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- -Lauren- -
06-27-2008, 02:34 AM
I love books.
books books books.

but I need some more recommendations.

I am in love with Chuck Palahniuk's works.. I've read Invisible Monsters, Fight Club, Diary, Haunted, Choke, Survivor, and just got Lullaby and Snuff.

But I can't just rely on one author to read all summer. I'm interested in reading more by Ken Kesey, Ray Bradbury, and some other authors.

Can anyone with similar reading interests give me some recommendations? The selection is so vast that it's hard to narrow down what I really want to go out and buy to read. I don't like libraries, for some odd reason. I would love it if some of you would give me some ideas, I'm desperate for new books.

T-6005
06-27-2008, 03:47 AM
For Ray Bradbury, I'd definitely recommend the obvious ones, like Fahrenheit 451 and The Martian Chronicles. Something Wicked This Way Comes is also pretty kickass, and if you're looking for something you can pick up and put back down at will, you can get The Illustrated Man, which is mostly a collection of short stories.

If you're into Palahniuk AND Bradbury, I suggest trying out Bret Easton Ellis - particularly Lunar Park and Glamorama. American Psycho I'd give a miss to. It's just not as good as the others. I haven't read any of his really early stuff like Less Than Zero, but I've heard it's good. He's got that whole distorted look on our lifestyle that I've always liked in authors, which is why I imagine him to be similar to a Palahniuk-Bradbury marriage.

Otherwise I'll always recommend Vonnegut - Cat's Cradle, Slaughterhouse 5, Sirens of Titan, that whole thing, and again, if you're just looking for something you can pick up and put down, he's got a few collections of short stories. I think Welcome to the Monkey House and Bogombo Snuff Box are the two, while Hocus Pocus reads kind of like that as well.

medi01
06-27-2008, 03:51 AM
i suggest you watch films instead...its easier and alot quicker:D

wheelchairman
06-27-2008, 05:09 AM
What Thibault meant to say, and what I'm saying is

"Robert Jordan and his Wheel of Time series could easily last you all summer and they're totally worth it."

WebDudette
06-27-2008, 05:37 AM
I've read Choke, Survivor, Snuff, and Rant by Chuck. Out of those Choke (which is being made into a movie) and Snuff are pretty good. Survivor is great, and Rant just makes most books I've read seem sub-par.

Mota Boy
06-27-2008, 05:50 AM
Ever read any Philip K. Dick? He's got the sci-fi genre of Bradbury with twisted imagination of Palahniuk. Plus, his works all short stories spiced up with the rare novella, so they're perfect for reading one at a time, outside.

Also, I'd suggest picking up a book by Seattle author Tom Robbins - any book really - and seeing how you like him. I'd suggest avoiding "Jitterbug Perfume" as your first, as it's a bit long and possible to get bogged down in, but his style of writing shows a twisted genius that sucks you in. Perhaps start out with "Half Asleep in Frog Pajamas" just because it'll be the first book you've ever read that's written entirely in second person, and that's something you've gotta cross off the list at some point.

Oh, and Snow Crash. Read Snow Crash.

Edit - I just remembered in the shower - if you're interested in Ken Kesey, read The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Tom Wolfe's account of his wild time with the Merry Pranksters. And if that only furthers your interest in that place and that era, follow it up with Hell's Angels by Hunter S. Thompson. Both books have intros so damn good that the rest of the book can't hold up prose-wise, but the stories are absolutely fascinating - reports from the front lines at the birth of counterculture. And what I love is that both coincide at the meeting of the Hell's Angels and the Kesey Clan, from each others' perspectives.

wheelchairman
06-27-2008, 06:34 AM
Yeah I really enjoyed Hell's Angels. My cousin Tom Lincoln apparently is mentioned somewhere in the Electric Cool-Aid Acid Test (something about the font he patented, Lincoln Gothic.)

As far as Ken Kesey goes he only has two books that people considered worth reading. Both are really good, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and Sometimes A Great Notion. I really loved Sometimes A Great Notion, it's something of a masterpiece however you really don't realize it until the book ends. It's well done.

Right now I'm planning on reading Charles Bukowski's book Women.

Rag Doll
06-27-2008, 08:00 AM
i recommend this to everyone and my mens likes palahniuk and also enjoyed this, soooo.

jesus' son - denis johnson. many short stories about one individual. the writing is beautiful, but the stories are, for the most part, pretty fucked up. car crashes, voyeurism, working in an old age home, etc.

JohnnyNemesis
06-27-2008, 08:02 AM
Oh, how weary I am of Chuck Palahniuk.

Anyway, read:

Rule of the Bone by Russell Banks
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz (the best book I've read in the past decade)
Beloved by Toni Morrison
Notes of a Native Son by James Baldwin
The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien
Break Any Woman Down by Dana Johnson

Yes.

Jakebert
06-27-2008, 09:33 AM
The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test was one of my favorites of last summer.

So far this summer I've read

What Happened by Scott McClellan (pass, interesting to start with, but gets dull and repetative. Plus he's kind of a Bush apologist),
Chariot of the Gods? by some German guy whose name I can't remember (good book, but nerdy ufo topic), and
Why I Am Not a Christian by Betrand Russel (good book of essays)

jacknife737
06-27-2008, 02:33 PM
Nick Hornby - Long Way Down,

A little dark, but funny, a great read. About a group of people who are contemplating committing suicide and meet on a rooftop by chance.

- -Lauren- -
06-27-2008, 09:05 PM
….Otherwise I'll always recommend Vonnegut -.

I started to read Cat’s Cradle, but got distracted this year. I hadn’t read it very much, and had a book report due. I like reading by my own pace, with no deadline. So I did my report on a book I already read. I forgot to mention that I was interested in Vonnegut, I knew I was forgetting someone.


i suggest you watch films instead...its easier and alot quicker:D

go burn on a stake. movies are great, but books are much more necessary.



"Robert Jordan and his Wheel of Time series could easily last you all summer and they're totally worth it."

I will look into it.


Ever read any Philip K. Dick? He's got the sci-fi genre of Bradbury with twisted imagination of Palahniuk.


sounds like my kind of book. I’m really excited to read this.



As far as Ken Kesey goes he only has two books that people considered worth reading. Both are really good, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and Sometimes A Great Notion. I really loved Sometimes A Great Notion, it's something of a masterpiece however you really don't realize it until the book ends. It's well done.


I was forced to read One Flew … for my American Literature class. I did not want to read it, considering my loathing for book deadlines. I decided I would read it on my own time. And I will check into the other one.



jesus' son - denis johnson. many short stories about one individual. the writing is beautiful, but the stories are, for the most part, pretty fucked up. car crashes, voyeurism, working in an old age home, etc.

sounds amazing.



Anyway, read:

Rule of the Bone by Russell Banks
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz (the best book I've read in the past decade)
Beloved by Toni Morrison
Notes of a Native Son by James Baldwin
The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien
Break Any Woman Down by Dana Johnson

Yes.

I will trust you. Isn’t The Things They Carried about war? If so…then meeeeeh maybe. I’m not a huge fan of war stories.



The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test was one of my favorites of last summer.

So far this summer I've read

Chariot of the Gods? by some German guy whose name I can't remember (good book, but nerdy ufo topic), and
Why I Am Not a Christian by Betrand Russel (good book of essays)

I will take a good look into these, I’m really digging The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, since more than one person has recommended it.


Nick Hornby - Long Way Down,

A little dark, but funny, a great read. About a group of people who are contemplating committing suicide and meet on a rooftop by chance.

MMMM YES. YES. YES.

EDIT: thank you all for taking the time to give me suggestions, now there is an abundant selection of books I will possible read and like. if you think of any more, please let me know!

WebDudette
06-27-2008, 09:07 PM
I recently tried to read Cat's Cradle. I made it maybe 40 pages in, it is rather boring so far. The only Vonnegut book I have read at this point is Slaughter-House Five, maybe I should have started with some thing different.

JohnnyNemesis
06-27-2008, 09:08 PM
I will trust you. Isnít The Things They Carried about war? If soÖthen meeeeeh maybe. Iím not a huge fan of war stories.

It's been read as such, but it's more an autobiography of a man who faught in a war. Of course war inevitably dominates the narrative, but it isn't really a "war story" as much as it is a story of a conflicted dude who's fighting in a war.

My ex-gf called it a war story for people who don't like war stories, but I personally still don't feel that it's a war story.

Rag Doll
06-27-2008, 09:10 PM
The Things They Carried was beautiful. And I went into it thinking I would hate it. Anything but. There were only 2 chapters/sections of chapters I didn't like, but otherwise...wow. It was great.

- -Lauren- -
06-27-2008, 09:38 PM
Alright, I will trust you both and read it.

I also like fantasy, so I loved The Looking Glass Wars. The last two Harry Potter books were phenomenal. I've heard Hard-Boiled Wonderland and The End of the World by Haruki Murakami was really good.

Mota Boy
06-27-2008, 10:45 PM
I wasn't a huge fan of Cat's Cradle myself. I much preferred Slaughterhouse Five. Cat's Cradle is a bit more twisted, however.

- -Lauren- -
06-27-2008, 10:53 PM
I started Cat's Cradle. It was hard to get into because he talked a lot about his religion, which of course, was made up for the book.

I think I got 40 pages through it and stopped because it had to be returned and did not want to do it for a book report because I didn't have enough time. This is why I dislike libraries.

coke_a_holic
06-27-2008, 11:43 PM
Cat's Cradle wasn't as good as Breakfast Of Champions, which I would recommend as a good place to start with Vonnegut.

This summer, I read Catch-22 again, which I thoroughly loved again, though it still gets really confusing at points because of the way it's written. I'd recommend it to anyone because it's a funny book and it's awesome, though just hard to really break into. It takes place during World War II, but... it's not really a war novel, it's too funny to be.

I also read Freakonomics, which warped my view of everything ever. It was awesome, but it's a non-fiction book about... economic viewpoints used to explain non-economic phenomena. His use of data to explain things like sumo wrestling, crime, and crack is... fucking cool.

I would recommend Stephen Colbert's I Am America (And So Can You!) for being so unnecessarily hilarious. It's a fast read, and I found myself giggling quite a bit as I read it.

Also, The Sheltering Sky by Paul Bowles was a breathtaking novel, it was really great; he kinda went along with the whole counterculture movement, so it's in that vein, too.

And, if you haven't read it yet, The Great Gatsby is a fun, short read, and the Jesus imagery is pretty epic.

- -Lauren- -
06-28-2008, 12:43 AM
I actually didn't like The Great Gatsby. Well, what I DID read of it that is... it was another book I had to read for school. I hate being forced to read books in school, especially if I'm also supposed to have an "outside" reading book.

Maybe I'll give it another try.

I'm currently reading Requiem For a Dream and am LOVING it. Of course, I should read more by Hubert Selby Jr. It's fantastic, and I'm on like... the third chapter. I recommend it highly.

Tizzalicious
06-28-2008, 12:59 AM
I finished The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger last week, and I loved it.

killer_queen
06-28-2008, 01:36 AM
I think you should go with Rick's and Thibault's recommendations. Last month I bought the Illustrated Man and Break Any Woman Down and I finished both of them in one day. They are great books. So I guess they wouldn't recommend something boring.

If you like spy stories I'd gladly suggest John Le Carre's books. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold is easily his best and the most well-known book. And I've never seen anyone who didn't like it.
And there's Mary Gaitskill, who is a very talented woman with amazing stories. But they are also very disturbing so I'm not so sure if it's a good book for sunny summer days.

Fatally Yours
06-28-2008, 03:01 AM
I'm currently reading a book called "Twilight" by Stephanie Meyer. It's really absorbing so far. I'd recommend it :)

Mota Boy
06-28-2008, 08:53 AM
This summer, I read Catch-22 again, which I thoroughly loved again, though it still gets really confusing at points because of the way it's written. I'd recommend it to anyone because it's a funny book and it's awesome, though just hard to really break into. It takes place during World War II, but... it's not really a war novel, it's too funny to be.Mike, check out Imperial Life in the Emerald City by Rajiv Chandrasekaran. It's a nonfiction account of the occupation of Iraq in its first few months, and while it's written more as vignettes of life in the country rather than a single plotline, it's fucking awesome. It's a real life Catch-22, as absurd and mind-bending as anything out of Heller's mad mind. You have to read it as a dark comedy in order not to throw it down in outrage, but then it's hilarious.

Little_Miss_1565
06-28-2008, 09:33 AM
I also like fantasy, so I loved The Looking Glass Wars. The last two Harry Potter books were phenomenal.

Oh ho! If you are looking for a break from the "I met a girl. I drink a lot. Now I will write about fucking the girl I met" of Bukowski and want something along the lines of what I quoted of you, check out Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. I picked it up because I went on a major Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series bender earlier this year and wanted some more of that fine British fantasy with funny bits.

Just kidding about Bukowski. Okay, I'm not. :) I just get really bored with him. Every book of his is the same. Actually I can't remember if anyone actually mentioned Bukowski or if it was just Pahlaniuk, but the two of them melt together in my mind. I liked Fight Club but that's more of the exception rather than the rule for me.

BUT, if you like super violent crazy fucked in the head shit, you need to check out Wanted by Mark Millar. It's a graphic novel, and I use "graphic" as a modifier meaning "holy fucking shit that's a lot of gore and violence" and also that it's a comic book. It was turned into a movie of the same name starring Angelina Jolie and James McEvoy, but the movie totally pussied out and made the storyline all sensitive and shit. I saw it last night and it's not much like the book at all, really.

The Search Button
06-28-2008, 09:37 AM
Frankenstein- Mary Shelley

Gulliver's Travel - Jonathan Swift

Two books that cinema have destroyed.

Mota Boy
06-28-2008, 11:52 AM
Mike, check out Imperial Life in the Emerald City by Rajiv Chandrasekaran. It's a nonfiction account of the occupation of Iraq in its first few months, and while it's written more as vignettes of life in the country rather than a single plotline, it's fucking awesome. It's a real life Catch-22, as absurd and mind-bending as anything out of Heller's mad mind. You have to read it as a dark comedy in order not to throw it down in outrage, but then it's hilarious.Holy shit, I know someone in this book. I mean, he has his own heading in the index and everything! I knew he was in Iraq, but I didn't know that, at 24 with no experience in the region, he was one of the top advisers to the viceroy! I'm about to go into a detailed account of his missteps. This adds a whole new dimension to the absurdity and unreality. "When I first met him... I thought he was a spy." HA!

wheelchairman
06-28-2008, 01:03 PM
If you like Chuck Palahniuk you should check out Rant by him. It's a great story, an Oral History.

T-6005
06-28-2008, 02:46 PM
What Thibault meant to say, and what I'm saying is

"Robert Jordan and his Wheel of Time series could easily last you all summer and they're totally worth it."
I never recommend fantasy to girls.

Alright, I will trust you both and read it.

I also like fantasy, so I loved The Looking Glass Wars. The last two Harry Potter books were phenomenal. I've heard Hard-Boiled Wonderland and The End of the World by Haruki Murakami was really good.

Clearly I should have, though. The Wheel of Time is probably my favorite series of books ever. It's easily the greatest fantasy series ever. By far.

I make a point of reading the first 11 books at least once a year.

JohnnyNemesis
06-28-2008, 03:02 PM
I met a girl. I drink a lot. Now I will write about fucking the girl I met"

The people who like this kind of boring bullshit are the kind of people that make me want to leave NYC forever.

T-6005
06-28-2008, 03:10 PM
If you like that sort of crazy stuff, make a point to check out Kiss Me, Judas by Will Christopher Baer.

If you can find it, that is. I found my copy in a Malaysian supermarket and have never seen another.

Betty
06-28-2008, 03:35 PM
Well, I guess since I'm slow, this will mostly be reiterations.

I will second Tom Robbins. I read "Still Life With Woodpecker" and absolutely adored it and am looking forward to reading more. I won't even try to describe the style (bizarre to some degree), but try a couple chapters and see if it hooks you.

For Vonnegut, I haven't read too many of his novels (well, I've only read Slaughterhouse Five), but if you're having trouble getting through a book, I read "Welcome to the Monkey House" and it's the greatest ADD book since it's a collection of short stories and they're mostly all good and you don't get a chance to get bored. I read it on a plane actually, and usually on planes I read a few chapters of my book and then pass out, but I think I read about 3/4 of this book all in one sitting.

Nick Hornby is another author I've been hooked on lately. I read High Fidelity first and LOVED it. "About a Boy" was also good. I read "Long Way Down" and I'd say that's my least favourite by far, so I personally wouldn't recommend that one. I mean, it's okay, but he writes it from the perspective of various characters, and the characters are all kind of losers (in a bad way - as opposed to the protagonists in the two previously mentioned novels), so I feel that takes away from the book since the narrators aren't as insightful as they could be. And his other novels are just better.

Finally, I'll recommend a new one: Douglas Coupland. Again, I've only read one book (All Families are Psychotic), and it was quite enjoyable. And I know he has a bunch of other books that got great reviews that I haven't gotten around to yet. Plus, he's Canadian (woo!).

Endymion
06-28-2008, 06:30 PM
If you like that sort of crazy stuff, make a point to check out Kiss Me, Judas by Will Christopher Baer.

that, the contortionists handbook, house of leaves, and geek love. amazon is your friend, lauren.

Little_Miss_1565
06-28-2008, 09:25 PM
I loved House of Leaves! Except the ending, but whatevs. And I second Geek Love. Everybody run out and read it.

nieh
06-28-2008, 09:51 PM
Now I will write about fucking the girl I met" of Bukowski and want something along the lines of what I quoted of you, check out Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. I picked it up because I went on a major Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series bender earlier this year and wanted some more of that fine British fantasy with funny bits.

I actually recently picked up my first Terry Pratchett book for exactly the same reason, but I had no idea he worked with Neil Gaiman on anything. I've been meaning to check Gaiman out at some point as well but I'm not a very heavy reader so it'll probably be a while before I get to anything of his.

- -Lauren- -
06-28-2008, 10:53 PM
I'm currently reading a book called "Twilight" by Stephanie Meyer. It's really absorbing so far. I'd recommend it :)

meeeeh, isnít it like a vampire romance story? all of my girl friends are reading itÖ I donít mind romance as a side story, but I donít want it to be the main thingÖ for example, as movies go, I donít like chick flicks.


If you like Chuck Palahniuk you should check out Rant by him. It's a great story, an Oral History.
yeah, I havenít read Rant yet. Itís on my to-do list, of course, along with finishing Snuff and Lullaby, and reading Stranger Than Fiction and Fugitives and Refugees.


I never recommend fantasy to girls.


Clearly I should have, though.

Öand why donít you?


that, the contortionists handbook, house of leaves, and geek love. amazon is your friend, lauren.
YES IT IS! my co-worker suggested Geek Love to me because she also loves Palahniuk and thought I would enjoy it.

--I am also surprised nobody has suggested Augusten Burroughs yet. I havenít read Running With Scissors yet. I saw the movie, but havenít read it yet.

Fatally Yours
06-29-2008, 02:35 AM
meeeeh, isn’t it like a vampire romance story? all of my girl friends are reading it… I don’t mind romance as a side story, but I don’t want it to be the main thing… for example, as movies go, I don’t like chick flicks.

Not usually my thing either but I'm enjoying it :)

T-6005
06-29-2008, 05:02 AM
Öand why donít you?

Mostly because most of the girls I know don't like fantasy and/or don't read all that much. Whereas most of what I read is what I'd call filler fantasy - random fantasy books I pick up at Chapters and read through and then forget about and never read again.

The Wheel of Time is different, though. I'd love it even if I hated fantasy.

Mota Boy
06-29-2008, 08:43 AM
I actually recently picked up my first Terry Pratchett book for exactly the same reason, but I had no idea he worked with Neil Gaiman on anything. I've been meaning to check Gaiman out at some point as well but I'm not a very heavy reader so it'll probably be a while before I get to anything of his.I just read "American Gods" a few weeks ago. It's good, but not as good as I'd hoped. The story is pretty good and the world he creates is wildly flush with possibility and subtlety, but the prose is fairly dry. Also, it's long as hell. I'd suggest picking up a book of short stories by him. In a way they annoyed me as it comes across as if he feels he has to run over all the clichť subject matter of fantasy, but it's still pretty good, especially for someone not ready for the full commitment that the novel entails.

nieh
06-29-2008, 09:34 AM
Would I be better off checking out his stories or does he have any graphic novels that would be more interesting? I know he's known for both.

Mota Boy
06-29-2008, 11:11 AM
Would I be better off checking out his stories or does he have any graphic novels that would be more interesting? I know he's known for both.Oooh, he's supposedly done awesome work on... the Sandman series? I think? Go for the graphic novels. I haven't seen 'em, but they sound hellagood. The short stories are pretty good, but the graphic novel would probably be more culturally relevant and would actually tell a cohesive story.

nieh
06-29-2008, 11:32 AM
Yeah, he's known mostly for the Sandman series but has done a lot of other stuff too. The problem is I tend to like more self-contained stories when it comes to comics so if he has anything (even Sandman stuff) in graphic-novel format as opposed to having to go through a bunch of random issues I think I'll try to pick that up first.

WebDudette
08-28-2008, 08:01 PM
Can someone recommend me some good contemporary that my High School library might have?

I really liked the Chuck Palhanuik stuff I read. Slaughter-House Five and 1984 stuff were both fantastic. Thats the type of stuff I'm looking for.

Right now I'm reading The Sun Also Rises by Hemmingway and I just started Notes from the Underground. Neither one are exactly what I'm looking for.

Good comedies too, I enjoy those.

coke_a_holic
08-28-2008, 08:59 PM
Read more Vonnegut, you fucker. No, but really, Cat's Cradle, Breakfast Of Champions, and Slapstick are fantastic, as is anything else he's done. You can't go wrong with him.

Also, if you haven't read The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (I'm not sure if it's assigned reading anywhere else, but it really should be), that's a great one. Also, a lesser-known, but great book I recommend often is The Sheltering Sky by Paul Bowles. If you can find it, it's a real gem, I loved it.

Betty
08-28-2008, 10:45 PM
Pilz, I will refer you again to my recommendations. I think I mentioned Vonnegut, Tom Robbins, Nick Hornby, and Douglas Coupland, and rambled on a bit about them a few posts ago.

wheelchairman
08-28-2008, 10:52 PM
I just read Next by Michael Crichton, a good book and he's a very good author.

jacknife737
08-28-2008, 11:03 PM
Also, if you haven't read The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (I'm not sure if it's assigned reading anywhere else, but it really should be), that's a great one.

I had to read it when i was in grade 11 for high school, but I agree, a great read.


I think I mentioned Vonnegut, Tom Robbins, Nick Hornby, and Douglas Coupland, and rambled on a bit about them a few posts ago.

Highlighted for relevancy. People need to stop what they are doing and go read Long Way Down.

sKratch
08-29-2008, 07:15 AM
Read more Vonnegut, you fucker. No, but really, Cat's Cradle, Breakfast Of Champions, and Slapstick are fantastic, as is anything else he's done. You can't go wrong with him.

You can go wrong with Vonnegut: Read too many of his books in a row. I loved just about everything I read by him (either Cat's Cradle or Player Piano I didn't like too much, but I forget which). I'd like to reread Hocus Pocus and Slaughterhouse 5 because I read them very early in my Vonnegut career. HOWEVER! If you read too many Vonneguts in a row, his style becomes very... I don't know, apparent? It can be a little repetitive--but not as bad as reading too many Pahlanuiks in a row.

Also, if you want to spend far too long reading a book, Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace was fucking phenomenal.

Betty
08-29-2008, 09:55 AM
Highlighted for relevancy. People need to stop what they are doing and go read Long Way Down.

Good work on the additional plug. But I believe I may also have mentioned that I think High Fidelity and About a Boy were both much better reads. And Songbook made me feel unashamed of my love of pop music, and Rod Stewart.