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Old 09-14-2013, 08:32 AM   #17671
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I just finished REAMDE by Neal Stephenson. I thought it was fantastic and I recommend it to everyone. It's not as densly populated with math as some of his other works so its more easily accessible. A good old thriller with some terrorists, mobsters and online role playing games.


Next up, not sure...maybe since we are working our way into fall and Halloween I'll read "Under a Graveyard Sky". Or maybe I should finally get around to purchasing "Dust" and read that.
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Old 09-14-2013, 09:41 PM   #17672
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Just finished Ronald Malfi's novella The Mourning House. Really well done, and I thought pretty original for a haunted house tale.
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Old 09-15-2013, 05:02 AM   #17673
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Don't you think that sometimes you have to struggle (at least a little) to get the most out of some books? And by "struggle", I mean, by definition, you're not enjoying it.
This is sometimes the case. And if it was a generally well-regarded book or series, I might well continue in the expectation that I will appreciate the book as I get further into it.

But for some random book from my TBR? If I get over a quarter of the way into it and it seems to not to be to my taste (or badly written or trite or nonsensical), then I now feel no guilt in abandoning it for better (for me) books.
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Old 09-15-2013, 05:07 AM   #17674
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Next up: The Undead Hordes of Kan-Gul by Jon F. Merz.
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II have The Undead Hordes of Kan-Gul on my TBR. When you finish it let me know if you enjoyed it please.
It was OK. But overall not really satisfying. The villains seemed to be stupid, the magic system incoherent, the hero didn't really work as a character for me, and the undead hordes uninspired.

That may be a little harsh. It did keep my attention, and I finished it fairly quickly, but not yet an author that will be on my watch list.

Next up: This month's book club book, Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie.
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Old 09-15-2013, 09:06 AM   #17675
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It was OK. But overall not really satisfying. The villains seemed to be stupid, the magic system incoherent, the hero didn't really work as a character for me, and the undead hordes uninspired.

That may be a little harsh. It did keep my attention, and I finished it fairly quickly, but not yet an author that will be on my watch list.

Next up: This month's book club book, Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie.
Thank you.
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Old 09-15-2013, 09:33 AM   #17676
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Read Maureen Johnson's Devilish, which started off well but for some reason stopped really working for me once it got into the supernatural part of the plot. Odd, as that's generally the stuff I prefer. So... meh, overall, but at least it was a quick and easy read.

Considering getting back to Laurie R. King's Mary Russell series now - I have to check which book I stopped at; after the sixth or seventh, I think. Not sure I'm 100% in the mood for that, but after three relatively disappointing books in a row, I'm getting a bit antsy for something that could at least be a four star read.
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Old 09-15-2013, 01:17 PM   #17677
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Finished it this afternoon, and I definitely enjoyed this re-read. Now, on to something completely different -- Bill Bryson's A Walk in the Woods. This is his story of hiking the Appalachian Trail. And, like all Bryson's books, it is extremely funny! I don't know how I missed this when it first released, but I saw it at my Library for download and jumped on it. I'm two chapters into it, and my DW and I are doing dramatic readings back and forth to each other, with both of us laughing uncontrollably.
Finished, and enjoyed it thoroughly. Also reading Ashes of Victory, #9 in the Honor Harrington series by David Weber. This is primarily an audio read, but I'm jumping back and forth depending on where I am and what else I'm doing.

Next up? Hmmm. Possibly Treecat Wars by Weber and Lindskold, if I don't finish the current Harrington book today (since Treecat Wars won't be out until tomorrow.) If I do finish today, then I'll start something else. Maybe another Phryne Fisher? That would be fun, for sure.
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Old 09-15-2013, 01:53 PM   #17678
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Just Finished:

The Running Man by Richard Bachman (Stephen King) - never read this before or saw the movie so I wasn't sure what to expect. It was a decent story but I never really connected to any of the characters.

Currently reading:

Tales of Dunk and Egg #1 - The Hedge Knight by George R.R. Martin - just killing time until Doctor Sleep comes out, so I don't want to start a big fat novel. A Song of Ice and Fire novella should do nicely.
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Old 09-15-2013, 01:54 PM   #17679
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Considering getting back to Laurie R. King's Mary Russell series now - I have to check which book I stopped at; after the sixth or seventh, I think. Not sure I'm 100% in the mood for that, but after three relatively disappointing books in a row, I'm getting a bit antsy for something that could at least be a four star read.
I stopped after book five (O Jerusalem). I have the next one (Justice Hall) on my Nook but I'm wary of starting it. The last three were all kinda boring and weren't much of mysteries.
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Old 09-15-2013, 02:17 PM   #17680
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And I did decide on my next book, which is Locked Rooms, the eighth in the Mary Russell series.

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I stopped after book five (O Jerusalem). I have the next one (Justice Hall) on my Nook but I'm wary of starting it. The last three were all kinda boring and weren't much of mysteries.
I agree in that they've not been much of mysteries as such; for me, the real strength of these books lies in the settings, the descriptions, the language, and the character studies more than anything else. It's almost as if the mysteries are mostly incidental, there to lend a reason for all the rest to happen.

Fortunately for me, this happens to be exactly what I like about these books, so I've been really happy with all of them so far!
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Old 09-15-2013, 03:18 PM   #17681
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Just finished No Orchids for Miss Blandish by James Hadley Chase. Good plot, shallow characterization. Although I voted for it for the MR Book Club September selection, I'm glad it didn't win. The discussion of The Demonic Verses will be much more lively and interesting.
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Old 09-15-2013, 07:15 PM   #17682
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This is sometimes the case. And if it was a generally well-regarded book or series, I might well continue in the expectation that I will appreciate the book as I get further into it.

But for some random book from my TBR? If I get over a quarter of the way into it and it seems to not to be to my taste (or badly written or trite or nonsensical), then I now feel no guilt in abandoning it for better (for me) books.
Agree with your point-of-view 100%. It seems different giving up on War and Peace (which I've done several times ) vs. giving up on, say, a self-published stinker.

Which points up another difference. With well-regarded books, I'll probably give them more than one chance.

In the meantime, I'm happy to report that I'm getting into the flow of From Here to Eternity and expect I'll see it through to the end. Probably won't end up on my list of favorites, but an interesting look at a slice of life in the pre-World War II U. S. infantry.

Last edited by orange!; 09-15-2013 at 07:17 PM.
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Old 09-15-2013, 09:46 PM   #17683
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Just started "Wicked Prey," the #19 in John Sandford's 'Lucas Davenport' series, and he's done it again... Sucked me in from the first page and I'm having trouble putting it down! Sandford has done such a good job with this series, and his 'Virgil Flowers' spin-offs are every bit as entertaining. Great characters, convoluted plots, and clever but realistic dialogs make me want more and more!


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Old 09-16-2013, 02:55 AM   #17684
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Got about halfway into Locked Rooms yesterday and then had to give it up for sleep. I don't think this one's going to be among my top Mary Russell books, but I'm still enjoying it considerably more than the last three books I read, so I'm hopeful this will help me out of this current reading slump.

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This is sometimes the case. And if it was a generally well-regarded book or series, I might well continue in the expectation that I will appreciate the book as I get further into it.

But for some random book from my TBR? If I get over a quarter of the way into it and it seems to not to be to my taste (or badly written or trite or nonsensical), then I now feel no guilt in abandoning it for better (for me) books.
I'd agree with this in theory (and I've quit a handful of books after a while, when they were really completely awful).

I mostly have two issues with not finishing books I've started, though - one, that I feel uncomfortable about not finishing a book I've paid for (not the best reason ever, I know, but it does make a difference for me), and two, which is the main one: I've read more than one book in my life where I've really struggled with the beginning or even the first half - even the first three quarters! - and in the end, it's turned out to be more than worth it.

And I'm not just talking about accepted classics, bestsellers or literary fiction or anything else where I'd be otherwise inclined to make an effort.

If it wasn't for that second reason, I think I'd give up on books more easily than I do. At least I've got to a point where I have no problems giving up on a series after the first book (or, if later on, several books in a row) has failed to impress or entertain me sufficiently.
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Old 09-16-2013, 08:37 AM   #17685
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...giving up on War and Peace (which I've done several times )....
Try an unabridged audio version. You might even be able to find a free one read by volunteers on Librivox.org.
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