Jump to content

What are you reading now?


Recommended Posts

Red Sparrow by Jason Matthews

The Jennifer Lawrence movie was based on this book (haven't seen it). I'm halfway through and completely engrossed.

Great for fans of Le Carré, Fleming, etc. More spycraft and character-building, less Hollywood prurience.

spacer.png

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 1.5k
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

What the fuck kind of books are you guys reading that require study guides and devoting years of your lives to? I am reading Russka by Edward Rutherford and I have not had to hire a support staff

Seems like a good day to start a biography of Pliny the Elder and  Younger that Claire got for me at Christmas.  

Posted Images

  • 5 weeks later...

Dune-Frank_Herbert_(1965)_First_edition.

Late last year I was reading a feature (maybe it was a profile of the movie coming later this year?) where the author made reference to Dune as being impenetrable to a lay audience and full of gobbeldy-gook. I first read the book about two decades ago, so I figured it was a good time to pick it back up and re-read.

I'm happy to say the opposite is true. Far from being impenetrable, I found it all but impossible to put down once I got momentum going. I think it has aged beautifully. I think it is well deserving of its "classic of the genre" status.

Dune's brilliance, to me, comes from the combination of its world-building, characters, prose (better than I remembered), and plot (schemes within schemes). I think Dune ends up as more than the sum of its parts. In not being overly reliant on any one aspect of story-telling, it succeeds in a way that a lot of classic sci-fi does not under contemporary scrutiny. Herbert's focus on character and location give Dune timelessness in ways that sci-fi novels overly reliant on cool/novel technology can never be. I also can't believe how middle-eastern the book is having re-read it after travelling to the region.

--

I'm not at all excited about the 2021 movie. I get wanting to bring this story to a wider audience who is never going to read a 600 page sci-fi book from the 60s. Dune is just so fulfilling to those of us who love it. However, even with low expectations for the movie I fully expect to be disappointed. The Lynch movie at least nailed the production design and a lot of the casting, even if it ended up a colossal mess. The story is just very difficult to cram down to a 2-3 hour script without losing a lot of the richness that makes Dune what it is.

But hey, paging @cutestory! When was the last time you (re)read it, Jeffy who is known to us as Maud'dib, and how did it hold up for you?

Edited by TMoney
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

TheQueensGambit.jpg

Absolutely wonderful. This is a great complimentary read to those who have watched the show, or a wonderful journey for those who have not seen it yet. I'm really impressed by Tevis as a writer.

Ender's Game is one of those books you give to precocious young people who might feel ashamed of being smart. Maybe it is time to re-think that default option and give them this classic instead.

Best compliment I can give the book is I read it in a single day. It hooks you and won't let you go.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/17/2021 at 4:25 AM, TMoney said:

I also can't believe how middle-eastern the book is having re-read it after travelling to the region.

I read it for the first time a few months ago, and I found it very similar to you.  It was really well-paced, I felt propelled from one plotline to the next, my unhappiness at leaving one storyline outweighed always a little by excitement to revisit another.  It's really a great story, laid out well.  The discussions about reading order and canon are impenetrable and detract from the experience somewhat, but what can you do?

I highlighted the above because I think the sort of Arab fetishism the writing about the Fremen exhibits did not age the same way the rest of the book did.  Obviously public conceptions about the Middle East have shifted greatly here in the West, and I'm personally very fond of the kind of romanticized Bedouin culture seen in works like Dune and Lawrence of Arabia, but I also think it's a  little skin deep.  The noble savage thing is a well worn trope and it fits the larger hero's journey nicely, but it does feel like a bit of moralizing on Herbert's part.  It also removes me from the fantasy somewhat, as the other major factions don't seem to have the same obvious real-world counterpart.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

One hundred precent, Tyler. I am in total agreement. That is part of why I have zero interest in Herbert's sequels. He caught lighting in a bottle once, but trying to stretch it out beyond the one book has no appeal to me.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
39 minutes ago, TMoney said:

One hundred precent, Tyler. I am in total agreement. That is part of why I have zero interest in Herbert's sequels. He caught lighting in a bottle once, but trying to stretch it out beyond the one book has no appeal to me.

I listened to Dune this year and enjoyed it thoroughly.  The sequel, no thank you.  It was a total struggle and it'll be the last of the series that I bother with.  

In other news I (unsurprisingly) took @en480c4's recommendation and have now listened to Gideon the Ninth and Harrow the Ninth.  The former is effing fantastic.  The second was more difficult, for reasons I will not divulge (spoiler) but finished incredibly well and has me looking forward to the final book in the trilogy to see where the story goes.  The audio books are highly recommended, the narration and narrator are brilliant. 

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites

I actually slogged through all of the sequels and it was rough. I got on such a roll that I read his son's cheesy prequels and such. In my defense, commuting on the streetcar was a painful slog at the time and I fully associate the sound of the MUNI announcement chime with Dune and the Guild. 

  • Like 3
  • Haha 1
  • Confused 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...