Tacticular Cancer: We'll have your balls

  1. Welcome to rpgcodex.net, a site dedicated to discussing computer based role-playing games in a free and open fashion. We're less strict than other forums, but please refer to the rules.

    "This message is awaiting moderator approval": All new users must pass through our moderation queue before they will be able to post normally. Until your account has "passed" your posts will only be visible to yourself (and moderators) until they are approved. Give us a week to get around to approving / deleting / ignoring your mundane opinion on crap before hassling us about it. Once you have passed the moderation period (think of it as a test), you will be able to post normally, just like all the other retards.
    Dismiss Notice

redding is teh hard; How about a Books thread?

Discussion in 'Codex Public Library' started by kingcomrade, Dec 1, 2005.

  1. Djadjamankhgender: ⚧ Liturgist

    Djadjamankh
    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2009
    Parrots:
    1,252
    Location:
    Where the place? Upon the heath.
    Click here and disable ads!
    Fair enough. :)

    I was just a bit confused by the reference to the downbeat ending. If you want to read the original, there are a few translations around. The most readable one IMO is in The Tale of Sinuhe and Other Ancient Egyptian Poems by RB Parkinson. It's also fairly widely available.
     
    ^ Top  
  2. Make America Great Again Darth Roxorgender: ⚧ Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis, Hater of Eternity

    Darth Roxor
    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Parrots:
    1,866,858
    Location:
    Djibouti
    I've just finished Lem's 'The Investigation'. Good stuff. But in all honestly... I wish I knew what the fuck happened in that case :(

    I guess the 'meaning' was that while everyone was looking around for some sort of 'motive' or 'regularity', there was, in fact, none, and everything was attributed to blind coincidence? Well, whatever. That final conversation with the inspector (whose name was, interestingly enough, Sheppard) was incredibly awesome. Heck, all the conversations with the inspector were good. So was the scene where Gregory 'meets' himself in the mirror.

    Good stuff.

    Chain of Chance (who the fuck translated that) is next :thumbsup:
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    ^ Top  
  3. Awor Szurkrarzgender: ⚧ Arcane In My Safe Space

    Awor Szurkrarz
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2009
    Parrots:
    21,891
    Codex 2012
    At The Mountains of Madness - the graphic novel. Quite nice. Graphics were pretty nice and I think they used fragments of the original novella for dialogues and narration, which gave it the characteristic Lovecraftian weirdness :D . Especially an expository dialogue referencing the history written in Necronomicon :D .
     
    ^ Top  
  4. Atomkillagender: ⚧ Arcane

    Atomkilla
    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2011
    Parrots:
    631
    Finished Sword of Destiny by Sapkowski.

    Hard to say... It's good, definitely, but the premise is a bit different. Some of the stories are partially written in first person, with Geralt's own thoughts put forward, which seems kinda weird to me. If I recall correctly, there wasn't stuff like that in The Last Wish. Oh, well. Still a good book.

    Looking forward to Blood of Elves.
     
    ^ Top  
  5. Erebusgender: ⚧ Arcane

    Erebus
    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2008
    Parrots:
    3,577
    Finished Peril at End House by Agatha Christie. I usually really enjoy her novels and I hardly ever guess more than a sliver of the truth before the ending revelations.

    This time, however, the book completely failed to fool me. The first twelve pages were enough for me to be fairly sure of who the culprit was going to be. I didn't even need to meet most of the suspects or to know who was going to be killed.

    I mean, seriously, a smart murderer missing his target four times ?

    After the murder actually occurred, I was sure I had the right idea. But it took ages for Poirot to finally get a clue. He really seemed unusually dense in this story (he even failed for a very long time to realize that "Maggie" might be short for "Magdala").
     
    ^ Top  
  6. Erebusgender: ⚧ Arcane

    Erebus
    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2008
    Parrots:
    3,577
    Finished another Christie : Taken at the flood.

    The setting is very interesting : it's England just after WWII, people have a hard time getting by and soldiers have trouble reinserting into society.

    The ending is amazingly immoral.

    Rejected by the woman you love because she finds you too bland ? Try strangling her. Everything will turn out OK.
     
    ^ Top  
  7. malko_sunderveregender: ⚧ Learned

    malko_sundervere
    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2010
    Parrots:
    476
    Project: Eternity
    I hate to say it, but no. I read her Liveship Traders series and quit about halfway through the second book; she creates a world that pulls you in and great characters, and then sort of gets bored and continues with miles of filler around the time she finishes developing *one* character.
     
    ^ Top  
  8. SCOgender: ⚧ Arcane In My Safe Space

    SCO
    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2009
    Parrots:
    16,082
    Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    Hobb is a sadist, she believes that protagonists must suffer to get to the end (even if she generally lets them live and have a "reward" at the end).

    Try the forest mage trilogy to see this almost self parodied (the ending of the first farseer is this too).



    I prefer other authors.
     
    ^ Top  
  9. Lonely Vazdrugender: ⚧ Pimp my Title

    Lonely Vazdru
    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    Parrots:
    6,042
    Location:
    Agen
    Currently reading Simon Morden's " Equations of life".

    [​IMG]

    It may have one the shittiest covers ever but it's still the closest I've read to Richard Morgan's "Altered Carbon" yet. It's like a european Morgan in a Post Apoc setting.
    If you liked "Altered Carbon" you should give this a try.
     
    ^ Top  
  10. Rhallegender: ⚧ Augur

    Rhalle
    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Parrots:
    2,196
    Read The Old Man and the Sea, never having read it.

    Apparently it was really celebrated in 1951 when it came out, and was the book responsible for Hemmiway's Pulitzer a few years later. Critics a decade or so after, however, didn't think very highly of it, and I have to agree with them.

    It wasn't really what I expected; it was a far more external affair than I had assumed-- it didn't take place inside the Old Man's psyche in the way I had presumed it would. However, the influence of Joyce in that respect is palpable; although Hemmingway isn't all that good at 'doing' Joyce. He's perhaps not even as good as Steinbeck at it, and certainly vastly inferior to Faulkner.

    And the extreme un-aesthetic, unadorned style arguably grates as much (or more) than someone who writes with too much art.

    A few of his short stories are going to be the only thing that Hemmingway will be remembered for, as a kind of 20th C. Lost Generation inferior Chekhov or something.
     
    ^ Top  
  11. ghostdoggender: ⚧ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron

    ghostdog
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2007
    Parrots:
    9,482
    So, whenever I try to read fantasy lately I hit the wall of "bleh". "Left Hand of god" was a crappy novel and "Song Of Albion" was a bit too stale and academic for my taste.

    I read good stuff about David Gemmell's Legend. Is it any good ?
     
    ^ Top  
  12. Lonely Vazdrugender: ⚧ Pimp my Title

    Lonely Vazdru
    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    Parrots:
    6,042
    Location:
    Agen
    I loved it but it's very basic. To me Gemmell was always like some kind of modern days Howard. His characters are very blunt and the stories are pretty simple yet they always remind me of Conan and reading Gemmell makes me feel like like I'm 16 again.
    "Legend" is the first book I've read by him and it's probably my favourite still, recommended.

    Titanium cast main character + fort Alamo in Barbarianland can't go wrong anyway.

    Too bad he passed away, no more stories. :(
    Plus I really would have wished to meet him.
     
    ^ Top  
  13. Satori (original)gender: ⚧ Arbiter

    Satori (original)
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Parrots:
    6,992
    Currently going through Offenders, Deviants, or Patients?: Explorations in Clinical Criminology by Herschel Prins 2nd Ed but I think I should update to the 4th.
    Also The Man who Mistook His Wife for a Hat (thanks Destroid and Kingston)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Man_Wh ... _for_a_Hat


    The first is good but is more geared towards the British Isle readers but the second is a good read for any one.
     
    ^ Top  
  14. SoupNazigender: ⚧ Arcane Patron

    SoupNazi
    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2010
    Parrots:
    4,348
    Location:
    DX:HR Fanboy Central
    Serpent in the Staglands
    Pretty much everything by Sacks is great, even if it's more of a "fun fact:" than proper case studies. I recommend Musicophillia to anyone who considers music to be a significant part of their life.
     
    ^ Top  
  15. JoshTheDennisgender: ⚧ Novice

    JoshTheDennis
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2011
    Parrots:
    4
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    I've been reading copious amounts of work written by and about Ludwig Wittgenstein lately - specifically his biography written by Ray Monk and the Philosophical Investigations. Does anybody else here dig on any of the same pretentious old shit-eating philosophy that I do?
     
    ^ Top  
  16. DraQgender: ⚧ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    DraQ
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Parrots:
    29,511
    Location:
    Chrząszczyżewoszyce, powiat Łękołody
    I've heard it's good.

    Haven't read it, but read The Burning House.
    Nice book to have at hand when demolishing dualismfags, BTW.
    :smug:
     
    ^ Top  
  17. MasterSmithFandangogender: ⚧ Arcane

    MasterSmithFandango
    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2008
    Parrots:
    7,228
    Wow... I have to disagree with you on this. Hemingway packs so much into a single word... I prefer his style to say Fitzgerald, who seems so disconnected with reality and it comes through in his language. Hemingway is the highbrow author for the working man. I won't say he's the greatest, but there is something to be said for the wonderful simplicity of his writing.
     
    ^ Top  
  18. Mangoosegender: ⚧ Arcane Patron

    Mangoose
    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2009
    Parrots:
    15,120
    Location:
    I'm a Banana
    Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity
    Science, Strategy and War: The Strategic Theory of John Boyd

    :monocle:
     
    ^ Top  
  19. grotsnikgender: ⚧ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    grotsnik
    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Parrots:
    1,650
    Was halfway through Riddley Walker a few days ago when its author died. Damn.

    If you think pidgin/phonetically-written fiction is self-indulgent, you'll probably hate it, but I'm having fun with it even if it's a hard slog to get through at times, and the mud-filled, rainy south-eastern flats of England are perfect for post-apocalyptica. Some great lines, too.

     
    ^ Top  
  20. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    Parrots:
    30,394
    Location:
    Cell S-004
    MCA Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2
    Christmas present comics review time!

    Alright, this Christmas I got Crécy, Squadron Supreme: The Pre-War Years (the follow-up to Supreme Power by Strachzynski), and Iron Man: Extremis.

    Crécy was the best of the three, with great b&w art that had spirit and expressiveness to it, and writing that made me laugh out loud every other page. Great comic, and delightfully politically incorrect. Also, it didn't outstay its welcome, and was instead a rowdy and snarky (and utterly hilarious) narrative by an English bastard archer about English stuff and how much he hates the French and Welsh. And Normans are a bunch of liars. It's not awesome in a historical fiction sense, like say Ghost Dance (not published outside of Finland) or Anabasis (not published outside of Finland, yet), but it's absolutely hilarious commentary on history with great art.

    4/5

    Squadron Supreme for the majority kept up the good standards of the comics before it, which is a great thing. However, the story still moves at a snail's pace, and the African superhumans were a bit too much of a Deus Ex Machina and political strawman. At least it helped that the Blur still pointed out that the Africans were wrong to blame all their problems on the West alone, and that he doesn't like people like them or Nighthawk. Speaking of which, Nighthawk is easily the most awesome character in Supreme Power now that Hyperion has been put on the back-burner duty. Angry scary black panther Batman hooah! Also, Gary Frank is one of the best artists in the business. BUT THE FUCKING COMIC ENDS RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THINGS SO NOW I HAVE TO GET THE CROSSOVER STORY WITH THE ULTIMATES FFFFFFFUUUUUUUU!!!! Also, it's short.

    3/5

    Iron Man: Extremis is the weakest Warren Ellis comic I've read so far. The art is great as concepts and line-art of the Iron Man suit, but the colouring just makes it seem flat and clinical, devoid of action or a sense of life to it. Similarly, faces lack expression, and there's very little in panels outside of the characters, most often with barely-there backgrounds. Granis is also way better at drawing the Iron Man armor than people, and he draws a whole lot more people than Iron Man. The plot is rather bland (Western Civilization Defense Squad member gets powers instead of posting on GD), despite having real cool sci-fi Ellis stuff (like how the Extremis super-formula "works", it's really believable and legit sounding), and boils to Tony Stark JUST UPGRADING FUCKING AGAIN. It also doesn't help Tony Stark is still probably one of the most unlikeable mainstream superheroes I can think of. PS: I also found where one pair of Long Gloves in Champions Online came from.

    2/5





    I've also been reading Morrison's book, Supergods, and it's terrific. Not only is he a very entertaining writer with a lively style, clearly one of the finest writers of all time, he also has lots of profound things to say in his chronicle of superhero meta-history and characters' natures (showing he reads a fuckload). A particularly good one is his first two chapters, where he talks about the origins of Superman and Batman, and why they are the two coolest superheroes already when they came out, but why they're fundamentally so different right down to their creative origins.

    5/5


    EDIT: I've also got American Fantastic Tales: Terror And The Uncanny and Alan Moore: Storyteller. I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream is a short story, right? Because if it's just an excerpt in American Fantastic, I'm going to explode out of butthurt.
     
    ^ Top  
  21. SoupNazigender: ⚧ Arcane Patron

    SoupNazi
    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2010
    Parrots:
    4,348
    Location:
    DX:HR Fanboy Central
    Serpent in the Staglands
    I'm never going to read that book, but could you elaborate on the Superman and Batman thing please?
     
    ^ Top  
  22. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    Parrots:
    30,394
    Location:
    Cell S-004
    MCA Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2
    Basically, they're diametrically opposed politically. Superman is the working man as a hero, who stands up for the common man before returning to their ranks like a socialist John Henry with a happy ending. He smiles, he signifies the future and solidarity. And he's very down to earth. He is an individual with special powers, but he chooses to rather live like the Everyman, not elevate himself above the masses he so loves.

    Batman on the other hand can be a superhero because he's an owner, the capitalist superhero. His world has already gone to hell and he's just slowing down the slide one leather-clad fist at a time. While Superman's enemies are for the most part upper class, Batman himself is upper class fighting lower class gangsters enroaching on the city he builds. In his secret identity, he's not the modest, mild-mannered and unassuming Clark Kent, Batman's the sleek, luxurious, decadent and sexy Bruce Wayne. He's dangerous, he's dark, he's sexy, he's edgy, he's what people fantasize being rich meaning to be. And you know he must be batshit insane to be doing what he does, which only makes him even sexier.

    Superman is the hero we want to be there to save us all at the end of the day, the science fiction messiah from another planet, who represents all the best we can aspire to be and who will never let us down he believes in the best in all of us. Batman is the man we'd fantasize of being, living a jet-set lifestyle of danger and adventure that we can overcome by simply being one bad motherfucker, and an unending string of dangerous and mentally unstable sexy fetish babes craving your Bat-Cock from Catwoman to Poison Ivy to Vicky Vale (this is an important contrast: Batman is surrounded by grade AAA ass n titties 24/7, Superman would never even think of flirting with someone other than Lois Lane).

    It's what makes the whole day and night aspect work, the fact they have this sole single fundamental part they agree upon: Killing is always wrong.


    As for creative side, Superman was a flash of lightning, a magical creation more than the talents of his creations, made by two enthuasiastic Jewish geeks. With Bob Kane and Billy Finger, the game is different: Bob Kane carefully calculated Batman by combining ideas from here and there, and worked the whole thing like a businessman (notice how the writer, Billy Finger, is never mentioned in credits for creating the character). And it adds to the myth of both.


    tl;dr: Superman is the hero we aspire to be, Batman is the hero we fantasize of being.
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    ^ Top  
  23. Hoodoogender: ⚧ It gets passed around. Dumbfuck

    Hoodoo
    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2009
    Parrots:
    6,671
    isnt supergods the comic where cthulu fights mushroom man fights G.I joe fights vishnu while warren ellis does his narration thing?
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    ^ Top  
  24. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2008
    Parrots:
    30,394
    Location:
    Cell S-004
    MCA Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2
    No, that's Supergod (no plural). I've posted it here, it's a decent enough read that starts out strong buts ends up with Ellis realizing that the good superhuman is gonna save the world and he can't have that shit happening in his edgy comic so he needs to asspull something to stop that from happening because his British fungi would get curbstomped by Krishna.

    Supergods: What Masked Vigilantes, Miraculous Mutants, And A Sun God From Smallville Can Teach Us About Being Human is Grant Morrison's book (book, not a comic) about superheroes as a genre and phenomenon, and why they're special among all forms of fiction and formats.
     
    ^ Top  

(buying stuff via the above buttons helps us pay the hosting bills, thanks!)