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Old 03-25-2008   #11
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Re: I Just Finished Reading...

I just finished "The Great God Pan" by Arthur Machen. It's the first time I've read any Machen and I was surprised. It was good, but not quite I expected.

I read it as background research for a review of Brian Keene's "Dark Hollow" which I'm reviewing for a journal.
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Old 03-25-2008   #12
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Re: I Just Finished Reading...

Read more Machen! The Inmost Light, The White People and The Three Imposters come highly recommended - actually, with Machen's weird tales, as with those of M.R. James, William Hope Hodgson, Hanns Heinz Ewers and R.W. Chambers, I would pretty much recommend them unreservedly. His non-weird fiction I cannot comment on.
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Old 03-27-2008   #13
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Re: I Just Finished Reading...

Quote Originally Posted by Mr Intolerance View Post
Read more Machen! The Inmost Light, The White People and The Three Imposters come highly recommended - actually, with Machen's weird tales, as with those of M.R. James, William Hope Hodgson, Hanns Heinz Ewers and R.W. Chambers, I would pretty much recommend them unreservedly. His non-weird fiction I cannot comment on.
I completely second more Machen!! My favorite story of his was the Three Imposters as well as Great God Pan and White People. I was in the middle of reading Great and Secret Show by Clive Barker. I just finished The Maltese Falcon by Hammett, as well as The Best Short Stories of J. G. Ballard. Other books that I am reading are Teatro Grottesco by Ligotti, Moby Dick by Melville and the entire Frank Frazetta's Death Dealer series starting with The Prisoner of the Horned Helmet.
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Old 03-28-2008   #14
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Re: I Just Finished Reading...

I just read "the cat inside" by William Burroughs.It is a little book about his feelings
towards cats and some other topics.It was quite a surprise to see such tenderness (!) inside a man we all know as a bad ass.Although its best sentence brings back the Old Bull Lee I always loved.

"My past is an evil river"

It´s a very short book but very powerful.

NEXT: The Invention of Morel, by Adolfo Bioy Casares.
I tried to read this one before the WB book but I didn´t really connect to it.I am going to give it another chance...
It is the first (and only) time Borges qualified a book as "perfect".I think I can trust Borges...

If you're a wizard, why do you wear glasses?

Last edited by Severini; 04-01-2008 at 10:22 PM..
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Old 03-28-2008   #15
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Re: I Just Finished Reading...

'The Virgin in the Garden' by AS Byatt.
This is a very strange and wonderful novel.
It also has a great last line:

"That was not an end, but since it went on for a considerable time, it is as good a place to stop as any."

MY WEBSITE: www.nemonymous.com
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Old 03-28-2008   #16
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Re: I Just Finished Reading...

Two books I just finished reading are:

Fungi from Yuggoth and Other Poems by H.P. Lovecraft, with illustrations by Frank Utpatel-- This is a substantial selection of Lovecraft's poetic work. My favorite pieces are the "Fungi from Yuggoth" sonnet sequence and "Psychopompos," a narrative poem about a werewolf. In addition to poems with fantastic and horrific themes, there are samples of humor, like "To Mistress Sophia Simple, Queen of the Cinema," and nostalgia, like "Old Christmas."

Selected Stories by Joseph Conrad-- This contains eleven stories by this master storyteller, including such vaguely creepy stories as "Karain" and "The Secret Sharer."

I'm currently reading Short Friday and Other Stories by Isaac Bashevis Singer. It is described in a Newsweek blurb on the back as a "witches brew of Poe, Gogol, the Gothic novelists, and the Chasidic fabulists." It should be a very interesting read.
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Old 03-28-2008   #17
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Re: I Just Finished Reading...

I just finished Chaosium's first volume of Arthur Machen short stories, The Three Impostors. The title work was very good, especially "The Novel of the Black Seal" and "The Novel of the White Powder." Machen's "The Inmost Light" and "The Great God Pan" are also included, but I'd read them before. Still, a re-read of Machen is always pleasant, so I was glad to go through the collection cover to cover.
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Old 03-29-2008   #18
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Re: I Just Finished Reading...

I recently finished Aleister Crowley's Diaries from Tunisia in 1923, a selection of stories by Robert Aickman, True Hallucinations and Food of the Gods by Terrance McKenna and reread Zos Speaks, a collection of correspondences between Kenneth & Steffi Grant and Austin Spare, plus some previously unpublished writings. Come to think of it, I reread all of the above.

I'm currently struggling through Ouspensky's In Search of the Miraculous. This is my second reading, since the first time around I got lost three quarters of the way through, after which my attempts at understanding the text would not surpass the half-assed.

Other projects include Erdmann's History of Philosophy and then perhaps Kant.

I'm a voracious rereader of literature, likely due to the fact that I'm neurotic about reading books in pristine condition (there are exceptions, but...). I buy most of the books I read, but since I'm often too sick to hold down a regular job I reread the books I own.
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Old 03-29-2008   #19
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Re: I Just Finished Reading...

Secret Hours by Michael Cisco. A fine collection of short stories by the author of The Divinity Student. One story in particular, which Cisco dedicated to our one and only TL, has been haunting my wine-addled brain for days: "The Ice Age of Dreams". It is highly reminiscent of Ligotti in Lovecraftian mode, ie. "The Last Feast of Harlequin".

Here is a passage (ellipsis is Cisco's):

"Well ... I've been exploring the idea of fossilized dreams, some traces ... These would be ancient dreams, that were caused to solidify over time ... completely independent, material dreams ..."

There was a longer pause.

"... I'm calling to report ... I've succeeded ..."

I heard a car pass.

Hennel explained. He had been digging in a spot not far from town, screened by rock outcrops and heavy timber. I never learned the precise location. Shortly before sunset, he had found them.

"They were buried in what appeared to be rows ... like the terracotta soldiers in China ... a series of small mounds apparently in rows ... I had to work quickly--the sun was going down ... I uncovered the first of the mounds ... I did some digging and then worked with the brush ... I found myself brushing a smooth ... and slightly pale ... surface ... marked with ... a few fine grooves ... I cleared more earth away ..."

For anyone who needs a Ligotti fix, this might do the trick, but don't quote me.

"Reality is the shadow of the word." -- Bruno Schulz
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Old 03-31-2008   #20
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Re: I Just Finished Reading...

few people reading cormac mcarthy here. love this guy. read two of the border trilogy (outstanding), the road (absolutely brilliant post-apocalyptic story of father and son on a journey they know not where – father's feeling about his son could make you cry), and the best of all a western called blood meridien. this one's special – really haunting and violent, and it stains you – ie it stays with you for weeks after you've finished reading it. can't recommend this book highly enough.
also been reading a japanese guy called murikimo (can't remember his first name). also impressive stuff. check out the wind-up bird chronicles and kafka on the shore.
machen, hanz heinz ewers, hodgson, schulz, lem, grabinski et al are all a given.
the tenant was excellent (roland something) (new edition with ligotti introducing it).
you've also got to check out thomas bernhard. this guy rants like an angel.
one of my fave novelists is the english writer rupert thomson. brilliant stylist and weird enough for anyone. check out five gates of hell, the insult, soft, divided kingdom, dreams of leaving…
and i second the aickman recommendation – bought those tartarus collections – worth every penny.
sorry to blather on: once you start it can be hard to stop.
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