2017's What fiction or non-fiction book are you reading?

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
I just started on the 1Q84 trilogy by Murakami. It's a collection band with all three books combined. As such it is one of the biggest books I've ever read (1400 pages) rivalling The Stand and LOTR.

I'm about 100 pages in and I still don't really know what this book is about, although there are some interesting things happening. The setting, 80's Japan, is also very interesting. I don't know a lot about modern-day Japanese culture and as such this book is intriguing to me even because of the setting alone.
 

Darth Tater

Journeyed there and back again
Today I plan to begin The Caine Mutiny by Herman Wouk. All I know about the book is that there is a mutiny, Misterr Chrisssstian, a trial, and Captain Blye. So it will be exciting to read going in blind (that's a contradiction in terms, isn't it? :D

Anyhow, I read The Glory by him a couple years ago. The Hope covers the Israeli six day war and the Glory is the aftermath. I thought the Glory was very well written, informative, and touching. He also wrote The Winds Of War and War And Remembrance. "I knew The Caine Mutiny came out in the fifties (1951) so I wondered when he died. After all, that was 66 years ago. Well, guess what? He is still alive and kicking!! He was born in 1915 and that makes him 102 years old. So I hope to finish it before he moves on. :oldman:
 

Darth Tater

Journeyed there and back again
The Caine Mutiny. I don't need to tell anyone that Herman Wouk can write. He states things simply and matter of factly without wasting words. He somehow draws you in and makes you care about these realistic characters.

The first half of the book was kind of slow but not boring. I think a lot of novels from "the old days" were like that. Nobody and nothing is purely good or bad.

The story is mostly from the POV of one character and is divided into around four parts. His life and romance just before enlisting in the Navy during WWII. Then his experiences. Next the mutiny. Lastly the trial and aftermath.

Checked out some of the movie clips afterwards. The acting was great and the essences of the characters were splendidly captured.

Has anyone read anything by Wouk? Interested to know your thoughts. If you havent read anything by humin I think it is worth considering.
 

Darth Tater

Journeyed there and back again
A couple mysteries. Will run out of Louise Penny books soon enogh.

My first (and final) Ellery Queen's The Greek Casket.. A lot of reviewers found it to be convoluted. I agree. Some said it was an aberration. IMO are better mysteries out there that are modern. Others loved it. These cozy mysteries (like Agatha Christie's) are a nice soothing break for me. They are not the foo foo apple pie ones. But Ellery Queen was so so. The solution took so long that it was boring with bland characters. I dislike male mystery writers.

Tried a Patricia Wentworth. First half was mundane but the next half was almost an exciting thriller. The detective is like a middle aged more business type Miss Marple. She dumps a lot of characters on youwith so many aliases and lord knows where or how she gets her amazing info??? Very confusing
Regardless , I will read another at some point.

Now on to fantasy!! :cool:
 

Bierschneeman

Journeyed there and back again
Starting war and peace, restarting unbearable lightness of being, abandoning gone with the wind until I find a complete copy.
 

Darth Tater

Journeyed there and back again
*crickets*

Louise Penny Inspector Gamache mystery series. A Trick Of the Light. IMO, best one yet She makes you feel like you're really in this Canadian village. Complex characters that grow (series should be read in order). Interesting plot. If you want a great get away from it all modern day Agatha Christie type book (no excessive on scene violence and no swearing) I highly recommend these. Best read in order for full experience). I've read books 3-7 and love it!! 5/5
 

Darth Tater

Journeyed there and back again
Dorothy Sayers. Gaudy Night. Lord Wimfrey book 12. The mystery was enjoyable but the lady was born in 1893 so too much latin, too many poems, and too many tangents where I couldn't even understand what she was even talking about or how it related to the story. Still, I enjoyed it despite these things. But I doubt I will read any more of her books. One of the rare mysteries I've read where
there isn't a murder.
The story takes place in a womens college where the pranks are far from funny. 4/5​
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
Some time ago I finished 1Q84 by Murakami. It is a huge tome (1400 pages) in the Magical Realism genre. A lot of people seem to like this book. I am not one of them. Nothing much happens at all. The story is ridiculously slow. I also get the feeling a lot gets lost in translation from Japanese to English. I don't want to go into too much detail, but I would recommend against picking this one up. 4/10.
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
I'm reading a western, Jubal Sackett, by Louis L'Amour. I originally read it so long ago that everything is new again. L'Amour wrote 17 books centered on the Sackett family and their generation by generation progress from the eastern US to the west and the Pacific ocean.
 

Darth Tater

Journeyed there and back again
Trued another new mystery author. Rhys Bowen. Death Of Riley.,She has several different detective series going. This was a Molly Murphy. It was ok. You knew who was going to get killed from the title. You get sent on all these snipe hunts and then about 2/3 into the book the real murder and their clues show up. 3 of 5 stars. Not bad but not that special. There are others

I've been burned out on fantasy for 3-4 months so I've basically mixed them in evenly with mysteries and thrillers. But now I'm eager to get back to reading predominantly fantasy.I will still throw in some others.
 

Bierschneeman

Journeyed there and back again
just finished Milan kundera s unbearable lightness of being.

I liked most of it. sometimes I loved it, sometimes I felt like I need black turtle neck and a beret in a smoky coffee shop to reach this level of self aggrandizement.

it's got some very great moments in a story about adultery, lecherous views on the value of life, and the russian occupation of Czech.

The bad parts are when he gets all philosophical in a way we've all seen drinks in bars get. rewriting Nitzche .

The best parts are when he explains phrases into his theories

Einmal ist Keinmal

7.5/10
 

Darth Tater

Journeyed there and back again
I'm reading a western, Jubal Sackett, by Louis L'Amour. I originally read it so long ago that everything is new again. L'Amour wrote 17 books centered on the Sackett family and their generation by generation progress from the eastern US to the west and the Pacific ocean.
I tried three Louis L'amour books when going through a Westerns stage in 2015 and 2016. All revolved around the Sackett clan which as you pointed out spanned multiple generations and also were his most popular series. I read Sackett's Land, To The Far Blue Mountains and Sackett. IIRC Jubal was one of 4 sons born to the original Sackett settler. IMO, all were well written, action packed, and a lot of fun. The Sacketts were nice upstanding guys but usually anyone messing with them ended up in a pine box shortly thereafter. ;)
 

Alice Sabo

Helped Logen count his fingers
Just finished the Mages of Bennamore by Pauline Ross. A light, fun read with these bizarre sex scenes tossed in. It's the 3rd book in a series of stand-alones all in the same world. The magic was a little under explained, but I did start at book 3. It was mostly PG until the female main character turns around and says "I want you to fuck me." Needless to say it totally threw me out of the story. I'm not offended by it, just really startled. It seemed completely out of character. But I don't usually read romance, and maybe this was straddling that category.
 

Sparrow

Journeyed there and back again
Pale Rider, by Laura Spinney.
An historical account of the Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918/19, better known as, though completely inaccurate... "The Spanish Flu". Makes the Black Death seem like a tea party.
They still don't know exactly how it mutated so quickly, and why it attacked people in the prime of health worse than the very young and elderly... and it all began in Kansas, of all places. They figure they know the county in Kansas, and even the first person who contracted the virus. Amazing story!
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
I tried three Louis L'amour books when going through a Westerns stage in 2015 and 2016. All revolved around the Sackett clan which as you pointed out spanned multiple generations and also were his most popular series. I read Sackett's Land, To The Far Blue Mountains and Sackett. IIRC Jubal was one of 4 sons born to the original Sackett settler. IMO, all were well written, action packed, and a lot of fun. The Sacketts were nice upstanding guys but usually anyone messing with them ended up in a pine box shortly thereafter. ;)
There you go. I think you're right about the four original brothers, Tell, Orrin, Morty and Jubal. I think I'm going to continue with these again.
 

Darth Tater

Journeyed there and back again
There you go. I think you're right about the four original brothers, Tell, Orrin, Morty and Jubal. I think I'm going to continue with these again.
I remember Tell. He was featured in book 7 (I’ve read #7, 2,& 1 respectively). The beauty of L’amour was that you think “you’ve read one Western you’ve read them all” but based on my small sampling that was far from true. Sure, you had the macho quick drawing hero who gets the girl in the end but the individual plots were very different.

I have two go-to mystery series and I’m excited to start a potential third written by a woman with a PH.D. in Egyptology. All 20 books take place there.

I’ve tried other series that didn’t work out. The Patricia Wentworth I sampled ended well so I tried another titled “Eternity Ring”. This will be the last. The language and writing is from the early 1900’s and while the books are pretty good in some ways they don’t compare with the mysteries of today.

I read two more from my beloved Louise Penny. One, a short story was good but no comparison to her novels. The other was a novel (The Beautiful Mystery) and although very good, unlike the others it took place in a secluded monastary where a murder is committed...think Name Of The Rose. The normal lovable and quirky villagers were absent and it lacked the charm that made the other books so special.
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
You have a broad reading range, Darth. I need to branch out, although I am somewhat doing that with L'Amour and Christian Cameron.
 

Darth Tater

Journeyed there and back again
I just read two great mysteries.

How The Light Gets In. I love Louise Penny. These books can be read in any order but I highly reccommend chronological order to get the full impact. Book 9 wraps a lot of threads up and now I wonder where sge is heading. A village in Quebec to small to even be listed on ANY map with lovable characters who are complex. This book was the bestest of the bestier of the bestiest!! I just lose myself in this town. Seems like she wins an Agatha Award with each new book. I started with book 3 (long story) and just completed book 9. I literally missed meals because I couldn’t put it down.

I found my 3rd mystery series!! The late Elizabeth Peters Amelia Peabody (Egyptian) series. I think this is another one best read in order but I may just go with the deals that hopefully pop up. I hate spending $10 on a mystery under 300 pages long. This one is from the POV of the main character. How to describe her? She is a take charge kind of woman (whether asked for or not), she never seems to notice her own faults and it is narrated in a tongue in cheek manner. The authors sense of humor is very dry and the humor flows naturally and IS actually witty and funny. I’m thinking the books. This one had a mummy running around but was it real? Highly entertaining.

Oddly, while I’m not good at nabbing whodunnit I’ve pretty much figured out the culprit in my last 2 or 3. Experience? Nah. But while twists are always good I think it is a credit to the author when they leave good clues. I hate it when at the end you find out that so and so was such and such but there was nothing to lead you to that conclusion because only the “clever” author knew about this.