what are you reading right now?

Health insurance rip off lying FDA big bankers buying
Fake computer crashes dining
Cloning while they're multiplying
Fashion shoots with Beck and Hanson
Courtney Love, and Marilyn Manson
You're all fakes
Run to your mansions
Come around
We'll kick your ass in

Postby No Good Advice » Thu Oct 25, 2018 2:28 am

deadbass wrote:

I should definitely point out I read it 12 or 13 years ago when I was 18, so I both don’t trust my memory of it nor do I trust my judgement of it. I remember feeling like there were equal parts powerfully written characters and unrealistic idealogical automatons like Helen Burns. I also remember feeling like the plot just splayed out in so many directions in the second half and never came together. (Also just have a very powerful memory of laughing at the “happiness is not a potato!” Line)

You calling it your favourite novel makes me want to revisit it, especially In light of rereading Jane Eyre. Hope I didn’t offend you - I wasn’t trying to discount liking the book in any way, and, like I say, I was/am speaking from a muddled memory at this point.


Absolutely not, I'm basically stoked to engage with anyone who's read it, regardless of their view on it, but I'd def love to talk more specifics if you revisit it. I don't think there are many Helen Burns-likes in the book. You get some characters that are totally unlike the narrator Lucy (who's messy, uncertain, angry, creative), like Polly, whom she praises in superficial terms but is basically the opposite ideal of a woman (together with Ginevra and Lucy herself a nixe juxtaposition with the ideas of women in the art gallery she hates so much) and who Dr John - who's attractive and nice, but intellectually limited - falls for, for reasons Lucy describes in a faux-sympathetic but really quite mocking way. (Her relationship with Ginevra is one of the more light-hearted highlights of the book, even outside the great gender-bending scene they share early on.)

I think the plot is actually pretty focused in the 2nd half, focused on her finding a footing and a place for someone unconventional like herself in this world, very much staying in her head, with her struggles, so hopefully if you read it again some day you can expand on that.

For you, though:
No mockery in this world ever sounds to me so hollow as that of being told to cultivate happiness. What does such advice mean? Happiness is not a potato, to be planted in mould, and tilled with manure.
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Postby Kenny » Thu Oct 25, 2018 8:27 am

Kenny wrote:I've been slowin going through this:

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Really beautiful stuff and I like how the translation makes him seem like a real human but he lived in the 1500s


Just finished this, really really beautiful stuff and I can't believe how well it makes you think that a man alive 500 years ago was a man just like you. This is only a fraction of the whole book, which I would love to get around to reading some day, though I don't know when I'd have the time (It's huge) but I bet it would be great.
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Postby abs » Fri Oct 26, 2018 10:54 am

HotFingersClub wrote:Finished:

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Joanna Russ - The Female Man
This was INCREDIBLE. So smart, powerful and weird. Crazy that it was written in the 70s, both because of its relevancy to the current era and the stylistic explosiveness. She was doing DFW 20 years before DFW. Abs what u reckon?



So my feeling was definitely more wishy-washy than incredible. I was reading some reviews that I think better articulate what wasn't working for me, and I definitely keep coming back to your comment about it being like DFW. Trouble is, that style of writing is so not my speed.I think perhaps an annotated version would be appealing to me.

The relevancy is obviously standout but other parts of it rang false to me.

Going to quote a review I read on GR that articulates more of my issues with the read, spoiler-ing just in case:

But aside from the writing style, I grew bored with the story real quick. I'm sure when it first came out, it was amazing and it rattled cages and whatnot. I also got a lot of the anger Russ was expressing. But I couldn't identify with it. Part of it is the characters. There's no real women or men in here, just cardboard cutouts. Aside from the "J"s, all the women are either asinine or male versions of women, and all the men are chauvinistic sexaholics. It got old real quick.

The whole "get married, then stay at home and be pretty" lifestyle Russ rants about just did not apply to the black women of my childhood. My grandma did laundry for a living, put herself through nursing school and had several kids through different men (she eventually married the last one). She didn't have time to sit around looking pretty. There was this whole educated white woman privilege theme running through the story that grew wearying after a while. There were even a couple of scenes where Russ lapses into black slave "Massah" talk. I know she was trying to show how farcical it was for women to put on a show for men, but to try to compare that with how Black people were treated in that time was very ignorant and stupid on Russ's part.
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Postby abs » Fri Oct 26, 2018 10:57 am

slow few months of reading for me. started this last night and am flying through it. super informative and highly readable, definitely tickling the history nerd in me.

making me want to brush up on my latin too.

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Postby Eyeball Kid » Fri Oct 26, 2018 11:59 am

Started John Hawkes's The Cannibal this morning. The only other Hawkes book I've read is Second Skin, which left me cold. This one is going a bit better! Alas, my edition sports this cover:

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which makes awkward as hell reading it in public.
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Postby ahungbunny » Fri Oct 26, 2018 12:08 pm

lol at first i was like they probably think you're just a cool guy reading about choppers

then i saw it
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Postby Eyeball Kid » Fri Oct 26, 2018 12:11 pm

It's currently placed on my desk at work, cover-side down. This is going up there with Memoirs of an Anti-Semite and Nazi Literature in the Americas in my canon of potentially embarrassing public reads.
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Postby abs » Fri Oct 26, 2018 1:00 pm

this one was fun to read on public transit :ahuh:

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Postby Eyeball Kid » Fri Oct 26, 2018 1:08 pm

I read Willie Masters' Lonesome Wife entirely at home, given that it consists of several images of a nude woman on the inside and that my particular edition had a photograph of a topless woman on the cover. The book was a quick read at least—I read it in one sitting—so the self-imposed limitations of where I could read it were not much of a hassle.
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Postby Riverchrist » Fri Oct 26, 2018 1:13 pm

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My Amis True
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Postby mascotte » Sun Oct 28, 2018 8:52 am

I recently finished People Who Eat Darkness (finally). Can you recommend me some similar gripping non-fiction? Not necessarily from the true crime shelf.
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Postby reversemigraine » Sun Oct 28, 2018 9:00 am

guy forget wrote:if you want any recs on more modern history or specific stuff i can do my best. messier object and upland trout also can probably make some good suggestions too, i think they both know a lot about environmental history (and likely are better read on the subject than i am). emotional fascism knows a lot too. beyond US history i only know a random smattering really and of that it's mostly european history with some east asian environmental history. i'm just one guy here!


Good history reccs thread here: http://forums.hipinion.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=111118
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Postby alaska » Sun Oct 28, 2018 9:30 am

ahhh that was the thread, thanks

and re: the female man i might have said this somewhere else but yeah, i was pretty into it but couldn't wind up finishing it because of that brutal scene maybe 3/4 of the way through where they go to the planet (?) where the men are "pretending" to be women. i've never felt so like rapidly and completely ejected from a book, and i think, while very different from the problem your quoted reviewer was outlining, speaks in another way to its disappointing & intermittent myopiaToggle Spoiler
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Postby Eyeball Kid » Sun Oct 28, 2018 2:21 pm

Speaking of embarrassing book covers AND de Sade, I picked up the recent translation of The 120 Days of Sodom and there's naked butt on the cover. Thanks, Penguin.
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Postby hadlex » Sun Oct 28, 2018 2:28 pm

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The laughing jumbo of Europe's gay spots.
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Postby Slamwich Artist » Sun Oct 28, 2018 5:59 pm

over the past couple months:
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only read the first part so far--really good, but grueling and difficult to carry around
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gorgeous, my favorite modiano aside from young once
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dug this one too
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everyone should read this

now reading too many books at once:
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really trying to savor this. know almost nothing about most of the people she writes about but it doesn't matter. want to read some hermann broch now.
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only read the first chapter so far, which (the parts i understood anyway--i still don't quite get what he means by "political" and some other words) i found really interesting and insightful
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mostly digging this--a good antidote to the antiseptic, abstract way think tank types conceive of war. the stuff on how saddam hussein needs to be brought to heel (written in the mid-90s) is troubling though
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got this out of the library because keegan talks about it so much and i couldn't quite follow his references. seems like an important book to have some familiarity with. much more engaging and readable than i was expecting, also really twisted
Haaaaa. The got me. I didn't know it was on Satire! Got it. Peeps got jokes. It's cool!
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Postby Kenny » Mon Oct 29, 2018 10:39 am

Read based on the latest Backlisted:
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Really loved the former, a great little introduction of poets with some background info to make their poetry feel more vibrant. Just the sort of thing I've been looking for for a while.

Autumn Journal has been a great before bed read, really pretty stuff,

started today:
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My fourth book by Macaulay this year. Just a book of little chapters about things she likes, very poetical or maybe just because I've been reading a lot of poetry lately.
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Postby rushedbehind » Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:16 am

I'm close to finishing Arendt's Origins of Totalitarianism, and barring some calamitous 180 in the last hundred pages, it's some of the most riveting political theory I've read. It starts slow, and there's a lot of foundations to be laid, but her arguments about statelessness and human rights as an abstraction hit hard. It seems hacky to recommend it as a "must read" in light of current events, but I think it's very useful in interpreting a lot of contemporary political trends
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Postby tanaka » Tue Oct 30, 2018 7:35 am

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one of the writers profiled died after eating sixty meat dumplings for a dare

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baby with giant head and his grandfather reminisce about life in rural china since 1949, the giant head baby is the grandfather's grandfather who was executed by the communists and then spent the following half-century reincarnating into different animals before becoming a baby with a giant head

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the whole thing surrounding the '89 protests is fascinating to me, i've a lot of related books lined up, thought i'd start with this one.
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Postby Plainsong » Tue Oct 30, 2018 8:14 am

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Postby adam sampler » Tue Oct 30, 2018 10:11 am

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Postby alaska » Tue Oct 30, 2018 12:38 pm

Love love love grace paley!!!
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Postby alaska » Tue Oct 30, 2018 12:39 pm

Sorry no photos bc i am,on my phone but

I just finished "lucy" by jamaica kincaid and it fucking ruled. Started "the ravishing of lol stein" last night
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Postby j-ol » Tue Oct 30, 2018 10:02 pm

adam sampler wrote:Image


these are among the best short stories i've read, some of which are truly heartbreaking.
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Postby Plainsong » Wed Oct 31, 2018 3:28 am

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Postby Kenny » Wed Oct 31, 2018 5:45 am

I was thinking about reading Forbidden Colors by Mishima sometime, but I was wondering whether his fascism got in the way (tone:sincere)

I've just been reading about hims now and it appears his facism is an odd one, about a "traditional Japan" and also seems like a pretext to kill himself, but then again I don't know what kind of stuff he's printed/said
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Postby Dirty Penny » Wed Oct 31, 2018 10:46 am

Started this Oct. 1st, finished it today. What a massive and amazing book.

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Postby madness and chaos » Wed Oct 31, 2018 11:04 am

Roberto Bolaño's chair
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Postby Eyeball Kid » Wed Oct 31, 2018 4:29 pm

Started this today! (NSFW: nudity)

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The 120 Days of Sodom - Marquis de Sade
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Postby hadlex » Wed Oct 31, 2018 4:33 pm

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Just finished this this morning. 31 chapters, one for each day of October. Read it aloud with the missus. Really fun!
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