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Old 10-15-2017   #941
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Re: Recent Reading

The Life of Insects by Victor Pelevin... a satire of post-Soviet Russia in which the characters are anthropomorphic insects. Really funny and misanthropic.

The Sailor Who Fell From Grace With the Sea by Yukio Mishima... not very far in this one but so far typical Mishima goodness.

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Old 10-15-2017   #942
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Re: Recent Reading

Quote Originally Posted by Speaking Mute View Post
I'm two stories into Damian Murphy's Daughters of Apostasy and enjoyed it enough to buy other works by Murphy.

I've also been dipping into Gustav Meyrink's The Opal and Others - a strong collection so far with the exception of only one story. I was surprised by the fact that Meyrink's short fiction is satirical - a few of the shorter stories are more or less extended jokes.

I'm still reading Coleridge, but I've concluded I like Byron and Shelley much better...
Among the work of those still living and writing, I think I enjoyed The Daughters of Apostasy more than I have anything for some time.

"Irreverence is a greater oaf than Superstition" - W.H. Auden
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Old 10-15-2017   #943
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Re: Recent Reading

Quote Originally Posted by Hidden X View Post
His short fiction can be pretty great indeed, though I can see why those coming to it after reading his novels might be pretty disappointed. E. F. Bleiler all but completely dismissed his satirical short stories in his introduction to my old paperback edition of The Golem, basically describing them as being of no interest to anyone outside of historians specializing in that time period.
In hindsight, it's not that large of a gap between his novels and satirical shorts - The Golem's narrative is framed with the tongue-in-cheek notion of hats transferring memories etc.
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Old 10-16-2017   #944
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Re: Recent Reading

Quote Originally Posted by qcrisp View Post
Among the work of those still living and writing, I think I enjoyed The Daughters of Apostasy more than I have anything for some time.
A wonderful volume indeed. With the many references to Islamic mysticism & the Blakean visions i was bound to like it anyway, but i was very pleasantly surprised at the way the collection manages to circumvent, or subvert, ideas of what 'characterization' in fiction should entail without ever becoming dull, dry or difficult. It also has a video game- like way of navigating a setting ( and not just the story about a video game ), and seems to owe not a little to certain strands of contemporary art in the way some tableaux are constructed and presented; the enumeration of artifacts carefully arranged. And this is probably just me imagining that all my favourite things partake of one another, but it seems there's a bit of Barker influence in there as well? Wouldn't be able to pinpoint why, but there you go.

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Old 10-17-2017   #945
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Re: Recent Reading

Quote Originally Posted by Ibrahim View Post
With the many references to Islamic mysticism
Going by his Goodreads page, he seems to be into authors like Henry Corbin...
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/28631820
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Old 10-21-2017   #946
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Re: Recent Reading

Just started The History of the Kings of Britain by Geoffrey of Monmouth. I'm only a few pages in, but it's already one of the bloodhthirstiest things I can ever recall reading.

Of Brutus, the first of the heroes in the work, supposed founder of Britain:

Quote
He wrought pitiable slaughter on both townsfolk and peasantry, for his plan was to exterminate this unhappy race down to the last man.
I can see why the rival Mediaeval historian William of Newburgh was sniffy about it, but it reads very well, nonetheless.

"Irreverence is a greater oaf than Superstition" - W.H. Auden
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Old 10-21-2017   #947
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Re: Recent Reading

The first volume of Hieroglyphic Press' journal 'Sacrum Regnum'.

I've only read the first two stories so far, by D. P. Watt and Mark Samuels respectively, but already I'm feeling saddened that it appears this journal stopped publication after just two issues.
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Old 10-22-2017   #948
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Re: Recent Reading

Quote Originally Posted by In A Dark Light View Post
The first volume of Hieroglyphic Press' journal 'Sacrum Regnum'...saddened that it appears this journal stopped publication after just two issues.
Seconded. Go harrass the parties involved to bring it back...

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Old 10-22-2017   #949
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Re: Recent Reading

Quote Originally Posted by Ibrahim View Post
Quote Originally Posted by In A Dark Light View Post
The first volume of Hieroglyphic Press' journal 'Sacrum Regnum'...saddened that it appears this journal stopped publication after just two issues.
Seconded. Go harrass the parties involved to bring it back...
I fully intend on purchasing a copy of the second issue, and had thought to leave a note asking why the journal had been (seemingly) discontinued.
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Old 10-29-2017   #950
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Re: Recent Reading

'The Republic of the Southern Cross' by Valery Bryusov. One of the finest short stories I've read in some time, and something of an underappreciated gem.

In fact, I couldn't help but feel that the setting of the story, with its enclosed city cast into darkness and descending into disease, decay, and madness, would make for a fine anthology of original stories recounting in greater details the events which are only accounted for in the original story.
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