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The Story Coaster from artist Grant Snider

Reblogged from Books2day:

Grant Snider is the enterprising creator of Incidental Comics and also does posters. This one seemed especially appropriate for BookLikes.


Click on the picture to see more of Grant's works:


Source: http://www.incidentalcomics.com

The Crying of Lot 49

The Crying of Lot 49 - Thomas Pynchon Wonderful. I was wary of Pynchon for a long time. A reputation for denseness or difficulty, obscurity, but this was like a burst of light. OK, I couldn't say what the story was about in every detail, but it enjoyable in it's self and also for the gap it filled in my literary education.
Drugged up, psychotic conspiracy theories have never been written so well.

Navidad & Matanza

Navidad & Matanza - Carlos Labbé, Will Vanderhyden Received as Goodreads Giveaway.
"A literary descendent of Roberto Bolaño..."
I didn't really like the Robert Bolano I read; I felt it was pretentious and deliberately obscure. I just finished "Infinite Jest" by David foster Wallace, and that could be similarly accused, but with the key difference, I was drawn in by the characters.
This book is an intricate puzzle, a glittering jewel of compact post-modern techniques that is admirable but ultimately empty because I wasn't attached to any character.
There is no time to develope the characters in 90 pages, but anyway the main theme is the mutability of identity,so maybe character wasn't the point and in the end I was glad it was as short as it was.
Not bad but not really for me.

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves - Karen Joy Fowler, Orlagh Cassidy I probably would have enjoyed this a lot more if it hadn't been the audio version. Personally I didn't get on with the voice at all. A dreary monotone most of the time.


Darkmans - Nicola Barker I loved every moment of reading this book. While I was away from it I needed to get back to it, which for me, is my definition of a supremely successful novel.

The Guts

The Guts - Roddy Doyle If you read a quick synopsis of this, you might think it was a bit grim. Middle-age desperation and colon cancer among musical nostalgia.
But this isn't just a re-hash of the Commitments story, just aged, it's as if the characters have been living real lives all this time. So real I feel I knew them.
This book made me laugh and cry, and left me with a warm glow. I love it when I enjoy a book so much.

[ Lots of swearing, of course, it is Roddy Doyle]

Quote from TV comedy "Father Ted"
Father Dougal: I wouldn't know Ted, you big bollocks!
Father Ted: [astounded] I'm sorry!?
Father Dougal: I said I wouldn't know Ted, you big bollocks!
Father Ted: Have you been reading those Roddy Doyle books again, Dougal!?
Father Dougal: I have, yeah Ted, you big gobshite!

The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot

The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot - Robert Macfarlane, T.B.A. A book unlike any modern genre but also deeply rooted in the tradition of travellers that use their travel in the exterior world as a way to talk about the interior life.
To be taken at a slow walking pace. When you have plenty of time for contemplation. The audio version is read in an agreeable, deep richly rolling voice. Good before bedtime, I suppose.

A Tale for the Time Being

A Tale for the Time Being - Ruth Ozeki I was given this to review.
I'd already read a book by Ruth Ozeki that I really liked http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/917346.All_Over_Creation
and so I had high hopes for this one. It didn't start too well though, two different voices, and neither seemed to speak to me. One a teenage girl sitting in cafe in Tokyo writing a diary and the other a japanese-american woman reading the diary she's found on the beach, on an island in British Colombia.
Her writing is simple, uncomplicated but this is deceptive and as the strands of the story weave together and the layers are built up the characters deepened and I became hooked.
She made me think of Barbara Kingsolver in her realism and Haruki Murakami in her dreamy mystical resonances.


Skios - Michael Frayn Tom Sharpe wrote brilliant farces, David lodge writes campus novels, here frayn mixes them up and sets the result on a Greek Island. Very competent and readable , but light holiday matter.


NW - Zadie Smith I loved this book.

I loved "White Teeth" but with genius debuts you never know if the experience will be repeated. Her second "Autograph Man" I didn't really enjoy, too much abstruse Kabbalah and obscure symbolism, trying too hard.
The third "on Beauty" i enjoyed but found a bit of a slog in parts, maybe again writing too many words, too much Writing.

This one is a masterpiece.Dialogue driven, every word counts to drive the story on. Each part, as in poetry, has resonances and undercurrents, but none of it seems contrived, it looks effortless. A joy.

Telegraph Avenue: A Novel

Telegraph Avenue: A Novel - Michael Chabon I thoroughly enjoyed this book; perhaps the first of Chabon's that I've enjoyed unreservedly. I think it helps that I am already often preoccupied with obscure music and films. the references to Tarantino were obvious before they became explicit.
But don't worry there's very little gore here and that is in a childbirth related storyline. And unlike Tarantino films the substance wins out over the style: friendship beyond dividing lines of race, gender or blood.

The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid

The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid - Bill Bryson I'd read anything by Bill Bryson, he makes me laugh without fail. Even if he wrote out his shopping list I'm sure he'd make it funny, unfortunately this is more or less what he falls back on a bit too often.
The unique circumstances of a fifties american childhood are captured with an alien anthropologist's eye but the lists of products or TV shows I could have done without.

Bring Up the Bodies (Thomas Cromwell, #2)

Bring Up the Bodies (Thomas Cromwell, #2) - Hilary Mantel I would recommend this book to anyone who desires to inhabit a character, to really sink their mental mandibles into some good meaty writing and to almost sense the world described.
It makes no difference if you're not attracted to historical fiction, this is just top level lit, and amply rewards a little patience, in getting into the style of the first book.
Wolf Hall

Sacré Bleu: A Comedy d'Art

Sacré Bleu: A Comedy d'Art - Christopher Moore Made me think of Tom Robbins "Jitterbug Perfume" crossed with the film of "Moulin Rouge". Started off pale by comparison to these two, but I grew to like it in it's own right.

The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer

The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer - Siddhartha Mukherjee I found this supremely well written, balanced between the smooth telling of a suspense (who-done-it?) and just enough grounding in science history to keep both strands readable.
He kept the human context alive with the patients he followed and he showed humility in the way he never presumed to be more than a learner even after he became a qualified specialist.
The best science books are those that kindle the feeling of awe at life and the universe. Here there is awe at the perseverance of many to find cures and even awe at the incredible wily supreme survivor, the disease itself.
The only reason I didn't give 5-stars was because there wasn't enough of the patients perspectives, but perhaps I'm being unfair, the subtitle is "a biography of Cancer" after all.


Angelmaker - Nick Harkaway As another reviewer already said this "ticks all the boxes" but is ultimately disappointing. After Nick Harkaway's brilliant debut novel "The Goneaway World" that was edgy, creepy and seriously mind-blowing scienc-fiction I was expecting more. After reading Neil Gaiman and China Mieville's takes on the secret London conspiracy plot I did feel as if I'd read it all before, and was just looking for the climax and the end.