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Author Topic: Return of the Book Thread  (Read 471535 times)
Murgos
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Reply #35 on: July 10, 2006, 07:24:26 PM

Next up is Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?- I have STILL never seen Blade Runner, so I thought I would check the book out first.

There is really no need for that.  As I recall the book and movie share little more than theme theme and a few names.  The directors cut of Blade Runner is EXTREMELY faithful to the overall theme of the book though.

"You have all recieved youre last warning. I am in the process of currently tracking all of youre ips and pinging your home adressess. you should not have commencemed a war with me" - Aaron Rayburn
Morat20
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Reply #36 on: July 10, 2006, 09:34:53 PM

I just noticed this thread -- ironically, I'm running a Nightside-inspired campaign for some friends. They wanted something "different" and with "wide-open character creation". None of them have ever read Green, so...*shrug*. I have a wealth of someone else's work to draw upon.

Books to recommend: A Fire Upon the Deep, and the collected works of Terry Pratchett.
Yegolev
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Reply #37 on: July 11, 2006, 12:54:17 AM

Still reading O'Reilly books when I'm not scanning electronic documentation.  Last thing I read was some chapters in Intermediate Perl, and the last I scanned was a section of Tivoli Storage Manager help files.  I find this stuff a lot more interesting than fiction, but I have been led to believe that view is abnormal.  Still, Intermediate Perl is long overdue and I recommend it if -- like me -- you have trouble jumping from basic programming to the Advanced Perl book.

Why am I homeless?  Why do all you motherfuckers need homes is the real question.
They called it The Prayer, its answer was law
Mommy come back 'cause the water's all gone
Sky
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Reply #38 on: July 11, 2006, 09:22:38 AM

I used to kick ass in BASIC back in the early 80s.

bhodi
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No lie.


Reply #39 on: July 11, 2006, 09:38:42 AM

Yegolev
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2/10 WOULD NOT INGEST


WWW
Reply #40 on: July 11, 2006, 10:16:17 AM

I used to kick ass in BASIC back in the early 80s.

Having learned BASIC like everyone else, I'll just say that shit won't fly now.  Apparently GOTO is the Debbil.  Everything smells like C, which is not bad at all... except that I can't program in C.  Damn my non-computer-oriented education, and thank Jebus for Larry Wall.

Why am I homeless?  Why do all you motherfuckers need homes is the real question.
They called it The Prayer, its answer was law
Mommy come back 'cause the water's all gone
WayAbvPar
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Reply #41 on: July 11, 2006, 11:06:57 AM


Awesome.

Finished Ender's Game. Very interesting book, but I was not a big fan of the last 50 pages or so; it felt really rushed, and the 'surprise' ending wasn't much of a surprise at all. Still, I can see why it is popular, especially for a younger crowd. Thumbs up.

When speaking of the MMOG industry, the glass may be half full, but it's full of urine. HaemishM

Always wear clean underwear because you never know when a Tory Government is going to fuck you.- Ironwood

Who the hell taught you how to write? Fuck, that sentence is like internet transmitted face-attacking knives. Jesus. schild
Morat20
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Reply #42 on: July 11, 2006, 11:52:32 AM

I used to kick ass in BASIC back in the early 80s.

Having learned BASIC like everyone else, I'll just say that shit won't fly now.  Apparently GOTO is the Debbil.  Everything smells like C, which is not bad at all... except that I can't program in C.  Damn my non-computer-oriented education, and thank Jebus for Larry Wall.
Jump statements ARE the devil.
Hoax
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l33t kiddie


Reply #43 on: July 11, 2006, 03:30:20 PM

So I just hopped in Acorn books on Polk, looking for a bunch of stuff from the thread.  I didn't find much but I did pick up Gaiman's Neverwhere for $2.10 so its all good.  I also saw the 4th book in the Hawk & whatever series by Simon Green but nothing from "Nightside".

I've got a list now though so I'll stop at a few more random book stores and see what I can find.

A nation consists of its laws. A nation does not consist of its situation at a given time. If an individual's morals are situational, then that individual is without morals. If a nation's laws are situational, that nation has no laws, and soon isn't a nation.
-William Gibson
Murgos
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Reply #44 on: July 11, 2006, 07:42:42 PM

I used to kick ass in BASIC back in the early 80s.

Having learned BASIC like everyone else, I'll just say that shit won't fly now.  Apparently GOTO is the Debbil.  Everything smells like C, which is not bad at all... except that I can't program in C.  Damn my non-computer-oriented education, and thank Jebus for Larry Wall.
Jump statements ARE the devil.

Well, unless your working in ASM.  But then I guess you could say you were in hell already...

"You have all recieved youre last warning. I am in the process of currently tracking all of youre ips and pinging your home adressess. you should not have commencemed a war with me" - Aaron Rayburn
Strazos
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Reply #45 on: July 11, 2006, 08:06:46 PM

Just started reading the Starship Troopers book....it's pretty engaging, at least moreso than Dune.

Fear the Backstab!
"Plato said the virtuous man is at all times ready for a grammar snake attack." - we are lesion
"Hell is other people." -Sartre
Morat20
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Reply #46 on: July 11, 2006, 08:44:03 PM

I used to kick ass in BASIC back in the early 80s.

Having learned BASIC like everyone else, I'll just say that shit won't fly now.  Apparently GOTO is the Debbil.  Everything smells like C, which is not bad at all... except that I can't program in C.  Damn my non-computer-oriented education, and thank Jebus for Larry Wall.
Jump statements ARE the devil.

Well, unless your working in ASM.  But then I guess you could say you were in hell already...
I'd say ASM is more purgatory. ADA is hell.
Johny Cee
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Reply #47 on: July 11, 2006, 10:10:12 PM

Just started reading the Starship Troopers book....it's pretty engaging, at least moreso than Dune.

Heinlein is pretty good,  and Starship Troopers is probably my favorite.  Of the sci fi "masters" (Clarke, Asimov, Heinlein),  I think his work holds up the best with time.

Just keep in mind when you read him that he's writing the equivalent of literary trolling.  He liked to kick the hell out of socially accepted ideas.  He takes a run at government, democracy, sexual mores, and gender roles at different times.

You sound like historical fiction might be your thing,  if you enjoy or are knowledgable about history?  There's some pretty good historical stuff out there.  From Three Musketeers to the "Hornblower" or "Aubrey & Maturin" books.

Contempory scifi,  Simmons does alot with historical or literary bases. 
Johny Cee
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Reply #48 on: July 11, 2006, 10:11:38 PM

So I just hopped in Acorn books on Polk, looking for a bunch of stuff from the thread.  I didn't find much but I did pick up Gaiman's Neverwhere for $2.10 so its all good.  I also saw the 4th book in the Hawk & whatever series by Simon Green but nothing from "Nightside".

I've got a list now though so I'll stop at a few more random book stores and see what I can find.

I'd say stay away from "Hawk & Fisher". 

Pretty much anything from Gaiman is gold, though.
Johny Cee
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Reply #49 on: July 11, 2006, 10:23:12 PM

Has anyone read Laura Resnick's Disappearing Nightly?  I've heard some offhand good things mentioned,  but haven't managed to find a copy yet.

@ Sky:

If you mind browsing through used books online,  Cook has a bunch of out of print titles which are pretty good.  Passage at Arms,  essentially "Das Boot" in space with lots of Cook paranoia and negativism, is a favorite of mine.  Tower of Fear is a one shot fantasy book that's real interesting.

The Dragon Never Sleeps is out of print,  and supposed to be one of his best.  It used to have a regular spot in the "100 best scifi/fantasy novels" website, before the site went out of date.

I still haven't tracked down a copy yet, though.


Bujold also has a new book due out on October 1st.  Don't see much info on it yet,  so will do some digging.  Doesn't look like she's going back Miles Vorkosigan any time soon.
sarius
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Reply #50 on: July 11, 2006, 11:14:30 PM

Quote
After a few years of mostly non-fiction, I am in the midst of a self-indulgent fiction orgy. Good times!
Yeah, I'm happily amidst that phase now. Started with LE Modesitt's Recluse stuff, moved into GRR Martin's Fire and Ice stuff and now back through the Cook and Rosenberg I mentioned earlier. I'm really enjoying them all, but the Cook and Rosenberg is especially fun because it a) held up over the years (I first read them when I was in my teens) and 2) have several new books in the series I haven't read.

I commend you on Modesitt as a choice for fantasy fiction.  Recluse restored my faith in story-telling as an art, once upon a time.  'Gravity Dreams' intrigued me, too, from his collection.

It's always our desire to control that leads to injustice and inequity. -- Mary Gordon
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Reg
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Reply #51 on: July 12, 2006, 02:21:12 AM

I liked the Recluse books too but Modesitt's habit of writing out sound effects annoyed and distracted me until I learned to tune it out.

Am I the only one that noticed that?

I've also been reading some Martha Wells books. Death of the Necromancer is a good stand alone book set in what feels like a parallel version of 19th century England where magic and technology both work. It even has it's own version of Sherlock Holmes and Watson. There's a trilogy set about 20 years after Death of the Necromancer that's also fun so far.
Sky
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Reply #52 on: July 12, 2006, 08:34:17 AM

I never noticed that, I guess. I enjoyed his take on magic, with Recluse being located over an iron vein, thus anchoring order. And the tie to crafting trades ordering chaos. Good stuff, most books just kinda throw in magic so offhandedly, I like at least a nod toward believability, within a given framework.

Morat20
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Reply #53 on: July 12, 2006, 11:42:31 AM

Quote
After a few years of mostly non-fiction, I am in the midst of a self-indulgent fiction orgy. Good times!
Yeah, I'm happily amidst that phase now. Started with LE Modesitt's Recluse stuff, moved into GRR Martin's Fire and Ice stuff and now back through the Cook and Rosenberg I mentioned earlier. I'm really enjoying them all, but the Cook and Rosenberg is especially fun because it a) held up over the years (I first read them when I was in my teens) and 2) have several new books in the series I haven't read.

I commend you on Modesitt as a choice for fantasy fiction.  Recluse restored my faith in story-telling as an art, once upon a time.  'Gravity Dreams' intrigued me, too, from his collection.

If you liked Gravity Dreams you might try his Parafaith War and it's sequal The Ethos Effect.
bhodi
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Reply #54 on: July 12, 2006, 12:01:30 PM

parafaith war is one of my favorite novels, ethos effect didn't quite live up to the first but it was still good.
Morat20
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Reply #55 on: July 12, 2006, 12:46:49 PM

parafaith war is one of my favorite novels, ethos effect didn't quite live up to the first but it was still good.
I've noticed authors -- at least the long running ones -- tend to ultimately hit a stage where some notion just takes over, and all their books tend to reflect it. (If they avoid the Monster Long Fantasy Series trap).

Moddesitt seems to find the intertwining of ethics, power, and society to be a subject he can't let go of. His books tend to be about the ethics of power, and situations in which individuals (or small groupings) have to handle an ethical dilemna resulting from uncommon power -- in short, if you DO have the ability to change society, and think it should be changed -- how do you know you're right? And should you be making that choice for everyone?

Alan Dean Foster just got obsessed with the English language. I've had to look up words he's used, and I haven't had to resort to a dictionary in 20 years.

The less said about the obsession Chalker got himself into, the better.
bhodi
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No lie.


Reply #56 on: July 12, 2006, 12:51:31 PM

very true, if you check out the wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L._E._Modesitt%2C_Jr. , the recurring themes section, and look at the book list, it's really apparent.

Hey, someone added a whole parafaith war entry.. it wasn't there last time I looked! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Parafaith_War

Edit: something I really like and wish people did more, is supplement the narrative with fictional texts. I like that. It was done in this book, and in dune, to great effect.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2006, 01:03:05 PM by bhodi »
Morat20
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Reply #57 on: July 12, 2006, 01:08:55 PM

very true, if you check out the wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L._E._Modesitt%2C_Jr. , the recurring themes section, and look at the book list, it's really apparent.

Hey, someone added a whole parafaith war entry.. it wasn't there last time I looked! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Parafaith_War

Edit: something I really like and wish people did more, is supplement the narrative with fictional texts. I like that. It was done in this book, and in dune, to great effect.
I tend to agree -- when it's done well, it's a great addition to the book. Shows planning -- or at least good editing -- and helps highlight themes and bring certain subtleties to light.
Strazos
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Reply #58 on: July 12, 2006, 01:22:35 PM

Not really pertinent, but the final 100 pages or so of the second book of The Cleric's Quintet made me want to cry...

*A bunch of pages about dwarves killing orcs and shit*

*Some elves killed some goblins*

*Some trees killed some giants and caught on fire*

etc etc....the big battle at the end of that book just went on for what seemed like half the book. I was tempted to just skip ahead.

Fear the Backstab!
"Plato said the virtuous man is at all times ready for a grammar snake attack." - we are lesion
"Hell is other people." -Sartre
Righ
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Reply #59 on: July 12, 2006, 11:51:33 PM

Has anyone read Laura Resnick's Disappearing Nightly?  I've heard some offhand good things mentioned,  but haven't managed to find a copy yet.

I was scared off when I browsed upon it in a bookshop. It sounded a bit too Nancy Drew.

The camera adds a thousand barrels. - Steven Colbert
Margalis
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Reply #60 on: July 13, 2006, 01:03:11 AM

I like Heinlein but I find his earlier stuff way better than his later stuff. I think Farnham's Freehold might be the worst book I've ever read.

For people who really like stuff like Dick and Heinlein I say pick up some old copies of some of the monthly short-fiction collections that used to run, "Fantasy and Science Fiction" for example. (Or maybe "Science Fiction and Fantasy", I forget) Those things are pure gold. They have trashy pulp to cerebral concept stuff, each issue has something new and interesting, some very well-established authors and some one-shot weirdos.

Just make sure to stop when you start to get into the 1980s. Then they turn to crap.

I love reading those old collections, you get exposed to so many interesting authors, stories and concepts, it's really a treat.

vampirehipi23: I would enjoy a book written by a monkey and turned into a movie rather than this.
Lt.Dan
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Reply #61 on: July 13, 2006, 01:09:36 AM

I've been digging back through oldie sci-fi.  Man in the High Castle, Canticle for Leibowitz, and a compilation of Ray Bradbury short stories.  Great stuff.  Really interesting ideas and characters.  I seriously can't understand how people read "Monster Long Fantasy Series" (thanks morat).  Even incorporating relatively grown-up themes doesn't hide the fact that they are bloated, pulp stories centred around a very narrow hero character.  there's nothing wrong with this per se, but I went through that stage reading the Belgariad.  Now, it's so bad it seems half the sci-fi section is part x of something.  

That said, I'm currently reading Neal Stephenson's The Confusion.  I picked it up for $5 and I did like Cryptonomicon - what could possibly go wrong?  Sadly, now I remember why I never finished Quicksilver (its predecessor).  I just don't give a shit about the characters and the story.  All the main characters are practically omniscient, it's like reading a story in god-mode - I know who's going to win and I still have 300 pages to go.

Luckily, I just got some books back from long-term storage.  I've got some great non-fiction.  Chaos by James Gleick, Genius (bio of Richard Feynman) by James Gleick, Chickenhawk (bio of a vietnam helicopter pilot) and a bazillion cook-books.

Morat20
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Reply #62 on: July 13, 2006, 11:38:59 AM

A Canticle for Liebowtiz still rates up there are some seriously good shit. It's a damn classic. I never bothered reading the sequel thing he finally wrote. Didn't want to risk it sucking.

If you're fond of classic sci-fi, you should try The Lathe of Heaven.
Raph
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WWW
Reply #63 on: July 13, 2006, 11:42:41 AM

Righ
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Reply #64 on: July 13, 2006, 12:16:19 PM

Thanks. I think I'll pick up The Carpet Makers and also give Lisa Tuttle a fresh try. I first discovered Tuttle because she married (and divorced) one of my favorite quirky British SF authors a long time ago, Christopher Priest. While she's a great writer, she seems to prefer to write short stories, and the novels I've read seem a bit strained.

The camera adds a thousand barrels. - Steven Colbert
Sky
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Reply #65 on: July 13, 2006, 02:01:41 PM

Quote from: Raph
Certainly plenty was going on within UO that I wasn’t aware of! The stories of strong-arm quasi-mob tactics by gold farmers, the various macro techniques, and so on, make for compelling reading.
Oh yeah, I'm so done with online worlds. Irl, the most cunning cocksucker wins. Online reflects that pretty well. Oblivion may be lonely, but I don't have to worry about some 3rd party progging hackwad hopped up on red bull showing up to....enhance the experience.

WayAbvPar
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Reply #66 on: July 13, 2006, 02:45:44 PM

Finished Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?. Holy fuck, what a depressing book. Very well written, however. I also ordered the Blade Runner Director's Cut DVD, so I can see how far it goes from the book (which is quite far, from what I have heard).

All Tomorrow's Parties is next (sitting on my desk now). Then either the Amber Chronicles or Betting Thoroughbreds (Daddy needs to get his gamble on!).

When speaking of the MMOG industry, the glass may be half full, but it's full of urine. HaemishM

Always wear clean underwear because you never know when a Tory Government is going to fuck you.- Ironwood

Who the hell taught you how to write? Fuck, that sentence is like internet transmitted face-attacking knives. Jesus. schild
Morat20
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Reply #67 on: July 13, 2006, 03:33:32 PM

Finished Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?. Holy fuck, what a depressing book. Very well written, however. I also ordered the Blade Runner Director's Cut DVD, so I can see how far it goes from the book (which is quite far, from what I have heard).
Philip Dick there fucking wrote anything happy. Dystopian hell all the way.
Hoax
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Reply #68 on: July 13, 2006, 03:34:19 PM

Philip Dick there fucking wrote anything happy. Dystopian hell all the way.

Are you drunk?

A nation consists of its laws. A nation does not consist of its situation at a given time. If an individual's morals are situational, then that individual is without morals. If a nation's laws are situational, that nation has no laws, and soon isn't a nation.
-William Gibson
Johny Cee
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Reply #69 on: July 13, 2006, 03:57:54 PM

Finished Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?. Holy fuck, what a depressing book. Very well written, however. I also ordered the Blade Runner Director's Cut DVD, so I can see how far it goes from the book (which is quite far, from what I have heard).

All Tomorrow's Parties is next (sitting on my desk now). Then either the Amber Chronicles or Betting Thoroughbreds (Daddy needs to get his gamble on!).

"Amber Chronicles" is The Great Book of Amber, right?

It's very good stuff, though the last five books are a bit weaker.  If you feel like picking up more Zelazny after,  make sure to ask first.  Zelazny was very, very prolific and not all of it was great.  One of those authors that was brilliant but had some money issues,  and churned out too much stuff for the paycheck.

I don't now about the Amber stuff being written now.  Supposedly,  Zelazny told close friends not to continue the series (includes Brust and Wolfe, among others.) 

I have some real issues with near-future cyberpunk/scifi stuff.  Their economic systems are too kludged for me to suspend disbelief,  and are usually gapping holes of ignorance for anyone with a background in developmental economics.
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