Just 10 recommendations

Discussion in 'Other Literature' started by Boreas, Nov 24, 2016.

  1. kenubrion

    kenubrion Well-Known Member

    I don't know how I forgot Malazan. It's actually #1 for me.
  2. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    Seriously? #1? Both you and @TomTB love it that much, huh? I guess I'll really have to make an effort in giving the series a proper go.
  3. Jorind

    Jorind New Member

  4. Bierschneeman

    Bierschneeman Well-Known Member

    Hmm, should I list them chronologically showing how they shaped me progressively or in order of the size of the importance to me now.....


    1. Elric Saga~Michael Moorcock. (Age 9) In america books for kids are ( or were) all printed with reading levels on the backs. This would indicate what grade level of education would be needed to understand the text. These books were my first above the RL 12 (last year of high school) they also represent my trying to grow up, avoiding the fantasy novels I thought of as kid stuff at the time ( Tolkien, Narnia, Wind in the door) later I gave up on fantasy for a long while after I realized how adolescent Elric was. ( when I reached high school) but it was my fondness for Elric that brought me back to fantasy books after I left college.

    2.Murders at the Rue Morgue~Poe. This novella sealed my fate as a fan of horror. ( age 10) I had started at age 8, but this novel I think graduated me to beyond poe.

    3. Starship Troopers~Heinlein. (Age 10) my first real experience with science fiction books (not parodies) It's similar to me as a perfect book for a male teenager as was Elric saga. When I abandoned fantasy, I stayed with scifi.
    4.short stories of Lovecraft. (Age 13) continuing the horror trend when I had grown bored of Poe and books like poe

    5.Naked Lunch~WS Burroughs. (Age 14) My favorite book of all time. I collect various copies of it and I have read this more often then any other book. I also have every book he ever wrote.

    6. Scarlet Letter~Hawthorne. ( age 14) a lot of influence on my writing.

    7.A Clockwork Orange ~Burgess. (Age 14) not only let me continue reading scifi when I was abandoning fantasy like Elric and scifi like Heinlein because I wanted something more adult, but helped to anchor my blossoming fascination with Russia.

    8. Short stories of Tolstoy. (Age 18) I am not deeply entrenched in literature coming from Russia.

    9.Designing Great Beers~Ray Daniels. (Age 19 or 20) this book gave me the branch from 'this is a hobby I could take or leave' to 'I can take this to the next level, maybe even work the industry'.

    10. Anna Karenina ~Tolstoy ( age 27) second favorite book. Showed me I could enjoy a book about high society. I am reading bonfire of the vanities right now because of this book .
    Boreas likes this.
  5. Bierschneeman

    Bierschneeman Well-Known Member

    Crap, I forgot the great gatsby...but what to remove...
    Boreas likes this.
  6. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    I love The Scarlet Letter and Anna Karenina, too! TSL was assigned in school when I was 16. AK I read when I was 18 whilst visiting my grandparents over summer.

    Another favourite. I went through a pretty massive Hemingway and Fitzgerald phase during my mid-to-late teens. It started off with For Whom the Bell Tolls which I read of my own volition rather than for school. But The Great Gatsby was assigned, and I absolutely loved it. It hit all the right notes at the time because I had just read The Sun Also Rises, and it contained the same 'generation perdue' sentiment but in an East Coast US context instead of decadent Paris. The Sun Also Rises was also my introduction to the world of bull-fighting and I was quite confused. I despised the sport, but Hemingway's descriptions and love for it bled through the pages so that I couldn't but help my own fascination.
    Bierschneeman likes this.
  7. Bierschneeman

    Bierschneeman Well-Known Member

    Wow, that's so rare, everyone hates both of these. I feel like we are kindred spirits now.
    Cool, so last year I read my first hemmingway.

    I think it's pretty neat how you were going through the classics of over drought decadent high class society like gatsby and Hemingway . I was slumming it through the beatnik works like burroughs, kerouac, and jumping into hunter s Thompson, clockwork orange and various decayed society literature.

    We went in two different directions in high school.
    Boreas likes this.
  8. Bierschneeman

    Bierschneeman Well-Known Member

    I'm missing the word when
  9. Diziet Sma

    Diziet Sma Administrator Staff Member

    Oh, Anna! I believe @Boreas and I have discussed Anna somewhere in this forum...

    It shows how, as a reader, you are shaped by many factors, but as a young reader, family influence and literary culture of your country of birth do have a strong impact on you...
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  10. Bierschneeman

    Bierschneeman Well-Known Member

    There seems to be less buttons here, than BFB. Most concerning I can't edit. "I am not deeply entrenched in Russian literature " is supposed to read 'NOW'.
  11. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    Yeah, the Beatnik literature I never got around to exploring except for a couple of books. But you know, I don't think the Lost Generation and the Beatniks were that different. I mean, stylistically and in terms of topics and setting, sure. But they both had this restless undercurrent of unfulfilled potentials and somewhat strong nihilistic attitude to life. They just came one generation apart. The perdue writers were suffering from the shock of WWI and the cruel, cold new reality of a mechanised world. The Beat Generation was dismayed by the abject cruelty of WWII and the holocaust, and saw first hand the Enlightenment ethos of science and technology transformed into the most highly efficient form of mass murder. Which is why the Beatniks seemed (to me) to be overtly looking for some form of spiritual fulfillment. Both generations were psychologically displaced. Also, I think you can trace the literary roots of both groups to the decadent and pessimistic fin-de-siècle literature of Europe.
    Weird, the 'edit' button should be at the bottom of your post to the right of your name.
  12. Bierschneeman

    Bierschneeman Well-Known Member

    Beautifully stated. Yeah I think it could be said they share roots, also saying that the lost generation you were reading , we're the inspiration for the beatnik (and HST) authors I was reading.

    Thematically the same, but delivery was different. IMHO the beatnik were raw, emotional, and vulgar in describing the dismay and ugliness around them. The lost were poetic in describing it, first writing as if the elegant gilding of the high society life awe inspired them, later in the same novels revealing the cold ugly truths about its hollowness.

    IMHO of course.
    Boreas likes this.
  13. Christophe

    Christophe Full Member

    Jean Giono: The song of the world
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky: The Brothers Karamazov
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky: Crime and Punishment
    Chaim Potok: The Chosen
    Chaim Potok: My name is Asher Lev
    Hermann Hesse: The glass bead game
    Hermann Hesse: Narcissus and Goldmund
    Thomas Mann: The magic mountain
    Thomas Mann: Doctor Faustus
    Albert Camus: The plague
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  14. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    Never heard of Chaim Potok, but I've read all the others except for Doctor Faustus and The Glass Bead Game (which I had planned to read last year, but postponed it) and The Song of the World. But by strange coincidence, I bought a couple of Jean Giono works some months ago. One of them is the original novel from which one of my 16-year old self's favourite historical romance films was based, The Horsemen on the Roof with Juliet Binoche. It's on my Kindle right now! The other is just a short story, but apparently a very famous one, "The Man Who Planted Trees".
    Christophe likes this.
  15. Christophe

    Christophe Full Member

    Potok is to me the most "human" or humane writer I ever read, and it's really hard to explain why.
    The man who planted trees is a wonderful tale.
    I have never seen The horseman on the roof, I will have to check that one out.
    I think the Glass bead game is for Hesse what The magic mountain is for Mann: his opus Magnum.
    kenubrion likes this.
  16. Boreas

    Boreas n log(log n) Staff Member

    I'll check him out.
    I constantly hear that. The most visionary, ambitious and dense of his works. Also his only science fiction.
    I haven't seen it since my teens. I bought it on VHS and I instantly loved it! Maybe it's time for a re-watch, but this time I'll read the book first.
  17. Christophe

    Christophe Full Member

    Concerning Giono: I think that in Song of the world he has one of the most extraordinary writing stiles ever. As if he invented a new language to tell this story.
    I read it in French and in the Dutch translation. I don't know what the English translation is like, but if you can read it in French I would very much recommend that you do. Someday I will get the English edition to compare the translation to the original text.
    Boreas likes this.
  18. JamceWilliam

    JamceWilliam Full Member

    Thanks for this collection. I am looking for the interesting books. this collection gives me a great idea. Thnks again
  19. Safari Bob

    Safari Bob Well-Known Member

    1. The Lord of the Rings - Tolkien
    2. The Talisman - Scott
    3. Beowulf
    4. Chesapeake - Michener
    5. The Idea of the Holy - Otto
    6. Inside the Atom - Asimov
    7. Sacred and Profane - Eliade
    8. Cold Dish - Johnson
    9. The Return of the Native - Hardy
    10. The Cat Who Could Read Backwards - Lilian Jackson Braun
  20. kenubrion

    kenubrion Well-Known Member

    You're welcome JamceWilliam. The two others are Malazan Book of the Fallen by Steven Erikson, and The Red Knight by Miles Cameron. If I hadn't forgotten them, they would be numbers one and two on my list. But anyway thanks for the compliment.

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