Thread: What are you currently reading?

  1. #2326
    "I don’t know this one, but I do enjoy Graham Swift, Waterland is one of my favourite novels. I re-read it a year or so ago, it was still captivating."

    It was just published a few weeks back. It's very much in the same sort of spirit as his recent, & brilliant, Mothering Sunday. He's a superb technician, I think, but at the same time, a very moving writer.

    I find MacFarlane slightly "showy" - there's a very sharp take-down of nature writers of his ilk by Kathleen Jamie (herself a brilliant poet & nature writer - & someone who I had the good fortune to study with at Uni) - who discusses a certain precious masculinity in their writing, that sense of an heroic "conquest", where the writing becomes as much about the man as it does about nature - what she calls the "lone enraptured male"! (This may not apply to the one you mention, which seems like it may be a slightly different type of book for him)
    Last edited by per anporth; 04-08-2020 at 03:48 PM.

  2. #2327
    Quote Originally Posted by per anporth View Post
    "I find MacFarlane slightly "showy" - there's a very sharp take-down of nature writers of his ilk by Kathleen Jamie (herself a brilliant poet & nature writer - & someone who I had the good fortune to study with at Uni) - who discusses a certain precious masculinity in their writing, that sense of an heroic "conquest", where the writing becomes as much about the man as it does about nature - what she calls the "lone enraptured male"! (This may not apply to the one you mention, which seems like it may be a slightly different type of book for him)
    I want to like MacFarlane but I find reading his work to be a bit of a slog. The Allan Holdsworth of nature/travel writers- technically and formally gifted but somehow lacking in connecting to the gut of the reader- well at least this reader.

  3. #2328
    Just finished a book (White Elephants and Red Herrings) on the origins of common phrases. Now reading Christopher Moore's Practical Demonkeeping, which is thus far pretty darn funny.
    Maka ki ecela tehani yanke lo!

  4. #2329
    Quote Originally Posted by per anporth View Post
    "I don’t know this one, but I do enjoy Graham Swift, Waterland is one of my favourite novels. I re-read it a year or so ago, it was still captivating."

    It was just published a few weeks back. It's very much in the same sort of spirit as his recent, & brilliant, Mothering Sunday. He's a superb technician, I think, but at the same time, a very moving writer.

    I find MacFarlane slightly "showy" - there's a very sharp take-down of nature writers of his ilk by Kathleen Jamie (herself a brilliant poet & nature writer - & someone who I had the good fortune to study with at Uni) - who discusses a certain precious masculinity in their writing, that sense of an heroic "conquest", where the writing becomes as much about the man as it does about nature - what she calls the "lone enraptured male"! (This may not apply to the one you mention, which seems like it may be a slightly different type of book for him)
    I’ll add the Swift to my wish list, I really enjoyed Mothering Sunday, so that’s all to the good.

    I know what you mean with MacFarlane. I am enjoying this one though, there are only a few places where his solitary wandering and “heroic conquest” of the land intrude. I enjoy the subject matter though, I love a cave or a hidden catacomb, though I would never consider a hobby of exploration with that level of danger. The ground beneath our feet has always been of interest to me.

  5. #2330
    Having completed O'Farrell's superb Hamnet, I'm going to be alternating new reads with classics by Elmore Leonard, whose Get Shorty is the only novel I have read... Starting off now with Swag.

  6. #2331
    Member Lou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sturgeon's Lawyer View Post
    Just finished a book (White Elephants and Red Herrings) on the origins of common phrases. Now reading Christopher Moore's Practical Demonkeeping, which is thus far pretty darn funny.
    Moore might be my favorite comedic author. This one is in my bullpen . If you haven't read it, please check out The Lamb. This is the funniest book I have ever read.
    A Comfort Zone is not a Life Sentence

  7. #2332
    Oh, I've readLamb, it's brilliant. "The Gospel according to Christ's childhood friend Biff".

    But my favorite of the Moore books I've read is The Stupidest Angel.
    Maka ki ecela tehani yanke lo!

  8. #2333
    Member Lou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sturgeon's Lawyer View Post
    Oh, I've readLamb, it's brilliant. "The Gospel according to Christ's childhood friend Biff".

    But my favorite of the Moore books I've read is The Stupidest Angel.
    That too is brilliant!
    A Comfort Zone is not a Life Sentence

  9. #2334
    Just started Jorma's Been So Long.. should be an interesting read..
    jorma_kaukonen._been_so_long_book_cover.jpg

  10. #2335
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    Quote Originally Posted by happytheman View Post
    Just started Jorma's Been So Long.. should be an interesting read..
    jorma_kaukonen._been_so_long_book_cover.jpg
    I read that last year and really enjoyed it.

  11. #2336
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveSly View Post
    I read that last year and really enjoyed it.
    Same here.
    Lou

    Awarded the Krusty Brand Seal of Approval. It's not just good, it's good enough.

  12. #2337
    Still reading Mark Lewisohn - The Beatles Tune in (extended edition)
    Interesting read, though I really need my dictonary.

    Yesterday I stumbled on the name of Graham Bonnet.

  13. #2338

  14. #2339
    George Alec Effinger's What Entropy Means to Me. I can't decide whether this is SF disguised as fantasy, fantasy disguised as SF, postmodern silliness, or what. It's funny as all get-out tho.
    Maka ki ecela tehani yanke lo!

  15. #2340
    Quote Originally Posted by interbellum View Post
    I wonder if more people here have read this book. For those who don't know it: it's the story of a 70 year old man, who is an amateur-chemistrist, but more important a musician and composter. Through flash-backs we learn a lot about 20th century music (both classical, modern and everything between those), but also his love for Mozart's Jupiter. In one scene he describes in what circumstances Messiaen's Quartet For The End Of Times was written and first performed. His chemical-activities though bring him in trouble.


  16. #2341
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    I started reading the new book “The OX: The Authorized Biography Of The Who’s John Entwistle. So far, I am really enjoying this book and it comes from a different perspective from Roger, Pete and Kenny’s books (all of which I have read). Entwistle started writing an autobiography at one point which is source material for some of this book. The family cooperated with the rest of it and there are lots of good tidbits from people who were close to John. I am up to the point right after “Quadrophenia” has been released. I would think any Who fans would enjoy this one. The guy certainly lived life to the fullest.

  17. #2342
    Member nosebone's Avatar
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    Hemingway's complete short stories.

    Love this guy!
    no tunes, no dynamics, no nosebone

  18. #2343
    Quote Originally Posted by interbellum View Post
    Here's another "review"/interview: http://www.angelswings.mindeartheart...-powers-orfeo/

  19. #2344
    Started re-reading William Styron's Sophie's Choice (1976). I bought the novel a few months before the movie was released in The Netherlands. Although I love the movie, I think the book is so much better. It's very much the story of a young wannabe-writer who struggles to find a way of living and, after a while, of writing. It takes quite a long time before he actually meets Sophie and Nathan.

    The book is partly auto-biographical. Styron describes his first job at a publisher where he refused the manuscript of Kon-Tiki, which as we know became a hugh hit after that. He also refers to the book he wrote before this one, The Confessions Of Nat Turner.

  20. #2345
    Dead Skip, by Joe Gores.

  21. #2346
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    Just started the new Steve Howe book. As others have said it is a bit dry, but I am enjoying it so far.

  22. #2347
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    I've watched quite a few of those Mafia's Greatest Hits–type shows on the American History Channel and Reelz. I've become intrigued about the Mob's role in the Kennedy election and assassination. I've had the book about Sam Giancana of the Chicago Outfit, Double Cross by Sam and Chuck Giancana, sitting around for years, so I've finally started reading it. Not very far in yet, but I've noticed the index has many entries for Jack and Bobby Kennedy. I've read a fair number of books by and about Mob characters. Fascinating stuff, though I wonder how true they really are.
    Lou

    Awarded the Krusty Brand Seal of Approval. It's not just good, it's good enough.

  23. #2348
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lopez View Post
    I've watched quite a few of those Mafia's Greatest Hits–type shows on the American History Channel and Reelz. I've become intrigued about the Mob's role in the Kennedy election and assassination. I've had the book about Sam Giancana of the Chicago Outfit, Double Cross by Sam and Chuck Giancana, sitting around for years, so I've finally started reading it. Not very far in yet, but I've noticed the index has many entries for Jack and Bobby Kennedy. I've read a fair number of books by and about Mob characters. Fascinating stuff, though I wonder how true they really are.
    The book "I Hear You Paint Houses" (the book "The Irishman" film was based on, implies mob involvement with the Kennedy's, although how much of it is actually true is open to debate. I have read a lot of mob books and find them interesting.

  24. #2349
    Ed Chang: Devil Take The Hindmost - The Otherworldly Music Of Allan Holdsworth (Jazz In Britain, 2020). It's not a biography in the true sense of the word, more a description of almost all recordings Holdsworth was involved with.

  25. #2350
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    Empress of Forever by Max Gladstone - a headlong rush of science fiction/fantasy that is extremely weird and utterly addictive.
    I don't like country music, but I don't mean to denigrate those who do. And for the people who like country music, denigrate means 'put down.'- Bob Newhart

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