Just Finished a Book Thread

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  • mods, feel free to delete if you feel it's redundant with the book chat thread but there's a lot of other discussion in there and I've seen threads like these do well on other book forums.

    The idea is you post a book you just finished and something like your thoughts, a review, summary, and whether you'd recommend it.

    Just finished David Mitchell's new novel Utopia Avenue

    I thought it was pretty good. Maybe 4/5. I've always liked David Mitchell and loved Cloud Atlas. Critics seem to hold him to that novel as a standard but, like Murakami, I find his prose and storytelling to be enjoyable no matter the subject matter. This is now probably my favorite Mitchell book after Cloud Atlas.

    Utopia Avenue is about the formation and early years of a British band in the 1960's. It's a fictional band but they sometimes interact with real musical figures from that era in entertaining ways. Mitchell rotates between three of the band members to tell the story. He relates to some of his other work and switches between genres a bit, which might turn some people off, but I liked the characters a lot and the ending left me wanting more, though it was well concluded.

    Would recommend it to fans of Mitchell, 1960s rock music, or just anybody who wants a quick, enjoyable read.

    next up is that Charlie Kaufman novel

  • The picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

    5/5

    One of my, if not the favorite book I’ve read this year. The prose is really really beautiful. I really enjoyed the conversations between Lord Henry and the various other characters, I did not expect that a classic can make me laugh that much. It was also very clever of Wilde to not specify all the horrific sins Dorian committed, giving the reader the possibility to figure out which would be the most horrific sins for themselves. Or as Wilde himself put it: “each man sees his own sin in Dorian Gray. What Dorians sins are nobody knows.”

    My favorite quote from the book:

    There are few of us who have not sometimes wakened before dawn, either after one of those dreamless nights that make us almost enamoured of death, or one of those nights of horror and misshapen joy, when through the chambers of the brain sweep phantoms more terrible than reality itself, and instinct with that vivid life that lurks in all grotesques, and that lends to Gothic art its enduring vitality, this art being, one might fancy, especially the art of those whose minds have been troubled with the malady of reverie. Gradually white fingers creep through the curtains, and they appear to tremble. In black fantastic shapes, dumb shadows crawl into the corners of the room and crouch there. Outside, there is the stirring of birds among the leaves, or the sound of men going forth to their work, or the sigh and sob of the wind coming down from the hills and wandering round the silent house, as though it feared to wake the sleepers and yet must needs call forth sleep from her purple cave. Veil after veil of thin dusky gauze is lifted, and by degrees the forms and colours of things are restored to them, and we watch the dawn remaking the world in its antique pattern. The wan mirrors get back their mimic life. The flameless tapers stand where we had left them, and beside them lies the half-cut book that we had been studying, or the wired flower that we had worn at the ball, or the letter that we had been afraid to read, or that we had read too often. Nothing seems to us changed. Out of the unreal shadows of the night comes back the real life that we had known. We have to resume it where we had left off, and there steals over us a terrible sense of the necessity for the continuance of energy in the same wearisome round of stereotyped habits, or a wild longing, it may be, that our eyelids might open some morning upon a world that had been refashioned anew in the darkness for our pleasure, a world in which things would have fresh shapes and colours, and be changed, or have other secrets, a world in which the past would have little or no place, or survive, at any rate, in no conscious form of obligation or regret, the remembrance even of joy having its bitterness and the memories of pleasure their pain.

  • pluviophile
    · edited

    The picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

    5/5

    One of my, if not the favorite book I’ve read this year. The prose is really really beautiful. I really enjoyed the conversations between Lord Henry and the various other characters, I did not expect that a classic can make me laugh that much. It was also very clever of Wilde to not specify all the horrific sins Dorian committed, giving the reader the possibility to figure out which would be the most horrific sins for themselves. Or as Wilde himself put it: “each man sees his own sin in Dorian Gray. What Dorians sins are nobody knows.”

    My favorite quote from the book:

    There are few of us who have not sometimes wakened before dawn, either after one of those dreamless nights that make us almost enamoured of death, or one of those nights of horror and misshapen joy, when through the chambers of the brain sweep phantoms more terrible than reality itself, and instinct with that vivid life that lurks in all grotesques, and that lends to Gothic art its enduring vitality, this art being, one might fancy, especially the art of those whose minds have been troubled with the malady of reverie. Gradually white fingers creep through the curtains, and they appear to tremble. In black fantastic shapes, dumb shadows crawl into the corners of the room and crouch there. Outside, there is the stirring of birds among the leaves, or the sound of men going forth to their work, or the sigh and sob of the wind coming down from the hills and wandering round the silent house, as though it feared to wake the sleepers and yet must needs call forth sleep from her purple cave. Veil after veil of thin dusky gauze is lifted, and by degrees the forms and colours of things are restored to them, and we watch the dawn remaking the world in its antique pattern. The wan mirrors get back their mimic life. The flameless tapers stand where we had left them, and beside them lies the half-cut book that we had been studying, or the wired flower that we had worn at the ball, or the letter that we had been afraid to read, or that we had read too often. Nothing seems to us changed. Out of the unreal shadows of the night comes back the real life that we had known. We have to resume it where we had left off, and there steals over us a terrible sense of the necessity for the continuance of energy in the same wearisome round of stereotyped habits, or a wild longing, it may be, that our eyelids might open some morning upon a world that had been refashioned anew in the darkness for our pleasure, a world in which things would have fresh shapes and colours, and be changed, or have other secrets, a world in which the past would have little or no place, or survive, at any rate, in no conscious form of obligation or regret, the remembrance even of joy having its bitterness and the memories of pleasure their pain.

    Wilde is a genius. There’s a reason Morrissey idolized him. He was to British culture what Walt Whitman was to American culture

  • L A U D E D

    Wilde is a genius. There’s a reason Morrissey idolized him. He was to British culture what Walt Whitman was to American culture

    I’m a The Smiths stan, and while I always enjoyed reading classics and modern classics, and I had this on my reading list for forever, the reason why I recently decided to read this was in fact Moz

  • L A U D E D

    Wilde is a genius. There’s a reason Morrissey idolized him. He was to British culture what Walt Whitman was to American culture

    Have you read anything else by Wilde? If so what would you recommend picking up next?

  • pluviophile

    Have you read anything else by Wilde? If so what would you recommend picking up next?

    Importance of Being Earnest

  • L A U D E D

    Importance of Being Earnest

    Thanks I ordered it

  • Just finished Meditations by Aurelius. Good read, short and to the point. Got some good bits and pieces for my commonplace book.

  • The Book Thief was a depressing read

  • Plants

    Just finished Meditations by Aurelius. Good read, short and to the point. Got some good bits and pieces for my commonplace book.

    So short, but so hard to read quick w/o stopping to ponder

  • Dankmustard Mobile

    So short, but so hard to read quick w/o stopping to ponder

    For real. Took me like two weeks to get through tbh.

  • Plants

    For real. Took me like two weeks to get through tbh.

    Same t!bh, couldnt do more than a book a day

  • In af, I'll be tagging randoms from the thread for some opinion on my opinions

  • in ! placeholder for permanent record written by edward snowden . great book til now

  • in

  • Just finished the small "book" that comes with the Criterion edition of Do The Right Thing

    it comes with an essay and the a journal that Spike Lee kept leading up to the production of the film

    so fascinating, i really love books about movies

    i might get Akira Kurosawa's autobiography next

  • The State and Revolution by Lenin
    Lenin was talkin a whole lotta s***

  • finally finished Antkind by Charlie Kaufman and what a relief it is

    didn't enjoy this at all and have no clue why I stuck with it. probably my least favorite book I've read in recent memory. thought his movie I'm thinking of ending things was wack too so guess I'm not a Kaufman fan anymore.

    on to the new Elena Ferrante novel

  • 2.5/5

    I went in this excited, idk what I expected but this wasn't it. Really don't understand the hype for this one, I'm genuinely puzzled. I like that it's dialogue driven, making it a quick read, but I didn't care for most of the dialogue unfortunately. And the prose was super bland. Overall, just a dull read

  • KoGoYos

    finally finished Antkind by Charlie Kaufman and what a relief it is

    didn't enjoy this at all and have no clue why I stuck with it. probably my least favorite book I've read in recent memory. thought his movie I'm thinking of ending things was wack too so guess I'm not a Kaufman fan anymore.

    on to the new Elena Ferrante novel

    I gave up on antkind at like 4%

  • Ronald_Vegan

    I gave up on antkind at like 4%

    saw that and was jealous of you lol. it was basically the same style while becoming more absurd with no real story for the other 96%

  • KoGoYos

    saw that and was jealous of you lol. it was basically the same style while becoming more absurd with no real story for the other 96%

    Damn and here I was contemplating if I made the right decision

  • just finished righteous dopefiend for my anthropology class. what a great book! probably the first school book i've actually enjoyed in years maybe

  • The Lover by Marguerite Duras

    A provoking and haunting romance story. Very few books out there written with such audacity on this topic. Growing into a bigger Duras fan with every book I read.

    Highly recommend!

  • Finished Native Son a month or so ago. never felt so anxious reading a book. Extremely poignant at times, way too blunt at others

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