October's Obdurate Observations Of Outstanding Ouevres

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Lord Soth

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Finished the rather brief (for Hamilton) Manhatten in Reverse, a mix of good and not so good short stories.

NOw, after recommendations from the enlightened on this forum, I shall try Across the Nightingale Floor by Lian Hearn.
 

GOLLUM

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IQ84 is excellent. Slowly but surely I am beginning to understand the Pulitzer and Nobel prize rumblings. It is a character-driven work of Ballardian and Phlidickian fiction with a more romantic angle and understanding of human relationships and desires.
Interesting. I had no idea you had even picked this book up yet. That's two books now (the other being Sorkoin's Ice Trilogy) that I have on my TBR pile. I definitely intend to read and review 1Q84 before the year's end. I have all of Murakmai's published work and you might like to check out Kafka On The Shore and Wind up Bird Chronicles if you end up enjoying this, probably his most ambitious work to date. As per your comments on Sorokin, I look forward to reading your final thoughts on 1Q84. It apparently takes longer than a normal Murakami novel to get going.
 

GOLLUM

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Indeed! And you probably know that her selected letters, The Habit of Being, is very highly regarded.
I was aware of her talents as a letter writer but not about that particular publication. I shall keep an eye out for it.

@Lord Soth: It was probably me extolling the virtues of Lain Hearn's Otori cycle beginning with the classic Across The Nightingale Floor. I've got all of Hearn's books in this sequence...Across The Nightingale Floor is still my favourite. The book is a mixture of pseudo realism (set as it is in a pseudo samurai warrior style 'class' setting in a country suspiciously like Japan) and fantasy but the fantasy elements are more understated, so don't expect a storyline where the fantasy component is necessarily front and centre i.e not the kind of book or series one expects to see traditionally catalogued under SFF in the local bookstore; in fact it is often shelved under General Fiction or sometimes Literature.
 

Lord Soth

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@Gollum: To be honest that's exactly what I am after. It was the setting, and the story more that the fantasy elements which I was looking for, like GGK's Under Heaven where the fantasy elements are also very understated.

Started it last night and I already know its something which I am going to like!
 

GOLLUM

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Good to hear Lord Soth...:)

I'll be posting the November reading thread within the next 12 - 24 hrs.

Cheers.
 

D_Davis

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To the November thread?

Interesting. I had no idea you had even picked this book up yet. That's two books now (the other being Sorkoin's Ice Trilogy) that I have on my TBR pile. I definitely intend to read and review 1Q84 before the year's end. I have all of Murakmai's published work and you might like to check out Kafka On The Shore and Wind up Bird Chronicles if you end up enjoying this, probably his most ambitious work to date. As per your comments on Sorokin, I look forward to reading your final thoughts on 1Q84. It apparently takes longer than a normal Murakami novel to get going.

I read Wind Up Bird, Hardboiled...., and The Elephant Vanishes a long time ago, and liked them. I didn't love all parts of them, but I like them enough to put Murakami on my map, and I like his unique, matter of fact style. I haven't read anything since then and now.

1Q84 does take a long time to get going, but I'm not minding at all. On the contrary, I'm enjoying the glacial pace and the atmosphere it is creating.
 

Connavar

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Davis i wondered if you had read 1984 because of the title to Murakami novel made think of Orwell novel. You and Gollums words about 1Q84 makes its very interesting. About the romance angle when i think about it i doubt a writer as acclaimed as Murakami would mess up something as simply storytelling technique like that.


In the last day of october i finished reading Fault Line by Barry Eisler which was an exciting action thriller with pretty realistic political story,element. The writer backround as CIA op makes as believable as John Le Carre books.

Now im reading a swedish poetry collection called 17 Poems or 17 Dikter in swedish. I want to read a whole book of the swedish poetry gigant today.
 

D_Davis

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Davis i wondered if you had read 1984 because of the title to Murakami novel made think of Orwell novel. You and Gollums words about 1Q84 makes its very interesting. About the romance angle when i think about it i doubt a writer as acclaimed as Murakami would mess up something as simply storytelling technique like that.
.

Oh yeah - I've read 1984. Not the biggest fan of the novel, but I respect it. Orwell's novel plays a big role in 1Q84; it's like the Rosetta stone with which one might decipher the themes Murakami explores. It is mentioned more than once in the novel, and Murakami has said that 1984 was a major influence.
 

Connavar

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Oh yeah - I've read 1984. Not the biggest fan of the novel, but I respect it. Orwell's novel plays a big role in 1Q84; it's like the Rosetta stone with which one might decipher the themes Murakami explores. It is mentioned more than once in the novel, and Murakami has said that 1984 was a major influence.

Good to know i was hoping a novel like that and not because im a big fan of 1984 because smart,deep dystopians are fascinating reads for me.

If my TBR pile wasnt a huge pile close a 100 books i would have not waited for the library copy of 1Q84.
 

GOLLUM

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I must say it's rather nice to see Murakami get some air time here. Aside form Nesacat, I didn't know anyone else here had read Murakami or had an interest in his work, so it's good to know there will already be a few members in a position to discuss him when I start reviewing some of his lesser known works....:)

I'll be posting the November reading thread shortly, so probably best to hold off posting here until I do.

Cheers.
 

Extollager

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"The Lake," the next story in The October Country, seems to me not completely successful. The evocation of the end-of-season locale is authentic. But as we attend more specifically to the story, I'm not sure that felt "authenticity" remains. We're meant to sympathize with the narrator. I think we do this to the extent that we grant a wistful feeling about having been kids once, never again. But mixed up with his sense of loss is the finality of the body-bag. This doesn't work, for me. Rather than focusing the loss-theme in a powerful moment of feeling, I'm thinking: "No way that, after ten years, there'd be anything left but odd scattered bones." And I'm thinking: "How clever of the lifeguard to estimate just exactly ten years." And I'm wondering a little about the context in which the lifeguard would have been told this convenient bit of information. And the narrator's feeling seems so unreal.

So I wouldn't include this story in an Essential Bradbury.

It's a Bradbury classic, but it does, now, remind me of that famous remark of Anthony Powell's, that self-pity is the basis of all bestsellers.

https://www.nytimes.com/books/00/04/30/bookend/bookend.html
 
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