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Author Topic: What are you reading  (Read 287964 times)
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absurdexposition
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« Reply #165 on: December 07, 2012, 08:56:42 PM »

Hawking's A Brief History of Time

also picked up Camus' The Plague yesterday
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« Reply #166 on: December 11, 2012, 02:07:43 AM »

I'm finishing the last part of "Into that darkness" by Gitta Sereny, following HongKongs suggestion earlier in the thread. Very good read... sometimes the attention to detail (who said what to whom where, who can verify it, etc.) is a bit slow to get through, but it also comes across as very convincing due to the amount of work put into it. I like Serenys philosophy of histories,  accepting that the stories of different people sometimes contradict each other, not all events can be proven with 100% certainty and it's the broad picture that matters. Makes me want to re-read "The short summer of anarchy" by Hans Magnus Enzensberger, a biography of Durruti told without "official sources" and only through personal accounts from different people who were involved with him in some way.
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mfr
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« Reply #167 on: December 12, 2012, 04:44:42 AM »

Dennis Cooper: The Marbled Swarm
Aleister Crowley: Gems from the Equinox
The Writings of Austin Osman Spare
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redswordwhiteplough
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« Reply #168 on: December 18, 2012, 02:52:41 PM »

Arthur C. Clarke: Childhood's End
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HongKongGoolagong
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« Reply #169 on: December 26, 2012, 12:11:12 AM »

Lisa Carver: _______ (book with no title)

Ms Suckdog's take on 'victim literature' with a huge number of additional and pretty good paintings by her as full colour illustrative plates. No gossipy sexy light tone and good humour this time, and no bitching about her ex-husbands either: this is a very disturbing and intense book about buried memories from childhood resurfacing, about not knowing what was real anymore, about how a painting project led to a diagnosis of Dissociative Identity Disorder. You really don't like the sound of her dad at all by the end. But like her, the reader is in quicksand: what was real? Why did Rollerderby readers point out that the zine's content and preoccupations had all the hallmarks of someone sexually abused as a child when she couldn't remember much about it until the age of 42? It's not at all like the usual exploitative painful lives memoirs (I burst out laughing in bookshops when I see titles like "Dance For Your Daddy" and "Ma, He Sold Me For A Few Cigarettes" at the sheer prurient tastelessness): it's a very unsettling, dark and murky read and she puts a sentence together pretty good.   
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Levas
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« Reply #170 on: December 26, 2012, 07:13:58 AM »

Free software. Free society. Selected Essays of Richard M. Stallman.
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Jordan
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« Reply #171 on: December 30, 2012, 04:45:02 AM »

Lisa Carver: _______ (book with no title)

Ms Suckdog's take on 'victim literature' with a huge number of additional and pretty good paintings by her as full colour illustrative plates. No gossipy sexy light tone and good humour this time, and no bitching about her ex-husbands either: this is a very disturbing and intense book about buried memories from childhood resurfacing, about not knowing what was real anymore, about how a painting project led to a diagnosis of Dissociative Identity Disorder. You really don't like the sound of her dad at all by the end. But like her, the reader is in quicksand: what was real? Why did Rollerderby readers point out that the zine's content and preoccupations had all the hallmarks of someone sexually abused as a child when she couldn't remember much about it until the age of 42? It's not at all like the usual exploitative painful lives memoirs (I burst out laughing in bookshops when I see titles like "Dance For Your Daddy" and "Ma, He Sold Me For A Few Cigarettes" at the sheer prurient tastelessness): it's a very unsettling, dark and murky read and she puts a sentence together pretty good.   

Read this one a couple of months ago. Can't really say anymore than you did. As usual, or at least often, good writting. Her recent Vice Magazine piece about her son Wolf was pretty heart wrenching. The Wolf: The Artist From... book has a really good piece by Lisa Carver as well.


Just finished the annotated and expanded version of The Atrocity Exhibition by Ballard. Never got my hands on the Re/Search edition so I was pretty excited for this, and not let down at all. Puts a lot of stuff in context, in other Ballard works as well. This book also features the excellent short story The Smile. Would highly recommend it to anyone who's only read the original edition, like myself.

About to embark upon Ezra Pound: a close-up by Michael Reck.
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ARKHE
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« Reply #172 on: December 31, 2012, 02:35:12 PM »

December:

Olympos, by Dan Simmons. Second part following Ilium. Masterful SF, mixing up Shakespeare, Homer and quantum mechanics on a truly epic scale even though they haven't left the solar system (unless you count the departures into parallel universes). One of the true masters of modern science fiction, in my opinion. Highly entertaining.

Gilgamesh epic. Thought about picking up the Iliad but looking at the sheer weight of it I decided to go with this most recent annotated translation of the even older epic, which is much thinner. It is unfortunate that some the most exciting parts  have been destroyed through the ages, but still exceptional reading once you get into the repetitive writing style. Strange that it hasn't been filmed yet, as far as I know, the dynamic between Gilgamesh and Enkidu would make a great Hollywood partnership.

Eurock: the Second Culture. Mentioned this in the prog/RIO-thread, but worth mentioning again. Collection of the US fanzine Eurock, from 1973 and forwards: snapshots of the European cosmic/progressive rock movement seen from the perspective of a US fanatic. Worth reading alone for the dismissive attitude towards the recently departed flower power era & the imbecile worship of it that the mainstream rock press was (is!) succumbed in. Fuck that five year old shit, screw Pink Floyd, let's listen to Amon Düül II and Magma. First issues are simple presentations of several bands, discussing their discography up to date (Tangerine Dream have just signed to Virgin records and will release a new album in early 1974, Wolfgang Flur has just joined Kraftwerk etc). It's old news since it was published in 2002, but still available from Amazon.
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acsenger
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« Reply #173 on: January 01, 2013, 10:22:47 PM »

Quote
Eurock: the Second Culture

How much of this book deals with Zeuhl & RIO? I've seen the index for it on Amazon and a lot of the French bands & musicians were there, but I'm curious how big a part of the book is about them (bands like Magma, Offering, Weidorje, Patrick Gauthier, Bernard Paganotti etc.). Also curious about the presence of RIO in the book.
I'm asking cause I don't like all of Krautrock and wouldn't want to spend $40 (I think that's what the book costs at Amazon) plus postage unless I really needed the book. Thanks!
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ARKHE
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« Reply #174 on: January 03, 2013, 12:57:03 PM »

Acsenger: there's a lot more Kraut than Zeuhl and RIO, but there is at least one issue that's only Zeuhl - mind that I've only read up to 1976 this far so that stuff hasn't really happened yet in the chronology of the book. If you don't like Kraut rock at all, you might want to skip the book, though I think there are few resources from that time that wrote anything at all about the RIO movement for example, or the bands/musicians you mention. Looking at the index, there's a LOT of Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze being mentioned, but also hundreds of bands I've never heard of.
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Levas
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« Reply #175 on: January 12, 2013, 12:43:52 PM »

Almost finished listening to Dostoyevsky - Crime and Punishment . I guess no comments are needed.

Reading Stanislav Grof - Books of the dead. I'm returning to him from time to time. very interesting psychoanalytic material.
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Andrew McIntosh
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« Reply #176 on: January 12, 2013, 12:48:37 PM »

Almost finished listening to Dostoyevsky - Crime and Punishment . I guess no comments are needed.

Took me two reads to get it, and I guess there are issues with translation and language. I seem to recall reading, although I can't remember where right now, that it's rather dense style was criticised at the time. In any case, I came 'round to it, you just have to go the hard yards and slog it out.

EDIT - listening to it being narrated would, in fact, make it easier, no?
« Last Edit: January 12, 2013, 12:53:31 PM by Andrew McIntosh » Logged

"Unless suffering is the direct and immediate object of life, our existence must entirely fail of its aim." - Schopenhauer.
Levas
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« Reply #177 on: January 12, 2013, 01:01:06 PM »

Well, the style is dense and overall the book is intense, weird, moralizing and depressing. Truth is i never liked listening to audiobooks, but I was bored with listening to music while going somewhere etc. so tried it. I would've never read 6 tomes of that book I guess..
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ARKHE
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« Reply #178 on: January 13, 2013, 06:53:55 PM »

Finished Don DeLillo's Point Omega yesterday. Short & nice, more like two 60-something pages short stories that are subtly connected. Very open-ended, leaves most questions pleasantly unanswered.
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HongKongGoolagong
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« Reply #179 on: January 22, 2013, 12:35:10 PM »

Will Self - Walking To Hollywood - this is a terrible book which would not have been published if written by an unknown, it's going in the bin.

Re-read JG Ballard - Running Wild - his last flash of brilliance for me after the unbeatable 70s Atrocity Exhibition to Unlimited Dream Company run of what might be called pro-psychopath literature. A fantasy of coddled suburban kids imploding into a private secret language that very much resembles industrial culture - pornography, concentration camp fetishism, senseless violence. Amazing short book.

I would like to read "Westley Allan Dodd: The Victorian-Renaissance Evidence" by Thomas A Green having been tipped off to its obscure self-published existence by Mr Sotos. Author's blurb: "In 1990, nine boxes of corrosive, criminal evidence travel from the courtroom of Westley Allan Dodd's execution sentencing to the warehouse for the Washington State Archives in Olympia. They harbor a bizarre secret that could unravel the mystery of Dodd's murderous motive, heretofore, recognized by most as simply, “Evil." The trial is gruesome in its details, leaving psychologically savaged Jurors beyond the healing of counseling. The boxes remain untouched for 20 years, too loathsome to resurrect, or, reconstruct. The author, as a Forensic Psychology graduate student working on his Master's Degree, is informed that he is the first to request them. Could the Victorian-Renaissance reproductions in Dodd's collection of child erotica hold the skeleton key to the inspiration for Dodd's brutal desire to have sex with the dead bodies of children? What role did the Angels play? “What are young angels, if not dead children, returned to life?” But the introduction you can read on Amazon tells another story.
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