Author Topic: I is amazingly under read  (Read 4305 times)

border-rider

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #25 on: January 27, 2009, 12:07:18 pm »
120, but that didn't feel like many.  I agree that there are some odd choices.  The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles as SF ?

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #26 on: January 27, 2009, 12:33:13 pm »
They were probably using the W H Smith definition of SF. I have been in some of their shops at stations where there is no SF at all in the SF section, plenty of gothic horror and swords and sorcery fantasy but no actual SF at all.
I think you'll find it's a bit more complicated than that.

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #27 on: January 27, 2009, 12:55:31 pm »
Quote
The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles as SF?

Their 'SF' included a good deal of 'speculative fiction' and 'magic realism', into which the above could readily be inserted. I don't think it's an unreasonable lumping together when you've got only seven categories and are looking for catchy /journalistic, rather than accurate / academic, headings.

Agree with most of the reservations expressed above but all-round I found both the lists and the synopses stimulating and provocative  :)

Jezza

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #28 on: January 27, 2009, 01:01:59 pm »
I was scrolling through it, wondering why I hadn't read so many of them, then suddenly got on a roll. Some odd choices there, but I'm glad to see some unconventional ones like Gorky Park by Martin Cruz Smith, or Justine by Lawrence Durrell (which should really be 4 books, as it's the first in The Alexandria Quartet). 

So I've read 156 of them. Some way to go yet.

Eccentrica Gallumbits

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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #29 on: January 27, 2009, 01:14:10 pm »
A quick scan of the list and I counted 77 that I've read. Or 76½ as I think I failed to finish Foucault's Pendulum:-\

I did finish it and I'm none the wiser as to what it was about.  :-[

Same with Dickens, had a couple on the list, but my favourite (The Old Curiosity Shop) wasn't on there.

Bwahahahahaha. The Old Curiosity Shop? Really?

I counted 116 of those that I've read, a few I've started and not finished, a few I'm not sure if I've read or not and several I have in the house but haven't started yet.
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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #30 on: January 27, 2009, 01:14:31 pm »
sorry. can't read the list. Got too many books to read.


blackpuddinonnabike

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #31 on: January 27, 2009, 01:19:12 pm »


Same with Dickens, had a couple on the list, but my favourite (The Old Curiosity Shop) wasn't on there.

Bwahahahahaha. The Old Curiosity Shop? Really?

Yep, the closest a book has ever come to making me cry (being a bloke of course I gave myself a kick up the arse for even thinking that way).

Mr Larrington

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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #32 on: January 27, 2009, 01:21:54 pm »
99½ - I have read some, but not all of pTerry's Discworld stuff.

But I think I should award myself an extra point for having eschewed "The Unnatural Lightness Of Being" in favour of "The Unnatural Lightness Of Being In Aberystwyth" ;D
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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #33 on: January 27, 2009, 01:24:02 pm »
I got to 37, but only counting Discworld as 1.
Sunset Song - I wouldn't have put that in the 'love' section, more like misery (painful memories of Higher English)
and Darkmans by Nicola Barker I thought was an unmitigated pile of equine faeces.

I was glad to see Death and the Penguin by Andrey Kurkov, and some Murakami and surprised not to see any Louis Des Bernieres.
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clarion

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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #34 on: January 27, 2009, 02:28:28 pm »
I've only read one Discworld book, so I counted that as zero.
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ChrisO

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #35 on: January 27, 2009, 03:53:54 pm »
127 for me.

I think there are some good and non-obvious choices on there. The Man Who Was Thursday for example, or Squire Haggard's Journal.

Yes there are some where they've tried a bit too hard to be different, with Conrad and the Brontes for example where their lesser known works are lesser known for good reason IMHO.

And the series issue is inconsistent. Why say Discworld, and not also The Aubrey-Maturin series, when they just list Master and Commander.

However apart from the obvious non-classics pointed out above* I think it's a pretty good list. Most of the books on it are worth a read and there were a few where I was thinking "Ooh yes I've been wanting to read that." More of those than ones where I was thinking "I'd never read that."

*and Gabriel Garcia Marquez - was Isabel Allende on there as well, she must have been. Euurgh, magical fucking realism germs.

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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #36 on: January 27, 2009, 04:05:55 pm »
I've had a quick look at that list and totted up up 532 (possibly 535) that I've read.  I blame it on my parents - we weren't allowed a TV when we were kids.

I'm glad to Wilkie Collins and JG Farrell made the list.  When I was last down at my mother's she'd dragged a box of my junk down from the loft.  In it was a well thumbed copy of the 'Siege of Krishnapur' which has been a favourite ever since it was set text at school.
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border-rider

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #37 on: January 27, 2009, 04:13:18 pm »
"The Unnatural Lightness Of Being In Aberystwyth" ;D

Now that is great literature. 

See also "Don't cry for me Aberystwyth", which I read on my hols just after PBP :)

Paulapops

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #38 on: January 27, 2009, 04:27:39 pm »
"The Unnatural Lightness Of Being In Aberystwyth" ;D

Now that is great literature. 

See also "Don't cry for me Aberystwyth", which I read on my hols just after PBP :)

Aberystwyth mon amour's a good'n too

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #39 on: January 27, 2009, 05:57:44 pm »
I lost count, but around 35.  It would be higher if I could count the Narnia books and the Dark Materials books separately.
Never tell me the odds.

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #40 on: January 27, 2009, 10:05:14 pm »
I feel as I suspect everyone else does, that there are books that shouldn't be there, & others that should be.

235 down, 765 to go - but the 765 includes at least 50 I've looked at & rejected, & many others where I've looked at something by the author & rejected his or her entire canon.

"A woman on a bicycle has all the world before her where to choose; she can go where she will, no man hindering." The Type-Writer Girl, 1897

Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #41 on: January 27, 2009, 10:06:13 pm »
The categories are strange - peculiar things listed as 'crime' or SF' that I wouldn't have put there.
Agreed.

The trashy Absolute Beginners from Colin Macinnes rather than Mr Love & Justice?

Nevil Shute is represented by A Town Like Alice rather than On The Beach.  Hmm.
1. That cut my count by one. Read Mr Love & Justice, not Absolute Beginners.
2. Didn't affect my count. Read both.
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Julian

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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #42 on: January 27, 2009, 10:41:25 pm »
141.

Quite a lot left to read!

Wowbagger

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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #43 on: January 27, 2009, 10:49:26 pm »
130 as it happens.  I'm astonished I've read more 'classic' literature than the erudite Wowbagger.

I've read very little "classic" literature. I've dipped into stuff and have former regular crossword-doer's knowledge of stuff, and I would not be in the least surprised if there are some titles there that I have read and completely forgotten. Similarly, I counted "David Copperfield" on the grounds that I probably read it once but it has been on the telly so often that I can no longer be sure. I definitely read "Hard Times" because Mr. Gradgrind was so like the head teacher of the school I taught in that I would laugh out loud in all the inappropriate places. I actually find Dickens quite dull and, to my shame, I have never read anything by Hardy.
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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #44 on: January 27, 2009, 11:18:53 pm »
What - no 'Watchmen'?

Nothing by Alan Moore at all?

Manotea

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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #45 on: January 27, 2009, 11:49:54 pm »
144. Better then I thought, though I fear I swim in the shallow end of the pool.

More to the point, 120 of the original readings probably date from >20 years ago....

I would have liked to see Illuminatus! (Robert Shea and Robert Anton) on the list.

Like I said, the shallow end of the pool. But don't take my word for it. Think for yourself!

redshift

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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #46 on: January 28, 2009, 12:10:28 am »
ICBA working out how many I've read / not read.  A quick scan says that what I consider 'must read' is largely unrelated to the views of whoever wrote the list.  Inconsistency such as The Andromeda Strain appearing in the 'crime' list just make it even more inept. 

The trick with 'must read' lists is to work out why on earth you 'must' anything at all.   I suspect I am merely a contrarian.  ;D
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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #47 on: January 28, 2009, 08:32:09 am »
 I suspect I am merely a contrarian.  ;D

I'm not.

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #48 on: January 28, 2009, 09:24:54 am »
What - no 'Watchmen'?

Nothing by Alan Moore at all?

I noticed that part way through the week, and expected it to pop up elsewhere.  Very disappointed by its omission.  And it's not that Graphics are completely neglected.  I noticed that Maus is included (quite rightly, IMO).

The categories were necessarily a bit arbitrary, because so many of the great works are uncategorisable, or span genres.  Where, for instance, should Slaughterhouse Five be placed?  SciFi/Fantasy?  War?  Even excluded for it's autobiographical content?  I'm not sure - it's the full list that counts, really.
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Mr Larrington

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Re: I is amazingly under read
« Reply #49 on: January 28, 2009, 09:50:51 am »
"The Unnatural Lightness Of Being In Aberystwyth" ;D

Now that is great literature. 

See also "Don't cry for me Aberystwyth", which I read on my hols just after PBP :)

Aberystwyth mon amour's a good'n too

See also Last Tango In Aberystwyth.  "From Aberystwyth With Love" to be published later this year.
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