Off Topic Art & Literature

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

  1. Archers Road

    Archers Road Urban Spaceman

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    I absolutely lived those books when I read them; I was in Tolkien’s world from the first page to the last.

    Mind you, I was a teenage boy; but I think as an adult they’d still make for great escapism.

    Loved the Peter Jackson movies too.
     
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  2. Ian Thumwood

    Ian Thumwood Well-Known Member

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    I have just finished Ian McEwan's "Machines like me" which I think is one of his best books for wages. On the face of it, it is a science fiction but the book really centres on the fact whether it is possible to produce robots which have consciousness. The book starts off on one track but the whole plot gets more complicated once one of the principle characters is found to be living a lie. Set in an alternative 1980s, I was struggling to put this one down it was so good. I am a big fan of this writer.
     
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  3. ChilcoSaint

    ChilcoSaint Lives in a Chilcohüttl
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    The Silmarillion is a great read too, more episodic than LOTR, so it’s not one continuous story but rather a history spread over thousands of years. Some wonderful tales in there though!
     
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  4. Susan

    Susan Well-Known Member

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    I’m not a fan of the movies (mostly cos of the ham acting and over enthusiastic CGI), and that always put me off the books. However, I read The Hobbit a month or so ago and loved it. So yeah, I will soon, thanks for the recommendo!
     
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  5. Saintmagic

    Saintmagic Well-Known Member

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    So during lockdown I am contemplating breaking my book virginity. Any recommendations?

    i absolutely hate sci fi or wizards and **** movies so assume I wouldn’t like books of the same genre
     
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  6. Rorschach's Journal

    Rorschach's Journal Well-Known Member

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    Stephen King is pretty reliable, always tells a good story - my favourite of his books is The Stand, which involves a superflu that takes out 99% of the population. Something a bit different, but we'll worth it is "The Life of Pi" by Yann Martel.

    I'm sure you'll get loads of recommendations from everyone else so that'll be a load of reading just to get through the posts from other bored readers stuck at home :emoticon-0102-bigsm
     
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  7. Saintmagic

    Saintmagic Well-Known Member

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    I have seen a couple of movies that have been based on his books. Pet Cemetery used to be a comedown favourite of mine, it is ****ing terrible.

    A flu that spreads all over the world? Sounds too far fetched for me
     
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  8. StJabbo1

    StJabbo1 Well-Known Member

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    Irvine Welsh, Trainspotting
     
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  9. Saintmagic

    Saintmagic Well-Known Member

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    Seen it
     
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  10. Susan

    Susan Well-Known Member

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    I’d start off with a spy-thriller. Something by Frederick Forsyth or John le Carre.

    Icon by Forsyth is really good.
     
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  11. StJabbo1

    StJabbo1 Well-Known Member

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    Read it and other Irvine Welsh.
     
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  12. Rorschach's Journal

    Rorschach's Journal Well-Known Member

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    My fav footie book is "The Miracle of Castel di Sangro" by Joe McGinniss. Its a proper underdog story about an Italian Village Football team that manages to get promoted to Serie B. Mafia, drugs, death and corruption, its a great read.
     
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  13. Ian Thumwood

    Ian Thumwood Well-Known Member

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    I remember reading "Salem's lot" as a teenager and being gripped. Anyone my age will connect with that simply because of the TV dramatization with David Soul. It was on whilst I was a school but even when it was repeated by the BBC in 1985, everyone doing summer work at Roadchef was trying to re-jig their lunchbreak to get home and watch it. I don't think videos were quite as prevalent then!

    Magic's comment made me laugh as it is exactly how I feel. I had anything with magic or dwarves in and science fiction falls flat on it's face unless it is written in a fashion to make you think or perhaps has a political edge to it. I can't even stand the idea of Harry Potter and the Tolkein stuff still gives me nightmares after struggling through "The Hobbit" at school when I was about twelve as it felt too childish to me even then. I would have much sooner read Alistair McLean at that time or one of the Hardy Boy books. I don't know why but teachers at school seemed hellbent on choosing books to put us off reading! I hated everything I was given to read at school even though I have always read and loved books.

    I did have a spell of reading some early science fiction books at one point and read through stuff by H.G Wells and Jules Verne, neither of whom greatly impressed me. Verne was apparently paid by word and this is what you often find page after page of proper nouns in some of his books. As science fiction had become reality, they no longer really stand up as great literature.

    It is the same with science fiction films for me, as well. They always promise a lot but seem to disappoint. Part of the appeal of writers like Ian McEwan for me is they flit between different oeuvres and even when you pick up one book, it will take you on a journey where you least expect to go.

    I must admit that another genre of book I was really sniffy about were detective novels but my opinion changes after reading a couple of Reginald Hill's "Dalziel and Pascoe" series which are under-pinned with a very dry sense of humour that is even more amusing than the TV series. One of the best ones concerned a mass shooting in a village and is told in flashback . I think it was "Pictures of perfection." The whole premise of the story is that you are trying to work out no only who was the perpetrator but also who will be shot. In the end, Hill manages to pull off an amazing "trick" with the writing which I never saw coming. Probably one of the best ever twists I have encountered in a book. I read about four of them and they transformed by perception of police thrillers.
     
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  14. Saintmagic

    Saintmagic Well-Known Member

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    Just read my first book, cheers Ian
     
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  15. Rorschach's Journal

    Rorschach's Journal Well-Known Member

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    <laugh><laugh>
     
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  16. Ian Thumwood

    Ian Thumwood Well-Known Member

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    Saint magic

    I think there are about four writers I always look out for whenever they have a new books out. As I said, Ian McEwan is usually terrific . The latest is a cracker but "Enduring love" (about a stalker) and "Atonement" are the dog's bollocks. I also have enjoyed William Boyd's books which tend to be thrillers or made of "biographies." At the moment the two writers I like the most are Kate Atkinson who has also written detective novels with a character called Jackson Brodie (Think it was made in to t a TV series) but her best stuff tends to be family histories including "A god in ruins" which is about Halifax bomber pilots in world War Two. Kate Atkinson is good because she can be quite dark but also really funny too. The humour is very English and , in opinion, she just captures the way people talk very accurately. Her best stuff is non-linear and you have to put all the pieces together before you understand what the picture is at the end. I like these kinds of stories but am aware it can drive some people nuts.

    My current favourite at the moment is Phillip Kerr who writes about a detective called Bernie Gunther who operates in Nazi-era Germany. He is a bit of a cult writer and there is a big fan base for his stuff - no doubt enthused by the wise cracks of his creation. if you love noir and violence, Kerr's books are excellent.
     
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  17. St. Beddytare

    St. Beddytare Plays the percentage

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    I am reading LJ Ross’s crime series DCI Ryan. A north of England murder detective. Her books are in the main well written...... you would probably enjoy them.
     
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  18. St Badger

    St Badger Well-Known Member

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    I have read the whole series.
    I love the way the characters are depicted and the dialogue is pretty much what you would get in any workplace, with the sarcasm and jokey comments being very “real”.
     
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  19. St. Beddytare

    St. Beddytare Plays the percentage

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    I think I’m on the 5th book “Cragside”.........I like the humanistic way she describes the stresses and strains the individuals are under making them more like real characters rather than works of fiction.
     
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  20. St. Beddytare

    St. Beddytare Plays the percentage

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    Cragside was a great read.......dark sky’s is next going to give that a go
     
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