Page 71 of 74 FirstFirst ... 21616970717273 ... LastLast
Results 1,751 to 1,775 of 1842
  1. #1751
    Kowalski's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    The Past
    Posts
    2,193
    Teams
    Bangor City, FCUM, Livorno
    Biscuit
    Custard Cream
    Actor
    Paul Newman c.1968
    Like!

  2. #1752
    WOM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Tronno
    Posts
    29,484
    Biscuit
    Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
    Last time we were in North Carolina, I picked up a book called My Folks Don't Want Me To Talk About Slavery, edited by Belinda Hurmence. This time I picked up Before Freedom: When I Can Just Remember by the same author/editor.

    These are fascinating volumes, comprised of first person interviews with elderly African Americans who'd grown up slaves and been freed, usually around ten or twelve years of age. The interviews were conducted mainly in North and South Carolina, sometime around 1935 as part of a WPA scheme to employ writers/authors. Most subjects were in their late '80s and early '90, and had generally fond memories of their life as slaves and of their owners. As the editor points out in the preface, this was common. Childhood was idyllic, and the later struggles they faced as freemen were far greater than the abstract concept of being 'owned' as a child.

    Also, the subjects universally remember 'the Yankees' as savages who looted, burned and pillaged as they spread the message of freedom to the slaves.

    The language is raw, beautiful and in many ways, foreign in both time and dialect. I'll eventually have the whole set of these, I find them so fascinating.

  3. #1753
    ChrisJ's Avatar
    Gate, gate...
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Samsara
    Posts
    1,150
    Teams
    Shrewsbury Town
    Biscuit
    Something chocolatey. And nutty.
    Actor
    Judi Dench
    Quote Originally Posted by RobW View Post
    Reading Alex von Tunzelmann's 'Blood and Sand', about the Suez crisis and the Hungarian revolution of 1956. Enjoying it immensely.
    Did it stand up to the end? If so, I'll give it a go. I really enjoyed her Indian Summer but I wondered if she'd paced it right. About to re-read it to check.

  4. #1754

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    11,914
    Biscuit
    Fair City
    Just finished "A Short History of the Boxer Rebellion" by Diana Preston. I had no idea in the 21st century that you could write a book about a major event in Chinese history without reference to any chinese sources whatsoever. Impressive, in a really non-impressive kind of way.

    Also reading Yuri Slezkine's "House of Government" which is - don't be fooled by the packaging and the book flap - essentially a 1000-page social history of the Old Bolsheviks who became big shots under NEP and Stalin. It is not without interest - the stuff on architecture and urban planning is fascinating (how do we build houses and neighbourhoods if we don't know if parents or the state will have the primary responsibility for raising children?) - but the insistence on viewing everything through the lens of "communism-as-religious-sect" is really annoying and the 100-page meander through Axial-age religions and early-modern millennial sects was unnecessary and painful.

  5. #1755
    caja-dglh's Avatar
    Got 15 different iPhones but so ain't phoney
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New England
    Posts
    8,594
    Got to make a choice between books to start. Meet Me in the Bathroom or 2023 - A Trilogy. Having been reading all the craziness about the Toxteth Day of the Dead I am not sure I am ready for the latter.

  6. #1756
    Incandenza's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    21,267
    Teams
    UCLA, Lakers, Dodgers, Galaxy
    Biscuit
    Trader Joe's Maple Leaf cookies
    Finished The Girls, by Emma Cline. A coming of age novel told in flashback by a woman who was a teenager in the late 1960s in the Bay Area and fell in with a group that is a thinly veiled version of the Manson family. The similarities are extremely obvious and unsubtle, but the plot is not as important as her writing style, which I really enjoyed. She has some great sentences and turns of phrase, and the book is more about the relationship of women of different ages among each other and what it is like to be a woman and seen by others. I really enjoyed it.

  7. #1757

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    11,914
    Biscuit
    Fair City
    Yan Lianke's Serve The People is OK. Not in anything like the league of the Explosion Chronicles or Lenin's Kisses though. Actual sex scenes, though, which is pretty rare in Chinese lit (the stuff that gets translated anyway)

    Ian McEwan's The Children Act is fantastic. Now that Iain Banks is gone he may be my favourite British writer. You know every story is going to have a horrible ending but the suspense he builds in exactly how horrible it is going to end is fantastic. And the pacing: characterdrivencharacterdrivencharacterdrivenchara cterdrivencharacterdrivencharacterdrivenHOLYFUCKIN GPLOTcharacterdriven is unique.

    Still chugging through House of Government. It gets better, but Christ it could have used a tougher editor.

  8. #1758
    Patrick Thistle's Avatar
    Try to be kind. Even when you don't want to.
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    The fabled land of druids and dragons
    Posts
    7,163
    Teams
    Shrewsbury Town, Wales, Cardiff Devils
    Biscuit
    Oreo McFlurry
    Actor
    Chris Pratt
    Just finished reading Bob Wilson's autobiography (see football books thread). I've overlapped and am a couple of chapters in to Jackie Robinson's autobiography that had two "fucking hell!" moments before I got to him being court martialed for talking to a white woman on a bus.

  9. #1759
    Patrick Thistle's Avatar
    Try to be kind. Even when you don't want to.
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    The fabled land of druids and dragons
    Posts
    7,163
    Teams
    Shrewsbury Town, Wales, Cardiff Devils
    Biscuit
    Oreo McFlurry
    Actor
    Chris Pratt
    150 pages into the Jackie Robinson autobiography. I was surprised to learn he campaigned for Nixon against Kennedy in 1960.

  10. #1760
    Sam's Avatar
    You never can tell with bees.
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    The Paris of the south
    Posts
    10,126
    Teams
    Manchester United, River Plate and Barcelona
    Biscuit
    Dark chocolate digestive
    Actor
    A young David Bowie
    Finished Golden Apples of the Sun - lovely stuff. I have now started Swing Time by Zadie Smith, which so far I'm very much enjoying, having not read anything by her before (apart from probably the odd article).

  11. #1761
    Patrick Thistle's Avatar
    Try to be kind. Even when you don't want to.
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    The fabled land of druids and dragons
    Posts
    7,163
    Teams
    Shrewsbury Town, Wales, Cardiff Devils
    Biscuit
    Oreo McFlurry
    Actor
    Chris Pratt
    Finished the Jackie Robinson book. Very sad reading about his son.

    This was published in 1972 and although some of the scenery has changed evidently not much has improved in American attitudes to race in the past 45 years.

  12. #1762

    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    2,048
    Teams
    Lincoln City
    Biscuit
    Garibaldi
    Started reading India Conquered; Britain's Raj and the Chaos of Empire by Jon Wilson this morning.

  13. #1763
    Patrick Thistle's Avatar
    Try to be kind. Even when you don't want to.
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    The fabled land of druids and dragons
    Posts
    7,163
    Teams
    Shrewsbury Town, Wales, Cardiff Devils
    Biscuit
    Oreo McFlurry
    Actor
    Chris Pratt
    I'm now halfway through The Outback Stars by Sandra Mcdonald. It's spacey sci-fi based on Australian aboriginal myths. Mcdonald served 8 years in the US Navy so the space navy set up seems very authentic. Perhaps too authentic - it's the first space opera book I've read with an emphasis on how much paperwork needs to be done in a space navy.

    A quick Google reveals this is the first in a trilogy so I might try and find the next 2 books while I'm here in Hay on Wye.

  14. #1764
    Patrick Thistle's Avatar
    Try to be kind. Even when you don't want to.
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    The fabled land of druids and dragons
    Posts
    7,163
    Teams
    Shrewsbury Town, Wales, Cardiff Devils
    Biscuit
    Oreo McFlurry
    Actor
    Chris Pratt
    Finished the book. It's not set up so you have to read the sequels which is pleasing.

    Not sure what to read next. Not got any others started so will have to see what is lying around. I remembered yesterday that I still have Danish Dynamite about the mid 80s Denmark team in the to read pile. So I might do that next.

  15. #1765

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    11,914
    Biscuit
    Fair City
    It's less interesting than you'd think.

  16. #1766

    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Posts
    24
    Teams
    Tottenham Ajax Hapoel Tel Aviv
    Biscuit
    JodeKager
    I am currently reading the fascinating 'Final Solution' a masterful overview of the Holocaust by one of the leading exponents of modern Jewish history and now passed Daivid Cesarani - olevashólem 'lit

    The voice of clarity and dignity silenced, the voice of classical realism - a shining light has gone out, but his books live on.

    'Final Solution -The Fate of the Jews 1933-1949' a lucid synthesis of scholarship, 1000+ pages, I'm 70% through it (kindle) an absolute massive read. It is impossible to be reading such testimony and not to be overwhelmed by the events themselves. Reinstating the singularly Jewish character of the tragedy like no other book I've read on the subject.

  17. #1767

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    5,470
    Teams
    Oldham/Farnborough
    "American War" by Omar El-Akkad. Utterly unsubtle but readable novel about the US crumbling into a vicious Second Civil War (sponsored by resource rich Middle Eastern states) with biological warfare, refugee camp massacres, suicide bombers, rogue drones, against the backdrop of cataclysmic global warming and fossil fuel depletion.

  18. #1768

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    11,914
    Biscuit
    Fair City
    Unsubtle is putting it mildly. I get the sense Omar was pretty traumatized by leaving Toronto and dealing with life in the states (you may have read this piece of his in the Graun recently). Interesting as a vision of a remarkably low-tech future.

    Now, my wife just bought me The Chinese Typewriter: A History, which looks utterly fascinating and i may have to stay up all night to read it.

    (edit - a third of the way through now. It's very good if sometimes heavyhanded. Technolinguistics is a fascinating field - for instance, as yourself how morse code works in Chinese. I think many on here would like it, though maybe Ginger Yellow more than any.)
    Last edited by Anton Gramscescu; 01-10-2017 at 16:15.

  19. #1769
    WOM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Tronno
    Posts
    29,484
    Biscuit
    Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
    Quote Originally Posted by Anton Gramscescu View Post
    Technolinguistics is a fascinating field - for instance, as yourself how morse code works in Chinese.
    I swear to you...he's interesting and engaging in person. He really is.

  20. #1770

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    11,914
    Biscuit
    Fair City
    Oh hush. This book is fabulous.

    For instance, did you know that the Input Method Editor system now used on every Chinese, Japanese and Korean phone and computer was actually first developed for a typewriter built in 1947? Imagine the work that goes into making something that complicated work mechanically as opposed to electronically. Amazing.

  21. #1771
    hobbes's Avatar
    A bastion of rightness in a wrong old world.
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Hell (You may know it as Bromley.)
    Posts
    14,737
    Teams
    Liverpool
    Biscuit
    Jaffa Cake
    I'm about 2/3rds through The Nix by Nathan Hill.
    Boy, this is quite a read. All the criticisms about it being overlong and overstuffed are correct, and yet... What a ride. Reminds me of later period Pynchon (when he'd got past the need for endless digressions) and a bit of Tom Woolf's knack for unpicking an absurdity.
    Seriously, this is up there with A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki as my book of the year.

    Before that I read Idaho by Emily Ruskovich which was brilliantly evocative and fist-gnawingly dull at the same time. And also How Not to Be a Boy by Robert Webb. Surprisingly engaging if overly obvious. It often uses a sledgehammer where a nutcracker would do, but had a lot of easily recognisable and relatable situations for me and I assume any bloke around my age.

  22. #1772

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    11,914
    Biscuit
    Fair City
    I really liked the Nix too even though mildly annoyed by the one obvious, glaring problem of timing, (the Democratic convention happened in August so for classes at the uni to have been in session they would have had to start term in July which I'm pretty sure has never been the case at American colleges).

  23. #1773
    hobbes's Avatar
    A bastion of rightness in a wrong old world.
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Hell (You may know it as Bromley.)
    Posts
    14,737
    Teams
    Liverpool
    Biscuit
    Jaffa Cake
    Ah, I hadn't twigged that. Yes, I can see how that would grate.

  24. #1774

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    6,471
    Teams
    Oxford United
    Biscuit
    Petit Ecolier (milk chocolate)
    I'm about halfway through reading Adam Johnson's The Orphan Master's Son right now, and it's very good, very entertaining and readable. I think somebody years ago on this thread commented how well it was written given that it's an American author writing with a North Korean's voice.

    Before that it was The 100 Year Old Man, which is entertaining fluff but would have been better if I knew less history

    And before that it was Eileen by Ottessa Moshfegh, which was actually really very dull for a book that short.

  25. #1775
    imp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Frankfurt, in the main
    Posts
    4,159
    Teams
    The Mighty Imps of Lindum
    Biscuit
    Jaffa Cakes/Biscuits
    Quote Originally Posted by San Bernardhinault View Post
    I'm about halfway through reading Adam Johnson's The Orphan Master's Son right now, and it's very good, very entertaining and readable. I think somebody years ago on this thread commented how well it was written given that it's an American author writing with a North Korean's voice.
    I was thinking, ooh, that sounds interesting, and then I remembered that I read it, and that it was possibly me who made the comment on here. But who would ever have the time and energy to excavate this thread and check?

    Noting down The Chinese Typewriter as a Xmas present for oldest impette - cheers for the recommendation, AG.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •