Read any good books lately?



  • I'm reading Graeme Obrees biog at the minute, interesting chap.
  • I'm currently reading 'Long Way Round' by Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman. A fascinating read image
  • is it better than the tv programme?

    we watched it every week shouting at the tv what complete pillocks they were and how it was just a big jolly for two posh blokes on bikes
    we never felt they were in any sort of danger

    my husband stopped us watching it in the end


  • My main problem with To Kill A Mockingbird is that I thought 'To Mock a Killingbird' would make a good misreading of the title. And then I just had the thought of pointing and laughing at a golden eagle. And that's a difficult thought to shake off. As is the cocktail, 'Tequila Mockingbird'.

  • maybe an english degree is not for you then SVT


  • Kwilter, I never noticed the names being shipping forecast regions image

    I'm looking forward to re-reading these as I'm sure there are loads more things I missed first time round.

    Hashette, hope you enjoy sticking with the Book Thief.

  • Think I'm done with degrees for now.

    I'm enjoying the first few chapters of The Idiot but will save comments for the end.

  • SVT You really need to have a look at my take on 'To Kill a Mockingbird' ... it's a semi-autobographical  morality  tale, focusing upon my days working in the student bar, at the time when I was doing my first degree, titled:  'To clock a Willing Bird'

    On a serious point ,I've just finished Charlie Brookers 'Dawn of the Dumb' a complilation of his Guardian Columns... very funny and have just started Ian Rankin's latest Rebus book 'Exit Music'  I don't read much fiction anymore and very little of the crime genre, so I'm looking forward to it.

  • Hi Folks been a long time out but heres a few of the recent ones...

    Pies and Prejudice by Stuart Maconie

     Loved it loved it. Writing style similar to the description of Bill Bryson but supping on a decent beer and munchin a pie instead of hot choc!! Really recommend to lovers of Northern culture and places and just about any type of music.

    Iain Banks - The Steep Approach to Garbadale.

    Always been a big fan and this did not disappoint. Long time since I last read one of his books but this makes me want to go back and read them all again.

     Just starting  Al Gore - The Assault on Reason: How the Politics of Blind Faith Subvert Wise Decision-making.

    Good to get the brain ticking over again - I have hardly read anything in the last 6-12 months as have been exhausted by work.

  • Agree about the 'brain ticking over' bit; I've been trying to read more often after I discovered it was something I managed to do every Christmas.

    Having an Iain Banks-fest at the moment. I've just finished 'Walking on glass' and if anyone can answer the question 'WTF?' I'd be grateful...

    Enjoyed The Steep Approach to Garbadale, which seemed the most 'normal' of his books that I've read so far.

    Having just jointed t'fred, have I missed any reviews of 'Oystercatchers', by a woman, which I thought was magical; the majority opinion seems to be that it was unreadable...

    ...and do I have to acknowledge that I've dumbed down as most of my recent reads have been on a 'Richard and Judy' list? It's coincidence, honestly image

  • Good to hear people like Steep Approach to Garbadale - it's in my pile of books to try soon. Has anyone tried his SF stuff? I actually prefer some of these to his normal books.

    Who wrote Oystercatchers, CH? May add it to my list of books to look out for.

  • LN - I prefer the fiction to the SF but then my limit for fantasy is Terry Pratchett....

    Maybe I should retry..... Have not read Walking on Glass  - will look out for it Crashie and see if I fare any better!! Always enjoy them even if I am not actually sure what the hell happened!!

  • LN, Oystercatchers is by Susan Fletcher. We've acquired 'Eve Green' by the same author; will be interested to see if I enjoy it as much.

    Our recent book splurge came from Amazon marketplace, eight books for a penny each (though it's £2.70, I think, for the p+p on each book) on earth is it woth the sellers' while, even though they must make a little on the p+p?

    Finished 'Canal Dreams' (another of our 1p Bankses) last night. Which is about a cellist caught up in a guerrilla war while sailing to Europe. As her ship is held in Lake Gattin, the dangers become ever-more real. It struck me as more Alistair MacLean than Iain Banks, which probably means I've missed the point...

    (Sadcase alert: I've read everything ever written by AMacL...I was young and impressionable, ok? image)

  • No. it's ok, Wikipedia says it was an action novel and that Banks thought that it would be easy to strip out the politivcs and make a 'Die Hard'-style film out of it.

    Wikipedia also says that Walking on Glass is one of his least regarded books. Wikipedia is my friend image

  • It's the volume of books they sell and the money made on the P&P CH, my daughter did it for a while to get rid of the millions of books I had in the house.

    Currently reading Nothing To Lose by Lee Child.  I love his Jack Reacher books but I've put off reading this one as my mum said "yeah, it's good" which is not much of a review!  Enjoyable so far but certainly not challenging.

    In the process of reading the Inspector Morse omnibuses (!!)  the Third Inspector Morse Omnibus arrived today.  It cost me 1p plus p&p so not too shabby!

  • Having an Iain Banks-fest at the moment. I've just finished 'Walking on glass' and if anyone can answer the question 'WTF?' I'd be grateful...

    one of my favourite books


    i think iain banks does every second book in his sleep cos some of them are sh*te
    canal dreams being one of them - the bridge being another

    dead air is superb
    as is the crow rd

  • i am going to go on wikipedia and change that - it's a fab book

  • Dead Air is ace. Espescialy the tv debate with the holocaust denyer.

    The Wasp Factory is not.

  • Has anyone read Perfect Night by Peter Grimsdale?


    "Nick Roker was an ambitious young documentary film-maker until an explosion in Sri Lanka almost killed him and destroyed much of his memory. The beautiful woman he was working alongside died in the atrocity. Now living a quiet life as a film archivist, Nick finds himself redundant and on gardening leave during a company take-over. A doctored film reveals the image of a man connected to the explosion - a man who by all accounts had died years earlier after another international incident. So begins a gripping thriller with a sympathetic and world weary hero. Nick and his difficult ‘loner’ friend Colin begin to piece together the parts of the picture and in the process attract the attention of people determined to silence them. Fluently written, exciting and often moving, with a fascinating insight into the world of television and film making (where Grimsdale himself works) this is a very successful debut"

    I bought a copy for my dad but am intrigued by the story so may have to buy another copy for me!

  • Hmmm, which Banks books have I read? Let's check...

    The Bridge - I actually liked this
    Espedair Street - superb
    A Song of Stone - not great

    Not read The Crow Road but enjoyed the TV adaptation.

  • Lurks, but can you explain it to me? Is the sci-fi part of the plot in the head of one of the other characters? If not, how can a character in a novel be reading the book in which she's a character? My head hurts...

    Walking on Glass either ties up beautifully and I'm being thick or it's written to show to the world how clever the author is...

  • I haven't read any fiction for ages, just sifting through library books on Mac computers because I'm in the process of  making the switch, as well as going though a lot of books of drawings by the old masters because I'm about to start a proper 6-month drawing and painting course.image

    Corinth- feel free to send me some of your juveniliaimage

  • Crash Hamster wrote (see

    Having an Iain Banks-fest at the moment. I've just finished 'Walking on glass' and if anyone can answer the question 'WTF?' I'd be grateful...


    II thought it all could have taken place in the helmet guy's head?  And doesn't "the immoveable object move, while the irrestible force is resisted " or some tosh like that?  I loved that book when i was young, but I don't think i could read it now.  I used to know a Sarah Ffitch too, but she wasn't like the girl in the book. (I hope not anyway)

    Canal dreams was awful..."You be Rucky" sticks in my head to this day.  Trying to get my 17 year old son to read "Espedair St."  

    Loved all the culture novels when I was younger and occasionally re-read Consider Phlebas

  • Mr P, pretty much spot on! I quite liked the idea that it was all in the helmet guy's head (his name was similar to that of the 20th century paranoid chap) but that would mean that the sci-fi plot was real, which means that Alaji was reading about her predicament in a book in which she was a character...I'm sure that this would cause some sort of a hole in the space-time continuum and that the universe would implode image would also mean that she'd solve the riddle they'd been set (on account of the fact that the answer was in the book) and thus escape the castle forever, which would make for a happy ending.

    on the other hand, the fact that a twentieth century novelist could write a book that deals accurately with the fate of characters several centuries later is implausible...unless Iain Banks is being controlled by another 'helmet bloke' from the 28th century <dah dah dah!!!>

    I'm off to lie down in a darkened room before my head explodes image

  • I'm going to dig it out and read it now...
  • i picked it as my book circle read once

    they didn't like it

    they never like my choices


  • currently reading this at the moment, not enjoyed a book so much in ages image

    The Average American Male by Chad Kultgen

  • Finally finished Brothers Karamazov a few days ago.

    Although there are some good bits I think overall the book didn't quite work for me. There were a few too many sections that had very little to do with the story and dragged you out of the flow. I would have preferred it if there was less of this and a bit more about the people after the trial. It seemed to end v. suddenly with lots of issues unresolved. Don't think this will be a book that I will reread although I may try another one of his books, maybe a shorter one!

    I'd recommend it with a few reservations:

    • It's probably a good idea to have a rough knowledge of Russian history about this time. I'm sure some of the philosophical passages related to the emancipation of the serfs and the changing religious climate of which I only had a vague clue.
    • Everyone has about 6 names so you need to know what all the variations of Dmitri are!
    • Russians seem a lot more emotional than British people, there will be lots of exclamation marks in the dialogue!!!

    I'm now reading Double Fault by Lionel Shriver - a much easier read but still enjoyable. Definitely not as good as We Need To Talk About Kevin though.

  • In an unending effort to satiate my yearning to spend some more time living out of a bag I'm reading

    These Are the Days That Must Happen to You - Dan Walsh

     Interesting style of writing, very contemporary and is pretty creative with his choice of words which keeps me entertained as much as the story, so far it's a 7/10 but I'm only 2/3 of the way through.

  • I'm in the middle of reading The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson....something completely different for me (in the middle of my epic Inspector Morse re-read).

    I'm about 2/3 way far I would definitely recommend it, I'm reserving judgement until I finish as I'm waiting for some kind of twist at the end....not sure if there is or not??

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