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Old 07-20-2006, 02:28 AM   #1
spa ced
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Default where to begin with the following authors?

what books would be the best introduction/and or best book(s) by the following authors? also, which books by these authors should i avoid?

vonnegut -

j.d. salinger -

bret easton ellis -

david foster wallace -

margaret atwood -

thomas pynchon -

david sedaris -

j.g. ballard -

any help is appreciated. thanks.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 03:38 AM   #2
daydreamer999
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read slaughterhouse-five and then cat's cradle for the vonnegut

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 03:39 AM   #3
benjamin619
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sedaris - naked
salinger - franny and zooey

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 03:42 AM   #4
ChristHimself!
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bret easton ellis - I absolutely love American Psycho, you should too, if you can get past the anal descriptions of everything. It's got some hilarious black comedy moments in it, and I just really enjoyed the way it was written. Rules of Attraction is quite good, but nowhere near as good as American Psycho is for me.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 04:06 AM   #5
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i haven't read much of David Foster Wallace's work but when i asked the same question of a friend, they suggested Infinite Jest, and i really enjoyed it.

as far as vonnegut, i wouldn't start with slaughterhouse five. cat's cradle is a good suggestion, but i think breakfast of champions is a better introduction

Last edited by schaadow : 07-20-2006 at 04:12 AM.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 04:27 AM   #6
TuralyonW3
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why isn't philip roth on your list

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 07:07 AM   #7
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David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day and Barrel Fever are both great. The latter has possibly the funniest thirty pages of any book ever as a final chapter.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 07:23 AM   #8
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Vonnegut - I started with Mother night, but Breakfast of champions is a good start..actually his collection of essays is good.

for B E Easton - American Psycho is fantastic, kind of graphic (rat + inside of vagina)

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 07:25 AM   #9
ChristHimself!
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coathangers kahlo

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 09:23 AM   #10
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hey let's ask netphoria what i should read great idea idiot

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 12:42 PM   #11
Orenthal James
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Ellis' Glamorama is his best work.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 12:43 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pale blue eyes
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day.
i think you sent that to me. it was great.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 12:56 PM   #13
spa ced
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thanks guys...i'm going to the library today so i'll look for these.

oh and kiss my ass nimrod.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 01:00 PM   #14
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I don't read much, but I liked Salinger's 'Nine Stories'. It's exactly what it says it is- nine short stories. A couple aren't very good, but I enjoyed the majority of it.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 02:39 PM   #15
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pynchon: the crying of lot 49. or V. if you jump into gravity's rainbow you'll drown!

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 02:58 PM   #16
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i love vonnegut(even if he has gone a bit off of his rocker in later years) and ballard. i think that with vonnegut you should maybe just work through the novels in chronological order or if you're just testing the waters maybe you should just check out welcome to the monkey house. but you should definitely read cat's cradle if nothing else. and as far as ballard goes - empire of the sun would be a good start but high rise and the unlimited dream company are also really good reads. but then again this is all just the personal opinion of someone that's already totally taken by both of these authors.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 03:17 PM   #17
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vonnegut - Cat's Cradle is a nice starting point, because I started with Breakfast of Champions and I loved it, but it didn't prepare me for his less dadaist writing style (that book is gloriously nuts). I wouldn't shy you away from BOC either. I like it better than Cat's Cradle.

j.d. salinger - Franny & Zooey

thomas pynchon - (I'm so tempted to just thrust you into Gravity's Rainbow...)

david sedaris - Naked

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 03:34 PM   #18
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brkfast of chsmpions anf catcher s rye

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 03:50 PM   #19
spa ced
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okay guys here's what i got from the library:

margaret atwood - oryx & crake
bret easton ellis - american psycho
kurt vonnegut - breakfast of champions
j.d. salinger - franny and zooey

and these books i purchased at half-price books:

david foster wallace - infinite jest ($5.96!)
david sedaris - me talk pretty one day (6.98)

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 03:54 PM   #20
Rockin' Cherub
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out of those i've only read salinger. i'm uneducated as fuck

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 05:54 PM   #21
alisonmonster
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChristHimself!
bret easton ellis - I absolutely love American Psycho, you should too, if you can get past the anal descriptions of everything.
i couldn't read Ellis for this reason, it was so distracting. I enjoyed the movie though.

I've read most of Atwood's books, everyone says 'A Handmaids Tale' or 'The Robber Bride' (both of which are excellent) but Cat's Eye is really heartbreaking. Its sort of like a more detailed, subtler version of Welcome to the Dollhouse.

Isn't JG Ballard the one who wrote the book that the movie 'Crash' was based on? (the first Cronenberg one). The book is pretty much exactly like the movie is, but the author put himself in as the lead character.

Last edited by alisonmonster : 07-20-2006 at 05:59 PM.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 06:31 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spa ced

david foster wallace -
don't waste your time

 
Old 07-20-2006, 06:44 PM   #23
pale blue eyes
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndySlash
I don't read much
No, you sure don't. Did you finish that book yet? No rush, just curious.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 06:45 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spa ced
david foster wallace - infinite jest ($5.96!)

 
Old 07-20-2006, 06:46 PM   #25
twice
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graveflower
don't waste your time

wtf

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 06:47 PM   #26
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ok i'll admit i didn't finish it

 
Old 07-20-2006, 06:54 PM   #27
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The only Vonnegut book I've read is Breakfast of Champions, and I really enjoyed it, but now I get the impression that I would have enjoyed it more if I'd read some of his other stuff previously - since it's supposedly meant to be sort of a parody of his own work. This thread makes me want to read more Vonnegut though, so maybe I'll do that, and then read it again. It's a super quick read. I think it took about two days.

Other than that, I haven't read anything by any of these folks aside from Salinger. I, too, am clearly an illiterate fuck. But! I did read the opening couple pages of Gravity's Rainbow and they really made me want to keep reading. I couldn't though, because it was my brother's book and he wouldn't let me borrow it - he says I have to read Crying of Lot 49 first, since he's been trying to get me to read it for years, and in fact bought me a copy like three Christmases ago...

Uh, and that's my story. Enjoy your books!

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 06:55 PM   #28
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i didn't finish gravity's rainbow either but i wouldn't say it's a waste of time

infinite jest was
not good

but keep in mind my favorite books were written for children

 
Old 07-20-2006, 06:56 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pale blue eyes
No, you sure don't. Did you finish that book yet? No rush, just curious.

Yes! I'm sure I told you?!

Get on AIM, we'll talk about it.

 
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Old 07-20-2006, 06:58 PM   #30
pale blue eyes
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No, you didn't! And here I come.

 
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