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I want to rediscover books

Discussion in 'Reader's Corner' started by Ram, Oct 24, 2006.

  1. Ram

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    Can someone recommend me a few great clasics?
    I'm 21 now and throughout my education, I've disliked reading and therefore neglected all kinds of fictional books. I really don't know what to start with.

    I'd like to read something adult orientated. Preferably with an underlying political theme. Of course this isn't necessary.
    Recommendations appreciated. :)
     
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  2. less

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    As they say in the Music Department: If you want to introduce people to a new genre, start them out with something catchy :amuse

    As far as great classics with underlying political themes go, 1984 by George Orwell is a must. It might not be the best starting point for someone who's spent his adult life book-free, but it's not as boring as many people on these borads claim. And it's as classic as they come until you start getting all Moby Dicky. Then you got The Great Gatsby, of course, which is nice, but not a great starting point either.

    I'd recommend The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy by Douglas Adams. True, it a sci-fi parody, but it's got more underlying themes than you can count and it's written by the greatest English wit ever with a language so brilliant that I can pick it up anytime and be amazed at his syntax. How many syntaxes can you be amazed by? In a good way, I mean.

    If the geek-following and cult status of that one seems like a turn-off, I'll go out on a limb and recommend (again) Johnathan Safran Foer's Everything is Illuminated. I honestly believe it to be the best debut written this century. It's hillarious, and it's sad as all hell. Safran Foer's talent are being funny and being sad, and in a book where he never is anything but, he shines. Like, truly shines. (If you pick this one, though, don't be alarmed by the language in the first pages. As you'll soon find out, there's a reason for it.)

    Or you could do the poetic sensitive thing and get Sputnik Sweetheart by Haruki Murakami. It's pretty short and not very political, but it's beautifully written, slightly surreal, and it has Japanese lesbians.

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. Mori`

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    less is always helpful to everyone.

    I'd concur on 1984, very much one of the quintessential classics, was originally published in 1949 and covers all sorts of areas.

    the world in it sort of parrallels with stalins soviet union and its ideals, the leader of the party controlling the world is known as 'big brother' (ever wonder where the tv show yoinked that one from) and you'll find several comparisons between him and various dictators.

    The basic plot follows a guy named Winston and how we see his own thoughts and ideals change from a conforming ministry worker to someone who is willing to rebel against the party.

    The book gives a very interesting look at how things might be under a communist style state and the way in which people behave.

    ---

    *sucks at 'reviews'

    ---

    I'd also concur with reading Hitchhikers guide if you haven't already, truly a genius book. (if you've seen the film...read the book now :/)
     
  4. Robotkiller

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    under "pictures"

    A game of thrones. A song of Ice and Fire.

    The books are known for complex characters, sudden and often violent plot twists, and intricate political intrigue. In a genre where magic usually takes center stage, this series has a reputation for its limited and subtle use of magic, employing it as an ambiguous and often sinister background force

    It's got politics, it's got love (incestual and non), it's got action, and it truly is one of my favorite book series.

    Give it a try buddy, only 8 american dollars for 800 pages of page-turning greatness.
     
  5. Ram

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    Thanks very much for the recommendations guys. I'm going to start with 1984.
    I'll also have to read The Hitchiker's Guide and the rest of your recommendations.
     
  6. isanon

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    have you read odysses ??

    its pretty good even though its so old
     
  7. ThisCorrosion

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    As classics go I suggest the horror classics. Bram Stoker's Dracula is book everyone has too read. As of course is Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. For short horror classics, pick up a collection of either Edgar Allen Poe or H.P Lovecraft. Both are master storytellers and have you gripped in each story.

    I also have to recommend Oscar Wilde's A Portait of Dorian Grey. A masterpiece novel, it is extrodinary, exquisite and yet horrifying.
     
  8. Twizted

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    If you like history and mythology, then the Iliad is a great read. Likewise the Odyssey is great too.

    Also, Tim O'Brien's The Things They Carried is a masterful series of short stories, some true, some completely fabricated, about O'Brien's time in Vietnam. The main focus of them is to show you how it's literally impossible to write truthfully.

    Edit: Oh damn, you're banned. Well for when you get back then.
     
  9. martryn

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    Catch-22. I'm rereading it now. Couldn't ask for anything better.
     
  10. Alia_Atreides

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    "Dune", by Frank Herbert. Always read "Dune".

    Yeah, it's sci-fi, but has political tones, exciting story, interesting view of the human nature. I would recommend it to a person that wants to read something that can entertain you and teach you something at the same time.

    The Great Gatsby was already suggested, and yeah, it's really great... Same goes for 1984. Or Lord of the Rings. I would also add Wuthering Heights, by Emily Brontë.
     
  11. Catatonik

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    Recommended reading?
    Sure.

    No god but God by Reza Aslan: One of the most fascinating new works on Religion. It is a study, explanation, praise for and critique of Islam. Reza is himself a devout Muslim, and a voice in the call for Reformation, one of those trying to prove that Islam is a beautiful and fascinating set of beliefs. It is a brilliant read, evocative and in-depth, and with a wry sense of humour diffused through out. Aslan is also a semi-regular on the Daily Show.

    Jingo by Terry Pratchett: Jingo is politics, fantasy, humour, satire, and a social critique. It is a brilliantly funny and inspiring fantasy comedy, that at the same time holds a mirror up to the grim realities of our world. It is a laugh out loud read, and thought provoking philisophical page turner.

    American Gods by Neil Gaiman: One of the most brilliant modern fantasy authors, Neil Gaiman runs parallel to Pratchett, but tends to write about our world, with a twist. American Gods is one of those amazing books that questions theology and science equally, religion, belief and society, as well as being funny, and a mystery.
     
  12. Kisiro

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    I'd go with everyone elses LOTR. It has deep meaning when you actually look into it about everything. It's also very entertaining as well. If you want to grab a book that has some really deep meaning pick up The Scarlet Letter, It's by Nathaniel Hawthorne. I was forced to read it by my school, you might like it. Enjoy!
     
  13. DragonHeart52

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    Has anyone mentioned "Ender's Game"? Great book!! Easy to read but keeps you engaged all the way through.
     
  14. Sasori No Danna

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    A Confederacy of Dunces, while lacking in the underlying political themes is a fantastic book
    A Christmas Carol is a fantastic story that everyone knows but very few people have READ through
    The Tempest, As You Like It-two fantastic Shakespeare plays that are not THAT hard to understand
    Good Omens is a very funny book by Terry Prachett and Neil Gaiman that I'm thoroughly enjoying thus far, may seem a bit childish but it's not bad
     
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