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(Daily Kos)   Are you reading more books since the pandemic started? If so, what is your favorite book that you read in 2020 or 2021?   (dailykos.com) divider line
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136 clicks; posted to Discussion » on 18 Jan 2022 at 2:20 PM (24 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



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2022-01-18 1:57:13 PM  
"The Caine Mutiny" by Herman Wouk. Saw the movie with Humphrey Bogart long ago. Found the hardcover on a thrift table for 50 cents. Then I read "The Winds of War" and "War and Remembrance" . I had read them both before but years ago. Like another favorite author, James Michener,  Wouk was a Naval officer in WWII and really sets some scenes beautifully.
 
2022-01-18 2:09:56 PM  
I'll contribute.
Pure escapism in style and plot.
Doig's style is evocative - almost painterly.

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Even though it's only like 150 pages, it still took me a couple weeks to read. Found myself slowing down my reading pace to chew over the text enjoy it fully.

/'burp
 
2022-01-18 2:10:47 PM  
Finished Erik Larson's The Splendid and the Vile about Churchill.
It was good, but not his best work.
Read Dangerous Visions by Harlan Ellison.
It may have been more interesting to read in the '60's.

Read How to Hide an Empire by Daniel Immerwahr.  A good history of American colonialism.

Reading this now. Wish I'd have read it years ago, it wouldn't be so scary now.
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2022-01-18 2:11:38 PM  
Oh BTW subby, only something like 25%* of US adults ever read a book again after high school.

*That number may be high
 
2022-01-18 2:14:36 PM  

RolandTGunner: Finished Erik Larson's The Splendid and the Vile about Churchill.
It was good, but not his best work.
Read Dangerous Visions by Harlan Ellison.
It may have been more interesting to read in the '60's.

Read How to Hide an Empire by Daniel Immerwahr.  A good history of American colonialism.

Reading this now. Wish I'd have read it years ago, it wouldn't be so scary now.
[Fark user image 237x346]


Ugh - I read ICHH in 2018 because I obviously needed more doom-scrolling in my life.
You're spot on with TS&TV.
 
2022-01-18 2:15:38 PM  
Read this over the summer. 
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Reading this now
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2022-01-18 2:21:21 PM  

exqqqme: RolandTGunner: Finished Erik Larson's The Splendid and the Vile about Churchill.
It was good, but not his best work.
Read Dangerous Visions by Harlan Ellison.
It may have been more interesting to read in the '60's.

Read How to Hide an Empire by Daniel Immerwahr.  A good history of American colonialism.

Reading this now. Wish I'd have read it years ago, it wouldn't be so scary now.
[Fark user image 237x346]

Ugh - I read ICHH in 2018 because I obviously needed more doom-scrolling in my life.
You're spot on with TS&TV.


Oh man, no kidding. The whole book so far.
 
2022-01-18 2:28:45 PM  
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2022-01-18 2:32:21 PM  
Been reading less since this shiatshow started. Bought the Mel Brooks autobiography in November. Barely read 100 pages so far. I'm normally a voracious reader. Attention span is shot. Not sure what happened. Pandemic brain sucks. Been lucky enough to avoid Covid so far.
 
2022-01-18 2:35:16 PM  
Need Help (Soonish).

Awesome anthology. The authors are really damned good, and the editing team should probably receive a Nobel prize for putting up with those authors. If the Nobel is out of the picture, perhaps a week's supply of the adult beverage of their choice would not be amiss.

Oh- if you buy a copy, a worthy charity gets the money.
 
2022-01-18 2:37:34 PM  

Petit_Merdeux: [Fark user image image 425x641]


Seconded.
 
2022-01-18 2:50:22 PM  

Petit_Merdeux: [Fark user image 425x641]


Hail Marry by the guy who wrote The Martian.

Just finished this. I mentally titled this middle school science teacher saves the world. It worked for me and I really enjoyed it.

I grew up reading classic Steven King, Pet Cemetary, The Stand, and the Bachman books. Sort of overloaded on him until my mother recommended 11-22-63. Really well done, one of his best. Of course, it is classic King with 700 pages and it sums up in a chapter.
 
2022-01-18 2:52:21 PM  
To End In Fire.
David Weber Honorverse book.
 
2022-01-18 2:55:53 PM  
During the lockdown, I started reading a possibly-unhealthy number of books about human behavior.  One of the most interesting was Black Box Thinking: Why Most People Never Learn From Their Mistakes -- But Some Do by Matthew Syed.  It goes into great detail about how people do (or, more often, don't) learn from failure, and why being able to learn from failure is so important to success in almost everything.
 
2022-01-18 3:08:52 PM  
I used to be a voracious reader.  Having kids changed that habit.  Now that I'm living alone again, vision issues make getting into a good book a tricky endeavor.

Picked up "lost Causes Of Bleak Creek" and only got one chapter in.  Really liked the vibe and descriptive quality and I really want to give the rest of the book my undivided attention at some point in the next month or so.
 
2022-01-18 3:18:08 PM  
I received a Kindle Paperwhite for Christmas, so I'm looking forward to your recommendations!
 
2022-01-18 3:34:58 PM  
"The Road" by Jack London.  Memoir of his days hopping trains as a youth in the 1890s looking for work and adventure, published in 1907.  Interesting and exciting.
"The African Queen" by EM Forster - the film followed it very closely, so ir you liked it, you might enjoy this as well.
Also, various biographies, and stuff by James Thurber, Robert Benchley, Dorothy Parker and that crowd. Lots of different pulps and crime novels of varying quality.
 
2022-01-18 3:43:44 PM  

Imaginativescreenname: I used to be a voracious reader.  Having kids changed that habit.  Now that I'm living alone again, vision issues make getting into a good book a tricky endeavor.

Picked up "lost Causes Of Bleak Creek" and only got one chapter in.  Really liked the vibe and descriptive quality and I really want to give the rest of the book my undivided attention at some point in the next month or so.


My dad started to have vision problems a few years ago, and he has since gotten heavily into audiobooks.  I think he's now on Audible's "3 credits per month" plan.
 
2022-01-18 3:45:10 PM  
yes, the pandemic has me reading a lot more. I have read several Louise Erdrich in the second half of 2021. Now for the beginning of 2022, I am re-reading Tolkien. Done with Silmarillion and just starting fellowship. Reading is good comfort during a lack of socializing.
 
2022-01-18 3:52:47 PM  
Anthropocene Reviewed.  John Green.
 
2022-01-18 4:04:56 PM  
I spent almost all of 2021 reading Discworld over and over, broke out of my rut, read Infinite Jest at the end and am about 70% through Gravity's Rainbow now.

Loved Infinite Jest, Gravity's Rainbow is taking longer to finish.
 
2022-01-18 4:10:03 PM  
"Ascending Peculiarity"  it's a kind of autobiography of Edward Gorey made by compiling a lifetime's worth of interviews.  he comes across a lot like i hoped he would be: pretty much a gentle weirdo.  i really like this approach of using his own words over the decades to build a picture of him, instead of just a straightforward timeline of events.  avoids dissecting the butterfly, so to speak.
 
2022-01-18 4:29:20 PM  
I wouldn't call it a favorite in the sense that I enjoyed it, but The Inconvenient Indian was a really good read.
 
2022-01-18 4:42:08 PM  

Uchiha_Cycliste: I spent almost all of 2021 reading Discworld over and over, broke out of my rut, read Infinite Jest at the end and am about 70% through Gravity's Rainbow now.

Loved Infinite Jest, Gravity's Rainbow is taking longer to finish.


I've been working on Gravity's Rainbow since the '70's.
 
2022-01-18 4:56:26 PM  

RolandTGunner: Uchiha_Cycliste: I spent almost all of 2021 reading Discworld over and over, broke out of my rut, read Infinite Jest at the end and am about 70% through Gravity's Rainbow now.

Loved Infinite Jest, Gravity's Rainbow is taking longer to finish.

I've been working on Gravity's Rainbow since the '70's.


That's not wholly encouraging, I must admit.
 
2022-01-18 4:59:43 PM  
My attention span is shot too. I'm just getting books out of the Little Libraries that are in front of some homes. I decided to force myself to read at least a few chapters from a book daily. I read two books since New Year and on my third. The Birth of Venus by Sarah Dunant.

I used to read about 50 books a year. One year in a contest that my local library had, I read 140 in a year. I admit I read short books near the end. My goal is 30 books this year. I'm trying to get back into the habit.

I'm reading this thread for suggestions.
 
2022-01-18 4:59:49 PM  
My Dark Vanessa by Russell. Very hard to read and simultaneously very hard to put down. Right now, I think it is a great achievement in literature. On my reread list.
Rereading is my thing. I reread The Great Gatsby. Fitzgerald was truly great. This work makes an interesting companion to The Age of Innocence.
 
2022-01-18 5:19:08 PM  
I needed a break from reality so I read all 3 volumes of the Calvin and Hobbies collection, and after that the complete collection of Bloom County, Opus and Outland. That got my mind right again.
 
2022-01-18 5:27:36 PM  
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Great coming of age / road trip story.  Nice diversion from pandemic.

on Amazon
 
2022-01-18 6:17:53 PM  
Trying to finish The First Conspiracy (about the early plots to kill General Washington in 1776) so I can start reading Mel Brooks' All About Me!
 
2022-01-18 6:29:33 PM  
Opposite. I used to be such an avid reader and pandemic depression just turned me into a sad sack binge TV person. I'm trying to get back on track this year and am very disappointed in my weak attention span. Starting with The Witcher series.
 
2022-01-18 6:35:54 PM  
I read about 50-60 books a year, so about the same pre and current pandemic. Reading book 8 of the Expanse now. I glanced through my Goodreads log for the last couple of years, but nothing really stood out as an amazing read to suggest to others.

I read a decent about of YA, romance and regular fiction books, in-between the fantasy and sci-fi.
 
2022-01-18 6:54:53 PM  
Well, the reading amount kinda fell off a cliff during the plague, because games liked to fill the space, but my top books of the last 2 years:

Shake Hands with the Devil - Lt Gen Roméo Dallaire
They Fight Like Soldiers, They Die Like Children - also by Lt Gen. Dallaire
On Bullshait - Harry G. Frankfurt
On Inequality - Harry G. Frankfurt
My Stories, My Times - Rt. Hon Jean Chrétien
The Red and the Blue - Steve Kornacki
 
2022-01-18 6:55:50 PM  
"Hollow Kingdom" by Kira Jane Buxton was a very interesting take on global plague.

"The Big Over Easy" by Jasper Fforde had some pretty compelling moments. Because of that one, I'm reading the second of the series called, "The Fourth Bear."

I didn't finish "Under The Pendulum Sky" by Jeannette Ng, but it had a very interesting premise and solid start.
 
2022-01-18 7:02:27 PM  

The Weekend Baker: I wouldn't call it a favorite in the sense that I enjoyed it, but The Inconvenient Indian was a really good read.


my wife is reading that right now and she recommends it as well
 
2022-01-18 7:29:06 PM  
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2022-01-18 7:30:33 PM  

smellysocksnshoes: The Weekend Baker: I wouldn't call it a favorite in the sense that I enjoyed it, but The Inconvenient Indian was a really good read.

my wife is reading that right now and she recommends it as well


It's depressing as hell, but it's the kind of book everyone should read.
 
2022-01-18 8:09:50 PM  
My pandemic reading list thus far:
Confessor
The Cuckoo's Calling
Mongoliad
Roar
Maisie Dobbs
Birds of a Feather
Mr. Churchill's Secretary
Messenger of Truth
An Incomplete Revenge
Among the Mad
Keeper of Lost Causes
Good Omens
Guns, Germs and Steel
Furies of Calderon
Academ's Fury
Cursor's Fury
Color of Magic
Russka
Tom Jones
Master and Commander
Post Captain
HMS Surprise
The Mauritius Command
Death in Focus
The Punishment She Deserves
The Law of Nines
Dead of Jericho
Riddle of the Third Mile
The Way Through The Woods
Anansi Boys
The Light Fantastic
The Jewel That Was Ours
Mort
The Wench is Dead
Sourcery
Death is now my Neighbor
The Arms of Krupp
Bleak House
Drop Shot
Caste
Dingley Falls
The Fall
Angel of Darkness
Suspicions of Mr. Whicher
The Elephant Keeper's Children
Evidence of Innocence
War and Peace
The Path Between the Seas
Moonflower Murders
Case Histories
Final Proof
The Last Wish
 
2022-01-18 8:23:32 PM  
I haven't been able to read fiction the last couple years. I don't watch tv, and rarely see movies.

But this last year I've been buying lots of Dummies guides on various topics, mostly music and business related. Lots of them are under $5 on eBay, and a few vendors are Buy 3 Get 1 Free, so I do. A few I wish I'd found years ago.
 
2022-01-18 8:40:42 PM  

Picklehead: My attention span is shot too. I'm just getting books out of the Little Libraries that are in front of some homes. I decided to force myself to read at least a few chapters from a book daily. I read two books since New Year and on my third. The Birth of Venus by Sarah Dunant.

I used to read about 50 books a year. One year in a contest that my local library had, I read 140 in a year. I admit I read short books near the end. My goal is 30 books this year. I'm trying to get back into the habit.

I'm reading this thread for suggestions.


I love books that tell a good story while also respecting your time.

Last Night at the Lobster is a solid, quick read.  Same for Silk and The Sense of an Ending.  We Have Always Lived at the Castle is a classic.  For nonfiction, I used to keep a copy of Fugitives and Refugees handy for anytime I was waiting on subway.  It's about Portland before people knew about Portland.  Very 'let the inmates run the asylum' vibe.  Makes me wish I could've lived there in the 90s.
 
2022-01-18 8:49:10 PM  

Shelbyraed: My pandemic reading list thus far:


Nice!  I'm working on Case Histories now.

Does the Maisie Dobbs series get better?  The first book, she was so literally perfect in every way, it was like reading a historical mystery starring Roary Gilmore.*

*orig version, not the vapid but interesting hot mess of later years
 
2022-01-18 8:55:08 PM  
I decided to reread some favs like Band of Brothers and And the Band Played On.  Yes, I was aware of what I was doing with that last pic.  Every time someone in the news said 'vaccine by Christmas' I had awkward flashbacks.

My pandemic indulgence was Star Trek novels.  Q-Squared got me right back in.

Currently reading Case Histories and the Discovery of Witches series.  The latter because we watched the first season on Prime and b/c Amazon - not coincidentally - had the whole ebook set for something like $1.99.  They're not bad popcorn reading - definitely with more history than most.  Not a lot of fantasy/romance novels will throw in people speaking Occitan.  The TV show has so far done a better job of threading together developments from the beginning instead of just tossing in 'look, new stuff!' near the end.
 
2022-01-18 9:14:37 PM  

K.B.O. Winston: Does the Maisie Dobbs series get better?  The first book, she was so literally perfect in every way, it was like reading a historical mystery starring Roary Gilmore.*


Haha, good summary. I would say the ones I read were...okay. Nothing to go out of the way for, but a fine quick library book.

The next book in my "to read" pile is a follow up to Case Histories, One Good Turn.  Looking forward to that.
 
2022-01-18 11:19:11 PM  
In late fall of 2020, after feeling bad about not having a Ren Faire to go to, and not having any fun winter holiday stuff to look forward to and enjoy, and not having been to any anime conventions or having any on the horizon, I re-read The Night Circus. It's a beautiful book about a place that becomes a whimsical escape from reality, the people who make it, and the fans who adore it. If you want some hauntingly beautiful escapism, highly recommend.
 
2022-01-18 11:25:03 PM  
Quichote by Salman Rushdie
The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern
 
2022-01-19 1:30:37 AM  
It had been a while since I read what I had in my bookcase.

So in 2021 I reread the Foundation series, a collection of Sherlock Holmes stories, and I'm almost through the Hitchhikers Guide collection. Once I finish that I asked for books for Xmas.

So I got these ahead of me:

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Never read Pratchett or Banks. And yes I know Banks is missing a book. Mom bought a set off Amazon and didn't realize it was missing one.

The Pratchett is of course merely the tip of the iceberg.

Not sure how quickly I'll get through them. Last few months I've been reading in bed before going to sleep, but I tend to not get in bed until I'm exhausted so it's taking me a while to finish Mostly Harmless.

If I get in the reading zone though I could devour that row in a month easily.
 
2022-01-19 6:19:50 AM  
Puckoon.

Pooping as an exercise in metaphysics...
 
2022-01-19 10:30:09 AM  
Read alot of Neil Gaiman this year ending up buying everything he has ever written.

Favorites so far are his book on Norse Mythology and Neverwhere.

Also read 2 of the Witcher books and absolutely loved them so now I get to track more of those down.

Started the Xanth books based on people on Fark and my friends saying they enjoyed it. I probably would have liked them more as a teenager. His treatment of females is off-putting to me these days.
 
2022-01-19 12:52:22 PM  
I stayed away from my usual wintertime reading of depressing Russian novels; pandemic was depressing enough.  The joke was on me when I read Martin Eden by Jack London.  The protagonist definitely kills himself at the end, while London possibly killed himself at the end.  Would not recommend.
On a lighter note, I read The Once and Future King and then continued in the arthurian vein with Fool, by Christopher Moore, which I would recommend.
Also recently read The Honshin Murders, which was a good whodunit, but with a couple of plot holes you could drive a Mitsubishi mini-van through.
 
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