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PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 10:48 pm 

Barnes and Banville are great indeed.

I trudged my way slowly through That Old Ace in the Hole by Proulx, whose work I usually love. I found this one a bit slow but it actually got really interesting at the end so it was worth sticking with.

I just started into Antic Hay today by Aldous Huxley. It's off to a really hilarious and enjoyable start. It has taken me completely by surprise as I read Brave New World recently, the only other one I have read by him, and while it is certainly relevant in a 1984 way, it wasn't really my bag. I get that it's supposed to be detached and dystopian, hence the general grey tone of it all, but this one seems much more up my street so far. A pleasant surprise!

Now to shamelessly flick through a few pages of Winter of the Worlds by Ken Follett before zonking out... Take that, high art!


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:20 am 

I have been reading a lot of Robert Harris these days. Read Fatherland, An Officer and a Spy and Conclave. The missus bought me Imperium, Lustrum and Dictator. Looking forward to cracking into those :D


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 3:18 pm 

PatrickReborn wrote:
I have been reading a lot of Robert Harris these days. Read Fatherland, An Officer and a Spy and Conclave. The missus bought me Imperium, Lustrum and Dictator. Looking forward to cracking into those :D


Harris is a good man for a page turner alright. You should read 'Pompeii' about the volcanic eruption, I think it's my favourite by him.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 7:19 pm 

I absolutely love Márquez, fantastic author. I detest the term 'magic realism' though.

I read 'A Small Town In Germany' by le Carre there. Enjoyable enough but very, very confusing. 'A Most Wanted Man' is easier to follow.
Any suggestions for more spy-based literature? Nothing too heavy but historical accuracy and realism is a must.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2017 7:22 pm 

The Sympatizer is a very good recent novel about a Vietnam War double agent: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sympathizer


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 12:11 pm 

Padre Pio wrote:
PatrickReborn wrote:
I have been reading a lot of Robert Harris these days. Read Fatherland, An Officer and a Spy and Conclave. The missus bought me Imperium, Lustrum and Dictator. Looking forward to cracking into those :D


Harris is a good man for a page turner alright. You should read 'Pompeii' about the volcanic eruption, I think it's my favourite by him.

My experience with him couldn't get more polar. I found Fatherland amazing, whereas The Fear Index is woeful, sub-Angels and Demons shite. I think I need to read more of his books to get a more rounded picture!


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 2:39 pm 

Pagan Waltar wrote:
The Fear Index


Yeah, that's the worst I've read by him. Agreed on 'Fatherland' though.

To be honest, he writes page turners rather than high art so there's no pressing reason to force yourself to like him.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 27, 2017 4:00 pm 

Padre Pio wrote:
Pagan Waltar wrote:
The Fear Index


Yeah, that's the worst I've read by him. Agreed on 'Fatherland' though.

To be honest, he writes page turners rather than high art so there's no pressing reason to force yourself to like him.


I'm very much a history guy which is probably why I found it quite easy to pick up his stuff and power through. I can be a very infrequent reader and might not touch a book for a year then read 3 or 4 within a few months.

If you haven't checked out An Officer and a Spy, I'd recommend it - based around the Dreyfus Affair and the rise of espionage and intelligence/counter-intelligence in France. I liked it even more than Fatherland.


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PostPosted: Fri May 12, 2017 2:46 pm 

Reading a collection of Daphne Du Maurier's weird fiction short stories at the minute which, while undoubted page-turners, are leaving me with a lot more questions than answers.
" A Borderline Case" really had me engrossed this morning, certainly didn't expect it to end up as literally close to home as it did but I was still left more than a little puzzled about the big 'crux of the matter' or even indeed if there was one (without giving too much away to anyone who hasn't read it).


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 2:06 pm 

Can anyone recommend a decent Che Guevara biography?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 4:32 pm 

'Che Guevara - A Revolutionary Life' by Jon Lee Anderson is surely the most exhaustive one (in fact I don't think I've read the whole thing, but gone to sections that interested me most).


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2017 2:50 pm 

Cheers for that.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 01, 2017 6:44 am 

Read In Cold Blood by Truman Capote over the break. What a great great book. Highly recommended. Anything remotely like it as a recommendation would be great.

Also read All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy. Having being left a little torn by Blood Meridian at times(still highly recommended) I literally ate the book in a couple of days.

Two amazing writers whose use of the English language is simply sublime at times.

Currently reading Breakfast at Tiffanys and the Leaf Storm by García Marquez, also Victor Frankl's book Man's search for meaning or something like that. See how I get on.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 04, 2017 1:15 pm 

It's been years since I read In Cold Blood but I read a true crime one fairly recently called Serpentine which was really good. It follows this guy Charles Sobrhaj's life as he goes from small petty crime in his teens through to countless forgeries, stolen identities, large thefts and eventually murders as he gets older.

Although I haven't read it yet, Helter Skelter about the Manson Family is supposed to be excellent


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 19, 2017 9:17 pm 

Helter Skelter is a brilliant book..literally couldn't put it down.

I'll have to check that other one


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