute. It's essentially the life story of Bren Cameron, paidi-aiji (a cultural and linguistic translator) between Humans and the Atevi whose world humans landed on 200 years or so before the story gets started. The Atevi are kinda Asian culturally with a lot of Tudor politicking thrown in and were just developing steam power when the humans arrived. Absolutely engrossing stories, but not the easiest reading out there. It's generally a sci-fi setting, but it's not, for the most part, your typical space opera.
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