Author Topic: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?  (Read 123503 times)

Offline Phrubruh

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #825 on: February 10, 2010, 09:30 PM »
Now reading "Dangerous Ground" by Larry Bond.



Calling to mind such undersea techno-thrillers as Clancy's The Hunt for Red October and Hagberg's By Dawn's Early Light, this latest outing by Bond, a former naval officer turned bestselling military suspense author (Larry Bond's First Team, etc.), is an edge-of-the-seat yarn about an aging nuclear submarine on a secret mission to Russian waters. Using his senator uncle's political clout, Lt. (j.g.) Jerry Mitchell—a former pilot permanently grounded thanks to a wrist injury sustained in a freak carrier crash—has found his way into submarine training, where, among the other basic skills, he becomes an expert on the Manta, a robot device used for underwater exploration. Cmdr. Lowell Hardy, veteran skipper of the Memphis, a nuclear sub long overdue for decommissioning, is given orders to take Dr. Joanna Patterson from the President's Advisory Science Board and her comely young assistant, Dr. Emily Davis, into Russian waters to look for evidence of illegal disposal of nuclear waste. Mitchell's alleged political pull and the presence of women aboard create unrest among an already unhappy crew. Somewhat predictably, the mission uncovers a major threat to world security and the suspense cranks up when the Russians learn they've been found out. Despite an obligatory surfeit of naval alphabetese and a muster of trite maritime stereotypes with seabags full of childish personality conflicts, this is an engaging read.
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Offline Phrubruh

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #826 on: February 22, 2010, 10:33 AM »
Just finished up "the Book of Names" and "Alice in Wonderland". I guess I should finish Alice off with "Though the Looking Glass" by Lewis Carroll.



First published in 1865, Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland was an immediate success, as was its sequel, Through the Looking-Glass. Carroll’s sense of the absurd and his amazing gift for games of logic and language have secured for the Alice books an enduring spot in the hearts of both adults and children.

Alice begins her adventures when she follows the frantically delayed White Rabbit down a hole into the magical world of Wonderland, where she meets a variety of wonderful creatures, including Tweedledee and Tweedledum, the Cheshire Cat, the hookah-smoking Caterpillar, the Mad Hatter, and the Queen of Hearts—who, with the help of her enchanted deck of playing cards, tricks Alice into playing a bizarre game of croquet.  Alice continues her adventures in Through the Looking-Glass, which is loosely based on a game of chess and includes Carroll’s famous poem “Jabberwocky.”

Throughout her fantastic journeys, Alice retains her reason, humor, and sense of justice. She has become one of the great characters of imaginative literature, as immortal as Don Quixote, Huckleberry Finn, Captain Ahab, Sherlock Holmes, and Dorothy Gale of Kansas.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2010, 10:38 AM by Master_Phruby »
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Offline Phrubruh

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #827 on: February 26, 2010, 09:23 AM »
Ok the Alice books are done. On to "The Gunslinger (The Dark Tower book 1) by Stephen King.



Thirty-three years, a horrific and life-altering accident, and thousands of desperately rabid fans in the making, Stephen King's quest to complete his magnum opus rivals the quest of Roland and his band of gunslingers who inhabit the Dark Tower series. Loyal DT fans and new readers alike will appreciate this revised edition of The Gunslinger, which breathes new life into Roland of Gilead, and offers readers a "clearer start and slightly easier entry into Roland's world."
King writes both a new introduction and foreword to this revised edition, and the ever-patient, ever-loyal "constant reader" is rewarded with secrets to the series's inception. That a "magic" ream of green paper and a Robert Browning poem, came together to reveal to King his "ka" is no real surprise (this is King after all), but who would have thought that the squinty-eyed trio of Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, and Eli Wallach would set the author on his true path to the Tower? While King credits Tolkien for inspiring the "quest and magic" that pervades the series, it was Sergio Leone's The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly that helped create the epic proportions and "almost absurdly majestic western backdrop" of Roland's world.

To King, The Gunslinger demanded revision because once the series was complete it became obvious that "the beginning was out of sync with the ending." While the revision adds only 35 pages, Dark Tower purists will notice the changes to Allie's fate and Roland's interaction with Cort, Jake, and the Man in Black--all stellar scenes that will reignite the hunger for the rest of the series. Newcomers will appreciate the details and insight into Roland's life. The revised Roland of Gilead (nee Deschain) is embodied with more humanity--he loves, he pities, he regrets. What DT fans might miss is the same ambiguity and mystery of the original that gave the original its pulpy underground feel (back when King himself awaited word from Roland's world).
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Offline Ben

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #828 on: February 26, 2010, 11:27 PM »
I started reading The Stand a couple of weeks ago. I'm a reasonably fast reader, and I'm not even halfway through the book yet. THAT'S a Big Damn Epic.

It's thoroughly enjoyable, though. I've never read any of Stephen King's work before and I'm really enjoying it. I'd like to check out the Dark Tower series at some point. Though I still have a pile of books I bought when some local bookstores were closing, so it might be awhile.
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Offline JediJman

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #829 on: February 26, 2010, 11:38 PM »
Still knocking off some of the older novels.  Having finished the Thrawn trilogy, I'm onto the X-Wing series:

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Offline Rob

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #830 on: February 27, 2010, 01:30 AM »
Still knocking off some of the older novels.  Having finished the Thrawn trilogy[/img]

Best ones they ever put out IMO.



I just started this....


Offline Mikey D

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #831 on: February 27, 2010, 06:34 AM »
Up Next:









Finished all those.  Up next:

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Offline Phrubruh

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #832 on: February 27, 2010, 10:44 AM »
I started reading The Stand a couple of weeks ago. I'm a reasonably fast reader, and I'm not even halfway through the book yet. THAT'S a Big Damn Epic.

It's thoroughly enjoyable, though. I've never read any of Stephen King's work before and I'm really enjoying it. I'd like to check out the Dark Tower series at some point. Though I still have a pile of books I bought when some local bookstores were closing, so it might be awhile.

The cool thing about the Dark Tower series is the bad guy in that series is Randall Flagg from "The Stand".
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Offline JediJman

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #833 on: February 27, 2010, 12:08 PM »
The cool thing about the Dark Tower series is the bad guy in that series is Randall Flagg from "The Stand".

Same character?  Does it take place before or after "The Stand?"
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Offline Phrubruh

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #834 on: February 28, 2010, 12:46 AM »
The cool thing about the Dark Tower series is the bad guy in that series is Randall Flagg from "The Stand".

Same character?  Does it take place before or after "The Stand?"

I'd say both in a parallel universe-type way. The Dark Tower is a little like Lost. It jumps around between lots of different worlds. Randall Flagg also shows up as the evil magician in "The Eyes of the Dragon". The Walking Man is everywhere!

 

From Wiki:

Randall Flagg is a fictional character created by Stephen King. Flagg has appeared in nine novels by King, sometimes as the main antagonist and others in a brief cameo. He often appears under different names; most are abbreviated by the initials R.F. There are exceptions to this rule; in The Dark Tower series, the name most often associated with Flagg is Walter o'Dim.[3] Flagg is described as "an accomplished sorcerer and a devoted servant of the Outer Dark"[3] with general supernatural abilities involving necromancy, prophecy, and unnatural influence over predatory animal and human behavior. His goals typically center on bringing down civilizations, usually through spreading destruction and sowing conflict.

The character first appeared in the novel The Stand as a demonic figure who wreaks havoc after a plague kills most of the population. He makes his second appearance in The Eyes of the Dragon as an evil wizard attempting to plunge the fictional medieval city of Delain into chaos. Flagg made several more appearances in King's epic series The Dark Tower as one of the main antagonists, in which he attempts to thwart protagonist Roland Deschain from reaching the Tower, the lynchpin of all existence, to claim it for himself and become a god. The Dark Tower expanded upon Flagg's backstory and motivations, as well as connecting his previous appearances together.

Aside from King's novels, Flagg was featured in a television miniseries adaptation of The Stand, in which he was portrayed by Jamey Sheridan, as well as making appearances in Marvel Comics' adaptations of The Dark Tower and The Stand. Stephen King initially attributed Donald DeFreeze, the lead kidnapper in the Patty Hearst case, as his inspiration for Randall Flagg. He later attributed Flagg's creation to an image of a man in cowboy boots, denim jeans and jacket always walking the roads that "came out of nowhere" when he was still in college. As King's self-described best villain, the nature of Flagg's character and evil has been the subject of much discussion by literary critics.
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Offline Tracy

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #835 on: February 28, 2010, 12:09 PM »
I am intrigued by this novel already.  If I can get through the first couple of chapters, that is.

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Offline JesseVader08

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #836 on: March 1, 2010, 03:15 PM »
Randall Flagg also shows up as the evil magician in "The Eyes of the Dragon". The Walking Man is everywhere!

I haven't read a ton of King's stuff, but I was absolutely riveted by that book.

Offline Keonobi

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #837 on: March 1, 2010, 03:28 PM »
I have like two pages left in the Med-Star duology.  Next is Deathtroopers.  I've managed to create quite the to-do list of books lately...
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Offline Nathan

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #838 on: March 2, 2010, 01:01 AM »
Just finished these:



Currently:

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Offline Phrubruh

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Re: JD Book Club: What Are You Reading Now?
« Reply #839 on: March 4, 2010, 12:39 AM »
Ok. Two new books I am reading. The first is "The Hunger Games" by Suzanne Collins.



If there really are only seven original plots in the world, it's odd that boy meets girl is always mentioned, and society goes bad and attacks the good guy never is. Yet we have Fahrenheit 451, The Giver, The House of the Scorpion—and now, following a long tradition of Brave New Worlds, The Hunger Games. Collins hasn't tied her future to a specific date, or weighted it down with too much finger wagging. Rather less 1984 and rather more Death Race 2000, hers is a gripping story set in a postapocalyptic world where a replacement for the United States demands a tribute from each of its territories: two children to be used as gladiators in a televised fight to the death.Katniss, from what was once Appalachia, offers to take the place of her sister in the Hunger Games, but after this ultimate sacrifice, she is entirely focused on survival at any cost. It is her teammate, Peeta, who recognizes the importance of holding on to one's humanity in such inhuman circumstances. It's a credit to Collins's skill at characterization that Katniss, like a new Theseus, is cold, calculating and still likable. She has the attributes to be a winner, where Peeta has the grace to be a good loser.It's no accident that these games are presented as pop culture. Every generation projects its fear: runaway science, communism, overpopulation, nuclear wars and, now, reality TV. The State of Panem—which needs to keep its tributaries subdued and its citizens complacent—may have created the Games, but mindless television is the real danger, the means by which society pacifies its citizens and punishes those who fail to conform. Will its connection to reality TV, ubiquitous today, date the book? It might, but for now, it makes this the right book at the right time. What happens if we choose entertainment over humanity? In Collins's world, we'll be obsessed with grooming, we'll talk funny, and all our sentences will end with the same rise as questions. When Katniss is sent to stylists to be made more telegenic before she competes, she stands naked in front of them, strangely unembarrassed. They're so unlike people that I'm no more self-conscious than if a trio of oddly colored birds were pecking around my feet, she thinks. In order not to hate these creatures who are sending her to her death, she imagines them as pets. It isn't just the contestants who risk the loss of their humanity. It is all who watch.Katniss struggles to win not only the Games but the inherent contest for audience approval. Because this is the first book in a series, not everything is resolved, and what is left unanswered is the central question. Has she sacrificed too much? We know what she has given up to survive, but not whether the price was too high. Readers will wait eagerly to learn more.



The second book is "The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" by Robert Louis Stevenson.



Idealistic young scientist Henry Jekyll struggles to unlock the secrets of the soul. Testing chemicals in his lab, he drinks a mixture he hopes will isolate—and eliminate—human evil. Instead it unleashes the dark forces within him, transforming him into the hideous and murderous Mr. Hyde.

The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde dramatically brings to life a science-fiction case study of the nature of good and evil and the duality that can exist within one person. Resonant with psychological perception and ethical insight, the book has literary roots in Dostoevsky’s “The Double” and Crime and Punishment. Today Stevenson’s novella is recognized as an incisive study of Victorian morality and sexual repression, as well as a great thriller.
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