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AggieDave

Please suggest a good book

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Recently, while my daughter ran off to join the circus (she did too, with Barnum & Bailey), I read her copy of Sara Gruen's "Water For Elephants". Great story about circus life during the Great Depression.

Somebody else mentioned Tolstoy's "War and Peace". Don't be intimidated by the size. though it's about as big as The Bible, it's also broken down into bite size chapters of 2 - 12 pages apiece. The style is VERY readable and it's a fantastic story. By the time you get near the end, you'll wish it was still longer, because you'll hate to finish !

Your humble servant.....Professor Gravity !

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Neil Stephenson started out as a sci-fi writer (snow crash was excellent early cyberpunk style) and then got into writing very long historic fiction.

A few years ago he wrote a trilogy based on the beginnings of the scientific age around 1700 in London when coffee shops were the place to hang out and change history. Then it starts traveling around Europe, the American colonies, and Asia visiting scenes of war and piracy to keep the action going....with a good dash of Monty Python style humor...

Vol 1 - Quicksilver
Vol 2 - The Confusion
Vol 3 - The system of the World

"The reason angels can fly is that they take themselves so lightly." --GK Chesterton

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Add me to the number of people suggesting the Millenium Trilogy series of books (Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) andthe book on the Shackleton expedition that I just re-read a couple of weeks ago.

On the Shackleton theme, "Shackleton's Boat Journey" by the Captain of the Endurance, Frank Worseley is a great, short recounting of Shackleton's desperate sea voyage from Elephant Island to South Georgia Island.

"The Big Short" by Michael Lewis about how the US economy was driven over the cliff is a brilliant book. I thought it would be boring...being about derivatives and so on, but it is very entertaining. Amazing personalities.

Malcolm Gladwell was previously mentioned...I like Tipping Point the best of the 4 of his books that I have read.
--
Murray

"No tyranny is so irksome as petty tyranny: the officious demands of policemen, government clerks, and electromechanical gadgets." - Edward Abbey

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Sounds like you may have read these already, but I will second people who suggested:

Elmore Leonard. The master of crime and westerns.
Caleb Carr
E.L. Doctrow. Billy Bathgate, The waterworks.
Larry McMurtry. Lonesome Dove is the classic western.
michael chabon. Yiddish Policemans union, Amazing adventures of Kavlier and Clay. Really good writer.

I just started reading Alan Furst. Good writer of espionage. Night Soldiers, The Foreign Correspondent. Shorter books, tightly plotted.



For non-fiction:
Jared Diamond: Guns, Germs, and Steel (pulizer prize). Collapse.

Daniel Okrent; Last call. story of prohibition.



Avoid Clive Cussler. Avoid Robert Jordan. it takes more than plot to write a story.
It's flare not flair, brakes not breaks, bridle not bridal, "could NOT care less" not "could care less".

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Lots of good suggestions. I would strongly second Neal Stephenson and add Cryptonomicon to the list. Also George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series is terrific. I have read all the books that are out about five times and I keep finding new things. They are adapting it into a series on HBO.

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LGeorge R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series is terrific.



This is a very good fantasy/medival setting series. But I can't recommend it because George is taking forever to finish it. Just wait till he is done IMHO, probably happen around 2015 at his current pace.

His books are so densely plotted that by the time the next one comes out, I have forgotten 1/2 of the previous ones details. I am going to wait till he is done and then start at the beginning and read all 5000-6000 pages in one long stretch.
It's flare not flair, brakes not breaks, bridle not bridal, "could NOT care less" not "could care less".

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anne mcaffery dragaonriders series
andersonville mackinlay cantor
james clavell king rat taipan shogun
alexander soljianitsan (sp) gulag archipelago, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich et al !
Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn (proper spelling)
what ? no steven king
comes the blind fury
suffer the children

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For fiction - which I don't read much of - I just finished Steig Larsson's Millennium trilogy (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest) and really loved them all.

+1

See this thread also.

mh
.

"The mouse does not know life until it is in the mouth of the cat."

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