Foro Flamenco
Posts Since Last Visit | Advanced Search | Home | Register | Login

Today's Posts | Inbox | Profile | Our Rules | Contact Admin | Log Out



Welcome to one of the most active flamenco sites on the Internet. Guests can read most posts but if you want to participate click here to register.
This site is dedicated to the memory of Paco de Lucía, Ron Mitchell, Guy Williams, Linda Elvir, Philip John Lee and Craig Eros who went ahead of us too soon.
We receive 12,200 visitors a month from 200 countries and 1.7 million page impressions a year. To advertise on this site please contact us.





Best book you have read   You are logged in as Guest
Users viewing this topic: none
  Printable Version
All Forums >>Discussions >>Off Topic >> Page: [1]
Login
Message<< Newer Topic  Older Topic >>
 
gerundino63

Posts: 1689
Joined: Jul. 11 2003
From: The Netherlands

Best book you have read 

Hi friends,

The longer evenings are about to start.
You are a fine bunch of international chaps, so I would like to ask you an off topic question.

What is the book you have red that made the most impression on you?

I am looking for some reading inspiration😊

_____________________________

  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 12 2019 20:46:22
 
kitarist

Posts: 1485
Joined: Dec. 4 2012
 

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

Don't know about best, however one that left a lasting impression on me but might not be well known was "A Winter in the Hills" by British writer John Wain (1925-1994). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Wain

He is better known in North America (for example) for his first book - "Hurry on Down".

_____________________________

Konstantin
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 12 2019 22:34:58
 
Piwin

Posts: 3398
Joined: Feb. 9 2016
 

RE: Best book you have read. (in reply to gerundino63

Citadelle by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. Not sure it's been translated though, nor do I even know whether I'd recommend it (it's not a polished work, as the author died before he could finish it) but, well, that's the one that left the longest lasting impression.
By the same author, you might try Wind, sand and stars (French:Terre des hommes), which I know has been translated and is well worth the read.

Of what I've read this year, I'd say the one that stands out the most in my memory is Victor Pelevin's The sacred book of the werewolf. It left an impression alright, although, to be honest, as with every other book by him that I've read, that impression is "What the hell did I just read?" 6 months later and I'm still wondering what on earth was up with that book, but I did enjoy it. Go figure.

_____________________________

"Anything you do can be fixed. What you cannot fix is the perfection of a blank page. What you cannot fix is that pristine, unsullied whiteness of a screen or a page with nothing on it—because there’s nothing there to fix."
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 0:27:52
 
Escribano

Posts: 6326
Joined: Jul. 6 2003
From: England, living in Italy

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

"The Dice Man" - a bit old now, but a classic

_____________________________

Foro Flamenco founder and Admin
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 12:00:44
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3313
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

A work that had a profound effect on me was Lawrence Durrell's Alexandria Quartet, a tetralogy of interconnected novels that Durrell wrote in which he used the principle of relativity as the basis for recounting the same events from different perspectives. Durrell published "Justine," "Balthazar," "Mountolive," and "Clea," and he lays them out in an interesting way, using pre-war and war-time Alexandria, Egypt as the backdrop for events.

Durrell's Alexandria is populated with a cosmopolitan set of characters that includes Arabs, Greeks, Armenians, and Jews, as well as the British protagonists. Although it is as much a product of Durrell's imagination as it is of actual pre-war Alexandria, I think it fairly describes Alexandria before Nasser's takeover of Egypt and expulsion of pretty much all of the non-Arab population. The writing is gorgeous. Durrell is a painter with words. And as the sequence of novels unfolds, it is interesting to find that what one thought occurred during an incident in "Justine," to use an example, was not what happened at all, and one finds in "Balthazar" that a completely different incident occurred than originally appeared to be the case. The story lines involving the various protagonists are interesting, covering everything from the nature of love to some of the darker aspects of Gnosticism.

For entertaining and thought-provoking reading, however, nothing beats the short stories of the Argentine writer Jorge Luis Borges. His stories, which center on appearance vs. reality, the doppelganger, mirrors, labyrinths, infinite libraries, alephs, as well as gauchos and knifefighters, are a real treat. I re-read them about every six or seven years and enjoy them as much as I did the first time, many years ago. If I had one book to take with me alone on a desert island, it would be the collected stories of Jorge Luis Borges.

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 14:53:35
 
gerundino63

Posts: 1689
Joined: Jul. 11 2003
From: The Netherlands

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

Thanks a lot for your input guys!

See what I can get in the dutch translation.....

_____________________________

  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 16:46:31
 
Paul Magnussen

Posts: 1763
Joined: Nov. 8 2010
From: London (living in the Bay Area)

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

quote:

What is the book you have red that made the most impression on you?


Tough decision. If I go for the books that I’ve re-read most often over the years, and would also be comprehensible in translation, then (off the top of my head):

Fiction: The World of Suzie Wong (Richard Mason)
Nonfiction: The Blank Slate (Steven Pinker)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 17:54:21
 
Mark2

Posts: 1706
Joined: Jul. 12 2004
From: San Francisco

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0018ND8B6/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

Read it twice and really enjoyed it.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 18:27:03
 
flyeogh

Posts: 729
Joined: Oct. 13 2004
 

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

Of late I've been reading (fairly light reading) new authors on my kindle. Of course there is a lot of self published rubbish, but with the availability of free samples they can be weeded out for nothing.

There are some very good sci-fi writers addressing real potential future problems (Luke Smitherd comes to mind).

And also some good observational stories of the strains of modern day life.

Jo Spain is another author I've discovered for light reading.


I resisted a kindle for many years just preferring paper, but now reading 4 or 5 books a month I'd find that too expensive. Rather spend my cash on strings and lessons

_____________________________

nigel (el raton de Watford - now Puerto de Santa Maria, Cadiz)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 20:12:16
 
Escribano

Posts: 6326
Joined: Jul. 6 2003
From: England, living in Italy

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to flyeogh

quote:

I resisted a kindle for many years just preferring paper, but now reading 4 or 5 books a month I'd find that too expensive.


Me too and I have loads of books but the Kindle is best for my new collection.

_____________________________

Foro Flamenco founder and Admin
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 21:49:21
 
Richard Jernigan

Posts: 3223
Joined: Jan. 20 2004
From: Austin, Texas USA

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

If you haven’t done it already, you must read “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” by Mark Twain. Structured as picaresque, it tells of young Huckleberry and the runaway slave Jim, who raft down the Mississippi from Missouri to New Orleans and Jim’s freedom.

Twain’s superb but easygoing humor keeps the reader entertained, while Huck and Jim traverse the 19th century heartland of America, its manners, foibles, small time crooks, civic leaders and ordinary citizens.

The entire book is a narration of the universal racism of the time, whose consequences I saw as a boy two generations later. Thus it is a tragicomedy, with humor and a “happy ending.” But one lays the book down with a sense of darkness.

To my mind, “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” is the Great American Novel, long sought but unrecognized in its day, and Twain is our greatest writer so far.

Another recommended cultural experience is the sight of the Mississippi River. I remember vividly my first view of it 75 years ago, as the train crossed the bridge at Memphis on a bright moonlit night. It still moves me to see it. At Memphis it is a mile wide. It gets bigger downstream. Its huge mass, rapid current and irresistible force are some of the rawest displays of nature’s power.

Good reading!

RNJ
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 22:06:31
 
Paul Magnussen

Posts: 1763
Joined: Nov. 8 2010
From: London (living in the Bay Area)

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to flyeogh

quote:

but now reading 4 or 5 books a month I'd find that too expensive.


No libraries? Or just inadequate ones?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 22:12:38
 
Paul Magnussen

Posts: 1763
Joined: Nov. 8 2010
From: London (living in the Bay Area)

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to Richard Jernigan

quote:

If you haven’t done it already, you must read “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” by Mark Twain.


I’ve been meaning to read this for decades; but many modern editions seem to have been bowdlerised as regards language, and there’s usually no information as to whether a particular edition is or isn’t.

I want to read what Twain actually wrote, not what some modern clown thinks he ought to have written. Can anyone help?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 22:16:55
 
Neil

 

Posts: 78
Joined: Oct. 29 2018
 

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

Of the books I have read that were written in the last 20 years, This Thing of Darkness by Harry Thompson is my favourite.

"Brilliant young naval officer Robert FitzRoy is given the captaincy of HMS Beagle, surveying the wilds of Tierra del Fuego, aged just twenty-three. He takes a passenger: a young trainee cleric and amateur geologist named Charles Darwin. This is the story of a deep friendship between two men, and the twin obsessions that tore it apart, leading one to triumph and the other to disaster."
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 22:30:57
 
Richard Jernigan

Posts: 3223
Joined: Jan. 20 2004
From: Austin, Texas USA

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to Paul Magnussen

quote:

ORIGINAL: Paul Magnussen

quote:

If you haven’t done it already, you must read “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” by Mark Twain.


I’ve been meaning to read this for decades; but many modern editions seem to have been bowdlerised as regards language, and there’s usually no information as to whether a particular edition is or isn’t.

I want to read what Twain actually wrote, not what some modern clown thinks he ought to have written. Can anyone help?


I haven’t seen this, but two reviewers on Amazon praise it as a near facsimile of the first edition, complete with the original illustrations: https://tinyurl.com/y4uuhbw9

RNJ
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 13 2019 23:21:07
 
Piwin

Posts: 3398
Joined: Feb. 9 2016
 

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to Paul Magnussen

Have you checked over at Project Gutenberg?
I've found many digitized first editions over there.

edit: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/76
Digitized from an 1885 edition.

_____________________________

"Anything you do can be fixed. What you cannot fix is the perfection of a blank page. What you cannot fix is that pristine, unsullied whiteness of a screen or a page with nothing on it—because there’s nothing there to fix."
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 14 2019 0:16:42
 
flyeogh

Posts: 729
Joined: Oct. 13 2004
 

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to Paul Magnussen

quote:

No libraries? Or just inadequate ones?


Paul I live in Cadiz and sadly the economy doesn't allow for such luxuries

Although there is still a great second-hand book stall/shop tradition.

_____________________________

nigel (el raton de Watford - now Puerto de Santa Maria, Cadiz)
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 14 2019 8:05:14
 
Brendan

Posts: 263
Joined: Oct. 30 2010
 

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

The great 19th century novels are all on kindle for buttons, so if you haven’t munched through the George Eliot yet, get in. Middlemarch on its own will keep you going a good while.

Prosper Mérimée’s Carmen is worth a read—it’s nothing like the opera. It’s a tricksy modern novella with an unreliable narrator.

Nabokov’s Pale Fire is a gem.

Non-fiction: Peter Frankopan’s The Silk Roads. Essential.

_____________________________

https://sites.google.com/site/obscureflamencology/
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 14 2019 9:00:43
 
makanakijones

 

Posts: 14
Joined: Sep. 14 2019
 

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

La Colmena - Camilo J. Cela
Anything from Robert L. Stevenson
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 14 2019 9:24:34
 
mrstwinkle

 

Posts: 507
Joined: May 14 2017
 

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

In terms of pure enjoyment reading, my vote goes to Carter Beats the Devil by Glen David Gold.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 14 2019 10:33:48
 
Filip

 

Posts: 296
Joined: Apr. 23 2006
From: Paris

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to gerundino63

I've just spent a bit more than half an hour writing a post with links and descriptions, to accidentally click cancel at the end :facepalm: So forgive me for being very brief now.

My top 3:
King Solomon's ring by Konrad Lorenz.
T. Rex and the crater of doom by Walter Alvarez.
The feast of the goat by Mario Vargas Llosa.

Other:
The code book by Simon Singh
Tuva or bust by Ralph Leighton
When I was a teenager I enjoyed books by Jules Verne and Alexandre Dumas.

Regarding something closer to my culture though, definitely Ivo Andric (his The bridge on the Drina is a classic). If you are interested in that part of the world I could recommend more things.

Cheers
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 14 2019 12:15:06
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3313
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to Richard Jernigan

quote:

If you haven’t done it already, you must read “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” by Mark Twain. Structured as picaresque, it tells of young Huckleberry and the runaway slave Jim, who raft down the Mississippi from Missouri to New Orleans and Jim’s freedom.

Twain’s superb but easygoing humor keeps the reader entertained, while Huck and Jim traverse the 19th century heartland of America, its manners, foibles, small time crooks, civic leaders and ordinary citizens.

The entire book is a narration of the universal racism of the time, whose consequences I saw as a boy two generations later. Thus it is a tragicomedy, with humor and a “happy ending.” But one lays the book down with a sense of darkness.

To my mind, “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” is the Great American Novel, long sought but unrecognized in its day, and Twain is our greatest writer so far.

Another recommended cultural experience is the sight of the Mississippi River. I remember vividly my first view of it 75 years ago, as the train crossed the bridge at Memphis on a bright moonlit night. It still moves me to see it. At Memphis it is a mile wide. It gets bigger downstream. Its huge mass, rapid current and irresistible force are some of the rawest displays of nature’s power.

Good reading!


I couldn't agree more with your assessment of "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" and Mark Twain, Richard. I have always considered "Huckleberry Finn" as one of two candidates for the title, "The Great American Novel," the other being "Moby Dick, " by Herman Melville. The opening sentence of "Moby Dick"-- "Call me Ishmael"-- is one of the great lines in literature. The whaling ship is a microcosm of many races, discoveries, and truth as the crew perceives it. Although Ishmael initially is afraid of Queequeg (a harpooner) as a tattooed cannibal, he soon decides, "Better sleep with a sober cannibal than a drunken Christian."

Back to Twain, his friendship with Ulysses S. Grant is one of the more moving aspects of his life. Grant, of course, was the great General who won the Civil War and later served two terms as president. He had lost his money in bad investments and was convinced by Twain to write his memoirs, which even today are considered beautifully written. Mark Twain published Grant's memoirs and arranged the publicity that led to their sale. Because of Twain's efforts, Grant left his wife a secure future, although he died of throat cancer just days after completing the memoirs.

I grew up in Phoenix, Arizona and had never been around blacks, as there were none in the schools I attended. At the age of 20, I joined the Air Force, and after basic training was sent to Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi for seven months of training in intelligence gathering to man "listening posts" overseas. Biloxi was my first experience in the South. This was 1963-64, and there were water fountains and public rest rooms labeled "Whites" and "Colored," and one dared not use the wrong one. It was a shock to me at the time.

While at Keesler AFB, I made several trips to New Orleans, which was only 90 miles away. It was a revelation for me, too, to see the Mississippi River. I met a girl who lived in the town of Gretna, across the Mississippi River from New Orleans. She invited me to her home for dinner and we had a few dates, but of course it ended, as it should have. Germany and Pakistan awaited my assignments.

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 14 2019 16:26:21
 
Paul Magnussen

Posts: 1763
Joined: Nov. 8 2010
From: London (living in the Bay Area)

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to Richard Jernigan

quote:

I haven’t seen this, but two reviewers on Amazon praise it as a near facsimile of the first edition


Many thanks, Richard, that’s exactly what I was looking for.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 14 2019 20:23:58
 
Ricardo

Posts: 13399
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to Richard Jernigan

There is also the great mexican-american classic novel about racism and growing up south of the border called “Tequila Mockingbird”.

_____________________________

CD's and transcriptions available here:
www.ricardomarlow.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 16 2019 7:33:19
 
edguerin

Posts: 1563
Joined: Dec. 24 2007
From: Siegburg, Alemania

RE: Best book you have read (in reply to gerundino63

Jane Gardam‘s Old Filth trilogy

_____________________________

Ed

El aficionado solitario
Alemania
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 16 2019 20:39:19
 
Richard Jernigan

Posts: 3223
Joined: Jan. 20 2004
From: Austin, Texas USA

RE: Best book you have red. (in reply to BarkellWH

quote:

ORIGINAL: BarkellWH

I grew up in Phoenix, Arizona and had never been around blacks, as there were none in the schools I attended. At the age of 20, I joined the Air Force, and after basic training was sent to Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi for seven months of training in intelligence gathering to man "listening posts" overseas. Biloxi was my first experience in the South. This was 1963-64, and there were water fountains and public rest rooms labeled "Whites" and "Colored," and one dared not use the wrong one. It was a shock to me at the time.

Bill


I went to school in Oklahoma City, San Antonio, Anchorage Alaska, and graduated from high school in a Washington DC suburb in 1955. Though there were plenty of blacks around, except in Alaska, there were none in my segregated schools.

The only blacks whose acquaintance I made were servants.

Some time in about 1953 my father came home to dinner, a formal affair with white table cloth, sterling silverware and English bone China. I'm sure he and my mother had discussed the evening's conversation in advance. And I'm also sure that at least my mother had assured our black maid and cook they could stand in the doorway and listen.

Dad said, "I saw the President today."

Mom asked, "What did Ike have to say?"

"He wants Bolling to be the first integrated Air Force base." Truman had signed the executive order integrating the armed sevices, but the military had slow-walked it with studies, small scale trials and the like.

"How did you respond?"

"I told Ike I thought you can't legislate human relations." It was code for favoring segregation, though I'm sure Dad meant it literally as well. He was an eleventh generation white southerner. Both of his grandfathers had owned slaves and fought for the Confederacy.

"...and what did Ike have to say?"

"He said he thought someone of my background was ideally suited for the task. So I want you boys to put aside any personal feelings you may have, and help with the job."

He didn't know what our personal feelings were. One of my mother's grandfathers and two great uncles had fought for the Union. Her father was a William Jennings Bryan Democrat, who didn't hesitate to call himself a Socialist. No racist remark in our house passed without a gentle, respectful, but firm rejoinder.

Dad's racism was not the hateful kind I had seen often enough. Rather it was the paternalistic variety of his social class. He thought blacks were inferior, they needed to be taken care of, and he didn't want them reducing the effectiveness of his command.

When he met the cream of the crop of the black Air Force, his attitude completely reversed. He was impressed by their abilities and attitudes, and valued their experience and advice. I have always admired him for it.

I still didn't know any black kids. All 14 generals who lived on our street were white. We generals' teenage kids stuck together.

The first black people I got to know were the first black undergraduates admitted to the University of Texas, after the school lost a lawsuit. The black students were a lively, impressive and fun bunch of people to know.

After Dad died, we were given a tape of a TV interview. The presenter asked Dad, "You knew some of the great leaders of WW II. Who was the greatest?" Dad knew Eisenhower, served for a year on MacArthur's staff at the beginning of the Occupation of Japan, knew Bradley, Patton, Hap Arnold, etc. He served as Nate Twining's deputy in Alaska. While the first five Chiefs of Staff of the Air Force were captain and majors, he was a lieutenant stationed with them. Some of them were like uncles to my brother and me.

He answered without hesitation, "Eisenhower, without a doubt."

"Why do you say that, Sir?"

"When Ike asked you to do something, you wanted to do it."

RNJ
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Sep. 17 2019 21:26:38
 
HMaN

Posts: 25
Joined: Dec. 9 2014
 

RE: Best book you have read (in reply to gerundino63

"The Book of Five Rings" -Miyamoto Musashi
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 18 2019 13:17:33
Page:   [1]
All Forums >>Discussions >>Off Topic >> Page: [1]
Jump to:

New Messages No New Messages
Hot Topic w/ New Messages Hot Topic w/o New Messages
Locked w/ New Messages Locked w/o New Messages
 Post New Thread
 Reply to Message
 Post New Poll
 Submit Vote
 Delete My Own Post
 Delete My Own Thread
 Rate Posts


Forum Software powered by ASP Playground Advanced Edition 2.0.5
Copyright © 2000 - 2003 ASPPlayground.NET

6.445313E-02 secs.