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I'm booooorrrrrrred.

It's an especially slow time at work for me right now, and will be for a few more weeks at least. Please recommend some online time-killers. Specs within. [more inside]
posted by mudpuppie on Aug 12, 2013 - 12 answers

Can you convert a (literate) non-reader?

I would like my boyfriend to read more for leisure. Partly because I think he'd enjoy it, but also because I think it would be a good activity to share together. He's never been "into" reading; I think he sees it as a significant commitment. Were you a non-reader previously and now love to read? What made you change? If you are an avid reader yourself, have you ever inspired someone to start? How did you go about it? [more inside]
posted by goblue_est1817 on Aug 7, 2013 - 44 answers

Looking for the best in non-repetitive non-fiction

You know how a lot of non-fiction books get really tiresome after the first few chapters? Yeah, me too. Help me compile a list of non-fiction books that can keep my interest from the first to the last page. Challenge: no psych/neuro allowed. Other sciences okay. [more inside]
posted by dino might on Aug 3, 2013 - 47 answers

What book should my son and I read once we're done with Harry Potter?

We're almost done with Harry Potter. What should we read next? My son is 10 years old, and this is for bedtime reading aloud. The books have to be interesting, not too scary (I had to summarize one or two passages in Harry Potter), funny for both of us. Long is good, especially books that are in a series. There can't be any cruelty to animals (not even the slightest bit) and preferably not much cruelty to people. He doesn't like romance -- Ron and Hermione are trying his patience. The more recent the books, the better. He likes books that are for kids, not adult books that happen to be okay for kids to read. [more inside]
posted by The corpse in the library on Aug 2, 2013 - 61 answers

Where to find free non-literary book summaries?

This summer I have a lot of reading to do: some books about physics and math applied to sports, others about evidence-based sport conditioning, objectivism, ... stuff that built up because I didn't had to read it. When I read books I like to have a top down view of the subject but most books' introduction fail to do so, either because it is too short and not enough to give a good overview of each chapter or because they not even try to summarise the contents of the books and on how to use the book. [more inside]
posted by tsuwal on Aug 2, 2013 - 2 answers

What's the next step in my chronological, geographical reading list ?

I've just read The Black Dahlia by James Ellroy (takes place on the West Coast in the 1940's), I'm currently reading In Cold Blood by Truman Capote (takes places in Kansas in the 1950's). Please help me find books in the similar genre that take place in the 1960's/1970's/1980's (possibly 1990's) *and* that move eastward of each other. [more inside]
posted by Baud on Jul 30, 2013 - 11 answers

Books of stories to read aloud

We're looking for books of fairy tales well-suited to bedtime reading. [more inside]
posted by The Notorious B.F.G. on Jul 29, 2013 - 11 answers

Isn't it Ironic?

Looking for a short story, in which an elevator figured prominently, used to demonstrate literary irony in a gifted-talented/advanced placement middle school class. [more inside]
posted by crush-onastick on Jul 19, 2013 - 3 answers

Favourite examples of foreboding or suspense in literature?

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]
posted by swrittenb on Jul 17, 2013 - 22 answers

Please teach me how to read

I don't know how to read. Or, rather, I don't know what to do to keep track of the information in difficult, complicated texts. I'm pretty sure someone tried to teach me this when I was in, say, middle school, but I certainly never picked it up. So, now I'm asking Metafilter: how does reading work? [more inside]
posted by meese on Jul 10, 2013 - 15 answers

Mindlessly amusing myself with curiosity

I want to go about finding entertaining, engaging, intelligent things I can read about subjects I know nothing about. Ideally, I want a source of these things which will reliably send me off in directions I'm completely unfamiliar with, rather than just new sources which cover individual specific subjects. But it has to be enjoyable, even somewhat mindless reading – think Cracked or Buzzfeed. Does anything like this exist? Are there good places online for me to stimulate myself when I'm in that mindless time-killing mood?
posted by Rory Marinich on Jul 9, 2013 - 30 answers

Help with books/essays on criminal justice system?

I'm interested in reading works on the criminal justice system, race, and political/economic inequality. [more inside]
posted by MisantropicPainforest on Jul 9, 2013 - 14 answers

Resources for learning to learn more effectively?

I'm looking for resources for evidence-based processes, tips, hacks, improvements, ideas, etc., for learning more effectively. [more inside]
posted by StrawberryPie on Jun 23, 2013 - 11 answers

Salivating for Satire

Can you point me toward good satirical fiction? [more inside]
posted by aintthattheway on Jun 19, 2013 - 23 answers

Refresher Reading in basic Religion/Politics/Philosophy

Hi Metafilter. Recommendations, please? Recently I had ended a cycle of medication that was likely to affect my memory. It has. I feel as though I've gone from a quick, engaged conversationalist, to a bit of an observant, less inclined platform of speaking. Mostly, it's because I can't seem to recall things as quickly as before. It's so, so uncomfortable. I've been told my memory will return over time, but in the meantime, I can read and participate in exercises in an attempt to jar it. Can anyone offer some comprehensive overviews of religion, history, philosophy, or politics? Really basic stuff would be just find - Any texts going over the religions of the world, introductions to politic, lists of notable philosophers or historic figures.. Thank you!
posted by thewolfandewe on Jun 16, 2013 - 13 answers

Finding a particular recording of Alan Ginsberg reading America

I'm looking for a particular recording of Alan Ginsberg reading America. It was on a mix tape I lost many years ago, and the particular moment that stands out is when he says "America I am the Scottsboro boys", someone in the (high as a kite and raucous) audience shouts out "you are the Scottsboro boys!" Any pointers would be helpful, either to purchasable media or to online video.
posted by pmb on Jun 15, 2013 - 4 answers

Book Recommendations Wanted!

After rereading the Little House on the Prairie series, I want more books of a similar style! Particular specifications and a few more examples within. Note: Anne of Green Gables need not apply. [more inside]
posted by windykites on Jun 13, 2013 - 51 answers

organizing ebooks on Kindle Fire

How do you all organize your ebooks? [more inside]
posted by spunweb on Jun 12, 2013 - 8 answers

What makes it tick? What makes it NOT tick?

I'm looking for examples of analysis of why a particular passage of prose is excellent, or why it fails. [more inside]
posted by tchemgrrl on Jun 11, 2013 - 13 answers

Promote a literary event in NYC (Gowanus, Brooklyn) on short notice?

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]
posted by archivist on Jun 10, 2013 - 5 answers

Educate me on modern mathematics!

My math knowledge ends just past Newton. What books provide a good, relatively general-audience introduction to the past 150-250 years of problems and developments in mathematics? [more inside]
posted by gallusgallus on Jun 10, 2013 - 7 answers

RPGs for reading, not playing

I like reading pen-and-paper RPG rulebooks. Can you recommend some of your favorites? Extra points for: non-Tolkein universes, a cool new spin on classes or magic, and anything that has interesting non-combat systems. [more inside]
posted by subject_verb_remainder on Jun 8, 2013 - 40 answers

Book Award Recommendations?

My wife and I are starting a "book club" for the two of us. The plan is to read an award winning book each month. The first month we'll read a book that won an award in 2012, the second month an award-winner from 2011 and so on. There are many, many book awards to pick from so here's the question: What book awards do we use to determine the "nominees" for each month? [more inside]
posted by John Frum on Jun 4, 2013 - 19 answers

Public Spaces for Reading in Queens?

What are the best transit accesible public spaces for sitting and reading in Queens? Even after the renovation of the Queens Central Library, it's still hard on the eyes. Are there attractive libraries? Privately owned public spaces, like the Olympic Tower Atrium in Manhattan? Hotel lobbies? [more inside]
posted by Jahaza on May 30, 2013 - 6 answers

Looking for a good literary magazine...

I want to submit my short story to the kind of literary magazine that I'd actually enjoy reading. Do you have any suggestions? [more inside]
posted by pretentious illiterate on May 25, 2013 - 12 answers

Summer Reading You Want to Finish

Summer’s here. In need of amazing novel recommendations. Particulars within. [more inside]
posted by xenization on May 22, 2013 - 47 answers

Refresh my commute reading, if you please.

I'm looking for new mystery series with a strong, atmospheric setting. [more inside]
posted by superfluousm on May 21, 2013 - 46 answers

Pun-filter: Book group name

I adore to read. And I adore puns. Help me choose an amazing pun-based name for my book group! All suggestions considered. Googling "book puns" and "reading puns" was surprisingly unhelpful.
posted by drunkonthemoon on May 19, 2013 - 13 answers

I want Readability stylesheet on each web page 1st load. Possible?

I'm finding as I age, I use Readability on a lot of pages. Can I make a local style sheet that overrides the native one upon first load of a page that does what Readability does?
posted by usermac on May 14, 2013 - 5 answers

Reading the other side

As a Progressive, aside from some stuff I hate read, the only conservative periodicals i read on any regular basis are First Things and the Economist (which, you know Cliche). Part of the problem is homophobia, but that's not enough of an excuse. So which blogs, websites, pod-casts, magazines, journals, tv shows, subreddits, zines, or mailers about neocons, fiscal cons, paelocons, libertarians, paleo-libertarians, social conservatives, or anything I have missed. I have read a lot of books, and I am more interested in a set of ongoing discussions, rather than something as solid as a monograph.
posted by PinkMoose on May 7, 2013 - 18 answers

I read way too many books by white dudes.

I'm looking for recommendations for contemporary(ish) literary fiction written by folks who are not white men. [more inside]
posted by shakespeherian on May 7, 2013 - 55 answers

What is this called

I'm seeing a trend emerge, but I can't quite put my finger on how to identify it. Does it already have a name? If not, help me come up with one (for an article I'm writing). The article's jumping off point is RapGenius's foray into annotating everything not just lyrics, the NYTimes' Quips tool, Medium.com's paragraph-level commenting/annotation system, and Findings.com. [more inside]
posted by AceRock on May 6, 2013 - 10 answers

What are some good books for quicker, disjointed reading sessions?

I commute to and from work, which involves busses and trains transfers and other general distractions, and while I really enjoy reading on this commute, I can't sink my teeth into heavier books that require a ton of concentration to comprehend and follow (I save those for the weekends). I have found that lighter books with shorter chapters and engaging storylines are easiest to read in this atmosphere. What are your recommendations? [more inside]
posted by wordsmith on May 3, 2013 - 21 answers

Non-fiction about the Great Outdoors

I've recently discovered that I love reading non-fiction about the Great Outdoors and the things that happen there. I'm talking about books like 'Touching the Void' by Joe Simpson, and Jon Krakauer's books 'Into Thin Air' and 'Into the Wild'. It doesn't necessarily have to be about disasters and tragedies: I really loved this recent FPP about the Alaskan Iditarod. I want to read (but haven't yet) 'Into the Silence: the Great War, Mallory and the Conquest of Everest'. Please recommend me other books in this vein?
posted by meronym on May 2, 2013 - 35 answers

E-books to get me through a long spell in the woods.

I am leaving for Africa in less than 12 hours. I will be spending the next three months doing fieldwork. I am bringing a Kindle. What reading material should I bring for entertainment? What's gotten you through some long spells away from civilization? Looking for recommendations for books that really make you think. [more inside]
posted by Scientist on May 1, 2013 - 33 answers

Romance novel suggestions, similar to Danielle Steel?

My grandmother is in her 80s, but loves romance books, especially Danielle Steel. She's gotten several of the Harlequin Intrigue, etc series, but says that there's too much sex in them. She prefers the Danielle Steel books because of the plot (I think?). Can you suggest any other authors/books? [more inside]
posted by needlegrrl on Apr 25, 2013 - 21 answers

I need a culture fix!

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]
posted by dynamiiiite on Apr 23, 2013 - 37 answers

Can you identify this unusual neurological (?) reading phenomenon?

It's when "words fall away to pictures" occasionally , perhapps particularly when reading the text of physical books, usually novels, of a large size. It doesn't happen with reading online or e-book readers or textbooks. It's as if the visual imagination (without deliberate activation) overrides what's actually been seen by the eyes, so that the story unfolding is actually being "watched" in the mind's eye in an immersive, vivid way where one becomes virtually unaware of the actual text print and the outside world (so it's not even like watching a movie in a cinema, where there is more consciousness of the real surroundings). This is not just getting immersed in reading - the strong, and not deliberately activated, visualization is crucial. Based on anecdotal evidence, what I'm describing (not from my personal experience) appears to be a rarer rather than a common experience. Anyone have ideas what this neurological (?) trait might be?
posted by zresearch on Apr 20, 2013 - 18 answers

Best way to gauge comprehension of written training docs by employees?

Reading is important, and I want my team to do it as part of training. And then I want to know what they understand, how much they assimilate, what conclusions they reach from the articles and documents I am sending them. What are some good ways for me to accomplish that? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Apr 17, 2013 - 6 answers

reading glasses, .50 strength, how to search?

Searching for [reading glasses .50] gets me 2.50, etc., on both Google and Amazon. ReadingGlasses.com has expensive ones, but I'm hoping to find good, low-strength reading glasses for the same price one would pay in a drug store. Strength .5 and/or .25. Any specific recommendations or search tips? (and what is the unit of measurement, anyway?)
posted by amtho on Apr 16, 2013 - 8 answers

All the world's a book, and all the men and women merely characters

Recommend novels to help me learn more about the world! [more inside]
posted by therumsgone on Apr 16, 2013 - 29 answers

Can you identify this from Carl Sagan?

Years ago (years!) I recall a TV show with Carl Sagan wherein he was standing in a library and made the point that if he read x books per week for x number of years then he would have read a small fraction of the books that have ever been written. His point was that even a well-read person can only ingest a fraction of what is out there. I've always like that quote and would like to find this scene on YouTube or another site... Anyone?
posted by gilast on Apr 7, 2013 - 3 answers

Looking for wonderful books I can read to my kids, one chapter at a time

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]
posted by zarq on Apr 2, 2013 - 61 answers

Taking Suggestions for Library of Low Stakes Fiction

My taste for bleak fiction is making me miserable. Help me lighten it up. [more inside]
posted by murfed13 on Mar 18, 2013 - 19 answers

Crime, Insured!

Might you recommend crime fiction written by women? [more inside]
posted by Gin and Comics on Mar 16, 2013 - 14 answers

Poetry for Life

I am turning 27 in two days. Inspired by this, I want to ask for your help in compiling a list of poems that celebrate turning older each year. [more inside]
posted by pleasebekind on Mar 13, 2013 - 17 answers

Looking for Books of the Ancients

So I'm jonesing for some science fiction of a particular nature. Specifically stories that deal in the Precursors trope. [more inside]
posted by SilverTail on Mar 3, 2013 - 16 answers

Book recommendations for 13 year-old girls

I run a once-a-week book club for 8 grade 7 girls. We likely have funding and time to read one more book and I'd really like to make it something special. [more inside]
posted by iftheaccidentwill on Feb 26, 2013 - 46 answers

What is a good reading list to bring me up to speed in modern feminism?

I am a white gay dude. My goal is to bring myself up to speed on feminism (and important streams in gender and whatnot). What books should I read? What blogs should I be reading? I want to be able to speak more coherently to these issues with an understanding of the history, and of the current theory.
posted by wooh on Feb 24, 2013 - 15 answers

Help me find a word in Infinite Jest

While reading Infinite Jest, I looked up a word in the dictionary only to discover that the example sentence in the definition on my Kindle was exactly the same sentence I had just read in the book. [more inside]
posted by :-) on Feb 20, 2013 - 5 answers

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