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What non-comics are you reading these days?


#630

His short story collection, Pump Nine is all about post-environmental disaster worlds (one of the stories is even set in the same universe as The Windup Girl), and a lot of them are highly effective. There’s one that stand out about a team of genetically engineered mercenaries defending a corporate facility who find a dog and take it in and care for it - it doesn’t end well, of course.

And in The Water Knife, what’s fascinating is how much of it is based on real-world issues. Water Rights are real, as is the book that various characters refer to.


#631

It’s all very plausible like the potential with AI. That’s what makes it unsettling to read. It’s like when Christian Bale’s character in The Big Short suggests investing in water as a sure thing.


#632

Just started The Martian and I’m already enjoying it hugely. Weir’s writing style is satisfyingly tight and direct. And I’m learning a lot!


#633

Just started James Forrester’s historical fiction novel Sacred Treason, whose protagonist is a Catholic herald living in London during the anti-catholic rule of Elizabeth I. It’s a quick read, which I needed after finishing the brutal non-fiction book Gettysburg.


#634

Started yesterday Batman The Black Mirror by Scott Snyder. First time I did, I never got to the end as I found the story to bizzarre (gruesome murders, a party with gas masks, etc), but maybe’ll now get the place in my heart. Artwork by Jock I dislike immensely, however art is subjective.


#635

Oh no! First off, I absolutely love that story, I think it’s the best Batman comic Snyder ever wrote.
But secondly (and of even more importance), this thread seems to be for books without pictures (boring, I know). All of the comic-booky talk tends to go in this thread:

:slight_smile:


#636

This is only slightly tenuously relevant, but as this relates to audio adaptations of Sci-fi novels, I am hoping that it gets in under the wire

BBC are running another season of science fiction stories, including an adaption of The Kraken Wakes and Brave New World.

Last time out, they did a pretty decent version of Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? with James Purefoy.


#637

Undermajordomo Minor by Patrick DeWitt. Patrick DeWitt’s previous book The Sisters Brothers was accused of being a Coen Brothers movie in novel form. Well this time out, he’s done a Wes Anderson movie on paper with more than a hint of Gormanghast. I loved this book. It was so weird and funny. It takes place in an unspecified time in somewhere vaguely European ridden with an ongoing but unspecified war. Lucien Minor ( or Lucy as he is better known) goes to work in a large crumbling castle to work as an Undermajordomo. Like Sisters Brothers, it is a bit episodic, but it never overstays it’s welcome.

Star Trek: Assignment Eternity by Greg Cox. I read this a couple of weeks ago on a day when I was ill in bed. It features the old school TOS Crew getting involved in an adventure with Gary Seven from the Assignment Earth episode. Given that Gary Seven was a James Bond type character in the Trek Universe, the writer has a lot of fun throwing in references to an abundance of 1960’s spy series like The Prisoner and The Avengers. It also involves time travel and protecting the timeline. I enjoyed this. It helped me through the sick day. However it does smack of someone getting their first and potentially only attempt to write a Star Trek novel, throwing everything at the wall. To be fair, Peter David takes a similar approach, but with him it is usually done with far more elegance than is managed here.

Day by AL Kennedy. I read AL Kennedy’s Doctor Who novel a while back and enjoyed it immensely and at the time I reminded myself to check out some of her other writing. So I bought Day (which is absolutely nothing like Doctor Who for the record). It is the story of an inarticulate man told in a non-linear stream of consciousness taking him through World War 2 and joining an RAF Bomber crew, through meeting the love of his life, and working as an extra in a POW movie years after the war. Although not necessarily in that order. I found this really interesting. I can’t say I loved it. I found it quite an intense read, largely due to the way it was cold.

The Drowning Pool by Ross Macdonald. It has been years since I’ve read any Lew Archer novels. I really don’t know why. This was great. Lew Archer is a more thoughtful, more empathetic version of Philip Marlowe and he has his work cut out for himself in this book. Macdonald still has a great gift for description.

I also tried…and regrettably failed to get into Justice for Hedgehogs by Ronald Dworkin. I gave it about 100 pages before I gave up. I think that I need to know more about philosophy and the concepts being discussed in the book before I try to tackle it again…If anyone can recommend a decent basic philosophy book, let me know. I’m in the market.


#638

I loved The Sisters Brothers. Looking forward to reading his latest. Nice reviews btw. Ross Macdonald is great. Love the way he incorporates classic mythology into his books; it’s all hidden secrets and tragedy with clever psychological insight and he does have a wonderful gift for description. I met Linwood Barclay last year and he used to exchange letters with Macdonald. He had some great stories about him. He told me his most treasured memory of him was when he wrote a message in one of his books that he hoped he would one day outwrite him.

Shame you didn’t get on with Justice for Hedgehogs. I think it’s a fantastic read. “Without dignity our lives are only blinks of duration. But if we manage to lead a good life well, we create something more. We write a subscript to our mortality. We make our lives tiny diamonds in the cosmic sands.”


#639

I love Ross Macdonald as well. I love that Archer is almost a catalyst running through the novels. He is not terribly judgemental either and is quite accepting of human frailty. I hadn’t picked up on the mythology until you mentioned it. That’s an interesting point.

That seems to be fairly true of the author as well. Warren Zevon credited him with helping get him back into rehab when he was in the depths of drug and alcohol addiction.

And. I didn’t dislike Justice for Hedgehogs. I will put my hands up and admit that I’m just not sure that I really understood what was going on. I haven’t read any philosophy before, so I wonder if I need to get a basic knowledge of the concepts first. I fully intend to get back to it at some stage.


#640

Macdonald seemed to be such a lovely, decent man from what was said. Some of his books are based on his own experiences, especially the themes of abandonment. Probably why he took the time to think of others. I think he’s really underrated. He’s better than Chandler.

I like the kind of challenging books that break my brain a bit. Everyone here should be made to read that book and then there could be an endless thread about all the ideas within it. Not sure what other similar books to recommend. I’m sure there’s others here who could give you a few good examples.


#641

That was sort of my intention in reading the book. I like to challenge myself and try to learn new things every now and again.

I can’t claim credit for the idea. Tim referred to it during a previous thread about Feminism and Potatoes (like many things on Millarworld, it made sense at the time).

But ok…I will give it one more try. I’m determined to finish it at any rate.


#642

That’s enough motivation for me to seek out that book. :relaxed:


#643

[quote=“Bernadette, post:640, topic:28”]
He’s better than Chandler.
[/quote]I hope you are referring to American journalist Chandler Hale, and not the great and wonderful Raymond Chandler. :rage:


#644

Raymond Chandler is great and wonderful but Macdonald is better.

The Sisters Brothers is a terrific read. At least listen to me about that.

Yay! It’s well worth it. Also, I’m beginning to think that Tim is stealing all my books. Wait… What? Feminism and potatoes? What did I miss? Now I am confused. I’m not Mrs Potato Head.


#645

Were you not involved?
Did we seriously have a discussion about feminism with no female contributors? :confused:
Oh well, probably best to not seek it out.


#646

Well, I haven’t read everything here. Anyway, some of the guys here are more feminist than a lot of people I know. Could be interesting, if only for the potato connection. :wink:


#647

I read the whole thing and did not understand the potato connection.
Irish stereotypes maybe? :confused:


#648

I think I’ll have to seek this thread out now. Besides I do like potatoes – spot the Irish stereotype. :wink:


#649

Now, I understand potatoes.