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Thread: Book Thread number ?

  1. #921
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by FadeToBlack&Gold View Post
    Thinking about giving this 'List Challenge' a shot in 2018. Over the years, I've knocked off 22 out of the 200 listed.
    I don't normally have a high count on those types of lists, but I count 27 that I've read from that list. A few more could be added in there if I were to include those I've started and put down due to disinterest in the stories.
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by burd View Post
    I've read around 55 on the list but honestly do not retain much useful memory of many of them. I am not remotely capable anymore of getting through much from Kep's list--just don't have the stamina anymore. I will say that everyone should make an effort to become a little familiar with Shakespeare's body of work (the plays). They are not lengthy or very dense and are, for the most part, entertaining. It may be "rerun" material, but he had an astounding feel for the noble, ignoble, heroic, villainous, funny, sad, and mad that is in all of us in all walks of life. Not only is it entertaining reading, it helps us understand a lot about what it is to be human.
    For Shakes I recommend watching the BBC collection of the full set of plays, rather than reading them. Buy them and then just watch whatever you are in the mood for over the next, you know, 30 years; that's how I've seen them all several times. Other than the Henry VI and Henry VIII plays I think they are all under 3 hours long. The acting is superb and none of them has any adventurous kind of interpretation or set design to be a distraction. And some of them are gems -- I defy any man or woman to watch their As You Like It and not be irrecoverably in love with Helen Mirren.

    I'm reading through all the surviving Greek tragedies now (and will be for the next few years -- I read VERY slowly). IINM there are fewer of them than there are all of Shakes' plays (about 35), and they are all super short (we're talking 90 minutes or less). They are among the most sublime pieces of writing, thinking, and feeling ever created -- they fill you with tremendous emotion. I can't imagine what they were like in production with entire cities (small towns, really) filling amphitheaters and watching them together like Olympic events during the Dionysian festivals. We have nothing like it in our world -- sort of a combination of hockey, opera, and professional wrestling all tied together. But even just reading them can literally change your life. It's another way of knowing what miracles human beings are capable of.

    We monkeys are very curious beings. So much of what we do is stupid and cruel. But goodness, at our best...

    I will tell you why; so shall my anticipation
    prevent your discovery, and your secrecy to the king
    and queen moult no feather. I have of late--but
    wherefore I know not--lost all my mirth, forgone all
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    with my disposition that this goodly frame, the
    earth, seems to me a sterile promontory, this most
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    o'erhanging firmament, this majestical roof fretted
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    me than a foul and pestilent congregation of vapours.
    What a piece of work is a man! how noble in reason!
    how infinite in faculty! in form and moving how
    express and admirable! in action how like an angel!
    in apprehension how like a god! the beauty of the
    world! the paragon of animals! And yet, to me,
    what is this quintessence of dust? man delights not
    me: no, nor woman neither, though by your smiling
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    (Hamlet -- Act II Scene 2 Lines 293-310)
    Last edited by Kepler; 12-07-2017 at 05:34 PM.
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  3. #923

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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by burd View Post
    I've read around 55 on the list but honestly do not retain much useful memory of many of them. I am not remotely capable anymore of getting through much from Kep's list--just don't have the stamina anymore. I will say that everyone should make an effort to become a little familiar with Shakespeare's body of work (the plays). They are not lengthy or very dense and are, for the most part, entertaining. It may be "rerun" material, but he had an astounding feel for the noble, ignoble, heroic, villainous, funny, sad, and mad that is in all of us in all walks of life. Not only is it entertaining reading, it helps us understand a lot about what it is to be human.
    Well put. Harold Bloom called his collection of essays on Hamlet "The Invention of the Human" and argues that how we think about who we are changed radically as a result of Shakespeare and a few other Elizabethan writers.
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  4. #924
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    I've read plenty of Shakespeare. Willy was a required part of the lit curriculum every year of HS - got through R&J, Taming, MacBeth, and King Lear. Not sure I'm ready to rush out and dig into the Henry plays or Hamlet anytime soon.
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  5. #925
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by FadeToBlack&Gold View Post
    I've read plenty of Shakespeare. Willy was a required part of the lit curriculum every year of HS - got through R&J, Taming, MacBeth, and King Lear. Not sure I'm ready to rush out and dig into the Henry plays or Hamlet anytime soon.
    Henry V was really good, but I can't speak to the others.
    "The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command." George Orwell, 1984

    Women and I have an understanding. They tend to stay away from me, and I tend to understand that I'm repulsive to them. It's not my favorite understanding.

  6. #926

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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by FadeToBlack&Gold View Post
    I've read plenty of Shakespeare. Willy was a required part of the lit curriculum every year of HS - got through R&J, Taming, MacBeth, and King Lear. Not sure I'm ready to rush out and dig into the Henry plays or Hamlet anytime soon.
    Hamlet will work for you. You already know it. I swear every decently educated person already knows 500 lines form the play by heart. It's that much part of our culture.

    Here's my recommendation to get into Shakes. Beyond the recommendation to watch the performances first, then startbreading the plays once you are hooked.

    1. Branaugh's Much Ado About Nothing -- for my money, the best WS adaptation in movie history
    2. The BBC Julius Caesar -- great drama, with very modern pacing and themes, also Charles Gray as Caesar is a hoot
    3. Zeffirelli's Romeo and Juliet -- and not just cuz Juliet is hot, though she is. Beautifully done.
    4. Moonlighting's "Atomic Shakespeare" episode of Taming of the Shrew
    5. The BBC As You Like It for pure sublimity
    6. Olivier's Hamlet -- OK, by now you have the rhythm down, so you're ready for the Gordie Howe of all WS films
    7. Branaugh's Henry V -- particularly if you're an adolescent male, but women will enjoy the dirty French lesson scene
    8. Ralph Fiennes' Coriolanus -- amazing adaptation of a fairly obscure WS play; really, really dark
    Last edited by Kepler; 12-07-2017 at 05:55 PM.
    2016 USCHO POSER OF THE YEAR

    "The strength and power of despotism consists wholly in the fear of resistance." -- Thomas Paine

    Cornell University
    NCAA Champion 1967, 1970
    ECAC Champion 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1973, 1980, 1986, 1996, 1997, 2003, 2005, 2010
    Ivy League Champion 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1977, 1978, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1996, 1997, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2012, 2014

  7. #927
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Recent reads

    The Burning Land (The Saxon Stories #5) by Bernard Cornwell The latest in the series finds Uhtred breaking with Alfred and heading back to try and take his ancestral homeland. He can’t escape from Alfred’s machinations though and the end of the book finds him once again fighting to save the kingdom from the Danes. Good read

    The Whistler (The Whistler #1) by John Grisham This book follows the investigation of a judge and a shadowy mafia family who have fixed justice and committed murder to keep their empire alive. Beset and threatened by multiple characters seeking to protect their scheme. One of the better recent Grisham novels.

    Trap the Devil (Dewey Andreas #7) by Ben Coes Another good Andreas adventure as the members within the US are plotting a coup to take power that will take out the President and Vice President. Old enemies also return as Dewey is flagged by Interpol as a suspect and they gather to kill him which leads to some interesting action on a train. Good read

    Typhoon Fury (The Oregon Files #12) by Clive Cussler, Boyd Morrison The Oregon is probably my current favorite of Cussler's series. This one finds them battling against Communist guerrillas who are using a drug left behind by the Japanese during WW II on the Philippines. Lots of action as they battle a group blessed with superhuman qualities making them one of their most dangerous foes yet. Good read.

    The Medical Examiner (Women's Murder Club #16.5) by James Patterson (Goodreads Author), Maxine Paetro To say Patterson is a prolific writer is something. This is my 100th James Patterson book. I find the bookshots concepts a little funny since I can finish most of his regular sized books in a day, these take me about a half hour to finish. This short story finds Lindsay and Joe out of town so her partner Rich Conklin takes the stage investigating when a seemingly dead woman rises from the dead in the morgue. He also is surprised when she does not recognize the dead man she was with once he speaks with her. His girlfriend Cindy Thomas is of course hot on the trail of the case as they try to solve the case of the woman returned from the dead.

    Enemy of the State (Mitch Rapp #16) by Kyle Mills (Goodreads Author), Vince Flynn I have always liked Kyle Mills and while he is not Vince Flynn he has done an admirable job of continuing the Mitch Rapp series. This involves Mitch going even further off the reservation and leaving the CIA and forming a kind of “Suicide Squad” made up of his former enemies to take on the Saudi’s and their sponsorship of terrorism. My big complaint is that several of the secondary plot lines that are set up within the story kind of come to an abrupt end with little or no build up which made me wonder why was this in the book at all.

    The Armageddon File (Tommy Carmellini #8) by Stephen Coonts Similar to Coonts last book this follows current events with a election rigging plotline and characters relating to current politicians, Trump, Hillary and George Soros. Like the last one this was just tolerable at best. Okay story but with the current climate and people in it it seemed to be more of a political point than a story.

    Wrestling at the Chase: The Inside Story of Sam Muchnick and the Legends of Professional Wrestling
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    Cash Landing by James Grippando I had this listed as a Jack Swyteck novel but he only makes a short appearance at the end. Definetly not a lawyer novel as it follows the adventures of Ruben and his conspirators as they rob millions of dollars. Afterwards all kinds of bad luck and trouble befalls them as every criminal element seems aligned against them in addition to the authorities who are seeking to arrest them.

    The Midnight Bell (Sean Dillon #22) by Jack Higgins I’ve always liked Higgins his novels don’t have a whole lot of depth of plot but they are readable and enjoyable and he has an interesting cast of characters. Like the Rashid family in earlier novels he has recently fallen on using “The Master” a kind of the nameless Al Queda leader as a villain, I think this book makes the 3rd Master. Why anyone who is intent on wiping out Fergunson and company would constantly call and give them clues warn them etc. Instead of just killing them makes no sense. Also a whole lot of traveling around the world to add very little to the plot as various Master minions are taken care of.

    The Birth of Empire: DeWitt Clinton and the American Experience, 1769-1828 by Evan Cornog A pretty good biography of long time NY governor, leading force behind the Erie Canal and one time Presidential candidate. Interesting stories of early American politics and the rise of political parties within the US.

    Death of Kings (The Saxon Stories #6) by Bernard Cornwell The King is dead long live the King. In the 6th book in the Saxon chronicles, Uhtred must face his future as King Alfred lays dying. Uhtred expects the Danes to pounce once Alfred is dead and must decide if he is going to commit himself to Alfred’s son or not. Another good book though a couple of the swerve’s are pretty obvious.
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  8. #928
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kepler View Post
    Hamlet will work for you. You already know it. I swear every decently educated person already knows 500 lines form the play by heart. It's that much part of our culture.

    Here's my recommendation to get into Shakes. Beyond the recommendation to watch the performances first, then startbreading the plays once you are hooked.

    1. Branaugh's Much Ado About Nothing -- for my money, the best WS adaptation in movie history
    2. The BBC Julius Caesar -- great drama, with very modern pacing and themes, also Charles Gray as Caesar is a hoot
    3. Zeffirelli's Romeo and Juliet -- and not just cuz Juliet is hot, though she is. Beautifully done.
    4. Gil Junger's Ten Things I Hate About You
    5. The BBC As You Like It for pure sublimity
    6. Olivier's Hamlet -- OK, by now you have the rhythm down, so you're ready for the Gordie Howe of all WS films
    7. Branaugh's Henry V -- particularly if you're an adolescent male, but women will enjoy the dirty French lesson scene
    8. Ralph Fiennes' Coriolanus -- amazing adaptation of a fairly obscure WS play; really, really dark
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  9. #929

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kepler View Post
    Hamlet will work for you. You already know it. I swear every decently educated person already knows 500 lines form the play by heart. It's that much part of our culture.

    Here's my recommendation to get into Shakes. Beyond the recommendation to watch the performances first, then startbreading the plays once you are hooked.

    1. Branaugh's Much Ado About Nothing -- for my money, the best WS adaptation in movie history
    2. The BBC Julius Caesar -- great drama, with very modern pacing and themes, also Charles Gray as Caesar is a hoot
    3. Zeffirelli's Romeo and Juliet -- and not just cuz Juliet is hot, though she is. Beautifully done.
    4. Moonlighting's "Atomic Shakespeare" episode of Taming of the Shrew
    5. The BBC As You Like It for pure sublimity
    6. Olivier's Hamlet -- OK, by now you have the rhythm down, so you're ready for the Gordie Howe of all WS films
    7. Branaugh's Henry V -- particularly if you're an adolescent male, but women will enjoy the dirty French lesson scene
    8. Ralph Fiennes' Coriolanus -- amazing adaptation of a fairly obscure WS play; really, really dark
    #1 was the one with Denzel Washington? That one is on my don't miss list - as is Henry V.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FadeToBlack&Gold View Post
    Thinking about giving this 'List Challenge' a shot in 2018. Over the years, I've knocked off 22 out of the 200 listed.
    How do you not have ‘Bonfire of the Vanities’ or ‘A Man in Full’ included? The list loses a lot of credibility for no Tom Wolfe.

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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Much Ado sounds like a well-written 16th century chick flick. I'm not above those.

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew S. View Post
    How do you not have ‘Bonfire of the Vanities’ or ‘A Man in Full’ included? The list loses a lot of credibility for no Tom Wolfe.
    All such lists are going to have opinions. It's just like lists of "Greatest Rock Bands".

    Somewhere out there, some jarhead has compiled a "Must Read" list that has 5 Tom Clancy novels in it.
    Last edited by FadeToBlack&Gold; 12-07-2017 at 08:24 PM.
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  12. #932
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    I’ve always liked rainbow six

  13. #933
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew S. View Post
    How do you not have ‘Bonfire of the Vanities’ or ‘A Man in Full’ included? The list loses a lot of credibility for no Tom Wolfe.
    Every book list is like that. No Thomas Wolfe, Saul Bellow, Wendel Berry . . . Jack London makes the list three times. I'd sooner reread Sometimes a Great Notion than Cuckoo's Nest.
    Last edited by burd; 12-07-2017 at 08:29 PM.

  14. #934
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by burd View Post
    Every book list is like that. No Thomas Wolfe, Saul Bellow, Wendel Berry . . . Jack London makes the list three times. I'd sooner reread Sometimes a Great Notion than Cuckoo's Nest.
    Call of the Wild was alright. I loved White Fang.

    Never heard of the former three authors you've mentioned. I guess I should be embarrassed by that?
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by FadeToBlack&Gold View Post
    Call of the Wild was alright. I loved White Fang.

    Never heard of the former three authors you've mentioned. I guess I should be embarrassed by that?
    Glad you're not serious.

    But now that you mentioned it. One book which is missing from both lists and which is a MUST read is Fight on Sioux, published by Grand Forks Chamber of Commerce award winning author, the Grand Forks Herald (soft cover). A seriously cool book about hockey history at the good old U of ND.

    You SHOULD be embarrassed if you have not read that.
    Last edited by burd; 12-07-2017 at 09:01 PM.

  16. #936
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by burd View Post
    Glad you're not serious.

    But now that you mentioned it. One book which is missing from both lists and which is a MUST read is Fight on Sioux, published by Grand Forks Chamber of Commerce award winning author, the Grand Forks Herald (soft cover). A seriously cool book about hockey history at the good old U of ND.

    You SHOULD be embarrassed if you have not read that.
    I'll save it for a lazy day in retirement. At least 35 years away for me. I'm sure it'll be updated with UND's 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th titles by then. Hell, maybe more once they start allowing schools to pay athletes a salary.
    Last edited by FadeToBlack&Gold; 12-07-2017 at 09:29 PM.
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    Re: Book Thread number ?

    Quote Originally Posted by FadeToBlack&Gold View Post
    Call of the Wild was alright. I loved White Fang.

    Never heard of the former three authors you've mentioned. I guess I should be embarrassed by that?
    No, you should be happy you discovered some new authors to read. 'A Man in Full' and 'Bonfire of the Vanities' are two of my favorite books and I think in time they will be two of the books people look to in order to understand the late 20th century in America. They are both 700 or 800 pages but I'm sure you will read both in less than a week. I read 'I am Charlotte Simmons' when I was a kid and loved it, but honestly I can't imagine reading it if I was over 25. 'Back to Blood'(was actually very disappointed when this came out as there was a long wait for it) and 'The Right Stuff' are okay if you like his other work.
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