Author Topic: What are you currently reading?  (Read 1003413 times)

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Offline vers la flamme

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10460 on: January 31, 2021, 05:29:55 AM »
Middlemarch.



Always wanted to read this. What do you think?

Offline Iota

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10461 on: January 31, 2021, 07:46:59 AM »
Always wanted to read this. What do you think?

One of those books I put down and thought, do I really ever need to read anything else after that? A wonderful thing imo. (Sorry you didn't ask me, but thought I'd chip in anyway.) Actually was going to reread it a couple of weeks ago until I found my copy had gone missing.  :(

Offline DavidW

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10462 on: January 31, 2021, 08:12:21 AM »
Always wanted to read this. What do you think?

Too early to tell yet but it is much easier to read than Mill on the Floss.

Offline Dry Brett Kavanaugh

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10463 on: February 01, 2021, 08:24:34 AM »
Six Crises, Richard Nixon.
Excellent writing and great insights.
One of the most intelligent presidents of the U.S.A..

Offline SimonNZ

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10464 on: February 01, 2021, 04:54:16 PM »


Finally getting around to this after having had it on the shelves for years, and of course its as good as its reputation and fully justifies being used as a much-quoted primary document in so many histories of the era. Only a hundred pages in but already the extended eyewitness descriptions of the Anschlus and of the fate of the Sudetenland have justified buying and reading. And the close analysis and cataloging of the propaganda at each step. And in the sense of events unfolding daily on top of each other in a headlong rush.

I hadn't heard before this that Hitler had suppressed the publication of any translation of Mein Kampf, as it would undermine his pretense of peaceful intentions and the first English edition didn't appear until 1939.

Offline Benji

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10465 on: February 01, 2021, 05:08:45 PM »


Finally getting around to this after having had it on the shelves for years, and of course its as good as its reputation and fully justifies being used as a much-quoted primary document in so many histories of the era. Only a hundred pages in but already the extended eyewitness descriptions of the Anschlus and of the fate of the Sudetenland have justified buying and reading. And the close analysis and cataloging of the propaganda at each step. And in the sense of events unfolding daily on top of each other in a headlong rush.

I hadn't heard before this that Hitler had suppressed the publication of any translation of Mein Kampf, as it would undermine his pretense of peaceful intentions and the first English edition didn't appear until 1939.

Do you know the book Travellers in the Third Reich? If not you might find it a good companion read to your current reading. (I haven't finished reading my copy yet but it was well reviewed)

Offline SimonNZ

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10466 on: February 01, 2021, 05:16:27 PM »
I wasn't aware of it. Looks interesting. Thanks for the heads-up.

Offline vers la flamme

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10467 on: February 03, 2021, 05:02:42 AM »
Just finished Arthur Conan Doyle's The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. A fun read. I have this anthology:



... of which I'm now about halfway through. I'm only picking it up here and there between other reads and on vacation and the like.

Offline vers la flamme

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10468 on: February 04, 2021, 04:02:25 AM »
Now The Snows of Kilimanjaro and Other Stories by Ernest Hemingway. Mixed feelings so far. Not my favorite Hemingway.


Offline Dry Brett Kavanaugh

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10469 on: February 04, 2021, 10:54:30 AM »
Le Rouge et Le Noir (The Red and The Black), Stendhal.

Offline Florestan

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10470 on: February 04, 2021, 11:12:44 AM »
Le Rouge et Le Noir (The Red and The Black), Stendhal.

This is a book I started twice and twice gave it up before reaching its middle. The third time I started it (after a hiatus of more than a decade) 'twas a page turner from start to finish. I guess it's one of those books which require a certain degree of maturity and life experience to be fully enjoyed. A masterpiece.

The Charterhouse of Parma is also very good.

Rumor has it that Lucien Leuwen is at least as good as the two above but I haven't read it.

Stendhal was an avid music lover and his memoirs of his Italy years as an officer in the French army are chock-full of musical references (he was mainly an opera guy). They can be found online but I'm too lazy to provide a link. IIRC, they are titled Rome, Florence & Naples.
"Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent." - Victor Hugo

Offline Dry Brett Kavanaugh

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10471 on: February 04, 2021, 11:47:46 AM »
This is a book I started twice and twice gave it up before reaching its middle. The third time I started it (after a hiatus of more than a decade) 'twas a page turner from start to finish. I guess it's one of those books which require a certain degree of maturity and life experience to be fully enjoyed. A masterpiece.

The Charterhouse of Parma is also very good.

Rumor has it that Lucien Leuwen is at least as good as the two above but I haven't read it.

Stendhal was an avid music lover and his memoirs of his Italy years as an officer in the French army are chock-full of musical references (he was mainly an opera guy). They can be found online but I'm too lazy to provide a link. IIRC, they are titled Rome, Florence & Naples.

Well-said. It is an intriguing, thrilling, and entertaining read. The book has been one of my all-time favorite works since I read it first time when I was 12 y/o. The book also “vividly” depicts the corruption, deception and hypocrisy in church, aristocracy, and local govts.  S’s skills in that aspect could possibly be even higher than that of Dostoevsky.

I have 2 biographies of Stendhal. They say that unlike the protagonists in Parma and the Red, he was ugly (or non-good looking at best). I guess, perhaps he admired beautiful people. Yes, he liked everything in Italy. S even admired Casanova and his written memoir (as I do).

Offline Brian

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10472 on: February 04, 2021, 12:17:51 PM »
I enjoyed Red/Black last year on a first read - haven't read Charterhouse yet but want to. Red/Black is definitely one of those books which improves cumulatively from a quiet beginning to a fully developed world.

I'm ping-ponging between Albert Murray's essay collection The Omni-Americans and James M. Cain's pulpy crime noir classic The Postman Always Rings Twice.

Offline SimonNZ

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10473 on: February 04, 2021, 04:53:04 PM »
Started:


Offline JBS

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10474 on: February 04, 2021, 07:18:07 PM »
Now The Snows of Kilimanjaro and Other Stories by Ernest Hemingway. Mixed feelings so far. Not my favorite Hemingway.



The only Hemingway books I truly liked were Old Man and the Sea and Death in the Afternoon. For Whom the Bell Tolls is a great novel but I've felt any desire to reread it.

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10475 on: February 05, 2021, 04:03:30 AM »
I read Hemingway in the past. Picked him up together with Fitzerald. I have zero recollection of his short stories. War is not my main interest, so I felt kind of indifferent to his novels. The only one that kept me interested was A Moveable Feast.   

Offline vers la flamme

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10476 on: February 05, 2021, 04:32:33 AM »
I loved The Sun Also Rises. In fact I might call it one of my favorite books. When I first read it, I found a little too much to relate to in the two main characters, and it made me reevaluate my life a bit. Never made as much progress with his other books. I read A Moveable Feast back in the fall and enjoyed it thoroughly but it didn't strike me as a "major" work if that makes any sense.

The aforementioned short story collection, which I finished last night, was hit or miss; even within a single story there were parts I liked and parts I disliked. The final story was The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber which I had read before and enjoyed then, and I enjoyed it again now. It's the pinnacle of Hemingway's macho code of conduct and I'm not sure how I feel about the values expressed, but they were certainly expressed with mastery. Not sure whether I'll be returning to this book or not. I have A Farewell to Arms and another short story collection on the shelf and I reckon I'll get around to one or the other sooner or later in the year.

Edit: I wonder if Francis Macomber and his wife are based on Scott & Zelda Fitzgerald... If you've read it, what do you think?
« Last Edit: February 05, 2021, 04:40:28 AM by vers la flamme »

Offline vers la flamme

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10477 on: February 06, 2021, 05:19:28 AM »
Yesterday I found a copy of Bob Dylan's Chronicles, Vol. 1 for $2 at the local used book store in excellent shape. I'm about halfway through. This is a reread, having first read it in college, but now, some 7 years later, I'm finding it about as fresh as the first time.


Offline Florestan

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10478 on: February 06, 2021, 11:46:56 AM »
Well-said. It is an intriguing, thrilling, and entertaining read. The book has been one of my all-time favorite works since I read it first time when I was 12 y/o. The book also “vividly” depicts the corruption, deception and hypocrisy in church, aristocracy, and local govts. human nature.

FTFY.

No, really, I mean it 100%. I am absolutely, unshakably and positively convinced that anyone --- and I mean anyone as in I, you and all of our neighbours, all GMGers included --- were prone to corruption, deception and hypocrisy should we be in a position of real power over our neighbours, be it as churchmen, aristocrats or democratically elected government officials.

Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. --- Lord Acton


I am no anarchist, let alone communist, but I can't help pondering the question: When Adam delved and Eve span, Who was then the gentleman?

 ;D

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S’s skills in that aspect could possibly be even higher than that of Dostoevsky.

The only writer who is on the same plane as Dostoevsky in describing the ills of the modern world is Franz Kafka.

OTOH, there are lots (I mean hundreds of thousand, if not millions) of people in this world of ours who have never read Stendhal, Dostoevsky or Kafka but who have been able to lift themselves from poverty to a decent livelihood for them and their family. Moreover, they managed to do it thanks to an economic regime which both S and D and K decried. What do you make of this fact?

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S even admired Casanova and his written memoir (as I do).

Casanova is a superb writer. His Memoirs are excellently written.
"Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent." - Victor Hugo

Offline steve ridgway

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Re: What are you currently reading?
« Reply #10479 on: February 07, 2021, 08:35:30 AM »
William R. Clark - At War Within. To learn some basic stuff about the immune system.

“Nature does not know extinction; all it knows is transformation” - Wernher von Braun