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What book are you reading right now?

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DarkAlphabetZoup wrote:
If you haven't read Brave New World, definitely read that.

That's exactly what I was going to tell Cheese!

Remember my speech teacher who liked A Clockwork Orange? I ended up taking her class on satire. Of all the books we read that year, Brave New World was the finest.

You won't even feel the blade.

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Brave New World was definitely the one I had in mind with the "etc"... just couldn't remember the title.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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Recently finished Mockingjay, and just finished the graphic novel of Artemis Fowl book 3 The Eternity Code (I love the books, so reading the graphic novel versions are nice second helpings). And once again got Brisingr from the library and hope to make more progress than the last time I checked it out.

stabguy wrote:
Remember my speech teacher who liked A Clockwork Orange? I ended up taking her class on satire. Of all the books we read that year, Brave New World was the finest.

Is that also where you read Animal Farm "before I was born"?

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aurllcooljay wrote:
Is that also where you read Animal Farm "before I was born"?

Heh. As a matter of fact, the first book we read in satire class was Animal Farm. I had already read it once just a year or two earlier, so it was a review for me.

I sat next to this girl from my cross country team who liked to mother me. She was concerned that I was falling behind the rest of the class on Animal Farm and encouraged me to catch up on my reading. Later, when we got our grades back on our book reports, she noticed that my grade was as high as hers (we both got an "A" or whatever). She asked if I had finished reading the book. I hadn't. Innocent

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stabguy wrote:
aurllcooljay wrote:
Is that also where you read Animal Farm "before I was born"?

Heh. As a matter of fact, the first book we read in satire class was Animal Farm. I had already read it once just a year or two earlier, so it was a review for me.

I sat next to this girl from my cross country team who liked to mother me. She was concerned that I was falling behind the rest of the class on Animal Farm and encouraged me to catch up on my reading. Later, when we got our grades back on our book reports, she noticed that my grade was as high as hers (we both got an "A" or whatever). She asked if I had finished reading the book. I hadn't. Innocent

Animal Farm book report:
four legs good, two legs bad, world war 2, pigs

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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Settled on a classic... The Complete Sherlock Holmes. I've read the first half of the first book (A Study in Scarlet) and I'll move on from there... maybe I'll finish it over the holidays... but there are a LOT of pages... and a LOT of words on each page.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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Dammit, Cheese, now I have to go buy it and read it. And I'll end up reading until 3 AM every night. Thanks for fucking up my sleep schedule.

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I got that one in in a classics set I bought my wife for our 4th anniversary (leather ... leather-bound books ... it makes sense).

It came with complete Sherlock Holmes, Grimm's Fairy Tales, complete Shakespeare, complete Poe, Jane Austen Seven Novels and Homer's two masterpieces... it was only like $70 at the time, and they look GREAT in our bookcases.

Needless to say, I have plenty to read.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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I recently upgraded my car stereo to a Pioneer FH-X720BT. It can play compressed audio files (e.g. MP3) either from CD or a smartphone through the aux or USB port. What was the first thing I did with my fancy new stereo? I read a book!

I do read a lot for work but rarely find enough alone time to read for pleasure. The paperback of Catch 22 had been kicking around for a couple of months. I'd read a little now and then but there are about 20 main characters and I kept forgetting which was which. So I decided to give audiobooks a try. I usually drive about an hour a day. At that rate it took 3 weeks to listen to Catch 22 from start to finish. No problem keeping the characters straight this way.

Catch 22 was different than I expected. I knew it was an anti-war satire but didn't anticipate the absurdist comedy. For example, here's a dialogue when Clevinger is facing disciplinary action and is being questioned by a colonel:

"I didn't say you couldn't punish me, sir."
"When?" asked the colonel.
"When what, sir?"
"Now you're asking me questions again."
"I'm sorry, sir. I'm afraid I don't understand your question."
"When didn't you say we couldn't punish you? Don't you understand my question?"
"No, sir. I don't understand."
"You've just told us that. Now suppose you answer my question."
"But how can I answer it?"
"That's another question you're asking me."
"I'm sorry, sir. But I don't know how to answer it. I never said you couldn't punish me."
"Now you're telling us when you did say it. I'm asking you to tell us when you didn't say it."
Clevinger took a deep breath. "I always didn't say you couldn't punish me, sir."
"That's much better, Mr. Clevinger."

It goes on and on like that. Eventually I caught onto the absurdity and appreciated the rest of the book. Then I watched the 1970 movie. Alan Arkin gave a good performance as Captain Yossarian but the screenplay adaptation was a mess.

For my next audiobook I've loaded up The Yard by Alex Grecian. It's a good warmup for Assassin's Creed Syndicate because it's set in Victorian London. The story follows The Murder Squad of Scotland Yard in the year after they failed to capture Jack the Ripper.

You won't even feel the blade.

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stabguy wrote:
I'd read a little now and then but there are about 20 main characters and I kept forgetting which was which.

Then don't even try the A Song of Ice and Fire series (Game of Thrones).

For my next audiobook I've loaded up The Yard by Alex Grecian. It's a good warmup for Assassin's Creed Syndicate because it's set in Victorian London. The story follows The Murder Squad of Scotland Yard in the year after they failed to capture Jack the Ripper.

My wife really liked that one. It's on our shelf somewhere.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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I bought Dictator by Robert Harris yesterday. It's the third book in a trilogy about the life of Cicero and the death of the Roman Republic. I also finished it yesterday.

I need help.

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I'm currently reading The Lies of Locke Lamora - Book 1 of the Gentlemen Bastards series. More rogues 'n stuff.
You know meee...

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DarkAlphabetZoup wrote:
I'm currently reading The Lies of Locke Lamora - Book 1 of the Gentlemen Bastards series. More rogues 'n stuff.
You know meee...

Have you read the Night Angel Trilogy (Brent Weeks, I believe)?

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
DarkAlphabetZoup wrote:
I'm currently reading The Lies of Locke Lamora - Book 1 of the Gentlemen Bastards series. More rogues 'n stuff.
You know meee...

Have you read the Night Angel Trilogy (Brent Weeks, I believe)?

I have, it's my favorite book of all time (I consider them all one book.)

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DarkAlphabetZoup wrote:
Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
DarkAlphabetZoup wrote:
I'm currently reading The Lies of Locke Lamora - Book 1 of the Gentlemen Bastards series. More rogues 'n stuff.
You know meee...

Have you read the Night Angel Trilogy (Brent Weeks, I believe)?

I have, it's my favorite book of all time (I consider them all one book.)

It seemed like something you'd enjoy. I enjoyed it to a point. Too much magic for my tastes though.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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It was actually just enough magic for me to enjoy without being too much. I really don't like too much magic in stories either; what's awesome about Night Angel for me is that its magic feels pretty consistent, and all of it has a cost.

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stabguy wrote:
For my next audiobook I've loaded up The Yard by Alex Grecian. It's a good warmup for Assassin's Creed Syndicate because it's set in Victorian London. The story follows The Murder Squad of Scotland Yard in the year after they failed to capture Jack the Ripper.

I'm really knocking out the audiobooks now. After The Yard I listened to The Martian by Andy Weir and now I'm starting Truman Capote's In Cold Blood.

The Yard was entertaining and gave good insight into how people lived in Victorian London. I thought it would make a good movie right up until two pivotal scenes happened in total darkness. That sort of thing doesn't play well in movies and you can't very well give characters night vision goggles in a period piece. Those scenes would have to be adapted for a screenplay.

I just loved The Martian. It's a compelling book to begin with and the narration was top notch. In fact, R.C. Bray won an "Audie" award for best science fiction narration. I think you science guys will appreciate it as much as I did. The book is full of plausible hard science: chemistry, botany, astronautics, etc. They even threw in some computer science for me! I haven't seen the movie yet but assume they edited out most of the engineering and kept the comedy.

You won't even feel the blade.

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Anyone heard of The Man in the High Castle? Been thinking about it but would a better recommendation than what I can read on the cover.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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Haven't heard of that one. What types of books do you typically read?

The Templars were framed.

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Finally finally finally, after a few years and four or five times checking out Brisingr, I finally finished it. Now the fourth and final book, Inheritance, is waiting for me at the library.

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The Martian was great.

Zoo was okay, at best.

I've just started The Man in the High Castle and will let you know when I'm finished.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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If you're into counterterrorism novels (big in the U.S.), anything by Brad Thor and Vince Flynn (R.I.P.)/Kyle Mills are great. Both have a single main character throughout all their novels. I just finished the most recent by Flynn/Mills last month. It's crazy how these guys accurately predict world events.

The Templars were framed.

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Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
The Martian was great.

I knew you would love it!

Let's see... In Cold Blood was pretty good. At times I thought the same treatment could be given to any number of murders. Why did Truman Capote choose to write about this particular crime? His research was incredibly thorough. I've seen the movie (the one with Robert Blake) once or twice. The movie I'd like to see again is Capote because it's about the time in his life when he was researching In Cold Blood.

After that I read a couple of science fiction books: Double Star by Robert Heinlein and Hyperion by Dan Simmons. Don't bother with Double Star. I used to really enjoy Heinlein books. Now I can't decide whether Double Star is just a dud or if I've outgrown Heinlein completely. Hyperion is an ambitious project with the same narrative style as The Canterbury Tales: a group of pilgrims travel together and each tells their story on the journey. Most of the stories have interesting sci-fi twists. Beware though: what the pilgrims find at their destination is left for the sequel The Fall of Hyperion. The first book ends with a cliffhanger.

That's the last book I read for entertainment. Now I'm reading several books for work.

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I don't spend much time driving these days but managed to finish another sci-fi audiobook. It was The Mote in God's Eye by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. This one is actually pretty good. It's about the first contact between humans and an intelligent alien species. I appreciated the simplicity of a single narrative after experiencing the complexity of Hyperion, which is like six novels crammed into one. Then yesterday I finished an e-book for work, Optimized C++ by Kurt Guntheroth.

That leaves me with an empty plate for my flights to Baltimore and back. Instead of downloading a new e-book or audiobook, I took inventory of all the physical books in my house that I want to read. There are 42 of them! I settled on Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow. This book has become famous as the inspiration for the Broadway musical Hamilton. The American Revolution is my favorite historical period and I'm a big fan of Hamilton and Washington. It's a dense book so I don't expect to finish it in a week.

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Currently reading Memories of Ice, third in the Malazan Books of the Fallen series. This shit is fucking great. It can be quite brutal, like Game of Thrones, but much less meandering. Also great humour. 9/10 would recommend.

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"Well, neither is drinking liquor, but I'm drawn to its dangers all the same."

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I finally read Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy over Christmas break. I have the rest of the series to read, but haven't started the next one yet (The Restaurant at the End of the Universe). I enjoyed the first one enough to read the others, but just haven't had much reading time.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
I finally read Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Me too! Actually I listened to the audiobooks of the original trilogy about six months ago. The first one was the best, mostly because it was read by Stephen Fry who added comedic value. He narrated the 2005 film and did this audiobook as a tie-in.

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ah yes... the "Trilogy" that consists of 5 books. Smile

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Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
ah yes... the "Trilogy" that consists of 5 books. Smile

i loved Hitchhikers Guide.
must have missed number 4 and 5, though

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from wikipedia:

The deliberately misnamed Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy "Trilogy" consists of six books, five written by Adams: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (1979), The Restaurant at the End of the Universe (1980), Life, the Universe and Everything (1982), So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish (1984) and Mostly Harmless (1992). On 16 September 2008 it was announced that Irish author Eoin Colfer was to pen a sixth book. The book, entitled And Another Thing..., was published in October 2009, on the 30th anniversary of the publication of the original novel.

Of course, I don't know if I would count a non-Adams book as part of it or not. It didn't come in my giant combined works book.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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"Part six of three"

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stabguy wrote:
I settled on Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow. It's a dense book so I don't expect to finish it in a week.

I read 150 pages on my business trip. Unfortunately, Alexander Hamilton is 750 pages long. It's going to take four more business trips to finish this one...

Meanwhile I started and finished two other books. The first was for work: React.js Essentials by Artemij Fedosejev. React is the hottest JavaScript framework today. If you want to learn it, I can recommend React.js Essentials over Mastering React. That one wasn't going anywhere so I bailed.

The other book will be of interest to most people here: Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. It's a fun adventure about gamers competing to find an easter egg hidden in a futuristic MMO game. Set in 2044, it's perversely all about 1980's pop culture: classic video games, movies, and music. Parts felt as if I had written it myself. The designer of the MMO wrote his first game at age 15 on a TRS-80 Color Computer. Same here.

Steven Spielberg has directed the movie adaptation scheduled for release March 30, 2018. I listened to the audiobook narrated by Wil Wheaton, which was well performed. Wil Wheaton is actually mentioned once in the book, so there was a meta-moment where he read his own name aloud.

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Ready Player One is one of my favorite books of all time and I highly recommend it to just about anyone.

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Art3mis sounds like your steampunk dreamgirl, DAZ:

She wore a suit of scaled gunmetal-blue armor that looked more sci-fi than fantasy. Twin blaster pistols were slung low on her hips in quickdraw holsters, and there was a long, curved elvish sword in a scabbard across her back. She wore fingerless Road Warrior–style racing gloves and a pair of classic Ray-Ban shades. Overall, she seemed to be going for a sort of mid-’80s postapocalyptic cyberpunk girl-next-door look. And it was working for me, in a big way. In a word: hot.

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stabguy wrote:
Art3mis sounds like your steampunk dreamgirl, DAZ

But is she a red head?

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I don't think she's a redhead, but hey, nobody's perfect. ;] And Art3mis is definitely a character I very much like a whole ton.

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Joey's a red head. Patrick's sex face

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Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
Joey's a red head. Patrick's sex face

I mean, if it makes the community happy, a ginger's gotta do what he's gotta do.

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Sighhhhhh.

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Well, for the last month or so I've been reading the current version of the Manual of Patent Examining Procedure (MPEP). Not so much reading it as studying the MPEP. It's over 3000 pages long and I'm about 80-85% through. I have about another week of studying.

This is all so I can take a test; the Examination for Registration to Practice in Patent Cases Before the United States Patent and Trademark Office, aka the Patent Bar.

This is the basis of a career change for me. It's kind of terrifying, but I'm up for it. Once I pass the test I can find a job as a Patent Agent and (if I decide to go to Law School after that) a Patent/IP Attorney. I've been looking for a career more flexible than doing chemistry in a lab. This is one that would allow me to set more life-friendly hours and stay out of the lab but still allow me to use all my chemistry knowledge in a useful and rewarding career.

All this with a time crunch of June 30, when my current appointment at the research institute will be terminated. No pressure.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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That's quite a career change, Cheese. Regardless of how it turns out, you could create a website and study guide for others who are preparing for the Patent Bar. The guy who created this site on the LEED exam became a millionaire. Anything would be preferable to studying a 3,000 page book.

Best of luck on the test and new career. Grade

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oh. there are plenty of online study guides out there... and i'm using one of them. Smile

The harrowing thing is that the pass rate on the exam is 45%. That's 45% of all people taking it, including those taking it again because they failed the first time. And to even be allowed to take the test you need a degree (or equivalent) in a hard science... so it's not a bunch of dummies taking it to begin with.

I'll be fine, though.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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You're gonna make it! I'm studying for a CFA (financial analyst) qualification right now myself! Only my exam is only in December so that'll take a bit. Best of luck!

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Good luck on the CFA! That's the nastiest thing I've every attempted. Make sure you get some sleep the night before. Get through those three exams and you'll make a fortune.

I'm currently studying for the Series 65 exam dealing with investment advisory for work, not pleasure. Not nearly as intense as the CFA, and only one book instead of seven or eight.

For pleasure, I've been reading a few different counter-terrorism/national security series over the past 8-10 years and catching up on the most recent ones from Steve Berry, Brad Thor, Vince Flynn, and David Baldacci.

The Templars were framed.

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Took the patent bar yesterday. Preliminary results indicate I passed. Need to get the final results from the USPTO.

[edited to add: I have taken many tests in my life. I took a lot of tests for my PhD at the #1 chemistry school (at the time) in the country... that was the hardest test i've ever taken.]

So now I am back to reading.

Next three on the docket:
- Rest of Hitchhiker's Guide (have only read the first one so far)
- The Life and Adventures of Robinson Crusoe
- Gulliver's Travels

Not sure which order these will be in. I have a physical copy of Hitchhiker's and the other two are on my tablet. Thoughts?

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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That sounds awesome so far, hard work paying off.

For the books, I'd continue reading Hitchhiker's at the moment, since you've already started the story.

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I told myself I'll be reading more this summer, but I'm not so sure about that anymore. Sad

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I'd go in this order:

  1. Gulliver's Travels
  2. Rest of Hitchhiker's Guide
  3. Robinson Crusoe

That way you split up the classics on e-reader.

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Any reason for Gulliver's Travels over Robinson Crusoe?

The reason I'm interested in Robinson Crusoe is that I recently got two different board games with a direct Robinson Crusoe theme, Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island and Friday. That said, Gulliver's Travels has certainly been in the queue for longer than either of the other ones.

“Force has no place where there is need of skill." Herodotus

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Double McStab with Cheese wrote:
Any reason for Gulliver's Travels over Robinson Crusoe?

While Robinson Crusoe ranks higher on the "best books of all time" lists, I prefer satire and Jonathan Swift. When asked which book she liked better, stabgal said Robinson Crusoe. So there you have it. Puzzled

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