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(Short List)   14 daunting books that every man should read. Subby has read less than zero of these   (shortlist.com) divider line 303
    More: Scary, Manic Street Preachers, Moby Dick, bookshelf  
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20906 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 27 Apr 2012 at 10:43 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-04-27 01:32:17 PM
From this list I have read Zen, Infinite Jest and Underworld. All three of them made me want to vomit in my sock drawer. What, no Tom Robbins fark-fests for extra literary brownie points?

/"literary" rarely means "good"
 
2012-04-27 01:32:22 PM

keylock71: OldManDownDRoad: Heh - I'm currently sitting two blocks from the theatre where he wrote some of the first draft. Good book, glad it hasn't been forgotten.

My wife bought The Moviegoer for me... I'm ashamed to say I had never heard of him before that. Thoroughly enjoying the read, though. Can't wait to read more by him!

johnny queso: walker percy is fantastic. the moviegoer and love in the ruins both are excellent. the gf calls me binx due to my tendency to wander the streets and watch the world go by.

Heh... One of the reasons my wife got it for me. She said, "You'll like it. The main character wanders around aimlessly like you do."


Nice. :)
 
2012-04-27 01:32:32 PM

hasty ambush: [ecx.images-amazon.com image 300x300]


i834.photobucket.com
 
2012-04-27 01:36:30 PM
I've read Hawkings book. Liked it. Most of the rest i would never read, only because i dont bother with fiction books. I think if my bookcase at home has more than 5 fiction titles, its a lot.
 
2012-04-27 01:38:59 PM

BohemianGraham: 555-FILK: mr_a: Total read: 5
Total enjoyed: 0

Did you (or anyone reading this thread) ever read Pillars of the Earth?

A bit off subject from the list of books but I recently tried reading Trainspotting and it was simply unreadable with the Scottish dialect used in the book. Stopped reading after about 60 pages.

It's not that off topic, as it is a "daunting" read in a sense.

Reading Trainspotting was a lot like reading A Clockwork Orange. You have no idea what the fark you're reading at first, but then you begin to pick up on the language and it's easy as fark to read. I thought the accents and the slang in both books really worked, and they were far superior to their film counterparts, especially ACO, since Kubrick adapted the American version which lops off the last chapter and thus ruins the symbolism Burgess had going.

I actually missed the accent when I tried to read the sequel to Trainspotting, Porno.


If I didn't read finish Trainspotting would be okay to read Porno? Also along that genre did you ever read Last Exit to Brooklyn?

This is a great thread but didn't hear much about The Count of Monte Cristo. I'll keep reading because I'm sure someone mentioned it. Once I finish "Pillars" I'm going to read In Cold Blood and then The Count of Monte Cristo.

proteus_b: i'm hardly a feminazi but are women just not meant to read at all, or just to focus on the jane austen works?


I'm not a feminazi myself but I just don't think women read as much as men and I mean books, not Cosmo, Glamour or People, etc. I hang out at the local library a lot and see far more men reading and looking for books than women. Women are usually looking for DVDs to borrow. This is just what I observe.

I was held back in second grade because I was small for my age and picked on, yada, yada, yada and hated school with a passion! Paniced at the site of the building, the teachers were nice and knew I struggled with reading but I mostly hated the kids for making school hell for me for a those few years. I couldn't read so my parents had me repeat the third grade. I simply didn't apply myself but knew I had it in me learn. Hated my parents at the time for doing it but as I got older I understood why they did it and now I thank them for doing so.

I real a lot of books and magazines from time to time and am the only one in my family who actually reads books cover to cover. They're actually quite amazed at how much I do read. Really started reading more and more once I hit my 30s. I'd much rather read a book than watch some crappy show peppered through evening television. That's not to say I don't like to watch cooking and home and garden shows or older re-runs of Law & Order-type shows.

+1 for Subby for a great thread. I love book threads.
 
2012-04-27 01:40:31 PM

Braindeath: I forgot that I checked out Infinite Jest. I should read that but it's probably expired by now. However, I don't care about specific books. Just read some farking books other than Twilight and you're good with me.

ModernLuddite: While I tend toward agreement THOMAS HARDY IS AWESOME. I had been warned and warned about how terrible he was, then somehow ended up reading "Jude the Obscure". That book is farking amazing. I really, really encourage everyone to read that one novel.

Someone else likes Thomas Hardy? I am besides myself. I love Jude the Obscure and everyone else hates it.


Another Thomas Hardy fan here, albeit a casual one.

I've been meaning to read Jude the Obscure as well as Far from the Maddening Crowd, I loved the film. I've personally enjoyed The Woodlanders (first Hardy I ever read when I was about 15) and Tess of the d'Urbervilles.
 
2012-04-27 01:52:07 PM

OldManDownDRoad: keylock71:
I was a Communications Major so I'm in no position to ridicule Creative Writing Majors... (I did go back and get a degree in Graphic Design when I was in my 30s, though).

I was a double major in English/History. When I realized that would be slow starvation, I shifted in my senior year to Journalism. That department at my uni is now "Communications" since journalism jobs started drying up about 15 years into my career, and includes PR and electronic media - including design.

Taught myself web development. I assume those jobs will start drying up soon, but hopefully not before I can retire. Or win the lottery.

Anyway, the so-called liberal arts curricula at least teach you how to read, process, think, and arrive at new knowledge. Whether that's learning new skills or proving in a Fark thread on books that not all Farkers are sub-liberate morons blaming everything on Rethuglicans or Muslim Socialists, rational thinking is a skill worth every hour spent at the library.

/or so I keep telling myself


My original intent was to go into Radio... I quickly found out I would be better off going into commercial fishing (Which I also did for a while, as well as Chef, Bouncer, Laborer and Sign Fabricator).

I was working as a Travel Agent when I got laid off in 2003. So, I did the reasonable thing and went to Art School... : )

Honestly, money was never much of a motivator for me. I never had it growing up, so it's not like I'm missing out on anything, and I love what I do now (Senior Designer at an advertising agency and also do a lot of freelance work).

If I had it to do again, I wouldn't change a thing.
 
2012-04-27 01:52:25 PM
I've read none. I'm not too big on Fiction. Though I'll always love "Where the Red Fern Grows'

We Die Alone, The Long Walk, and the Journeys Out of the Body trilogy by Robert Monroe are some of my faves.

Yea, I'm not too sophisticated.
 
2012-04-27 01:53:05 PM
Huh, Fark likes Thomas Hardy, eh?

I've always thought he was melodramatic. Then again, he's at the tailend of the Victorians, so everything is poetry about dead chicks and starving children.

The end of Jude the Obscure always struck me as unrealistic.

SPOILER

His twelve-year-old son and daughter hang themselves, their reason being to relieve the stress and burden of cost against their parents, and Jude's wife leaves him for another man. Really? How do children of that age conceive of suicide? Are children really so adept that they perceive that their deaths would alleviate their parents' suffering?

After Hardy wrote Jude he received so many letters decrying how depressing the book was that he stopped writing novels altogether and solely worked on poetry. I'm not surprised, that book is a gauntlet. It's not like Tess is any better either. Dat rape scene...
 
2012-04-27 01:55:48 PM

keylock71: If I had it to do again, I wouldn't change a thing.


Actually, that's a lie... I would have tried harder to bang my high school crush, Meagan Farley.
 
2012-04-27 01:59:05 PM
There is nothing "pseudo" or "pop" about Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, and it is not philosophy.

It is one thing, not to understand. It is quite another to disparage from ignorance.
 
2012-04-27 02:04:27 PM

BohemianGraham: I didn't mind Trainspotting at all and actually found it a bit easier to read


Someday I'm sure I'll pick up Trainspotting again. It seemed like a good book and just like with Requiem for a Dream, Selby's writting was quite unconventional from what I'm used to reading but once I got past the first 50 pages I got the hang of his style of writing and slang.

and they never missed the books because no one had checked any of them out since the 1980s, and we still had paper and pencil checkouts, no electronic shiat),

I was in high school in the mid-80s and we the cards with the old-school stamp that was used to date books for when they were due back.

We actually had to use the Dewey Decimal System/Card Catalog system throughout school and my family had A-Z of the Encyclopedia Britannica at home in the glass shelves. Yes, the glass shelves to keep them free from dust and to keep the leather bindings in fine condition for generations to come. My mom donated them to Goodwill after I graduated high school when the folks redcorated the family room and got rid of the glass shelves. Lolz :)
 
2012-04-27 02:06:55 PM

Springy23: Really? How do children of that age conceive of suicide? Are children really so adept that they perceive that their deaths would alleviate their parents' suffering?


LOLWUT? I'm thinking you don't know many 12 year olds.

Just food for thought, according to many Christian sects, age 12 is when you are fully capable of accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and become culpable for any sins you may commit.
 
2012-04-27 02:08:47 PM

God Is My Co-Pirate: keylock71: I would also say that as far as Joyce goes, Finnegan's Wake if far more daunting than Ulysses.

I've read Finnegans Wake and enjoyed it, despite having to write many, many essays on it, but In the Name of the Rose broke me. I tried so hard.


Hmmm, all I recall of FW was that it was several hundred pages of this.
(excerpted and hot)

What clashes here of wills gen wonts, oystrygods gaggin fishy-
gods! Brékkek Kékkek Kékkek Kékkek! Kóax Kóax Kóax! Ualu
Ualu Ualu! Quaouauh! Where the Baddelaries partisans are still
out to mathmaster Malachus Micgranes and the Verdons cata-
pelting the camibalistics out of the Whoyteboyce of Hoodie
Head. Assiegates and boomeringstroms. Sod's brood, be me fear!
Sanglorians, save! Arms apeal with larms, appalling. Killykill-
killy: a toll, a toll. What chance cuddleys, what cashels aired
and ventilated! What bidimetoloves sinduced by what tegotetab-
solvers! What true feeling for their's hayair with what strawng
voice of false jiccup! O here here how hoth sprowled met the
duskt the father of fornicationists but, (O my shining stars and
body!) how hath fanespanned most high heaven the skysign of
soft advertisement! But was iz? Iseut? Ere were sewers?
 
2012-04-27 02:09:37 PM
Not on the lis, but should be: House of Leaves
farm1.staticflickr.com
 
2012-04-27 02:12:37 PM

DeaH: I loved the book Starship Troopers. When I read it, I came away thinking, "This is how a man is turned into a soldier." The futuristic setting seemed a lot less important than the transformation of a man into a soldier. Even the nature of citizenship was secondary, to me.


Cyberpunk by Bruce Bethke was much the same. I view them both as transition from boyhood into manhood though. They're about learning and growth.

Just finished Hunger Games(all 3). I kept thinking it'd be a similar tale, but found it was too similar to twilight's vapid every-woman thing only they made it masculine enough that it did it for both the sexes. Saving grace was a meta-story / action that made you stick with it instead of giving up in a fury.

Before that it was Wheel of Time(all books). Robert Jordan was one of the worst authors I've ever read. Repetition, over and over, redundantly so, reviews of what the unchanging characters felt, usually about the other characters. Hunger Games had a little of that going on, it only saved itself by being so short. Gave this set up in disgust the first time I tried to tackle it, as it was also aggravatingly slow. Once you get a feel for it, you learn to scan through the more than useless filler. Where Cyberpunk and Starship Troopers got growth right, A Clockwork Orange got it wrong(an almost instant switch in the famous cut off chapter) as did Wheel of Time in that it almost never happens to any characters, except the one's with a magical fate, and then it takes extreme environments. Perpetual childhood, for the whole planet. Sure, maybe there's a meta-message in there, a reflection on society, whatever. Hunger games, we get a mongoloid ignorant main character who's stunted.

_________________

As to the listed books. If daunting means boring, then yeah. Old tales for an old generation where thinking outside the box wasn't allowed really. I'm not all that big on finding a meaning within, I prefer the in your face confrontation with ideals and what X really means, but that doesn't mean it has to be blunt or glaringly obvious. Almost too careful avoidance of a real theme just makes me think of artsy try-hards. A million dollar white canvas piece of art, and it's subsequent celebration as brilliance and talent...

Same for convoluted stories where one can dig up and read into the work any type of meaning or parallel they want, is also annoying. Still akin to the blank canvas...

I find much of that reading, irrelevant. The tales carry morals that suit a different age, concepts that sound silly today, or meaningless "I wish i had a better life" such as Jane Austen's tragedy turned fantasy. (Although Pride and Prejudice and Zombies was mildly entertaining.) Dickens can be good, even shakespear, but IMO, they make better movies/plays. Mel Gibson's Macbeth was great, Romeo & J modernized but only visually was entertaining(yes, even with young Leo, but he dies, so maybe that's why I liked it). Great Expectations modernized was also a great tale, Dinero was awesome. Reading these were about as entertaining as digging a ditch.

Maybe you enjoy it, that's fine, as long as you don't get pretentious about it. I read what grabs me, immerses me, and entertains me. Sometimes I've got to sort through some real garbage, either within a book, or within a genre, to find something I like, or atleast find some redeeming quality.

I'm not going to choke down caviar so much that I become acclimated to it's foulness, just to fit someone elses idea of what I "should" like. I simply won't eat it.

I very much like C. S. Friedman's books. A pulp series called Deathlands(post apocalyptic group of adventurers, cheap stuff I know, but it fills a craving). Cyberpunk - William Gibson has some good ones, Heinlen of course(but some are too out there, or too silly, but there are several gems). Foundation(a set that spans centuries), Diamond Age, The Belgarion set(Started with the last book first by chance, Belgariad which also covered vast amounts of time). Hmm....more fantasy, Forgotten Realms - RA Salvatore and the like(goes back to where my reading started).

Right now, I'm jumping the gap, again, and reading the novels for the Halo(videogame) universe. The beginning of which, are like Cyberpunk and Starship Troopers with the training of spartans(a couple of books do this), and deals with their missions along the way, and spin a neat sci-fi universe as it goes on. They're writing books 100,000 years ago in the same line(about forerunners), as well as finally continuing the saga after Halo 3 and the last book written years ago(the first is out i believe).

I liked the story for that game, but the books do it so much more justice.
 
2012-04-27 02:16:04 PM
I like to thread bomb!

Anyway, since this is a literary thread, could anyone recommend some new novels for me if I love Jim butchers Dresden, and moderately like the Anita Blake series (laurell k Hamilton). I like the supernatural, the detective, the 'going up against odds which should kill me and surviving by will power and grit and intelligence and planning' aspects. I hate the endless sex scenes and romantic plots of hamiltons novels, they're just boring.

I've tried Kim Harrison, but her writing is honestly just too g rated for me. Pellet guns, no swearing, etc. just strikes me as overtly child friendly, to the point of being sanitized.

As to topic at hand, of the books I've tried on that list, I didn't enjoy them. Ergo I didn't read them. I read for enjoyment of the story, and have no real interest in the agendas of the author. For comparison, I don't read king because I don't enjoy his novels either. No matter how grossly popular they are.
 
2012-04-27 02:27:34 PM
Hey, speaking of books....

Go to librivox.org and you can browse for and download free audio books which are in the public domain. Then you can have books read to you while you drive, if you have figured out how to interface your MP3 player to your car stereo. It's a great way to catch up on old classics, since it does not contain recently published - copyrighted - materials.

I'm a fan, not an affiliate. The only downside is that all reading is done by volunteers. Some are highly competent and a delight to the ears while others are apparently practicing English.

I am now learning about the history of ancient Egypt from books by Gaston Maspero. I recently enjoyed several works about ancient Greece. Thucydides' Peloponnesian War" really ought to be on a 100 books to read type of list, and not because of anything in it specific to Greece. The bulk of works available from librivox are of fiction, however.

/my two cents
 
2012-04-27 02:31:42 PM
Excuse me:
upload.wikimedia.org

Or, for something more accessible:
www.thomaspynchon.com
/hot images
 
2012-04-27 02:39:00 PM
Read most of them, and find "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance" to be, in the words of Jonathan Swift, author of Gulliver's Travels, "Total shiate."
 
2012-04-27 02:42:28 PM
"Extraordinary Popular Delusions and The Madness of Crowds", Charles Mackay, 1841

Written 170 years ago. In a nutshell, it documented how stupid people are. Things have not improved.

Wiki-wack-pedia

Being as old as it is, free versions are readily available. If you can't read the whole thing, read the sections on "bubbles" and think about recent history.
 
2012-04-27 02:46:31 PM

kroonermanblack: Anyway, since this is a literary thread, could anyone recommend some new novels for me if I love Jim butchers Dresden, and moderately like the Anita Blake series (laurell k Hamilton). I like the supernatural, the detective, the 'going up against odds which should kill me and surviving by will power and grit and intelligence and planning' aspects. I hate the endless sex scenes and romantic plots of hamiltons novels, they're just boring.


You may like the Night Watch series by Lukyanenko. It's very, very Russian.
 
2012-04-27 02:46:53 PM
I tried to read A Brief History of Time and gave up after the first page or so when he managed to get Kant wrong. I mean, it's understandable, but kind of kills his credibility. And yes, I have read the Critique of Pure Reason - Kant needed an editor. The earlier version, A Treatise on Human Nature, was better. Hilariously wrong, but at least it was whimsically and hilariously wrong in the telling, rather than a phone book.

Foucault's Pendulum was nice, and I really enjoyed the notion that all of that ancient mystery mumbo-jumbo was just good, old-fashioned dumbfarkery. Rather like In the Name of the Rose, people in it for the story are bound to be disappointed.

I'd add the Gulag Archipelago to this list.
 
2012-04-27 02:46:56 PM
I 2nd/3rd/4th Dostoyevsky's 'Brothers Karamazov' - definitely in the top 3 of my greatest novels list; (not that Crime, Idiot, Underground are crap, I just like Brothers better).

The first time I read Tolstoy's 'War and Peace', I read it over one extended weekend (about 300 pages a day iirc). I put it away for 10 years, then read it again at a more leisurely pace - about 10 days. I think it's brilliant. If I had to make a recommendation, try to read it at a faster than normal pace - I do better keeping track of the gamillion characters. (Simarillion comes to mind.)

I tend to read at 3 different speeds: it may seem counter-intuitive, but quite fast when I'm trying to mem data - may require multiple passes but I retain more if I keep the pace up, (my brain gets 'tired' the longer I go, so cram it in quick), medium when I'm reading for enjoyment, and medium for 20pgs/set the book down for three days, because I don't want to know who the damned author is going to kill/torture/maim next... (GRRM, Malazan Series, etc. Gah!)

lol, I mentioned to my wife that the Anna Korenina movie was on one night. She didn't know the story at all, so I told her she should watch it without me as I had to leave for a few hours. Big mistake. The words not happy do not convey her state of mind afterwards...

If you want a taste of Russian lit w/o slogging through 400-900+ pages, Start with Gogol's 'The Overcoat', in the top 3 of my greatest short stories list - you can read it in 30m easily (I like his other stuff too, like 'Taras Bulba', and if you want a more surreal story, try Bulgakov's 'Master and Margarita' - maybe not for everyone, but I thought it was brilliant also.

Along with Cervantes and Melville, I'd include Goethe's 'Faust'; and if I could only pick one Hesse novel, I guess it'd be 'Magister Ludi'/Glass Bead Game'. Books I really like, I tend to re-read several years later, as my perspective/life experiences colors and/or resonates - at times - very differently when I revisit the story.

I apologize, but I am not a Joyce or Proust fan. doh. (Or Michener for that matter). Yet another blasphemy: I preferred Henry Fielding's 'Tom Jones' to almost all of Dicken's works - I did like 'David Copperfield'.

Granted, they're completely different, but I tend to think of Zen... and Catcher... in the same light - a good read when you're mid/late teens, but doesn't hold well with time. For that type I preferred Knowles' 'A Separate Peace', or Keyes' 'Flowers for Algernon'.

/stopping now, approaching tl;dr status.
//allocate - oh six months of your life and read Erikson's Malazan Series. Capital 'D' dark in places, but brilliant.
 
2012-04-27 02:52:53 PM

adamgreeney: As a Creative Writing major, I feel that the only literature worth reading is the kind that shows off an authors brilliance. I want to feel the pages stick together from their massive deposits inspired by their own work. If you can't appreciate that, go back to your Dan Brown and James Patterson.


Actually, I'm more of a Dune/LOTR kinda guy but also very much enjoy non-fiction. Even I think Dune is written in a rather obtuse style and could've used some editing to increase readability.

I'm fine with footnotes, references, etc. but there is a point when it's obvious you're just tooting your own horn to the detriment of the narrative. Ulysses crosses that line with pride. It's proud of its pride and it's proud of that, too. ("Stupid Texas Song" by the Austin Lounge Lizards).

I didn't like it but I understand why LitCritNuts like it. I just hate that it's shoved down our throats that "It's the greatest novel of the 20th century" when by other criteria, it ain't.
 
2012-04-27 02:54:10 PM

The Loaf: The main difficulty when reading Moby Dick?

Cetology.


images.wikia.com
 
2012-04-27 02:56:17 PM
upload.wikimedia.org
 
2012-04-27 03:02:44 PM

Embden.Meyerhof: I was hoping that Cormac McCarthy's The Road would be on there; the story of how to be a father in the most difficult of times.


If the key criterion is daunting then I don't think this qualifies among McCarthy's work, unless by daunting you mean a read full of constant, intense foreboding. Blood Meridian surely is a more daunting novel. Arguably, so is Suttree. In fact next to No Country, The Road is McCarthy's most accessible novel. That's not meant to be a criticism.
 
2012-04-27 03:20:08 PM

BohemianGraham:
Reading Trainspotting was a lot like reading A Clockwork Orange. You have no idea what the fark you're reading at first, but then you begin to pick up on the language and it's easy as fark to read. I thought the accents and the slang in both books really worked, and they were far superior to their film counterparts, especially ACO, since Kubrick adapted the American version which lops off the last chapter and thus ruins the symbolism Burgess had going.


You mean the pointless chapter bolted on at the end, which is completely counter to the rest of the book? That chapter falls flat. The idea of Alex transforming into a mature person and avoiding the ultra-violence he formerly embraced when he reaches 21 is absurd. He was the youngest member of the gang, several of whom become bullying police officers. He spent time in prison, where he was the object of lust of older, violent inmates. The government officials essentially bribed him after performing surgery on him to remain in office. A much older victim of his tried to get Alex to kill himself. Kubrick knew what he was doing, and he did it right.
 
2012-04-27 03:29:03 PM

omeganuepsilon: DeaH: I loved the book Starship Troopers. When I read it, I came away thinking, "This is how a man is turned into a soldier." The futuristic setting seemed a lot less important than the transformation of a man into a soldier. Even the nature of citizenship was secondary, to me.

Cyberpunk by Bruce Bethke was much the same. I view them both as transition from boyhood into manhood though. They're about learning and growth.

Just finished Hunger Games(all 3). I kept thinking it'd be a similar tale, but found it was too similar to twilight's vapid every-woman thing only they made it masculine enough that it did it for both the sexes. Saving grace was a meta-story / action that made you stick with it instead of giving up in a fury.

Before that it was Wheel of Time(all books). Robert Jordan was one of the worst authors I've ever read. Repetition, over and over, redundantly so, reviews of what the unchanging characters felt, usually about the other characters. Hunger Games had a little of that going on, it only saved itself by being so short. Gave this set up in disgust the first time I tried to tackle it, as it was also aggravatingly slow. Once you get a feel for it, you learn to scan through the more than useless filler. Where Cyberpunk and Starship Troopers got growth right, A Clockwork Orange got it wrong(an almost instant switch in the famous cut off chapter) as did Wheel of Time in that it almost never happens to any characters, except the one's with a magical fate, and then it takes extreme environments. Perpetual childhood, for the whole planet. Sure, maybe there's a meta-message in there, a reflection on society, whatever. Hunger games, we get a mongoloid ignorant main character who's stunted.

_________________

As to the listed books. If daunting means boring, then yeah. Old tales for an old generation where thinking outside the box wasn't allowed really. I'm not all that big on finding a meaning within, I prefer the in your face confrontation wit ...


tl;dnr
 
2012-04-27 03:42:26 PM
Did somebody post Sherlock Holmes in a thread about daunting books?
 
2012-04-27 03:55:56 PM

keylock71: keylock71: If I had it to do again, I wouldn't change a thing.

Actually, that's a lie... I would have tried harder to bang my high school crush, Meagan Farley.


You never made it with Meagan Farley? Everybody else did, even the janitor.
 
2012-04-27 04:01:44 PM
Dopy Dick is a really great book but the Confidence Man is better. And murkier.

Loved Ulysses, gave up on war and peace 'cause crybaby leo is a crybaby and zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance because it was stupid.

seriously, read Melville's The Confidence Man.
 
2012-04-27 04:08:47 PM

Confabulat: I read Foucault's Pendulum before they invented Wikipedia.

I'm not sure how I did that.


It's not hard when you consider all the main characters are basically intellectually bullshiatting one another 90% of the time and can be safely assumed the characters have no clue about their jibber-jabber beyond the last sentence they uttered.

That or I'd read enough goofy conspiracy theories for it all to make basic sense.

/Grad school prepared me for the former
//The internet prepared me for the latter
 
2012-04-27 04:17:06 PM
I've read Ulysses a number of times and I think if you go in with the expectation you're reading something that is about style and not necessarily story, then you can enjoy it much like how one can enjoy an abstract painting or a piece of music. Joyce was a High Modernist and very learned (too learned) writer who was interested in puzzles after the naturalism of Dubliners. Kind of like a Writer's writer to the Nth degree.

Finnegans Wake works for me one paragraph on a randomly chosen page at a time. Kind of like the entire book is telling the same fairy tale over and over again in different OULIPO tricks.
 
2012-04-27 04:21:21 PM
3/4 of the way through John Muir's "Nature Writings" -- nearly 1000 pages worth! I laugh at these so-called "daunting" books...
 
2012-04-27 04:29:23 PM

sprawl15: kroonermanblack: Anyway, since this is a literary thread, could anyone recommend some new novels for me if I love Jim butchers Dresden, and moderately like the Anita Blake series (laurell k Hamilton). I like the supernatural, the detective, the 'going up against odds which should kill me and surviving by will power and grit and intelligence and planning' aspects. I hate the endless sex scenes and romantic plots of hamiltons novels, they're just boring.

You may like the Night Watch series by Lukyanenko. It's very, very Russian.


I did read them actually. I loved the first (after seeing the movie version) then they got progressively less interesting as they went along. I think I just got depressed or bored on the final one before I finished it.

Not so big on the 'main character is in effectual at everything, is useless and simply a pawn moved obviously against things he simply cannot and does not fight'.
 
2012-04-27 04:36:04 PM
None of those books are about dating.
 
2012-04-27 04:41:50 PM

Embden.Meyerhof: I was hoping that Cormac McCarthy's The Road would be on there; the story of how to be a father in the most difficult of times.


nice thoughts!
 
2012-04-27 04:46:40 PM
A Dinner of Onions, by Nora Harmony Wallace
 
2012-04-27 04:49:50 PM

under a mountain: OK Farkers, what is the best version of Don Quixote to read?


If it's not your native language, one that's not in French, I assure you.
 
2012-04-27 04:55:46 PM

kroonermanblack: sprawl15: kroonermanblack: Anyway, since this is a literary thread, could anyone recommend some new novels for me if I love Jim butchers Dresden, and moderately like the Anita Blake series (laurell k Hamilton). I like the supernatural, the detective, the 'going up against odds which should kill me and surviving by will power and grit and intelligence and planning' aspects. I hate the endless sex scenes and romantic plots of hamiltons novels, they're just boring.

You may like the Night Watch series by Lukyanenko. It's very, very Russian.

I did read them actually. I loved the first (after seeing the movie version) then they got progressively less interesting as they went along. I think I just got depressed or bored on the final one before I finished it.

Not so big on the 'main character is in effectual at everything, is useless and simply a pawn moved obviously against things he simply cannot and does not fight'.


You might like the Repairman Jack series by F. Paul Wilson. It has all the 'supernatural, the detective, the 'going up against odds which should kill me and surviving by will power and grit and intelligence and planning' aspects' that you are looking for.
 
2012-04-27 05:12:48 PM
Ready Moby Dick and Little Dorrit all the way. I have partial on 6 others.

Moby Dick IS a good book, as long as you have the endurance.
 
2012-04-27 05:14:36 PM
I read Crime and Punishment and Moby Dick, and they are both my 2 favorite books....

Moby Dick probably took a good 6 to 8 months to get through it though, but i took my time, sometime only reading a few pages a day.
 
2012-04-27 05:15:31 PM

Confabulat: I read Foucault's Pendulum before they invented Wikipedia.

I'm not sure how I did that.


Me too, and I empathize with your comment completely.
 
2012-04-27 05:20:03 PM

hasty ambush: [ecx.images-amazon.com image 300x300]


You magnificent bastard!
 
2012-04-27 05:22:05 PM
 
2012-04-27 05:35:17 PM
The Sportswriter by Richard Ford would fit nicely into this list. Not exceedingly long, but cripes is it dense and ponderous. It's like the eeyore of books. Tried to read the follow up Independence Day and couldn't get 30 pages in.
 
2012-04-27 05:47:04 PM
I've read five, but I've also read ZAMM about half a dozen times, so I should get extra credit for that.
 
2012-04-27 05:50:41 PM
Read and enjoyed most of these, but refuse to finish Ulysses.
Joyce can go to hell as far as I'm concerned.
 
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