Whats the best book you've ever read?

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FrankChurch
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Postby FrankChurch » Thu Jun 29, 2006 5:35 pm

Loftus just got possessed by the spirit of Horshack.

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markabaddon
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Postby markabaddon » Fri Jun 30, 2006 1:25 pm

Ron Palillo is dead?

It is probably a cliche, but I have to say that Hamlet is the greatest work in Western literature. I re-read it again before I went to see it at the Guthire Theater and was just amazed by what the complexity and deoth of the work. As much as I love Midsummer Night's Dream and MacBeth, nothing can top Hamlet.

Other books I consider to be the greatest of all time include (in no particulr order)

* A Tale of Two Cities
* Lord of the Rings
* Tales of Edgar Allen Poe
* Le Misanthrope - by Moliere
* Gulliver's Travels
* The Illiad
* War and Peace
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Steve Evil
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Postby Steve Evil » Wed Jul 05, 2006 11:53 am

markabaddon wrote:It is probably a cliche, but I have to say that Hamlet is the greatest work in Western literature.


Amen.

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David Loftus
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Re: Whats the best book you've ever read?

Postby David Loftus » Thu Jul 06, 2006 9:18 am

Cary Bleasdale wrote:I am a constant, voracious, Get-the-fuck-away-can't-you-see-I'm-busy reader.



Just a comment on this. Some people find it amazing that I read a lot while walking -- downtown, in the business and shopping district, crossing the bus mall diagonally in the middle of the block.

Nothing strange or difficult about this. Peripheral vision and an occasional strategic glance up or to one siide tells me pretty much all I need to know, and most other people walk with their eyes wide open and give me a wide berth anyway.

Telephone poles and fire hydrants? No problem. Curbs? Hardly a concern at all. The only tricky thing has tended to be low-hanging tree branches, which tend to slip in above my peripheral vision, trained as it is at a little below eye level to the ground. I've been caught in the forehead by those a number of times. Someday I'll probably put an eye out.

I also read while flossing my teeth. Always.

However, I do NOT read while driving, or even while waiting for a light, as I've occasionally noticed other people do. I'm neither homicidal nor suicidal.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

rich

Postby rich » Sat Jul 08, 2006 8:00 pm

But can you chew gum at the same time?

Cary Bleasdale
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Postby Cary Bleasdale » Sat Jul 08, 2006 11:34 pm

Just a comment on this. Some people find it amazing that I read a lot while walking -- downtown, in the business and shopping district, crossing the bus mall diagonally in the middle of the block.


Out of curiosity, I tried this today.

Its a lot easier than it looks. My walk to work is largely straight lines, so its simple to do. My only recomendation for other would-be read-walkers: get a book with largish print. My copy of "One Hundred Years of Solitude" has tiny print, which made it hard. But the greatest way to walk I've ever found. Thanks David!

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David Loftus
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Postby David Loftus » Sun Jul 09, 2006 10:22 pm

rich wrote:But can you chew gum at the same time?



I can.

But I don't.

I don't like chewing gum anymore.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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robochrist
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Postby robochrist » Mon Jul 10, 2006 12:40 pm

The other night a friend and I felt like back alley retards when we found ourselves discussing the title of '20,000 Leagues Under the Sea'.

We'd spent our childhoods and our adult years up to two nights ago assuming the title referred to astounding vertical depths achieved by the submarine Nautilus. Then I asked, "do I even remember what a league is equal to in feet?" How deep IS 20,000 leagues. After this delayed reaction we grabbed a dictionary for 3 second refresher course.

"The marine league of England and the United States is equal to three marine, or geographical, miles of 6080 feet each."

OK. So I, being the brighter of the two of us, asked, "are we trying to say the Nautilus reached a depth of 3 miles x 20,000?"

That we were true whizzes that night, we came to realize that the title refers to the full vertical nautical distance traveled by the Nautilus in the course of its entire mission.

We felt a tad more educated having resolved that misinterpretation.

The next book I myself am planning to hit for is "Uncle Tom's Cabin". Never did get around to one of the most important American novels of all time, its substance having been contorted and misunderstood over so many decades (silent movies were made based on the book, but altering so much to the degree that made Birth of a Nation seem like a contribution to civil rights).

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David Loftus
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Postby David Loftus » Mon Jul 10, 2006 2:31 pm

I remember the mental gong when I finally realized this one.

I, too, assumed for many years it stood for vertical depth, until I discovered what a league was, and eventually realized I had probably confused it with a fathom.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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JohnPacer
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Postby JohnPacer » Mon Jul 10, 2006 6:48 pm

The Oresteia by Aeschylus

The Odyssey by Homer

VALIS by Philip K. Dick

The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis

A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller Jr.

The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco

The Stranger by Albert Camus

Shatterday by Harlan Ellison

The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde

The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury

The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell

The Trial by Franz Kafka

The Practice and Science of Drawing by Harold Speed

The Geometry of Art and Life by Matila Ghyka

The Painter's Secret Geometry by Charles Bouleau

The Enjoyment and Use of Colour by Walter Sargent

Elements of Dynamic Symmetry by Jay Hambidge

Die Gestalt des Menschen by Gottfried Bammes

CEREBUS by Dave Sim and Gerhard

Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons.

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Ezra Lb.
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Postby Ezra Lb. » Tue Jul 11, 2006 2:22 pm

When I made an attempt to list my faves before I gravitated towards fiction but there have been some non-fiction books that have stayed with me over the years.

A few of them are

The Gun that made the Twenties Roar by William J Helmer

A cultural history of the iconic Thompson Sub-Machine gun.


Billion Year Spree by Brian Aldiss

Science Fiction:What it’s all about by Sam Lundwall

Two first rate surveys of the SF field, both literary and cinematic. Each has a definite point of view and both end their discussion just prior to the advent of STAR WARS which came along and destroyed everything. Aldiss' book was later revised and updated as Trillion Year Spree but in my opinion, in a vastly diminished form.


Danse Macabre by Stephen King

Yeah that Stephen King. A first rate survey of the horror field. Kudos to Mr King for helping to resuscitate the reputation of Shirley Jackson who was slowly slipping into undeserved obscurity when this book was written.

Wizardry and Wild Romance by Michael Moorcock

A first rate survey of the Fantasy field. Moorcock is opinionated as hell and sometimes full of shit but always interesting. Apparently Fritz Leiber beat him to it but this contains the first real critique of Tolkein I ever read.


Myths to Live By by Joseph Campbell

Long before he became a new age guru to the dopes Dr Campbell was a pioneering scholar of mythology. This book is a collection of essays written mostly during the 60s reflecting current events in light of his ideas. So ok maybe today I wouldn't be inclined to follow him wherever he might want me to go but he is never less than bracing and stimulating.

There are more, there are always more but my mind is going...Dave...
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Rick Keeney
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best lately

Postby Rick Keeney » Thu Jul 13, 2006 6:30 pm

DERMAPHORIA by Craig Clevenger

KISS ME, JUDAS
PENNY DREADFUL
HELL'S HALF ACRE--all by Will Christopher Baer

A PRAYER FOR THE DYING-Stewart O'Nan

UNDERWORLD--Don DeLillo

Ace_Arn
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Postby Ace_Arn » Mon Aug 14, 2006 4:49 pm

Top billing goes to:

*** The Bear That Wasn't - Frank Tashlin

followed by:

** Power of Myth - Joe and Bill, like bananas and peanutbutter
** The Space Odyessey Quadrilogy - Knights Bachelor Sir Arthur C Clarke
** The Universe in a Single Atom: The Convergence of Science and Spirituality - His Holiness Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama
** Prometheus Bound, Oresteia - Aeschylus
** Fragments - Heraclitus
** Theogony - Hesoid
** Pomes All Sizes, Old Angel Midnight - Kerouac
** The Nag Hammadi Library
** Dhamapada
** Upanishads
** Ocean of Sound - David Toop
** Glass Teat, Other G.T., The Beast that Shouted Love at the Heart of the World, Hornbook, Run for the Stars, etc etc - by good old what-his-name
** Janson History of Art
** Opus 300, Begining and the End, I Robot - His Holiness Isaac Asimov

various projects by Steve Bisette, Alan Moore, Rick Veitch, John Totleben, Neil Gaiman, Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis. Chris Claremont on X-Men. James Robinson on Starman.

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David Loftus
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Postby David Loftus » Mon Aug 14, 2006 10:51 pm

Cary Bleasdale wrote:Out of curiosity, I tried this today.

Its a lot easier than it looks. My walk to work is largely straight lines, so its simple to do. My only recomendation for other would-be read-walkers: get a book with largish print. My copy of "One Hundred Years of Solitude" has tiny print, which made it hard. But the greatest way to walk I've ever found. Thanks David!



Another one brought over to the Dark Side . . . mwuh-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!

Seriously, I should pass along the observation that some drivers really get irritated when they see me reading as I cross the street -- in a crosswalk, with the light, even. Believe me, I walk as fast I would have without a book; it's not like I'm holding up their turn on a red or anything. But they're ticked; nobody's yelled or pulled a gun, but you can hear it in the way they rev the motor as they get rolling after I've passed.

So nowadays, if someone's waiting in his car, I tend to close the book on my finger for the duration of the walk across the street, out of consideration for their feelings. If there are no cars there, I continue to read while crossing the street.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

rich

Postby rich » Tue Aug 15, 2006 6:29 am

But have you ever stepped over a body named Harry?


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