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Ian Butler
I wonder if there's any interest to discuss books here on the site. I'm a heavy reader and only increasingly so the last year since I stopped watching television, movies and even series (though I occasionally still watch a series). In the past 12 months I've read dozens of books.

If other people are interested in that, let me know.
Though I must admit, I'm a pretty specific reader. I can appreciate books from about any genre but 90% of the books I read (and like) are all science-fiction, so it's fairly specific I'm targeting.

Favorite authors include Philip K. Dick, Isaac Asimov, Stanislaw Lem, Arthur C. Clarke but also non-science fiction authors like José Saramago ('blindness' absolutely stunned me).
Favorite books include Foundation/Robot Series (Asimov), VALIS, Martian Time-Slip (P. Dick), Fountains of Paradise (Clarke), Stranger in a Strange Land (Heinlein), 1984 (Orwell), We (Yevgeny Zamyatin).

Got some more interesting books to read in the near future. Also in my book shelf waiting exploration are Dune (Herbert) and the first two books of the Culture Series (Iain Banks), anyone with experience here?
 
roturn
I am a very one-dimensional reader to be honest. Mainly reading criminal novels.

John Grisham, James Patterson, Michael Connelly might be most famous authors I use to read.

Though what I can really recommend, which might be less famous (at least here in Germany totally) is Stuart MacBride. I read his books in English language and it`s basically a Scottish author writing lots of slang language in dialogues. But still fine to read and very well written.

I got his first book of a series as present in London tube together with the daily newspaper. Took me 2 years to start reading it, but was well worth it and by far the best books I read for some time now.


Other than those typical criminal novels I also use to read the Tolkien or Dan Brown books but not really fund to read older books for some reason. Probably due to the need to read several in school and lost the interest since in those kind of books.
 
Avin Wargunnson
Ahhh, reading, my biggest love, cycling pales in comparsion. Grin

I have obviously less and less time to read with family, work and all that stuff that comes with age (until retirement), but i still try to read at least several books per year. Now i am finishing the three books large fantasy series from Joe Abercrombie and i love it:

The First Law trilogy
The Blade Itself (2006)
Before They Are Hanged (2007)
Last Argument of Kings (2008)

It is dark and violent fantasy, but very clever and characters are well written. Fantasy is my main genre since my childhood, i have finished majority of well known series.

But i am also into sci-fi, epic history novels, detective thrillers (Phil Marlowe yay!) and another dozens of genres. But unlike Roturn, i almost only read older books, few centuries are not problematic. Pfft

so i have read majority of well known novels in history, everybody knows that from literature lessons, i was literary eating into books by dozens when i was teenager. Hemmingway, Twain, Stendhal, Tolstoj, Orwell, Dostojevskiy, Goethe, Verne, Dumas, London, H.G. Wells - you name it, i have probably read it.

My favourite authors of historic novels are Victor Hugo and Walter Scott, i love books like "93" or "Ivanhoe".

When i was like 16-18 years old i have found the love fro philosophy and works of great authors like Nietzsche, Schopenhauer or Søren Kierkegaard. It is tought to read these books, but it is gods mana for your soul and mind. Smile
I'll be back
 
Selwink
It seems like I'm not quite the reader you guys are, but I do still read quite often. At the moment I'm trying to get through all Stephen King's books and I'm not quite there yet, but I also read the detective thrillers (Scandinavian ones are the best) and some sci-fi (though admittedly not much of the latter). Of these detective writers I've found Stefan Ahnhem to be quite good among those less known (I assume he is?)

Have you read HG Wells already Avin?
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Ian Butler
roturn wrote:
Though what I can really recommend, which might be less famous (at least here in Germany totally) is Stuart MacBride. I read his books in English language and it`s basically a Scottish author writing lots of slang language in dialogues. But still fine to read and very well written.


Sounds cool. Can you recommend one particular title, I want to give it a try!

Avin Wargunnson wrote:
Ahhh, reading, my biggest love, cycling pales in comparsion. Grin


No competition whatsoever. I loved reading when I was a teenager but struggled finding books I really liked. So I'd find a book I loved, finish it in 4 days, reread it five times over the course of the next year and spend the rest of the time not-reading, because I couldn't find another book I loved.
Only about a year ago I re-discovered reading with English paperback editions and brand new authors I never heard of. Now I read 1 hour a day if I have no time, 2 hours on a working day, 3 hours on a weekend and holidays can keep me reading an entire day on and off.

Oh and I don't consider reading in bed to get to sleep reading, but that's also 1-2 hours every evening Pfft

Avin Wargunnson wrote:
When i was like 16-18 years old i have found the love fro philosophy and works of great authors like Nietzsche, Schopenhauer or Søren Kierkegaard. It is tought to read these books, but it is gods mana for your soul and mind. Smile


I tried some Nietzsche but I must admit it was over my head. Probably because it was in English and it's not my native language, the book was not easy to follow, just the language alone.
I've read some of his stuff in Dutch and that was better. So I should probably get some of his books in Dutch to get to know him better. Fiction takes precedence at the moment, though.
I know what you mean about gods mana for soul and mind. I have the same about reading in general (compared to tv and other sht) and especially some of my favorite authors. My favorite books are clever books, which give me a kick because you understand an intelligent person wrote it and it's not just boy-meets-girl-hollywood rubbish.


About H.G. Wells. Here's my very brief intake on his four most famous novels:

The War of the Worlds
Great story telling, I really loved it. It wasn't dragged out and I finished it in two sittings because it was so enticing.

The Island of Dr. Moreau
Perhaps my least favorite of these four, but still pretty good. Story didn't have me as hooked as for example the invisible man, but it was still a good read. Some very interesting themes in this book and some scary images. I think I liked the second half more than the first part, which wasn't that slow moving, but felt a bit slow to me at times.

The Invisible Man
I just love this one. I've seen the movie ages ago and I remember loving the story. The book is, as always, even better. Great story, great character, amazing read. I was baffled by this book and this made me love H.G. Wells' work.

The Time Machine
Very creative piece of writing. Story could be better in my opinion, but the way the story is told is quite neat and the story-within-a-story structure is pretty well done. Felt just a tad long to me.



Also I've finished Solaris by Lew just a few days ago and I have this to say about it: what an original alien-novel. So refreshing and even though it got a bit tough in the middle (too many descriptions - could be the translation because Lew never liked the translation) but the story amazed me too much to let it get to me. I finished is quite rapidly so I'm reading 2001: A Space Oddysey now!


@AVIN: You've read Verne? I have several of his books in English waiting to be read but so far I've been a bit hesitant. You read English version? Is it good? Are my fears of bad translation justified or do I need to drop everything and delve into the books right away?
BTW what did you make of 1984? Very curious because it's one of my all time favorites. Maybe a little bit less after I read We by Zamyatin.
Edited by Ian Butler on 16-05-2017 11:29
 
Croatia14
I've found Robert Ludlum as my favourite international author. But also the books afterwards based in his style. I love his intregious style of creating complexes, also his partly drastic and thus authentic choice of words adds to that.

I am very much into these spy thrillers or those that deal with global problems - of all kind. Not necessarily with one good or bad side, but in general with issues that tackle the whole population.

Maybe that's why of "modern classics" I'm mostly into writers like Dan Brown or Tom Clancy, and not really into those complete fantasy books. Would never read stuff like Harry Potter or similar stuff, because that is too abstract for me.

But one author is the one I currently enjoy most: Marc Elsberg. The Austrian had an absolutely amazing book out of nowhere in "Blackout". Whoever hasn't read that yet, especially if you're a native German speaker and liking books, get your shit together and read that masterpiece. His next one in "Zero" was amazing as well, I can only recommend you to try him out.

Last but not least there is Sebastian Fitzek, I'd call him the hipster German author currently. A little bit darker and initially not really my type, but when you get into out you can't escape the bonds of his unique writing style.
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Avin Wargunnson
@Selwink: Yep, i have read H.G Wells during teenage years, exactly those most famous novels Ian described in detail. Smile

@Ian: i read 99% of books in Czech language, because going through english text leaves me guessing at some points here and there and i never have complete feel as with my native language. I think that Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter were only series i have read in English, but i knew that books very well at that point.

So Verne also in Czech, i think that we have lots of good translators with literature skills and i rarely see bad translation (at least i think it was bad translation, not knowing originals).
Verne is an absolute classic of science fiction pioneering times, i think that sci-fi genre would not be as it is without him, he is father of adventure books in my eyes.

I feel like those books are something for every boy (and older boys too) who loves to imagine something fantastic:

A Journey to the Center of the best Earth
Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
A Floating City
Around the World in Eighty Days
The Mysterious Island,
......

I'll be back
 
Avin Wargunnson
I have pu some fantasy books tips into PM for Ian, but if anybody else is interested, those are probably the best fantasy series/books i have ever read ( and i have read a lot). I am still not finished with Erikson and his series, but man that is so tough to read and follow. Pfft

Patrick Rothfuss: Kingkiller Chronicle series
Joe Abercrombie: The First Law series
Steven Erikson: The Malazan book of the Fallen series (probably the most demanding fantasy ever created, with like 8-10 books in the series, which is not for everybody, very tough to read, but sooo great and epic)
Neil Gaiman: pretty much anything from him
Davi Gemmel: Drenai Tales
Steven King: The Dark Tower (absolute epic, his masterpiece, but falls on quality later in the series i think)

aaaand of course Andrzej Sapkowski, master himself with his Witcher books (well known now thanks to PC/console games).
I'll be back
 
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Avin Wargunnson
Tom Clancy is great Croatia14, i have not read all that spy titles (i would need like three lifes to achieve that), but i have read maybe a dozen. I like the first "Jack Ryan" books the most, especially:

The Hunt for Red October
Patriot Games
The Cardinal of the Kremlin
I'll be back
 
AbhishekLFC
Ah books! Grin

Well, there's only one book that I've ever taken up and not finished, no matter how horrible. That honour goes to Tale of Two Cities. Robinson Crusoe came very close.

Now to the good stuff. I read on the bus to office everyday. It's a one hour ride, so I get through a decent number of pages daily. The last book I finished was The Sicilian by Mario Puzo. And yes, I've read his most famous work, The Godfather too.

My first real love in books outside my school syllabus was Jeffrey Archer. It started with Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less and has gone on to more than 10 of his books, including the short story collections. A lot of Grisham, Ken Follett (Eye of the Needle being my favourite), Ludlum and more have been consumed. I'll be starting off with Archer's The Clifton Chronicles next.

I really like the works of Khaled Hosseini - Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns are two of my favourite books. Read them just to know just how glorious Afghanistan used to be before the Taliban!

I read a lot of Indian authors who write in English. Salman Rushdie, Arundhati Roy, Amitav Ghosh and Arvind Adiga to name a few. Midnight's Children by Rushdie is chillingly depressing while God of Small Things by Roy and The Hungry Tide by Ghosh remain a couple of the simpler favourites.

I like reading books that focus on dystopian themes too - Fahrenheit 451, Lord of the Flies and A Clockwork Orange just to name a few. I haven't read Orwell yet which is something I intend to correct soon.

A book that really made a mark on me is Ayn Rand's Fountainhead. It is a personal favourite. I have read Paulo Coelho and don't understand the hype! Catch 22 I enjoyed a lot.

I'm forgetting a lot of books right now probably, so will post back here when I remember them Smile

And yes, I'm a Potterhead Grin
 
Avin Wargunnson
Harry Potter is awesome, i have maybe read it like five times and then listened to the audiobook three times. Pfft

People can think it is silly, but even when i am person who reads Kant and his Critique of Pure Reason, i can still love Harry Potter. That english lady created something big.
I'll be back
 
Selwink
Avin Wargunnson wrote:
Steven King: The Dark Tower (absolute epic, his masterpiece, but falls on quality later in the series i think)


From what I heard it's best to start reading the Dark Tower after reading other books by Stephen King, as he does sometimes use characters from his other books in the Dark Tower and that might spoil those other books.

My grandfather is a Sci-Fi fan and probably has hundreds of sci-fi books. I'll probably visit him again some time soon and maybe pick up a few to read already. I'll see if I can get something that hasn't been mentioned here yet Grin


I've found Robert Ludlum as my favourite international author. But also the books afterwards based in his style. I love his intregious style of creating complexes, also his partly drastic and thus authentic choice of words adds to that.


I've read Ludlum as well a couple of years ago. It may have been slightly too complex for be back then, so maybe I'll start rereading them soon as well, hopefully my parents haven't got rid of them yet.

Also Dan Brown is something I started liking more and more recently, but I haven't read his newer ones yet.

AbhishekLFC wrote:

Well, there's only one book that I've ever taken up and not finished, no matter how horrible. That honour goes to Tale of Two Cities. Robinson Crusoe came very close.


Ooh I know that feeling. I got through about 100 pages of Max Havelaar (a Dutch classic) before giving up.
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AbhishekLFC
Selwink wrote:
Also Dan Brown is something I started liking more and more recently, but I haven't read his newer ones yet.

AbhishekLFC wrote:

Well, there's only one book that I've ever taken up and not finished, no matter how horrible. That honour goes to Tale of Two Cities. Robinson Crusoe came very close.


Ooh I know that feeling. I got through about 100 pages of Max Havelaar (a Dutch classic) before giving up.

People in those classics sure had very slow lives :lol:

I liked Da Vinci Code when I read it but now I like Angels and Demons and Inferno more. Haven't read his non-Langdon books. I knew I was forgetting some Pfft
 
Avin Wargunnson
To be honest, i would threw anything after Da Vinci Code out of the window, because those later books are crap in my eyes. Pfft

and whole Dickens is boring, i hated it when i had to read it at school.
I'll be back
 
tsmoha
Terry Pratchett. RIP.
 
Croatia14
Avin Wargunnson wrote:
To be honest, i would threw anything after Da Vinci Code out of the window, because those later books are crap in my eyes. Pfft


I liked Meteor, the maybe less "typical" one, most of the ones after the "Da Vinci Code"...
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Croatia14
for bringing you the Marc Elsberg books a little closer: https://www.marcel.../books.php

I can only say: try Blackout
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Kiserlovski01
Pretty much like roturn, I mostly read criminal / mystery novels when I read, though I have rather many interests so reading is often pushed to the back plan. Sad

Don't know if these names will ring any bells, but I really like books (and descriptions of those I haven't read) of:

- Gregg Hurwitz
The Crime Writer, They're Watching

- James Rollins
Sandstorm

This man's mystery / adventure novels, often spiced up with interesting scientifical, historical and/ or religious elements, are really something unique. His books have some kind of a 'reading threshold', if you guys understand what I mean, but his way of building suspense and keeping it up is one of a kind (among the writers I know ofc).

- Linwood Barclay
Never Look Away
Edited by Kiserlovski01 on 16-05-2017 15:13
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Ian Butler
Avin Wargunnson wrote:
Harry Potter is awesome, i have maybe read it like five times and then listened to the audiobook three times. Pfft

People can think it is silly, but even when i am person who reads Kant and his Critique of Pure Reason, i can still love Harry Potter. That english lady created something big.


Harry Potter is what got me reading when I was a kid Pfft
I've read the first five volumes like 7-10 times, the later ones each at least 4 times. Favorite one 'Half-Blood Prince'.
I've read in Dutch a few times and then they were my first English books and then (to practise) I even read the first one in French.

Very fond memories of those books, though it has been several years since I revisited them. Maybe one of these days it's time to get back to them Cool
 
roturn
Ian Butler wrote:
roturn wrote:
Though what I can really recommend, which might be less famous (at least here in Germany totally) is Stuart MacBride. I read his books in English language and it`s basically a Scottish author writing lots of slang language in dialogues. But still fine to read and very well written.


Sounds cool. Can you recommend one particular title, I want to give it a try!

It`s like a series of books with same detective "Logan McRae". Hence reading from start would be most ideal I guess. Not a must but easier to get knowledge of all people involved/backgrounds etc.

https://en.wikipe...t_MacBride

He apparently has started a second series and some stand-alone books as well.

"Cold Granite" is his opener of the McRae series. It`s a total of ~13 books in that series at the moment with ~1 new book every year.
For the moment I really liked all of his but still miss half the series which I am going to read one after the other now.
 
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