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Fiction or other narratives that describe using primitive skills?

When I read the Earth's Children series (Clan of the Cave Bear and its sequels), the aspect I enjoyed the most was the detailed descriptions of how the people did things back then (hunting, foraging, skinning, toolmaking, shelter building, etc.). While how-to books abound, I enjoy the fiction or narrative nonfiction format more. Any recommendations? Thanks!
posted by Jacqueline on Sep 10, 2014 - 25 answers

Warhammer Novels - for a ten year old

My kid is a huge Warhammer enthusiast. He also loves to read. Am I going to be able to combine both. [more inside]
posted by Megami on Aug 24, 2014 - 5 answers

Mother may I (have some book recommendations)?

What are some novels featuring imperfect but sympathetically-portrayed mothers? [more inside]
posted by ferret branca on Jul 30, 2014 - 25 answers

high-concept low-spectacle speculative realistic fiction

What are some good novels that have a high-concept speculative element in the background, but aren't quite about that? [more inside]
posted by threeants on Jul 28, 2014 - 34 answers

Let's get physical (in fiction)

Recommend me novels that have a strong component of sport, physical training, or exercise. [more inside]
posted by quadrilaterals on Jul 28, 2014 - 23 answers

Double posting encouraged

I am interested in variations -- that is, not just a body count -- of the doppelganger and evil twin themes in fiction, folklore, and movies. [more inside]
posted by Clyde Mnestra on Jul 19, 2014 - 58 answers

Lady-friendly sci-fi recommendations?

After getting really into Marion Zimmer Bradley's Darkover series, I'm looking for similar reading material. Can y'all recommend other sci-fi novels featuring a predominantly female cast?
posted by schooley on Jul 10, 2014 - 22 answers

Detective/Mystery Novels in Current Day New York?

A little while back I stumbled upon a detective novel (Losers Live Longer) that takes place in 2009 NYC and utilizes actual city streets, restaurants, bars, etc. The writing was pretty average, but the book kept me constantly aware of the protagonist's location (oftentimes cross-streets). The real-world geography of areas I knew well really sucked me into the world and engaged me on another level than the narrative alone. Are there any other good detective or mystery novels that use post-2000s (or, better yet, post-2010) New York accurately? [more inside]
posted by gregoryg on Jul 8, 2014 - 13 answers

Book filter

Can you recommend other novels like Russell Hoban's Turtle Diary and The Bat Tattoo? [more inside]
posted by neat graffitist on Jul 7, 2014 - 2 answers

Help me find something as good as Zita the Spacegirl for my kids?

I have been reading Zita the Spacegirl to my kids (7 & 5, boy and girl) very night. For those who haven't read it, it is a terrific graphic novel for kids full of adventure and strange creatures, with a great message. What else would you reccomend, as we approach the end of this great series? Specifically thinking of a modern, adventure-filled (but not overly mature) graphic novel or series. Science fiction or fantasy would be ideal.
posted by blahblahblah on Jul 1, 2014 - 23 answers

tweet me a novel

I'm enjoying following Moby Dick excerpts via Twitter, and Angus MacLise's calendar poem YEAR. Are there any other Twitter accounts like this that the hive would recommend? [more inside]
posted by ethel on Jun 19, 2014 - 8 answers

Fantasy Disguised as General Fiction

Looking for fantasy books hiding out in the non-genre section of the bookstore. [more inside]
posted by xenization on Jun 18, 2014 - 27 answers

Nonviolent sff: where is it?

Please recommend to me any science fiction/fantasy novels (maybe TV shows as well) that are well written, interesting, and essentially nonviolent. "Completely violence-free" isn't necessary. I'm particularly looking for novels aimed at adults that don't rely on combat scenes to advance the narrative, generate/resolve tension, or provide Crowning Moments of Awesome.* [more inside]
posted by wintersweet on Jun 17, 2014 - 41 answers

From which Samuel Beckett novel is this?

Looking for a specific passage in a Samuel Beckett novel (probably from Watt or Murphy). I'm pretty certain this is from one of his early novels, rather than any of his other works. [more inside]
posted by cincinnatus c on Jun 11, 2014 - 3 answers

Thoughtful-but-entertaining novels for the nonliterary type?

I'm teaching an introductory course on prose fiction (reading, not writing). What fun post-1900 novel should I put on the syllabus? Should be intelligent, but needn't necessarily be, you know, Literary. [more inside]
posted by gallusgallus on Jun 10, 2014 - 40 answers

It was a bright cold day in April and the clocks were striking thirteen.

I am looking for recommendations of great dystopian novels, novellas, and short stories. Any length will do! [more inside]
posted by SkylitDrawl on May 22, 2014 - 39 answers

What can I read while waiting for the next Ibis Trilogy book?

I want to read novels about migration, trade, and globalization in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries -- I especially loved Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh (and its sequel River of Smoke) and The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell and would love to find more novels along these lines. [more inside]
posted by EmilyFlew on May 18, 2014 - 8 answers

Historical novels, subtype 'just-so' stories?

I'm craving a particular subtype of historical novel: the kind that posits a dimly-remembered reality behind a famous myth/legend/story, sort of filling it out and extrapolating the details into realism. My favorite of this kind is Mary Renault's "The King Must Die" about Theseus (also the sequel). I also enjoyed "Eaters of the Dead", about the events of 'Beowulf'. But what are some other good ones you can recommend? More examples and specifics inside! [more inside]
posted by theatro on May 15, 2014 - 32 answers

Best Airport Novels?

I read a lot of Classic and contemporary literary fiction and am interested in reading some books purely for distraction and fun. [more inside]
posted by R.F.Simpson on May 13, 2014 - 50 answers

Help me find a pair of novels set in the future with magic.

Trying to find a pair of novels set in the near future North America that I read sometime between 1990 and 2004 approximately. The "big idea" is that neopagan magic "returns" (or at least everyone believes it does, and acts accordingly) with the millennium. The protagonist of one novel is pregnant with the next world spiritual leader. In one scene, a prophet yells at her, "you're full of fish!" Another novel with the same setting (perhaps the same novel) involved a conspiracy and had a genderqueer magical cyberpunk/hacker as a minor character. I remember them as similar to Galveston by Sean Stewart but I'm pretty certain they're not by Stewart. It's not Bone Dance or DeLint, and they had nothing to do with Shadowrun. Help appreciated. They're probably not all that great, but the pair were striking enough that a few things stick out.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos on Apr 3, 2014 - 2 answers

books with realistic female characters?

I am tired of novels that have an enigmatic woman at the center of the novel. Can you recommend some books to me where all of the female characters actually act like real people? [more inside]
posted by colfax on Mar 30, 2014 - 57 answers

What novels have news clippings and press releases in them?

I'm writing the Great American Novel (isn't everyone?). I want to intersperse press releases and newspaper clippings throughout the book, but I'm not sure about formatting (and e-book format raises yet another question). [more inside]
posted by adverb on Mar 3, 2014 - 13 answers

More dark thrillers by women?

Another ReadMe Question. Lately I've been really enjoying literary-leaning thrillers and mystery type books authored by women. Can you recommend some more? [more inside]
posted by Lutoslawski on Feb 5, 2014 - 52 answers

Novel about workplace bullying at an NGO?

A few years ago I read a lengthy novel about workplace bullying at an NGO, possibly in the U.K. It centered about two women who had been close friends but by the end of the book are sworn enemies. It may have involved violence, and there may have been a male who was a romantic interest for one or both. Do you know what book I'm talking about? (More details inside.) [more inside]
posted by rogerrogerwhatsyourrvectorvicto on Jan 28, 2014 - 3 answers

Around the World in Eighty Pages

I am trying to read my way around the globe. Can you please recommend me international fiction/memoirs that frame the contemporary culture, customs, and values of the country that it is set in? [more inside]
posted by sevenofspades on Dec 30, 2013 - 13 answers

Help me compile a list of 100 books to read

This year one of my goals is to read two books a week, help me make sure I get the good ones! [more inside]
posted by everydayanewday on Dec 30, 2013 - 35 answers

BookFilter: English fiction with lots of Spanish language elements

I'm looking for recommendations of English-language fiction that heavily features Spanish-language elements. I'm working on learning Spanish again (I had 3 years in high school, about 10 years ago) and thought it would be fun and useful to read novels that incorporate Spanish heavily, kind of an immersion strategy. [more inside]
posted by sprocket87 on Dec 30, 2013 - 11 answers

Resources on Alan Moore's process

I couldn't find any information as to how Alan Moore goes about writing his comics (namely Watchmen, V for Vendetta, and From Hell). I found an excerpt from his Watchmen script which shows how incredibly detailed he is in describing each panel. I once read that on Watchmen, it was a back-and-forth between him and Dave Gibbons, where Gibbons starts off with roughly sketching out the panels, gets comments from Moore, gets greenlit, then proceeds to drawing the final version. Any more information on Moore's process? Any other scripts you know of and is his writing as detailed for all his projects as detailed (I know that From Hell has labyrinthine appendices that almost match the work itself in length for example)?
posted by omar.a on Dec 17, 2013 - 3 answers

Mefites led me to Game of Thrones but now I need more to read!

Several years ago I found the Game of Throne books after several people suggested it on here. I have a pretty decent amount of Christmas vacation this year and I would like to read more, well-written, fantasy. This is where you come in - what would you have me read? [more inside]
posted by WinterSolstice on Dec 17, 2013 - 23 answers

Can you help me make the Great Native American Novel reading list?

I like to learn about different places and cultures by reading fiction set in those places and with characters from those cultures. Can you recommend to me a contemporary novel about American Indians? I'm particularly interested in books about Native American communities in the continental US. [more inside]
posted by bluefly on Dec 7, 2013 - 17 answers

Fiction featuring Thanksgiving gatherings?

What are some examples of works of fiction (e.g. novels, movies) that feature a Thanksgiving family gathering as a major plot element? [more inside]
posted by Asparagus on Nov 30, 2013 - 21 answers

Several characters in search of a plot

I'm looking for an example novel(s) that features several separate third person viewpoint characters with seemingly different plot strands at the beginning but whose plots converge as they go on and they end up meeting further on in the novel (if only briefly). I want to see how the author handles these meetings and the meta narrative of several stories merging into one. I would prefer mainstream rather than literary as I'd like to seem something straight forward rather than overly tricky and would prefer sf but please don't let that constrict you as I'm more interested in the mechanics rather than the background and any genre would do.
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Nov 14, 2013 - 50 answers

Progressively Challenging Hindi Literature for the Novice Hindi Reader

I'm looking for Hindi books that progressively increase in difficulty. I'm a Hindi speaker that learned from my parents conversationally, but I have no grasp of the Devanagari script. I thought I could teach myself the script by rote, then work my way up through books of increasing difficulty similar to how I have read books in grade school in the USA. [more inside]
posted by brocrastinator on Nov 11, 2013 - 3 answers

Black turtlenecks, cigarettes, red wine, and Derrida

I'm defending my dissertation next week and the process has wrung all enthusiasm for academia right out of me. The whole enterprise has come to seem like nothing but an anxiety-ridden grind. In my small amount of free time before the defense and during the break I'm allowing myself afterwards, I'd like to read some novels that will delude me into thinking that being an intellectual is kind of, well, hot. Examples and extended description below. [more inside]
posted by pretentious illiterate on Oct 26, 2013 - 19 answers

Sometimes a Great List

What are some lesser known film adaptations of good/great novels? [more inside]
posted by perhapses on Oct 25, 2013 - 34 answers

Recent Entry-Level Science Fiction

In search of accessible contemporary SF—help! [more inside]
posted by xenization on Oct 22, 2013 - 24 answers

More reading material, please

My partner keeps rereading the Phrynee Fisher series. He likes them because they're on his E-reader, detective stories, and they pass the Bechdel and Russo tests. He likes the characters in these novels: these are relatively happy people for the most part. Please, O MetaFilter. He's ready for a new series. What else is out there?
posted by aniola on Oct 19, 2013 - 13 answers

adventure novels about french trappers/explorers in america

This is a long shot. When I was a wee child in the 70s, I remember reading an old adventure novel about a French explorer in the 1700s or 1800s, having adventures in the American wilderness, making allies with native americans, living off the fat of the land, escaping from British soldiers, etc. It was written in English though I suppose it could have been a translation. Anyone have any ideas as to title or author?
posted by jak68 on Oct 14, 2013 - 14 answers

You know where you want to go, but you don't know for sure...

[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]
posted by fix on Oct 13, 2013 - 24 answers

Recommend exciting stories, simply written

I'm an intermediate ~ advanced German student, and my instructor recommended native language-to-German translations for extracurricular reading. Her idea is to make it easy to find stories/authors/genres you already know you like, and just get you reading in German. I really like crime thrillers - serial killers, gruesome murders, etc. I'm looking for recommendations for authors and novels that have good, engaging stories, but aren't written in especially sophisticated English. I remember quite liking Cody McFadyen's stories, but being very underwhelmed with his use of language. This is perfect. I'm lucky as a native English speaker, as it's pretty likely that anything written in English that was even slightly popular has been translated into German. So, any recommendations? Vielen Dank!
posted by dmvs on Oct 3, 2013 - 5 answers

Non-euro fantasy stories?

Looking for fantasy that's not based on your standard European/Tolkien background. Pretty much any flavor of fantasy is alright (straight, urban, science, what have ye). Just finished reading Barry Hughart's Master Li/Number Ten Ox books and enjoyed them. Would definitely prefer "adult" fiction versus YA, but no preference for novels versus short stories.
posted by curious nu on Sep 23, 2013 - 24 answers

What the f*ck was that?

Is censorship of words in american novels common now? [more inside]
posted by eas98 on Sep 3, 2013 - 18 answers

Depictions of Children's Street Culture in Fiction and Nonfiction

Please recommend fiction and nonfiction novels which depict folklore and mythology created by children who are free of adult supervision and authority. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Sep 3, 2013 - 16 answers

Help my partner identify a novel she read in South America.

My partner read a novel a few years ago at a book exchange in a hostel. Here's what she remembers:
posted by HeroZero on Sep 2, 2013 - 5 answers

Marisha Pessl's "Night Film" as eBook

Based on some of the negative reviews, it sounds like the more stylized portions of Marisha Pessl's "Night Film" are a mess on Kindle devices. Can anyone comment on how it is using the Kindle app on an iPad, or in iBooks?
posted by boombot on Aug 26, 2013 - 6 answers

Economic Fantasy And The Anti-Anthem.

Settle a bet: Friend claimed that Terry Pratchett's "Going Postal" and "Making Money" where unique in the fantasy genre for dealing so much with the economics and " white collar" systems of a fantasy setting. I said that couldn't be true but couldn't think of any examples ( they abound in Sci-Fi, but we're talking wands and robes here, and the Baroque Cycle is only kind-of-fantasy). So, what are some examples of fantasy novels where things like labor unions, mediums of exchange, guild politics, trade imbalances, commodities markets, hostile takeovers and government regulation are both explored and woven into the plot? [more inside]
posted by The Whelk on Aug 26, 2013 - 30 answers

Novels for the American Southwest

I'm doing environmental work in Utah for the next three months. I'll have my kindle. Tell me your favorite novels about the American Southwest. [more inside]
posted by Rinku on Aug 9, 2013 - 36 answers

Novel to film rights

How do I find out if the film rights are available to a book/novel? Or, more specifically, if they are not available - how do I find out who owns the rights? [more inside]
posted by crossoverman on Aug 8, 2013 - 6 answers

Books or movies like Dark Souls?

Along with a friend, I have been immersed in Dark Souls for over 100 hours the past couple weeks. Although we still have much ground to cover, we're obsessed with the beautiful world, tone and feel created by this game. Are there any movies or books that capture this? Don't know what Dark Souls is like? Explanation has lots of detail! [more inside]
posted by Senza Volto on Jul 25, 2013 - 17 answers

What book is this?

I read a book in the early 90's about a guy who was helping a run-away child with nuclear launch codes embedded in his heart. The older man was a former code child himself (I think) and they were hiding out in Northern California/San Francisco with hippies driving around in art cars called "Gluers". Any idea? Amazon, Google, Good Reads, Library Searches have gotten me nothing. I'm not sure if it's even any good, I just want to make sure I didn't hallucinate the whole thing. Thanks You!
posted by capnmarrrrk on Jul 20, 2013 - 5 answers

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