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Book Collection
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2006 2:12 pm    Post subject: Book Collection Reply with quote

I love to read and have a good sized collection that I am looking to increase. Can you recommend me some of your favoriet books?
I love reading essays, political satire, philosophy and religion, but I am looking to broaden my library. I have hardly any of the classics, and well just want more variety.
My American Lit. prof. really made me hate American literature from the Victorian Era. Can anyone recommend something from that time period they really loved? I would like to change my mind. I'm still a little gun shy about Willa Cather and Edith Wharton.
My three favorite authors of all time are J.D. Salinger, Sarah Vowell and Jane Austen. Followed closely by David Sedaris, Anthony Bourdain and Douglas Coupland.
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Denise



Joined: 12 Jan 2006
Posts: 22
Location: Sénas, France (Provence)

PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2006 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have you read books by Isabel Allende? I think I have all her books - I love books with eccentric characters and family histories and she is certainly great at that. Other books I loved are "Life of Pi" (sorry can't remember the author's name), and "A Suitable Boy" by Vikram Seth (this is a really long book though, not for the faint of heart).
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David



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1855
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2006 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Erin--so glad to see Sedaris on your fave list! Mine too! I would suggest anything by Michael Cunningham, in particular The Hours or Flesh and Blood. And just because we're grown ups is no reason to overlook Anne of Green Gables.

Denise hits the jackpot with Allende but of all the "magical realism" books from South American I have read 100 Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez is closest to my heart.

Life of Pi is by Yann Martel.
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Denise



Joined: 12 Jan 2006
Posts: 22
Location: Sénas, France (Provence)

PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2006 3:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gabriel Garcia Marquez is great too...love that magical realism...and David Sedaris too...although I prefer listening to him tell stories, his voice is priceless...Sarah Vowell's too...I see we have some NPR fans here...
didn't I see something on this site about a book club? Is that still going on or did it fizzle out? I was just thinking it might be interesting to read books about food....
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Judy



Joined: 29 Sep 2004
Posts: 1196
Location: buried under a pile of books somewhere in Adelaide, South Australia

PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2006 12:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jodi Picoult

Diana Gabaldon

Tim Winton

Sarah Waters
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Barbara



Joined: 13 Nov 2004
Posts: 899
Location: Gold Coast Australia

PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2006 2:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Judy - I love Tim Winton too.

Erin
My faves: Jonathan Franzen, Alain de Botton, Julian Barnes, Mark Kurlansky. Have you read Ex Libris by Anne Fadiman?
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Barbara
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2006 2:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Barbara, I haven't but it sounds interesting. I am adding it to my shopping cart!
Here's a link for anyone who wants to check out the book Ex Libris http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0374527229/ref=sr_11_1/002-3183827-5183209?%5Fencoding=UTF8

David, Of course he is on my list! I almost died laughing when I read 'Me Talk Pretty One Day'. His sister Amy kills me too, "Strangers With Candy" was a disturbing show but great all the same.
I have never read Anne of Green Gables, my friend Kim is a huge fan. I may have to give it a read one of these days. I will also check out Michael Cunningham, you always have the best taste.

Today I bought, John Hodgeman's, " The Areas of My Expertise", Kafka's Metamorphsis, (read in high school, I think it's time to give it another go), and "Please Kill Me, An Oral History Of Punk" by an author who's name is escaping me.

Thanks for all the suggestions so far, I will be checking them all out. Please, keep 'em coming!
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minkey



Joined: 30 Oct 2005
Posts: 80
Location: Tempe, Arizona; US

PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2006 6:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think Jeanette Winterson is great. I found Sexing the Cherry by accident and was blown away. Written on the Body is really something too. Neither are particularly racy despite the titles. I read everything by her I can get my hands on. To me her writing seems like a western version of magical realism. Once in a while I find a recycled phrase or something, there are a couple of her books I don't recommend as much, but, overall, wow.

I adore Sedaris too Laughing
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FoodSciGeek



Joined: 19 Aug 2005
Posts: 143
Location: Vancouver

PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2006 6:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For escapism I read Fantasy and Science Fiction, but that's not for everyone. If you're interested, I can recommend some authors in the genre. In more mainstream fiction, a personal favorite is Roddy Doyle. Start with the Commitments (which the movie was based on), very interesting prose written in Dublin slang. Christopher Moore is very funny, a sample title "The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove". If you like Douglas Coupland, you might want to look into Chuck Palanhiuk (Fight Club). They actually did a reading toghether here in Vancouver back in February. I wanted to go, but it sold out before I got around to calling for tickets for my book club.
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minkey



Joined: 30 Oct 2005
Posts: 80
Location: Tempe, Arizona; US

PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2006 7:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Food Sci Geek, what a great reading that sounds like. Sorry it didn't work out Crying or Very sad

Erin and Barbara, I read the bits online of ex libris and now I will have to go to my bookseller and order it.

Thanks, Erin for bringing up this topic. I love to read, but a couple lit teachers (and my bad attitude) in high school turned me off to classics. For years I have meant to give Hemingway and Hawthorne another chance but never did. All of your examples and the suggestions from everybody are inspiring.

But I still don't care for Mrs. N. Evil or Very Mad
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2006 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FoodSciGeek,
I actually saw Douglas Coupland do a reading at the Elliot Bay Book Company in Seattle. We talked with him for a while afterwards, he is an interesting guy, very dry. It is too bad you missed him. I will be checking out Chuck Palanhiuk, I have heard of him but never read any of his work. I will be putting Roddy Doyle on my Wish List right now!

Minkey,
It is really sad when teachers who have such a great opportunity to inspire turn a great work into watching the grass grow. If you give Hemmingway another go round try "Moveable Feast". You won't be sorry. Thanks for you recommendation of Jeanette Winterson, your description peaked my interest.

Thanks all, these are great so far.
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Debbie



Joined: 21 Feb 2005
Posts: 861
Location: Paris

PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2006 9:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So many authors, so little time...... Shocked

Most of the authors and books listed are fabulous. Definately on my shelves and/or wish list. One of the things I really miss about Sydney is my absolutely enormous book collection. It numbers in thousands.... and has only increased in the time I have been here...... oops. Also have a passion for very old books and will not even start to think how many collectors editions I have.... the insurance man loved me when our belongings went into storage.... my husband was less than impressed.

I must admit that I have a very ecclectic taste when it comes to reading. Just about everything and anything can be "grist to the mill" of my mind.

Foodscigeek, when we came over here the only books that came in the freight were a handfull of scifi books. My husband reads them almost in exclusion of all other genres.

I was the lucky recipient of a parcel containing books (and other goodies) from Pestoman and his lovely wife. Was trying to save them to read on my upcoming trip..... but they have not made it...... Embarassed They are finished and absolutely fabulous!!!!!!!!!! There was a trilogy on the life of Josephine by Sandra Gulland and also a copy of Master and Commander.

At present I am reading The Ship of Brides by Jojo Moyes. Very interesting read. Based on the diaries of war brides from Australia who married American and British soldiers.

Also have a few other books on the go, one of which is Villette in french and english. Really enjoying that one and looking forward to reading more classics in french.

We have an english language library at the club, and can borrow 4 books at a time. I try to borrow a biography, a new release, a "frivilous read" and a serious novel each time. This way I enjoy a wide range and read books which I might normally bypass. Having limited access to books in english really changes your preferences! Wink

I saw Ex-Libris on the shelves last time I was in the library. Will make a point of borrowing it next tuesday if it is still available. Always on the lookout for a good read.

Feel very sad for those of you who had bad experiences in english classes. I am feeling very privileged right now as I had wonderful teachers who encouraged my (already rampant) reading. One of the best things in life is rediscovering an old friend, and books are truely one of the best friends you will ever make! Hope you all regain the spark for reading and soon enjoy it as much as I do.
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jenjen



Joined: 06 Nov 2004
Posts: 268
Location: Melbourne Australia

PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2006 11:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Erin, re David's suggestion, have you read Ann of Green Gables? It is a wonderful read, as is Little Women!

Debbie, good reading experiences begin our our mother's lap when our mother's and father's read to us early on. Our Premier has instigated a reading club to encourage our youth to read, the children have to read a prescribed number of books after which they receive a certificate from the Premier.

Unfortunately my workload is etremely heavy at present, so most of my reading is technical. I can't wait to begin reading for pleasure again, particularly as it looks like being a long cold and wet winter here.
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madameshawshank



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Penrith (where jacarandas remind me of change), New South Wales, Australia

PostPosted: Sun May 07, 2006 4:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paulo Coelho and Alain de Botton

'n of course MFK Fisher Wink
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Sun May 07, 2006 5:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Madame, Of course MFK Fisher! I could hardly love reading and food without her.

jenjen, Lousia May Alcott was required reading in my house. I love Little Women. I have not read Anne Of Green Gables, thoughit has been recommended to ma many times. I think it is finally time to see what everyone is talking about!

Debbie, I would be so sad if I had to leave my books behind. Though living abroad would lessen the pain. A good friend of mine moved to Boston two years ago to pursue her Masters etc, she left her bed behind and brought her books. She rents a tiny little room just off campus, and it is absolutely filled with stacks of books and one little air mattress in the corner. Thank goodness her boyfriend is moving out next month, and bringing the bed. That's dedication!
P.S. While my poor experience with Victorian Era American Lit soured me some, at least it didn't turn me off to reading.
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