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thespaceinvader
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by thespaceinvader »

Finished the Red Canary. As decent as I remembered.

Then read, cover to cover, Consider Phlebas, by Iain M Banks, for the first time, in about 2 days. Very good book, not unexpectedly. Top-drawer sci fi/space opera stuff.

Currently reading Cityboy by Geraint Anderson. Investment banking is disturbing and scary.
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Erlend
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by Erlend »

Jared Diamonds Collapse - How Societies choose to fail or succeed. Takes a while for to read it --, Since I'm only 15 and not English the english is a bit advanced for me, but I'll get through it :)

eventually..
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by Hulavuta »

Finished Starship Troopers a while ago. Liked it as much as the movie, if not more. The movie was good for being action-y and epic, but the novel I liked because of it's more thought provoking. I really didn't like how he kept switching to different squads and being with different people every chapter or so, but I guess (I've never really been in the army myself, so I'm just guessing) that that's more realistic.

Started on Catch-22. So far my favorite part is when Yossarian is trying to find out why Orr used to put crab apples in his cheeks and keeps getting extremely literal and/or answers that are right, but not what he's looking for (i. e. they were more comfortable than putting horse chestnuts in his cheeks).
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by Velensk »

I can not say I was too impressed by the Starship Troopers movie, especially not the troopers themselves. Lacking the training, armament, and attitude they have in the books they seem to think that zerg rushing an enemy (that practically is the zerg) with hand guns is a good idea. Also, at the very least the books make it clear that the bugs are a sentient and highly intelligent enemy with technology about on par with the humans (dumb animals don't build space ships).
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by Hulavuta »

Yeah I was confused in the movie why they didn't make any tanks or anything. At least in the book they had power armor (which basically makes them like tanks).

I also liked how the bugs showed how a communistic society could work well, if all the members were selfless and worked together. Also they could shoot. They shoulda been able to shoot in the movie.

But at the very least, I found out that the marauder from StarCraft is a reference to the book.
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by thespaceinvader »

The Starship Troopers movie is so notoriously crappy and different from the book that it seems likely to many that it was, in fact, one of those cases where a completely different movie script was re-drafted slightly to make it fit with some IP the studio bought the rights to...
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by Hulavuta »

I agree. Honestly I think it's entertaining, but a popcorn flick and nothing more. I mean, why give Johnny the "robot" arm fixup treatment when there are people missing their whole legs in the room before? He wasn't even any higher ranked than anyone else at this point, so that's basically ruled out...

Also, my garage has a sensor that makes it stop when a person is under it. A space ship door doesn't have one? They could have at least made her fall out of the ship or just get caught in a fire, instead of something that stupid...

And now I'm done complaining about the movie. I'd highly recommend the book to anyone, if anybody wants to read it.
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by Kaddo »

thespaceinvader wrote:The Starship Troopers movie is so notoriously crappy and different from the book that it seems likely to many that it was, in fact, one of those cases where a completely different movie script was re-drafted slightly to make it fit with some IP the studio bought the rights to
And there's a general consensus that the director hated the source material, because the human society as Heinlein describes it (the Citizen Federation is basically 'Sparta in space') gets distorted beyond all recognition.
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by cookie »

I'm reading the Airhead series by Meg carbott.
Has anyone else read it?
I'm currently up to the 2nd book. It's a light read and I quite like it
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by thespaceinvader »

Currently reading a new author - Chris Evans. The book is called A Darkness Forged In Fire, from the Iron Elves trilogy. Thus far (a chapter or two into the first book) it's pretty good. Not really had time to form a solid opinion yet.
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by Myrien »

Lois Lowry - The Giver. Well written and certainly a fun and easy read, but I often had the impression it was 1984 for children. The organisation of the society and aspects clearly almost copied from the 1984, like the speakers, lead to this impression, There wasn't much that set it apart from most other dystopic books, but I guess that it's certainly worth reading for someone new to the genre or who doesn't want anything very new.
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by thespaceinvader »

Finished the first two books of the Iron Elves. And I have to say, I've been thoroughly impressed, and they get a hearty recommendation from me. I only haven't finished the trilogy because the library didn't have the third one in when I picked them up.

I'm impressed, because they're well-written, well-imagined, and interesting. The core question is a fascinating one - what happens when you take a traditional pseudo-medieval fantasy, and add 500 or so years? What if the industrial revolution happened in a middle-earth-like environment? How do Victorian-esque empire-building, colonialism and muskets mix with nature-magic, elves, dwarves and orcs.

Overall, a very interesting couple of books.

Currently reading King Rat by China Mieville. Unsurprisingly very good.
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by Velensk »

TSI: I've seen many books that use the concept you described but most of them took it in very different ways. Some of them merely use it as a setting (like the adjective metal noun series of mysteries), others use it as a reason to have magic in what is mostly a strait-forward period story (like the Goblin Moon and it's sequel the Gnome Engine). In what way do the books you describe make use of this trope?

To be on topic, I havn't been reading a lot lately but over the past few weeks I've read a couple. Scot McClouds Understanding Comics (essentially an essay on the comic book medium in comic book format) was an interesting read. Also attempted a book by the creator of Conan in his alternate Earth setting (or at least, I think it is intended to be an alternate Earth). I was having a bit of a hard time swallowing the race origin/rigid typeing and the historian in me was amused by the Brittians, the Picts, the Gaels, the Celts, and the Vikings joining into an alliance agains the Romans and the King of Atlantis showing up to provide the Vikings with the King they demanded as their fee into the alliance.
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by thespaceinvader »

I think it's the take on Victorian English colonialism that interest me.

But in a sense, the setting is less important than the skill with which it, and the characters, are described. The author does a very solid job of not information-dumping, of revealing character growth and setting details in small, tempting, tantalising bits rather than all at once.

A small example, is the habit of the Dwarves of the setting of chewing crute - analogous to tobacco, but some kind of rock, which deposits metal on the teeth and makes it dangerous for the dwarf in question to use a musket, because of the way in which the setting trains its musketeers to bite the ball from the end of the cartridge, pour out the powder, and then use the cartridge as wadding. The teeth can strike sparks, and blow off the poor dwarf's head. So the dwarf in question uses a different weapon which works in a different way. But this is all inferred and barely discussed, left mostly to the reader's imagination - and it should be, because it's common knowledge in the setting, and therefore infodumping it would have felt really artificial. A skilled author can make good on a setting.
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Re: What are you reading right now?

Post by Limabean »

Dan Simmons, Hyperion. Not much to report so far. Remindsd me vaguely of Foundation, only darker. Solid sci-fi, which is good because I haven't been reading much besides old favorites recently and this is the first "new" book i've found to really interest me.
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