Book Thread

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With borders closing I went and did a bit of a rummage for books at the same cost as amazon but you don't have to wait :)

Actually I tend to prefer looking through bookshops to amazon as I buy stuff based on a single word in the title or picture ont he cover, something that is hard to do on amazon.

I grabbed "The Quantum Thief" by Hannu Rajaniemi.

Just finished it now after a bit of a single minded read. Brilliant book. Doesn't explain a bloody thing. Relatively hard core sci fi with new words for new concepts which aren't explained except through contextual use. It was like every few chapters another thing would click into "oh I know what that means". Pretty short book, has the usual good sci fi plot complexity (think "use of weapons" by Ian Banks, if you hated that you will probably hate this).

I am actually looking forward to the second read when I know the first few chapters will make a world more sense.

Has some incredibly complex ideas which are fleshed out in a couple of sentences. For example there is a speies that has decided the best way to reform criminals is to put them into a game of the prisoners dilemna over and over and over until cooperation is ingrained into their very nature. The books explanation is shorter than mine, most of the understanding seems to rely on you being faintly aware of the idea and then reading the situation and then one sentence to hook it together a few chapters later.

And that is one of the more well explained concepts :)

It really felt like I couldn't put the book down because I would forget something and come back to a book of gibberish.

Apparently it is his first book. I dread to think how nuts he will go when he gets a bit of free reign and a publishers contract. Could be brilliant.

A must for fans of Egan and Stephenson I think. Fans of Gibson will probably dig it too for the frenetic pacing.

I bought it because it had the word quantum in the title hehehehe

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Thanks tor.

Fancy not having a Book Thread!!


I've just finished the trilogy by Steig Larrson.

"The girl who...."

Well written, and intriguing story line.

I've also just started "Gilead" by Marilynne Robinson.

It is fiction but she has an amazing vocabulary, and a major grasp of philosophy and theology.

I have read one of her books previously - "Home". Fascinating.

For more lighter reading, I've downloaded Anthony Trollope - "An eye for an eye", onto my iPhone. (Does that count in a books section?)

I have "Angela's Ashes" beside my bed, but it seems to be taking me a while to really get enthused.

I have accounts with a number of on-line bookstores, and regularly search for pre-used books. Much cheaper to purchase and many of them are in excellent condition.

My wife reads Jeanette Evanovich, and I picked up a couple of second-hand fairly cheap.

I do wonder whether traditional books have had their day, but it just doesn't seem the same taking the iPhone to bed.

I'm conservative I know, but I do hope books never really go out of fashion.

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... regularly search for pre-used books. Much cheaper to purchase and many of them are in excellent condition.

Oh I do like a good secondhand book store. But not online, it has to be a physical, visceral experience. The dusty aroma, the inevitable leaky roof, the erratic pricing policies... what's not to like?

I recently picked up an 1856 copy of The Old Curiosity Shop for $8. It was sheer greed, I don't even like Dickens that much - but I do like old books, that sense of others reading over your shoulder from years past.

I have a small but comprehensive collection of 100yr+ medical handbooks, not so much for the freak factor (which is apparently high - I was surprised to find there is stiff (ugh) competition for this type of book in certain circles) but for the gritty practicality they demonstrate.

Also, every so often some generous soul ditches their whole library and you can scoop up a lifetime of diligent specialist collecting in one fell swoop. Excellent for books on food (not cookbooks, which are a different and altogether sadder thing), old science fiction, specialist travel etc.

The physical book is my friend (altho I have no problems with downloading them either) and I will continue to have a library for as long as it is physically practical to do so. At several thousand and counting, space can be a problem.

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I've developed a love for reading on my smartphone, in the last couple of weeks i've gotten through Fahrenheit 451, Brave New World and Heart of Darkness - just started Choke (by the guy who wrote Fight Club) and have a heap more books on my must-read list...

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