March Reading Thread

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vanye

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Alan Alda: If I Understood You, Would I Have This Look on My Face

Alan Alda is the actor who played Hawkeye in M*A*S*H. And he is very much into communication. I found this book because I watched Alan Alda be interviewed by Neil deGrasse Tyson. Should be easy to find on YouTube if you're interested.

On his quest to make communication more successful, Alan Alda employs techniques from impro theater to teach scientists how to communicate, especially with non scientists. He thinks that communication is really an experience shared by a group and that empathy is what makes you a successful communicator.

I myself have been into communication professsionally for decades, and I found this book had a lot to teach me.
 

Bick

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I finished The City and the Stars, by Arthur C. Clarke. I quite enjoyed it, but I don't place it as high as many of his other works. I think very far future books are hard to do well, and at all convincingly.

I'm now turning to another Discworld book, Witches Abroad, in my continuing, rather slow, read through of Pratchett's classic series.
 

Azoraa

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I've just finished Blackfish City by Sam J. Miller. It has been somewhat of a tough read, especially to get through the first half, but it was worth it. I loved it :) I'd love to read more of such books! Maybe a tiny bit faster-paced... with queer/ethnically heterogeneous characters, animals, and a mix of spirituality and science. Recommendations?
 

Galactic Bus Driver

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Nancy Varian Berberick: Shadow of the Seventh Moon

Fantasy that feels a bit old-fashioned. Old English setting and lots of familiar names, but I think the historical context is probably fake (I have read only very little about this particular period and that was more than thirty years ago, so please take this with a grain of salt).

Still, a good one. As a frame narration it has a very intense sense of storytelling. In contrast to modern fantasy, there is little fighting and the descriptions of these scenes are a lot less graphic and explicit. To me, this was a nice change of pace and I reckon there are some folks here who might appreciate the book more because of it.

Overall, I liked it. It gives off a nice warmth, although the tale is one of grim times. Definitely a recommendation for readers who like fantasy and appreciate a different flavour.
I've read this book to tatters more than once and it's on my list of books I've read so many times I've lost count. I too recommend it to any and all fans of fantasy. The writing may not be the worlds best, but you'll go a long way before you find better story telling. I think I'll be putting it back on the short list for a re-read.

There's a sequel called "The Panther's Hoard" which I will likely also re-read. I can remember almost nothing about the second one and have but a vague sense that it was disappointing after the first. May be the experience will be different this time.
 

dannymcg

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Can't sleep so digging through my older file of ebooks.

I've started Stephen King's Carrie, it seems totally unfamiliar and I really don't think I've ever actually read it.

I've watched the film a few times but this is very different and a bit tricky to follow, non linear and in various styles/formats
 

Extollager

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Still reading Tolstoy’s Resurrection, and a biography of the travel writer Stephen Graham, called Beyond Holy Russia. Today read a shortish Icelandic saga, about Havard the Halt/Lame. Tolkien seems to have thought it the best of the shorter sagas.

Felt like taking up a book I remember seeing 50-odd years ago, Alan E. Nourse’s The Universe Between, but I couldn’t find the copy I thought I had.
 

soulsinging

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Finished Wizard of Earthsea by Le Guin. I enjoyed it more than the first time I read it 15-20 years ago but I still don't love it. Something about Le Guin's writing just doesn't resonate with me for some reason. Nonetheless, I liked it enough to want to finish the rest of the series someday.

Now I'm reading 2 books:

The Relic by Preston/Child, a book I started when I was 12 or 13 and was too scared to finish. I'm holding up better now that I'm near 40, though some of the hoke/cheese is tough to swallow (these characters are paper thin... all the better for being shredded by the museum monster!). Still, a very entertaining read during quarantine!

Also reading Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse on my kindle at night. Kind of a "Harry Dresden goes to the reservation" set in a post-apocalyptic future America. Not far enough in to have any thoughts yet.
 

tachyon

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I've just finished Blackfish City by Sam J. Miller. It has been somewhat of a tough read, especially to get through the first half, but it was worth it. I loved it :) I'd love to read more of such books! Maybe a tiny bit faster-paced... with queer/ethnically heterogeneous characters, animals, and a mix of spirituality and science. Recommendations?
You might like All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders.
 

tobl

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The Relic by Preston/Child, a book I started when I was 12 or 13 and was too scared to finish. I'm holding up better now that I'm near 40, though some of the hoke/cheese is tough to swallow (these characters are paper thin... all the better for being shredded by the museum monster!). Still, a very entertaining read during quarantine!
honestly i had no idea who the hero was supposed to be.
At least the other books created a interesting character in Pendergast
 

Parson

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Finished Cross Your Heart by Melinda Leigh. I've read several of her books and they are all solid detective novels if a bit formulaic. The story will be different but so far I can count on 1. there will be at least one dog with a somewhat important role. 2. the detective will be female with a messed up childhood in some way. 3. there will be a helpful male who will slowly, sometimes over several books, become more and more romantically involved with the detective. --- Even knowing these things the books are high on my list of enjoyable reads.
 

Randy M.

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Finished Cross Your Heart by Melinda Leigh. I've read several of her books and they are all solid detective novels if a bit formulaic. The story will be different but so far I can count on 1. there will be at least one dog with a somewhat important role. 2. the detective will be female with a messed up childhood in some way. 3. there will be a helpful male who will slowly, sometimes over several books, become more and more romantically involved with the detective. --- Even knowing these things the books are high on my list of enjoyable reads.
Parson, I can't recall if I've asked before: Have you read Louise Penny or Donna Leon? I suspect you'd find much to enjoy in their work. Neither writes brutal scenes or glories in violence, both write very well, and their characters are well defined and delineated.

For myself, now working from home, I found myself trying to decide between some bulky novel I wouldn't want to lug to work or something with a cover I hadn't wanted to be seen with in public. I managed to combine the two:

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Thanks for the recommendation, Baylor. It's a hoot. Like watching a really good 1930s Universal mummy movie (somewhat gorier, but not reveling in it) with a slight infusion of The Wild, Wild West 1960s TV show at about the 1/3 point of the novel. I'm only about half-way through.

Randy M.
 

Parson

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@Randy M. thanks so much for the recommendation. I have not read Louise Penny or Donna Leon. I went to do a quick check on Amazon and they do look like the kind of book that I would enjoy. But I would not enjoy paying $10-18 for an ebook. So until they give me a shot at Kindle Unlimited to see if I would really like them I'm not going to order one. Unless the book is something that I love in S.F. or a preaching resource, I'm likely not to pay over $3.99 for a book. There are just too many others that I will enjoy for less. And as I read between 10-15 books a month my normal payment is about $.99 per book.
 

HareBrain

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Not been in much of a reading mood, but I have got through about half of Angry White Pyjamas: an Oxford Poet Trains with the Tokyo Riot Police by Robert Twigger. Basically one man's quest to punish himself with Aikido.
 
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