what are you reading?

  • infornography 04-28-2017, 09:32 PM
    since the book club seems to be only about visual novels, let's give an home to bookworms and graphic novels enthusiasts alike to keep notes and discuss novels\non-fiction\research papers as well\whatever
    so, watcha currently reading?

    I'll start since I need to vent: 
    - joyce's dubliners: holy crap, this has to be the worst pile of literary excrements I've read in years. How can joyce be considered a great writer after having published trash like that is beyond me - i know, i know that ulysses is supposed to be his best work and blahblah-. so far, all the short stories have been nothing but a pedant inventory of the ordinary creepiness and trivial miseries of dublin's average joes, and to make things even worse the way joyce portrays those sad excuses of characters completely lacks of the slightest introspection. yes, I'm loathing him and I'm triggered
    - william zinsser's on writing well: pretty good book so far with few nice insights on how to improve your writing style for non-fiction works
  • All in One 04-28-2017, 10:42 PM
    I finished up James Michner's The Covenant about a month ago. It wasn't as enthralling to me as Hawaii but still an enjoyable read. As an account of South Africa's history the ending does feel a tad incomplete but since it was finished in 1979 I can't exactly fault the author for that. After that I tried to start Frank Herbert's The White Plague but decided to stick it on the back burner after the main suddenly transitioned into a dedicated bio-terrorist not even thirty pages in. What I'm reading now is a Japanese crime novel called Six Four. Mildly intriguing so far but I haven't gotten far enough into it to make a real judgment.
  • GlassMoon 04-29-2017, 05:02 AM
    In the midst of studying for finals, so right now: a lot of review sheets.

    But in between, I'm going through Confucius's Analects. Everything in it feels very profound. It's interesting to me in that it both feels more antiquated in its particulars than the ancient Greeks (lots of references to ancient Chinese history I have no context for), but perhaps more universal than them in its overall effect. I suppose the path to becoming a sage never changes.
  • Backlash 04-30-2017, 09:35 AM
    (04-29-2017, 05:02 AM)GlassMoon Wrote: But in between, I'm going through Confucius's Analects.


    Funny you should mention that! I just read Confucius' chapter in Action Philosophers.

    For those who've never heard of it, it's pmuch a nifty little comic book that illustrates the views of famous social/political/metaphysical philosophers through mini-narratives. Violence and slapstick abound.

    [spoiler]Highlights include the Pre-Socratics...

    [Image: glXFvvs.jpg]


    Plato...

    [Image: tW6hG4S.jpg]


    Descartes...

    [Image: 37xSj0K.jpg]


    And of course, Marx.

    [Image: N9Vntur.jpg]
    [/spoiler]

    All in all, pretty cool stuff! It's great if you wanna get a broad overview of every school, or if you simply don't have time to wade through archaic verbiage for some opinion you might disagree with.
  • Em. 05-01-2017, 05:36 AM
    I just read The Dead by Joyce, which I suppose is a section of Dubliners. I thought it was short and sweet, but it was like a slice of life in book form, I could see how reading a full length book of this could get tiresome, even though I do enjoy his style of writing, very short and concise but conveys who the characters are just by their actions and small hints. Overrated though.

    I also finished The Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto, interesting reading the teachings of one of the best 17th century swordsmen, but it's essentially just him shit-talking other schools of fighting and saying that a pragmatic and dirty style of fighting is best and ending every paragraph with "this needs to be studied thoroghly". It's got some nice wisedom in short spurts though, but nothing too profound.

    Next up is "The Book of Family Traditions and the Art of War" by Yagyῡ Munenori, only because I have a copy at home and I just finished Five Rings.
  • sParn 05-02-2017, 10:45 PM
    Currently reading Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance. I am...so in love with this man.
  • dwell 05-03-2017, 05:09 AM
    (05-01-2017, 05:36 AM)Em. Wrote: I just read The Dead by Joyce, which I suppose is a section of Dubliners. I thought it was short and sweet, but it was like a slice of life in book form, I could see how reading a full length book of this could get tiresome, even though I do enjoy his style of writing, very short and concise but conveys who the characters are just by their actions and small hints. Overrated though.

    I also finished The Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto, interesting reading the teachings of one of the best 17th century swordsmen, but it's essentially just him shit-talking other schools of fighting and saying that a pragmatic and dirty style of fighting is best and ending every paragraph with "this needs to be studied thoroghly". It's got some nice wisedom in short spurts though, but nothing too profound.

    Next up is "The Book of Family Traditions and the Art of War" by Yagyῡ Munenori, only because I have a copy at home and I just finished Five Rings.


    Have you read the Art of War?
  • Em. 05-04-2017, 02:23 PM
    Nah, it's on my list of things to read. I've started reading it before but quickly realized I was more in the mood for fiction and read Red Rising instead.
    Is it any good, or is it just a trendy meme of a book?
  • dwell 05-04-2017, 07:04 PM
    (05-04-2017, 02:23 PM)Em. Wrote: Nah, it's on my list of things to read. I've started reading it before but quickly realized I was more in the mood for fiction and read Red Rising instead.
    Is it any good, or is it just a trendy meme of a book?


    I enjoyed it but whether or not you are going to enjoy it depends on what you are trying to use the knowledge for. I read it for security related stuff but I could also apply many of the lessons to playing rainbow 6. As far as it being a trendy meme book goes there are some notes that are obvious but others that are not and some that only apply to real war. Although I have listened to people make some crazy corelations between some notes and bussies practices as well as love.
  • tftp 05-04-2017, 11:01 PM
    I am currently reading Dubliners by James Joyce
  • Rose 05-23-2017, 11:21 AM
    Bleak House by Charles Dickens
  • GlassMoon 05-25-2017, 11:56 PM (Edited 05-25-2017, 11:57 PM)
    (05-24-2017, 04:32 PM)Yuu Wrote: I'm reading the first part of "The Gulag Archipelago" book series (Volume one, focused on the artificial prison industry labour and red terror during early soviet times), book one of seven or something. By Alexander Solzhenitsyn. It is all very interesting to read about these hard realities, hard but complex (can't say all his books are easy). Only previous book by said author that I've read is "One day of of Ivan Denisovitjs life" which was a pretty great story telling about the harsh realities in the gulag times.

    I read too little, but I really need to get into it more. Rebuild my focus, attention spam and damaged intellect which I feel I've lost over the years. Pretty much have a whole book shelf of very interesting stuff I pick up from thrift shop, although I've found little to no time to read any of them. I spend time on the wrong things. But I also look forward to read some Osamu Dazai later which I ordered, just hope I won't get too depressed.. (ningen shikkaku).


    I loved Cancer Ward when I read it a few years ago (already four years ago? wow). It was a bit slow-going at first where the characters were wide-spread but it really picked up around the second half. The beginning had its own charm though.

    Ningen shikkaku is no lighthearted book but it's one of the most special I've read. I think it gives an incredibly close look into the Japanese psyche in a way few other works of literature do.

    (05-23-2017, 11:06 PM)moeki Wrote: i'm reading a crack-up at the race riots by harmony korine. it's, yes, it's harmony korine. completely amazing but impossible to describe.


    [spoiler]
    Hardy: Once I raped my landlord after I escorted her home from church one evening.
    Laurel: Oh Hardy, that is so shameful.
    Hardy: Afterwards she made me tea.
    Laurel walks to the open window and leaps out of the fire escape. When he hits the concrete, he shatters both his ankles.[/spoiler]

    (That book is one of my favorites, but then again Korine is one of my favorite directors)
  • Sora 05-26-2017, 08:11 AM
    Lately I've been a fan of Haruki Murakami's works. The first book of his that I read was Kafka on the Shore. At the moment I'm now reading The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle.
  • Em. 05-26-2017, 12:49 PM (Edited 05-26-2017, 12:50 PM)
    (05-24-2017, 04:32 PM)Yuu Wrote: I'm reading the first part of "The Gulag Archipelago" book series (Volume one, focused on the artificial prison industry labour and red terror during early soviet times), book one of seven or something. By Alexander Solzhenitsyn. It is all very interesting to read about these hard realities, hard but complex (can't say all his books are easy). Only previous book by said author that I've read is "One day of of Ivan Denisovitjs life" which was a pretty great story telling about the harsh realities in the gulag times.

    I read too little, but I really need to get into it more. Rebuild my focus, attention spam and damaged intellect which I feel I've lost over the years. Pretty much have a whole book shelf of very interesting stuff I pick up from thrift shop, although I've found little to no time to read any of them. I spend time on the wrong things. But I also look forward to read some Osamu Dazai later which I ordered, just hope I won't get too depressed.. (ningen shikkaku).


    I've always wanted to read his works, but have never gotten around to it. Thanks for reminding me - I'm gonna pick up some of his works next trip I take to the library!

    EDIT: referring to Solzhenitsyn
  • Beeblebrox 07-14-2017, 02:00 PM
    Right now I'm a little over halfway through The Complete Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Egypt by Richard H. Wilkinson. It's a pretty interesting read so far. The first part of the book is an explanation about the general theology of Ancient Egypt. Their religious landscape was surprisingly different than other polytheistic religions that we are used to in The West. If you died in a particular way or after doing particularly cool things, you could be deified and have temples built to worship you (this happened in the case of two brothers who drowned in the Nile river). Also, their gods could die and stay dead (or in the case of Re, who died every night, be reborn). There were also many different theologies that we lump into "Ancient Egyptian religion", and even their creation myths were more varried than any prominent religion that we see today.

    It's a good read if you're into history, and Ancient Egypt in particular, or ancient religions in general.
  • Mercurial 07-14-2017, 03:05 PM
    (07-14-2017, 02:00 PM)Beeblebrox Wrote: Right now I'm a little over halfway through The Complete Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Egypt by Richard H. Wilkinson. It's a pretty interesting read so far. The first part of the book is an explanation about the general theology of Ancient Egypt. Their religious landscape was surprisingly different than other polytheistic religions that we are used to in The West. If you died in a particular way or after doing particularly cool things, you could be deified and have temples built to worship you (this happened in the case of two brothers who drowned in the Nile river). Also, their gods could die and stay dead (or in the case of Re, who died every night, be reborn). There were also many different theologies that we lump into "Ancient Egyptian religion", and even their creation myths were more varried than any prominent religion that we see today.

    It's a good read if you're into history, and Ancient Egypt in particular, or ancient religions in general.


    Huh, that's pretty cool. I didn't know sometimes they deified mortals.

    I just discovered Rudyard Kipling yesterday so I'm reading some of his prose now. Also found "The Dark Side" by Jane Mayer, which looks at how America's War on Terror led to some constitutionally-ambiguous policies in the name of homeland security. That one's really good; I didn't know that Joe Biden was put through various secret doomsday simulators since Reagan's days, for fear of a violent Soviet takeover. That really helped him act decisively during the 9/11 attack, shutting down airports and commanding aerial forces supposedly without even breaking a sweat, as well as helping during the anthrax scare that hit the Senate/White House a month later. Not far enough in to say if the whole book's good, but it's good so far.
  • Beeblebrox 07-14-2017, 04:14 PM (Edited 07-14-2017, 04:15 PM)
    (07-14-2017, 03:05 PM)Mercurial Wrote: Huh, that's pretty cool. I didn't know sometimes they deified mortals.


    Yeah it's pretty cool. A good amount of their gods and goddesses (at least the anthropomorphic ones) were deified mortals. There were a lot of things that could get you deified upon death. This is a partial list of things that lead to people being deified
    • Being a king
    • Dying in a weird way
    • Dying in a religiously significant way
    • Doing something really awesome
    • Being really good at your job
    • Being really helpful
    Ancient Egypt was pretty lit. They also had this weird thing where their gods could be fused together. Such as the god Re and the god Amun becoming Amun-Re. We don't really have a super concrete understanding of what the context of this was, but from what we can tell, neither god was destroyed in the process, and a new god was not created, and it wasn't necessarily permanent. The phrasing that the Egyptians used (from hieroglyphs) was something along the lines of Re is resting in Amun and Amun is resting in Re.

    (07-14-2017, 03:05 PM)Mercurial Wrote: I didn't know that Joe Biden was put through various secret doomsday simulators since Reagan's days, for fear of a violent Soviet takeover. That really helped him act decisively during the 9/11 attack, shutting down airports and commanding aerial forces supposedly without even breaking a sweat, as well as helping during the anthrax scare that hit the Senate/White House a month later.


    You might be interested to read some military training manuals. They're relatively easy to find on the Internet and they can give you fun insights into how the military works. There's one official manual in particular that goes through all the steps that the military would take for a zombie outbreak. Before you go "ughh zombie fever is so 10 years ago", they used it for training not because they thought that it would actually happen, but because it's useful training just in case you ever have to fight against an unending horde of unarmed and stupid, but persistent enemies.
  • Rooky_Ghost 07-15-2017, 02:06 AM
    (05-24-2017, 04:32 PM)Yuu Wrote: I'm reading the first part of "The Gulag Archipelago" book series (Volume one, focused on the artificial prison industry labour and red terror during early soviet times), book one of seven or something. By Alexander Solzhenitsyn. It is all very interesting to read about these hard realities, hard but complex (can't say all his books are easy). Only previous book by said author that I've read is "One day of of Ivan Denisovitjs life" which was a pretty great story telling about the harsh realities in the gulag times.

    I read too little, but I really need to get into it more. Rebuild my focus, attention spam and damaged intellect which I feel I've lost over the years. Pretty much have a whole book shelf of very interesting stuff I pick up from thrift shop, although I've found little to no time to read any of them. I spend time on the wrong things. But I also look forward to read some Osamu Dazai later which I ordered, just hope I won't get too depressed.. (ningen shikkaku).


    grandma got me to read that one, which is enough to cherish that book, but Primo Levi's "if this is a man" is for sure the most crude among them all
  • Hexd 07-28-2017, 09:57 PM (Edited 07-28-2017, 09:58 PM)
    (05-02-2017, 10:45 PM)sParn Wrote: Currently reading Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance. I am...so in love with this man.


    How is it? any especially cool stuff you learned from it that you didn't know about Elon Musk?

    I'm currently raeding the Graphic Novel Paper Girls which is pretty great and is written by the writer of Saga which is my favorite graphic novel and has my favorite artist Fiona Staples working on it as well.
    [Image: PaperGirls_Vol01-1.png]
  • sParn 08-06-2017, 06:04 PM
    (07-28-2017, 09:57 PM)Hexd Wrote: How is it? any especially cool stuff you learned from it that you didn't know about Elon Musk?

    I'm currently raeding the Graphic Novel Paper Girls which is pretty great and is written by the writer of Saga which is my favorite graphic novel and has my favorite artist Fiona Staples working on it as well.


    Hey! It's awesome...the concepts he introduced into the space and automotive industry alone made me fascinated with him though I never really knew much about him as a person or entrepreneur. His childhood was interesting and I related with him on his curiosity especially when it came to computers as a lad. His startups and sometimes harsh, though progressive, methods of pushing his businesses forward continue to astound me, I'm particularly excited to see where things go with Neuralink being someone heavily into Transhumanism :)

    Now how's Paper Girls? I've heard of that and Saga just haven't read them yet :/
  • Hexd 08-06-2017, 06:43 PM
    (08-06-2017, 06:04 PM)sParn Wrote:
    (07-28-2017, 09:57 PM)Hexd Wrote: How is it? any especially cool stuff you learned from it that you didn't know about Elon Musk?

    I'm currently raeding the Graphic Novel Paper Girls which is pretty great and is written by the writer of Saga which is my favorite graphic novel and has my favorite artist Fiona Staples working on it as well.


    Hey! It's awesome...the concepts he introduced into the space and automotive industry alone made me fascinated with him though I never really knew much about him as a person or entrepreneur. His childhood was interesting and I related with him on his curiosity especially when it came to computers as a lad. His startups and sometimes harsh, though progressive, methods of pushing his businesses forward continue to astound me, I'm particularly excited to see where things go with Neuralink being someone heavily into Transhumanism :)

    Now how's Paper Girls? I've heard of that and Saga just haven't read them yet :/


    That's awesome, any particular harsh methods of pushing his business you could summarize? I think Elon is super inspiring and I hope him well in his businesses although I think Neuralink is a bit too much much I do look forward to the Tranhumanist evolution.

    Paper Girls is pretty good, very different to anything else I've read and Saga is amazing all time favorite and best written\drawn graphic novel I've read to date.
  • Heidegger 08-07-2017, 04:46 PM
    Usually I read manga and books for my law school.
    My current readings are: A book about Japanese history and culture. I'm reading Lolita again, lol. The rest of the books are for study.
  • sParn 08-07-2017, 06:50 PM
    (08-06-2017, 06:43 PM)Hexd Wrote:
    (08-06-2017, 06:04 PM)sParn Wrote:
    (07-28-2017, 09:57 PM)Hexd Wrote: How is it? any especially cool stuff you learned from it that you didn't know about Elon Musk?

    I'm currently raeding the Graphic Novel Paper Girls which is pretty great and is written by the writer of Saga which is my favorite graphic novel and has my favorite artist Fiona Staples working on it as well.


    Hey! It's awesome...the concepts he introduced into the space and automotive industry alone made me fascinated with him though I never really knew much about him as a person or entrepreneur. His childhood was interesting and I related with him on his curiosity especially when it came to computers as a lad. His startups and sometimes harsh, though progressive, methods of pushing his businesses forward continue to astound me, I'm particularly excited to see where things go with Neuralink being someone heavily into Transhumanism :)

    Now how's Paper Girls? I've heard of that and Saga just haven't read them yet :/


    That's awesome, any  particular harsh methods of pushing his business you could summarize? I think Elon is super inspiring and I hope him well in his businesses although I think Neuralink is a bit too much much I do look forward to the Tranhumanist evolution.

    Paper Girls is pretty good, very different to anything else I've read and Saga is amazing all time favorite and best written\drawn graphic novel I've read to date.


    I suppose harsh in terms of (at times) treatment towards employees however that is necessary when running innovative companies that could change the world. He definitely separates himself from emotion and humanity at times to ensure business is pushing forward which in turn leads to cutting fat more often than a typical company, even if it was someone who was a lifelong friend or a person who dedicated their life to his company for years if not over a decade. He's still brilliant though and certainly let his imagination and visions of the future transform his companies. Out of curiosity what about Neuralink do you hesitate on?

    And that's awesome! I gotta get caught up, I have a list of graphic novels and mangas I have to read before I die lol. I think the old Hellsing mangas are next on my list.
  • Hexd 08-07-2017, 09:29 PM
    (08-07-2017, 06:50 PM)sParn Wrote:
    (08-06-2017, 06:43 PM)Hexd Wrote:
    (08-06-2017, 06:04 PM)sParn Wrote:
    (07-28-2017, 09:57 PM)Hexd Wrote: How is it? any especially cool stuff you learned from it that you didn't know about Elon Musk?

    I'm currently raeding the Graphic Novel Paper Girls which is pretty great and is written by the writer of Saga which is my favorite graphic novel and has my favorite artist Fiona Staples working on it as well.


    Hey! It's awesome...the concepts he introduced into the space and automotive industry alone made me fascinated with him though I never really knew much about him as a person or entrepreneur. His childhood was interesting and I related with him on his curiosity especially when it came to computers as a lad. His startups and sometimes harsh, though progressive, methods of pushing his businesses forward continue to astound me, I'm particularly excited to see where things go with Neuralink being someone heavily into Transhumanism :)

    Now how's Paper Girls? I've heard of that and Saga just haven't read them yet :/


    That's awesome, any  particular harsh methods of pushing his business you could summarize? I think Elon is super inspiring and I hope him well in his businesses although I think Neuralink is a bit too much much I do look forward to the Tranhumanist evolution.

    Paper Girls is pretty good, very different to anything else I've read and Saga is amazing all time favorite and best written\drawn graphic novel I've read to date.


    I suppose harsh in terms of (at times) treatment towards employees however that is necessary when running innovative companies that could change the world. He definitely separates himself from emotion and humanity at times to ensure business is pushing forward which in turn leads to cutting fat more often than a typical company, even if it was someone who was a lifelong friend or a person who dedicated their life to his company for years if not over a decade. He's still brilliant though and certainly let his imagination and visions of the future transform his companies. Out of curiosity what about Neuralink do you hesitate on?

    And that's awesome! I gotta get caught up, I have a list of graphic novels and mangas I have to read before I die lol. I think the old Hellsing mangas are next on my list.


    Um from the tiny amount that I know of Neuralink is that they plan to implant chips in brains so humans can compete with A.I.'s but I don't think implanting a chip that will let advertisers get even more data on you is a good idea
  • GlassMoon 08-08-2017, 01:44 AM
    The Histories of Herodotus

    I have a hard time with these ancient histories. So much of it is obviously based on myth, so I have the instinct to be skeptical, but I also have a good ability to rationalize how something mentioned could be true or rooted in something true. Great overall though. It's going to take me some time to finish it.

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what are you reading?