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"Read 25 Books by the End of the Year" Challenge

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussions' started by George, Jun 28, 2008.

  1. MannishBoy

    MannishBoy Senior Member

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    Anybody enjoy Neal Stephenson's stuff? He's probably most famous for Snow Crash, a sci-fi book that basically imagined a lot of the "virtual world" stuff that Second Life wishes it could do, and has been a big influence in video games.

    My favorite book was Cryptonomicon, which was a dual time novel that's both action and geek fiction :) After that, with some of the same families, he did some really long trilogy of books set during the 1700s called The Baroque Cycle. They include a lot of historical fiction based around the scientific work of the Royal Society (Newton, Hooke, Leibni, etc, etc), the financial development of things like fiat currency and financial markets, and societal and government issues of the time (sounds boring, but it wasn't to me). It's basically sci-fi set in the 1700s.

    Anyway, he's got a new book coming out in September I'm excited about...Anathem.

    Tried to preorder it with some Amazon stuff this morning and they were going to delay my whole shipment until the stupid book came out, so I cancelled, but I'm definitely picking it up when it comes out.
     
  2. Nowhereman

    Nowhereman Well-Known Member

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    Code:
     
    1) [URL="http://www.amazon.com/Reading-Instruction-That-Works-Third/dp/1593852282/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1215638566&sr=8-1"]Reading Instruction That Works: The Case for Balanced Teaching[/URL]
     
            A reading instruction book that promotes the use of the skills
     emphasis model and whole language. 
     
    2) [URL="http://www.amazon.com/Reading-Comprehension-Second-Strategies-Independent/dp/159385756X/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1217439162&sr=8-2"]Reading Comprehension: Strategies for Independent Learners[/URL]
     
          Another reading instruction book that lists strategies students 
    can use to become better readers.
    


    My second book. Another professional reading book.
     
  3. MannishBoy

    MannishBoy Senior Member

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    This was a very entertaining audiobook :tu:
     
  4. mastover

    mastover Well-Known Member

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    EDIT: just finished "The Seventh Scroll" by Wilbur Smith. WOW they should make this book into a movie (not that I watch movies or anything lol) If anyone is interested in ancient history, particularly Egyptology, I can't recommend his books enough. Makes me want to head over to the Museum of Modern Art every time I finish a chapter. :nod:

    Currently reading the text book for NASM, to get another personal training certificate. Man, this is a tough course!

    Started on "The Prosecution of George W. Bush For Murder" by Vincent Bugliosi, and "The Dark Side" by Jane Mayer.
     
    #104 mastover, Aug 9, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2008
  5. Rise

    Rise Active Member

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    Awesome book.

    I can't believe I haven't seen this thread! Oh well, it's never too late to join in on a reading thread. I'm working on going through a list I found a while back of The Top 100 Sci-Fi Books which actually has 200 books in an extended section and I'm probably 12% through it.

    Also, I ordered Watchmen (to read, again) from Amazon a week ago after seeing the trailer for it in the new Batman movie. And after MannishBoy recommended it, I ordered Catch Me if You Can as well. I'm thinking about re-reading some mythology books in the next few months too... ahh too many choices!!
     
  6. guava

    guava Elite Member
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    List of completed books
    1. Pigtopia - Kitty Fitzgerald
    2. As a Man Thinketh - James Allen
    3. Oprah Magazine - May 2008
    4. Schoolgirls: Young Women, Self Esteem, and the Confidence Gap (Non-fiction)
    5. A Long Way Down - Nick Hornby
    6. The Dying Animal - Philip Roth
    7. Paula Spencer - Roddy Doyle
    8. 100 beaded Jewelry Designs - Stephanie Burnham
    9. The Metamorphosis - Franz Kafka (Adapted to Graphic novel by Peter Kuper)
    10. Was it Beautiful? - Alison McGhee
    11. Lullabies for Little Criminals - Heather O'Neill
    12. The Asiatics - Frederic Prokosch
    13. The First 20 Million is Always the Hardest - Po Bronson
    14. Upgrading - Simon Brooke
    15. The Way Life Should be - Christina Baker Kline
    16. Miss Misery -Andy Greenwald
    Still reading

    Eleanor and Abel - Annette Sanford

    Started
    How We Die by - Sherwin B. Nulan

    Was it Beautiful, Upgrading, and The Way Life Should Be were kind of standard chick lit. Not very deep, somewhat humorous and inspirational.

    Lullabies was nice. It's the story of a girl with an absent mother and a father who keeps going in and out of jail. It chronicles how she deals with her low standard of living and her constantly changing home environment. It's not sad or shocking, but rather lighthearted and quirky, but still moving.

    The Asiatics, as I mentioned, I didn't like all that much. I think it's supposed to be a story of adventure and exploration, but it read to me like a story of escapism. People give him gifts of their money, their attention, their time, and he rarely offers them anything at all in return. The guy doesn't really make any significant choices, but instead, relies on the strangers that he meets to decide for him what direction to move next. Even when he gets arrested, it's because of something he's believed to be, not something he's believed to have done. His romantic encounters are embarrassingly passive as well. I suppose that Prokosch may have been an extremely reclusive introvert and this is the story of how he wishes his life would have been - full of interesting things that he was led to by other people instead of those which he had to suffer to earn.

    Po Bronson is an ideas man. I didn't find the book to be all that smooth flowing, but he obviously did a lot of research to be able to create such convincing fiction. This book was actually made into a movie in 2002, and had Rosario Dawson one of the main roles.

    How We Die is really fascinating. :spaz: I didn't even realize I wanted to know how we die until I started flipping through this at the library. It's written by a physician, and is incredibly medically detailed, but with dramatic poetic descriptions, very much how Chuck Palahniuk writes out the gory details of anatomy and suffering in his novels. This would make a fabulous audiobook, if they could convince Morgan Freeman to narrate it.

    "Branches of the main coronary arteries descend toward the valentine's tip, giving off twiglike branchlets that bring bright red oxygen-rich blood to the rhythmically heaving myocardium. In health, these coronary arteries are the friends of the heart; when they are diseased, they betray it at its most needful moments." :scared:
     
  7. woodan

    woodan Well-Known Member

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    How's the French going? I have his Spanish audio learning cds. I've not got very far though.

    Also, I have to ask. Is the Hawking book read by himself? That would be cool.


    I recently got into reading which is why I looked at this thread. I've read 3 books over the last 6 weeks or so which is some kind of record for me.
     
  8. Nowhereman

    Nowhereman Well-Known Member

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    #108 Nowhereman, Aug 18, 2008
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2008
  9. MannishBoy

    MannishBoy Senior Member

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    I didn't like Coraline much (I did the audiobook, which Gaiman reads himself).

    My favorite Gaiman was probably American Gods. Anansi Boys is also good.

    I've read 3 or 4 of those, but never got around to finishing it.

    I think it's under my bed now that I think about it :blank:
     
  10. Nowhereman

    Nowhereman Well-Known Member

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    The book was alright but it fizzles out in the end. I guess there is so much you can do when it's a horror book intended for kids.

    I used to read it to my 5th grade students and I would get all into it. Tapping my glasses as other mother tapped her button eyes. It's a cool read aloud.



    I remember that I liked the first one but then heard that the other one's weren't as good. Probably the reason I never continued it.
     
  11. George

    George Senior Member

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    He's pretty mean. I don't know if I'll keep listening to it. :scared:
    Nah. You're not the first to ask. :nod:
     
  12. zenpharaohs

    zenpharaohs Elite Member
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    I've gotten through sixteen audio books, all by Patrick O'Brian; fifteen of them in the Aubrey-Maturin series. What is interesting is that in this unabridged reading, they have substituted the words "blank" and "blanking" for the authentic words. Which is sort of interesting since in the middle of the current book up pops the word "fucking", after probably a dozen occurrences of "blank" and "blanking".

    I suppose the reason for this nonsense is to avoid having a "Parental Advisory" sticker on the product. If so, then it says something about the scrutiny of whatever agency deals with that.
     
  13. paulo_drummer

    paulo_drummer Well-Known Member

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    I can't believe I missed this challenge from the beginning! :eek:

    It's already September, but I'm gonna try anyway.

    A good question: I'm in the middle of reading two books right now. Should I count them too?

    A dumb question: Can I list up the books I've already read since the beginning of the chalenge? (June 28th, 2008)
     
  14. MannishBoy

    MannishBoy Senior Member

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    I've been meaning to start those. That will tick me off if the version I got from the library does the same thing. :mad:
     
  15. Necross

    Necross Active Member

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    Hope it's not too late to join the challenge. It's co-op time and it means a lot of reading :D

    I read two books this week:

    1) Time's Eye by Arthur C. Clarke and Stephen Baxter
    2) Sunshine by Arthur C. Clarke and Stephen Baxter

    Currently reading:

    The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins
     
  16. zenpharaohs

    zenpharaohs Elite Member
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    Don't sweat it. It's not really a big deal, it's just a curiosity. In fact, some of the occurrences of the word "fucking" are there. I'm not quite sure what they are doing.

    I have just finished the lot of them - until the final unfinished one ("21") comes out in a few weeks. I don't regard it as a proper member of the series, but until I read it, I can't really say.
     
  17. George

    George Senior Member

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    Yes to both. :)

    The goals of this thread are to get people to read more and to expose everyone to titles that they may not have heard of before.
     
  18. guava

    guava Elite Member
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    List of completed books
    1. Pigtopia - Kitty Fitzgerald
    2. As a Man Thinketh - James Allen
    3. Schoolgirls: Young Women, Self Esteem, and the Confidence Gap (Non-fiction)
    4. A Long Way Down - Nick Hornby
    5. The Dying Animal - Philip Roth
    6. Paula Spencer - Roddy Doyle
    7. 100 beaded Jewelry Designs - Stephanie Burnham
    8. The Metamorphosis - Franz Kafka (Adapted to Graphic novel by Peter Kuper)
    9. Was it Beautiful? - Alison McGhee
    10. Lullabies for Little Criminals - Heather O'Neill
    11. The Asiatics - Frederic Prokosch
    12. The First 20 Million is Always the Hardest - Po Bronson
    13. Upgrading - Simon Brooke
    14. The Way Life Should be - Christina Baker Kline
    15. Miss Misery -Andy Greenwald
    16. Eleanor and Abel - Annette Sanford
    17. How We Die by - Sherwin B. Nulan
    18. Alternate Beauty - Andrea Rains Waggener
    19. Lizard - Banana Yoshimoto
    20. The Flirt - Kathleen Tessaro

    I'm not counting magazines anymore, because I've read about 20 of them. Usually Real Simple, but for the last couple of weeks, I've been signing out Popular Photography from the library.

    Miss Misery was quirky and interesting.

    Lizard was beatiful in the raw honest way that very few things are so beautiful.

    The Flirt is standard chick lit. There's quite some hopeless wishful thinking in there, which makes me think that the author has drawn this from her own bad experiences, yet she's strong enough to avoid generalizing the bitterness towards "all men" or "everyone". This is unlike Alternate Beauty, where the author has such clear envy and misunderstanding of thin people that she can't help but write them into her story as across-the-board manipulative.

    How we Die was okay, but there were a lot of moral judgments in there that were put across as fact, that I'm not so crazy about. I've just started In Heaven As On Earth by M. Scott Peck (The Road Less Travelled). Unlike his other best-sellers, this one is fiction, which he seems to be having a lot of fun with.
     
    #118 guava, Sep 8, 2008
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2008
  19. paulo_drummer

    paulo_drummer Well-Known Member

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    Nice! :)

    I'm reading like crazy to improve my reading level in English. And I'm already taking notes of what people here are reading, so I think I have a great information source here. :tu:

    Here's my list:

    1. The Metamorphosis - Franz Kafka
    2. The Book Thief - Markus Zusak
    3. 1984 - George Orwell
    4. Around the World in 80 Days - Jules Verne
    5. Rebel without a Crew - Robert Rodriguez

    Currently reading:
    Moby Dick - Herman Melville
     
  20. Gila Monster

    Gila Monster Well-Known Member

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    I fiinally got to log in, having restored my comp after getting infected with the facebook virus :S

    Having no internet access gave me a lot of free time to read, so meanwhile I finished:
    The Tribute to 6 Authors of the 19'th Century,
    "King Matuish" by Janusz Korczak (540 pages),
    "Monday Begins on Saturday" by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky (260 pages)

    and began reading Tale of the Troika , again by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky (211 pages).
     

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