Looking for recommendations

sorabji.com: Last book you read: Looking for recommendations

Margret on Tuesday, May 2, 2000 - 11:02 am:

    I am in a quasi-John Barth mood. Which means I want things which twist traditional storytelling modes and trojan horse me with their seemingly standard literary tropes.
    Also, I would like some Christopher Moore like amusing stuff.
    Kurt Vonnegut is my god. Anyone?

By on Tuesday, May 2, 2000 - 11:05 am:

    donald barthelme is amusing.

By dry poo on Tuesday, May 2, 2000 - 12:19 pm:

    me not like vonnegut like me did in high school.

    me like barthelme, though. much. read short stories first.

    have read barth's *sot-weed factor* [applause] and his first novel *the floating opera*. good 2.

By Rhiannon on Tuesday, May 2, 2000 - 12:31 pm:

    I would recommend Paul Auster's "New York Trilogy," of which the second book, "Ghosts," is the best, in my opinion. A twist on the mystery genre. Very neat.

    Paul Auster has also written a very interesting novel called "In the Country of Last Things," which I think is supposed to be set in New York after some sort of apocalypse, but it's never clear. I recommend that, too.

    I also would recommend "The Knife-Thrower and other Stories" by Stephen Millhauser. His writing style is diametrically opposed to Auster's.

    If you have some time to kill, you might want to read both authors.

By Margret on Tuesday, May 2, 2000 - 12:44 pm:

    i read at least one book a day for pleasure when i can. i will check it out.

By on Tuesday, May 2, 2000 - 12:48 pm:

    stanislaw lem is amusing, too.

By Warner on Tuesday, May 2, 2000 - 02:06 pm:

    You mentioned Kurt Vonnegut,
    Slaughterhouse 5!!!

By Isolde on Tuesday, May 2, 2000 - 02:42 pm:

    I'm reading "Cosmic Serpent."
    It's ok. If you like reading about shamanism (I'm reading this under duress), it's very good.

By Gee on Wednesday, May 10, 2000 - 02:28 am:

    I'm reading "The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy". I'm very impressed with it.

By semillama on Wednesday, May 10, 2000 - 08:48 am:

    You have read them all, Gee! I remember the first time I read that, back when I was 11 or so, and just laughing and laughing.

    go to http://www.douglasadams.com for more of his stuff.

By agatha on Wednesday, May 10, 2000 - 02:53 pm:

    i just read "tis," the second installment of "angela's ashes," by frank mccourt. i love the way that man writes.

By Rhiannon on Wednesday, May 10, 2000 - 06:13 pm:

    I tried to read "Angela's Ashes," but I couldn't get past the first few pages.

    Now, a friend of mine's been pushing me to read Dostoevsky's "The Idiot." I try, but I can't get past the first 20 pages.

    I want my old attention span back.

By droopy on Wednesday, May 10, 2000 - 06:20 pm:

    try short stories - funny ones. there's a guy named george saunders who writes stories that are a little like vonnegut but, in my worthless opinion, better.

By Dougie on Wednesday, May 10, 2000 - 07:49 pm:

    Why not just watch tv? It's easier on the eyes, and the colors are so vivid.

By Dougie on Wednesday, May 10, 2000 - 07:54 pm:

    Actually, Rhiannon your post in another thread where you mentioned "all the pretty colors..." reminded me of a great trilogy by Cormac McCarthy, starting with "All the Pretty Horses." Check it out. Sorry about the flippant post above.

By Rhiannon on Wednesday, May 10, 2000 - 08:41 pm:

    Ooh, I was just thinking about Cormac McCarthy! I heard good things about his "Blood Meridian" and was looking for it in my library. But, alas, it's not here.

    "All the Pretty Horses" is part of a trilogy, isn't it?

By cyst on Wednesday, May 10, 2000 - 09:56 pm:

    yeah, the first and the best of the three. I heard they're making a movie out of it. if you try that and like it, you may want to go on to the second, but be warned that the last is full of long monologues from spooky old sages in the desert.

    oh, if you have no attention span, you may do well with sarah vowell's "take the cannoli." do you like her "this american life" stuff? it's more of the same. the fluffy stories are really fun, but I couldn't finish her little history of the cherokees.

    today I finished "goodbye, columbus" by philip roth. I think I may finally need to take a break. in the last couple months I've read that and "portnoy's complaint," "deception," "sabbath's theater," "the ghost writer," "zuckerman unbound," "the anatomy lesson" and "the prague orgy."

    maybe tonight I'll pick up the dave eggers book. it's become such a joke. when I see that guy I piggybacked into the reading with, he asks me if I'm so skinny because stores have started locking up their dumpsters. last weekend I met up with a really beautiful woman, and she told me it was the last book her reading group had chosen. last night that guy who hit on me at the bar mentioned the sexual orientation chart at the start of the book. today I read through the "chance meeting" section in the personals, and some guy wants to meet some girl who was reading it at cafe lena.

    it's like the pickup prop of the season here in portland. I should try it out.

By Isolde on Thursday, May 11, 2000 - 12:40 am:

    I've read all the books you just mentioned. I feel so...lonely. I liked "The Idiot." I didn't like "'Tis" as much as "Angela's Ashes," but I liked it well enough. (I bought a copy in Dublin.)
    and, as has been mentioned...I hate vomitgut.

By Rhiannon on Thursday, May 11, 2000 - 01:47 pm:

    Cyst: I heard that Roth has written a book that's nothing but dialogue, and I'm wondering: is it in that list of yours, and if so, is it any good?

By Star on Thursday, May 11, 2000 - 04:47 pm:

    The last book I read other than a Karl Marx book, was "Cruddy", by Lynda Barry, it is about this girl who, during an acid trip, gets caught by the police, and her mom grounds her for a year. So, of course, she decides to commit suicide. The book takes you back in time to when her mom stuffs her in the back seat of her dad's car before he drives off.....the rest is better if you read it, and it consists of flash backs,murder, and money. I loved it, and would recomend it to anyone. READ IT!!!

By cyst on Thursday, May 11, 2000 - 09:03 pm:

    rhiannon - I think "deception" is all dialogue, or nearly all dialogue.

    it's about two people having an affair. she visits him in his studio and they have sex and talk. they (mostly she) say obvious, funny, sad things about betrayal and loneliness and despair.

    my friend who recommended it to me really liked it, but I kept thinking, "yes, this I know, yes yes yes, ok, enough already," but maybe that was just because I really wanted things to work out and of course they didn't.

    today I went to a bookstore and read lorrie moore's review of "the human stain" in the new york times book review. she liked it ok. I picked it up and was reading the dust jacket when I heard voices behind me:

    "yeah, I started reading that eggers book..."

    "'a heartbreaking work of staggering genius.'"

    "yes. I got 250 pages into it but then I started a vonnegut, and I can't disturb that. but I should finish it because I want to be able to say that I read it."

By Gee on Friday, May 12, 2000 - 01:52 am:

    when I was at the library today I read a short story in a book called "Not Her Real Name" by Emily somebody from NZ. I read one story about a couple who used to go out and after they break up they meet in a supermarket. I thought it was really good. it reminded me of the way that I think sometimes.


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