Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 12-13-2005, 04:20 PM
Birdmonster is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: thankfully, not in a van
Posts: 1,752

Recommend a book for a long plane flight


Millions,
Iíve got a cross-Atlantic flight a-coming and I need a book recommendation. Yes, yes, I always come crawling to you guys for literary wisdom, but so far Iíve discovered Terry Pratchet, rediscovered PG Woodehouse, and was recommended Chris Buckley, who remains solidly in my favorite author list. So far, so perfect.

In fact, Iím again looking for something in the above vein. Something fun, not necessarily brain-less (see above) and, preferably looooong. Something I can enjoy on a half day of travel to lands where I speak only bastardized versions of their languages.

Currently, Iím thinking of getting a nice thick Neil Simon volume with about 6 plays in it. But Iíd rather a nice juicy novel. It doesn't have to funny, but, you know, nothing Russian. This is a vacation.

And I just finished Good Omens, so you canít go there.
  #2  
Old 12-13-2005, 04:25 PM
twickster is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 38,723
Damn, I sometimes go months without recommending what is IMHO the funniest book ever written -- here's my second chance today.

Richard Russo's Straight Man.

Don't get if you'd be self-conscious about people staring at you because you're giggling uncontrollably while you read.
  #3  
Old 12-13-2005, 04:43 PM
Thudlow Boink's Avatar
Thudlow Boink is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Lincoln, IL
Posts: 27,360
I asked my brain for something long, not brainless, and fun, and these are the two titles it came up with. (Why these two in particular? I don't knowóask my brain.)

Handling Sin by Michael Malone

The Salterton Trilogy by Robertson Davies (actually three novels, but you can get them in one volume)
  #4  
Old 12-13-2005, 04:47 PM
Spectre of Pithecanthropus is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Transplanted!
Posts: 19,347
My last trip -- to Vancouver and back was by ship and rail respectively, so I know from long journeys. I had John Updike's Rabbit novels (the first three in one volume) and found it to be a very worthy traveling book. If you buy one of the novels singly you should start with Rabbit, Run since that's the first one. One nice thing about it was that I didn't feel my vacation was quite over until I got to the end of the third novel.

When in a confined space like a plane I find I also need a couple pieces of alternative reading matter as well, though on the cruise I didn't really need to because there was so much else to do.
  #5  
Old 12-13-2005, 05:05 PM
Birdmonster is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: thankfully, not in a van
Posts: 1,752
Those all look good. Straight Man's already on my short list & Handling Sin looks like the exact sort of thing I asked for. Think it's readily available. Salterton Trilogy seems intriguing, mainly because of Thudlow's description.

As for the Rabbit novels, I've read most of them and have nothing bad to say. Updike walks that line between enjoyable and meaningful as well as anyone I can think of, with the exception of Flannery O'Connor, who I've cannonized in my personal literary universe.
  #6  
Old 12-13-2005, 05:14 PM
Spatial Rift 47 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 3,222
Anything at all by Neal Stephenson. Snow Crash is a present day alternate history cyberthriller. Cryptonomicon is ... a genre unto itself, I think. It follows a present day and WWII storyline, and it revolves around the cryptography that both sets of characters (some family connections) use. Quicksilver, the first in the Baroque Trilogy (all of which is available), takes place in the 17th and early 18th centuries in Europe, and a bit in Massachusetts too. It's ... astoundingly good.
  #7  
Old 12-13-2005, 05:22 PM
ShibbOleth is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Schlaraffenland
Posts: 20,611
We read a book, it may have been this one, when some friends and I flew to Barcelona for a long weekend. It was essentially a transcription of the final moments recorded on the flight data recorders and short investigation into the accidents mentioned. If that doesn't float your boat then maybe "Alive".
  #8  
Old 12-13-2005, 05:31 PM
Birdmonster is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: thankfully, not in a van
Posts: 1,752
ShibbOleth: Link's no good. Birdmonster's curious.
  #9  
Old 12-13-2005, 05:48 PM
Maastricht is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Dutch in the Netherlands
Posts: 9,281
Ken Follets: The pillars of the earth.
Long, and just plain effing good storytelling. Spans fifty years and the building of one big cathedral in medieval England. Not big on lighthearted fun, but it was one of those rare books that held me in a sort of time-warp: when I looked up from the pages again, it was three hours later.
  #10  
Old 12-13-2005, 05:50 PM
ShibbOleth is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Schlaraffenland
Posts: 20,611
Quote:
Originally Posted by Birdmonster
ShibbOleth: Link's no good. Birdmonster's curious.

Sorry, multitasking is no good when trying to post links. I accidentally posted the link into an ICQ chat with a colleague.

Second try: The Black Box.
  #11  
Old 12-13-2005, 08:56 PM
wonky's Avatar
wonky is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: DC area
Posts: 30,703
I quite enjoyed Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell which is a pretty hefty volume.
  #12  
Old 12-13-2005, 09:44 PM
wonderlust is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,828
I noticed you read Good Omens. Perhaps Neil Gaiman's American Gods or his newest, Anansi Boys.
  #13  
Old 12-13-2005, 09:45 PM
koeeoaddi's Avatar
koeeoaddi is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: elsewhere
Posts: 5,901
Quote:
Originally Posted by twickster
Damn, I sometimes go months without recommending what is IMHO the funniest book ever written -- here's my second chance today.

Richard Russo's Straight Man.

Don't get if you'd be self-conscious about people staring at you because you're giggling uncontrollably while you read.
That's a great recommendation. It's a wonderful book. I read it based on a funniest book thread and laughed out loud through the whole thing -- on a plane. No one turned around and glared at me though. I was sitting right over the wing, so no one heard a thing.

Another great air travel book, if you like fantasy is Ursula Le Guin's Changing Planes. It's about other worlds that are found and can only be revisited through the discomfort of air travel. It's funnier and a bit more satirical than most of the other books of hers I've read. I'm going to reread it the next time I have to fly.
  #14  
Old 12-13-2005, 09:47 PM
twickster is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 38,723
Quote:
Originally Posted by jsgoddess
I quite enjoyed Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell which is a pretty hefty volume.
I loved this also, but you should read a chapter or two before you take off with it as your only reading material -- some people can't get into the very leisurely pace and stylized prose, uh, style.
  #15  
Old 12-13-2005, 09:52 PM
Plan B is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 2,054
I am Charlotte Simmons, by Tom Wolfe. If you choose it, you might want to look at some of the reviews on Amazon. I think the readers who didn't like it were looking for something other than fun fiction, like some kind of intellectual social commentary, or a historically acurate account of college life today. Not the point of the novel at all. Tom Wolfe always (in his three novels at least) uses lots of exagerration to entertain.
  #16  
Old 12-13-2005, 11:15 PM
NAF1138 is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: North of Philly
Posts: 10,016
I read Shogun on a trans Atlantic flight, never had a better time. Fun, inoffensively historically inaccurate, and loooooooong. But I have to say it was a page turner. I would put it in the same category as Pillars of the Earth, which was already recommended. Solid storytelling for a thousand plus pages. The flight will feel about 5 minutes long.

Or, if you are into Fantasy, go for a portion of the Song of Ice and Fire. Take all 4 in the series, read the first 2 on the flight over and the last...um well 1 and a quarter on the way back. Then finish the last one and wait 4 years for the next book.
  #17  
Old 12-13-2005, 11:20 PM
cckerberos is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Wakayama, Japan
Posts: 3,177
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spatial Rift 47
Cryptonomicon is ... a genre unto itself, I think. It follows a present day and WWII storyline, and it revolves around the cryptography that both sets of characters (some family connections) use.
I second this. I read Cryptonomicon on a flight from Boston to Osaka and it took up most of the time.
  #18  
Old 12-13-2005, 11:51 PM
Askia is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 7,155
Quote:
Originally Posted by brightpenny
I noticed you read Good Omens. Perhaps Neil Gaiman's American Gods or his newest, Anansi Boys.
I second both these suggestions, with the added endorsement that I finished Anansi Boys three days ago, had a ball reading it, and managed the trick in four hours.
  #19  
Old 12-14-2005, 07:48 AM
singular1 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Pacific NorthWet
Posts: 2,890
Last time I flew, I picked up Wicked. I was flying to my hometown for the first time in 15 years, and I found it difficult to pay attention to my family and not hole up and finish this book. It's the story of Oz from the Wicked Witch's perspective. The other books by the same author, a retelling of Cinderella and Snow White, are also good but not quite the page-turner Wicked is.

And you can't miss with anything by Christopher Moore - light, funny reads great for traveling. I've read them all at least twice.
  #20  
Old 12-14-2005, 08:00 AM
irishgirl is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Belfast, Ireland.
Posts: 6,380
I read Haruki Murakami's The Wind-up Bird Chronicle on a trans-atlantic flight, and really enjoyed it.

I basically walked into the bookshop and asked for something over 700 pages, knowing I wanted something to keep me occupied on a 10hour flight...you might want something shorter and less whimsically japanese.
  #21  
Old 12-14-2005, 09:23 AM
Ethilrist is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Saint Paul
Posts: 26,917
As an alternate, you might consider taking along a book of crossword puzzles, if the reading book pans out or you need a break from it.
  #22  
Old 12-14-2005, 10:37 AM
Shoeless's Avatar
Shoeless is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: The Sunflower State
Posts: 6,774
Another vote for Neal Stephenson's "Cryptonomicon".

And with tongue planted firmly in cheek, I'll also recommend John Varley's "Millenium".
  #23  
Old 12-14-2005, 11:23 AM
Shirley Ujest is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Somewhere in the Middle.
Posts: 21,387
Shadow of the Wind not funny, just interesting.

Very entertaining book that I really need to buy: Gil's All Fright Diner It has everything you need for a good romp: A vampire named Earl. A werewolf named Duke and zombie attacks.
  #24  
Old 12-14-2005, 12:33 PM
BiblioCat is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Baltimore
Posts: 10,877
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maastricht
Ken Follets: The pillars of the earth.
Long, and just plain effing good storytelling. Spans fifty years and the building of one big cathedral in medieval England. Not big on lighthearted fun, but it was one of those rare books that held me in a sort of time-warp: when I looked up from the pages again, it was three hours later.
I'd second this one. It's a great book.


At the other end of the spectrum, something light and funny is A Walk In The Woods by Bill Bryson. You could easily finish it on the plane ride.
Anything by Bryson is good.
  #25  
Old 12-14-2005, 12:42 PM
h.sapiens is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Oak Park, IL
Posts: 2,766
Have you read any Douglas Adams? You can get all five books of the "Hitchhiker's Trilogy" in one volume (and it really won't matter if you don't make it to the fifth ).
  #26  
Old 12-14-2005, 12:43 PM
slaphead is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Streatham Common
Posts: 2,896
You could do worse than Jim Butcher's The Dresden Files, which is quite amusing if you're into private eye wizards. If you get all six books it should keep you occupied for a while.
  #27  
Old 12-14-2005, 12:54 PM
N9IWP is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Southeast MN
Posts: 6,295
I can't believe I'm the first one to mention (re)reading the LOTR trilogy.
Though it may be too much of a downer.

If you like Hitchhiker's, there are also the two Dirk Gently books - those can be fun.

Brian
  #28  
Old 12-14-2005, 12:56 PM
Lisa-go-Blind is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,976
Quote:
Originally Posted by h.sapiens
Have you read any Douglas Adams? You can get all five books of the "Hitchhiker's Trilogy" in one volume (and it really won't matter if you don't make it to the fifth ).
That's what I came in to recommend.

You said you'd prefer a novel, but how about a book of short stories? If you like Wodehouse, you'd probably like Evelyn Waugh. In paperback, his Complete Short Stories is 640 pages long, which should be lengthy enough to keep you occupied for several hours.
  #29  
Old 12-14-2005, 01:14 PM
Green Bean is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: NJ, Exit #137
Posts: 12,084
Carl Hiaasen's always fun. His stuff is hard to describe--a couple of reviews I found called his books "serio-comic Florida thrillers" and "crime farces." I guess those are fair descriptions. Hiaasen is light reading, but thought-provoking, too. My personal favorite is Strip Tease (not to be confused with the movie of the same name, which is ostensibly based on the book, but in reality, is probably the worst thing to ever happen to Carl Hiaasen.)

They're kind of long, but quick reads.
  #30  
Old 12-14-2005, 04:04 PM
Elendil's Heir is offline
SDSAB
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: my Herkimer Battle Jitney
Posts: 85,169
I strongly recommend:

Gary Jennings, Aztec - A huge, historically-accurate, sex-and-violence-drenched novel.

George R.R. Martin, Fevre Dream - An outstanding vampire novel set on the Mississippi River during the pre-Civil War steamboat era.

George R.R. Martin, Tuf Voyaging - An amazing collection of interconnected science fiction short stories. A sad-sack space trader stumbles upon the most powerful starship in the Universe, and decides to make full (and funny) use of it.

Joseph Ellis, Founding Brothers - Witty, engrossing Pulitzer Prize-winning collection of essays about the Founders and their relationship to one another.

Michael Shaara, The Killer Angels - Another Pulitzer winner, about the Battle of Gettysburg. Utterly evocative and believable.
  #31  
Old 12-14-2005, 04:34 PM
ddgryphon is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 1,682
If you've not read it, Mists of Avalon would be great.
  #32  
Old 12-14-2005, 06:50 PM
Jennshark is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Tren'un, NJ
Posts: 3,444

E.F. Benson!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Birdmonster
Millions,
Iíve got a cross-Atlantic flight a-coming and I need a book recommendation. Yes, yes, I always come crawling to you guys for literary wisdom, but so far Iíve discovered Terry Pratchet, rediscovered PG Woodehouse, and was recommended Chris Buckley, who remains solidly in my favorite author list. So far, so perfect.

In fact, Iím again looking for something in the above vein. Something fun, not necessarily brain-less (see above) and, preferably looooong. Something I can enjoy on a half day of travel to lands where I speak only bastardized versions of their languages.

Currently, Iím thinking of getting a nice thick Neil Simon volume with about 6 plays in it. But Iíd rather a nice juicy novel. It doesn't have to funny, but, you know, nothing Russian. This is a vacation.

And I just finished Good Omens, so you canít go there.
If you like Woodehouse, try E.F. Benson's 1930ish writing. I dont' know what the smaller collections are called, but the compendium of his stories about social maneuverings in a small English village is titled "Make Way for Lucia." I'm sure his stuff is out of print, but you can probably find it on Amazon used books.

Forgive me if these books have already been mentioned, I just skimmed the thread:
Anything by Annie Proulx
"Running with Scissors" by August Burroughs
Most things by Cormac McCarthy
Hilary Mantel's "Beyond Black" and "Giving Up the Ghost"
If you like humorous travel writing, most anything by Bill Bryson
For a really, really big book try "Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell"
  #33  
Old 12-14-2005, 06:54 PM
LiveOnAPlane is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Huntsville, AL
Posts: 2,569
There are some really good suggestions, above.

You may not care for them but some of the James Michener novels have been wonderful long reading for me...

"Hawaii"
"Chesapeake"
"Centenneal"

Not today's faves, for sure, but just a suggestion.
  #34  
Old 12-14-2005, 06:58 PM
LiveOnAPlane is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Huntsville, AL
Posts: 2,569
Centennial! :wally
  #35  
Old 12-14-2005, 08:36 PM
chique is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: East of Lake Wobegone
Posts: 4,514
In my experience, short stories tend to be better for trips than books. If you're not interested in the one you can flip to another, and if you get distracted by weather or the airplane's in-flight entertainment system, the weather, or a seatmate you can pick up later without any huge loss. In that vein, I'm going to recommend any short story collection by W. Somerset Maughm.
  #36  
Old 12-14-2005, 09:01 PM
Dangerosa is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Twin Cities, Minnesota
Posts: 22,539
Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Bean
Carl Hiaasen's always fun. His stuff is hard to describe--a couple of reviews I found called his books "serio-comic Florida thrillers" and "crime farces." I guess those are fair descriptions. Hiaasen is light reading, but thought-provoking, too. My personal favorite is Strip Tease (not to be confused with the movie of the same name, which is ostensibly based on the book, but in reality, is probably the worst thing to ever happen to Carl Hiaasen.)

They're kind of long, but quick reads.

My vacation books! I only allow myself to read them on vacation. Lucky Me is my favorite so far. Great for plane travel - they don't take a lot of brain power, but they don't insult your intellegence (unless you happen to be a Florida redneck - he spends a lot of time insulting all flavors of felonious Florida rednecks).

The Jasper Fjorde Thursday Next stuff is interesting. The first is wonderful, by the third its a stretch. The first one is The Eyre Affair.
  #37  
Old 12-15-2005, 10:31 AM
Birdmonster is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: thankfully, not in a van
Posts: 1,752
On the Gaiman tip:
I was recently loaned Neverwhere. Better? Worse? On par with the Anasasi Boys or American Gods?
  #38  
Old 12-15-2005, 12:11 PM
Amaranta is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 626
So I've got a 6-hour flight next week (Hawaii yay!) and I picked up Richard Russo's the Straight Man. Dammit, I knew I should have waited - I was just going to look at the first couple of pages, y'know, see what kind of story I was looking at - then it was one chapter, then two...

So, uh, any other books similar to this to recommend?
  #39  
Old 12-15-2005, 12:22 PM
cher3 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Posts: 7,090
Quote:
Originally Posted by Birdmonster
On the Gaiman tip:
I was recently loaned Neverwhere. Better? Worse? On par with the Anasasi Boys or American Gods?
I'd put it closer to American Gods. It's quite a bit darker and gorier than Anansi Boys. I enjoyed the premise, but found the villains a bit tediously sadistic.
  #40  
Old 12-15-2005, 03:24 PM
wonderlust is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,828
Quote:
On the Gaiman tip:I was recently loaned Neverwhere. Better? Worse? On par with the Anasasi Boys or American Gods?
I take it you enjoyed Good Omens, co-written by Gaiman. Neverwhere was Gaiman's first novel. In it are images you'll never forget, places that will stay with you. It's comically dark, not horror-dark. I'd never read anything dark previous to reading Neverwhere, and I adored it. If you have the book, by all means read it. Then know that his other books expand upon the promise of imagination and humor found in his first novel.
  #41  
Old 12-15-2005, 09:13 PM
NoCoolUserName is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Lookout Mountain!
Posts: 2,625
I got caught in the Chicago blizzard (8 Dec 05) and spent 8 hours on the runway. Fortunately enough, I had just started the 400-page Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies. I finished it before I got back to Denver (10 1/2 hours later). Good book.
  #42  
Old 12-16-2005, 03:25 AM
Bogeyman is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Behind the door
Posts: 59
I'm not quite sure whether this would be to your taste, but I greatly enjoyed the Illuminatus! Trilogy by Robert Anton Wilson and Robert Shea. Hilarious, offbeat, and thrilling. It's usually sold in one volume and has about 900 pages.
fnord
Warning: contains sex, drugs, rock 'n' roll, violence, odd religions, conspiracies, and strong language.
fnord
  #43  
Old 12-27-2005, 02:24 PM
Birdmonster is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: thankfully, not in a van
Posts: 1,752
Thudlow Boink: AG! Thanks a billion. After racing through twickster's Straight Man (really good by the way), I began Handling Sin a day or two into my trip. Could not stop reading. Which is weird, when you're in Andalucia and all you should be doing is drinking red wine till 4:30 in the morning. I literally spent most of my siesta time with that book, then all my flights, finishing it with blurry-tears in the airport before coming home. I'd honestly put that book in my top ten. Brilliant recommendation. Thanks.
  #44  
Old 12-27-2005, 02:49 PM
twickster is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 38,723
**Adds Handling Sin to Amazon wishlist**
  #45  
Old 12-27-2005, 03:56 PM
Birdmonster is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: thankfully, not in a van
Posts: 1,752
You will not be dissapointed.
Since you did me right, let me suggest "Brothers K" by David James Duncan. I would have suggested it to myself under this very heading and it remains my favorite book. No need to know Karamatzov before hand...
(as you might be able to guest, since I can't even spell it)
  #46  
Old 12-27-2005, 04:17 PM
Gadarene is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Washington, D.C.
Posts: 6,636
The Brothers K is amazing. Also exceptionally engrossing: Watership Down. Just a damn, damn good story.
  #47  
Old 12-27-2005, 04:23 PM
Birdmonster is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: thankfully, not in a van
Posts: 1,752
Juuuust did Watership Down a few months ago. Took me a little to get used to the style & start enjoying it, but when I did I just couldn't put it down.

I also grew up on Redwall books, so it was nice to read Jacques logical inspiration.
  #48  
Old 12-27-2005, 11:09 PM
pesch is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Chocolatetown, USA
Posts: 2,178
I'll second the Illumnatus trilogy. I read those books years ago and some of the scenes still stick with me, such as the orgy aftermath with the men's magazine publisher, in which NopenotHef spouts ludacrious philosophy to his butler while watching two girls .... well, you'll just have to read it.

Someone's already recc'd Robertson Davies' Salterton trilogy, so I'll recommend his Cornish Trilogy. instead. I've read it at least three times. Hard to say what it's about, but it touches on the life of Francis Cornish, a wealthy art collector, and the effects on a group of people from his death. A foundation financed by his will puts on an opera based on King Arthur, and their lives parallel the story. In another book, one of the characters from the first book investigates Cornish's life and discovers the meaning behind a masterpiece he painted. There's also a murder mystery involving gypsies, the tarot and the meaning of life. Great, thoughtful stuff, full of no-nonsense Canadian meaning of life, with some mysticism thrown in.

I'd also recommend George Macdonald Fraser's The Pyrates , which I've also read several times. It's a farcical story in which there are pirates (natch!), buried treasure, walking the plank, the Hearts of Oak and Rule Brittanica, alongside Spanish deviltry and hearty sword-fighting (Stamp and sa-ha!) and he throws in tons of historical anachronisms. The only problem is that you'll probably finish it in two hours.
  #49  
Old 12-28-2005, 03:22 AM
Liz is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: The 38th Parallel
Posts: 1,499
I second the suggestion of Augusten Burroughs' work, although they are very fast reads.

This doesn't exactly fit the authors you listed in your OP, but I have to throw out The Crimson Petal and The White by Michel Faber. A lot of people say it's what Dickens would have written if he were living in this era but writing about the Victorian age. It's thought-provoking, at times amusing, VERY dirty in certain sections, and just an all around wonderful read. The narrative device Faber uses is also brilliant. It's nice and fat at around 900 pages, but it moves lightning quick. Highly, highly recommended.
  #50  
Old 12-28-2005, 07:08 AM
twickster is offline
Charter Member
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 38,723
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liz
This doesn't exactly fit the authors you listed in your OP, but I have to throw out The Crimson Petal and The White by Michel Faber. A lot of people say it's what Dickens would have written if he were living in this era but writing about the Victorian age. It's thought-provoking, at times amusing, VERY dirty in certain sections, and just an all around wonderful read. The narrative device Faber uses is also brilliant. It's nice and fat at around 900 pages, but it moves lightning quick. Highly, highly recommended.
I'll second this. I actually thought of it when someone recommended Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, but, um, didn't say anything. It's a very fast read -- I gulped it down in little over a day while I was on vacation. (A beach vacation of the "not much happening but hanging out reading" persuasion, obviously.)
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:46 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright © 2018 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017