robin

New member
what's the bertrand russell book like?
i know virtually nothing about philosophy,is it a good place to start?
we have it for sale in the bookshop i work in so i was thinking of picking it up,does it assume any prior knowledge of the subject though?
 

francesco

Minerva Estassi
... everybody needs somebook to love

uhm... just jumpin' between Olaf Stapledon Star Maker and Melville Pierre, wish i could read more actually... tons of books on the floor, so little time... ah, and re-reading From Hell by Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell, best comic book ever, forgot the incredibly badly movie that has very little to do with the Alan Moore writing. Ciao.
 

satanmcnugget

New member
Robin...i read the Russell back in my school days...it is a VERY good place to start for someone with not much in the way of prior knowledge of philosophy...it does assume SOME prior knowledge in that you have to know what phrases like a priori mean, etc....but not much...very readable
 

Baal's Eyes

New member
Yes Bertrand is incredibly readable. Philosophy books usually arent my reading choice but its an area Ive neglected. He throws in a bit of history and what he calls 'social history' as well for context, when required. Its pretty darn good.
 

Backjob

New member
What's Persepolis 2 like? I loved the first one.

I just finished Neal Stephenson's "System of the World" which was the last in the "Baroque trilogy". I loved those books, proper immerse-yourself massive chunks of writing and endless opportunities to geek out on the little period detail and sly cracks about Royal Society-era scientists. It's a horrifically ambitious thing to have written, and I dunno if he completely pulled it off, but it's still really good fun.

Got Gunther Grass - "The rat" and "The flounder" cued up to read next...
 

Mister Lex

New member
Is anyone else here into Haruki Murakami?
I have become addicted to his work.
At the moment I am half-way through 'Dance, Dance, Dance' which is a kind of sequel to 'The Wild Sheep Chase', in that they share the same protagonist and the weird presence of 'The Sheep Man'.
I recently finished 'The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle' and now understand what my mum meant when she said "You will never look at a well in the same way again after you read this book".
Although he's an elusive author, in one of the few interviews I have found with him, he talks about an abiding sense of loss in his work, which is mostly melancholic. :eek:
There is a weariness with modern life which I find very attractive, as well as the poignancy of the dream-like sequences in many of his books.
 

mind_philip

saw the light
I'm currently reading Al Franken's 'Lies and the Lying Liars...' (I'm visiting the US, glued to the car-crash that is FOX News); 'Battle Cry of Freedom' by James McPherson (In Virginia, cradle of the civil war), and browsing a copy of the Penguin Dictionary of American Folklore I got at one of Charlottesville's many excellent second hand bookstores.
 

Backjob

New member
Yeah, Murakami is the don dada of current authors, nobody else really touches him. I see people reading his stuff everywhere from japan to singapore to thailand to australia - it's totally universal. People who haven't read a novel in years suddenly get hooked on his books and read all of them. Really genuinely a phenomenon...
 

Grievous Angel

Beast of Burden
Haven't read any fiction for ages. Other than Stewart Home's down and out..., but that doesn't count. And I recently finished one of the bound volumes of The Invisibles, which was really good, but nowhere as good as it would've been when it first came out.

Non-fiction: recently finished Hutton's triumph of the moon -- great, well researched history of pagan witchcraft by Bristol Uni's professor of history -- and am picking over his History of the Ritual Year. Read a couple of books about the invisible college around the time of (nd during!) Malachy's birth. I guess I mainly read tech magazines, but when I stay at Eden's, I tend to rifle through his extensive collection of seventies left wing tracts and pamphlets and fill in all the "e's" in blue biro.

Never black biro -- just blue.

A really good thread might be "what books do you keep going back to"...
 

Pearsall

Prodigal Son
Stiglitz 'Globalization and Its Discontents'. It's fucking boring, but it's the sort of thing you feel you should read. I find economics dull beyond belief, but it's important.
 

Jamie S

New member
Good to see a few Finsbury Park people on the board.

I read Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood and Pattern Recognition by William Gibson a bit earlier this year and they both blew me away (although the consensus on the Gibson is that it's shit.) I want to start a thread on them as soon as I can get my angle straight in my head.

Failed to finish Vernon God Little, although I don't know why - I found the distinctive voice that he's been praised for a bit offputting, I think. Anyone else?

Started Words and Music a while ago, and found it really exciting - I mean, it's ambitious isn't it? You know you're not reading Nick Hornby. - I'm not sure the Kylie dialogue (Kyalogue?) actually works beyond the odd joke, though. I know it got written about round here quite a bit, so I'll have to see what other people's
take was once I finish it.
 

luka

Well-known member
Staff member
'Stiglitz 'Globalization and Its Discontents'. It's fucking boring, but it's the sort of thing you feel you should read. I find economics dull beyond belief, but it's important.'

my sister said to me the other day, i've goven up on self-improvement. i've read so many books that are supposed to be good for me, and i can't remember anything about any of them.

my sister is very wise. life is too short for economics.
 

luka

Well-known member
Staff member
i'm not reading (or listening to) anything. i recommend it. give up on life!
 

grimly fiendish

New member
Jamie S said:
Failed to finish Vernon God Little, although I don't know why - I found the distinctive voice that he's been praised for a bit offputting, I think. Anyone else
hmm: it failed to move me in any way, really. it was a decent enough yarn, but there's nothing special or unusual about it at all. i really have nothing else to say about it, which is a shame.

Started Words and Music a while ago, and found it really exciting - I mean, it's ambitious isn't it? You know you're not reading Nick Hornby. - I'm not sure the Kylie dialogue (Kyalogue?) actually works beyond the odd joke, though. I know it got written about round here quite a bit, so I'll have to see what other people's take was once I finish it.
it's worth reading because it's morley and he's always worth reading because he has a wonderful mind, but it's overly ambitious and drags terribly in places. it's also atrociously edited (which i think has been discussed elsewhere; ilm, maybe?), not just in terms of the myriad mistakes but insofar as someobody really should have had a word with him about some of the more self-indulgent ramblings.

mind, i can talk. i can barely string a sentence together today. a zillion boos to alcohol. (that should give you a clue to a childhood favourite i revisited recently too.)
 

Tobias

New member
Backjob said:
What's Persepolis 2 like? I loved the first one.

I just finished Neal Stephenson's "System of the World" which was the last in the "Baroque trilogy". I loved those books, proper immerse-yourself massive chunks of writing and endless opportunities to geek out on the little period detail and sly cracks about Royal Society-era scientists. It's a horrifically ambitious thing to have written, and I dunno if he completely pulled it off, but it's still really good fun.

Ten days ago I finished Quicksilver the first part of the trilogy. Maybe it was the german translation but although i'm a big fan of Stephenson I wasn't really happy with "Quicksilver". I had the feeling it was overambitious. As if he wanted to accomplish too much. Tell the beginnings of modern thought and science, describe a world in turmoil, still write a good novel, present the characters. And although I really liked these character when I met them for the first time in "Cryptonomicon" and liked them once again - by transfering them 300 years in the past it seems Stephenson wants to make archetypes out of them.
I was a bit disappointed.
 

Rambler

Awanturnik
grimly fiendish said:
atrociously edited (which i think has been discussed elsewhere; ilm, maybe?), not just in terms of the myriad mistakes but insofar as someobody really should have had a word with him about some of the more self-indulgent ramblings.
Agree x 10 to that. I counted enough good ideas for a 10-page article, then 348 pages of utter wank. Easily the most disappointing read of the year for me.
 

Backjob

New member
luka said:
i'm not reading (or listening to) anything. i recommend it. give up on life!
Stopping smoking is a piece of piss. Quitting media is much harder. I don't want to look at the toilet door while shitting. Maybe I should...
 

fldsfslmn

excremental futurism
  • Jorge Luis Borges, Labyrinths: Selected Stories & Other Writings
  • Alain Robbe-Grillet, Dans le labyrinthe (I hold the English version open in my left hand in case I get stuck, which I do)
  • Jon Stallworthy, Louis MacNeice
  • Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the "Spirit" of Capitalism (a rare point of intersection between schoolwork and personal enjoyment)
 
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