Great books

Discussion in 'General Discussion Forum' started by Gruug, Nov 14, 2003.

  1. Gruug

    Gruug Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    340
    Nov 7, 2003
    Well, we've had a topic on lots of other great things, why not on great books?

    Tom Clancy writes great books, especially his net force saga, also, if you like Steven King's books, you would probably love most of Dean Koonz's work.
    But now I put forth a writer who I doubt many would know of, Anne McCaffrey, she has a few great series, but for one of the best fantasy/sci fi series, you can't beat the Dragons of Pern series, one of the best series of books I have ever read.

    So post your good reads.
     
  2. Wooz

    Wooz Vault Sweeper Admin Orderite

    May 18, 2003
    As mentioned on another thread, Orwell's "year 1984" is probably the best book I've read this year. From another style, I like Terry Pratchett. En espanol my favs are Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Cortazar, Fuentes. En francais Andre Breton, Voltaire. Po polsku Gombrowicz, Konwicki.

    And of course, Bakounine, Czapski >:-D
     
  3. KurganFr

    KurganFr Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    374
    Sep 21, 2003
    I do seem to remember writing about this in another topic; no matter, here goes:

    Authors who write constantly great novels:
    - Terry Pratchett, who no longer requires to be introduced.
    - Derek Robinson, whose insight into the mind of fighter pilots of both World Wars is as valuable as his dry humour is ever-present.
    - Robin Hobb (alias Megan Lindblom) whose Royal Assassin series is as strong as ever in Episode 9 as it was in the first page.

    Authors whom I enjoy thoroughly despite a certain lack of variety in the long run:
    - Douglas Reeman, who has managed to write some thirty gripping novels about the British Navy during WW2 around the same basic plot.
    - Alistair MacLean, whose novels have formed the basis for many movies, including The Guns of Navarone and Where Eagles Dare.
    - Wilbur Smith, whose evocative descriptions of Africa are unmatched.
    - Robert E Howard, who created Conan. Enough said.

    Authors whom I intend to read more from: all the above plus
    - Jack Vance, whose Lyonesse series is an intriguing blend of many genres written in a quite particular style, and a surprisingly refreshing and enjoyable experience.
    - Tom Holt, whose works are of unequal quality, but who creates so outrageous and hilarious situations that one never knows where he is going next.
    - James Patterson, very good at characterisation.
    - Tom Clancy, Robert Ludlum, Jack Higgins, whose completely interchangeable novels remain a thrilling read.
     
  4. John Uskglass

    John Uskglass Venerable Relic of the Wastes

    Aug 29, 2003
    Kafka, Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, Orwell, Anna Komnena, Dickens, Shakespear.
     
  5. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    Richard Adams' Watership Down is the greatest novel...ever

    After that; Dickens, Poe, Dostojewski, I'm not partial to Tolstoj, Homerus, Carrol, Wilde...to name but a few.

    Dickens and Dostojewski constantly compete over the titel of greatest writer ever in my mind, though

    I would promote Dutch literature, but it's really bad. Only Dutch author worth the trouble is an early 20th century novelist, barely known and universally under-rated, who writes much in the spirit of Dostojewski and Tolstoj, called A. Den Doolaard. the rest is crap.
     
  6. Ozrat

    Ozrat Antediluvian as Feck
    Orderite

    Apr 2, 2003
    Ishmael
    - Daniel Quinn

    I'm still reading the second in the series.
     
  7. Azael

    Azael Still Mildly Glowing

    265
    Apr 6, 2003
    There's something seriously wrong with a sentence that contains the words "great books" and "Tom Clancy" in it.

    I'm quite fond of the works of Dostoyevkiy myself, particulary The Idiot and Brothers Karamazov, I've read some of Tolstoy as well, but don't think he's of the same class. Gogol and Pushkin are also very good Russian authors.

    Short list of authors I like (besides the already mentioned):

    Albert Camus, Edgar Allan Poe (mainly his short stories), John Steinbeck, William Faulkner, Aldous Huxley, Stanislaw Lem, August Strindberg, Kurt Vonnegut and Joseph Heller.

    I'm sure I missed some, but that's the brunt of it. I'm also shamefully fond of Stephen King.
     
  8. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    *shrugs* I don't like him either, and he is indeed on one of the lower planes of the heirarchy of authors, but to just discount him completely seems a bit snobbish, if somewhat justified.

    Dunno why, but Gogol SERIOUSLY freaks me out. Seriously.

    Also, haven't you read Guilt & Penance/Crime & Punishment? 's good. Confused, but good.

    Anyway, for all the Dostojewski-lovers out there, I must let my rather small and suppressed national pride surface and suggest you try A. Den Doolaards "Kleine mensen in de Grote Wereld" (Small People in the Large World), it consists of three stories, and the first one is so reminiscent of Dostojewski, not so much in style as in the large Christian undercurrent and the strong whisper of love for all of mankind. It's a seriously good book.
     
  9. Azael

    Azael Still Mildly Glowing

    265
    Apr 6, 2003
    I don't think it's snobbish, I've read a few of his books, and there's certainly nothing great about them from a literary point of view, but that doesn't mean that they're bad entertainment. It all depends on what you look for in a reading experience.

    Yes, I've read Crime and Punishment (but not the other one), a very good book, but I prefer the other books I mentioned. Raskolnikov wasn't a very sympathetic protagonist I guess.
     
  10. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    Guilt and Penance = Crime and Punishment. It's a matter of translation, the original title could be translated both ways (and thus, if you wanted, probably as Crime and Penance or Guilt and Punishment, but that makes no sense, does it?) The Dutch title is still "Schuld en Boete" which means Guilt and Penance.

    Raskolnikov is probably on of the least sympathetic protagonists...ever. And the book is not exactly filled with symphatetic actors besides him. Yes, it is indeed a lesser work, but it still stands amongst his best. I'm partial to the Idiot myself, though the Brothers Karamazow was the first I read, and loved thoroughly...Both great, but the Idiot is a bit better.

    PS: wanna discuss this topic over a pint of Guinness? Discussing things is one thing, discussing things over a pint of Guinness...There's little better in life. Ask Conan.
     
  11. Azael

    Azael Still Mildly Glowing

    265
    Apr 6, 2003
    Discussing things over a pint of Guinness is certainly the best way to do it, no matter the subject.
     
  12. John Uskglass

    John Uskglass Venerable Relic of the Wastes

    Aug 29, 2003
    I thought the opposite. I thought that Raskolinkon was dualistic, and dispite being "morally paralized" in some respects had some element of decency. Maybe that was why I perferd it to Karamozov, maybe it was because I was half asleep most of the time I was reading Karamozov

    Kafka. I love Kafka. I worship Kafka.

    Dont feel bad Kharn, everyone loves Dutch culture. I have a Brughel desktop, and my weed comes from Amsterdam.
     
  13. Paladin Solo

    Paladin Solo So Old I'm Losing Radiation Signs

    Nov 7, 2003
    Tom Clancy is the greatest. I like his books, they contain interesting detail. Left Behind series are pretty good too. Dracula is a classic. And who can forget The Cat in The Hat.

    I would like to know if any of you can help me in my search for a newer book. I don't know what it is called, I wanted to buy it yesterday at Wal-Mart but I ran out of money and forgot the title. It's about these soldiers in Ancient Greece. It was a story about Athens, Sparta, etc... and thier battle with Persia. I heard it begins with the battle of Sparta I think. Would any of you know the title?
     
  14. Bradylama

    Bradylama Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 22, 2003
    How can you people forget Hemingway? ;_;

    The man liberated a Parisian bar from the Nazis for Chris' sake.
     
  15. John Uskglass

    John Uskglass Venerable Relic of the Wastes

    Aug 29, 2003
    When? How?
    I am more a Russian man anyway.

    Anyone know the name of that early Russian sci-fi book about a dog who's testicles are replaced with that of a mans and he becomes as a man?
     
  16. Pipboy2000

    Pipboy2000 Companion to the Last Proton
    Orderite

    Sep 29, 2003
    The author that I'm currently banging (metaphoricly...) is Brian Jacques, his books are incredible. He is the author of the Redwall series. He also started another series, "The Castaways of the Flying Dutchman."

    Right now, I'm reading "Loamhedge" just released. It's great.
     
  17. Gruug

    Gruug Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    340
    Nov 7, 2003
    *Shrug* To each his own.
    Tom Clancy is the best in his particular *field* of writing in my oppinion.(Hate it when people write imo or imho)
     
  18. requiem_for_a_starfury

    requiem_for_a_starfury So Old I'm Losing Radiation Signs

    Apr 3, 2003
    Sounds like you mean Gates of Fire and Tides of War by Steven Pressfield.

    Gates of Fire tells the story of the battle at Thermopalye.

    Tides of War is about the War between Sparta and Athens, though I've not read that one yet.
     
  19. Paladin Solo

    Paladin Solo So Old I'm Losing Radiation Signs

    Nov 7, 2003
    Oh yeah now I remember. Thanks Starfury. I'll have to buy them when I get paid.
     
  20. Bradylama

    Bradylama Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 22, 2003
    During the war, Hemingway enlisted in the military. When troops arrived in Paris they found that Hemingway and his unit had gone ahead of the rest of the army and were treating themselves to the spirits of a Parisian bar.