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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 06-30-2006, 12:18 PM   #21
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Re: Really big book suggestions

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Originally Posted by mclesters
Justin quit baiting "them" with the Ayn Rand!
That's why I mentioned the caveat! I wouldn't want anyone to get mad at me if they take a 1200 page book on vacation, get 50 pages into it and find out that they hate the book and the author because of her politics. There's much more to the book [Atlas Shrugged] than just politics. Lots of descriptive narrative, good plot, exploration of human nature (what drives us?). And that's in the first 1/4 of it. I'm sure some will utter "That's B.S.!" a couple of times, like I did when reading The Jungle (Upton Sinclair), which was never the less a good read.

Yes - read Anthem, and if you can stomach it, you'll probably like Atlas Shrugged.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 06-30-2006, 12:23 PM   #22
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Re: Really big book suggestions

the thickest book in my house is only about 700 pages. though not quite one to lose yourself in, it has been said that confucious, had he more time, would have spent it all studying i ching aka book of changes. my favorite translation is by wilhelm/baynes and includes a foward by c.g. jung.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 06-30-2006, 02:06 PM   #23
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Re: Really big book suggestions

Alot of great suggestions, so far.

I would add "Team Of Rivals", by Doris Kearns Goodwin.

Justin, I read a lot of Rand in my early 20's.

Don't worry, you'll grow out of it.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 06-30-2006, 02:14 PM   #24
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Re: Really big book suggestions

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Originally Posted by alphabet soup
Justin, I read a lot of Rand in my early 20's.

Don't worry, you'll grow out of it.
Hey, don't impugn me. I'm in my mid-20's now.

I like the themes in Rand's works. I think she's over the top in terms of the extremes she illustrates. Most characters in her works (of the two that I've read) are either black or white (in the figurative sense), very little gray. In that respect, some characters' actions/personalities aren't very convincing.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 06-30-2006, 02:26 PM   #25
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Re: Really big book suggestions

The Quincunx - Charles Palliser
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 06-30-2006, 02:51 PM   #26
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Re: Really big book suggestions

Ditto any of Michener's and Eco's. Also, I just recently re-read "In Cold Blood" (after seeing "Capote" on video), and it is well-deserving of its reputation. A gripping account.

"Affluenza" by John DeGraaf.
"The Coming Generational Storm" by Kotlikoff & Burns.
"I'll Be Short", Robert Reich.

And for fun: "Fly Fishing Through the Midlife Crisis" by Howell Raines.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 06-30-2006, 03:29 PM   #27
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Re: Really big book suggestions

Ok - so I'm gonna be the one to recommend the not "Great" literature, but some good books - there are two or 3 total of the Hannibal Lecter books. I think the last one is called Red Devil - it's awesome and will scare the crap out of you.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 07-03-2006, 07:07 AM   #28
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Re: Really big book suggestions

Looong books I enjoyed:

Mason & Dixon; Thomas Pynchon (perhaps more accessible than some of his others)
773pp.

A Suitable Boy; Vikram Seth
1474pp. (not a typo-- one thousand four hundred seventy-four in my paperback edn.)

The Claudius Novels; Robert Graves
a good 700-something pp. put together.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 07-03-2006, 08:36 AM   #29
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Re: Really big book suggestions

The Civil War by Shelby Foote -- 3 volumes, about 900 pages each, should keep you busy for a while. Is quite engrossing and readable -- much more so than Bruce Catton's histories of the Civil War (IMHO).
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 07-03-2006, 09:25 AM   #30
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Re: Really big book suggestions

Atlas Shrugged

note - I'm 53 yo and still reread it every few years - never did grow out of it, nor did my husband!
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 07-03-2006, 07:25 PM   #31
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Re: Really big book suggestions

Thanks for all the suggestions - some comments

War and Peace - I saw the movie.
The Winds of War and/or War and Remembrance - I saw the mini series.

"The Good Soldier Svejk" - I don't feel a conection
Lonesome Dove - I've lost interest in westerns.

Hitler's Willing Executioners : Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust -- by Daniel Jonah Goldhagen -
Rise And Fall Of The Third Reich -- by William L. Shirer - read it.

A Widow for One Year -- by John Irving - I'm not a fan of his.
The World According to Garp by John Irving

Don Quixote de La Mancha (Modern Library) by Miguel De Cervantes Saavedra
Les Miserable - read it
Travels with Charlie - read it

Atlas Shrugged - read it
The Fountainhead - read it
Ayn Rand's Anthem - read it

Tom Clancy - not a fan of his
Stephen King - I'm going to read the Cell
James Michener - read a lot of his
"Affluenza" by John DeGraaf - no interest
"The Coming Generational Storm" by Kotlikoff & Burns - no interest
"I'll Be Short", Robert Reich - I listen to him on NPR

And for fun: "Fly Fishing Through the Midlife Crisis" by Howell Raines - I'm pass it.
Hannibal Lecter books - saw the movies
The Civil War by Shelby Foote - read alot of civil war books.
Mason & Dixon; Thomas Pynchon (perhaps more accessible than some of his others) - I tried to read one of his books - I couldn't understand it. It was about a fish that guides mankind; if I remeber.


A Suitable Boy; Vikram Seth
1474pp. (not a typo-- one thousand four hundred seventy-four in my paperback edn.)

The Claudius Novels; Robert Graves
a good 700-something pp. put together.

These are in the running - I think Cryptonomicon & Quicksilber are on the top of the list.
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Cryptonomicon
Foucault's Pendulum, by Umberto Eco
Cryptonomicon
Stephenson's latest trilogy, the Quicksilver
Team Of Rivals", by Doris Kearns Goodwin
The Quincunx - Charles Palliser

I decided to go with:
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Foucault's Pendulum, by Umberto Eco
Ordered both on Amazon.com for 9.96 including shipping - I think they make their money from the shipping.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 07-03-2006, 09:12 PM   #32
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Re: Really big book suggestions

After Foucault's Pendulum, you might try Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon.
And sooner or later you may want to read James Joyce's Ulysses, which can be enjoyably read without notes if you don't mind not getting all of the references. (This is probably not true of Finnegan's Wake, though having never gotten past the first few pages, can't say for certain.)
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 07-03-2006, 09:21 PM   #33
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Re: Really big book suggestions

I recall reading the original spanish language version of 100 years of solitude during high school - very interesting, bizarre, and confusing at times probably due to the magical realism style. Great imagery and descriptive narrative too.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 07-03-2006, 09:43 PM   #34
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Re: Really big book suggestions

Quote:
Originally Posted by bpp
After Foucault's Pendulum, you might try Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon.
And sooner or later you may want to read James Joyce's Ulysses, which can be enjoyably read without notes if you don't mind not getting all of the references. (This is probably not true of Finnegan's Wake, though having never gotten past the first few pages, can't say for certain.)
I tried to read Gravity's Rainbow - it got great reviews when it came out - I couldn't get through it, nor could I understand it.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 07-03-2006, 09:57 PM   #35
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Re: Really big book suggestions

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I tried to read Gravity's Rainbow - it got great reviews when it came out - I couldn't get through it, nor could I understand it.
In my mind it is kind of a cross between Foucault's Pendulum and Ulysses, with a dash of Monty Python thrown in. The banana breakfast scene at the beginning sucked me in, but I could see how one could fail to get into it as well. I haven't really cared for other Pynchon books, for that matter.
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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 07-03-2006, 10:22 PM   #36
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Re: Really big book suggestions

By the way,

Quote:
Originally Posted by dex
Lonesome Dove - I've lost interest in westerns.
I have never had any interest in westerns, but recall enjoying reading Lonesome Dove when it first came out.

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Re: Really big book suggestions
Old 07-03-2006, 11:58 PM   #37
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Re: Really big book suggestions

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Originally Posted by dex
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Oh that's just an awesome book!!!! I don't remember it being particularly long?

A current? bestseller by Amy Tan - Saving Fish from Drowning - Amazing! Definitely engrossing - totally transports you. A really wild story. 496 pages. I think it's still on bookshelves at most stores.

Audrey
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