Book discussion?

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Postby WaywardSoul » Wed Apr 20, 2005 1:53 pm

A horse is a horse, of course, of course!

Unless it's a talking horse, which is a sure sign of demonic possesion in animals! :shock: :twisted:
"Remember, there's a big difference between kneeling down and bending over." - Frank Zappa
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Postby MarylandManson » Fri Apr 22, 2005 1:39 pm

Soon I'll set up the new book discussion forum. How about the following schedule for the next year?

MM

***

June THE THREE COFFINS by John Dickson Carr
July INTRUDER IN THE DUST by William Faulkner
August I AM LEGEND by Richard Matheson
September THE SPY WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD by John le Carre
October THE CASE OF CHARLES DEXTER WARD by H.P. Lovecraft
November CRIME AND PUNISHMENT by Fyodor Dostoevsky
December SWASTIKA by Michael Slade
January I, THE JURY by Mickey Spillane
February THE MOON AND SIXPENCE by W. Somerset Maugham
March LADY, LADY, I DID IT! by Ed McBain
April THE STRANGE CASE OF DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE by Robert Louis Stevenson
May THE OCCULT: A HISTORY by Colin Wilson
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Postby WaywardSoul » Fri Apr 22, 2005 2:58 pm

Looks good to me, MM! Only two on the list that I've previously read.

Man, "Swastika" is going to be such a sweet reward for actually paying attention to " Crime and Punishment", this time around.
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Postby Cawdorgraves » Fri Apr 22, 2005 5:02 pm

I wonder if we shouldn't postpone Swastika til it is available for all people invovled? Isn't it true that Americans get it issued later than us fellow Canucks? Or will this year issue be a different circumstance? I sure hope there are no distribution issues and the book release is delayed! When is the new Harry Pothead being issued? Last time this book played a crucial interference with Slade signing our infamous 'X' release.

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Postby Slade » Fri Apr 22, 2005 5:23 pm

MM,

I just read your book list and it seems great to me. We can add the Bond book to September. For now, you can leave SWASTIKA in December, until matters currently in the works are finalized.

WaywardSoul's comment about CRIME AND PUNISHMENT is a valid one. The secret there is translation. The version I favor is David Magarshack's Penguin edition, if it's still around. Penguin issued a different edition some years back, which might have replaced it. I don't think we'll go wrong with whatever version Penguin now publishes.

Another book to consider is Steinbeck's OF MICE AND MEN. Is that one a "must read" in the U.S. school system, or did most of you Americans manage to graduate without encountering it?

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Postby Starra » Fri Apr 22, 2005 5:45 pm

I guess I'm headed over to Amazon.ca again...

I'd like to get some Hammett and Chandler added to the list, eventually...

please...
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Postby WaywardSoul » Fri Apr 22, 2005 10:17 pm

Who knows what they're reading these days, in America's public school systems?
I do know "Of Mice and Me" was standard issue for American Lit. classes, during my school years.
There's no problem with reading it again.
Quite often, I enjoy re-reading those classics that were forced on me in school, because maturing and experiencing more of life gives me a deeper appreciation for them.

One question.

Where the hell did "The Satanic Verses" come from? :evil:
Did I skip one of Slade's earlier posts, where he recommended this?

Damn, here I was thinking it would be smooth sailing for me, once I cleared "Crime and Punishment".

Fair warning, Slade!
If "Anna Karenina" makes the list, I'm staging a revolt!
"Remember, there's a big difference between kneeling down and bending over." - Frank Zappa
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Postby Slade » Fri Apr 22, 2005 11:46 pm

WaywardSoul,

THE SATANIC VERSES is a bit of piracy by our beloved MM himself.

Personally, if we're going to do Rushdie, I think it should be MIDNIGHT'S CHILDREN, which not only won the Booker of Bookers, but is - at least the last time I asked - the best book Pink Slade has read.

Somewhere along the line, we should include the best Canadian novel that I have read: THE WARS by Timothy Findlay, about WWI.

Also, we don't want to get too high minded. So I'll turn my mind to more good pulp.

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Postby MarylandManson » Sat Apr 23, 2005 2:03 am

WaywardSoul wrote:Where the hell did "The Satanic Verses" come from? Did I skip one of Slade's earlier posts, where he recommended this?


Ahoy, me hearties! That was my lame attempt to lure the bunny-shark-wielding Pink Slade into the mix. I recalled that she was a big Rushdie fan. Now that we've heard from the family Slade on Rushdie, the list is edited.

As far as pulp goes...anyone ever see QUATERMASS 2 (aka ENEMY FROM SPACE), starring Brian Donlevy?

"That pipe's been blocked with human pulp!"

Always wanted to find an opening for that quote...

Cheers! MM
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Postby WaywardSoul » Sat Apr 23, 2005 1:24 pm

Arrrrrgh!
MM, you old scallywag!
Try that again and it's straight to Davey Jones' locker with ye!

But you're absolutely right.
Pink Slade should pick selections, also.

I'm hoping this reading list will introduce me to many of the important literary touchstones for Slade.
The writers and stories that influenced and inspired Slade, that's what I'm looking for.
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Postby Slade » Sat Apr 23, 2005 4:58 pm

WaywardSoul,

And that's what you'll get. Many of these titles, Slade hasn't read for decades, but in some way or other, each has influenced the creation of Special X. We might even go back to the Hardy Boys, for a future month. I'll bet that would bring back a lot of memories, and Pink Slade could weigh in with Nancy Drew.

MM,

Good work on setting up the discussion. Readers can come and go as they please for each book. I expect it to be a roller-coaster ride. To go from John Dickson Carr to William Faulkner will be quite a jolt. CRIME AND PUNISHMENT is not an easy read, but it's the closest - I hope - that any of us will ever get to actually killing someone and having to wrestle with the guilt, and at the same time play cat-and-mouse with a suspicious and very smart cop.

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Postby PohlSE » Sun Apr 24, 2005 7:17 pm

Just a suggestion for the Oct 2k6 title; How about one of Donald Hamilton's Matt Helm novels?


Image

All the spy talk in the other section got me digging through all the old stuff.

It's kind of a gear grinder after Rushdie, but you can't get much more pulpish than:

"As tough an operative as ever crushed a Russian spy's kidney with a crowbar." (Front cover, Murderers' Row)
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Postby MarylandManson » Mon Apr 25, 2005 3:48 pm

WaywardSoul wrote:Christie sounds like such a significant literary figure in the development of Slade, maybe you should add one of your favorite Christie novels to the reading list, or the one Christie novel you'd recommend for a first-timer, like me.


[note: quote from the "Agatha Christie" topic]

If Slade is Agatha Christie's bastard son, maybe John Dickson Carr was the father. With that in mind, if everyone's game and with Slade's approval, perhaps we can add AND THEN THERE WERE NONE to the June reading of THE THREE COFFINS. After all, the fusion of those two novels gave us the Deadman's Island setup of RIPPER!

MM
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Postby Slade » Mon Apr 25, 2005 5:04 pm

WaywardSoul & MM,

Let's do just that. Many consider AND THEN THERE WERE NONE to be Christie's greatest mystery, and it's been filmed at least four times.

Putting aside the spy story, mysteries divide up into three basic categories: the cozy (Christie); the noir private eye (Hammett, Chandler); and the police procedural (McBain). The Slade novels are a fusion of the cozy and the police procedural.

As a rule, the cozy is quite bloodless and preposterous, much like a game of CLUE, which is based on it. It's the puzzle that counts. The cozy exercises "the little gray cells" of Hercule Poirot in the reader.

The cozy reached its height in the 20s and 30s, mainly in Britain: what's known as "the Golden Age." By the time you finish THE THREE COFFINS and AND THEN THERE WERE NONE, WaywardSoul, you'll definitely know whether the cozy subgenre is your cup of tea, (hot or cold).

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Postby Slade » Mon Apr 25, 2005 8:10 pm

(From the Agatha Christie thread because it applies here, too.)

WaywardSoul,

Christie is all about being deceived. She's the Queen of Crime because she's the all-time master of deception. Reading her books is like playing the old pea game with three shells.

Which one, buddy?

That one.

Gee, too bad. Try again.

That one.

Sorry, stuck out again. Third time lucky?

That one.

Tough luck. The hand is quicker than the eye, huh? One for the road?

That one.

Hit the road, Jack. Anyone think he can do better? Step right up, folks.

Carr is like Christie, only macabre. His puzzles - he's the all-time master of the locked room - are more about Howdunit than Whodunit.

AND THEN THERE WERE NONE and THE THREE COFFINS show the pair at their prime.

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