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Old 09-30-2010, 04:05 PM   #1
branchedout
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Nonreader looking for a suggestion!

Hi there. I haven't read a book (aside from required texts in high school and college) since... Oh... the 11th grade. And it was three books. Before that, 7th grade. So, in the past 8 years, I've read 3 books.

But, I got a Kindle, mostly for comics. Then I thought, "Hey. This thing reads books, too! Crazy!"


Those three books were part of the Odd Thomas series, my new (as of 4 years ago, anyways) favorite book.

I'm looking for a reccomendation, and I'll list the books I've enjoyed over the past 10 years, and I'll tell you what I enjoy in things now. Maybe you guys can help me find a free book! Maybe there's an author out there that needs someone to read their work.


Okay: The list is small, but here's my favorite books.

Odd Thomas
White Fang
Ender's Game

And that's it.

What I'm looking for, really, is a modern book. I grow weary of the description-heavy text of the older books. Dialogue is one of my favorite aspects of the book.

Some of you might ask, "Then why is White Fang on that list? It's chock full of words and description and not much talking."

Because White Fang is a BAMF. That's why.
Moving on.

But, I'm looking for a humorous book. Something that'll make me laugh.
Zany situations, bad puns, and the like.
If there could include a bit of action, then all the merrier. It's probably why I like White Fang so much. Throats gettin' ripped out and such!


But yes. My library doesn't do ebooks, and I've yet to see if I could get one of those "reprocrial" (the word escapes me) schmeals with a library in Louisiana that MIGHT have ebooks that I like. MIGHT. Overdrive shows me no libraries with Odd Hours (the ebook of the Odd Thomas sereis I'm wanting to read) in LA! So, I need a free option. I can convert epubs with no hassle.


If you've read through all of this, then thanks!
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Old 09-30-2010, 05:07 PM   #2
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The "Odd Thomas" series and the several "Ender's Game" sequels are available commercially; they aren't free, though.

Jack London's "The Call of the Wild" very much a compliment to "White Fang". It is public domain and available from a number of sites including: http://manybooks.net/titles/londonjaetext95callw10.html Its a great book, but hardly the fun/humorous book you seem to be looking for.

You might browse around at ManyBooks.net. Humor is a rough genre for recommendations. Personal taste varies massively when it comes to what is funny or comic. One author whose works are mostly in the public domain that I like it P. G. Wodehouse (http://manybooks.net/authors/wodehous.html).

Another is Mark Twain. This collection of short and very short stories of his might be a good start: http://manybooks.net/titles/twainmaretext94beqst12.html
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Old 09-30-2010, 05:29 PM   #3
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Welcome branchedout! I grew up in New Orleans.

For zaniness, you might try one of the PG Wodehouse books which are available free here at MobileRead. Lots of funny dialogue!

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/ebo...id=128&page=10
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Old 09-30-2010, 11:43 PM   #4
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If you're okay with sf/fantasy and are looking for zero-cost reads, then the Baen Free Library is your new best friend. The other thing that Baen has a lot of besides MilSF is comedic adventures and they've put quite a few among the freebies.

So if you're looking for modern zany stuff with action and possibly bad puns, you can't go wrong trying the following for free (I have not read all personally, but will note if I liked it/the author's other works):

Aaron Allston, Doc Sidhe. Keep meaning to read this, but never quite get around to it. But it's got favourable reviews and ratings from quite a few people who say it's a fun pulp-style action/adventure.

Lois McMaster Bujold, The Warrior's Apprentice, and The Mountains of Mourning. If Ender's Game is one of your favourites, then I think you should definitely at least try Bujold's Vorkosigan novels, if you haven't already. They are truly excellent and worthy of the awards they've won. Not as overtly funny as the others I've listed here, but there's humour mixed in between adventure and poignancy.

Rick Cook's Wiz Biz series. Computer programmers and magic mix together, neither will be the same again. And also, the obligatory fight between the forces of good and evil. One of my favourites and recommended.

Caveat downloader: While the Webscription listing for this implies that you'll be getting the omnibus edition containing the first two books, it seems to only contain the first book and you'll have to go to the old Baen Free Library site to pick up the second.

Rosemary Edghill, The Warslayer. You need to download this, if only to read the bonus fanboy-style episode summaries for the fake TV show in the book. Hilarious. The rest of the book is a bit more serious and less comedic than the premise might make you think, but still a light, enjoyable read.

David Freer & Eric Flint, Pyramid Scheme. This is also on the to-be-read list for me. I rather liked Dave Freer's recent Dragon's Ring which was a light humorous adventure and going by both description and reviews, this one significantly ups both the humour and the adventure, so it seems like it might be right up your alley.

And if you happen to like that one, the same writing team has done Rats, Bats & Vats and The Rats, The Bats & The Ugly, which are apparently a send-up of MilSF experimental super-soldier/combat creature tropes.

Keith Laumer, The Lighter Side. I know absolutely nothing about this except that Laumer is one of the more "classic" sf writers and this involves "a motorcycle-riding rutabaga-like alien" and "a beleaguered Satan asking a college professor for help when extra-dimensional aliens invade Hell itself". What's not to love?

Since it's a mix of longer and shorter stories, if you find you don't like his style, then at least you're not out much time discovering that.

No doubt others will chime in and suggest more Baen titles they've also found enjoyable. Happy reading!
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Old 10-02-2010, 07:43 AM   #5
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You want zany situations, bad puns and the like? Then The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is just what you are looking for! In fact, the entire series is available at a discount. Check it out here http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=100327

These are very funny books with lots of bad puns and, another advantage, you'll learn the answer to life, the universe and everything!
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Old 10-02-2010, 08:40 AM   #6
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What comics do you like? I'm an avid reader of both comics and novels.
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Old 10-02-2010, 09:37 AM   #7
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It seems like OP is looking for Heller's "Catch 22"
Not the most modern of books (it depends on the point of view of course) but it's funny and conversational.
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Old 10-02-2010, 10:52 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by cassidym View Post
You want zany situations, bad puns and the like? Then The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is just what you are looking for! In fact, the entire series is available at a discount. Check it out here http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=100327

These are very funny books with lots of bad puns and, another advantage, you'll learn the answer to life, the universe and everything!
My thoughts exactly! I second this suggestion.
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Old 10-02-2010, 11:46 AM   #9
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A bit of action, bad puns and throats gettin' ripped out? Ooh! Ooh! Ooh! I know this one!

Monster Hunter International and its newly-released sequel, Monster Hunter Vendetta, both by Larry Correia.
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Old 10-02-2010, 11:58 AM   #10
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If you liked Ender's Game, I'd suggest:

Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein
Armor by John Steakley
Old Man's War by John Scalzi

Though that might be a lot of military sci-fi all at once...

-David
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Old 10-02-2010, 06:07 PM   #11
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Maybe some of Neil Gaiman's work? His writing strikes me as modern. Though like many authors, some can't stand him. Me, I very much liked American Gods (and the Anansi Boys semi-sequel) and the Graveyard Book.
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Old 10-03-2010, 07:42 AM   #12
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To the OP: Remember that if you have a Kindle you can easily download free samples from Amazon, and you can get an idea if you like the style. I almost always try out samples before buying.

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Maybe some of Neil Gaiman's work? His writing strikes me as modern. Though like many authors, some can't stand him. Me, I very much liked American Gods (and the Anansi Boys semi-sequel) and the Graveyard Book.
Some of Gaiman's books is in a Young Adult style - though aimed equally at adults. I don't like that so much, but I really liked "American Gods".
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Old 10-04-2010, 01:24 PM   #13
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If you liked Ender's Game, I'd suggest:

Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein
Armor by John Steakley
Old Man's War by John Scalzi

Though that might be a lot of military sci-fi all at once...

-David
I'll second Old Man's War.
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Old 10-08-2010, 01:09 AM   #14
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My recommendations:

- The "Myth Adventures" series by Robert Asprin: I picked up the first book and it was so funny that I couldn't stop reading it.

- The "A Series Of Unfortunate Events" series by Lemony Snicket: Excellent series that has a very sly humor.

- "Cyberbooks" by Ben Bova: Set in the near future and involves the attempt to develop an e-reader (the book was originally released in the early 1990s). The book features a great deal of humor while also giving you an insight into the publishing industry.
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