Poetry Forum

Full Version: What were the last three books you read?
You're currently viewing a stripped down version of our content. View the full version with proper formatting.
I read an article recently about American politicians who were asked, during the 2008 presidential election, what the last three books they read were.
John McCain answered A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway (re-reading), The Age of Turbulence by Alan Greenspan and The Spirit of Churchill by Deborah Davis Brezina.
Hillary Clinton listed Ike: An American Hero by Michael Korda, The Bourne Betrayal by Robert Ludlum and The Appeal by John Grisham.
Barack Obama, on the hand, claimed to have read all the Harry Potter books with his daughter Malia.
How important do you consider a person's chosen reading material? Do you think it provides a window into their personality? John F. Kennedy famously endorsed Ian Fleming's From Russia With Love as one of his favourite paperbacks, boosting the author's career.
And what were the last three books you read? Here's my list: Death Wish by Brian Garfield, The Orchard Keeper by Cormac McCarthy and Whatever by Michel Houellebecq.
My three don't make any sense together unless you know me, but here's the list: Mastering PHP, The Triggering Town and A Dance With Dragons
snowcrash,fear and loathing in las vegas,the new york review of books[very good magazine]
I don't read novels very often these days, I lose the plot (in the original sense of the phrase) because of the gaps between one reading session and another.

I'm reading three books at the moment - Mr. Rosenblum's List (easy to pick up and put down) - Natasha Solomons, Comes the Peace by Daja Wangchuk Meston (interesting life but badly written)
Colored People by Henry Louis Gates Jr. (another interesting life and well written)

Mark - what IS PHP
i think it's a form of code he's learning about
(11-22-2011, 11:31 PM)grannyjill Wrote: [ -> ]Mark - what IS PHP

PHP is a HTML pre-processing language that allows the production of tailored HTML for web pages from database queries. In tandem with SQL, PHP powered sites can draw from a database(like a list of all the posts on this forum) and then produce a HTML page with specific formatting and style information(fonts, colors, sizes, forms, borders, etc.) along with this queried information: said post(s)

It is the language that this forum is written in and is very useful to know if you plan on taking over the world. Big Grin
Mark, what is PHP? (Only half-joking....) I understand words like 'that allows' and 'can draw from' and a few other phrases, but the rest went over my head.

.........but, at least I now know it is a kind of computer language thingy.

Thank you.
(11-22-2011, 12:13 PM)Mark Wrote: [ -> ]My three don't make any sense together unless you know me, but here's the list: Mastering PHP, The Triggering Town and A Dance With Dragons
You're a bit behind, I read A Dance With Dragons about five minutes after it (finally) came out, and I've since re-read the entire series (again) looking for clues to what the hell will happen now... and mostly going a little bit crazy because I know it will be another five years before the bastard brings out the next book! Anyway...

my last three are: The Bookseller of Kabul by Asne Seierstad, A Tale Writ In Blood And Hard Black Pencil by Christopher Brookmyre and a 900th re-read of The Long Dark Tea-Time Of The Soul by Douglas Adams.
"Apocalypso", "Recursion" and "Barking" none of which I would recommend.

The trouble I'm finding at the moment is that the fantasy section (in particular) of the local library is almost totally full of series and I want to read a novel, not part 1 of 13 novels. Let alone, since part 1 is often checked out, or shelved in another branch, part 2 of 13 novels. And that's not to mention the series-in-production--read the first 7 parts and then wait 6 more years if you-re lucky to read the rest FFS!!! Grrrrr.
I know what you mean,so now i download my books,problem solved.
Yeah, I've done that sometimes. But I don't like reading on a computer and I don't have an ebook reader yet. One day though...
yes,i agree,that's next on my list,ebook reader
I think the question is more what's the last three books you read AND LIKED. I read non-stop and never know if I'll like the book or not.

The last three I did read though were:

The Towers of Midnight (Robert Jordan/Brandon Sanderson) Must finish the f'ing series.

The Shadow of the Torturer (Gene Wolfe)

The Starfish and the Spider (Ori Brafman/Rod Beckstrom)
(11-27-2011, 06:20 AM)Leanne Wrote: [ -> ]
(11-22-2011, 12:13 PM)Mark Wrote: [ -> ]My three don't make any sense together unless you know me, but here's the list: Mastering PHP, The Triggering Town and A Dance With Dragons

You're a bit behind, I read A Dance With Dragons about five minutes after it (finally) came out, and I've since re-read the entire series (again)

Actually that's what I did. I got so tired of waiting on Dance that I started rereading them all and got sidetracked so when I was finally able to download the book, I was still in the middle of A Feast for Crows. Not to mention the poetry books I was cramming for a while there getting in the way of my fantasy withdrawals :p

(11-27-2011, 07:32 PM)Touchstone Wrote: [ -> ]Yeah, I've done that sometimes. But I don't like reading on a computer and I don't have an ebook reader yet. One day though...
(11-27-2011, 07:43 PM)srijantje Wrote: [ -> ]yes,i agree,that's next on my list,ebook reader

I just got a Kindle Fire! I think you would love it. As far as a reader it's fairly standard, but what makes it stand out in my opinion is that it comes with lifetime 3G Internet at no extra charge. In fact, I'm considering turning the data plan off for my iPhone because I don't need it. When I've used it long enough to know my data limits, I may.
You can tell a lot about a person from the books they read, but 3 isn't
a valid statistical sample and confining the list to just books won't
help you much either since there is SO much out there that doesn't come
packaged in the classic book format.*

But, whatever, my last 3 books:

"The Challenger Launch Decision: Risky Technology, Culture, and Deviance
at NASA" - Diane Vaughan
"Truth, Lies, and O-Rings: Inside the Space Shuttle Challenger Disaster"
- Allan J McDonald
"Managing Maintenance Error" - James T. Reason, Alan Hobbs


*For instance: Most of the non-non-fiction reading I've been doing recently
comes from these two sites:
3:AM Magazine - http://www.3ammagazine.com
Great Flash Fiction and Poetry!

Poetry International Web - http://www.poetryinternational.org
Lots of poets from different countries. Example:

__Never Make Friends with a Crow__
- Tua Forsström (Finland)

Never make friends with a crow!
a biologist said on the radio. A crow
gets attached to you easily, she’ll tap on
the window constantly, a crow can easily become psychotic.
Nothing happens here. Nothing. Gardens
in the rain. Lemons in moonlight. A flock of jackdaws
flew up with a huge racket by the ruin last night. The bells
softly through the haze. The smoke, the ringing. Once I saw
the eyes of a little girl cloud over, it was irreparable
right from the start, it hurts. The cloud floated over the
violet eyeball, slowly in toward the
pupil, and then I could no longer
follow it, that cloud.

- - -
I love this poem! I'm not allowed to say that on here (except perhaps in the Mild crit section) but that is my reaction to most poems I have enjoyed. I do so wish I could write stuff like that.
ghill said: "I do so wish I could write stuff like that."
me too!

ghill said: "I'm not allowed to say that on here..."

Huh? Is there some demon spirit lurking or are you under some
literary moral constraint?







Oh, I forgot to credit the translator for Tua Forsström's "Never Make
Friends with a Crow": it's Stina Katchadourian. And shame on me as I think
a translator is JUST as important as the original poet. Some literary critics
assume this and even go as far as to claim translations are unique works and
should be criticized as such and NOT linked to the work they were derived from.
Not sure I'd go that far on most translations, but some are definitely that
way. (German is the only language I'd be barely qualified to make that comment
on, well ok, maybe Spanish, nah, no, that's me deceiving myself again but I'd
love to be able to as I'm much more attuned [despite my name] to Spanish
poetry.) Smile

Here's another of hers and Katchadourian's:

__The City was Sparkling__

The city was sparkling at a distance, and
I stopped. Everything looked so beautiful,
the street plans and the terraced gardens,
as if water-transparent, and I saw it all
very clearly. I thought about the great cities
with cathedrals, and the small local museums in
the countryside in Sweden, and the meadow-sweet with its
strong fragrance, and I remembered how attached I had been
to the little kitten with the spotted paws who
ran away and how I had missed it.
I turned around and someone was crying, I couldn’t
pay attention to it. The city was made of transparent glass.
I stood there. I saw my pre-eminent love.
Shimmering of pearls. The black swans. Chalcedony.
I tried calling the small kitten. Everything was sparkling.
I hesitated, I knew everything, I would
not come back.

. . .