Like many people lately, I'm feeling low about the state of things--specifically, language. My recent reading consists solely of political news and analysis as well as, for relaxation, hard-boiled detective novels. I've lost, over the past few months, all sense of language as exuberant, playful, abundant, dazzling, rich with pleasure. Can you help pull me out of my language funk with suggestions of novels, short stories, poems, essays that will delight and surprise me, that I can sink into like a warm luxurious bath? [more inside]
What are some of your favorite editions, versions, or retellings of fairy tales or folk tales or other stories in adjacent genres? I'm interested in beautiful illustrations, or well-written prose, or any other reasons that you love that specific version. If you have one preference for younger kids and a different for older kids, tell me that too! [more inside]
My wife is just beginning her second trimester, so it looks as though I'll be a dad in July. I'm pretty excited about this. I'd really love to instill an appreciation for canonical literature at an early age since it was so important to me as a kid and now as an adult. [more inside]
For the past couple of years, I've been doing an informal, personal challenge to read a new-to-me book published in each year from 1900 to 1999. The only decade I haven't touched yet is the first, and I'd appreciate recommendations for books published from 1900 through 1909. [more inside]
I'm an enthusiastic reader, across pretty broad boundaries; literary fiction is probably my favorite, but I also enjoy good sci-fi/speculative fiction, mysteries and thrillers as well as quite of bit of non-fiction, including history, science and true crime. What I've never been able to manage though, is to even read, let alone enjoy poetry. [more inside]
I would like to broaden her mind a little and give her a selection of comics to see which she likes best and see if she takes to reading as a life habit. [more inside]
What poems / readings would you recommend for a 50th Anniversary? My parents have been having health issues so I would prefer to avoid the usual "ha ha you're falling apart" joke poems about pills and getting infirm. They are somewhat stoic but have a good sense of humor.
I have a faint recollection of reading an essay by C. S. Lewis, in which he discusses reading poetry, and suggests moving one's lips while reading. Does this ring any bells? [more inside]
I currently work such long hours that I don't have much time to read. I can't read the types of books that I normally would want to - literary fiction - because I am too exhausted to really concentrate at night and I just don't have the time. I also don't want to be stuck in a 400 page novel for 3 months. details inside [more inside]
Help me experience the reading I missed out on as a child. [more inside]
How can I read more about life in countries other than the USA? [more inside]
I recently enjoyed The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer and am searching for similar novels. By which I mean novels that are about people living their lives, and the growth and change that naturally happens as they do. Engaging, but not particularly dramatic. Difficulty level: reading that helps me fall asleep. A couple of snowflakes inside... [more inside]
I'm going to start by admitting that my interest in reading went from avid bookworm to "I don't even want to read this considerably lengthy text message." That being said, I'm about ready to jump back into literature. So where do I start? [more inside]
My honors student is planning out her thesis and is looking for enjoyable short stories (that are in the public domain, preferably) that end in a twist. Details (and a few spoilers!) inside. [more inside]
Help me find books that convey a jolly feeling of appreciation for the wonders of modern life. Ideally these would be books that have a sci-fi or fantasy feel, but in which nothing overtly magical or fantastic happens. The best recent examples I can think of are Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore, which has all the elements of a fantasy novel but is set squarely in our world, and William Gibson's most recent novels, all of which feel fantastic to me but are grounded in real life. [more inside]
Give me your most well written genre fiction! [more inside]
Bookfilter: Books that are beautifully written but funny, feel-good (at least at the end) and preferably with some female characters that are cool. [more inside]
[Book filter] Please recommend stories about people who find out (through trail and error) what they really want, and eventually get there (after a bunch of detours). [more inside]
I've been in South America for six months and running out of books to lose myself in. I read a lot of big long books-do you know of some more? [more inside]
I'm looking for book recommendations for thorough, engaging, and rigorous histories of Savile Row tailoring and/or books that talk about the history and philosophy of fine men's tailoring and dress. I'm not averse to books with technical information, as well as historical and cultural information. Thank you!
me my friend that she finally got a copy of To Be Or Not To Be the other day -- and her tween who is wicked witty and wants to read more Shakespeare is going to be stuck for a couple of hours for then next few weeks during "homework time" doing nothing and required to remain quiet.
Is this tweenish friendly? [more inside]
Hi everyone. I am an international student considering the option of going to the US to do my graduate studies. I am currently studying for the GRE. As I am not a native English speaker (Portuguese), the verbal section is really difficult for me because of the vocabulary. As I got bored of studying vocab flashcards, I am know thinking of reading a book with a great diversity of words. What recent books do you recommend reading? (remember that I am completely unaware of the what the best english literature may be)
What are your favourite examples of building tension or suspense in literature? Ideally these are brief moments, single paragraphs or small scenes, compelling the reader to continue on, worried about what will follow. [more inside]
I would like to spread the word on a release party of sorts for a small publication that specializes in experimental poetry, literature, and conceptual writing. [more inside]
I'm looking for recommendations for contemporary(ish) literary fiction written by folks who are not white men. [more inside]
If I were to choose 10 fiction and 10 non-fiction books to read within the next year to make me a better, more well-rounded conversationalist (for argument's sake, let's say within a college-educated professional audience), what books would give me the most bang for my buck? [more inside]
My kids (a boy and a girl) are now five years old, and my wife or I read to them every night before bed. I'd like to start reading larger books to them which we can stretch out throughout a week or more, by reading them a chapter a night. Please help me put together a great reading list of age-appropriate books that will capture their imaginations and inspire happy dreams. [more inside]
Seeking recommendations for fiction that features matriarchy / female led societies.
How do you decide what books to read? Recommendations? Reviews? Go to the bookstore and read a chapter? I often find myself overwhelmed with the zillions of choices. How do you narrow it down?
Help me discover recent 'Best Seller' scientific journal articles to read in 2013. [more inside]
Another book recommendation question. I'm looking for a few general history books to read as preparation for diving into Thomas Pynchon's "Against the Day". [more inside]
How do I get better at reading literature? Looking for books, lectures, and your perspective. [more inside]
Is Franz Kafka to intense to give to an 11 year boy? [more inside]
Akashic Books Noir Series. Which are your favorites? Each book is an anthology of original short stories. It looks like they've published over fifty volumes. I find they differ greatly in style and overall quality of writing. It makes sense... each anthology has its own editor. I'd like to read the volumes that have the best quality writing, and are the most fun. Here's what I've read so far, in most favored order: [more inside]
Scare me please! I am looking for the scariest book out there. I have read most of Stephen King, The Exorcist, etc. But i want to find something new that will frighten me even more than the evening news...
How did reading a biography learn you a valuable lesson, help you gain a crucial insight, change your worldview or impact you in some other, non-trivial way? [more inside]
I am going to be bored by A Dance with Dragons, aren't I? [more inside]
How would you go about reading aloud a story with names redacted? [more inside]
I have never read Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, but I would like to. Please recommend to me your ideas for the best way to approach this. Web, Kindle or iOS friendly methods welcome. [more inside]
Could someone suggest a nice reading edition of Henry James's The Ambassadors? [more inside]
Where can I find audio by actors with awesome voices reading various stuff? [more inside]
More non-fiction please! As a strange antidote to having to read a lot of dry academic articles, I enjoy pleasurable non-fiction writing about jobs and work. Books I've liked in the past include May Roach (Stiff); Atul Gawande (Complications, Better); Barbara Ehrenreich (Nickeled and Dimed); and Tracy Kidder (House, Among Schoolchildren). I'd like recommendations for more non-fiction along those lines. [more inside]
My best friend is getting married! And I am doing the reading! Yay! Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find anything that really fits the couple. Halp. [more inside]
Literature distinguished by its richly drawn characters [more inside]
Help me find postcolonial literature from the Middle East. [more inside]
I need extremely light and easy reading, but I am a snob. [more inside]
Seeking strategies to get all reading done within allotted time without sacrificing close reading on literature. [more inside]
What are the best magical duels and battles in literature? Sorcerors blasting each other with lightning bolts, the metaphysical shenanigans of Last Call etc, whatever. I haven't actually read the Harry Potter books, so if there are any particularly good wizard battles in that, do say.
Please recommend short books (15-35 min from start to finish) for middle schoolers who read at the 3rd through 5th grade level. [more inside]