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Colyngbourne 8th Jan 2013 8:54

2013 Palimplist Conversations
To start us off,

JM, spotted Space Family Stone on your list already. I haven't read that since teenage years. Was it worth revisiting? The twins, the snarky grandmother?

JunkMonkey 10th Jan 2013 11:40

Re: 2013 Palimplist Conversations
I enjoyed it. Though how much of my enjoyment was nostalgia, and how much of it was a relief that it wasn't unreadably awful I don't know. (I too hadn't read it since teenage years.) Looking at it now, through the jaded eyes of middle-agedness, it still managed to generate a bit of the old 'sense of wonder'. It's improbable, Libertarian-lite hookum of course but slickly written and page-turningly paced.

Ang 23rd Mar 2013 8:49

Re: 2013 Palimplist Conversations
KevinfromCanada, I spotted this in your list:

18. The Blue Book, A.L. Kennedy -- abandoned

I almost abandoned it but glad I didn't as it had an excellent ending. However, I understand why you did abandon it.

KevinfromCanada 23rd Mar 2013 16:16

Re: 2013 Palimplist Conversations
Ang: After 60 pages, I was annoyed more than anything else -- in the edition I was reading the "interior" thoughts were in italic type. I didn't think they were telling me much and it was even worse to have them set in hard-to-read type. And then when yet another character with extended interior thoughts was introduced, I'd had enough -- quit the book on page 100.

I have read other works by Kennedy (short stories, I should say) and quite liked them. I think part of my reaction to this one was that I had just finished Satantango, another novel that features a lot of confusing action (and unconventional typography), and simply wasn't up to extending a lot of effort when I wasn't getting much of a return.

Lucoid 1st Apr 2013 15:44

Re: 2013 Palimplist Conversations
Are there any Louis de Bernieres fans here? I'm really struggling to get into The Troublesome Offspring of Cardinal Guzman and wondering if it's worth persevering. I know it's part of a trilogy but as far as I can work out it's intended to stand on its own as well as with the preceding two books, which I haven't read. Is that right or should I just give up now?

JunkMonkey 2nd Apr 2013 1:53

Re: 2013 Palimplist Conversations
I loved them. I started when I discovered The War of Don Emmanuel's Nether Parts on holiday and read all three in quick succession. Later I read Captain Corelli's Mandolin in one non-stop sitting. I haven't read any of them again.

I do remember The Troublesome Offspring of Cardinal Guzman getting horribly graphic in places.

Lucoid 3rd Apr 2013 13:26

Re: 2013 Palimplist Conversations
Thanks JM. Not quite sure that helps entirely but like I say, thanks. I'm starting to settle into it now, and will approach the horribly graphic bits forewarned and from behind a cushion. It does have a very different feel from Captain Corelli's Mandolin, at least as I remember it.

JunkMonkey 3rd Apr 2013 18:37

Re: 2013 Palimplist Conversations
Actually I'm now wondering now if the horribly graphic bits I mentioned were in the SeƱor Vivo and the Coca Lord. Either way I still remember them 20 years later and I still have them on my shelves.

POSSIBLE SPOILER BELOW - my brain has mislaid the 'How to do the blanking thing', sorry.

I think the memory of the HGBs has put me off revisiting them, not because the HGBs are HG but because they (one in particular where a central character is VERY brutally murdered) happen to characters I had come to like a lot and seemed very unfair and was painful to read.

Mookse 8th Apr 2013 21:05

Re: 2013 Palimplist Conversations
Kevin, I see I can join forces with you if anyone starts claiming Nathan Englander is the greatest short story writer ever.

bill 9th Apr 2013 0:04

Re: 2013 Palimplist Conversations
I've read about half of Englander's WHAT WE TALK ABOUT WHEN WE TALK ABOUT ANNE FRANK. I thought the title story was quite good, as was the one about the old folks camp, or whatever it's called. But at least a couple of the ones I've read were genuinely bad. The one about the guy who goes to the peep show was embarrassing. I was getting whiplash reading that book.

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