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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Fri February 12, 2021 11:33 pm 
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4/5 wrote:
Is the first story (Mister Squishy, the like corporate marketing one) good or meh?

I like that one.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Sat February 13, 2021 3:48 am 
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Simple Torture wrote:
4/5 wrote:
:lol: :lol:

To answer the thread's question, just started
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Some good and some meh in this one.

Good Old Neon


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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Sun February 14, 2021 9:01 pm 
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Borrowed Train Dreams from the library yesterday. Finished it this morning.

Loved it. I’ll definitely read it again soon, and check out Jesus’ Son.


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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Mon February 15, 2021 7:30 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Mon February 15, 2021 7:32 pm 
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Don't usually care too much for politics - even less when it's a foreign country, but this is really interesting

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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Mon February 15, 2021 9:24 pm 
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dad wrote:
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:thumbsup: :thumbsup:


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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Wed February 17, 2021 3:38 am 
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epilogue wrote:
dad wrote:
Image

:thumbsup: :thumbsup:

100%

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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Wed February 17, 2021 3:39 am 
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Song of Solomon...around halfway through, but so good

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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Wed February 17, 2021 4:18 pm 
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lennytheweedwhacker wrote:
epilogue wrote:
dad wrote:
Image

:thumbsup: :thumbsup:

100%

Such a fun and funny read. Having seen the trailer for the movie it’s been hard to read it and not hear their voices, even harder to not want to just put the book down and watch the movie.

My favorite chapter has to be when Eli decides he wants to trim down his waistline to look more attractive, and tries to order lighter portions of food at the saloon/restaurant.


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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Wed February 17, 2021 6:16 pm 
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Read the first five chapters in Spanish in the fall but put it down for life reasons. Enjoying the hell out of it this time, teaching it in two weeks


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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Wed February 17, 2021 6:19 pm 
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Mickey wrote:
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Read the first five chapters in Spanish in the fall but put it down for life reasons. Enjoying the hell out of it this time, teaching it in two weeks

Nice!

I forgot the new Bolaño came out yesterday. Gotta finish an eternal scifi novel soon.


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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Wed February 17, 2021 6:26 pm 
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Yeah the novellas got a lukewarm review in the NYT today but I'll still read them at some point.


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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Fri February 19, 2021 7:32 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Tue February 23, 2021 3:33 am 
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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Tue February 23, 2021 5:35 pm 
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I haven’t gotten that one yet.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Tue February 23, 2021 7:13 pm 
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Some of the stories are genuinely scary but some are horribly racist which is the norm for Howard. It's too bad. His occasional brilliance will forever be lost in his bullshit.


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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Tue February 23, 2021 7:16 pm 
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4/5 wrote:
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Finished this last night. I don't want to grade another essay so I'll write about my impression of this collection.

So DFW is unlike any other novelist that I read. I assume a lot of that is just because of how relatively few contemporary novelists I've read, so I read him and wonder if he's as unique as it feels like when I read him. For reference, the only other fiction I've read for him was Infinite Jest. Probably because of this uncertainty I feel more self-conscious when I read him or think about my feelings about what I've read. For example, in Oblivion my favorite story was also probably the most straight forward story of the bunch and didn't have the normal DFW vocabulary flexes. And that sets me to thinking, "Do I think I loved that one so much just because it was so much easier than the others?" And I don't think it's that, I think it was a masterful piece of storytelling, but I can't help but wonder. I also can't help but wonder if I like the idea of being a DFW fan because it's like a literary merit badge signifying that I can focus and keep my eye on the ball as he shifts the story and perspective and context all around. Idk. I do know that I loved Infinite Jest and I loved Consider the Lobster and I loved parts of Oblivion and I can't wait to read more from.

Oh, and he's really good at endings, even though most of the stories don't really feel like they have an ending somehow. Even some of the stories I didn't love seemed to turn and feel compelling in the end.

Impressions of each story with spoilers:
Spoiler: show
Mister Squishy--This was okay. It felt like it was longer than it needed to be, but if he wanted it to be longer to really feel that soul sucking corporate job emptiness then I understand the choice and he succeeded. But about 2/3 of the way I fell asleep a couple of times trying to make it through.

The Soul is Not a Smithy--(the deranged substitute teacher story) I really enjoyed this one. It took me a little bit to get comfortable with how he was telling the story, but it was excellent. The witness to the event recounting his totally unrelated memories and filling us in on the facts that he also obtained second hand even though he was there was a nice twist.

Another Pioneer--(the ancient village wise man child) This one was a struggle. Going back to my insecurity part of me is like, okay this was the most challenging one, I wonder if that means it's the one that people like to brag about liking. But anyway, the vocabulary in this one was on a whole other level, even by DFW standards. Combined with the latin phrases and the indigenous words this was easily the most challenging story in the collection. The last 1/3 of it or so I found really interesting and quite enjoyed. There were some really good moments in this one and I felt like it rewarded me for not quitting on it. So I didn't enjoy reading it but I'm glad that I did. The perspective of the story being told like third or fourth hand was also interesting. I'm not sure what the purpose of that device was, but it worked. Maybe illustrating how fact turns to fiction to myth to legend through retelling? I'm not sure.

Good Old Neon--Hands down the best story in the collection. For my money this was masterful story telling. I think maybe his greatest talent is that super self-conscious inner dialogue and man is it powerful in this story. This reminded me of some of my favorite passages in Infinite Jest, where I think he provides the best description of depression that I've ever read. But yeah this one is worth the price of admission alone even if everything else was terrible it'd be worth it for this one. The twist at the end is phenomenal and gut wrenching at the same time.

Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature--This didn't do anything for me.

Oblivion--This one was okay. Longer than it needed to be, but again I enjoyed the ending.

The Suffering Channel--This one is a weird one for me. There were scenes and exchanges that were absolutely hilarious and I enjoyed the irreverence and what I assume were critiques of art and commerce but the story didn't feel as essential as I wish it had, especially since it was by far the longest story in the book. But it was a pretty breezy and enjoyable read which makes it unique among his fiction that I've read so far.


Okay, I guess I'll go read essays now.

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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Tue February 23, 2021 7:22 pm 
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Crom!

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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Tue February 23, 2021 7:31 pm 
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indeed


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 Post subject: Re: What are you currently reading?
PostPosted: Tue February 23, 2021 11:40 pm 
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Mickey wrote:
Yeah the novellas got a lukewarm review in the NYT today but I'll still read them at some point.

I finished the first section of Cowboy Graves and really liked it, but I guess your mileage may vary depending on how much you like the scattered Arturo stories. It's been one of my favorite parts of his work, and I like how these stories have filled in various gaps as I've read them over the past 13 years or so. Read the last sentence of "The Days of Chaos" right before reading this, and it's contextualized well.

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McParadigm wrote:
lol


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