What are you reading?

A place to discuss your favorite authors and poets, Christian and secular

Re: What are you reading?

Postby Panda4christ:3 » Tue Sep 23, 2014 3:24 pm

So I bought a couple books last week and...

Currently reading:

Mort by Terry Pratchett - I love absolutely everything about how Death is portrayed in this book <3. And the characters are fantastic~

Looking For Alaska by John Green - Just...so much love for this <3

Finished:

Cut by Patricia Mcormick - Wow, just wow. Everything about this was just really...good. I think it's my favorite of the books I got XD Definitely going to be reading more from this author in the future :)

The Dead & Buried by I honestly don't remember. Nor do I care to - The only book I've read so far that I really didn't like. It had me going I guess, but only because the culprit only had a few appearances and almost no motive.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby the_wolfs_howl » Fri Sep 26, 2014 3:33 pm

The Last Chinese Chef by Nicole Mones

This was just a really good story about an American writer for a food magazine who goes to China to interview a Chinese-American gourmet chef. Not only does it have succulent descriptions of really interesting-sounding foods, it also uses this innocuous premise to explore a lot of fascinating differences between American and Chinese culture, as well as the expat and TCK cultural tensions present in those who don't quite fit into either. The only problem I had with this book was that it would make me hungry unless I read it while eating :lol:
You can find out things about the past that you never knew. And from what you've learned, you may see some things differently in the present. You're the one that changes. Not the past.
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"There's a difference between maliciously offending somebody - on purpose - and somebody being offended by...truth. If you're offended by the truth, that's your problem. I have no obligation to not offend you if I'm speaking the truth. The truth is supposed to offend you; that's how you know you don't got it."
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Sundown » Tue Oct 14, 2014 8:54 pm

Inkheart by Cornelia Funke. I haven't read this book in years, and it is still every bit as amazing as it was when I first read it.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby the_wolfs_howl » Fri Oct 17, 2014 5:59 pm

I Heard the Owl Call My Name by Margaret Craven

A short, simple story about a vicar who is sent to a tiny, out-of-the-way Native American village in Canada. As he preaches for several nearby villages and becomes involved in their daily life, he learns about their culture and slowly realizes that he no longer fits in the outside world. An interesting little story, though I prefer writing styles that delve more explicitly into the characters' thoughts and feelings (this book felt sort of Hemingway-ish in that respect).
You can find out things about the past that you never knew. And from what you've learned, you may see some things differently in the present. You're the one that changes. Not the past.
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"There's a difference between maliciously offending somebody - on purpose - and somebody being offended by...truth. If you're offended by the truth, that's your problem. I have no obligation to not offend you if I'm speaking the truth. The truth is supposed to offend you; that's how you know you don't got it."
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Panda4christ:3 » Thu Nov 20, 2014 5:54 pm

Paradise Lost & Paradise Regained

I also recently finished:
Paper Towns by John Green
I'm Not Crazy (which was just...okay)
Looking For Alaska by John Green
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Jonathan » Fri Nov 21, 2014 6:46 pm

I'm reading a Comedy Book called Nightlight.
"And Jesus said unto him, 'Why callest thou me good? There is none good but one, that is, God."-Mark 10:18

"But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the son, but the father."-Mark 13:32

"Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I."-John 14:28
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby GeneD » Mon Nov 24, 2014 8:57 am

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. I decided I want to finish the series before next year March/April when I might be visiting England.

Also reading the 3rd volume of Narita Ryohgo's Vamp!.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Kaori » Mon Dec 08, 2014 6:19 pm

Reread the Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula LeGuin. The first time I read it, I was annoyed by the blatant way in which LeGuin made the narrator into such a sexist bigot, but I was impressed by the strong picture of the two countries, Karhide and Orgoreyn, with their opposing systems of government, which are pretty much opposite to each other. This time, I was just as annoyed, if not more, by the blatant sexism of Genly Ai (I see the point she is trying to make, but she is pretty much bludgeoning her readers with it), and the world-building of the two nations did not impress me so much. Some things just did not completely ring true. Also, while on an intellectual level I can sort of grasp why LeGuin wanted to make this thought-experiment about a society in which everyone can be both male and female at certain times (i.e. male sometimes and female sometimes, not both at once), which is that she was trying to make a point about sexist attitudes, this sort of "what if" question just does not interest me at all.

Finished rereading The Forgotten Beasts of Eld. McKillip at her best. It’s my third time reading this book, and I still find the moral issues worth pondering over; this time around I think that the overall message is anti-revenge, but Sybel does get to sort of have her cake and eat it too at the end, which I don’t like.

Chalice is not Robin McKinley’s best. For much of the book, the plot was a bit aimless and dragged (although there are some books that make up for not being gripping page-turners by having other outstanding qualities to make up for it, this isn’t one of them). The ending was a very typical McKinley SPOILER: Highlight text to read: magical deus ex machina. Also as expected of McKinley, there was a romance, though the amount was fairly light. So overall, the book was fairly predictable.

The Didache. At sixteen short chapters, it can be read in a single sitting easily, and that is what I did. Contains a lot of the teachings of Christ, a ton of stuff about the necessity of giving to the poor, some explicit prohibitions of murder of children, either already born or still in the womb, the instruction to fast on Wednesday and Friday instead of Monday and Thursday (“like the hypocrites”), and some specific words of prayers to be said before and after the Eucharist. Overall, it contains very pithy and valuable teaching, and I can see why it was so highly-regarded in the early Church. I think that it ought to be read by anyone who has even the remotest interest in learning what the Church was like in the early centuries.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby DecooPunk » Sat Dec 13, 2014 10:50 am

Reb and the Redcoats. This is such a cute book.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby EventualDay » Fri Dec 19, 2014 5:29 pm

I'm starting Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, as per recommendation of my friend. Haven't gotten very far but am enjoying the style.



Two questions for anyone out there: first of all, can someone give me a brief idea of what the Discworld series is about? I mean, I recognize it's a huge franchise so I don't need a lot of detail; I guess what I'm more curious about is for those who have tried to read it, was it worth your time? I generally hear positive things, but it's such a long (and ongoing) series that it seems like a big commitment.

Secondly, anyone have any YA books they really like? Genre-wise I like semi-realistic books, usually ones that aren't too dark and that maybe have an element of fantasy thrown in. YA books really help me relax because they're pretty easy reading, but lately I've gotten incredibly tired of the bad writing and plots. I know there are good ones out there. Some of what I like (which probably no one's read?) are Five Flavors of Dumb, Dragonfly (which I personally thought began terribly, but had a strong enough ending that I liked it quite a lot), novels by L.M. Montgomery...
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby GeneD » Sun Dec 21, 2014 12:32 pm

EventualDay wrote:first of all, can someone give me a brief idea of what the Discworld series is about? I mean, I recognize it's a huge franchise so I don't need a lot of detail; I guess what I'm more curious about is for those who have tried to read it, was it worth your time? I generally hear positive things, but it's such a long (and ongoing) series that it seems like a big commitment.

The Discworld books can be grouped into different, for lack of a better word, storylines or arcs, with each generally dealing with the same people and places. There are also a few more stand alone books, but there is some overlap between these and also between the main storylines.

Copying from the Discworld wiki (with my added notes):
The Rincewind books (featuring Rincewind and The Luggage and often the other Wizards of Unseen University) - Rincewind is a very unlucky (or some would say, very very lucky) wizard who generally lands in his next misadventure by having run away from the last one.

The Witches books (featuring Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg et al) - The Witches go about helping the people of rural Lancre with hard work, "headology" and if they absolutely have to, magic.

The Death books (featuring Death and Susan Sto Helit, often against the Auditors) - Death is the anthropomorphic personification of, well, death, whose job it is to take people into the next life, but sometimes he can't help but get curious about the lives they currently have.

The City Watch books (featuring Sam Vimes and the rest of the Watchmen) - The Watch are the police of the city-state of Ankh-Morpork, one of the greatest (and dirtiest) cities on the Disc. These stories often play out as a bit of police procedural, only occasionally with dragons.

The Post Office books (featuring Moist Von Lipwig and the staff of whichever service he's working for) - Ex conman Moist is tasked to revamp and revitalise several of Ankh-Morpork's public services -or else.

The Wee Free Men books (the children's Discworld series with Tiffany Aching and the Nac Mac Feegle) - Tiffany is a young witch who meets, gains the respect and friendship of, and goes on various adventures with the Wee Free Men or Nac Mac Feegle, a clan of fairies who were kicked out of Fairyland for causing fights and being drunk at two in the afternoon. Ties in with the Witches books.

Here's a reading order guide, showing the groupings and the first book for each group.
http://www.pinterest.com/pin/273523377343253086/

I know it looks a bit complicated, but the best would probably be to pick a storyline you think sounds interesting and read a few of those books in their given reading order. If you're not sure, the City Watch books might be a good place to start. I don't recommend starting with the first book published, The Colour of Magic, since it's a bit more loosely put together plot-wise than the later books and can put a person off from the whole series, which would be a terrible shame.

As for worth my time, Terry Pratchett is my absolutely favourite author ever and I have read and own almost all of the Discworld books. Feel free to ask me anything else you'd like to know. XD

On topic: I'm just over half way through both The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern and Assassin's Apprentice, first in the Farseer Trilogy by Robin Hobb.
I don't know what broke to make you like this, but I must be broken too if I'm standing here praising your destructiveness. -Rock (Black Lagoon)

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Re: What are you reading?

Postby MomentOfInertia » Sun Dec 21, 2014 4:45 pm

I'll nominate the city watch (Guards! Guards! is the first one) as a good place to start Discworld, and Wee Free Men/Tiffany Aching as a good YA series.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby EventualDay » Sat Dec 27, 2014 5:50 pm

GeneD wrote:The Discworld books can be grouped into different, for lack of a better word, storylines or arcs, with each generally dealing with the same people and places. There are also a few more stand alone books, but there is some overlap between these and also between the main storylines...



Wow that was a fantastic answer. I wasn't expecting so much detail and it was very helpful :) Also thanks, MomentOfInertia. The series looks much more understandable now!

On-topic, I'm prepping for a class next semester by reading some Shakespeare (Henry IV, to be exact). And though I really really should never admit this as an English major, I don't love Shakespeare. I don't even like him a little bit. Oops.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Sundown » Sat Dec 27, 2014 6:45 pm

An unabridged copy of Jules Verne's Around the World in Eighty Days.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby the_wolfs_howl » Sun Jan 18, 2015 5:10 pm

EventualDay wrote:On-topic, I'm prepping for a class next semester by reading some Shakespeare (Henry IV, to be exact). And though I really really should never admit this as an English major, I don't love Shakespeare. I don't even like him a little bit. Oops.

Fear not, my fellow English major! Your fate is shared by many...and really, even though everyone talks like you have to love Shakespeare or you're an uncultured swine, it's really not necessary. It depends a lot on the professor you get, I suppose, but I hated Shakespeare until I studied him in class. I thought his plots were lame and boring and awfully melodramatic, but once I was forced to study them in more depth, I realized just how ingenious he really was. He had an unparalleled mastery over the English language, so even though I still don't think much of most of his plots, I enjoy reading him just for the beautiful turns of phrase. It also really helps if you can watch the plays, rather than just read them. Things that seem stilted and awkward on the page come to life on the stage, and you realize that's really the best (if not the only) way to experience the stories. My college put on a production of A Midsummer Night's Dream, which is my least-favorite of his comedies...and I loved it! It was hilarious. If there's no other option, at least check out a movie version of the plays you're reading. Especially if it's got Kenneth Branagh in it :D
So yeah, you don't have to love Shakespeare, but you have to admit stuff like this is beautifully wrought:

To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury
Signifying nothing.



...Anyway, to get back on topic, I recently read The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson. WHICH IS ABSOLUTELY FREAKIN' AMAZING, BY THE WAY. What a wonderful end to the trilogy. It was so exciting, so suspenseful, so unexpected! Loved it. And now I'm really curious about The Alloy of Law....

I also read Death Comes to Pemberly by P.D. James, which was...less amazing. The book's only real selling point is that it's a published piece of Pride and Prejudice fanfiction. It involves a (rather lame and boring, if you ask me) murder mystery on the grounds of Pemberly several years after the events of Pride and Prejudice. I could see right through it almost from the beginning, and I'm horrible at figuring out mysteries. So I wasn't impressed.
You can find out things about the past that you never knew. And from what you've learned, you may see some things differently in the present. You're the one that changes. Not the past.
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"There's a difference between maliciously offending somebody - on purpose - and somebody being offended by...truth. If you're offended by the truth, that's your problem. I have no obligation to not offend you if I'm speaking the truth. The truth is supposed to offend you; that's how you know you don't got it."
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Thunderscream872 » Sat Jan 31, 2015 2:41 pm

Finished up Star Wars Heir to the Empire. I'll probably start Dark Force Rising soon. I also plan to start reading Star Wars Tarkin by James Luceno.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby the_wolfs_howl » Sat Jan 31, 2015 7:53 pm

I recently read John Calvin's Golden Booklet of the True Christian Life for class. And The War of Art for another class.
You can find out things about the past that you never knew. And from what you've learned, you may see some things differently in the present. You're the one that changes. Not the past.
- Ellone, Final Fantasy VIII

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"There's a difference between maliciously offending somebody - on purpose - and somebody being offended by...truth. If you're offended by the truth, that's your problem. I have no obligation to not offend you if I'm speaking the truth. The truth is supposed to offend you; that's how you know you don't got it."
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Kaori » Fri Feb 20, 2015 7:05 pm

Since I last posted in here:

Thoughts in Solitude by Thomas Merton. Very interior and based on personal experience. Basically, the only way I could confirm whether something he said about the spiritual life was true was if I have also experienced it in my own life. If not, then I don’t know whether it’s generally true but something I have just not experienced or something that is only true to his experience and not necessarily true to everyone’s experience. So it had some good thoughts here and there, but for the most part I wasn’t able to get much value of it because I had to constantly hold it at arm's length in skepticism.

Ah, but your Land is Beautiful by Alan Paton was not very good; the author bit off far more than he could chew with this one. Set in 1953, in the midst of Apartheid South Africa, it is a collection of all sorts of fragments and letters and sound bites about various political events. He tries to weave throughout the stories of some individuals and families, and in some cases he somewhat succeeds, but in trying to include so many little snapshots of so many different things and in trying to be true to the way that IRL there isn’t always a decisive ending to things, he mostly forgets to tell a story. Highly recommend reading Cry, the Beloved Country instead.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby the_wolfs_howl » Sun Feb 22, 2015 1:35 pm

I recently read Walking on Water by Madeleine L'Engle and Breath for the Bones by Luci Shaw, both of which are reflections on writing and how it relates to faith. I found Walking on Water more helpful/inspiring, possibly because it's more in line with the kind of things I like to write, and it also felt a bit more coherent. But both are good if you need some encouragement about writing or wonder how faith can interact with writing even if what you write isn't explicitly Christian.
You can find out things about the past that you never knew. And from what you've learned, you may see some things differently in the present. You're the one that changes. Not the past.
- Ellone, Final Fantasy VIII

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"There's a difference between maliciously offending somebody - on purpose - and somebody being offended by...truth. If you're offended by the truth, that's your problem. I have no obligation to not offend you if I'm speaking the truth. The truth is supposed to offend you; that's how you know you don't got it."
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Sheenar » Mon Feb 23, 2015 6:35 am

Currently reading "Oliver Twist".

Recently finished Don Miller's new book "Scary Close" --I highly recommend it. Such a good book on relationships.
"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

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Re: What are you reading?

Postby the_wolfs_howl » Mon Mar 09, 2015 11:13 am

I recently read The Supper of the Lamb by Robert Farrar Capon, a beautifully written book that uses food and cooking as a way to meditate on God and our relationship with him. It's not really like any other book I've ever read, and it made me appreciate food in a much deeper way than I ever have before. It's kind of hard to explain or describe, but I highly recommend this to pretty much anyone. Though I doubt I'll ever cook like him :P
You can find out things about the past that you never knew. And from what you've learned, you may see some things differently in the present. You're the one that changes. Not the past.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Zeke365 » Thu Mar 12, 2015 1:38 pm

I'm currently reading Scriptwriter bible 6th edition.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Lilac#18 » Sat Mar 14, 2015 9:06 pm

I've been reading Serenity Reflections and Scripture on the Serenity Prayer book. I'm using it as a stress reliever. Something that will give me peace of mind.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby GeneD » Wed Mar 18, 2015 12:49 pm

Finished Mistborn 1, The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson today. I liked it, but idk, less than I though I would... Major beef I have with it is that there are basically zero female characters besides Vin (no, ex-of-the-love-interest and random-court-gossip hardly count). I feel like I'm seeing a lot of repeat... ideas/concepts in his work, like the all-powerful ruler or the inspiring rebel leader or the uprising of the oppressed population. Sure he uses them in a different way each time, and I guess it isn't necessarily a bad thing, it just kinda distracts me while reading. I also didn't find many of the twists/"fantasy trope subversion" surprising, even when things I thought would happen, did happen but in a completely different way than I expected/were subverted. SPOILER: Highlight text to read: Like I was reading it while burning Atium and could see all the possibilities and just had to wait and see which one would be used. Not sure much of that makes sense but anyway. I liked a lot of the dialogue, at least I captured a lot of quotes, Sazed was my fav character, followed by Vin and then probably Kelsier.

I have the next two books, but I'm not good at reading related things consecutively, so started on the last Hunger Games book.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby the_wolfs_howl » Thu Mar 19, 2015 4:01 pm

Sorry you were underwhelmed, GeneD :( I thought it was awesome, but then, it was my first Sanderson book, so I couldn't really compare it to his other work. Did you at least like the battles? I think that's the best part about that series, even more than the super-cool magic system; they read like an action movie if you ask me. Especially the one where SPOILER: Highlight text to read: Kelsier fights the Inquisitor and the Lord Ruler. There are a couple more important female characters in the other two books, though I kind of doubt they'd solve the problem for you :P Personally, I think it makes a lot of sense why there aren't many female characters as the focus, since the books center around war and thievery and that kind of thing. In a society like Luthadel's, women just aren't going to be in the thick of stuff like that unless they're Allomancers. And sure, Sanderson could have put in more female Allomancers, but I don't really see a problem with it the way it is. They have bigger fish to fry than gender equality :P Anyway, Sazed is awesomesauce <3 He might be my favorite character, but I can't decide between him and Vin.


For class, I read Christian Mythmakers by Rolland Hein, which traces the history of the fantasy genre from Dante all the way to Madeleine L'Engle and some of her contemporaries. It's a good summary and analysis of the genre, though a lot of it was redundant information for me because I'm writing a huge research paper on that very topic :P
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"There's a difference between maliciously offending somebody - on purpose - and somebody being offended by...truth. If you're offended by the truth, that's your problem. I have no obligation to not offend you if I'm speaking the truth. The truth is supposed to offend you; that's how you know you don't got it."
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby GeneD » Sun Mar 22, 2015 12:35 pm

Oh yeah the action was great. I was literally imagining/picturing the SPOILER: Highlight text to read: Kelsier vs Inquisitorfight as a movie scene while reading it.
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GeneD
 
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Sheenar » Sun Mar 22, 2015 4:40 pm

Depression: Looking Up from the Stubborn Darkness by Edward T. Welch.

Currently am almost halfway through. This is the most compassionate and Gospel-centered book on depression that I have read so far. I definitely highly recommend it if you struggle with depression or know someone who does.
"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

"Since the creation of the Internet, the Earth's rotation has been fueled, primarily, by the collective spinning of English teachers in their graves."
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Sheenar
 
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby the_wolfs_howl » Fri Mar 27, 2015 10:34 am

^Definitely agree. That was a really helpful book.

GeneD wrote:Oh yeah the action was great. I was literally imagining/picturing the SPOILER: Highlight text to read: Kelsier vs Inquisitorfight as a movie scene while reading it.

I KNOW, RIGHT?! 8D I could even hear the epic soundtrack when I read the final climactic battle in The Hero of Ages <3

I recently read The Piazza Tales, a collection of Herman Melville's short stories. Some were better than others, but they were at least all more interesting and palatable than the majority of his stuff that I've had to read for this class of mine <_< My favorite by far was "The Bell-Tower," which is actually what you might call a horror story!
You can find out things about the past that you never knew. And from what you've learned, you may see some things differently in the present. You're the one that changes. Not the past.
- Ellone, Final Fantasy VIII

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"There's a difference between maliciously offending somebody - on purpose - and somebody being offended by...truth. If you're offended by the truth, that's your problem. I have no obligation to not offend you if I'm speaking the truth. The truth is supposed to offend you; that's how you know you don't got it."
- Brad Stine
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the_wolfs_howl
 
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby the_wolfs_howl » Sat Apr 11, 2015 9:22 am

For class, I read Billy Budd by Herman Melville, which was kind of depressing :/

And for another class, I read The Christian Life by Sinclair Ferguson. Sort of a practical application of doctrine, I guess. It was pretty good.
You can find out things about the past that you never knew. And from what you've learned, you may see some things differently in the present. You're the one that changes. Not the past.
- Ellone, Final Fantasy VIII

Image

"There's a difference between maliciously offending somebody - on purpose - and somebody being offended by...truth. If you're offended by the truth, that's your problem. I have no obligation to not offend you if I'm speaking the truth. The truth is supposed to offend you; that's how you know you don't got it."
- Brad Stine
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the_wolfs_howl
 
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Thunderscream872 » Mon May 11, 2015 5:58 am

I started reading Star Wars Tarkin by James Luceno. Someone had told me that this was the first book Star Wars book written after Disney took over the franchise, and previous EU was regarded as non-canon. Not sure if that's the case or not, but either way the book seems interesting so far.
"NO BLOOD! NO BONE! NO ASH!"

“I don’t take orders from anybody. If there’s something I wanna do, I do it. If there’s something I don’t wanna do, I don’t do it. That’s the dandy way to live, and I’m Dandy. Do you get it?” - Space Dandy

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