Fav. Books?

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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by bananahead82 on Wed May 27, 2009 9:08 pm

I have sooooo many favorite books! Anything by Jane Austen, all the Lord of the Rings books, House of Mirth, Wuthering Heights, Jane Eyre, The Scarlet Letter, Gone with the Wind...I'll read pretty much anything you put in my hands.

Oh and I'm Rhianna by the way Smile
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by Natalie Zhen on Wed May 27, 2009 9:27 pm

Rhianna--I just finished The Scarlet Letter. For a 12AMer, I really enjoyed it. What are you view on the characters? I came to respect Hester, simultaneously symphathize with and get fed up with Dimmesdale, and just get fed up with Pearl.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by bananahead82 on Wed May 27, 2009 11:25 pm

You're one of the first people I've met that actually liked it! I really admire Hester, but Dimmesdale and Pearl annoyed me. I felt like there wasn't a lot of depth to Dimmesdale's character and Pearl just seemed a little evil. I'm trying to read another of Hawthorne's books, The House of the Seven Gables, but it's not as good.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by Natalie Zhen on Wed May 27, 2009 11:46 pm

I liked The Birth-mark (short story), though Hawthorne is a little... exuberant with details. I enjoy to have some room for personal interpretation.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by oliviah on Thu May 28, 2009 4:29 pm

Has anybody read Tuesdays with Morrie? My English teacher handed it to us yesterday and told us that we weren't going to have a test on it or really even do anything with the book that was going to be graded, so it wasn't even an assignment, really. She just genuinely loved the book and said that it had made such an impact in her life that she wanted us all to have the opportunity to read it if we wanted to.
Now, I am the definition of lazy procratinator. I've only legitly read three of the five books and officially zero of the short stories that we were assigned this year, but something about this one just really intrigued me. I'm already like halfway done with it, and it is just so GOOD.
I've read The Last Lecture, so this isn't the first "dying memoir" that I've been through, so maybe it's just me in thinking that those kind of things are really insightful...but I totally reccomend it to anyone. It really kind of helps you develop your own opinions about what is most important in your life.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by androgynousmermen@verizon on Thu May 28, 2009 5:12 pm

YAY ANGST~! Natalie, are you feeling angsty? jk and might I just take the time to comment that I'm so proud this thread has so much interest! very happy yay smart ppl.
I'm reading Death of a Salesman... Any thoughts. readING mind. not done but I'm kinda really not loving it. at all. I feel the way natalie felt about Gatsby. The ppl are just stupid and mean to eachother... Anyway... END OF SCHOOL APPROACHES=gratuitous amounts of time for pleasure reading very happy very happy
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by bananahead82 on Thu May 28, 2009 8:56 pm

Natalie- I read one of his short stories, The Minister's Black Veil, and I liked it, but I'm not really a fan of short stories in general. I feel like it just doesn't give you enough time to get to know the characters.

And Oliviah- Yes, I loooove Tuesdays with Morrie! It's so touching and I often had to remind myself that it was a true story! I haven't read The Five People You Meet in Heaven but I heard that one was really good too.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by Mike on Sun May 31, 2009 9:40 pm

So i started one day in the life of ivan denisovich, and its actually pretty good. It's about a russian prison camp during Stalin's reign (i think it's either after or towards the end of WWII). Anyway, so far i suggest it. It's interesting to read about the horrible conditions they suffered.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by Natalie Zhen on Sun May 31, 2009 10:18 pm

Melissa--I cried during Death of a Salesman. I can't really remember why. I think it was when Linda is yelling at her sons after the restaurant fiasco.

Rhianna--Yeah, short stories can be really frustrating. They are good for short, powerful pieces that deliver a succinct, potent message. Other than that, they can be very troublesome.

On the topic of shorter works, I have a few anthologies of essays. A lot of contemporary essays are much more enjoyable to read than the language of say, Civil Disobedience, is. I would recommend Michelle Morano's "Grammar Lessons: The Subjunctive Mood" to anyone, especially Spanish students. It's excellent, and not a grammar lesson at all.

Oh, and Mike--those kinds of books always make be feel uncomfortable about being privileged. That recognition is good for me, I think.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by Lauren on Sun May 31, 2009 10:27 pm

Tuesdays with Morrie is very inspirational. If you're looking for analysis and interpretation of literature, you won't find what you want. Read it instead as your teacher intended it: for the pure joy of reading it. It tells a very touching, heartwarming story.

Death of a Salesman was so sad! But by the end of it, I was impressed.

I finished Wuthering Heights today! Amazing, and I didn't expect the ending, which was a nice surprise.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by oliviah on Mon Jun 01, 2009 7:37 pm

I finished Tuesdays with Morrie today, and was very proud of myself that I didn't burst out in sobs in the middle of Global Issues. There are so many good little quotes I've taken from that book. Seriously. I dogeared the bottom of practically every page. That was a nice read. And I totally agree with you Lauren - you've got to just take your time and read it for pleasure. No analyzing, or you really just destroy the whole point.
And Wuthering Heights. That is my favorite book in the history of ever. It even beats Gatsby, which as you all know, I was quite fond of as well.
Speaking of Fitzgerald (again, I know. Sorry.), has anyone read anything else by him? I was at Borders today and was quite tempted to buy another one of his just for the heck of it. I might make one of those my Gov School books for July! I was just curious if anyone had any reccomendations on his other stuff.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by bananahead82 on Mon Jun 01, 2009 8:54 pm

AHH! I am so happy to finally find people who like the same books as me! I love any kind of gothic or victorian novel and I adore most classic literature they make us read in school. I'm sad that I've already read everything by the Bronte sisters. Any suggestions?
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by iheartnyc2010 on Thu Jun 04, 2009 8:23 pm

OK so here's the thing...I have to pick two of the following books for summer read for my humanities class at normal school and I was wondering if you (obviously very well read) people could help me out by telling me what is amazing and what really isn't. I know I saw some of these mentioned here somewhere but yeah...my choices are:

Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
Emma (Jane Austen)
Tess of the D'Ubervilles (Thomas Hardy)
Catch 22 (Joseph Heller)
Age of Innocence( Edith Wharton)
Ethan Frome (Edith Wharton)
The Picture of Dorian Gray (Oscar Wilde)


yeah, there were more but I'd either already read them or decided against them. I'm kinda looking at Catch 22 and....well I like the movie pride and prejudice but idk. help?? SmileSmileSmileSmile
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by Mike on Thu Jun 04, 2009 9:08 pm

Read Catch 22 and Pictures of Dorian Gray. My friend read both of them and she liked them a lot. They are both apparently hilarious (and if you read Catch 22 you'll know where that expression comes from ;D). As i've said, i hated Pride and Prejudice, but then again most girls seem to like it (though i've talked to a few who hate it). And the only other one I really know is Emma and I don't particularly like Jane Austen so...

hope that helps!
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by oliviah on Fri Jun 05, 2009 7:48 pm

Ethan Frome wasn't all that horrible of a read, but the subject matter really angered me. It's about a man debating whether or not to cheat on his wife. Well, that's the basics at least. My guy friend and I would get into HUGE debates over this in Chemistry. I was on the NOT OKAY side. The book's not too too bad, though.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by bananahead82 on Sat Jun 06, 2009 11:11 am

Jane Austen definitely is an author that you either love or hate. I've heard several people say that Ethan Frome wasn't great, but I read House of Mirth by Edith Wharton and liked it a lot. Pride and Prejudice is better than Emma.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by chrismc91 on Mon Jun 08, 2009 11:20 pm

Hi-
My name's Chris. I live in C'ville, and I know I'm really late getting into this and most likely this will not receive much notice, but I had to add my thoughts Smile

First of all- Sound and the Fury people. Read it. Loved it. Love to talk about it, if you want to work through. Just don't throw it in the trash can when you get to Jason.

Second- Dorian Gray people. Eh. Hedonism? Just because Wilde can throw around a sentence through some linguistic gymnastics doesn't make him a good writer. It makes him nonsensical. Thoroughly enjoyed it, just can't support it as a great novel.

Alright, so my picks-

1. Anna Karenina, Tolstoy- please read this novel. It will change you.
2. Ulysses, Joyce- all you faulkner people, no one does it like the original.
3. All the Kings Men, Penn Warren- Even though I give the nod to Faulkner as our greatest writer on the grounds of his inventiveness, Penn Warren has better pure prose.
4. Saturday, McEwan- thanks to all of you who read attonement and didn't just go see it in theatres. On Chesil Beach broke my heart, Amsterdam creeped me out, but Saturday elated me.
5. Madame Bovary- Madame Bovary, c'est moi. Flaubert got it right once, and that's all that mattered.

Recent favorites- Everything is Illuminated, Jonathan Safran Foer- Check this one out. What a talent! We'll be hearing from him in the future.

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, Eggers- Eggers doesn't know how to write when he's not autobiographical, but this is just a special pseduo-memoir

Alright, that's all for now!

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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by cherry_eyes_2592 on Mon Jun 08, 2009 11:38 pm

ok so i had to jump into this conversation Smile

my favorite books are a mix, particularly because science-ish fiction is my secret vice.
I love Sabriel (Garth Nix), The Great Gatsby (classic, of course), To Kill a Mockingbird, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, O Jerusalem, Catcher in the Rye, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, and I'm in the middle of The Seventh Million (anybody familiar with it?) which so far, I am loving. I really like revionist Israeli history, so that book is a little off the beaten path.

I also really enjoy the stark-er Communist-inspired. literature like One Day in the Life of Ivan D..... (I saw Mike mention this). It is seriously an incredibly book. And, I've read some short stories by Tolstoy which were incredible. Probably my favorite writer/poet ever grew from this communist influence, Wislawa Szymborska. I can re-read her poems again and again and still find beauty and new excitement in her words.

And of course, Harry Potter, but also the Immortal Instruments series, and many others...
Anyone an avid David Sedaris reader? I mean, i can only recite lines from his essays...its not like im obssessed or anything...hahaha

Oh and if we count plays, I loved Antigone by Jean Anouilh. incredibly and skillfully written. oh and Shakespeare
AND i have to add, that while I agree with some of the people about Gatsby and how some of the characters were so hard to like ("Tom and Daisy- they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness") but I loved Nick and his narrative style, especially the last line of the book, " So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past." yeah I pulled out my Gatsby...


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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by chrismc91 on Mon Jun 08, 2009 11:50 pm

You've got some interesting tastes there, Samantha. You should read some Tom Wolfe if you like Catcher and Cuckoo's Nest and Sedaris- check out The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. About Ken Keasey, and he's got a really cool style.

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Faulkner

Post by Oneida on Tue Jun 09, 2009 1:06 pm

Chris- I love Faulkner. I've kind of been lurking this board, and I think you're the first person to mention him. The Sound and the Fury was amazing. After I read it, I was pretty much dazzled... I went out and bought As I Lay Dying, Absalom Absalom, Intruder in the Dust, and The Unvanquished. I am in the process of reading As I Lay Dying now.
I'm glad someone else recognized his excellence. Smile

Also, I love Gatsby. Not die hard, but I have a weird love for Jordan Baker that noone seems to understand. She was my favorite.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by chrismc91 on Tue Jun 09, 2009 3:41 pm

hey Oneida-

Yeah, The Sound and The Fury was pretty spectacular. It didn't make my top 5 because I didn't like the prose in the Dilsey section, but it's definitely up there. I really want to read Absalom, Absalom; apparently, that's Quentin's novel, and he was my favorite character. We read "The Bear" from Go Down, Moses in school, and I enjoyed that as well.

Have you read any Joyce? You could knock out Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man in a weekend, or "The Dead" from Dubliners in an hour or so. He was Faulkner's hero (think Benjy- as my English teacher says, it's Faulkner trying to out-do Joyce); Faulkner actually spent his family's vacation money stalking Joyce around Paris. Portrait would go well with the Faulkner you're reading; be prepared to learn a bit about Irish culture, Catholicism, and Latin, though.

Can't entirely sympathize with the Jordan Baker thing... Nick was my fav. But, I didn't dislike her as much as the rest of my class Smile

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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by bananahead82 on Tue Jun 09, 2009 5:31 pm

Oneida--
Jordan was my favorite too! I really liked the contrast between her spunky independence and Daisy. I was kind of disappointed when she didn't end up playing a greater role in the story towards the end.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by kristinnn on Tue Jun 09, 2009 9:36 pm

well i loved harry potter.
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by carolineb on Tue Jun 09, 2009 10:07 pm

AMEN KRISTIN

hpiddy rocks my socks

i also love the charlie bone series
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Re: Fav. Books?

Post by chrismc91 on Tue Jun 09, 2009 10:12 pm

hahaha hey, nothing wrong with HP. I think Stephen King called JK Rowling one the preeminent writers of contemporary British fiction... I'm not going to argue Smile

PS 6th movie comes out July 15th! Parents' day July 17th... hmmm... movie theaters nearby?

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