Friday, July 11, 2008

Your Turn

It has been awhile since I have done this because I was running out of ideas and wanted to give everyone something to find to plug or promote. Anyway, I have been plugging this book to everyone lately and would love to hear about what everyone else is reading. I know that whatever we pick will be better than Oprah at least. It can be anything. I don't care if it is Slash, which by the way is a great book, or some tell-all or poems, or whatever. I liked this book about Shel Silverstein because I knew of course about his children's books and a few of his #1 songs, but there was so much more I didn't know. If you love his books or songs or have no idea who the hell he is, you will love this book.


Laura said...

I just finished Jemima J by Jane Green (again). Love her.

Bad Fish said...

I'm on David Sedaris' new book. He's quite possibly the funniest man alive.

Kara said...

I love Shel Silverstein. I haven't heard about him for ages.

A Human Stain by Philip Roth is my favorite book.

AphraelDanae said...

@laura: Jemima J! I haven't read that in ages - really should dig it out again...

Feeling kinda geeky these days - re-reading some Discworld. Love me some Terry Pratchett. And Neil Gaiman for that matter.

mags said...

These are three I'm currently reading.

Whistling in the Dark


The Rest of Her Life

Love Shel

jax said...

Firecracker by Sean Stewart about a man who sees dead people as a child. good read.

I hope they serve beer in hell by Tucker Max- the guy is a grade A asshole but damn his stories are funny.

Little Miss Smoke and Mirrors said...

What bad fish said^. The new Sedaris is entitled "When You Are Engulfed in Flames." It's gold.

Little Miss Smoke and Mirrors said...

Just saw Carole King in Random Photos. Might I also suggest "Girls Like Us" by Sheila Weller, a bio of Carole King, Carly Simon, and Joni Mitchell.

Ernestine said...

YESSSSSS! A Your Turn involving BOOKS!!! The English Major in me (because, uh, I was an English Major) is totally doing jumping jacks and somersaults!

That said, there are three books I push on everybody:

1) Middlesex, by Jeffery Eugenides, is painstakingly detailed, jawdroppingly brilliant, and his WRITING is just...I can't really describe how amazing this novel is without being annoying adjectival. The plot is incredibly bizarre, but miraculous, too. PLEASE read it. In fact, I SOBBED when I finished it. I MOURNED the end of this book -- not the ending itself, just the fact that I wouldn't have the pleasure of unfolding its surprises anymore. In fact, I think I'm going to read it again. Right now.

I LOVE you, Jeffery. PLEASE write some more novels, now!

2) Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, by Annie Dillard, is a great choice if you love birds and plants and rocks and things (sorry, just had to put in an America reference, you know?) and other aspects of the natural world. I am quite convinced that Annie Dillard is the hugest genius ever. She also went to my college, so I may be a little biased. :-)

3) Lolita, by Vladimir Nabokov, is utterly gorgeous from start to finish. I've read it four times; it's my absolute Most Perfect Piece of Literature. It's no coincidence homeboy had the same birthday as Billy Shakespeare.

Badfish! Are you reading Barrel Fever? It's BRILLIANT -- David's collection of short stories that are absolutely beyond side-splitting. The one about the whorish Vietnamese war baby who comes to live with her "family" is my favorite one, I think.

Yay for literature and celebrity gossip and people who love and appreciate both! :-)

Ms. said...

One of my favourite books is
Rule Of The Bone by by Russell Banks. F A N T A S T I C book. Trust me on this. If you liked Catcher in the Rye, you'll love this one too.

Came out in 1995 and (from Wikipedia)It is a bildungsroman about the 14-year-old American narrator, Chappie, later dubbed Bone (named for a tattoo that he gets), who, after having dropped out of school, turns to the guidance of a Rastafarian Jamaican illegal immigrant.

Charles said...

I just finished listening to Stephen King's Duma Key on audiobook, during my commute to work.

I'm reading Kim Harrison's For a Few Demons More on paper.

My all-time favorite books are Mark Helprin's Winter's Tale and William Goldman's The Princess Bride.

Ms. said...

Oh yeah, just started Carl Hiaasen's new book, Downhill Lie

operaghost said...

I'm reading Hex Marks the Spot by Madelyn Alt. The author calls the books "Mysteries...with hex appeal," and I heartily agree!

Mooshki said...

I couldn't begin to pick a favorite book(s), so I'll just say I'm currently reading "Brick Lane" by Monica Ali, and it's really good.

DNfromMN said...

Might have to check out that Shel Silverstien bio, ent. Man warped many a young mind with his poems/drawings, and we enjoyed it all the same.

We read The Raw Shark Texts by Steven Hall for book club last month. Blew my mind. A little out there.

nancer said...

'lush life' by richard price.

i love all his books but this is one of his best.

mags said...

2) Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, by Annie Dillard, is a great choice if you love birds and plants and rocks and things

Thanks for the suggestion. I like the above.

The Tender Bar (has been suggested to me by a number of people).

Abaddon said...

The Golden Compass Trilogy. And Hominids (by Bob Sawyer) which was great, also a trilogy. Read both in two days.

dbfreak said...

I read way too much to offer favorites too, so I'm just going to offer up the three I'm currently reading:

1) Offbeat Marijuana: The Life & Times of the World's Grooviest Plant by Saul Rubin - I'm almost done with this one and it is a damn good attempt at covering the history and cultural impact of marijuana from when references to it first started appearing in India and Europe through present day.

2) Unquiet Dreams by Marc del Franco - this is an urban fantasy PI series starring a male druid in Boston - second book - so far, so good

3) Two Little Girls in Blue by Mary Higgins Clark - actually haven't started this one - I just added it to my stack to replace...

4) Cuba by Emily Barr - would classify as British chick lit but this book is so much more. It's about a single woman who becomes obsessed with her English neighbors (young couple with a baby) and follows them to Cuba with results both entertaining and horrifying.

Kat said...

Great topic here.

Currently reading 'White Teeth' by Zadie Smith who is a brilliant writer. Loved 'On Beauty' which she wrote and it prompted me to get her first piece of work.

Catcher in the Rye is one of my all-time favourites. I've read it several times and own three copies, and for some reason it makes good sense to have them all.

'Love in the Time of Cholera' is gorgeous. I highly recommend it to people who value great writing and have a sense of romance.

Jax, I'm going to look into the one you suggested. I love anything supernatural. Also going to look for David Sedaris and Nabokov.

Books excite me as much as chocolate and sex.

Lynne said...

I devoured the Discworld novels. It's just awful about Terry Pratchett.

Carl Hiaasen is wickedly funny.

If you want a good cry, try anything by Willa Cather.

My favorite book is All the King's Men by Robert Penn Warren. It has haunted me so, that I haven't been able to reread it yet. Maybe ever.

scumkid said...

"The Boat" by Nam Lee First collection of short stories

jax said...

kat- i got it on sale at chapters here for $3.99.
god bless the cheap table.

LaurenD said...

I just finished (yesterday) a great book called "The Sky Isn't Visible From Here" by first time author Felicia C. Sullivan. Tough subject matter, but really well written and a great read.

gillian said...

Just finished (literally) "The Perfect Scent" by Chandler Burr which traces the development of SJP's "Lovely" and a new perfume for Hermes. The perfume industry is more secretive and convoluted than fashion!

Frustrating because he creates dazzling word-images for dozens of scents and some great dish on not-so-good ones and the reader will be compelled to run to the nearest high-end department store/duty-free shop to try them out.

I think if I'd read this book in high school, I would've become a chem major; it is that fascinating.

Here's a tip: synthetics (in perfume) are much less likely to cause an allergic reaction than a natural ingredient.

Harriet Hellfire said...

I'm actually working on "Slash" at the moment, but then again, I just would. It is really good once you get through all the stuff about him riding his bike and smoking pot as a kid.

If we're talking rock 'n' roll biographies (my favourite genre)...if you haven't already, you MUST read "WonderLAnd Avenue" by Danny Sugerman. I have a feeling this tip is a bit late and that this book is a staple in the library of any pop culture fanatic, but I just thought that if I can get to one or two people who haven't read's worth it...*L*

"The Dirt" - Motley Crue's biography. I read it in one sitting. But then again, I would.

"Somebody To Love" - Grace Slick. It's just awesome.

I don't read a lot of fiction but I loved "The Lovely Bones" by Alice Sebold. I guess they're making a movie of it now.

If there are any Swedish readers on here, you should read "Män som hatar kvinnor" by Stieg Larsson. (The title, if you're curious, means "Men who hate women". Crime thriller. Excellently written.

Ernestine said...

Harriet -- you've GOTTA read Old Gods Almost Dead and Thunder of the Gods, by Stephen Davis, if you haven't already. His biographies of The Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin, respectively, are AMAZING reads.

I love that you're reading a book about Slash! Does he talk about Buckethead at all? That dude totally weirds me out, but I love him. And long live hair metal!

Lil Bee said...

"Three Cups of Tea" by Greg Mortenson and David Olivier Relin. If anyone wants to REALLY know what the world is like in the Middle East, read this. Be prepared to feel completely inadequate once you have read it, but it is inspiring, heartwarming, and hopeful.

Bad Fish said...

@earnestine, nope, read Barrel Fever already, its When You're Engulfed In Flames

RagDoll said...

I got all into an OLDIE but goodie: "Love is a Dog From Hell" especially the story entitled "Cass" This is good 'ol crazy Chuck Bukowski, BTW

Shel Silverstein wrote the first book that ever moved me to tears: "The Giving Tree" I've loved reading so much ever since.

Anon.Y.Mous said...

"Naked" by David Sedaris. That book is so funny that it had me laughing out loud while spending 2 hours on line at the DMV.

Chris said...

Just finished Kris Radish's "Sunday book of Dreams" ...Any woman can probably relate to something in that book, and it was hilarious...I've read her other stuff too- "Annie Freeman's Fabulous traveling funeral" takes you on a roller coaster ride of emotions that you never want to get off...great book!

surfer said...

Like others have said, there are just too many great books out there.

But one of my all-time favorites is Tessie & Pearlie, written by photojournalist Joy Horowitz, documenting the lives of her two Jewish grandmothers. As they were getting on in years, she wanted to have a record of their lives/experiences, so she sat down with them and asked lots of probing questions. One chapter is about Tessie, the next, Pearlie, and each starts off with one of their recipes. I remember she asked one of them about sex, and the response was something like "sex, shmex, who needs it?" The book will make you cry and laugh at the same time.

Another great read is The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls, detailing her upbringing with her parents who became homeless.

Harriet Hellfire said...

Ernestine - thanks for the tip, I will check Stephen Davis out for sure.

I haven't gotten to the Buckethead days of the book yet, I'm still on "Appetite", which of course, is the most interesting part...*L*

Jessica said...

Currently reading "Vanity Fair" by William Makepeace Thackeray. It's a long read but way better than the movie (aren't they all though?).

Favorite books: Emma by Jane Austen (I've read this 3-4 times within the last 2 years) and Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes

Katja said...

Loved HEAT,
Jane Green is way cool,
favorite all time is Vanity Fair (I even have a moldy 1st edition)

Love Mary Higgins Clark even if you can figure out her formula, to stories are gripping.

Finished Majik, Flyte & Phisyk (sp)

Currently reading Divinci's kitchen and e-mail marketing for dummies.

Just got back my copy of "I'll carry the fork' from a friend whose husband had a stroke it's about dealing w/brain injury. Mine had one a few years ago at age 38.

Two other good books are:
Kinky Gazpacho: Life, Love & Spain

Free Food for Millionaires, by Min Jin Lee

Rebecca said...

I'm currently reading Take It Like A Man: The Autobiography of Boy George.

Katja said...

omg! is that a real book! did George Michael write a tagline review for it???

auntiedotcom said...

To Say Nothing of the Dog by Connie Willis

Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen

Fearless Fourteen by Janet Evanovich

Trouble in Paradise by Robert Parker are all books I've read in the last two weeks.

Dharma said...

The Psycho Ex Game by Merrill Markoe
One word - Hilarous!

Come on, we all have at least ONE psycho ex!

nicole said...

SO, SO excited to see people into books! I am totally on the Sedaris love wagon as well as Bukowski (poetry mostly).
I read a book recently by Will Christopher Baer called Phineas Poe (series of 3) it was really entertaining especially if you like dark, dark action/comedy.
Some of my favorite authors are: Bret Easton Ellis (read the Informers, such a laugh!), Chuck Palahniuk, Amy Hempel, Dave Eggers...and whoever said they devoure rocker bios, I am right there with you! I have read a ton of them!

nieceytee said...

I am reading book 11 of L.A. Banks' Vampire Huntress series. The book is called The Shadows. It is great if you love vampire books but can't stand L.K. Hamilton's bad porno ridden drivel. Awesome plot, historically accurate, realistic supernatural characters, (including the best Devil I have ever seen), incendiary sex scenes. And a strong female protagonist to boot.

I am also rereading A Piece of Cake by Cupcake Brown. A REAL urban cautionary tale that was independently vetted before it was published, unlike that stereotypical mess Love and Consequences. How ANYONE thought that book was real is beyond me.

I am impatiently awaiting the publication of Faefever by Karen Moning. Another excellent supernatural book with a strong female protagonist. September 16th can't come fast enough.

I too am very glad to see that the readers of CDAN are also serious readers, and I am copying the recommendations here to add to my book list.

First time poster, long term lurker and fan of this site.

irishstayc2 said...

YAY books ... I always say "Books are my crack and Barnes & Nobel is my dealer" Hee - just got back from the beach so really Atlantic Books is my new dealer cause they are so cheap! Love the sale tables too Jax.

I just finished Janet Evanovich's 14th Stephanie Plum novel Fearless Fourteen. LOOOVED it as always -
I wish they'd make a freaking movie already... it's been in the works for years

Also recently read Bob Newharts new book - shouldn't even be doing this. I just think he is great.

And just started the newest Mary Higgins Clark book where Are You Now.

Thanks enty and thanks all for the great suggestions everyone...

laurelgray said...

Love this. I was an English major in college and I read a lot of non-fiction.

Rock n' Roll/Music:

Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk by Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain

The Dark Stuff: Selected Writings on Rock Music by Nick Kent and Iggy Pop

Get in the Van: On the Road With Black Flag by Henry Rollins

Our Band Could Be Your Life: Scenes from the American Indie Underground 1981-1991 by Michael Azerrad

If you don't like and/or can't get into the next three books (see below), I will personally mail you the cost of the book.

1. The Informant by Kurt Eichenwald (read it before the movie comes out)

"When the U.S. government accused powerful agri-business giant Archer Daniels Midland of price-fixing, they thought they had the ultimate star witness--a vice president turned informant who had taped nefarious meetings with competitors. They ended up with a horrible liability instead; their informant turned out to be a psychotic liar who stole millions from his employer."


2. A Civil Action by Jonathan Harr (skip the movie but if you've seen it, please read the book)


3. Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble, and Coming of Age in the Bronx by Adrian Nicole LeBlanc

"Journalist LeBlanc spent more than 10 years following two Latina women from the Bronx, and in this ambitious work, she tells their stories, beginning in the late 1980s with their young teen years. Older Jessica becomes a mistress to an enormously successful heroin dealer, and Coco falls for Jessica's brother, an aspiring gangster. The two women find love, weather abuse, have babies, endure their own and their partners' prison terms, and struggle with health problems, social systems, motherhood, their own mothers, the violence of their communities, and the uncertain future."

Those are my top three non-fiction books.

Others I like immensely:

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America by Barbara Ehrenreich

The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver

Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison

Self-Help by Lorrie Moore

The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression by Andrew Solomon (best book on depression so far followed by Darkness Visible: A Memoir of Madness by William Styron)


PeepStone said...

Just finished Baker Towers by Jennifer Haigh.

About to start We Gotta Get Out of This Place: The True, Tough Story of Women in Rock by Gerri Hirshey.

Mooshki said...

I changed my mind - gotta add one must-read that you may not have heard of. Going After Cacciato by Tim O'Brien. It's about the Vietnam war in a Catch-22 kind of way.

Mooshki said...

Damn this thread - as if my Amazon wish list weren't already completely out of control.

DBFreak - I have read a couple of Mary Higgins Clark's books, and Two Little Girls in Blue was my favorite.

"Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison"
Effing brilliant book.

Nickel and Dimed
I live by that book.

To Nieceytee:

"It is great if you love vampire books but can't stand L.K. Hamilton's bad porno ridden drivel."

"I am impatiently awaiting the publication of Faefever by Karen Moning."

Have you read Charlaine Harris? I haven't read her "Southern Vampire" series yet, but I love her "Grave" books.

nieceytee said...

To Mooshki:

Seriously, how could ANYONE use badly written porn as a substitute for a plot? Damn, it isn't that hard, no pun intended, lol!

No I haven't read Charlaine Harris, but she sounds interesting! Next time to go to the dealer . . .i mean Barnes and Noble, I'll pick up one of her books.