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  1. #1
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    Book Recomendations

    Hello. Its the summer and as you all probably know, it can get pretty boring. I was wondering if anyone had any good books they would like to recommend me. My favorite kinds of books are usually ones with dark, violent, complex, and morbid subject matter, with a focus on characters. Right now I'm reading "no country for old men" by Cormac McCarthy (amazing and the coen brothers are makin a movie ) and i also have a book of flannery O'Connor stories (most of which I've finished). Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


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  3. #2
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    A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess

    I've not yet it yet, it's on order. But I assume it'll be a great book

  4. #3
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    Cormac McCarthy is good. His style is superb. I'm planning to read his supposedly best work, Blood Meridian, sometime soon. I guess you've already read it, but if you haven't, it seems like just the kind of book that would suit your tastes.

    How about American Psycho or Lunar Park by Bret Easton Ellis, if you haven't already read them? Or the post-apocalyptic novel Oryx & Crake by Margaret Atwood?
    American Psycho is my favorite novel, a book that captures the zeitgeist like no other. It's definitely dark and morbid, and has a strong focus on characters.

  5. #4
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    Also check out the novel/short-story collection The Informers , by B.E. Ellis. I'm reading it right now, and some of the short-stories are really great, almost on par with the best chapters from AP.

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    I guess you'd like Chuck Palahniuk also. Fight Club is an obvious suggestion, but I've heard that Survivor is just as good, if not better.

  7. #6
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    Thanks Gnosis. I'll be sure to pick up some of those books, ill make a list and see what interests me while at the store. Oh and your in for a real good read with "blood meridian" its great, and the ending is as good as it is cryptic (weird way to put it but whatever).

  8. #7
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    For one of the most mind blowing sci-fi fantasy epics ever written, check out Gene Wolfe's series The Book of the New Sun (volumes 1&2 released as Shadow and Claw, 3&4 as Sword and Citadel). It's about a young professional torturer who is outcast from his guild and gets wrapped up in one of the best adventure stories that I believe I'll ever read. Set in the far far future, so technically it's sf, but it reads more like fantasy. It's amazingly good.
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  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavePalumbo View Post
    For one of the most mind blowing sci-fi fantasy epics ever written, check out Gene Wolfe's series The Book of the New Sun (volumes 1&2 released as Shadow and Claw, 3&4 as Sword and Citadel). It's about a young professional torturer who is outcast from his guild and gets wrapped up in one of the best adventure stories that I believe I'll ever read. Set in the far far future, so technically it's sf, but it reads more like fantasy. It's amazingly good.
    sounds cheery. If it was really that good then ill definitely check it out.

  10. #9
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    That sounds like a great story, Dave. I'll have to check out those books on amazon now.

  11. #10
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    dark, violent, complex, and morbid subject matter, with a focus on characters
    I'm reading "A People's History of the United States" by Howard Zinn. It's a fascinating read, and really has expanded the way I think about the world.

    but uh... It's nonfiction...

  12. #11
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    Warren Ellis' Crooked Little Vein comes out next week. That's a pretty hotly anticipated novel, and sounds right up your alley.

    The first chapter has been posted online as a preview here.



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  13. #12
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    Hmm, I've never really read anything morbid but I can help you with some deeper ("dark" I guess) and complex readings.

    A Gift From Earth by Larry Niven. Probably the best sci-fi novel I've ever read. The protagonist just wants to be left alone, but is thrust into being a hero for a cause he doesn't understand (nor wants to). The workings of his mind as he moves throughout the plot are the main chunk of the novel as his abilities which make him desirable as a hero stem from his own fear.

    Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis. Not his fantasy or theological works and without tie-ins to them as well. This is a retelling of the myth of Cupid and Psyche from Greek legends told in a new setting (dark ages of sometime/somewhere) and from the perspective of Psyche's sister (names have been changed as well). Powerful novel about what love is narrated from someone who's only concepts of it are manipulation and lust. I was told it was his most intricate and well written novel before I read it and after reading it I can't disagree. Currently my favorite book.


    I guess some of Jack London's short stories can definitely be considered morbid and/or dark. Read "To Build a Fire" for more clarity on this.

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    Dark, morbid, violent? George Orwell - 1984

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    Parasite Rex by Carl Zimmer
    Stiff by Mary Roach...

    Dark, morbid, violent? Why read fiction when you can have the truth?

    [evil smirk emoticon not found.]

  16. #15
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    "The Island of Dr. Moreau" - H.G. Wells I believe.

    somewhat dark, somewhat morbid, somewhat violent.

    But I think Edgar Allen Poe's stories are exactly what you are looking for.

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    Not nessecseily dark or morbid though they have their moments -

    The Inheritance Trilogy (Eragon Eldest and the 3 isn't out yet) by Christopher Paolini. If you went to see the movie of Eragon before you read the book - wipe the crap that was the movie from your brain and read the book.

    His Dark Materials Trilogy (Northern lights/The golden compass, The subtle Knife and The amber spyglass) All very good books by Phillip Pullman

  18. #17
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    Perfume by Patrick Suskind - fits all your criteria, and is geniously worded. It's not uber-violent, but it's details are creepy and insidious, and Suskind describes everything so eloquently that you are transported right into the filth and murk of 18th century Paris. I recommend reading it twice before you consider watching the movie (which is also excellent, but it cannot begin to give you all the extremes of the book, like a full blown orgy). My ex-girlfriend pestered me for ages to try it out, and I resisted simply because the cover was naff, and looked like a romance novel/light thriller. Er......

    for non-fiction try The Damage Done, can't remember the author, - about a guy surviving a notorious Bangkok prison

  19. #18
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    Books, you say?

    The Scar by China Meiville is a good fantasy, and not in the vein of "hey elves dragons and swords wrapped up in ancient prophecy!!!". And it's oceanfaring too so that's always a plus for me. But the main focus is on characters, most definitely, so I reckon you might like it. It's a thick little paperback too so you've got to commit to it.
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  20. #19
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    A few suggestions:
    American Gods (by Neil Gaiman of Sandman fame)-about ancient gods that end up in America.
    Books of Blood (by Clive Barker)-these are the stories that put the man on the map!
    The Cthulhu Mythos (by H.P. Lovecraft)-there are numerous stories based in this mythos by dozens of great writers. I should warn you that Lovecraft can be an acquired taste.
    It (by Stephen King)-my personal favorite Stephen King book.

    I know your looking for novels and fiction but I think you might want to check these out if you can find some time:
    A Short History of Byzantium (by John Norwich)-Covers the eleven hundred year long history of a nearly forgotten Christian Empire. After reading this book I can't believe no one has ever adapted Byzantine history into a movie!
    The History of Hell (by Alice K. Turner)- A real history of a fictional place as told by an Athiest researcher.
    The Alphabet of Manliness (by Maddox)-Absolute hilarity! Unless you are a women or feminist of any sort.
    Remember, just because you have their attention doesn't mean you have their respect-Dale Gribble (from King of the Hill)
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  21. #20
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    Heres a few I recently read and liked:

    Shogun - James Clavell
    Violence, sex, samurai, ninjas, torture!

    Songs of Earth and Power - Greg Bear
    One of the best 'fantasy' novels I've read.

    Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
    Wrongful imprisonment, torture, and sweet calculated revenge. Not to mention a classical work.

    Keep the suggestions coming, I'm taking notes myself..

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