Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Need book help

I talked to my biology professor and he said it'd be fine if I attended some live classes, even though I'm an internet student and also, due to work arrangements, a guaranteed late arrival to class. So I figure I'll try to catch at least every other class session, if not more. This, however, means commuting time. (reading on the way to ITM440, if I opt to attend live sessions, is a no-go as that commute is via highway)

So I downloaded a mega-torrent of eBooks from various sci-fi/fantasy authors. Studying on the train is a lost cause, I've tried it before and there are too many distractions for really absorbing material. Fiction, however, is another story. So I figure I'll throw some on the GP2X (god I love that thing, best handheld EVER) and read on the go.

However, I'm still faced with one problem...where the frell do I start?

Here's a list of the authors whose works were included in the multi-gig behemoth of a torrent I nabbed:

Alan Dean Foster

Angie Sage

Anne McCaffrey

Audio

Ben Bova

Christopher Stasheff

Dave Smeds

David Eddings

David Weber

Derek Paterson

Diane Duane

Dragonlance

Forgotten Realms

Gaiman

George Orwell

Glen Cook

Harlan Ellison

Ian Prater

Isaac Asimov

Jim Butcher

JK Rowling

John Norman

John Ringo

Jonathan Stroud

Kate Elliott

Kate Saundby

Keri Arthur

L.E. Modesitt

Larry Niven

Laurell K. Hamilton

Lawrence Watt-Evans

Margaret Weis

Mercedes Lackey

Orson Scott Card

Philip Jose Farmer

Philip K. Dick

Piers Anthony

RA Salvatore

Robert Asprin

Robert Jordan

Robin Hobb

Simon R. Green

Stephen King

Stephen R. Donaldson

Terry Brooks

Terry Goodkind

Terry Pratchett

Tolkien

Ursula LeGuin

Wilbur Smith


So, which of those are good/particularly good/excellent/read-now-or-you'll-lobotomize-me-with-a-screwdriver?

Or, at the very least, which ones lend themselves to reading in short bursts, such as on the train where there's a line change after half an hour's ride?

I've heard good things about Norman and the Gor series, but I haven't actually read any of it yet. I know Pratchett is hilarious, and I hear Jordan has a tendency to be rather long-winded.

Also, Herbert's "Dune" series...anyone read it? Input, perspectives, opinions? It's not in this list, but I can probably nab it or try to find a dead-tree version that's small enough to be pocket/train/commute friendly.

5 Comments:

Blogger Jenny said...

Now you're speaking my lingo!

Looking for good train-lit, hmm? Well, Robert Asprin's been a favorite writer of mine for years and years... kinda quirky, light fantasy. Terry Pratchett's also along those lines, only more satirical with a little more depth (Asprin's Myth books are like candy).

As I recall, you prefer slightly darker literature...
Jim Butcher's main series, the Dresden Files, features a private detective/wizard/smartass. I think you'd like him.

One of Glen Cook's series features a private detective/smartass in a Tolkienesque fantasy world. I think you'd like him too.

Oh, and if there are books by Neil Gaiman that you haven't read? Read 'em :D

Brooks/Jordan/Goodkind, et al.= bad Tolkien rip-off. IMHO. John Norman I wouldn't touch with a 10-foot-pole. In his Gor books, women exist as the sexual slaves of men. Yeah, not going to happen.

**makes eyes at Cryptonomicon on the top shelf** Alas, I'm doing a project on children's fantasy fiction for Children's Lit, so guess what I'm reading? It's fun, but I miss my dark sci-fi. A lot.

David Eddings is on my to-read list.

Anywho, 'nuff babbling. Happy reading/riding the train/attending school in person!

PS: Word verification is fligo. I like it!

9:52 AM  
Blogger Journey said...

My brother would vote for Asimov...I like reading trash on the train so I'd probably go for Stephen King, but nothing newer than the 1980s. Both are written in short chucks/sub-chapters. Most of the others I've never heard of and I'd like to know why you arne't sharing. *pouts*

Ummm...I started listening to American Gods on the bus. I'm only 30 min in, but it's not so bad so far.

5:32 PM  
Blogger Aidan Novastral said...

@Jenny:

Does Robert Asprin's writing cure headaches?

*ducks tomatoes*

Sorry, sorry, couldn't resist. Aaaanyway, lots of SF writers named "Terry." Wonder if it's the profession that draws the names or the name that draws one to the profession...or if there's even a difference.

I'll definitely give Butcher a whirl then. I've heard Dresden Files mentioned somewhere else, though I can't place it at the moment. The only Gaiman I haven't read yet is Anansi Boys, unless you count Coraline and his short-story collections.

Glen Cook, check, will do that one too.

Naughty to speak ill of the dead and all that jazz, but I've heard "Wheel of Time" is nigh on insufferable and wasn't exactly chomping at the bit to start reading it. Figured I'd keep it around just in case.

@Journey
(hey, Jenny and Journey, almost rhymes. *chuckleyukyukyuksnort*)

Asimov is definitely on my to-read list. He and Heinlein both, though I have to suck down a torrent of Heinlein. Respect for the classics and whatnot.

As for American Gods, just wait'll you meet Mr. Nancy and Czernobog. Czernobog's my personal favourite character, but Mr. Nancy tells this story about a tiger that must be heard to be believed...

11:16 PM  
Blogger Jenny said...

So what are you reading first, dear sir? I just started Pawn of Prophecy by David Eddings.

8:41 AM  
Blogger Aidan Novastral said...

Dredsen Files, and at home the first book of Gor. Your response intrigued me and it sounded just too delightfully kinky to pass up. ^________^

F

7:59 PM  

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