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      Something Wicked This Way Comes...   10/09/2019

      The Autumn Supporter Giveaway!       Welcome to the very first of the seasonal BCF supporter giveaways! This month also marks one year since I took on the forum, so I want to say an extra huge thank you to all of you for keeping this place going. I have a little bit more to say about that later but, for now, let's get to the giveaway!     The Autumn Giveaway winner will be getting two Penguin Little Black Classics, The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe and To Be Read At Dusk by Charles Dickens. Both of these little books contain three atmospheric short stories, perfect for autumnal evenings. The winner will also get Mary Shelley tea (a lavender and vanilla black tea) from Rosie Lea Tea's Literary Tea Collection (https://www.rosieleatea.co.uk/collections/literary-tea-collection) and a chocolate skull, to really get that spooky atmosphere .   and...   A special treat for a special month. The winner will choose one of the following recent paperback releases from the independent bookshop Big Green Bookshop:       The Wych Elm by Tana French A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan Melmoth by Sarah Perry The Familiars by Stacey Halls  The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White   The winner will be chosen via the usual random selection process in one week. Patreon supporters are entered automatically. If you aren't a patreon supporter but you'd like to join in with this giveaway, you can support here: https://www.patreon.com/bookclubforum.   I really hope you're all going to like this introduction to the seasonal giveaways. It's been a lot of fun to put together. Other chocolate skulls may have been harmed during the selection process…     

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28/08/16. The Outsider - Camus, Albert
Edited by woolf woolf

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Happy Reading in 2015 :readingtwo:! Are there any particular books you plan to read in the next while?

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Happy reading, Sousa! I have both War and Peace and The Myth of Sisyphus on my TBR pile. They're very different in length, but I suspect they'll both be challenging reads in their own way! :)

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I've read The Outsider by Camus and I enjoyed that very much. I'll be interested to know what you make of this one.

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Thanks poppyshake.

 

Happy reading, Sousa! I have both War and Peace and The Myth of Sisyphus on my TBR pile. They're very different in length, but I suspect they'll both be challenging reads in their own way! :)

 

Yes, it will be challenging, especially because I'll try to read Camus on the way home and I won't have a dictionary around. As to the other, I'll likely finish it in a few months and read others inbetween. I'm a slow reader when it comes to big books.

 

I've read The Outsider by Camus and I enjoyed that very much. I'll be interested to know what you make of this one.

 

I bought that one in french, as an incentive to learn the language. It's not working.

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I bought that one in french, as an incentive to learn the language. It's not working.

 

:giggle: Oh dear! At least you're trying though. I could never do that. Do you already know some French? From my school days, I remember a few numbers and how to introduce myself, but that's about it!

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:giggle: Oh dear! At least you're trying though. I could never do that. Do you already know some French? From my school days, I remember a few numbers and how to introduce myself, but that's about it!

 

I knew more before, from school. When I bought the book I tried Duolingo, but other things came around and I've never returned to it.

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I've finished Clannad's fourth volume, a series of manga (japanese comics). The main character is Tomoya Okazaki, a reserved boy with a non-existent family life, a cynical view of life and without motivation to put his best efforts in anything; things start to change when he meets Nagisa Furukawa, a queer and cute girl with low self-esteem and childish tastes. They meet at the beginning, in a path leading to school, and Tomoya feels a growing duty of helping overcome her sadness and achieve her objectives. Through this, they make new friendships at school and their relationship grow stronger throughout young adulthood. Although with some silly moments, this story is very down-to-earth, without action or artificial elements to spice it up (there is one but it proved irrelevant, more like a side-story to fill some pages). I enjoyed reading it, it's not great but it's not bad either, and it felt fresh because I hadn't yet known more realistic animes or mangas (but this might be because I don't know much of it). Apparently, the story isn't yet finished, and more mangas are to be published. But thanks to the wiki, I discovered the ending of the anime series and it ruined things a bit. Fortunately, manga covered almost all of the elements of the anime except the bad ones, and hopefully will give a more realistic and credible closing arc.

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I've finished Clannad's fourth volume, a series of manga (japanese comics). The main character is Tomoya Okazaki, a reserved boy with a non-existent family life, a cynical view of life and without motivation to put his best efforts in anything; things start to change when he meets Nagisa Furukawa, a queer and cute girl with low self-esteem and childish tastes. They meet at the beginning, in a path leading to school, and Tomoya feels a growing duty of helping overcome her sadness and achieve her objectives. Through this, they make new friendships at school and their relationship grow stronger throughout young adulthood. Although with some silly moments, this story is very down-to-earth, without action or artificial elements to spice it up (there is one but it proved irrelevant, more like a side-story to fill some pages). I enjoyed reading it, it's not great but it's not bad either, and it felt fresh because I hadn't yet known more realistic animes or mangas (but this might be because I don't know much of it). Apparently, the story isn't yet finished, and more mangas are to be published. But thanks to the wiki, I discovered the ending of the anime series and it ruined things a bit. Fortunately, manga covered almost all of the elements of the anime except the bad ones, and hopefully will give a more realistic and credible closing arc.

I'm glad you enjoyed them :). It sounds interesting, I hope you will get a good ending.

 

I have read some realistic manga, in the sense that there were no magical elements or anything. My boyfriend and I both love Kare Kano: His and Her Circumstances, for example. I also really like Suzuka and With the Light: Raising an Autistic Child (in terms of realistic manga). We have a couple of volumes of Ai Yori Aoshi, but I've only read one myself. My BF liked it though and we both liked the TV series though he more than I did.

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Happy reading in 2015 Sousa  :smile: .

The Myth of Sisyphus is excellent, as a book, and a philosophy to live by.  (Camus's The Plague is also very good)

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Thanks anisia, Marie H, frankie. I said I would read one of those two, but last night I had none of those near me and so I started Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, by Philip K. Dick. It's a good science fiction book, somehow original at least in introducing the world, characters and building up. It's small and if everything goes smoothly I might end it very soon.

 

I'm glad you enjoyed them :). It sounds interesting, I hope you will get a good ending.

I have read some realistic manga, in the sense that there were no magical elements or anything. My boyfriend and I both love Kare Kano: His and Her Circumstances, for example. I also really like Suzuka and With the Light: Raising an Autistic Child (in terms of realistic manga). We have a couple of volumes of Ai Yori Aoshi, but I've only read one myself. My BF liked it though and we both liked the TV series though he more than I did.

 

Thanks for the suggestions; I'll start with Kare Kano, it seems a reading for a long time. 

Edited by Sousa

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Thanks anisia, Marie H, frankie. I said I would read one of those two, but last night I had none of those near me and so I started Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, by Philip K. Dick. It's a good science fiction book, somehow original at least in introducing the world, characters and building up. It's small and if everything goes smoothly I might end it very soon.

I quite liked that one when I read it last year, I hope you enjoy it too :)

 

Thanks for the suggestions; I'll start with Kare Kano, it seems a reading for a long time.

I hope you enjoy the books :)!

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I discovered the ending of the anime series and it ruined things a bit. Fortunately, manga covered almost all of the elements of the anime except the bad ones, and hopefully will give a more realistic and credible closing arc.

 

I haven't read the manga; I watched the anime and liked it, but I watched it just to get to Clannad: Afterstory, which I had been told was superb, and I have to agree. Not sure if you meant the end of the former or the later with your remarks?

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In the meantime I've been reading Kare Kano: His or Her Circumstances, it flows a lot and it doesn't have much occupying the pages, so it can be read fast. But some drawings are pretty cool. I can't read any physical book today because there's a party in the living room and I'm uncapable of reading prose when noisy. It's a good manga, at the beginning it was a little boring but in time it got more interesting.

 

I haven't read the manga; I watched the anime and liked it, but I watched it just to get to Clannad: Afterstory, which I had been told was superb, and I have to agree. Not sure if you meant the end of the former or the later with your remarks?

 

The end of Afterstory. The fourth volume ends here: http://www.mangareader.net/187-53997-26/clannad/chapter-28.html

Edited by Sousa

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In the meantime I've been reading Kare Kano: His or Her Circumstances, it flows a lot and it doesn't have much occupying the pages, so it can be read fast. But some drawings are pretty cool. I can't read any physical book today because there's a party in the living room and I'm uncapable of reading prose when noisy. It's a good manga, at the beginning it was a little boring but in time it got more interesting.

I'm glad you're enjoying them so far :). There is some really interesting, deep stuff happening in some of the later books. I'm glad you're liking them so far.

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I've finished Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, by Philip K. Dick. It's a science fiction novel, depicting a post-apocalyptic society in a devastated Earth. Most of life perished due to polluents, radioactive dust and other elements originated from a huge and devastating war. Having a domestic pet became a sign of social status, but most people have an artificial one passing as genuine. These artificial beings are very much alike the real animals except in the case of a malfunction, so people have to maintain them well and treat them as they would treat a real one. The conditions on the planet worsened and it was decided to make people live leave Earth to one of the off-world colonies; as if the promises of a better life weren't enough, each person or family received as a gift an artificial slave to help wherever they would settle. These artificial slaves, named replicants, were very similar to humans, and with time their personalities and reactions have become even more like the human ones. However, these beings have no rights, because this is a strange and discriminating society: people are divided not only in wealth but also in intelligence, this meaning that people only received as much freedom to work and travel as their intelligence allowed (e.g. people with low IQ couldn't leave Earth).

 

The main element people possess to unite them is a religion called Mercerism, in which they worship a god called Wilbur Mercer through a machine. This machine is believed to be some kind of portal in which anyone enters and tries to escalate a mountain while being tossed stones; people with all kinds of moods enter this machine so that people leave it with an even disposition, and also enter when they search Mercer in order to receive some answers. Only humans are allowed to this machine and religion, because they have empathy, and according to several parts from the book that is the main characteristic that distinguishes the organic from the artificial. The protagonist is Dick Reckard, a police officer with an average life and a mildly depressed wife. He's troubled because he once had a live animal, but it perished and he so far hasn't been able to find a genuine replacement. Deckard's speciality inside the police is to hunt and retire clandestine replicants that came to Earth, and he receives an assignment to find and retire six specimens from the latest and best model, Nexus-6. From here further, is the land of spoilers. I liked the book, especially the first chapters were very interesting and detailed, but from some point which I can't say everything starts to be less captivating. Even with this, it's a good book and a main option for those who want to read about a dystopian futuristic society; but don't expect it to be descriptive and critic of the world because, unlike Orwell and Huxley, Dick uses this society as a background for the main story. And for those who have seen the film, the two stories are completely different, so nothing is ruined.

 

P.S.: Before reading it, I thought the title meant that the androids were not only receptive of human rationale and conventions, but also decided to transform it into their own. I mean, people count sheep in their heads when they can't sleep; I thought there was a doubt in the story about if the androids also thought of sheep when they couldn't sleep, and if they thought of organic ones or artificial ones. After reading it, I wonder if it's about androids wanting to be treated as equals.

Edited by Sousa

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I'm glad you enjoyed the book :). I think you might be right as to your thoughts in the P.S. .

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