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Your top 5 books
Started by The Lad Herz




93 posts in this topic
Jeff Resnick
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05-15-2020, 11:10 AM -
#41
(05-15-2020, 08:31 AM)Currahee! Wrote: I really like John Niven as an author. All his books are good.

The Second Coming is possibly in my Top 5. Fantastic read from the opening pages to the end.
Currahee!
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05-15-2020, 11:15 AM -
#42
(05-15-2020, 11:10 AM)Jeff Resnick Wrote: The Second Coming is possibly in my Top 5. Fantastic read from the opening pages to the end.

I read it again on holiday last year. I had forgot how good it was. Cracking read. Sound
Nicolas Sarkozy
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05-15-2020, 12:18 PM -
#43
Never read Catcher in the Rye either, funnily enough I've got a copy of it that I had already earmarked as the next thing to start once I finish one of the books I'm reading at the moment. Interested to see how reading it for the first time in my late 20s compares to people who read it as teenagers and love it.

Top 5 that I actually go back to is probably something like:
Slaughterhouse 5, Kurt Vonnegut
Catch-22, Joseph Heller
The Godfather, Mario Puzo
The Great Gatsby, F Scott Fitzgerald
Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov

Top 3 are always in there but could switch the bottom two for any of On the Road, Breakfast of Champions, Heart of Darkness, Complete Works of Sherlock Holmes, Life of Pi, L'Amant or something like Postwar by Tony Judt.

My bookshelf is essentially:
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Neaven Staismith
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05-15-2020, 01:52 PM -
#44
Vonnegut MyMan

Haven't read Slaughterhouse but BOC is class. Galapagos too.
Makween
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05-15-2020, 02:08 PM -
#45
Fucking hate On the Road with a passion. Self-indulgent tripe written by a massive twat (but enough about my posts).
(08-21-2017, 01:25 PM)i8hibsh Wrote: I AM A LONER BY CHOICE
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Little Bit Of The Boycey
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05-15-2020, 02:37 PM -
#46
(05-15-2020, 02:08 PM)Makween Wrote: Fucking hate On the Road with a passion. Self-indulgent tripe written by a massive twat (but enough about my posts).

Thank you - I’ve tried to read it three times at various different stages of my life and it’s fucking hard work. Made it to the end on the third attempt a couple of years ago and was not enriched by the experience. I think his writing is pretty pedestrian and meandering tbh.

On The Road Tim

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Neaven Staismith
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05-15-2020, 02:48 PM -
#47
(05-15-2020, 02:08 PM)Makween Wrote: Fucking hate On the Road with a passion. Self-indulgent tripe written by a massive twat (but enough about my posts).

(05-15-2020, 02:37 PM)Little Bit Of The Boycey Wrote: Thank you - I’ve tried to read it three times at various different stages of my life and it’s fucking hard work. Made it to the end on the third attempt a couple of years ago and was not enriched by the experience. I think his writing is pretty pedestrian and meandering tbh.

On The Road Tim

The Road Jim Kens
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CoroNaFish
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05-15-2020, 03:45 PM -
#48
Didn't much like on the road as a teenager, but could atleast get behind that spirit of pushing forward and fighting against time. Re-read it a year or two back and couldn't get over the fact that he left his wife and child to get cross country two or three times for a lark. Berk.
Walter Boycechak
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05-15-2020, 05:24 PM -
#49
Really hard one this, have been through phases of reading a lot of different stuff over the years. Going to look back at books which made an impact on me at the time. Like london fields would never be my top 5 desert island books but...

Martin Amis - London Fields. I remember on Mark Radcliffe's late night radio show they used to get folk on to read excerpts from novels, and this was one. It seemed like such a modern novel at the time I read it (was only 14 or 15 I think).

Kerouac - on the road. The energy popping off the page. I know some people hate it ( Monty Chuckle ), and I've not revisited it, but for the time in my life it was perfect. That gives rise to things like:

Jim Dodge - Not fade away. This is possibly my favourite novel, so much fun. A wild, weird ride.

Arthur Nersesian - the fuck up.

Alberto Moravia - Contempt

Albert Camus - The plague and L'etranger. Hard to separate for me, again they define a period in my life and i would say helped make me who I am today (a cretin). Can put in Nausea by Sartre as well. Probably nausea affected me most profoundly, was 16 and, well it is quite a negative book. Anyone read the devil and the good lord? Tremendous.

George Orwell - again hard to pick one book, as for me he is the master stylist, but will plump for down and out in paris and london.

Honourable mention for brett easton ellis, american psycho is superb, and remember being blown away (lol if you've read it amirite) by glamorama. Went through a period of reading everything by Milan Kundera, started with the unbearable lightness of being. It seems like such a cliche now, might need to go back and reread it to see if I rate him as highly.

Feel there should maybe be space for some scottish books in this thread though, maybe worth a thread on its own? From Welsh to Hogg, to Kelman.
Walter Boycechak
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05-15-2020, 09:25 PM -
#50
(05-14-2020, 08:16 PM)Neaven Staismith Wrote: Prestor John (John Buchan) - It's between this and Heart of Darkness for my most-read book. A really good yarn about a Scottish guy who moves to deepest, darkest South Africa and gets caught up in tribal warfare, treachery, and hunting/being hunted by this murderous warlord across the Transvaal. Always thought it would make a great movie.

Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail (Hunter S Thomson) - HST's Gonzo style meets the backhanders and backstabbing of Nixon's re-election. Doesn't hold back on what he sees. Illustration by Ralph Steadman is, as per, outstanding.
Have only read the 39 steps, what a classic. Will have to look into Prestor John.

Mentioned Hunter S above. It's really great writing.

(05-14-2020, 08:35 PM)Neaven Staismith Wrote: The books I remember reading in school were Merchant of Venice...

Shakespeare was taught in its usual impenetrable way, where if you come out of a lesson knowing what's going on you're doing ok. Have read four of Shakespeare's plays and MOV is the most boring by far. Think the only reason we read POMJB was because we were in Edinburgh.

We did Merchant of Venice as well, but hat whole year of english for me was great. Had a decent class and we had shakespeare and our RPRs. A boy at my table did "Dalglish - My autobiography". Laugh Heh

Went on a trip to stratford upon avon as well (60% of the guys were caught smoking doobs and nothing was said other than put that away) to see 3 plays at the RSC brought it to life. Thinking back that was a amazing trip and time. Super lucky to have had that. Wee smoke in the gardens of warwick castle, some archery, a few more smokes and then as you like it in the late afternoon. A genuinely amazing way to spend a day.

(05-14-2020, 07:38 PM)The Lad Herz Wrote: The BFG - Dahl. The greatest teacher in the world read it out to us. Just nice times back then.

How good are Dahl's books. Can't wait to share them with my daughter. Danny, the champion of the world is probably my favourite, but I imagine that might change when reading them together, or as she gets older as well.
Neaven Staismith
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05-15-2020, 10:00 PM -
#51
(05-15-2020, 09:25 PM)Walter Boycechak Wrote: Have only read the 39 steps, what a classic. Will have to look into Prestor John.

Mentioned Hunter S above. It's really great writing.
I read 39 Steps for the first time a few years ago and didn't think it was as good as Prestor John. Let me know what you think of it if you ever do pick it up Sound

(05-15-2020, 09:25 PM)Walter Boycechak Wrote: How good are Dahl's books. Can't wait to share them with my daughter. Danny, the champion of the world is probably my favourite, but I imagine that might change when reading them together, or as she gets older as well.
I was a big fan of the BFG and George's Marvelous Medicine, but the wee man loved The Twits. Must've read that about 10 times in the last few years. I used to do the Roly Poly bird's speech in a Jamaican accent and he loved it Warnock

Still had all my old Dahl books from when I was a kid in my ma's attic, so it was a nice feeling bringing them down and reading them again with the boy.
Ross Kemp On Spice
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05-15-2020, 10:16 PM -
#52
I honestly think I have some sort of memory issue. Read so many books but if I had a gun to my head I couldn't tell you my favourite.

I'll go with

Trainspotting (special because it's my home)
1984
Phillip K Dick - The Man in the High castle

After that I'm not sure. I'm not a great fan of fiction and it feels like that is the best for this sort of thing. I will never read a book twice either so it depends where I read it in my life. Shree amazing books there though.
Mikey
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05-15-2020, 10:47 PM -
#53
My best mate has read two books in his life. The Alchemist and On the Road Comical Ally
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05-15-2020, 10:50 PM -
#54
Alex Fergusons autobiography
S.J.
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05-15-2020, 11:30 PM -
#55
Great thread, btw
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05-16-2020, 12:26 AM -
#56
(05-15-2020, 10:16 PM)Ross Kemp On Spice Wrote: I honestly think I have some sort of memory issue. 


Pondlife

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Jeff Resnick
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05-16-2020, 12:49 AM -
#57
(05-15-2020, 10:16 PM)Ross Kemp On Spice Wrote: I honestly think I have some sort of memory issue. Read so many books but if I had a gun to my head I couldn't tell you my favourite.

I think I'm in similar territory.

Trainspotting is a huge fave. It isnt Welsh's best but because its about Edinburgh and after battling my Higher English teacher to use it for my RPR, its quite a special book to me.

The aforementioned The Second Coming. Roaring away from start to finish as well as the obvious jibes at modern society.

Moneyball. I try to read it at least once a year. I've a real affinity with it including because its the baseball team I follow thats the subject. I've always followed teams that have struggled against the monetary odds, so this resonated throughout.

Those are the three that I always look back and have read more than once.

Obviously a few from my childhood, as some have mentioned, Roald Dahl in particular. He's the author that really hooked me into reading from a young age. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe as well. Not my thing as an adult but growing up was a real favourite.

Certainly a soft spot for 'Dark Souls' by Ian Rankin. First Rebus novel I read and I've been hooked since.
Mikey
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05-16-2020, 12:55 AM -
#58
Got all the Roald Dahl's books in a box at my maw's house. Hopefully read them to my own bairns one day.

His two autobiographical ones Fart Smelly

Some life.

Got all the Tintin books as well jjay Probably read them all about 100 times growing up.
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05-16-2020, 08:20 AM -
#59
I’ve had a new found love for Dr Seuss since I’ve had the kids. Think I only ever read the two Cat in the Hat books when I was a kid but bought a big box set when Maisie was little and they get pulled out all the time. The Things That You’ll Do is amazing, you could read it at any age and take something from it.
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05-16-2020, 12:26 PM -
#60
Genuinely tough to pick 5

American Tabloid - James Ellroy
Blood Meridian - Cormac McCarthy 
The Stranger - Albert Camus
Lucky Jim - Kingsley Anáis
Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole

I’ll throw Watchmen in there as a comic book too
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