Reply to topic  [ 70 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Next
All-New And Improved Reading Thread 
Author Message
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 27, 2002 4:21 am
Posts: 6168
Location: In the orbit of Baltimore, Maryland
Cliffie wrote:
It was entertaining, but I was irritated over and over by the characters constantly making current-day grammatical and usage errors while pretending that the year is 1928.

It's remarkable how jarring it is when bits of present-day idiom find their way into period stories. Juniper and I went to see Kong: Skull Island over the weekend, and I couldn't believe how completely (albeit briefly) it bounced me out of the story when one of the characters defended himself in an argument with "I'm just sayin'..."

As for the actual point of this thread, I've somehow found myself embroiled in four books simultaneously:

Islam by Karen Armstrong is disappointing through no fault of its own; turns out it's primarily a history, whereas I was looking for a doctrinal primer. But because it is at least a history of the religion rather than the people who practice it or the region it dominates, it doesn't feel too redundant after Bernard Lewis's The Middle East and Albert Hourani's A History of the Arab Peoples.

Water World by William Appel has nothing to do with the Kevin Costner post-apocalypse movie. Instead, it's about a widowed psychiatrist attempting to treat a girl who simultaneously thinks she's turning into a fish and may genuinely be under long-range magical attack from a Yanomamo shaman. Meanwhile, the psychiatrist must resist the overwhelming masculine charms of her patient's inconveniently widowered father. Cliffie, I'm sending this straight to you as soon as I finish with it.

Horror Noire by Robin R. Means Coleman is a study of black people in horror movies and of horror movies made by black people. The early chapters are inevitably shaping up to be "Holy crap! Old-Timey Hollywood sure was racist, y'all!" but I fully expect the book to become more interesting when it gets to the blaxploitation era of the 70's and the neo-blaxploitation era of the 90's, which is what the author really cares about if the introduction is any indication. Maybe it'll even lose some of its weird academic defensiveness-- although I'm certainly not counting on that!

Japanese Cruisers of the Pacific War by Eric LaCroix and Linton Wells II is another of those nerdy-as-hell warship design histories that I'm addicted to. I've had this book for a long, long time without ever making it past the first chapter-- not because it doesn't hold my interest, but because it's physically unpleasant to read. It's formatted like a coffee table book, but it's 880 pages long, and it weighs more than seven pounds. There's simply no comfortable way to hold it, and since I don't actually have a coffee table, it's hard to find a place where I can lay it out flat, either. Nevertheless, I'm determined to finish this time.

_________________
Now at 1000 Misspent Hours and Counting-- The Belko Experiment, Get Out, Kong: Skull Island, and a whole lot more!


Tue Mar 14, 2017 5:36 pm
Profile WWW
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Mon Sep 30, 2002 5:35 am
Posts: 2479
Location: Chattanooga TN
About to start a Dover reprint of The Steam Man of the Prairies (1868) by Edward S. Ellis. It's said to be the first "edisonade" (adventures of a young inventor and his gizmo) of which Ellis wrote about one hundred. Early example of a robot in modern fiction. I expect it to be terrible. (Does it count as steampunk if it was actually written in the mid 19th century?)

_________________
Dark tears for is alabaster muse lost forever into the unforgiving jade daggers of the night. Her slim form no longer to touch his burning lips, her blood like the thorny rose no longer his, O Death! O Oblivion! Why havent you come! I wait in my garden of shadows for thee! -- Juniper releases her inner Goth.


Tue Mar 14, 2017 6:35 pm
Profile
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 12, 2002 9:12 pm
Posts: 3783
Location: Minnesota
Victoria Silverwolf wrote:
About to start a Dover reprint of The Steam Man of the Prairies (1868) by Edward S. Ellis. It's said to be the first "edisonade" (adventures of a young inventor and his gizmo) of which Ellis wrote about one hundred. Early example of a robot in modern fiction. I expect it to be terrible. (Does it count as steampunk if it was actually written in the mid 19th century?)


Actually, steampunk was in part created as a late counter to the Edisonade, if I read correctly.

_________________
"Times have not become more violent. They have just become more televised." - Brian Warner

"Marlowe's overreacting, Marlowe's taking it wrong, Marlowe's lighting kittens on fire again..." - Marlowe, on how the rest of the board sees him

"What we have here is one hellaciously well-built monument." - Bergerjacques, on the Lincoln Memorial

"Folks, we need a way to get Uwe Boll to inadvertantly touch Tony Jaa's elephant." - Beggar So's Hat speaks truth


Tue Mar 14, 2017 8:45 pm
Profile
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Mon Sep 30, 2002 5:35 am
Posts: 2479
Location: Chattanooga TN
Thanks for the information. The "steam man" turned out to be a means of transportation rather than a robot. It was a steam engine shaped like a man that pumped its legs to pull a wagon forward. Pretty much an eccentric automobile (that could only go forward) of the Old West. The story used it for action and comedy.

I have started Dark Reflections by Samuel R. Delany (2016 revision of 2007 original.) It's a mainstream novel (or, depending on how you look at it, three linked novellas) about an African-American poet in New York City from the 1950's to the 1980's (the three novellas or chapters, depending on how you look at it, in reverse chronological order.) So far it's very readable, very realistic, not at all Delany's often dense and difficult style, nor his fantastic content.

_________________
Dark tears for is alabaster muse lost forever into the unforgiving jade daggers of the night. Her slim form no longer to touch his burning lips, her blood like the thorny rose no longer his, O Death! O Oblivion! Why havent you come! I wait in my garden of shadows for thee! -- Juniper releases her inner Goth.


Sat Mar 18, 2017 12:06 am
Profile
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Sun Dec 16, 2001 2:48 am
Posts: 4966
Location: Brighton, MI
El Santo wrote:
Water World by William Appel has nothing to do with the Kevin Costner post-apocalypse movie. Instead, it's about a widowed psychiatrist attempting to treat a girl who simultaneously thinks she's turning into a fish and may genuinely be under long-range magical attack from a Yanomamo shaman. Meanwhile, the psychiatrist must resist the overwhelming masculine charms of her patient's inconveniently widowered father. Cliffie, I'm sending this straight to you as soon as I finish with it.


OMG, yes! :twisted:

_________________
Guy in bar: "I got 50 dollars in my pocket saying you're coming home with me tonight."
Girl in bar: "They're lying to you."
(from Psychos In Love)

Sample piscatorial love at Cliffie's Notes! Now in blog form for the greater good of the Fish Conspiracy!


Sat Mar 18, 2017 5:39 pm
Profile WWW
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Mon Sep 30, 2002 5:35 am
Posts: 2479
Location: Chattanooga TN
I managed to finish Dark Reflections very quickly. Excellently written, and a compelling portrait of the life of a not-very-successful poet.

I have now started Grave Predictions (2016) edited by Drew Ford, which collects apocalyptic fiction from 1872 to 2013. It's part of the Dover Press "Doomsday Classics" series, of which I have a bunch yet to read.

_________________
Dark tears for is alabaster muse lost forever into the unforgiving jade daggers of the night. Her slim form no longer to touch his burning lips, her blood like the thorny rose no longer his, O Death! O Oblivion! Why havent you come! I wait in my garden of shadows for thee! -- Juniper releases her inner Goth.


Sun Mar 19, 2017 2:00 am
Profile
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Wed Apr 04, 2001 6:41 pm
Posts: 9376
Location: Carlisle, Kentucky
Victoria Silverwolf wrote:
I managed to finish Dark Reflections very quickly. Excellently written, and a compelling portrait of the life of a not-very-successful poet.


How does one determine success in poetry?

_________________
Oh yeah, down here, I am considered the apotheosis of cool - Sewer Urchin

This is an appalling film. And for some of you, well worth your time - SSM

I like the way this board thinks


Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:53 pm
Profile WWW
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Thu Mar 30, 2006 1:54 am
Posts: 6571
Location: California's #2 tourist destination
Groupies.

_________________
"This is a Star Trek that pretends to have balls, but continues to prove that those balls are actually rubber prophylactics pretending to be balls." -- Bj

b l e s s e d    a r e    t h e    c h e e s e m a k e r s


Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:41 pm
Profile WWW
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 27, 2002 4:21 am
Posts: 6168
Location: In the orbit of Baltimore, Maryland
supersonic man wrote:
Groupies.

Groupies are a not-bad metric for success in a lot of fields, now that you mention it.

_________________
Now at 1000 Misspent Hours and Counting-- The Belko Experiment, Get Out, Kong: Skull Island, and a whole lot more!


Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:26 pm
Profile WWW
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Fri Apr 12, 2002 9:12 pm
Posts: 3783
Location: Minnesota
Bergerjacques wrote:
Victoria Silverwolf wrote:
I managed to finish Dark Reflections very quickly. Excellently written, and a compelling portrait of the life of a not-very-successful poet.


How does one determine success in poetry?


If you've heard of them, they succeeded.

_________________
"Times have not become more violent. They have just become more televised." - Brian Warner

"Marlowe's overreacting, Marlowe's taking it wrong, Marlowe's lighting kittens on fire again..." - Marlowe, on how the rest of the board sees him

"What we have here is one hellaciously well-built monument." - Bergerjacques, on the Lincoln Memorial

"Folks, we need a way to get Uwe Boll to inadvertantly touch Tony Jaa's elephant." - Beggar So's Hat speaks truth


Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:19 am
Profile
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Mon Sep 30, 2002 5:35 am
Posts: 2479
Location: Chattanooga TN
Bergerjacques wrote:
Victoria Silverwolf wrote:
I managed to finish Dark Reflections very quickly. Excellently written, and a compelling portrait of the life of a not-very-successful poet.


How does one determine success in poetry?


In this case, money. The protagonist wins one middling award, sells some copies of his books, works various jobs, and lives on the border of poverty.

_________________
Dark tears for is alabaster muse lost forever into the unforgiving jade daggers of the night. Her slim form no longer to touch his burning lips, her blood like the thorny rose no longer his, O Death! O Oblivion! Why havent you come! I wait in my garden of shadows for thee! -- Juniper releases her inner Goth.


Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:14 pm
Profile
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Mon Sep 30, 2002 5:35 am
Posts: 2479
Location: Chattanooga TN
Next in the Dover Press "Doomsday Classics" series:

The Night of the Long Knives by Fritz Leiber (1960). Novella printed in book form; it was published in full in the January 1960 issue of Amazing Stories. Set in the USA after a nuclear war, where scavengers wander through the devastated landscape with murder on their minds. Pretty intense stuff.

_________________
Dark tears for is alabaster muse lost forever into the unforgiving jade daggers of the night. Her slim form no longer to touch his burning lips, her blood like the thorny rose no longer his, O Death! O Oblivion! Why havent you come! I wait in my garden of shadows for thee! -- Juniper releases her inner Goth.


Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:19 pm
Profile
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Mon Sep 30, 2002 5:35 am
Posts: 2479
Location: Chattanooga TN
Next in the series:

The Scarlet Plague (1912) by Jack London. Starts about sixty years after the title disease that killed off most of humanity, throwing them back into savagery. The first chapter includes a scene where a group of youngsters casually dig up the skeletons of plague victims and pull out their teeth to wear as trophies.

_________________
Dark tears for is alabaster muse lost forever into the unforgiving jade daggers of the night. Her slim form no longer to touch his burning lips, her blood like the thorny rose no longer his, O Death! O Oblivion! Why havent you come! I wait in my garden of shadows for thee! -- Juniper releases her inner Goth.


Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:42 pm
Profile
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Mon Sep 30, 2002 5:35 am
Posts: 2479
Location: Chattanooga TN
The Scarlet Plague was novella length, so I raced through it quickly. It takes the form a story told by an elderly man who remembers civilization before most of humanity got wiped out to his savage grandchildren. Pretty effective portrait of things falling apart.

Next up in the "Doomsday Classics" series is Japan Sinks by Sakyo Komatsu (1973; translated by Michael Gallagher, 1976.) Fans of B movies may recall that it was adapted into the Japanese film Submersion of Japan (also 1973) which was cut from 143 minutes to 81 minutes, including new American footage, and released as Tidal Wave by Roger Corman in 1974.

Roger Ebert's amusing one-half star review of Tidal Wave here:

http://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/tidal-wave-1975

_________________
Dark tears for is alabaster muse lost forever into the unforgiving jade daggers of the night. Her slim form no longer to touch his burning lips, her blood like the thorny rose no longer his, O Death! O Oblivion! Why havent you come! I wait in my garden of shadows for thee! -- Juniper releases her inner Goth.


Sat Mar 25, 2017 4:54 pm
Profile
Burning Godzilla
User avatar

Joined: Mon Sep 30, 2002 5:35 am
Posts: 2479
Location: Chattanooga TN
Japan Sinks was pretty good, part hard SF (the science here being geophysics), part disaster novel, part character study, part meditation on the character of the Japanese people.

Next up in the "Doomsday Classics" series:

Underground Man by Gabriel de Tarde (1905 translation by Cloudesley Brereton of the 1904 original, expanded from an 1896 article, Fragment d'historie future)

Written by a French sociologist, this is apparently a somewhat satirical account of the society created when humanity has to live beneath the surface of the Earth when the sun grows cold. Introduction by H. G. Wells.

_________________
Dark tears for is alabaster muse lost forever into the unforgiving jade daggers of the night. Her slim form no longer to touch his burning lips, her blood like the thorny rose no longer his, O Death! O Oblivion! Why havent you come! I wait in my garden of shadows for thee! -- Juniper releases her inner Goth.


Tue Mar 28, 2017 6:20 pm
Profile
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Reply to topic   [ 70 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5  Next

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Jump to:  
cron

Forum hosting by ProphpBB | Software by phpBB | Report Abuse | Privacy