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Sload Soap
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Re: Books!

by Sload Soap Wed Jan 17, 2018 10:45 am

prfsnl_gmr wrote:
Pulsar_t wrote:I could use a recommendation for a new book on philosophy or psychology (or both).

Here’s one: ... 5193792533


Right now, I am reading Roadside Picnic by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky. It forms the basis for Tarkovsky’s masterpiece, Stalker, and while it is not without its issues, I am enjoying it very much. Also, the film captures only a very small portion of the book - the last chapter, basically - and as I finish it up, I can’t help but thinking it could actually be adapted into a pretty great TV show. One day, maybe...

I read that recently and enjoyed it. I haven't seen Stalker but what I know of it, it seems more of a translation than adaptation. If you haven't read it I recommend Monday Begins on Saturday by the Strugatskys. It's much less serious, coming off almost as a Soviet era Harry Potter but it's full of crazy ideas and the biting satire they are known for.
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Re: Books!

by MrPopo Sun Jan 28, 2018 2:11 am

So I've recently been reading the Three Body Problem trilogy, just having finished the second book. I first picked up the first book because it had won the Hugo and was from China; I was curious at how a translated book had managed to do so well at the awards. By the time I finished the first book I knew I had to pick up the other two, and so far have not been disappointed. This is truly some extremely fine science fiction, with so much of the focus on the human reality of the consequences of the future portrayed in the book. And the actual science is no slouch either; a lot of really believable stuff, and the stuff that seems crazy still has that layer of logic, of "well, if we posit they have figured out this level of development, then this seems like a reasonable application of that".

But man, I am going to warn you. The first book is an incredibly SLOW burn. I was 2/3 of the way through before things picked up enough to get me turning the page to see what happens next, rather than as a general quest to complete the book out of obligation. And it's only in the last fifth to a quarter that you actually find out what the overarching plot is. Now, this makes the eventual payoff extraordinary, and I think it was worthwhile in the end. But this really is something you need to give a chance. You have to trust me that by the end you're going to say "I'm glad I stuck with this."
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Re: Books!

by REPO Man Tue Jan 30, 2018 10:30 am

Finished the first book in the "Royal Institute of Magic" series.

The first book, "Elizabeth's Legacy", introduces us to a world where our countries coexist alongside magical kingdoms in secret. In a magical world that's rustic yet modern, goblins wear jeans, Starbucks makes its famed coffee drinks and dodo sandwiches with only magic, dragon-pulled trains depart and dock in underground facilities (a la London's Underground) and soar through the air, and magic is bought and sold alongside dodo sandwiches from Starbucks and high-end designer jeans.

While it appears on the surface to be another attempt at being the next Harry Potter, we soon discover that this is more than just a "hidden magical world" tropes of Harry Potter or its ancestor The Worst Witch. Like J.K. Rowling's famed series, the normal world remains (mostly) oblivious to the existence of magic, until a young man finds out that magic is real and hidden away from our eyes.

Ben Greenwood, the book's main character, does seem like he's cut from the same cloth as Rowling's legendary "Boy Who Lived", much like how his friend Charlie and their R.I.M. guide/new friend Natalie seem to fill similar roles to Ron and Hermione. Years after his parents' disappearance, Ben soon discovers a secret kept from his parents, and finds himself riding a dragon-pulled train to the titular Royal Institute of Magic, established by Queen Elizabeth I as a means of keeping an invading kingdom of dark elves in check while uniting the other Unseen Kingdoms.

Personally, I could totally see this getting an adaptation, either as a motion picture to compete with superhero epics and the latest teen lit adaptation du jour, an original series on Amazon Video or Hulu or Netflix, or even airing on a television network like the BBC alongside our favorite Time Lord.

A perfect way to start my New Years' Resolution to read a new book every month (I don't HAVE TO start or finish it in a month, but basically 12 books by the end of the year), which only includes books I haven't read before and excludes books I've started before the New Years Day.

I had some money in my Amazon wallet so I went ahead and snagged the second book, which is $3.99, as opposed to the first book which sells for 99 cents.

Sadly, the author Victor Kloss passed away back in 2016, with the final novel released posthumous a year later.
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Re: Books!

by nullPointer Tue Feb 13, 2018 3:39 pm

Any Cormac McCarthy fans in here?

I read The Road last year, and I'm looking for something else with that general tone if not setting. I really dig McCarthy's prose, but I'm not much into Westerns, horses, and 'sheriffs in cowboy hats', all of which seem to comprise a large remainder of his literary output (weirdly, I do enjoy all of those things in cinema just not so much in literature). Bearing this in mind, does anyone have recommendations regarding further Cormac McCarthy titles to explore? Or perhaps the works of other authors who effectively evoke the same sort of tone and feel as The Road?
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Re: Books!

by REPO Man Wed Feb 28, 2018 12:37 pm

Recently finished the second book in the "Royal Institute of Magic" series, "The Shadowseeker".

Join Ben Greenwood, still searching for clues to his parents' whereabouts and to his family's destiny, and his friend Charlier Hornberger as they begin their apprenticeship with the secretive Royal Institute of Magic. Tackling the R.I.M's five departments, the two strive to join the Institute, which will help Ben find answers to his parents' whereabouts and the truth about his destiny.
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