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 What are you currently reading?

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Lawless

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Tue Dec 30, 2008 1:53 am

I'm reading, The Historian, by Elizabeth Kostova

The story opens in Amsterdam in 1972, when a teenage girl discovers a medieval book and a cache of yellowed letters in her diplomat father's library. The pages of the book are empty except for a woodcut of a dragon. The letters are addressed to: "My dear and unfortunate successor." When the girl confronts her father, he reluctantly confesses an unsettling story: his involvement, twenty years earlier, in a search for his graduate school mentor, who disappeared from his office only moments after confiding to Paul his certainty that Dracula--Vlad the Impaler, an inventively cruel ruler of Wallachia in the mid-15th century--was still alive. The story turns out to concern our narrator directly because Paul's collaborator in the search was a fellow student named Helen Rossi (the unacknowledged daughter of his mentor) and our narrator's long-dead mother, about whom she knows almost nothing. And then her father, leaving just a note, disappears also.

As well as numerous settings, both in and out of the East Bloc, Kostova has three basic story lines to keep straight--one from 1930, when Professor Bartolomew Rossi begins his dangerous research into Dracula, one from 1950, when Professor Rossi's student Paul takes up the scent, and the main narrative from 1972. The criss-crossing story lines mirror the political advances, retreats, triumphs, and losses that shaped Dracula's beleaguered homeland--sometimes with the Byzantines on top, sometimes the Ottomans, sometimes the rag-tag local tribes, or the Orthodox church, and sometimes a fresh conqueror like the Soviet Union.

Although the book is appropriately suspenseful and a delight to read--even the minor characters are distinctive and vividly seen--its most powerful moments are those that describe real horrors. Our narrator recalls that after reading descriptions of Vlad burning young boys or impaling "a large family," she tried to forget the words: "For all his attention to my historical education, my father had neglected to tell me this: history's terrible moments were real. I understand now, decades later, that he could never have told me. Only history itself can convince you of such a truth." The reader, although given a satisfying ending, gets a strong enough dose of European history to temper the usual comforts of the closing words.

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gaboman

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:13 pm

That book sounds excellent Kris, I definitely want to get it.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:22 pm

Just started: "Why We Suck: A Feel Good Guide to Staying Fat, Loud, Lazy and Stupid" by Denis Leary.




Awesome. Already laughing.

The chapter titles are priceless... "Your Kids Are Not Cute"... "Autism Shmautism"... "Matt Dillon Is A Giant Fag"... excellent.

-HECK!

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:25 pm

Hahahah I wasn't sure, but the chapter titles sold me on it. I want that too.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:45 pm

Totally worth a read. Flows really well. Leary just talks shit on the world. Makes some great points.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:47 pm

I never really read comedy books. Mainly because this Jon Stewart one I got bored the living shit out of me. The dude's funny, but not 'let's write a book' funny.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Tue Dec 30, 2008 11:52 pm

gaboman wrote:
That book sounds excellent Kris, I definitely want to get it.


Grant... it's an EXCELLENT book. I'm reading it slowly... but, really taking it in. I read a chapter (sometimes 2) each day/night. Check it out, and let me know what you think. I'm not even half way into it.

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gaboman

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Wed Dec 31, 2008 3:34 am

Probably be a while, Kris. I wrote the details down so I can find it next time I'm in the store, but there's no guarantee it'll be in the book shops here. I'll see what happens.

Then again, I'm visiting the states soon. Sure there's a borders somewhere nearby (or whatever book stores you have there).

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Wed Dec 31, 2008 4:06 pm

OR... I will have it done before you're here (I'd assume) and I could probably just bring you my copy. I got in on clearance for like $4. I don't mind giving it to you. Seriously. So, let me know. You'll probably have to remind me though.

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gaboman

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Thu Jan 01, 2009 5:41 am

If you're done with it and you remember, that'd be awesome. But don't go to any special trouble for it or anything.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Thu Jan 01, 2009 2:28 pm

Grant... this book, in my opinion, just keeps getting better and better. I REALLY like this story... you're going to love it, I think.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Thu Jan 01, 2009 7:11 pm

I'm reading Duma Key by Stephen King.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Thu Jan 01, 2009 8:13 pm

I got Duma Key but I ain't read it yet.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:43 pm

Damn... the more that I read my book, the more I'm sucked in. I've read like 10 chapters today! Smile

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Thu Jan 01, 2009 11:09 pm

I'm reading my history textbook. Liberty, Equality, Power A History of the American People

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Fri Jan 02, 2009 3:53 am

I'm reading After MIdnight by Richard Laymon.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Fri Jan 02, 2009 11:09 am

Oh I remember that one. Umm... chick, lives alone by the woods... was she house sitting? Or she was a widower or some crap. Then a bloke shows up randomly after she catches some other dude spying on her.

Or something like that.

Oh, and I remember she has a body like a brick shit house.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Thu Jan 08, 2009 10:12 pm

I just finished reading book one of the NIGHT HUNTRESS series, and I've started book two, today. Book three will be read by tomorrow night, or Saturday at the latest. Book four comes out in a few months. I LOOOOOOOOVE VAMPIRES!

1) Halfway To The Grave

Night Huntress, Book One

Half-vampire Catherine Crawfield is going after the undead with a vengeance, hoping that one of these deadbeats is her father the one responsible for ruining her mother's life. Then she's captured by Bones, a vampire bounty hunter, and is forced into an unlikely partnership.


2) One Foot In The Grave

Book Two in the Night Huntress series

Half-vampire Cat Crawfield is now Special Agent Cat Crawfield, working for the government to rid the world of the rogue undead. She's still using everything Bones, her sexy and dangerous ex, taught her, but when Cat is targeted for assassination, the only man who can help her is the vampire she left behind.


3) At Graves End

Book Three in the Night Huntress series

It should be the best time of half-vampire Cat Crawfield's life. With her undead lover Bones at her side, she's successfully protected mortals from the rogue undead. But though Cat's worn disguise after disguise to keep her true identity a secret from the brazen bloodsuckers, her cover's finally been blown, placing her in terrible danger.

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Fri Jan 09, 2009 7:57 pm

I'm reading Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West

kind of weird. pretty good.
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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Fri Jan 09, 2009 8:04 pm

Dek, is that the Wicked play or something?

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Fri Jan 09, 2009 8:12 pm

I just looked it up on good ole wikipedia.

Yeah, they made a play out of it, and it looks like they are making a movie of it for 2010 as well.
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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Fri Jan 09, 2009 8:29 pm

Gotcha. Heard good things about the play, imagine the book is the same.

To be honest I didn't know it was a book first.

-HECK!

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Last edited by HECK! on Sat Jan 10, 2009 2:54 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:04 pm

Yeah, they made the play from the book. The book doesn't have music in it though.

Oh my god, someone should totally make a musical in the form of a novel!!!!!!

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Fri Jan 09, 2009 9:26 pm

The musical, Wicked, is my all time favorite in this world. I didn't care for the book though.

Demi Moore owns her own movie company (with other people, I think) and they bought the rights to making this into a movie, some years back. They never did though, because they said it was just too damn hard to do.

I hope that they finally can make it into a movie (and I wonder if it will be like The Wizard of Oz, or if it will be more like the musical).

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PostSubject: Re: What are you currently reading?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 10:55 pm

One of the best sci-fi writers today is Richard K. Morgan.

He is now tackling the fantasy realm with 'The Steel Remains', first in a what's supposed to be a trilogy.

Now if you've ever read Morgan's work, this entry into Fantasy isn't cutesy, it isn't Lord of Them Things, it isn't all warm and cuddly cliches with knights and wizards and princesses and chivalry.

This is a gritty, realistic, twisted, funny, freaky foray into the genre.

Barely into the third chapter and the main characters have issues, to say the least. Some great battle scenes already. Morgan tells it well.

Still waiting for someone to pick up some of Morgan's work. If you like fantasy and have the balls, check this one out.

His debut novel, 'Altered Carbon,' isn't only one of the best sci-fi books I've read, it's one of the best stories I've come across ever.

-HECK!

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