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Pat's Guide to Glasgow West End

Any good books on the go? ....


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It's a right dreary day outside. I've just lit a coal fire and plan to spend the afternoon curled up with a text book on core process psychotherapy for a study day I'm doing in two weeks. It's so dry it's making me yearn for a good novel. Anyone had their nose in any good reads lately?

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Nope! It's been academia only for me since October, apart from reading Philip Pullman's 'The Good Man Jesus...' over xmas, loada drivel. Currently reading 'Columbine' by David Cullen, about the school shootings. It's partly academic ;-)

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Nope! It's been academia only for me since October, apart from reading Philip Pullman's 'The Good Man Jesus...' over xmas, loada drivel. Currently reading 'Columbine' by David Cullen, about the school shootings. It's partly academic ;-)

I've got The Good Man Jesus... gave up on it quite early in.

Hope the course is going well, Lynnski:)

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No academic books for me. :lol: But stick in.

Recently I enjoyed Maggie o'Farrell's - The Distance Between Us.

The had less love and more excitement with Lee Child's '61 Hours' - soft spot for Jack Reacher, although, his lack of clean clothes bothers me a bit.:)

I then read a rather strange book 'The Devil's Garden by Richard Montanari - extraordinally far fetched but full of suspense.

I'm gearing myself up to reading Germaine Greer's 'The Female Eunuch' for a book group on February 3rd but after a conversation with my sister, who was singing the praises of Marian Keyes, I started 'The Brightest Star in the Sky'. First time I've read one of her books - she is hilarious if not riveting.

One of my friends bought me 'The Help' by Kathryn Stockett for Christmas so it's sitting on the shelf and looking forward to that as lots of people singing its praises.

I'm always open to recommendations. :)

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I need to read more especially since I've started writing - well so they say but I wonder if what inspires you interrupts your style of writing? anyway I won't worry when I get the bestseller/film/series/ toyboy(s)

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I need to read more especially since I've started writing - well so they say but I wonder if what inspires you interrupts your style of writing? anyway I won't worry when I get the bestseller/film/series/ toyboy(s)

Hope we get to read the proofs, IonaW. Stick in. :lol:

I've been chatting a lot to my friends about reading recently, including to one of them yesterday (we were on the train for five hours). She said that no matter what she is reading she invariably finishes the book even when struggling to get through it.

My approach is pretty different, I discard at least half of the books I get from the library. I have tried some authors a second time but there isn't one that I have eventually taken to after initially deciding that I didn't like their writing.

Last week when I went to visit one of my cousins she was raving about her E-reader and showed me fifty books that she had downloaded from the Net. Pretty impressive and, she assured me, loads of advantages, including saving you carting a pile of books off on holiday, needing a bed light to read in bed, you never loose your page etc etc

I can see the attraction but I am not ready to give up turning my own pages just yet. Anyone tried one?

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Fifty grand by Adrian McKinty borrowed from Glasgow City libraries.

Adrian McKinty's wonderful Dead Trilogy confirmed him as a master of modern noir, up there with Dennis Lehane and James Ellroy. Fans nervous about where he might venture after the retirement of his "un-######-killable" antihero Michael Forsythe at the end of The Bloomsday Dead can, however, relax. Fifty Grand is a blast: a standalone effort which again showcases McKinty's brutal lyricism as well as his sensitivity to the indignities of the immigrant experience.

I'd go along with most of John O'Connell's review but an editor should have sliced a few more bits off the ending.

Fifty-Grand-by-Adrian-McK-001.jpg

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Sounds up my street. Dex. Although my reading streets vary depending upon a number of factors including mood and state of alertness.

I didn't read the full review - don't want to know too much - will have a look in the library. :D

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That's me off out to the library. I think I'll see if I can get the Adrian McKinty. Just finished Ian McEwan's 'On Chesil Beach', fine writer and absorbing story about the relationship between a couple of mismatched young innocents. I shouldn't have stayed in bed this morning finishing it because I didn't really have the time and it's not the most uplifting book in the world.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Fifty grand by Adrian McKinty borrowed from Glasgow City libraries.

I'd go along with most of John O'Connell's review but an editor should have sliced a few more bits off the ending.

Fifty-Grand-by-Adrian-McK-001.jpg

Thought I would start with the trilogy, Dex, so I got 'Dead I May Well Be' in the library. - 'A riveting story of revenge'.

I think it will be a bit different from the book I've just finished: 'Murder Alfresco - a sunny mccoskey napa alley mystery.'

Very enjoyable, quite light but interesting setting and quirky characters. There's a lot of disussion about food and restaurants - I think this was what prompted me to have a big cook-in for my guests the other night. I even went as far as making panna cotta from scratch plus a chocolate cake. :lol:

I also popped into Waterstone's last night en route to the Film Festival and picked up a Rough Guide to New York. Some travel plans to be made. :)

What are the rest of you reading?

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I am loving, Into the Silent Land by Paul Broks, although it's tough going in places.

Paul Broks is a neurospychologist and his book is described as a mosaic of neurological tales, metahpysical parables and autobiograpgical reflections. He describes ordinary people whose extraordinary situations have much to teach us about chance, compassion and human resillience in the face of adversity. Not quite sure how the book ended up in my possession but it's an interesting read.

I'm struggling through My Fault by Billy Childish. I keep thinking I should like it but I'll probably bin in. The last time I felt like that about a book was reading Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, which I hated. Wasn't that keen on Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance either. Avoided and poo pooed On the Road for years, read it and loved it.laugh.gif

Next on the list is the biography of Gabriel Garcia Marquez... just read the first chapter and it looks stonking. He's 17, has been homeless and is now living in a brothel and avenging the the eviction of his mother from her house. Is this the kind of life you/one needs to experience to be able to produce a book like 100 Years of Solitude? Could magical realism ever have come oot of Paisley or Dumbarton? laugh.gif

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When I was sick there I thought I'd catch up with the last few years bestseller fodder and so far read Room by Emma Donoghue - fantastic etc etc maybe the only criticism was that it flagged a bit towards the end but so gripping from the start and middle that kept me going.

Lovely Bones - gave up after the first chapter - don't know what the fuss was all about not because of the subject matter just found it ...boring - someone told me they felt the same about the film.

Currently reading How to Cope With Teenagers - seriously :) and the Alex Harvey bio which caught my eye in the library in a display entitled "Gone Before Their Time :) ahh the Irish and their obsession with death :D

Next on the list The Time Traveller Whatsit?

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I dumped The Lonely Bones too and gave the film a miss. I can't stand Alexander Whatshisname Smith in any shape nor form. althought millions like him and I have a comlete aversion, perhaps unfairly, to anything recommended by Richard and Judy.laugh.gif

Good luck with the teens book, IonaW. If it doesn't work you can always throw it at them. tongue.gif

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I dumped The Lonely Bones too and gave the film a miss. I can't stand Alexander Whatshisname Smith in any shape nor form. althought millions like him and I have a comlete aversion, perhaps unfairly, to anything recommended by Richard and Judy.laugh.gif

Good luck with the teens book, IonaW. If it doesn't work you can always throw it at them. tongue.gif

Couldn't see anything attractive about The Lonely Bones book or the film.

I've read a couple of McColl Smith's No 1 Women's Detective Agency and enjoyed them. Not so keen on the Scotland Street characters.

What have you got against Richard and Judy? :)

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I think Richard is truly awful and Judy would have been a much happier and successful woman if she had dumped him years ago..... seeing you asked.laugh.gif

I've only had fleeting glimpses of the pair but thought that their book lists were very popular

http://www.richardandjudy.co.uk/current-reads/Spring-2011/42

Just had a look and read a bit of their blog. Their daughter is dancing on ice. I'm not mad on the programme, haven't got the patience as they all look hopeless for the first few weeks.

Apols - should have said that on the tele thread. :)

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Good luck with the teens book, IonaW. If it doesn't work you can always throw it at them. tongue.gif

Best advice yet - the only thing is the hormones/moods change every second - in the time it takes for the book to hit him he's back to ma wee boy again :)

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Oh, I have a 20 year old one of those. God, can he turn on the mammy charm when it suits him.

I remember the teenage years of full throttle angst and dramatic performances that would even had Holden Caulfield looking askance. (See keeping it on topic there. wink.gif)

That said, it is my karma, I was a stonkingly outrageous teenager and reached adulthood relatively unscathed. I also passed on some fairly headstrong genes...tongue.gif

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Oh, I have a 20 year old one of those. God, can he turn on the mammy charm when it suits him.

I remember the teenage years of full throttle angst and dramatic performances that would even had Holden Caulfield looking askance. (See keeping it on topic there. wink.gif)

That said, it is my karma, I was a stonkingly outrageous teenager and reached adulthood relatively unscathed. I also passed on some fairly headstrong genes...tongue.gif

Just thinking (as I'm still negotiating round said teenager :)) with all these negotiating skills and patience and balance needed to exist with teenagers- my CV should be sent to the Diplomatic Service for a flash well paid job in say .....Libya :)

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Just thinking (as I'm still negotiating round said teenager :rolleyes:) with all these negotiating skills and patience and balance needed to exist with teenagers- my CV should be sent to the Diplomatic Service for a flash well paid job in say .....Libya :o

That sounds a bit drastic, Ionaw. Maybe just put the experience to use in your writing. :rolleyes:

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Just finished 'The hand that first held mine' by Maggie o'Farrell and thoroughly enjoyed it. One of those books that you miss when you've finished it and while you're reading it you take it out with you to read on the bus. Very unusual and great storytelling.

If you want to know all about it here's a review: http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2010/may/29/hand-held-mine-maggie-ofarrell

but I think it might be more enjoyable not knowing too much.

I had a go at the writer Dex recommended, Adrian McKinty, and the guy certainly has more than a way with words. His descriptive powers are awesome and wry:

"Fergal shook his big head at me. Fergal was tall and brown-haired, with a disastrous russet beard covering cadaverous cheeks. He wore tweed jackets in an attempt to appear sophisticated. It was a look that he just might have carried off at, say, a Swiss tuberculosis clinic circa 1912, but it weas hardly appropriate for a hot summer in New York eight decades later."

I immediately fell for young Michael Forsythe, the main character, but the subject of the hard boiled crime story is not up my street so I am swithering as to whether to continue reading the book.

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