Recommended Reading

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Recommended Reading

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:14 am

Recommended Reading

This topic serves as an archive of a thread from the Harry Potter Lexicon Forum as hosted on World Crossing which ceased operation on April 15, 2011. Elanor

Denise P. - Nov 8, 2003 9:38 pm
Edited by Kip Carter Sep 26, 2007 3:37 am
Back by popular demand! This is the thread where you can recommend a book that you really like or recently read. Please keep in mind that this thread will be purged on a regular basis so write it down if you think you may want to read it.



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Last edited by Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:58 am; edited 1 time in total
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Recommended Reading (Post 1 to 50)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:22 am

Denise P. - Nov 8, 2003 9:44 pm (#1 of 938)
Ravenclaw Pony
Actually, I am glad to see this thread again since I am always looking for a good book to read. Here are a few that I have either re-read or read recently that others may like.

1. The Harry Dresden wizard series by Jim Butcher - these books are not for kids, they contain gore, violence and adult situations. There are 5 books in the series right now and I like them. The first one is Fool Moon, I think.

2. Cirque de Freak series by Darren Shan - these are found in the Young Adult section but there is some gore in them and they may be too violent in some parts for younger readers. In the US, we are up to #5 out in paperback. In the UK, they are considerably further along.

3. All Creatures Great & Small (and the three others in the series) by James Herriot. These are almost 30 years old now and follow a young vet in the late 1930's. While they are semi-factual, the author's actual name is not James Herriot. They are very funny and I read them initially when I was about 13.

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freshwater - Nov 8, 2003 10:35 pm (#2 of 938)

Connections, speculation, discussion: the best part of HP reading! Check out the on-going HP Lex Forum series re-read! Currently reading GoF...
I'd like to second NoVeil4Me's recommendation of the books by/about James Herriot. I've read them all many times and enjoy them more each time. Great humor, great characters, great insights into human nature and how we deal with stresses and conflicts. They are classics in the sense that they'll never go out of style or out of date. EVERYONE should read them! Get thee to a bookshop!

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The Great Abbycadabra - Nov 9, 2003 12:14 am (#3 of 938)

Crocs Rule!
Oh, yay! I love this tread. *rubs hands together mischieviously*

Ella Enchanted by Gail Levine. I just read this book and it was delightful, really. It's a version of the Cinderella tale where Ella is under a spell to always be obedient. Which makes the story make much, much more since because I always thought Cinderella was rather stupid to stay around and be bossed about by her stepfamily.

I believe I mentioned these series before, but they're still really good, so I'll mention them again. The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot. These books are so great and they're really a very quick read. It's about a 14-year-old girl who finds out that she's a princess, and that being a princess isn't all it's cracked up to be. There are currently 4 1/2 books in the series. The next one comes out in March, I believe.

Also by Meg Cabot, but under the pseudonym Jenny Carroll, is The Mediator series. These are about a 16-year-old girl who essentially sees dead people. She is the one who makes lost souls move on to the other side. She frequently uses force. These are truly great and funny novels. There are five of these, but beware because the latest one is called Haunted and it was published by a different publisher and under the name Meg Cabot. So it looks completely different from the other four. The first in the series is called Shadowland and it's under Jenny Carroll. Just a heads up. The next one comes out in January 2005. Darn long waits. Ah, I'm used to it.

I know I have more, I just can't think of them at the moment. I'll be back.

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Sly Girl - Nov 9, 2003 1:16 am (#4 of 938)

I would wholeheartedly like to suggest three books by Jan Siegel- it's a trilogy and I'm just on book two right now but they are really good- extremely well written and very well done. They're about Atlantis- although not what you would expect. It takes a bit to get used to her lyrical writing style, but after awhile you get sucked into her world. Great characterization.

Anyway, the first book is Prospero's Children, the 2nd one is The Dragon Charmer and the 3rd is the Witch Queen.

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timrew - Nov 9, 2003 3:20 am (#5 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
I remember the book, "All Creatures Great And Small" by James Herriot. An excellent book, even though it was referred to sometimes as, "All Creatures Grunt And Smell".

All the books by him about life as a vet in the Yorkshire Dales are excellent.

I would also recommend any book by Alan Garner, an English author who lives not far from me in a place called Alderley Edge in Cheshire. Particularly the two books that he set in the Alderley Edge area, "The Weirdstone Of Brisingamen" and, "The Moon Of Gomrath".

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Jim the Potty - Nov 9, 2003 8:51 am (#6 of 938)

President of the Potties, forum member since the beginning, never online
Where to start....

I too have read the James Herriot books, they are very funny.

Also read 'His Dark Materials' by Philip Pullman, a fantasy trilogy ('Northern Lights', 'The Subtle Knife' and 'The Amber Spyglass'). Subtle Knife is the best of the series, I was a bit unimpressed with the ending to Amber Spyglass. ***WARNING*** these books, especially Amber Spyglass, are ANTI-CHRISTIAN - Pullman wrote them as a deliberate unChristian alternative to the Narnia books.

Another trilogy, better than Dark Materials in my opinion but less well known, is 'The Wind on Fire' ('The Windsinger', 'Slaves of the Mastery' and 'Firesong'). Windsinger is set several years before the second two, which are set within a day of each other. The last two are better than Windsinger, but don't skip reading it, it contains very important information.

Read 'Lord of the Rings' and 'The Hobbit' obviously (both by JRR Tolkein, if you've been living under a rock for the last century ;-P)

Thats all I can think of for now...I love this thread, thanks Denise!

Jim the Potty

PS - I'm 14 and have read all of these books within the last year or two

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Madame Librarian - Nov 9, 2003 9:54 am (#7 of 938)

Two excellent titles dealing with good v. evil, post-WWII, set in New York city, magic-realism, golems* young heroes:

1) Pete Hamill's Snow in August. Young Catholic boy whose dad was killed in the war, befriends a Holocaust survivor, a young, Orthodox rabbi. Together they create golem to deal with the evil bullies threatening them.

2) Michael Chabon's The Amazing Adventures of Cavalier and Clay. Two young men, one a refugee from Prague during the Nazi occupation, become the creative force behind the making of America's comic book superheroes--Superman, Spiderman, etc. In a desperate effort to rescue his family back in Europe, the refugee attempts to re-create the Golem of Prague that he smuggled out when he fled.

*Golem--an artificial man, bigger that life-size, created from clay and brought into being with the proper incantations that serves as a protector for those that created him. A most famous one, according to legend, was created by the Chief Rabbi of Prague. Some say that this legend from the 1500s is the basis for the story of Frankenstein. If you want to read more, click here.

Ciao. Barb

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Weeny Owl - Nov 9, 2003 10:11 am (#8 of 938)

I loved James Herriot's books and also the BBC series.

Other books I've liked:

1. Anything by Madeline L'Engle.

2. Marion Zimmer Bradley's "Darkover" books.

3. Any of Ann McCaffrey's series. I keep thinking how delighted Hagrid would be on Pern... even if he couldn't be a dragonrider, he could have a fire lizard.

4. C.S. Friedman's "Coldfire" trilogy.

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Ovate - Nov 9, 2003 10:35 am (#9 of 938)

For those of you who enjoyed LOTR, I would recommend "Song of Fire and Ice"

The plot is intricate, complex and unpredictable, yet logical and satisfying in its own way. The characters are well-drawn, vivid, unique, and within the context of the story, realistic, their dialogue is natural and convincing. The books are full of intrigue At times its quite difficult to be certain which characters are trustworthy and which are not. A real sense of danger creates a palatable tension throughout the books. Every character, the good, the bad and the ugly, is fair game. The good guys are not always victorious, but you're not always certain who you should be rooting for anyway. That said there are characters who you will take to heart. There are battles, jousts and sword-play, but they are really secondary to the story.

I also agree with Jim the Potty that His Dark Materials is worth a read, but, as he says, the ending is disappointing. However, I don't agree that they are necessarily anti-Christian, although most Christians (perhaps a very large majority) may see the books that way. I saw them as anti-Church rather than anti-Christian, at least in opposition to those churches that have become rigid and dogmatic, and have lost their spiritual bearings. As far as I can recall neither Christ, nor any Christ-like figure, is mentioned in the book, though my memory sometimes fails me. I do think that the books have a kind of spiritual underpinning. For the most part, the books are just a well-written fantasy and an enjoyable read. Those who are not easily offended by anti-religious sentiment and like the Harry Potter books might very well also enjoy these books.

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A-is-for-Amy - Nov 9, 2003 10:44 am (#10 of 938)

Mom of 2 boys
I just read the three Artemis Fowl books and found them a clever, quick read. I was pleasantly surprised by them, because I expected just a Harry Potter rip-off, but they are nothing like the series. There is a lot of technological stuff that I'm not sure younger kids would understand, but they are fun. All of them are available in paperback.

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Denise P. - Nov 9, 2003 11:21 am (#11 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I agree with the Artemis Fowl books, good read. I read Dark Materials and while it was ok, the ending stunk and I don't normally recommend them.

Anne McCaffrey books are good. If you like Anne McCaffrey, you would probably enjoy Mercedes Lacky - Heralds of Valdemar series.

I think I am the lone person who finds Lemony Snicket a very dull read.

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A-is-for-Amy - Nov 9, 2003 1:32 pm (#12 of 938)

Mom of 2 boys
No, you're not! I thought that the first of the Series of Unfortunate Events had turned into an unfortunate series. Period. I thought they read like a strange after-school special.

I did enjoy the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, and I read the Dragons of Pern series when I was about 12 -13, and remember them fondly.

I didn't like Midnight for Charlie Bone... too much like a Harry Potter book... done badly. Very choppy characters and predictable.

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HarrysAngel - Nov 9, 2003 2:00 pm (#13 of 938)

An excellent non-fiction book I've just read is In Search of Shakespeare by Michael Wood - a spinoff from a BBC series. Sounds dry but it's not - it really brings the period to life. And amazingly, it mentions that Shakespeare used to lodge in a house on the corner of Sylver Street and ...Muggle Street! Apparently the real name was Monkwell but locals called it Muggle Street. It's shown on a map from the 1550s.

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Jim the Potty - Nov 9, 2003 3:48 pm (#14 of 938)

President of the Potties, forum member since the beginning, never online
Edited by Nov 9, 2003 2:49 pm
Talking of non-fiction books, read anything by Bill Bryson, especially 'A Short History of Nearly Everything'. I know we have several Bryson fans who can tel you about his other books, but my favourite is definately Short History. Its a book thats not about what we know, but how we know it. Its about the truth behind the discoveries made by man over the years - interesting and amusing, totally unputtdownable!

And no I don't work for him

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Madame Librarian - Nov 9, 2003 4:13 pm (#15 of 938)

If you would like to laugh so hard that people around you look at you with concern, read Bysons's The Lost Continent. It's his first book. Part travelogue, part memoir. He's home to Iowa on a leave from his newspaper job in England, and decides to re-create the family car trips he went on as a child, fighting interminably with his brother in the back seat, whining for his dad to pull over to see some sleazy roadside "wonder" (World's Largest Ball of String--just 2 miles north of exit 27). Well, on this one he's on his own, and does stop at all those goofy places in addition to some famous ones (Mt. Rushmore and the like). OMG, that man is hilarious! He manages to offend almost everyone, but does it so evenly and fairly that I can't fault him for it.

Second favorite of his is A Walk in the Woods about his misadventures in trying to hike to complete Appalachian Trail over the course of two summer trips. The man is a weirdo-magnet. Funny, funny guy.

Ciao. Barb

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Hem Hem - Nov 9, 2003 4:39 pm (#16 of 938)

Bill Bryson is my all-time favorite nonfiction author. I'm so glad to see that I'm not the only one with that sentiment! The Mother Tongue and Made in America make the English Language seem like the most fascinating topic ever (they've made me want to become a linguistics major, they're so interesting!), and I don't think it's possible to not enjoy Bryson's writing style, unless you're the type of person who doesn't have the patience to handle digressions.

As for the His Dark Materials series, I really enjoyed the first book, but I couldn't stand the rest of the trilogy. Not only did Lyra's character develop in a very choppy, unrealistic manner, I was highly offended by the "battle against G-d" aspect. I'm not even Christian...they may be high-quality books, just be careful, because they are fairly controversial. Some people will seriously not enjoy them, while others may be unfazed....the first book in the series doesn't really adress any of the theological undertones of the series, though.

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Matt Allair - Nov 9, 2003 9:51 pm (#17 of 938)

'Mischief Managed.......Not! (Nox)'
Funny I had just mentioned to Densie P last week, about bringing this thread back, thanks Denise!

I just got through a very good book, this is similar in theme to the Harry Potter books. Clive Barker's The Thief Of Always.

I really enjoyed it although it's a little dark for certain kind of ages. Slightly macabre but it ends well, nice moral message at the end. I don't think it's for anyone under 11 and with a good reading level. I'd say it's for 12-16 and up. Adults I think will like it as well as children.

Some weird, yet interesting illustrations by the author as well.

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Carina - Nov 9, 2003 10:54 pm (#18 of 938)

and her killer bunny rabbit
I'm going to stick up for Lemony Snicket. I admit they are quite silly, but I think they are really good if you take them for what they are.

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The Great Abbycadabra - Nov 10, 2003 2:16 am (#19 of 938)

Crocs Rule!
The Thief of Always is incredible. I do recommend that, highly.

I too will stick up for Lemony Snicket. I do find, now that we're nearing the end of the series, it's getting much more interesting as the plot seems to be thickening. Though, of course, being a Lemony Snicket book, you tend to go about in circles, but that's part of what amuses me. How else could you stretch the story to thirteen books?

Also, Artemis Fowl is wonderful. I once described it to my cousin as Harry Potter meets James Bond, which, I'll admit is a rather vague and not totally realistic view of the books, but it's similar enough to get my spy-loving cousin to read them. Just a nice blend of fantasy and technology.

My two favourite classics are Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte and The Time Machine by H.G. Wells. Great stories and probably pretty self-explanitory.

Anything by Lois Duncan. I enjoy her supernatural thrillers, I suppose they'd be called. I think my favourite of those is The Third Eye. I also like Gallows Hill very much.

Tom's Midnight Garden by Philippa Pearce and Charlotte Sometimes by Penelope Farmer are both incredible time travel-y books. Very enjoyable.

Wait Till Helen Comes by Mary Downing Hall is a great ghost story. I read that one over and over when I was about 11 or 12. In fact, I may just go read that one again. Another excellent ghost story is The Ghost in the Swing by Janet Patton Smith. I'm not even sure if this is in print anymore--my copy is my mom's. But it's funny and it has a great adventurous feel to it.

Heh, just wait until I get on to my recommended non-fiction books.

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Denise P. - Nov 10, 2003 8:39 am (#20 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I just thought of another series that is similar to Harry, even though they came out years before Harry. Similar only in that it deals with a young wizard though.

So, you want to be a wizard by Diane Duane is a good read. I think there are 5-6 books in the series now. I have read through #3, I just recently found out that there were more so I am going to revisit the series for Christmas I think. People know I like books but never can think of one to get me, I will just request this series.

About Lemony Snicket, I know loads of people adore them. I have 5 of them myself but it is like a trip to the dentist for me to read them. One of my kids likes them though. I think any series that gets kids to read has merit. Here is a link to an audio interview with Lemony taken from my favorite syndicated morning show. Lemony Snicket Interview It is the second interview listed and about 5 minutes long. I thought it was good even though I don't like his books.

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timrew - Nov 10, 2003 3:38 pm (#21 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Barb And Hem Hem, I totally agree with you. I think Bill Bryson is a brilliantly funny author. But his serious works (if you can call them serious!) are also excellent.

I took 'A Short History of Nearly Everything' (also championed by Jim the Potty) with me to Portugal, and read it in two days. There's a fascinating fact on every page.

Another author who I think is absolutely wonderful is John Steinbeck. I think a lot of people are put off him because he won The Nobel Prize for Literature; but his books are as life-affirming and as easy to read as the Harry Potter ones.

This is especially true of his shorter novels. Everybody knows about, 'Of Mice And Men'; but I would also recommend, "Tortilla Flat', 'Cannery Row', and its follow-up, 'Sweet Thursday'. Once you've read them, then go on to the longer books, 'The grapes Of Wrath', and 'East Of Eden'. It's all wonderful stuff!

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Susurro Notities - Nov 10, 2003 10:39 pm (#22 of 938)

Edited by Nov 10, 2003 9:45 pm
I like many on this forum have little time to read what I would like to. I read a lot of children's stuff. I would however like to recommend three books.
Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper -- Case Closed. Patricia Cornwell. Thoughtful and balanced.
The Zoom Trilogy. Not a book for adults but read it to your young family member (3 or 4 and up). Wonderful introduction to fantasy. Charming.
I Capture the Castle. Dodie Smith. I was once Cassandra Mortmain - so were you.

A wonderful resource for good books is The Common Reader Ask for a catalog. I bet you will spend hours circling those you would like to read.

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timrew - Nov 11, 2003 12:58 pm (#23 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Susurro Notities, 'I Capture The Castle' was one of the other books I read while on holiday. It's hard to believe that the thoughts of Cassandra Mortmain (aged about 17 in the book), were written by Dodie Smith when she was 49!

An excellent book, and I second your recommendation!

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Ladybug220 - Nov 11, 2003 6:43 pm (#24 of 938)

...moves faster than Severus Snape confronted with shampoo
I have to third that recommendation - it is a great book.

Now, I just need to read The Little White Horse.

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Emily - Nov 11, 2003 6:44 pm (#25 of 938)

I suggest the Redwall series by Brian Jacques for anyone ages 11 to 15. I supposean adult might like them, but my mom didn't. They are about an animal world much like ours; in one of the books (can't remember it's exact title) it seems medieval. My favorite was Mossflower.

I second His Dark Materials, but only if you don't get offended by battles against the church (not war, but a battle of power) or evil angels or things like that in a bok.

I also re-reccomend Artemis Fowl. I've only read two of them, but am constantly on the search for a library that has the third one on hand.

This could turn into one of my favorite threads. Watch out!

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Ladybug220 - Nov 11, 2003 6:50 pm (#26 of 938)

...moves faster than Severus Snape confronted with shampoo
Actually, my brother and I both like the Redwall series and I am in my late 20's and he is in his early 30's. They are quite good as are the Artemis Fowl books. I have been hesitant to read the Series of Unfortunate Events books, but I think that I will try the first one and see how I like it.

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Rich - Nov 12, 2003 12:07 am (#27 of 938)

Families are about love overcoming emotional torture. -Matt Groening
Since there's been a lot of Sci-Fi/Fantasy books mentioned I'll start with those.

First of all, Emily Rodda. She's Australian and has written a few pretty cool fantasy series. I read them when I was around 9-12 (I'm now 14 but still enjoy re-reading them). Two of her best series are Deltora Quest and Deltora Quest 2 (their is around 11 books in the series all up, and probably a few more to come). But an even better series is Rowan of Rin. Their are four books in this series, although I personally think the first (Rowan of Rin) is the best. They're probably more aimed at younger teen and you could get through one easily in a day, but are pretty good reads regardless. (I'm not sure about availability in countries outside Australia though).

Another great Australian author is John Marsden. He is famous for his Tomorrow, When the War Began series. It is set in Australia and probably would appeal more to Australians, but it is worth a look anyway. (Again, I'm not sure of availability outside Australia).

Secondly, and completely another genre, is anything by Tom Keneally (another great Austrlian author). He wrote Schindler's Ark (the movie is Schindler's List) and a whole heap of other great books. I'm currently reading The Tyrant's Novel, which is going well.

Also, A Fine Balance, by Rohinton Mistry. I just finished it and it is a fantastic book and I highly recommend it. But be prepared for a bit of a dismal read in some places, but it is still sensational.

And finally anything by George Orwell (especially 1984 and Animal Farm), H.G. Wells or any short stories/poems by Poe.

rich

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I Am Used Vlad - Nov 18, 2003 10:28 am (#28 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
I just finished reading Wolves of the Calla, the fifth book in Stephen King's Dark Tower series, and was surprised to find that Harry Potter is in the book. I won't tell how Harry has been incorporated into a 20 year old series, but it is very amusing. I recommend these books, even to people who don't usually read King. The forth book, Wizard and Glass, and the new one are excellent.

I also recommend Ender's Game, by Orson Scott Card, and all its sequels.

Finally, I think Douglas Adams should be mandatory reading for the entire human race.

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Killian - Nov 24, 2003 5:35 pm (#29 of 938)

Anything by Stephen King is pretty good, and of course the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit are excellent. His Dark Materials is good as well. To Kill a Mockingbird, for those of you who haven't read it, is excellent. If you're into sci-fi/fantasy, Mercedes Lackey is one of my favorite authors. If you can deal with one with a lot of detail, which you probably can if you've read LotR, then The Wheel of Time isn't a bad series, either. Definitely agree with H.G. Wells, and Robert Heinlem (he's the guy who wrote Starship Troopers) is a good author, too. One series that I've been getting into lately is The Sword of Truth, which is kind of similar to The Eye of the World but is so far, in my opinion, a lot better.

Probably one of my favorite series after Harry Potter, though, is actually a part of a bigger group serires of books known as Forgotten Relams--they all just take place in the same world. It's a series by R.A. Salvatore, well, actually it's more like six different trilogies, but anyway the first one is The Dark Elf Trilogy, which is a series that I absolutely love, and there's also The Icewind Dale Trilogy right after that. There's a bunch of others, though, and it would just take way too long to list them all, but definitely try it if you get the chance to. His writing is simply spectacular, and the main character is just so well-developed . . . I better stop now. I could rant about it almost as long as I could about Harry Potter.

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Susurro Notities - Nov 24, 2003 7:32 pm (#30 of 938)

Edited by Nov 24, 2003 6:36 pm
I have never read LOtR but all the discussion on this forum about LOtR has me intrigued. I have two sons 5 and 8 and the feeling I am getting about LOtR and the Hobbit is that these books would be a bit over their heads. Is that correct? If so I guess I will wait to read them until my sons and I can read them together. What age range would be able to understand LOtR?

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Pinky - Nov 24, 2003 8:14 pm (#31 of 938)

La la narf!
LOTR would be way over their heads. It can get lengthy and wordy at times. I love the books - but I think the attention span of a 5 and 8 year old would not do so well with those. The Hobbit, on the other hand, is written in a much younger style. Possibly your 8 year old would enjoy it.

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Denise P. - Nov 24, 2003 9:07 pm (#32 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
LotR is very, very dry. I tried it when I was about 12 and gave up. I was sucessful at 15. Even now, more than 20 years later, it is a long row to hoe getting through the triology. Very, very dry but it is good.

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Rich - Nov 25, 2003 1:32 am (#33 of 938)

Families are about love overcoming emotional torture. -Matt Groening
I just finished The Moon is Down by John Steinbeck and it was really good. Only a long short story but still very enjoyable. Just thought I'd recommend it.

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Denise P. - Nov 30, 2003 8:17 am (#34 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I saw a brief trailer for the movie Timeline and decided to check the book out. Boy, am I glad I did. This was a great book! I started it yesterday evening and ended up staying up until 3 am finishing it since I could not put it down. It will be interesting to see how the movie stacks up.

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SarcasticGinny - Dec 1, 2003 7:08 pm (#35 of 938)

David Sedaris's "Me Talk Pretty One Day", "Holidays on Ice", and "Naked" are laugh out loud funny. Not for the wee ones, but definitely a good read if you like to laugh a lot when reading.

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Psyche - Dec 2, 2003 11:53 am (#36 of 938)

One of my personal favourites is Stephen King's The Stand. Mind you it's a very long read (over 1150 pages), but well worth the time. I'm reading it for the third time now, and I can't put it down.

I also recommend Diana Wynne Jones's Charmed Life, about a boy and his witch sister. It is the first book in the serie The Chrestomanci Novels. A friend of mine called them pre-HP, which is a pretty accurate description (although they're not as good as HP, and have a different sort of magic).

Psyche

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Little Ginny - Dec 3, 2003 1:09 pm (#37 of 938)

My absolutely most favourite book of all times is Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.

I have read it so many times I really can't count them any more.

It's absolutely no science fiction, and it's about 200 years old, but if you like a very ironic wit, a sharp look onto society, amiable protagonists and a happy ending, this book might entertain you as well.

Nayone who liked Patricia Cornwell might like the Lincoln Rhyme-series form Jeffrey Deaver, of which The Bone Collector (movie with Denzel Washington and Angelica Jolie) was the first book, and the fifth part of which, The Vanished Man came out this year.

And I can only support those who like The Hobbit. It's a wonderful book!

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timrew - Dec 3, 2003 5:48 pm (#38 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
A favourite author of mine is Laurie Lee. He never wrote much in his life, but what he did write is magic. Check out his books, "Cider With Rosie", and my favourite, "As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning".

Pure poetry from start to finish.

And, I agree, Ginny. "The Hobbit" is a wonderful book!

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Killian - Dec 7, 2003 7:21 pm (#39 of 938)

I love the Hobbit so much! Did anybody else here that they're making it into a movie as well?

And for the a more open minded crowd, as well as those over 13 which I think most of you are anyway, there are these books out there that fit into a genre known as "manga." Those are Japanese comics, and don't scorn them because they're comics! They're really, really good most of the time, in particular any serious by CLAMP, Yu Watase or Mineko Ohkami. They seem weird, but the stories are excellent.

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timrew - Dec 10, 2003 1:17 pm (#40 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
You may have already seen "The Sword in the Stone" in the Disney animation; but did you know that this is just the first part of a series of books about the Arthurian legend, published in one volume as, "The Once And Future King", by T.H. White, in the 1950s.

"The Sword in the Stone", then, is a rumbustiously delightful tale of Arthur's youth as an orphaned child in the home of Sir Ector and his son Kay. The other books are called "The Witch In The Wood", "The Ill-Made Knight", The Candle In The Wind" and "The Book Of Merlin".

If you want magic, it is provided by Merlyn (it's spelt that way!), who turns up a Sir Ector's castle to be a tutor to The Wart (as Arthur is known), and Kay. Merlin is living his life backwards, having started in the 20th century. He magics the crockery to wash itself, he has an owl called Archimedes, he turns Arthur into various creatures as part of his lessons, he takes part in a wizard's duel (remind you of anything?).

There is also the old Knight, King Pellinore, who has spent all his life in the pursuit of the Questing Beast (don't ask me what it looks like, it would take too long!). And the sequence where King Pellinore jousts in the Forest Sauvage with Sir Grummore is a lesson in what jousting was really like!

Although the book does get darker further in (it's about King Arthur, after all), it's a delight from start to finish, and I heartily recommend it.

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The Great Abbycadabra - Dec 10, 2003 10:15 pm (#41 of 938)

Crocs Rule!
Oooh, I read the best book. It's called Acceleration by Graham McNamee. It's about this kid who works at the lost and found of the subway in Toronto. He finds the journal of a serial killer and tries to stop him before he kills anyone. Oooh, it was so good. A nice suspenseful book.

A really good author is Caroline B. Cooney. She wrote The Face on the Milk Carton where a girl sees herself on a milk carton and realizes that she was kidnapped as a small child. Very good book, it's followed by several sequels that I'm going to read eventually. She also has written a series of time travel books that I've just now discovered. And I love time travel books, so yay! The first one is called Both Sides of Time and a girl named Annie suddenly finds herself in 1895 and pretty much messes with everyone's lives. And there is this murder mystery and such and it's really very intersting. I haven't read the rest of these yet (there are three following), but I'll let you know when I read them.

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Susurro Notities - Dec 10, 2003 10:33 pm (#42 of 938)

timrew,
"The Once And Future King" sound great for me and my boys. I have a five and eight year old, would they be old enough for this or should I hold off a bit? Sorry to ask the same question about ages but I am keen to read books with them that we all will find interesting. Reading with my boys is a wonderful connection to keep up as they grow older and more interested in boy stuff that I know little about.
Abby,
Those all sound wonderful to an avid mystery reader like myself. I am buying "Acceleration" this week!

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Hem Hem - Dec 10, 2003 10:45 pm (#43 of 938)

Forgive me for not being Tim, but I was really happy to see him suggesting TH White's Arthur books, which I read about a month ago and really enjoyed.

Anyways, "The Sword in the Stone" may work well for kids as a read-aloud, it's a pretty good story which I think is a lot like Harry Potter, really. But I strongly think that the rest of the books would not be appropriate for your kids. They are full of incest and adultery...it almost seems like the author makes a point that every major character is born out of wedlock. Putting that aside, I still enjoyed the books, but they really aren't for kids.

It's kind of funny, I had learned things about King Arthur in my childhood, I was familiar with the Sword in the Stone story and the excalibur and the Round Table, etc.-- however, I could never understand why the books that read would leave out Arthur's adventures with Guenivere and Lancelot. Most books just said "Arthur had many other adventures" and left it at that. But once I actually read the book, it became clear to me why children's accounts of Arthurian legends tend to gloss over most of the story....

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Susurro Notities - Dec 10, 2003 10:55 pm (#44 of 938)

Thanks Hem Hem. Although I don't lie to my children about the realities of life I also don't go out of my way to present those realities to them, especially in our recreational reading. Guess I will stick to The Sword in the Stone

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Brandon Christopher - Dec 11, 2003 12:15 am (#45 of 938)

Watch out for the killer rootbeer!!! (if you had been to the gathering you would know :-p)
If anyone here likes Stephen King then you absolutely must read Robert R. McCammon! His writing style is quite similar to King's but fortunately he can actually write decent endings unlike King. He has classics such as Baal and Ushers Passing but his new book which I am about halfway through is great. It is actually a two parter because it is so long, the first part is Speaks the Nightbird but I forgot what the second is. The subjects he writes about are very similar to King also (horror and sci-fi,) but he, how should I put this? He tends to be a little more "mature" in his themes. There are definitely parts that younger children should not read. Think pg-13 mostly but some that is definitely rated R. But don't let that deter you; he has some of the best imagery I've ever read, he can paint a picture in your head so vividly.

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timrew - Dec 11, 2003 12:51 am (#46 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Yes, to back up Hem Hem, Sussuro, I would recommend "The Sword In the Stone" for your kids; but would leave the rest of the books until they're a bit older!

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Madame Librarian - Dec 11, 2003 9:59 am (#47 of 938)

I've read these ages ago so I'm not sure how I'd view them today as a more "mature" woman, but people whom I speak with at the library really seem to enjoy them (especially teen readers ready for something meatier)--Mary Stewart's Merlin Trilogy:

The Crystal Cave

The Hollow Hills

The Last Enchantment

As you might figure, the books treat Merlin as the major character with the King Arthur story as the backdrop. Again, I'd say they're a bit advanced for little 'uns.

Ciao. Barb

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timrew - Dec 11, 2003 4:50 pm (#48 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
I read Mary Stewart's Merlin Trilogy about 20 years ago, Barb, and I remember thoroughly enjoying them. You've actually made me want to read them again!

That Amazon makes a fortune out of me!

Edit: (in response to Denise's post). Thanks! I'll give it a go, Denise.

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Denise P. - Dec 11, 2003 5:04 pm (#49 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Tim, try [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] I find great deal on books there. Of course, I think since it would be shipped to the UK, it may not be as great of a deal.

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Madame Librarian - Dec 11, 2003 5:31 pm (#50 of 938)

Hey, tim, what about the library??

Ciao. Barb

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Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:24 am

timrew - Dec 11, 2003 5:44 pm (#51 of 938)
Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
I usually find in the library, Barb, that they have part three of the trilogy in stock; but parts one and two are not available.

I think I'll try Denise's suggestion <[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] but I've found so far that Amazon are a lot cheaper than any of the bookshops in the UK. It's just the volume of business I give them that costs me!

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I Am Used Vlad - Dec 11, 2003 8:34 pm (#52 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
Brandon Christopher, if you like horror and science fiction than you should read books by Dan Simmons. He is a better writer, in my humble opinion, than either King or McCammon. From the horror genre, I would recommend Carrion Comfort and Children of the Night. For sci-fi, read the Hyperion series (winner of both the Hugo And Nebula awards). His most recent novel, Ilium, is also good.

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Brandon Christopher - Dec 11, 2003 10:48 pm (#53 of 938)

Watch out for the killer rootbeer!!! (if you had been to the gathering you would know :-p)
I'll Definitely have to check those out Nimrod, thanks for the tips.

Oh and I forgot, if you like satyrical books then Carl Hiaasen is awesome, and also Dave Barry's one novel Big Trouble is one of the funniest books I've ever read.

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Joost! - Dec 19, 2003 2:26 am (#54 of 938)

Second line of information
The other day Madame Librarian posted this poem by Goethe on the House Elf thread (Thanks Barb!). And I thought of some recommended reading: The Sorrow of Young Werther ("Die Leiden des jungen Werthers") by Goethe. It's a bit easier to read than Faust or some of his other works.

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timrew - Dec 22, 2003 11:47 am (#55 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
A series of books which I found really amusing are the "Discworld" series by Terry Pratchett - a spoof look at the world of witches and wizards set in the city of Ankh-Morpork on the Discworld (a flat world which floats through space supported on the back of a giant turtle).

As this author is prolific (to say the least), he manages about one book per year, the series is up to about 30 by now. And I think JKR even tips a nod to Mr. Pratchett - one of the books in the series is called "Wyrd Sisters".

Another book I can recommend is by Terry Pratchett in conjunction with Neil Gaiman, and is called "Good Omens". This has a sort of "Omen" style plot, with a bad angel, Crawley, trying to swap the baby Anti-Christ for the baby that's just been delivered to the American Ambassador's wife. He gets it wrong, of course, and swaps the wrong babies.

There's also a good angel, Aziraphale, who is trying to stop Crawley's evil plottings, and the Four Horsemen Of The Apocalypse (in the form of Hell's Angels on motorbikes). "Hey, what Chapter are you guys with?" "Revelations!"

Not a book for young kids - they probably wouldn't get half the references. Nor is it a book that is pro (or anti) religion. It only tells it, not like it is, but like it should be! Hilarious.

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Caput Draconis - Dec 22, 2003 5:44 pm (#56 of 938)

Look...at...me...
Ah Tim, it's good to hear you plug Discworld. I haven't read any of the series, but I just got a letter from my uncle telling me not to buy any Terry Pratchett, shortly followed by a book shaped delivery in the post. Heh.

Anyway, I just want to second (I think it was nimrod) who recommended King's Dark Tower series. I loved Wolves of the Calla, and it pleases me to know that 6 and 7 are written and released next year. TDT is King's epic, Roland and his world were imagined before all the other stuff he's written, thus you'll find references from his other novels in the series. Randall Flagg is a (the?) bad guy, and Father Callaghan from Salem's Lot plays a large part in WotC. Most of it remains clever without being self-serving. Although I do worry about SK writing himself into the 6th book, and will wholeheartedly agree with anyone who says he can't write endings if it turns out the whole thing has been a figment of his imagination as he sits atop the Tower. I'm re-reading The Stand and The Eyes of the Dragon, looking for RF clues, heh. And I got a kick out of the Harry reference too.

Can't leave without (again) recommending The Earthsea Quartet (now a quintet, with The Other Wind and Tales of Earthsea on the side) by Ursula leGuin, it's magical, beautiful and still my all time favourite.

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I Am Used Vlad - Dec 22, 2003 10:15 pm (#57 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
That was me who recommended the Dark Tower series. I really enjoyed The Eyes of the Dragon too. It is a fantasy book and completely unlike most of his novels. If I remember correctly, he wrote it specifically because his daughter told him that she hated all his books.

I also agree that the Discworld series is good, but not laugh out loud funny like Douglas Adams. At least the first seven or eight that I've read are not. They are extremely clever satires of ,well, pretty much everything, so they can be appreciated on more than one level. Unfortunately, all I wanted was to read books so funny that I would be overcome with uncontrollable fits of laughter every time I thought of them, causing mothers to shepherd their youngsters away from me.

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Denise P. - Dec 22, 2003 10:25 pm (#58 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
These are two classic series that are fantastic, I highly recommend them to everyone. Even my husband has read some of the first series

Little House on the Praire series by Laura Ingalls Wilder Don't base what you know or think you know of them on the TV series, the books are much better and easy reads.

Anne of Green Gables series by L.M. Montgomery Again, the TV series is okay but the books are better.

Both of these books have 7 or 8 books in the series. The Laura Ingalls books are much more simplistic than Anne but I think both are wonderful series. I am planning on starting my almost 7 year old on Little House in the Big Woods when she has her birthday in February. I think she will be ready for Anne by the time she is 9 or 10.

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Marye Lupin - Dec 23, 2003 4:45 pm (#59 of 938)

"I know the answer! The answer lies within the heart of all mankind! The answer is twelve? I think I'm in the wrong building." Peanuts
My sister used to be a huge Laura Ingalls fan. We both read them when we were little but she got really into them.

I also really enjoy the Bryson books. He is hilarious! Right now I'm reading the one about Australia (can't remember exactly what it's called but it's very funny)

I don't know if anybody's mentioned The Princess Bride by William Goldman (I think) but that's one of my all time favorite books. I've read it about four times and I've recommended it to a number of friends all of whom loved it. (for those of you who have seen the movie-- the book's better Wink ). I call this book my all-purpose present because if I find out somebody hasn't read it they can usually count on getting it for their birthday or Christmas.

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Celestina W. - Dec 23, 2003 8:46 pm (#60 of 938)

Go Minnesota Twins!
Denise, the Little House and Anne books were among the first series my parents read to me when I was little. Both great, although I actually like L.M. Montgomery's Emily (first is Emily of New Moon) series better than the Anne series. The Chronicles of Narnia is another great series to read aloud, and (this goes out to all parents), if by any chance you want to make your kids lifelong Tolkien fans, read them The Hobbit at age 9 or 10. Then move on to The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion. That's what my mom did and it sure worked on me!

Sorry for so many italics; I just remembered how to use them and then I couldn't stop.

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Denise P. - Dec 23, 2003 8:55 pm (#61 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I have two LM Montgomery books that I like that are stand alones. First is Jane of Latern Hill and the other is The Blue Castle I like the Emily series too.

I am partial to some of Piers Anthony's early works. The first few of the Xanth series. I would not bother once it went beyond...maybe Night Mare I liked most of his Incarnations of Immortality series and I liked his Apprentice Adept series. His more recent stuff pretty well stinks.

Mercedes Lackey's Arrows for the Queen and Last Herald Mage are worth a read.

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Celestina W. - Dec 23, 2003 9:19 pm (#62 of 938)

Go Minnesota Twins!
Another series I love is the Riddlemaster trilogy (The Riddlemaster of Hed, Heir of Sea and Fire, Harpist in the Wind) by Patricia McKillip. They're fantasy books, but hard to describe beyond that. Remind me a bit of Tolkien and of the Earthsea books (also good, BTW). I think the Riddlemaster books might be sold as young adult books, but, IMO, they're kind of dark; appropriate for maybe 11 or 12 and up, I'd say. Very good books, but not well known. Anyone else out there ever read them?

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SJ Rand - Dec 24, 2003 10:45 am (#63 of 938)

.
timrew : >>A series of books which I found really amusing are the "Discworld" series by Terry Pratchett - a spoof look at the world of witches and wizards set in the city of Ankh-Morpork on the Discworld (a flat world which floats through space supported on the back of a giant turtle).

As this author is prolific (to say the least), he manages about one book per year, the series is up to about 30 by now. And I think JKR even tips a nod to Mr. Pratchett - one of the books in the series is called "Wyrd Sisters".

Absolutely. Pratchett became one of my favorite writers from the very first book of his that I read. I often described him to other people as being what Douglas Adams would like to become when he grew up, as far as wit and humor. Although his last few Discworld novels are somewhat more serious, especially Monstrous Regiment. Well, serious for Pratchett anyway.

I've also noticed a few witches that sound a lot like Granny Ogg and Mistress Weatherwax, even noticed one or two named Ogg although I've no idea how common a name that is.

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azi - Dec 27, 2003 2:39 pm (#64 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
I got this great book for Christmas called The Amulet of Samarkand. It's written by Jonathan Stroud and although it's more of a childrens book (you find it in the childrens section of Ottakers anyway) its really really interesting. It's set in modern day London where Magicians form the British government and rule over the 'commoners' (non-magical people). Follows the humourous and rather blunt views of a demon called Bartimaeus and also focuses a boy whose real name is Nathaniel. It's so good I'm having trouble putting it down!

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Joanna S Lupin - Dec 28, 2003 12:01 pm (#65 of 938)

Little Bobik
What an excellent thread it is!!!!!!!!!

I would like to reccomend a great series of books 'The witchman' by Andrzej Sapkowski magnificent Polish fantasy author - it is a serie of seven books - two with stories about the witchman and serie of five novels - it is something like 'the lord of the rings' though much more funny, it is rather for adult readers

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Joanna S Lupin - Dec 28, 2003 12:32 pm (#66 of 938)

Little Bobik
sorry for posting so quickly after my last post but I have forgotten something important to add

'The witchman' is also so fantastic because personalities of characters are extremelly complicated. There are no typical good ones and evil ones, because each of them has something dark about him or herself.

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timrew - Dec 30, 2003 8:05 am (#67 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Okay, I'm cheating a bit here. I haven't read this book, but I've just watched an adaption of it on television, and I fully intend reading it in the near future.

It's called "The Young Visiters", and it's by Daisy Ashford, who was a nine year old Victorian girl. She actually wrote it about 1909, but then it was put away for ten years. When it was finally recovered, a publisher decided to put it into print, along with all the spelling mistakes (hence the title); and it has never been out of print since.

Here is the first paragraph of the book, and if you want to read the rest, you can find the book in its entirety at <>

"Mr. Salteena was an elderly man of 42 and was fond of asking peaple to stay with him. He had quite a young girl staying with him of 17 named Ethel Monticue. Mr Salteena had dark short hair and mustache and wiskers which were very black and twisty. He was middle sized and he had very pale blue eyes. He had a pale brown suit but on Sundays he had a black one and he had a topper every day as he thorght it more becoming. Ethel Monticue had fair hair done on the top and blue eyes. She had a blue velvit frock which had grown rarther short in the sleeves. She had a black straw hat and kid gloves."

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Madame Librarian - Jan 4, 2004 2:49 pm (#68 of 938)

Edited by Denise P. Jan 4, 2004 1:58 pm
freshwater, I have not heard of that one, but I have just e-mailed myself at work to have a look see when I get back there on Tuesday (my library has the book).

There are a few books of that genre (about the wonders of books and reading) that I am aware of, though I haven't gotten to them all yet (they are on my to-do list). Here are a few titles I can think of off the top of my head:

Ex Libris by Anne Fadiman

Book Lust by Nancy Pearl (of Librarian Action Figure fame)

Reading Lolita in Tehran: a memoir in books by Azar Nafisi

There are more, but I have to do this research at work. These books offer a delightful window into someone's mind and soul, and often are like sharing a bit of a book group experience with another person. When the memoir is by an author you enjoy, the insights are wonderful. Maybe that's why the Forum Folk get so excited when, in an interview, JKR comments on what she's currently reading.

BTW--the author of the book you mentioned, Gentle Madness, is Nicholas Barbanes if anyone else is interested in looking it up. Copyright '95, I believe. Thanks for the tip.

Ciao. Barb

EDIT--Whoops! Totally unaware of the jump-shift to the "reading" thread as opposed to the "viewing" thread. Wow. Scary how that happens. Oh well, if someone picks up this thread, please move this post to the "reading" one. Thanks.

Edit: Done!

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Madame Librarian - Jan 4, 2004 4:18 pm (#69 of 938)

Denise, merci beaucoup!

Ciao. Barb

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Madame Librarian - Jan 6, 2004 3:44 pm (#70 of 938)

I set that book, A Gentle Madness aside today. I hope I can give it a look-see tomorrow, was too busy at work today. Just a correction, though, I mis-typed the author's name earlier. It's Basbanes not Barbanes. Sorry.

Ciao. Barb

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Rich - Jan 7, 2004 1:58 am (#71 of 938)

Families are about love overcoming emotional torture. -Matt Groening
I just finished reading a book called "Vernon God Little" by DBC Pierre (that's a pseudonym, I think) and it was great. If you're sick of the media then this is the book for you. It's not for young kids and is a bit depressing at times, but it has a dry humour about it which I found really good. Once you get into it you'll realize how relevant it is. It won the Booker prize in 2003 I think. As I said it's a bit depressing and sometimes quite confronting but really good regardless.

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A-is-for-Amy - Jan 7, 2004 7:51 am (#72 of 938)

Mom of 2 boys
I am currently reading Abarat by Clive Barker, ans so far am really enjoying it. Has anyone else finished this one?

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I Am Used Vlad - Jan 7, 2004 9:43 pm (#73 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
I read Abarat, Amy, but didn't like it that much. I have read and enjoyed many of Barker's books, but Abarat didn't do much for me. The whole time I was reading it, I had the impression that the only reason he wrote it was to try to capitalize on the popularity of "children's books" that Harry Potter has caused. Or maybe its just that every time Shape was mentioned I read it as Snape.

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Garion - Jan 8, 2004 2:54 am (#74 of 938)

A very good series is the Belgariad (5 books in all) by David Eddings and the companion book, Belgarath the Sorcerer.

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Brandon Christopher - Jan 8, 2004 7:52 pm (#75 of 938)

Watch out for the killer rootbeer!!! (if you had been to the gathering you would know :-p)
I just realized that I made a horrible mistake on my first post on this thread. I reccomended Robert McCammon and a few of his books but I left out his two best books. One of these is actually my mom's favorite book; and coming from her that's saying something seeing as she's read more than a few thousand books. Anyways his best book is Boy's Life; it is far and beyond most novels out there. Next to the Harry Potter books it is my favorite book (of course what else would I say here?)

And for any of you fans of apocalyptic novels out there he has something that will quench your thirst. Swan Song is probably the best apocalyptic book that I've ever read. It is definitely not for the little kids but is an excellent read nonetheless. It is a decent length book, 950 some odd pages; but is a quick read so don't let the length fool you. It does not drag along in any parts and is actually a pretty quick read.

Another great apocalyptic book is In the Heart of the Valley of Love by Cynthia Kadohata. I was assigned this novel last quarter in my college literature class and enjoyed it immensely. Kadohata does an excellent job of touching on issues that are disturbing yet interesting also. How can there be love in a world where no one cares about anyone else? She addresses this in the first chapter and it gets better from there; definitely worth at least a passing glance if you like apocalyptic novels.

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EdwardGr - Jan 9, 2004 2:08 pm (#76 of 938)

This has probably been mentioned at least once or twice here but The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown is a wonderful read. Obviously not for children but mid-teens and up should find it interesting.

I have also just picked up Eragon by Christopher Paolini, I am not far enough in yet to offer a true review but it shows great promise. It should be noted that he started writing this when he was 15 or so, it was initially published by his parents publishing company or through his parents. It was then picked up by a larger label recently and has had good reviews. I will give a formal recommendation after finishing it. It is the first of a trilogy.

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Hem Hem - Jan 12, 2004 12:16 am (#77 of 938)

I just finished reading Don Quixote, and I loved it. The version I read was condensed (translated by Walter Starkie), so it was only about 430 pages instead of 900, but it was a wonderfully entertaining read. The plot carried better in some places than it did in others...however, I was pleases to see that there actually was a plot, after all, Don Quixote is probably the world's oldest surviving novel, and it didn't have all the works of recent centuries for its foundation.

The other thing that I found remarable about Don Quixote was how funny it was, and how the language was fluid. Considering that I was reading a translation of a book from Shakespeare's era, I would have expected some dense language. I anticipated that some of the humor would have wiped off over the centuries --after all, they say Shakespeare was laugh-out-loud funny in his time, and although I enjoy Shakespeare, I can hardly call his plays hilarious. This book is funny. The characters are amazingly endearing. It was a wonderful read...although I would definately recommend looking for the abridged version!

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Gina R Snape - Jan 16, 2004 9:54 pm (#78 of 938)

"The world isn't split into good people and death eaters"
Has anyone here read "Wicked--The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West" by Gregory Maguire?

I got it for Christmas and I cannot put it down. I've been trying to read it slowly to savour it.

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Brandon Christopher - Jan 16, 2004 10:18 pm (#79 of 938)

Watch out for the killer rootbeer!!! (if you had been to the gathering you would know :-p)
I just finished "Speaks the Nightbird" by Robert McCammon. And for all of you people who thought that Hawthorne's "The Crucible" was cool, well you just have to read this book. It's based on a with trial in the year 1699 and is absolutely fantastic. McCammon can paint pictures better than any other author out there; although sometimes this is disturbing because of the subjects in the story. Let's just say that some parts of the book are definitely not for the wee ones. But it is an excellent read for anyone who enjoys fictional writing.

And just so you guys know the story is a two parter: the first book is Volume 1: Judgement of the Witch and the second book is titled Volume 2: Evil Unvieled

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Weeny Owl - Jan 17, 2004 2:30 am (#80 of 938)

It was mentioned earlier that Nora Roberts had a reference to Harry Potter in her "Key of Valor" book. That's the last one in a series of three.

I've read the first two books of her "key" series, and so far she's mentioned a stag, a potion, and the dark arts.

The books are about a Celtic god who married a mortal. They had three daughters who are demigoddesses (half-bloods?). The daughters' souls are stolen by an evil god (Kane). Their guardians were banished to the mortal world because they hadn't protected the daughters, and once each generation three women come to them and are given the quest of finding the keys that can open the Box of Souls that Kane stole so the daughters' souls can be returned to their own realm.

Nora Roberts writes romances, obviously, but her romances aren't frippery. There is a lot of magic and drama, a lot of tears, and some really funny moments in these books, and I can't wait for the last... especially the Harry Potter reference.

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Madame Librarian - Jan 21, 2004 5:27 pm (#81 of 938)

For all the Bill Bryson fans who inhabit the Forum, here is an interesting article in the NY Times International edition:

Bryson

It seems he likes it better in England. Sigh, I probably would, too.

Ciao. Barb

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Ladybug220 - Jan 21, 2004 7:16 pm (#82 of 938)

...moves faster than Severus Snape confronted with shampoo
Weeny, that was me that made the reference to the Nora Roberts book. There is also another reference in the Key of Valor to Zoe's son wearing Harry Potter pajamas. I was thrilled to see those references in her book.

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mollis - Jan 22, 2004 7:25 am (#83 of 938)

Gina "Has anyone here read "Wicked--The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West" by Gregory Maguire?"

I saw that in the bookstore just the other day and almost bought it, but I already had my arms full, so I thought I'd wait. Guess I'll have to pick that one up next time.

I love this thread, but I would like to make a suggestion. I think it would be nice if when making a recommendation, you noted the genre of the book (whether it's sci-fi, romance, mystery, etc.). Just a thought.

And for my contribution, I would like to recommend pretty much anything by Anita Shreve. Her novels are more about the love story and remind me of Pride and Prejudice (which is one of my favorites). She has a neat device of setting several of her books in the same house about 50 or 100 years apart (Fortune's Rocks-1880's?, Sea Glass-1920, and The Pilots Wife-modern). Her plots are kind of twisty, you don't necessarily read the events chronologically, but they are very well crafted. I've also read Eden Close and The Last Time They Met, also by Anita Shreve. These are very nice reads, great for airplanes, but most definitely adult novels.

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Madame Librarian - Jan 22, 2004 10:15 am (#84 of 938)

Mollis, I like Shreve, too. She's very popular with the bookgroup group. I, too, like her device of using a location over again in different historical periods. And, I like the hint of historical fiction she injects. She's very good (and probably quite accurate) at depicting the era and its issues (like the strike in Sea Glass which I just finished reading). Your suggestion about indicating the genre is a good one. I read this thread with my librarian hat on, so naturally I agree. Shreve, btw, is general fiction.

The book by Maguire has intrigiued me and I do intend to read it. In a similar vein (I think) and a very amusing in a dark sort of way is Margaret Atwood's collection of essays called Good Bones and Simple Murders. A few of the selections deal with the bad rap all the stepmothers, stepsisters, witches and the like have gotten in fairy tales and literature. Her droll, acerbic humor makes for an excellent read, especially if one is in a particularly wasp-ish mood.

Ciao. Barb

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Gina R Snape - Jan 22, 2004 10:51 am (#85 of 938)

"The world isn't split into good people and death eaters"
The only thing of Atwood's I've ever read was A Handmaid's Tale and though I read it almost 16 years ago, I recall being a bit unimpressed with it. But it was early in her career. Is her collection of essays much better?

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Madame Librarian - Jan 22, 2004 2:57 pm (#86 of 938)

Gina, please give her another go--read The Blind Assassin. I loved it. Very eerie, very dark, lots of social commentary through the events of the story. Has a story within a story. The parallel one is imitative of the awful pulp sci-fi fiction of the 30s, but is in itself a great yarn.

The essay collection is good, too. Being short and sweet (well, not really that sweet, Atwood is good at sarcasm and skewers many social conventions). She has a lot to say about how society views traditional roles for women, including the one-sidedness of many myths and legends. I like essay collection sometimes because nowhere is it written that you have to read every single one.

Ciao. Barb

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The Great Abbycadabra - Jan 22, 2004 11:31 pm (#87 of 938)

Crocs Rule!
Aha! Meg Cabot strikes again! I recently finished her series 1*-800*-WHERE-R-YOU (the first one is called When Lightning Strikes.) The books are about a girl who gets struck by lightning and henceforth develops psychic powers. She's able to see a picture of a missing person, and, when she wakes up the next morning, she simply knows where that person is. She'll call the missing children's hotline, hence the name of the series, and anonymously leaves the location of the missing people. Anonymously until the FBI traces her calls, of course. These books are now a series on the Lifetime Channel in the US. It's called 1*-800*-MISSING. I haven't seen it yet, however.

I think I mentioned it before, but I finished reading another series by Caroline B. Cooney recently about this girl who has a tendency to travel back in time to the late 19th-century. They are Both Sides of Time, Out of Time, Prisoner of Time, and For All Time. They were pretty good. Some things happened that irritated me, but, hey, what can you do?

I discovered another good author not too long ago named Margaret Peterson Haddix. She wrote a great book called Just Ella. It's about what happens to Cinderella, who didn't have a fairy godmother by the way, after the "happily ever after" part. Another good book she wrote was kind of sci-fi-ish. It's called Among the Hidden. It's about a time in the future where people are only allowed to have two children, but some people have three or more children. These extra children, known as the hidden, have to hide (obviously) or else they will be disposed of. A pretty interesting and a pretty quick read.

[I have added "*" in the titles of two books to prevent turning the titles into a live link - Elanor]

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Brandon Christopher - Jan 24, 2004 1:52 pm (#88 of 938)

Watch out for the killer rootbeer!!! (if you had been to the gathering you would know :-p)
I just saw the movie adaptation of "Big Trouble" and it reminded me of the book. Written by Dave Barry, it is one of the funniest satyrical books out there. A venom spitting toad, a teen game called killer in which people get wet, and a nuclear warhead - what more can one ask for? Dave Barry has always been a brilliant satyrist but his first novel is truly a masterpiece!

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Marye Lupin - Jan 24, 2004 7:41 pm (#89 of 938)

"I know the answer! The answer lies within the heart of all mankind! The answer is twelve? I think I'm in the wrong building." Peanuts
Gina-- I also got Wicked for Christmas and I loved it! I read it in two days then I made my younger sister watch the Wizard of Oz with me while I pointed out all the things that they got "wrong" (we've both always hated that movie so my sister was pretty shocked that I wanted to watch it).

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Little Ginny - Jan 26, 2004 8:53 am (#90 of 938)

I've just finished The Once and Future King by T.H. White, and it's one of the best books I've ever read. It's about the legend of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, and there's all that stuff in it you'd expect, like tournaments, and knights, and Lancelot and Guinevere and so on, but besides, the author always gives little comments that don't fit in with fairy-tales, and then there are always allusions to modern politics (well, modern dosn't fit, as it was written in the forties). And the figure of Merlyn (yes, they spell it that way) is simply fantastic, and I had to think about Dumbledore a lot of times.

If you like legends or fantasy-stories or stories that play in history, this might be a book for you!

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timrew - Jan 26, 2004 11:09 am (#91 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
I'm re-reading that as well, Ginny. I have to second your recommendation. A great book! But I would only recommend the first book, 'The Sword In The Stone', for younger readers. The rest of it is a lot more 'adult' than Harry Potter!

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Madame Librarian - Jan 26, 2004 5:49 pm (#92 of 938)

I just finished reading Eragon by Christopher Paolini. A fantasy YA (that's Young Adult in library-speak) novel that is quite a good read. It's got a young (15 yr.) old orphan who discovers a dragon's egg and all sorts of special, weird, dangerous, you name it things start happening. There's a quest of sorts, a complex world political situation, the Empire, the king, the defunct (maybe) Dragon Riders, the Varden, the dwarves the elves, some things very much akin to dementors, Orcs, the Force, magic, familiars. All that good stuff.

Yes, I know what you might ask: Does the world need yet another knock off of LotR, HP, Narnia, etc.? Well...yes, because an author who can take those universal elements and cook them up into a pleasurable mix of plot and excellent writing is a delight to read. This fellow Paolini is someone to watch. He wrote this book--505 pages, and that's just part one, part two is in the works--at age 15!! Apparently that's when he graduated high school. He's 19 now and working full time on his writing. Dang, he's one creative cookie!

Paolini, like JKR starting in PoA, does not shelter readers from the ugly side of conflict. There's a lot of gruesome fighting, ethical issues that hero has to wrestle with, pain, misery, and truthfully not much humor to soften the edges. But the yarn is fast-paced, complex without getting bogged down in too many twists. I don't think Eragon is quite the main character that Frodo is, at least not yet, but I still liked this book very much.

Ciao. Barb

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Gina R Snape - Jan 27, 2004 7:00 pm (#93 of 938)

"The world isn't split into good people and death eaters"
Ooh, Marye, I've been dying to rent Oz and point out the errors! Hee.

On a whim, I went and started a yahoo group called 'fabulous elphaba' but didn't advertise so no one has joined. I can't believe there isn't a huge following for this book or the author.

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Marye Lupin - Jan 28, 2004 8:12 am (#94 of 938)

"I know the answer! The answer lies within the heart of all mankind! The answer is twelve? I think I'm in the wrong building." Peanuts
Didn't the author write another book about Cinderella's evil stepsister or was that somebody else? I've been meaning to try to find that book but I haven't gotten around to it.

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A-is-for-Amy - Jan 28, 2004 9:22 pm (#95 of 938)

Mom of 2 boys
I think there was a movie called "Confessions of an Ugly Step Sister" but I'm not sure.... it wasn't listed on Amazon

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Gina R Snape - Jan 28, 2004 9:52 pm (#96 of 938)

"The world isn't split into good people and death eaters"
Yes, he did write that. And I'm told he's recently published another book called "Mirror, Mirror". That's his shtick, apparently, to write revisionist tales from the point of view of the evil protagonist, as though the original works actually vilified the character he's writing about. I love the idea!

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Marye Lupin - Jan 30, 2004 6:37 pm (#97 of 938)

"I know the answer! The answer lies within the heart of all mankind! The answer is twelve? I think I'm in the wrong building." Peanuts
I do too! As soon as I get a chance I'll go to the library and try and find the other books by him!

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scully jones - Jan 30, 2004 8:40 pm (#98 of 938)

yeah right
I think if I told you guys all the books you should read, I'd be here forever.

Piers Anthony is a great author. HOWEVER, you either hate him or really really like him... Be Prepared.

Xanth series-set in a magical fantasy world, everyone is born with a magic talent ranging from spot-on-the-wall talents (like the talent of creating a purple spot on your bedroom wall) to Magician caliber magic (like being able to turn into any kind of living creature.)

Incarnations Of Immortality series-Very controversial. There are seven different Incarnations-War,Death,Nature,Fate,Time,Good,Evil. Each is a person who comes into the job in different ways. This is for mature ppl, there is some references to bad stuff.

Okay, I'll stop for now.

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Matt Allair - Feb 2, 2004 10:37 pm (#99 of 938)

'Mischief Managed.......Not! (Nox)'
It's been a while since I recommended anything. So I am going to do a repeat of something I recommended in a similar thread a year ago.

However much the following books are dated, since they are in a similar vein as H.G. Wells or Jules Verne. For people who love intergalatic space opera type fiction, these are simply fun. This series also predates the Star Trek or Star Wars type of fantasy. For most of the 90's/ 00's generation, this will seem obscure, but it's the grandfather of all of that type of fantasy story telling.

These are fun, you'll have to get past some of the stereotypes, but they are worth checking out.

'The Lensmen' series by E.E. "Doc" Smith. There's six published books that were first printed in serial form in the 30's. The books are as follows "Triplanetary, First Lensmen, Galactic Patrol, Gray Lensmen, Second Stage Lensmen and Children Of The Lens". Last I checked, Old Earth Books was re publishing them.

For a more contemporary Science Fiction writer, Brain Aldiss is another one I'd look out for. Just about anything by him, he's a great read! His stories "Supertoys Last All Summer Long, Supertoys When Winter Comes, Supertoys In Other Seasons" were the inspiration for the Stanley Kubrick / Steven Spielberg film "A.I. - Artificial Intelligence."

Lastly, I must put in a word for Richard Matheson's book, "I Am Legend", one of the best horror / science fiction novels I have ever read.

As soon As I think of more I'll add them!

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The Great Abbycadabra - Feb 2, 2004 11:24 pm (#100 of 938)

Crocs Rule!
I was reminded recently how much of a fantastic author Bob Brier is. Bob's an Egyptologist and his books are by far the most entertaining books on ancient Egypt I have ever read. My particular favourite is The Murder of Tutankhamen. It goes through everything from the discovery to the study of the contents of the tomb and Tut's mummy itself. It's a great forensic-y mystery book. And I'm rather partial to it because I always did say that Tut was murdered, but I'm always one to go with the conspiracy theory. Another fantastic Bob book is Egyptian Mummies where he talks about royal mummies, not-so-royal mummies, modern day mummies, and movie mummies. Ooh, it's just great. I like mummies, in case you couldn't tell.

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Recommended Reading (Post 101 to 150)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:30 am

EdwardGr - Feb 3, 2004 12:45 pm (#101 of 938)
I will second Madame Librarian's review of Eragon. I had meant to pick it up weeks ago, but got sidetracked reading Dan Brown's first three novels (the three before The DaVinci Code.) When I finally picked up Eragon, I couldn't out it down. I finished over the course of two days, but it only took about six hours total to read.

The characters in the book are well thought out. Christopher has created a vast world and does not appear to have any problems wrapping the reader up in this world. Definitely worth the read. I am now anxiously awaiting the release of Elder, book two of Christopher's Inheritance trilogy.

As for the other three books that I have recently finished, Angels and Demons, Deception Point, and Digital Fortress. I really enjoy Dan's writing style. The only complaint I have and it may be simply due to having read all four of his novels in about two weeks time is that the true villain in each becomes apparent a little to easily. I am sure that if I had read each of these as they were released I would feel differently but I just saw to many of the plot twists in each before they actually happened. However Dan's dedication to understanding the subject he is writing about, more than makes up for this one fault. Angels and DaVinci code have the same main character, Robert Langdon, I like this character a lot, and I think that Dan has done an excellent job with this character. A third novel with Langdon as the main character is currently being written and will deal with yet another secret society (how many of those can there be?)

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nmnjr - Feb 3, 2004 5:36 pm (#102 of 938)

"Good judgment comes from experience, and experience - well, that comes from poor judgment."
(I am reposting from the "Thoughts about Translations" thread.)

There is a translation of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone into Latin. My sister (a first-year Latin student at college) got it for Christmas. It's pretty neat.

You can look through some of the pages on amazon.com by searching for "Harrius Potter."

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I Am Used Vlad - Feb 3, 2004 9:59 pm (#103 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
I'll second Matt Allair's recommendation for "I Am Legend". It's one of my favorite books. And for people who criticize the HP movies, read this book and then watch "Omega Man", the bad adaptation starring Charlton Heston. We HP fans don't have it too bad.

Matheson's more recent "Hunted Past Reason" is also entertaining, although many(including me) may disagree with it for religious or philosophical reasons.

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Little Ginny - Feb 7, 2004 11:51 am (#104 of 938)

I have read the Latin translation "Harrius Potter et Philosophi Lapis"(being a kind of Latin fan) and, having learned Latin for five years and knowing the first book, found it rather easy to read. Some of those translations are really funny.

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virgoddess1313 - Feb 18, 2004 6:32 pm (#105 of 938)

Just thought of an excellent book that I don't think has been mentioned... if it has, I apologize. Nancy and Plum by (I believe) Betty MacDonald. It's been out of print for years, but my local library had it and my mom read it to my brother and I as kids and I fell in love. It's very sweet. I wanted a copy for ages, but had trouble finding one that wouldn't cost me and arm and a leg... my boyfriend finally found a web page that sells them and got me a copy for Valentines.

And I definately second Abby's Bob Briar choices... they are excellent. His Encyclopedia of Mummies is also really good (I'm a mummy nut too).

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The Great Abbycadabra - Feb 18, 2004 11:09 pm (#106 of 938)

Crocs Rule!
Oh, how could I forget the Encyclopedia of Mummies? That's the best one.

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Denise P. - Feb 20, 2004 11:38 am (#107 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I read this book ages ago and recently re-read it as part of a book club. I liked it the first time around but I found it much deeper this time around (funny how 20 years later, things like that happen) A Tree Grows In Brooklyn follows a young girl in an early 1900's slum in Brooklyn. It was also made into a film in the late 40's or 50's I think, and the lead actor won an Oscar for his role as her father.

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Madame Librarian - Feb 20, 2004 1:24 pm (#108 of 938)

Denise, that is the quintessential 7-hankie book/movie! Along with Old Yeller and Where the Red Fern Grows, it is my benchmark for rating how sad a book or movie is. More weepy, less, about the same. I still will sometimes warn a patron at the library that a particular book he or she is considering is--"oh, my gosh, that's as sad as A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.

Wait...I think I have to add An Affair to Remember to that list.

Ciao. Barb

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SHEla WOLFsbane - Feb 21, 2004 1:27 pm (#109 of 938)

I have to second WHERE THE RED FERN GROWS. I cried the first time, and second time I read it, different spots though... you'll see...

I think I'll have to check out A TREE GROWS IN BROOKLYN...

I'd also like to recommend, DANDELION WINE by, I think, Ray Bradbury for young adults.

Adult: The wheel of time series. Good if you like, "Wait, who is that again, wasn't he in book two..." (when you're reading book five) That's just an example, couldn't tell you actual books but the idea is there. Bad if you want to hurry up and know what happens... I think there are currently ten books out there... ARGH!!! what do you do when both apply??? Any suggestions?

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Dr Filibuster - Feb 23, 2004 2:59 pm (#110 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
I'm half way through British (adults) No.1 bestseller, "Starter For Ten" and have laughed at every page.

It's a comedy about a teenage boy starting Unversity in 1985, the year when I failed my NEWTs, I mean A Levels, and didn't go to college.

I keep thinking he's a cross between Harry Potter and Ben Stiller.

Must get back to it, I'm on Chapter 23.

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Sly Girl - Feb 23, 2004 5:48 pm (#111 of 938)

Ah yes, Where the Red Fern Grows made a major impact on me when I read it as a kid. They say the books you read between the ages of 10-12 have the most profound effect on you as an adult.. interesting, isn't it? Think of all these kids who got started out on HP. Smile

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sarah lou - Feb 24, 2004 9:31 am (#112 of 938)

Dr F, I have read rave reviews of 'Starter for Ten' and it will be the first thing I buy when I get paid this week!

I posted this on another thread, but a favourite book of mine is 'Eats Shoots and Leaves' by Lynn Truss. If, like me, any of you are real sticklers for perfect grammar and spelling, and it sets your teeth on edge to see 'could of' or 'its over their', then this is the book for you.

Other favourites of mine... 'About a Boy', 'The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy' (Marvin is one of my all-time favourite creations) and 'Mother Tongue' (my degree was in linguistics and phonetics)

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Madame Librarian - Feb 24, 2004 12:59 pm (#113 of 938)

sarah lou, you might be interested to know, that despite the fact that Eats Shoots and Leaves has not yet been released in the US, our acqusitions librarian here where I work has already received many inquiries about it. There's been a lot of word-of-mouth chat, and, of course, people can see it's available at Amazon-UK, so they assume we've got it, too. I check the "order placed" database at work every day so I can put a reserve on it for me ASAP.

Wow. Just as I wrote this, I though I'd check again. Ta-dah!! There it was. Dang, I'm no. 2 on the list. I bet my boss is no. 1. So, folks, I'm sure the bookstores have it (libraries are slower--*sigh*).

Ciao. Barb

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Dr Filibuster - Feb 24, 2004 1:50 pm (#114 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Sarah Lou, have you paid a visit to the Pronunciation thread yet? I think we'll be quoting from "Mother Tongue" as much as "Goblet of Fire" soon.

I think "Eats shoots and leaves" may be my next purchase.

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sarah lou - Feb 26, 2004 3:39 am (#115 of 938)

I did a lot of modules at uni on accents, particularly different accents within the British Isles. I love the Pronunciation thread, it's fantastic -but makes me wish I was back at uni...grrr.

PS Have been paid today, so I'm going to nip out to Waterstone's at lunchtime to buy 'Starter for Ten'!!

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Little Ginny - Feb 27, 2004 1:14 pm (#116 of 938)

I can only second About a Boy, it's been great fun to read (about as much as Mother Tongue, which besides is still very informative) and I cannot wait to buy High Fidelity, which is also by Nick Hornby.

Fantastic books for children are the books by Astrid Lindgren, a Swedish author who died about two years ago. I grew up reading these books, but I don't know whether they are famous in the US or in the UK as well. I don't even know their English titles, but the most famous ones (at least in Germany are about Karlsson, who lives on the roof, about Pippi, who lives together with her horse and her monkey, and about an island called Saltkrokan. But she's written much more, and they are all very wonderful, taking place in Sweden in the time about the fifties, and just describing things children have always dreamt of. If anybody knows them and can help me with the English titles, thank you!!

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Dr Filibuster - Feb 27, 2004 1:47 pm (#117 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Little Ginny, I have not read those books, but Ingrid Lindgren (not Astrid) is mentioned in "Starter For Ten"

"Shelves of children's books indicate that Alice was obviously something pretty big in the Puffin Club; Tove Jansson, Ingrid Lindgren, Eric Kastner, Herge, Goscinny, Uderzo, Saint-Exupery - world literature for tots"

The Puffin club was a kid's book club. I was in it too.

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Little Ginny - Feb 28, 2004 10:08 am (#118 of 938)

Well, her name is definitely Astrid Lindgren, perhaps this was mixed up somewhere?

By the way: What is "Starter for Ten"?

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Dr Filibuster - Feb 28, 2004 1:48 pm (#119 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
It's a very funny book by David Nicholls.

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Mare - Feb 28, 2004 2:31 pm (#120 of 938)

Astrid Lindgren, I love the Lionheart brothers! (or however you translate it..)

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Little Ginny - Feb 29, 2004 9:41 am (#121 of 938)

I just found out that her (Astrid Lindgren, that is) most famous book, translated into English, is called Pippi Longstockings.

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veraco - Mar 2, 2004 10:50 am (#122 of 938)

Have you read Bless me, Ultima? (Rudolfo Anaya) If not, you might find it interesting

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Julia. - Mar 4, 2004 4:14 pm (#123 of 938)

74% obsessed! Uconn Jew Crew says: is it August yet?
I have to throw my 2 cents in for "Shoeless Joe" by W.P. Kinsella. It's my favorite book, I read it every year before the baseball season starts.

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Maollelujah - Mar 7, 2004 8:38 pm (#124 of 938)

I thought I would add a few title to this recommended reading list.

The Girl I Left Behind by Endo Shusaku. It is about, to steal the writer's words, how "It's not possible for someone to interact with a fellow human being without leaving some traces." Yoshioka Tsutomu and Morita Mitsu have an affair. For Yoshioka, who is a college student, the affair is nothing more than one night stand, but for Mitsu it is a lot more. Yoshioka graduates, gets a job, finds a girlfriend, tying to think nothing of 'the girl he left behind', but through various events, the memory of her keeps popping up... It is a very sad story, but one that I find worth rereading every year.

The Idiot by Fyodor Dostoevsky. Dostoevsky's attempt to depict a purely innocent/good man. It is another book that I reread every year, even though in some parts you need an iron will to get through.

Confessions of Zeno by Italo Svevo. A story of a man writing his confession's at the behest of his analyst. He is quite neurotic, and gives his own self-analysis as he wanders through life. It is really funny. I haven't read this book for a while, I loaned it too an Englishwoman and never saw it again. Sad

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firebird - Mar 22, 2004 5:44 pm (#125 of 938)

I guess I'll add some because they really deserve to be mentioned. And these books are never out of my head, really.

1. The Little Grey Men, by BB (yes, that's the name under which the author writes), this is the first piece of literature I have ever read. I had the book for years before I actually got around to reading it. Wow, the way everything is described is just so vivid and unforgettable... even if it is about gnomes - not HP garden gnomes! Smile

2. Obasan, by Joy Kagawa, about Japanese-Canadians in World War 2, and very touching.

3. Possession, by A.S. Byatt.

4. God of Small Things, by Arundhati Roy.

5. Anything by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. The first of his I ever read was Love and Other Demons (about a priest who falls is love with a girl first supposedly bitten by a rabid dog and then supposedly possessed), and the best was Love in the Time of Cholera (where Florentino Ariza falls in love with Fermina Daza and never ever falls out even when she marries Juvenal Urbino and he doesn't speak to her for fifty-something years).

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Julia. - Mar 22, 2004 6:08 pm (#126 of 938)

74% obsessed! Uconn Jew Crew says: is it August yet?
Oh firebid, I read Chronical of a Death Foretold in English last year. It was hysterical! I could almost picture the guys saying "OK, we're off to kill the girl now!"

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firebird - Mar 22, 2004 7:11 pm (#127 of 938)

Heheh Julia... I didn't finish that one, I started reading it two years ago - stole it from my roommate - and then in the middle I started Goblet of Fire - also stolen from same roommate - instead, and became so engrossed I forgot about 'Chronicle'... lol (I read GoF before PoA!!! which is the worst thing that can happen to anyone - I knew Sirius was a good guy and so all the suspense in PoA was useless - I laughed when Harry got so pissed off. Thickhead, you'd think he could have just listened to what Sirius had to say???).

I did finish Autumn of the Patriarch though, which is sort of sad... but it gives you a real headache since there are no paragraphs... well the whole book is one long paragraph I guess. =D

edit: I forgot to say, I meant to say, I really like this thread!

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Denise P. - Mar 26, 2004 10:24 am (#128 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Edited Mar 26, 2004 2:49 pm
boop, thanks for the heads up that Cirque Du Freak #5, Trials of Death was out in paperback! I ran out and got it today and plan to start it within the next day or so (after I finish a few other books I am reading)

If you have not yet checked out Cirque Du Freak by Darren Shan, it is worth looking into. If you are in the UK, you are in luck since #12 is coming out soon there. For those of us in the US, #7 is being released in May, I think.

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Chris. - Apr 3, 2004 10:03 am (#129 of 938)

HBP: 16th July 2005: the most anticipated day in history
I don't know if this has been mentioned but the Spiderwick Chronicles (by Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi) is an enjoyable read. Although a little too adventurous, SC has all the magical creatures you can expect from a fantasy book. There is several illustrations throughtout the books, the front cover usually being mystic but colourful at the same time.

Spiderwick Chronicles consists of The Field Guide, The Seeing Stone, Lucinda's Secret and The Ironwood Tree.

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mollis - Apr 13, 2004 7:42 am (#130 of 938)

Okay, I've got a pretty good one to recommend. Its called The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson. Its a non-fiction about the creation of the World's Fair in Chicago in 1893 and a serial killer who used the fair to lure his victims. It goes back and forth between the stories of Daniel Burnham (architect who designed the fair) and H.H. Holmes (the serial killer). Very interesting read. It's probably an adult book, nothing gruesome or racy, but still, it deals with murder. No kids here, so I'm really not a good judge of appropriate material. But it was very well written and would probably not offend the tender-hearted.

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Madame Librarian - Apr 13, 2004 1:47 pm (#131 of 938)

Mollis, that book is hugely popular now. We get so many requests for it at the library. A non-fiction title that's made it with the book club set (usually they go for fiction). That's my old neighborhood, Hyde Park (Chicago version, not London), and it was great to know exactly what stuff looks like now. The Museum of Science and Industry was the Arts & Architecture building. Originally built out of that temporary stuff for the Fair, it was re-done as a permanent structure a few years later. The statue of Columbia is still there, and was recently re-gilded. She's stunning...you're driving along a nice parkway road alongside a golf course on one side and trees on the other, and --wow!--there she is, out of nowhere, this huge golden statue. Anyway the book is a nice blending of urban history, true crime, and all the gruesome stuff that some just love.

Larson's other book, Isaac's Storm, is excellent. In some ways I liked it more. It's about the worst hurricane ever in the US--1900, Galveston, Texas. The build-up of tension as the storm is brewing out in the Gulf is very well done, and you learn an awful lot about weather and storms and oceans. Cool stuff. This book came out the same time as The Perfect Storm and deals with a similar topic, but I think it's better. The Perfect Storm outpaced it because they touted the movie so much (and George Clooney).

Oy, I've written a book here. Sorry.

Ciao. Barb

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mollis - Apr 13, 2004 2:15 pm (#132 of 938)

Edited by Apr 13, 2004 2:15 pm
You are once again, a wonderful source of information. I bet you're the best librarian ever!

I didn't know it was a popular book though, a friend of mine at work recommended it a few months ago and I happened to run across it while looking for a traveling book to read on the plane. I guess I have good taste!

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Madame Librarian - Apr 13, 2004 2:30 pm (#133 of 938)

Of course, you do! You read Harry Potter, after all.

Ciao. Barb

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haymoni - Apr 15, 2004 12:29 pm (#134 of 938)

Gina - I'm reading "Wicked" now - I'll have to check out your group.

On another thread I mentioned a book I read when I was young that referenced a philospher's stone - "Gone Away Lake" by Elizabeth Enright. I'm reading it with my son right now.

I read the "Little House" books, "A Wrinkle in Time" - I'll pick them up now - my husband thinks I'm crazy.

I haven't read an "adult" book in such a long time - "Wicked" has been a bit of an eye opener!!

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Marye Lupin - Apr 15, 2004 6:12 pm (#135 of 938)

"I know the answer! The answer lies within the heart of all mankind! The answer is twelve? I think I'm in the wrong building." Peanuts
I just read "Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister" by the same author as "Wicked". It was pretty good though I prefer "Wicked".

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Madame Librarian - Apr 15, 2004 8:14 pm (#136 of 938)

Wicked was first published in 1995. It is having a revival now, especially with the book group crowd, because the play (a musical, I think) opened this winter on Broadway.

Also, I just read that Madeline L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time has been made into a movie. Release date this summer.

Ciao. Barb

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haymoni - Apr 16, 2004 5:58 am (#137 of 938)

Wonderful - I'm off to the Internet Movie Database to check!

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Acceber - Apr 20, 2004 7:35 am (#138 of 938)

Ruler of Omeletteheads
A Wrinkle in Time being made into a movie? NOOOOOO!!!! The movie will totally ruin the fabulous book. *sudden inspiration* I wonder how they'll do Mrs. Whatsit's transformation from the bag lady to the Beast. *walks away muttering*

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draco all the way - Apr 20, 2004 7:40 am (#139 of 938)

I thought they already made the movie. Or maybe it was just a movie with the same name but different plot. I haven't read the book you see.

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Padfoot - Apr 20, 2004 1:33 pm (#140 of 938)

I haven't read A Wrinkle in Time in a long time. I will have to reread it again to refresh my memory before the movie comes out. Gosh, I read that back in Elementary school. Such a long time ago.

The Narnia Chronicals are being made into movies I've heard through the grapevine. Not sure about that. It's hard when those movie types take something so cherished and reinterpret it. They did that with one of my favorite books: The Man in the Brown Suit. I refused to see it once I heard it was "updated".

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The Great Abbycadabra - Apr 21, 2004 12:15 am (#141 of 938)

Crocs Rule!
I had read about the A Wrinkle in Time movie last summer. I even saw a trailer for it. I thought it was going to be on The Wonderful World of Disney or something. Here's it's IMDB page: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] It's airing in the US in May apparently. It premeired last April in Canada.

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draco all the way - Apr 21, 2004 2:44 am (#142 of 938)

The Narnia chronicles are beautiful books. I used love reading them. In my family we call them the modern fairy tales. I think Aslan is one of the most beautiful names in the world. I have a stuffed lion called Aslan. How original is that?

Edit: I'm rambling, aren't I?

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Padfoot - Apr 21, 2004 9:52 am (#143 of 938)

Draco all the way, my Christmas tree theme is Narnia. Well why not? Basically it's got mostly animal ornaments on it, but every now and then I can find something that fits in totally with the books. I only choose animals who look like they can talk of course.

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timrew - Apr 21, 2004 3:09 pm (#144 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Nice, padfoot. I love the Narnia Chronicles, too. Your Christmas tree sounds terrific!

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dobbyiscool - Apr 22, 2004 2:00 pm (#145 of 938)

Whatever women do they must do twice as well as men to be thought half as good. Luckily this is not difficult. --Charlotte Whitton
I love the Chronicales of Narnia! I had them all at one point in time, but my sister lost the seventh one, so that's that. I'll have to buy it to finnish the collection.

I'd have to recomend any books buy Margaret Truman (yes, the former President's daughter). They are cool murder mysteries that take place in famous locations around Washington DC. For instence, there's Murder in the White House, Murder in the Supreme Court, Murder at teh Pentagon, etc. They where published in the early eighties (before I was born), and they where best sellers.

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Loopy Lupin - Apr 23, 2004 5:59 am (#146 of 938)

Oh, I glanced over this thread and originally posted this in the pop culture thread. Sorry. Anyway, there is a book called "The Science of Harry Potter." Its extremely interesting; the author clearly loves the books.

Here's a link:

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

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Little Ginny - Apr 29, 2004 10:17 am (#147 of 938)

I finally got my copy of Wicked last week, and I just wanted to thank all the people who recommended it because I greatly enjoyed reading it!

Thanks!!

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Padfoot - Apr 30, 2004 2:26 pm (#148 of 938)

Edited by Apr 30, 2004 2:27 pm
I just saw an article about a "Christian Harry Potter" fantasy series. I haven't read it, but wonder how it compares to the real HP books. Here is the link to that article: Yahoo link I have no clue whether it even is interesting or not. I just saw the words Harry Potter and had to mention it.

Edit: the link doesn't seem to be working. It's in the book section of Yahoo news.

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nmnjr - May 16, 2004 5:03 am (#149 of 938)

"Good judgment comes from experience, and experience - well, that comes from poor judgment."
The Alchemist by Paulo Cohelo is a wonderful book. Plus, it has a lengthy discussion of the Philosopher's Stone and the Elixer of Life. I thought that was kind of cool too.

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azi - May 16, 2004 9:16 am (#150 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
I just read 'The Wee Free Men' by Terry Pratchett. I don't usually like his books but having the Nac Mac Freegle was hilarious. I was paricuarly fond of the phrase 'you can't grow a witch on chalk'. Aparently they need good solid rock. Smile

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Recommended Reading (Post 151 to 200)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:31 am

draco all the way - Jun 4, 2004 2:15 am (#151 of 938)
I don't know if this is the right thread, but... I have to pick between Paul Cohelo's The Alchemist and the Da vinci Code. I'm 15 what do you guys suppose would be the best for me?

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Padfoot - Jun 4, 2004 9:27 am (#152 of 938)

I have never read Paul Cohelo's The Alchemist, so I can't speak for that one. But I have read the Da Vinci Code and it's a really good fiction book. It's a quick read and pretty exciting. Plus, there are Potter references in there.

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draco all the way - Jun 4, 2004 9:31 am (#153 of 938)

Potter references? I don't think I need anymore convincing than that! Thanks Padfoot!

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riquelme - Jun 10, 2004 12:56 am (#154 of 938)

One Hundred Years of Solitude

Cuoro (Heart)

From the Appenines to the Andes

Catcher in the Rye

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Padfoot - Jun 10, 2004 9:07 am (#155 of 938)

I just finished reading The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold last night. It's a pretty good book, although depressing and dark.

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Nellie - Jun 11, 2004 11:27 am (#156 of 938)

I love this! I am a book collector and am lucky enough to have a library in my house with a big squishy sofa where I can sit and read. I am always looking for new books to fill up spare shelf space. My own recommendations would be:

1. Anything by Terry Pratchett. A comic Sci-Fi series set on The Discworld, a flat planet that flies through space on the back of four elephants which stand on a giant turtle. The world is full of wizards, magic, witches and DEATH (who always speaks in capitals and has a pet horse called Binky). There are around 22 books in the series, all of them hysterically funny.

2. Agatha Christie - the Harry Potter books had a "Christiesqe" murder mystery type feel to them. All of Christie's books are wonderful puzzles which twist and turn. One of her best is "Who murdered Roger Ackroyd?". When it was published she got a lot of bad press because of the ending. I won't tell you who did it, but the public felt she had conned them. I think it is one of the best endings I have ever read.

3. P.G. Wodehouse - gentle stories from the 20s and 30s about various members of the (fictional) British upper classes. Very funny

4. The Amulet of Sarakand - The Bartamaeus Trilogy. The first of a promised trilogy about how people in power only get there through the demons they trap. Very dark...

5. Garth Nix - another trilogy "Sabriel"; "Lireal" & "Abhorsen". About Necromancers who have to keep the living safe when the dead refuse to stay dead and try to take over the world. Not one for younger readers, but still excellent

That's probably enough to be going on with... Enjoy!

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Padfoot - Jun 11, 2004 12:27 pm (#157 of 938)

Newton, I love Agatha Christie's books! The endings are all really great. Some of my favorites are: And Then There Were None, The Mysterious Affair at Styles and The Mysterious Mr. Quin. My favorite book by her is The Man in the Brown Suit. I think I have read that one more often than any other book.

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Nellie - Jun 12, 2004 3:24 am (#158 of 938)

Agatha Christe was how I got into book collecting. My boy friend bought me a first edition of "4:50 from Paddignton" for my birthday and ever since I have been collecting. My ambition it to have a first edition of all her books. The later ones are easy to find, but the early ones are very hard. The rarest is "Murder on the Links", so if you ever see a copy buy it! You'll be able to sell it to someone like me for vast sums of money!

I like the books, because although they are about murder, which clearly is not a good thing, it is never senseless violence, I mean violence for the sake of it. There is always a reason: love, money, revenge. None of these thing justify the act of course. Did you know she wrote her first book as a dare from her sister?

The cover art on the 1970s UK paperbacks (and I think US too) is great. It's by a guy called Tom Adams. If you look at his paintings that are on the covers, you are supposed to be able to solve the crime.

What other crime writers do you like Padfoot?

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Little Ginny - Jun 12, 2004 8:37 am (#159 of 938)

I'm not that much a fan of Agatha Christie, although I read quite a lot of her novels. They're really exciting, of course, and great fun to read (and I always love to watch "Murder on the Orient Express"), but sometimes I feel that they're over-constructed. Still, I enjoy reading them, but I don't collect them. That's of course just a matter of opinion and I don't want to dissuade anyone from reading them.

My most favourite crime writer, however, is Dorothy L. Sayers, who is, together with Christie, one of the classical British crime-writing ladies. Her most famous books all feature Lord Peter Wimsey, a book-collecting hobby sleuth and younger brother of a duke. They are set in the 20s and 30s of the 20th century and, in my opinion, give a very faithful picture of their time.

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The Great Abbycadabra - Jun 13, 2004 12:50 am (#160 of 938)

Crocs Rule!
Personally, I love Simon Brett's Charles Paris novels. Just some more British murder mysteries for you. Charles is an actor who is a bit better at solving murders. It seems as though someone related to his current acting job must die everytime. Makes life interesting though, doesn't it?

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draco all the way - Jun 14, 2004 4:28 am (#161 of 938)

I don't know why but I have an aversion towards Agatha Christie and detective novels in general. I really like classics even though they are a bit bland and predictable. Little Women made me cry and still does even though I've read it millions of times. Its a book I treasure. But in the end, I'll read anyting you give me. Some of the best books, I find, are obscure and low budget. Anyone read Fringle?

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Padfoot - Jun 14, 2004 10:34 am (#162 of 938)

Edited by Jun 14, 2004 10:34 am
Never read Fringle, Draco. I went to Louisa May Alcott Elementary school once upon a time. So I figured I had to read her books. Loved them too.

Newton, I have 6 or 7 of Christie's books, none first editions. (Have read most, if not all 80 books) Lucky you! I usually don't try and collect 1st editions. The exception is Tom Clancy books. I have several 1st editions. Some I even got at Goodwill for $1!!! Mostly I just don't have the budget for that sort of collection. I do have an early (not first) edition of Jane Eyre that I treasure. As well as an early edition of the Sherlock Homes stories all in one book. Both those books are really old, so I am very careful with them. Old books are so much fun aren't they?!

Back to your question regarding mystery authors. Wow, that would be a long list. I have been reading mysteries for 18 years or so. All starting with Nancy Drew books. I like P.D. James, Erle Stanley Gardner, James Patterson, Anne Perry, Elizabeth Peters, Dick Francis and Ed McBain to name a few.

I saw an interview of P.D. James and the interviewer compared her to Christie. The interviewer (who obviously didn't read mysteries) asked her why people like gruesome crime novels like hers and Christie's. James looked at her and immediately told her that Christie's books are not gruesome and totally different than her books. (I don't think James's books are that gruesome either, but grittier). James went on to say how lighthearted Christie's books are. And she's right. We always know that the bad guy will be caught, or at least found out. Her books are comforting and fun to read.

I also love reading spy/espionage books too. Reading Tripple by Ken Follet (love him) from my collection. Got to go buy The Bourne Supremacy before the movie comes out. That's by Robert Ludlem, also very good. Heck, I could go on and on all day about books. Guess I should stop now before this post gets too long.

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Accio Book Six - Jun 16, 2004 8:09 am (#163 of 938)

I went through enriched english in highschool, and so read at least double the books the other class did. I've read books on my own, but I'd say my favourite book (and author) next to Harry Potter is 'Not Wanted on the Voyage' by Timothy Findlay.

I HIGHLY reccomend Timothy Findlay. Not Wanted On the Voyage is sort of an unconventional look at the story of Noah's Ark. I would probably say that it has a little anti-religious sentiment, however it only deals with adding a story to the biblical tale of the flood, so I'd say it was more an anti-killing the world and letting one self-righteous man and his family live sentiment. READ THIS ONE, PEOPLE! Smile It wouldn't be good for the kiddies though.

Oh, and other good Timothy Findlay books include 'The Wars' and (I *think* this is the title) 'The Piano Man's Daughter'

ps. another great war book that everyone in the world should read is 'All Quiet on the Western Front' by (insert first name)Remarque

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Little Ginny - Jun 16, 2004 10:21 am (#164 of 938)

His name is Eric Maria Remarque, which is actually an alias because his real name was Kraemer (yes, he was German, and for those who are interested, the German title of the book is 'Im Westen nichts Neues'). I have not read the book, but I saw the film, and if the book is somehow like it, then yes, it is a great anti-war book, but it is really full of violence, and I don't think younger kids should read or watch it.

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Accio Book Six - Jun 17, 2004 6:39 am (#165 of 938)

Thanks Little Ginny. I had originally typed Eric, but I didn't want to look dumb, so I took it out incase I was wrong.

And you should read it, Little Ginny! It's so good, and it's a fairly quick read as the book isn't too long.

And yes... don't read it until you or your parents feel you can deal with the thought of fairly gruesome deaths and some scary psychological situations. It really is a fabulous book though and especially with the state of the world at the moment, everyone should read it.

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Nellie - Jun 28, 2004 2:00 pm (#166 of 938)

Hi Padfoot,

To have read all of Christie's books takes some doing! Well done! As far as collecting first editions, never go to a book dealer, try and pick them up at jumble sales etc, you just have to know what you are looking for... Most people who give books to charity don't realize when they are giving away a first edition and thats when you can get a bargain. Having said that I am not sure that applies to Harry Potter, everyone wants one of those first editions!

I also agree that Christie and PD James are completely different. Christie are really just puzzles and nothing more....

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Padfoot - Jul 1, 2004 5:10 pm (#167 of 938)

I never have gone to a book dealer per say. I will either go to a regular book store (there is a great independent book store in my town) to buy new books (usually paperback). Occasionally I will go into a Goodwill or a small book store in a little town if I happen by some place interesting. I rarely go into a Barnes and Noble because those places are so impersonal.

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draco all the way - Jul 3, 2004 8:07 am (#168 of 938)

Padfoot, a while back you told me that the Da vinci code was an exciting book. (You also reeled me in, hook line and sinker, by saying HP's involved.) So, I finally got around to buying it. It was probably one of the best decisions I've made. It's a great great book! I recommend to all you Potties! And thanks Padfoot!

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Padfoot - Jul 3, 2004 9:44 am (#169 of 938)

You are welcome! Glad you enjoyed it.

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Ladybug220 - Jul 3, 2004 2:04 pm (#170 of 938)

...moves faster than Severus Snape confronted with shampoo
DATW - Angels and Demons by Dan Brown is excellent as well.

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Leila 2X4B - Jul 3, 2004 9:12 pm (#171 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
Hi all. I think that everyone should read the following: Euripedes- Collected plays include: Medea, Trojan Women, and Iphegenia at Aulis. Shakespeare: Titus Andronicus Grant Naylor: Red Dwarf: Infinity welcomes careful drivers Tolkien: Simillarion George RR Martin: Game of Thrones, Clash of Kings House of Sand and Fog Dante: Divine Comedy Steinbeck: Grapes of Wrath The Giver Robert Cormier: I am the Cheese Tolkien: LOTR Trilogy and Hobbit The Wall Jumper

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Chris. - Jul 3, 2004 10:38 pm (#172 of 938)

HBP: 16th July 2005: the most anticipated day in history
Okay, here's my short list of books to read... NOW!

-The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion: J.R.R. Tolkien
-Spiderwick Chronicles- Holly Black & Tony DeTerlizzi
-Goodnight Mr Tom- Michelle Magorian

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Padfoot - Jul 4, 2004 9:52 am (#173 of 938)

Hm, I better go check those titles out. I have only read the Hobbit and the LOTR's trilogy out of those listed.

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timrew - Jul 4, 2004 4:37 pm (#174 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Steinbeck: Grapes of Wrath. Steinbeck I would totally agree with, Sleeping Beauty.

But I would also add his shorter novels: Tortilla Flat, Cannery Row, Of Mice And Men, Sweet Thursday, The Pearl, The Red Pony and The Moon Is Down. He's one of my favourite authors (as you might have gathered!)

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Leila 2X4B - Jul 5, 2004 12:09 am (#175 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
I agree with anything Steinbeck, my favorite American author.

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Ozymandias - Jul 5, 2004 2:08 am (#176 of 938)

Nothing beside remains...
How have I not stumbled into this thread before now? Ah well, better late than never.

My list:

Anything by Christopher Moore. Everything he's written is laugh-out-loud hilarious. Island of the Sequined Love Nun is a good starting place, about an isolated Polynesian tribe that forms a religion based on the pinup girl painted on the nose of a WWII American plane that crashed there.

Anything by Douglas Adams. Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy gets all the credit, which it deserves, but I think the two Dirk Gently novels are worthwhile as well.

How can you talk about mystery writers without talking about Arthur Conan Doyle? I don't read much mystery, but I've been devouring the Sherlock Holmes series lately.

The Callahan series by Spider Robinson. Great science fiction stories with lovable characters and horrid puns.

And now I will stop my rambling before I name every book I've ever read.

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Miss Malaprop - Jul 5, 2004 3:42 am (#177 of 938)

Edited by Jul 5, 2004 3:46 am
Hello! I must second Newton’s recommendation of PG Wodehouse. They are fantastically funny and really take you away to the English country manor world of the 1920s and 30s. Once you start reading one you just have to keep reading more!

I will also second Madame Librarian’s recommendation of Michael Chabon – I just finished Summerland, a very inventive children’s book – and Mary Stewart. I love her book A Walk in Wolf Wood and read it every year. It is about a brother and sister who walk through a wood and find themselves in 16th century Germany, dealing with dukes, amulets, werewolves, and wizards. An excellent adventure! I also loved E. Nesbit ( The Railway Children, Five Children and It ) when I was young (and I still do). Also, more recently, Michael Hoeye’s stories, Time Stops For No Mouse, and its sequel. Highly entertaining adventures about a mouse called Hermux Tantamoq.

Paul Jennings is an Australian children’s writer who was extremely popular in the early 1990s. He writes quirky, moreish short stories which I still enjoy. We sent his books to a young Canadian friend who never read anything, but devoured these books. If you can get them overseas, they are great for kids of about 8 and up.

I’m sure these last two books were mentioned in previous Recommended Reading threads, but I will mention them again anyway because they are so good: Out of the Silent Planet by CS Lewis (and the other two books in the trilogy). Kind of like Narnia for Grownups. Although there is nothing wrong with grownups reading the original Narnia books! Finally, The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. This is one of the most beautiful books ever written, I think. Short but very beautiful.

Edit: And eternal shame on me for omitting The Princess Bride by William Goldman!

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Ozymandias - Jul 5, 2004 4:18 am (#178 of 938)

Nothing beside remains...
A hearty second to The Princess Bride. Shame on me too!

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Marye Lupin - Jul 5, 2004 7:40 am (#179 of 938)

"I know the answer! The answer lies within the heart of all mankind! The answer is twelve? I think I'm in the wrong building." Peanuts
The Princess Bride is probably one of my favorite books. It's got something for everyone!

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Padfoot - Jul 5, 2004 2:50 pm (#180 of 938)

And eternal shame on me for omitting The Princess Bride by William Goldman

I am reading that right now. I love that book, so funny.

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timrew - Jul 5, 2004 2:52 pm (#181 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
It sadly took the recent death of the author to remind me of a series of books that I read avidly as a teenager. They are very funny and deal with the lives of two young boys at boarding school in England in the 50s.

I don't know why I didn't think of them before, because The Jennings books, by Anthony Buckeridge, are a sort of precursor to Harry Potter.

Although having nothing to do with magic, the books follow the hilarious adventures of Jennings and his nice (but dim) friend Derbyshire, along with their Master, Mr. Wilkins, who would like to be a Snape but ends up more like a Dumbledore.

I will now have to buy all these books again (I think there were about six or seven of them). It'll give me something to read while I'm waiting for book six!

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Catherine - Jul 7, 2004 5:46 pm (#182 of 938)

Canon Seeker
I have lots of suggestions, but take them with a grain of salt, as I used to be an English teacher. What the heck do I know?

As I am a native Virginian, I do have a love for good Southern novels. One "sleeper" that I remember well (because I attended a workshop she gave) is called Clover, a book by Dorie Sanders (of South Carolina peach growing fame) which I believe Disney bought the rights to, but never did anything with. It's a good reading out-loud kind of book, for children of all ages. She has a good publishing story that will remind you of JKR, and it's a sweet tale. Other Southern faves are Clyde Edgerton. He actually taught at the same high school I did, but way before my time, and played in a bluegrass band. I love his novels, but his first one, Rainey is close to my heart, as is Walking Across Egypt. Anything by Pat Conroy (a publishing powerhouse who does not need my recommendation or anyone elses!) or Kaye Gibbons with Charms for the Easy Life and Ellen Foster. My latest love is Big Fish, both the movie and the novel. They both overwhelm me.

I really do think that everyone should read The Inferno, The Iliad, The Odyssey, and The Aenead, and The Epic of Gilgamesh. It helps put everything in perspective.

I majored in medieval and renaissance lit, but I'll save those recs for a different post!

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Hollywand - Jul 11, 2004 4:39 pm (#183 of 938)

Gryffindor
For those who are interested in history, I highly recommend "Religion and the Decline of Magic" by Sir Keith Thomas, Oxford University Press. It's a wonderful book that examines the social function that magic provided for those seeking security and reassurance in a very uncertain world. Mostly it covers documentation on witches and "cunning men" in England in the 15th and 16th centuries. Social circumstances are identified that show how a person might be singled out in their community as a scapegoat, and declared a magical person, and evil. One of my favorite passages is that of a judge who had the courage to stand up to the mob accusing a poor woman "witch" of flying. "Why, there's no law against flying!" The judge skeptically asserts...... :-)

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timrew - Jul 23, 2004 5:12 pm (#184 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
I must tell you that I'm reading, 'The Little White Horse' by Elizabeth Goudge (as reccommended by JKR) and enjoying it immensely. It's right what she says about food. It's described with great 'gusto'!

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Dr Filibuster - Jul 24, 2004 2:22 pm (#185 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
I want to read Tim's pantomime. How's it going?

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timrew - Jul 24, 2004 5:11 pm (#186 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
It's nearly there, Sue. But I'll send you last year's, Jack and the Beanstalk, if you like. And anyone else that wants it.

But, believe me.....it's done in a totally English panto style, and we've (yes, my son, Matthew deserves credit too) ripped off a few jokes from TV, film, etc......

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Ozymandias - Jul 24, 2004 11:19 pm (#187 of 938)

Nothing beside remains...
Okay, the stupid American wants to know what a pantomime is. Or you could send one to me, Tim, and I could see firsthand. Smile

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Loopy Lupin - Jul 25, 2004 4:30 pm (#188 of 938)

Another stupid American wants to know too.

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Dr Filibuster - Jul 26, 2004 2:43 pm (#189 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Hey, you're not stupid....it's a shame you never went to a panto when you were little. "Oh no it isn't" "oh yes it is" (sorry)

see [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] and look at the history. Rowling has said that Voldemort is not a pantomime baddie. "Oh yes he is" "Oh no he isn't"(sorry, sorry)

I'd love to see your last script Tim. Please e-mail me.

Ahem, to get back on track, I am currently reading the first No 1 Ladies Detective Agency novel. I'm enjoing it. Has anyone else read them? Have you read them all? I'm often bored when I read other books in a series because they get too formulaic. The exception being Harry's stories of course.

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Madame Librarian - Jul 26, 2004 9:08 pm (#190 of 938)

I just finished the most amazing and unusual book--The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. A 15-year old boy discovers his neighbor's dog horribly murdered in the back yard, and he decides to try to solve the crime. The thing is this kid, Christopher, is autistic. His perception of the world is incredibly strange, both off-kilter and hyper-logical at the same time. Despite the boy's severe mental problems and attendant behavioral quirks (things like barking like a dog to keep people from getting too close to him, eating only foods that are red or green, freaking out if he sees too many yellow cars in a row), there is an innocence and sweetness about him. It's a very compelling book, getting a lot of word-of-mouth buzz these days.

Ciao. Barb

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Dr Filibuster - Jul 27, 2004 12:01 am (#191 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Yes it's a wonderful and interesting read isn't it Barb. It's won loads of awards. Be warned though, it's listed as a children's book (in the UK at least), probably because it's about a 16 year old. I was going to buy it for my friends' 10 year old bookworm (he loves OoP) but I don't think they would appreciate the excessive swearing. I gave it to my friends to read instead.

Did you know that it's Davd Heyman's latest project? He's the producer who "discovered" The Philosopher's Stone back in 1997 and decided to get the film rights from Rowling.

I shall be watching out for his other finds.

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Leila 2X4B - Jul 27, 2004 4:57 am (#192 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
I just finished reading a We All Fall Down by Robert Cormier. Brilliant, but scary in the sense that it amazes me that people can do things like they did. Robert Cormier is noted to be one of the best writers for the Y.A genre. He was actually born and raised in my hometown of Leominster, MA. It is the setting of many of his books. Look for the town Monument(as in Monument Square, in downtown Leominster). I aslo loved I am the Cheese and The Bumblebee Flies Anyway. Plus who doesn't love The Chocolate Wars.

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Madame Librarian - Jul 27, 2004 8:45 am (#193 of 938)

Dr. Filibuster, at our library, the Haddon book (post #190) is double-shelved in both adult and YA (that's the unfortunately named "young adult" section of the library). I agree that 10 may be a bit immature for the book, but it really depends on the kid and the parents. Despite the department being called YA, the typical patrons we get there are usually between 10 and 16, with the vast majority being middle school age.

Ciao. Barb

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Luke E.A. Lockhart - Jul 27, 2004 2:00 pm (#194 of 938)

I second the person (way down on the list) who recommended Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card, as well as its sequel, Speaker for the Dead - although I'd stop there, as the plot just gets weird and incomprehensible.

I also second the recommendation of the Dark Materials trilogy - religious people should just remember that it's not anti-religious. This is confirmed by the fact that the author is friends with the Archbishop of Canterbury and has said that the story is an allegory, not to be taken literally.

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RowanRising - Jul 28, 2004 11:48 am (#195 of 938)

Edited by Jul 28, 2004 11:49 am
The absolute BEST Anne Rice book I've ever read is called The Witching Hour. Definately NOT for the younger crowd (under 16 I'd say) but a beautifully crafted family history/mystery/horror/love story.

Right now I'm reading "God-Shaped Hole" by Tiffany DeBartolo. It's engrossed me already Very Happy

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Leila 2X4B - Jul 28, 2004 12:36 pm (#196 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
Call me a prude, but I don't care for Anne Rice's ahem racy writing. Some of it borders on porn. I prefer innuendo. I do like some of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer books like Book of Fours. I mainly stick with things written before this century by European authors. Goethe's Faust is simply breathtaking.

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Padfoot - Jul 28, 2004 12:41 pm (#197 of 938)

Edited by Jul 28, 2004 12:41 pm
I have never read of those Anne Rice books. I have just read the vampire ones and one ghost one. I will have to read The Witching Hour as I have not read it yet.

I did not know that there were Buffy the Vampire Slayer books! Really? Hm, are they as funny and clever as the show?

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Leila 2X4B - Jul 28, 2004 12:45 pm (#198 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
They do maintain the humor of the show, well the ones I've read. I still hear all of her books are bit too mature for this 22 year old. Well, I had the misfortune of trying to read one of her Sleeping Beauty books and *aghast* I didn't realize what it really was until too late. She tarnished my namesake. I was horrified

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Eponine - Jul 28, 2004 12:45 pm (#199 of 938)

Somebody I knew had one of those Anne Rice books. I read about three pages before I got utterly disgusted. I flipped through the rest of the book to see if it got any better. Nope, it got much much worse.

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RowanRising - Jul 28, 2004 12:57 pm (#200 of 938)

Edited by Jul 28, 2004 12:58 pm
I will be the first to admit some of her writing is...racy to put it mildly. She has a collection of 3 books specifically designed in that um, genre. I have always loved her books for one big reason- the writing itself. She finds a way to convince me that the warm air of New Orleans is wrapping itself around me, and to envision with perfect accuracy exactly what a particular flower looks like. As for content- the chronicles are a bit hard to get if you take them at face value but are ultimately about the humanity of the characters, their fight with the enduring questions of morality, and the experiences we all have with loneliness, fear, God, death, love, etc- but can't the same be said for HP?

Btw- I do read other things besides Anne Rice! LOL!

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Recommended Reading (Post 201 to 250)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:32 am

Padfoot - Jul 28, 2004 1:38 pm (#201 of 938)
Anne Rice seems to have two different types of genres, as RowanRising mentioned. If you avoid the racy books (which are in a different section of the book store), her "normal" books are perfectly acceptable reading for anyone. Not saying I would read a book on vampires to a 5 year old before they go to sleep, but you get the idea.

I was reading The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe last night and was reminded of how much I love that book (and the series). There are lots of creatures that appear in the HP world. If there is anybody out there who has not read the books yet, do so! (These books you can read to a 5 year old before going to bed. )

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Miss Malaprop - Jul 28, 2004 11:35 pm (#202 of 938)

Edited by Jul 28, 2004 11:37 pm
Dr Filibuster, I absolutely love the Precious Ramotswe books! It is very rare that I buy books for myself, and I almost never buy new books, but as soon as each book came out (I believe there are now five of them) I went and bought them and devoured them in a day. That’s the trouble with those books, you can’t put them down until you have finished and then…you have finished! I highly recommend them – they are funny, with engaging characters, some great common sense and moral lessons thrown in, and describe life in Botswana wonderfully (I had absolutely no interest in Africa until I read these books). I think they are going to be made into a TV series.

“There are some great books that this guy called Alexander McCall Smith put out that take place in Botswana. They are really fun to read and make you feel like human beings can really have worthwhile lives. The first one is called The No 1 Ladies' Detective Agency. I highly recommend them if you like to be happy.” – Flea, from Red Hot Chili Peppers

Can you tell I love these books? Smile

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thetheatre62442 - Jul 29, 2004 8:24 pm (#203 of 938)

If you all haven't heard or read them already, I highly recommend the 'Series of Unfortunate Events" series. There's 10 books so far. But they're children's books, so they're all about 150 pages, if not less. I absolutely adore them. They're actually quite depressing if you take out all the humor... The first one is called 'The Bad Beginning' and they're all by Lemony Snicket. Who wouldn't want to read them with an author who has such an awesome name as that? Smile

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Eponine - Jul 29, 2004 8:54 pm (#204 of 938)

I've only read the first one of the Unfortunate Events series, and I enjoyed it. The thing that I loved the most was the dustjacket of the biography of Lemony Snicket. It had a decoy jacket printed on the other side for a book called The Pony Party about the Happiest Children in the World, so you could flip the dustjacket around and no one would know you were reading such a dangerous book.

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Dr Filibuster - Jul 30, 2004 3:35 pm (#205 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Miss Malaprop...thanks for the info. I shall watch out for Precious' tv appearance.

I saw a great picture of Jim Carey in the Unfortunate Events movie a few months ago. Timothy Spall (Peter Pettigrew) is in it as well.

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Acceber - Aug 1, 2004 3:54 am (#206 of 938)

Ruler of Omeletteheads
-Goodnight Mr. Tom-Michelle Magorian-Prongs

I loved that book! It's actually a children's book (I read it last year when I was 12) but I loved it! It's so sad in some places, yet so happy. Remind you of anything?

Let's see-I read Gone With the Wind at camp which I loved. It's really long, but so descriptive and well written, that makes up for it. My dad only saw the movie, which he thought was just another corny love story, but the book wasn't like that at all. It mixed history with fiction in a way to be admired. More or less, if you're on a twelve hour plane flight with nothing else to do-read it.

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Catherine - Aug 1, 2004 7:17 am (#207 of 938)

Canon Seeker
I adore reading Jane Austen's novels. Pride and Prejudice is still my favorite, although Emma is a fun read.

I still love to reread Madeline L'Engle's books and C.S. Lewis's books.

For mysteries, I can't pass up anything by Anne Perry, Minette Walters, or Carol O'Connell.

Romance novels--I like Regency-era romances.

Non-fiction: I love biographies of the Tudors.

Historical Fiction: Margaret George, Jean Plaidy (aka Victoria Holt), Gary Jennings, James Michener, Irving Stone.

I'll read anything at all!

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Denise P. - Aug 1, 2004 10:15 am (#208 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I just got back from a long drive out west so naturally, as we were driving there, my thoughts turned to a specific book.

I highly recommend the book Centennial by James Michener. The book was made into a TV miniseries back in 1978 and is available on VHS. It follows the book pretty faithfully and I am majorally bummed it is not on DVD.

Along with Centennial, another one of his books that is good is Hawaii

As long as we are on area specific books, James Clavell's novels are pretty darn good. Shogun deals with Japan. My favorite one, Tai-Pan deals with Hong Kong and there are a few others that intertwine, King Rat(WWII Japanese prison camp), Noble House
To sum it up:

Shogun is worth reading and an excellent miniseries
Tai-Pan is an excellant read, the movie was a huge mistake
Noble House is an excellent read, the miniseries a mistake

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Little Ginny - Aug 1, 2004 12:28 pm (#209 of 938)

I can only second Catherine in her praise of Jane Austen. Those books are really great, and Pride and Prejudice is my favourite, too, though closely followed by Persuasion and Emma.

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Prefect Marcus - Aug 1, 2004 8:21 pm (#210 of 938)

"Anyone can cook"
Edited by Aug 1, 2004 8:22 pm
My list of Jane Austen favorites goes:

Pride and Prejudice To quote Jane Bennet, "Can there be any other opinion on the subject?"
Persuasion A very satisfying book. Anne Elliot is her most complex heroine.
Sense and Sensibility Colonel Brandon rocks, right Gina?
Northanger Abbey Her most LOL book.
Emma Emma Woodhouse is an obnoxious busy-body whose neck you want to wring. I am sorry, but I saw through every single one of the "mysteries".
Mansfield Park She tried, but the novel just doesn't work, IMO.

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Madame Librarian - Aug 2, 2004 6:30 pm (#211 of 938)

As there are a fair number of Austen fans on the Forum (I am, too), I'll recommend The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Jane Fowler. It's about a group of 5 women and 1 guy who meet each month to discuss a different Austen book. Of course, the novel really is about the members of the club. How they relate to the Austen novels and specific characters is revealing and a wonderful characterizatin device. Funny, sad, warm...you almost will want to join this book group...maybe. For those of you who are a bit rusty on which Austen book is which--I admit that I mix them up sometimes (not Emma, that's my favorite--Fowler has synopses at the back of the book on all the Austen books.

Ciao. Barb

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Ozymandias - Aug 4, 2004 12:18 am (#212 of 938)

Nothing beside remains...
I have a question for the Austen fans. I read Pride & Prejudice in school and absolutely loved it. I want more, but I don't know where to begin. What of her other work do you reccomend?

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Miss Malaprop - Aug 4, 2004 5:08 am (#213 of 938)

Edited by Aug 4, 2004 5:09 am
Ozymandias - all of them!

I think Prefect Marcus summed it up pretty well in post 210. Pride and Prejudice is also my favourite. I think everybody (except Mark Twain) loves it!

Northanger Abbey IS laugh-out-loud funny – excessively diverting! It basically makes fun of all the over-the-top gothic novels that were so popular at the time. (Catherine Morland, the heroine, loves The Mysteries of Udolpho. I tried to read it and I gave up – it was so gushing and melodramatic! I can understand where Austen is coming from!)

You would know the story of Emma if you have seen the movie Clueless. Many people love this book – personally I found the characters rather unengaging.

Persuasion is often noted as “the book with Jane Austen’s oldest and most mature heroine.” I enjoy it every time I read it. My favourite Austen companion, The Friendly Jane Austen, describes it as “autumnal, poetic and slightly world-weary.”

I quite like Mansfield Park, despite the insipid heroine, Fanny. I think I prefer watching Sense and Sensibility to reading it. Those are the Big Six; I haven’t read Sanditon, The Watsons or Lady Susan; all “minor” works.

If you have only read P&P, I would try Persuasion or Northanger Abbey, for some contrast. Also several “sequels” have been written by other authors, but I would not wish to excite your anticipation – I was quite disappointed. There is also an excellent, comprehensive website called The Republic of Pemberley, worth a visit.

There you go – hope that provides a good start!

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Ladybug220 - Aug 4, 2004 10:34 am (#214 of 938)

...moves faster than Severus Snape confronted with shampoo
Edited by Aug 4, 2004 10:36 am
Ozy, I second what Miss Malaprop said. I have read all of the published works of JA and I would definitely recommend Persuasion or Northanger Abbey next. Some of her short stories are good but they are just unfinished stories (Catherine, Sandition etc). I also like Mansfield Park as well and the movie is quite good but read the book first so that you aren't disappointed - the movie is excellent(and slightly different)! Also, try to rent the P&P BBC adaptation - it is very good and very true to the book.

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Madame Librarian - Aug 4, 2004 8:03 pm (#215 of 938)

Just like to mention that there are Forums that get as gung-ho about Jane Austen as we do here about HP. Of course, they have no big plot mysteries to resolve, and I don't suppose they're waiting for Jane to do another book, but I believe they get just as worked up and intense as we do here.

Ciao. Barb

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Hermione Weasley - Aug 4, 2004 9:43 pm (#216 of 938)

I don't know if anyone has mentioned him but I love Michael Crichton. All of his books are worthy of reading.

Also, the "Outlander" series by Diana Gabaldon is so completely fantastic that I rank them (although they are a different genre) up there with JKR stuff.

Outlander series is about a 20th century woman, Claire, who finds herself two hundred years in the past by falling through a "time portal" in one of the megalithic standing stones dotting Scotland. In the past, she meets and discovers an all consuming love and passion for Jamie Fraser, whom she marries (although at the moment the marriage was forced), but is riddled by guilt because she is married to Frank Randall in the 20th century whose ancestor, Black Jack Randall just happens to be a sadistic homosexual who wants Jamie. It just gets more complicated from there and that just half of the first book. FANTASTIC READ!!!!!!

(somebody read it just so you know how great they are!)

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Good Evans - Aug 8, 2004 10:07 am (#217 of 938)

Practically perfect in every way
Edited by Aug 8, 2004 10:12 am
I have just today finished the "barry trotter" sequel, have to say it made me laugh - I am a bit ambivalent about it as of course it rips off the HP books - but the second book was better than the first, and if you like to poke fun at the books it is worth a read. Not reccomended to anyone that cant take the concept (you need to be able to laugh at the "what if")

I love particularly the characterisation of "Halfwid" - horribly unfair, nastily rude but oh so funny!

I also love Terry Pratchett, Michael Crichton, James Patterson, Stephen King and as all good mystery addicts - Agatha Christie - would reccomend anything of these authors

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djellibabe - Aug 11, 2004 12:59 am (#218 of 938)

Am here after a reccomendation from Madame Librarian, so Hello!! Have flicked through the previous posts and have picked up some fantastic tips. I am a big Pratchett fan and would recommend that the younger ones among you maybe start with his 'Johnny' books and then move on to the 'Discworld' novels. I have just read his newest 'Hat Full of Sky' which is excellent as always. I could really use some help though, years ago I read a book about a bus load of kids, off with the youth club on a trip, they crash and end up staying over night in a haunted house. I know I read it over and over, It was an amazing story but now I can't remember what it was called or who it was by. Anyone got any ideas?

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virgoddess1313 - Aug 11, 2004 9:50 am (#219 of 938)

I beleive I mentioned it on the Chat thread at one point, but the book Stiff by Mary Roach is excellent. Its about various things that happen to us after we die (cremation, decomposition, etc.) so avoid it if you are squemish, though, because while she puts things in a humerous manner, they can still be pretty gross at times. It was facinating, I couldn't put it down and it really gave me a whole new perspective on that sort of thing.

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Penny Lane. - Aug 11, 2004 11:07 am (#220 of 938)

I recently finished "A Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Atwood. I enjoyed it, it was similar to Brave New World and Farhenheit 451. It is an adult/high school book though.

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T Brightwater - Aug 11, 2004 1:52 pm (#221 of 938)

I wouldn't be a true Brightwater if I didn't recommend Suzette Haden Elgin's Ozark Trilogy (Twelve Fair Kingdoms, The Grand Jubilee, And Then There'll Be Fireworks) Probably long out of print, but you might find it used or in the library.

Anything by Dorothy L.Sayers, including her nonfiction (especially _The Mind of the Maker_ - terrific book about the creative process and the Christian Trinity) and her translation of Dante's _Divine Comedy_.

Just finished _Eats, Shoots, and Leaves_. Hysterical!

I'll also add another vote for Alexander McCall Smith's Precious Ramotswe series.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Aug 12, 2004 2:24 am (#222 of 938)

Finally made it to this thread. Back up T Brightwater's recommendation of Sayers. I would suggest "Gaudy Night" one of her Lord Peter Wimsey novels. Set in Oxford University there are slight Potterish qualities to be spotted.

Also must jump on the Pratchett band wagon. Hogwarts in nothing to the Unseen University - so try Soul Music. Or try Wyrd Sisters. This is the best retake of Macbeth available. For those who love the theatre there's Maskerade. Or Moving Pictures for you film buffs. The game is try and spot the reference to something else. My all time favourite of these books though has to be "The Thief of Time". A classic.

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Luke E.A. Lockhart - Aug 12, 2004 8:45 am (#223 of 938)

Has anyone ever read Wizard/s Hall by Jane Yolen? I didn't really like the book, but it sure has some similarities to HP. A kid goes off to wizard school and has to fight a snakelike monster hidden by one of the school's founders to purge the school of something-or-other, and it's all because of a prophecy about him.

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TomProffitt - Aug 12, 2004 9:16 am (#224 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
I haven't seen many posts here with interests similar to mine, but here's my list:

Robert Heinlein, science fiction written on many levels at once, the man uses so much hyperbole you can never be sure he's talking about what you think he's talking about

Jack McDevitt, science fiction, deep well rounded characters, well thought out well rounded setting, writes good puzzles, my favorites are A Talent for War, and The Engines of God

Dick Francis, long time favorite

Terry Goodkind, epic fantasy

Carl Sagan, explains science in very interesting and understandable manner, accidentally throws in a lot of philosophy, thought provoking nonfiction, try Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors if you can handle something a little heavy

David Weber, Harry Turtledove if you like military science fiction. Honor Harrington is my role model.

Tanya Huff, try her Summon the Keeper series if you like humorous magical tales (set in modern day Ontario)

Steven Ambrose, great if you like 20th century history, particularly WWII

Guy Sajer, The Forgotten Soldier, if you have any doubts about just how bad war really is for the soldier, read this one

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T Brightwater - Aug 12, 2004 9:18 am (#225 of 938)

Phelim, I'll add _Jingo_ to the list of Highly Recommended Terry Pratchett, especially for those who like political satire.

More of my favorites:

Mysteries: Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody series, Lindsay Davis (Marcus Didius Falco), Laurie R. Hill (Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes), Josephine Tey.

Fantasy: Tolkien first and foremost! Katherine Kurtz's Deryni books; _The Shadow of the Lion_ by Lackey, Frith, and Freer; Melissa Scott and Lisa Barnett; Madeleine L'Engle; John Bellairs; Charles L. Williams.

Science fiction: C.J.Cherryh, especially the Chanur novels; Eric Frank Russell; Melissa Scott (again, especially the Silence Leigh trilogy); R.A.Lafferty.

Tolkien's essay "On Fairy Stories" (in _Tree and Leaf_ and _The Tolkien Reader_) is a must for anyone contemplating writing fantasy.

I didn't fully appreciate Tolkien's storytelling, especially his pacing, until I read LOTR out loud to my mother, who has macular degeneration. The movies don't begin to do it justice.

I've been reading HP to my mother (we're about a quarter of the way through Goblet) and she absolutely loves it. I hope HBP is out by the time we've finished Phoenix!

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Luke E.A. Lockhart - Aug 12, 2004 9:23 am (#226 of 938)

I've read C.J. Cherry - I don't really like the Chanur novels that much. I love the setting, but I find it hard to identify with humanoid cats. Her other books about humans in the same world are better, in my opinion.

I've read Stranger in a Strange Land, by Heinlein, for a science fiction course at my high school, which finally decided to cave in to my nerd revolution and offer courses that interest nerds such as myself. WAHAHAHAHAHA! Anyway, Stranger was weird, but interesting.

I also read the Heinlein short story where the guy is his own mother, father, sister, brother, uncle, aunt, et cetera, because of time travel - I can't remember what it's called.

EDIT: I personally don't like Tolkein as much as modern fantasy writers. I find that his ideas have been redone and perfected by others. Don't get me wrong, his books are still good - but I don't like this idea that "because it was really popular 50 years ago, it must be a classic!" I know some people find Middle Earth captivating, but I personally don't. I thought Pullman with His Dark Materials tops Lord of the Rings easily. At least there you care about the characters, and the end actually affects you, rather than, "Oh, they go away on a ship. So sad."

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Madame Librarian - Aug 12, 2004 9:24 am (#227 of 938)

Hmmmm, Luke (post #223)...that could trip someone up on "Jeopardy" in the recent fantasy literature category.

Even though it's been mentioned before, now's a good time to suggest Eragon again. It's by Christopher Paolini (c2003). Wonderful saga set long ago about a boy, his magical mentors, evil Emperors, a quest, his dragon. This is only part one, and the ending leaves you wanting more.

The amazing thing is that Paolini, now about 19, was just 16 years old when he wrote this 509-page epic. Honest, unless you were told this in advance, you'd never guess. A rich, twisty plot, wonderful secondary characters, a dark tone with just enough black humor. BTW, Eragon is 15, an orphan, just learning about things magical. Only in the slightest sense is he like Harry. Both boys are angry, rash and a bit clueless as to why this is all happening to them.

Sorry for the repeated recommendation, but since there seems to be a fresh bunch of Forum members, I thought it's worth a mention again.

Ciao. Barb

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T Brightwater - Aug 12, 2004 9:31 am (#228 of 938)

Actually, Luke, I believe the hani in the Chanur books are based on lions rather than cats. Anyway, _Chanur's Legacy_ (my favorite of the bunch) is, among other things, a hilarious reversal of the old "woman tries to prove herself in a man's world" theme. Maybe guys don't find it as funny. (I think the same is true of the Ozark Trilogy.)

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virgoddess1313 - Aug 12, 2004 10:20 am (#229 of 938)

T Brightwater, what is the Ozark Trilogy about? I've never heard of it before and I'm curious because I live in the Ozarks region of Missouri. Not to mention, I always need new books to read.

EDIT: I looked up the Ozark Trilogy on Barnes and Noble's site and they had it new, but it didn't give any description of it.

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Luke E.A. Lockhart - Aug 12, 2004 10:33 am (#230 of 938)

"Maybe guys don't find it as funny."

Yeah, that's the other thing. I don't like books where either gender is weaker than the other; I've never seen gender as a factor for characters at all. I think that people should just forget about what gender people are and write characters.

EDIT: But as I said, I love the setting of the Chanur books - as in, merchant ships traveling space picking up cargo. I've written stories about it, and tried to write a computer game about it (still working on that one). It's my favorite fantasy/sf setting for stories. Not Cherry's world in particular, but the freighter in space having adventures thing.

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Padfoot - Aug 12, 2004 11:15 am (#231 of 938)

Tom I like Dick Francis books too. I have several of them on my bookcase.

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Scarlet Seer - Aug 12, 2004 5:52 pm (#232 of 938)

For older HP fans, I'd recommend Katherine Kurtz's Deryni stories. They also feature a race of people that live alongside humans but posses great magical powers. They're really good, but considerably darker than Harry Potter; most of the books describe the persecution of the Deryni, and there are some graphic descriptions of medieval "justice." I also love Les Misérables by Victor Hugo.

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ShelterGirl - Aug 12, 2004 5:56 pm (#233 of 938)

I also love the Laurie R King "Holmes/Russell" books and recommend them highly to anyone who is fond of pastiches. Speaking of which, there was a great book called On Night's Shore, by Randall Silvis. It's a mystery in which Edgar Allan Poe is researching a murder/suicide in 1840 New York City. Anyone who loves mysteries should check out Val McDermid's books. They are very well written and can be genuinely creepy at times. The first one I read was A Place of Execution, and it was fantastic. I also liked the first two Ender books by Orson Scott Card, but lost interest as the series progressed. However, one of the scariest books I ever read was one of his. It was called Lost Boys, and it actually made me holler with shock.

That's it for now. I'll save the rest for later. Smile

Julie

EDIT: PS..I lied. Smile One of the BEST books ever was Boy's Life, by Robert R McCammon. I have re-read this book once a year since it was published. It's an amazing story about how a boy in Alabama in the 60's discovers what life really is about. It has mystery, and adventure, and music, and a lake monster, and a "dinosaur" on the loose. I can't say enough about this book, and it spurred the only fan letter I have ever written.

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T Brightwater - Aug 12, 2004 8:49 pm (#234 of 938)

virgoddess, the Ozark Trilogy is about twelve families of Ozarkers who leave Earth and settle another planet, more or less peacefully coexisting with each other and three other sapient species, at least until there's a breakdown of both the political and the magical systems that hold things together.

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Leila 2X4B - Aug 12, 2004 9:03 pm (#235 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
Am I the only one who recommends things written before the 1600's?

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TomProffitt - Aug 12, 2004 10:21 pm (#236 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
Beauty one of my favorites is The Art of War by Sun Tzu, c. 300 BC.

Principles still valid today, and applicable in things other that warfare.

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Leila 2X4B - Aug 12, 2004 10:45 pm (#237 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
Chaucer anyone? I also adore the Bhagavad Gita. That is a part of the Mahabarahta(which I know I misspelled). Indian poetry. It is beautiful, especially the ones about Shiva and Krishna. I am also fond of Milton. Goethe is a must read as is Gabriel Marquez. If you like the bizare, Jorge Louis Borges is quiet a find. Another modernest I enjoy is Samuel Beckett, "Waiting for Godot" and "Krapp's Last Tape".

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Phelim Mcintyre - Aug 13, 2004 5:54 am (#238 of 938)

T Brightwater, I don't actually like the Nightwatch. But I will also add "The Truth" for a great satire on the media - Rita Skeeter is an ameatur compared to some of the guys who work as the newspaper in this story.

Also, for people interested in a possible source for the name "Hogwarts". Get "The Complete Molesworth". Otherwise known as "The Curse of St Cuthberts" Molesworth is a third form pupil at an English Grammar school. The house Molesworth is in is called "Hogwarts". It is written by Geoffrey Willans and illustrated by Ronald Searle who also wrote and drew the St Trinians stories. Pah, Harry Potter is a beginner compared to these characters.

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Eponine - Aug 13, 2004 6:27 am (#239 of 938)

Sleeping Beauty, did you ever read Beckett's "Happy Days"? We had to read that in my studies in drama class in college, and we all got headaches from it.

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T Brightwater - Aug 13, 2004 6:43 am (#240 of 938)

Molesworth also refers to a good joke or trick as a "wizard wheeze," "wizard" being an adjective for something that is clever and highly-approved-of, at least by Molesworth.

I like the City Watch (it even has a werewolf in it!) and don't care much for the Rincewind books. Chacon à son goût. (did I get the right accent?) I agree with you about _Thief of Time_!

As for recommendations before 1600 - _Orlando Furioso_, Ludovico Ariosto, translated by Barbara Reynolds, published by Penguin. A true hoot. (You can skim the bits about the glorious House of Este, just think of them as literary commercials - or paid political ads.) Boccaccio's _Decameron_ (also in a Penguin edition), and the lais of Marie de France.

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Catherine - Aug 13, 2004 7:51 am (#241 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Heck, no, Leila! I'm right there with you.

I majored in medieval/Renaissence literature. I absolutely love Chaucer, and I really enjoyed "Troilus and Cressida." Don't bother with Shakespeare's version; Chaucer's is much better. I also laugh every time I read the prologue to "The Wife of Bath's Tale."

I really think that everyone should read Dante's Divine Comedy, and Milton's works. Paradise Lost is so amazing.

I can never decide which Shakespeare play is my favorite. As I get older, I appreciate "Antony and Cleopatra" much more than I did in my 20s. I still like "Measure for Measure" and "The Tempest" quite a bit. And of couse, there's "Hamlet."

I like John Donne's works, also.

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T Brightwater - Aug 13, 2004 10:10 am (#242 of 938)

Dante, yes!!! I love the Sayers translation, as much for her notes as anything - have you others to recommend?

I had an excerpt from "The Franklin's Tale" read at my wedding. It's hard for me to name a favorite, but it's probably "The Nun's Priest's Tale."

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Inappropriate Goat Charm - Aug 14, 2004 1:32 pm (#243 of 938)

For older readers I would recommend they read books by Carl Hiassan, including the newly released "Skinny Dip." If you are going to read one of the Dan Brown books everyone is reading, I would say go for the Da Vinci Code, because while both books have the exact same story, Code is much better. For younger readers, I always liked Interstellar Pig, which is about some little boy all alone on vacation with his family that plays a life-or-death board game with aliens. Also, do not listen to whoever said to read Borges, because all of his stories are incredibly self-centered and make no sense.

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Celestina W. - Aug 14, 2004 8:08 pm (#244 of 938)

Go Minnesota Twins!
I think I've got to be the only person on the planet who didn't really like The Da Vinci Code. I was pretty offended by it on a religious level, and it seemed like other than the plot twists to keep you hooked, there really wasn't much substance to it. Not much emotional depth at all, I thought.

On a more positive note, I'll second Barb's recommendation of Eragon. It was a fun read, and I'm looking forward to the sequel. I could see a few of the plot twists coming a mile away, but that didn't bother me too much. There are bits that reminded me of Tolkien, Robert Jordan, Anne McCaffrey, the Earthsea books, and the Dragonlance books, without really seeming like a rip-off of any of those. Unlike the few Dragonlance books I actually read, which seemed to me to be a disgustingly direct rip-off of Tolkien, but that's neither here nor there. Eragon was good, and I thought it was neat that some of the author's (apparent) influences were things I myself have read.

Currently, I'm four chapters into The Grapes of Wrath, and I'm sorry to say I think it's pretty darn boring so far. I mean, come on, there's three pages about a turtle crossing the road! I've seen the movie, so I know the basic plot, and I'm hoping the action picks up soon, otherwise this is going to be one tough book to slog through.

I could write much more about all of my favorite books, but that'll be an incredibly long post, so I think I'll save it for another time.

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Little Ginny - Aug 15, 2004 4:25 am (#245 of 938)

I had about thirty posts to catch up, so I'll now comment on things posted a while back.

I love to see so many Janeites here, though I really can't understand why you don't like Emma, which I like much better than Sense and Sensibility, but then, the main thing is that it's by Jane Austen, isn't it? I can only recommend Jane Austen and her time by Deidre LeFaye (sp?) which is a wonderful guide for those who don't know Austen and her work so well yet, and a great source of "background information" for the really obsessed.

Also, I can only second the fans of Sayers. Gaudy Night is one of my favourites as well. And A place of Execution was one of the best mysteries I ever read.

Someone said that Goethe is a must, and yes, he is, but his plays (if you read them at school) can get dull at some times. For beginners, I would recommend his poems, which are really great (at least in the original, I don't know about translations).

Oh, and for me, Tolkien IS a classic, and one of my most favourite authors ever.

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Madame Librarian - Aug 15, 2004 10:48 am (#246 of 938)

Little Ginny, I think Emma is the best Austen. At least it's my favorite. And Gaudy Night is my favorite Wimsey book, though Sayers's books seem to have a chronology that connects them all if you go in order, or at least do so for the ones leading up to Gaudy Night.

Ciao. Barb

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Chris. - Aug 15, 2004 6:59 pm (#247 of 938)

HBP: 16th July 2005: the most anticipated day in history
I'm going to start reading some older novels. Can anyone recommend some Shakespeare for a 14-year-old, that's fairly easy to understand?

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Madame Librarian - Aug 15, 2004 8:14 pm (#248 of 938)

Prongs, I wouldn't say they're the best, but many high schools have their freshman classes read either Julius Caesar and/or Romeo and Juliet.

Since you might be dealing with those in the next school year anyway, why not start with them? You are probably familiar enough with the plots so you won't be confused about what just happened as you read, you'll be able to focus on the wonderful language, which is a bit different than contemporary English, but worth getting into.

Ciao. Barb

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Ozymandias - Aug 15, 2004 8:20 pm (#249 of 938)

Nothing beside remains...
I would reccomend Othello. I read it in eighth grade, and fell in love with it.

Also, have any of the Jane Austen fans read Evelina by Frances Burney? It was one of the novels I studied in the 18th century lit class I took last semester, and according to my professor it had a huge impact on Austen's work. Just having read Pride and Prejudice once, I could see the influence. It's not as good as P&P in my opinion, but still quite a good read, and the descriptions of social customs of the time are fantastic.

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Leila 2X4B - Aug 15, 2004 8:44 pm (#250 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
I would recommend Taming of the Shrew or Twelfth Night or Tempest, that is is really good. Hamlet is ok. Romeo and Juliet of course. Richard the Third is good too. I also liked Julius Casaer and Antony and Cleopatra. These are all good to begin with. Every yougin is different though.

Macbeth, Titus Andronicus, Othello, Merchant of Venice should be tackled later.

His sonnets are good, but some include varies genders of beloveds depending on whether you find it appropriate.

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Recommended Reading (Post 251 to 300)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:34 am

Celestina W. - Aug 15, 2004 8:51 pm (#251 of 938)
Go Minnesota Twins!
I prefer Shakespeare's comedies; specifically, A Midsummer Night's Dream and Much Ado About Nothing are my favorites.

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Leila 2X4B - Aug 15, 2004 8:54 pm (#252 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
I forgot about those. How could I? I also am partial to Henry V and Love Labour's Lost. I enjoyed Winter's Tale too.

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Little Ginny - Aug 16, 2004 4:41 am (#253 of 938)

When having to read Macbeth at school (with my terrible English teacher) I discovered that it had some striking similarities with Harry Potter. There are prophecies in it, and the main topic (in my opinion, my teacher disagreed, he thinks the main topic is killing) is choicing. So I'd definitely recommend Macbeth for a Potterfan!

Madame Lib: I have read about all the Peter-Wimsey novels, and there really is a chronology, but I think it is not that much important, only those with Harriet Vane in it should be read in order ( Strong Poison- Have His Carcass- Gaudy Night- Busman's Honeymoon (those are the English titles, I think))

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Luke E.A. Lockhart - Aug 16, 2004 6:34 am (#254 of 938)

Read Hamlet - it's the first Shakespeare play I read, it's got lots of action to hold your attention if that's a problem for you, and although I won't say any Shakespeare is "easy to read", it should be easier than most. Great plotline too.

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Good Evans - Aug 16, 2004 12:10 pm (#255 of 938)

Practically perfect in every way
Prongs - do not read Coriolanus - dull dull dull but do read the merry wives of windsor or measure for measure - great morals and good humour not too hard going .

b
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Eponine - Aug 16, 2004 12:24 pm (#256 of 938)

I second Good Evans, Coriolanus is BORING!! I had to read it for my Shakespeare class in college, and I could barely get through it. I like Henry V a lot as well as Titus Andronicus. Much Ado About Nothing is great also.

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Padfoot - Aug 16, 2004 2:06 pm (#257 of 938)

I enjoyed reading Hamlet back in high school. My British Literature teacher was actually British. So she was able to show a class that had zero interest in Shakespeare that the man actually had a sense of humor. Who knew?

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Madame Librarian - Aug 16, 2004 3:57 pm (#258 of 938)

Little Ginny, that's what I was trying to say...the ones with Harriet have a chronology. But the others do suggest a Peter Wimsey who ages and grows more deliberate and mature. It's very subtle, and certainly doesn't require a reader to do them in order.
Ciao. Barb

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I Am Used Vlad - Aug 16, 2004 4:15 pm (#259 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
My Shakespeare recommendations are Macbeth, Othello and Hamlet. For some reason I like the Tragedies.

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RuthJ - Aug 16, 2004 4:53 pm (#260 of 938)

I agree with recommendations for Much Ado About Nothing, and I'm reading Julius Caesar now.

I don't know if this has already been mentioned (I'm new to this thread), but with the amount of sci-fi/fantasy readers here, I recommend the Dune saga. Somewhat hard to get through, especially for the under-13 crowd, but it's incredibly imaginative, with great imagery.

Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code has been mentioned, but I'll add that it's better if you have some knowledge of art history and of the Bible. His other books, though not as intellectual, are entertaining.

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T Brightwater - Aug 16, 2004 5:34 pm (#261 of 938)

I also really like Barry Hughart's books about Master Li and Number Ten Ox - "Bridge of Birds," "The Story of the Stone" and "Eight Skilled Gentlemen." (maybe there are others out by now.)

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Luke E.A. Lockhart - Aug 16, 2004 6:36 pm (#262 of 938)

Dune is good, so's Dune Messiah, the first sequel. The rest... not so great.

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virgoddess1313 - Aug 17, 2004 1:18 pm (#263 of 938)

I actually thought Shakespeare's King Lear was fairly good and I really don't like Shakespeare. We read it my senior year in my college English class.

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Madame Librarian - Aug 21, 2004 6:43 am (#264 of 938)

Hi, folks, I have to crow a bit.

I just bought a used book at our library book sale that I thought might be useful in my pursuit for world-class trivia facts and in offering insight to many elements of JKR's HP universe (as well as other fantasy/legend/lore stories).

It's Funk & Wagnalls Standard Dictionary of Folklore, Mythology and Legend. A big (as in takes two hand to lift off shelf) book with a very comprehensive approach, incrediby teeny type, illustrations of pertinent symbols, etc., etc.

The one I have is the 1972 edition and is very nice condition (they still made books well back then, and this is a library edition, a bit stronger, I think). It was marked $20, but I paid $10 because library staff members get book sale items for half price. Just out of curiosity, I checked amazon.com to see if it's still in print and what it costs. Wow. A used copy (no edition year given) that describes as though it's in similar condition to mine goes for between...$110-$145. The 2-volume, 1949 edition (the first maybe) goes from $250+! Yikes! What a deal.

I am thrilled, of course, but I do intend to use the book. I'm keeping it (as soon as I clear off a bunch of other things) on the shelf near my collection of HP books. Since this sits on a shelf sort of up and over the computer desk, I'll have to be careful pulling this heavy tome off to check something. I'd hate to smash my typing fingers. It'd probably destroy my computer, too. (Joking, I hope.)

Ciao. Barb

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Madame Librarian - Aug 21, 2004 4:56 pm (#265 of 938)

Here's a chuckle from that book I just bought (see post above this one). I was checking the table of contents and there in black and white was this listing:

Riddles--Potter

Whoa. How did they know? This book is a 1972 edition! Sense and logic took over when I realized that the section is about riddles (as in when is a door not a door) and it was written by someone named Potter (Charles Francis Potter, to be exact). Still, for a nano-second I really started to believe in time travel.

Aside from that, I am finding all sorts of good stuff that relates to HP. JKR really did some serious homework on folklore, legends and mythology. I don't want to quote at random (I'd have to quit my day job), but if a topic arises and there is some worthwhile information in here I'll be sure to share it.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Aug 22, 2004 12:38 pm (#266 of 938)

Celestina W - I had to review "The Da Vinci Code". Not a bad thriller, but historically, theologically and philisophically it falls down big time.

Clearwater - someone after my own heart. A fellow Sayers and Pratchett fan. I enjoy the Rincewind stuff because the unseen university is so like the university I went to (though mine was not as magical). But I do love the witches. Maskerade is fab. A phantom of the opera spoof. Spot the puns about Andrew Lloyd Webber, Rogers and Hammerstien, opera, Sondhiem and others. West musicals will never be the same. Also, in the run up to Christmas, I would advise people to read Hogfather. A great tonic to the Christmas decorations that have already gone up in a store near me (and it's only August!).

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Padfoot - Aug 24, 2004 12:04 pm (#267 of 938)

Barb, what a great find! A great resource at a great price. I remember finding some first edition Tom Clancy books at Goodwill. I paid $1 each!!!! I practically ran out of there before anyone could stop me and "adjust" the price.

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Madame Librarian - Aug 24, 2004 1:00 pm (#268 of 938)

Bravo, Padfoot! I suppose we could call library book sales and places like Goodwill...um...Recommended Shopping.

I come from a l-o-o-n-g tradition of never pay retail!

Ciao. Barb

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Hermy-own - Aug 25, 2004 9:44 am (#269 of 938)

S.P.R.W. Vice President = Ponine
I'm currently reading the first book of Maggie Furey's Shadowleague series.
Anyone else read it? That Lord Blade reminds me of Lord Voldermort...

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virgoddess1313 - Aug 25, 2004 8:29 pm (#270 of 938)

Just remembered another great children's book, The Boxcar Children. My mom read it to me and my brother when we were little and I loved it. I went and bought it today and finished reading it in less than an hour. I also read my first A Series of Unfortunate Events book (I think that is the name of the series). It was cute.. depressing, but cute. Obviously, I am a great fan of kids books (they are wonderful for a bit of light reading).

I know I'm going to think of a million more tonight, I'm in the sort of mood to look up all of my old favorites on Barnes and Noble's site.

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Eponine - Aug 25, 2004 8:53 pm (#271 of 938)

virogoddess, I love children's books. I have quite a collection. I want my kids (whenever I get around to having some) to have great books available to them just like I did, so I like to go to used book stores and buy the ones I used to read.

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RuthJ - Aug 25, 2004 9:20 pm (#272 of 938)

Oh, I loved The Boxcar Children. Still do, but I haven't read it in years. I was a huge fan of Nancy Drew, too. Are there any Eloise fans here? When I was little I wanted a pet like Skipperdee, until I discovered turtles are rather boring animals.

I read The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold last year. A chilling, emotionally exhausting story, one of those that stays with you for a long while.

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Eponine - Aug 25, 2004 9:22 pm (#273 of 938)

I love Eloise! I have all the books, but I didn't discover them until I was in college.

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Leila 2X4B - Aug 25, 2004 9:24 pm (#274 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
The Lovely Bones was terrible story. Not due to bad writing, but due to the fact that it is so terrible. It made me cry and the ending ticked me off. The book was well written and would recommend it too.

Leila

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Padfoot - Aug 26, 2004 8:36 am (#275 of 938)

Edited by Aug 26, 2004 8:36 am
Sara, I loved The Boxcar Children too! I have not even thought about that book in years. I loved books like that. Still do!

The Lovely Bones is an interesting book. Rather depressing, but interesting.

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Catherine - Aug 26, 2004 9:03 am (#276 of 938)

Canon Seeker
The Lovely Bones was a really good novel, but the story is every parent's nightmare.

I just finished The Dogs of Babel, and really enjoyed it.

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Classicsquid592 - Aug 26, 2004 9:18 pm (#277 of 938)

Has anyone read "The Shadow War Trilogy" ("Shadow Moon", "Shadow Dawn", and "Shadow Star") by George Lucas and Chris Claremont? It follows off of the Ron Howard film "Willow" but the series does not even compare with this film (even though you will have to see it to understand who any of the characters are). Within the first chapter, it becomes both darker and much larger in scale. It was a well written, epic series with many unexpected twists throughout.

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virgoddess1313 - Aug 26, 2004 9:34 pm (#278 of 938)

I usually re-read books multiple times, but I didn't do that with The Lovely Bones. RuthJ is right... it was chilling and very emotionally exhausting.I was very stressed out after reading it.

And speaking of re-reads, I finished up Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden the other day... excellent book. The Other Boelyn Girl by Phillipa Gregory is also wonderful.

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RuthJ - Aug 26, 2004 10:23 pm (#279 of 938)

A friend told me, after reading The Lovely Bones, that she couldn't wait to see it made into a movie. I disagreed, 100%. How horrific would it be, to see that kind of tragedy on screen? My own imagination was more than enough.

Other children's books that deserve mentioning: A Wrinkle in Time, Tom Sawyer, and To Kill a Mockingbird. That last one is usually classified as in the children/young adult section of libraries, but like Harry Potter, it has more depth--and more humor--than just a story about kids growing up.

Classicsquid, my cousin has wanted me to read The Shadow War books for ages. He read the books before seeing the movie, & said the books are enormously more enjoyable. Haven't gotten around to it yet, but it's on my list.

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Classicsquid592 - Aug 27, 2004 9:40 am (#280 of 938)

The books are much better than the movie, but I would have been immensely confused If I had not seen the movie first.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Aug 27, 2004 12:33 pm (#281 of 938)

A non fiction recommendation. Lance Armstrong's "It's not about the Bike"

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Classicsquid592 - Aug 28, 2004 4:40 pm (#282 of 938)

If you click on my icon, my bio includes a list of favorite authors.

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Celestina W. - Aug 28, 2004 8:38 pm (#283 of 938)

Go Minnesota Twins!
Edited by Aug 28, 2004 8:38 pm
RuthJ, To Kill a Mockingbird is a wonderful book. I don't think it should be considered a kids' book at all; everyone should read it.

I liked the Wrinkle in Time books pretty well, as I recall. It's been a really long time since I read them. I think A Swiftly Tilting Planet (Tilting? Turning? can't remember) was the best.

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Eponine - Aug 28, 2004 9:40 pm (#284 of 938)

I love To Kill A Mockingbird, but after I taught it to a group of sophomores, it will probably be a while before I pick it up again.

A Wrinkle in Time is a wonderful book as well. I remember doing a book report on it in 6th grade and thinking my classmates just didn't get it.

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ShelterGirl - Aug 29, 2004 6:47 am (#285 of 938)

My favorite book from childhood was Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O'Dell. Every time someone I know has a baby daughter, I purchase the hardcover of that book as a gift for them.

I also have very fond memories of reading all of the Tarzan books as a pre-teen.

My most guilty pleasure of all dating back to when I was 9 (er...1980, but who's counting...) is The Destroyer series by Warren Murphy. These are the books that the dreadful Remo Williams movie was based on, and I still shudder when I think of how they ruined the premise. The books are great fun, humorous, and they go down as easy as hot chocolate.

Julie

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Magical Llama - Aug 30, 2004 7:13 pm (#286 of 938)

My copy of Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell came in today. I will let you know how it is.

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Herm oh ninny - Aug 31, 2004 10:46 am (#287 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
I have to say that the book "Rebecca" by Daphne DuMaurier is incredible. I read it for my sophomore year term paper and have loved it ever since. Some other great books are: A Series of Unfortunate Events, Artemis Fowl, and I am in the middle of the book Eragon by Christopher Paolini and it is incredible. I also loved Lord of the Rings.

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Chris. - Aug 31, 2004 12:04 pm (#288 of 938)

HBP: 16th July 2005: the most anticipated day in history
Quick question: Do the "Series of Unfortunate Events" books have to be read in order?

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Herm oh ninny - Aug 31, 2004 4:20 pm (#289 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
Yes Prongs they definately need to be read in order. Also the unauthorized biography of Lemony Snicket also reveals a lot of clues and should be read after the 9th book.

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Madame Librarian - Aug 31, 2004 8:14 pm (#290 of 938)

M. Llama, I am on the waiting list for Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell. Please don't give anything away. I am looking forward to discovering all on my own. I'm almost sorry I read the long Time Magazine review, although that's how I heard about the book.

Ciao. Barb

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Little Ginny - Sep 2, 2004 11:26 am (#291 of 938)

I just finished North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell, and I liked it very much!! Mrs Gaskell was a friend of Charlotte Bronte, and wrote her novels at the same time as Charlotte Bronte (she also wrote a very interesting biongraphy about Charlotte Bronte) and within this novel, she describes the story of young Margaret Hale, who, in the midth of the 19th century, moves from the agricultural South to the industrial North of England, where she meets, among others the worker Nicholas Higgins and the mill-owner John Thornton, and has to form her own opinion on such things as wages and strikes.

After having read this book, I want to read other books by the author, but at the moment I am wating for my copy of The Princess Bride to arrive, which couldn't be delivered to my local bookstore as fast as I thought. If you want to order some foreign books in Germany, you sometimes have to be just patient!!

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Leila 2X4B - Sep 2, 2004 11:28 am (#292 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
I am reading The Bonesetter's Daughter, by Amy Tan. It is excellent.

Leila

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Catherine - Sep 2, 2004 1:15 pm (#293 of 938)

Canon Seeker
I almost hesitate to recommend this book, given how boring some folks found the grammar discussions on the chat thread, but I SO enjoyed Eats, Shoots, and Leaves by Lynn Truss.

For anyone who has an Inner Stickler, you will enjoy it. Her humor is wonderfully British, and I laughed out loud. I found it delightful.

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Dr Filibuster - Sep 2, 2004 1:33 pm (#294 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Catherine, did you have an American version of the book?

I'm just curious because there seems to be quite a few differences between British and American English. Or maybe it's the alternative spellings that make it feel like there are.

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I Am Used Vlad - Sep 2, 2004 2:35 pm (#295 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
Sue, this is from the Publisher's Note for the American version:

"Lynne Truss's Eats, Shoots & Leaves has been reprinted exactly as it was in its original British edition, complete with British examples, spellings and, yes, punctuation."

The books are the same.

Or is it "...and, yes, punctuation".

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Madame Librarian - Sep 2, 2004 3:37 pm (#296 of 938)

I think it's wonderful that every few dozen posts or so, when a new batch of members starts participating in this thread, that Lynn Truss's book is mentioned.

She actually shares some writerly characteristics with Jo. They are both clever, funny, serious, passionate about their topic, original, and willing to be in the public eye (i.e., they don't hide from their fans). I wonder if they ever get together for a chat and a cuppa.

Ciao. Barb

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Little Ginny - Sep 3, 2004 4:55 am (#297 of 938)

Sorry to be somewhat slow, but is this Lynn Truss-book a fictional book or rather something like Bill Bryson's Mother Tongue (which has already been discussed here, but in my opinion can't be recommended often enough)? I must confess that I have never heard about that book before, but what you say about it sounds interesting.

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Catherine - Sep 3, 2004 5:55 am (#298 of 938)

Canon Seeker
I would say that Eats, Shoots, and Leaves is a rant, a history of punctuation, editorial anecdotes, and a style manual all wrapped up in a very British package.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Sep 4, 2004 1:46 am (#299 of 938)

Eats, Shoots and Leaves is non-fiction. Yes, Little Ginny, it is similar to Bryson's Mother Tounge. There are other books out there including one with a foward by John Humphrey's - the BBC broadcaster.

To understand the differences between British, American, Australian, Canadian and other English dalaects try the Oxford Dictionary of World English.

But on another note... did you, like I did, find Shakespeare boring at school? The try "Exit Stage Right, Pursued by A Bear". I don't know the author and have probably got the grammar wrong not having the book infront of me but it is a great look at the English Bard's (Shakespeare's) works.

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Choices - Sep 4, 2004 6:00 pm (#300 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
OK, I admit I'm lazy and haven't read through all the previous posts to see if this book has been recommended already or not. I just found it recently at the library. It's by John Granger and it's called "Looking for God in Harry Potter" (with a comment in the front by our own Steve Vander Ark)

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Recommended Reading (Post 301 to 350)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:35 am

Steve Newton - Sep 7, 2004 10:57 am (#301 of 938)
Librarian
Some fantasy books/series/authors that I like and would recommend.

Glen Cook-Many good ones. The first three Black Company books. The follow-ups are, um, spotty. He also had the Garrett books. Sort of LOTR meets Sam Spade. Very funny, good mysteries, fully developed, if dark, world. And the old Dread Empire series.

Robert Asprin-the Myth books. Very funny. Another Fine Myth is the best.

David Gemmell-Some of his early stuff is classic. 'Knights of Dark Renown' and 'Morningstar'.

My two favorite books of all time are 'To Kill a Mockingbird' and 'Catch 22.' Dumas' 'The Count of Monte Cristo' is a fabulous read. It is a tad long.

I must stop. I am a librarian after all.

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Padfoot - Sep 8, 2004 12:02 pm (#302 of 938)

I am currently reading Red Rabbit by Tom Clancy and enjoying it. Don't know if there are any other fans of his here. Probably are. Although if you have never read his books, they are extremely detailed with a lot of military jargon. My two favorites of his are: Without Remorse and The Hunt for Red October.

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TomProffitt - Sep 8, 2004 5:29 pm (#303 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
Steve, if you like Glen Cook try Tanya Huff. I actually like Cook's science fiction better than his fantasy, but it's more the worlds he creates than his stories.

Has anyone mentioned Terry Goodkind on this thread? I like his stuff, some books are better than others, but it is good stuff.

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Steve Newton - Sep 9, 2004 9:00 am (#304 of 938)

Librarian
TomProffitt, thanks for the tip. I just ordered 'Child of the Grove' from my library. It was the only one by her that was listed.

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TomProffitt - Sep 9, 2004 3:59 pm (#305 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
I haven't actually tried that one yet. I love her Summon the Keeper series. I'm reading it for the third or forth time now. (Just got it this year)

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Steve Newton - Sep 10, 2004 7:51 am (#306 of 938)

Librarian
TomProffitt, it was the only one in the system.

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Steve Newton - Sep 17, 2004 12:20 pm (#307 of 938)

Librarian
Does anyone read Jim Butcher's Harry Dresden books?

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Accio Book Six - Sep 19, 2004 7:36 pm (#308 of 938)

It's been a while for me on these boards so I haven't read EVERY page, but I dont' think I've read any reccomendations for the His Dark Materials trilogy...

ATTENTION-- The series that will FILL YOU HARRY POTTER VOID is called "His Dark Materials" by Philip Pullman. Seriously... buy these books. They're amazing. Anyone who loves Harry Potter will lose themselves in these books.

The three books that will make the wait for book 6 tolerable are called:

"The Golden Compass" "The Subtle Knife" and "The Amber Spyglass"

so I expect all of you to be trotting along to your local book emporium to check out my reccomendations Smile

ps. I'm also reading the Artemis Fowl books right now, which are good, but don't rival His Dark Materials or Harry Potter.

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ShelterGirl - Sep 20, 2004 10:10 am (#309 of 938)

I've finally bitten the bullet and purchased Jonathan Strange & Mr. Morrell.

I started it last night. One of my friends said it took a lot for him to get into it. After reading several chapters it's clear he has never read Austen.

Anyway, so far so good. Has anyone finished it yet?

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Little Ginny - Sep 20, 2004 11:36 am (#310 of 938)

Oh, yes, can anybody comment upon Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell ?

I'm trying to find out whether I should order it. As it sometimes takes ages to order British books from Germany this has to be very carefully planned.

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Doxy Bowtruckle - Sep 20, 2004 2:00 pm (#311 of 938)

I have read Philip Pullmans Dark Materials and was totally blown away by them.

I would love to have a Daemon like Pantalaimon just like the main character Lyra. Pan (for short) takes on various forms throughout the books and finally settles on one true form near the end.

It is set in Oxford around the colleges and universities, but is set in Lyra's time line, who then manages to cross over to other times also set in Oxford and other far away places.

I was so hooked on this that my partner and I recently went up to Oxford on a pilgrimage to see the Botanical Gardens and the colleges.

Well worth a read. Smile

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Accio Book Six - Sep 22, 2004 10:28 pm (#312 of 938)

Yes! Another Dark Materials fan! Except she doesn't jump timelines, she jumps worlds. the theory is that there are infinite amounts of universes all on top of eachother, each different from the next, and there's a way to jump between them. It's sort of like an RPG, actually! Like, all of the world's mana (not called mana in the book) is depleting... and there's the quest to save everything...

Read it and find out guys, seriously.

oh, and artemis fowl is getting better. it's actually pretty good.

EDIT: That's so cool about the botanical gardens! Make sure you sit on that bench if it actually exists!

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Doxy Bowtruckle - Sep 24, 2004 4:33 am (#313 of 938)

The bench we did find and sat on was pictured in the made up post card in the book Lyras Oxford (PP), (David Fickling Books 2003) So not really sure if it was the right one, knowing my luck, earwax!

We also saw the avenue of Hornbeam Trees on Sunderland Avenue and Mary Malones house, which you can find on the map.

When we were at the Botanical Gardens, there was a really unusal but beautiful cat which kept hovering around the bench, made me think of Pan and Lyra waiting for Will to meet them again on next Mid Summers Day at Midday.

I just wish that i could go and see some of things that are mentioned in the HP books. Kings Cross doesn't appeal to me that much!

To midsummers day and September 1st, maybe i shall do both next year!

DoxyB x

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El Cronista de Salem - Sep 26, 2004 10:23 am (#314 of 938)

we commented this book the other day in the Parvati Patil post.

"Life of Pi", of... ¿Yann Matel?

It is a WONDERFUL book. It is very special... Is difficult to describe. Hm... very difficult. Maybe you will need patience at the begining of the book. personally, i dont like NOTHING give a synopsis of a book, because it describes the first 100 pages, and i want the the book would be a surprise from the 1st page.

now i am reading 1984, of george orwell... i am enjoying a lot. but as i haven't finished, i cant give you my last opinion. but i read "Farm.... revelation?" (i dont know the title in english) and it was great.

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TomProffitt - Sep 27, 2004 3:41 pm (#315 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
"Animal Farm"

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Madame Librarian - Sep 27, 2004 9:13 pm (#316 of 938)

The Life of Pi was written by Yan Martel. Great book. Very unusual premise, smooth reading (i.e., not dense), superb adventure story (think "Survival" or "Lifeboat") and incredibly thought provoking. And, ala The French Lieutenant's Woman, you get to pick your ending...sort of.

Ciao. Barb

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Julia. - Sep 28, 2004 5:55 am (#317 of 938)

74% obsessed! Uconn Jew Crew says: is it August yet?
Merlin's beard, I hated Animal farm, but that could have been because I was forced to read it by an evil high school English teacher, who insisted we spend a month and a half on it learning nothing, and making sure our paragraphs all had three sentences.
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timrew - Sep 28, 2004 2:53 pm (#318 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Like all the great writers in history, whose paragraphs had three sentences - not!

Teachers like that (who assume that they are right, and everyone else is wrong) should be barred from the teaching profession. I understand your hatred of Animal Farm, Julia, even though it is a wonderful book; and an indictment of all political systems (not just Communist ones!).

Leave it a few years, until the memory of 'Miss Snape' recedes, and then try reading it again.

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Classicsquid592 - Oct 3, 2004 10:58 am (#319 of 938)

"ATTENTION-- The series that will FILL YOU HARRY POTTER VOID is called "His Dark Materials" by Philip Pullman. Seriously... buy these books. They're amazing. Anyone who loves Harry Potter will lose themselves in these books."

Accio- I respectfully disagree, however because my complaint with the series you mention would bring the conversation to an argument of philosophy I will not pursue the argument any further. Anyone who is a fan of these novels, by all means keep reading them. However I do not think that there should be any comparison with Harry Potter in discussing these books. I do not speak to offend, I disagree with the author in terms of philosophy. I say nothing negative about the quality of the books themselves and admit that I oft recommend books with which I disagree and even with these novels I will admit that they are indeed quite well written. I simply would not compare them with Harry Potter.

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Aud Duck - Oct 3, 2004 1:47 pm (#320 of 938)

"I know I have to beat time when I learn Music." "Ahh, that accounts for it. He won't stand beating."--Alice in Wonderland
I wasn't all that impressed by His Dark Materials, either. Well, I was until the end. That was really disappointing.

I really like The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, A Wrinkle in Time By Madeleine L'Engle, and A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket. You have to be prepared for the Snicket books to be dumb, but I, personally, like them for that. Candide is amusing in the same way, though it is probably done better. My favourite author is E.M. Forster. Literary, but fairly easy to read. My favourite was Howard's End, but A Passage to India is really good, too.

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timrew - Oct 3, 2004 2:16 pm (#321 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Nope, Philip Pullman is an author I could not get into at all. In fact, I got to page 34 of "Northern Lights", at the start of the, "Lyra's Jordan" chapter, before I put down the book in despair.

I'm afraid it just bored me to death.

So, if anyone in the UK wants a free copy of, "Northern Lights", pristine condition, almost unread........just let me know.....

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T Brightwater - Oct 3, 2004 9:14 pm (#322 of 938)

I liked _His Dark Materials_; I've even re-read it (once) but I didn't think it was nearly as good as HP. Interesting that the Spectres in HDM are a lot like Dementors; I think the Spectres may also be embodiments of depression.

I don't usually care for appropriations of other peoples' characters, but I really like Laurie R. King's Sherlock Holmes & Mary Russell mysteries - they're not pastiches of Conan Doyle, and they're good stories in their own right, especially the most recent one, _Justice Hall_. I advise reading them in order, however: _The Beekeeper's Apprentice_, _A Monstrous Regiment of Women_, _A Letter of Mary_, _The Moor_, _O Jerusalem_, and _Justice Hall_.

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Accio Book Six - Oct 4, 2004 12:51 pm (#323 of 938)

If you ask me, you can't give an opinion on a book that you haven't finished. I mean, books are meant to be enjoyed as a whole, not just 30 pages. Maybe if you had kept reading until her journey began you'd have a different opinion.

Just do me a favour, people, if you start a book, finish it. A lot of the time you'll never know what you're missing if you just give up and you'll probably never read it again. If you don't want to read it, just don't start it, because starting and stopping will just turn you off of it even more. I can't tell you how many of my friends have started reading harry potter and stopped before he even got to school because they said it was boring, and now it's IMPOSSIBLE to get them to pick it back up again.

OH, and everyone should read Timothy Findley. All of his books are great, but my favourite is 'Not Wanted on the Voyage'. But once again, it starts slow but gets amazing, so all of you people who get bored easily, just do me a favour and don't pick it up, cuz maybe if you don't now, you will eventually.

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timrew - Oct 4, 2004 3:45 pm (#324 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
I've only put two books down as unreadable in my life. One was brought out, I think as a rival to LOTR, and it was called "The Worm Oroboruos". I forget who the author was, but I don't want to know anyway; and the other was Philip Pullman's, "Northern Lights".

It really takes a lot for me to put a book down part read - I love reading. But I found these two books so stultifyingly boring that I really could go no further. To suggest that I plod on to the end of either of them is the same as suggesting I iron my hands.

Unless an author can grip you in the first sentence of a book, then he/she is a poor writer indeed! Only my two knuts, but I have no intention of reading either of these dire books again.

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Madame Librarian - Oct 4, 2004 3:54 pm (#325 of 938)

Accio Book Six, oh dear, I beg to differ. As an avid reader and a librarian, I have come to the conclusion that life's too short and there are way too many wonderful books (wonderful to me, that is) to keep on with a book that is just not your cup of tea. I used to feel otherwise, but I discovered that finishing a book that was not enjoyable put me in a cranky mood. And, as much as I may adore HP, I cannot browbeat someone into liking it. In my job my opinion is often asked and I'm approached by library patrons all the time for recommendations. I have learned to very open and honest in my little mini-book chats with others, and certainly not to take offence when someone has different reading tastes than I.

Now, I agree that one should stick with something a teensy bit and give it a chance. Although, there are those books that one knows immediately with the first page will just not suit. And, I have no problem with people expressing (politely) their opinion of a book regardless of whether they finished it or not. That's what it is--just one person's opinion. I would indeed have a problem if that same person who just read one page or ten pages were to write a full-fledged review or go on and on about how awful it was. No, I don't approve of that at all.

The huge fun of this Forum is enhanced by the atmosphere of friendly debate, the agreeing to disagree, the sharing of opinions, the opening of our eyes to new ideas, even ones we may end up rejecting. If everybody liked the same thing, life would be a bit dull. As they say in the ice cream businsess, that's why there are 31 flavors.

Ciao. Barb

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timrew - Oct 4, 2004 4:24 pm (#326 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Okay, Barb, I guess I came on a bit strong there! Sorry!

But, I really did try to get into both books. After all, I had paid good money for them! (There, I should have joined a library after all!)

Another book I did finish and found very disappointing was "Artemis Fowl". I think at the the time I was taken in by all the "better than Harry Potter" hype. It wasn't. I won't be re-reading it or any further books in the series.....

But I did recently finish re-reading, "The Once And Future King" by T. H. White and found it as excellent as when I first read it about thirty years ago. And if anyone says that they thought it was the worst book they've ever read.......I promise not to be upset at all!

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Aud Duck - Oct 4, 2004 5:28 pm (#327 of 938)

"I know I have to beat time when I learn Music." "Ahh, that accounts for it. He won't stand beating."--Alice in Wonderland
I was disappointed in Artemis Fowl as well, but the second in the series is far better than the first. I'm not necessarily reccomending it. I don't really think it's worth seeking out. But that is probably where all of the positive reviews come from. I think the main improvement is the dialogue. That always seemed unnatural to me in the first.

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TomProffitt - Oct 4, 2004 5:45 pm (#328 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
You can't argue taste.

I put up a fairly long list of some of my favorite authors and I was quite surprised that no one agreed with any of my choices.

I can't understand why anyone would read Jane Austen, but she seems to be quite popular with Harry readers. On the other hand I love Jack McDevitt's work, his plots are as rich JKR's, but no one here seems to have heard of him.

I read a lot. I try a lot of quite different stuff. I read and enjoyed Clancy and W.E.B. Griffin until I realized they were using the same plot and characters all of the time. By the way, Anne McCaffery does the same thing (albeit, with quite a different plot and characters, but still, repetitious).

No one is going to like all the same stuff. I have learned to appreciate those rare moments when I find people who have similar tastes to my own, rather than wallow in despair when people I like find my tastes don't suit them.

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Leila 2X4B - Oct 4, 2004 6:42 pm (#329 of 938)

I'd be smegged off. I'd be mad as hell, man. If some git in a white coat designed me to croak just so that he could sell his new android with go-faster stripes.
The main reason I have yet to agree with you Tom is, sans Art of War, I have yet to read one of the books you have listed.

Leila

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TomProffitt - Oct 4, 2004 6:55 pm (#330 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
Leila, I learned a long time ago that my tastes are somewhat unique.

I don't feel a need for people to agree with me. I appreciate people who try to understand where I am coming from, just as I strive to understand the views of other people. If people can understand why I believe something and still feel I'm wrong, I'm okay with that. I just don't want to be one of those people that proclaims "right, wrong, and truth" without trying to understand all of the arguments.

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Madame Librarian - Oct 4, 2004 7:53 pm (#331 of 938)

Golly, tim, I hope you didn't think I was tsk tsk-ing anyone. We librarians have to be careful about that. Too many people think that's all we do anyway.

This reminds me of an idea I had for a library promotion. A few years ago I did one called "Thanks for the Memories" where we had parons fill out slip with a brief blurb about the book they loved most. The responses were great. I edited the piece and created a hand-out. People really liked it. They said it brought back lots of memories of their favorite books. So, I thought next I should do one and ask for people to write up a short paragraph on their least favorite book. Now that would be really fun.

Ciao. Barb

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Catherine - Oct 5, 2004 7:49 am (#332 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Barb,

I didn't think you were "tisking" at all. I agree with you about feeling "ok" with putting down a book that isn't one's "cup of tea!"

Life is too short to read bad books that do not bring you pleasure. Now, I find different kinds of pleasure in different books, but if reading a certain book leaves you empty, then by all means put it down and pick up another one.

I myself will "slog" through books I don't really like if I think there might be a payoff in the end. But when teaching high-school in which I encountered many "non-readers," I always told them for their "outside" reading that if they hated it, find something else. The important thing to me was that they not stop reading, but make another selection to continue reading. My students were always surprised that I gave them "permission" to not finish a book. Keep in mind this was for their outside reading, and reading for their papers!

People are so busy today and have less leisure time than ever before. Kids are so overscheduled, and life can be hectic. Finding refuge in a good book is one of life's greatest pleasures, and I think it's fine if people don't want to spend their free time with a book that they do not enjoy.

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Classicsquid592 - Oct 5, 2004 3:39 pm (#333 of 938)

Aud Duck: Were you comparing Voltaire to Lemony Snicket? I have never quite seen the "Unfortunate Events Books" put on quite on the same level with "Candide". The thought is somewhat amusing, however the adjective "dumb" makes me think that there must be another book with the same title. Sorry, if there is, I must warn you that I very rarely read current literature.

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Rex Jones - Oct 10, 2004 1:35 pm (#334 of 938)

This is a list of my favorite books beside Harry and LOTR

1. The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin. Very funny and puzzle-like mystery. I LOVE this book!

2. Cirque du Freak, Vampire's Assistant and Tunnels of Blood by Darren Shan. VERY cool vampire books, that are recommended by JKR herself. Beware:The other books in the series suck!

3. A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare. Classic tale, and Shakespeare's best.
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Madame Librarian - Oct 12, 2004 9:24 am (#335 of 938)

I also posted this on the HP in Pop Culture thread:

I am currently reading Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke (Bloomsbury, 2004), but happened upon this review in the NY Times Book Review section of 9/5/2004 (yes, I'm a bit behind on my review reading...tsk, tsk). I'll quote the first paragraph (the heading is "Hogwarts for Grown-Ups").

"There is a great deal of magic in books nowadays," Mr. Norrell says. He's right. The publishing world has been under a weird enchantment since She-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named (but her initials are J.K.R.) came out with the first Harry Potter novel....

[The review is written by Gregory Maguire who wrote Wicked: the Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West and most recently, Mirror Mirror.]

BTW-I'm nearly half way through the book (it's 782 pages!), and though it's not quite a page-turner, I'm really enjoying it.

Ciao. Barb

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T Brightwater - Oct 13, 2004 6:52 am (#336 of 938)

Tom, have you read anything by Eric Frank Russell? I think you'd like him a lot. Unfortunately I'm having a bad memory day and can't remember titles, but I think two of them were _Six Worlds Yonder_ and _The Space Willies_; he also wrote a lot of short stories. Hilarious!

Timrew, I had a friend who recommended E. R. Eddison (_The Worm Ouroboros_) so highly that I made myself read all of his books - and I wish I'd bailed out like you did.

I also read the whole E. E."Doc" Smith "Lensman" series, and later re-read them just because I couldn't believe they were really as awful as I remembered them. They were.

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Steve Newton - Oct 13, 2004 7:21 am (#337 of 938)

Librarian
A good read, and another coming of age story, are the Chronicle of Prydain by Lloyd Alexander. (The Book of Three, The Castle of LLyr, The Black Cauldron, Taran Wanderer, The High King). This list is from memory and may be out of order, but, I think that I got the titles right. The series starts off as a children's series but matures well. Published in the late 60s.

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Amilia Smith - Oct 14, 2004 1:49 pm (#338 of 938)

I second the recommendation of the Prydain Cycle. I think it is based on Welsh mythology, but could be wrong. I recently recommended this series to a friend, and he is excited enough about these books that he has been calling me from California nightly to update me on his progress.

I would also recommend Alexander's Westmark Trilogy (Westmark, The Kestral, The Beggar Queen). These are books that grabbed me with the first sentence, which was startling and unexpected every time. If I remember correctly, the first sentence of Westmark was, "Theo, by occupation, was a devil." Once you read a little further, you discover that he is a printer's devil, or apprentice.

My latest discovery is The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde. It is laugh out loud funny with plenty of action thrown in. One of the funnest parts for me was the names Fforde has come up with. The heroine is Thursday Next. The evil arch-villian is Archeon Hades (who has a brother named Styx). Thursday is a literary detective. Her boss's name is Victor Analogy. The big boss over the whole office, a weak and ineffective man, is named Braxton Hicks. There are identical twin brothers who work in her office named Jeff and Geoff Forty. I could go on and on about the names, but I will leave some of them for you to discover on your own. I highly recommend this book, especially to readers (which everyone here seems to be), as it is full of literary allusions that you have to be literate to get.

Mills.

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Albus Glumbumble - Oct 31, 2004 9:46 am (#339 of 938)

1st Class Melancholy - Inducing Treacle Producer
Here's some of the best books out there apart from the HP series, in my opinion:

Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" trilogy is one of the best stories of the last century, read the books and love them.

The Artemis Fowl books by Eoin Colfer mightn't exactly change your outlook on life or anything, but the three so far are really excellent, clever reads. I've got three of them signed, too Wink

Needless to say, the Lord of the Rings trilogy from Tolkien.

Terry Pratchett's Discworld series are the funniest books out there, especially the City Watch ones.

I found Alexandre Dumas' Three Musketeers and Count of Monte Cristo surprisingly good. Monte Cristo is a bit slow, however.

At the moment I'm reading Lian Hearn's Tales of the Otori trilogy, which are pretty good books, too, for young adults.

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Elanor - Oct 31, 2004 3:30 pm (#340 of 938)

Albus, if you liked the Three Musketeers, you will like "20 years later" which is its sequel (Sorry, I don't know exactly how it was translated in English; the real title is "Vingt ans après"). It is brilliant and you will find out that Milady's son would have done well in Slytherin too...

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SHEla WOLFsbane - Nov 6, 2004 5:08 am (#341 of 938)


Whew* I had a lot to catch up on. I've got a list of books to read now though. Thanks all!

Working backwards, Tom: I just picked up Art of War. Haven't got around to reading it yet, I'm working my way through Sense, and Sensibliliy.

I love fantasy books, but I'm trying to read at least one 'classic' or non fiction for every two fantasy books I read.

I used to hate reading! Truly! If a book didn't get my attention in the first page, I was out of there. Then I went to flipping through it if it didn't grab my attention, figuring if it did later in the book, I'd give it a try. Some times that worked, some times it didn't. I had an English teacher in High School, who told us if we got to a slow part of the book, and felt like we couldn't take any more of it, to skip that part. A paragraph or two, or maybe even a page- until it picks up- just so we know it will. Read until our interest is peaked again, then go back over the part we missed. It worked great for me. I still use it to this day if need be. I read for fun, if a book isn't fun, or relaxing, I have no probs putting it down. Especially if I'm still not interested after those 'tricks' and reading *gasp* the last page.

Anyway, sorry about that. Okay, I'm not going to recommend any fantasy books this time, there are just too many that I have enjoyed. But I will second, or third, or what ever it turns out to be, the 'votes' for Steinbeck. Also Ray Bradbury. I have not read a lot of his works, but what I have read has drawn me in.

I may have recommended this one before, but since I just got done re reading Where the Red Fern Grows after 12+ years, and found that it still made me cry, and laugh... I have to recommend it again. Wonderful book for all ages- though, I don't suggest reading it out loud...

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Madame Librarian - Nov 6, 2004 6:54 am (#342 of 938)

Oh, dear, Where the Red Fern Grows is on our library's list of Best Books to Read Aloud with the Family.

My son was in 5th grade (age 10). He arrives home from school one day with a look on his face that spelled 'trouble.' He looked so horribly upset, with tears brimming in his eyes. My instant reaction was a bully incident at recess or being unfairly sent to the principal's office. He wouldn't say what's wrong. All he could mumble was, "I can't talk about it now." He went directly to his room and shut the door. I didn't here a sound from him for 2 hours. I peeked in and he was buried under his covers with a pillow over his head. I thought maybe he was sobbing.

When he emerged from his room, he was calmer, but very, very serious looking. I prepared myself for the worst. Here's what he told me:

"Mom, you know how Ms. Schlecker [his teacher] likes to read aloud with us? Well, we just finished this book, Where the Red Fern Grows. Mom, everyone...everyone is class was crying, even Ms. Schlecker! It was so sad. I had to come home and cry some more. I just loved that book! It's the best we ever read together."

Relieved? Me? Yes, but the kid nearly had me sobbing, too, at that point, and I hadn't even read the book!

So, there's a different take on things. As we know from our HP obssession, sometimes the sad parts are the best parts.

Ciao. Barb

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SHEla WOLFsbane - Nov 6, 2004 9:37 pm (#343 of 938)

Madame Librarian, My first experience with Where the Red Fern Grows was much the same as your sons. Our 6th grade teacher Mrs. Bejin read it out loud to us. My reaction was much the same as your sons also. (As was Mrs. Bejin's) I think that was the first book I talked my Mom into reading. She cried too. The only reason I didn't recommend reading it out loud is because it's kind of hard to see the words with tears in my eyes, and to talk past the lump in my throat. (It does kind of ruin the flow when I have to stop because I simply can't see the words any more) I DO think that it is a great family book, and that all could, and would enjoy it! Just think having some one to hand the book off to when you can no longer read past the lump would be a good idea if it's going to be read out loud.

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Little Ginny - Dec 12, 2004 7:41 am (#344 of 938)

I have just finished the Thursday Next series by Jasper Fforde, and I liked it. The first volume is The Eyre Affaire, followed by Lost in a Good Book and The Well of Lost Plots.

If you like a book about a 1985 different from ours, plus an exciting adventure, plus some witty and funny allusions to literature, you might like these books.

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Aud Duck - Dec 12, 2004 10:01 am (#345 of 938)

"I know I have to beat time when I learn Music." "Ahh, that accounts for it. He won't stand beating."--Alice in Wonderland
Classicsquid: Yes, I was comparing the Snicket books to Candide. They are in the same genre in that they are both very silly satires that derive their humour from the sheer preposterousness of the events they relate. I was not, however, suggesting, that the Snicket books are as good as Candide.

I recently finished the first two books to Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and have, so far, been very pleased with the series. I also enjoyed Once on a Time by A.A. Milne and Don Qixote de la Mancha.

Hmmm. I think that that officially makes my list include only two books that aren't silly satires. I should probably branch out a bit.

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Amilia Smith - Dec 12, 2004 3:07 pm (#346 of 938)

To add to Little Ginny's list, the fourth book in the Thursday Next series is Something Rotten. And next year we can expect The Big Over Easy from Jasper Fforde, which is to be the first book in the Jack Spratt detective series, Nursery Crime.

Sorry. I couldn't resist. I have also discovered these books recently and become something of a Fforde ffan.

Mills.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Dec 28, 2004 4:23 am (#347 of 938)

Two to read if you can get hold of them. Both by John Masefield, a contempary to J R R Tolkien and C S Lewis, and a Poet Lauriate here in the UK. They are called "The Midnight Folk" and "The Box of Delights". Superb books about magic which I am sure J K Rowling would have come across.

But on the Dark Materials trilogy - as someone who read all three books I would recommend the first two but not the last one. The polemic gets in the way of the story. Not a good thing.

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Veritaserum - Dec 28, 2004 10:13 am (#348 of 938)

Go Jays!
I third the Thursday Next suggestion. Very highly recommended, for all those who enjoy books and strange bizzarity.

And having recently discovered the Hitchhikers' Guide series, I greatly enjoy those too, and am terribly excited for the movie.

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Celestina W. - Dec 30, 2004 9:46 pm (#349 of 938)

Go Minnesota Twins!
I very strongly recommend A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith. I absolutely loved this book. To summarize, it's the story of a girl growing up in Brooklyn in the early 20th century, but really, the book is so much more than that. It's one of the most honest, emotional things I've ever read. I cried, several times (and that's coming from someone who didn't even shed a tear when Sirius died, even though he was one of my favorite characters). There are parts of this book that I felt could have been written about me. I know I'm not doing a good job of describing it, and you might be skeptical, but trust me, read A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and you won't regret it.

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T Brightwater - Dec 31, 2004 5:43 pm (#350 of 938)

Thanks to those who recommended _Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell_; I got it for Christmas and I love it, but I sure hope Jo doesn't leave us hanging the way Susanna Clarke did.

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Recommended Reading (Post 351 to 400)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:37 am

Saralinda Again - Jan 5, 2005 11:35 am (#351 of 938)
My Patronus is a Crumple-Horn Snorkack
It's great to see other fans of the Hitchhiker's Guide series here. I never read Where the Red Fern Grows but only last night someone at work recommended it to me. Obviously it goes on the list.

For grownups who like history, science, and science fiction with a big helping of humor, I recommend Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon. It is not a kids' book, on any level -- it's densely written and may be tough going for the first few pages -- but Whoo what a read! He's now written a three volume prequel to it, set in the late 1600s and early 1700s.

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Veritaserum - Jan 5, 2005 4:37 pm (#352 of 938)

Go Jays!
I'm reading The Three Musketeers right now and am really enjoying it. I thought it would be dense and hard to get through, but it's actually quite understandable and action-packed.
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Aud Duck - Jan 17, 2005 12:12 pm (#353 of 938)

"I know I have to beat time when I learn Music." "Ahh, that accounts for it. He won't stand beating."--Alice in Wonderland
I just finished Mostly Harmless, the last in Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. I don't remember who reccommended this, but I'm seconding whoever it was. Admittedly, the first couple are much better than the last ones, but they were all worth reading.

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Catherine - Jan 17, 2005 4:11 pm (#354 of 938)

Canon Seeker
I've enjoyed reading Middlesex, which won a Pulitzer, and I really liked The Time Traveler's Wife.

And, as it's known that I am a dog nut here on the Forum, I really, really enjoyed The Dogs of Babel.

Happy reading.

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mollis - Jan 20, 2005 11:26 am (#355 of 938)

Edited by Jan 20, 2005 10:27 am
Ohhh, Catherine! I read The Time Traveler's Wife a couple of months ago. It was a wonderful book! Very intriguing.

I just picked up a couple of books last night that have been recommended here: The Once and Future King and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I love getting new books and can't wait to start these.

One book I read a while back was The Dante Club . Very good, but not for the the young or squimish. Deals with a group of literary figures that a doing the english translation of Dante's Divine Comedy and then someone begins murdering people in the style of the various levels of hell. A fairly basic knowledge of Dante's book is most helpful when reading this one. Sorry, I don't remember the author's name, but it should be with the new paperbacks at your local bookstore.

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Veritaserum - Jan 20, 2005 4:11 pm (#356 of 938)

Go Jays!
It's Matthew Pearl, mollis. I almost bought that the other day and I do plan to read it sometime.

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Chemyst - Feb 2, 2005 4:09 pm (#357 of 938)

"Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up." A.A. Milne
On the Chat thread, From Venus asked about books that would help keep her grandkid's love of reading alive. I thought this would be a more appropriate place to answer since I wanted to post a link that is absolutely custom-made for her question.
Here is a copied and pasted excerpt from what Jim Trelease says about Harry Potter:

How is Harry Potter different from other "series" books?
There are two kinds of series books:
the quick and easy commercial kind, like: Nancy Drew, Goosebumps, and The Baby-Sitters Club; the more sophisticated series, like: Cleary's Ramona books, Lewis' The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe, Banks' The Indian in the Cupboard, and Rowling's Harry Potter.
The quick and easy series are often mass-produced, sometimes written by more than one author, and churned out at a pace of more than one a year; the more sophisticated series are always written by one person, published a year or more apart, and are characterized by richer text, plot, and characterization.
Along with its excellent imagery, what especially sets Harry Potter books apart from nearly all other series books is the amount of text. Consuming that many words, students are getting prodigiously better at reading — many for the first time, and enjoying it.

From Venus had mentioned Goosebumps and on this page there is a chart that compares word counts. Just a teaser– Goosebumps averaged 8 words per sentence while GoF averaged 13! (highlight)
The home page for Trelease On Reading leads to a lot of information about child-friendly books.

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Denise P. - Feb 2, 2005 4:17 pm (#358 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
The Magic Treehouse series of books is a good one to spark an interest in reading.

With my now almost 11 year old and my almost 8 year old, I started getting them Illustrated Children's Classics, my local bookstore has them for about $3 each. The 11 year old has read many, many classics this way. Yes, they are abridged and have pictures but they still get the basic story and it sparked his interest in reading. My 7 year old (will be 8 in about a month) read Treasure Island about 6 months ago using this version. I really like these. Once they are older, I am hoping they will pick up the full version to read.

My almost 12 year old recommends the Wayside School Series, I think there are maybe 3.

Charlie and The Chocolate Factory is good, Trumpet of the Swan, Stuart Little, The Borrowers, the Mouse and the Motorcycle books... There are a lot of good books. If you are stuck, ask the clerk in the store or talk to a librarian.

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Catherine - Feb 2, 2005 5:19 pm (#359 of 938)

Canon Seeker
I'm finally getting down here to post. I wholeheartedly second the nominations made by Chemyst and Denise.

I was always drawn to historical fiction, so my choices may reflect that. Elizabeth George Speare is a Newberry winner, and I remember reading her book The Witch of Blackbird Pond and being fascinated with Puritan life. She also wrote The Bronze Bow in which I learned more about life in Galilee during the time of Jesus' ministry. Because I am a dog lover, I found her book Julie of the Wolves quite interesting as well.

Katherine Patterson also is a Newberry winner, and I especially loved her book about twins on a remote Virginia/Maryland island Jacob Have I Loved. She also wrote the very tragic and imaginative Bridge to Terabithia, which still makes me cry.

Lupin is Lupin and I were chatting about the book Understood Betsy. I remembered it very fondly, and Kim confirmed that it is still quite wonderful even now.

I have always liked Madelne L'Engle's novels and the Narnia series by C.S. Lewis. In fact, I still cry at the conclusion of the last book of Lewis's book. His adult fiction is also among my favorites, but then, I do have a fondness for British literature.

Good luck!

EDIT: Because JKR said she loved The Little White Horse, I read it. It's a sweet fairy tale.

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Eponine - Feb 2, 2005 5:32 pm (#360 of 938)

I'm going to nod along and agree with everything you all have listed. I adore Madeline L'Engle and C.S. Lewis. Beverly Cleary's Ramona books were some of my favorites growing up.

Hmm...I'm off to check my childrens' lit. bookcase. (I have a strange obsession with kiddie lit)

I would also recommend Elizabeth Enright. Thimble Summer won a Newberry, and The Four-Story Mistake is another good one. Gone-Away Lake is another one of my favorites. They are a little out-dated with some of the references, but they are quite enjoyable.

Holes by Louis Sachar is such a fun book, and the movie adaptation was one of the most faithful I've ever seen. Oh, and the Sideways Stories from Wayside School are full of great silly stories.

I hope some of these help!

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Catherine - Feb 2, 2005 8:16 pm (#361 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Ooh, Eponine, Holes was a great story, and the movie was fun, too.

I encourage male forum members to come forth and recommend....it's been exclusively ladies for ever so long now...

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Madame Librarian - Feb 2, 2005 8:53 pm (#362 of 938)

Reluctant readers of the 7-9 year old variety who are nonethless reading at their grade level will often cotton to the Dragons of Blueland series by Gannett. The first one is My Father's Dragon. Humor and fantasy in a not-too-long chapter book.

The Stories Julian Tells, first of another series by Ann Cameron is also a big hit with that gang. Wacky older brother entertains little brother with wild and funny tales.

All the others mentioned are good picks, too. And, don't forget that wonderful little people fantasy/adventure series The Borrowers by Mary Norton. This is an old classic, around when I was a kid, that still captures the younger set's delight and imagination.

You can't go wrong with All-of-Kind Family by Syndey Taylor, though I find that it's more of a girl series than a boy one. As a read-aloud, younger boys, 5-6, would probably go for it.

Well, I'm off on my librarian schtick, and if I don't stop here, I'll be up all night.

Ciao. Barb

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Mrs. Sirius - Feb 2, 2005 10:18 pm (#363 of 938)

Mom of 4 in serious lurker mode.
Venus, all of my children (ages 6 and Cool love the "Junie B. Jones" books, even I can't help cracking up reading them.

My son (Cool also likes the "Young Cam Jansen" books which are a bit of detective twist to them. Recently I started reading "Charley and the Chocolate", and he just loves that. He likes Roald Dahl, and of course he just loves "Harry Potter". One of my girls loves, loves any book about princes, rags to riches stories. She told me told that during library time she just walks right to the princes section.

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From Venus - Feb 3, 2005 12:24 am (#364 of 938)

Less than three months to HBP!!!!
Wow! Thank you everyone for all your wonderful recommendations. I have gotten some good ideas for the kids. Tomorrow, I'm going to re-read all these and make a good shopping list. I have some birthdays coming up in April.

And so now...off to bed. It's waaaaay past my bedtime!

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Phelim Mcintyre - Feb 3, 2005 1:04 am (#365 of 938)

May I suggest P L Travers Mary Poppins, the book is so dark compared to the Disney film. There are actually a number of books in the series. Also J M Barries Peter Pan.

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Feb 3, 2005 2:34 pm (#366 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
I hope I'm not repeating what's already been recommended. Except I have to second The Witch of Blackbird Pond. I enjoyed it tremendously when I was younger and although upon rereading it I found it more simple than I remembered it was still good.

As Catherine mentioned, Understood Betsy is timeless and simply wonderful.

For years I read and reread Black Beauty and One Hundred and One Dalmations and they are both spectacular books. The movies have never done either any justice.

A book I loved as a child was The Blind Connemara by C. W. Anderson. He also did the Blaze series of books, although I have not read those. I believe the book is out of print but if you can find it at your library I heartily recommend it.

Another good one is The Court of the Stone Children by Eleanor Cameron. This is especially good for older girls (12ish). This author also wrote The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet which I understand is quite good although I've never read it myself. I recommend it for boys.

Also for boys, although I enjoyed it tremendously as an adult is My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George. This is actually the first of a trilogy but I haven't read the others yet.

I always liked to be spooked and enjoyed both Down a Dark Hall and Summer of Fear by Lois Duncan. The first has a "supernatural" theme and the second deals with black magic but they were engrossing when I was young. (As an aside, Summer of Fear became a pretty decent Made-for-TV movie with Linda Blair. And she played the good guy!)

I just read Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine and thought it thoroughly entertaining. She's rather prolific so if this book finds a welcoming audience there are more by her.

And a simply wonderful, wonderful book is A String in the Harp by Nancy Bond. It deals with Welsh/Celtic history and a bit of magic/mysticism. It's a wonderful read and good for boys and girls.

I have to say the "Little House" books never did it for me. Although people adore them. I think I was hooked on the Michael Landon version and never looked back.

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haymoni - Feb 3, 2005 5:25 pm (#367 of 938)

Eponine - I'm glad to see another fan of Elizabeth Enright. The whole Melendy family absolutely captivated me. I actually thought about naming my daughter Miranda and calling her Randy just like the books.

The Little House books are great, especially for city kids.

Johnny Depp is supposed to be starring in "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" so I'm going to ask Ungrateful Son to get it out of his school's library. I need to get the Gene Wilder version out of my head.

I also liked The Great Brain books.

The Magic Treehouse books were a favorite of my son's about 2 years ago. He wrote to Mary Pope Osbourne and actually received a letter back. He was thrilled.

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Catherine - Feb 3, 2005 5:34 pm (#368 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Haymoni, thanks for the dittos on "The Magic Treehouse."

We went to the UNC Planetarium this fall to see the Mary Pope Osburne Magic Treehouse Show. It was an amazing show that she personally wrote and did appear in, and we all learned a lot. The tie-in to the books was great. Even Mr. Catherine, who is a scientist, thought it measured up.

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Eponine - Feb 3, 2005 6:14 pm (#369 of 938)

Haymoni, I've thought about doing that too! Of course, I don't have a daughter to name yet, but it's still a possibility. I always liked the name Rush too.

I also heartily recommend Roald Dahl's books. Love him!

I've never read any of the Magic Schoolbus/Treehouse books (aren't they by the same lady?), but I have seen the cartoons which I loved.

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haymoni - Feb 3, 2005 7:10 pm (#370 of 938)

I can't speak to the Magic Schoolbus books - loved the cartoon.

Mary Pope Osbourne researches each of her topics and then writes a story that teaches children, but doesn't talk down to them. The kids have a tree house with books in it. They open a book and the tree house takes them there. We've gone to the moon, to a tornado, to Titanic, to ancient Egypt and to the Globe Theatre. I think she's written well over 25 of the books now. The kids collect a clue in each book - the books are tied together and they solve a poem/riddle every 3 or 4 books. Great to keep kids reading.

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Chemyst - Feb 4, 2005 10:55 am (#371 of 938)

"Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up." A.A. Milne
If Kim, Catherine, & Barb are all recommending Witch of Blackbird Pond, I guess I'll have to break down and read it. I certainly have seen the title on a gazillion children's lit. lists over the years, but I never thought a story about an orphaned child thrust into a strange environment ... oh well, never mind.

I wanted to add a note about fairy tales, especially Grimms' and Andersen's. If you just want the kids to read, any of them will do. But if you want them to get a richer experience from it, the translated ones are better than the simplified "as retold by" versions. This is especially true in the case of Hans Christian Andersen's tales which were written with strong character-building messages that are sometimes watered down in the retold versions.

One more suggestion for boys who enjoy mathematicians as heroes, Carry On, Mr. Bowditch, by Jean Lee Latham. (The mathematician-as-hero, is the reason I listed Bendick's book about Archimedes on the chat thread too.)

I don't think the Magic Treehouse series came out until the late '90s, and my kids were reading older-kid stuff by then, but I do know that the series is getting wonderful reviews at the home schooling bookfairs. They have a Merlin's Missions with the same kids, Annie & Jack – anyone know anything about those?

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Catherine - Feb 4, 2005 11:38 am (#372 of 938)

Canon Seeker
... I never thought a story about an orphaned child thrust into a strange environment ... --Chemyst

Imagine reading such a story! Could such a story actually attract devoted fans and make loads of galleons..ahem...I meant money? Surely not...

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Denise P. - Feb 4, 2005 3:29 pm (#373 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Oh, how could we have forgotten Island of the Blue Dolphins?? I didn't much care for the sequel though.

For the horse and dog mad group, I remember reading a bunch by Lois Duncan. The Blaze series by CW Anderson that Kim recommened, it is beautifully illustrated. Walter Farley's Black Stallion and Island Stallion books are good as are the Maurgerite Henry books.

Wilson Rawls does very good books although you will get weepy...Where the Redfern Grows (Made into a so so movie), Summer of the Monkeys (never saw the movie). I was lucky enough to have signed copies of each of these since my gram worked in a bookstore and would send them to us.
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Catherine - Feb 4, 2005 3:34 pm (#374 of 938)

Canon Seeker
I very much liked Island of the Blue Dolphins, also.

I need to print out some of these latest suggestions so that I have a list handy the next time I'm at the library or the bookstore.

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Amilia Smith - Feb 4, 2005 4:34 pm (#375 of 938)

I loved the Black Stallion books as a kid. There was one year in elementary school (5th grade?) that I didn't read anything else. I think alot of us in the class must have had troubles branching out from one particular genre that we enjoyed, because our teacher gave us a reading chart with a rainbow on it. One band was mystery, one was sports, one was romance, one was animals, you get the idea. We were supposed to read a book from each of the different genres on our chart in order to color the rainbow in. I was able to tie a different Black Stallion book in with each band of the rainbow, and therefore didn't have to leave my favorite books at all. :-)

I was so enamored with the world of horse racing introduced to me in these books that I tried desperately to convince my parents to get me a horse. I got a stick horse and a model horse for Christmas that year. However, my mother did take me to the local racetrack to watch the one day of horse races our small town had.

As an adult, I enjoyed Seabiscuit as it brought back so many happy Black Stallion/horse racing memories. Thank you, Denise, for bringing those memories back as well.

Mills.

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timrew - Feb 4, 2005 4:44 pm (#376 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
I agree, eponine. Anything by Roald Dahl is recommended. That guy knew how to write!!

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Catherine - Feb 4, 2005 5:54 pm (#377 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Tim, Roald Dahl did indeed write a great yarn.

I remember that my mom bought me his short stories (for adults) after I had raced through his kids' books at age eight. His sense of humor ferried me across the ocean, quite literally, and I haven't regretted a moment. After I read his books, my mother, and I did begin to call her "mum," which is a joke to this day, said, "What in the world has gotten IN to you?"

To this day, my mother still signs her cards to me, "Mum." And she still thinks that I am pure evil, but she likes it, just like I loved it about Mr. Dahl.

**Oh, and I like you, too, Tim! **

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Madame Librarian - Feb 4, 2005 7:22 pm (#378 of 938)

How could I forget this one? Again, it's really best suited for the under-10 set, The Indian in the Cupboard by Lynn Reid Banks. The second in the series, Return of the Indian ain't so great, but then for the 3rd and 4th (I think there might be one more; I didn't read all of them) things pick up again.

Ciao. Barb

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Eponine - Feb 4, 2005 10:29 pm (#379 of 938)

Mmmmm...Roald Dahl. I adore his short stories. They're so macabre.

I had a teacher read us The Indian in the Cupboard series when I was in elementary school, and we all loved them.

Another book I enjoyed when I was younger was The Egypt Game by Zilpha Keatley Snyder. I also liked The Borrowers by Mary Norton, but I never got into the sequels. A book I've read more recently is The Giver by Lois Lowry, and it moved me. The companion book Gathering Blue is worth a look too, but I haven't gotten to The Messenger yet.

Oh, I just got in the mail today The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge that JKR says was one of her favorite books when she was little. So, I'm looking forward to reading it.

Anyway, I'm really enjoying everyone's recommendations.

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Veritaserum - Feb 5, 2005 11:46 am (#380 of 938)

Go Jays!
Eponine, Messenger is good, only I kind of liked not knowing what happened to Jonas and Gabe better. The Giver is quite good.

Some of my favorite kids books: A Wrinkle in Time, Ella Enchanted, Island of the Blue Dolphins, Matilda, The Witches. The Dear America books are good and teach you lots of stuff about history. I think the old ones are better than the newer ones.

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Little Ginny - Feb 6, 2005 12:52 pm (#381 of 938)

My sister, who is now twelve, likes The Princess' Diaries series by Meg Cabot. I think they're rather funny to read for girls of that age. Not a kiddie's classic, but fun nevertheless...

Anyway, when I was her age, I read everything by Enid Blyton. By now, I think that if you have read one of her books, you know all of them, but when I was twelve, I collected all books of the Five and all the other series.

But what I think are really good children's books are all books by Astrid Lindgren, a Swedish writer who died a few years ago and who wrote really wonderful books about children and their adventures that I like up to now.

I also read the Eddie Dickens trilogy, which is classified as children's literature, but although I liked it very much, I don't know whether children will like it quite as much, as it portrays a rather strange sort of humour, that children often don't understand that well. (It's been called something like "Charles Dickens meets Monty Python").

Oh, and I can only second anybody who recommended Roald Dahl's book about witches (forgot the title) and Matilda.

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Eponine - Feb 6, 2005 1:34 pm (#382 of 938)

Oh, and I can only second anybody who recommended Roald Dahl's book about witches (forgot the title) and Matilda. - Little Ginny

It's called (appropriately enough) The Witches.

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Aud Duck - Feb 6, 2005 2:27 pm (#383 of 938)

"I know I have to beat time when I learn Music." "Ahh, that accounts for it. He won't stand beating."--Alice in Wonderland
Little Ginny, do you remember who wrote the Eddie Dickens trilogy? Not that I need something else to add to my list of books to read (which covers several pages), but it does sound interesting.

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Madame Librarian - Feb 6, 2005 3:51 pm (#384 of 938)

I did a database search at the Evanston Public Library. Philip Ardagh is the author of the Eddie Dickens Trilogy. The individual titles are:

A House Called Awful End Book One

Dreadful Acts Book Two

Terrible Times Book Three

The series is pretty new (c2000 or 2001 originally). I am not familiar with it, but the titles sound like they could just as easily have been dreamt up by Lemony Snicket. The author is English as is the setting. Magic seems to be involved. Note that the house's name is Awful End. Here's what the Lib. of Congress notes say--

When eleven-year-old Eddie Dickens's ill parents become "a bit crinkly round the edges," he is taken by his great-uncle and great-aunt, Mad Uncle Jack and Mad Aunt Maude, and embarks on adventures that involve strolling actors, St. Horrid's Home for Grateful Orphans, and a carnival float shaped like a giant cow.

There, I've done my librarian thing even though it's Sunday and I'm off.

Ciao. Barb

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Little Ginny - Feb 7, 2005 11:36 am (#385 of 938)

Yes, it's true, these books were written by Philip Ardagh, but no, there's no magic involved, it's just the very funny description of the life of a kid who has rather, well, unusual relatives. There is his father, who likes to paint, but unfortunately all he can paint is liver sausages (though he intends to paint biblical scenes), his mother, who cooks him things like "snow soup", his Mad Uncle Jack, who thinks in dried fish categories and his Even Madder Aunt Maud, whose companion is a stuffed stoat called Malcolm (though Mad Uncle Jack thinks it's called Sally). Eddie has to organise his own life and that of his family, and that can get a bit difficult.

What I like very much about the book are the comments by the narrator, like (paraphrasing), "the front door opened to the front. The clue lies in the name."

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Pinky - Feb 12, 2005 8:42 pm (#386 of 938)

La la narf!
I just finished an excellent book titled Outwitting History by Aaron Lansky. It is nonfiction. It is the amazing story of a journey to rescue Yiddish literature after the realization that it was disappearing from the world. After World War 2, many Yiddish books had been either destroyed or lost. As the survivors of that era began to age, the books they owned were in jeopardy of being thrown out. Very few young people were learning Yiddish as a language, and so saw no use in keeping Yiddish books around. The author decided to attempt to collect as many of these books as he could in order to preserve them. Even if you are not interested in Yiddish, all you need is a love for books in order to enjoy this story. I highly recommend you look for this book in your library or bookstore and give it a read. It is very entertaining, and will grip you all the way to the end.

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Catherine - Feb 13, 2005 7:14 am (#387 of 938)

Canon Seeker
I finished the curious incident of the dog in the night-time. It's written from the perspective of an autistic British teen, hence the lower case letters in the title.

The author, Mark Haddon, does an amazing job of portraying how Christopher can be a math/science genious, have a photographic memory, but be completely baffled by facial expressions and human emotions. As a parent to a mildly autistic child, I found this book very funny and still full of empathy.

I can't wait to see what kind of reaction this book gets at our book club meeting on Wednesday.

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Madame Librarian - Feb 13, 2005 9:43 am (#388 of 938)

I really liked that book, too, Catherine. I found Chris (the protagonist and narrator--a 15-yr. old autistic boy) so charming in his own way. I have recommended the book to many of our library patrons who ask for suggestions. You should have a rich discussion on this one--bring up a question about whose perception is the real one--i.e., what's really real. I had also found it helpful to have some simple medical/psychological info handy on autism and Asberger's Syndrome (sp?). I think I just googled it and picked out a few basic ones. Try the Mayo Clinic site--it is considered one of the most un-bogus medical info sites for the lay person.

Ciao. Barb

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Dr Filibuster - Feb 13, 2005 2:55 pm (#389 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
Catherine, did you know that "curious incident" is Potter producer David Heyman's new film project?

It seems like he has a good knack for picking interesting reads. Maybe we should ask him onto this thread?

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Madame Librarian - Feb 13, 2005 9:56 pm (#390 of 938)

Ooooh, I thought it'd make a great film. Hope they do it well. It'll be all in the casting, I think.

Ciao. Barb

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Catherine - Feb 14, 2005 5:32 am (#391 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Thanks for the information about the film version, Sue! It has the potential to be wonderful.

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Eponine - Feb 14, 2005 3:06 pm (#392 of 938)

Not to rain on anyone's parade or anything, but did you know Steve Kloves is writing the screenplay for that movie? I don't know how you feel about his HP adaptations, but at least there's no Hermione to turn into Pink Power Ranger in this book.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Feb 15, 2005 6:23 am (#393 of 938)

Eponine - Hermione as pink power ranger. I thought it was more powderpuff girl.

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T Brightwater - Feb 15, 2005 10:28 am (#394 of 938)

Does anyone remember a book called something like _The Secret Door_, in which an Appalachian family takes in a boy from another world? I can't remember many of the details, but its prejudice vs. understanding theme had a quite a powerful effect on this Hufflepuff.

I didn't read Susan Cooper's _The Dark is Rising_ series until I was in college, but I liked them a lot.

One of my favorite Madeleine L'Engle books is _The Arm of the Starfish_.

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Feb 15, 2005 3:31 pm (#395 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
I have to second The Dark is Rising series. I read it last year and loved it! While magical, it is of a much different tone than Harry Potter. It's quieter and, I felt, more menacing. Not as imaginative as Rowling's work, but as far as believability is concerned, this one feels more like it could actually happen and thus more likely to give one chills.

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dizzy lizzy - Feb 16, 2005 12:31 am (#396 of 938)

There is more to life than increasing its speed: Mahatama Ghandi.
I will say that The Dark is Rising is a great series.

Another good series is by an Australian Author - Garth Nix. He has written for both children and adults. His childrens' books aren't bad reading for adults, but they are good value for introducing kids to the concepts behind science fiction/fantasy.

For Adults, try - The Old Kingdom trilogy - Sabriel, Lirael and, Abhorsen

For Children (and adults), try - The Seventh Tower series and Keys to the Kingdom series. This series is partially written and has Four books (of Seven) to go.

Thanks everyone for the great suggestions here, now to go find them!

Lizzy

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T Brightwater - Feb 16, 2005 8:49 am (#397 of 938)

Correction: Now that I think about it, the book I was trying to remember is called _The Forgotten Door_. Can't remember the author's name.

Also good are Zelda Henderson's stories about "the People." Can't remember book titles, though. (Insufficient memory at this time...)

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Madame Librarian - Feb 16, 2005 1:49 pm (#398 of 938)

T, the author of The Forgotten Door is Alexander Key. It was copyright 1965.

(I haven't read it; I just checked the library website for the info.)

Ciao. Barb

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T Brightwater - Feb 16, 2005 6:03 pm (#399 of 938)

That sounds right. Thanks, Barb!

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haymoni - Feb 17, 2005 5:08 pm (#400 of 938)

I'm not recommending them, but will anyone else admit to reading the V.C. Andrews "Flowers in the Attic" books???

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Recommended Reading (Post 401 to 450)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:38 am

Catherine - Feb 17, 2005 5:29 pm (#401 of 938)
Canon Seeker
Haymoni, I admit it.

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Denise P. - Feb 17, 2005 5:37 pm (#402 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I read them when I was about 12, when they first came out. I loved them, they were just so....:::sigh::: romantic (Blech! Now I think about it...) After I hit about 16, I stopped reading anything written by VCAndrews LOL I read Harlequin Romances too...

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Steve Newton - Feb 17, 2005 7:31 pm (#403 of 938)

Librarian
As I recall it V.C. Andrews has written more books since he died than while he was living. The name is now sort of a franchise.
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dizzy lizzy - Feb 18, 2005 1:31 am (#404 of 938)

There is more to life than increasing its speed: Mahatama Ghandi.
Denise, I was the same. I read the first four books as a teenager and now I wouldn't touch them with a ten foot pole. When I tried to read them the second time I thought they were plain outright weird.

Steve, I used to work as a library assistant and that's what I was told as well.

Lizzy

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Feb 18, 2005 3:06 pm (#405 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
I read them about the same time as Denise and at the time, I found them utterly fascinating.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Feb 19, 2005 3:14 am (#406 of 938)

Denise - you read Mills and Boon ?!!!!. So Harry Potter must be light relief. But then who am I to judge, much of my reading is traditional cosy crime novels (Agatha Christie/Dorothy L Sayers etc) or historical crime novels. This is mainly because, as some one with a psycholgical background, I find the modern psychological thrillers unrealistic.

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Denise P. - Feb 19, 2005 9:05 am (#407 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Mills and Boon? I suppose I may have at some point, I read a wide variety of material, not all fiction Smile We were talking about the sappy VC Andrews books.

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haymoni - Feb 19, 2005 4:38 pm (#408 of 938)

I read somewhere that VC Andrews was a woman who was in a wheelchair.

True???

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Steve Newton - Feb 19, 2005 5:44 pm (#409 of 938)

Librarian
Not sure of the sex of V.C. Andrews but whoever it was died a few years ago so the wheelchair would seem to be a stretch at this time.

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Eponine - Feb 19, 2005 5:50 pm (#410 of 938)

Here's the IMDB mini-biography on VC (Viginia Cleo) Andrews

V. C. Andrews was the author of a number of books, including "Flowers in the Attic". After her death in 1986, a ghostwriter she was working with (novelist Andrew Neiderman) continued the series' she had begun. The last book she wrote was "Fallen Hearts" (part of the Casteel series), and since then, Neiderman has been writing the books and putting them out under her name. During her life, the wheelchair-bound V. C. never wed. Her books were her children.

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haymoni - Feb 19, 2005 9:39 pm (#411 of 938)

Sorry, I read "Neiderman" as "Neidermeyer" and thought, "Wasn't he killed by his own troops in VietNam?"

Guess I should go to bed!

Back to "Flowers in the Attic" - ever see the movie version of that book?

And we were upset about POA???
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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Feb 20, 2005 1:22 am (#412 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
I saw the movie! Gosh, how long ago was that? If I remember correctly, the woman who played Nurse Cratchet (One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest) played the grandmother who banishes the children to the attic. There's two hours of my life I'll never get back again.

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Feb 20, 2005 7:49 am (#413 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
Sorry to double-post but as you can see, they're hours apart. I don't know if these have been mentioned but for the person looking for children's book recommendations (I can't remember who just now) I recommend two book catalogs. They are Chinaberry and The Company of Books. Both offer in depth summaries and critiques of books for children of all ages. You can find both on line. I would recommend ordering the catalog if, like me, you find it more comfortable to read a catalog in your lap rather than on your screen.

Also, the same people who produce The Company of Books also produce A Common Reader which is the same idea but for adults.

I imagine with a book-smart crowd like this you've all heard of them but I thought I'd pass it along anyway.

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Chemyst - Mar 4, 2005 7:04 am (#414 of 938)

"Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up." A.A. Milne
Kim, thanks for mentioning that the same people who produce The Company of Books also produce A Common Reader. "Company of Books" does not do well on either a Google or a Yahoo search, (one gets many book companies, natch,) but it was easy enough to find a link to it from the Common Reader. (Chinaberry comes right up.)

If anyone is looking for classical-flavored books for children, Veritas Press also offers a catalog with descriptions of each book. This catalog is marketed for home education, but the literature and history sections have broad interest.

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Catherine - Mar 4, 2005 9:37 am (#415 of 938)

Canon Seeker

*rubs hands gleefully**

Thanks, Chemyst. Wonderful to get new book sources.

**off to Google**

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Mistress Gim - Mar 6, 2005 4:58 pm (#416 of 938)

I haven't read all of the posts, but most of them - I'm about to run out the door, but I wanted to post something here.

The "Artemis Fowl" series by Eion Colfer was mentioned; I love the series - there are three that I know of, so far - and I recommend it, but I do understand why some might not like it.

I don't think this one was mentioned, unless it was in the part I didn't read: The "Alex Cross" series by James Patterson. I absolutely adore this series. Patterson is a genius writer, one of my few favorites (another being JKR) and his AC series is among the select number of books I'll always be willing to reread any time.

Also, if it hasn't been suggested, "Inkheart" by Cornelia Funke. I noticed her name is similar to one Cornelius Fudge; coincidence, though, methinks. Another great book.

AF, I think, has been summarized - and I can't think of a decent summary for it right now. The AC series follows a detective whose skills in the field lead him to danger, excitement, and a lot of sick people. That one's definately not for young people. Rated "R" so far as I'm concerned. And "Inkheart" I think would have to be 'PG" or "PG-13" for mild violence; AF seems to be the lightest of the bunch, at a "PG" leve or about there.

Anyway, "Inkheart" is about a guy named Mortimer and his daughter, Meggie; some evil person comes back for Mo as well as an old friend. And this evil person wants Mo to use his ability to his own evil purposes. It's a good read, and I probably make it sound worse than it is, but for now that can't be helped, I guess.

Has anyone heard of "Inkheart"? Or James Patterson?

- Koto Asakawa

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Catherine - Mar 6, 2005 6:16 pm (#417 of 938)

Canon Seeker
I enjoy reading James Patterson's novels, Koto, but I will say that many of them may not be suitable for our younger members.

For those who enjoy British period mysteries, I like Anne Perry a great deal. She has several series going at present, which means that there is always a good book when you need one. Her novels focus on the late Victorian period, with her newest series showcasing WWI.

Her novels have very interesting female characters, and usually have "social" roots at the source of the mystery.
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Madame Librarian - Mar 6, 2005 9:27 pm (#418 of 938)

I am currently reading and enjoying (with lots of out-loud guffawing) The Know-It-All: One Man's Humble Quest to Become the Smartest Person in the World by A. J. Jacobs.

Jacobs's day job is a writer/editor on staff at "Esquire" magazine, but he is a very funny fellow who writes a memoir-ish report of his learning adventures while trying to read the entire Encyclopaedia Britannica. This is a quest beyond a wish to merely know a bunch of trivia (although that, I fear, is the result). The poor guy is really after an impossible dream--to internalize all the facts in the whole enchilada. To our advantage the effort he makes is valiant and very humorous. He drifts off on wonderful tangents thereby introducing us to his ever-patient wife, family, co-workers, his foibles, idiosyncracies (some are really weird), and his hilarious attempts to use his new found knowledge in casual conversations. His droll, self deprecating tone is loaded with irony and a sense of the absurd. My kind of humor, similar to the way Bill Bryson writes.

Ciao. Barb

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Mellilot Flower. - Mar 7, 2005 4:06 am (#419 of 938)

Pixie led
I loved Inkheart, I'm currently saving up my knuts to buy Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke- the landscapes she described were wonderful, as were the characters; at once stylised representations and in depth characters.

I'm going to reiterate a few books that I think have already been mentioned here (or at least they should have been).

The Spiderwick Chronicles by Holly Black and Anthony Diterlizzi; a set of five books following the adventures of twins Simon and Jared and their older sister Mallory. These are gorgeous, set in america but with dozens of creatures whose origins are generally in the brittish isles or scandanavia, and they are all very acurate to their mythologies but with that little extra quirke. The books themselves are beautifull and I spend hours just leafing through them without reading. Aimed at younger readers, simple style and quite short, but very enjoyable for 19yr olds too Smile Also by Holly Black, for older readers Tithe. This is a young adult book and follows Kaye as she returns to the town she lived in when she was much younger, where she had several "little" friends.

Diana Wyne Jones' Merlin Conspiracy is very good, though very british - it takes our world britain and then manipulates it to make it very recognisable perhaps to the adult reader with an understanding of the world, but very unique. It should still be appealing to those that aren't familliar with england though.. It is very involved, and wonderfully woven. Also recomended by her would be her Chrestomanci series, I can't remember how many their are and they don't have to be read in order... but they are very nice. And then there's her Dalemark Quartet - I read them out of order, but should really be read from begining to end though it isn't necassary. Again, wonderful world that she creates, I especially like the third in the series, The Spellcoats.

Garth Nix has deffinately been mentioned, but his Old Kingdom series is well worth reading. The ideas in the book are very ingenious and the characters are so easy to relate to.

Neil Gaiman's Stardust is also brilliant.

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azi - Mar 7, 2005 2:58 pm (#420 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
I second the Garth Nix books - brilliant and imaginative! I think the Old Kingdom books are better than the Keys to the Kingdom series personally. Also, The Book of Dead Days and The Dark Flight Down by Marcus Sedgwick. These two books have an extremely intriguing plot (The Dark Flight Down is the sequel). I just started reading The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown. It's probably been mentioned on here already, I can't remember, but I'm finding it a nice change from my usual childrens fantasy books. Smile

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Little Ginny - Mar 8, 2005 11:24 am (#421 of 938)

I read Inkheart, too, or rather Das Tintenherz, which is the German original title. I thought it was rather nice, too. Cornelia Funke also wrote some books for younger girls about some girls founding a group called "The Wild Hens" (Die wilden Hühner in German), which, I think, are rather funny books for girls 11+, but I don't know whether they have been translated into English.

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Herm oh ninny - Mar 8, 2005 9:12 pm (#422 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
"Eragon" by Christopher Paolini is an excellent book. I bought it because something about the cover reminded me of Harry Potter.(I bought the Artemis Fowl and Lemony Snicket series for the same reason!} The book was incredible and the next book in the series comes out in August.

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MoonRider - Mar 8, 2005 11:15 pm (#423 of 938)

I'm sorry I haven't read anything on this thread-----though, I want to------I just wanted to add my favs (in no particular order------and, aside from the obvious, JKR):

Louis Lamour (sp?)

Beverly Lewis

Les Miserables

Virginia Andrews

Sarah Waters

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Madame Librarian - Mar 14, 2005 1:20 pm (#424 of 938)

Hi, all. This doesn't really fit the description of recommended reading, but it's more of a "heads up" on a book yet to be written.

Saw this little snippet in the paper and heard about it on NPR--

Award-winning author Geraldine McCaughrean has been chosen to write the official sequel to J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan. She won a contest run by the Great Ormond Street Hospital, insititution that was bequeathed the copyright and royalties of the story by Barrie in his will in 1937.

McCaughrean, children's author, has written many books retelling the world's myths and legends (a few titles are The Epic of Gilgamesh, The Golden Horde, God's People, The Crystal Pool). Her most recent work is a juvenile novel called The Kite Rider (not to be confused with The Kite Runner), which was very highly acclaimed here in the U.S.

The hospital trustees stipulated that the sequel must contain all the primary and secondary characters from the original. The working title is Captain Pan.

This was one of my favorite tales when I was little. I loved the stage play ("I Gotta Crow," etc.) with Mary Martin when they broadcast it on TV. I think I was about 7 or so. But I had never really read the book/play. It was Disney or Mary Martin. Then when I was about 10 or 11, I finally read the original, and loved it all the more. It might have been one of my first "oh my gosh, the book is sooo much better than the movie" experiences.

So I look forward to this as I often lulled myself to sleep as a young 'un imagining the future for Peter, Wendy, Tink and all. I just hope Ms. McCaughrean does a better job with this sequel than the disappointing result with the sequel to Gone With the Wind (Alexandra Ripley's Scarlett).

Ciao. Barb

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vanessa cave - Mar 14, 2005 4:14 pm (#425 of 938)

Hi Madame Librarian, i must confess to not liking peter pan at all but noticed your comment on the sequel to Gone With The Wind. I am currently reading Gone With The Wind for the second time (I love it) and was considering reading the sequel, although i didn't know it existed until recently. Is it really bad? i don't want to read it and have it spoil the original. Sorry if this question is off topic.

My absolute favourite books second only to Harry Potter are the Discworld series, I just can't make my mind up as to whether i enjoy the witches or the city watch more?

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Amilia Smith - Mar 14, 2005 4:54 pm (#426 of 938)

Vanessa: I am not Madame Librarian, but I also read Scarlett, and was also very disappointed. It reads like a bad romance novel. Highlight below for a brief synopsis and spoiler.

Scarlett has another baby, Rhett's baby (don't ask), but neglects to tell him until the end of the book. Scarlett goes to Ireland. (Ireland? Why Ireland, of all places, you ask? Because this is now a romance novel and we must go to Ireland.) Scarlett finally grows up. Scarlett gets Rhett back.

Besides reading like a corny romance, part of the reason I didn't like it was because Gone With the Wind doesn't need a sequel. It is complete in and of itself. Some people don't like the ending, but I love it. That is what makes the book real. Life is like that. It is our own faults and mistakes and obsessions that destroy us, not external forces. Scarlett is Scarlett's downfall. She did herself in, where the war and the carpetbaggers couldn't. And sometimes you miss your chance. While I do believe that people can change and grow, what is gone is gone. By this I mean that, sure, Scarlett can grow up, go on, live a happy life. But she won't live it with Rhett. That opportunity is long gone.

Mills.

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Denise P. - Mar 14, 2005 4:55 pm (#427 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
The sequel to GWTW is not bad as long as you don't mind that the author totally redid the main characters and ruined them.

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Eponine - Mar 14, 2005 5:22 pm (#428 of 938)

I read Scarlett when I was about 13-14, and it seemed perfectly fine to me at the time. I had not read GWTW then, but I have since and have become appalled at the way Scarlett was handled. So, I would not recommend it.

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Madame Librarian - Mar 14, 2005 6:14 pm (#429 of 938)

vanessa, it seems you've gotten your answer! Yes, I agree with everything my fellow readers have said. GWTW was a great epic, great war story, love story and particularly good historical fiction (one of my favorite genres). It was a huge story. The sequel was too narrow, went too far afield from the U.S. and post-war South and lost the infrastructure that a good historical novel has. The happenings in this country were so fascinated in that crucial time that I was disappointed when Scarlett hops off to Ireland. Yeah, I know her Daddy was from Ireland, and her last name is O'Hara, but it just wasn't something that Margaret Mitchell would have done.

Ciao. Barb

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vanessa cave - Mar 15, 2005 5:08 am (#430 of 938)

Hi, thank you all for helping me with that one i will give it a miss, i enjoy GWTW too much.

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Archangel - Mar 16, 2005 6:21 am (#431 of 938)

Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end. -- Semisonic
Has anyone here read the Wind on Fire trilogy? One of the best young adult series, IMHO.

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hawkeyetkdchick - Mar 16, 2005 7:48 pm (#432 of 938)

Hi!

I have to second Eragon (I know it's been on this list before when the book first came out). I borrowed it from a friend, and liked it so much I bought it. I'm now rereading it (I first read it right after it had come out).

Another series I like is The Obsidian Trilogy by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory (not really sure if I spelled the authors right.. I've lent out both of my books ). Anyway, the first book in the trilogy is The Outstreatched Shadow. The second book came out pretty recently-it's To Light A Candle. I really enjoyed both books (although it started out a little slow-but not too bad). I think I'd put a PG-13 rating on them, but maybe I'm a little conservative..? Has anyone else read these books? I'm curious to know if anyone else likes them.

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Herm oh ninny - Mar 16, 2005 11:33 pm (#433 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
"Rebecca" by Daphne DuMaurier is a great book. I read it years ago and I still get chills whenever I re-read it! I also love "The Silence of the Lambs", "Red Dragon", and "Hannible" by Thomas Harris. I am currently reading the "OZ Chronicles" by R.L. Baum (I hope I got the name right, my book isn't around!) and so far they are great!

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Acceber - Mar 18, 2005 10:02 pm (#434 of 938)

Ruler of Omeletteheads
I'm currently on a classics rampage. I'm in the middle of The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald. I read GWTW over the summer and have also recently read Kidnapped, by Robert Louis Stevenson; The Caine Mutiny, by Herman Wouk; David Copperfield, by Charles Dickens; and Wuthering Heights, by Emily Bronte. I'm going to read A Tale of Two Cities, also by Charles Dickens; The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, by Carson McCullers; and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, by Betty Smith.

All of the already read are highly recommended, even though I probably didn't understand them all fully.
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Amilia Smith - Mar 19, 2005 12:36 am (#435 of 938)

Good choices, Acceber. Of those you have coming up, A Tale of Two Cities is my favorite Dickens novel, and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is probably my all time favorite novel. Have not read The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, so let us know how good it is.

I have recently been reading Orson Scott Card. I think Ender's Game was mentioned earlier on the thread, and it is excellent. Some of his other works also deserve mention.

Lost Boys is very creepy. Sort of a supernatural murder mystery. Gives me chills every time.

My favorite stand-alone book of Card's is Enchantment. It involves time travel and Russian folklore, and is absolutely beautiful. Plus, Card does his homework. I took Russian language and culture classes in high school, and Russian history courses in college, which doesn't make me an expert or anything, but I can tell when someone has done at least as much research as I have. Enchantment does not contradict anything I learned. And the characters are not modernized. You know how, sometimes, you read a book, and even though it is supposed to be taking place 100 years ago, the only way you can tell is that the heroine is wearing a dress instead of jeans? Not so with this book. Highly recommend.

My favorite series by Card is The Tales of Alvin Maker. They take place in an alternate reality. In an America that might have been. Magic is real, and everyone has their own special knack. Funnest of all, for the history major in me, are the historical references that are just slightly off of what really happened. **WARNING, RANT AHEAD*** However, Card does not seem to want to finish this series. He keeps trying to kill if off before it is over. The latter books in the series are not what the first ones were. And there are long waits for new books. Unfortunantly Card keeps returning to Ender instead of finishing Alvin. Ender's Game is a complete entity in and of itself. It didn't need a sequel. But it got one. And another and another and another. And then Card retold the whole thing from a different viewpoint. While poor Alvin is no closer to the end of his story . . . grrr

Mills.

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T Brightwater - Mar 23, 2005 3:45 pm (#436 of 938)

Terry Pratchett's two most recent Discworld books are neither City Watch nor witches, but they're quite good - "Monstrous Regiment" and "Going Postal" There's a bit of humor at the expense of prophecies in the latter...

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Phelim Mcintyre - Mar 24, 2005 1:41 am (#437 of 938)

T Brightwater - I loved Monstrous Regiment, but am waiting for Going Postal to get into paperback. I would encourage people to read Witches Abroad though, some great ideas about fulfilling stories.

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vanessa cave - Mar 24, 2005 3:45 am (#438 of 938)

I enjoyed Monstrous Regiment and am also waiting for Going Postal to make it to paperback, my favourite has to be The Fifth Elephant.

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Hermy - Mar 24, 2005 4:45 pm (#439 of 938)

To Kill a Mockingbird - one of the few books that the movie was just as good as the book

The Shades by Betty Brock - this book is out of print - My sister use to read it to me as a child. It is a great book about a boy named Hollis that has to live with his aunt. There is a magical garden of shadows.

La Morte de Arthur - I know I probably spelled this wrong but it is one of the stories of King Arthur and it is very good.

I keep trying to fill my time mainly with the LOTR while waiting on the 6th book. I have reread it and have the extended versions of all the dvds. I am trying to wait until July for a marathon reread of the Harry Potter books.

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Steve Newton - Mar 24, 2005 7:53 pm (#440 of 938)

Librarian
It should be a sin To Kill a Mockingbird. My second favorite book.

My favorite is Catch-22.
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Eponine - Mar 24, 2005 8:39 pm (#441 of 938)

I actually just finished teaching To Kill a Mockingbird to a bunch of 9th graders. They really got into it, and when I was reading the attack scene at the end to them, they were completely and utterly silent. It made me happy, especially since I really have to work to hold myself together when I get to "Neighbors bring food with death and flowers with sickness and little things in between. Boo was our neighbor. He gave us two soap dolls, a broken watch and chain, a pair of good-luck pennies, and our lives."

I really love that book.

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Herm oh ninny - Mar 25, 2005 2:23 pm (#442 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
I just finished reading Bridget Jones' Diary and Bridget Jones the Edge of Reason. They were hysterical. I literally had to hold myself back from laughing at work!

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Cornelia - Mar 25, 2005 2:50 pm (#443 of 938)

If you like crime-thrillers, I can highly recommend swedish authors.

Look for Henning Mankell (The fifth Woman) or Liza Marklund (Paradise) or Hakan Nesser (there should be a little ° over the first a, but I couldn´t find it on my keyboard) or M. Sjöwall/P. Wahlöö (Kommissar Beck, don´t know in English)

I checked the first two on amazon, there are english editions, but I didn´t try the other two...

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Mrs Brisbee - Mar 25, 2005 3:11 pm (#444 of 938)

I read Sjowall and Wahloo's (sorry, don't know how to make accent thingies) Martin Beck series about 20 years ago in english, so it has been translated at one point. I remember enjoying them very much.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Mar 26, 2005 5:34 am (#445 of 938)

Some one recently said they had just finsihed reading Tolkien's Symarillion. I can't remember who it was but I do have a question for them - did you understand it?

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Mar 26, 2005 5:21 pm (#446 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
I've got myself a nifty little promotional certificate from Amazon and since I'm not proud and possess very little shame I've decided to get myself a high-end dictionary. No more Webster's New Collegiate for me. Is it still considered new if the copyright is more than 30 years old?

Sooooo, you're a smart group. Recommendations? And if it's not too much trouble could you tell me what you like best about whatever it is your recommending. Thanks.

I can't remember who it was but I do have a question for them - did you understand it?---Phelim McIntyre

You're getting a bit pushy there, aren't you Phelim? I mean, the bragging rights are in the reading of the Silmarillion, not the understanding.

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Madame Librarian - Mar 26, 2005 9:18 pm (#447 of 938)

Lupin is, I'd go for the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary. It's a two-volume set and fits on a normal bookcase. You will not get a hernia lifting a volume up to check something. I've seen prices from about $85 to $100. Here's Amazon's promo for it

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

I find this a comprehensive dictionary that's got excellent word origin material, is current, reflects everyday British and American usages, and though expensive is still affordable.

Ciao. Barb
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Phelim Mcintyre - Mar 28, 2005 5:19 am (#448 of 938)

Lupin, you actually finished the book!!!!!! I think you should be awarded some type of medal. Order of Merlin 1st Class at least. So far I have been defeated.

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Little Ginny - Mar 28, 2005 7:45 am (#449 of 938)

Well, I just skipped the introduction of the Silmarillion (I am going to read that when I really have a lot of time) and got along very well with the rest. Does that count? I must add that, understanding or not, I like the book.

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azi - Mar 28, 2005 8:37 am (#450 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
Finishing the Silmarillion? I've started it, but it's so difficult to understand and get your head round that I've kind of abandoned it. I've got to be in an extremely focused mood to take any of it in. A rare event.

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Recommended Reading (Post 451 to 500)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:40 am

T Brightwater - Mar 29, 2005 1:01 pm (#451 of 938)
Actually, I liked the Silmarillion, even though it can be depressing. The scope of Tolkien's imagination is astounding.

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Mar 29, 2005 3:48 pm (#452 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
Barb--thank you for the recommendation. I was leaning in that direction but I'm glad to have your input before making the purchase.

Lupin, you actually finished the book!!!!!!---Phelim Mcintyre

Did I say that? :::looks around innocently::: No, no. If I had read it, then I could brag about it. In all honesty, I read it back in college (going on 20 years ago) and cannot remember if I read it in total or in parts. I know I was particularly interested in the backstory on Arwen's ancestors and that was where my focus lay. I'm sure I read other parts but I would not have read it front to back in an orderly fashion (that's just torture) and I have no memory of saying, "There! That's done."

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fleur-de-lys - Apr 1, 2005 11:32 am (#453 of 938)

I was reading and posting on a thread a few days ago and was reminded of a series of books, that the Harry Potter fan would enjoy. Lloyd Alexander has written a wonderful series called The Prydain Chronicles. I was comparing a plot, major to one book but minor to the overall story, to the theories on the "Why didn't Voldemort die?" thread. After thinking about the Prydain Chronicles for a few days and comparing them to Harry Potter, I realized that Harry Potter fans may enjoy them as well. They aren't quite as long or as dark, but they are very good. There is magic, but the magical world is not hidden. They are set more in medieval times, with knights and wandering bards and castles and kings and queens. They are also considered kids books, but I think adults will enjoy them almost as much as Harry Potter. Again they are The Prydain Chronicles and the author is Lloyd Alexander. He has other books out too, but I haven't read any of them. If anyone has read them or reads them after reading this, I would love to discuss comparisons. I've found a few interesting tidbits. Perhaps a subject for a new thread. Enjoy.

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Catherine - Apr 1, 2005 4:31 pm (#454 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Barb--thank you for the recommendation. I was leaning in that direction but I'm glad to have your input before making the purchase. Lupin is Lupin

I second Barb's recommendation. I adore my Oxford English Dictionary that Mr. Catherine bought me as a gift a while back. And boy, does it make Scrabble fun!

And yes, I considered this a very romantic gift. I'm a an uber-goober, after all.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Apr 2, 2005 12:38 am (#455 of 938)

Catherine - for Scrabble I recommend Chambers. For every thing else the OED is best. Even better if you have the space for the Complete OED. Some words in there are wonderful.

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Melly - Apr 10, 2005 12:59 am (#456 of 938)

For those of you who love to read to your kids (and I know there are a lot who do) then I seriously reccommend Australian author Emily Rodda. The ones I reccommend are the Rowan of Rin series which are FANTASTIC, you and your kids will love them. I think there are four or five books in this series. Another book by Emily Rodda that is also FANTASTIC is Finders Keepers and its sequel The Timekeeper. I am not sure of the availability for people who live in other countries but if you can get your hands on them then please read them! Very Happy

Another great series is the Tomorrow series by Australian author James Marsden. This series is very popular in Australia and I know many people who have read it and loved it. There are I think seven books in this series. It is set in Australia and is about a group of teenagers who go camping in the bush and when they return home they find they've been invaded and their family and friends and the rest of the country is been held hostage. There is not a dull moment in these books it is action packed! If you can get your hands on this series then please do read it! Very Happy

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I Am Used Vlad - Apr 16, 2005 5:27 pm (#457 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
With appologies to Amilia Smith, I'd like to recommend Orson Scott Card's latest book, Shadow of the Giant. It is the forth book in the second series of Ender stories, and they are all worth reading, even though they are keeping Card from writing about Alvin Maker.

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T Brightwater - Apr 18, 2005 1:31 pm (#458 of 938)

Connie Willis is terrific; I especially like _To Say Nothing of the Dog_, and _Bellwether_, both of which are hilarious. _Doomsday Book_ is good but heartbreaking.

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Amilia Smith - Apr 18, 2005 7:07 pm (#459 of 938)

Edited Apr 18, 2005 8:22 pm
I'd like to second the Connie Willis recommendation. I haven't read anything she has written that I didn't like. Besides the books T Brightwater mentioned, I especially like Lincoln's Dreams, Remake, and Passage. She's got a new book coming out in June called Inside Job. It's a chapbook. Can anyone tell me what a chapbook is?

Vlad: No apologies necessary. To tell the truth, I quit reading the Ender books after Ender's Shadow because I was so mad. (What??!! Now he's retelling the same story from a different point of view???) However, I should probably get over it. On your recommendation, I will check out the others. :-)

To my ffellow Fforde ffans, we now have a release date for The Big Over Easy. Those of you lucky enough to live in the UK can get it July 11, those of us in the US must wait until July 25. The blurb on jasperfforde.com reads:

It's Easter in Reading -a bad time for eggs- and no-one can remember the last sunny day. Ovoid D-class nursery celebrity Humpty Stuyesant Van Dumpty III, minor baronet, ex-convict and former millionaire philanthropist is found shattered to death beneath a wall in a shabby area of town. All the evidence points to his ex-wife who has conveniently shot herself.

But Detective Inspector Jack Spratt and his assistant Mary Mary remain unconvinced, a sentiment not shared with their superiors at the Reading Police Department, who are still smarting over their failure to convict the Three Pigs of murdering Mr Wolff. Before long Jack and Mary find themseves grappling with a sinister plot involving cross-border money laundering, bullion smuggling, problems with beanstalks, titans seeking asylum and the cut and thrust world of international Chiropody.

And on top of all that, the JellyMan is coming to town...

End quote.

I looked up chiropody. It is synonymous with podiatry. The branch of medicine concerned with the feet. hmmm . . .

Mills.

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Denise P. - Apr 18, 2005 7:28 pm (#460 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
For those who are Artemis Fowl fans, I see that there is a new book out in hardback. Artemis Fowl and the Opal Deception....whoo hoo! I love Artemis Fowl and was so bummed that the last few books from Eoin Colfer were not Artemis books.

The Darren Shan books are good too... Cirque Du Freak series. They are found in the teen section but they are really good. I started reading them when someone on the Forum suggested them a few years back. In the UK, I believe the series is finished (12 books) but here in the US, we just got book #9.

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Elfcat - Apr 19, 2005 7:04 pm (#461 of 938)

What do you call a boomerang that doesn't come back? A Stick.
Hey! Stop telling people The Lord of the Rings is dry! it is NOT! You just have to have a special sort of sense of humor sometimes. The dryest thing about it is the long words. One of My favorite scenes (Ingold and Gandalf have been having a discussion about Pippn):

"...His Name is Peregrin, a very valiant man."

"Man?" said Ingold dubiosly, and the others laughed.

"Man!" cried Pippin, now thoroughly roused. "Man! Indeed not! I am a Hobbit, and no more valiant than I am a man, save now and again by necessity. Do not let Gandalf decieve you!"

"Many a doer of great deeds might say no more," said Ingold. "But what is a hobbit?"

End quote.

It may take a little while to get into the writing style, but it's far from dry when you learn to decode it. Do not imagine you know the stories if you have only seen the movies.

I also highly recomend:

The Hobbit

Hawksong and Snakecharm by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes (slight pg rating here, reccomend @ least 13 years of age)

Mark Twain, particularly the huck Finn & Tom Sawyer books.

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy absolutely rocks, though I personaly would recomend only reading the first three books of the series (last two drag). Deffinitely rated pg or pg13 for language.

Gordon Korman is absolutely the best commedy writer for all ages. His work is generally considered to be for children, but so is HP, so there. He's got the best laugh out loud value per chapter of any author I've ever read, and yes that includes Douglass Adams.

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Little Ginny - Apr 20, 2005 9:49 am (#462 of 938)

I most definitely don't think the Lord of the Rings is dry! I love the books, and I remember how I read The Hobbit for the first time, when I was ten or eleven, and how much I loved it (and still do so!)

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T Brightwater - Apr 20, 2005 2:43 pm (#463 of 938)

I think the complaint of dryness was in regard to _The Silmarillion_ rather than LOTR. The hobbits are the source or at least the provocation of most of the humor in LOTR; they have a way of bringing situations abruptly down to earth. (Aragorn's little tirade to Merry in the Houses of Healing, in which he mimics the Warden, is one of my favorite passages.)

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Veritaserum - Apr 20, 2005 4:43 pm (#464 of 938)

Go Jays!
Yay! The Big Over Easy! Sounds wicked hilarious, as usual!

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Elfcat - Apr 21, 2005 9:32 am (#465 of 938)

What do you call a boomerang that doesn't come back? A Stick.
I'll go with The Silmarillion being dry. It took me three attepmts to get all the way through it. (as in started reading, got bored, put it down for 6 months, forgot where I was and started over...)

I'm taking the numerous recommendation on Artemis Fowl, and it's really good so far.

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Little Ginny - Apr 21, 2005 12:00 pm (#466 of 938)

Has anybody already read the new Artemis Fowl? Can you recommend it?

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Denise P. - Apr 21, 2005 2:08 pm (#467 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I have it, read the introduction but have not finished it yet. If his previous books are any indication, The Opal Deception will be worth the read.

I just picked up The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke. It is fairly good so far. I saw an article that mentioned JKR and this author was mentioned so I thought I would try it. I got The Theif Lord and then the next day my kids brought home a book order form where I could order Thief Lord AND Inkheart for less than I paid. :::sigh::: Figures. I will still order it since it is less than I would pay for Inkheart alone (another by the same author)

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Denise P. - Apr 26, 2005 6:09 am (#468 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Little Ginny, I finished Opal Deception and can recommend it. It is not as good as the first 2 Artemis books and I am most unhappy with one aspect but overall, it is a good read and I like how things were resolved from the last book.

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Elfcat - Apr 26, 2005 5:51 pm (#469 of 938)

What do you call a boomerang that doesn't come back? A Stick.
There is also a very good book out there somewhere called The Theif, But I can't quite recall the author. Possibly Tanith Lee, but it might be somebody else with a similar name.

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Little Ginny - Apr 27, 2005 8:35 am (#470 of 938)

Thanks, Denise, I think I will get in in May, when the English Paperback is available in Germany.

By the way, I read Inkheart, and I thought it was quite nice, also suitable for children (maybe 10+, but I'm no expert about such things).

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Veritaserum - May 1, 2005 10:21 am (#471 of 938)

Go Jays!
Elfcat, are you thinking of The Thief where the main character's name is Eugenides? If that's the case, it's by Megan Whalen Turner. I highly recommend both that and the sequel, The Queen of Attolia. Eugenides is one of my favorite characters that I've read. Got that great sarcastic quality to him.

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Little Ginny - May 2, 2005 10:32 am (#472 of 938)

I have just heard that Alfred Lord Tennyson seems to have written some Poems about King Arthur, Merlin, Launcelot and Elaine and other Knights of the Round Table.

Does anyone know whether there is a book edition with all the Poems on this topic collected, or, if there are more, can you recommend any? (preferably from the UK, as I have difficulties ordering books from the US)

Thanks a lot!

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Steve Newton - May 2, 2005 10:37 am (#473 of 938)

Librarian
Ginny, here is the online text of Idylls of the King:

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

You'll have to copy and paste. I don't do links.

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timrew - May 2, 2005 11:07 am (#474 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Ginny, if you go to [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] select 'books'(under which product), and type 'tennyson, alfred' into their search engine, you should find a large selection of books of his poetry.

You'll want The Idylls Of The King (as Steve has said), and The Lady Of Shallot (principally about Lancelot). I don't know if he has written any more on this subject, but someone on this forum might.

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Little Ginny - May 2, 2005 12:10 pm (#475 of 938)

Thanks, I'll try out amazon! (I'm not so very fond of online texts- feels as if it were no real book to me. I can't really explain, I just prefer reading things that are bound together- perhaps because you can better carry them around)

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Elfcat - May 2, 2005 4:42 pm (#476 of 938)

What do you call a boomerang that doesn't come back? A Stick.
Yes, that's the one, Veritaserum! The first book has the king of all surprise endings, don't you think?

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Veritaserum - May 4, 2005 2:42 pm (#477 of 938)

Go Jays!
Oh, yes it does! Great ending. And the second one, well, the main surprise is at the beginning, but the ending is quite unexpected as well. Thoroughly enjoyed both of them.

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Good Evans - May 7, 2005 3:05 pm (#478 of 938)

Practically perfect in every way
I am just finishing Going postal by Terry Pratchett - V good and up to his usual standard.

But for another "childrens book" (being faceitious - dont throw things!!) that has adult appeal try Jonathan Strouds "Bartemaus" trilogy the first two are out and we are waiting for the third. The amulet of samarkand and the golems eye were the first two. loved them both and love the world that is depicted. London modern times run by Wizards who are corrupt and the non magical are supressed with a highly inventive resistance movement. Not Harry, but very enjoyable (I was surprised to find they were so called childrens books as I think they have some dark content).

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applepie - May 18, 2005 2:09 pm (#479 of 938)

"Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much." -- Oscar Wilde
"Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas" by James Patterson It's a very quick read, but is extremely emotional.

I am still trudging through "Anna Karenina" by Leo Tolstoy. I feel as though I have been reading it for a year...maybe I have, but I seem to be stuck about 3/4 of the way through.....I am seriously contemplating dropping it all together.

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Mare - May 20, 2005 2:10 am (#480 of 938)

applepie, I read that book too. if you finish it, please tell me what you think about the last chapter... To me it felt like it was "tagged on", it didn't seem to fit with the rest of the book.

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applepie - May 20, 2005 6:54 am (#481 of 938)

"Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much." -- Oscar Wilde
At the moment I am reading "The Five People You Meet in Heaven" by Mitch Albom. I have to admit that I am enjoying it, though it is a short read and I should finish it today.

Anna Karenina is still bookmarked and waiting for me to gain the strength to finish it. I probably will finish it, because I have not abandoned a book yet, but how long it will take, I cannot say. Thanks for the heads up on the last chapter. I'll keep it in mind.

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Amilia Smith - May 20, 2005 4:43 pm (#482 of 938)

I didn't like Anna (the character, not the book) at all. She drove me nuts. So after a while, I started skipping all of the Anna parts, and only reading the Levin (who I liked very much) parts.

I ended up doing the same thing with War and Peace, skipping all the war parts and just reading the peace parts. I had a Russian professor tell me that Russians do the same thing, after I admitted this to her.

Mills.

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timrew - May 21, 2005 4:56 pm (#483 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
Edited May 21, 2005 6:00 pm
You'll have to bear with me on this. It's a long story, as they say.......

A few weeks ago, I visited Grasmere (in the English Lake District), well known as the poet William Wordsworth's dwelling place (for some years - Dove Cottage is here), and also the place where he is buried.

On visiting his grave in the village churchyard, I saw that it was a family plot, with headstones for William (and his wife, Mary), and various other Wordsworths and family members.

Then, just behind William and Mary's grave I saw a small, stone celtic cross marking another grave, but I couldn't quite make out the name. On going nearer, and bending down to take a closer look, I made out the name Hartley Coleridge.

Hartley? I knew Wordsworth was a friend of Samuel Taylor Coleridge of 'Ancient Mariner' fame; but I'd never heard of a Hartley Coleridge. So I decided to do some research. Things like this really bug me until I find out about them!

I put Hartley Coleridge's name into Google and came up with a few results. Hartley, it turns out, was the oldest son of Samuel Taylor Coleridge. He was also a poet, but was overshadowed by his own (very famous) dad, and therefore ignored by most people. He was left virtually to his own devices by Samuel (who, let's face it, was a bit of an opium-head). And while Samuel travelled round Europe, Hartley lived in the Lake District and became a good friend of William and Mary Wordsworth. In fact, Hartley sounds like the kind of person that was loved by everybody.

He died at the age of 52, a year before Wordsworth (who lived until he was 80); and it was Wordsworth who caused him to be buried in the family plot saying to the sexton, "Let him lie by us, he would have wished it".

Hartley loved to drink; and speculation is, that drink caused his death. He was supposed to have got drunk one night, caught a chill walking home, which led to bronchitis, which led to his premature death.

I had to find a book of his poetry. I found it on Amazon, a collection of his poems called "Bricks Without Mortar" edited by Lisa Gee. And you know what? I think Hartley Coleridge is better than his dad - not as prolific, but better. His book is such a slim volume, only 75 pages of his poems, but all of them wonderful. It's a crime that he is so ignored.

"I am a sinner, full of doubts and fears,
Make me a humble thing of love and tears."

from the sonnet, "Multum Dilexit"

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applepie - May 23, 2005 7:39 am (#484 of 938)

"Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much." -- Oscar Wilde
Amilia Smith, good idea about Anna. I skip a lot of the political stuff in the book, but I think Anna drives me insane too. I much rather read about Levin and Kitty.

Glad to know it's not just me...

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Little Ginny - May 25, 2005 12:01 pm (#485 of 938)

I recently got the impression that almost every girl in the English-speaking world grew up reading "Anne of Green Gables", or am I wrong in that?

Anyway, I thought that now, at twenty years, I should perhaps also read it, to know what every one is talking about, though I am not a native speaker. Can anyone tell me in which order the books ought to be read?

Thanks!

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Veritaserum - May 25, 2005 12:44 pm (#486 of 938)

Go Jays!
Anne of Green Gables is first, I'm pretty sure. I actually did read them all when I was younger, but I've forgotten most of them by now. I don't know if they're quite so popular among the people I know, Little Ginny. I know one girl who LM Montgomery is her favorite author, but generally I think more kids have read HP and things like Nancy Drew or something.

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Amilia Smith - May 25, 2005 4:27 pm (#487 of 938)

Edited May 25, 2005 5:18 pm
Anne of Green Gables
Anne of Avonlea
Anne of the Island
Anne of Windy Poplars
Anne's House of Dreams
Anne of Ingleside
Rainbow Valley
Rilla of Ingleside

Some of my all time favorite books. L. M. Montgomery also has several other novels that are very good, and some short story collections. My only complaint with her writing is that she tends to use the same plot line over and over again. Lonely/abused/neglected orphan finds a family and happiness. But this doesn't really bother you until you read all her short stories.

Mills.

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Ladybug220 - May 25, 2005 5:14 pm (#488 of 938)

...moves faster than Severus Snape confronted with shampoo
I have never read Anne of Green Gables but I have read all of Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House books and those are great!

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Denise P. - May 25, 2005 7:21 pm (#489 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Oh, Rilla of Ingleside always chokes me up when Jem comes home and is greeted by his dog. ::::sniffle::::

If you like the Little House books, you will like the Anne books. My least favorite of the series is Anne of Windy Poplars but it is still good.

She has a few other series, L.M. Montgomery but Anne is her best work. The Blue Castle is a favorite non-Anne book.

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Veritaserum - May 26, 2005 11:19 am (#490 of 938)

Go Jays!
I second The Blue Castle. Great irony.

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Elfcat - May 26, 2005 7:41 pm (#491 of 938)

What do you call a boomerang that doesn't come back? A Stick.
I'm reading Outlaws of Sherwood by Robin McKinley at the moment, and it seems pretty good so far. True, it is a Robin Hood retelling. But it's a good one. Tad bit of violence occasionally, but really not worse than you'd find in The Lord of the Rings.

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applepie - May 30, 2005 8:46 am (#492 of 938)

"Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much." -- Oscar Wilde
Just started Good Grief by Lolly Winston. So far, I love it. I could not imagine losing a loved one, especially my husband. I read it until 1am and concencted to sleep since I had to be at work for 8am today.

Has anyone read it?

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Mare - May 31, 2005 5:57 pm (#493 of 938)

I didn't like Anna (the character, not the book) at all. She drove me nuts. So after a while, I started skipping all of the Anna parts, and only reading the Levin (who I liked very much) parts.

I had the same thing. Anna is whiny, but in her defense, there isn´t much she could do... In her time and situation she is nothing more than an extension of the man she is married to. The only time she ever chooses for herself she ends up an outcast.
Now, we would wack the husband on the head (or never marry him in the first place) and sue him for custody.

In the end I disliked her too, except for the last moment we meet her. Her thoughts make sense, and I had feeling like "Aha, deep in your heart you know that you are to blame as well".

And I liked Levin, but his whole "the farmers are happy and good and noble" routine got abit tiring at the end. It was an odd and sometimes longwinded book, but I learned something about Russian society, so I was glad I read it. Won't reread it though.

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Amilia Smith - Jun 2, 2005 3:24 pm (#494 of 938)

I am looking to brush up my very rusty Russian by reading a Russian work side by side with its English translation. Does anyone know of any short Russian children's stories that have been translated into English?

Mills.

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Herm oh ninny - Jun 4, 2005 12:03 pm (#495 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
Little Ginny, you should definately give the Anne Books a try. They are very good, and you should watch the movies too. All except for the 3rd movie which has nothing to do with the books. Ladybug, I agree with you, the Little House Books are great!! I just watched the movie The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. It was cute. Has anyone read the books? How are they?

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Little Ginny - Jun 4, 2005 2:09 pm (#496 of 938)

Herm oh ninny, I think I will. It should prove an interesting challenge for my local library.

Amilia, I think I read Russian children's stories, but of course, I don't rememember too well. There is however, one book I can highly recommend you to read, and I think it should be no problem for you to find an English version, and that is Garri Potter i filosofskiy kamyen. ;-) No, seriously, I read parts of that, too, and because I knew the contents almost by heart, it was not that difficult to recognize the many words unknown to me (Me and Russian vocabulary- it's a story of mutual hatred- I simply cannot remember the verbs, I always remember only the funny words you never need). I also tried to improve my Latin by reading the Latin version, and my Dutch by reading the Dutch version... it didn't work too well, because I didn't have much patience, but perhaps I should have concentrated on one language... still, it's something I can only recommend if you want to brush up a language.

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lemonbalm&bees - Jun 4, 2005 2:32 pm (#497 of 938)

"This time it was right, it would work, and no one would have to get nailed to anything." ~D.A.
I agree Little Ginny. 'Harry Potter y la piedra filosofál' was a great read! In the first chapter alone I learned many new words, including 'owl' and 'drill!'

And I would definately reccommend the Little House books to anyone. These books are where the books-on-tape tradition began with my family. My dad was in submarines and missed a great deal of my growing-up years, but he would visit me in recordings of "Little House in the Big Woods." Countless times, my friends have been amazed at some odd knowledge I seemed to posses. "Where on earth did you learn that?!?" And of course, it was the Little House books.

In fact, for those who grew up with Little House and Anne of Green Gables, I can personally gauruntee that they are ten times better when you go back to them years later. (Not to mention their being much quicker)

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Finn BV - Jun 4, 2005 8:23 pm (#498 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
Oh, yes. I am attempting to read "Harry Potter y la Orden del Fénix" without a copy of my English book. It's tempting to switch over occasionally, but it's really good for learning another language.

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Amilia Smith - Jun 4, 2005 8:25 pm (#499 of 938)

Don't know why I didn't think of that. :-) I shall check out my local bookstore, and if that fails, Amazon.

Mills.

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Veritaserum - Jun 4, 2005 8:57 pm (#500 of 938)

Go Jays!
Herm oh Ninny, I enjoyed the Sisterhood movie, and I thought they did a pretty good job adapting the books. I liked the book a little better in some parts. I like the books because they are an easy read, and some nice girly teenage angst, which is different from what I normally read.

Also, I have been "reading" Harry Potter et le prisonnier d'Azkaban for a year and a half and I'm only on chapter 3 or 4...I don't get around to it too often. But it is fun, especially to note how they translated some of the names. Professor Snape= Professor Rogue, for example.

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Recommended Reading (Post 501 to 550)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:43 am

applepie - Jun 6, 2005 11:45 am (#501 of 938)
"Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much." -- Oscar Wilde
I am finding it increasingly difficult to read The Lovely Bones for a long period of time. I am a little more than half-way through, but it is a very dark and depressing book. I find it hard to read in the evenings (when I normally read) because it leaves me very unsettled, and almost nervous. I have just started alternating it with Eats, Shoots & Leaves, reading the latter just before I retire for the night.

I must admit that I have been wanting to read The Lovely Bones since it came out in the bookstore, and put Eats, Shoots & Leaves on the back burner so I could start it, but I will need to do a little more investigating before taking on a book of this nature.

Has anyone else read the book?

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Amilia Smith - Jun 9, 2005 8:39 pm (#502 of 938)

Ffellow Fforde Ffans: I have just made a wonderful discovery. If you go to [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] and type "big over easy" into the search function, you can read the first chapter of Jasper Fforde's new book, The Big Over Easy. I found this very exciting as the book does not hit shelves until July (which is going to be a very good month).

I would have put the link in for you, but it is a big site, and I didn't want to make a mod have to go through the whole site. Everything I encountered was Forum friendly, but I don't know what other books have excerpts available.

Mills.

Edit: They also have excerpts from Harry Potter in both print and audio. Nothing from HBP, yet, alas, alack and Alaska. I didn't really think there would be, but what kind of fan would I be if I didn't check?

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João Paulo Costa - Jun 15, 2005 3:50 am (#503 of 938)

Hello all:

I checked and did not find in this thread, so I supose that these books have not been sugested - unless they were sugested prior to this thread as been discontinued.

The fiction books that I read, that dealt with magic, and that influenced me for a long time were The Earthsea Chronicles, by Ursula le Guin:

1. The Wizard of Earthsea 2. The Tombs of Atuan 3. The Farthest Shore 4. Tehanu (I still have not read this one)

The aspect of the books that striked me as the most appealing was the use (or rather, the rationality of use) of magic in these books.

(When I first read the Harry Potter books, I was somehow thrown off by the fact that magic was done all the time, and seemed a very mundane thing - what atracked me later to the HP series was the continuous revealing off the mistery of HP: the number and multitude of characters, the very complicated plot, the fact that the characters age and learn...)

Like the Harry Potter books, these books also deal with the growing up of a character (in the first book he grows from 12 to 19 years old; in the second he is a grown man, probably in his 30's; in the third he is about fifty yeears old, an old man by the story standards). Also like in HP, the action takes place in a world that functions with magic. However, the nature and use of it are radically different.

I recomend it for all of those that like fantsy books. But these books deal with several harsh lessons of life: making mistakes, being marked by them and trying to correct them. Being solitary in a vast world. Having the courage to live. Having the courage to deal and accept death.

Good reading to all. Joao Costa.

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KTO - Jun 15, 2005 1:08 pm (#504 of 938)

I am not happy unless I am reading a good book, here are some recomendations (for adults)

1. anything by David Sedaris 2. The Mists of Avalon - one of my all time favorites 3. The Far Pavillons - amazing, wanted to cry when I finished it as I felt like I was losing a friend 4.The Kit Runner - should be mandatory reading for all adults. 5. The Red Tent - loved it, loved it, loved it.

KT

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KTO - Jun 15, 2005 1:17 pm (#505 of 938)

any suggestions for the harry potter companion books?

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Veritaserum - Jun 15, 2005 4:39 pm (#506 of 938)

Go Jays!
Oh, you mean like the clue books and all?

The only one I've read of those is the Ultimate Unofficial Guide to the Mysteries of Harry Potter or something to that effect. It's pretty good and brings up some interesting points. They go really far out there on some of it, but then I suppose so do we.

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Regan of Gong - Jun 18, 2005 7:22 pm (#507 of 938)

Self declared doctor of everything.
Has any one here read Alex Rider ? They're really for kids and teenagers written by Anthony Horowitz. He's done some really good research into these so that everything he writes is within the bounds of reality. He consults experts and researchs information for ages so it can be realistic. They're teenage spy thriller books- but hold the groaning 'till you read them through. It's got a good running plot through the six books published so far, everyone thought they had ended when Alex was shot in book 5 and there was a massive outcry frokm the public. It's in the top ten at Dymocks. Anthony Horowitz also writes Midsommer Murders for TV.

I also enjoy a series of books called CHERUB. More child-spy type of thing, but realy witty and brilliantly written. They're written by Robert Muchamore, and there's a series of 8 planned so far, but only 3 are out at the moment. It's more single books, indivual plot series following a boy called James and his missions of espionage. I love them, but my brother is going to murder me when he comes home and finds I've read book 3 before him.

Sorry bout my rambling, Regan

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Elfcat - Jun 28, 2005 8:15 pm (#508 of 938)

What do you call a boomerang that doesn't come back? A Stick.
applepie brought a point to my attention: I have thus far failed to recommend Eats, Shoots and Leaves. I have failed you all, and deserve severe punnishment. If you like English (Like me, freak that I am), have trouble with english, or could care less about the language, this book is for you. If you like or need to learn about the language, well, you learn about it. If you could care less, you get to amuse yourself with the way she compares punctuation to objects and animals, IE- the "Oxford Coma" as a shark, the normal coma as a sheepdog, etc. Surprisingly good read. (all this is the IMHO of a language lover, by the way)

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Finn BV - Jun 28, 2005 8:26 pm (#509 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
I second Elfcat. Fantastic book. See my response to when dizzy lizzy said something about "reading through 160 odd posts" on the Chat thread and I warned her about that tricky hypen: "160-odd posts" means 160-169 posts; "160 odd posts" is a very rude way to describe what we put into our posts. Yup, anyway, a great read.

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dizzy lizzy - Jun 28, 2005 8:41 pm (#510 of 938)

There is more to life than increasing its speed: Mahatama Ghandi.
lol *blushes*

Someone I am sure has recommended Garth Nix (Aussie Fantasy Author) haven't they?? He has another new book of short stories being released pretty soon. As I understand it, his books are starting to make their presence felt in the US and UK.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Jun 29, 2005 1:52 am (#511 of 938)

Elfcat - you may leave the court without a stain on your character. f you put in Eats, Shoots and Leaves into the search you will find nearly everyone on this thread has recommended the book, or supported a recommendation by someone else.

You should have seen the discussion we had about the use of the hyphen in Half-Blood Prince. Eats, Shoots and Leaves was our touchstone.

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Finn BV - Jun 29, 2005 11:18 am (#512 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
Yeah, Phelim, I had S.E. Jones change the title thread because every time I looked at it I just shook my head with a slight bit of sadness. Glad we've got more grammar freaks.

Lizzy, hope you understand I just couldn't resist that little bit of hypen-ism.

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dizzy lizzy - Jun 29, 2005 5:27 pm (#513 of 938)

There is more to life than increasing its speed: Mahatama Ghandi.
No problems fbv. I'm still laughing . I had better go to the local library and borrow Eats, Shoots and Leaves then.

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Finn BV - Jun 29, 2005 6:25 pm (#514 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
This is so funny! So I went to [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] just because I saw there was a web site, and look at this picture at [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] correcting "Two Weeks Notice" to "Two Weeks' Notice"! The other movie playing just had to HP! I just couldn't believe it. A must-post on the You Know You're a Fan When… thread!

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Little Ginny - Jun 30, 2005 4:59 am (#515 of 938)

Oh, yes, I can only recommend Eats, Shoots and Leaves ; though I have not finished it yet, it has greatly influenced me.

There is a shop in the town where I live offering Women and Men's Fashion (I suppose it would be too unfashionable to have a German name for a German shop), and every time I pass it I wonder whether I should go in and ask for "a middle-aged woman, capable of cooking and housekeeping, not too expensive", since they seem to have specialised in that kind of things. ;-)

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T Brightwater - Jun 30, 2005 2:21 pm (#516 of 938)

In _Going Postal_, Terry Pratchett has a lot of fun with the "Greengrocer's Apostrophe." (as in "Cabbage's 99p")

By the way, Elfcat, as long as we're all sticklers together here, is the Oxford coma a newly-described medical condition? :-)

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Phelim Mcintyre - Jul 1, 2005 4:10 am (#517 of 938)

For those who can get hold of it - you must read the Uxbridge English Dictionary. Published by Harper Collins. There is a great comedy program on BBC Radio 4 called "I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue". it describes itself as the "antidote to panel games". One of it's rounds is the "new definitions". Take a normal word and change its definition. For example: idiomatic - a Ugandan washing machine; vacinate - to administer drugs using a Hoover. You get the idea.

Funny enough to use the Imperious Curse to force people to buy it. These defenitions would really send Dementors flying.

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Elfcat - Jul 5, 2005 4:20 pm (#518 of 938)

What do you call a boomerang that doesn't come back? A Stick.
T Brightwater--Oh NO!! I did that? While talking about grammar? I hate that! Bad Elfcat, bad! *goes to iron hands*

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nu9p - Jul 6, 2005 9:56 am (#519 of 938)

I don't know if anyone has recommended this yet, but I enjoy orson scott card books. He wrote the ender's series...Ender's Game, Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide, Children of the Mind...the bean's series...Ender's Shadow, Shadow of the Hegemon, Shadow Puppets, Shadow of the Giant...I think I got those in order...He also wrote another series that I enjoyed...but I can't remember their titles, anyways, he is a science fiction author.

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nu9p - Jul 8, 2005 6:44 am (#520 of 938)

His other series is the Homecoming series I believe. Anyways, good stuff, you should check it out.

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Denise P. - Jul 8, 2005 7:36 am (#521 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
He also wrote the Alvin Maker series.

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nu9p - Jul 8, 2005 8:36 am (#522 of 938)

Yeah, but I haven't read that yet. Is it any good?

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Amilia Smith - Jul 8, 2005 7:03 pm (#523 of 938)

I love the Tales of Alvin Maker. If you go up a ways on this thread, you see me go on and on about it. However, I will admit that the latter books in the series are not as good as the early ones. It's almost as if Card has lost interest in the series, which is a shame as he has not finished it yet!

Non series Card: I recommend Enchantment. Time travel, Russian fairytales, a little romance, what more could you want?

Mills.

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nu9p - Jul 11, 2005 5:36 am (#524 of 938)

Thanks for the response Amilia.

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Loopy Lupin - Aug 4, 2005 2:23 pm (#525 of 938)

I have to recommend "The Historian" by Elizabeth Kostovo. It's a Vampire tale, but it is immersed in the history of Vlad The Impaler. It has been compared to "The DaVinci Code" but it is not really like that at all because the history is more of a backdrop and less of a means to solve puzzles.

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I Am Used Vlad - Aug 4, 2005 8:07 pm (#526 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
That book is near the top of my books to read after HBP list, Loopy. I like vampire stories in general, and books about Vlad Tepes specifically. My current favorite is Children of the Night by Dan Simmons. My name being Vlad is, however, entirely coincidental.

Speaking of Dan Simmons, I am finishing reading his latest book, Olympos, now. I would recommend it and its predecessor, Ilium, to fans of science fiction or the Trojan War.

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Loopy Lupin - Aug 5, 2005 9:03 am (#527 of 938)

My name being Vlad is, however, entirely coincidental.-- Vlad

Thank you for not saying that it is ironic .

The fact that you know to call him "Vlad Tepes" tells me you'd enjoy the book immensely. I've really come away from it with a real sense of the history of the region.

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Aug 5, 2005 9:11 am (#528 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
Really?

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Loopy Lupin - Aug 5, 2005 10:20 am (#529 of 938)

Yup!

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Aug 15, 2005 12:45 pm (#530 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
Has anyone read Marlena de Blasi's A Thousand Days in Venice? I'm just about finished and found out she's written a follow-up: A Thousand Days in Tuscany. I've enjoyed reading her first book and will certainly grab the second. I think she has an unusual style and am wondering if anyone else out there is familiar with her work.

I also just reread Jack London's Call of the Wild and have finally started White Fang which I promised myself many years ago I would read. I'd forgotten what a beautiful writer he is. I hope someone else out there enjoys him.

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irish flutterby - Aug 21, 2005 7:33 am (#531 of 938)

new to the thread, and looking forward to making use of the recommendations. I'd also like to recommend, if you can get your hands on them, The Song of Albion trilogy. I think " Paradise War" is the first. Stephen R. Lawhead is the author. But, beware, they are no longer in publication, so good luck finding them. They are about a guy who finds a "door" to an ancient celtic world, and war breaks out in this paradise. There's more to it, but that's a one sentence synopsis. Fantasy Fiction, and an excellent read. All three books.

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Dame Peverell - Sep 2, 2005 10:18 pm (#532 of 938)

Who wants JKR to hire some help and get on with it...
HOMER PRICE by ROBERT McCLOSKEY

A wonderfully funny childrens book, (we can remember it decades later) most especially for those not quite ready for the life and death realism of Harry Potter.

Or any adult looking for the brighter side.

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Joanna S Lupin - Sep 10, 2005 7:28 am (#533 of 938)

Little Bobik
Lupin is Lupin - I read London's books as a child and loved them!

I just finished Incas trillogy by A. B. Daniel and although it's terribly sad (obviously) it is very well written, picturesque, and amazingly beautiful.

Book One is: Puma's Shadow Book Two is: Gold of Cuzco Book Three is: Light of Machu Picchu

Excellent read!

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irish flutterby - Sep 21, 2005 4:31 pm (#534 of 938)

I just finished Serinity which is the novelization of the movie set to come out Sept 30th and a compliment to the series "Firefly" that used to air on Fox, but was not given a fair chance and was cancelled before the end of one season. Anyways, the novel is pretty darn good. can't wait to see the movie. I highly recommend the series, too.

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Eponine - Sep 21, 2005 6:53 pm (#535 of 938)

I second the recommendation for the series Firefly, but as this is a book thread...I'm reading The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time and I really like it so far.

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Finn BV - Sep 21, 2005 7:01 pm (#536 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
Curious Incident is a fantastic book. I've read it about four times now. I really love it, although I haven't gotten so fanatic about it as I have with Harry…

It's really touching.

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Nathan Zimmermann - Sep 21, 2005 10:47 pm (#537 of 938)

Eponine, the title you mentioned reminded me of the Sherlock Holmes short story Silver Blaze where they key to the mystery is referred to as the curious incident of the dog in the night time.

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Amilia Smith - Sep 22, 2005 12:07 am (#538 of 938)

I have not read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, but my brother has. He said he was much more impressed with The Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon, also about autism, and why he read Curious Incident in the first place.

Now, I have read Speed of Dark, and I can give it a very favorable recommendation. So, all you who enjoyed Curious Incident, check it out!

Mills.

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Veritaserum - Sep 22, 2005 3:48 pm (#539 of 938)

Go Jays!
I have Curious Incident, but have not had a chance to read it yet.

I just finished To Say Nothing of the Dog, by Connie Willis. It was very good and entertaining. Almost like light (and sane) Jasper Fforde.

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Finn BV - Sep 22, 2005 4:42 pm (#540 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
Jasper Fforde – Mills, isn't that the author of a book you were trying to get – didn't you mention it on the Chat Thread?

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Amilia Smith - Sep 22, 2005 7:10 pm (#541 of 938)

Indeed it is! The Big Over Easy came out a week or so after HBP. Detective Jack Spratt is trying to figure out who killed Humpty Dumpty. It was a hoot. And I just saw yesterday, on Fforde's website, that he will autograph your book if you mail it to him. I am thinking I will do this.

Now Connie Willis is another of my all time favorite authors. I have not read a single thing of hers that I haven't liked. She also had a new book out this summer, at the end of August. Inside Job was much harder to get a hold of than either of the other new releases I bought this summer. Apparently it was a limited edition with a small print run. (I think, I am just making this up based on my experience.) So my local Borders did not have it. And when I ordered it from Amazon, I got a series of emails saying that my order was delayed, and not to expect my book till October. Fortunantly it didn't take that long, and when I got it, it was a second printing. But it was worth the wait. Excellent book, as expected, my only complaint was that it was too short.

Veritaserum, have you read Doomsday Book? Also Connie Willis. Also in the same universe as To Say Nothing of the Dog. But it has a very different tone. (One of the things I like about Willis is that she can adopt different tones. Most authors, you can tell right off who is writing because they always write this way.) Doomsday Book was out of print for quite a while, but has just recently come back. So now you can find it again! Yay!!!

Mills.

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wynnleaf - Sep 23, 2005 3:56 pm (#542 of 938)

For those who like the alchemy aspects of the HP books, and also like historical fiction, you might like to try Scottish writer, Dorothy Dunnett's books of the Lymond Chronicles: "Game of Kings," "Queen's Play," "Disorderly Knights," "Pawn in Frankensense," "The Ringed Castle," and "Checkmate." They were written in the 60's and 70's (I think).

The primary character, Francis Crawford, deals on an adult level with themes of prophecy, political manuvering, good/evil, truth, destiny, etc. As you'd guess from the titles, there's also a major chess theme throughout. Set in the period of the beginnings of the reign of Mary Queen of Scots, through the start of Elizabeth I's reign. Takes place everywhere from Scotland to Russia and the mid-east.

It would take a lot of explaining to say why, but somehow, some of the themes and characters of HP remind me of themes in the Lymond series. That would maybe seem strange to anyone who's read both -- even to me, but there it is.

If it sounds interesting, google the titles to learn more.

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Veritaserum - Sep 23, 2005 8:20 pm (#543 of 938)

Go Jays!
Amilia, To Say Nothing of the Dog was the first book I'd read by Connie Willis, but I do think I'm going to read Doomsday Book now.

And for anybody that likes Tamora Pierce-ish type fantasy, try Crown Duel by Sherwood Smith. It's very good. I totally called the romance, but it was very sweet anyway.

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Herm oh ninny - Sep 24, 2005 10:17 pm (#544 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
Angela's Ashes and its sequel 'Tis by Frank McCourt were great books. I would definately recommend them.

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irish flutterby - Sep 26, 2005 8:55 am (#545 of 938)

I don't know if it's been mentioned, but I recenty read "Because of Wynn-Dixie." It was a short read, but really well written and moving, IMO.

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Amilia Smith - Oct 1, 2005 5:41 pm (#546 of 938)

I am taking a storytelling class this semester, and I am doing a presentation on literary fairy tales. I need a bibliography of sources, and I was wondering if anyone here has a favorite author. By "literary fairy tales," I mean stories that sound like traditional fairy tales, but were actually written by an author. Think Hans Christian Andersen, Eleanor Farjeon or Rudyard Kipling's Just So stories.

Thanks in advance,
Mills.

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irish flutterby - Oct 1, 2005 7:38 pm (#547 of 938)

Does the Chronicles of Narnia count? C.S. Lewis actually calls the books "fairy tales" in the first sentence or two of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. That's one of my favorite series.

Another fave is William Goldman's Princess Bride

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Amilia Smith - Oct 1, 2005 7:44 pm (#548 of 938)

They would count, except for this project I have to find stories that are short enough that you could tell them in a library storyhour.

And I agree, The Chronicles of Narnia is one of my favorite series too.

Mills.

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Herm oh ninny - Oct 1, 2005 9:39 pm (#549 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
Amilia, I am quite partial to the Grimm Brothers. They wrote Cinderella, The Frog Prince, and my absolute favorite Rumplestiltskin (SP?). Those are just a few of their fairy tales.

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Little Ginny - Oct 2, 2005 5:34 am (#550 of 938)

I also thought about the Grimm brothers first, but if I remember correctly, they collected fairy-tales throughout the country (Germany, mostly), polished them up a bit, edited and published them. I'm not sure whether they actually wrote a few of them.

By the way, Herm oh Ninny, I think that it is indeed spelt Rumplestiltskin in the English-speaking world. The original German name is Rumpelstilzchen.

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Recommended Reading (Post 551 to 600)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:45 am

Shannon aka Brammwell - Oct 2, 2005 12:53 pm (#551 of 938)
Financial Services Representative
Herm oh ninny..I agree, I loved Angela's Ashes, it is one of my favorites..

Can anyone recommend books that are like the Harry Potter books, with wizardry?

I'm going to read the Chronicles of Narnia series again but need something new after that?

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irish flutterby - Oct 2, 2005 1:51 pm (#552 of 938)

If you haven't read Lord of the Rings it's fabulous. The language can be very thick, if you know what I mean, but it is well worth the read. Or you can get the books on CD. (very good, also.)

As far as Fairy tales goes. I just rememebred that A.A. Milne wrote The Ugly Duckiling.

No, not the story about a swan. The version I saw was a play, but it may be in story form originally. It's about a princess whose forced into an arranged marraige. She gets her maid to pretend to be the princess so she can size the prince up. She falls in love with the Princes servant, only to find out that the Prince's servant is actually the Prince. It's really funny and a good classic style fairy tale. Also, it's short.

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Little Ginny - Oct 3, 2005 5:27 am (#553 of 938)

Shannon, have you tried the "Artemis Fowl" books? They're not really about wizards, but about magic, and a really evil hero. I liked them a lot.

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Esther Rose - Oct 3, 2005 8:06 am (#554 of 938)

I have moved on to the DaVinci Code. It soothes the logic puzzled mind of mine. Not for the younger minds though. Now waiting for Rowling's and Dan Brown's next books.

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Shannon aka Brammwell - Oct 3, 2005 11:30 am (#555 of 938)

Financial Services Representative
Little Ginny - No I haven't read Artemis Fowl but I'll try it out, it sounds very intriguing.

Esther Rose - If you are reading the DaVinci Code and you like it there's also Angels & Demons which preceeded the DaVinci Code.

Any other "magic/wizard" genre recommendations for me?

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dizzy lizzy - Oct 3, 2005 5:32 pm (#556 of 938)

There is more to life than increasing its speed: Mahatama Ghandi.
Shannon:

Try Diane Duane, Jim Butcher (definitely darkish adult themes in both series), Tamora Pierce, Garth Nix (Aussie Author), Diana Wynne Jones (UK author), Jasper Fforde, Charles DeLint, Jane Yolen, Edith Pattou, Ursula Le Guin (Earthsea series), Eva Ibbotson, Meridith Ann Pierce, Patrick Carman, Cornelia Funke, Christopher Paolini and last but not least - other books written by Eoin Colfer (artemis fowl author)

Most of these Authors (except for Jim Butcher) write for Young Adults and Adults - sometimes in the one book!

Most have written a series or two of books, and some have written stand alone books. Diana Wynne Jones mostly writes standalones and she has an amazing way of looking at magic/wizardry and the world.

I could go on for ages about each author. Email me using my worldcrossing address which is [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] if you (or anyone else needs more information/ideas).

Lizzy

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azi - Oct 4, 2005 6:51 am (#557 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
I definitely second Garth Nix. Also try Johnathon Stroud and The Bartimaeus Trilogy. It's a completely different style of magic to Harry Potter, but is one of my favourite sets of books! I have heard that Diana Wynne Jones is excellent, but haven't got round to reading anything of hers yet.

There's a book out in the UK called The Magicians Guild. It's the first of a trilogy, and the second book has also been released. I can't remember the name of the author (something like Trudy Canavan or something...) but it's about magic and is apparently a lot like the Garth Nix books. So if you like Garth Nix, you may like this.

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dizzy lizzy - Oct 4, 2005 3:31 pm (#558 of 938)

There is more to life than increasing its speed: Mahatama Ghandi.
Thanks,azi...I shall put "The Magicians Guild" on my list of books to further investigate.

Lizzy

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muggle born - Oct 6, 2005 2:01 am (#559 of 938)

Has anyone read Terry Pratchett disc world books, There are lots of them. I also like The Green Rider books by Kristen Britain I have read the first two the third should be out soon, can't wait to find out what happens next.

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T Brightwater - Oct 6, 2005 4:27 pm (#560 of 938)

I'll second the recommendations for Terry Pratchett and Connie Willis; the latter's Bellwether had me in hysterics. Doomsday Book is beautiful but very sad.

A good literary fairy story which is quite readable and hilarious is Tolkien's "Farmer Giles of Ham." "Smith of Wootton Major" is also good but more contemplative in character.

More wizardry: Susan Cooper's "The Dark is Rising" series (thanks, Patrick Mullan, for reminding me of those).

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Shannon aka Brammwell - Oct 7, 2005 6:06 am (#561 of 938)

Financial Services Representative
Dizzy Lizzy, T Brightwater & Azi - thanks for the recommendations, you've given me alot to look from. All the suggestions look wonderful! I'm off to the library.........

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Patrick Mullan - Oct 7, 2005 11:25 am (#562 of 938)

Edited by Oct 7, 2005 11:26 am
I would like to recommend the Dark is Rising sequence written by Susan Cooper.

It is a classic fantasy tale written in the late 70's and 80's with many characteristics that can be found in Harry Potter.

The first book Over Sea, Under Stone starts with the three main characters (2 boys and a rather clever girl) taking a long train ride. And they meet up with their Great Uncle Merry who is as wizard-like as they come.

Although it is not as smooth and easy to read as Harry Potter, it is an enjoyable tale.

The entire sequence of books can be found at Barnes and Noble in a boxed set.

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Veritaserum - Oct 7, 2005 10:48 pm (#563 of 938)

Go Jays!
Ditto to the Garth Nix, Tamora Pierce, and Jasper Fforde. I've only read one Terry Pratchett book, but I have a couple of friends on me to read more.

Along the fairy tale line, I just finished Wicked by Gregory Maguire. The musical is something of a cult fave in my group of friends, and the book was quite good, though a little confusing and not so cut and dried (which, of course, was quite the point.) But I liked it so much I'm being Elphaba for Halloween. Smile Also by Gregory Maguire, Mirror Mirror is very good, but I didn't enjoy Lost very much.

Oh, and the Tales of the Otori trilogy by Lian Hearn is excellent also. It's kind of samurai/secret agent/medieval Japan-ish/a little bit of fantasy/love story. Quite good, especially the beginning of the first and ending of the last.

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azi - Oct 8, 2005 5:06 am (#564 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
Wow, I'm currently reading Wicked! It's quite a good book for humour, but it's not the page turner type like with other books. A friend got me to read it as she loved it. The description is good and Elphaba is a really cool character! I didn't think many people would have read it, since I'd never heard of it before, but obviously someone has!

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Veritaserum - Oct 8, 2005 2:47 pm (#565 of 938)

Go Jays!
Azi-- have you heard of it as a musical? It came out on Broadway a couple of years ago, and now it's kind of on a US national tour...it came to Chicago and Denver and stuff. I have some musical-obsessed friends who first got me interested. I really want to see the musical to see how it differs from the book; it's quite a complicated book to adapt. Now I'm never going to look at the Wizard of Oz the same again!

P.S. Gregory Maguire also just came out with a sequel: Son of a Witch. It's about Liir, if you've gotten to him yet.

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azi - Oct 8, 2005 2:56 pm (#566 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
No, I didn't know it was a musical! From what I have read, I also think it will be difficult to adapt - although as a slapstick comical sort of thing it should work quite well. I think the book is much better than The Wizard of Oz (it's a bit...quaint...for my liking).

Haven't read about Liir yet. I'm only on the bit where Elphaba is a teenager at university.

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Veritaserum - Oct 9, 2005 11:37 am (#567 of 938)

Go Jays!
Ah yes. That's my favorite section of the book, I think. That or the one coming up right after that.

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haymoni - Oct 9, 2005 3:09 pm (#568 of 938)

After reading "Wicked", I find that it is very difficult to watch "The Wizard of Oz" with the same wonderment I once did.

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T Brightwater - Oct 10, 2005 8:01 am (#569 of 938)

Nobody's mentioned Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke for a while. It's a different literary approach to magic - assuming that it has always been a well-known part of English history, with a considerable (ficticious) scholarly bibliography. Clarke has managed to capture a lot of the flavor of Jane Austen, including some of her very sly humor, and although it's a bit slow-moving at first, it is quite engaging, and downright riveting by the end.

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Dr Filibuster - Oct 11, 2005 2:06 pm (#570 of 938)

Sue, from Northwich, England.
I'm halfway through Jonathon Strange and enjoying it a lot.

Infact, I just popt off the sopha to put a recommendation on here, only to find that T Brightwater beat me to it.

I had my eye on it for a while, but waited until it came out in paperback and on sale. Got it for £3.99 in the end.

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Veritaserum - Oct 11, 2005 7:30 pm (#571 of 938)

Go Jays!
Hmm, haymoni, I always thought Wizard of Oz was kind of overrated. I just never really liked it (the movie, anyway). Now with Wicked, I feel a lot more affinity for the story. Kind of opposite, huh?

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haymoni - Oct 12, 2005 6:23 am (#572 of 938)

It's just hard to be scared of her now. And I feel really badly when she gets doused - poor thing.

Although, that "Auntie Em! Auntie Em!" bit in the crystal ball when she looks at the screen still flips me out!

I had borrowed "Wicked" when I read it, so I only read it once. I should go back and read it again.

I think Gina Snape said that she was involved in a forum about it.

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Veritaserum - Oct 12, 2005 3:31 pm (#573 of 938)

Go Jays!
Oh, I totally agree. I am way more sympathetic to Elphaba now. She's my favorite character. It was so sad when she got killed, too. And (according to Wicked) Corothy didn't even mean to kill her!

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Herm oh ninny - Oct 12, 2005 9:57 pm (#574 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
You should read the Oz books. The movie takes plots from 3 or 4 of them and kind of mashes them together.

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CatherineHermiona - Oct 13, 2005 11:00 am (#575 of 938)

My drawing... LOL
I definitely reccomend you to read Laura Leander books, writer Peter Freund. That are amazing books and very similar to Harry Potter. For more informations you can look at [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] (I don't exactly know how to put a link so I'm letting you to write this address alone. I'm sorry!). Just beautiful book!

I'm still in the chat room! Kate

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Finn BV - Oct 13, 2005 6:58 pm (#576 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
Hmm… Kate, when I go to laura.com it asks me for a password. I'll check out the library, though.

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CatherineHermiona - Oct 13, 2005 11:19 pm (#577 of 938)

My drawing... LOL
Yes, I know. But try to write [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] and he will give you the results on Croatian if you would like to read that kind of informations . If you look in the library I think titles would be something like Laura and the secret of Aventerra and Laura and Signet of seven moons. Or months (that's the same word here).

Kate

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Patrick Mullan - Oct 14, 2005 6:27 am (#578 of 938)

I am well into the second book in the Dark is Rising sequence written by Susan Cooper.

Their are many items in the book that can be found in Harry Potter.

I have to assume that JKR was influenced by this sequence of books by Susan Cooper when she was writing the Harry Potter books.

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T Brightwater - Oct 14, 2005 6:56 am (#579 of 938)

Or they were drawing on many of the same materials - what Tolkien calls the "Cauldron of Story." Harry, Luke Skywalker, Aragorn, King Arthur and Susan Cooper's Will are all variations on the same theme. For a point of difference, Cooper's Old Ones are guardians of the non-magical world; JKR's wizards pretty much ignore it.

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Chemyst - Oct 16, 2005 11:31 am (#580 of 938)

"Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up." A.A. Milne
Has anyone read Dragons in Our Midst by B. Davis? It is supposed to be a series for teens. The customer reviews at amazon are pretty high, but I've never met anyone who has actually read them. I'm looking for Christmas shopping ideas for young teens, so if you have suggestions... post away.

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Oct 18, 2005 7:26 am (#581 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
Chemyst, I may have mentioned this one before, but I strongly recommend A String in the Harp by Nancy Bond. It's about three American kids who go to Wales with their father and the boy (about 11 or 12) finds a harp tuning key which causes him to have visions of the ancient past and the legendary life of the bard, Taliesin. It's recommended for ages 10-14 although I read it at thirty-something and found it fascinating.

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Patrick Mullan - Oct 18, 2005 7:55 am (#582 of 938)

Well Brightwater, you may be correct.

However there are certainly some shocking similarities between the Rowling and Cooper works.

For those who may be interested in "The Dark is Rising" series as some reading material until we get Book 7, I found this interesting article from the Sunday Times dated May 16, 2005.

LOS ANGELES: A British writer about to celebrate her 70th birthday is poised to become a second JK Rowling after selling a series of fantasy books to Hollywood in a deal that could be worth pound stg. 2million ($5 million).

Susan Cooper, a former journalist who began her career by working for Ian Fleming, the creator of James Bond, has signed a contract to turn The Dark is Rising, one of her quintet of epic tales, into blockbuster movies.

The mythical saga, set largely in Cooper's native Buckinghamshire, in southeast England, has been bought by Walden Media, a US film company whose movie version of CS Lewis's The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe will be released this Christmas.

After turning down film offers for many years, Cooper said she had entrusted her books to Walden, which is owned by sports tycoon Philip Anschutz, because the company would not wreck them.

"You have to do some violence to a book to turn it into a film, but that doesn't mean there are no limits," she said.

"They wanted to set it in America, which I stopped, but they'll have to update it. The books were written in the 1970s and the characters say things like 'Gosh!' that I'm not sure if modern children would even understand." The Dark is Rising is the second book of the quintet, and revolves around a farm boy called Will Stanton who teams up with a Merlin-like figure to save the world from dark forces resurrected from Celtic mythology.

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Mrs. D. - Oct 19, 2005 7:43 am (#583 of 938)

I know it has already been brought up but I really enjoyed "Eldest" by Christopher Paolini. I was groaning when I came upon the end and realized I would have to wait for book 3. LOVED it!!!

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T Brightwater - Oct 19, 2005 9:59 am (#584 of 938)

Patrick, thanks for the news! What's ironic is that Cooper's books were out long before JKR's, but she's being called "a second J.K.Rowling." (And she isn't - her books don't have nearly the depth of detail or the humor of HP, but Cooper is very good with atmosphere.) By the way, I invoked your theory on the Snape thread, but don't read that post unless you've finished the second book. :-)

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Patrick Mullan - Oct 19, 2005 10:56 am (#585 of 938)

Edited by Oct 19, 2005 11:02 am
He he he,

It sure is going to be interesting when we see what happens to Snape in the last book. I can't wait.

I agree Bright,Susan Cooper is not as detailed or as humorous as JKR.

But I am finding that the books are a good read, and they should make interesting movies. I think I would have had a hard time getting through them when I was a teen ager but I can appreciate them now.

What they probably mean by saying Cooper will be a "second" JKR is that the movies (if successful) will propel her into the same sort of fame that JKR currently holds.

Of course, JKR was famous before the movies so there is sort of a reverse scenario here.

Mrs. D, the Christopher Paolini works will probably be my next read. I see the books in the store all the time and I have yet to buy them. They sure look interesting.

I also have a stack of the latest Salvatore works and some Goodkind to keep my mind occupied until JKR produces her final book.

And, I saw the trailor for the Goblet of Fire, and it looks awesome.

I can't wait for the movie to come out.

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T Brightwater - Oct 19, 2005 11:25 am (#586 of 938)

Here's a question: Other than HP, what fantasy books have characters or a world that you wonder about when you're not reading the books?

A lot of books are good enough to produce what Tolkien called "Secondary Belief" - that the reader "believes" what is happening in the context of the story. I think what he, JKR, and a few others have done is to approach what he calls "Enchantment" - a world that exists in its own right, that both creator and audience can enter.

Mine include:

LOTR Katherine Kurtz's Deryni series Terry Pratchett's Discworld series

and to a lesser extent:

Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell C. J. Cherryh's Chanur books (these are sf but I'm counting them anyway.)

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Patrick Mullan - Oct 19, 2005 1:26 pm (#587 of 938)

Interesting question Bright.

Middle-Earth, of course, is the brightest world in my mind, with Harry Potter's wonderous world coming in second.

I dream quite often of sipping a cup of tea by the fire while I watch the snow falling heavily outside my window in Hogsmeade.

I could also find myself quite at home in R.A. Salvatore's Icewind Dale.

Those three worlds are the only ones that have a firm hold on my imagination to the point where I would love to slip into one of them for a few hours.

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dizzy lizzy - Oct 19, 2005 7:28 pm (#588 of 938)

There is more to life than increasing its speed: Mahatama Ghandi.
For me HP is the brightest and is the most real, but I often "stop by" to say hi to Nita and Kit from the young wizards Series by Diane Duane.

Lizzy

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Amilia Smith - Oct 20, 2005 3:30 pm (#589 of 938)

Years ago, when I was reading Brian Jacques's Redwall series, I used to worry about the characters constantly. I had to keep reminding myself that they weren't real, that it was only a book. He's written several more books since I quit reading them. I ought to go back . . .

Mills.

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irish flutterby - Oct 20, 2005 4:07 pm (#590 of 938)

I was at a used bookstore recently looking for more fantasy to bewitch me when I ran across a book by Patricia A. McKillip. I bought it for the cover, mostly.

Just finished. It's fantastic (no pun intended).

Alphabet of Thorn is great. I had a hard time understanding the world, at first, but once I got into the plot (about the second page) I was hooked.

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hawick girl - Oct 22, 2005 10:44 pm (#591 of 938)

I think that Stephen King's Dark Tower series (epic/saga/anthology...) is a version of 'second belief' because there is alot about second/alternate/other worlds and infact the Dark Tower is the visualization of this (a Tower in a field of red roses held in place by magic and machines where different 'worlds' exist like pancakes stacked one atop another). I think that SK's stories make up the worlds, but also incuded are all stories ever made.

My favorite SK's are Dark Tower IV (Wizard and Glass), Dark Tower VII (the Dark Tower), the Stand, From a Buick 8, Insomnia, Hearts in Atlantis, Dolores Claiborne, Different Seasons, I suppose all but Carrie and the Girl Who loved Tom Gordon (dumb girl walks out of FM radio range).

Other great books are:

Hannibal -rather gory, but tantalizing (I actually cheered for Hannibal)

The Anasazi Mysteries series -a dual time line story where one is making the artifacts and stuff found in present day (in archeology sites)

To Kill a Mockingbird -a classic had to read in high scool and bought in college because it was so good

The Handmaid's Tale -another classic read last year and it seems so realistic and believable and all the more scary

Stephanie Plum series -bounty huntering gone wrong. they are unbelievably funny actually so funny I'm laughing just remembering the crap she endures--my stomach hurts Smile

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Patrick Mullan - Oct 24, 2005 8:39 am (#592 of 938)

My favorite Stephen King of all time is Misery.

That book kept my heart in my mouth until the end.

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irish flutterby - Oct 24, 2005 8:53 am (#593 of 938)

I think I'm a bit of a sucker to get drawn in to alternate reality. Almost any book I get so engrossed that I begin to "worry" for the character.

For example: I am in the middle of reading The Summer Tree from Guy Gavriel Kay's series The Fionavar Tapestry.

It's becoming really hard to focus on other things. My mind keeps coming back to the books.

It's a really great book so, far by the way.

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hawick girl - Oct 24, 2005 12:57 pm (#594 of 938)

SK's Misery is great even the movie although different is great especially Kathy Bates as Annie Wilkes. Scary,very scary, but great!

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Patrick Mullan - Oct 25, 2005 12:33 pm (#595 of 938)

No recommended reading thread would be complete without mentioning, The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant, the Unbeliever by Stephen R. Donaldson.

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Regan of Gong - Oct 31, 2005 3:30 am (#596 of 938)

Self declared doctor of everything.
I reckon I could definately see myself relaxing on one of the various private islands/penthouses/yauhts/mansions etc. of the Alex Rider series. Living a supreme existance indeed I think.

We just finished The Chrysalids for English at school and that's a fair good book for anyone who hasn't read it yet. It's a 40's sci-fi book with the what-if? question of what if there was a nuclear war and we lost most knowledge of technology and slipped back to a middle-ages existance. It's also about a bunch of kids who communicate by telepathy and need to keep the secret safe from their people because they'll kill them if they find out they're different from themselves and not "in the Image of God" as they put it. Pretty good read if you haven't already.

Regan

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valuereflection - Nov 9, 2005 2:53 pm (#597 of 938)

Can anyone help me? I want to find a quote from J. K. Rowling, about a book she was reading. I remember her saying it a year or so ago, probably before Half-Blood Prince. The context was that JKR walked past crowds to some kind of event where she was doing a reading (I think it was from Order of the Phoenix?). Anyway, while she was walking, she happened to mention the book which she was reading at the time. She commented that for people who had read that book, it would give them some insight into the passage which she was about to read from her own book. I think MAYBE the author's last name started with an "O", but I'm not certain. Please can anyone remember this event?

I tried to search "Quick Quotes" but I couldn't seem to find it. I wonder if maybe this quote didn't get transcribed, because she said it before the event actually began. Or maybe I don't know quite where to look.

Thanks for your help!

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valuereflection - Nov 9, 2005 10:05 pm (#598 of 938)

Do you think that I should start a new thread with my question? That way, more Forum members might notice it and answer me. (Actually I don't know how to start a new thread. But I wondered if the idea would be helpful.)

Thanks again.

Edit: I'm not 100% sure JKR was walking in to do a reading when she said the quote I'm looking for -- the event might have been an Azkaban movie premiere, or something else.

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Amilia Smith - Nov 10, 2005 4:08 am (#599 of 938)

Hi, valuereflection! I don't remember ever seeing a quote like the one you described. I had a lot of fun looking in Quick Quotes tonight, though! :-) I found several places where she mentioned her favorite authors, but I didn't have any more luck than you did in finding one that she says would specifically give insight to her books.

As far as I can tell, the only readings she did for OotP were Royal Albert Hall and the Edinburgh Book Festival. While, once again, she discussed her favorite books in each interview, she didn't tie any particular one to the readings.

The closest I found was a 2000 interview with Writer's Digest:

Q: You've said before that you want to keep your favorite authors to yourself. [When has she said this? I couldn't find any such quote. She always seems happy to share her favorite authors.] Are there secrets about Harry that you'll keep to yourself?

A: There are things I know about many of the characters in the Harry books that might not make it into the books themselves ... too much information, not enough space!

Which doesn't really help.

So . . . I haven't really got anything to report, I just wanted you to know that I had seen your message and tried to look for an answer.

Mills.

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valuereflection - Nov 10, 2005 10:44 am (#600 of 938)

Amilia Smith, thank you for looking for me.

I seem to remember that the book JKR mentioned was a more recent work by a modern author, who JKR just happened to be reading during that week. I don't know if JKR meant to say that this book she mentioned would relate to all of her own books; I think she intended to say it happened to be related to the subject of the passage which she had chosen to read on that day. (It might have been the scene with Umbridge and McGonagall, but again, I'm not sure.) When this incident happened, I read about it on the internet. Then I tried to look up JKR's recommendation on "Amazon", because I had never heard of that book or that author. I think I remember that Amazon described a plot about a child growing up with a chicano (spelling?) grandmother -- which I didn't expect, as JKR is British. Next I tried to request the book from my local library, but they didn't have it, and so I forgot about it ... And now I can't find the reference.

Do you think that it would be a good idea to make my question into a new thread, so it will attract more attention? I hope someone on our forum will remember this.

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Recommended Reading (Post 601 to 650)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:46 am

valuereflection - Nov 11, 2005 8:50 am (#601 of 938)
I found it!!
From Madam Scoop's Hoaxes and Rumors page:

"Rumor: Book 6 is related to Rudolfo Anaya's book Bless Me Ultima According to fansite postings, at the Royal Albert Hall event (2003), Rowling introduced her book-reading with a comment that fans should read Bless Me Ultima for a small hint about book 6. This is in no transcript that we can locate; the only place you see this claim is on fansites -- it is not corroborated anywhere else. While there is a slight possibility that Jo told this to someone at a book signing (where everything she says person-to-person doesn't get reported), we are currently treating this as an unsubstantiated rumor. Indeed, "Juno Puddifoot," an HPANA member who was there says "At Royal Albert Hall JKR was talking about the reading she was doing that day providing a small hint of what was to come (which was the Career chapter from OotP). Not what book she was reading at the time." (Bless Me Ultima is a great story, by the way!)."

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Amilia Smith - Nov 11, 2005 2:48 pm (#602 of 938)

Congratulations! Well, even if it is just an unsubstantiated rumor, if Bless Me Ultima is a great read, you're not out any.

Mills.

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valuereflection - Nov 13, 2005 5:30 pm (#603 of 938)

I've noticed both "timrew" and "Padfoot" posted on other threads that Watership Down , by Richard Adams, is a great read. That is one of the most favorite books in my family, all of us avid readers. (after we're past making jokes about "the rabbit book") I began reading it only because my fiance (now husband) insisted, so I thought that the first chapter moved pretty slowly. But then it became very absorbing; I didn't want to put the book down for anything. It's a suspenseful depiction of military strategy.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Nov 14, 2005 5:53 am (#604 of 938)

For those interested in something other than magic, but about Edinburgh could I suggest the Rebus novels by Ian Rankin and the two novels by Alexander Mccall Smith, The Sunday Philosophers Club and it's sequal. Ian and Alexander are actually neighbours of JKR so may give her help in plotting the mystery aspects of her books. Both Ian and Alexander are crime writers.

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azi - Nov 14, 2005 7:26 am (#605 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
I remember reading Watership Down. I was about 9 or 10, and got really upset. Seem to remember it was a good read.

Ack crime books, always good covers, never really my style of reading. Keep meaning to read something by Ian Rankin though. I only got 4 books (including 4 of Douglas Adams in one book) to read after all!

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Good Evans - Nov 15, 2005 10:20 am (#606 of 938)

Practically perfect in every way
nothing to do with magic or potters, but can I reccomend A wayne in a manger by G Phinn. Absolute scream, I couldnt put it down it is so funny. If you haven't heard of it, it is a collection of true recollections from a school inspector in Yorkshire, nativity plays and childrens behaviour around school events at christmas. The things that Children say. I wont spoil it but "wayne" comes in to his own due to a small boy having misheard something. worth a stocking filler this christmas....

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timrew - Nov 15, 2005 3:59 pm (#607 of 938)

Middle-aged Harry Potter fan
I see they went and changed the ending to Pride & Predjudice, the movie.

After Mr. Darcy has asked for the hand of Elizabeth from her father, the film ends with Darcy and her on a balcony. They exchange several kisses, while Darcy moans, "Mrs. Darcy, Mrs. Darcy, Mrs. Darcy......." - you get the drift. This shows us that they really got married. I always wondered........

Will Hamlet be next? Hamlet and Ophelia don't die; but instead get married, raise kids, and get a house with a picket fence......

Star Wars. Princess Leia and Luke are not brother and sister. They get married, raise kids, and get a house with a picket fence......

Where will it all end?

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Esther Rose - Nov 15, 2005 4:19 pm (#608 of 938)

Well Timrew,

Bride of Dracula has been changed to getting one coffin made for two, raising a couple of bats and a BLACK picket fence.

Just wanted to let you know.

And um Romeo and Juliet. They didn't really die they just drifted apart after going to different universities. 20 years later they end up reuniting on some cheesy talk show about family rivalries. They then adopt kids, buy a house with a white picket fence. =)

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valuereflection - Nov 21, 2005 7:56 pm (#609 of 938)

One of my favorite series for rereading while I was growing up was about how the earth had been taken over by aliens, the Tripods, but a few brave human teenagers dared to challenge them. The author is John Christopher. The first book is The White Mountains, and the second book is The City of Gold and Lead. The books are fairly short and easy to read. Has anyone else read them?

I am taking a storytelling class this semester, and I am doing a presentation on literary fairy tales. I need a bibliography of sources, and I was wondering if anyone here has a favorite author. By "literary fairy tales," I mean stories that sound like traditional fairy tales, but were actually written by an author. Think Hans Christian Andersen, Eleanor Farjeon or Rudyard Kipling's Just So stories. --Amilia Smith

Amilia, I loved Eleanor Farjeon when I was about 10. She wrote a book of short fairy tale-like stories called The Old Nurse's Stocking Basket, as well as full-length children's novels.

My first reactions to your question: the 1001 Nights, also called Arabian Nights, which I enjoyed while growing up. And the Brer Rabbit stories by Uncle Remus, which I only heard of when I was an adult.

But after thinking some more, I would recommend the author Thornton W. Burgess. He wrote a series of short stories that were very popular with children around the turn of the last century; his stories were published in newspapers and in books about "Mother West Wind". I was reminded of him by your example of Rudyard Kipling's Just So stories, because some of Burgess' short stories had similar titles to Kipling's, such as "Why Grandfather Frog has No Tail", "Why Jimmy Skunk Wears Stripes", and "Why Ol' Mistah Buzzard has a Bald Head". Some of Burgess' books have been reprinted now.

I was an avid reader as a child. So when my family went to visit acquaintances but I was bored, I explored their bookshelves. One day I came across this old book by Thornton W. Burgess. (It was old and rare even back then.) I was curious because it looked different from anthing I'd read before. I ended up borrowing "Mother West Wind Why Stories" many times from our acquaintance, because I wanted to read it over and over again. Then I asked the public library to track down another book in the series: Mother West Wind "How" Stories. I read stories from both books aloud to my friends. I loved how every story presented a moral,like Aesop's fables -- but reading Aesop was dry when compared to Mother West Wind.

Because I wanted to be able to continue rereading these books, I eventually decided to copy them. This was before copy machines. I remember Thornton W. Burgess vividly because I gave up playtime for many weeks to tediously copy some of his stories in longhand, in my childish handwriting, onto a large stack of paper. It was a price I was happy to pay, so that I could participate in the world of Mother West Wind.

Your school assignment is probably finished by now, but I'm still intrigued to hear that a university offers a class about storytelling. That's a skill which I always thought some people must simply be born with (JKR is one of them).I'd like to know more about the class curriculum. Which department of the university offers this course?

Edit: "...for this project I have to find stories that are short enough that you could tell them in a library storyhour." --Amilia Smith

I also remembered Betty MacDonald's books, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle and Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's Magic, which I loved to read aloud to my brothers and my friends when I was about 11. They are funny for kids. Betty MacDonald said that she used to tell bedtime stories about Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle to her own children, before she decided to publish the stories. Although each chapter is a separate story, it does help your listeners if they are already acquainted with who Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle is. Thus I'm not sure if it would work, if you have only one hour to present the story.

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valuereflection - Nov 21, 2005 8:37 pm (#610 of 938)

Once I get started down memory lane...

Another exciting book for teenagers is Escape to Witch Mountain, by Alexander Key. The book is better than the movie! This author also wrote The Forgotten Door, which has already been discussed on this thread.

And I want to second the poster who recommended The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupery.

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Mrs. D. - Nov 23, 2005 2:04 pm (#611 of 938)

Long live the Baobab tree!

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valuereflection - Nov 23, 2005 9:16 pm (#612 of 938)

Where did everybody go?

A book I greatly enjoyed, when I was about 13-15, was The Robe, by Lloyd C. Douglas. My friends loved it, and they recommended it to me. It's an old but famous Christian novel, about a Roman soldier who crucified Jesus Christ. It's still fun for me to re-read. Has anybody on the Forum read it?

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Amilia Smith - Nov 23, 2005 11:36 pm (#613 of 938)

Thanks for the great suggestions, Valuereflection! I have indeed finished that assignment. I told Farjeon's "Westwoods," and it went off rather well! :-) The written part of the assignment was to research your story and hand in an annotated bibliography of similar stories. But as this is something I am hoping to carry with me onto the job (I want to be a children's librarian), your recommendations are greatly appreciated. I had never heard of Thornton Burgess before; I shall make it a point to check him out.

Oh, and I am a Library Science major at the University of Hawaii. Most MLIS programs offer a Storytelling class, as that is part of the fun of being a librarian, you get to tell stories to little kids! It's my favorite class; I shall be very sorry to bid it good-bye at the end of the semester.

I have also read and loved The Robe and Escape to Witch Mountain. Witch Mountain used to be my favorite movie to watch over at my grandparents' house. So when I discovered the book, needless to say, I was delighted.

Mills.

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valuereflection - Nov 29, 2005 6:45 pm (#614 of 938)

In Post #357, Chemyst said: On the Chat thread, From Venus asked about books that would help keep her grandkid's love of reading alive.

So even though its been awhile, I went back to read the original question by From Venus. After all, Christmas is coming; maybe From Venus or some other forumers are preparing a shopping list. Here's her question:

My grandkids are really getting into reading. My grandson Alex is in the 3rd grade (he'll be 9 in April) and he really likes the Goosebumps series. Are you familiar with them? My granddaughter, June, who is in 1st grade (age 7), is getting into the Junie B. Jones series. I would really like to keep their love for reading alive. Do any of you have any books and/or series that you would recommend for their age groups? Also, my youngest granddaughter, Penny, who'll be 5 in April, is already learning to sound out words. She'll start Kindergarten in the fall. I think she'll be a reader too. I love this reading kick they're on; it makes for a nice quiet house at times when you usually hear a lot of noise coming from the TV; cartoons or video games. I'd like to make some good interesting books available to them to keep this love for reading alive.

I'm surprised that none of us Harry Potter fans have mentioned The Little Witch, by Anna Bennett. This was a favorite of my two daughters when they were 8-9. Its a favorite for many girls aged 7-9. Its like a fairy tale about a girl who is a witch, but it doesn't insult children's intelligence. When I was 7 years old, this was the first book I read with chapters, and I loved it. Our family likes to give this book as a gift.

For beginning readers who aren't ready yet to read a whole book with chapters (1st and 2nd grade, about age 5-7), the beloved Triplet series, by Maj Lindman, are very popular even though they are now out of print. If you can find them used, or borrow from a library, they are worth the trouble because children still love them. My public library's copies are always checked out, and they have a waiting list. Look for titles which begin with Snipp, Snapp, Snurr, or with Flicka, Ricka, Dicka. Snipp, Snapp, and Snurr are three little Swedish boys who are triplets. Flicka, Ricka, and Dicka are three little Swedish girls who are triplets. I've seen both boys and girls at my library who happily read about both sets of triplets, because they like how the books are written.

Another short book for beginning readers which is much loved is Miss Suzy, by Miriam Young, because it's about bullying. It has memorable pictures with about one or two sentences per page. Although it might appeal more to girls because Miss Suzy lives in a dollhouse, boys would enjoy having the story read to them.

I agree with the posters who recommended the Little House books. Several of my nieces and nephews were charmed by a similar book when they were about age 7-11: Susannah, the Pioneer Cow, by Miriam Evangeline Mason.

For older children, about age 9-12, mine were riveted by From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, by the author E. L. Konigsburg. Each of my children, both the boys and the girls, read it three times or more, until the pages were falling apart -- then they objected strongly to the idea of throwing the book in the trash can.

The Freddy the Pig series, by Walter R. Brooks is now back in print. Most of the books are still funny and interesting despite being written long ago. Recommended for kids ages 4-8, but I know of 11-year-olds and 14-year-olds who enjoy them. Read the story aloud to younger children, or let older ones enjoy on their own. Some of the best titles in the series are: Freddy and the Bean Home News; Freddy the Detective; Freddy and the Men from Mars; Freddy's Perilous Adventure. However, a few titles, such as Freddy and the Space Ship, are not as much fun because they are now outdated.

If you have a child who enjoys the Encyclopedia Brown mystery series by Donald J. Sobol, he/she might also like an adventure/mystery series about Alvin Fernald, by author Clifford B. Hicks. These books are fascinating for kids who like to think.

Another series about set of triplets who are older and have interesting and entertaining adventures, is by author Nan Hayden Agle. The titles all begin with "Three Boys and..." Some titles are: Three Boys and a Lighthouse; Three Boys and a Train; Three Boys and a Helicopter; Three Boys and a Mine; Three Boys and the Remarkable Cow; Three Boys and H20; Three Boys and a Tugboat; Three Boys and Space. I can't remember exactly what age group would be best for this series, but I had fun reading it when I was about 10 years old. It's not in as much demand as the triplet series by Maj Lindman.

I hope that my ideas will help a child in some Lexicon Forumer's life, to have fun reading.

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valuereflection - Nov 29, 2005 7:33 pm (#615 of 938)

Okay, just one more suggestion... Smile

Key to the Treasure , by Peggy Parish was the second book with chapters that I read. I was then 7 years old. This mystery story was so exciting that some of my friends, who were not yet confident in their own reading, asked me to read it aloud to them -- several times.

Peggy Parish wrote a few sequels, but I don't know if they are as exciting as the first book.

Pippi Longstocking, by Astrid Lindgren, is good also for young readers about age 7-8 years old.

Keith Robertson wrote a series of very fun novels, beginning with Henry Reed, Inc., about an ingenious youthful entrepreneur. Its a good transition for older children who are ready for more sophisticated, adult reading, about ages 9-12.

Have fun reading.

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valuereflection - Nov 29, 2005 8:39 pm (#616 of 938)

This children's book is different. It's a non-fiction book which kids find interesting, for ages 10-13. I wasn't interested in the subject at first, when I received the book as a gift in my childhood. Nevertheless this book was SO interesting that I re-read it several times. It became interesting because it was just so well-written. Then I wanted to read other books by this author.

When Nantucket Men Went Whaling, by Enid La Monte Meadowcroft

This is really a fun thread. I hope I haven't overdone it.

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T Brightwater - Nov 30, 2005 12:49 pm (#617 of 938)

Pippi Longstocking and Mrs. Basil E Frankweiler! Haven't thought about those in ages; both were great fun.

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haymoni - Dec 1, 2005 4:29 pm (#618 of 938)

I absolutely ADORED "From the Mixed Up Files..."!!!

To this day, I try to think of unusual places to run away to!

I had forgotten all about that book. Ungrateful Son is 12 - I'll have to get on the stick!

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valuereflection - Dec 2, 2005 8:01 am (#619 of 938)

Glad to help, T Brightwater and haymoni. How did Ungrateful Son get that name?

When I was age 9-11, I read Mr. Mysterious & Company, by Sid Fleischman, over and over about 30 times because I loved it. I would have read it more, but other kids liked it, too, and our library had only one copy. The story was about a traveling magic show in the Old West. I was intrigued by The Twenty-One Balloons, by William Pene du Bois -- I read it maybe 15 times. Until today I didn't know that it won the Newbery Award. Garth Seldon's The Cricket in Times Square enchanted me, although I didn't reread it. (Sid Fleischman is author of the Newbery Award winner The Whipping Boy, which I've been intending to pick up sometime because it sounds interesting even if it was written for children.)

Here are two more, which my children loved when they were at about the same age. They INSISTED that Mom had to read this book. (Incidentally, I was first introduced to Harry Potter when my 11-year-old daughter insisted in that way. After listening to her for several months, pleading with every member of the family to please look at this book called Harry Potter, I was finally motivated to action when I overheard her grumbling to herself, "No one in this family loves me, because no one will even try to look at my book for me." I brought PS along, on one of those chauffeur-Mom errands where I transported the kids to an activity and waited around to take them back home afterward. And then I couldn't put the book down. I confess that someone else in the family made dinner that night, because I didn't care about food. I finished at 4 am. Next my daughter and I got the rest of our family addicted to Harry Potter, too -- all of us remain addicted still. I learned from that experience to trust my children when they tell me to read one of their books! Probaby others have also had the experience of first reading Harry Potter in order to see what their children were so engrossed by. But I digress...) The same daughter told me to read Journey to America by Sonia Levitin, which was astonishingly good. My son told me to read Summer of the Monkeys, by Wilson Rawls, which made me laugh so hard I was in pain.

When my sons grew into teenagers, I can remember two books which they told me to read because they were impressed by them: Dragonwings by Laurence Yep, and Jonathon Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach.

Happy Holidays to everyone on the Forum!

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haymoni - Dec 2, 2005 11:16 am (#620 of 938)

value - When Ungrateful Son turned 11, I offered to throw him a full-blown Harry Potter party - "It's not every day yer young man turns 11!" - with costumes, pumpkin juice, a Sorting - whatever he wanted.

He turned me down flat! All he wanted was a sleepover with his buddies and to play video games all night.

He has been "Ungrateful Son" ever since.

Actually, he did earn a reprieve after a period of time, but now that he's a mouthy 12-year-old (I don't know where he gets it!) he has earned the title once again.

He brought home "Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH" as a school assignment. I had never read the book and I finished it in 2 evenings. What happens next??? Was there a sequel???

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Nathan Zimmermann - Dec 2, 2005 3:54 pm (#621 of 938)

Haymoni, there is at least one sequel called Racso and the Rats of NIMH written by Robert O'Brien's daughter Jane Conly.

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haymoni - Dec 2, 2005 5:25 pm (#622 of 938)

Mmmm...I'll have to check that out. I take it NIMH stands for National Institute of Mental Health, but I find it strange that the rats don't figure that out.

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Denise P. - Dec 2, 2005 6:12 pm (#623 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
R-T, Margaret, and the Rats of NIMH is another one. I recall reading both sequels but they pale in comparison.

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T Brightwater - Dec 29, 2005 10:00 am (#624 of 938)

Several of us have recommended Terry Pratchett's Discworld books, but his latest, "Thud!" is outstanding even for him. He's as good at presenting deep moral issues in a fantasy setting as JKR, and the little pokes at "The Da Vinci Code" are an added bonus.

I don't think this will ruin anything for anyone: one line that sent chills up my spine was "What kind of creature defines itself by hatred?"

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Veritaserum - Jan 6, 2006 6:47 pm (#625 of 938)

Go Jays!
I just read A Tale of Two Cities for school and thought it was great. Compelling story, awesome character names, and a heartwrenching ending.

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azi - Jan 8, 2006 1:16 pm (#626 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
So...I finally get to this thread about 8 days after I finished the books I wanted to recommend!

Anyway, it's called the Black Magician trilogy and is written by Trudi Canavan. I mentioned the first book a while ago before I had read it. The 3 books are The Magicians Guild, The Novice and The High Lord. I found myself unable to stop reading for 3/4 days while I read them. Brilliant storyline! If you like Garth Nix then the reviews are right - the style is fairly similar.

In a way, the story follows a typical fantasy story style, but the imaginative places and events can distract you from that fact easily.

Erm, I hate to admit asking this, but was A Tale of Two Cities written by Charles Dickens, Shakesphere or someone completely different?

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dizzy lizzy - Jan 8, 2006 4:07 pm (#627 of 938)

There is more to life than increasing its speed: Mahatama Ghandi.
LOL azi - I can't quite remember the author either.

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Veritaserum - Jan 8, 2006 4:59 pm (#628 of 938)

Go Jays!
It was Charles Dickens.

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hawick girl - Jan 10, 2006 7:45 pm (#629 of 938)

I read A Tale of Two Cities in 9th Grade and liked it a lot, but I read To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee in 10th grade and loved it. I bought a copy when in college. Right now I'm reading America (the book) by Jon Stewart and the Daily Show people and it is siriusly funny.

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haymoni - Jan 10, 2006 8:54 pm (#630 of 938)

My mother-in-law received a copy of that book for Christmas. I started reading it before she did - very rude, I know, but I was only going to be there for the day - what a scream!!!

It is a textbook about history - very, very twisted history. I can't even think of any examples right now, but everything I read had me laughing hysterically. The rest of the family kept shooting me dirty looks as I was interupting the football games.

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azi - Jan 11, 2006 9:16 am (#631 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
Thanks Veritaserum! Nice to have that cleared up!

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Veritaserum - Jan 11, 2006 3:34 pm (#632 of 938)

Go Jays!
It was my pleasure.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Jan 14, 2006 5:31 am (#633 of 938)

May I recommend Lynn Truss's follow up to "Eats, Shoots and Leaves". It is called "Talk to the Hand" and is about the lack of courtesy in letters and society in general.

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Madame Pomfrey - Jan 22, 2006 8:13 am (#634 of 938)

I recieved the the saga A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin on my B-Day and am currently half way through book 1 A Game Of Thrones. I am enjoying book 1 so much I can hardly put it down and am looking forward to the rest of the saga.Has anyone else read these books?If so,I'd would appreciate any input.

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Choices - Jan 22, 2006 10:49 am (#635 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
It sounds interesting Madame Pomfrey. I am going to put that on my "to read" list. I am waiting for the last book in the Highlander series by Diana Gabaldon to arrive - book 6 - and I want to finish that before I start on anything else.

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Madame Pomfrey - Jan 22, 2006 11:13 am (#636 of 938)

Choices,I know how it is to want to finish a series before starting a new one and these books make for a very long read.They are medievil fantasy.There are 5 books available and book 6 is due sometime next year.How is the Highlander?Was the movie The Highlander based on the books you are currently reading?

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Choices - Jan 22, 2006 11:28 am (#637 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I don't know about the movie Madame - I didn't see it. I have really enjoyed the Highlander series. They are long books - each is right at 1000 pages more or less, but they are very interesting. The action starts out in the 1950's if I remember correctly, but then goes back to the 1700's in Scotland. Claire, the main female character is a British army nurse (who becomes a physician) who travels back in time when she accidentally steps into the crevice of a stone in a huge stone circle (ala Stone Hinge). In about book 4/5 the story moves to the American colonies. I love the characters and the story is very good. It is a great love story. I ordered book 6 the end of December and am still waiting for it to arrive. If it doesn't come this week I will have to reorder. I am so anxious to see what happens to everybody - the American Revolution is about to begin. If you like historical novels with some supernatural thrown in and a great love story, you will like these books.

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Denise P. - Jan 22, 2006 12:01 pm (#638 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
There are books based on the Highlander movie and TV show but the books Choices is talking about is called the Outlander series. Parts of it do take part in the Highlands though. It is a great series although you could skip book 5 (snorefest) without missing much.

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Choices - Jan 22, 2006 12:38 pm (#639 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Thanks for correcting me Denise. I don't know why I always want to call it Highlander (well, I do, but it's wrong). It is Outlander as Denise said, but it is about Highland Scots, thus my mistake. I wouldn't want to skip book five necessarily, but I did do a bit of "skimming".

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VeronikaG - Jan 22, 2006 12:39 pm (#640 of 938)

ASOIF is on my to read list as well. I just need to finish The Wheel of Time first. Is it only three books?

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Denise P. - Jan 22, 2006 4:05 pm (#641 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Wheel of Time? You are asking if WOT has three books?

The last book in WOT that came out was Knife of Dreams, book #11 in the series. And he is STILL NOT FINISHED!!!

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Finn BV - Jan 23, 2006 4:47 pm (#642 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
Well, this has nothing to do with the current books discussed but I recently finished Life at These Speeds by Jeremy Jackson which was incredible. Being a Cross-Country runner, I particularly enjoyed it, but you don't have to be one to like it. It's a tear-jerker, but it's really well-written and fast-paced. The writing style is excellent, first person, very spacey.

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Madame Pomfrey - Jan 24, 2006 9:48 am (#643 of 938)

Choices,The Outlander sounds like something I'd like to read.I enjoy historical novels being I have read mounds of historical romances. I usually find an author I like and read all their works.

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azi - Jan 31, 2006 6:14 am (#644 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
In The Guardian (a UK newspaper) today, there was an article on books that authors say are must-reads. JKR recommended;

Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl

Robinson Crusoe - Daniel Defoe

David Copperfield - Charles Dickens

Hamlet - William Shakespeare

To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee

Animal Farm - George Orwell

The Tale of Two Bad Mice - Beatrix Potter

The Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger

Catch-22 - Jospeh Heller

Just thought everyone may be interested. Personally, I have only read two of the books - the ones by Roald Dahl and Beatrix Potter. Three - Robinson Crusoe, Wuthering Heights and David Copperfield - I attempted to read at the ages of 8, 10 and 12 respectively, got bored and gave up on.

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dizzy lizzy - Jan 31, 2006 3:33 pm (#645 of 938)

There is more to life than increasing its speed: Mahatama Ghandi.
The Catcher in the Rye, Wuthering Heights, To Kill a Mockingbird and Animal Farm were school texts for me! I liked Harper Lee's book but Charlie and the Chocolate factory is my favourite!.

Lizzy

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Steve Newton - Jan 31, 2006 3:38 pm (#646 of 938)

Librarian
To Kill a Mockingbird and Catch-22 are my 2 favorite books ever.

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Amilia Smith - Feb 1, 2006 1:43 am (#647 of 938)

You might want to go back and try those books again, Azi. I've often found that books I gave up on as too boring when I tried to read them as a kid, but then went back to as an adult were excellent reads. Not sure what made the difference . . . higher reading level, more maturity, what?

Keep in mind that Dickens was paid by the word. When you realize this, and start looking for all the padding, it's quite fun! Especially when you realize how good he still is. It is the rare author who can pull that off.

Mills.

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valuereflection - Feb 2, 2006 11:19 pm (#648 of 938)

In Post #644, Azi said: In The Guardian (a UK newspaper) today, there was an article on books that authors say are must-reads.

The whole article was really interesting to me. The title was, "From Beatrix Potter to Ulysses ... what the top writers say every child should read."

I don't know how to put a link into my post. But below is the web address where I read the article, so hopefully you can cut and paste to read it. I hope that the moderators will approve this ,and allow it to remain in this thread for people to refer to.

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

For everyone who loved From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, the author E. L. Konigsburg won a second Newbery medal for her book, A View from Saturday. My local library had a reading discussion group a couple years ago. Although they traditionally had chosen only adult literature for this group, they made an exception for Konigsburg's book because it impressed everyone. The book's structure is astonishingly intricate. There was plenty of material for our large group of adults to analyze. This children's story is so elegant that my both my husband and I have reread it several times.

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valuereflection - Feb 3, 2006 12:02 am (#649 of 938)

The Phantom Tollbooth, by Norton Juster, was a much beloved and clever story for me, my brothers, my in-laws, and my own children. Its written for about ages 9-12.

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haymoni - Feb 28, 2006 7:15 am (#650 of 938)

"Sense & Sensibility" was on TV again last night, so of course I had to watch it.

While I plan on reading the book SOMEDAY, I know it will not be any time soon, so spoil it for me and answer this question:

In the book, does Miss Steele know what she is doing in telling Miss Dashwood about Edward or is she just looking for someone to confide in?

Each time I watch the movie, I look for answers - they show her holding that hankerchief just right so that the initials show, it seems like a blatant slap in the face. But she really seems floored when Edward visits Miss Dashwood later in London.

I'm guessing the movie doesn't exactly follow the book - where have we seen that before??? - but I didn't know if things were made more apparent than they were in the movie.

It was on AMC - they were doing an Oscar tribute - the host specifically mentioned "Sir John" was "Cornelius Fudge", but made no mention of Alan Rickman or Emma Thompson being in the films. He did say however that Emma is the first actor to receive an Oscar for acting (Howard's End) and one for writing (Sense & Sensibility).

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Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:48 am

Choices - Feb 28, 2006 11:02 am (#651 of 938)
*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
And Sir John's mother-in-law was the fat lady in SS/PS and COS movies.

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haymoni - Feb 28, 2006 12:41 pm (#652 of 938)

And her daughter will be Umbridge.

But is Miss Steele the snake that I think she is???

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valuereflection - Feb 28, 2006 2:49 pm (#653 of 938)

"In the book, does Miss Steele know what she is doing in telling Miss Dashwood about Edward or is she just looking for someone to confide in? ...is Miss Steele the snake that I think she is???"

Haymoni, the answer is both yes and no. Her intentions behind her actions are as snake-like as you suspect. However, she is a very poor relation, supported by the charity of her relatives. Despite the poverty of Elinor and her family, Lucy Steele is more poor still.

"The whole of Lucy's behaviour in the affair, and the prosperity which crowned it, therefore, may be held forth as a most encouraging instance of what an earnest, an unceasing attention to self-interest, however its progress may be apparently obstructed, will do in securing every advantage of fortune, with no other sacrifice than that of time and conscience."

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haymoni - Feb 28, 2006 2:58 pm (#654 of 938)

Thanks, value.

I couldn't grasp how she could know about Elinor if she only sees Edward a couple times each year (again, I have only seen the movie.)

Guess I'll have to break down and read this one for myself.

I do like the movie though!

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valuereflection - Feb 28, 2006 3:55 pm (#655 of 938)

Haymoni, for some reason only part of my last post showed up. Here's the rest if you're still interested.

As a consequence of Lucy's poverty, she is both much less educated and less experienced than Elinor. She is jealous of Elinor for this. When she wants to hurt Elinor, she is often too inexperienced to know if she succeeds (but that doesn't keep her from trying). Although Lucy is conniving, she generally only knows what she can determine by watching people's emotional reactions to herself.

When Lucy first confides in Elinor (handkerchief scene), her original intent is to let Elinor know that Edward is taken so she'd better stay away from him -- because Lucy has observed that Edward's feelings toward herself have grown a bit less enthusiastic than in the past and he has once mentioned Elinor's name. Elinor is so stunned by Lucy's information that she consciously decides to try not to show any reaction to what Lucy says until she can determine how much is true. A more worldwise woman than Lucy would have discerned Elinor's true feelings from her understated reaction, but Lucy is puzzled by Elinor's coolness. Elinor figures this much out about Lucy very quickly.

After this incident, Lucy becomes very curious to know how Elinor and Edward feel about one another. She constantly seeks Elinor out in order to talk about Edward, hoping to observe some reaction from Elinor which she can understand. Elinor realizes that Lucy has engaged in underhanded warfare with this behavior. Elinor resolves to display no romantic sentiment toward either Lucy or Edward, because Lucy has become obsessed with watching her. For months Elinor is carefully circumspect to noncommitally communciate, "Isn't that nice."

I hope I haven't spoiled the book. My husband surprised me with the DVD. I was fascinated by listening to Emma Thompson describe how she adapted the book into a screenplay. She quoted the book as saying that Lucy did rather well for herself in the end without having to sacrifice anything more than time and conscience. (My last post quoted that book passage.) Then I too wanted to know more about Lucy Steele.

I read the story online for free. It was a fast, easy, and suspenseful read for me (as compared to the only other Austen book which I've read, Pride and Prejudice). I read it at classic reader.com.

Hope you have fun!

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valuereflection - Feb 28, 2006 4:50 pm (#656 of 938)

Sorry, its [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] (no space)

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Choices - Feb 28, 2006 6:36 pm (#657 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
All I can say is....Col. Brandon....sigh!!!!

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haymoni - Mar 1, 2006 7:25 am (#658 of 938)

Hands down, Choices!!

Is it true that Emma Thompson is married to whomever played Willoughby?

value - I did find the book online - boy, are her sentances long or what???? I think I hate Mrs. John Dashwood even more!!

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Caius Iulius - Mar 2, 2006 5:00 am (#659 of 938)

Emma Thompson has got a relationship with Greg Wise, who indeed plays Willoughby in S & S.

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Nathan Zimmermann - Mar 6, 2006 10:56 am (#660 of 938)

I would recommend reading Don Quijote by Cervantes.

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Die Zimtzicke - Mar 15, 2006 12:39 pm (#661 of 938)

Anyone who lolved the great book Lovely Bones should read Just Bones by Jeffrey Denhart. Great mystery to it. Of course for the best mysteries, get into Sherlock Holmes. Doyle was the master for me.

Anyone who loves mysteries and WWII should read Just Revenge by Alan Dershowitz. It's about a holocaust survivor who finds the man who murdered his family years later and cooks up a plot to turn the tables. Most original book I've ever read.

Younger Potter fans should read Jill Murphy's "The Worst Witch" series or go get the DVDs of the TV show that came out in Britain in the late 90's. My midwestern USA library has them. It is Hogwarts on a simpler scale. Edith is Malfoy to a "T" and the black-robed potions mistress Miss Hardbroom is Snape in drag. My oldest son recommended it to me when he turned off Harry Potter and was trying to prove to me how unoriginal it was, but you can love the Murphy stories for their own charm.

Laur Wilder's books captured a time period beautifully, but they always irritated me because they had such huge holes in them You could drive a truck through the missing parts of the plot. They succeed solely on their charm.

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azi - Mar 15, 2006 12:50 pm (#662 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
I would also recommend The Worst Witch. I always enjoy comparing it to HP! I saw HB as being McGonagall's alter-ego though, as both are (were) strict deputy headmistresses working for an eccentric head. Miss Hardbroom never had much patience for the very Trelawney-like Mrs Bat. In fact, the TV Miss Hardbroom is how I imagine McGonagall to look like and Trelawney looks like Mrs Bat! Ethel is a Slytherin through and through, hating Mildred Hubble who is from a non-witch background. Ethel's father is like Lucius Malfoy, having influence as a governor and trying to get people like Mildred out of Cackles...I could go on!

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Die Zimtzicke - Mar 15, 2006 9:54 pm (#663 of 938)

Mrs. Bat is very Trelawney-like. Good catch. Sorry I said Edith instead of Ethel. I had just finished watching Ben Kingsley in "Anne Frank", the film based on the biography by Melissa Muller, and I must have had the name Edith stuck in my head.

If anyone likes "the Diary of a Young Girl" I'd recommend the book "The Hidden Life of Otto Frank" by Carol Ann Lee. And if anyone like Schindler's List" I'd recommend Emilie Schindler's book about her husband, "Where Light and Shadow Meet" or "Schindler's Legacy" a book about the list survivors by Elinor Brecher.

My kids all loved Nancy Cartwright's book about playing Bart Simpson: "My Life as a Ten-Year-old Boy".

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Veritaserum - Mar 16, 2006 9:20 am (#664 of 938)

Go Jays!
I just read "A Northern Light" by Jennifer Donnelly. It was one of the best books I've read in awhile. It is a young adult book, but I think older people would enjoy it also. It is a historical novel, love story, mystery, etc. The writing is beautiful.

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valuereflection - Mar 16, 2006 12:47 pm (#665 of 938)

Laur (Laura) Wilder's books captured a time period beautifully, but they always irritated me because they had such huge holes in them You could drive a truck through the missing parts of the plot. They succeed solely on their charm. --Die Zimtzicke

What plot holes?

I'm also curious about the meaning of your name, Die Zimtzicke.

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haymoni - Mar 16, 2006 12:52 pm (#666 of 938)

I didn't think there WAS a plot to those stories.

They were just recollections of her life. There wasn't a mystery to solve or a love to be regained.

It just was Half-Pint growin' up.

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Moo4Freedom - Mar 16, 2006 2:14 pm (#667 of 938)

Been reading the works of one Gregory MaGuire and highly rcomend. He has a modern and sophisticated slightly gothic style. Can vouch for Wicked, Son of a Witch, and Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister. Hope you all enjoy Smile

Sorry if there was a discussion going, jsut didn't want to forget to mention these books.

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Die Zimtzicke - Mar 16, 2006 5:10 pm (#668 of 938)

Die Zimtzicke is a crabby old lady in German. I'm one of the over 50 fans, and part-German.

As for the Wilder books, they had holes in my opinion, because we got more details on things like how the dress they made for Mary to take to college in was sewn, and turned out, than reactions to the death of Laura's only brother or only son. And if Almanzo's sister hated Laura so much, why did she want to come west to arrange their wedding, which forced them to elope? There are TONS of things like that. Even as a kid, I thought the stuff I personally wanted to know about most was the stuff that got dropped. I'm scared spitless HP will always be like that! But as I said, the lifestyle was captured well.

Back on topic and to Jill Murphy, little ones should see her books "Five Minutes Peace" or "All in One Piece" which I admired myself as a mother of many. I love "the Little Prince", too, and anything by Doctor Seuss. My kids were big "One Fish, Two Fish" fans. I had to read that over and over and over...

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valuereflection - Mar 16, 2006 8:08 pm (#669 of 938)

Thank you for answering my questions, Die Zimtzicke. I think your name is cute.

I guess that Laura wouldn't have felt comfortable in telling about her baby brother's death, along with her family's grieving, as a bedtime story for children. It didn't fit the into the theme and general tone which she wanted for her children's stories. Even The First Four Years, which was written much later than the other books, had a tone which was much dryer and sadder: lots of worrying about the details of having enough money to make their farm work, and very little of the descriptions of fun and the personal anecdotes which appealed to me so much in the earlier books. As I child, I was disappointed by it. But now that I am adult, I would appreciate hearing about more of the depth of her family's heartbreak over their losses.

And if Almanzo's sister hated Laura so much, why did she want to come west to arrange their wedding, which forced them to elope? Okay, I figured out this answer to at least this one of your questions. Eliza was so bossy while she was growing up, that she simply didn't know any other mindset. Of course she would arrange Almanzo's wedding -- because she had always told her little brother what to do. I think Almanzo recognized that his sister was not grown up enough herself to be able to change her accustomed way of thinking toward her little brother. Change is uncomfortable for anyone, but especially for an insecure spinster. Eliza would have felt more comfortable quarreling (about anything, including running a wedding) than acknowledging that her brother is now an independent adult. I thought Almanzo was wise to avoid a big family blow-up which could have affected the family's relationships for years afterward. (But I couldn't figure out Eliza until after I was married myself. This question confused me, too, during my childhood reading of her books.)

The books you suggested sound intriguing to read.

Heidi (by Johanna Spyri) is one of my favorite stories for reading over and over because of its charm.

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Finn BV - Mar 22, 2006 8:02 pm (#670 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
Anybody ever read The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin? I'm reading it voluntarily for school and I'm starting to regret the commitment… so far I haven't really found a plot…

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haymoni - Mar 23, 2006 7:03 am (#671 of 938)

I remembered a title of a book I read when I was young - "Jennifer, Hecate, MacBeth, William McKinley and me, Elizabeth".

It was about 2 girls who were friends - the one claimed to be a witch (Jennifer)- I can't remember all of the details, but there was a bit of a mystery that Elizabeth ended up solving.

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valuereflection - Mar 23, 2006 8:47 am (#672 of 938)

I also liked Jennifer, Hecate, Macbeth, William McKinley, and Me, Elizabeth, by E. L. Konigsburg; I read it when I was about 10 years old. If I remember correctly, Elizabeth was about nine, so she looked up to Jennifer, who was about 12 and had a very different personality. It's a Newbery honor book and very good. Nevertheless, Konigburg's two Newbery Medal winners are even more outstanding: The View from Saturday and From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler.

I've never heard of The Fire Next Time. But I read the review on Amazon.com. It described the book as a bestseller in the sixties, which contained two essays against racial prejudice, and short. How did you hear about it, Finn BV?

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Finn BV - Mar 23, 2006 11:54 am (#673 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
It's my school's Book Day book, value. However, it's the high school's Book Day book, so it's optional attendance for middle schoolers like me. I signed up for it anyway, but it's really slow. I think there have been 4 sets of quotation marks -- meaning 4 sets of dialogue -- in 40 pages.

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Holly T. - Mar 23, 2006 12:04 pm (#674 of 938)

My daughter got me hooked on the Artemis Fowl books, which I enjoyed.

She also liked Inkheart, which I couldn't get into at all. She says it's because I was listening to the audiobook instead of actually reading it.

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Nathan Zimmermann - Mar 23, 2006 12:19 pm (#675 of 938)

I am an avid reader of mysteries There are several series I enjoy reading.

The Nero Wolfe series by Rex Stout, the stories are a lot of fun to read and I also like to try the dishes mentioned in the books.

The Brother Cadfael Chronicles by Ellis Peters. These are set in the period from 1137 to 1145 C.E. in Shrewsbury.

The Alienist and Angel of Darkness by Caleb Carr, both these mysteries are set in Manhattan of the 1890's and include characters such as Theodore Roosevelt, Clarence Darrow, Jacob Riis, and Lincoln Steffens.

A Daughter of Time by Josephine Tey.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Mar 24, 2006 3:27 am (#676 of 938)

Holly T - negotiations are underway for an Artemis Fowl movie!!!!

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Mrs Brisbee - Mar 27, 2006 10:17 am (#677 of 938)

The Brother Cadfael Chronicles by Ellis Peters. These are set in the period from 1137 to 1145 C.E. in Shrewsbury.-- Nathan Zimmerman

I'll second those as a good read. Brother Cadfael is a very likeable hero, and the detail Ellis Peters put into her historical setting was very enjoyable.

Another mystery series I enjoyed was Peter Tremayne's Sister Fidelma books. They are set in 7th century Irland. For some reason I really enjoy relaxing with a mystery with a historical setting. Maybe because I feel like I'm cheating and learning something at the same time

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Veritaserum - Mar 27, 2006 6:49 pm (#678 of 938)

Go Jays!
I am reading Peace Like a River right now. It is very good. The writing style is very poetic, like A Northern Light, which I mentioned earlier, and it's very well written. Makes me wish I could write like that.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Mar 28, 2006 4:50 am (#679 of 938)

Miss Brisbee - try the John Rawlings novels by Deryn Lake, set in Georgian England. My favourite historical mysteries. Oh yes and the Templar series of medevial mysteries by Michael Jecks.

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Herm oh ninny - Apr 3, 2006 1:51 pm (#680 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
negotiations are underway for an Artemis Fowl movie!!!! -Phelim

WHOOOOO HOOOOOO!!!

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - Apr 14, 2006 12:55 pm (#681 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
Has anyone seen What the Dormouse Said--Lessons for Grown-ups from Children's Books? Although it's been out for a while I just saw it for the first time. It's broken up into chapters--such as "Faith and Courage", "Defiance", "Silence" and "Acceptance". Each chapter contains pertinent quotes from children's books. I've only flipped through it but this one, from National Velvet, caught my eye: "Mrs. Brown gave no second chances. It was her strength."

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Eponine - Apr 14, 2006 1:50 pm (#682 of 938)

I've been reading a lot of the Dorothy Sayers books lately, and I'm really enjoying them. They're very good, and they're not easy to figure out how things were done either. I definitely recommend them.

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Catherine - Apr 15, 2006 11:06 am (#683 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Same here on the Dorothy Sayers, Eponine! How coincidental that we've been reading it now.

I cannot recommend Geraldine Brooks highly enough. I've recently finished March and Year of Wonders along with her nonfiction book The Nine Parts of Desire, which deals with Brooks' time as a journalist in the Middle East. March is the story of the father from Alcott's Little Women; Year of Wonders deals with the plague year of 1666.

As part of my preparation to teach 7th grade this fall, I've been indulging myself with a lot of adolescent/young adult literature. One of the Printz award winners Looking for Alaska is a fabulous "boarding school" novel, although it has some "adult" love scenes that are perhaps not appropriate for very young teens. I've also really enjoyed Lois Lowry's The Giver (won a Newberry), Gathering Blue, and Messenger.

Anyone who reads Carl Hiassen's adult fiction will probably enjoy his YA novel Hoot. It reminded me a lot of Holes by Louis Sachar, which I also really enjoyed.

Finally, I recommend A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly. It is an ALA "Top Ten" Best Book for Young Adults, a Printz honor book, a Carnegie Medal winner, and it also won a book prize by the Los Angeles Times. The novel was inspired by a real murder in 1906. Donnelly provides a great bibliography for further reading at the end of the novel.

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Nathan Zimmermann - Apr 15, 2006 11:17 am (#684 of 938)

I would recommend Bullfinch's Mythology, it is an interesting read.

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Die Zimtzicke - Apr 15, 2006 9:45 pm (#685 of 938)

I just finished Cynthia Lennon's new biography of John Lennon (JOHN) and it's very good. It's certainly much better than the book she wrote in the 70's (A Twist of Lennon)which was good, but didn't go into so much detail about living with Beatlemania and the aftermath of John and Cynthia's divorce.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Apr 17, 2006 7:07 am (#686 of 938)

Eponine, Catherine - if you enjoy Dorothy Sayers (who I love - especially Gaudy Night set in Oxford) then try these modern authors: David Roberts, author of the Lord Edward Corinth and Verity Brown books (http://www.lordedwardcorinth.co.uk); Jacqueline Winspear, author of the Maisie Dobbs books (http://www.jacquelinewinspear.com); and Catriona McPhearson, author of After the Armistice Ball staring Dandy Gilver ([You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] All three are worth the read.

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Liz Mann - Apr 29, 2006 4:35 pm (#687 of 938)

Join us for the Philosopher's Stone Watch-A-Long
I don't know if anyone has mentioned these books before, but if you like children's fantasy (and I'm assuming a lot of people on here aren't exclusive to Harry Potter ) I'd recommend the Children of the Red King books by Jenny Nimmo. They're not as good as Harry (obviously ) but they have some good features and a good plot. Four out of the planned five books are available and the fifth is coming out this summer.

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Mrs Brisbee - Apr 30, 2006 6:52 am (#688 of 938)

Well, I went to the library the other day intending to look for some of the books recommended on this thread. I'd had a tough few months and was hoping to find a good mystery novel to relax with, but unfortunately my frazzled brain went completely blank as soon as I stepped into the library, so I ended up going to the history section to get one of my favorites, A Bridge Too Far. I wasn't too happy with my grim choice, I'd wanted something light, but as soon as I started reading it I was hooked. I'd forgotten what an amazing historian and writer Cornelius Ryan is, and I highly recommend A Bridge Too Far, and also his book The Longest Day.

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Lupin is Lupin. Natch. - May 3, 2006 10:05 am (#689 of 938)

Sometimes known as Kim.
I just finished Under the Banner of Heaven by Jon Krakauer and just started The Lost Continent: Travels in Small Town America by Bill Bryson. I very much enjoyed the former. As for the latter, it's apparent to me I can't go a paragraph of a Bill Bryson book without laughing so hard I start to cry.

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Rea - May 5, 2006 3:22 am (#690 of 938)

I really loved "Der Sterben der Pythia" , I read it in italian, La Morte della Pizia. The death of Phytia is as short story into Der Mitmacher by Friederich Durrenmatt (1976) I'm really sorry I couldn't find an english edition in order to give you a clear reference... It is a story about profecies, destiny and chaos. I really recommend it! Rea

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John Bumbledore - May 10, 2006 11:25 am (#691 of 938)

"Tempus edax rerum." [Time, the devourer of all things.] Ovid
Another Aussie Author (I believe, he is) Matthew Reilly, has several books out about an American solder with the nick name of Scarecrow. (Ice Station is the only title I can remember at the moment.)

I have read a few of the Alex Rider books, and I also recommend them.

Eragon is the series I am currently reading, while I await HP-Year 7.

<)B^D˜ John Bumbledore

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Esther Rose - May 10, 2006 1:15 pm (#692 of 938)

I finished Eragon in two days. Good book. Didn't think I would enjoy it at all. Now I am thinking I may need to invest in Eldest. sigh..

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Finn BV - May 11, 2006 7:30 pm (#693 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
I am still trying to get through Chronicles of Narnia… I think they may have been read to me, but that was a while ago. I'm reading them in publication order, not chronological order, so I'm on The Silver Chair now. It's getting good…

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Die Zimtzicke - May 14, 2006 9:12 pm (#694 of 938)

If anyone likes true crime stories or Chicago history, get "The Devil in the White City" about a series of murders that occurred during the Chicago World's fair. Very well done by Erik Larson.

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Madam Pince - May 20, 2006 6:40 am (#695 of 938)

The eyes are the windows to the soul...
This is going back a ways, but I just found this thread...

Die Zimtzicke, about the Laura Ingalls Wilder books, another issue for Laura was that a lot of the people she was writing about were still alive at the time of her writing, and so she left out a great many things that she felt would be embarrassing or hurtful to them. (Remember this was back in the day when people were still nice to each other...) I have read a couple biographies of Wilder and done some online research, and there is a lot more "fill-in" available out there, should you really like to know more. (For example, I just recently found out that Cap Garland died at a very young age - late 20's maybe? - from a farming accident. The website had a picture of him, too, which was way cool.) The curators of the various Wilder museums are also very helpful if you e-mail them, and there are several book collections of Laura's later writings (A Little House Sampler, etc.) from when she wrote for a local farming magazine/newspaper -- they are quite interesting and give some insight into her earlier books as well as about her later life. There was one short story in the Sampler book which was written by her daughter Rose, (also an accomplished writer and often credited with prodding/doing the "guts" of her mother's work) and was about the young family's brief stay in Florida. That story, "Innocence," was most unsettling and raised a whole bunch of questions for me about what really happened which I still haven't figured out for sure. (I'm a big Wilder fan, in case you can't tell! )

And this is from even further back, but haymoni I had to laugh when you asked if there are sequels to Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH -- I would be glad to provide you with copies of the sequel I wrote when I was in the sixth grade! I was so enchanted with that book that I wrote a sequel for one of my writing assignments! (Well, actually, to be fair it really was only the start of a sequel -- the assignment was due before I really got rolling!) I tell myself about once a year that I really should dig it out and finish it and become a famous children's book author.

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haymoni - May 20, 2006 6:35 pm (#696 of 938)

Madam P - I have always been a "Well, what happened NEXT????" kind of reader. Ungrateful Son had brought NIMH home so I read it and I actually flipped the book over to make sure that I had really read all of it. Most disappointing!!

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Madam Pince - May 20, 2006 8:02 pm (#697 of 938)

The eyes are the windows to the soul...
Me, too -- that's exactly how I felt about NIMH! But so often sequels are more disappointing than the actual yearning for more of the book (case in point: Scarlett -- NOT a recommended read!) so I try not to think about it.

I think the solution is that we should only read very prolific writers rather than "one-hit wonders," because then by the time we've read them all we'll be old and forgetful and can enjoy them like new all over again! That's what I do with Agatha Christie -- I get to a part and think to myself "Hmmmm... this was a major clue I think.... I just know it means something!" but oftentimes I can't remember exactly what. It's almost as good as the first read! Of course, it means I'm going off my rocker, but hey....

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Finn BV - May 20, 2006 8:40 pm (#698 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
I completely agree on NIMH as well.

And of course we all know that you have to be Agatha to know what something's going to me ahead of time. They're just so unpredictable.

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mooncalf - May 20, 2006 11:43 pm (#699 of 938)

Ooh, Madame Pince! I do exactly the same thing with Agatha Christies. By the time they get pushed to the back of the shelf, they're about due for a re-read, And she was wonderfully prolific!

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Nathan Zimmermann - May 21, 2006 9:37 am (#700 of 938)

It is interesting you should mention Agatha Christie, I just finished a reread of Sleeping Murder. Of all her mysteries I would recommend the Tuesday Club Murders

I also wish I could lay my hands on a copy of Miss Marple's Final Cases and Two Other Stories and While the Light Lasts and Other Stories neither of which were published in the United States

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Recommended Reading (Post 701 to 750)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:51 am

Madam Pince - May 21, 2006 1:59 pm (#701 of 938)
The eyes are the windows to the soul...
Now why did you do that to me, Nathan? Here I thought I had a copy of everything she wrote -- even the play Black Coffee. Do you know the names of the stories in the collections? Sometimes they are also in other collections.

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Nathan Zimmermann - May 21, 2006 5:38 pm (#702 of 938)

Edited May 21, 2006 6:25 pm
The volume contained the following stories:

Sanctuary (1954) A/K/A: The Man on the Chancel Steps; also contained in Double Sin and Other Stories (1961).
Strange Jest AKA Buried Treasure Also contained in Three Blind Mice and Other Stories (1950).
The Tape-Measure Murder Also contained in Three Blind Mice and Other Stories (1950).
The Case of the Caretaker Also contained in Three Blind Mice and Other Stories (1950).

Madam P., I would recommend looking at wikipedia's article on Agatha Christie tit has an excellent chronological list of her works. Maybe it can provide more infprmation than I have here .
The Case of the Perfect Maid Also contained in Three Blind Mice and Other Stories (1950).
Miss Marple Tells a Story (1939) Also contained in The Regatta Mystery and Other Stories (1939).
The Dressmaker's Doll (1954) Also contained in Double Sin and Other Stories (1961). Nonseries story.
In a Glass, Darkly (1934) Also contained in The Regatta Mystery and Other Stories (1939). Nonseries story.

The Harlequin Tea Set contained the following short stories:
The Edge
The Actress
While the Light Lasts,
The House of Dreams
The Lonely God
Manx Gold
Within a Wall
The Mystery of the Spanish Chest
Harlequin Tea Set

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Phelim Mcintyre - May 22, 2006 1:23 am (#703 of 938)

Nathan - don't know what country you live in but Harper Collins, her publisher here in the UK, did a collection of the complete Miss Marple short stories.

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Nathan Zimmermann - May 22, 2006 7:29 am (#704 of 938)

Phelim Mcintyre, I live in the United States. I kmow of the book you are speaking. However, if I remember correctly several of the stories in the The Harlequin Tea Set utilized one of Christie's lesser known dectetives Harley Quinn.

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Phelim Mcintyre - May 22, 2006 7:44 am (#705 of 938)

With Charles Satherwaitte ho appeared with Hercule Poirot in Murder in Three Acts/Three Act Tragedy (different titles for different sides of the Atlantic). I think the main serries with Harley Quinn was called the Mysterious Mr Quinn on both sides of the pond. The Harlequinn Tea Set is a Quinn/Satherwaite story but I'm not sure any of the others are.

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valuereflection - May 28, 2006 11:24 pm (#706 of 938)

In Post #116, Little Ginny said: Fantastic books for children are the books by Astrid Lindgren, a Swedish author who died about two years ago. I grew up reading these books, but I don't know whether they are famous in the US or in the UK as well. I don't even know their English titles, but the most famous ones (at least in Germany are about Karlsson, who lives on the roof, about Pippi, who lives together with her horse and her monkey, and about an island called Saltkrokan. But she's written much more, and they are all very wonderful, taking place in Sweden in the time about the fifties, and just describing things children have always dreamt of. If anybody knows them and can help me with the English titles, thank you!!

Little Ginny, Mischievous Meg by Astrid Lindgren is wonderfully funny. Its not a well-known title, but people who read it say they like it.

In Post #245, Little Ginny said: I love to see so many Janeites here, though I really can't understand why you don't like Emma, which I like much better than Sense and Sensibility, but then, the main thing is that it's by Jane Austen, isn't it? I can only recommend Jane Austen and her time by Deidre LeFaye (sp?) which is a wonderful guide for those who don't know Austen and her work so well yet, and a great source of "background information" for the really obsessed.

I would like to read this reference book which you recommended, but I could not find it. Amazon.com listed 3 books with somewhat similar titles, but those 3 books were written by different authors than Deirdre Le Faye. Their website also showed Deirdre Le Faye wrote 10 books about Jane Austen, but her 10 books had very dissimilar titles. Would you please check the title and author.

In a college English class which my son took, this book was studied as a text: You Just Don't Understand: Women and Men in Conversation, by Deborah Tannen. It was fascinating to read! My son often couldn't find his copy to bring to class -- because I really enjoyed it and shared it with my friends also.

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valuereflection - May 29, 2006 2:28 am (#707 of 938)

Edited May 29, 2006 3:11 am
Little Ginny:

I noticed that Amazon.com has listed some other book titles by Astrid Lindgren, which were translated into English. Several of them sounded like they would be interesting and fun to read (besides her famous Pippi books). Here are a few titles: Ronia the Robber's Daughter, The Children of Noisy Village, Mio My Son, and The Brothers Lionheart. Are these books the ones which you remember reading? (Personally I have only read Pippi Longstocking and Mischievous Meg, because I did not know that Astrid Lindgren wrote other books, too.)

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Choices - May 29, 2006 10:58 am (#708 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I have the Outlander series that I have finished and can highly recommend - romance, adventure, historical and sci-fi all rolled into one. If anyone would like the series, e-mail me and we can work a steal of a deal. There are six books at about 1000 pages each.

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valuereflection - May 29, 2006 11:40 am (#709 of 938)

Choices, would you please tell more about why you liked Outlander. Thanks in advance.

I forgot to mention You Just Don't Understand: Women and Men in Conversation was a #1 national bestseller here in the US. It is an intriguing read, because it tells how men and women grow up behaving in profoundly different ways.

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Denise P. - May 29, 2006 2:32 pm (#710 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I am not Choices but I can say Outlander is one heck of a series. It was originally shuffled off to the romance section of stories but now is properly in the general fiction. Yes, there is romance but there is adventure, thrills, mysteries, history, science fiction (not a lot but enough) and just about every other kind of action in the stories. The main characters are well written so you can actually care about them.

There are currently six books published with the seventh in the works. IMO, the fifth book, The Fiery Cross, has been the weakest in the series.

I wear a sterling silver replica of the ring Jamie gave to Claire. An online group called The Ladies of Lallybroch got permission from the author several years ago to have the rings made. I was lucky enough to get one of them since they only made one group of them.
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Choices - May 29, 2006 5:45 pm (#711 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Thanks Denise - You said just about all that I would say about the series. I think the main thing for me was that I grew to care so much about the characters. They were so likable and so well written. The books just flowed, much like Harry Potter does. I hate reading books that you have to struggle to read, but Outlander is written so well it is a pleasure to read - you just sail through them.

Claire is a former English wartime nurse, married and living in Scotland with her husband who is a historian - it is the late 1960's if I remember correctly. I won't say how (hint: think Stonehenge), but she goes back in time to the Scotland of the 1700's and meets a man with whom she falls in love. Thus begins some wonderful, exciting and dangerous adventures and a love that transcends time. All I can say is that it is a wonderful story - 6000 + pages long and you will love every page of it.....well, most of them anyway. :-)

I think the ring idea is lovely Denise - I know you are proud of it.

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Denise P. - May 29, 2006 6:30 pm (#712 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
When Claire went back in Outlander (Book #1), it was just after WWII.

If you are in Europe, you may want to look for the book Cross Stitch, that was the title used for Outlander in England. The author is Diana Gabaldon

Choices, I would post a picture but I can't ever really capture the design well on film because it is so intricate. It does have the Jacobite thistle interwoven with a celtic design though. I did find a finished auction on eBay showing Claire's Ring that is like mine.

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Amilia Smith - May 30, 2006 2:59 am (#713 of 938)

That is one cool ring. Also, good to know about the seventh book. I was wondering if she would be going on . . . things were tied up so nicely at the end of A Breath of Snow and Ashes.

What I like best about the Outlander books (well, besides the things already mentioned) was how well Gabaldon did her homework. I don't know a whole lot about anything, but I do know a little bit about a lot of things. And it drives me nuts when I am reading a novel and it is obvious that the author did not do the slightest bit of research to prepare because s/he will make stupid mistakes that even I can spot. Gabaldon does not do this. She did her homework, and it shows. Well, she did buy the clan tartan myth, but so has everyone else for the past 150+ years; she doesn't make a big deal out of it, and everything else is so well researched that I have forgiven her for that. :-) I think I read somewhere that they sell her books at Culloden because they are so well researched.

I am really into Scottish Highland dancing, and go to Scottish Games all over the Western US. Tons of fun. Now, when you go to these games, you hear Bonnnie Prince Charlie this, and Bonnie Prince Charlie that, and After the '45 . . . Well, Gabaldon does not paint such a rosy picture of the Bonnie Prince. It was because of her books, and the faith I had in her research, that I started wondering about that. How did a man who destroyed his country come to be its quintessential nationalistic symbol? That's what I ended up writing about for my senior thesis: the evolution of the Bonnie Prince and the '45.

Gabaldon has also published An Outlandish Companion, which as well as telling all sorts of interesting things about the characters, gives a bibliography listing her sources of information on the Bonnie Prince and the '45. I was very grateful for this as it gave me a jumping off point for my own research.

And after saying all that, I am worried that you will think these books read like a history text. They don't. I promise. They are everything Choices and Denise have said. Adventure. Romance. Characters. Intrigue. Family. Sacrifice. Friendship. Loyalty. Bad men. Good men. Beautifulest ladies. Pain. Death. Brave men. Coward men. Strongest men. Chases. Escapes. Lies. Truth. Passion. Miracles. (To quote another good book . . .)

Mills.

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TheSaint - May 30, 2006 3:52 am (#714 of 938)

Finished 'Angels and Demons', was a good quick read, though I found most of the clues easily solved and new the form when I read the poem the first time. Great read for airplane or beach..lol.

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Veritaserum - May 30, 2006 8:31 am (#715 of 938)

Go Jays!
Haha, Amilia. The Princess Bride is a great book. It has everything the movie has (in fact, some scenes are almost word for word), plus a little more background info.

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valuereflection - May 30, 2006 1:18 pm (#716 of 938)

Thanks for describing Outlander. You have all convinced me to look and give it a try. I loved Princess Bride, too.

Amilia Smith, in Post #613 you said you still want to collect literary fairy tales to use for your future job. I sent you an e-mail about a source of stories. I hope you like it. Please would you let me know if you receive it -- thank you.

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Holly T. - May 30, 2006 1:23 pm (#717 of 938)

Here is my very snarky reason for not wanting to read the Outlander books--a person I strongly dislike loves them. I cannot stand the thought of possibly liking them and then having something in common with her.

I must edit to add that the person mentioned above is not someone on this forum!

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Choices - May 30, 2006 5:29 pm (#718 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Holly T, thank goodness that same person isn't into Harry Potter or you really would be missing out on something wonderful!!

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Laura W - May 31, 2006 1:07 am (#719 of 938)

Holly, for some reason your comment made me think of the part of PoA where Harry has to get a new broom for Quidditch because his Nimbus Two Thousand was smashed by the Whomping Willow and his new Firebolt has been confiscated by McGonagall. Oliver Wood says to him, "I reckon it's time you ordered a new broom, Harry. ... you could get a Nimbus Two Thousand and One, like Malfoy's got." and Harry replies, "I'm not buying anything Malfoy thinks is good."

(chuckle)

Laura

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Phelim Mcintyre - May 31, 2006 5:08 am (#720 of 938)

TheSaint - Angels and Demons a good book? Did you read the same Dan Brown novel I did? But then when I read it I wasn't trying to kill time on a plane or beach.

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Choices - May 31, 2006 8:52 am (#721 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I also thought Angels and Demons was a good book. Like I said previously, it is all a matter of individual taste when it comes to reading matter and art. One person's trash is another person's treasure.

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Denise P. - May 31, 2006 3:20 pm (#722 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I thought Angels and Demons was better than Da Vinci Code I read them fairly close together and read Da Vinci first.

If one likes vampire/paranormal type books that have a dose of :::ahem::: adult content, the Dark-Hunter series is pretty good for a fun read. It is not as fun as Laurell K. Hamilton's books or even Jim Butcher but it is close.

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Esther Rose - May 31, 2006 3:51 pm (#723 of 938)

Angels and Demons was okay. The beginning was good but by the end of the book it was a bit too fantastical for me to take seriously.

The DaVinci Code was good. And it goes to show how dangerous an ounce of truth can be in a web of fiction.

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Die Zimtzicke - May 31, 2006 10:12 pm (#724 of 938)

If anyone liked "The DaVinci Code" (religion based mystery) you should try "White Smoke" by Andrew Greeley, an AU version of the last papal enclave.

And I still think anyone who likes the Potterverse, but wants a more small-kid friendly version, should get The Worst Witch series by Jill Murphy, from the 70's, or at least get the TV shows (on DVD) from the early 90's. Most big libraries have them.

Edith is Draco's role model,and Miss Hardbroom, the evil black robed potions mistress might as well be Snape in drag. You can just see where Hogwarts came from, in my opinion.

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TheSaint - Jun 1, 2006 3:59 am (#725 of 938)

I was on a plane..for 12 hours! The book worked well for that, but as i said, it was predictable, and yes, the end was a bit much...but better than the solution to The Stand!

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Esther Rose - Jun 1, 2006 7:01 am (#726 of 938)

Edited Jun 1, 2006 7:57 am
Another good book with a religion base is The Red Tent by Anita Diamant. (Not much of a mystery though) A fascinating fictional read beautifully written!

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Holly T. - Jun 1, 2006 7:27 am (#727 of 938)

I liked The Red Tent.

I also liked Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks. She also wrote March, which just won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. I bought March but haven't read it yet, since I was reading Andrew Jackson: His Life and Times by H. W. Brands, which I had from the library, so I read it first. It was very good.

I read an interesting mix of fiction and non-fiction. The librarian even made a comment about it once when I was checking out three romance novels, a biography of John Quincy Adams, and a biography of Queen Victoria.

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Die Zimtzicke - Jun 1, 2006 9:26 am (#728 of 938)

Oh, I adored "the Red Tent" and think that was a very good choice of books to recommend.

Historical fiction fans might also like "Love is Eternal" a ficitonalized account of the marriage of Abraham and Mary Lincoln that is based on a considerable amount of fact.

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Madam Pince - Jun 1, 2006 1:22 pm (#729 of 938)

The eyes are the windows to the soul...
For a history buff, the actual real letters of Mary Todd Lincoln are a fascinating read as well. I can't remember the name of the book and it's at my Mom's house, but I think it is something basic like "The Letters of Mary Todd Lincoln" or similar. You really get a sense of how, ummm..., difficult a person she was! I read that one and followed it up with a biography of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, and I was very struck by many similarities between the two!

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Laura W - Jun 2, 2006 12:11 am (#730 of 938)

I read The Red Tent when it first came out and really, really liked it too!

Laura

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Veritaserum - Jun 9, 2006 1:03 pm (#731 of 938)

Go Jays!
I just finished reading Captain Alatriste by Arturo Perez-Reverte. There's a series of about five or so, originally published in Spain, and the English translations are coming out I think once a year. The first two are out now. It's a swashbuckling story of a Spanish swordsman in the seventeeth century. You like the alliteration?

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Mrs. D. - Jun 10, 2006 3:57 pm (#732 of 938)

My son is out of school for the Summer and we tried very hard to find something of interest for him to read that was age appropriate (he is 12). We came across the Bartimaeus Trilogy which I have since discovered several Lexers have read since last December. We have completed the first book and he has promised to read the second of the series while I am away next week so I can have it when I get back.

This series is definately a winner!

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Holly T. - Jun 10, 2006 7:54 pm (#733 of 938)

My daughter's summer reading list for sixth grade (she just finished fifth) has The Golden Compass on it as one of the choices. She'd already read it and it now reading the other books in the trilogy. I haven't read them, but she is a big HP fan if that makes a difference in the other books she likes.

I also suggested that she read all of the books on the list instead of just picking one. I think there were four or five for them to choose from.

She's read the Bartimaeus books and liked them.

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Catherine - Jun 11, 2006 8:38 am (#734 of 938)

Canon Seeker
I've read the Pullman "His Dark Materials" series, and enjoyed them.

I've been reading a lot of juvenile and young adult fiction lately. Here's what I've enjoyed:

I recommend Lois Lowry's trilogy consisting of The Giver, Gathering Blue, and The Messenger. The first book won the Newberry award.

Cynthia Voigt's Homecoming and Newberry winning seqeul Dicey's Song are quite good.

Carl Hiassen's Hoot is a fun read, but I liked the more recent Flush better.

Some recent Printz (award for young adult fiction) that I really liked include Tangerine by Edward Bloor and John Green's Looking for Alaska.

Warning: Alaska contains VERY mature scenes of adolescent experimentation with substance abuse and intimate relationships.

It's also one of the most poignant, laugh-out-loud funny, and literary books (adult or juvenile) that I've read in a long time. I think it is a modern answer to Knowles's A Separate Peace and Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye. I made Mr. Catherine read it, and he could not put it down, and had tears in his eyes at the end. I think this book could spark some good heart-to-heart parent/teen discussion.

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Steve Newton - Jun 11, 2006 6:03 pm (#735 of 938)

Librarian
Catherine, we got Looking for Alaska for our son to read and then held back. The suicide theme gave us pause. Do you recommend it for a 14 year old?

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Catherine - Jun 12, 2006 5:23 am (#736 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Edited Jun 12, 2006 6:10 am
You know, Steve, it really depends on the child. I read at a very high level at that age, and I would have been fine. I have students who would be ok with it, too, but I also have students who would not get the historical or literary references, and would be very upset by the ambiguity of Alaska's death. The students do wonder--did she have a tragic accident, or did she choose a tragic death?

That said, I have had to deal with students who have lost parents and who have tangled with mental illness, and the behaviors that come with that. Unfortunately.

Many parents would be concerned by the gritty teen language (read: not family-friendly) more so than the issues surrounding Alaska's death, so I am glad that you are looking at the real content of the novel.

Fourteen is probably young to appreciate this book as a general rule. I think, though, if someone is old enough to drive, they are probably old enough to deal with the themes in this book.

EDIT: The novel does not, in my opinion, glamourize or glorify suicide (and there is some abiguity about the nature of the teen's death). The narrator, "Pudge," takes a world religion class throughout the novel, and has to evaluate his own spiritual beliefs and reconcile them with the events in the novel.

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Steve Newton - Jun 12, 2006 9:25 am (#737 of 938)

Librarian
Thanks for the feedback. My son is very intelligent, he was reading at an 11th grade level in 4th grade. He is more responsible than the average 14 year old, I think. How do you judge maturity? I have no problem with language, but am not so sure about my wife.

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Catherine - Jun 12, 2006 4:22 pm (#738 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Edited Jun 12, 2006 5:38 pm
How do you judge maturity?--Steve

I look at what the student has already read and enjoyed, what TV shows the student follows and enjoys, and what historical subjects interest them. I look at their social skills, their comprehension level of what they read, and how "philosophical" they wax.

About language--what's really amusing is that in certain times, profanity about body parts and bodily functions and actions was not considered obscene. "Cursing" was really about profaning the name of a deity, for example. Our modern society is much more prudish about certain types of language (read Shakespeare if you don't believe me! ) but tends to take (in casual conversation) the deity's name rather lightly. Perhaps this is one reason why I enjoyed majoring in Medieval English--bawdy speech (which I do not engage in, by the way) and bawdy imagery was allowable, but lying and profaning a deity was not.

I think that families are at the heart of it all--every family and community has at its heart the "standard" of what is acceptable. I think reading some teen novels from a "cultural" perspective is useful--it can open discussion about what is OK and what is not OK within various communities--families, schools, sports, the city, the state, the nation, the world. Language, substance use and abuse, intimacy--these are all things that families with teens really must deal with, and I think good novels provide juicy fodder for reflection and discussion. (See the Forum for details...)

Also, the "honesty" in which some teen novels deal with difficult topics can show parents (even if the teens never read them! ) what issues REALLY ARE out there, even if the teen never asks/tells the parent about them. There were several "clues" in the Alaska novel that I so wished someone had clued in a "responsible adult" about, and it didn't happen. Tragedy as a result.

So perhaps, when I recommended the Printz award-winning Looking for Alaska, I was wishing that parents were as attuned to teen lives as the author is, and thinking that perhaps parents of teenagers might find this novel as touching as I do. And as scary as I do. And as enlightening, like...I really meant to talk about X....so let's introduce that topic and see what happens...

I just fly by the seat of my pants, Steve, when it comes to judging when someone is ready for a book. My experience shows that parents judge well someone's reading "level" while not really knowing what "experience" or "knowledge" they really have. I would encourage parents to really discern this information, rather than assume. But if your gut feeling is that it's not the right time, and that your wife would seriously object to the language, I'd say, with sadness, "Not yet."

Cheers.

EDIT: I reread your above post, and the sentence My son is very intelligent, he was reading at an 11th grade level in 4th grade. He is more responsible than the average 14 year old, I think really stood out to me. I was tested in fourth grade (don't ask, not a pretty story) and was found to read off the test. Literally. All they would say to my mother is that I was reading beyond high school level and she said, "You're telling me??!!"" She'd been frustrated trying to keep me occupied and on "social level."

It didn't work. I was reading books WAY above that of my peers, while being socially less adept than my peers. Reading helped me "bridge" the gap, while not actually violating my family's standards, nor my own. College was a relief, as then we could dispense with the "labeling" of literature and move on with business, no matter what the content, worthy or not.

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haymoni - Jun 12, 2006 7:54 pm (#739 of 938)

Here is a definition of maturity that I stole from "Dear Abby".

This is maturity: To be able to stick with a job until it's finished; to do one's duty without being supervised; to be able to carry money without spending it; and to be able to bear an injustice without wanting to get even.

It hangs on our refrigerator door, just in case Ungrateful Son (or anyone else!) forgets.

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Regan of Gong - Jun 21, 2006 3:00 am (#740 of 938)

Self declared doctor of everything.
"Carry money without spending it"

'Spose that rules out me, half the other people around here as well...

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Snuffles - Jun 29, 2006 3:09 am (#741 of 938)

Olivia
I would definately recommend any book by 'Torey Hayden'. The one I am reading at the moment is 'Just another Kid'. I finished one of her other books 'Ghost Girl' last week.

They are all based on her past experiences as a special-education teacher. Once I pick up her books I can't seem to put them down again.

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Nathan Zimmermann - Jun 30, 2006 5:09 pm (#742 of 938)

Hi all, I am in need of some advice. I am working on a project for my legal reasearch class on the subject of McCarthyism and effect it had on the various aspects of the law especially in regards to first, fifth, and fourteenth amendment rights. I am curious to know whether any of the members could suggest any books or films that could shed light on the period. On another note I was not sure whether to place my question here or on the recommended reading thread? I fanyone has any thoughts on books that might be useful I qould apprieciate any and all suggestions?

Best Regards Nathan

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Die Zimtzicke - Jun 30, 2006 5:17 pm (#743 of 938)

Film on McCarthyism that you should see is Woody Allen's "The Front". It's ficitonalized, but the main thrust of it is right on target. When it came out people had a field day guessing who was disguised as who.

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Steve Newton - Jun 30, 2006 5:33 pm (#744 of 938)

Librarian
Excellent choice. Excellent movie.

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Veritaserum - Jun 30, 2006 8:42 pm (#745 of 938)

Go Jays!
Well, I haven't seen it, so I can't vouch for it's quality, but I know "Good Night and Good Luck" was about that era.

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TwinklingBlueEyes - Jul 2, 2006 4:58 am (#746 of 938)

"Character is doing the right thing when nobody is looking"
Wonders how we went from reading to movies... no matter.

For those who suggested Outlander, thanks loads! I am halfway through it and love it!

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valuereflection - Jul 5, 2006 8:12 pm (#747 of 938)

Has anyone read Emergence, by David Palmer, or can anyone tell me about it? My mother-in-law gave us and her other kids a copy and told us we have to read it! (It looks like science fiction -- but she usually doesn't read science fiction.)

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valuereflection - Jul 5, 2006 9:52 pm (#748 of 938)

BTW, those movies sound excellant -- even if the thread is about books. Now I want to watch them.

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Die Zimtzicke - Jul 12, 2006 11:38 am (#749 of 938)

Awesome book, meant for teens, but I liked it and I am VERY old:

"Dear Zoe" by Philip Beard.

A teenaged girl's 3 year old sister is killed by a hit and run driver, and the girl writes to and about her lost sister to work through her grief. Very bad language, though, and some descriptions of drug use. Be warned if that doesn't appeal to you.

The comments about religion are quite humorous to me, and the parents grief, which overshadows them to the extent that they have trouble relating to each other and their other children seems quite realistic. The scene where the dad comes home and breaks down when he finds his wife has painted the dead little girls' room is heartbreaking.

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Finn BV - Aug 29, 2006 3:48 pm (#750 of 938)

Me kayaking, Niagara River, August 2006. I have been likened to Reepicheep in this photo.
For any Potter fan, a must-read is Harry Potter and Philosophy: If Aristotle Ran Hogwarts, eds. David Baggett and Shawn E. Klein. Though published before HBP, there are numerous excellent theories, my favorite of which deals with Time Travel (it discusses the philosophical and scientific possibilities of divination, the Time-Turner, and the events at the end of PoA).

On Amazon.

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Recommended Reading (Post 751 to 800)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:53 am

S.E. Jones - Sep 7, 2006 10:06 pm (#751 of 938)
Let it snow!
I noticed someone mentioned Diana Wynne Jones a while back. I read her book "Howl's Moving Castle" and absolutely loved it. I'm currently reading it to my 4-year-old niece and she loves it to. It's been a long time since I found anything as addictive as HP so her book was a great find for me.

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Vulture - Oct 10, 2006 8:35 pm (#752 of 938)

It's just my opinion, but I like it !!
I read Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" trilogy after a (friendly) argument with a former tutor of mine about Harry Potter _ i.e. she couldn't get interested in HP and was all into Pullman. I liked some of it well enough, but found a few bits distasteful. I couldn't help thinking _ those people who think Harry Potter is some kind of threat to civilization should read "His Dark Materials": the title alone (if they know where it comes from) should stop them ever complaining about JKR again !!

I also think that anyone who really liked Order Of the Phoenix should look up the former BBC T.V. drama seies "Secret Army" for comparison.

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Nathan Zimmermann - Oct 10, 2006 9:12 pm (#753 of 938)

I just finished reading In the Company of Strangers written Mary Meigs that serves as the companion volume to Cynthia Scott's film The Company of Strangers. Both the film and the companion volume were brilliantly written.

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journeymom - Oct 11, 2006 11:09 am (#754 of 938)

Vulture, you read "His Dark Materials"? I've been meaning to mention that series here.

What did you think of the Specters? And note that "Golden Compass/Northern Lights" was published two years before SS/PS.

And I agree, the people who get upset about Harry Potter would have a coronary if they read His Dark Materials. Golden Compass is being made into a movie and it's already being condemned.

And I also agree, a few bits are distasteful. I'm reading it to my 11 y.o. daughter, and we're about half way through Amber Spyglass. I felt a little odd reading to her the angel's description of the true nature of the Authority. I had to leave some out when Will sees the two angels reunited. I don't mind if she reads it herself when she's a little older. I just didn't fancy the idea of her mother reading that passage to her. I'm also wondering just what it's going to look like when Mary Malone facilitates Lyra's 'Fall'.

No doubt about it, Pullman's a more poetic writer. I have an easier time reading his stuff out loud than I do with JKR's stuff. Her writing is a little less graceful.

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Vulture - Oct 11, 2006 4:32 pm (#755 of 938)

It's just my opinion, but I like it !!
Hi, Journeymom _ The Spectres ? _ scary enough, but I think the Dementors would have them for breakfast. Mind you, I've forgotten the details of what they do, exactly.

My favourite of the trilogy was "Northern Lights", largely because of Lyra, the gypsies, and the descriptions of boats. In general, though, I didn't feel as close to Pullman's characters as I do to JKR's. There are particular passages of HP which make me smile or move me _ that wasn't really the case with Pullman _ I felt more distant. On the other hand, I think the worlds he created were more persuasive than JKR's _ more detailed.

I didn't know that "Northern Lights" had an alternative name. I imagine the films of Pullman are bound to be better than the HP movies _ I always feel angry that the actors are so good in HP films, but that the whole thing is ruined by rubbish direction and almost complete elimination of JKR's own lines.

Yes, the stuff about "the Authority" _ I just felt that Pullman had an agenda when it comes to religion, which I don't like. On the other hand, I liked the whole notion of parallel universes, and of people's daemons in Lyra's world _ equivalent of the HP Patronuses, I suppose, though very different.

==============================================================================

Do try and see "Secret Army" if you can get hold of it. The character of Kessler has to be one of the best fictional villains ever created. Voldemort would hide behind a sofa !!

====================================================================================

By the way, has anyone ever heard of a book called "Ged" _ the character Ged being an apprentice wizard ? I read it when I was a kid, and it was great, but I can't remember the writer's name, and when I searched on the Net, I couldn't find it.

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journeymom - Oct 11, 2006 4:40 pm (#756 of 938)

I thought it was notable that the Dementors do exactly the same thing that the Spectres do. Though I suppose the Spectres keep exclusively to adults.

Yes, the publishers did the same thing to Philip Pullman's first book that they did to JKR's first book. They changed the name for the American public from Northern Lights to Golden Compass. He was very irked but didn't have enough clout to fight it at the time.

I'm searching for Secret Army.

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journeymom - Oct 11, 2006 4:47 pm (#757 of 938)

There aren't any books called Ged, but there's "Wizard of EarthSea" by Ursala K. Le Guin. Ged goes to a wizarding school that's suspiciously like Hogwarts. His secret name is SparrowHawk.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Oct 13, 2006 4:59 am (#758 of 938)

journeymom - try Amazon for Secret Army under DVD or videos.

The difference between Pullman''s Dark Matter Trilogy and HP is Pullmans wrote his work as an athiestic answer to the Narnia Chronicles. I wouldn't recommend them (especially the last one) as Pullman can not keep his rhetoric from dominating the story. Pullman's work are, by his admission, anti-Christian and anti-God where JKR's are not.

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Holly T. - Oct 13, 2006 8:05 am (#759 of 938)

My daughter read the Pullman trilogy over the summer--the first one was one her summer reading list from school and she went ahead and read the others too. They don't look that interesting to me but I am wondering if I need to read them just to be a responsible parent.

I got the new Artemis Fowl book from Amazon the other day and told my son he could read it first. He hid it in his room so his sister doesn't know he has it.

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Herm oh ninny - Oct 15, 2006 10:04 pm (#760 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
Holly- I finished the new Artemis book, definitely my favorite of the series!

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kaykay1970 - Oct 19, 2006 2:23 pm (#761 of 938)

S.E. Jones, I saw your "Howl's Moving Castle" post. Are you aware that there is a sequel? I haven't read "Castle in the Air" yet, but my daughter really enjoyed it.

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S.E. Jones - Oct 19, 2006 3:32 pm (#762 of 938)

Let it snow!
There's a sequel! Is it by Wynn Jones as well? Oh, I absolutely LOVED Howl's Moving Castle, so I'll check out the "Castle in the Air". Thanks, kaykay!

In fact, I've become so addicted to Howl that, while re-reading HBP, my mind keeps wandering to Howl, and I keep thinking, "but I've got Harry right here in my hands, what am I thinking?!?"

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kaykay1970 - Oct 19, 2006 4:19 pm (#763 of 938)

Yes, it is the same author. Your welcome!

*From kaykay's daughter :p* I am now the Mad Hatter of Howl, from the quote where he tells Sophie "We can't all be mad Hatters." If you liked the first book, you should like this pretty well. Although you can never top the original Howl as it was the greatest anyway.

Any fan of Howl is encouraged to check it out. Razz

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valuereflection - Oct 27, 2006 10:44 am (#764 of 938)

Since everyone on this thread has a love of reading, I want to share with you: "Once Again I Fail to Read an Important Novel," by George Bilgere. My husband and I heard this unusual short poem on the radio show, "The Writer's Almanac." Hope you enjoy it.

The Writer's Almanac

The poem was published in Bilgere's new book, Haywire, which won the Swenson Poetry Award.

I'd happily type it in here, but I'd need to get the author's permission. So you can read it at this link from National Public Radio. Scroll down to 22 September 2006.

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TheSaint - Oct 27, 2006 1:04 pm (#765 of 938)

Thanks VR! That was a great laugh and a wonderful poem!

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kaykay1970 - Oct 29, 2006 10:08 am (#766 of 938)

I just read "Now You See It..." by Vivian Vande Velde. It is a children's book but I really enjoyed it and I'm 36 years old. Of course that doesn't necessarily make me qualify as an adult!

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azi - Dec 21, 2006 8:34 am (#767 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
I just finished reading the second of the books in Trudi Canavan's Age of the Five trilogy, called Last of the Wilds. I was engrossed from beginning to end and read the book in one day. I would even claim that emotions are better written in her books than in HP (blasphemy, I know). Alas, I have to wait until February for the last book, although people in Australia (*waves*) are lucky enough to have it already.

I know I've recommended this author before on this thread, but she really is that good!

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Tom Marvolo Riddleton - Dec 23, 2006 10:04 am (#768 of 938)

I recently found a book called Henry Potty and the Pet Rock: An Unofficial Harry Potter Parody. I thought some parts were hilarious, and the basic premise was funny. Every character has their own pet name, such as Really Wimpy (Ronald Weasley) or Bumbling Bore (Dumbledore), and the basic plot follows that of Sorcerer's Stone. The book spends the majority of it's time poking fun at how heroes are portrayed in books and also how no matter what Henry does, it should logically lead to him being victorious in the end (come along, he's the hero). While the book is described as being fun for people of all ages, no matter their knowledge of the Harry Potter series, I think it's really only interesting if you know about the world of Harry Potter and can catch all of the little references to the real HP.

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me and my shadow 813 - Jan 3, 2007 6:38 pm (#769 of 938)

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This is a good idea. Never really noticed this thread before.

The book(s) that first come to mind to recommend, for "fantasy" book fans, is Juliet Marillier's Sevenwaters Trilogy - Daughter of the Forest, Son of the Shadows, and Child of the Prophecy. I think a lot of why I empathise with Severus came from reading these three books, in particular, book 2. I'll never judge a "cruel" man the same way again. Has anyone else read them?

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me and my shadow 813 - Jan 3, 2007 7:38 pm (#770 of 938)

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Sorry, went back reading the thread and noticed folks give a background on their recommendations. So here goes:

It's Celtic in nature, with the point of view in all three books being a daughter of the Sevenwaters house, who are the keepers or guardians of the forest. The "seventh daughter" myth comes into play in book 1, as do other Celtic stories, such as the swan and a curse by a sorceress.

Book 2 is my favorite. Liadan, an herbologist and healer (like her mother), is thrust into a compromising situation which serendipitously...

Book 3 has a nice twist in the "prophecy" and is a fabulous read. All in all, a grand gathering of Celtic myth, destiny, villains, romance, and adventure.

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The Wandless Wizard - Jan 7, 2007 9:53 pm (#771 of 938)

When wands are outlawed, only outlaws will have wands.
me and my shadow, if you enjoy Celtic myths, you should try "The Mysteries" by Lisa Tuttle. It is a strange but fantastic book that is based strongly in celtic folklore and myth. It is story about a detective who specializes in missing persons because his life has been shaped by people in his life who have disappeared (his father and girlfriend both disappeared without a trace). While this girl's loved ones want answers grounded in fact, the detective becomes convinced the girls disappearence might be more mystical. Is he right? Or is it wishhful thinking that people disappear to a magical land instead of just abandoning their loved ones?

I discovered Tuttle while reading George RR Martin. I got hooked on his Song of Ice and Fire series. This is a most excellent series as well. However, it is very adult in nature, so I will not be recomending it here. Anyway, he co-wrote a book with Lisa Tuttle called Windhaven and speaks very highly of her on his website. So I tried a few of her books and they were very good. I wouldn't list her as one of my absolute favorites, but "The Mysteries" is definitely worth a read, especially if you are interested in the Cletic mythology.

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me and my shadow 813 - Jan 8, 2007 12:12 am (#772 of 938)

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Thank you, Wandless.

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Die Zimtzicke - Jan 22, 2007 7:43 pm (#773 of 938)

Anyone who has read "The Diary Of Anne Frank" and loved it should read "The Hidden Life of Otto Frank" by Carol Ann Lee. Otto Frank has a much more interesting story than simply as Anne's father. He is interesting in his own right, particularly when it comes to his early life, his survival of the concentration camps and his life after the war. He deserves his own biography.

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Catherine - Jun 10, 2007 3:24 pm (#774 of 938)

Canon Seeker
After a year of teaching 7th grade Humanities, I have a handle on the books children of all ages will enjoy.

Not for the first time, I wholeheartedly recommend The Little Prince. I still cry when the fox discusses the taming process.

Gordon Korman's books really appeal to reluctant male readers. The Son of the Mob series stands out for its sassy dialogue. For younger readers, or slow readers of middle school age, the book No More Dead Dogs is a delightful romp that skewers all the "usual suspects" of middle school literature that have dogs who are gonna die in the title.

Overall, Printz award winners are amazing for young adult and mature readers. Certain books that I still recommend (with caution about language, situation, and maturity) are Looking for Alaska, A Northern Light, and How I Live Now.

I have begun reading Orson Scott Card's books, and cannot recommend Ender's Game highly enough. I will be teaching it next fall in 8th grade as part of our "Cold War and Space Exploration" unit that I am imagining.

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Denise P. - Jun 10, 2007 8:11 pm (#775 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Oh, I adore Ender's Game It is just an awesome book. The other Ender books are not so great. The parallel Ender books, that mainly focus on Bean, are actually better, IMO, than Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide

No More Dead Dogs Laughing It is great!

I recently read the latest Artemis Fowl book...good series!

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Veritaserum - Jun 10, 2007 8:24 pm (#776 of 938)

Go Jays!
it's not fantasy or young adult, but I just read The Visible World by Mark Slouka and really liked it. If you're interested in Czech history, WWII, the nature of storytelling and memory, or love stories, I would recommend this book. Very interesting story, and very well done.

And I agree about Le Petit Prince (I read it in French last year), such a good book.

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I Am Used Vlad - Jun 13, 2007 11:37 am (#777 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
Denise, did you forget there was a forth book in the original Ender series, or just leave out Children of the Mind because it stank so much?

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Denise P. - Jun 13, 2007 1:03 pm (#778 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
It stank but I did forget about it I didn't like any of the books that followed Ender but the parallel series, with Bean, I like some of them.

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I Am Used Vlad - Jun 14, 2007 12:06 pm (#779 of 938)

I Am Almighty!
I love all of the Ender's Shadow series. Sorry, Mills.

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Amilia Smith - Jul 18, 2007 11:06 pm (#780 of 938)

:-P

I've actually had a bit of a change of heart towards them. Once I got over myself, and forgave Card for writing them instead of finishing Alvin Maker, I discovered that they weren't so bad after all. And it was thanks in good part to your glowing recommendation that I gave them a second chance.

Catherine, have you read Enchantment or Lost Boys yet? Those are probably my favorite Card stand-alones. He also wrote an essay for Border's Great Snape Debate, which I have not yet read . . .

Mills.

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Catherine - Jul 19, 2007 6:06 am (#781 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Catherine, have you read Enchantment or Lost Boys yet? Those are probably my favorite Card stand-alones. He also wrote an essay for Border's Great Snape Debate, which I have not yet read . . . --Mills

No, but I'll put them on my list!

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Denise P. - Jul 19, 2007 6:09 am (#782 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I think Lost Boys was originally a short story that expanded into a novel. I think it was the short story that I liked better but it has been years since I read either of them

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valuereflection - Jul 26, 2007 8:21 am (#783 of 938)

I loved Ender's Game and so did my teenaged sons. In fact, they brought it to me and insisted I read. It was a winning book without their recommendation. An experience to share between teenage boys and their mother is cool, too.

Catherine, I appreciate your classroom experience with recommending books to read, which you share in your comments. I like to read your insightful posts.

Can you tell me if you have discussed this book with a student? The Robe, by Lloyd C. Douglas: it was a bestseller during each of the World War II years in the U.S.A. When I was 13-14 years old (in the 1970's), one of my friends glowingly recommended it, and I devoured it. Was I a weird kid? I am thrilled to see it is newly republished in paperback now. Thanks.

Mills, awhile ago you and I discussed using this book for a library story-hour: The Story of King Arthur and His Knights by Howard Pyle. I recently learned that was John F. Kennedy's favorite childhood book. He read a lot while he grew up because he had a couple of lengthy illnesses, and his parents gave him books while he convalesced. I'm going to add it to my list of books I want to read.

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Catherine - Jul 26, 2007 9:40 am (#784 of 938)

Canon Seeker
Can you tell me if you have discussed this book with a student? The Robe, by Lloyd C. Douglas: it was a bestseller during each of the World War II years in the U.S.A. When I was 13-14 years old (in the 1970's), one of my friends glowingly recommended it, and I devoured it. Was I a weird kid? I am thrilled to see it is newly republished in paperback now. Thanks. --Valuereflection

Actually, I have not had the pleasure of discussiong that book with a student! I read that book as a teenager myself. Perhaps it is due for a reread.

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Denise P. - Jul 26, 2007 11:51 am (#785 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Hmm, maybe I will have to see if my library has it. The library here just rocks! It has 335 copies of DH! I am very impressed with the system, so much better than the one we had in TN. There, it was not worth looking at the library unless all you wanted was much older books, very few new releases.

I may have mentioned these before but the Pendragon series by DJ MacHale is worth a read. It is consider young adult fiction, I think.

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Denise P. - Aug 3, 2007 9:12 am (#786 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Okay, I just picked up The Robe from the library as well as the next Pendragon. I also already have the next 3-4 in the Cirque du Freak series as well. I will be on a reading binge.

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valuereflection - Aug 3, 2007 4:33 pm (#787 of 938)

Hope you have fun reading, Denise.

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Madam Pince - Aug 8, 2007 1:18 pm (#788 of 938)

The eyes are the windows to the soul...
My mom has an old copy of The Robe, from the 1940's I believe. I remember seeing it on her shelves, but for some reason I never picked it up (odd, that...) I'll grab it the next time I'm there.

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Potteraholic - Aug 14, 2007 7:39 am (#789 of 938)

"Plenty of courage, I see. Not a bad mind either. There's talent - and a nice thirst to prove yourself ..." (PS/SS)

I originally posted this in the "Chat and Greeting Thread for Members" -- Aug 13, 2007 1:50 pm (#1401 of 1418) -- but had a vague recollection that there was a book recommendation thread somewhere on the Forum. After looking on the main page a few times and not finding it, after another quick look-see, voilá, I finally saw it!

Here is my post from the chat thread:

I was going to put this in one of the HP Movies; threads, but thought it fit better in this thread, as it's more of a book recommendation.

The other day, I read that Emma Watson will voice the character of 'Pincess Pea" in an animated film version of The Tale of Despereaux (Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread) by Kate DiCamillo. This is a wonderful children's book which I absolutely love. They better get the movie right! Messing it up is like messing up a Harry Potter book.

Children, and adults, too, should not see this movie until they have read the book for themselves. I basically think this is true for every movie-from-a-book production, as do countless other book lovers. The story is divided into 4 parts and each part is dedicated to a different character. The end of the book brings together all these 4 characters' different stories.

Emma should be fine as Princess Pea, especially since her flaring nostrils and roving eyebrows (to paraprahse comments I've read in other posts) won't be on view. About her being cast for the BBC's Ballet Shoes, I was a little surprised by the director's choice. I saw the original production years ago and don't remember any of the girls being quite as old as Emma is now. I suppose the hair, make-up, and wardrobe people will do their magic to "young" her up a bit. Didn't realize there was a book and totally missed (as in it went over my head), Meg Ryan's mention of it in 'You've Got Mail". Will try to find it and read it. I remember liking the Beeb's version years ago when I saw it; I must have been about 11 or 12 then.

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TomProffitt - Aug 14, 2007 5:28 pm (#790 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
My current favorite series (after Harry Potter) are:

The Women of the Otherworld by Kelley Armstrong (Bitten, Stolen, Dime Store Magic, Industrial Magic, Haunted, Broken, and No Humans Involved). An Urban (or Modern) Fantasy Series with rotating first person narrative.

Rachel Caine's Weather Warden Series (Ill Wind, Heat Stroke, Chill Factor, Windfall, Firestorm, and thin Air) A unique take on Djinn, in the first person.

Jim Butcher's Harry Dresden. Much better than the briefly lived TV series on SciFi.

Patricia Brigg's has written two books with a character who can turn herself into a coyote. It has vampires & werewolves and if I remember correctly has little or no sex & profanity. Has anyone read any of her other stuff?

Kim Harrison's Rachel Morgan series. Funny stuff, but the plots are somewhat too focused on relationships for my taste.

Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse series. A "dumb blonde" telepath having all sorts of problems with her relationships with Vampires. The humor is great, but there is too much focus on sex for me.

Carrie Vaugn's Kitty the Werewolf. (Kitty and the Midnight Hour, Kitty Goes to Washington, and Kitty Takes a Holiday)

If Rowling writes "mostly" with teens/young adults in mind, all of the series I've listed here are adult series, but essentially in the same genre.

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TomProffitt - Aug 15, 2007 8:59 am (#791 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
I'm a military history fan. I find that I like to read first person type stories, oral histories, of war. I've found good accounts for Vietnam & WWII, but am hoping to find WWI stories. Does anyone know of any good ones. All Quiet on the Western Front is on my list to read next, but I'm wondering if there are other recommendations.

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Holly T. - Aug 15, 2007 9:52 am (#792 of 938)

Tom, All Quiet on the Western Front is an excellent book. There are a few books about the Christmas Truce during WWI you might want to look at. I think one is called Silent Night. There are also some books about Gallipoli. Most of my WWI era reading involves the flu epidemic, not the war itself.

For another great young adult series I highly recommend Rick Riordan's The Lightning Thief, The Sea of Monsters, and The Titan's Curse, all modern updates of Greek mythology. Book 4 is coming out next May--it's about the Labyrinth!

I am still wadiing through Tournament of Shadows, which is about the Great Game in 19th-century Asia. I can't say that I recommend it, as it is very slow going. But it is very interesting.

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valuereflection - Aug 15, 2007 3:38 pm (#793 of 938)

Edited Aug 15, 2007 5:04 pm
Holly T., please tell me what you read about the flu epidemic. I'd like to learn more about it.

TomProffitt, do you like to read Civil War literature, too? There are probably more of those stories than World War I stories.

I also read All Quiet on the Western Front and was moved by it. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy was based on World War I -- not the second world war as is commonly believed (according to the film documentary "J. R. R. Tolkien: Master of the Rings").

Read any biography or autobiographal account of Sergeant Alvin York, the most decorated American soldier of World War I. Or watch the film starring Gary Cooper.

Following are some World War I books which I have heard good things of -- and I would like to read them myself: Puck recommended the award-winning Johnny Got His Gun in Post # 1564 on the "Chat and Greeting Thread (12 May 06 to 27 Jul 06)." To the Last Man, by Jeff Shaara, is a bestseller. Try A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway, or The Forty Days of Musa Dagh by Franz Werfel. The film "Gallipoli," directed by Peter Weir, is popular in Australia.

My husband said there is a lot of poetry written by infantrymen in that war, because they believed it was the war to end all wars. For example, the very short but horrifying poem, "Dulce et Decorum Est" by Wilfred Owen. (The title was taken from a recruiting slogan used in the colleges.)

The online encyclopedia Wikipedia.com has an entry for "Media of World War I" with more suggestions.

Sorry for the overkill post. I've also wondered about WWI literature.

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Potteraholic - Aug 15, 2007 5:34 pm (#794 of 938)

"Plenty of courage, I see. Not a bad mind either. There's talent - and a nice thirst to prove yourself ..." (PS/SS)
Edited Aug 15, 2007 6:15 pm

Tazzygirl, Here all the The Indian in the Cupboard titles. Hope you get to read them all. I'd love to find out what you think.

1. The Indian in the Cupboard
2. The Return of the Indian
3. The Secret of the Indian
4. The Mystery of the Cupboard
5. The Key to the Indian

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TomProffitt - Aug 15, 2007 5:45 pm (#795 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
Thanks Holly & valuereflection, let me be specific. I am not looking for literature or fiction. I'm looking for true stories about individuals rather than historic overviews.

I'm not particularly interested in the American Civil War, being from Virginia and within only a couple of hours of dozens of historic battlefields I've been over exposed to the Civil War.

I'm interested in WWI because it is kind of forgotten in American History shuffled between the two "bigger more climatic wars."

I'm definitely into war films, but am very picky about truth or realism. I enjoyed Sgt York but it was too sanitized for me. The opening beach scene in Saving Private Ryan is one of the most incredible and accurate battle scenes I've ever watched.

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DJ Evans - Aug 15, 2007 7:19 pm (#796 of 938)

Genealogy....Where you confuse the dead & irritate the living!
I don't know if you would be interested, but the book The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart is quite a good read. It is supposed to be for kids in grades 5-9, but there are a lot of adults who like it too. The reason why we read it, & not just because Mr. Stewart lives in our home state, but we kept hearing it being compared to HP. Yes, you can spot a few similarities in the story, but I think on a whole it will stand on it's own.

Later, Deb

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Holly T. - Aug 15, 2007 8:00 pm (#797 of 938)

valuereflection, I read Flu by Gina Kolata and another book I can't remember the name of now, plus some articles. I've read a lot more about yellow fever and cholera (lest you all start to think I am crazy, I study 19th-century politics, specifically urban politics, and a lot of city policy in the 19th century was related to the control of and reaction to infectious diseases).

Tom, you can't beat All Quiet for an individual's story about WWI. The other ones I mentioned are all nonfiction, but they aren't the individual stories you're looking for.

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mollis - Aug 15, 2007 8:11 pm (#798 of 938)

Tom - you might try Ghost Army of World War II by Jack Kneece. It is the true story of the twenty-third headquarters special troops of the US Army. They were a special unit of soldiers trained to mislead and deceive the enemy through the use of rubber dummies of tanks, trucks, planes, etc. simulating a strong enemy force. They would also broadcast fake chatter over the airwaves and draw enemies towards them while the real troop movement was going in the other direction. Interesting read. And made even cooler because my grandfather served in that unit. It was classified until 1996 when he could finally tell my grandmother what he had done in the war.

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NFla Barbara - Aug 15, 2007 8:15 pm (#799 of 938)

Tom, have you read The Somme: Herosim and Horror in the First World War, by Martin Gilbert? It came out in paperback this spring; I think I got the hardcover last year by accident from a book club, but it was a very interesting (if difficult) read. It takes a very personal approach -- focusing on individuals or small groups of them. Of course, given the battle, almost everyone dies. But it might be something along the lines of what you're looking for.

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Potteraholic - Aug 15, 2007 9:20 pm (#800 of 938)

"Plenty of courage, I see. Not a bad mind either. There's talent - and a nice thirst to prove yourself ..." (PS/SS)

TomProffitt,

Since you are looking for true stories about individuals rather than historic overviews, I thought you might like this book: The Ransom of Mercy Carter by Caroline B. Cooney. It’s a book for 5th-9th graders, but it was recommended to me by a parent (I’m a teacher) who was researching her family tree in Massachusetts. I know it’s set in a different historical period than the on you’re interested in, but it’s still an excellent read.

Here is an excerpt from From Publishers Weekly as found on Amazon’s website:

Based on actual events, … is a gripping and thought-provoking account of the 1704 Indian raid on the English settlement of Deerfield, Mass. After their village is burned and many of its residents killed, Mercy and more than 100 other settlers are taken prisoner by the Kahnawake Mohawk, who have been converted to Catholicism by the French. Some of the novel's most riveting chapters describe the difficult winter trek that takes them 300 miles north to Canada, where Mercy settles into life in a traditional Indian village near Montreal. Uncertain whether she will be adopted by the Mohawk who captured her or whether the English will pay the ransom that would allow her to return to Massachusetts, Mercy struggles to balance loyalty to her own family and traditions with a growing appreciation for the Kahnawake way of life. Just how much her perspective broadens can be measured by the fact that, in addition to adopting many Indian ways, Mercy can find something sacred and comforting in the Catholic mass a rite she was raised to believe led straight to eternal damnation. .... Cooney's trademark staccato delivery keeps the pages turning. Ages 12-up.

I had such a visceral reaction to this book. It was the first time a book written for children made me react this way. I’ve often debated whether I should read this book aloud during my class’s study of Colonial America, but I’ve never been able to do it. I think it might be too much for 4th and 5th graders to fully comprehend the magnitude of some of the events.

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Recommended Reading (Post 801 to 850)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:55 am

azi - Aug 16, 2007 3:50 am (#801 of 938)
Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
Tom - if you like I can ask my mother if she minds me emailing you the transcript of my great grandfather's diary from WWI. I don't think it includes reference to American involvement (haven't read it in a while), but it's a non-exagerrated real-life account.

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TomProffitt - Aug 16, 2007 4:28 am (#802 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
azi, that would be great! The nationality of the people involved isn't important to me. I'm interested in understanding what life was like for the soldier, and that isn't tied to nationality. (Actually the best WWII books are written by folks who fought for Germany)

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valuereflection - Aug 16, 2007 8:03 am (#803 of 938)

Edited by megfox* Aug 16, 2007 8:56 am
TomProffit, I'm sorry I misunderstood your question. Do any of the diaries on the Wikipedia website sound like what you are looking for? Many soldiers published their diaries after the war. Scroll to, "Memoirs and Diaries," a bit down the page.

I don't know how to post the link. (You might also be interested in the list, on that same page: "Novels written from personal knowledge.")

Holly T., thanks for the suggestion for a book about the great influenza epidemic. I don't think you're crazy -- your study of how infectious disease affected city politics in the 19th century sounds interesting! If you remember the name of the other book you read, please post it, too.

I edited this post to remove a hot link. For further explanation of this please, see Denise's post #1195 on the Practice Area thread here . Thanks!

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azi - Aug 16, 2007 10:58 am (#804 of 938)

Photo borrowed from Ardent Photography
Tom - I've sent you an email to the address in your profile, entitled 'HP Lexicon Forum - War Diary'.

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valuereflection - Aug 16, 2007 11:43 am (#805 of 938)

Sorry, Denise P. I hadn't read the Forum's new policy about posting active links.

Tom, the removed link was for the entry, "Media of World War I," on the wikipedia website. I hope one of those soldier diaries listed in it is what you're looking for.

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TomProffitt - Aug 16, 2007 12:39 pm (#806 of 938)

Bullheaded empiricist
Thanks, thanks, folks.

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Steve Newton - Sep 6, 2007 1:21 pm (#807 of 938)

Librarian
I can't personally recommend it but the September 3, 2007 issue of Publishers Weekly of David Thewlis' new book is very positive. A "laugh-out-loud, darkly intelligent debut." It is called 'The Late Hector Kipling.'

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PeskyPixie - Sep 23, 2007 7:50 pm (#808 of 938)

'Life of Pi' by Yann Martel is incredible.

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Anna L. Black - Oct 4, 2007 8:07 am (#809 of 938)

PeskyPixie, I just finished reading it yesterday! The whole book was amazingly written, although the "second story" left me a bit squeamish...

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PeskyPixie - Oct 4, 2007 8:38 am (#810 of 938)

Anna, do you have any idea what the meerkats and the carnivorous island are meant to represent in the 'second story'?

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Anna L. Black - Oct 8, 2007 1:49 pm (#811 of 938)

I've wondered that as well... The best thing I can come up with is (in white): After all that time alone in the sea, he started 'eating himself' from the inside (not literally, although in this book it's hard to know...), maybe going crazy, etc...

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kaykay1970 - Oct 17, 2007 5:42 am (#812 of 938)

"Twilight" by Stephenie Meyer! I really enjoyed this one. Darling Daughter brought it to my while she was home for Fall break and insisted that I read it. I think this one more will be enjoyed more by the ladies of the forum. It has just the right mixture of romance, comedy and danger...Loved it! She's bringing home the second in the series for me to read when she comes home for Thanksgiving. It's going to be a long wait...:sigh:

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PeskyPixie - Oct 17, 2007 2:23 pm (#813 of 938)

Most of you have probably already read it, but I absolutely adored 'The Good Earth' by Pearl S. Buck.

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TwinklingBlueEyes - Oct 28, 2007 3:37 am (#814 of 938)

"Character is doing the right thing when nobody is looking"
Check out this site I found for online audio books. Wired for Books.

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KTO - Nov 5, 2007 6:26 pm (#815 of 938)

Game of Thrones, followed by Clash of Kings, Storm and Swords and Feast for Crows, great George R.R. Martin, not for kids.

Mists of Avalon

Shantaram - one of my top five of all times, EPIC.

A suitable boy.

hope all are well

peace and blessings, KT

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PeskyPixie - Nov 5, 2007 6:29 pm (#816 of 938)

Is A Suitable Boy by Rohinton Mistry?

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valuereflection - Nov 6, 2007 10:33 pm (#817 of 938)

Amazon.com said that A Suitable Boy was authored by Vikram Seth, but I don't know anything about the book.

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PeskyPixie - Nov 6, 2007 10:40 pm (#818 of 938)

Then it is by Vikram Seth. I have one of his books in my library. Let me go check what it's called ... I'm back. It's called Two Lives, but I haven't read it yet. It's supposed to be really good.

I have read A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry. I liked it a lot, but didn't LOVE it as Oprah did.

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Meoshimo - Nov 19, 2007 8:39 pm (#819 of 938)

I recommend:

Timequake by Kurt Vonnegut (anything by him, really)

Darkness At Noon by Arthur Koestler

The Children of Hurin by J.R.R. Tolkien

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe (CAUTION: This one isn't for everyone)

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PeskyPixie - Nov 19, 2007 8:59 pm (#820 of 938)

To Kill A Mockingbird is one of my favourites as well. I also recommend In Cold Blood by Truman Capote.

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Meoshimo - Nov 20, 2007 9:45 am (#821 of 938)

Something interesting I found was that at almost the same time the movie Capote was made, there was another movie with the same general storyline and subject matter called Infamous . What's more, I think it looks better than the Philip Seymour Hoffman one.

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Choices - Nov 20, 2007 12:19 pm (#822 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Ewwww, In Cold Blood is one of the scariest books I've ever read. It haunted me for weeks, I suppose because it is based on something that actually happened. Chilling!

KayKay, I'm reading Twlight now and enjoying it. Thanks for the recommendation. :-)

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kaykay1970 - Nov 20, 2007 1:22 pm (#823 of 938)

You're very welcome Choices! I'm glad you are enjoying it! I have read the two available sequels "New Moon" and "Eclipse". Daughter brought them home the weekend she made the surprise visit. I can say that they are both fabulous as well!

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Denise P. - Nov 20, 2007 5:53 pm (#824 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I read Twilight after seeing it mentioned here and a few other places. I am about done with New Moon and am on the wait list for Eclipse

I looked at my libary account, I currently have 14 books out (need to return several) and am currently reading 4 of them at the same time.

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Choices - Nov 20, 2007 6:48 pm (#825 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I am about half-way through Twilight and looking forward to the next two. :-)

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PeskyPixie - Nov 23, 2007 9:03 am (#826 of 938)

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving

I just reread it for the first time as an adult and appreciate it more than when I read it as a child.

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Barbara J - Nov 27, 2007 5:49 pm (#827 of 938)

I'm in search of a recommendation for a mixed-age group of girls, middle and high school, but for reasons I won't go into it needs to be about a fifth-grade reading level. This group has in the past read Hoot, Holes, and The Outsiders. Any suggestions?

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Potteraholic - Nov 27, 2007 6:14 pm (#828 of 938)

"Plenty of courage, I see. Not a bad mind either. There's talent - and a nice thirst to prove yourself ..." (PS/SS)

Hi Barbara J,

I'm a 4th/5th grade teacher and the books I'm suggesting have been big hits over the years. This list is off the top of my head, since I'm at home right now. If you need more ideas, just post another message and I'll have another look in my class and ask my class for recommendations. Here it goes:

1. How about some Jerry Spinelli: Maniac Magee, Crash, Wringer, Library Card (mostly male protagonists, but still appealing to girls).

2. Then there's books by Deborah Wiles: Love, Ruby Lavendar, Each Little Bird That Sings, and Aurora County All-Stars (mostly girl protagonists).

3. Kate DiCamillo has great books, too: Because of Winn-Dixie and Tiger Rising, especially (girl, and girl and boy protagonists, respectively).

4. Any of the Tales of Dimwood Forest books by Avi; they have animal protagonists, but there is a lot of good chracter development stuff there.

5. Some individual titles I love:
- Strays Like Us by Richard Peck (girl protagonist - my current read-aloud in my 4th/5th grade class)
- The Shioh trilogy by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor (Shiloh, Saving Shiloh, Shiloh Season; boy and his dog stories)
- Spider Boy and Going Solo by Ralph Fletcher (boy, and boys/girls protagonists, respectively)
- Hatchet by Gary Paulsen (boy survival story in Canadian wilderness; GREAT!)
- Number the Stars by Lois Lowry (girls prtagonists, set in WWII,; context: Holocaust)
- Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse (girl protagonist, Dust Bowl story)

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Barbara J - Nov 27, 2007 9:59 pm (#829 of 938)

Thank you so much! I'm familiar with some of these and had put others on my "possible" list, but I have not read most of them myself -- it is reassuring to hear from the voice of experience. (I have an avid 4th grade reader at home, and this has given me some good ideas for him too.)

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PeskyPixie - Nov 30, 2007 2:30 pm (#830 of 938)

Les Miserables and The Hunchback of Notre-Dame by Victor Hugo are both incredible. I read them on my own in high school and enjoyed Hugo's writing far more than the Dickens we were reading for class.

I still like Dickens, though. I just need to be jabbed repeatedly before starting one of his books! I've actually got two volumes of his Christmas stories which I've never read. I really should start one tomorrow.

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valuereflection - Nov 30, 2007 4:13 pm (#831 of 938)

Pesky Piskie, what is the title(s) of your two volumes of Christmas stories by Charles Dickens?

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PeskyPixie - Nov 30, 2007 4:47 pm (#832 of 938)

The books are simply called Christmas Stories I and Christmas Stories II. Volume one contains the following stories: A Christmas Tree, What Christmas Is As We Grow Older, The Poor Relation's Story, The Child's Story, Nobody's Story, The Seven Poor Travellers, The Holly-Tree, The Wreck Of The Golden Mary, The Perils Of Certain English Prisoners, Going Into Society, The Haunted House, A Message From The Sea, Tom Tiddler's Ground, Somebody's Luggage

Volume II: Mrs. Lirriper's Lodgings, Mrs. Lirriper's Legacy, Doctor Marigold, Mugby Junction, No Thoroughfare, The Lazy Tour Of Two Idle Apprentices

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valuereflection - Nov 30, 2007 6:13 pm (#833 of 938)

Thanks. It sounds like a good read.

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PeskyPixie - Nov 30, 2007 6:17 pm (#834 of 938)

Thank you, Valuereflection, for giving me the 'jab' to yank it out of the library. I'll start volume I tomorrow. The inscriptions inside the front covers state that I received them in 2004. Sorry, Santa.

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PeskyPixie - Dec 9, 2007 11:08 pm (#835 of 938)

The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger makes for an entertaining read. I like the movie, but the book is much better.

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Madam Pince - Dec 10, 2007 5:36 am (#836 of 938)

The eyes are the windows to the soul...
In the book, does she send the assistant to get a pre-release copy of a Harry Potter book? Or was that just a movie-ism? (I found it to be appalling, by the way, that the assistant was successful in this venture...)

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PeskyPixie - Dec 10, 2007 1:43 pm (#837 of 938)

Yes, it's in the book as well. As if a pre-released copy of any HP book would be that easy to get without risking JKR's wrath.

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Veritaserum - Dec 15, 2007 7:56 pm (#838 of 938)

Go Jays!
I recommend Into the Wild and Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer.

Also, Barbara J, when I was that age I really liked books by Sharon Creech: Walk Two Moons, Chasing Redbird, etc. Also A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L'Engle.

And I can't say enough about A Series of Unfortunate Events, for all ages. I have two more to go!

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PeskyPixie - Dec 16, 2007 11:59 am (#839 of 938)

I love Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events as well. Be sure to read The Beatrice Letters once you've finished The End.

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Veritaserum - Dec 18, 2007 12:16 pm (#840 of 938)

Go Jays!
I certainly will.

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Barbara J - Dec 21, 2007 2:25 pm (#841 of 938)

Thanks, Veritaserum! I actually suggested Walk Two Moons, but the girls in the group I was shopping for had already read it. We ended up with Listening for Lions.

I picked up A Wrinkle in Time for one of my older son's Christmas presents. (He loves to read, and I am happy to get him lots of books.) I've actually never read it myself, so I am looking forward to reading it with him.

And then maybe, just maybe, I'll find time in the next month to read one of the books on my OWN reading pile.

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Madam Pince - Dec 21, 2007 4:33 pm (#842 of 938)

The eyes are the windows to the soul...
Ooooo! I remember I loved Madeline L'Engle's books when I was young. I re-read A Wrinkle In Time recently and found that it suffered in comparison with the Harry Potter books, but was still enjoyable.

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haymoni - Dec 22, 2007 4:12 pm (#843 of 938)

I still think Jo got the apparation feeling from the tesseract.

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Veritaserum - Dec 22, 2007 8:29 pm (#844 of 938)

Go Jays!
Now that you say that, haymoni, it did always remind me of that.

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valuereflection - Jan 9, 2008 11:26 am (#845 of 938)

PeskyPixie, Have you read the story that Charles Dickens handwrote for his own children, The Life of Our Lord? At his request, it was not published until 85 years after his death, because it was so personal. It is inspiring. It is also short and written in simple language, because he wrote it for children.

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PeskyPixie - Jan 9, 2008 11:42 am (#846 of 938)

Valuereflection, I haven't read The Life of Our Lord. I hadn't even heard of it, but must look into it now. Thanks.

I received quite a few books for Christmas. So far I've read Steve & Me by Terri Irwin. It's written well and very informative about wildlife conservation. Three descriptions of atrocities committed against animals are haunting (I can't stop thinking about them), but knowledge is power and I feel I've learned many things which need to be heard by people all over the world. I've always loved animals, but after reading this book I know that I'll never be tempted by an awesome alligator skin purse as I now understand the process behind it. Point well made, Mrs. Irwin! Steve is smiling from beyond the veil.

I've now started A Mighty Heart by Mariane Pearl. As I've already seen the movie, I'm interested to note the differences between the two.

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PeskyPixie - Jan 20, 2008 4:54 pm (#847 of 938)

I read Cold Mountain this week. I found it similar to Homer's The Odyssey and was pleasantly surprised to learn that it was intentionally written as a sort of Civil War 'Odyssey'.

I read A Mighty Heart by Mariane Pearl the week before that and was a bit startled at some of her comments as the movie portrayed her as a much softer character. Also, while Pearl is the better writer I find that Terri Irwin is much stronger at re-creating her own late husband's presence in her recent book, Steve & Me.

Gosh, I need to read something more cheery!

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Herm oh ninny - Apr 1, 2008 11:28 am (#848 of 938)

"Accio treats!"
I just read the Twilight series from Stephanie Meyer and they were great! A new obsession has been born

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HungarianHorntail11 - Apr 4, 2008 2:08 pm (#849 of 938)

The heart sees deeper than the eye.
Priscilla has been through a number of books she enjoyed and recommends:

The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau - this one is being read by her bookclub run by the librarian.

Also, No Talking by Andrew Clements.

Avalon by Rachel Roberts.

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kaykay1970 - May 22, 2008 7:07 am (#850 of 938)

Stephenie Meyer is a genius! I just finished reading "The Host". It is a very touching and beautiful story.

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Elanor
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Recommended Reading (Post 851 to 900)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:57 am

PeskyPixie - May 22, 2008 7:17 pm (#851 of 938)
I had been meaning to read Nineteen Eighty-Four since high school. I finally got around to it this month and found it to be an exceptional read. It definitely lives up to its reputation. I like it even better than Brave New World

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Anna L. Black - May 23, 2008 12:57 am (#852 of 938)

Pesky, now re-read the first part of DH (especially the chapter when they break into the Ministry). I think you'll find a lot of similarities... (I actually shuddered when reading all this "Magic is Might" stuff, Rowling did a very good job describing this kind of regime...)

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PeskyPixie - May 23, 2008 8:37 am (#853 of 938)

Alrighty, Anna. I'll do it.

Big Brother's omnipresence is absolutely chilling. I can already begin to see similarities between the beliefs the Party promotes and the Death Eaters' propaganda. Scary.

I'm sure I'll also pick up all sorts of nuances which I missed during my first readings of DH.

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haymoni - May 26, 2008 8:28 pm (#854 of 938)

That big screen of Fudge hanging in the Ministry in the OotP movie gave me the Big Brother willies.

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John Bumbledore - Jul 22, 2008 7:07 am (#855 of 938)

"Tempus edax rerum." [Time, the devourer of all things.] Ovid
Was it really one year ago that DH was released? :winged_clock:

I'm currently reading "Airman" by Eoin Colfer, author of the Artemis Fowl series. I hope Airman becomes a series! The Artemis Fowl series hasn't captured my interest in the least; but my oldest son does recommend them--makes me fear he would be a Slytherin.

I'm also waiting (impatiently) for Matthew Reilly's conclusion of "Seven Deadly Wonders" and "The Six Sacred Stones" about Jack West Junior. These are better than his Shane Schofield (Scarecrow) series.

I'm always on the watch for another Alex Rider adventure by Anthony Horowitz. I just finished the last two: Ark Angel and Snakehead

John Bumbledore <)B^D˜

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Holly T. - Jul 22, 2008 8:26 am (#856 of 938)

I just read the latest Artemis Fowl book, The Time Paradox last night. I love that series. Eoin Colfer is actually going to be in town this Sunday night, but I will not be able to go the event, since I will be in Arkansas with my Girl Scouts.

John, Artemis is definitely a Slytherin!

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John Bumbledore - Jul 22, 2008 11:17 am (#857 of 938)

"Tempus edax rerum." [Time, the devourer of all things.] Ovid
Edited Jul 22, 2008 12:41 pm
Holly, I wondered if I had used a vague pronoun. My fear is that my oldest son would be a Slytherin... I wouldn't care what house Artemis would sort into (so long as it wasn't Gryffindor.)

Aren't you the one who calls her son, "Draco?"
Then there is Lina's oldest sporting a dark mark..
Is it Denise P. that has "Millicent"?

I am beginning to worry about our (HP forum members') next generation of students.

Edit to add...

Well, he also reads stories about Alex Rider, Eragon, and Jack West Junior; so there are positive in fluences.

Speaking of Eragon, I haven't heard anything recent about the third book... Oh! Here we go, but that word "cycle" bothers me.

BRISINGR, book 3 in the Inheritance cycle, will be on sale September 20, 2008.
(Since I can't edit my profile, may I put the count down here?)

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Holly T. - Jul 22, 2008 11:41 am (#858 of 938)

John, I understood that you were worried about your son, but if he likes Artemis he may have some Slytherin-like traits.

My Draco is also a potential Slytherin, but he may choose Camp Half-Blood instead of Hogwarts. He is a son of Apollo.

Which brings me to more recommended reading--Draco's counselor at Camp Half-Blood started reading Gods of Manhattan to them and now Draco is reading it. He likes it, but he says I can't read it until he is done. Draco did want to have his picture made with the statue of Alexander Hamilton when we went to the National Constitution Center since apparently Hamilton is a character in this book.

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TwinklingBlueEyes - Jul 22, 2008 8:08 pm (#859 of 938)

"Character is doing the right thing when nobody is looking"
Since some of us seem to have a "thing" about dragons, may I recommend Naomi Novik"s series about Temeraire, a historical fantasy series set in the Napoleonic era.

1.His Majesty's Dragon 2. Throne of Jade 3. Black Powder War 4. Empire of Ivory 5. Victory of Eagles

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Denise P. - Jul 23, 2008 5:39 pm (#860 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Yes, I have Millicent (not her actual name!)

I think Artemis would have been a Slytherin originally but would now firmly be a Ravenclaw

I see there is a new book in the Pendragon series. If you have not yet checked it out, now is a good time to look into a good series.

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John Bumbledore - Jul 25, 2008 12:43 pm (#861 of 938)

"Tempus edax rerum." [Time, the devourer of all things.] Ovid
Edited Jul 25, 2008 1:17 pm
I just picked up the first two Sherlock Homes story, "A Study in Scarlet" and "The Sign of Four" for my first time read (I did not know they were the first two, they just happened to be the only two titles available that sounded interesting). I read Watson's analysis of Homes's study habits.

Yet his zeal for certain studies was remarkable, and within eccentric limits his knowledge was so extraordinarily ample and minute that his observations have fairly astounded me. Surely no man would work so hard or attain such precise information unless he had some definite end in view.
I felt a humorus affinity to the description. I think Homes must have suffered ADHD, though I always think of it as hyper-attentiveness.
John Bumbledore <)B^D˜

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PeskyPixie - Sep 11, 2008 6:34 pm (#862 of 938)

I've just read The Other Boleyn Girl and I liked it a lot. The trick is to remember that it's fiction, even though the characters and major events are based in history.

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Choices - Sep 12, 2008 9:12 am (#863 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I am reading the Fever Series by Karen Moning and it is interesting because it incorporates a good bit about the Hallows of Britain - both good and evil. (DarkFever, BloodFever and FaeFever). If you enjoy paranormal mystery/romance, you will like these books. The setting is Dublin, Ireland.

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PeskyPixie - Sep 18, 2008 3:07 pm (#864 of 938)

Marley & Me by John Grogan. Anybody who has ever had a beloved pet will appreciate this one. Then again, chances are that it's been recommended already.

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Holly T. - Sep 19, 2008 7:38 am (#865 of 938)

The Maze of Bones by Rick Riordan. It's an adventure story, similar to the National Treasure movies. A fun read.

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TwinklingBlueEyes - Sep 19, 2008 8:04 am (#866 of 938)

"Character is doing the right thing when nobody is looking"

**reuters.com/article/oddlyEnoughNews/idUSLH9268320080917

"Hitchhiker's Guide" series to ride again

Replace stars with www

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John Bumbledore - Sep 19, 2008 8:28 am (#867 of 938)

"Tempus edax rerum." [Time, the devourer of all things.] Ovid
H2G2 always reminds me of "The Princess Bride," best when retold as a heavily edited and anotated story.

I convess that I have never been able to finish reading any of the H2G2 books. They put me to sleep.

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Orion - Sep 19, 2008 11:51 am (#868 of 938)

Of the Douglas Adams books the best one is "The Long Dark Teatime Of The Soul". It is absolutely awesome! If the Hitchhiker's books are too pessimistic for you, you will hopefully find Teatime more uplifting, and it's fantastically funny. The new one, "Salmon Of Doubt" is also great. It contains also interviews with Adams, and he is really the most loveable person who ever lived. I remember the day when I read he had died. It was like "Fred is dead", only worse because Adams really lived. He had lived as a single for so long, and then he finally found a wife and had a daughter and was happy, and then he had a heart attack on his exercise machine.

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journeymom - Sep 21, 2008 9:49 am (#869 of 938)

I finally read A Study in Scarlet a little while ago because someone here at the Lex was discussing it in reference to Harry Potter. And now I have no idea what the connection was. But Holmes was great. Gregory House on the tv show House is analogous to Holmes, but Holmes is a much nicer person.

I heard Eoin Colfer interviewed about his Douglas Adams project just yesterday.

I just finished reading Seventh Son by Orson Scott Card, and have started Red Prophet. These are excellent stories. But I think you need to have at least a high school knowledge of American history in order to fully 'get' it. And knowledge of American folk lore and 19th century culture. They're clever, thoughtful and well written.

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Choices - Sep 21, 2008 5:11 pm (#870 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Ya'll make me feel so dumb. You are all reading these "classic" books and I am mired down in paranormal romance novels now. Seems I spent my early years reading the classic books and now I just want fluff. LOL

I finished what I thought was the last book of the Fever series by Karen Marie Moning this afternoon and it ended so abruptly I was left hanging by my fingernails from a sheer cliff. I am devastated. I love this series and am really glad there are going to be two more books to come, but I can't stand the thought of having to wait another year or two for them. I have ordered all 7 books of her Highlander series and will pass the time with them for a while. :-(

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Holly T. - Sep 22, 2008 7:17 am (#871 of 938)

Choices, I love to read romance novels! I like historical romances. But I also read nonfiction political history, books about the history of diseases, all sorts of books, plus what I read at work. To me, reading a romance novel is like watching TV, only better.

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Orion - Sep 22, 2008 11:41 am (#872 of 938)

I love Alexander McCall Smith, especially "The Sunday Philosophy Club" and his other novels about Edinburgh philosopher Isabel Dalhousie. She is constantly asking herself whether her actions are in accordance to her ethical beliefs, and questions herself all the time. I just like her immensely. Some time ago I found out that Ian Rankin, Alexander McCall Smith and Joanne K. Rowling all live in the same street in Edinburgh and know each other, and as I love all three of them, I find that quite amazing.

At the moment I read "The 2 1/2 Pillars of Wisdom", also by McCall Smith, it's about three hapless crotchety linguists from Regensburg university, and it's very funny.

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John Bumbledore - Sep 23, 2008 6:47 am (#873 of 938)

"Tempus edax rerum." [Time, the devourer of all things.] Ovid
Sometime I think I manage 2 and a half pillars of wisdom all by myself; then life happens and ... no pillars to be seen.

Can one recommend "Harry Potter Lexicon Forum => + Recommended Reading" as a good read?

Now see what I mean?

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Choices - Sep 23, 2008 6:59 am (#874 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
John - "Can one recommend "Harry Potter Lexicon Forum => + Recommended Reading" as a good read?"

Thanks to faithful posters like you John, I think we can definitely call the HP Forum a "good read".

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Denise P. - Sep 30, 2008 5:44 pm (#875 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
Choice, what paranormal romance are you reading? I just finished the last JR Ward one, Lover Enshrined. I also have Noah by Jacquelyn Franks to read.

A book series targeted to teens but a decent read was House of Night series by PC Cast and Kristin Cast. The 4th book just came out. Since it is marketed to teens, light on romance but still pretty decent. Very quick reads.

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Choices - Sep 30, 2008 6:07 pm (#876 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Denise, I just finished the third book in the Fever series by Karen Marie Moning. There are supposed to be two more in the series coming out, but I don't know how soon. I really enjoyed the first three and am on pins and needles waiting for the last two. They take place in Dublin, Ireland and have to do with the Hallows of Britain. I just started the Highlander series by Karen Moning - there are seven books. Moning incorporates aspects and characters from the Highlander books in the Fever series. That is why I wanted to read them - for the background information.

I finished all the Ward books - Lover Enshrined was the last I read.

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Elanor - Oct 1, 2008 12:37 pm (#877 of 938)

I really enjoyed reading the first two books of the Series by Michael Scott ("The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel"): "The Alchemyst" (first book) and "The Magician" (second book).

Though Nicholas Flamel is one of the main characters of the series, the alchemy depicted in it has nothing to do with what alchemy is. The author just used the names of famous alchemists/scientists/historic characters/authors of old, along with lots of characters from the mythology (mythologies I should say) and had lots of fun creating his own "rules" for his universe.

The result, however, is a very fun and pleasant reading. It's very creative, packed with action, and I'm not surprised the first book will soon become a movie: you can almost "watch" the movie in your head while reading the books already!

So, in summary, perfect for some nice "light reading"!

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journeymom - Oct 10, 2008 2:42 pm (#878 of 938)

Hey, congratulations to Frenchman Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clézio, for his Nobel Prize in literature.

Audrey, have you read any of his writings?

===============

I finished the afore mentioned Red Prophet and it was very good. But it also finished the story arc so I have no real reason to read the next book.

Ds and I are just about finished reading Titan's Curse from the Percy Jackson series. I highly recommend it; it's been a lot of fun. It seriously stinks, though, that Book 4 is only yet available in hard bound, while we own the first three in paper bound. Doesn't fit with my sense of order.

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Elanor - Oct 11, 2008 6:20 am (#879 of 938)

I have! If I remember well, when I was at school, we read "Voyage au pays des arbres" (Journey to the Land of the Trees) which is a very nice book he wrote for children, very poetic and uplifting.

I can't say I've read many of his books since then but each time one is published I always think I'll have to give it a look in due course (yeah.. that list of "books to read when I have the time" is quite long, lol!). The reviews of these books are always inviting, especially if you like travels and discovering other cultures. He's first a traveller and he knows how to make the reader travel with him and discover people and cultures, in a beautiful yet very accessible way. He is very famous here and manages to be at the same time a popular writer and someone whose work is praised by critics (which rarely goes together, lol!).

I hope one day Jo gets that prize! She would so deserve it IMO, if only for getting so many kids to read and discover they like it!

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Madam Pince - Nov 9, 2008 7:39 am (#880 of 938)

The eyes are the windows to the soul...
Scholastic dot com has two faux "non-fiction" hardcover books that looked like fun to me, although I didn't get to check them out as much as I would've liked at the book fair. One is called Dragonology (red cover) and one is called Wizardology (blue cover.) The dragon one caught my eye as it looks like an "authentic" wizarding-world book that might be in Hagrid's library, or in Madam Pince's perhaps... Just thought it might be worth mentioning since the holidays are approaching and many HP fans might be looking for something besides Tales of Beedle the Bard to stock their wizarding libraries...

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PeskyPixie - Nov 9, 2008 9:46 am (#881 of 938)

I've seen those, Madam Pince. They do look wizardy.

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Julia H. - Nov 10, 2008 12:53 am (#882 of 938)

I've recently seen a book called Piratology. It may be the same series.

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Ludicrous Patents Office - Jan 2, 2009 4:48 pm (#883 of 938)

There is also Mythology.

LPO

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Choices - Jan 2, 2009 7:58 pm (#884 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
For those who like vampire romances/mysteries - I am reading the Sookie Stackhouse books - she is the main character. The first book is called Dead Until Dark (takes place in a small Louisiana town) and I am almost finished with it. It is different from the usual vampire romances and I have enjoyed it. The next book is called Living Dead in Dallas.

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Orion - Jan 3, 2009 2:34 am (#885 of 938)

The last book I read was "44 Scotland Street" by Alexander McCall Smith. He wrote it as a serialised novel for a newspaper, and apparently it was a huge success, so that there have been four sequels. It is easily the most beautiful, funny and uplifting novel I have ever read. It creates instant happiness and you don't want to part from all those interesting people. Most of all I liked somebody called Angus who was a sort of older and more sociable Snape. (Of course!)

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Ludicrous Patents Office - Jan 3, 2009 8:57 am (#886 of 938)

Choices I never liked vampire books until Twilight.

Orion I like novels that make me happy!

One of my favorite series is by P.B. Kerr the Children of the Lamp. They are about twin young genies. It is fun.

I'm really into an Australian writer John Flanangan and his Rangers Apprentice series. Great books for middle school aged boys. LPO

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Choices - Jan 3, 2009 10:18 am (#887 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
LPO, I have to admit that most of the vampire books I have read are very cookie-cutter - pretty much ho-hum, same plot and characters - but I did like The Twlight series very much and I also liked the Fever series by Karen Marie Moning. I am still waiting anxiously for the next Fever book to come out. The Sookie Stackhouse book is a combination vampire romance/mystery - interesting and I like the character of Sookie - southern/country girl who works as a waitress in a small town and has the curse (in her opinion) of being able to read people's minds. Sort of a different twist.

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journeymom - Jan 5, 2009 9:13 am (#888 of 938)

Choices, I finished reading the first three Sookie Stackhouse novels a few weeks ago. I really enjoyed them for a while. I think Charlaine Harris is a better writer than Stephanie Meyer, but she's still not a great writer, lol! That's ok, the stories were immensely entertaining. Perhaps it was the steamy (explicit) romantic encounters. And I liked Sookie much better than Twilight's Bella, though I think Bill is surprisingly dull. But by the end of the third book some plots were getting repetitive. Book Three ended with Sookie making a decision I heartily approved of, and it was a good place to stop. Perhaps I'll pick up the story again later.

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Choices - Jan 5, 2009 1:21 pm (#889 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Journeymom, I have to totally agree about Sookie - she is a rather interesting character, but on the other hand, Bill is not a very exciting vampire.

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Choices - Jan 12, 2009 9:03 am (#890 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
On the Golden Globes last night, the girl who plays Sookie in True Blood (the TV series based on the Sookie Stackhouse books) won the best actress in a TV drama award. I have never seen the show, but plan to watch it now.

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journeymom - Jan 12, 2009 9:37 am (#891 of 938)

Anna Paquin won for best actress? Cool. I think she does an excellent job. However, Choices, if you're going to watch the show be prepared for some explicit action. I don't remember what its TV rating is, but it's easily the equivalent of an R movie rating, in my opinion.

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Choices - Jan 12, 2009 6:48 pm (#892 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Well, there goes my chance to see it. Oh, not because of the rating, I just don't have HBO or whatever premium channel it is on. Rats!

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PeskyPixie - Feb 9, 2009 6:41 pm (#893 of 938)

I am searching for a book I read when was in my early teens, but I have forgotten its title. It was set during the Holocaust and tells the story of two young sisters who are hidden in someone's attic. Hmm, that doesn't narrow it down, does it? The title may have referred to 'the room' in which the girls were hiding (I think it was an attic, but it might just as easily have been a cellar).

Does anyone have any idea what book I am rambling about? If not, do you know of any Holocaust novels for young readers? Thanks. (I've already got The Diary of Anne Frank in my library.)

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Ludicrous Patents Office - Feb 9, 2009 9:54 pm (#894 of 938)

PeskyPixie it might be The Upstairs Room by Johanna Reiss. It is about an 8 year old Annie and her sister Sini who were hidden by a family in Holland. LPO

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PeskyPixie - Feb 9, 2009 11:16 pm (#895 of 938)

Thanks a lot, LPO. I'm going to look it up on Amazon. For some reason, the only detail I remember about this book is a scene where the sisters are given pork for dinner, and when they don't eat it they're told by their host that they better learn to eat it. I don't know why this particular moment stands out.

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Verity Weasley - Feb 10, 2009 7:07 pm (#896 of 938)

Pesky, while you're there, check out Once by Morris Gleitzman. It is a complete departure from his usual style and tells the story of the Holocaust from the point of view of two children. It is poignant and heart-wrenching.

Once when I was substitute teaching I was filling in for the library teacher who had been reading this book with the grade sixes. I read the same two chapters four times that day with different classes, and afterwards I had to get a copy for myself so I could read the rest of the book. I highly recommend it.

There is a sequel, called Then, but I haven't had a chance to read it yet.

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PeskyPixie - Feb 10, 2009 9:12 pm (#897 of 938)

Thanks, Verity. I'll check it out right now!

ETA: Once is already in my Amazon cart, along with The Upstairs Room.

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me and my shadow 813 - Feb 12, 2009 11:23 pm (#898 of 938)

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We got on the topic of Hitler on a thread and I remembered a book which got me hooked on WWI. It's called King, Kaiser, Tzar and it is nothing short of fascinating. They were three cousins ruling during the delicate and tragic years before and during the war. A great book for teens to learn more than the average history class covers, I think.

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PeskyPixie - Feb 12, 2009 11:38 pm (#899 of 938)

Thanks, Shadow. I'll definitely check it out.

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PeskyPixie - Feb 18, 2009 11:16 am (#900 of 938)

Y'all () have probably read it already, but last week I read Fried Green Tomatoes At The Whistle Stop Cafe and I really enjoyed it. Of course, I was already a fan of the movie, so I was looking forward to the book; I was not disappointed.

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Elanor
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Recommended Reading (Post 901 to 938)

Post  Elanor on Sat Jun 11, 2011 10:58 am

Choices - Feb 18, 2009 7:30 pm (#901 of 938)
*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Fannie Flagg is from a little town in Alabama not too far from Mobile. Alabamians are very proud to say she is from our state. I love that book also and loved the movie.

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PeskyPixie - Feb 18, 2009 8:43 pm (#902 of 938)

I love both as well. Whenever I pass through/by towns which are deserted (even if they are ancient tourist sites) I wonder about the people who lived there, what their lives were like, what their stories were.

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Holly T. - Apr 7, 2009 12:34 pm (#903 of 938)

I read Scat, the new young adult novel by Carl Hiassen, last night. I liked it just as much, if not more, than Hoot. I did not particularly like Flush. It was a good read, with the added bonus of one of the characters being a HP fan! At one point someone asks her what she reads and she says "All of the Harry Potters, at least three times." And at another part when she thinks someone is a witch another character tells her "this isn't Hogwarts."

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me and my shadow 813 - Jul 21, 2009 4:56 pm (#904 of 938)

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For those who are interested in the miracle and magic of the universe (probably everyone interested in the HP Universe!) I recommend Parallel Worlds by Michio Kaku, a brilliant physicist. He talks about theoretical physics and the direction they are going to explore realities living side by side, or literally in the same space, but unseen to each other. It is written in layman's terms so that it is easily understood and appreciated!

It explains perfectly why Muggles can't see the Leaky Cauldron, and so many other HP phenomena.

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Puck - Aug 5, 2009 10:08 pm (#905 of 938)

Mommy, Queen of Everything
Ah, that sounds like one my husband and I can both enjoy!

I just finished The Kite Runner last week. A powerful novel.

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haymoni - Aug 7, 2009 5:35 am (#906 of 938)

Does anyone else find that they are better readers after reading the Harry Potter series?

I am reading "My Life In France" by Julia Child and I am on my second read-through. It is very good. Didn't know Julia was from Pasedena.

My co-worker asked why I was re-reading it. I'm re-reading it because I bought a paperback copy for our Niagara trip. I finished it, but was interrupted so many times, I know that I missed something.

I just find that I am making connections sooner, remembering names better, etc.

Anyone else have similar experiences?

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John Bumbledore - Aug 11, 2009 9:09 am (#907 of 938)

"Tempus edax rerum." [Time, the devourer of all things.] Ovid
Sorry, It was J.R.R.Tolkien's Silmarillion that was the catlyst for my reading study skills. After two failed attempts, I sat down with a notebook and pencil and attacked the tome as if it were a text book for a self-paced study course. Well, that during my time at university, also, so I tended toward an eidetic (known as "photographic") memory then.

But I applied (what was left of) it to HP and seldom have I found a novel or series since that really needed such analysis.

I think the Harry Potter series is densly woven tail with many details that only become visible after close examination and cross comparisons between chapters and books.

Eidetic memory is a multi-media skill and about "one in twelve"1 children have the ability. Alas! It fades with age. I am more muggle now than when I was at university. "One investigator guessed that fewer than one in a thousand adults [still] had it."2
(1,2 From [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] written September 1, 2000 by Cecil Adams)

--John

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Orion - Aug 11, 2009 10:19 am (#908 of 938)

Too bad if you have that memory only for rubbish. I can quote large passages out of Martha Grimes novels, know every character by heart, know every Beatles song on earth and every known biographic detail - what for??? Sometimes I think that if you fill your head with popcultural waste like that you don't have much space left for important stuff.

People say that today's teenagers get more and more stupid. Are they really? They are amazingly fast at zapping people or peoploids in their fancy computer games, and they know all the features of their expensive mobiles. They aren't thick! They're just not interested in school!

Back to topic (sorry!): I'm struggling through The Amber Spyglass (Pullman). Does anybody have an opinion on it? There are an awful lot of people dying, methinks, just what got on my nerves in DH.

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PeskyPixie - Aug 11, 2009 10:43 am (#909 of 938)

Mrs. Dalloway is the struggle novel for me. LOL, I zipped along through War and Peace but have yet to make a successful attempt at Mrs. Dalloway.

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Puck - Aug 12, 2009 6:54 pm (#910 of 938)

Mommy, Queen of Everything
I just finished Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. A fun read if you have a twisted and dark sense of humor. It does go a bit too far in some places, but there were a few parts that I had tears from laughing so hard. (Apparently, I have the required warped sense of humor. )

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mona amon - Aug 13, 2009 3:17 am (#911 of 938)

Pesky, it's very boring in the beginning, but it picks up. I really liked it.

Wish I could get hold of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, but I doubt if my library'll have it.

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Denise P. - Aug 13, 2009 7:13 pm (#912 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
PP & Zombies has been on my to read list for some time. It is down several books though.

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PeskyPixie - Aug 14, 2009 9:02 am (#913 of 938)

Okay, Mona, I'll give it another whirl.

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Orion - Nov 17, 2009 7:29 am (#914 of 938)

Does anybody know the Charlie Bone series by Jenny Nimmo? I found them in the library section for nine years and older and I absolutely love them. They are bit like HP but without the british wit, but you don't miss that much. Every time I get my hands on another one I read it bulimically, a whole book in one day, and then "burp". There are lots of pets, much more than in HP.

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journeymom - Nov 18, 2009 10:43 pm (#915 of 938)

Excellent, Orion. I've seen Charlie Bones around. I'll suggest it to my 10 y.o. son.

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Victoire Weasley - Nov 19, 2009 4:59 pm (#916 of 938)

I actually have Charlie Bones and the Time Twister on my shelf though I've never read it. My kids are too young to read it, but I'll check it out. Thanks Orion.

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Choices - Jan 2, 2010 3:53 pm (#917 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Has anyone read Percy Jackson and the Lightening Thief? Is it good reading and what about other books in the series. Can anyone tell me what they think about these books?

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journeymom - Jan 2, 2010 4:33 pm (#918 of 938)

Yes, Choices, I read the whole series to my son. My 14 y.o. daughter and one of her friends have read it repeatedly. Well worth a read. A fun take on Greek myths, cleverly done. We learned a bit about the real stories as we went along, as we'd stop to Google someone/something to get a better idea about characters in the story. Rick Riordan is not as good a writer as JK Rowling in my opinion. But still fine writing.

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Denise P. - Jan 2, 2010 5:37 pm (#919 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I agree. They are quick, fun read. They are not overly long and you don't have to think much when you read them but they do introduce to Greek mythology and you can use that as stepping stone to explore some classics...like Ulysses (You get the meet the Cyclops, who is still holding a grudge against Nobody)

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Choices - Jan 3, 2010 10:47 am (#920 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Thanks! I think I will give them a try. :-)

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Ludicrous Patents Office - Jan 3, 2010 4:46 pm (#921 of 938)

Choices I recommend them. Battle of the Labyrinth has one of funniest scenes outside of a HP book I've ever read. He is starting another series about Camp Half-Blood. LPO

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me and my shadow 813 - Jan 5, 2010 3:35 pm (#922 of 938)

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Wow, I was actually about to ask the same question as Choices! Thanks for input! Other than the Olympians, does anyone have any other series in this genre they recommend? I was in the HP area looking at books and cannot believe how many fantasy series there are for kids (and us)!

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Verity Weasley - Jan 8, 2010 7:10 am (#923 of 938)

I've mentioned it previously, but the Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott is another series worth checking out. There are three out so far - The Alchemyst, The Magician, and The Sorceress, with the fourth book, The Necromancer, due out in May. They also draw heavily on myth of all kinds, including a lot of little known Celtic mythology, and weave lots of actual historical figures into the storyline as well. Like Journeymom, Google is our constant companion when we read these books. I highly recommend them.

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me and my shadow 813 - Jan 9, 2010 3:50 pm (#924 of 938)

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Thanks, Verity!

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Choices - Jan 20, 2010 9:20 am (#925 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I'm reading (and enjoying) a book right now called Beautiful Creatures. Has anyone else read it and what did you think?

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Ludicrous Patents Office - Jan 23, 2010 2:36 pm (#926 of 938)

I also recommend the Fablehaven series by Brandon Mull. I second the Nicholas Flamel series. I really like the mix of mythology and modern life. The Children of the Lamp series by PB Kerr is good. The new Rick Riordon series is based on the Egyptian Gods. I'm looking forward to it. LPO

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Choices - Mar 17, 2010 7:45 am (#927 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I finished reading Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief - it was enjoyable, but certainly no Harry Potter. It exhibited nowhere near the thought that went into HP and nowhere near the "depth". When you read something like Percy Jackson, you realize all over again how truly amazing JKR is to have created HP and the HP wizarding world.....so much attention to detail, so many hidden meanings, so much suspence, such fascinating/in-depth characterizations, etc. JKR can relax, Percy will never replace Harry. LOL

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Verity Weasley - Mar 19, 2010 9:50 pm (#928 of 938)

I agree with Choices that Percy Jackson can never replace Harry Potter, however, I would encourage you to read on with the series. As our school library didn't have the first book, I started reading number two, then went on to three and four. I'm now reading number one, as I managed to get hold of a copy and I wanted to see how it started before I read the final book in the series. I have to say that I think it gets better. I haven't finished book one yet, but I think 2, 3 and 4 are better.

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Choices - Mar 20, 2010 8:18 am (#929 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Thanks for the recommendation Verity. I do want to read the rest of the series. :-)

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TwinklingBlueEyes - Mar 21, 2010 4:41 am (#930 of 938)

"Character is doing the right thing when nobody is looking"
The last book in the Fablehaven series by Brandon Mull comes out Tuesday.

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Verity Weasley - Jun 29, 2010 12:21 pm (#931 of 938)

It's something a little different, but I have just finished reading Little Brother by Cory Doctorow, and I highly recommend it. I think it should be required reading for teenagers and since the author has some very liberated views on copyright and makes his books available online for free, there's no excuse for not reading it.

Here's the link - just take out the *: http*:*//craphound.com/littlebrother/Cory_Doctorow_-_Little_Brother.pdf

Cory Doctorow is a science fiction writer but this book is scarily real. It is set in the very near future in San Francisco when a terrorist attack changes everything. The main character, Marcus, a 17 year old computer geek, is swept up in the aftermath of the attack when he and his friends are rounded up as suspected terrorists and subjected to illegal detention, questioning and torture. After his release, as a marked man, Marcus embarks on a quest to restore freedom and civil liberties to his city, using his knowledge of computers and gadgets.

The title is in reference to George Orwell's Big Brother, and the book raises similar questions, but in an America that is not so very far removed from the present day. The author's position on the issues comes through strongly, and he makes those clear in the foreword to the book in any case, but there is plenty of scope for debate and discussion of the issues in the book.

Amazon recommends this book for grade 10 and up, and there is some mild sexuality depicted - the main character is 17 after all, but my eleven year old (going on 18) read it first and really enjoyed it. My son was looking for something to read and we had already packed up all our books ready for our move, so this was very handy as it was available online. It's the first time I've read a book completely from my computer screen, but it's not overly long so it was OK.

It's written in a very teenage friendly style and it really appeals to your inner geek. If you have teenagers, or teach teenagers, give them this book.

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journeymom - Jul 8, 2010 1:27 pm (#932 of 938)

Verity, I'll recommend it to my 15 y.o. daughter, thanks!

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Ludicrous Patents Office - Jul 28, 2010 6:47 pm (#933 of 938)

I recommend The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. It is young adult. It is a page turner and very well written. The second book is Catching Fire. The third comes out on August 24.

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Denise P. - Sep 2, 2010 2:39 pm (#934 of 938)

Ravenclaw Pony
I read Mockingjay, the final book in the Hunger Games trio when it came out last week. It is much, much darker than the previous two and many people are unhappy with the conclusion of it. I am going to give it a few months and read it again. I would definitely recommend reading the trio but if you have younger readers (say, under 12) I would pre-read it.

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Ludicrous Patents Office - Sep 6, 2010 6:58 pm (#935 of 938)

I found the first one the darkest. The thought of the Hunger Games was appalling to me. It was the only one in the series that gave me nightmares. Mockingjay was sad. I liked how it ended (though I"m Team Gale...). LPO

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Verity Weasley - Nov 25, 2010 12:54 pm (#936 of 938)

I don't know if this has been mentioned on here before, but I just finished reading The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon.

This is a bitter sweet novel that gives great insight into the mind of someone with aspergers or autism. It is written in the first person by Christopher, the protagonist, who starts to investigate when a neighbour's dog is killed and ends up uncovering some uncomfortable secrets. I found the look inside the world of this autistic boy to be absolutely fascinating, as did my son, who read it before me and piqued my interest by describing snippets from the book, like the fact that all the chapter numbers are prime numbers and that Christopher hates the colours yellow and brown.

It's very different, but definitely worth a read.

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Steve Newton - Dec 9, 2010 7:26 am (#937 of 938)

Librarian
I've been listening to the Alan Bradley Flavia de Luce books. Quite fun. The first is 'The Sweetness At the Bottom of the Pie.' 1950, English countryside, 11 year old Flavia lives in a somewhat ragged mansion and loves chemistry. Especially poisons. Murder ensues. Fun. (Flavia is not the murderer, in case you were worried.)

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Choices - Mar 20, 2011 4:16 pm (#938 of 938)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I am almost finished with the second Hunger Games book and I am really enjoying the series. I understand that Alan Rickman is being considered for the role of Heymitch (or is it Haymitch - can't remember now). That would be awesome to see him in that. Love me some Alan Rickman in anything. LOL

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