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Old 01-31-2013, 06:19 PM   #106
Angst
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The Demolished Man - Alfred Bester
The Stars My Destination - Alfred Bester

I don't know if these books qualify as obscure, but they were written before I was born and I never read them until last year. They are listed on several top 100 SF books of all time.
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Old 02-01-2013, 01:46 AM   #107
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Originally Posted by issybird View Post
This sounded so exactly my kind of thing that I went ahead and bought all four books for less than $5 each at Kobo while vouchercodes40 still works. Thanks.

Returning the favor in kind, I'd like to recommend the Bandy books by Canadian humorist Donald Jack. They tell the hilarious adventures of hapless and horsefaced Bartholomew Bandy, during WWI and immediately after. Kobo has the first six books (couponable) of which I've read four; I'm trying to make them last.
I've found the Bandy books on Kobo, but I can't work out how to read a sample. I'm possibly just being dumb.

If you like the Otto Prohaska books and you're willing to switch period, take a look at Arthur Conan Doyle's Brigadier Gerard short stories. They're about a retired French brigadier, and apparently the inspiration for the Flashman series. The Mobile Read library has The Exploits of Brigadier Gerard and The Adventures of Gerard. They're both good fun.
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Old 02-01-2013, 04:08 AM   #108
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Originally Posted by Angst View Post
The Demolished Man - Alfred Bester
The Stars My Destination - Alfred Bester

I don't know if these books qualify as obscure, but they were written before I was born and I never read them until last year. They are listed on several top 100 SF books of all time.
Where did you get the ebooks from? I'm unable to find them.

Thanks.
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:43 AM   #109
Ralph Sir Edward
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Where did you get the ebooks from? I'm unable to find them.

Thanks.
The Stars My Destination is available at the US Barnes and Noble Nook site. I don't know about The Demolished Man.
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:44 AM   #110
BenG
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Amazon (U.S.) has The Stars My Destination (and I wouldn't call books obscure if they're on several top 100 lists).
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:45 AM   #111
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Amazon (U.S.) has The Stars My Destination (and I wouldn't call books obscure if they're on several top 100 lists).
Thanks. Probably another case where there are different US and UK publishers.
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Old 02-04-2013, 10:36 AM   #112
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I don't know how "obscure" this book is, but The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements by Eric Hoffer is well worth reading.

Eric Hoffer was a self-educated longshoreman who wrote books in his spare time. This one is an interesting foray into the minds of fanatics of all types; a highly readable investigation of people who commit themselves fully to movements and their reasons for doing so. It's perhaps even more relevant today than when it was first published in 1951.

While he was President, Dwight D. Eisenhower received a letter from Robert Biggs, a terminally ill World War II veteran, who complained that the President's recent speeches displayed hedging and uncertainty. "We wait for someone to speak for us and back him completely if the statement is made in truth." Biggs wrote.

As part of his response, Eisenhower wrote:

"The mental stress and burden which this form of government imposes has been particularly well recognized in a little book about which I have spoken on several occasions. It is 'The True Believer,' by Eric Hoffer; you might find it of interest. In it, he points out that dictatorial systems make one contribution to their people which leads them to tend to support such systems--freedom from the necessity of informing themselves and making up their own minds concerning these tremendous complex and difficult questions."

As someone who is not immune to the temptation to certainty in the correctness of my own opinions and intolerance towards dissenting viewpoints, over the years I have found this book to be invaluable for restoring a sense of balance and perspective.

I haven't been able to find an electronic version of the work.
This book is now available for the Kindle at Amazon. I got it as soon as it was offered, but forgot about having mentioned the book in this thread until Angst reminded me. Now I'm passing that news on.

Thanks, Angst!
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Old 02-04-2013, 04:43 PM   #113
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Originally Posted by Angst View Post
The Demolished Man - Alfred Bester
The Stars My Destination - Alfred Bester

I don't know if these books qualify as obscure, but they were written before I was born and I never read them until last year. They are listed on several top 100 SF books of all time.
Lol. I just borrowed Golem100 from my library in hardcover. I have seen Bester on the lists before and figured I would read what is supposed to be his worst book since I needed a title for 1980. It looks so cheesy b-movie science fiction that I think I am going to love it.
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Old 02-05-2013, 02:33 AM   #114
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I really enjoyed all of Bester's SF novels, even the supposedly bad ones.

He does like to mess with text formatting, though. I don't know how easy it would be to reproduce some the text art in an ebook.
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