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Books you've read and liked

Discussion in 'GatorTail Pub' started by solari, Apr 2, 2018.

  1. leftcoastgator

    leftcoastgator Ambivalent Zealot Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    This is a good list. I've read and agree with about 90% of this list.

    I'm a sucker for spy novels, so I'd add Red Sparrow and Palace of Treason by Jason Matthews, an ex-CIA guy. (Didn't care for the third book in the trilogy, the Kremlin's Candidate, because the ending disappointed.)

    Lee Child's Jack Reacher series is great escapism with a compelling character, a righteous ex-military police captain who is twice the size of Tom Cruise, who bought the film rights. Unfortunately.

    My all-time favorite is Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey-Maturin series, which is superbly written and researched with action scenes that are right out of the history of the Royal Navy.
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  2. danmann65

    danmann65 GC Hall of Fame

    May 22, 2015
    I love Neal Stephenson. His early books Snow Crash and the young ladies home primer(or something like that were amazing. The Culture Series by Iain M Banks is also amazing. I am sorry he died a couple of years ago. I still thought he was putting out good work. Humans I have added to my list. lol
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  3. danmann65

    danmann65 GC Hall of Fame

    May 22, 2015
    I am surprised not to see one of my favorite Authors. Patrick OBrian is amazing. They made a pretty but horrible movie called the far side of the world a couple of years ago. His Aubrey Maturin series is almost 20 amazing books long.
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  4. gatormonk

    gatormonk GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 3, 2007
    The Heart is a Lonely Hunter

    Carson McCullers
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  5. anstro76

    anstro76 GC Hall of Fame

    Feb 14, 2008
    Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
    American Gods - Neil Gaiman
    Soil - Jamie Kornegay
    The Resurrectionist - Matthew Guinn
    Under the Skin - Michel Faber
    Bull Mountain - Brian Panowich
    Me and the Devil - Nick Tosches
    Possible Side Effects - Augusten Burroughs
    Running With Scissors - Augusten Burroughs
    When You Are Engulfed in Flames - David Sedaris
    Born Standing Up - Steve Martin
    Galveston - Nic Pizzolatto
    The Graveyard Book Neil Gaiman
    The Ocean at the End of the Lane - Neil Gaiman
    The Sandman Series - Neil Gaiman
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  6. shelbygt350

    shelbygt350 GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 3, 2007
    OK, this is long, so bear with me.

    As a child I hated to read, so my mom took me to library and said pick any book what ever you want to read. So I picked up a kids book titled "The Kid Who Batted 1.000". I loved to play baseball so I figured it couldn't be too bad. I still recall the story and it got me reading which I do every day, wish I could do more.

    I loved: The Big Short and others by Michael Lewis. Malcolm Gladwell's David and Goliath, Tipping Point, Blink, etc. All of Tom Clancey's (originally his writing). Stephen Ambrose's WWII books like Wild Blue Yonder, etc. Some of the early USA history by David McCullough, but I find Ellis full of bull too often (as in he makes up conclusions of Founding Fathers based on opinion as opposed to evidence).

    Most books by John Grisham are good. As well as Michael Connelly, as in the Lincoln Lawyer. Brad Thor and David Balducci are also good.

    Others were all of John Steinbeck's, with Travels with Charley as a smile producer. Then there are odd ball ones like Joseph Plumb Martin's Yankee Doodle which is a first hand account of a Revolutionary War Soldier; Darwin's Black Box; Horse Soldiers; The Greatest Game; American Triumphant (Hogan, Nelson and Snead lives); and a real good one by Zane Grey "Last of the Breed", about an USA Air Force pilot shot down over the Soviet Union, who as an American Indian was raised to survive in the wild.

    My wife likes the Grisham, Connelly, Thor etc books and one series she finds hilarious : The Number One Ladies Detective Agency
  7. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude VIP Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    Great starter book, remember checking it out from Cooper Memorial Library in tiny Clermont.
  8. VAg8r1

    VAg8r1 GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 8, 2007
    A couple of good nonfiction books.
    The Day the Bubble Burst by Gordon Thomas and Max Morgan-Witts. Nonfiction that reads like a novel. Covers the year 1929 and the cause as well as the effects of the 1929 stock market crash on real people.

    O Jerusalem by Larry Collins and Dominique Lapierre. Also nonfiction that reads like a novel. Story of the 1948 Israeli War of Independence. Review from the Goodreads website
    The story of modern Israel's birth is so innately fascinating that it would be hard to tell in a boring way. The authors of this book, however, go above and beyond to make their account as riveting as any novel. I can only imagine the hundreds of hours spent gathering interviews for the countless personal portraits that make this history come to life.

    Winds of War and War and Remembrance by Herman Wouk, Two books that are essentially a two-part novel centering around a family during World War II. Was made into two tv mini-series in '80s. Although the made for tv movies were worth watching with the second, War and Remembrance, much better than the first (they're available on DVD and and be available as digital downloads, neither compares with the novels.

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  9. shelbygt350

    shelbygt350 GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 3, 2007
    You read that Book !!!!!!!!! Wow. You remember the story? The kid was from a farm, he was an expert on fouling off pitches to draw a walk. That kid could get a pitcher worn out. Did it all season, then in last game swung away and hit the game winning home run.

    Other recent books of note: The God Shaped Brain by Tim Jennings. Silent Victory (submarine warfare in WW2). Doolittle's Raiders (I think it was title, written in past 5 or so years). Unbroken and Sea Biscuit by Laura Hildebrand. Amazing Grace (story of one William Wiburforce who spent decades in England's Parliament working to out law slave trading). The Greatest Generation. Lewis and Clark's Journal.

    Heavy Heavy Reading: The Creature from Jekyll Island (Federal Reserve).
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  10. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude VIP Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    I read it more than once :) Remember it well, lots of good kids books back in the day, used to take my book, transistor radio and climb as high as I could go in the australian pines near my house and read for hours listening toR & R on WLOF & WHOO out of Orlando (Pre Mouse)
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  11. shelbygt350

    shelbygt350 GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 3, 2007
    That one book led me to start really reading......by the time I finished high school I had read all of Steinbeck's, all of Hemingway, all of Graham Green, as well as the huge Rise and Fall of Third Reich, the Albert Speer book he wrote in prison (he lied a lot to save his butt) and other ones.

    I had a huge book report due in the 9th grade and had forgotten all about it. It was supposed to be one on an actual historical events. The day before it was due, I was in a panic. So I made up a story, called it "Desert Sands", as in the actual account of a US Army soldier under Gen Patton on the invasion of North Africa. I made up the whole thing based on WW2 history books I had read, just typed it out on the Underwood upright. Got an "A", still feel guilty about it.
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  12. gatorbronco

    gatorbronco GC Hall of Fame

    Mar 3, 2008
    Harry Crew's books are little weird, but "A Childhood", the biography of his early years is very good. Set in southeast Georgia and then Jacksonville. Crews went to school at UF and then taught a creative writing class there. The articles about him after he died are very interesting. He got stabbed at the Cross Creek fish camp.
  13. StrangeGator

    StrangeGator GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 3, 2007
    Currently reading House of Spies. Have read everything else by Daniel Silva. Couldn't begin to name a favorite.

    Read everything from Carl Hiaasen up till 10 or 11 years ago. Got a little burned out. Planning on catching up on his more recent books soon. Had the pleasure of sitting next to Carl at a literary event in Panama City a few years ago. If you imagine he would be a cool guy, you're not even close. (Close friends with Keith Richards)

    WW II geeks should read Ian McEwan's Atonement and see the film adaptation, directed by Darkest Hour director, Joe Wright. The cinematography during the Dunkirk sequence rivals anything in Nolan's film. It's one of the longest, most dramatic continuous shots ever filmed. Brilliant performance from 12 year-old Saorise Ronan in her first major film and the first of her three Oscar nominations.
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  14. lacuna

    lacuna The Conscience of Too Hot VIP Member

    Apr 8, 2007
    @StrangeGator - have you by chance read McEwan's Booker Prize winning Amsterdam? It's a delightful cautionary tale, on the short side at a little more than 200 pages, with a devilish twist.
  15. WhattaGator

    WhattaGator All Along The Watchtower Moderator VIP Member

    Jun 1, 2007
    The Stand, by Steven King


    The place where you made your stand never mattered. Only that you were there...and still on your feet

    So I finally finished this gigantic brick. This freakin' gigantic heavy brick, and all I can say is, this is probably the best freakin' brick ever made. With a heaping 1439 pages, this book managed to hurt both my wrists, and probably injured some of my fingers. That's the price I had to pay to read this amazing novel. I never thought that I wouldn't finish this, fuck it I never even thought of putting this book down and read something else for the meantime. All I can say is, Stephen King managed to impress me again. Not that I doubted him though

    Its a typical thing for King to serve us with multiple characters with different stories, and plunge them together at some point. And as usual, some were amazing, and some were dreadfully boring unforgettable. This was also my experience while reading Needful Things, but his characters here are way better. I got an in depth description of each one, and I either loved or hated each one. That technique of King is truly remarkable. What goes best with an amazing plot? Well, freakin' amazing characters that's what. Ask me who my favorite is, and I'll probably end up describing most of them instead because I loved almost all of them.

    I remember complaining how long the novel is
    I've read quite a few epics, but all of them were way shorter than this. When I finished though, and pondered upon what could've been excluded, none came to mind. I believe everything happened for a reason, or let me rephrase that, everything was written for a reason. You can't really take out something from the story, because then the plot holes would reappear. The length of the novel is proportional to the enjoyment I experienced while reading this.

    Once again, the characters were amazing and fully developed. I actually cared for them, and I didn't want them to die. This novel focused on the battle between good and evil, in a lengthy epic like feeling. We have Mother Abagail on the good side, and Flagg as the devil. It's King's second time to introduce a devil-like character, and the character turned out just as amazing. Flagg truly depicted a strong devil. He's really a strong character that I would love to read more about in his other novels (really hoping for a guest appearance).

    Harold is the one I hated the most while reading. That pig really annoyed me. Everything he did was really annoying, and I wanted him to die at one point in the novel. Although I do have to point out that I hate him for a good reason. My hatred of him led to a better enjoyment of the novel. We all hate a character, and we want to see awful things done to them. I'm more than satisfied with the characters King created

    Lloyd and Nick were really amazing too. One is part of the dark team, and the other of the good team. I'm not gonna spoil who belongs where. All you need to know is that Nick's a kickass deaf-mute, and Lloyd's an annoying yet funny character. Tom's really cool too, despite being a retard. I didn't care for him that much in the beginning, but things started to change as I read along.

    Stu and Fran's story would have to be my favorite of all the ones in the novel. Ever since the early parts of the novel, Fran's story already caught my interest, and it continued till the end

    Larry Underwood's also really interesting. His pride overcoming him then more awful things happening really kept me interested in what would happen to him. I'm only going to mention those characters though, because who would want to read a spoiler and ruin their reading experience right? Those 3 are my favorites, but that doesn't mean that the others were boring. I will repeat, almost all the characters are amazing. There will obviously be a few that would stand out, and those 3 are my choice. Wait, I forgot to mention another favorite, the freakin' dog Kojak!! I always love dogs in novels
    Kojak didn't disappoint!

    Okay, enough feet kissing and let me get on with some negative aspects of this novel.

    The back of the book states that "The survivors who remain are scared, bewildered, and in need of a leader. Two emerge - Mother Abagail, the benevolent 108-year-old woman who urges them to build a community in Boulder, Colorado; and Randall Flagg the nefarious "Dark Man", who
    delights in chaos and violence.
    Yes, both of them possess those amazing qualities, but I don't think it's right to say that both of them are the leaders of the novel. I get that people in the novel looked up to the both of then [in fear and in doubt] but neither of the two became my genuine favorite. I really liked them both, yes, but that's that. Randall's really outstanding with all the violence don't get me wrong, but Mother Abagail was presented as somewhat disgusting . Obviously opinionated, but hey, aren't all reviews opinionated?

    Maybe I should've said that I had one problem, because that's all I can think of as of right now. I had problems along the novel though, but all [except the one stated above] were resolved

    Major problems like plot holes and all were resolved at the end of the novel, and that's awesome. Mostly when I read a novel, the problems that I had while reading didn't get fixed. The Stand proved itself otherwise. The main problem would be that we tend to complain even if we're not yet done with the novel.

    The ending's really great. I'm not going to complain anymore because I really liked it. It gave me closure, and honestly, the ending's really witty. You'll have to read it yourself, but I really liked it. I'm not gonna put it in a spoiler tag anymore, because there's no reason to do so. Just read this amazing novel and see for yourself. Once again, real witty of you King. This is why you're my favorite author
    So, to wrap things up, this is now my favorite King novel. It is clearly superior to The Long Walk and Needful Things, both in length and substance. I'm not saying don't read the other two, because they are both amazing in their own ways, and I'm also recommending them. The Stand is just King's novel that had the biggest impact on me, as of now. Such a shame to say that he's my favorite author yet I believe I've read less than ten books of his, and I've only read this now. I'm planning to change that soon though, I can't wait to read more amazing novels written by King. 5/5 stars, and a worthy addition to my favorites list. A clear recommendation, and I can say that this is one of my best reads
  16. COGatorman

    COGatorman Gator with Altitude! Premium Member

    Jan 2, 2010
    I subscribe to Audible and listen to novels rather than music or talk/news radio for both commuting and long trips. Was doing books on CD before as well for long trips.

    I am currently going through the Jack Reacher novels by Lee Child. It is a great escape even if improbably founded. It is fun to catch Lee Child, a Brit, try to describe some elements of American pop culture or common idiosyncrasies.

    As a younger man, I really enjoyed the Jack Ryan books by Tom Clancy and the Dirk Pitt novels by Clive Cussler (whom I met - nice guy, but pretentiously odd).

    I first got into the books on CD with the Cotton Malone novels by Steve Berry, but I stopped after the fourth or fifth because it seemed every conclusion was some way of bringing down a religious tradition of some sort. It seemed to have an underlying hostility to traditional religious beliefs and customs (and on an equal opportunity level - Catholics, Christians, Mormons - and others).
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  17. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude VIP Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    Would have been surprised if they weren't, he was an artist he didn't look back.......... a real piece of the Gvl mosaic back in the day.
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
  18. deathroll

    deathroll GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 8, 2007
    To Kill A Mockingbird
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  19. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude VIP Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    one of my all time favs as is the film
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  20. tec68

    tec68 Belle Glade Boy VIP Member

    Aug 12, 2010
    My recent expeditions because these following series are just that lol. You must invest time into them.

    Stormlight Archives(3 books)by Brandon Sanderson- great world and character building throughout the series, I am about 3 quarters through the final book and it hasn’t disappointed. Very enjoyable fantasy that has a unique well thought out “magic” system. It’s not a witches and wizards type of magic.

    The Name of the Wind(book 1 of Kingkiller Chronicles)by Patrick Rothfuss

    The Wise Man’s Fear
    (book 2 of Kingkiller Chronicles) by Patrick Rothfuss

    -this series by Rothfuss is not for the faint of heart. There seemingly isn’t a “happy ending” it is very raw and also has great world and character building. Waiting on future installments.
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