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Author Topic: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?  (Read 79888 times)

Offline Winter

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #30 on: April 05, 2011, 04:27:17 AM »
I just finished Arundhati Roy's The God of Small Things last night. It is a tragic tale, beautifully written and presented as a narrative puzzle to piece together bit by sad bit. Just, an excellent novel, deserving of the the accolades it has received in the past and those that it should continue to receive into the future. One of the best novels I have ever read, inside or outside the genre.
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Offline Shamrock

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #31 on: April 06, 2011, 07:18:49 AM »
Some books that I really enjoyed that aren't fantasy are:
The Dexter series - Jeff Lindsay
Rites of Passage - William Golding
Age of Iron -J.M. Coetzee
Perfume - Patrick Süskind
Water for Elephants - Sara Gruen

David Mitchell is amazing - Black Swan Green, Number9Dream, Cloud Atlas etc - and has fantastical elements and sci fi in his books.

For classics: Frankenstein and Heart of Darkness are must reads!
Joseph Conrad was almost the death of me during my undergraduate studies, urgh Heart of Darkness and Nostromo. Deepest darkest Africa isn't the horror, his books are. Although it might have been that my lecturers made it so boring, maybe I will try to read them again some day.
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Offline Nighteyes

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #32 on: April 06, 2011, 07:28:32 AM »
Some books that I really enjoyed that aren't fantasy are:
The Dexter series - Jeff Lindsay
Rites of Passage - William Golding
Age of Iron -J.M. Coetzee
Perfume - Patrick Süskind
Water for Elephants - Sara Gruen

David Mitchell is amazing - Black Swan Green, Number9Dream, Cloud Atlas etc - and has fantastical elements and sci fi in his books.

For classics: Frankenstein and Heart of Darkness are must reads!
Joseph Conrad was almost the death of me during my undergraduate studies, urgh Heart of Darkness and Nostromo. Deepest darkest Africa isn't the horror, his books are. Although it might have been that my lecturers made it so boring, maybe I will try to read them again some day.

The horror! The horror!
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Offline Shamrock

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #33 on: April 06, 2011, 09:02:59 AM »
Some books that I really enjoyed that aren't fantasy are:
The Dexter series - Jeff Lindsay
Rites of Passage - William Golding
Age of Iron -J.M. Coetzee
Perfume - Patrick Süskind
Water for Elephants - Sara Gruen

David Mitchell is amazing - Black Swan Green, Number9Dream, Cloud Atlas etc - and has fantastical elements and sci fi in his books.

For classics: Frankenstein and Heart of Darkness are must reads!
Joseph Conrad was almost the death of me during my undergraduate studies, urgh Heart of Darkness and Nostromo. Deepest darkest Africa isn't the horror, his books are. Although it might have been that my lecturers made it so boring, maybe I will try to read them again some day.

The horror! The horror!
Off the topic have you ever watched Whatever Works? It's directed by Woody Allen? In the one scene the old guys comes running out of his room screaming:
"The horror! The horror! You switched my night lamp off!"
Not sure of the exact quote but I almost peed myself laughing.
Books are the blessed chloroform of the mind

Offline Nighteyes

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #34 on: April 06, 2011, 09:06:16 AM »
^never seen it I'm afraid.  Will look out for it for sure :)
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Offline ChrisMB

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #35 on: April 22, 2011, 02:48:59 AM »
Most of the books I read that are not fantasy-based are history books. I keep going back to William Urban's The Teutonic Knights and Medieval Mercenaries for inspiration, and I love Peter Marren's Battles of the Dark Ages. Military Blunders by Major Steven Eden, U.S. Army (Hey that's how he's credited on the cover so that's how I cite him) is a great piece for armchair historians and it helped me with some lessons on occasion.

The only non-fantasy author I actively seek out is Jodi Picoult. I've read all of her books since I was given The Pact in high school, and although they are all the same in terms of structure, there's something about her writing style and the characters that makes me come back to them. It also helps that I attended a luncheon with her as the guest speaker, and her staunch position on researching a subject to know it inside and out really stuck with me. If anyone would like to get into her work, I strongly recommend either The Pact or My Sister's Keeper.

Offline Mr Soul

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #36 on: June 21, 2011, 05:56:37 PM »
That's a really hard question to answer. I read so much and on a fairly wide range of topics.

I'll have to give it some thought. But for now, I'd have to day the best non-fantasy (non-SF), fiction I've read in the last couple of years was Last Night at the Lobster by Stewart O'Nan.

Offline Roojets

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #37 on: July 01, 2011, 06:56:40 PM »
Its a tough question to answer. But To Kill A Mocking Bird is the only book I've read more than twice and its brilliant for so many reasons.

Offline ScatteredK

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #38 on: July 08, 2011, 12:04:29 PM »
Its a tough question to answer. But To Kill A Mocking Bird is the only book I've read more than twice and its brilliant for so many reasons.


I couldn't agree more! My mom and I read this every summer :)
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Offline Mr Soul

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #39 on: July 17, 2011, 03:16:18 PM »
Journey from the Land of No by Roya Hakakian. A memoir of the author's childhood in Tehran around the time Khomeini came to power.

Beautifully written. Hilariously funny at times but very sad at others. The Hakakians were members of a surprisingly large Jewish population in Iran.

I've given several copies of this book as gifts.

Offline Khaldun

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #40 on: September 29, 2011, 02:33:27 AM »
For non-fiction check out
the 43 laws of power
collapse, guns germs and steel (both by jared diamond)
confessions of an economic hit man
freakonomics.

Offline akapaoloverdi

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #41 on: October 18, 2011, 09:01:38 PM »
Here's my two-penny-worth!
In fiction I'd say if you haven't read Joseph Heller's 'Catch 22' then give it a go. It's amazing and funny and scary all at once, with moments of farcical insanity juxtaposed with heart-breaking scenes of the effects that war has on combatants and civilians alike.
I also rate James Ellroy's works with the LA Quartet (LA Confidential being the most famous) and the American trilogy starting with 'American Tabloid' probably his finest. Be warned though, they are not for the feint hearted.
Chuck Palahniuk's 'Fight Club' is a good easy read with lots to say and make you think as is his 'Haunted' which gets a prize for some of the most disturbing scenes I've ever read.
Non-fiction I tend to go with biogs and autobiographies and can recommend 'Groucho and Me' by Groucho Marx, 'Teller of Tales' about Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and 'Homicide' by David Simon upon which the tv series was based.
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Offline oppos3d

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #42 on: December 19, 2011, 03:17:38 PM »
Has anyone read The Lost Symbol by Robert Brown?  I loved the movies and wondered what people thought of this book.

Offline Nighteyes

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #43 on: December 19, 2011, 04:11:58 PM »
Has anyone read The Lost Symbol by Robert Brown?  I loved the movies and wondered what people thought of this book.

Could possibly be the worst book I ever read.
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Offline oppos3d

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Re: Best Non-Fantasy Book you have read?
« Reply #44 on: December 19, 2011, 07:33:04 PM »
Has anyone read The Lost Symbol by Robert Brown?  I loved the movies and wondered what people thought of this book.

Could possibly be the worst book I ever read.

Which is why I'm glad I come here before selecting reading options...  lol, thank you hound.  I guess I will wait for the movie.