Just bringing this discussion over to ning...

What books are you reading right now that don't have a narrative driven by images as well as words?

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I keep meaning to read that ...

The Baron said:

I used to have a copy of that. May still do.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

THE LIFE AND ADVENTURES OF SANTA CLAUS by L. Frank Baum: In lieu of reading this aloud to my nieces or my nephew, I read it aloud to myself. Lots of interesting trivia here. For example, Santa's first two reindeer were Flossie and Glossie. Negotiations with the Knook Prince allowed him as many as ten, so he added Racer & Pacer, Reckless & Speckless, Fearless & Peerless and Ready & Steady (although Tracy questions why Santa would ever use reindeer named "Reckless" and "Fearless"; together they would seem to make a dangerous combination). 

Well, I've shelved How Soon is Now? for now. I was hoping for some cool interesting stories, but it is mostly,,"Here is a band you've never heard of that put out one single." or "here is a record company you've never heard of that released 3 singles."

So, I did read Brad Meltzer's The Fifth Assassain. I liked this a lot better than the other book of his I read (The Tenth Justice which I thought was terrible). This book reads a lot like The Davinci Code. He does the same thing as Dan Brown in ending almost all of the chapters in a cliffhanger, than propels you to keep reading. Also, like Dan Brown here you have secret groups that have been around for years. This book deal with Beecher White and the rest of the Culper Ring trying to stop the assassination of the president, while the assassin builds up to it, by recreating the previous successful ones. I liked it.

Right now, I am reading Sparring with Gil Kane. Which I actually dropped 2 years ago, but I'm more into this time. It is various interviews and such with Gil Kane, and another subject. I was stoked to read the one with Gil and Crumb that took place in Dallas in 1986. The realizing if I had been there at that time, I would have had zero interest. Some of the discussions get super into the details of art.

Travis Herrick (Modular Mod) said:

Currently reading How Soon is Now? by Richard King. A book about the independent labels that sprouted in the 70s and on. I'm barely into it..

I've also wanted to re-read Elmore Leonard's short story Three-Ten To Yuma for a while now. I finally found it the crime anthology that I had it in, and read it again a few nights ago. Still really good.

THE LONE RANGER RIDES NORTH. I watched The Lone Ranger on TV throughout elementary school. In junior high I read eight (of 18) novels by Fran Striker and listened to old radio shows on cassette tape. Then I didn't have any association with the Lone Ranger for 40 years. In 2020, I started listening to the radio shows on CD. One of the sets I listened to was a collection of Lone Ranger and Green Hornet which highlighted the relationship of those two characters via the Ranger's nephew and the Hornet's father, Dan Reid. the booklet that came with that set pointed out that the 1946 hardcover, The Lone Ranger Rides North, "went into more detail about the Lone Ranger's past and how Dan Reid had come to live with his grandmother" then the radio serial had.

Only the first eight of the 18 novels were reprinted when I was a kid, and The Lone Ranger Rides North was the ninth in the series. But, this being the Golden Age of Buying $#!t on the Internet, I found one on Amazon for less than 10 bucks (sans dust jacket) and had a copy in less than three days. Unfortunately, the only details not found on the radio were quoted in the booklet accompanying the CDs, but i still enjoyed this little bit of nostalgia. Perhaps I'll read some more Lone Ranger. I've got a complete set of Lone Ranger pulps (replica editions) I've never read. 

I haven't been reading too much lately. The last serious book I read put me off reading for a while when I realized "It Really Can Happen Here." Years ago, whenever I was in the midst of a reading drought, I'd read a piece of "fluff," usually a Star Trek novel, to bring me out of it. but that doesn't work anymore. The last two or three Star Trek books I tried to read I didn't even finish. what I've been reading for the past 20 years or so to bring me out of a reading drought have been books by comedians. I can't even tell you how many I have read, but it's a lot. Sometimes, if I liked reading the book, I'd buy the audio version of it as well. (Of course, they always read their own books.) Which leads me up to the piece of "fluff" I just finished.

YOU'LL NEVER BELIEVE WHAT HAPPENED TO LACEY by Amber Ruffin and Lacy Lamar: Amber Ruffin is a writer for Seth Meyers, and she recently launched her own show on the NBC streaming service, Peacock. Lacy Lamar is her sister. The subtitle is "Crazy Stories About Racism" and they are just that. Most of the text is written by Amber, but there's a certain amount of back-and-forth with each of the sisters' parts being printed in different fonts. The dust jacket describes these stories as "entertainingly horrifying"; I agree, but you'll have to decide for yourself which parts are entertaining and which are horrifying. There are many things I find funny, but I rarely ever laugh out loud. I did so three times while reading this book, once until tears came to my eyes. I would recommend this to anyone who thinks he might want to read a lighthearted treatment of a serious subject; don't expect the feelgood story of the year, though. I may have to buy this one on disc as well. 

After finishing a Canadian literary work that was well-written, but not that interesting, and an SF book by a noted author whom I sometimes like, and decided it was not one of his better efforts, I cracked open Trina Robbins' Last Girl Standing. Two chapters in, and I've found a fascinating glimpse of a life, 50s/60s SF fandom, a woman in comics and Bohemia, and more.

The book does not consistently hold up to its opening chapters, but I am impressed at how much ground she has covered in her life.

JD DeLuzio said:

 Two chapters in, and I've found a fascinating glimpse of a life, 50s/60s SF fandom, a woman in comics and Bohemia, and more.

Jack Reacher #8 the Enemy, reading them in order although this one is actually set 6 months before #1. 

THE PRISONER by Thomas M. Disch: I just finished reading this novel based on the cult classic TV show for the third time. My main takeaway is that I don't want to ever read it for a fourth time. Very frustrating. 

I just read Later, the new book by Stephen King for Hard Case Crime. I liked it a lot. I tend to like King best at his least ambitious -- just telling a story in an efficient way, get in and get out. This one's about a young boy who sees dead people, and can talk to them... and they can't lie to him. And how, eventually, a detective who knows his secret takes advantage of his powers. It's pretty casual for a while, laying the groundwork for a couple big events, and takes the kid from when he's around 6 to when he's 14 or so (and told from his vantage point of 22... later, as the title says).

Oh, I just read a review of that book yesterday. Sounds good.

The best Stephen King reading experience I ever had was back in the '90s when The Green Mile was being published serially. There were 8 or 10 people in my office reading and discussing it as it was coming out, just as the author intended. 

From a Certain Point of View: The Empire Strikes Back, the title is quite a mouthful, but this is a short story collection that is just what the title says. For instance you have an Imperial who is part of the team that analyzes probe droid data, or a cook in the mess hall of the Rebellion.

While the main characters do make appearances, they are not the stars of these stories.

This is a fun collection. I've enjoyed pretty much all of the stories I have read so far.

A History of What Comes Next by Sylvain Neuvel, an alternate or "hidden" history SF about stranded aliens who live among us. One is trying to direct human development and get us to the stars. The other has more problematic motives. Neither, after centuries of a kind of reproduction, have all of the information they started with.

It's an interesting, fast read, a fair bit of fun, and it incorporates a lot of real history.

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