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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Sun Nov 26, 2023 11:38 
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Joined: 30th Mar, 2008
Posts: 14104
Location: Shropshire, UK
It really is.


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2023 12:10 
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Master of dodgy spelling....

Joined: 25th Sep, 2008
Posts: 22517
Location: shropshire, uk
KovacsC wrote:
1. No Plan B - Lee & Andrew Child
2. The Thursday Murder Club - Richard Osman
3. The Man who Died Twice - Richard Osman
4. The Bullet that missed - Richard Osman
5. First Man In - Ant Middleton.
6. The Moscow Sleeper. - Stella Rimmington.


7. The Blade Itself - Joe Abercrombie - A great dark fantasy, but a long long book. Took about 17 hours to read. I will read a few other books before returning to the series.


Quote:
Logen Ninefingers, infamous barbarian, has finally run out of luck. Caught in one feud too many, he’s on the verge of becoming a dead barbarian – leaving nothing behind him but bad songs, dead friends, and a lot of happy enemies.

Nobleman Captain Jezal dan Luthar, dashing officer, and paragon of selfishness, has nothing more dangerous in mind than fleecing his friends at cards and dreaming of glory in the fencing circle. But war is brewing, and on the battlefields of the frozen North they fight by altogether bloodier rules.

Inquisitor Glokta, cripple turned torturer, would like nothing better than to see Jezal come home in a box. But then Glokta hates everyone: cutting treason out of the Union one confession at a time leaves little room for friendship. His latest trail of corpses may lead him right to the rotten heart of government, if he can stay alive long enough to follow it.

Enter the wizard, Bayaz. A bald old man with a terrible temper and a pathetic assistant, he could be the First of the Magi, he could be a spectacular fraud, but whatever he is, he's about to make the lives of Logen, Jezal, and Glokta a whole lot more difficult.

Murderous conspiracies rise to the surface, old scores are ready to be settled, and the line between hero and villain is sharp enough to draw blood.

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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Sun Dec 03, 2023 21:51 
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Soopah red DS

Joined: 2nd Jun, 2008
Posts: 3194
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
1. The Midnight Library - Matt Haig
2. Educating Peter - Tom Cox.
3. Carnival of Snackery - David Sedaris.
4. The Children of Dynmouth - William Trevor.
5. The Cactus Eaters: How I Lost My Mind and Almost Found Myself on the Pacific Crest Trail - Dan White.
6. No Less the Devil - Stuart MacBridge.
7. The Foot Soldiers - Gerald Seymour.
8. The Sellout - Paul Beatty.
9. Home Fire - Kamila Shamsie.
10. The Kaiju Preservation Society - John Scalzi.
11. Magnificent Women and Flying Machines - Sally Smith.
12. Lion - Conn Iggulden.
13. I Hate the Internet - Jarett Kobek.
14. Mr Pye - Mervyn Peake.
15. Sidesplitter - Phil Wang.
16. This is True - Miriam Margolyes.
17. La Belle Sauvage: The Book of Dust 1 - Philip Pullman.
18. Gotta Get Theroux This - Louis Theroux.
19. Exciting Times - Naoise Dolan.
20. Tenth of December - George Saunders.
21. The First and Last Men: A Story of the Near and Far Future - Olaf Stapledon.
22. Handsome Brute - Sean O'Connor.
23. Children of Time - Adrian Tchaikovsky.
24. How to Make the World Add Up - Tim Harford.
25. The Old Man - Thomas Perry.
26. Rutherford and Fry's Guide to Absolutely Everything - Rutherford and Fry.
27. How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu.
28. Utopia Avenue - David Mitchell.
29. The Old Drift - Namwali Serpell.
30. Before the Coffee Gets Cold - Toshikazu Kawaguchi.
31. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold - John le Carre.
32. Station 11 - Emily St John Mandel.
33. Stone Blind - Natalie Haynes.
34. Shuggie Bain - Douglas Stuart.
35. The Golden Enclaves - Naomi Novik
36. Wild Fell - Lee Schofield.
37. The Deptford Trilogy - Robertson Davies.
38. Havana Bay - Martin Cruz Smith.
39. The Dark Forest & Death's End - Cixin Liu.
40. Transition - Iain M. Banks.
41. Checkmate in Berlin - Giles Milton.
42. Exactly - Simon Winchester.
43. The Secret Diaries of Charles Ignatius Sancho - Paterson Joseph.
44. Empire - Conn Iggulden.
45. This Must be the Place - Maggie O'Farrell.
46. Starship Troopers - Robert Heinlein.


The Throne of Jade - Naomi Novik. Book Two of the Temeraire series which puts dragons in the Napoleonic Era. Love Novik's books. In this one, Temeraire (one title of the first book, also known as His Majesty's Dragon) has to go to China, which is where he's originally from. How can the Brits keep hold? I just couldn't see how it could work out, but should just trust the author - action and a satisfying conclusion all round.

The Last London - Iain Sinclair. This is a wander through London, describing as he goes. It's much better than that sounds, a real kaleidoscope of sights and sounds, but I didn't quite get on with it perhaps because there's so much description. I still think I soaked up some atmosphere from it. It was recommended by Stewart Lee and reads a bit like one of his columns, so if you get on with those you'll probably enjoy this; perhaps in small doses.


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Sun Dec 03, 2023 22:23 
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Heavy Metal Tough Guy

Joined: 31st Mar, 2008
Posts: 6483
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
1.) Shattered Sword: The Untold Story of the Battle of Midway - Jonathan Parshall & Anthony Tully
2.) Father Brown - G.K.Chesterton
3.) The Kean Land - Jack Schaefer
4.) To the Devil - a Daughter! - Dennis Wheatley.
5.) Riddle of the Sands - Erskine Childers.
6.) Tombs of Atuan - Ursula K. Le Guin.
7.) South by Java Head - Alistair MacLean.
8.) Sharpe's Triumph - Bernard Cornwell.
9.) Sharpe's Fortress - Bernard Cornwell.
10.) Sharpe's Trafalgar - Bernard Cornwell.
11). HMS Ulysses - Alistair MacLean.
12.) The Satsuma Complex - Bob Mortimer.
13.) Gateway to Hell - Dennis Wheatley.
14.) Sharpe's Prey - Bernard Cornwell.
15.) Aunt's aren't Gentlemen - P.G. Wodehouse.
16.) The Farthest Shore - Ursula K. Le Guin.


17.) Farewell My Lovely - Raymond Chandler

Generally splendid private eye book with a knotty plot. People get blackjacked with alarming regularity. There are dames. Cops are either crooked, useless or hard-bitten and a bit ruthless. Lots of pithy one liners. Fun read, even if I'm not normally one for detective novels


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2023 14:04 
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Excellent Painter

Joined: 30th Apr, 2008
Posts: 7312
Location: Behind you
Squirt wrote:
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
1.) Shattered Sword: The Untold Story of the Battle of Midway - Jonathan Parshall & Anthony Tully
2.) Father Brown - G.K.Chesterton
3.) The Kean Land - Jack Schaefer
4.) To the Devil - a Daughter! - Dennis Wheatley.
5.) Riddle of the Sands - Erskine Childers.
6.) Tombs of Atuan - Ursula K. Le Guin.
7.) South by Java Head - Alistair MacLean.
8.) Sharpe's Triumph - Bernard Cornwell.
9.) Sharpe's Fortress - Bernard Cornwell.
10.) Sharpe's Trafalgar - Bernard Cornwell.
11). HMS Ulysses - Alistair MacLean.
12.) The Satsuma Complex - Bob Mortimer.
13.) Gateway to Hell - Dennis Wheatley.
14.) Sharpe's Prey - Bernard Cornwell.
15.) Aunt's aren't Gentlemen - P.G. Wodehouse.
16.) The Farthest Shore - Ursula K. Le Guin.


17.) Farewell My Lovely - Raymond Chandler

Generally splendid private eye book with a knotty plot. People get blackjacked with alarming regularity. There are dames. Cops are either crooked, useless or hard-bitten and a bit ruthless. Lots of pithy one liners. Fun read, even if I'm not normally one for detective novels


Chandler is pretty much one of the defining masters of the genre. He only wrote six complete novels. All of them are very good. The standout best is The Long Goodbye, though

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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2023 16:26 
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Heavy Metal Tough Guy

Joined: 31st Mar, 2008
Posts: 6483
DBSnappa wrote:
Squirt wrote:
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
1.) Shattered Sword: The Untold Story of the Battle of Midway - Jonathan Parshall & Anthony Tully
2.) Father Brown - G.K.Chesterton
3.) The Kean Land - Jack Schaefer
4.) To the Devil - a Daughter! - Dennis Wheatley.
5.) Riddle of the Sands - Erskine Childers.
6.) Tombs of Atuan - Ursula K. Le Guin.
7.) South by Java Head - Alistair MacLean.
8.) Sharpe's Triumph - Bernard Cornwell.
9.) Sharpe's Fortress - Bernard Cornwell.
10.) Sharpe's Trafalgar - Bernard Cornwell.
11). HMS Ulysses - Alistair MacLean.
12.) The Satsuma Complex - Bob Mortimer.
13.) Gateway to Hell - Dennis Wheatley.
14.) Sharpe's Prey - Bernard Cornwell.
15.) Aunt's aren't Gentlemen - P.G. Wodehouse.
16.) The Farthest Shore - Ursula K. Le Guin.


17.) Farewell My Lovely - Raymond Chandler

Generally splendid private eye book with a knotty plot. People get blackjacked with alarming regularity. There are dames. Cops are either crooked, useless or hard-bitten and a bit ruthless. Lots of pithy one liners. Fun read, even if I'm not normally one for detective novels


Chandler is pretty much one of the defining masters of the genre. He only wrote six complete novels. All of them are very good. The standout best is The Long Goodbye, though


I think I read The Big Sleep about 25 years ago, but barely remember it at all. I'm gonna hunt down more of his.


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2023 17:12 
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Soopah red DS

Joined: 2nd Jun, 2008
Posts: 3194
DBSnappa wrote:
Squirt wrote:
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
1.) Shattered Sword: The Untold Story of the Battle of Midway - Jonathan Parshall & Anthony Tully
2.) Father Brown - G.K.Chesterton
3.) The Kean Land - Jack Schaefer
4.) To the Devil - a Daughter! - Dennis Wheatley.
5.) Riddle of the Sands - Erskine Childers.
6.) Tombs of Atuan - Ursula K. Le Guin.
7.) South by Java Head - Alistair MacLean.
8.) Sharpe's Triumph - Bernard Cornwell.
9.) Sharpe's Fortress - Bernard Cornwell.
10.) Sharpe's Trafalgar - Bernard Cornwell.
11). HMS Ulysses - Alistair MacLean.
12.) The Satsuma Complex - Bob Mortimer.
13.) Gateway to Hell - Dennis Wheatley.
14.) Sharpe's Prey - Bernard Cornwell.
15.) Aunt's aren't Gentlemen - P.G. Wodehouse.
16.) The Farthest Shore - Ursula K. Le Guin.


17.) Farewell My Lovely - Raymond Chandler

Generally splendid private eye book with a knotty plot. People get blackjacked with alarming regularity. There are dames. Cops are either crooked, useless or hard-bitten and a bit ruthless. Lots of pithy one liners. Fun read, even if I'm not normally one for detective novels


Chandler is pretty much one of the defining masters of the genre. He only wrote six complete novels. All of them are very good. The standout best is The Long Goodbye, though


Could he *be* any sharper and on point?


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2023 12:46 
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Joined: 30th Mar, 2008
Posts: 14104
Location: Shropshire, UK
1. Alien, by Alan Dean Foster
2. Aliens, by Alan Dean Foster
3. Alien 3, by (you guessed it) Alan Dean Foster
4. Jack Reacher: One Shot -- I mistakenly thought this was the first Reacher book, probably because it's the one that the first Tom Cruise movie was based on.
5. Jack Reacher: Killing Floor -- this one *is* the first Reacher book, and is what the TV series was based on.
6. Jack Reacher: Die Trying -- wasn't quite as enjoyable as the other two, perhaps because I struggle to form pictures in my head, but still a good read.
7. Jack Reacher: Bad Luck and Trouble -- wot the upcoming season 2 on TV is based on. Very good, gripping from start to finish.
8. Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, by Gabrielle Zevin -- as has been said here, brilliant! Even made me cry at a couple of points, which no book has ever managed to do before.
9: The Satsuma Complex, by Bob Mortimer -- quite short, and generally speaking an enjoyable read. Wasn't quite as "zany" as I anticipated, considering the author, but that's no bad thing in the context of the story. A few unexpected turns, but nothing that's going to leave a lasting impression.


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Tue Dec 05, 2023 15:10 
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Soopah red DS

Joined: 2nd Jun, 2008
Posts: 3194
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
1. The Midnight Library - Matt Haig
2. Educating Peter - Tom Cox.
3. Carnival of Snackery - David Sedaris.
4. The Children of Dynmouth - William Trevor.
5. The Cactus Eaters: How I Lost My Mind and Almost Found Myself on the Pacific Crest Trail - Dan White.
6. No Less the Devil - Stuart MacBridge.
7. The Foot Soldiers - Gerald Seymour.
8. The Sellout - Paul Beatty.
9. Home Fire - Kamila Shamsie.
10. The Kaiju Preservation Society - John Scalzi.
11. Magnificent Women and Flying Machines - Sally Smith.
12. Lion - Conn Iggulden.
13. I Hate the Internet - Jarett Kobek.
14. Mr Pye - Mervyn Peake.
15. Sidesplitter - Phil Wang.
16. This is True - Miriam Margolyes.
17. La Belle Sauvage: The Book of Dust 1 - Philip Pullman.
18. Gotta Get Theroux This - Louis Theroux.
19. Exciting Times - Naoise Dolan.
20. Tenth of December - George Saunders.
21. The First and Last Men: A Story of the Near and Far Future - Olaf Stapledon.
22. Handsome Brute - Sean O'Connor.
23. Children of Time - Adrian Tchaikovsky.
24. How to Make the World Add Up - Tim Harford.
25. The Old Man - Thomas Perry.
26. Rutherford and Fry's Guide to Absolutely Everything - Rutherford and Fry.
27. How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu.
28. Utopia Avenue - David Mitchell.
29. The Old Drift - Namwali Serpell.
30. Before the Coffee Gets Cold - Toshikazu Kawaguchi.
31. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold - John le Carre.
32. Station 11 - Emily St John Mandel.
33. Stone Blind - Natalie Haynes.
34. Shuggie Bain - Douglas Stuart.
35. The Golden Enclaves - Naomi Novik
36. Wild Fell - Lee Schofield.
37. The Deptford Trilogy - Robertson Davies.
38. Havana Bay - Martin Cruz Smith.
39. The Dark Forest & Death's End - Cixin Liu.
40. Transition - Iain M. Banks.
41. Checkmate in Berlin - Giles Milton.
42. Exactly - Simon Winchester.
43. The Secret Diaries of Charles Ignatius Sancho - Paterson Joseph.
44. Empire - Conn Iggulden.
45. This Must be the Place - Maggie O'Farrell.
46. Starship Troopers - Robert Heinlein.
47. The Throne of Jade - Naomi Novik.
48. The Last London - Iain Sinclair.


Broken Light - Joanne Harris. I used to associate Harris only with Chocolat and the other books that are similar in the series which blurred together a bit for me (Strawberry Thief, Lollipop Shoes). But her loose series (you could read them in any order, skip some, whatever) school-based thrillers are fantastic, properly creepy and with some decent whodunnit action in there. This one is a bit of a cross. A thriller but heavy on the magical realism. The protagonist has always been seen as a bit odd since school, partly because she has some special ability. It's never explained too exactly, which is wise (saves getting caught in any 'but couldn't you just..?'). But if she touches someone, she can see into their mind, and move things around; make two people eating swap the tastes they're experiencing, or leave a suggestion. Could that cause a mess? You bet it can! There's a shade of "what women want", the Mel Gibson film where he can hear everything they hear, with a good look at Me Too, and the idea that yes, not all men, but all could, whereas what's the worst a man faces? I thought it managed to look at that exhaustively but without being preachy - it's hard to talk about social media being all a bit shit without being quite dull, but this stays on the right side.
And after finishing this I saw Daniel Kitson in the evening, which made for a very magical realist day. Yes, recognisable reality and yet, surely that only happens with magic? Good stuff all round.


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2023 8:26 
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Joined: 12th Apr, 2008
Posts: 17732
Location: Oxford
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
1. The Confidence Men by Margalit Fox
2. Maus by Art Spiegelman
3. The Hunger by Alma Katsu
4. Ask a Historian by Greg Jenner
5. My Name's Not Friday by Jon Walter
6. All That Remains by Sue Black
7. Aftermath by Harald Jähner (tr. S Whiteside)
8. God: an Anatomy by Francesca Stavrakopoulou
9.A Million Years in a Day by Greg Jenner
10.How Westminster Works and Why It Doesn't by Ian Dunt
11. Everybody Wins: Four Decades of the Greatest Board Games Ever Made by James Wallis
12.The Theory of Everything Else by Dan Schreiber
13.A Bit of a Stretch by Chris Atkins
14. Jingo by Terry Pratchett
15. Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky
16. Eversion by Alistair Reynolds
17. The Irish Difference: a tumultuous history of Ireland's breakup with Britain by Fergal Tobin
18. Fake Heroes by Otto English
19. Peril by Bob Woodward and Robert Costa
20. The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged 13 3/4 by Sue Townsend
21. The Department of Truth: volume 1 - The End of the World by James Tynion IV; art by Martin Simmonds
22.One..Two..Three..Four - The Beatles in Time by Craig Brown
23.British Rail: the Making and Breaking of Our Trains by Christian Wolmar
24. The Restless Republic: Britain Without a Crown by Anna Keay
25. Homage to Catalonia by George Orwell
26. If Nietzsche Were a Narwhal by Justin Gregg
27 Cultish - the language of fanaticism by Amanda Montell
28.The White Ship by Charles Spencer

29.A History of the Roman Empire in 21 Women by Emma Southon

Much of what we usually hear about the Romans focuses on manly men doing manly things: war, violence, sex, assassinations, and so on. We also don't hear much about vast sections of the populace of that vast Empire, such as the enslaved, the poor, or the women.
This book looks at 21 women from the earliest days to the collapse of the western empire to see what it tells us about Roman life and being female.

As with her previous books, Southon writes in the style of an enthusiastic friend in the pub telling you this great story they've heard, and she keeps up her chatty style throughout. It's very engaging, and throughout Southon explains that whilst many sources are lost (because women weren't that interesting to the Roman historians, unless they did something bad we could learn a moral from), reading between the lines in what exists can tell us a lot about the society, culture, and attitudes.


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2023 11:44 
User avatar
Gogmagog

Joined: 30th Mar, 2008
Posts: 48571
Location: Cheshire
MaliA wrote:
MaliA wrote:
MaliA wrote:
MaliA wrote:
MaliA wrote:
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
]b]Corruptible - Brian Klaas[/b] Why we get the leaders we do, and how it is all our own fault, but there are ways to make it better. It's engaging, readable, and makes one think. There's a few ideas I I have seen elsewhere, but worth the time to go through it. Pair with How To Rig An Election for maximum eye row raising.

Spare - Captain Wales Christ, this is a ride and a half. It's very poorly written, and he comes over like Holden Caulfield without the whimsy. Really picks up in the final third with ALL THE GOSSIP. I ended up feeling some sympathy for him.


A Talent for War - Jack McDevit this bloke's uncle dies, and it is Very Mysterious, but his uncle was researching something, so this bloke picks up the trail. It's a good space adventure, and nods towards how we view our own history, it being written by the winners, and the legends that grow around powerful historical figures.

It's well worth the look.

Far From The Light of Heaven - Tade Thompson On a spaceship, travelling through interstellar space, the first officer wakes up from hypersleep to find the ship 's AI wiped, and thirty passengers out of the thousand on board who were also asleep out of their pods and very much dead. Really good locked room mystery.

The Employees - Olga Ravn (translated by Martin Aitkin) this is proper good. This is weirdly proper good. Life on board a spaceship through the employee's eyes. Highly recommended. Absolutely superb.

Cwen - Alice Abinia a book about life in an island where women begin to take over and what follows. It's a lot better than it sounds, and I probably would have been better reading it a lot more carefully.

Artemis - Andy Weir a caper on the moon. Similar in style to the Martian, but isn't as good. Dialogue felt clunky and awkward at times.

Beyond the Burn Line
by Paul J. McAuley


The earth is inhabited by evolved racoons now free from being enslaved by intelligent bears. They are trying to work out what went on.

It's OK, but I didn't massively enjoy it.

Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel

Absolutely loved this. Across three timelines, there's an anomaly witnessed. It's a great read, and lovely.

Recommend this!

The Terraformers - Annalee Newitz

The story of a planet made to be sold to people to live on as a holiday place, and those who take care of it through its life.

Yeah, I didn't like this
The first third was good, the second not so much, the third took a nose dive. Avoid.

Eversion by Alistair Reynolds

A vice enjoying surgeon joins a ship's crew on a private expedition to find a mysterious structure to gain fame and fortune in the absolutely brilliant mystery horror novel.

It was 99p so grab it on Kindle. I loved every page.

Children of Ruin - Adrian Tchaikovsky

Sequel to the first book Children of Time.

I didn't like it as much and it was a slog at times.
[Spoiler]
The Traitor by Seth Dickinson

This is very good, indeed. It's a saddening, horrific tale of someone trying to take down an empire. Suffers a bit from "too many names" at times, but I forgive it that.

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Good lord this is great. Highly recommend this about life on earth after a pandemic.


Monster by Seth Dickinson

Baru Cormorant continues doing stuff.Suffers a bit from "too many names" at times, but I forgive it that.

Knowing it is a trilogy removes a lot of the jeopardy


I gave up on the third one as I realised I didn't care


Ink Blood Sister Scribe by Emma Toezs- a decent enough fantasy thriller centered around the use of magic in the modern world



Hyperion by Dan Simmons

The Canterbury but in space, say some. It's brilliant. Also, I felt real human feelings. I haven't read the Canterbury Tales. They're probably not as good as they aren't in space


The Passenger - Cormac McCarthy

It's sad, whimsical, beautifully written and stunningly good.

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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2023 11:49 
User avatar
Gogmagog

Joined: 30th Mar, 2008
Posts: 48571
Location: Cheshire
MaliA wrote:
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
]b]Corruptible - Brian Klaas[/b] Why we get the leaders we do, and how it is all our own fault, but there are ways to make it better. It's engaging, readable, and makes one think. There's a few ideas I I have seen elsewhere, but worth the time to go through it. Pair with How To Rig An Election for maximum eye row raising.

Spare - Captain Wales Christ, this is a ride and a half. It's very poorly written, and he comes over like Holden Caulfield without the whimsy. Really picks up in the final third with ALL THE GOSSIP. I ended up feeling some sympathy for him.


A Talent for War - Jack McDevit this bloke's uncle dies, and it is Very Mysterious, but his uncle was researching something, so this bloke picks up the trail. It's a good space adventure, and nods towards how we view our own history, it being written by the winners, and the legends that grow around powerful historical figures.

It's well worth the look.

Far From The Light of Heaven - Tade Thompson On a spaceship, travelling through interstellar space, the first officer wakes up from hypersleep to find the ship 's AI wiped, and thirty passengers out of the thousand on board who were also asleep out of their pods and very much dead. Really good locked room mystery.

The Employees - Olga Ravn (translated by Martin Aitkin) this is proper good. This is weirdly proper good. Life on board a spaceship through the employee's eyes. Highly recommended. Absolutely superb.

Cwen - Alice Abinia a book about life in an island where women begin to take over and what follows. It's a lot better than it sounds, and I probably would have been better reading it a lot more carefully.

Artemis - Andy Weir a caper on the moon. Similar in style to the Martian, but isn't as good. Dialogue felt clunky and awkward at times.

Beyond the Burn Line
by Paul J. McAuley


The earth is inhabited by evolved racoons now free from being enslaved by intelligent bears. They are trying to work out what went on.

It's OK, but I didn't massively enjoy it.

Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel

Absolutely loved this. Across three timelines, there's an anomaly witnessed. It's a great read, and lovely.

Recommend this!

The Terraformers - Annalee Newitz

The story of a planet made to be sold to people to live on as a holiday place, and those who take care of it through its life.

Yeah, I didn't like this
The first third was good, the second not so much, the third took a nose dive. Avoid.

Eversion by Alistair Reynolds

A vice enjoying surgeon joins a ship's crew on a private expedition to find a mysterious structure to gain fame and fortune in the absolutely brilliant mystery horror novel.

It was 99p so grab it on Kindle. I loved every page.

Children of Ruin - Adrian Tchaikovsky

Sequel to the first book Children of Time.

I didn't like it as much and it was a slog at times.

The Traitor by Seth Dickinson

This is very good, indeed. It's a saddening, horrific tale of someone trying to take down an empire. Suffers a bit from "too many names" at times, but I forgive it that.

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Good lord this is great. Highly recommend this about life on earth after a pandemic.

Monster by Seth Dickinson

Baru Cormorant continues doing stuff.Suffers a bit from "too many names" at times, but I forgive it that.

Knowing it is a trilogy removes a lot of the jeopardy

I gave up on the third one as I realised I didn't care

Ink Blood Sister Scribe by Emma Toezs - a decent enough fantasy thriller centered around the use of magic in the modern world


Hyperion by Dan Simmons

The Canterbury but in space, say some. It's brilliant. Also, I felt real human feelings. I haven't read the Canterbury Tales. They're probably not as good as they aren't in space


The Passenger - Cormac McCarthy

It's sad, whimsical, beautifully written and stunningly good.


Nowhere to run - Jonathan Sayer

It's a super fun account of someone buying a non league football club with his father, and the highs and lows it produces. It's chatty, engaging, and no you don't want to buy a football club.

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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2023 10:32 
User avatar

Joined: 12th Apr, 2008
Posts: 17732
Location: Oxford
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
1. The Confidence Men by Margalit Fox
2. Maus by Art Spiegelman
3. The Hunger by Alma Katsu
4. Ask a Historian by Greg Jenner
5. My Name's Not Friday by Jon Walter
6. All That Remains by Sue Black
7. Aftermath by Harald Jähner (tr. S Whiteside)
8. God: an Anatomy by Francesca Stavrakopoulou
9.A Million Years in a Day by Greg Jenner
10.How Westminster Works and Why It Doesn't by Ian Dunt
11. Everybody Wins: Four Decades of the Greatest Board Games Ever Made by James Wallis
12.The Theory of Everything Else by Dan Schreiber
13.A Bit of a Stretch by Chris Atkins
14. Jingo by Terry Pratchett
15. Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky
16. Eversion by Alistair Reynolds
17. The Irish Difference: a tumultuous history of Ireland's breakup with Britain by Fergal Tobin
18. Fake Heroes by Otto English
19. Peril by Bob Woodward and Robert Costa
20. The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged 13 3/4 by Sue Townsend
21. The Department of Truth: volume 1 - The End of the World by James Tynion IV; art by Martin Simmonds
22.One..Two..Three..Four - The Beatles in Time by Craig Brown
23.British Rail: the Making and Breaking of Our Trains by Christian Wolmar
24. The Restless Republic: Britain Without a Crown by Anna Keay
25. Homage to Catalonia by George Orwell
26. If Nietzsche Were a Narwhal by Justin Gregg
27 Cultish - the language of fanaticism by Amanda Montell
28.The White Ship by Charles Spencer
29.A History of the Roman Empire in 21 Women by Emma Southon

30.52 Times Britain was a Bellend by James Felton

More laugh-and-learn from the Internet funnyman, but as with his other work probably written for toilet browsing rather than to be read through.


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Sun Dec 17, 2023 14:37 
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Joined: 30th Mar, 2008
Posts: 14104
Location: Shropshire, UK
1. Alien, by Alan Dean Foster
2. Aliens, by Alan Dean Foster
3. Alien 3, by (you guessed it) Alan Dean Foster
4. Jack Reacher: One Shot -- I mistakenly thought this was the first Reacher book, probably because it's the one that the first Tom Cruise movie was based on.
5. Jack Reacher: Killing Floor -- this one *is* the first Reacher book, and is what the TV series was based on.
6. Jack Reacher: Die Trying -- wasn't quite as enjoyable as the other two, perhaps because I struggle to form pictures in my head, but still a good read.
7. Jack Reacher: Bad Luck and Trouble -- wot the upcoming season 2 on TV is based on. Very good, gripping from start to finish.
8. Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, by Gabrielle Zevin -- as has been said here, brilliant! Even made me cry at a couple of points, which no book has ever managed to do before.
9: The Satsuma Complex, by Bob Mortimer -- quite short, and generally speaking an enjoyable read. Wasn't quite as "zany" as I anticipated, considering the author, but that's no bad thing in the context of the story. A few unexpected turns, but nothing that's going to leave a lasting impression.
10. And Away..., by Bob Mortimer -- his autobiography. Has some surprisingly moving moments, particularly around Bob's childhood. Pretty humourous throughout, but again not quite as zany as you'd think!


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Fri Dec 22, 2023 20:35 
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Heavy Metal Tough Guy

Joined: 31st Mar, 2008
Posts: 6483
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
1.) Shattered Sword: The Untold Story of the Battle of Midway - Jonathan Parshall & Anthony Tully
2.) Father Brown - G.K.Chesterton
3.) The Kean Land - Jack Schaefer
4.) To the Devil - a Daughter! - Dennis Wheatley.
5.) Riddle of the Sands - Erskine Childers.
6.) Tombs of Atuan - Ursula K. Le Guin.
7.) South by Java Head - Alistair MacLean.
8.) Sharpe's Triumph - Bernard Cornwell.
9.) Sharpe's Fortress - Bernard Cornwell.
10.) Sharpe's Trafalgar - Bernard Cornwell.
11). HMS Ulysses - Alistair MacLean.
12.) The Satsuma Complex - Bob Mortimer.
13.) Gateway to Hell - Dennis Wheatley.
14.) Sharpe's Prey - Bernard Cornwell.
15.) Aunt's aren't Gentlemen - P.G. Wodehouse.
16.) The Farthest Shore - Ursula K. Le Guin.
17.) Farewell My Lovely - Raymond Chandler


18.) Snow Crash - Neal Stephenson
Zoomy spiky sci-fi book in which the word "Metaverse" was invented and which contains more chapters where characters talk about Sumerian religion than one might expect. Gonna try to hit 20 books by new year!


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2023 1:34 
SupaMod
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Est. 1978

Joined: 27th Mar, 2008
Posts: 69499
Location: Your Mum
A classic. The suggestion that all programmers can count in binary as easily as base 10 still makes me smile.

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I wish Craster had left some girls for the rest of us.


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Thu Dec 28, 2023 21:53 
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Soopah red DS

Joined: 2nd Jun, 2008
Posts: 3194
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1. The Midnight Library - Matt Haig
2. Educating Peter - Tom Cox.
3. Carnival of Snackery - David Sedaris.
4. The Children of Dynmouth - William Trevor.
5. The Cactus Eaters: How I Lost My Mind and Almost Found Myself on the Pacific Crest Trail - Dan White.
6. No Less the Devil - Stuart MacBridge.
7. The Foot Soldiers - Gerald Seymour.
8. The Sellout - Paul Beatty.
9. Home Fire - Kamila Shamsie.
10. The Kaiju Preservation Society - John Scalzi.
11. Magnificent Women and Flying Machines - Sally Smith.
12. Lion - Conn Iggulden.
13. I Hate the Internet - Jarett Kobek.
14. Mr Pye - Mervyn Peake.
15. Sidesplitter - Phil Wang.
16. This is True - Miriam Margolyes.
17. La Belle Sauvage: The Book of Dust 1 - Philip Pullman.
18. Gotta Get Theroux This - Louis Theroux.
19. Exciting Times - Naoise Dolan.
20. Tenth of December - George Saunders.
21. The First and Last Men: A Story of the Near and Far Future - Olaf Stapledon.
22. Handsome Brute - Sean O'Connor.
23. Children of Time - Adrian Tchaikovsky.
24. How to Make the World Add Up - Tim Harford.
25. The Old Man - Thomas Perry.
26. Rutherford and Fry's Guide to Absolutely Everything - Rutherford and Fry.
27. How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu.
28. Utopia Avenue - David Mitchell.
29. The Old Drift - Namwali Serpell.
30. Before the Coffee Gets Cold - Toshikazu Kawaguchi.
31. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold - John le Carre.
32. Station 11 - Emily St John Mandel.
33. Stone Blind - Natalie Haynes.
34. Shuggie Bain - Douglas Stuart.
35. The Golden Enclaves - Naomi Novik
36. Wild Fell - Lee Schofield.
37. The Deptford Trilogy - Robertson Davies.
38. Havana Bay - Martin Cruz Smith.
39. The Dark Forest & Death's End - Cixin Liu.
40. Transition - Iain M. Banks.
41. Checkmate in Berlin - Giles Milton.
42. Exactly - Simon Winchester.
43. The Secret Diaries of Charles Ignatius Sancho - Paterson Joseph.
44. Empire - Conn Iggulden.
45. This Must be the Place - Maggie O'Farrell.
46. Starship Troopers - Robert Heinlein.
47. The Throne of Jade - Naomi Novik.
48. The Last London - Iain Sinclair.
49. Broken Light - Joanne Harris.


50. Mark Boyle - The Way Home. The 'moneyless man' starts living without technology (though quite near it, because his neighbours have it). A bit too much rationalisation, but otherwise a decent read about the reality of how much labour technology saves us (or how far we are from a natural life).

51. Golden Boy - cricket, the story of Kim Hughes' captaincy of Australia, particularly during the Ashes of 1981. Fascinating read about a troubled time for the Australia team. Hughes seems an interesting man, and this book lets you make up your own mind about to what extent you think he's brilliant/undermind/naive/a useless captain.

52. The Usual Santas: A Collection of Soho Crime Christmas Capers - Short stories from a variety of authors, all sorts of lengths, complexity and quality. Overall, not bad, but not at all vital even if you love one of the writers.


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2023 9:16 
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Joined: 12th Apr, 2008
Posts: 17732
Location: Oxford
52!
Giphy "applause":
https://media2.giphy.com/media/3otPotypHZ3Wev76Rq/giphy-loop.mp4


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Fri Dec 29, 2023 17:45 
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Master of dodgy spelling....

Joined: 25th Sep, 2008
Posts: 22517
Location: shropshire, uk
KovacsC wrote:

1. No Plan B - Lee & Andrew Child
2. The Thursday Murder Club - Richard Osman
3. The Man who Died Twice - Richard Osman
4. The Bullet that missed - Richard Osman
5. First Man In - Ant Middleton.
6. The Moscow Sleeper. - Stella Rimmington.
7. The Blade Itself - Joe Abercrombie


8. skyship Thrive - Ginger Booth

The first of 9 books. It was quite fun. I liked the characters and the problems of living with low gravity and harsh environment.




Quote:
An ex-cop who cannot die. A moon full of settlers who cannot thrive.

Mahina's terraformers built a high-tech urban paradise. Then Earth flooded the colony with desperate refugees, cop Sass Collier among them.

The settlers who arrived with Sass died decades ago. Outside the citadel, their descendants die weak and young.

Sass fought a rebellion against the city once. She won concessions to give the settlers a chance at health. She paid with 20 years in prison.

Now she’s out, a reformed character. She assembles a diverse crew and finds odd jobs. She intends to mind her own business – how to make a profit with the skyship Thrive.

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Kovacs: From 'unresponsive' to 'kebab' in 3.5 seconds


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Sun Dec 31, 2023 17:53 
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Soopah red DS

Joined: 2nd Jun, 2008
Posts: 3194
ZOMG Spoiler! Click here to view!
1. The Midnight Library - Matt Haig
2. Educating Peter - Tom Cox.
3. Carnival of Snackery - David Sedaris.
4. The Children of Dynmouth - William Trevor.
5. The Cactus Eaters: How I Lost My Mind and Almost Found Myself on the Pacific Crest Trail - Dan White.
6. No Less the Devil - Stuart MacBridge.
7. The Foot Soldiers - Gerald Seymour.
8. The Sellout - Paul Beatty.
9. Home Fire - Kamila Shamsie.
10. The Kaiju Preservation Society - John Scalzi.
11. Magnificent Women and Flying Machines - Sally Smith.
12. Lion - Conn Iggulden.
13. I Hate the Internet - Jarett Kobek.
14. Mr Pye - Mervyn Peake.
15. Sidesplitter - Phil Wang.
16. This is True - Miriam Margolyes.
17. La Belle Sauvage: The Book of Dust 1 - Philip Pullman.
18. Gotta Get Theroux This - Louis Theroux.
19. Exciting Times - Naoise Dolan.
20. Tenth of December - George Saunders.
21. The First and Last Men: A Story of the Near and Far Future - Olaf Stapledon.
22. Handsome Brute - Sean O'Connor.
23. Children of Time - Adrian Tchaikovsky.
24. How to Make the World Add Up - Tim Harford.
25. The Old Man - Thomas Perry.
26. Rutherford and Fry's Guide to Absolutely Everything - Rutherford and Fry.
27. How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu.
28. Utopia Avenue - David Mitchell.
29. The Old Drift - Namwali Serpell.
30. Before the Coffee Gets Cold - Toshikazu Kawaguchi.
31. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold - John le Carre.
32. Station 11 - Emily St John Mandel.
33. Stone Blind - Natalie Haynes.
34. Shuggie Bain - Douglas Stuart.
35. The Golden Enclaves - Naomi Novik
36. Wild Fell - Lee Schofield.
37. The Deptford Trilogy - Robertson Davies.
38. Havana Bay - Martin Cruz Smith.
39. The Dark Forest & Death's End - Cixin Liu.
40. Transition - Iain M. Banks.
41. Checkmate in Berlin - Giles Milton.
42. Exactly - Simon Winchester.
43. The Secret Diaries of Charles Ignatius Sancho - Paterson Joseph.
44. Empire - Conn Iggulden.
45. This Must be the Place - Maggie O'Farrell.
46. Starship Troopers - Robert Heinlein.
47. The Throne of Jade - Naomi Novik.
48. The Last London - Iain Sinclair.
49. Broken Light - Joanne Harris.
50. Mark Boyle - The Way Home.
51. Golden Boy - cricket.
52. The Usual Santas: A Collection of Soho Crime Christmas Capers.


And one bonus one, A Promise of Ankles (44 Scotland Street bk 14), Alexander McCall Smith. A warm hug of a book, with the occasional annoyance of the author's voice suggesting things are changing for the worse in crusty ways (soon we won't be able to say anything; universities have to put content warnings on). These are books where loads happens, but of little consequence, and in occasionally coincidental ways. Haven't read one for ages, but this scratched an itch.


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 Post subject: Re: Finish 52 Books 2023
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2024 1:01 
SupaMod
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Est. 1978

Joined: 27th Mar, 2008
Posts: 69499
Location: Your Mum
JBR wrote:
The Midnight Library - Matt Haig. This book was a bit of a 'thing', certainly in sales, and I followed the author for a while, but it, and his "you are enough" type messages are not for me. Glad I read it, it's an interesting idea - that before death people see a repository (like a library) that lets then explore other lives - but I thought it clunky.

I'm reading this right now! It's set in Bedford! In fact the lower school mentioned at the start of the book is basically around the corner from my house.

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I wish Craster had left some girls for the rest of us.


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