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Post by Mrs Figg Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:15 pm

Laughing yep the first couple of books were written in the 80s so the style and tone is touchingly old-fashioned, and that's why I like the books, I can imagine an era gone by.
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Post by halfwise Wed Jul 22, 2020 9:19 pm

80's is old fashioned? Shocked

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Post by azriel Thu Jul 23, 2020 10:25 am

Im having the biggest de-clutter on Earth. I didnt realise how many books I have until I took the bookcase out & disassembled it. The bookcase has gone to a bloke for his garage & my collection is in 2 halves. Books I will read & want & books I never will get round to & have read but wont read again. Im waiting for a new smaller, slimmer bookcase to arrive but until then poor dog is confused how to navigate the front room & the cats are loving the obstacle course that I obviously set up just for them

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Post by halfwise Thu Jul 23, 2020 11:00 am

Is the second set to be gotten rid of? I did some of that in my bed bug fight, and have a really hard time with it. Tossing out a book is like deliberately cutting someone out of your life.

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Post by Mrs Figg Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:42 pm

halfwise wrote:80's is old fashioned? Shocked

You would be amazed at how old-fashioned those books can seem. For example Hamish doesn't have a computer or mobile phone, he has to rely on legging it down to the local telephone box every time he wants to contact someone urgently. People go missing and with no mobile or modern tech it takes a weird amount of time to find them. The clothes described are like another age, for example taffeta ball gowns and with no flat screen TV, they are called television sets. The moral codes are also old-fashioned, women being told to 'cover up' when wearing 'skimpy' nightgowns, and men pinching their bums. Shocked The housewives love scrubbing floors on hands and knees, and all that jazz. Those books from the 80s are like a time warp. But I like it, its nostalgic. I remember when things were far more uncomplicated and being woke and politically correct would have seemed frighteningly alien.
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Post by Pettytyrant101 Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:09 pm

{{ I watched the first half hour of the first episode of the tv series, and though its contemporary set to when it was made- the mid 90's, its a ridiculously old fashioned by that time view of a Scottish village. The young very educated local Doctor smokes a pipe. Everyone seems to smoke cigarrettes. Theres more catlle in the roads than cars and that sort of thing- its got the mood of a 1930's-50's Scottish village, but the outside trappings of the 90's. }}

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Post by Mrs Figg Thu Jul 23, 2020 4:13 pm

and that is exactly why I wasn't chuffed with the TV series, it is trying to do both things. Hamish looks like a modern copper in the fake 1950s setting. The guy in tweeds and pipe looks ridiculous set against Hamish's 1990 uniform. They tried to make it period but they tried to do both periods. Instead in the 80s books it sounds authentic because modernity has yet to happen, people still wore tweeds in the 80s, there were Sloane Rangers all over the shop. The tv series might be fun in its own right, but they made a right dogs dinner.

Do try the first 3 books Petty and see if you like them, you might not of course, its personal taste. first one Death of a gossip, 2nd is Death of a Cad, (there were still cads at that point Laughing ) and the third Death of an Outsider. I am on the 4th, Death of a Perfect Wife, where I meet me, Angela Brodie. No
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Post by Pettytyrant101 Sun Sep 20, 2020 7:28 pm

{{ Been listening to Spike Milligans war biography- 'Adolf Hitler- My part in his Downfall'- as youd expect from Spike Milligan its funny, stupid and often silly. You also get to find out where the Goonies name came from, how it came about and get some cracking tales. Well worth a listen for the man who, arguably, created modern comedy and without whom Python would never have existed and all that followed them.



love Spike, his irreverance for authority and establishment so long as it was funny and made him laugh is legendary, and his sheer love and invention of words is infectious to me.
Here he is not long before his passing receiving a lifetime achievement award, and showing even at the end he can reduce the greatest to fits of helpless laughter and shocked disbelief. Brilliant. (Incidentally his grave stone bears the legend "I told you I was ill!" )



The following day Spike called Prince Charles and said "I suppose the knighthoods out the question them?" to which Charles replied "You'll have to do a little more grovelling." Very Happy  }}

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Post by halfwise Sun Sep 20, 2020 8:40 pm

3 minutes is much less intimidating that 3 hours. He's still very fast - the 'grovelling bastard' line came flying out without a split second hesitation.

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Post by Mrs Figg Sun Sep 20, 2020 9:21 pm

Spike always bewildered and delighted me as a kid, I could feel his strong wild inner crazy, like Peter Sellers, it seems the most genius comedians are on the cusp of sanity.
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Post by azriel Mon Sep 21, 2020 5:10 pm

We will never see men like these again. They were forged in rock & will stand famous forever. I remember seeing that Award on tv & hearing Spike say "grovelling little bastard" was wonderful. Thats what true friends say to & about each other Smile Its not just the great Comedians I miss but, so many great actors & actresses too. God love 'em all

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Post by Forest Shepherd Mon Oct 05, 2020 6:53 pm

I started the first Foundation book last night, and finished it this morning.

I can see how it's inspired science-fiction, but as a modern reader I ended up not caring much about the future of the galaxy. I mean, I liked when the empire was beginning to crumble; it's always a good time watching the world burn. But afterwards, once the Foundation begins to become an influential local power in its own right, the plot started to bore me. The scenarios are well-written and though-out, and I enjoyed some of the twists and turns, but the cyclical disruption of Foundation culture by these charismatic and innovative leaders began to wear on me in its predictability.

I finished the last page just now and put the book down, and realized that I don't care how the galaxy ends up. This macro-approach, this over-arching story comprised of vignettes, leaves me wishing for consistent characters that stick around for longer than a few chapters.
I'm not a big sci-fi nerd: I don't care as much about the how. It does not help that some of the sci-fi elements have aged poorly. I'm sure they were exciting and seemed likely when the book was first published, but they have since gone stale in comparison to the flashier ideas we get in modern sci-fi. A far-distant future in which FTL travel and micro-film co-exist is laughable to our modern sensibilities.

That being said, it is clearly a seminal work. (Some would call it... foundational.) I can see the value it has had. And, I did still read it all the way through in a day, so it has not lost all of its ability to entertain either.

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Post by halfwise Mon Oct 05, 2020 8:17 pm

The next book will start out the same way, and then there's a twist halfway through.  Asimov started out as a set of serialized stories in Astounding Stories, and I think he began to realize the formula would become tired. You're still going to have to deal with characters who don't last for more than one book I'm afraid, but at least the formula gets thrown for a loop, which makes it more interesting.

Yeah he's no poet, but it's a quick read.  And the twist and counter twist make it worth a couple extra days.

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Post by Mrs Figg Sun Nov 29, 2020 4:10 pm

So I am reading my way through the John Buchan books, I must say they are perfect snuggle-up books for dark Winter evenings, really exciting derring-do adventures. I would rank them as follows, 39 Steps, Greenmantle, The Island of Sheep, Mr Standfast, The Dancing Floors.
You can tell from his writing that he really didnt like Jazz music or Flappers, and he absolutely hated Modern Art. He makes them sound like barbaric pagan and barbaric which it might have done to a Victorian man I guess.
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Post by halfwise Sun Nov 29, 2020 6:32 pm

Funny, since the 39 Steps film is considered a sort of film noire, and film noire loves jazz.

I can understand some hatred of modern art. Much of it like the impressionists and expressionists are cool, but the adulation of minimalist artists like Rothko goes beyond silly. They ain't really doing anything.

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Post by Mrs Figg Sun Nov 29, 2020 9:02 pm

I guess at the time he was writing there were the Fauves, Dada, Surrealists and Expressionism, all very out there and wild.
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Post by Forest Shepherd Sun Dec 27, 2020 7:45 am

I started The Madness of Crowds last night and finished it this morning. Would recommend. The author, Douglas Murray, has some great points, and his pointed irreverence toward some of the sacred presumably-unassailable cows of 'social justice' were quite amusing. He is on the conservative side, but not very far. I think the main counter-argument against the book is that it is a little too simple in its analysis of the cultural shifts of the last few decades, that it has something of the scare-tactic to it, and that it picks on the usual easy targets.

Then again, these easy targets are increasingly not so easy, and the pace is hardly slowing down. There are some weaker spots, like when the author is complaining about google's image search results being skewed. But there are also passages that contain an appeal to reasonableness around some of these issues that I really appreciated.

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Post by halfwise Sun Dec 27, 2020 12:41 pm

Was he saying Google's image search results skew liberal?

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Post by Mrs Figg Sun Dec 27, 2020 5:59 pm

Forest Shepherd wrote:I started The Madness of Crowds last night and finished it this morning. Would recommend. The author, Douglas Murray, has some great points, and his pointed irreverence toward some of the sacred presumably-unassailable cows of 'social justice' were quite amusing. He is on the conservative side, but not very far. I think the main counter-argument against the book is that it is a little too simple in its analysis of the cultural shifts of the last few decades, that it has something of the scare-tactic to it, and that it picks on the usual easy targets.

Then again, these easy targets are increasingly not so easy, and the pace is hardly slowing down. There are some weaker spots, like when the author is complaining about google's image search results being skewed. But there are also passages that contain an appeal to reasonableness around some of these issues that I really appreciated.

In the UK Douglas Murray is seen as a far right winger.  Shocked  Although I do agree with a few of his ideas that 'victim mentality' identity politics and cancel culture is gaining ground and is pretty poisonous for society. That's the problem with him I find, he is very intelligent and talks well but some of his ideas are pretty right wing. For example, he supports Brexit and no-lockdown, and is extremely anti-Islam. At least he is brave enough to express his opinion about some sacred cows I guess in a culture where the 'offended' come down on you like a ton of bricks for expressing personal opinion. Like they did with JK Rowling.
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Post by Forest Shepherd Wed Dec 30, 2020 11:06 pm

halfwise wrote:Was he saying Google's image search results skew liberal?
Yeah, basically. Like, search for "European art" on a google image search. As I understand it there may be other reasons for searches to show up the results that they do though, which is why that point seemed less well-made.

Yeah Figgs, I got that impression. Anyone questioning the things that he questions are going to come under that brush. Although, of course, he is much less "right-wing" than many "right-wingers" here in the US.

Anyway, I did like some of his views, but it was his questioning style that I appreciated the most. Because, as you said, some of these movements are taken too far in an awkward attempt at course-correction.

I don't know. I'm aware of my biases in all this, and I don't want to pick a fight over these things. I'm just sharing that I liked the book. Smile

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Post by Mrs Figg Thu Dec 31, 2020 3:36 pm

I haven't read the book so I cant really comment on it, but I might get it and see what he is talking about.
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Post by Lancebloke Thu Jan 07, 2021 1:38 pm

Look what just arrived!

Books! - Page 30 20210111

Books! - Page 30 20210112

Books! - Page 30 20210110

I have never read Harry Potter but decided to watch all the films in Lockdown 1.0. Now I want to know how different the books are plus have some nice looking on the bookshelf with my copy of LotR (and alongside some skanky, old, beaten up books!)
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Post by halfwise Thu Jan 07, 2021 1:53 pm

nice edition! I think you'll find the HP films are closer adaptations of the books than LotR films were.

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Post by Lancebloke Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:03 pm

I wanted to check the quality of them before I got any more so just ordered the next two. Will have to wait on the rest as they are not illustrated yet!
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Post by Mrs Figg Thu Jan 07, 2021 4:37 pm

ooh those look fabulous Lance, I bet they smell nice too. I love sniffing new books, but thats just me. Laughing

I think the first three Harry Potter films are pretty spot-on faithful to the books, especially the first two. They got the characters and atmosphere perfectly.
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