Author Topic: Rate the latest book you've read.  (Read 7766 times)

Offline Baruch

Re: Rate the latest book you've read.
« Reply #90 on: February 11, 2017, 09:57:30 AM »
I have just bought my third copy of Douglas Hofstadter's Gödel, Escher, Bach.  I have quite literally read its two predecessors to pieces.  And my copy of his Metamagical Themas is starting to get a little ratty...

We tried a reading club on GEB ... but nobody was serious.  I got thru page 150, then gave up, because it was the sound of one hand clapping.  If you can even read that book, let alone understand it (I am only on second reading, years later) ... you are smarter than you claim to be.
שלום

Online Mr.Obvious (OP)

Re: Rate the latest book you've read.
« Reply #91 on: April 28, 2017, 05:32:24 AM »
I'm running a bit behind.

I read the dunk & Egg novella's on my Ereader. They were great. I could reall see this becoming the spin-off to GOT, though I'd love to see something about Robert's rebellion too.
8.5/10.

I'm still reading "I have no enemies, I know no hate", by liu xiaobo. It's good, but I needed something to take a break from it. Hence the next one. I'll finish it, but I don't know when.  8.0/10 for now.

I read 'The Good Guy' by Dean Koontz. I found it a second hand shop fof a euro. Koontz is an amusing writer. Once in a while his thrillers and novels are outstanding, like 'Life Expectancy'. Life Expectancy deserves a 9/10 in my book. The Good Guy, however, is one of his more standard works. I'd still give it a 6.5/10 however, and say it's a solid read for on a holiday. 95% of the book is entertaining, and maybe it's not fair that those few things, mostly converging at the last 5% of the book, drag down it's score so much. But an ending can be just as important as the thrill of the ride.
I'm just glad I only paid 1 euro for it, as paying full price would've sucked. I paid full price for Life Expectancy, but that wasn't so bad because it was great.
The Good Guy breathes Koontz' style. From the unspoken 'unique' connection between the protagonist and the love-interest/deuteragonist. (Unique meaning here that they just happen to get eachother, both having been the odd ones out in their lives until they meet eachother. It's Koontz trademark, and either a bit too obvious in this one, or I've read it too often already.) To the powers from the protagonist and his sidekick (and the sidekick's pet) bordering on superhuman. Just not quite there, but really pushing the brink of what we can consider within the bounds of humanity; i'm talking impossible reflexes, heightened rationalizing skills, practical wits beyond compare, dogs that can sense impossible to sense phenomena, ...

So the ride and premise are great. A guy at a bar gets mistaken first for a murderer-for-hire and shortly thereafter as the cliënt wanting to assasinate a woman. What follows is his attempt to outsmart the assassin and keep the woman safe, all the while trying to figure out who wants her dead, and why.
The villain, a bit bland, is entertaining enough to keep you invested.
But the pay-off is weak.

Sorry but you are not allowed to view spoiler contents.
« Last Edit: April 28, 2017, 05:46:40 AM by Mr.Obvious »
E = Mc²

In the end, we are all standing in the dark,
trying to figure out why we are here.
But let us not choose one direction
without proof of where it is headed.

Check your pocket for matches
so we can observe and learn together
as fast friends and relative idiots.

Offline Baruch

Re: Rate the latest book you've read.
« Reply #92 on: April 28, 2017, 07:22:07 AM »
Only reading non-fiction right now ... did get an interesting bio of Cicero the other day, by Anthony Everitt.
שלום

Offline missingnocchi

Re: Rate the latest book you've read.
« Reply #93 on: April 29, 2017, 06:49:07 PM »
Purple Hibiscus - Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Adichie is unquestionably a craftsman of character, which is what makes it so disappointing that the narrator is by far the least interesting one in the novel. The premise is that she and her brother have grown up in an extremely strict upper-middle class Catholic home in Nigeria, but begin to undergo transformations when they are exposed to the side of their family that is more in touch with the old traditions of the Igbo. Both of these transformations are very quiet for the bulk of the novel, and in the case of the narrator, very shallow. It seems to me that any one of the other major charaters - the brother, whose transformation ultimately proves to be a deep (yet woefully underexplored) one; the devout, autocratic father; the passively complicit yet deeply troubled mother; the frail and disowned traditionally-religious grandfather; the brash and righteous aunt; the rebellious cousin - would have been a better choice, anyone but the sponge we got. That's not to say that she is portrayed unrealistically or inconsistently. Her inner monologue does, I imagine, quite well reflect that of the quiet, obedient religious girl we all probably knew in high school. It's just that that sort of character isn't compelling, and remains so for the larger part of the book. I do think Adichie is quite a skilled author on the whole, and I could say a lot about her ability to portray, for example, how a man who considers his family an extension of himself behaves when things fall apart (which happens to be the title I read immediately prior to this, and which covers similar ground in that respect). I do look forward to reading her other novels, which I have heard are better, and it's incredible what she achieved with her debut.

I give it a 'read it if you're really interested in modern Nigeria' out of ten.
What's a "Leppo?"