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Thread: What are you reading?

  1. #4661
    Duckslayer's Avatar
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    currently reading badrep comments over and over again. Emotional rollercoaster. Has me in floods of tears. Incredible cuck scenes

  2. #4662
    Dahak's Avatar
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    Finished "World War Cthulhu", a collection of shorts in Lovecraft's universe where his various monsters and factions exist. It's a bunch of short stories by a variety of authors, so the quality varied considerably. There were some decent ones that did a good job of developing the horror and there were some that just went all-out with crazy extra-dimensional weaponry. I ended up giving the collection as a whole 3/5. I was hoping for more stuff like Stross' "A Colder War" and I didn't really get it, but what I did get was alright.

    Now, on to "In the Shadow of the Sword: The Birth of Islam and the Rise of the Global Arab Empire".
    Last edited by Dahak; March 6 2017 at 04:25:48 PM.

  3. #4663

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    Inspired by all the praise for the movie "Arrival", I've got myself the Ted Chiang short story collection which includes "The Story of my Life", upon which the movie is based.

    I hadn't done any research and thought all stories were SciFi stories, which they're not. I'm not even sure if there's an English term for that kind of literature, in German it's called "Phantastik". Think of Outer Limits-like "weird" stories. That's plots which have some SciFi/horror/fatansy (or a combination thereof) touch.

    As for the stories themselves: I applaud the person who could see a potential movie hit in "The Story of my Life" and turned it into what seems to be a very good movie script - I really couldn't. Even in hindsight. It's an OK'ish story, the idea for the main topic is interesting, but to me it didn't feel like something groundbreaking. For me, it lacks any kind of tension building. And I'm not talking about 'xplosions action! here, but any "Oh, now, that's interesting, how will this resolve?" moment.

    All other stories follow that impression. I wonder if that's perhaps a case of where translation did kill the spirit of the original works. The German version I've got is by a small publisher, one I've never heard of before and - from the looks of it, it could even be a one-person shop.

    Overall I'd give it a 3/5.

  4. #4664
    Malcanis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hel OWeen View Post
    Inspired by all the praise for the movie "Arrival", I've got myself the Ted Chiang short story collection which includes "The Story of my Life", upon which the movie is based.

    I hadn't done any research and thought all stories were SciFi stories, which they're not. I'm not even sure if there's an English term for that kind of literature, in German it's called "Phantastik". Think of Outer Limits-like "weird" stories. That's plots which have some SciFi/horror/fatansy (or a combination thereof) touch.

    As for the stories themselves: I applaud the person who could see a potential movie hit in "The Story of my Life" and turned it into what seems to be a very good movie script - I really couldn't. Even in hindsight. It's an OK'ish story, the idea for the main topic is interesting, but to me it didn't feel like something groundbreaking. For me, it lacks any kind of tension building. And I'm not talking about 'xplosions action! here, but any "Oh, now, that's interesting, how will this resolve?" moment.

    All other stories follow that impression. I wonder if that's perhaps a case of where translation did kill the spirit of the original works. The German version I've got is by a small publisher, one I've never heard of before and - from the looks of it, it could even be a one-person shop.

    Overall I'd give it a 3/5.
    Chiang is an outstanding writer. He writes thoughtful, sometimes rather subtle stuff that I can easily see getting failed by even a well meaning translation, especially if you were left with a 3/5 feeling from a collection that contains stories like Breathe and Babel.
    Quote Originally Posted by Keieueue View Post
    I love Malcanis!

  5. #4665

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    That's strange that you mention these two. Breathe is the one I probably enjoyed the most, along with Merchant's gate (don't know the real English original title). Whereas Babel left me with a big "So - that's it? What am I supposed to take away from it?".

  6. #4666

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    After realizing that it probably will take another year or so (if at all) until The Expanse makes it to German TV, I decided to start reading the books. I'm still early into the first one, but enjoying it so far. Haven't read some space opera for quite a while and appreciate the "no need to think - just consume" aspect.

  7. #4667
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    Hel Oween. It's literally 'Weird' or 'New-weird' depending on the era.

    China Mieville is a good example of 'New Weird'.

  8. #4668

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    Ah, thanks. Good to know. So I was pretty close with my Outer Limits-like "weird" stories description.

  9. #4669
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    Finished In the Shadow of the Sword: The Birth of Islam and the Rise of the Global Arab Empire. I didn't enjoy it much. Unfortunately much of the book is given over to the world before Islam even appears. The author does set it out in the introduction that in order to understand the rise you need to understand the environment it arose in, but so much time is spent on this era of late antiquity between the Romans and the Persians that the actual bits about Islam and the Arabs feels truncated. If you're looking for a somewhat rambling history of Judaism, Zoroastrianism, and Christianity in late antiquity with ~20% of the book about Islam, this is your thing. If you're looking for what the title implies, look elsewhere.

    So, since my interest in a history book was not sated, on to Neptune's Inferno: The U.S. Navy at Guadalcanal. I'm less than 100 pages in but thus far the USN is not looking very good.

  10. #4670
    Kai's Avatar
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    If you like it there's a new history on HMAS Canberra I that's just been released. But I can't for the life of me remember the author (who I've actually met).

  11. #4671
    Read a few books recently, all listed neatly for those interested:

    https://www.goodreads.com/review/lis...ource=homepage
    Last edited by Snottus; March 23 2017 at 10:07:47 PM.
    The world is against me, it wouldn't be fair otherwise"

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