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A - Z Game: Favourite books


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A - Z Game: Favourite/Recommended books

Haven't done this for a while.

Name a favourite book or at least something you enjoyed reading - and taking Prolixic's advice - add a few words about the book - what it's about, why you liked it, etc.

Hopefully, by "Z" we'll all have some new titles to put on our TBR list.

A - The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
A wonderful classic that takes a critical look at late-Victorian moral values and New York society. I love Wharton's writing - chatty and intimate. You feel like you're sitting in midst of the characters' conversation.


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B - Beasts by Joyce Carol Oates
Innovative and moving. Really gets you involved with the characters. Takes risks in style and ideas while not leading you down a 'rabbit trail'....


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C - Consilience by Edward O. Wilson

Edward O. Wilson, a biologist, urges scientists in other fields to acknowledge the role of biology in all areas of human understanding.

It's something everyone should read.


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Das Boot - Lothar Gunther-Bucheim

Fantastic story of a U-Boat crew in the Atlantic during WW II. Based on the authors experiences you can feel the claustrophobia and smell the fear and diesel fumes.

Utterly engrossing


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Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Thomas Wolfe

Fun book about Wolfe's time with Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters. Wolfe is a great writer and this book is similar in tone to On the Road. I read it first in college, actually, in a class about the Beatles. My favorite 4 credits of my scholastic career!


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OT- Das Boot

Hello Pilgrim,

Have you seen the movie, Das Boot, by Wolfgang Petersen? Excellent movie and as authentic-feeling as you describe the book. We saw the original German version with English sub-titles.

Did you read the bookl in German or was it a translation?


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OT - Das Boot

Hello Ell

I've not seen the movie version but I have seen the extended TV series ( six 1 hour episodes) from which the movie was extracted.

I think it is the most powerful war drama I have ever watched. It was having seen Petersen's series that made me want to read the book. The series is a very faithful recreation of the book and is full of the fear and claustrophobia of the book.

The only other war series I have seen that had anything like the same intensity was the recent 'Band Of Brothers'.

The Das Boot series was in German with English subtitles. By far the better option in my opinion. I dislike dubbed films as you lose all the nuance of the original language.

As for reading books in their original language, I'm afraid I'm a typical Brit and can order a beer in several langauages but that is about all. The book was in translation but was still extremely atmospheric (in a very uncomfortable way).


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A - Z Books

A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry

Rohinton Mistry is an Indian living in Canada and has been nominated for the Booker Prize several times now. He writes about contemporary India.

'A Fine Balance' is a story of four people (a widow, two tailors and a student) who are thrown together by circumstance in 1970's India and the people and situations that caused this to happen.

An excellent tale well written. This part of the blurb on the back sums it up very well - Panoramic yet humane, political yet full of rich local detail

Just read it OK !!:)


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In the Name of Sorrow and Hope, by Noa Ben Artzi-Pelossof

Great non-fiction memoir by Yitzak Rabin's granddaughter. You may remember she delivered a eulogy at his funeral.


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Jeeves and Wooster Omnibus - PG Wodehouse.

Actually, any of the Wodehouse books are brilliant but as they are usually a very quick read the omnibus option lasts that much longer. The new Penguin edition mentioned above has three hilarious novels in it. A great introduction if you've never read any before.


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Thanks for that... I've been wanting to read some Wodehouse, but I never knew where to start. Now I do. :)
K=Koko by Peter Straub.

Friends from the Vietnam War hunt down an old army mate they think may be a serial killer. Very neat story and I can't say enough about Straub's style.


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L - Loop's Progress by Chuck Rosenthal
In my opinion, this book (part of a trilogy) is a masterpiece of "magic-realism". It's about Jarvis Loop growing up in a decaying, rust-belt town - but that's like saying that Moby Dick is a book about fishing. Beautiful, funny, tragic, and the most memorable cast of characters I've ever encountered.


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Norwegian Wood - Haruki Murakami

This is his most accessible book. His other books (that I've read) are just as good if not better although slightly weirder, but not unduly so, if you get my meaning. I'll just babble on shall I.


New Member
Double Whammy! Let's speed things up.

M- Martian Time Slip by P. K. Dick

Great sci-fi book about a lot of things, like time and civiliation and greed, and mental illness and autism.

N-Neuromancer by William Gibson

Book about artificial intelligence and technology and sex and drugs. This book was highly influential, on other writers and on technology.