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Expand my mind :)

I'm hungering to spend my paycheck on books- any suggestions?

What are your book reccomendations and why?



( 34 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 6th, 2004 06:26 am (UTC)
Hmm... I feel kinda crappy for not having any good suggestions. I mainly have a bunch of ideas for stuff I've gotta read...so I dunno if they're good yet. Still, I feel obligated to give at least one! So, The Great Gatsby. Why?Because it's the last book I read, and I've read it twiced so it must be good.
Or, you could get your money trans..duced into american dollars & send it to me & i'll type up some crap & mail it to you.
May. 6th, 2004 08:57 am (UTC)
Great Gatsby is indeed a rather good book. I should re-read it, I only now appreciate most of the stuff that was forced into my cranium at school.

Or, you could get your money trans..duced into american dollars & send it to me & i'll type up some crap & mail it to you.

Even though the $ is not doing as well as the £ and I enjoy your writing, I'm too much of a miser poor. ;)
May. 6th, 2004 10:24 am (UTC)
Yeah, I always hated when we had to read books I actually wanted to read in school - cause I never read for school (i can't read around other people's schedules..)

Hey, on keyboards over there do they have a british pound sign if you press shift + 4?? And do you have a $, or is that one of those little commands... Cause the only pound sign i have is #.
May. 6th, 2004 11:30 am (UTC)
on my keyboard the pound sign is shift+3. And the dollar sign is shift+4.

i wonder if they're going to start producing keyboards with the euro sign at some point.
May. 6th, 2004 01:15 pm (UTC)
They already do, i've seen a couple :o)
May. 6th, 2004 06:53 pm (UTC)
so you mean the # pound sign, right?
May. 7th, 2004 06:11 am (UTC)
shift+3 = £

# is on its own little button (i think we call that the hash sign)
May. 7th, 2004 08:27 am (UTC)
aah ok.. interesting..
(Deleted comment)
May. 6th, 2004 06:42 am (UTC)
If you want "Lucky", i have it :o)

"Memoirs of an ordinary woman" is just that. I forget who wrote it, but it's a fictional diary of a woman born in 1903 (ish), and goes from when she is 13, to about 70. Intruiging.

"Notes on a small scandal" Zoe Heller - about a female teacher who gets into a relationship with a 15yr old male student

"the bride stripped bare" - Anonymous. A woman's story of marriage and affairs.

I was going to give you another but it seems like all my books are based on sex, so i won't! I have all those books tho, so you're welcome to borrow instead (which doesn't help the wanting to buy urges!

I need more books. I almost bought the atwood you mentioned, but bought something else instead, Alias Grace i think ;o)

You look sad, but purple.
May. 6th, 2004 07:06 am (UTC)
books based on sex?
I wants, I wants. ;)

I'll trade you my collection of Atwoods and other things that strike your fancy for the stuff on your shelves :D

(And my wanting to buy urges are entirely secondary to *want to read* urges and *don't like spending lots of money urges*) ;)
May. 6th, 2004 07:04 am (UTC)
yessssss, feeeeed my addiction.....
*bouncy bouncy bouncyness*

so when you get home does that mean I can look forward to additions to the list? :D

I love Alice Sebold! I've read both The Lovely Bones and Lucky- even though I had to read them over a period of months because they were quite triggering and made me howl.

The Reader and Stones from the River sound great, I'll check it out. :)

*state of blissed out anticipatory extasy*
(Deleted comment)
May. 6th, 2004 07:12 am (UTC)
I loved Lady Oracle although The Robber Bride is my first Atwood and probbaly my favourite. Having said this The Blind Assassin (a bit on the long side) contains one of my favourite ever lines : "And then the girl who couldn't speak and the boy who couldn't see fell in love".
May. 6th, 2004 10:01 am (UTC)
The Unbearable Lightness of Being, by Milan Kundera. If you haven't read it, you would probably adore it. I think so, at least.
May. 6th, 2004 12:35 pm (UTC)
I've read it and I've loved it. :)

Have you read/liked any of his other books?
May. 6th, 2004 10:45 am (UTC)
You might like "Blackbird" and "Still Waters" by Jennifer
Lauck. They should be read together to get the full effect
and story. But I thought they were wonderful. Non-fiction.
The only fiction book I've read lately is "Mysts of
"Avalon" and I thought it was wonderful.

David Sedaris is always good for a great, funny read.

I have no other suggestions. I read about serial killers
and history usually so no one ever wants my books
suggestions ;)
May. 6th, 2004 12:39 pm (UTC)
I really like history books you know :)

Have you ever read anything by Guy Gavriel Kay? He writes fantasy but it is based on the history of our world. And rather witty at times. (If you are interested I reccomend The Lions of Al-Rassan, and the Sarantine Mosaic books 1 and 2)

Mysts of Avalon I've read ages ago I think, I wonder if it has survived charity shop purges so I can read it again.

I've never heard of David Sedaris but I'll check it out. I've never heard of Jennifer Lauck either but I'll keep an eye. :)
May. 7th, 2004 09:05 am (UTC)
I heartily suggest you introduce yourself to Sedaris. I hope
other people like him, because I think he's a genius and
just hysterical.

"Wasted" by Mayra Hornbacher is a great memoir about
eating disorders. I like memories- that's what Lauck's books
are, too.

I'm reading "Gulag" by Anne Applebaum about the history
of the Russian Gulag. I like it a lot.

Oh oh oh....and Dorothy Parker is my favorite writer ever.
I think a collection of her works is essential for any

But oh oh oh oh....I can't believe I forgot my favorite
favorite book ever. "The Witching Hour" by Anne Rice.
It starts the Lasher series. I didn't like the others so much,
but "witching" follows this family of witches from their
beginning in like 1500's England and it goes to France
and St. Dominque and just all over the place. That's my
favorite favorite book.

And I like the Jasper Fforde books for a quick fun read.

I'll quit now before I just start rummaging through my
closet and pulling out every book I own :)
May. 7th, 2004 09:57 am (UTC)
I hope
other people like him, because I think he's a genius and
just hysterical.

My friend Susan concurs. :) She left a comment to that effect somewhere further along here.

Dorothy Parker is also one of my favourite writers. She was a brilliant creature. (I really liked the film about her too, Mrs Parker and the Vicious Circle I think it was called).

Anne Rice I'm not sure about, although when I was an adolescent it was one of the things I read because I'd heard it had sex in it.

Who is Jasper Fforde? Any particular title you'd reccomend?
May. 7th, 2004 11:27 am (UTC)
There's some sex in "Witching." With a ghost no less ;)

Jasper writes these novels about a detective named Tuesday
Next. Except it's sort of science fiction because they are
literary detectives. Like- one bad guy is stuck in "The Raven."

And famous literary characters appear to help Tuesday and
she can go back and forth and get into famous books.

It's a bit weird. But I thought they were fun and they're a
quick but fun read. And I've always wanted to actually
live in a book, so I thought it was a pretty cool idea.

My mom hated the books, though, so they aren't for

Dorothy Parker is just delicious, isn't she? Her and her
whole crowd. I would've loved to be part of that fabulous
May. 8th, 2004 06:35 am (UTC)
I just remembered this great 'sex' book I read once. It's
by Anne Rice- but using a pseudonym (nice spelling once
again). It's called "the Claiming of Sleeping Beauty" and
it's about a princess captured and turned into a sex slave.
It's very S&Mish and kinky. I loved it ;)
May. 6th, 2004 12:22 pm (UTC)
2 from Diana Wynne Jones
Howl's Moving Castle for its escapist charm

Fire and Hemlock for its web of legendary allusions and not-nice fairies :D

...I do read other authors, btw :D
May. 6th, 2004 12:40 pm (UTC)
Re: 2 from Diana Wynne Jones
Ooooooh. More things I've never heard of. Which is terrific because I'm always happy to discover new authors.
May. 6th, 2004 12:50 pm (UTC)
ooo you mean i haven't proselytised to you about DWJ yet?
*emails you*
May. 6th, 2004 03:07 pm (UTC)
Re: ooo you mean i haven't proselytised to you about DWJ yet?
no email :(
but my inbox was inundated so it might have bounced.

e-mail me again, pretty please?
*batts eyelashses*
May. 6th, 2004 04:47 pm (UTC)
(Susan here. Still no username.)
David Sedaris is HILARIOUS. And he's American, Little Miss "English humor is so much better." (Not that I actually disagree with you, but you know I gotta represent.) He's an essayist, and his best-known essay is about the Christmas he desperately needed money and got a job as one of Santa's elves at the Macy's (department store) in Manhattan.

Dealing with kids and adults who've stood in line for 3 hours to sit on Santa's lap for 3 minutes is, needless to say, not the world's best job. He describes how depressing and soul-crushing it was when every single person in line would do the same thing when they got near the front: they'd point and say "Look, there's Santa!" He decided to keep them from being too sheep-like by randomly pointing in other directions and saying things like "Look, there's Cher!" (They would look.)

Hey, in your quest for cheap books, don't forget my old friend the public library. The only word better than "cheap" is "free"! I love buying books, but honestly, think about the percentage of books on your shelf that you've actually read more than once. And if you love a library book, you can still go out and buy it. Going to the library is like downloading songs off the internet: it doesn't make you stop buying CDs; it helps you only buy ones you love enough to want to keep forever.
May. 7th, 2004 06:21 am (UTC)
Re: (Susan here. Still no username.)
(Not that I actually disagree with you, but you know I gotta represent.)

And seeing how I'm partially representative of Yugoslav humour I really shouldn't be the one to take a high moral stand on quality comedy. ;)

As for David Sedaris:
OOoh. A double reccomendation. The Santa thing sounds great. :)

Ah, the library. Actually, I'm shunning it out of fear and shame because I lost a Nancy Drew book I'd borrowed as a teenager (even though it was like 10 years ago) and I'm still scared that there is still some blacklist with my name on (even though they stopped sending me *give us our book back, it's very very late and we're not laughing* letters some time ago).

Of course I could just join the Swiss Cottage Library where hopefully my reputation doesn't precede me.

The only word better than "cheap" is "free"!

Music to my ears indeed. :)
May. 7th, 2004 01:24 pm (UTC)
*email lepers* :D
May. 7th, 2004 04:39 am (UTC)
calling all children of Stan

Dude I believe in discovering books and chancing upon them - so I can lead you to water but i respect you enough to let you choose to drink by yourself :

Go to Camden Market, they have lots of obscure "bookshops" or just bookshelves on the street - you can find really obscure TOTALLY out of Print (capital "P") books on astrology. Real weird shit which i adore - of the type of books I gave you last week. The obtuse almost indecipherable work of "Genius ? or Mad ??" authors. Well worth spending £1.50 to £8 on.

And you get to go Camden Market and look at people selling wands for £150, "um, so is this birch or willow ?" "Cristal mate, only 200 quid".
oh ! and get your hand read by that strange woman. and laugh at those quilts with the zodiac stitched onto it (a little too Madame Irma for me), and see the live bands get kicked out of the pubs they were hired to perform in, get a new navel stud (still can't believe i didn't buy that fabulous one..still mourning it), and see the people with their pink hair! and plastic in their hair! and ten-inch platforms..

It's almost worth staying alive for.

Have a cup of that green stuff for me


May. 7th, 2004 06:29 am (UTC)
Re: calling all children of Stan
wheatgrass? I've never heard of that.

however I have had pear and ginger juice which was green and very refreshing.

Camden is a good idea though. I also believe in books finding their way to me and I to them, like star-crossed lovers but I'm usually too lazy to walk to Camden so I scout out all the local charity shops (and I've found some wonderful weirdery - including Pictures of British Railway Stations and Train tracks, Volume 1. I am still guttered I didn't get it.

I found some astrology book from 1940s the other day and I tried to read it but nearly had an asthma attack from all the dust. Have been looking forward to delving into your two ones though :)
(Deleted comment)
May. 7th, 2004 07:55 am (UTC)
Re: *sharp intake of breath*
it would appear so. :)

Care to enlighten me? Is it one of your weird diet thingies like the pumpkin spaghetti?
May. 8th, 2004 02:53 am (UTC)
*sharp intake of cash*
Yeah I've found great books in charity shops too - I got "the knot of time" from charity shop in North Finchley, and we both know what a classic that book is.

Now let me describe the wheatgrass experience for you :

Wheatgrass is bright green and will be given to you in a small cup (labeled "experiment 626"-only kidding). It looks like alien amniotic fluid but smells like mown grass and is roughly that. If the guy making it is feeling enterprising or if he thinks you're pretty and wants to show off, he will pull out a plastic container that has what looks like long grass growing in it (that's probably the wheatgrass you're thinking, and you'd be right) the whole container and grass thing looks like a primary school cress-growing project, the man begins to shear off huge amounts of this grass and sticks it in a blender. Half a minute later he hands you a tiny cup of green. And you give him 4 quid.

You'll be wondering what the point of this is. Which, funnily enough, is EXACTLY what I asked him!

Apparently it's a mega healthy energy booster, it like a jolt of pure distilled healthiness (which your body may or may not respond to enthusiastically).
I had it once - I think I was with Robert - just try to imagine the look on Rob's face, a look of amused fascinated disgust as I drank a cup of vivid green "something".
That SOME GUY had sold me at Camden Market.

( 34 comments — Leave a comment )


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