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Everything posted by Pablo

  1. Cold, frozen and terrified. Food hard to come by. Wildlife extremely hostile. Scurvy rife, cannabalism a growing option. Wish you were here. Join the crew of the ships, Terror and the Erebus, bound in ice for 3 years while searching for the north-west passage in 1845. Survival never looked so appealing! 'The Terror' by Dan Simmons.
  2. Thanks for the happy birthday BigWords. I appreciate it.

    How's things?

  3. Hi Eliza. Sorry I haven't got back sooner - been a busy, busy few weeks and I've not been on BCF for a spell.

    I'm not too bad, thanks for asking.

    Not been reading much lately, despite some fantastic-looking recommendations from other members.

    Seem to have lost my all-round mojo somehow. I'll find it though.

    How's you?

  4. "Last Stand" Type of books

    How about Albert Sanchez Pinol's 'Cold Skin'? It's a story pared down to very few elements; A remote lighthouse, two survivors and a hellish, nightly siege. While not a murder-mystery, nor a thriller, it does have plenty of tension, suspense and horror, but your enjoyment of it might come down to the question of whether you like stories with a fantastical bent or not.
  5. Having just finished reading Dan Simmon's Hyperion series I'm not at a total loss as to what to start that won't feel like an anti-climax. I tried The Stars My Destination but I couldn't get into it at all. I suppose I'm in the mood for some ground-breaking sci-fi but I haven't found any yet. Any suggestions?
  6. Must. Read.

    Thanks Raven. I see what you mean by 'lots'.
  7. Scariest Book Ever?

    Read all the so-called horror classics, but for me nothing ever came close to The Terror by Dan Simmons. I suppose it depends on what you find scary though.
  8. Must. Read.

    Very tempting silverfaerychild, but I've got a thing about reading books if I've already seen the films. Mind you, I did enjoy the Alien books, so...mmmmmm. That might not be a bad idea at all. Thanks.
  9. You have only one book!

    Too easy Ian - Life Of Pi by Yann Martel. Its got something for everyone in it. There's the simple survival tale at its heart, fascinating animal psychology, an endless supply of brilliant anecdotes, and even an abundance of religious stuff for those that like that kind of thing. Plus its a crazy premise to boot.
  10. Unpopular opinion!

    It's been a while since I've read any of his stuff, but my overall opinion hasn't just emerged from nowhere. I haven't read Carrie, most likely because I didn't think much of the movie, and although I see where you're coming from with the 'religion can be bad' angle, it's a simple facet of life that there are many degrees between people, and that not all religious people are the archetypal angels they see themselves in the mirror. In fact religion has absolutely nada to do with what makes a person good or bad, so the fact that King uses a religious person to represent badness isn't too much of a stretch of imagination. Anyway, as for his books, how about The Green Mile or IT, and you also rightly mentioned The Stand, which although I enjoyed at the time, has undeniably religious overtones about it. Generally, his characters all seem to believe in god and this in itself can be irritating when it is mentioned consistantly. I think IT though was the final straw for me, for not only did I find it preachy, but it was also an incredible bore for me. I could be wrong though, and even if I'm not, I'm sure it won't turn you King fans off one little bit, and that's cool with me too.
  11. Hi Emelee.

    I hope you don't mind me saying this, but, you are beautiful.

    Don't worry - I'm not a stalker. In fact, I'm happily married.

    Please don't feel any need to respond. That's not what I intended.

    I just think that if you feel compelled to say something positive to someone, you should, and for some reason I felt it had to...

  12. Unpopular opinion!

    Hi Emelee. Interesting post there. Stephen King - Aside from Needful Things, The Stand and The Dark Tower series, I don't see the appeal at all. I find he pushes religion in nearly all of his books, something of a turn-off for an atheist, and his obsession with animal cruelty is seriously unhealthy. His writing style never seems to change from that story-tellers voice also, but saying that, it has put a few coins in his pocket, so why change? To me a lot of his characters are cliches too, and he spins his novels out to great length to mask a lack of imagination. The Hitchikers Guide To The Galaxy - After watching, and loving, the recent(ish) movie translation of the book, I thought I'd give the novel a crack, but couldn't get beyond thirty pages. It's just so poor in comparison, and I can't even pin-point why. I just did not like it one bit. I'm sure there's more but I've moaned enough.
  13. Hyperion by Dan Simmons

    Thanks for the thanks for the thanks, Univerze. Wow, this could get as complicated as a Dan Simmons book! I think an added interest in the last two Hyperion books for you might be the fact that the Shrike plays a more important role, and there's a revelation about it near the end of the series. He still doesn't say much though - he's just too cool. Oh, and BookJumper - don't let the graphic nature of the second tale in Hyperion put you off. The sexual scenes throughout the series are mostly done in a very tasteful manner. Besides, wasn't it you who once suggested that I was limiting myself by refusing to read vampire and ghost books, simply because I didn't like the genre? You know what? You were right. Skim over the hay-rolling bits and you'll find yourself falling in love with Simmons' visionary worlds.
  14. Must. Read.

    Wow. Many thanks again folks. Looks like I'm going to be busy for a while then. I've read reviews on some of the suggested books and they sound really good. And you're right Pixie - I'm anything but a snob, unless you count being a wine connoisseur!
  15. Must. Read.

    Thanks for the suggestions guys. I tried to read one of Iain M Banks books before Raven, but didn't get beyond about fifty pages. It might have something to do with the fact that I wasn't a sci-fi fan at the time, but I'm a little reluctant to return to him even now. I haven't read the Dune series Pixie, but from reader reviews I understand the books become worse as they go on, and I'm not sure I want to invest so much time in a series with diminishing returns. Oh, man, what a snob I sound. The Gap series does sound good though, so I think I'll probably give that a bash. Also toying with the idea of getting into some Neil Gaiman. Thanks again.
  16. Hyperion by Dan Simmons

    Just finished reading Endymion and The Rise Of Endymion and I've got to say that, for me, they were far more reader-friendly than the previous books in the series, and had far more to say. Those who are working their way through the Hyperion books just now with frowns lining their brows, would do well to finish the saga, as all, or at least, most of the questions raised are answered before the end. I'm missing Raul and Aenea already. I never thought I'd say that about fictional characters. They've left a void behind now that they're gone.
  17. Hyperion by Dan Simmons

    Thought 'Drood' was wonderfully macabre in places and its mystery had me hooked throughout, but I felt that it was far too long, with a great deal of meandering between actual events. I think the story would be better served as a novella to be honest. Might I recommend 'The Terror' (Also by Simmons), which, although very slow to begin with, gradually immerses you in its chilling atmosphere, and creates a genuine sense of palpable dread. Fantastic stuff.
  18. Hyperion by Dan Simmons

    I've got be honest here and say that I didn't understand much of 'The Fall Of Hyperion'. Seems like Dan Simmons has created an epic that has grown too big for him to reign in, for many of his themes are left unfinished or worse still, unexplained. Spoilers below: Just what is the purpose of the Shrike? Why did Moneta rape Kassad? What the hell was all that gobble-de-gook with Ummon all about? And what about Rachael? A woman, then a child, then a woman and a child. Eh? Finally...the poetry. Why, oh, why? End of spoilers. Grand, grand ideas, but a little too much for me. I'm glad to say that I'm finding Endimyon much more to my tastes. Any thoughts? Oh, as a final word - Thanks Univerze, for turning me on to Dan's Hyperion Cantos.
  19. Hyperion by Dan Simmons

    Well, what can I say? I've just finished Hyperion and moved immediately on to The Fall Of Hyperion. If you like your sci-fi EPIC and unafraid of thought-provoking ideas, then this is the saga for you. Like all of Simmons books, these seem to move at an astonishing pace, never lingering for a moment too long, and this makes for a very propulsive read. Absolutely awesome.
  20. Hi. You seem like a nice person, and I don't like to see nice people with no friends, so will you have me?

  21. I think you'll get a real kick out of 'The Terror' Univerze. It's a departure from his sci-fi stuff (Which I really like also - Hyperion is in my TBR pile) and is historically acurate up until the point where the tale enters unknown waters. I agree on the dreams front. Mine are also very vivid, incomparably weird and sometimes gut-churningly intense. And as for my brains - you're welcome to them, for all the good they'll do you.
  22. Eventually, if you expose yourself to elements of horror (books or movies) for long enough, you become desensitised. It takes more to get those nape hairs twitching, and for those who are in that boat with me, there is but one recommendation: The Terror by Dan Simmons. It is very long, and can be pretty slow-moving at times, but trust me, the scene-setting is essential for those moments of frozen horror. It's the only book I've ever read that has cultivated genuine fear in me, something Clive Barker and Stephen King have not managed yet. At the end of the day though, the effectiveness of a horror story, for me, is governed by two things: 1. What you find frightening, and 2. How well you visualise what you're reading, in your head. Without the right stimula the effect is lost, just as a lack of imagination reduces the potency of even the most gifted horror writer. Think about what scares you, find a reputable author in the sub-genre, then read it, taking time to imagine every detail. If that doesn't work, you are already one of the undead. Aaaaaarrrhhhh!
  23. Clive Barker

    It's certainly strange, Bookjumper. On Amazon, The Thief Of Always is quoted as being Clive's only children's novel. I also checked wikipedia but again there's nothing listed. One for Scooby and the gang, me thinks.
  24. What do you stubbornly refuse to read, and why?

    "Fiction. With very few exceptions, reality is more interesting. Especially since what you are reading in non-fiction actually happened." Mountainhiker, you are the ying to my yang. I think your viewpoint illustrates possibly the largest of gulfs between readers. On one extreme are those who cannot read anything unless it actually happened, and on the other are those who only deal in what could happen. I'm of the latter, where possibilities are limitless, and can also swallow up what really did happen (historical fiction), and although I can't imagine reading along such a narrow path as non-fiction, I 'get' where you're coming from. I suppose we all close ourselves off to some genre's and at the end of the day we're limiting what we can enjoy. I'm with you on Dawkins, Bookjumper - he is seriously preachy for an atheist! I didn't make it all the way through The God Dillusion.
  25. Clive Barker

    I can't recommend Clive Barker enough to anyone with an interest in fantasy, horror, or the landscape in between, particularly those seeking real flights of imaginative fiction. I've read everything to date, and for me the best of the bunch fall into two categories, depending on which genre you are drawn to. Clive's earlier works were pure horror, so if that's your bag you'd do well to hunt down The Books Of Blood, The Hellbound Heart and The Damnation Game. His later novels introduced substantial elements of fantasy, and were dubbed 'Dark Fantasy'. In these you'll find his more epic works such as Weaveworld, The Great And Secret Show, Everville and Imagica. He's also penned some novels aimed at younger age-groups, but aside from The Thief Of Always, I can't recommend any.