Favorite novel & why

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Re: Favorite novel & why

Post by DavidCM »

My favourite has to be Patrick O'Brian's Master and Commander..and indeed the whole series of 20 novels.Hignly readable,over and over and even the poignant, unfinished 21st book where he died part way through writing it.Highly recommended.
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Re: Favorite novel & why

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Strange as it may seem but I've never ever read a novel and I'm nearly 64.
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Re: Favorite novel & why

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Vacationing in Seattle this week, just coming back to my favorite forum.

Provocative thread, to say the least. I think I've forgotten too many great novels I've read over the years, so I'm hesitant to name a favorite as I keep thinking of only recently read books. For whatever reason, I also remember novels read in high school relatively clearly, perhaps because it was such an impressionable age. For US based authors, Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird would be my pick if I were forced to choose just one, with John Updike's Rabit, Run being a close second. For outside the US, Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard tops my list.

Impossible to choose just one!
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Re: Favorite novel & why

Post by Noush »

Almost anything by Isaac Asimov. "The End of Eternity" is the one I absolutely could not put down.
It staggers me that "I, Robot" as mentioned by @missF in I think 1950 described/invented the rules of robotics that are used without alteration today.
Graham Greene's "The Quiet American" is another I couldn't put down.

For some escapism, I had a LOT of fun reading all of George Macdonald Fraser's "Flashman" books.
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Re: Favorite novel & why

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He's been mentioned a few times, but I have to admit I've never read any of Asimov's work despite it being the kind of stuff I absolutely love (have seen plenty of adaptions of his work mind you!)- I recently picked up the Wool trilogy to read through on my Kindle after loving the first season of Silo on Apple TV (I know it's not going to be the greatest of novels, but again its the kind of story I just love!) so going to add some Asimov to my reading list for afterwards!
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Re: Favorite novel & why

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Too much SF here, definitely not my genre.

I am a real Haruki Murakami fan, so some fantasy. I blame Borders. One of their recommended reads, eons ago, was Norwegian Wood. A gentle introduction to his art. Got me hooked anyway. Re-read many, but the Wind Up Bird Chronicle is perhaps No.1. Sometimes. Why do I like him? I once read a lot of foreign contemporary work, when I didn't think there was much of any value being published in the UK. His stood out, the stories, how he writes (translated), his mind.

The late Philip Kerr's Bernie Gunther series. Anti-nazi German cop in pre-war Berlin somehow beds Eva Peron in Argentina. A lot happened in-between and beyond. If you like Philip Marlowe, these are up there. I understand Tom Hanks, a fan, owns the film rights. I wish he would do somethiing with them. A brilliant detective series based on and around true historical events, obviously involving not very nice nazi's. Some infamous killers feature heavily. But Bernie is the good guy.

And, as mentioned above, William Boyd. Superb.

Twice abandoned Catch-22. The film had to do.
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Re: Favorite novel & why

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Caller wrote: Mon Jul 24, 2023 3:33 pm Too much SF here, definitely not my genre.

I am a real Haruki Murakami fan.
Amazed to see that here, so am I. Have read everything he's ever written. I started with the WUBC which pretty much blew my mind with its inventiveness and otherworldliness. I love the way his books give you an insight into a very unusual Eastern consciousness. Very appealing when you're very European in your make up. Love Kafka on the shore, Killing Commendatore and 1Q84; in fact love 'em all. He's been tipped for a number of years now to win the Nobel prize for literature. His style is quite unlike anything else I've ever read. Delighted to see another fan.

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Re: Favorite novel & why

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I think I need a new Forum, this one is way too high brow for me.
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Re: Favorite novel & why

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Fascinating thread. I used to read a lot in my youth, but for various reasons my reading declined as I got older. I’ve never understood people who say they don’t like Science Fiction. It’s about people and our problems, just set in a possible future. And SF has foreseen much of recent technical developments and world problems. Asimov, Henlein, and many others whose names I’ve forgotten have givens much food for thought.

When it comes to pleasure P.G. Wodehouse stands alone. His expertly crafted, extremely funny novels and short stories about Bertie Wooster, Jeeves, lord Emsworth et.al. are a joy to read and re-read. Pure, delightful escapism.

Raymond Chandler is another favourite. During my twenties I read them all. Great stuff.

The (living) Norwegian author Jan Kjærstad is also someone I used to read. He’s a cerebral author, if that makes sense. Expertly crafted stories, lots of esoteric knowledge and thought provoking themes. Some love him, some hate him. I’m in the former camp.

Lord of the rings - big fan. Came to it late, after the films where made. Great writing.

During my military service I read Shogun by James Clavell. Not great literature, but a rollicking story well told. Utterly engrossing at the time, and gave me a life long fascination of Japan.

One work I’m happy (and somewhat proud) to have read is The Divine Comedy by Dante, footnotes and all, in an English translation. At times very beautiful, full of interesting details and a complete world in itself.
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Re: Favorite novel & why

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TheBeatles wrote: Mon Jul 24, 2023 4:23 pm I think I need a new Forum, this one is way too high brow for me.
I’m waiting for someone to mention Roger Hargreaves so I feel I can join in the conversation…..
Iain’s Law: Any discussion on the Christopher Ward forum, irrespective of the thread title or subject matter, will eventually lead to someone mentioning the Bel Canto if the thread continues for long enough.
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Re: Favorite novel & why

Post by Amor Vincit Omnia »

@iain This should appeal to you…

IMG_3790.jpeg
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Re: Favorite novel & why

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I have always been a pretty big reader. Like @ajax87 I read before lights out at night. I also listen to a lot of audiobooks on my commute. It is pretty tough to pick an absolute favorite. Here are a few that I have revisited several times.

Casino Royale - Ian Fleming My favorite of the originals. One of the best opening lines ever.

A Walk In the Woods - Bill Bryson I have done a fair amount of stomping around on the Appalachian Trail and this captures it in a very funny read.

A River Runs Through It - Norman Mclean More than fly fishing this book is about family and trying to help someone you love who doesn't want to be helped. Also a look into living in the American West in the early 20th century.

Eiger Dreams - Jon Krakauer Krakauer captures what it means to be a climber and be out in the mountains better than almost any modern writer.

Islands In the Stream - Hemingway Not many peoples favorite as it was published and edited after his death when I read it I can hear the breeze in the palms and here the roll of the ocean.

Travis Mcgee Series - John D. Mcdonald I still think they stole the idea for the 80s TV series Riptide from these books and did a really poor job of it. Still waiting for someone to pick this one up and run with it.

Ninety-two In the Shade - Thomas Mcguane Shows what living in the lower Keys in the 1970s was really like.

Young Men and Fire - Norman Mclean One of the best retellings of a tragedy that happened to an early group of Smoke Jumpers in Montana.
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Re: Favorite novel & why

Post by jkbarnes »

Amor Vincit Omnia wrote: Mon Jul 24, 2023 7:29 pm @iain This should appeal to you…


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Re: Favorite novel & why

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rkovars wrote: Mon Jul 24, 2023 7:41 pm A Walk In the Woods - Bill Bryson I have done a fair amount of stomping around on the Appalachian Trail and this captures it in a very funny read.
My introduction to Bryson! He’s a fantastic storyteller.

A River Runs Through It - Norman Mclean More than fly fishing this book is about family and trying to help someone you love who doesn't want to be helped. Also a look into living in the American West in the early 20th century.
One of my favorite movies, as much for the visual splendor as for the story and characters. Every time I re-watch it I tell myself I need to read the book. Now, I really must.
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Re: Favorite novel & why

Post by JAFO »

jkbarnes wrote: Mon Jul 24, 2023 8:26 pm
rkovars wrote: Mon Jul 24, 2023 7:41 pm A Walk In the Woods - Bill Bryson I have done a fair amount of stomping around on the Appalachian Trail and this captures it in a very funny read.
My introduction to Bryson! He’s a fantastic storyteller.

A River Runs Through It - Norman Mclean More than fly fishing this book is about family and trying to help someone you love who doesn't want to be helped. Also a look into living in the American West in the early 20th century.
One of my favorite movies, as much for the visual splendor as for the story and characters. Every time I re-watch it I tell myself I need to read the book. Now, I really must.
A River Runs Through It connected Robert Redford (Director) and Brad Pitt (Actor), who I always thought looked somewhat similar. They also got together in the excellent Spy game, although I think I need a director's commentary to really understand the end of that one. :D
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