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Books and more books 08:34 - May 19 with 1277 viewsGlossolalia

I'm in another reading phase, and about to order a few books online. Any recommendations? I'm mainly looking for 20th century fiction. Thanks
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Books and more books on 10:44 - May 20 with 491 viewsleighton1318

20th century fiction - work your way through Kingsley Amis. Amongst other things, he paints wondrous time-capsule pictures of how everyday life was.

Lucky Jim is the original closely followed by That Uncertain Feeling (set in an anonymised Swansea, where he lived at the time) and at the other end of his output is Booker winner The Old Devils, also set in South Wales. I wish the TV serialisation of that could be found but I don’t think it’s out there.

His memoirs are hysterically funny though ‘unreliable’. The bio of him by Zachary Leader is an immense work. Both of these also paint a vivid, though not fawning, picture of Swansea in the 1950s.

That lot should get you through the summer ...
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Books and more books on 10:52 - May 20 with 483 viewslondonlisa2001

Final suggestion from me, the Border Trilogy from Cormac McCarthy (starts with ‘All the Pretty Horses’) and the Tales of the City series by Armistead Maupin.

Again read and reread, and reread again, over the years.
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Books and more books on 11:52 - May 20 with 468 viewsGlossolalia

Books and more books on 10:44 - May 20 by leighton1318

20th century fiction - work your way through Kingsley Amis. Amongst other things, he paints wondrous time-capsule pictures of how everyday life was.

Lucky Jim is the original closely followed by That Uncertain Feeling (set in an anonymised Swansea, where he lived at the time) and at the other end of his output is Booker winner The Old Devils, also set in South Wales. I wish the TV serialisation of that could be found but I don’t think it’s out there.

His memoirs are hysterically funny though ‘unreliable’. The bio of him by Zachary Leader is an immense work. Both of these also paint a vivid, though not fawning, picture of Swansea in the 1950s.

That lot should get you through the summer ...


I've heard of Amis largely through Christopher Hitchens, who visited his son Martin in the Mumbles years ago. He describes driving past Port Talbot as a vision of hell.
I'll check out Amis senior and junior, thanks!
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Books and more books on 11:54 - May 20 with 466 viewsGlossolalia

Books and more books on 10:52 - May 20 by londonlisa2001

Final suggestion from me, the Border Trilogy from Cormac McCarthy (starts with ‘All the Pretty Horses’) and the Tales of the City series by Armistead Maupin.

Again read and reread, and reread again, over the years.


I've read The Road, which is incredibly bleak. McCarthy has such an odd style of writing, though I quite like it. So I'll take a look Lisa, many thanks.
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Books and more books on 13:15 - May 20 with 458 viewslondonlisa2001

Books and more books on 11:54 - May 20 by Glossolalia

I've read The Road, which is incredibly bleak. McCarthy has such an odd style of writing, though I quite like it. So I'll take a look Lisa, many thanks.


The Border Trilogy is very different to The Road. No bleakness in sight. It’s more of a ‘coming of age’ series. I didn’t enjoy The Road anywhere near as much (one of the few I occasions where I think I preferred the film).
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Books and more books on 13:58 - May 20 with 451 viewsGreatBritton

Books and more books on 10:11 - May 20 by WarwickHunt

Body and Soul - Frank Conroy
Revolutionary Road - Richard Yates ( anything by Richard Yates...)
A Confederacy Of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole (quite possibly the funniest book ever written)
All That Is - James Salter
Underworld USA trilogy - James Ellroy
The Berlin Novels - Christopher Isherwood
[Post edited 20 May 10:12]


Dammit. I should have mentioned Confederacy of Dunces. Now where did I put it/ Time for a re-read, methinks. Thanks for reminding me Warwick. I could also have added American Pastoral - Roth's best book.
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Books and more books on 14:01 - May 20 with 451 viewsGreatBritton

Books and more books on 15:22 - May 19 by londonlisa2001

“Infinite Jest' by David Foster Wallace will keep you going for a month or two.“

But you’ll never get that month or two back... You’re a better person that me, I gave up as I was honestly bored.

Agree on the Mick Herron books.

Recent books I’ve enjoyed -
Questions of Travel by Michelle de Kretser ,
Golden Hill by Francis Spufford,
Duveen by SN Behrman
The Shadow of the Sun by Ryszard Kapuściński,
Sea of Poppies by Armitage Ghosh
A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth (A re-read - I love this book).

Going through a phase of travel based writing in lockdown!


I didn't say I'd actually read all of Infinite Jest. I'm pecking away at it slowly, like a reluctant kid eating peas. It's a bit like reading somebody else's diary - a lot of stuff that's nothing to do with you and then a surprising insight or little gem of humour.
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Books and more books on 14:16 - May 20 with 446 viewslondonlisa2001

Books and more books on 14:01 - May 20 by GreatBritton

I didn't say I'd actually read all of Infinite Jest. I'm pecking away at it slowly, like a reluctant kid eating peas. It's a bit like reading somebody else's diary - a lot of stuff that's nothing to do with you and then a surprising insight or little gem of humour.


Makes sense.

I’ve tried with it a few times, and decided life’s too short. I’ve stopped forcing myself to read stuff I don’t enjoy any more.

It’s one of those books that I think people are supposed to think is great (it’s on every top 100 thing I’ve ever seen) and yet not that many seem to have actually enjoyed it.

It’s very personal though - I felt exactly the same about Cloud Atlas - I do know lots of people who enjoyed that one though.
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Books and more books on 19:38 - May 20 with 407 viewsLohengrin

Books and more books on 10:24 - May 20 by WarwickHunt

Mine too. Never tire of re-reading it. His short stories are superb too,


PS What are you doing for the rest of your life? ❤️😂


Running away to Nashville with me... bugger off!

You’d have enjoyed it out the back today with me, mate. Charlie Rich, Dan Penn and Donnie Fritts played loud as I finished off painting the fences and worked my way through a case of Newcastle Brown with Bulleit chasers. It’s been absolutely boiling!


An idea isn't responsible for those who believe in it.

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Books and more books on 20:35 - May 20 with 377 viewsbryncochjack



Forget David Foster Wallace and start reading Thomas Pynchon. This is by some way the most accessible. Laugh out loud portrayal of early 70s California.
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Books and more books on 20:53 - May 20 with 363 viewsWarwickHunt

Books and more books on 19:38 - May 20 by Lohengrin

Running away to Nashville with me... bugger off!

You’d have enjoyed it out the back today with me, mate. Charlie Rich, Dan Penn and Donnie Fritts played loud as I finished off painting the fences and worked my way through a case of Newcastle Brown with Bulleit chasers. It’s been absolutely boiling!



I’m afraid you lost me at Newcastle Brown, disgusting stuff!

The rest was spot on.👍
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Books and more books on 21:00 - May 20 with 358 viewsWarwickHunt

Books and more books on 13:58 - May 20 by GreatBritton

Dammit. I should have mentioned Confederacy of Dunces. Now where did I put it/ Time for a re-read, methinks. Thanks for reminding me Warwick. I could also have added American Pastoral - Roth's best book.


Roth and Bellow, can’t go wrong.
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Books and more books on 21:22 - May 20 with 352 viewsLohengrin

Books and more books on 20:53 - May 20 by WarwickHunt

I’m afraid you lost me at Newcastle Brown, disgusting stuff!

The rest was spot on.👍


I love ‘the dog!’ I drink it the right way too, poured into a half glass and gently topped up as I go so it never goes flat.

Blue collar nectar!

An idea isn't responsible for those who believe in it.

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Books and more books on 21:30 - May 20 with 346 viewsWarwickHunt

Books and more books on 21:22 - May 20 by Lohengrin

I love ‘the dog!’ I drink it the right way too, poured into a half glass and gently topped up as I go so it never goes flat.

Blue collar nectar!


Probably got wànkered on it too many times as a teenager.
I feel the same way about cheap sherry - can’t even look at it without feeling nauseous.
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Books and more books on 21:32 - May 20 with 340 viewsLohengrin

Books and more books on 21:30 - May 20 by WarwickHunt

Probably got wànkered on it too many times as a teenager.
I feel the same way about cheap sherry - can’t even look at it without feeling nauseous.


I feel exactly the same way about cider. A teenage bout left me sick as a hound, I’ve never been able to suffer so much as the smell of it since.

An idea isn't responsible for those who believe in it.

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Books and more books on 21:43 - May 20 with 328 viewsDuklaPrague

Evening Folks, I've been a stalker for a very long time but this topic made me register.
If you really like to read, my favourite book is "A Fine Balance" followed by Shantaram both big tomes but both brilliant.
However for all you Jack Bastards you cant beat Robert Llewellyns Trilogy
The Last Llanelli Train
Swansea Terminal
The Bank of The Black Pig
So good you think you are there
enjoy
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Books and more books on 22:01 - May 20 with 321 viewsDuklaPrague

I would also like to add "I Am Pilgrim"
genre - CIA/FBI world affairs political thriller
well worth a read
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Books and more books on 11:17 - May 21 with 252 viewsGreatBritton

Books and more books on 10:44 - May 20 by leighton1318

20th century fiction - work your way through Kingsley Amis. Amongst other things, he paints wondrous time-capsule pictures of how everyday life was.

Lucky Jim is the original closely followed by That Uncertain Feeling (set in an anonymised Swansea, where he lived at the time) and at the other end of his output is Booker winner The Old Devils, also set in South Wales. I wish the TV serialisation of that could be found but I don’t think it’s out there.

His memoirs are hysterically funny though ‘unreliable’. The bio of him by Zachary Leader is an immense work. Both of these also paint a vivid, though not fawning, picture of Swansea in the 1950s.

That lot should get you through the summer ...


Lucky Jim was bright, funny, refreshing at the time but The Old Devils was a tired, bring rehash. It's probably the only book that I've read where i got through about 85% and then thought, 'Blow it, I'm wasting my time here.' I did the same with the film version of The Color Purple, mind. But I had the good sense to walk out of the cinema after twenty minutes of Spielberg's execrable 1941. Amis's son is a better writer, but not a very nice man. Time's Arrow is very good indeed.
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Books and more books on 11:22 - May 21 with 247 viewsGreatBritton

Books and more books on 14:16 - May 20 by londonlisa2001

Makes sense.

I’ve tried with it a few times, and decided life’s too short. I’ve stopped forcing myself to read stuff I don’t enjoy any more.

It’s one of those books that I think people are supposed to think is great (it’s on every top 100 thing I’ve ever seen) and yet not that many seem to have actually enjoyed it.

It’s very personal though - I felt exactly the same about Cloud Atlas - I do know lots of people who enjoyed that one though.


I enjoyed Cloud Atlas, but I can't remember a thing about it. Can't have been all that good after all. I'm wading through Infinite Jest (great title) because someone writing about Ulysses, my favourite book in the whole wide world of iliterature, said it was comparable.
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Books and more books on 11:24 - May 21 with 246 viewsGreatBritton

Books and more books on 20:35 - May 20 by bryncochjack



Forget David Foster Wallace and start reading Thomas Pynchon. This is by some way the most accessible. Laugh out loud portrayal of early 70s California.


I forgot to mention The Crying of Lot 49 in my previous posts. Good stuff. I need to re-read that one too.
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Books and more books on 11:26 - May 21 with 245 viewsGreatBritton

Books and more books on 21:32 - May 20 by Lohengrin

I feel exactly the same way about cider. A teenage bout left me sick as a hound, I’ve never been able to suffer so much as the smell of it since.


Ah! Someone else who's got a lifelong aversion to the dreadful apple brew. Scrumpy in The Tenby was my downfall.
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Books and more books on 13:06 - May 21 with 227 viewsMuteswan

Books and more books on 11:26 - May 21 by GreatBritton

Ah! Someone else who's got a lifelong aversion to the dreadful apple brew. Scrumpy in The Tenby was my downfall.


Same here, can’t even stand the smell of it now. 🤢
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Books and more books on 22:27 - May 21 with 169 viewsdickythorpe

How people can seriously rate Strongbow as a good cider is beyond me.
That Smuggler's cider from Gower brewery is very nice.
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Books and more books on 22:21 - May 22 with 119 viewsJack_Meoff





Not fiction but pertinent to our times:




If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face--forever.

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Books and more books on 06:33 - May 23 with 89 viewsjackal

Favourite books.

The Godfather
Rich Man, Poor Man
The Caine Mutiny
The Day of the Jackal
Hotel, Arthur Hailey.
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