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Thread: Book Recommendations

  1. #1661
    Quote Originally Posted by Baldanders View Post
    He has written both amazing things and some completely self-indulgent pap--The Dark Tower series shows off both sides. He could use an editor to keep him on track, sometimes, IMO.


    I finally got around to reading Echopraxia, the sequel to Blindsight, a novel a few other folks here have read.

    I could say a whole bunch about it, but for now I'll try to keep it short. It's not nearly the book Blindsight is, unfortunately. The 3rd person POV just doesn't work nearly as well as the POV from the previous book. Much of the interesting stuff here was covered better in Blindsight and the new ideas don't get developed very far. The hive mind people are interesting, and there is the beginning of a discussion about science vs. religion, but it goes nowhere.

    The basic plot is fine, and I really hope we get a third book in the Firefall sequence soon. I want more Siri! (We get a little bit of him in Echo, but it's really just a teaser.)

    On the bright side, Valerie, our new vampire, is pretty awesome, and only suffers from having "powers" that reach unbelievable levels in one area. Scarier than the vamp from book one, IMO. She seems far more predatory. I really wish the novel had been written from her POV in the first person the whole way through.

    I wouldn't recommend it to folks who haven't read Blindsight, since it is mostly just a companion piece to it. If you loved Blindsight, I would suggest reading "The General" and the "presentation" on vampires on Watts's website, rifters.com, then reading Echo. Both pieces give some background that probably should be in the novel.
    I don't think the vampires had a first person point of view.

    Have you read the Starfish series?

    It's not as mind blowing as Blindsight but it is a good read.

  2. #1662
    Actually Molasses Baldanders's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by feudist View Post
    I don't think the vampires had a first person point of view.

    Have you read the Starfish series?

    It's not as mind blowing as Blindsight but it is a good read.
    Blindsight suggests sociopathy is close to non-sentience, but Valerie seemed pretty far from Rorschach in that regard, especially in the last third of the book or so. She certainly seems to have a capacity for humor, at least.

    I plan to read the Starfish series next.
    I wrote the Dune series because I had this idea that charismatic leaders ought to come with a warning label on their forehead: May be dangerous to your health.

    Frank Herbert

  3. #1663
    Quote Originally Posted by Coyotesfan97 View Post
    A Higher Call by Adam Makos

    https://www.amazon.com/Higher-Call-I...s%2C259&sr=8-1

    ďDecember 1943: A badly damaged American bomber struggles to fly over wartime Germany. At the controls is twenty-one Second Lieutenant Charlie Brown. Half his crew lay wounded or dead on this, their first mission. Suddenly, a Messerschmitt fighter pulls up on the bomberís tail. The pilot is Frank Stigler and he can destroy the young American crew with the squeeze of a trigger...Ē

    I saw Tara Rossís post about this incident and bought the book. Iím almost done with it. Itís a fascinating story about the two pilots. They met after the war and became long time friends. A lot of the book focuses on Stigler who flew in Africa, Italy, and the Western Front. He was a 262 pilot near the end of the war.

    Highly recommended!
    Sabaton just did a video on this.


  4. #1664
    critical race weary blues's Avatar
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    Currently reading "The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz " by Erik Larson.

    As with most of his work, excellent.

    Churchill really was the right man at the right time, pink fuzzy slippers, dressing gowns and all.

    We shall not flag nor fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France and on the seas and oceans; we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air. We shall defend our island whatever the cost may be; we shall fight on beaches, landing grounds, in fields, in streets and on the hills. We shall never surrender and even if, which I do not for the moment believe, this island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, will carry on the struggle until in God's good time the New World with all its power and might, sets forth to the liberation and rescue of the Old.
    ...and just like that, I woke up one morning and the America I knew and loved was gone.

  5. #1665
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    REVIEW:

    Escape from Sun City by Mike Solyom
    5/5

    Escape From Sun City takes place in a Caribbean country on the brink of starvation and collapse. Outside forces hope to leverage the chaos and topple the feeble remnant of government. They put in place a diabolical plan that will mean the death of thousands, but will leave them with a powerful foothold just off the American coast.
    The story is fast paced and action packed. Most importantly, if feels credible. Author Solyom goes much farther into firearms than I can follow. I am something of a ďgun guy,Ē though, and what I was familiars with, he got spot on. He even took a few sentences to disavow some of the ridiculous tropes, such as magic ďsilencersĒ that make big guns go ďpifff!Ē
    Iíve never had the honor of serving, but I grew up with a 20 year Special Forces Father. I knew many of his friends. There is something about these men that setís them apart. Itís hard to put your finger on it, but if youíve experienced it once, youíll know it when you see it again. Solyomís characters had that feel.
    The story is made even more interesting and realistic as the operators have to navigate a minefield of political sensitivities and international agreements.
    I give this book my highest recommendation.

    https://www.amazon.com/s?k=Escape+fr...ref=nb_sb_noss

  6. #1666
    Hobbyist JAD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigguy View Post
    I just finished "Rose City Free Fall" by DL Barbur. (Actually one of our own here on the PF.) I gave it 5 stars on Amazon and Good reads.
    It's a good story, well told. It is realistic, lacking the many ridiculous mistakes in so many books and movies, written by people who's only actual experience with violence is books and movies.
    I just finished it and agree. Man, Barbur just kicks the ~shit~ out of his hero.
    Ignore Alien Orders

  7. #1667
    Site Supporter Coyotesfan97's Avatar
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    Killer of Men: The Long War book 1. Itís written by Christian Cameron who wrote the Ill Made Knight series. It popped up on my Amazon feed and I finished it in two days. I love the history of this era.

    https://www.amazon.com/Killer-of-Men...9098870&sr=8-1

    Arimnestos is a farm boy when war breaks out between the citizens of his native Plataea and their overbearing neighbours, Thebes. Standing in the battle line for the first time, alongside his father and brother, he shares in a famous and unlikely victory. But after being knocked unconscious in the melee, he awakes not a hero but a slave.

    Betrayed by his jealous and cowardly cousin, the freedom he fought for has now vanished, and he becomes the property of a rich citizen. So begins an epic journey out of slavery that takes the young Arimnestos through a world poised on the brink of an epic confrontation, as the emerging civilisation of the Greeks starts to flex its muscles against the established empire of the Persians.

    As he tries to make his fortune and revenge himself on the man who disinherited him, Arimnestos discovers that he has a talent that pays well in this new, violent world - for like his hero, Achilles, he is 'a killer of men
    The bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and danger alike, and yet notwithstanding, go out to meet it.* Thucydides 471BC

    "Hey! Let's be careful out there." Sgt Phil Esterhaus played by Michael Conrad

  8. #1668
    Site Supporter MGW's Avatar
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    Iím currently reading The Dry by Jane Harper. I saw a preview for the movie on YouTube the other day and thought it looked interesting. Iím really enjoying the story so far. Came down with COVID last week. Pretty much Iím reading, staring into space, or sleeping so it has been a good distraction.
    ďIf you know the way broadly you will see it in everything." - Miyamoto Musashi

  9. #1669
    critical race weary blues's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MGW View Post
    Iím currently reading The Dry by Jane Harper. I saw a preview for the movie on YouTube the other day and thought it looked interesting. Iím really enjoying the story so far. Came down with COVID last week. Pretty much Iím reading, staring into space, or sleeping so it has been a good distraction.
    I read that a few years ago. She's a good writer.

    Feel better, brother.
    ...and just like that, I woke up one morning and the America I knew and loved was gone.

  10. #1670
    IS WHAT PLANTS CRAVE BehindBlueI's's Avatar
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    This is a counter-recommendation. I have rarely been so disappointed by a book.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...w_myk_ro_title

    Shadows of the Pomegranate Tree: A Novel

    This is a short novel about the remnants of the Muslim (and to a lesser extent, Jewish) communities in the south of Isabella's Spain. A rogue bishop breaks the treaties that were signed during the Capitulations and other characters have to react to that. It's historical fiction and it has all the parts of a good story...and then fails to use them. It's 99% windup and 1% pitch and then it's over. It just keep setting up and setting up and showing the mundane while working toward the exceptional and just never quite gets there. I won't spoil it in the event you elect to read it, but the ending was just a whimper after so much build up.

    I wish the book had been just bad. I wouldn't have kept going. Instead it was just good enough that I kept reading thinking SURELY the NEXT chapter is when all this starts to pay off. It didn't. I was hoping for something like Pillars of the Earth and it didn't even come close to that level of story telling, character arcs, or attain that balance of the routine of daily life with the epic they combine to make. The battle scenes are brief and lack any sort of descriptive flare. When the author does manage to accidentally insert some action, he must immediately flee from it and that just makes it that much more of a slog.
    Important rule change regarding political discussion here: https://pistol-forum.com/showthread....58#post1151858

    Quote Originally Posted by UNM1136 View Post
    Maybe with talented students I would lube up with baby oil and then go at it.

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