Off Topic Art & Literature

Discussion in 'Southampton' started by St. Beddytare, Nov 26, 2019.

  1. ChilcoSaint

    ChilcoSaint Lives in a Chilcohüttl
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    John Le Carre actually said after the BBC series that he should have written the Olivia Coleman character as a woman, and that having her pregnant was a master stroke.
     
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  2. Ian Thumwood

    Ian Thumwood Well-Known Member

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    I find Le Carre a bit wordy. I read "A perfect spy" and enjoyed that about 30 years ago but I just felt that the "Night manager" was far more satisfying on TV. The end was terrific whereas the book just peters out.
     
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  3. St. Beddytare

    St. Beddytare Plays the percentage

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    What about Dan Brown books? I haven’t read any of his for a while...........Any one read a decent one of his lately?
     
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  4. Number 1 Jasper

    Number 1 Jasper Well-Known Member

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    Stephen Donaldson .

    Mordant's need ( Mirror of her dreams + a man rides Through ) .

    Love it .

    Read it several times.
     
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  5. Susan

    Susan Well-Known Member

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    I've read both Angels & Demons and Inferno. Both decent reads and as per usual with Dan Brown, very much page-turners. If you've been to Florence, you will enjoy Inferno in particular, as it is set there and the city plays a big part in the plot.
     
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  6. Susan

    Susan Well-Known Member

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    Just finished A Christmas Carol. Must be the book with the most adaptations ever. The original is great. Obviously the plot is familiar, but Dickens goes all out on the figurative language. Really seems like he enjoyed writing this book, and just decided to have a laugh with it.

    Read both Great Expectations and Oliver a while back. Absolutely loved GE, but wasn't too fussed by Oliver.

    Any other Dickens recommends?
     
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    Last edited: Feb 9, 2020
  7. TheSecondStain

    TheSecondStain Needs an early night

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    Blimey, you just started with Dickens? well let me recommend The Pickwick Papers as fun adventures, and if you live in N.Kent you can visit the same Leather Bottle inn where Bill Stumps His Mark at Cobham in Kent.

    Our Mutual Friend is excellent stuff from the River Thames and tributaries, by turns sinister, tragic and funny. Martin Chuzzlewit is the same, based in Salisbury, but covers London and the USA [Martin is THAT desparate that he goes to America]. Nicholas Nickleby is another. Bleak House is brilliant. Dombey & Son is overlooked, I think, but both tragic and comedic in true Dickens style.
    Dickens was the Victorian Bard. He invented almost as many words as Shakespeare, and like the Stratford Bard he never had a problem with starting a sentence with "And." As do not I.
    Bollocks to primary school English teachers. :emoticon-0110-tongu

    Oh, and don't forget the short stories, like The Signalman.
     
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    Last edited: Feb 9, 2020
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  8. Susan

    Susan Well-Known Member

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    Cheers, TSS. Actually I read GE and Oliver a long time ago, but just never got round to any more of his.

    But yeah, definitely gonna go for more soon.
     
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  9. saintrichie123

    saintrichie123 Well-Known Member

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    The lost symbol was a good read.
     
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  10. St. Beddytare

    St. Beddytare Plays the percentage

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    Ok guys thanks........
     
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  11. Ian Thumwood

    Ian Thumwood Well-Known Member

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    I went through a phase of reading the classics and that included Dickens. I really liked "David Copperfield" which was the first one I read but I cannot recall a lot about it. I can recall even less about "A tale of two cities" which I read next although it was about the French Revolution and I included an amusing account of the Gordon Riots. I think "Great Expectations" was probably the best because the descriptions of the Thames and that environment are so evocative. However, I picked up "Hard times" shortly afterwards and have to say this was really poor. It started off as a critique of the education system of the time but then changed direction mid-way through before dealing with the poor in an industrial town. This book was written quickly for a journal when Dickens was midway through "Nicholas Nickleby" and he quickly needed some case. It really shows as the story is unfocussed and not a patch on something like Emile Zola's "Germinal" which is far more effective in covering this territory. I came to the conclusion that Dickens could be uneven but you often find this with some classic writers. I think there is a discussion to be had as to whether Balzac should be more celebrated than Dickens although he does not have the wealth of great characters. The stories are good and in Vautrin, he created one of the great literary villains.

    In my opinion Dickens is not on a par with Shakespeare but I find 19th century literature really unappealing as a whole and think that many historians consider the writing of George Elliot to be just as good at conveying the social situation of the time as Dickens. I was made to read "Jane Eyre" and "Far from the madding crowd" at school which made be reluctant to want to explore classic English writers for a long while. I have never read any Jane Austen and the thought of her books leaves me cold even though she was a local and I have visited her house as I am curious about this period of history. I think I have read more medieval literature than 19th century writers and think that some of the more popular writers such as HG Wells that I have read do not really stand the test of time. Incidentally, Jules Verne is even worse!

    I have read more Zola than Dickens and went through a spell of reading his books until I go fed up with the depressing endings. However, I think that "The debacle", "Germinal" and "La bete humaine" are exceptional - the latter is a crime thriller about a killer on a railway train.
     
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  12. hotbovril

    hotbovril Well-Known Member

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    I read his Gap Cycle last year. It is without a doubt the darkest, most brutal bit of science fiction it has ever been my pleasure to read.
     
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  13. Number 1 Jasper

    Number 1 Jasper Well-Known Member

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    Will give that a go thanks .
     
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  14. Susan

    Susan Well-Known Member

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    I'm on Wuthering Heights now. F*ck me, chapter 11 is mental (the argument/fight between Heathcliff-Cathy-Linton). What a pair of nutcases; Heathcliff and Cathy. <laugh>
     
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  15. St. Beddytare

    St. Beddytare Plays the percentage

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    <laugh>
     
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  16. It's Only A Game

    It's Only A Game Well-Known Member

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  17. It's Only A Game

    It's Only A Game Well-Known Member

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    What does a book reviewer do?
    "A book review is a guide for potential readers. In a concise manner, a review summarizes the author's qualifications and main points, often providing examples from the text. A review also provides an opinion on whether the author succeeds or not in convincing readers of his or her points."

     
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  18. Susan

    Susan Well-Known Member

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    <laugh>

    I bet there aren't many lads who grew up on a council housing estate in Shirley who have read close to the amount I have though.
     
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  19. St. Beddytare

    St. Beddytare Plays the percentage

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    At the hotel we’re staying I have picked up a old Agatha Christy novel. Murder on the orient express going to read that to cheer me up. Haven’t read that for nigh on 50 years!
     
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  20. St. Beddytare

    St. Beddytare Plays the percentage

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    Her books are very good aren’t they? Good plots that in some ways never date! I just might go back and read a few more later. Just wandering what to read next............
     
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