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Groggy
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« #375 : November 29, 2009, 02:06:29 PM »

I'm most of the way through Landscape Turned Red by Stephen W. Sears, a well-written and excrutiatingly detailed account of the Battle of Antietam. Should be able to finish it by tomorrow.



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« #376 : December 13, 2009, 08:05:49 PM »

I'm starting American Scoundrel: The Life of Notorious Civil War General Dan Sickles by Thomas Keneally today. If ever an historical figure deserved a biopic, it's definitely Sickles. Preferably played by Robert Downey Jr. or Daniel Day-Lewis.

« : December 14, 2009, 02:50:25 PM Groggy »


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« #377 : January 12, 2010, 11:15:48 PM »



I read this whole damned thing today, along with parts of another book and two textbooks. A really funny and entertaining work that dovetails nicely with my re-reading of Hopkirk's The Great Game (and its sequels). The similarities to Groggy Dundee really struck me, this is definitely the sort of novel I'd be writing if I had the stamina (and skill) to write a whole book. And to think as recently as a week ago I'd never heard of this bugger. If I haven't gone insane by the end of the week I'll have to try and track down the sequels.



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« #378 : January 13, 2010, 04:05:42 AM »

10,000 Ways to Die, not worth the price I payed (look for it used) and like many books about Spaghetti Westerns it does have mistakes.


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« #379 : January 13, 2010, 08:49:52 AM »




Mike Hammer's last adventure (chronologically. There are more to come based on unfinished Spillane's manuscripts). This one is the best in many years, probably since the early '70's non-Hammer novels Last Cop Out and The Erection Set. Acruallu, this reminded me of Hammer's best novels of the fifties. Strangely there is less violence than usual, some more humor and the finale is as good as any Spillane ever wrote. Sure, there is some contrivance, but that is usual in Spillane. 8\10


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« #380 : January 29, 2010, 06:55:53 AM »




It's exactly as crazy as it looks. Featuring Rincewind, the talentless and cowardish Wizzard (couldn't do magic to save his life, but world champion in running away), Cohen the Barbarian, the 90-something (still going strong!) hero and his Horde (around the same age as him). The whole thing takes place in a China / Japan hybrid place that our Barbarians want to invade (all seven of them).  ;D Hilarity ensues.





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« #381 : January 29, 2010, 08:42:46 AM »

I used to read Pratchett a lot at some point. At his best, he can kill you with laughter, but as soon as you learn his style bursts of laughter become rare.


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« #382 : January 29, 2010, 08:49:08 AM »



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« #383 : January 29, 2010, 10:39:22 AM »



Thoughts? It's been a few years since I read that but I remember liking it more than the film.



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« #384 : January 29, 2010, 10:45:38 AM »

Since my last post on this thread I've read:

Royal Flash - a Flashman pastiche of The Prisoner of Zenda. Still pretty good.

Like Hidden Fire - second of the Great Game trilogy by Hopkirk, dealing with Germany's attempts to incite an Islamic Holy War during WWI. Really interesting stuff, and the book is well-written and fascinating, though it meanders towards the end.

Setting the East Ablaze - fairly short, unfocused and not-entirely-developed account of Bolshevik attempts to revive the Great Game. Spends a lot of time dealing with Frederick Bailey, a British spy operating in the region, and self-appointed warlords like Baron Von Sternberg and Enver Pasha who were interesting but at best tertiarily related to the subject matter.

The Night of the Generals - pretty good, though I might have preferred the film on the whole, which if nothing else is a very faithful adaptation.

Flash For Freedom! - my favorite Flashman to date, and certainly the funniest. Wasn't crazy about the story at first glance, but Fraser does a really clever job of advancing the plot from one absurdity to the other. And an Abraham Lincoln cameo to boot.

Flashman at the Charge - another mostly good book but it went slightly downhill when Flashman returned to Afghanistan.

Plus various things for school which stink.

« : January 29, 2010, 10:48:12 AM Groggy »


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« #385 : January 29, 2010, 01:50:39 PM »

Thoughts? It's been a few years since I read that but I remember liking it more than the film.

In all honesty, I haven't finished it completely just yet but I'm pretty close. I like it. Good re-creation of it I'd say.  O0


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« #386 : March 09, 2010, 01:22:34 PM »

It's exactly as crazy as it looks. Featuring Rincewind, the talentless and cowardish Wizzard (couldn't do magic to save his life, but world champion in running away), Cohen the Barbarian, the 90-something (still going strong!) hero and his Horde (around the same age as him). The whole thing takes place in a China / Japan hybrid place that our Barbarians want to invade (all seven of them).  ;D Hilarity ensues.

The Rincewind books are really crazy - too crazy for my liking... I prefer the ones with the Witches, The Wyrd Sisters in particular (I also saw it in theatre - just as great).
Although my favourite character, as with many other Pratchett readers, is DEATH.


I started re-reading "Historie Svorné sedmy" ("The History of The Solidary Seven") by Jaroslav Foglar as my bedtime reading... Foglar wrote many books for young readers, from the 30s till 90s, with a decidedly moralist agenda, scouts honour and such things. Still, they're usually more or less reasonably enjoyable and often feature a very special atmosphere nobody else quite achieved in the genre (with the honourable exception of one writer, who wrote a better Foglar book than Foglar himself...), he contributed a lot to Czech comics; plus he wrote one completely hilarious book about his squad of scouts that's probably his best thing... This one in particular is special in featuring girls among the main characters.



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« #387 : March 09, 2010, 04:22:42 PM »

"Darker Than Amber" (1966) John D. MacDonald, revisiting the Travis McGee series, great pulp!


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« #388 : March 09, 2010, 05:57:47 PM »

I've read quite a bit since this thread was last active, but I'll limit myself to my latest:

Flashman's Lady - The first 70-80 pages are about a series of cricket matches - enough said. Once the main plot finally gets going, it comes close to Fraser's best work, and if nothing else it's nice to see Elspeth given a central role for once.



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« #389 : March 18, 2010, 03:41:14 PM »

Frank Norris' The Octopus: A Story of California.  Awesome tale of farmers vs. railroad. Inspired by the infamous Mussel Slough Tragedy.




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