IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » History, Literature, and the Arts
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Tags favorite books , recommended books

Reply
Old 13th December 2021, 11:34 AM   #841
Armitage72
Philosopher
 
Armitage72's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Rochester, NY
Posts: 6,561
Originally Posted by catsmate View Post
That sounds interesting. I read the Vlad Taltos series years ago.

The series is up to 15 books now. I just learned today that the plan is for it to end with book 19.
Armitage72 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 13th December 2021, 11:47 AM   #842
Ranb
Penultimate Amazing
 
Ranb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: WA USA
Posts: 10,445
James Blish's "Spock Must Die". Published 1970, short book of about 120 pages.

Ranb
Ranb is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 15th December 2021, 04:03 AM   #843
catsmate
No longer the 1
 
catsmate's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 26,335
Originally Posted by Ranb View Post
James Blish's "Spock Must Die". Published 1970, short book of about 120 pages.

Ranb
I read it, the best I'd said is it's OK.
__________________
As human right is always something given, it always in reality reduces to the right which men give, "concede," to each other. If the right to existence is conceded to new-born children, then they have the right; if it is not conceded to them, as was the case among the Spartans and ancient Romans, then they do not have it. For only society can give or concede it to them; they themselves cannot take it, or give it to themselves.
catsmate is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 15th December 2021, 11:44 AM   #844
Scorpion
Illuminator
 
Scorpion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 3,093
I just read ' The bird of paradise' by R. D. Laing: I found it entirely incomprehensible.
__________________
You see many stars in the sky at night, but not when the sun rises. Can you therefore say there are no stars in the heavens during the day? O man because you cannot find God in the days of your ignorance, say not that there is no God.
Sri Ramakrishna
Even in the valley of the shadow of death two and two do not make six.
Leo Tolstoy
Scorpion is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 19th December 2021, 03:12 AM   #845
Roboramma
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Shanghai
Posts: 14,988
Currently reading The Making of the Atom Bomb by Richard Rhodes. Pretty good so far: I'm only a little ways in and a lot of it is repeating subjects I know about, but the first chapter about Leo Szilard was both new to me and excellent. I'm looking forward to later chapters.
__________________
"... when people thought the Earth was flat, they were wrong. When people thought the Earth was spherical they were wrong. But if you think that thinking the Earth is spherical is just as wrong as thinking the Earth is flat, then your view is wronger than both of them put together."
Isaac Asimov
Roboramma is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 19th December 2021, 05:18 AM   #846
catsmate
No longer the 1
 
catsmate's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 26,335
Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Currently reading The Making of the Atom Bomb by Richard Rhodes. Pretty good so far: I'm only a little ways in and a lot of it is repeating subjects I know about, but the first chapter about Leo Szilard was both new to me and excellent. I'm looking forward to later chapters.
It's an excellent book, though just a little dated now.
__________________
As human right is always something given, it always in reality reduces to the right which men give, "concede," to each other. If the right to existence is conceded to new-born children, then they have the right; if it is not conceded to them, as was the case among the Spartans and ancient Romans, then they do not have it. For only society can give or concede it to them; they themselves cannot take it, or give it to themselves.
catsmate is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 4th January 2022, 02:21 PM   #847
Lennart Hyland
Muse
 
Lennart Hyland's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Sweden
Posts: 630
Recently finished with The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman and I enjoyed it. This year I feel the urge for some classics, so I'm starting with:

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas - Jules Verne
__________________
L.H 1919 - 1993 R.I.P

Unfortunately the 911truth movement web site does not allow any opinions contrary to their own, or I would have presented my views. David Scott - CTBUH Chairman
Lennart Hyland is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 11th January 2022, 07:56 AM   #848
SteveAitch
Critical Thinker
 
SteveAitch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: St Aines
Posts: 452
I am currently reading The End of Everything by Katie Mack*. I like a nice cheerful read before bed.


* Unless, of course, I am a Boltzmann Brain.
__________________
If this board is too exciting for you, try my Flickr pages. Warning: may cause narcolepsy!

Some people call me 'strange'. I prefer 'unconventional'. But I'm willing to compromise and accept 'eccentric'...
SteveAitch is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 11th January 2022, 08:40 AM   #849
DuvalHMFIC
Graduate Poster
 
DuvalHMFIC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Jacksonville, FL
Posts: 1,565
Originally Posted by SteveAitch View Post
I am currently reading The End of Everything by Katie Mack*. I like a nice cheerful read before bed.


* Unless, of course, I am a Boltzmann Brain.
I finished this a few months back, it was a very good read. Mack's enthusiasm oozes off the pages. And who would have thought she could make the end of the universe so exciting?
__________________
Ben is sick ladies and gentlemen, thats right, Ben is sick.
DuvalHMFIC is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 11th January 2022, 09:45 AM   #850
SteveAitch
Critical Thinker
 
SteveAitch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: St Aines
Posts: 452
Originally Posted by DuvalHMFIC View Post
I finished this a few months back, it was a very good read. Mack's enthusiasm oozes off the pages. And who would have thought she could make the end of the universe so exciting?
Yes, from what I've read, it's pretty good. She does get a bit too jokey at times though. Mind you, if you can't joke about the end of the universe...

She was quite good on an episode of the Infinite Monkey Cage (25th May, 2020 - should still be available on BBC Sounds, if you have access), which inspired me to get the book. There was another scientist on who also had a book on the subject out. Might try and get hold of that too.
__________________
If this board is too exciting for you, try my Flickr pages. Warning: may cause narcolepsy!

Some people call me 'strange'. I prefer 'unconventional'. But I'm willing to compromise and accept 'eccentric'...
SteveAitch is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 11th January 2022, 02:47 PM   #851
dudalb
Penultimate Amazing
 
dudalb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Sacramento
Posts: 53,355
Originally Posted by catsmate View Post
It's an excellent book, though just a little dated now.
Slighly dated, but still the best book about The Manhatten Project.
__________________
Pacifism is a shifty doctrine under which a man accepts the benefits of the social group without being willing to pay - and claims a halo for his dishonesty.

Robert Heinlein.
dudalb is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 14th January 2022, 01:43 PM   #852
The Common Potato
Critical Thinker
 
The Common Potato's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: The Scunthorpe Problem
Posts: 499
I bought Catch 22 a few years ago but only started reading it very recently. It's wonderful. It actually reminds me a little of Douglas Adams's Hitchhikers' Guide books: absurd situations that somehow make sense.
The Common Potato is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 14th January 2022, 03:05 PM   #853
theprestige
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: The Antimemetics Division
Posts: 55,818
After the third book in Melissa Scott's Silence Leigh trilogy took an unexpected and frightfully boring turn, I dropped in favor of revisiting an old read in a new format: Zodiac, by Neal Stephenson, on audibook.

It's been ages since I read it, but it turns out the narrator's voice in my head is deadpan sarcastic. The audiobook reader either isn't picking up on this or doesn't know know to deliver it. So I'm in the first few chapters, going through the phase of "is this story good enough to put up with this guy reading it to me?" So far, yes.

One interesting thing is that the story was written as a techno-thriller for the information age, but predates ubiquitous Internet, mobile phones, and certain other things we've been taking for granted going on twenty years now. So there's a certain amount of zeerust accumulating on the body of the narrative. This is fun, in a weird kind of way.
__________________
There is no Antimemetics Division.
theprestige is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 14th January 2022, 03:11 PM   #854
theprestige
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: The Antimemetics Division
Posts: 55,818
Originally Posted by catsmate View Post
It's an excellent book, though just a little dated now.
How is it dated?
__________________
There is no Antimemetics Division.
theprestige is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 14th January 2022, 08:55 PM   #855
Orphia Nay
Penguilicious Spodmaster.
Tagger
 
Orphia Nay's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Ponylandistan Presidential Palace (above the Spods' stables).
Posts: 39,954
"Planting the World: Joseph Banks and His Collectors: An Adventurous History of Botany" by Jordan Goodman.

The title sums it up. I'm about 35 pages in.
__________________
"We stigmatize and send to the margins
people who trigger in us the feelings we want to avoid"
- Melinda Gates, "The Moment of Lift".
Orphia Nay is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 15th January 2022, 07:23 AM   #856
alfaniner
Penultimate Amazing
 
alfaniner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Sorth Dakonsin
Posts: 26,135
The Revolving Boy by Gertrude Friedberg.

Her only novel. A science-fiction book where nothing much actually "happens" but is a supremely enjoyable read. Her ability to subtly set up a milieu has hardly been matched. There are a lot of little throwaway bits that really place a reader in a setting without explaining too much. Especially surprising because it was about the future, but written in 1966. It could have been written yesterday.

Heads-up, there is a spoiler of sorts on the back cover blurb of the old paperback copy I got. It's not a big deal but I would haver rather found out that information when it is revealed in the story.

Here is a sample of the beginning of Part II.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20220107_155012.jpg (108.8 KB, 6 views)
__________________
Science is self-correcting.
Woo is self-contradicting.

Last edited by alfaniner; 15th January 2022 at 07:30 AM.
alfaniner is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 15th January 2022, 04:25 PM   #857
Spektator
Watching . . . always watching.
 
Spektator's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Southeastern USA
Posts: 2,006
Roughing It by Mark Twain. His racism is appalling, but aside from that, his humor (mostly self-deprecating) is still amusing.
Spektator is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 15th January 2022, 05:22 PM   #858
alfaniner
Penultimate Amazing
 
alfaniner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Sorth Dakonsin
Posts: 26,135
Since Mark Twain came up I have a question about the ending of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn (since those books are related).

I tried to find the answer on the 'net but was unsuccessful. Since I at this advanced age never read them until last year, I'm going to Spoiler it:

At the end, Huck still has his $6000, but he never wanted to use it on himself. Perhaps I missed it, but was there some reason he didn't use it to buy Jim, and then set him free? I honestly thought that's how it would turn out once I got to the last few pages.
__________________
Science is self-correcting.
Woo is self-contradicting.
alfaniner is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 15th January 2022, 05:49 PM   #859
Spektator
Watching . . . always watching.
 
Spektator's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Southeastern USA
Posts: 2,006
Originally Posted by alfaniner View Post
Since Mark Twain came up I have a question about the ending of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn (since those books are related).

I tried to find the answer on the 'net but was unsuccessful. Since I at this advanced age never read them until last year, I'm going to Spoiler it:
My opinion about this:

When Pap showed up, Huck sold his part of the treasure to Judge Thatcher for a dollar to keep Pap from stealing it. The Judge meant to hold it in trust for Huck, but the boy probably did not know that. If he asked the Judge to return the money, the Judge probably would not give it to him for the purpose of buying Jim's, or any slave's, freedom. Also, since he wrote the book, on and off, over the course of a decade, Twain more than likely forgot.
Spektator is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 15th January 2022, 07:48 PM   #860
JoeMorgue
Self Employed
Remittance Man
 
JoeMorgue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Florida
Posts: 36,958
A Short Stay In Hell

A short, modern take on Jorge Luis Borges's "Library of Babel" concept find a recently deceased man assigned to a specific Hell that consists of a nearly endless (infinite for all practical purpose) library filled with countless books, a Hell he can only leave once he finds the book that tells the story of his life.

Really good.
__________________
"If everyone in the room says water is wet and I say it's dry that makes me smart because at least I'm thinking for myself!" - The Proudly Wrong.
JoeMorgue is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th January 2022, 12:43 PM   #861
Lennart Hyland
Muse
 
Lennart Hyland's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Sweden
Posts: 630
So I've finished [b]Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea/B]. I really enjoyed the book only a few times it got a tad bit boring. A book I actually would like to be turned into a movie with for say Tom Hanks as the professor and Christoph Waltz as Nemo.

I will continue my classic journey with The Trial - Franz Kafka.
__________________
L.H 1919 - 1993 R.I.P

Unfortunately the 911truth movement web site does not allow any opinions contrary to their own, or I would have presented my views. David Scott - CTBUH Chairman
Lennart Hyland is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th January 2022, 02:08 PM   #862
theprestige
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: The Antimemetics Division
Posts: 55,818
Baltimore Noir, part of the extensive "Akashic Noir" anthology series from Akashic Press.

The previous installments I've read (Brooklyn Noir 1 & 2, Chicago Noir), seem to do a pretty good job of maintaining a certain sense of locale between the stories. This installment has the dubious distinction of being the first short story anthology I've read that opens with the editor's own effort. I realized I find it a bit gauche for an editor to include their own work in a collection. Like wearing a band's t-shirt to their own show. You're supposed to wear the t-shirt of another, cooler band. And you're supposed to get your own stories published in other, cooler anthologies.

But the story itself is alright. Does the "Baltimore" thing well enough. Kind of predictable, but manages to slip the final punch(line) at least. The subsequent stories are all at least as good, or better - so far.

I will say this about the Akashic Noir series: So far they haven't given me any notable duds. Even Lee Child has put a stinker or two into the Jack Reacher series.
__________________
There is no Antimemetics Division.
theprestige is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th January 2022, 02:27 PM   #863
SuburbanTurkey
Penultimate Amazing
 
SuburbanTurkey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Massachusetts, USA
Posts: 13,068
Gangsters of Capitalism: Smedley Butler, the Marines, and the Making and Breaking of America's Empire by Jonathan M. Katz is released today. Hoping I get my copy before the weekend.
__________________
Gobble gobble
SuburbanTurkey is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 18th January 2022, 09:18 PM   #864
thines
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 97
Books

Several:

Weird Earth. Debunking Strange Ideas About Our Planet. By Donald Prothero. It's an excellent review of everything from flat earthers and young Earth creationists to earthquake quacks and Ley lines and lots more.

A Thread Across the Ocean. By John Steele Gordon. The story of the transatlantic cable. Good history.

Sleeping Beauties And Other Stories of Mystery Illness. By Suzanne O'Sullivan. Nice idea to write about psychosomatic disorders in the context of mass hysteria. Covers the Havana syndrome etc. But the book has no references, no notes of any kind and no index. Very poor job by the author. Does not live up to the hype about it.
thines is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » History, Literature, and the Arts

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 11:07 PM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2022, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.