Books - What are you reading?

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  • It took me 2 hours to read the first 19 pages of Ulysses. It was hard but also pretty funny and had some genuinely beautiful - legibly beautiful - lines.

    White breast of the dim sea. The twining stresses, two by two. A hand plucking the harpstrings, merging their twining chords. Wavewhite wedded words shimmering on the dim tide.

  • You Died
    It's a dark souls retrospective by a couple of fans.
    I'm loving it, but I love the game too so am a little biased.

  • Those crime novels by Burke are fantastic, They led me to Robert Crais and Michael Connelly who have written some great crime fiction.

  • Read 29.
    Watchmen and The Sot-weed Factor were my highlights

    Good list

  • Yup.
    Pretty niche
    Really enjoyed it along with the art book


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  • The Terror by Dan Simmons.

    Amazing telling of the fatal mission to find the North West passage to the North Pole.

    The detail of ship life, rigging, clothes, navy life, snow and esquimaux.

    Took a while to get into it but one in it is compelling reading.

    Simmons research and attention to detail in all his books has been the hook. Some other books disappoint since I started going through his collection.

  • The closing lines of the final chapter of that are bloody gorgeous as well.

    This book about Joyce's work was just published. I will not be buying it because it's 83 quid for fewer than 200 pages, but the blurb is good for a giggle. Very Joycean.

  • @bothwell my heart be still. Hiya!

    I have a Poincare conjecture of my own that I look like a supremo arrogant dick reading it on my commuter train but like War and Peace it's surprisingly fun and readable-ish

  • I work in a sixth form and we would love these!

  • The Beast, the Emperor and the Milkman: A Bone-shaking Tour through Cycling's Flemish Heartlands ....don't normally read this type of book....but not bad!

  • The Beast, the Emperor and the Milkman: A Bone-shaking Tour through Cycling's Flemish Heartlands

    Being Flemish and cyclist, I should read this. ;)

  • I didn't think that much of the film... Tommy Lee Jones is nothing like Dave Robicheaux visually so I felt a bit let down when I watched it. Worth picking up if you've got a bit of time on your hands, the last one was the 24th in the series I believe ;)

  • What are peoples thoughts on Kindles.

    My book collection is getting out of hand and whilst I love a good physical book, I also need to think about the practicalities of book ownership.

  • Nothing is as good as a real book, however I have 2 Kindles for travel etc. I realised it was a good idea to get one when I was planning my holiday kit around fitting the books in... Also great for trains, commuting and stuff.

    The bad side, is you cant lend out like you would a book, of scan the bookshelves, or feel the paper in hand, or know by touch where you are in the book etc.

    In short; a useful tool, not as good as a book.

  • I've got a kindle but it doesn't stop me buying physical books. It does mean I buy fewer physical books, which is good because I have more space and not as much stuff to dust.

    Other pros of kindles:

    • You can highlight stuff in the kindle easily so you can look it up later
    • You can search for keywords so it's easier to find stuff
    • You can change the font size
    • You can read super-embarrassing books and nobody will be any the wiser

    Not as good:

    • Easy to lose
    • You can't ostentatiously show off how clever you are with the highly visible contents of your bookcase
    • You can't sort your kindle books by number of pages, wtf
    • I put a cover on mine and it got really stinky and I had to put it in the washing machine and it got ruined :( (the cover, i mean, not the kindle. though if i'd put the kindle in the wash that would also have been ruined. and so would a book, if i tried washing one of those)
    • Jeff fucking Bezos
  • Forgot to say I love my Kindle now.

  • I kindle for night reading and helps with failing eyesight that you can enbiggen the font
    I also book.
    S'all good man

  • Would you consider just getting rid of books once you've read them? Would free up space and give you the warm tingly feeling of passing something on to a friend/ charity shop whilst allowing you to still read physical books. I only hold on to books that I think I'm likely to read again, I don't have the space for hundreds of books and would rather someone else enjoyed them.

  • I reckon I do 99% of my reading on kindles now. It's just so much more convenient and I find it's as easy on the eyes as a real book.

    On top of the other benefits I like being able to look things up in Wikipedia on the fly by just highlighting them in the book.

  • In short; a useful tool, not as good as a book.

    There are trade-offs, but you're arbitrarily citing the properties of a physical book as advantages in themselves. Some of those are purely sentimental/nostalgic associations. There were probably people who regretted the new-fangled book technology that meant you no longer needed a knife to read the next page.

    For example, @Johnnyw75 recommends J L Burke but

    the last one was the 24th in the series I believe

    If I were going to investigate Burke (which I probably won't, because there's only so much time in the world) , I'd definitely do it via Kindle rather than physical books. If I do binge read a genre author, it saves a lot of shelf space.

    Another physical advantage is with big books (number of pages, not page size). I've been reading some large non-fiction books and it's much more convenient to read those as ebooks than to lug the physical original around.

    No matter how often I reread an ebook, the pages aren't going to tear or be stuck together by an accidental coffee spill.

    I mostly use the Kindle app rather than my old 1st-gen Kindle Paperwhite, because I use Android tablets extensively for a range of purposes (and I also find the display options more flexible, despite the Android tablets being heavier and more power hungry). Either way (Kindle or Kindle app), the ease of control over font size and lighting, regardless of your surroundings, is a boon, particularly with my long-sightedness slowly getting worse.

    The biggest annoyances I've had with Kindle/ebooks is books where layout/typesetting is important. Non-fiction book with a lot of diagrams or photographs? Those are rarely placed as well as they are in the physical book, often just lumped together at the end. Large page format, with room for both diagrams/sidebars and main text? You're fucked. Footnotes important? Sorry, they're almost certainly fucked up (don't bother reading Jasper Fforde's "Thursday Next" books in ebook form, for example). Publishing the ebook version should get as much attention as the physical format and be treated differently, but that expense is too often skipped - which is really annoying because, when it's done right, navigating an ebook can be easier and friendlier. Sometimes, for older books, the typos and formatting options are so bizarre it seems somebody used a scanner and really shitty OCR software on a physical copy.

    For all those reaons, ebooks are the worst format to read technical books.

    Other minor annoyances are around Amazon not having made much effort with global and per-book settings. It seems I have to go turn off "popular highlights by tedious fuckwits who feel that underlining sentences in a book makes them intellectual/deep and they really want to share that" every single damn time.

    When I was a schoolboy and then student, I used to read a new book every week. Then I moved into a profession which requires a lot of technical reading and heavily relies on people upskilling outside of working hours, so that slowed to a trickle. Ebooks turned that around for me and I read more now than I ever did. So it may not be great for bookshops, but it might not be so bad for authors.

  • A lot of fun tidbits.

  • I agree with you, especially with this;

    you're arbitrarily citing the properties of a physical book as advantages in themselves. Some of those are purely sentimental/nostalgic associations.

    (I hope that quote worked) but in my defense, my response was subjective. I wasn't aiming to be objective, but to me those things are important.

    I genuinely enjoy lending out a favorite book, or looking at book shelves to decide what might deserve a re-read, or just holding a paperback. It has however made moving house a pain in the arse.

    I read a lot on the kindle, and often have kindle versions of books as well as physical. The kindle screen is a fantastic way to read, massively superior to a tablet/phone, but that again is not based on anything more than my opinion.

  • I think I'm going to get one. Based on the commuting/holiday-ing alone it's a good idea. I do love looking at books, especially second hand books. I like knowing that multiple people have passed the book along.

    But space is at a premium in our house. My wife won't entertain books shelves because this will give me license to buy even more books. (She's not a reader.)

    I also like buying first editions if I can find them, but that's just me being a snob.

  • S he's not a reader.

    A friend of mine has a senior tech role in Google Europe. When he was in one of the last of the many interviews, a manager put him through a 20 questions game. My friend managed to establish that it was a household object and that there would be no more than half a dozen of them in the guy's home, but couldn't work out the answer. After the questions were done, the manager smugly said "It was 'a book'".

    Friend: ...

    But your wife is smart. Managing bookshelf space is a problem for most people I know.

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Books - What are you reading?

Posted by Avatar for chris_crash @chris_crash

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