Random Book News

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Re: Random Book News

Postby Pacino86845 on Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:42 pm

Hermanator X wrote:Dictionary banned in californian schools because it contained a description of oral sex.

The dictionary's online definition of the term is "oral stimulation of the genitals". "It's hard to sit and read the dictionary, but we'll be looking to find other things of a graphic nature," district spokeswoman Betti Cadmus told the paper.



I hate the term, but LOL at this.

Words fail me. (See what I did there?)


:shock:
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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheBaxter on Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:52 pm

Pacino86845 wrote:
Hermanator X wrote:Dictionary banned in californian schools because it contained a description of oral sex.

The dictionary's online definition of the term is "oral stimulation of the genitals". "It's hard to sit and read the dictionary, but we'll be looking to find other things of a graphic nature," district spokeswoman Betti Cadmus told the paper.



I hate the term, but LOL at this.

Words fail me. (See what I did there?)


:shock:


look what you did! poor innocent little Pacina had not idea what "oral sex" meant, and now you've corrupted her!
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Pacino86845 on Mon Jan 25, 2010 1:09 pm

MY VIRGIN MOUTH!
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Hermanator X on Mon Jan 25, 2010 1:25 pm

Apologies Pacina, what the hell was I thinking? :wink:

Its outrageous isnt it? but the image of some puritans reading the whole dictionary to find objectionable words gives me goosebumps.
Its just so deliciously fucked up.

Sure, when I was at school, I would look up dirty words, but only for the silly little thrill it gave. If your looking in the dictionary for the word in the first place, you already know it exists. A bit of fun to see what rude words were actually in the school dictionarys we had, but probably spent about 10 minutes of my life doing so. Hardly a damaging exercise.
Foreign language dictionaries were the best, I will never forget looking the word "fuck" in the german to english dictionary. It had a few uses of the word, and some sentences it could be placed into. I will never forget the following example "Fucking hell, the fucking engines fucked and it wont fucking start." Which was such a random phrase to be used as an example.
Maybe they need to work on banning the words themselves.
...and so forth.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Al Shut on Mon Jan 25, 2010 1:30 pm

Hermanator X wrote:Sure, when I was at school, I would look up dirty words,


And look how that turned out :twisted:
Note to myself: Fix this image shit!
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Hermanator X on Mon Jan 25, 2010 1:35 pm

Al Shut wrote:
Hermanator X wrote:Sure, when I was at school, I would look up dirty words,


And look how that turned out :twisted:


haha. Case closed.
...and so forth.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheBaxter on Mon Jan 25, 2010 2:35 pm

everything i know about sex, i learned by looking up dirty words in the dictionary
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Re: Random Book News

Postby thomasgaffney on Wed Jan 27, 2010 3:00 am

Resignation of the Chief at Borders Adds to Unease About Book Sales

Adding to anxiety among publishers about the health of the book market, the Borders Group announced on Tuesday that Ron Marshall had resigned as chief executive just a year after he took the helm of the country’s second-largest bookstore chain.

Mr. Marshall, 55, joined Borders in January 2009, becoming the third person to occupy the chief executive’s seat in three years. Borders said that it had appointed Michael J. Edwards, 49, as interim chief executive.

Mr. Edwards joined Borders in September, when he was appointed chief merchandising officer. The company has retained the executive search company Korn/Ferry International to find a permanent chief.

Mr. Marshall is taking over as chief executive of the Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company, which operates the A.& P. supermarket chain, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. A spokeswoman for A.& P. did not return a call or e-mail message seeking comment.

Borders, which has been under a cloud of speculation about its long-term financial stability, has struggled to improve sales in a difficult market for book retailing. It has posted disappointing results amid price pressure from big-box retailers like Wal-Mart and competition from online booksellers like Amazon.

The company announced that sales fell nearly 14 percent over the 11-week holiday period ended Jan. 16, compared with the period a year earlier. By comparison, Barnes & Noble, the country’s largest bookstore chain, said that holiday sales fell 5 percent during a nine-week period ended Jan. 2.

In a statement, Richard McGuire, Borders’ chairman, said that Mr. Marshall had helped the company “pursue new growth opportunities, including recently announced partnerships to provide high-quality digital content for the industry’s next generation of e-reading devices.”

Mr. McGuire, known as Mick, said in an interview by telephone that under Mr. Marshall’s leadership the company “has made an enormous amount of progress over the course of the last year,” citing cost reductions, improvements in working capital and a reduction in unprofitable stores.

Publishers, which desperately want Borders to survive, were spooked by the latest news.

“Here we go again,” said David Young, chief executive of the Hachette Book Group, publisher of authors including James Patterson. “I hope they get up off the ropes.”

Carolyn Reidy, chief executive of Simon & Schuster, the publisher of Stephen King and Glenn Beck, said Borders was crucial in helping to support particular books that might not be getting as much attention elsewhere. She cited “Horse Soldiers,” by Doug Stanton, a book about a group of Special Forces officers who fought the Taliban on horseback, as an example of a book Borders had selected for a special promotion that went on to hit the New York Times best-seller list.

But analysts said that Borders had longstanding troubles, including its slow progress in shedding its small-format Walden bookstore locations.

Michael Norris, senior analyst at Simba Information, which provides research and advice to publishers, said that while Barnes & Noble derived less than 1 percent of its third-quarter revenue from its small-format B. Dalton stores, more than 12 percent of Borders’ sales came from Walden stores.

Mr. Norris said the company was also suffering from the executive turnover. “Every time a new person takes over, everyone beneath them has to get used to the new strategy,” he said. “And they have to undo whatever part of the old strategy the new management doesn’t like.”


From a personal standpoint, I love Borders and would hate to see them fold.

As a person who loves books and reading, this pisses me off to no end. Companies like Borders and Barnes & Noble put the little, independent bookstores out of business. And if a place like Wal-fucking-Mart puts Borders and B&N out of business, what are we left with? Literature doled out by the whims of a few. Society should strive for MORE bookstores for people to shop in, not fewer...
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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheBaxter on Wed Jan 27, 2010 11:09 am

they should make a movie about this. starring meg ryan as Ron Marshall and tom hanks as Sam Walton.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby thomasgaffney on Thu Jan 28, 2010 4:32 pm

J.D. Salinger's "New Yorker" Short Stories:

From 1946 to 1965, J.D. Salinger published thirteen stories in The New Yorker including such classics as “A Perfect Day for Bananafish” and “Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters.” There will be much more to come online and in next week’s magazine, but for now, we are making twelve of his New Yorker stories available to all readers through our digital edition.


edit: Bloo alerted me that you now must be a subscriber to read the stories.
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The Late Shift 2

Postby TheButcher on Fri Feb 12, 2010 10:50 pm

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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheBaxter on Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:28 am

he should call it The Late Shaft
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Willy the Wizard vs H@rry Potter

Postby TheButcher on Thu Feb 18, 2010 5:59 am

From Yahoo:
'H@rry Potter' author hit with plagiarism lawsuit
KRISTEN GELINEAU wrote:SYDNEY – J.K. Rowling has been named in a lawsuit alleging she stole ideas for her wildly popular and lucrative "H@rry Potter" books from another British author.

The estate of the late Adrian Jacobs on Wednesday added Rowling as a defendant in a lawsuit it filed in June against Bloomsbury Publishing PLC for alleged copyright infringement, according to a statement released by the estate's representatives, who are based in Australia.

The lawsuit, filed in a London court, claims Rowling's book "H@rry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" copied substantial parts of Jacobs' 1987 book, "The Adventures of Willy the Wizard — No. 1 Livid Land." Jacobs' estate also claims that many other ideas from "Willy the Wizard" were copied into the "H@rry Potter" books. Jacobs died in London in 1997.

"H@rry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" is the fourth book in Rowling's series and was published in July 2000.

Sydney agent Max Markson, who is representing the trustee of Jacobs' estate, Paul Allen, said Rowling was added to the lawsuit after Allen learned that the statute of limitations to sue her had not run out, as previously thought.

"I estimate it's a billion-dollar case," Markson said Thursday. "That'll be the decision of the courts, obviously."

There was no immediate comment from Rowling. In June, Bloomsbury said the allegation that Rowling lifted from Jacobs' work was "unfounded, unsubstantiated and untrue." Bloomsbury said Jacobs' estate first approached the company in 2004 with its claims, but was unable to identify any text in the "H@rry Potter" books that was copied from "Willy the Wizard."

In a statement, Allen said the estate is also seeking legal advice on whether the H@rry Potter films and soon-to-be-opened H@rry Potter theme park breach copyright law.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheButcher on Sat Mar 06, 2010 6:51 pm

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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheButcher on Tue Mar 23, 2010 4:38 am

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Re: Random Book News

Postby Maui on Thu Apr 01, 2010 9:00 pm

One of my favourite authors, Ian McEwan, has just come out with a new book, Solar.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Maui on Tue Apr 13, 2010 11:18 am

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Re: Random Book News

Postby Tyrone_Shoelaces on Thu Apr 15, 2010 2:45 pm

Mark Twain's final years
By HILLEL ITALIE, AP National Writer – Wed Apr 14, 2:39 pm ET

REDDING, Conn. – Mark Twain died here on April 21, a century ago. He was 74, and in failing health, his heart — his tobacco heart, he called it — so weak that he interrupted a restful cruise to Bermuda to return and die at the house on a hill built for him just two years earlier.

"Mark Twain is dead!" cried The San Francisco Examiner. "In those four words America announces to a weeping world the loss of her foremost literary man."

It had been a quarter of a century since Twain's classic "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn," but Twain remained the country's most famous and beloved writer, the slouching, white-suited, frizzy-haired humorist and storyteller. The records of Twain's final days were in bold headlines, with Twain's doctor providing updates carried by news outlets around the world.

"Yesterday was a bad day for the little knot of anxious watchers at the bedside," The Associated Press reported just before his death, adding that health concerns had led Twain to cut his smoking from 20 cigars a day to four.

"No deprivation was a greater sorrow to him. He tried to smoke on the steamer while returning from Bermuda, and only gave it up because he was too feeble to draw on his pipe. Even on his deathbed, when he had passed the point of speech and it was no longer certain that his ideas were lucid, he would make the motion of waving a cigar, and, smiling, would expel empty air from under the mustache still stained with smoke."

Twain had suffered a decade of trials. He lost his beloved wife, Olivia, and two of his children, one of whom — Jean_ died suddenly at the end of 1909, a tragedy that led Twain to vow he would never write again. Bad investments had forced him out of his eccentric Victorian mansion in Hartford and brought him to Redding, where he lived in a Tuscan-style house he named Stormfield, in part for his story "Extract from Captain Stormfield's Visit to Heaven."

Age saddened, but did not silence him. He was a leading opponent of the war in the Philippines and other military actions by the emerging American empire. He composed some of his toughest short pieces, such as the novella "The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg," or his mocking inquiry into Christian Science and an even harder hit on religion in "Letters From the Earth," in which Satan documents the follies of man's worship.

"He prays for help, and favor, and protection, every day; and does it with hopefulness and confidence, too, although no prayer of his has ever been answered," Satan reports.

Twain was fascinated, puzzled and eventually resolved about the nature of humans. "What Is Man?" was a Socratic dialogue in which an older man teases a younger man for believing we had control of our actions. God or no God, we are who we are, our lives determined by forces beyond us — by history and by nature.

"You can't eradicate your disposition, nor any rag of it," the older man advises. "You can only put a pressure on it and keep it down and quiet."

Mark Twain, the pen name Samuel Langhorne Clemens concocted for himself, was a serious man who couldn't help but make folks laugh. As surely as Benjamin Franklin was the founding father who "winks" at us, as biographer Walter Isaacson once wrote, Twain's eye catches ours like no other "classic" American author.

He is unstuffy, one of us. The line that begins Chapter 1 of "Huck Finn" ("You don't know about me without you have read a book by the name of `The Adventures of Tom Sawyer'; but that ain't no matter") seems no less cheeky and disruptive than it did 125 years ago. Favorite maxims such as "an uneasy conscience is a hair in the mouth" need no updating or explanation.

Born in Florida, Mo., in 1835, and raised, for the most part, in Hannibal, Twain was bred in a border state, sharpened in the West and polished in the East. He told wild tales, wrote merciless parodies and made poetry out of his rustic youth. He worked as a river pilot on the Mississippi (according to river pilots, the author once explained, "mark twain" means the water is at a safe depth to navigate), a journalist in San Francisco and carried on everywhere from New Orleans to Nevada.

Twain, by nature, was a contradictory soul, a drinker and freethinker who married a proper Christian; a satirist and protester who wanted to be loved. The young Twain, like Huck Finn, may have dreaded home and hearth, but the elder author had warmed to a steady roof over his head.

"The Redding house was a dream home," says biographer Michael Shelden, author of "Mark Twain: Man in White," published this spring. "He had been without a proper home for well over 10 years, because he had to leave the house in Hartford. For all that time, he was a wanderer."

Lured to Redding by author-versefier Albert Bigelow Paine, who became his biographer and neighbor, Twain lived a modern life. His house in Hartford was among the first private residences to have a telephone. In Redding, he had his own heating system and water supply. He was so fascinated by new technology that he happily let himself be filmed by Thomas Edison, ambling in front of his home and puffing a cigar. The electricity system was so bright that residents were reminded of the glow given off by an all-night factory.

"This is a man who wanted to be a part of the future, who wondered what the world would be like, not so much out of fear, but because he was excited about it," Shelden says.

Redding doesn't compare to Hannibal as a Twain shrine, but his name is no harder to spot than by visiting the library he helped start, the Mark Twain Library, featuring bronzed sculptures of the writer outside, and his characters and famous sayings painted on the walls inside.

Stormfield burned down in 1923, but a pretty fair replica (privately owned) has been built in its place; much of the 340 acres purchased by Twain has been bought and preserved by Redding. The Redding Roadhouse, a restaurant constructed on the same grounds where a favorite tavern of Twain's once stood, features a portrait of Twain over the bar room's fireplace and rents out a "Mark Twain" room for parties.

"For many years, Twain's time in Redding was known but was not a focus. That has changed quite a bit in the present day," says local historian Brent M. Colley.

A famous author would fit in without notice in 21st-century Redding, a small, well-stocked community where residents have included Leonard Bernstein, Jessica Tandy and Barry Levinson. But in Twain's day, Redding was an unpaved farming village, with little more than a train station and a general store. Twain was a shock to Redding if only because he was the first resident who consulted an architect to build his house.

"It was a big deal when he came," says Twain scholar Kevin McDonnell. "Redding didn't have a public sewer system. It didn't have electricity. It was a very rural community and not the enclave of wealthy New Yorkers that it is today."

Until the death of his daughter, Twain was a social man. He befriended several local schoolgirls and dubbed them the "angelfish." He chatted with farmers and hosted great names from out of town, such as Helen Keller, whose caretaker, Annie Sullivan, Twain helped immortalize by giving her the nickname that became the title of a play and movie, "The Miracle Worker."

Twain worked hard to set his story down. He not only cooperated with a biographer, but wrote hundreds of pages for a planned autobiography. At the same time, he became obsessed with Shakespeare and the latest theories over whether the Bard even existed, tickled that so little was known about the life of a writer he acknowledged as his superior.

"When Shakespeare died in Stratford it was not an event," Twain wrote. "It made no more stir in England than the death of any other forgotten theater-actor would have made. Nobody came down from London; there were no lamenting poems, no eulogies, no national tears, there was merely silence, and nothing more."

Twain knew death well and thought closely about it. He told jokes, of course ("the report of my death was an exaggeration"; "there is no humor in heaven"), but also reflected. Death was a challenge ("dying is nothing to a really great and brave man") and a conclusion. It was a relief and a responsibility, especially for the famous.

"A distinguished man should be as particular about his last words as he is about his last breath," he noted. "He should write them out on a slip of paper and take the judgment of his friends on them. He should never leave such a thing to the last hour of his life, and trust to an intellectual spurt at the last moment to enable him to say something smart with his latest gasp and launch into eternity with grandeur."

Twain's final words were brief, abbreviated, unwritten, uncertain. Laying in his death bed, he indicated a couple of unfinished manuscripts and whispered to Paine, his biographer, "Throw away." Hours later, he held the hand of his remaining child, Clare, told her goodbye, and added, apparently, "If we meet ..."

What remained, according to Paine, was a "fluttering sigh, and the breath that had been unceasing through seventy-four tumultuous years had stopped forever.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Maui on Thu Apr 22, 2010 10:54 am

I found this little gem this morning on the SF Examiner website. There are several standouts for me. :lol:

The 50 Most Memorable Author vs. Author Put-downs


1. Ernest Hemingway, according to Vladimir Nabokov (1972)

As to Hemingway, I read him for the first time in the early 'forties, something about bells, balls and bulls, and loathed it.

2. Miguel Cervantes' Don Quixote, according to Martin Amis (1986)

Reading Don Quixote can be compared to an indefinite visit from your most impossible senior relative, with all his pranks, dirty habits, unstoppable reminiscences, and terrible cronies. When the experience is over, and the old boy checks out at last (on page 846 -- the prose wedged tight, with no breaks for dialogue), you will shed tears all right; not tears of relief or regret but tears of pride. You made it, despite all that 'Don Quixote' could do.

3. John Keats, according to Lord Byron (1820)

Here are Johnny Keats's p@# a-bed poetry...There is such a trash of Keats and the like upon my tables, that I am ashamed to look at them.

4. Edgar Allan Poe, according to Henry James (1876)

An enthusiasm for Poe is the mark of a decidedly primitive stage of reflection.

5. John Updike, according to Gore Vidal (2008)

I can't stand him. Nobody will think to ask because I'm supposedly jealous; but I out-sell him. I'm more popular than he is, and I don't take him very seriously...oh, he comes on like the worker's son, like a modern-day D.H. Lawrence, but he's just another boring little middle-class boy hustling his way to the top if he can do it.

6. William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, according to Samuel Pepys (1662)

...we saw 'Midsummer Night's Dream,' which I had never seen before, nor shall ever again, for it is the most insipid ridiculous play that ever I saw in my life.

7. Edward Bulwer-Lytton, according to Nathaniel Hawthorne (1851)

Bulwer nauseates me; he is the very pimple of the age's humbug. There is no hope of the public, so long as he retains an admirer, a reader, or a publisher.

Charles Dickens writing something rotten, vulgar, and un-literary

8. Charles Dickens, according to Arnold Bennett (1898)

About a year ago, from idle curiosity, I picked up 'The Old Curiosity Shop', and of all the rotten vulgar un-literary writing...! Worse than George Eliot's. If a novelist can't write where is the beggar.

9. J.K. Rowling, according to Harold Bloom (2000)

How to read 'Harry Potter and the Sorceror's Stone'? Why, very quickly, to begin with, and perhaps also to make an end. Why read it? Presumably, if you cannot be persuaded to read anything better, Rowling will have to do.

10. Oscar Wilde, according to Noel Coward (1946)

Am reading more of Oscar Wilde. What a tiresome, affected sod.

11. Fyodor Dostoevsky, according to Vladimir Nabokov

Dostoevky's lack of taste, his monotonous dealings with persons suffering with pre-Freudian complexes, the way he has of wallowing in the tragic misadventures of human dignity -- all this is difficult to admire.

12. John Milton's Paradise Lost, according to Samuel Johnson

'Paradise Lost' is one of the books which the reader admires and lays down, and forgets to take up again. None ever wished it longer than it is.

13. Oliver Goldsmith's The Vicar of Wakefield, according to Mark Twain (1897)

Also, to be fair, there is another word of praise due to this ship's library: it contains no copy of 'The Vicar of Wakefield', that strange menagerie of complacent hypocrites and idiots, of theatrical cheap-john heroes and heroines, who are always showing off, of bad people who are not interesting, and good people who are fatiguing.

14. Ezra Pound, according to Conrad Aiken (1918)

For in point of style, or manner, or whatever, it is difficult to imagine anything much worse than the prose of Mr. Pound. It is ugliness and awkwardness incarnate. Did he always write so badly?

15. James Joyce's Ulysses, according to George Bernard Shaw (1921)

I have read several fragments of 'Ulysses' in its serial form. It is a revolting record of a disgusting phase of civilisation; but it is a truthful one; and I should like to put a cordon around Dublin; round up every male person in it between the ages of 15 and 30; force them to read it; and ask them whether on reflection they could see anything amusing in all that foul mouthed, foul minded derision and obscenity.

16. George Bernard Shaw, according to Roger Scruton (1990)

Concerning no subject would he be deterred by the minor accident of complete ignorance from penning a definitive opinion.

Goethe, author of the worst book Samuel Butler ever read

17. Jane Austen, according to Charlotte Bronte (1848)

Why do you like Miss Austen so very much? I am puzzled on that point. What induced you to say that you would rather have written 'Pride and Prejudice'...than any of the Waverly novels? I should hardly like to live with her ladies and gentlemen, in their elegant but confined houses.

18. Goethe, according to Samuel Butler (1874)

I have been reading a translation of Goethe's 'Wilhelm Meister.' Is it good? To me it seems perhaps the very worst book I ever read. No Englishman could have written such a book. I cannot remember a single good page or idea....Is it all a practical joke? If it really is Goethe's 'Wilhelm Meister' that I have been reading, I am glad I have never taken the trouble to learn German.

19. John Steinbeck, according to James Gould Cozzens (1957)

I can't read ten pages of Steinbeck without throwing up. I couldn't read the proletariat crap that came out in the '30s.

20. Herman Melville, according to D.H. Lawrence (1923)

Nobody can be more clownish, more clumsy and sententiously in bad taste, than Herman Melville, even in a great book like 'Moby Dick'....One wearies of the grand serieux. There's something false about it. And that's Melville. Oh dear, when the solemn ass brays! brays! brays!

21. Jonathan Swift, according to Samuel Johnson (1791)

Swift has a higher reputation than he deserves...I doubt whether 'The Tale of a Tub' to be his; for he never owned it, and it is much above his usual manner.

22. Gertrude Stein, according to Wyndham Lewis (1927)

Gertrude Stein's prose-song is a cold black suet-pudding. We can represent it as a cold suet-roll of fabulously reptilian length. Cut it at any point, it is the same thing; the same heavy, sticky, opaque mass all through and all along.

23. Emile Zola, according to Anatole France (1911)

His work is evil, and he is one of those unhappy beings of whom one can say that it would be better had he never been born.

24. J.D.Salinger, according to Mary McCarthy (1962)

I don't like Salinger, not at all. That last thing isn't a novel anyway, whatever it is. I don't like it. Not at all. It suffers from this terrible sort of metropolitan sentimentality and it's so narcissistic. And to me, also, it seemed so false, so calculated. Combining the plain man with an absolutely megalomaniac egotism. I simply can't stand it.

25. Mark Twain, according to William Faulkner (1922)

A hack writer who would not have been considered fourth rate in Europe, who tricked out a few of the old proven sure fire literary skeletons with sufficient local color to intrigue the superficial and the lazy.

26. Marcel Proust, according to Evelyn Waugh (1948)

I am reading Proust for the first time. Very poor stuff. I think he was mentally defective.

27. William Faulkner, according to Ernest Hemingway

Have you ever heard of anyone who drank while he worked? You're thinking of Faulkner. He does sometimes -- and I can tell right in the middle of a page when he's had his first one.

28. E.M. Forster's Howards End, according to Katherine Mansfield (1915)

Putting my weakest books to the wall last night I came across a copy of 'Howards End' and had a look into it. Not good enough. E.M. Forster never gets any further than warming the teapot. He's a rare fine hand at that. Feel this teapot. Is it not beautifully warm? Yes, but there ain't going to be no tea.

And I can never be perfectly certain whether Helen was got with child by Leonard Bast or by his fatal forgotten umbrella. All things considered, I think it must have been the umbrella.

29. Voltaire, according to Charles Baudelaire (1864)

I grow bored in France -- and the main reason is that everybody here resembles Voltaire...the king of nincompoops, the prince of the superficial, the anti-artist, the spokesman of janitresses, the Father Gigone of the editors of Siecle.

30. Charles Dickens, according to George Meredith

Not much of Dickens will live, because it has so little correspondence to life...If his novels are read at all in the future, people will wonder what we saw in them, save some possible element of fun meaningless to them.

31. Jane Austen, according to Mark Twain (1898)

I haven't any right to criticize books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticize Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Every time I read 'Pride and Prejudice,' I want to dig her up and hit her over the skull with her own shin-bone.

32. Gustave Flaubert, according to George Moore (1888)

Flaubert bores me. What nonsense has been talked about him!

33. Alexander Solzhenitsyn, according to Gore Vidal (1980)

He is a bad novelist and a fool. The combination usually makes for great popularity in the US.

Solzhenitsyn: "a bad novelist and a fool'

34. Ernest Hemingway, according to Tom Wolfe

Take Hemingway. People always think that the reason he's easy to read is that he is concise. He isn't. I hate conciseness -- it's too difficult. The reason Hemingway is easy to read is that he repeats himself all the time, using 'and' for padding.

35. James Joyce's Ulysses, according to Virginia Woolf (1922)

I dislike 'Ulysses' more and more -- that is I think it more and more unimportant; and don't even trouble conscientiously to make out its meanings. Thank God, I need not write about it.

36. William Shakespeare, according to George Bernard Shaw (1896)

With the exception of Homer, there is no eminent writer, not even Sir Walter Scott, whom I can despise so entirely as I despise Shakespeare when I measure my mind against his. The intensity of my impatience with him occasionally reaches such a pitch, that it would positively be a relief to me to dig him up and throw stones at him, knowing as I do how incapable he and his worshippers are of understanding any less obvious form of indignity.

37. Charles Lamb, according to Thomas Carlyle

Charles Lamb I sincerely believe to be in some considerable degree insane. A more pitiful, rickety, gasping, staggering, stammering tomfool I do not know. He is witty by denying truisms and abjuring good manners. His speech wriggles hither and thither with an incessant painful fluctuation; not an opinion in it or a fact or even a phrase that you can thank him for....

38. Edith Sitwell, according to Dylan Thomas (1934)

Isn't she a poisonous thing of a woman, lying, concealing, flipping, plagiarising, misquoting, and being as clever a crooked literary publicist as ever.

39. James Jones, according to Ernest Hemingway (1951)

To me he is an enormously skillful f#*&-up and his book will do great damage to our country. Probably I should re-read it again to give you a truer answer. But I do not have to eat an entire bowl of scabs to know they are scabs...I hope he kills himself....

40. Sir Walter Scott, according to Mark Twain (1883)

Then comes Sir Walter Scott with his enchantments, and by his single might checks...progress, and even turns it back; sets the world in love with dreams and phantoms; with decayed and swinish forms of religion; with decayed and degraded systems of government; with the silliness and emptiness, sham grandeurs, sham gauds, and sham chivalries of a brainless and worthless long-vanished society. He did measureless harm; more real and lasting harm, perhaps, than any other individual that ever wrote.

41. Jane Austen, according to Ralph Waldo Emerson (1861)

I am at a loss to understand why people hold Miss Austen's novels at so high a rate, which seem to me vulgar in tone, sterile in artistic invention, imprisoned in their wretched conventions of English society, without genius, wit, or knowledge of the world.

42. Robert Frost, according to James Dickey (1981)

If it were thought that anything I wrote was influenced by Robert Frost, I would take that particular work of mine, shred it, and flush it down the toilet, hoping not to clog the pipes....a more sententious, holding-forth old bore, who expected every hero-worshipping adenoidal little twerp of a student-poet to hang on his every word I never saw.

43. Tom Wolfe, according to John Irving (1999)

He doesn't know how to write fiction, he can't create a character, he can't create a situation...You see people reading him on airplanes, the same people who are reading John Grisham, for Christ's sake....I'm using the argument against him that he can't write, that his sentences are bad, that it makes you wince. It's like reading a bad newspaper or a bad piece in a magazine....You know, if you were a good skater, could you watch someone just fall down all the time? Could you do that? I can't do that.

Bret Harte: liar, thief, swindler, snob

44. Bret Harte, according to Mark Twain (1878)

Harte is a liar, a thief, a swindler, a snob, a sot, a sponge, a coward, a Jeremy Diddler, he is brim full of treachery, and he conceals his Jewish birth as carefully as if he considered it a disgrace. How do I know? By the best of all evidence, personal observation.

45. Thomas Carlyle, according to Anthony Trollope (1850)

I have read -- nay, I have bought! -- Carlyle's 'Latter Day Pamphlets,' and look on my eight shillings as very much thrown away. To me it appears that the grain of sense is so smothered up in a sack of the sheerest trash, that the former is valueless....I look on him as a man who was always in danger of going mad in literature and who has now done so.

46. Henry James, according to Arnold Bennett

It took me years to ascertain that Henry James's work was giving me little pleasure....In each case I asked myself: 'What the dickens is this novel about, and where does it think it's going to?' Question unanswerable! I gave up. Today I have no recollection whatever of any characters or any events in either novel.

47. James Fenimore Cooper, according to Mark Twain (1895)

Cooper's art has some defects. In one place in 'Deerslayer,' and in the restricted space of two-thirds of a page, Cooper has scored 114 offences against literary art out of a possible 115. It breaks the record.

48. Gore Vidal, according to Martin Amis (1995)

Vidal gives the impression of believing that the entire heterosexual edifice -- registry offices, 'Romeo and Juliet,' the disposable diaper -- is just a sorry story of self-hypnosis and mass hysteria: a hoax, a racket, or sheer propaganda.

49. Elizabeth Barrett Browning, according to Edward Fitzgerald (1861)

She and her sex had better mind the kitchen and her children; and perhaps the poor; except in such things as little novels, they only devote themselves to what men do much better, leaving that which men do worse or not at all.

I did say at the start of this unending Marah that these snippets of snarkiness weren't necessarily in order. I have, however, saved my absolute favorite for the end:

50. Tom Wolfe's A Man in Full, according to Norman Mailer (1998)

The book has gas and runs out of gas, fills up again, goes dry. It is a 742-page work that reads as if it is fifteen hundred pages long....

At certain points, reading the work can even be said to resemble the act of making love to a three-hundred pound woman. Once she gets on top, it's over. Fall in love, or be asphyxiated. So you read and you grab and you even find delight in some of these mounds of material. Yet all the while you resist -- how you resist! -- letting three hundred pounds take you over.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby so sorry on Thu Apr 22, 2010 11:05 am

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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheBaxter on Thu Apr 22, 2010 11:25 am

so sorry wrote:Image


x 50
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Maui on Thu Apr 22, 2010 11:34 am

This is likely the longest post I've ever written in the Zone (even if it's a copy/paste) and this is what I get?

An animated, hairy old man? x50

I've failed the book forum.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby so sorry on Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:01 pm

Maui wrote:This is likely the longest post I've ever written in the Zone (even if it's a copy/paste) and this is what I get?

An animated, hairy old man? x50

I've failed the book forum.



Sorry :(

But understand, Oh Snap Vampire studly Man says so much without saying a word.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Seppuku on Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:12 pm

Weird, I'd say most of those scribes took quite a few cues from the people they're filleting. I guess that old saying that doesn't exist about how the lesson is only truly over once you've killed your teacher holds true. Also, I'm pretty sure a few of those guys, like Gore Vidal, only got into writing for the sole purpose of being able to take a few fellow writers to task. Mark Twain is excused because he started out as a journalist.

Great read, Maus! Thanks.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Al Shut on Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:16 pm

I like how a lot of the author trashing others are also thrashed themselves
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Al Shut on Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:20 pm

Seppuku wrote: I guess that old saying that doesn't exist about how the lesson is only truly over once you've killed your teacher holds true.


There's a saying like that? :shock:

Maybe it's a good thing you quit school after all :-P
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Fievel on Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:23 pm

What a bunch of bitchy snobs (although being authors, some of them are rather cleverly-written attacks!!).
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Re: Random Book News

Postby BuckyO'harre on Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:25 pm

Al Shut wrote:
Seppuku wrote: I guess that old saying that doesn't exist about how the lesson is only truly over once you've killed your teacher holds true.


There's a saying like that? :shock:

Maybe it's a good thing you quit school after all :-P




And here I thought Keepcoolbutcare stopped coming around because his calves got flabby or something...
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Peven on Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:36 pm

what a bunch of opinionated Struggling Background Artists.....guess i should have been an author
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Seppuku on Thu Apr 22, 2010 1:05 pm

BuckyO'harre wrote:
Al Shut wrote:
Seppuku wrote: I guess that old saying that doesn't exist about how the lesson is only truly over once you've killed your teacher holds true.


There's a saying like that? :shock:

Maybe it's a good thing you quit school after all :-P




And here I thought Keepcoolbutcare stopped coming around because his calves got flabby or something...



This post resembles the terra cotta grease which forms on the walls of households whose members are particularly prone to flatulence. Perhaps the author would be playing more to his talents if he resigned himself to making monosyllabic remarks to his television set during sporting events. :wink:
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Nachokoolaid on Fri Apr 23, 2010 1:17 am

My two faves:

James Jones, according to Ernest Hemingway (1951)

To me he is an enormously skillful f#*&-up and his book will do great damage to our country. Probably I should re-read it again to give you a truer answer. But I do not have to eat an entire bowl of scabs to know they are scabs...I hope he kills himself....



Jane Austen, according to Mark Twain (1898)

I haven't any right to criticize books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticize Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Every time I read 'Pride and Prejudice,' I want to dig her up and hit her over the skull with her own shin-bone.


:lol:
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Maui on Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:25 am

Seppuku wrote:

This post resembles the terra cotta grease which forms on the walls of households whose members are particularly prone to flatulence. Perhaps the author would be playing more to his talents if he resigned himself to making monosyllabic remarks to his television set during sporting events. :wink:



#51


wuhuh
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Maui on Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:37 am

Glad you all enjoyed it. You too SS :wink:


And on a different vein, we can read such glowing praise of an author's work , like the one I read last night (on the back of my copy of War and Peace - which btw would also serve well as a good tire block):

Leo Tolstoy, according to Virgina Woolf

There remains the greatest of all novelists—for what else can we call the author of War and Peace? Shall we find Tolstoi, too, alien, difficult, a foreigner? Is there some oddity in his angle of vision which, at any rate until we have become disciples and so lost our bearings, keeps us at arm’s length in suspicion and bewilderment? From his first words we can be sure of one thing at any rate—here is a man who sees what we see, who proceeds, too, as we are accustomed to proceed, not from the inside outwards, but from the outside inwards. Here is a world in which the postman’s knock is heard at eight o’clock, and people go to bed between ten and eleven. Here is a man, too, who is no savage, no child of nature; he is educated; he has had every sort of experience. He is one of those born aristocrats who have used their privileges to the full. He is metropolitan, not suburban. His senses, his intellect, are acute, powerful, and well nourished. There is something proud and superb in the attack of such a mind and such a body upon life. Nothing seems to escape him. Nothing glances off him unrecorded. Nobody, therefore, can so convey the excitement of sport, the beauty of horses, and all the fierce desirability of the world to the senses of a strong young man. Every twig, every feather sticks to his magnet. He notices the blue or red of a child’s frock; the way a horse shifts its tail; the sound of a cough; the action of a man trying to put his hands into pockets that have been sewn up. And what his infallible eye reports of a cough or a trick of the hands his infallible brain refers to something hidden in the character, so that we know his people, not only by the way they love and their views on politics and the immortality of the soul, but also by the way they sneeze and choke. Even in a translation we feel that we have been set on a mountain-top and had a telescope put into our hands. Everything is astonishingly clear and absolutely sharp.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Seppuku on Fri Apr 23, 2010 1:07 pm

I really loved that book. I even wrote a love song about Natasha Rostov, which I guess is kinda creepy but it's a good song. Just don't expect a climactic ending. Tolstoy decided to end it with an essay on the Napoleonic Wars, which was hardly the carrot at the end of the stick that got me through all 2000 pages (or however long it is). Otherwise, it's a book rife with suspended moments of beauty. I guess I'll read it again when I'm 250 and living on one of Jupiter's moons as a literal bookend to my life. Hope you enjoy it.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheBaxter on Fri Apr 23, 2010 1:09 pm

Peven wrote:what a bunch of opinionated Struggling Background Artists.....guess i should have been an author


or a zoner.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby minstrel on Fri Apr 23, 2010 2:05 pm

I've read a lot of interviews with famous writers, and nearly all of them are gigantic egomaniacs. They can't stand to see another writer's work celebrated, so they rip and claw at each other until they're all bloody messes. It's kind of pathetic.

I hope when my work is published, and outshines them all, that I won't be so petty as to spit on my inferiors. :wink:
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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheButcher on Tue May 11, 2010 4:43 am

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Re: Random Book News

Postby so sorry on Tue May 11, 2010 1:31 pm

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Re: Random Book News

Postby Tyrone_Shoelaces on Wed May 12, 2010 2:17 pm

Not a punch line: Damon Wayans has written a novel
By JAKE COYLE, AP Entertainment Writer - May 12, 2010

NEW YORK – Damon Wayans now has the unique distinction of having both Homey D. Clown and a novel to his credits.

The comedian who long ago emerged on the sketch comedy show "In Living Color" and who is perhaps the most recognized face of the Wayans clan, has penned "Red Hats" (Simon & Schuster). The novel's main character is Alma, a bitter widow who finds new life after being taken in by a Red Hat Society group.

Wayans dedicated his book to his mother, Elvira, who took up with the Red Hats, a worldwide social organization for women. In the book, Wayans calls them "`Sex and the City' for old biddies."

The 49-year-old comedian, whose career has spanned 1984's "Beverly Hills Cop" to the early 2000s sitcom "My Wife and Kids," recently chatted about how he came to join the ranks of novelists.

AP: How did you decide to write "Red Hats"?

WAYANS: I was stuck as an artist in terms of what I wanted to do next. When you do TV and you get into syndication, you get lazy. ... So I went to Europe. I was kind of frustrated. I ran into Lionel Richie at a restaurant and he was like, "We all get so caught up as artists trying to do something so extraordinary that we get lost." He took me to see Dita Von Teese and she came out and she stripped down to some pasties and a diamond G-string. The crowd was going crazy and Lionel turns to me and he goes, "See? You just show them what they want to see. You don't show them too much. That's it."

AP: I doubt Dita Von Teese has inspired too many novels.

WAYANS: (Laughs) No, but it was inspirational to see what Lionel was saying, which is: Do simple stories.

AP: How much of your mother in Alma?

WAYANS: It's a combination of a lot of women that I know. I was born with club foot, so women in my life were very important to nurturing me. I was a lot of people's favorite, for some reason — my aunts and my grandmother and my sisters. In terms of building Alma, there's really a lot of me. I just went through a mid-life crisis. I got in touch with all of these emotions that as a young boy and a young man you never have to deal with or you never want to deal with. I think my divorce triggered it, and I just started asking myself, "Who am I?"

AP: A lot of people going through a mid-life crisis buy a red sports car, not write a book.

WAYANS: I've done the living to the extreme. The reason why I went to Europe by myself was to get away from that. I didn't want things to define me. One time I had five cars sitting in my garage and I'd have anxiety about what car to drive. Writing this novel was the beginning of me simplifying.

AP: Did writing comedy help you in writing fiction?

WAYANS: Writing sketch comedy — because it's all character driven — really helped me in terms of making these women three-dimensional and giving them each a voice. When you write Homey D. Clown, there's words that can't come out of Homey's mouth, that are untrue to his character.

AP: How have people reacted when you've told them about the book?

WAYANS: I didn't really tell too many people that I had written a novel, not even in my family. The only person that I let read the manuscript was my sister Kim, because Kim is the heart in my family. I knew that if she was touched by this book, then it's the right thing to do. If not, I would have trashed it. I would never present something like this to Keenan or Shawn or Marlon because they would ridicule me (laughing) — tell me I'm turning into Tyler Perry.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Ribbons on Wed May 12, 2010 2:45 pm

Along similar lines: Tyra Banks to write a fantasy series about "Intoxibellas"

Associated Press wrote:(05-11) 10:36 PDT New York (AP) --

Tyra Banks wants to spread some truth, and a little fantasy.

The talk-show host and former model has agreed to a three-book deal with Delacorte Press for a fantasy series for young people. It's about a girl trying to keep up with the beauty game at an elite school for supermodels, or Intoxibellas.

Delacorte said Tuesday that the first novel, "Modelland," comes out in the summer of 2011.

Delacorte is an imprint of Random House Children's Books.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby so sorry on Wed May 12, 2010 2:51 pm

Ribbons wrote:Along similar lines: Tyra Banks to write a fantasy series about "Intoxibellas"

Associated Press wrote:(05-11) 10:36 PDT New York (AP) --

Tyra Banks wants to spread some truth, and a little fantasy.

The talk-show host and former model has agreed to a three-book deal with Delacorte Press for a fantasy series for young people. It's about a girl trying to keep up with the beauty game at an elite school for supermodels, or Intoxibellas.

Delacorte said Tuesday that the first novel, "Modelland," comes out in the summer of 2011.

Delacorte is an imprint of Random House Children's Books.


She should have titled it The Prom Queen's New Clothes...

Can't wait for the movie version!
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Re: Random Book News

Postby minstrel on Wed May 12, 2010 2:59 pm

Ribbons wrote:Along similar lines: Tyra Banks to write a fantasy series about "Intoxibellas"

Associated Press wrote:(05-11) 10:36 PDT New York (AP) --

Tyra Banks wants to spread some truth, and a little fantasy.

The talk-show host and former model has agreed to a three-book deal with Delacorte Press for a fantasy series for young people. It's about a girl trying to keep up with the beauty game at an elite school for supermodels, or Intoxibellas.

Delacorte said Tuesday that the first novel, "Modelland," comes out in the summer of 2011.

Delacorte is an imprint of Random House Children's Books.


Where are all the politically correct people complaining about the objectification of girls? Especially by a famous model?
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Re: Random Book News

Postby TonyWilson on Wed May 12, 2010 3:05 pm

Ribbons wrote:Along similar lines: Tyra Banks to write a fantasy series about "Intoxibellas"

Associated Press wrote:(05-11) 10:36 PDT New York (AP) --

Tyra Banks wants to spread some truth, and a little fantasy.

The talk-show host and former model has agreed to a three-book deal with Delacorte Press for a fantasy series for young people. It's about a girl trying to keep up with the beauty game at an elite school for supermodels, or Intoxibellas.

Delacorte said Tuesday that the first novel, "Modelland," comes out in the summer of 2011.

Delacorte is an imprint of Random House Children's Books.



See, just when I think I may be coming out of my misanthropic tailspin along comes this sort of news and plunges me right back in.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby so sorry on Wed May 12, 2010 3:08 pm

TonyWilson wrote:
Ribbons wrote:Along similar lines: Tyra Banks to write a fantasy series about "Intoxibellas"

Associated Press wrote:(05-11) 10:36 PDT New York (AP) --

Tyra Banks wants to spread some truth, and a little fantasy.

The talk-show host and former model has agreed to a three-book deal with Delacorte Press for a fantasy series for young people. It's about a girl trying to keep up with the beauty game at an elite school for supermodels, or Intoxibellas.

Delacorte said Tuesday that the first novel, "Modelland," comes out in the summer of 2011.

Delacorte is an imprint of Random House Children's Books.



See, just when I think I may be coming out of my misanthropic tailspin along comes this sort of news and plunges me right back in.


But TW, according to her, she's spreading some truth! Haven't you ever wondered what goes on at elite supermodel school?
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Re: Random Book News

Postby minstrel on Wed May 12, 2010 3:15 pm

What do girls learn at a supermodel "school", anyway? Fancy pageant walkin'? How to put on a chocolate bikini? How to deal with fashion designers who have escaped from the mental institutions and are clearly off their meds? How to find a ghostwriter to write a novel about budding supermodels?
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Maui on Mon May 24, 2010 2:39 pm

Seppuku wrote:II even wrote a love song about Natasha Rostov, which I guess is kinda creepy but it's a good song.


The minute we are introduced to her character, we immediately fall in love with her though once she got married to Pierre and had kids, she kinda went all batshit crazy and annoyingly submissive which makes complete sense to me.

Seppuku wrote:
Just don't expect a climactic ending. Tolstoy decided to end it with an essay on the Napoleonic Wars, which was hardly the carrot at the end of the stick that got me through all 2000 pages (or however long it is).


Thanks for the warning. Geesh. It's comparable to his numerous pages on serf agriculture in Anna Karenina.
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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheBaxter on Mon May 24, 2010 3:01 pm

Maui wrote:
Seppuku wrote:Just don't expect a climactic ending. Tolstoy decided to end it with an essay on the Napoleonic Wars, which was hardly the carrot at the end of the stick that got me through all 2000 pages (or however long it is).


Thanks for the warning. Geesh. It's comparable to his numerous pages on serf agriculture in Anna Karenina.


SPOILERS!!!!
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Maui on Mon May 24, 2010 3:12 pm

TheBaxter wrote:SPOILERS!!!!



Duly noted and appropriately spoiler tagged.

Now get back to the LOST thread. ;)
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Re: Random Book News

Postby TheBaxter on Mon May 24, 2010 3:38 pm

Maui wrote:
TheBaxter wrote:SPOILERS!!!!



Duly noted and appropriately spoiler tagged.

Now get back to the LOST thread. ;)



hah. i was actually talking about giving away the essay at the end of War and Peace. why bother reading, now that i know how it ends?
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Re: Random Book News

Postby Maui on Mon May 24, 2010 10:56 pm

TheBaxter wrote:
hah. i was actually talking about giving away the essay at the end of War and Peace. why bother reading, now that i know how it ends?


It doesn't spoil it though. The essay relates to the novel, it's a separate and distinct piece of writing, basically Tolstoy's philosophies on history, power, events, leaders, God, etc. It's his reasoning behind all the events that took place in the novel. You could easily read the novel without reading the epilogues BUT that would be a huge disservice to Tolstoy's purpose in even writing War and Peace. Hope I didn't spoil it for ya.
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