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What sort of fiction do you read?

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MadArchitect

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What sort of fiction do you read?

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I know this is off-topic for a forum dedicated to non-fiction, but fiction is one of my major hobbies, so I'm interested in what you guys read. List some genres, some favorites, or just a general style.
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Re: What sort of fiction do you read?

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Wow, what a great question! I'll answer first.In terms of genres, I like classical Greek tragedy a lot. I've liked just about everything I've read of Sophocles, Euripides and Aeschylus. I like Seneca as well, even though he's technically Roman. I love the pathos and power of it all, the grim inevitability that drives the plot but still manages to shock, and the deep undercurrent of psychological insight.What else? I enjoy juvenellia. Ahem, children's books. In particular, I'm a fan of the work of Edward Eager, Tove Jannson, Leon Garfield, William Steig and A.A. Milne. Finding my mother's childhood copy of "Winnie-the-Pooh" was a large part of what kickstarted my adult interest in the genre.In terms of modern adult fiction, I tend to enjoy short works more than long works. Though there are exceptions, I tend to find the compression of a novella more rewarding than the expansion of a trilogy. To that end, some of my favorites are the flight novels of Antoine de Saint-Exupery, Thornton Wilder's "The Bridge at San Luis Rey", Watanabe Kawabate's "The Master of Go", Ernst Junger's "On the Marble Cliffs", Bruno Schulz' "The Street of Crocodiles", and John Gardner's "Grendel". I'm also a big fan of short stories, especially those by Graham Greene, Andre Dubus, Edith Templeton, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Jorge Luis Borges (one of my all-time favorites) and recently Robertson Davies.Basically, I look for fiction that will make an impact, something a little more profound than an easy read. I wouldn't say that I read exactly for leisure -- I want the book to makes a new outlook available to me. At the same time, I'm not looking to perform some analytic post-modern autopsy on the books I read, either. There has to be some spark of life in them that's not capturable in essay form. I do sometimes throw in some easier, fun books -- Raymond Chandler's hard-boiled crime novels are good for this, and I recently picked up an Ian Fleming 007 novel -- but I usually don't find those rewarding enough to read back to back to back.Anyone familiar with these titles or authors? Edited by: MadArchitect at: 3/4/05 12:05 pm
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Re: What sort of fiction do you read?

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Sometimes, if I don't talk to myself, I don't get an answer at all.I hear a great deal about Moorcock as an influence on the more savvy comic book artists and fantasy writers these day, but I wasn't terribly impressed with the one Moorcock book I read. Got any suggestions for top of the line Moorcock, Mr. P?Incidentally, have you read and H.P. Lovecraft or Algernon Blackwood? They're horror writers, and I'm not sure that's really your thing, but at their best they're downright fascinating. I'd suggest Blackwood's "The Willows" and Lovecraft's "The Music of Erich Zahn" or "The Shadow Over Innsmouth".Oh yeah, what do you think of Philip K. Dick? I recently finished "Valis". I wonder what you'd think... Edited by: MadArchitect at: 3/4/05 12:39 pm
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Mr. P

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Re: What sort of fiction do you read?

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Careful...you are starting to talk to yourself now!! lolI read anything that seems interesting. I grew up on Sci Fi/Fantasy, but like stories about people and everyday life...about existence, but with the eye of the cynic...I enjoy the styles of Asmiov, Moorcock, Tolkein, Cheever, Carver...may others...I tend to read a sampling of each author, rather than follow a career...exceptions are Asimov and Moorcock.Mr. P. The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.I came to get down, I came to get down. So get out ya seat and jump around - House of PainHEY! Is that a ball in your court? - Mr. PI came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper
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Mr. P

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Re: What sort of fiction do you read?

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Quote:For although nepenthe has calmed me, I know always that I am an outsider; a stranger in this century and among those who are still men. This I have known ever since I stretched out my fingers to the abomination within that great gilded frame; stretched out my fingers and touched a cold and unyielding surface of polished glass. Love that story...The Outsider...Lovecraft is amazing. Zahn, Innsmouth, The Outsider and Cthulu of course and many more...I have not read any in a while...time to take the Lovecraft anthology off the shelf...I do not have a short story book I am currently reading so...I heard of Blackwood but never delved...perhaps I will. I like horror, but do not read it much.Which Moorcock book did you read? I started with "The Chronicles of Corum" I was hooked with that, but the "Elric" series is my favorite...I even named my son Elric.I like Moorcock in general, but I have observed that he is a love it or hate it type of storyteller. I have not read anything by him I did not like.I never read Dick...I have almost bought his work a few times but for some reason decided against it...Mr. P. The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.I came to get down, I came to get down. So get out ya seat and jump around - House of PainHEY! Is that a ball in your court? - Mr. PI came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper
MadArchitect

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Re: What sort of fiction do you read?

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I'd definitely suggest Blackwood if you liked Lovecraft. Blackwood is something of a predacessor to Lovecraft, and Lovecraft called his story "The Willows" one of the finest pieces of horror fiction he had ever read. Personally, I can see the makings of the Lovecraft style in Blackwood's cosmic implications, but "The Willows" is a great deal more rooted in the mainstream literary traditions for its opening passages, which makes the descent into the supernatural all the more jarring.It took some digging to find the title of the Moorcock book I had read. Turns out the title was "War Hound and the World's Bane". Looks like it's out of print, so it may have been one of Moorcock's less reputable works. Familiar with it at all?
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Re: What sort of fiction do you read?

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I have never heard of that Moorcock book!! I will have to seek it out. Again...my favorites are the Eternal Champion series. Supposedly they are making an Elric movie soon...cannot wait for that!I looked for Blackwood in Borders yesterday, and unless they sold out of all his books...I did not see any.I will look for "The Willows" since you suggest how good it is.Mr. P. The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.I came to get down, I came to get down. So get out ya seat and jump around - House of PainHEY! Is that a ball in your court? - Mr. PI came to kick ass and chew Bubble Gum...and I am all out of Bubble Gum - They Live, Roddy Piper
MadArchitect

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Re: What sort of fiction do you read?

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As far as I know, there's only one Algernon Blackwood volume currently in print. It's a Penguin edition of his short stories edited by Lovecraft authority and atheist author S. T. Joshi. I don't think Blackwood wrote any longer works, but I could be wrong about that.
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Re: What sort of fiction do you read?

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MadI love the fantasy genre personally. Jack L. Chalker books are excellent, as are Joel Rosenberg. Chris
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Re: What sort of fiction do you read?

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SF & Fantasy are probably my favourites:Haven't thought of Moorcock in awhile -- MA, definitely read the Elric books, or if you want bizarre, try the Jerry Cornelius series.A newer author, Lois McMaster Bujold, does some great, fun sf, but her best book, in my opinion, is her fantasy novel The Curse of Chalion. A truly flawed hero, a well-developed religion, great story. As far as I can remember, it is the only book which finished, and immediately turned to the first page again.The only books that have ever made me cry (and not because they are sad, as such): The Bone People, by Keri Hulme, and The Power of One, by Bryce Courtney.I've notice one of my favourite authors has been mentioned a couple times in various forums: Robertson Davies. Lori "All beings are the owners of their deeds, the heirs to their deeds."
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