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 Post subject: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 4:40 pm 
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Looking for a good novel &/or Biography or non fiction book. Something that will take me far away.

Also, something that is available from my library via Hoopla audio book.

BEGIN THE SUGGESTIONS

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 4:52 pm 
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Try one of these, sweetie. I've read 'em all and highly recommend them.

Schulz and Peanuts by David Michaelis

The Theodore Roosevelt trilogy by Edmond Morris:
The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt
Theodore Rex
Colonel Roosevelt


Buster Keaton: Tempest in a Flat Hat by Edward McPherson

Sunday Nights at Seven: The Jack Benny Story by Jack Benny and Joan Benny

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:01 pm 
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I'm not much into novels, but I finally made myself sit down and read Gone With the Wind a few years ago. As magnificent as the movie is, the book is SO much better! :cloud9:

I also highly recommend the Asian Saga by James Clavell. If you go in order of publication, the books would be
King Rat
Tai-Pan
Shogun
Noble House
Whirlwind
Gai-Jin


If you go in chronological order, it'd be
Shogun
Tai-Pan
Gai-Jin
King Rat
Noble House
Whirlwind


(I went pretty much in publication order, except I read Gai-Jin before I read Whirlwind)

As for non-fiction, I highly recommend Lone Star Nation by H. W. Brands about the settlement of Texas from Moses Austin to annexation. You'll learn there was a lot more than the Alamo involved.

Two books I keep meaning to finish, but haven't yet are The Gettysburg Gospel by Gabor Boritt and Elizabeth and Mary: Cousins, Rivals, Queens by Jane Dunn.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:02 pm 
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Mrs. Timmy wrote:
Try one of these, sweetie. I've read 'em all and highly recommend them.

Shulz and Peanuts by David Michaelis

The Theodore Roosevelt trilogy by Edmond Morris:
The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt
Theodore Rex
Colonel Roosevelt


Buster Keaton: Tempest in a Flat Hat by Edward McPherson

Sunday Nights at Seven: The Jack Benny Story by Jack Benny and Joan Benny


Peanuts book is the only one available on Hoopla, I put it in my non-fiction queue.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:23 pm 
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Mrs. Timmy wrote:
I'm not much into novels, but I finally made myself sit down and read Gone With the Wind a few years ago. As magnificent as the movie is, the book is SO much better! :cloud9:


Sure, provided you can get past the racism, such as the astonishingly racist portrayal of the slave Prissy, or the way that the book implies that only 'bad n-words' ever wanted to be free, and that all the 'good n-words' knew that their rightful place was as a servant to white people, or the page after page praising the Ku Klux Klan and explaining why the Klan was 'necessary' because the 'n-words' were getting uppity and they needed to be put back in their places and not get crazy ideas like learning how to read, being free, serving in political office or voting. And let's not forget that Scarlett's second husband died while trying to lynch a black man, an act which is portrayed as noble and heroic.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:26 pm 
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WOW Shogun is 53 hours long!!!!!

That should hold me for awhile....

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:39 pm 
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Doom, I would have thought, as well-educated as you claim to be, that you would know better than to ascribe modern-day attitudes toward historical works. Would you also destroy the Venus de Milo because it is an image of a pagan God or Michelangelo's David because of its nudity? Shakespeare's Othello is rife with not only racism, but also Islamophobic themes. Are you going to endorse burning it?

Can you not instead reflect on the attitudes prevalent at the time reflected in an otherwise-exemplary offering of iconic prose and reflect instead on how far we've come?

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:53 pm 
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kage_ar wrote:
WOW Shogun is 53 hours long!!!!!

That should hold me for awhile....


And worth every minute. Don't be too put off by the hostility Blackthorne shows to the Jesuit Fr. Alvito. He is, after all, an Englishman on a Dutch ship. And the timing, during the counter-reformation, makes the protestant schism a crucial plot twist.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 09, 2017 9:47 pm 
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Mrs. Timmy wrote:
Doom, I would have thought, as well-educated as you claim to be, that you would know better than to ascribe modern-day attitudes toward historical works. Would you also destroy the Venus de Milo because it is an image of a pagan God or Michelangelo's David because of its nudity? Shakespeare's Othello is rife with not only racism but also Islamophobic themes. Are you going to endorse burning it?

Can you not instead reflect on the attitudes prevalent at the time reflected in an otherwise exemplary offering of iconic prose and reflect instead on how far we've come?


By the 'attitudes of the time' do you racist white southern women living in 1936?

Gone With the Wind is not 'a historical work', it is a work of fiction, which gives a jaundiced, racist and historically grossly inaccurate and caricatured account of the Civil War and Reconstruction. It is a book which records the views of unreconstructed southern racists of the 1930's, and, I cannot stress this enough, the story it tells is wrong. It makes claims about what happened during the war and during Reconstruction which are simply false. And not just false, but laughably ignorant.

You might have a point if it was written around 1880 and told a historically true narrative, but in fact it was written long after it should have been clear to any honest person that both slavery and lynchings were horrible crimes, so that it defends both is more than a little disgusting.

Every single example I cited is an example of where the narrator, not a character in the book, expresses a racist thought. It is one thing if a character in a book says something racist, that doesn't necessarily mean anything.

A writer can have characters say or do despicable things while still making it clear that the reader is supposed to disapprove of what is being said or done. This isn't what happens in Gone With The Wind.

But when the NARRATOR of a book says something, this is the author expressing his own views, and not merely that, it is author laying down the 'official' interpretation of the story of the book.

So when the narrator talks about how the Ku Klux Klan was 'necessary' because the 'n-words' (that's what she says!) were getting 'uppity', this was literally Margaret Mitchell expressing her views and telling the reader what they should think about the Klan.

Gone With the Wind is as strongly pro-KKK as 'The Birth of A Nation'.


How do you justify the ugly racial stereotypes in the book, especially the character of Prissy, who embodies pretty much every negative stereotype about African Americans which has ever existed?

Prissy is simultaneously stupid, ignorant, lazy, dishonest, manipulative and incompetent, doing literally nothing right during the entire book, screwing everything up on multiple occassions, leading both Scarlett and Melanie, at various points in the book, to threaten to whip her. I think Prissy's incompetence was supposed to be the 'comic relief' of the novel, but the character was funny only to people who find blackface and mistreal shows funny. Prissy is an incredibly offensive character, as offenisve as anything in Amos and Andy.

I'll tell you what: for decades I heard complaints about the 'racism' in Gone With the Wind, and assumed it was nothing, just people being hypersensitive and politically correct. Then I actually read the book, and I found myself getting angry at the casual racism and the appaling lack of racial sensitivity, at more than one point I found myself so disgusted by what I read that I wanted to throw it down and never finish it.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 1:17 am 
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You proved my point. Your entire critique is based on post-modern attitudes and political correctness, not of the unreconstructed first decades of 20th-century old-money Atlanta society in which Peggy Mitchell Marsh grew up, listening to men and women telling their first-hand accounts of the War of Northern Aggression as if it was yesterday. You don't like the book. Fine - no one's forcing you. But your personal dislike has no effect on the place in history firmly cemented by what is written on the pages of Gone With the Wind.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 6:59 am 
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The Master of Hestviken by Sigrid Undset.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 7:01 am 
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It's a set of two novels in Norwegian, but it seems the English translation appears to be divided into at least four, the first of which is called The Axe.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 7:53 am 
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I've never read (or seen) GWTW. :fyi: :|

I've never read The Master of Hestviken, either. :fyi: :|

A novel for listnin': Oliver Twist. There must be audio versions. It's definitely not Dickens's best, but it's a (comparatively) compact little story and pretty fun.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 8:34 am 
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gherkin wrote:
I've never read The Master of Hestviken, either. :fyi: :|


:shock: This must be rectified ASAP! :shock: :fyi:

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:59 am 
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gherkin wrote:
I've never read (or seen) GWTW. :fyi: :|

I've never read The Master of Hestviken, either. :fyi: :|

A novel for listnin': Oliver Twist. There must be audio versions. It's definitely not Dickens's best, but it's a (comparatively) compact little story and pretty fun.



Read all of Dickens in school (remember, I was homeschooled :) ) While I am glad that I have read them, they are not on my "must read again" list.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 11:00 am 
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Norwegianblue wrote:
The Master of Hestviken by Sigrid Undset.


The only offering from my library is "The Cross" and it is not in audio book format :(

Seeking audio books for listening while I do housework, crochet, etc.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 1:24 pm 
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kage_ar wrote:
gherkin wrote:
I've never read (or seen) GWTW. :fyi: :|

I've never read The Master of Hestviken, either. :fyi: :|

A novel for listnin': Oliver Twist. There must be audio versions. It's definitely not Dickens's best, but it's a (comparatively) compact little story and pretty fun.



Read all of Dickens in school (remember, I was homeschooled :) ) While I am glad that I have read them, they are not on my "must read again" list.


While Dickens does tend to ramble (because he was paid based on how many chapters he wrote, so he tended to pad out the length of his books, but getting past that, he really was a master storyteller, he was the most popular author of his own time, and he remains popular today, for a reason.

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Last edited by Doom on Fri Mar 10, 2017 2:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 1:36 pm 
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Doom wrote:
kage_ar wrote:
gherkin wrote:
I've never read (or seen) GWTW. :fyi: :|

I've never read The Master of Hestviken, either. :fyi: :|

A novel for listnin': Oliver Twist. There must be audio versions. It's definitely not Dickens's best, but it's a (comparatively) compact little story and pretty fun.



Read all of Dickens in school (remember, I was homeschooled :) ) While I am glad that I have read them, they are not on my "must read again" list.


While Dickens does tend to ramble (because he was paid based on how many chapters he wrote, so he tended to pad out the length of his books, but getting past, he really was a master storyteller, he was the most popular author of his own time, and he remains popular today, for a reason.



And Chesterton agrees.

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 1:39 pm 
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kage_ar wrote:
gherkin wrote:
I've never read (or seen) GWTW. :fyi: :|

I've never read The Master of Hestviken, either. :fyi: :|

A novel for listnin': Oliver Twist. There must be audio versions. It's definitely not Dickens's best, but it's a (comparatively) compact little story and pretty fun.



Read all of Dickens in school (remember, I was homeschooled :) ) While I am glad that I have read them, they are not on my "must read again" list.

I don't think you can count a book read (probably) under compulsion in your high school years as a book you've really read. :fyi:

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 Post subject: Re: A good novel, is that too much to ask?
PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 1:40 pm 
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I was fortunate in having bad high school English classes. I was never forced to read any of the classics and was therefore able to discover and enjoy Dickens on my own as an adult. And I was done learned to write good anyways.

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