Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Talk about anything under the sun or stars - but keep it civil. This is where we really get to know each other. Everyone is welcome, and invited!
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Mich » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:43 am

My parents got me War of Gifts for Christmas, humorously enough, and so I read it a few days ago. I was honestly surprised at how logically it was laid out at first, pretty much until Ender actually got involved in the story. I'm still not sure how I feel about it, but it read like high-quality fanfiction, I guess.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Young Val » Thu Dec 29, 2011 10:13 am

WITHERING TIGHTS by Louise Rennison
I was skeptical about this series at first, given how much I luuuurve Georgia Nicolson. Tallulah is markedly different than Gee, and to be honest I didn't know if she could carry off an entire book without being a bit, well, boring. The format of the book is different, too. It's more like traditional first-person narration than the hilarious diary entires that Georgia favored. All that said, I really loved it. Not only is Tallulah sweet and kind of refreshingly hilarious, the boys in the book are different as well. Alex is somewhat Sex God-y, sure, but in general I was impressed that Tallulah's mates and crushes aren't just a rehash of Georgia's. Not quite as laugh-out-loud funny as Gee's madcap adventures, and Angus and Libby are sorely missed (there are poor man's replacements for those two in this series, but they're truly poor replacements). Still, I kind of adored it, and look forward to the rest of the series.

I also blasted through EMMA (bought the complete works of Jane Austen on the kindle for 99 cents) and THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST (free!) recently.
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby CezeN » Thu Dec 29, 2011 1:16 pm

American Gods by Neil Gaiman.
A decent book, I guess. I basically stumbled through the plot since it basically teases you with explanations about everything going on. The need to find answers kept me hooked into reading the book for hours on end.

Most of the "gods" went over my head, since I'm not that knowledgable on mythology from all the different regions of the world.

It was an interesting book, I guess. I loved the end plot twist mostly because it was subtly foreshadowed in many of the interactions earlier in the book. It may have single-handedly made the whole book worth reading. However, I hate how it was so simply thwarted at the last minute. Like, you guys couldn't plan for the chance that your big plan might just be revealed by the person you told it to before it could come to fruition?

It was strange how the main character took everything in stride so easily, almost as if he wasn't a real person. But, I guess that's supposed to correspond with his name.

I liked some of the random stories of random gods fullfilling their functions in surprising ways. And I'm still curious about who the god who no one notices(Except Mr. Wednesday, but he knows the Names of all the gods) and who's name no one can remember. Why did he take pity on the girl and he has control over commerce/money/economy? I love the hypothesis someone proposed that he's the Invisible Hand of economy. lol

I guess I'd say the book was above decent, but like House of Leaves, it was annoying to read. (And for the same damn reason)
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Mich » Thu Dec 29, 2011 7:43 pm

I guess I'd say the book was above decent, but like House of Leaves, it was annoying to read. (And for the same damn reason)
I was under the impression that you really liked House of Leaves. But we're glad you at least partly enjoyed Gods. What I like about Shadow is that his point of being a nonentity main character makes almost complete sense.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby CezeN » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:58 pm

I did, a lot more than American Gods, but it was annoying to read. Because I was searching for answers while I enjoyed the journey. But, there was basically no answers.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Petra » Fri Dec 30, 2011 9:19 am

Has anyone read Ready Player One? I read a description of it yesterday and I'm dying to read it.
I've read it and it's fantastic. Such an indulgent mix of 80s geek culture and future-generation MMO gaming. No muss, no fuss, no real complexity or nuance, just a fun, fun read. You'll be glad you read it, and you'll be sorry when it's over. But you won't read it twice.

If you liked Ready Player One, check out Stephenson's new one, Reamde. Also very good, just not a fluff book like Ready Player One.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Taalcon » Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:02 am

Among other things, I broke down and just used Lendle to borrow Hunger Games on my Kindle Touch. Having just arrived at Chapter 6, I decided to watch the trailer for the film. I was surprised at how well it matched up with (and mostly covered) the details of what I had just read. Very interested in continuing to read, and then having a fun movie to watch not too long after the end of it!

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Luet » Fri Dec 30, 2011 12:16 pm

I hope you love it. The consensus around here was: loved the first, second was really good, third was flawed but still decent.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Rei » Fri Dec 30, 2011 12:18 pm

Gonna read AWoG...
I had to ask EL what this one was because apparently I keep forgetting it exists. Ever since Ender's Puppy I've had a hard time thinking of it as a real book.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Wind Swept » Fri Dec 30, 2011 12:25 pm

I broke down and just used Lendle
Ooo. I like this site. Perhaps we should start a Pweb club.

ETA: Ah, I see you have to be a paying member to start clubs...
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Taalcon » Fri Dec 30, 2011 1:04 pm

Ender's Puppy
Holy gee, I completely forgot about that. :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby UnnDunn » Sun Jan 01, 2012 2:16 pm

Has anyone read Ready Player One? I read a description of it yesterday and I'm dying to read it.
I've read it and it's fantastic. Such an indulgent mix of 80s geek culture and future-generation MMO gaming. No muss, no fuss, no real complexity or nuance, just a fun, fun read. You'll be glad you read it, and you'll be sorry when it's over. But you won't read it twice.

If you liked Ready Player One, check out Stephenson's new one, Reamde. Also very good, just not a fluff book like Ready Player One.
I'll definitely check it out. I was never a huge fan of Stephenson, but the subject matter intrigues me.

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Young Val » Mon Jan 02, 2012 1:53 pm

Just finished up GRACELING by Kristin Cashore.

It got weak reviews from a trusted friend of mine, so I didn't expect to like it much. I was pleasantly surprised. It was absorbing and unexpectedly thought-provoking. Yes, The plot did meander a bit, at times, but I went along with it. I'm very excited to read the prequel, FIRE, which I've gathered has a more complex and sophisticated set of characters (though rumor has it the world-building may be bit lacking here).
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby steph » Mon Jan 02, 2012 6:35 pm

Just finished up GRACELING by Kristin Cashore.

It got weak reviews from a trusted friend of mine, so I didn't expect to like it much. I was pleasantly surprised. It was absorbing and unexpectedly thought-provoking. Yes, The plot did meander a bit, at times, but I went along with it. I'm very excited to read the prequel, FIRE, which I've gathered has a more complex and sophisticated set of characters (though rumor has it the world-building may be bit lacking here).
It's been awhile since I read them, so I can't really accurately review them, but I remember liking them. In fact, just yesterday, I read thinking about then and couldn't remember the titles or authors, so thanks for reminding me!
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Mich » Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:52 pm

After a post about it on Reddit, I went and found a PDF of Scary Stories to Read in the Dark.

It sits on my desktop. I opened it once, and then immediately closed it.

It waits.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Carly. » Tue Jan 03, 2012 11:20 pm

I always read about 27000 things at the same time. Currently, Catcher in the Rye, Neuromancer, a collection of Lovecraft's short stories, and Weaveworld by Clive Barker.
I intended to have all of these read during my winter break, but it doesn't look like its going to happen, unfortunately. And as soon as school starts up again, I'll have no time to read. :grumble:

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby CezeN » Tue Jan 03, 2012 11:59 pm

After a post about it on Reddit, I went and found a PDF of Scary Stories to Read in the Dark.

It sits on my desktop. I opened it once, and then immediately closed it.

It waits.
Can you post a link? I can't really remember the last time I was actually scared by something I read.. (So you've piqued my interest)
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Mich » Wed Jan 04, 2012 1:35 am

It's on Scribd, here. Honestly, I have no idea if the stories are scary at all, to the not-fourth-grade-mind. The pictures, for what it's worth, still give me the freaking willies.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Young Val » Wed Jan 04, 2012 1:36 pm

IMAGINARY GIRLS by Nova Ren Suma
:love: :love: :love:
I really have nothing else to say. This book is horrifying and magical and bursting with love. I adored it.
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby steph » Wed Jan 04, 2012 1:44 pm

Just finished up GRACELING by Kristin Cashore.

It got weak reviews from a trusted friend of mine, so I didn't expect to like it much. I was pleasantly surprised. It was absorbing and unexpectedly thought-provoking. Yes, The plot did meander a bit, at times, but I went along with it. I'm very excited to read the prequel, FIRE, which I've gathered has a more complex and sophisticated set of characters (though rumor has it the world-building may be bit lacking here).
It's been awhile since I read them, so I can't really accurately review them, but I remember liking them. In fact, just yesterday, I read thinking about then and couldn't remember the titles or authors, so thanks for reminding me!
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby CezeN » Wed Jan 04, 2012 7:57 pm

It's on Scribd, here. Honestly, I have no idea if the stories are scary at all, to the not-fourth-grade-mind. The pictures, for what it's worth, still give me the freaking willies.
Yeah, wasn't really that scary to me. Maybe over a campfire at night...the right setting is needed.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Young Val » Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:24 am

THE SCORCH TRIALS by James Dashner
After reading the first book in this trilogy I wasn't interested enough to keep on. However, the second book was available instantly on e-book for the Kindle and I'd run out of other stuff to read. Um. This did not improve my opinion any. I could not give a flying f*** about Thomas and Teresa and their relationship, so I spent most of this book bored out of my skull. The secondary characters continue to be compelling, but not enough so to carry the weight of tedium that is the entire remainder of the book. Without the structure of the maze/box/farm this series loses anything that made it fascinating. I'll read the final one just because I hate to come this far in a series and not finish. But I probably won't enjoy it.
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Young Val » Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:00 pm

GOING BOVINE by Libba Bray
I didn't bother to finish this one. Nothing against Libba Bray. The opening was great, she nails the voice of an apathetic teenage boy, but I mentally and emotionally checked out as soon as the fever dream or whatever kicked in. The rest of the story was predictable and I wasn't remotely interested in it after that point. So I gave up. (It is only over the last year or so that I'm willing to abandon a book halfway through or less. Life is too short to force myself into tedious boredom). Love you, Libba. Maybe next book, yes?

CITY OF EMBER by Jeanne DuPrau
Adorable. Engaging. Wonderful. Loved it.

BOSSYPANTS by Tina Fey
It didn't make me laugh out loud quite as often as I'd hoped (although I definitely did laugh out loud) but all in all a very enjoyable read.

A PRACTICAL WEDDING by Meg Keene
Buy it. Read it. That's all, folks.

THE WORLD WE LIVE IN by Susan Beth Pfeffer
This was a WH book and was being written when I left. I'd read outlines and brief excerpts at that point, but that was all. I mostly liked it. I thought it was a decent enough end to the trilogy, although parts of it were pretty forced and there's some stuff in there I didn't like. Still, an engrossing and enjoyable read.
Last edited by Young Val on Fri Jan 27, 2012 9:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Young Val » Fri Jan 13, 2012 8:54 am

PRIZED by Caragh M. O' Brien
Eh. I was let down by the second installment in the BIRTHMARKED series. Gaia was reduced to a dithering idiot, and the plot was superfluous at best with nothing that remotely resembled resolution. Also, love triangles for the sake of love triangles? STOP IT.
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby zeroguy » Mon Jan 16, 2012 6:27 pm

I read Daniel Suarez's Daemon recently (just the first book). It's kinda dumb, but I suppose books in this genre must be to some degree. It's less dumb than other stories I've read like this, so I suppose something was done right.

I get the feeling that one of the selling points in this is the accuracy of the portrayed technology. Which I agree is better than most present-day techno-novels or whatever (but still not as good as I would expect from a security researcher). But I don't really see that as much of a benefit; while it allows geeks to go "hey I recognize that acronym and know what it means, that's cool", there are significant downsides: it freezes the story in time (in the future everything will just appear so old), and it makes the tech in the story so much less impressive. One of the more aggravating things about the story is seeing people get so mystified or whatever by technology that isn't difficult to produce; anybody with money could've done that! Things like synthesized voices, remote controlled cars, GPS... it's usually plainly explained after the bewilderment, but I don't see how any of this is a surprise in the first place.

[Edit: there are a couple of exceptions to this, the most notable one being the AI effectively serving as the antagonist... which the book never goes into any detail about or explores! That's like the only interesting tech in the whole freaking thing!]

It also just doesn't seem exceptionally well-written, but I'm of course not as good a judge of that. I also did not know while reading it that it was intended to be a two-part series, though that the book wasn't standalone was pretty obvious as you near the end. It feels a lot how I expect the movie Eagle Eye was; not that I've seen that, but I've heard that it was pretty bad (and the plots have similarities).
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Young Val » Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:28 am

THE PARTICULAR SADNESS OF LEMON CAKE by Aimee Bender
A very good (not great) coming of age story told quietly, and infused with magical realism. Achingly beautiful prose.

THE STRANGE CASE OF FINLEY JAYNE by Kady Cross
Flat, cumbersome, YA steampunk novella. Don't bother.
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby steph » Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:37 am

Last week I read O, Pioneers by Willa Cather. I really think my boys would have thrived, living on a homestead. I don't know that I would handle it well, certainly not like Alexandra did, but the acres to roam and explore would have been wonderful for my kids.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Young Val » Thu Jan 19, 2012 11:51 am

FIRE by Kristin Cashore
Really enjoyed this one, moreso than GRACELING. Excited for BITTERBLUE which comes out in May!

David and I just finished up PATHFINDER as our read-aloud and moved right on to Marie Lu's LEGEND, which I have been dying to read for over a year (I know the author). While the book is really great so far, I don't know that it was the best choice for a read-aloud. I'm tempted to abandon it and devour it on my own, and find something else for the two of us. Of course, this may be because it's the first read-aloud book I haven't previously read. And patience is decidedly not one of my virtues.

Jsut started INCARCERON by Catherine Fisher. The world-building is chaotic and I'm a little confused, but it's still early enough that I'm willing to wait it out, and I find the protagonists compelling so far.
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby steph » Thu Jan 19, 2012 12:28 pm

I had no idea there was a 3rd book coming out in May! I need to be more in the loop!

I'm re-reading Pathfinder right now. I love this book.
"When I look back on my ordinary, ordinary life,
I see so much magic, though I missed it at the time." - Jamie Cullum

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby LilBee91 » Sat Jan 28, 2012 1:13 am

This should probably be a confession. I have this problem of checking out at least three books from the library every time a go, regardless of whether I actually time to read them or not. One of the books I checked out this time was Twilight: The Graphic Novel (Volume One). I read it all today. It wasn't quite as awful as I thought it would be, but I didn't particularly like the artwork and most likely won't read Volume Two. But, you know, now I can say I've read it.

Next up: Left Hand of Darkness.
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby megxers » Sat Jan 28, 2012 3:16 am

I have come to terms with the fact I am never going to like a LeGuin novel as much as I anticipate, based on content, I will. Alas.

Notable reads this week were Fledgling, One for sorrow, and I finally read World War Z!
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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Luet » Sat Jan 28, 2012 6:49 am

I could not get into Left Hand of Darkness even though it's one of her most famous. However, I loved Lathe of Heaven.
"In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer." - Albert Camus in Return to Tipasa

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Young Val » Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:59 am

The last weeks have been slowish on the reading front, as so much wedding stuff has been happening. That said...

INCARCERON by Catherine Fisher. I really wanted to like it. And I DID like it. I guess I just wanted to like it more. The reveal was clear to me all the way at the beginning of the book, the world-building never got less confusing, and I never really felt a sense of urgency. I did LOVE the characters of Claudia and her tutor, entirely because they reminded me SO MUCH of Thomasina and Septimus from ARCADIA and I looooooooove them/that play so much it's ridiculous. Kind of disappointed overall, to the point where I had forgotten I'd read it until I looked back at my list.

DELIRIUM by Lauren Oliver. What if Love were literally a fatal isease? And what if you could be cured? The premise of this book has problems right from the get-go, and I was very skeptical going in, because it was obvious that the main plot of this dystopian YA was going to be a forbidden romance, and I hate books that are all romance. They bore me. And it's true. A forbidden romance IS the main plot of this book, and I really enjoyed it anyway. It helps that Lauren Oliver is a great writer. I don't care much about the romance or love interest, Alex, at all, but I AM interested in the protagonist, Lena (and I love her bff Hana).

THE GIRL WHO WAS ON FIRE edited by Leah Wilson. This is a collection of essays about THE HUNGER GAMES written by YA authors. The essays are mildly interesting, and generally solid. I disagreed strongly with some of them, and agreed with others. I was hoping for something new, a perspective I hadn't considered before, but didn't get it.

VARIANT by Robinson Wells. Starred reviews all over the place. One of Pub Weekly's best books of 2011. I had high hopes. This was a page-turner for sure, and I flew through it. I couldn't stop reading. And yet...I don't think I really liked it? I know there's a sequel (and good, because that was one hell of a cliff-hanger ending). I just finished it last night and I keep THINKING about it, so there's that to say for it at least. It didn't bore me. But none of my thoughts about it are overly positive. Then I went and read a little bit about the author and about how he wrote the book, and I think that might have cemented my opinions a little bit, too. You can always tell when a book is written for the market instead of from a genuine grain of inspiration, and that's also true in this case. Still. I couldn't put it down until I was done. So there's that.

Nothing really earth-shattering.


IMAGINARY GIRLS by Nova Ren Suma is the best book I've read so far this year. I'm waiting for something else to knock it down, but I'm not holding my breath.
you snooze, you lose
well I have snozzed and lost
I'm pushing through
I'll disregard the cost
I hear the bells
so fascinating and
I'll slug it out
I'm sick of waiting
and I can
hear the bells are
ringing joyful and triumphant

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby Rei » Wed Feb 01, 2012 4:22 pm

I just finished reading The Return of the King. And the ending always makes me feel so, so very sad. One feels very much like Sam, left by the master they love on the shore and then have to go back to living life for a time.
Le coeur a ses raisons que la raison ne connait point.
~Blaise Pascal


私は。。。誰?

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Re: Currently Reading / Just Read (Books/stories/whatever)

Postby neo-dragon » Wed Feb 01, 2012 5:21 pm

I could not get into Left Hand of Darkness even though it's one of her most famous.
Yeah, I think I mentioned before that I didn't like it very much. I don't see myself giving LeGuin another chance.
Notable reads this week were Fledgling, One for sorrow, and I finally read World War Z!
Fledgling? As in, Octavia E. Butler's Fledgling?
"Deep in the human unconscious is a pervasive need for a logical universe that makes sense. But the real universe is always one step beyond logic."
- Frank Herbert's 'Dune'


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