Recent Books that aint 'Arry Potter.

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Post by Mobiesque »

Just finished Oryx and Crake by Margret Atwood. I'm rather taken with her authory skills after reading this. A Tastefully done future imperfect speculative fiction featuring the end of the human race in a cloud of corporate controlled genetic engineering, jumping back and forth between the protagonists present day life and the chain of events leading to the 'outbreak'. Top shit.
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Post by Roark »

I read her Blind Assassin. Not bad. A bit rich, though. It was thick with...uhh... literary flavour. Like a big serving of literary mudcake.
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Post by Grotocult »

I liked The Handmaid's Tale a lot. At the beginning it was incredibly claustrophobic, like being trapped in the mind of some old Victorian maid. Then it got addictive. Definitely going to read Oryx which has been sold as something of a sequel to it.

Currently reading: job applications.

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Post by Mobiesque »

I read a review of her newest on the guardian a few days back. Reckon it'd be a good reason to get back into non-fiction. This one is about the historical nature of debt. From what the review said it covers modern day national debt, the origins of 'paying your debt to society', moral debt and the incongruousness of the term "owing it to yourself", among a million other snippets that originally began as a series of lectures.

I'm very impressed by her massive, throbbing bibliography I must say. Oryx and Crake was 2003 and if memory serves her first publication was 1967. I'm hopping into one of the short story books my mother has tonight, should be interesting.
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Post by Mobiesque »

Oh, and if anyone is in a position of brokering a copy of 'Campaigning With Grant' by Peter Minack, I'm accepting bids of any reasonable level. It'll save me stealing it from National Library.
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Post by Nam Tsao »

Dipping into American Politics and Society by McKay, enjoyihg thoroughly Rohan Gunaratna's 'Inside Al Qaeda'. A bunch of books on Ethics and moral philosophy for the uni.
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Post by Mobiesque »

Did Good Bones by Atwood. A collection of very short stories. Some of them were good, (Big Red Hen, and Ode to Stupid Women) but a great deal of it was poorly disguised feminist blather.
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Post by Dress Barn »

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very creepy

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Post by Redundant Retard »

Hank";p="987238 wrote:next up will be the old norse eddas
Those are really really boring. I'm just warning you. Check out M. R. James if you haven't already. You'll like his ghost stories, I'm sure.
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Post by Grotocult »

currently reading
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Post by Redundant Retard »

erutlucorgga";p="1006507 wrote:currently reading
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It's crap.
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Post by lambchop »

MMM!! Read LADY ORACLE By Margaret Atwood.

So good! We did it for year 10 English. Story about a fat girl.
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Post by Welcome to nowhere »

Nymphomania: A History

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I'm writing a movie about a sexually delinquent 15 year old ^_^

Actually learned a great deal about it, good read.
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by Welcome to nowhere »

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Jane Jensen said she read this so I went and read it. It totally reminds me of John Saul's Blackstone Chronicle's.

Talks about patients with weird mentalities and having phantom limbs and such. I really enjoyed it actually.
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by touchy feely »

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the 2000 mccain essay in particular is an interesting read
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by ChickenMug »

need. want. NOW.
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by Mary Hinge »

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This should be compulsory reading, particularly for schoolies.
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by Welcome to nowhere »

Mary Hinge wrote: The Future of Life
You ***MIGHT*** enjoy this book then...

The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals

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The great edifice of variety and
choice that is an American supermarket turns out to rest on a remarkably
narrow biological foundation comprised of a tiny group of plants

that is dominated by a single species: Zea mays, the giant tropical grass
most Americans know as corn.
Corn is what feeds the steer that becomes the steak. Corn feeds the
chicken and the pig, the turkey and the lamb, the catfish and the tilapia
and, increasingly, even the salmon, a carnivore by nature that the fish
farmers are reengineering to tolerate corn. The eggs are made of corn.
The milk and cheese and yogurt, which once came from dairy cows
that grazed on grass, now typically come from Holsteins that spend
their working lives indoors tethered to machines, eating corn.
Head over to the processed foods and you find ever more intricate
manifestations of corn. A chicken nugget, for example, piles corn upon
corn: what chicken it contains consists of corn, of course, but so do
most of a nugget’s other constituents, including the modified corn
starch that glues the thing together, the corn flour in the batter that
coats it, and the corn oil in which it gets fried. Much less obviously, the
leavenings and lecithin, the mono-, di-, and triglycerides, the attractive
golden coloring, and even the citric acid that keeps the nugget “fresh”
can all be derived from corn.

To wash down your chicken nuggets with virtually any soft drink in
the supermarket is to have some corn with your corn. Since the 1980s
virtually all the sodas and most of the fruit drinks sold in the supermarket
have been sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS)—after
water, corn sweetener is their principal ingredient. Grab a beer for your
beverage instead and you’d still be drinking corn, in the form of alcohol
fermented from glucose refined from corn. Read the ingredients on
the label of any processed food and, provided you know the chemical
names it travels under, corn is what you will find. For modified or unmodified
starch, for glucose syrup and maltodextrin, for crystalline
fructose and ascorbic acid, for lecithin and dextrose, lactic acid and ly-
sine, for maltose and HFCS, for MSG and polyols, for the caramel color
and xanthan gum, read: corn. Corn is in the coffee whitener and Cheez
Whiz, the frozen yogurt and TV dinner, the canned fruit and ketchup
and candies, the soups and snacks and cake mixes, the frosting and
gravy and frozen waffles, the syrups and hot sauces, the mayonnaise
and mustard, the hot dogs and the bologna, the margarine and shortening,
the salad dressings and the relishes and even the vitamins. (Yes,
it’s in the Twinkie, too.) There are some forty-five thousand items in the
average American supermarket and more than a quarter of them now
contain corn, just one single diseased susceptible, genetically identical, variety of corn at that.
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by Welcome to nowhere »

Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind
By: V. S. Ramachandran, Sandra Blakeslee
With a foreword By: Oliver stack

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In these unsettling tales from a neuroscientist every bit as quirky as the more famous Oliver Sacks, Ramachandran sets out his beliefs that no matter how bizarre the case, empirical, strikingly simple testing can illuminate the ways brain circuitry establishes "self."

Some of the cases:

- A woman paralyzed on the left side of her body who believes she is lifting a tray of drinks with both hands offers a unique opportunity to test Freud's theory of denial.

- A man who insists he is talking with God challenges us to ask: Could we be "wired" for religious experience?

- A woman who hallucinates cartoon characters illustrates how, in a sense, we are all hallucinating, all the time.
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by Mary Hinge »

Wilson does talk about the staggering quantity of grains that go towards putting food in front of first-worlders, as they are primarily meat-eaters. He makes the comparison with Indians; 10 billion Indians consume around the same volume of grains as 2.5 billion Americans, as so much of the grains get converted into livestock and poultry.
(He cites Americans, I doubt whether Aussies would be far behind that)

But he also talks about population explosion, catastrophic human interference with natural environments, biodiversity, and the general short-sightedness of people as they fuck up everything with (often wilful) ignorance, and puts them all together. He doesn't preach or patronise, he's just a really smart, fascinating guy who talks common sense in a beautiful way.
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by Roark »

Just read "Master and Commander" by Patrick O'Brian, who is a brilliant historical writer. The language is almost painfully rich and, if you can struggle through the immense terminology and lingo, he delivers a ripping yarn.
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by Mary Hinge »

Nah. If you like it, it must be bollocks.

:)
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by Roark »

I think the words would be a bit big for ya, love. :lol:
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by Mary Hinge »

Roark wrote:I think the words would be a bit big for ya, love. :lol:
eh, what?

*brandishes spectacles*
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Re: Recent Books: Last book you read (that wasn't harry potter)

Post by Welcome to nowhere »

has anyone read a Tom Robbins book before?
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