Current Reads

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Re: Current Reads

Post  Swarley on Sun Jan 12, 2014 5:57 pm

I second the recommendation of the Harry Hole novels. The newest Police kept me guessing. Nesbo also
Spoiler:
kills off a main character. I still can't believe he did that.

I like mysteries. I just finished Lisa Gardner's new book Fear Nothing. I highly recommend it. I cried at the end y'all. Of a crime novel. This is not a thing that happens regularly.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  Crowbridge on Sun Jan 12, 2014 6:20 pm

Swarley wrote:I second the recommendation of the Harry Hole novels.
I hope they aren't illustrated.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  dinahmoe on Sun Jan 12, 2014 6:35 pm

Raksha wrote:Today I finished Gun Machine by Warren Ellis.  So good!  It begins with the discovery of an apartment full of guns.  Guns all over the floors and walls in a strange pattern.  Each gun turns out to have been used in an unsolved homicide.  Because it's a potential career ender, the case gets handed to John Tallow, the detective who discovered the room in the aftermath of seeing his partner's murder.  He wasn't a terribly engaged cop before his partner was killed, so the higher ups figure it will be easier to explain away the inevitable failure of the case and get rid of Tallow as a scape goat.  Tallow surprises everyone and actually digs in on the case.  Then things get weird!  
I have to thank you for this rec. I'm almost done with it, and wow, this is a hell of a story. I love all of the characters. I don't want it to end!
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Re: Current Reads

Post  Raksha on Tue Jan 14, 2014 12:56 am

Yay, I'm so glad you liked it, dinahmoe!  I don't know what Warren Ellis has planned, but I love the characters so much I'd be happy if he made this into a series starring them.


Today I tried to finish Mechanique: A Tale of the Circus Tresaulti by Genevieve Valentine.  Eh.  It was a really interesting premise and there wasn't anything I really objected to or anything, but for some reason I just kind of wandered off half way through it and haven't been able to make myself finish it.  I tried for, like, the 5th time today and I just didn't want to, so I quit.  My new Stargate Atlantis book is much more engrossing, so Mechanique is going back to the library.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  sagitare on Tue Jan 14, 2014 5:48 pm

Swarley wrote:I second the recommendation of the Harry Hole novels.  The newest Police kept me guessing.  Nesbo also
Spoiler:
kills off a main character. I still can't believe he did that.
Right? That pissed me off not just because
Spoiler:
I'd come to really like Beate but mostly because her death was solely to motivate Harry to get involved with the investigation. How her death was written was very much 'out of sight, out of mind' because once she was gone - and the whole death/discovery/aftermath was dealt with quickly - she just wasn't there any more. By contrast, the death of his partner Ellen was shown to inform and affect events the spanned at least two books, while also being a great personal blow to Harry. I felt Beate had become a significant character in her own right, not to mention a good friend to Harry, that her death should have meant far more than it did.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  puddingcup on Tue Jan 14, 2014 6:11 pm

Recently finished Kasher in the Rye, Moshe Kasher's memoir of his messed up childhood. I had seen Moshe's stand up show and he was so funny. So the book's subtitle is "The True Tale of a White Boy Who Became a Drug Addict, Criminal, Mental Patient, and then Turned 16", so it's not like I wasn't warned, but oof, that was a rough childhood. It's so hard for me to picture him now as the kid in the book, though. At the same time, the book was pretty funny, he cracks jokes constantly.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  Swarley on Tue Jan 14, 2014 6:24 pm

sagitare wrote:
Swarley wrote:I second the recommendation of the Harry Hole novels.  The newest Police kept me guessing.  Nesbo also
Spoiler:
kills off a main character. I still can't believe he did that.
Right? That pissed me off not just because
Spoiler:
I'd come to really like Beate but mostly because her death was solely to motivate Harry to get involved with the investigation. How her death was written was very much 'out of sight, out of mind' because once she was gone - and the whole death/discovery/aftermath was dealt with quickly - she just wasn't there any more. By contrast, the death of his partner Ellen was shown to inform and affect events the spanned at least two books, while also being a great personal blow to Harry. I felt Beate had become a significant character in her own right, not to mention a good friend to Harry, that her death should have meant far more than it did.

Especially when you consider
Spoiler:
he found her body because he was going to ask her to be his best man! It did seem forced. But I liked how no one would sit in her chair after wards.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  salamandersam on Tue Jan 14, 2014 8:56 pm

puddingcup wrote:Recently finished Kasher in the Rye, Moshe Kasher's memoir of his messed up childhood. I had seen Moshe's stand up show and he was so funny. So the book's subtitle is "The True Tale of a White Boy Who Became a Drug Addict, Criminal, Mental Patient, and then Turned 16", so it's not like I wasn't warned, but oof, that was a rough childhood. It's so hard for me to picture him now as the kid in the book, though. At the same time, the book was pretty funny, he cracks jokes constantly.

I really enjoyed that book when I read it about a year ago. He has been through so much and managed to come out of it and that book lingers with me a little.

Currently I'm reading In One Person by John Irving, and while I usually love Irving, this one is a bit of a slog. I'm hoping to read 52 books this year but it's taking me two weeks to read this one. While I finished Beautiful Ruins in less than 48 hours, I'm still trudging my way through. It seems like it was more of an experiment for Irving than for any character speaking to him, and it's just not captivating me like some of his past works have.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  Algae on Wed Jan 15, 2014 10:23 am

I just started Gun Machine and now I'm mad that I have to work and can't keep reading it...
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Re: Current Reads

Post  killershrew on Wed Jan 15, 2014 11:39 am

I just finished NOS4A2 by Joe Hill. I really enjoyed it despite occasionally thinking that he should just get to the point already (a thought I often have while reading Stephen King, unsurprisingly).
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Re: Current Reads

Post  RubyTuesday on Wed Jan 15, 2014 4:55 pm

I just finished Eleanor and Park, which I loved and probably would not have known about if not for this thread!  Next up is The Interestings.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  sagitare on Wed Jan 15, 2014 6:08 pm

killershrew wrote:I just finished NOS4A2 by Joe Hill.  I really enjoyed it despite occasionally thinking that he should just get to the point already (a thought I often have while reading Stephen King, unsurprisingly).  
I'd also really recommend Horns. The way he handles that story is very different from his other books, IMO, where the plots/structure are much more traditional (if you will): beginning, middle, end, everything moves forward. Horns is much more challenging from that narrative point of view in that the story doesn't really follow a linear structure, and there are questions left unanswered - not everything is resolved or tied up into a neat little bow, which I really liked. As a reader you're given that space and opportunity to come to your own conclusions about what was going on.

I've really enjoyed his books. Kudos to him for writing in the same genre as his father, and there's a very similar feel to how they write (NOS4A2 could have been written by Stephen, in fact, and I don't mean that as an insult at all - they just have that same overall style). Both of them also share the ability to create characters that I really enjoy reading about (whether they're good or bad people, or somewhere in between). Like, even if nothing happened in the story, I just like hanging out with them as they go about their lives, you know?


Last edited by sagitare on Wed Jan 15, 2014 10:32 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Current Reads

Post  choubetcha on Wed Jan 15, 2014 7:02 pm

sagitare, your description of Horns totally intrigues me. I liked NOS4A2 and Heart-Shaped Box quite a bit but haven't read that one.

I just read The Happiness Project, which is a good read for this resolutions-keeping time of year, and The Rosie Project (unexpected project theme!), which is a romance with a hero who's on the autism spectrum. I was a little worried that The Rosie Project had been overhyped, but I actually really enjoyed it.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  naughty zoot on Wed Jan 15, 2014 7:33 pm

Just started The Golem and the Jinni and I'm loving it so far. The Golem has been created, and her master has died on their way to America, leaving her stranded in 1890 NYC, and the jinni has been released in NYC as well, with no memory of how he ended up trapped. I can't wait for their meeting.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  Bad Username on Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:24 am

Moon Called by Patricia Briggs. The first book in an urban fantasy series revolving around a skinwalker named Mercy Thompson. In this universe fae have revealed their existence, but there are other supernatural creatures that haven't revealed themselves yet. I'm enjoying the book, it's a little slow, but it's also the first book in the series, so I want to give it a go. One thing that bugs me is that the main character doesn't have many female friends - she blames it on being a mechanic - and she was raised in a werewolf pack. In this interpretation werewolf packs are still heavily patriarchal, women don't have a lot of power, and Mercy was able to leave and have her own life because she's not a werewolf, and as a result the women in the pack don't like her. So we have a female character with no female friends and who other shapeshifter women are jealous of, which makes me eyeroll a little. Apart from that I'm enjoying it.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  sagitare on Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:35 am

choubetcha wrote:sagitare, your description of Horns totally intrigues me. I liked NOS4A2 and Heart-Shaped Box quite a bit but haven't read that one.
There are many places during the story where the temptation to just let the thing go really over the top would have been indulged by many other writers, but what I think Joe does so well is that he resists that and is careful about how much and how far to go with it. So when something dramatic/supernatural happens it has a lot of emotional impact.

Hopefully I haven't oversold it, LOL. If you pick it up, I hope you enjoy it!
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Re: Current Reads

Post  Coneycat on Thu Jan 16, 2014 10:06 am

Recently I've been on a biography-reading kick, so at the moment I'm reading Shakespeare: The Biography by Peter Ackroyd and, as of last night, Cleopatra: A Life by Stacy Schiff (on a recommendation from salamandersam.) The Cleopatra work belongs to the public library so I figured I had better not wait until I'd finished the Shakespeare to start it. I'm only a couple of chapters in, and about halfway finished the Shakespeare book.

Both writers are working from incomplete records and centuries (or more) of tradition. So far Ackroyd seems to be doing a good job of isolating what's actually known about Shakespeare and pointing out which legends are more or less plausible based on what's known about both the man and the times. (And in fact the description of the times and theatre in those days is pretty fascinating.) Schiff's style is more informal but so far she's also careful not to presume too much. She's definitely very readable.

So far I'd recommend both, although the Ackroyd book might be a little dense and dry for some readers.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  Raksha on Fri Jan 17, 2014 12:03 am

I second the rec for Stacy Schiff's Cleopatra book. I read it a while back and quite enjoyed it.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  dinahmoe on Fri Jan 17, 2014 12:43 am

Reading Harlan Coben's Six Years and holy crap is it a huge pile of suck. I love the Myron Bolitar books for what they are (silly, OTT mystery novels with a huge does of humor and heart), but the stand-alone books are not winning me over. This one is just so one-dimensional and BAD.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  Algae on Fri Jan 17, 2014 9:48 am

I finished Gun Machine last night! Thanks for the recommendation!
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Re: Current Reads

Post  whatthedeuce on Fri Jan 17, 2014 2:02 pm

dinahmoe wrote:Reading Harlan Coben's Six Years and holy crap is it a huge pile of suck. I love the Myron Bolitar books for what they are (silly, OTT mystery novels with a huge does of humor and heart), but the stand-alone books are not winning me over. This one is just so one-dimensional and BAD.
I love Harlan Coben because he keeps suspense going so well, but I think he's actually a really awful writer, overall. I've read every one of his books, and while Myron Bolitar is often amusing, he's also cheesy to the point of he driving me nuts. Coben keeps me turning pages and yet rolling my eyes the entire time, and more often than not, his endings are so ridiculous or corny.


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Re: Current Reads

Post  Raksha on Tue Jan 21, 2014 11:48 pm

Today I finished The Bread We Eat in Dreams by Catherynne Valente. She's one of my all-time favorite writers, so of course I loved it. I've read a few of the short stories in here already, but most were new. I'm a sucker for her use of language and the way she twists and turns folklore into something new.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  Putli Bai on Wed Jan 22, 2014 7:18 pm

I'll have to check it out. I've only read Deathless, but I liked it very much.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  Raksha on Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:57 pm

Definitely check it out! And if you liked Deathless, you'd probably also like her Orphan's Tales duology (is that a word?). It's amazing. It's actually one long story, but it's made up of smaller stories within stories, like those Russian nesting dolls, yet somehow it never gets confusing. And at the end, all these stories weave together to form one big tapestry that I just adored.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  MaddyCat on Thu Jan 23, 2014 4:40 pm

Right now I'm reading The Coldest Girl in Coldtown and so far it's quite good. I like its take on vampires and vampirism (it's an infection and everyone knows about it and tries to shove the infected into Coldtowns), and I like the protagonist too--tough on the outside, scared shitless on the inside Tana. I hope it continues to be good.

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Re: Current Reads

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