I just finished "The Wonder Spot" this weekend. It's by Melissa Bank, who wrote "Girls Guide to Hunting and Fishing" - I really liked it. She's self-effacing and makes herself so bland that everyone else around her looks zany. Good stuff.
I think my plan is to read "Ceremony" again, now. I love that book.
Two cents. There they are. Shiny pennies.
gibran_the prophet. spring is here and i am changing.
just finished "Oh Pure and Radiant Heart" by Lydia Millet, quite good. easy read.
On to, Pynchon's "Against the Day"
I dated a girl this summer down in Hoboken who went out with him a couple times. She said he really is pretty much as forward as he sounds in his books and right at dinner would just bring up if they were going to sleep together or not.
Anyway douch or not, the shit cracks me up.
Strangers with this kind of honesty make me go a big rubbery one
just started reading the namesake, by jumpha lahiri (sp?). i see they are coming out with a movie. i really loved interpreter of maladies, so i'm looking forward to this one. so far so good. also, in my book club we are reading the alchemist by paolo coehlo...one of my all time favorite books.
Next you should introduce your book club to 'The Alphabet of Manliness' that I mentioned above. I think its good to change things up from time to time. Now you may be asking youself 'yeah but isn't this book just for men?' and to that I would say 'yeah, in the same way that lesbian porn sites are just for women.'
Strangers with this kind of honesty make me go a big rubbery one
Just finished reading two books: Bukowski’s Ham on Rye and Nabokov's Laughter in the Dark.
I am somewhat embarrassed to say that this was my first foray into Bukowski, but I liked it a lot. His terse, often harsh prose does a good job of capturing the moment he writes about -- the underbelly of depression-era Los Angeles. I especially enjoyed all the local Los Angeles references which still have currency: the protagonist Henry Chinaski eats at Clifton's Cafeteria and Philippe's (which indeed even then had the cheapest coffee in town); he enrolls in classes at LACC.
I think the blurb on the back of the book said that Ham on Rye was Bukowski's answer to A Catcher in the Rye, but I'm not sure how you could compare the two. Yes, they're both coming-of-age stories about disillusioned boys suffering hardship in the harsh face of the world. They both have an interest in sexuality and graphic language. But whereas Salinger is so intimately tied to the elitist east coast tradition of authors like Fitzgerald, Bukowski's prose seems very much embedded within a dirty, often chaotic free-wheeling lifestyle that's distinctly Californian. Any sort of resemblance between Ham on Rye and Catcher in the Rye is, in my opinion, purely superficial.
I'd like to read more Bukowski. Any suggestions for a second book? He has published a staggering amount of work.
I really enjoyed Ham On Rye. I'd probably suggest Post Office or Factotum next - his two most well-regarded novels featuring Henry Chinaski.
I'm studying for an English Literature degree, so I have to spend most of my time reading. In the next few days I need to read Martha Quest by Dorris Lessing - bildungsroman set in a fictional African country colonised by the British - and The Tempest by Big Will.
I wish I had time to read stuff for fun, but it's not gonna happen til the semester finishes.
So I finished Blood Meridian. I'm not sure the last time I've read a better book. I loved the prose. I loved the story. I loved near everything. More Cormac McCarthy is certainly on the horizon for me.
The only Bukowski book I've read other than Ham on Rye was Factotum. I liked it more.
I am trying to remember Bukwoski's Rye; it seems to me that if anything he was attacking the idea from Salinger's Rye that such troubles of the young are just a way of life and everybody feels that way and you'll grow out of it. Or, rather, not as much attacking as amending to say that, well, still some people will have it worse than Holden and they won't just grow out of it, they'll become crazy abusive drunks. Holden will catch many kids that feel out of place and isolated but there will be others that are beyond his powers. They get to read Bukowski instead.
I'm reading "An Artist of the Floating World" by Kazuo Ishiguro now. My first Ishiguro was "The Remains of the Day", which is a truly beautiful book. I had seen the movie and enjoyed it, and I remember other people on the board mentioning the book, so I read it. After that, I read "A Pale View Of Hills" and am now working myself forward through Ishiguro's books.
Oh and I've read Cryptonomicon, but that's the only Neal Stephenson I've read. His baroque cycle looks daunting to say the least.
edited to make more sense as wine has kicked in now.
I read Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go in December. It was my first exposure to him. A terrific book.
After devouring Ian McEwan's Saturday it's on to a little trash reading: Neil Gaiman's American Gods. Then I'll get back to reading "reputable" things.
I've heard raves about Saturday but haven't read anything yet by McEwan. Does it matter where I start with him?
McEwan has two books of short stories - First Love, Last Rites and In Between the Sheets - that are some of my favorites of his. They'd make a good way to sample him, but they're a little tough to find. My favorite novel of McEwan's is Enduring Love, which was made into a movie a couple years ago with Daniel Craig, Samantha Morton, and Rhys Ifans. Very creepy and Hitchcockian.
I like Cormac McCarthy, although I can't read him now without imagining him looking like the Owen Wilson/Eli Cash character in The Royal Tenenbaums. Sometimes his writing is a little too self-consciously testosterone-filled and bleak for me, but mostly it's good stuff. I haven't read Blood Meridian, but I did read his "Border Trilogy," starting with All The Pretty Horses. I guess that might be his best known book. I think I'm remembering now that there was a film adaptation too? I didn't see it. But the story is good -- another young man encountering the harsh face of the outside world sort of coming of age piece. In this case, it's the character of a young cowboy crossing the border to Mexico, written in McCarthy's idiosyncratic, sweeping writing style with a general lack of punctuation. The second part of the border trilogy, The Crossing, tells a parallel story, and then the third book, Cities of the Plain, brings the two together. Recommended reading.
I haven't had a chance to read through all the posts, but has anyone read "Infinite Jest?" I'm reading it... slowly (at this rate it'll take me another two months)... But I like it so far. I like the style and the character development... Anyone else have any thoughts on it?
Buy the ticket, take the ride.
"casino" by nicholas pileggi.
also random books on feng shui and gardening.
also a book about whitey bulger that i can't remember the name of right now.
that's all for this week. looking for a GOOD novel though.