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Passions in Poetry

A Good Book?

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Essorant
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0 posted 11-25-2002 10:55 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Do you have any suggestions for a good modern book to meet?  I don't have good relationships with ones that are just thinkers, yet ones that arre just pleasings do not suffice my heart either...maybe there is a manner of a book out there for me that has some content of both thinker and pleasing, put together in a formal and classic structure but yet still modern?  Could any one tell me if such a book exists on earth and would like to meet someone like me?  

[This message has been edited by Essorant (11-25-2002 11:01 PM).]

bsquirrel
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1 posted 11-26-2002 12:16 PM       View Profile for bsquirrel   Email bsquirrel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for bsquirrel

If you want to be challenged, confused, enraged and enlightened, try Ulysses by James Joyce.

On the same note, if you're looking for well-drawn complexities and the harshness of war, look into Homer's Iliad. Or the Odysessy, if you're in mood for a quest.

Oh wait, you said modern? Well, Joyce is sorta modern (1920s). And I can never get enough of the emotion and beauty (and eyeglass billboard) of The Great Gatsy by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

And some short stories of Ernest Hemingway are always pleasing and involved.

Good luck.
brian madden
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2 posted 11-26-2002 01:32 PM       View Profile for brian madden   Email brian madden   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for brian madden

Essorant,
it depends on your taste in books. Personally I like books that challenge and have a certain uncompromising approach.

I would recommend “The Wasp Factory” by Iain Banks, a wonderful dark black comedy.
IF you are looking for modern book that reflects and challenges 20th and 21st century ideals try American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellison.
I have to warn you that this is not an easy read, it is quite graphic in its descriptions of
Sex, violence and especially Huey Lewis and Whitney Houston (anyone who has read the book will understand). Approach this book with an open mind and strong stomach.
For a fun read try “The hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy” by Douglas Adams.
There are more books I can’t think of at the moment.





  

I used to make phantoms I could later chase images of all that could be desired then I got tired of counting all of these blessings"h.devoto magazine

Christopher
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3 posted 11-26-2002 03:56 PM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

American Gods - Neil Gaiman

As Brian said about his suggestions, this is an edgy, raw book with quite a bit of language and sexual situations. Not for the faint of heart. However, it is most definitely a modern book touching on some classic themes (completely obliterating them of course, lol). To boot, this guy has some darn good prose... best I've read in a while.
Marshalzu
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4 posted 11-26-2002 04:30 PM       View Profile for Marshalzu   Email Marshalzu   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Marshalzu's Home Page   View IP for Marshalzu

"The Bible" Various Authors apprantly it's the good book.

quietlydying
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5 posted 11-26-2002 09:04 PM       View Profile for quietlydying   Email quietlydying   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for quietlydying

and i quote:

'dear god, you name is on a lot of quotes in this book.  as crazy people wrote it, you should take a look'.

- nineteen eighty-four.
- what's eating gilbert grape [the movie just sucked].
- the poisonwood bible.  [very emotional].

there are tons.  since everyone else is suggesting more along the lines of classic, here's some modern lit for ya.  

oh, and what kid makes it through highschool without reading ordinary people?

/jen/

i'm so bitterly disappointed.  betty, i think it's time you leave now.

hush
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6 posted 11-27-2002 01:04 AM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

I'm shaking my head at Neil Gaiman over here- to be fair, I haven't read American Gods, or rather, I think I read like one page and shoved it back on the shelf at Thackeray's disgusted. To say the least, I'm NOT a Gaiman fan.

Not big on the Hemingway/Fitzgerald either- I struggled through Gatsby a couple years ago because a friend of mine gushed about it. I hate, hate, HATED that stupid book.

Now, on to the positives-

Brian beat me to the Guide- even if you're not a sci-fi person, the entire series is great. It's fairly light reading, and very intelligent satire at the same time.

I haven't read much Stephen King, but what I have read has hooked me, and while he's primarily a story-teller, I find some meat to his work as well. The Shining is one of my favorite books, period. The Bachman books are very good, albeit dark and violent. And the Stand is good insofar as long, involved novels go.

One really good book I read a few years ago is Sole Survivor by Dean Koontz. Normally, I'm  not a big fan of his, but that book floored me with its originality, and amazingly enough, its optimism. Now, I'm going on about a 4-year-old memory- maybe it wouldn't hold up so well- but I loved it.

Try memoirs. I really liked Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt- it has a nice, witty tone along with a harrowing story- told with just enough good humor. If you want to know about being poor, read this book.

I just finished The World According to Garp. Very good.

Oh, and I really like Kurt Vonnegut. Slaughter-House Five is neat, very innovative- Breakfast of Champions is a little easier to follow, and just as original and fun. (BTW, does anybody know his son's name, or the name of the book his son wrote about cracking up? It's been on my to-read list for a while, but I've got these obvious hindrances..)

Hope I could be of help.
Skyfire
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7 posted 11-27-2002 02:13 AM       View Profile for Skyfire   Email Skyfire   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Skyfire

*glowers at Andrew*

No, on second thought, let's not go to Camelot.
~ Arthur (Monty Python Search for the Holy Grail)

Christopher
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8 posted 11-27-2002 07:19 PM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

Why hush? Why? I just picked up American Gods, the first I've even heard of Gaiman, last week. I was instantly hooked! What didn't you like, or are there other books of his that I should avoid?

I forgot to agree on the 'guide." Actually, anything by Adams is WELL worth reading. He's awesome!

King was great... up until you couldn't tell the difference from one book to another. Pretty much about the time of Green Mile, I gave up trying to read... except for the Dark Tower books (and of course Black House, which is not only the sequel to the Talisman, but also a segue to the next Gunslinger book!)

Vonnegut - thanks, that reminds me... I've beenmeaning to read him for some time now and always forget.
hush
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9 posted 11-28-2002 12:58 AM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

Chris, I just can't deal with Gaiman. I mean, I guess I can see what someone else might see in him, but first off, I think he's too high-handed, and second off, I don't deal well with his conceptualization of characters.

My boyfriend's a comic book buff and tries constantly to get me to read Sandman, but there's something about the tone of it that incessantly bugs me. I also have trouble with a character named dream who hangs out with a talking raven and has sisters and brothers who are other concepts... I don't even like well-established mythology, let alone mythology that some guy pulls out of his head. I mean, yeah, if you like that sort of pretentious fantasy thing, go for it, but I am decidedly not a fan.

On American gods, I am pretty sure that's the book  of his that I read the first page of and put right back down- if you could remind me of how it starts, I could tell you for sure. Amazon.com didn't have a beginning excerpt of it.
Christopher
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10 posted 11-28-2002 01:34 AM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

quote:
Shadow had done three years in prison. He was big enough and looked don't-[mess]-with-me enough that his biggest problem was killing time, So he kept himself in shape, and taught himself coin tricks, and thought a lot about how much he loved his wife.
Ok, so that's not much, lol, but it's how it starts.

I remember the Sandman comics and wasn't fond of the stories, though I remember some killer inkings. But then again, I'm into the pretentious fantasy thing. That very well could be it right there… something that, now I think about it, we've already noted in our taste differences between poetry as well. *grin* I should have thought of that before, eh?
quietlydying
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11 posted 11-28-2002 02:16 AM       View Profile for quietlydying   Email quietlydying   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for quietlydying

must agree on angela's ashes.

nicely done - took me four days to read [was back in the hospital again].

but it was a good read.  enjoyed muchly.  

can't wait for the board game.  hahahahaha.  [yes i'm an oldschool madtv fan .]

/jen/

i'm so bitterly disappointed.  betty, i think it's time you leave now.

quietlydying
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12 posted 11-28-2002 02:17 AM       View Profile for quietlydying   Email quietlydying   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for quietlydying

and i'm really not fan of dean koontz or steven king.  i'd steer very clear of them.

/jen/

i'm so bitterly disappointed.  betty, i think it's time you leave now.

hush
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13 posted 11-28-2002 09:57 AM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

Chris- okay, that's not the book I started reading. The one I looked at started out by saying something about a troubled man's tale, and how it could be any troubled man's tale, and going on about some rubbish like that. To me, it was like Gaiman said "Hey, I guess I'm such a good writer I don't even need to make the opening page of my book interesting. My name will do it for me."

Beginning of American Gods seems a little more tolerable- at least I wonder why he's in prison, and if his personality is also "Don't-[mess]-with-me"- but... *Sigh* I really have trouble with names like "Shadow?" I mean, it brings to mind two images- my childhood poodle who went by the same name (lol), or I instantaneously imagine a big, built goth guy who's trying to act tough while reciting bad poetryabout black flames and despair. I cannot deal with goth, these people who wear white makeup and dye their hair black and are convinced that they are better than everyone else and that nobody understands them. That's what Gaiman smacks of to me, and if I'm making cover statements, it's because I think I have the right to- I've been through that stage, and I never once met a "goth" who was any better adjusted than I was. So, sorry to offend anyone, but to make a long story short, it's why I can't deal with Neil Gaiman.  
hush
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14 posted 11-28-2002 10:00 AM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

Jen, have you ever read Sole Survivor? It's remarkably better than the other books I read by him- much more compelling story and much more optimistic.

Now, the other ones I read were Intensity, one about some kid and his bully friend, and another than I can't remember, only remember disliking- Sole Survivor (despite the cliche title) tops them all.
Christopher
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15 posted 11-28-2002 10:15 PM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

Actually, hush, I think i would agree... but i would extend that past just goths and to any group that thinks they're misunderstood, or special, or whatever simply because they fall under a label. FWIW, Shadow (yeah, that's my dog's name too, lol) isn't gothy at all. When i started reading, i felt like he was quickly going into a very expected stereotype... but a few chapters in, he became a very interesting character.

Each to their own! Thanks for the conversation though.
Essorant
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16 posted 11-29-2002 12:27 PM       View Profile for Essorant   Email Essorant   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Essorant's Home Page   View IP for Essorant

Most of my literary life has been absorpt in Classics, but I wanted to venture out a bit and see if modern has been behaving itself better or if it is still seems all engrossed with violence and movie drama as when I tried this last.  
I'm thinking I might go with the very first book suggested.  If it is as good as his short story "Araby" there is no way it won't please me.

Thank you all for your reccomendations.

[This message has been edited by Essorant (11-29-2002 12:28 PM).]

Jaime
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17 posted 12-05-2002 10:36 PM       Edit/Delete Message     View IP for Jaime

"Slammerkin" by Emma Donoghue
"Memoirs of a Geisha" by Arthur Golden
"Prozac Nation" by Elizabeth Wurtzel

All light reads... but they are interesting both in psychological and emotional ways. (And all transport you to different periods of time and different cultures, if you're into that.)

i was here

 
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