The Almighty Book Thread

I’ve seen threads about visual novels, but what about novel novels? You know, good old books. I figured I’d make a place to talk about books! First and foremost, I think it’s important we set up some ground rules when discussing the loveliness of the written word.

Rule One: No fanfiction, no visual novels, no games, no movies, or other non-books in the book thread. By book I mean published stuff, not the movies/plays/video game adaptations created from the books. You can reference them in comparison to the original works, but I really want this to be an area primarily praising the original works. This is also a place for work that has already been written. If you are writing a book, visit the Literary Bar thread instead.

Rule Two: Please no bashing on any books. I think I can safely say that most of us agree that Twilight isn’t the best book out there. But by no means does that mean we should talk about how horrible it is. Someone out there might actually like it, and I want them to be able to express their love without being completely shut down by another person’s opinions. This said, if you have an opinion on a book, positive or negative, please voice it! Just, be respectful, ok? General forum rules apply here too.

I was gonna have a snazzy rule three here, but I couldn’t think of one.
Anyway, without further ado, here’s some of my favorite books in no particular order.

Elephants on Acid: And Other Bizarre Experiments
I know. You probably read the title and thought to yourself, “Man, this U4ea person is nuts! What kind of a book is this?” Well, it’s kinda exactly what it says it is. It’s a book about all of the bizarre, twisted psychological experiments conducted by the United States. One of these tests includes giving an elephant, named Tusko, LSD. Everything in this book is nonfiction and historical, which will either add to your amazement, or your horror.

The Book of General Ignorance
This is a book that makes you realize that the only thing you know for certain is the fact that you know nothing. Think of it a little bit like a book version of Mythbusters. It serves to correct several misunderstandings that are perceived as “common knowledge”, and how knowledge can be warped by those around us. For example, many Americans are taught at a young age that Christopher Columbus is the person who founded their country (I know I was), but this is false.

Go Set a Watchman
The sequel, and simultaneously the first draft of the infamous novel To Kill a Mockingbird. If you’ve read To Kill a Mockingbird, you will really appreciate this one, but I think it’s able to stand on its own too. It’s about a 26 year old woman named Jean Louise who has come home to Alabama from New York. Jean Louise sees how her former maid, Calpurnia is treated based on her race and gender. Like To Kill a Mockingbird, this novel tackles issues of racism and sexism in the pre/post Civil War USA, while expanding on the idea of finding one’s own moral compass.

The Catcher in the Rye
An infamous, and polarizing novel. This one discusses a teenager named Holden Caulfield, who is suspended from his school. The story is told from the perspective of Holden, who is a cynical, impolite, and sees everyone as being “phony”. Holden’s search for authenticity leads him down a path of depression, and the only thing that saves him is his innocent, younger sister named Phoebe. Holden then realizes that he doesn’t want to become an adult, since adulthood means that he will lose his own innocence and become inauthentic like the adults in his life.

So, what kind of books do you like, Rokkenjima? Are there specific genres you love? Is there a book you know that has a special place in your heart?
I truly believe books can take us into worlds that allow us to truly become in touch with ourselves.
And so… I made a thread to celebrate that.


I actually own this book.

That was a pretty interesting and fun read~


Wait do we really not have a book topic? We have a mystery fiction topic, a creative writing topic… But no book topic? How odd.


I looked around quite a bit because I also found it strange. But yeah, no book topics. So I made one!


I really enjoy reading just about anything by VC Andrews. For a long time, my favorite book ever was Ruby and I made a point to read it once a year at least. But ever since Umineko entered my life I have no favorite other than it.

I have “And Then There Were None”, which I actually bought after learning Umineko is sorta similar, but I have yet to read it. I should get around to it.

…Man, it’s been so long since I’ve read a book (assuming manga don’t count) that I can’t name many anymore, haha.


I actually read a lot of books before my entrance exams took precedence over all my hobbies. What one may also call an unfortunate juncture at this point was also the fact that I also decided to actively pursue a writing career side by side. So yeah, beyond what I’ve read before junior college, which is nothing to write home about, I’ve pretty much stopped reading to avoid absorbing the writing habits of other authors and keep my work original. I’d say it’s unfortunate that my habits in writing now mirror those of the editors of the textbooks I have loathed studying.


I’ve been reading The Disaster Artist by Greg Sestero. It chronicles the production of The Room, which was actually the worst film I’ve ever seen, which you’ve probably all heard of already. It flip flops every chapter between telling the story of Greg and the film’s director Tommy Wiseau’s friendship throughout the years, and the story of the actual production of the film and it’s pretty fantastic and reads like a comedy novel in places.

I’d recommend it to anyone who’s seen the film and who’s mental voice can do a half decent Tommy Wiseau impression to read his lines in.


I read normal books! …Kind of. These days I normally do audio books instead of print books. I can listen to them while I am working, and a lot of things I do at work let me split my attention well enough where it is possibly the only reason I am sane.

My favorite book series for years and years was the His Dark Materials series . The Amber Spyglass - the third in the series is my favorite, though it is only what it is because it had two books of build up. The Golden Compass - the first in the series - is probably the most well known since it is the one that got the (mostly terrible) Hollywood movie adaptation. The series is still very near and dear to my heart and I have read it a number of times. I really enjoy Pullman’s prose, especially since I think it hits the right balance between descriptive enough to make you feel and visualize everything, but not being so bogged down that the descriptions impede your enjoyment of the plot.

My favorite as of about 2 years ago, though, is The Diamond Age: Or, a Young Lady’s Illustrated Primer. I thought this book was bloody brilliant. It is a sort of cyberpunk novel that follows the story of a young girl who gets access to highly advanced electronic book. The girl is very poor and her parents are terrible and at times abusive. Through this book, which falls into her hands by chance, she grows up getting an education well beyond what would normally be available to someone in her position. It is a coming of age story, and uses its setting to really effectively take on issues of classism and education in a deft and compelling manner. Plus, the primer is basically the coolest piece of fictional tech ever imho. Incidently it inspired both the codename used in development of Amazon’s Kindle, and helped inspire the One-Laptop-Per-Child project.



If we’re talking about ‘normal’ normal literature then the only thing I’m really reading is Jim Butchers books, especially the Dresden Files, though nowadays I mostly listen to the audiobooks instead.

But if we’re counting other forms of ‘normal’ literature then I really enjoy several different Light Novels with everything from Spice & Wolf to Danmachi, Mahouka Koukou and Konosuba.

Right now though I’m reading a book about HSP (Highly sensitive person) which is something I’ve recognised more and more about myself in. Really interesting, enlightning and thought provoking.


I didn’t want to read it in case it sullied my original vision of the characters from the original but if it’s good I’ll take a look.


It’s a good one~ It is true that the characters change, particularly Atticus. I don’t want to give any spoilers as to how he changes, but I will say that I liked this version of Atticus better. He felt a lot more realistic to me, considering the time period this story takes place. If you loved the Atticus in the original, you might not like this one as much, but I still think it’s worth giving a shot!

I recommend dipping your toes in by reading the first chapter of Go Set a Watchman, which is avalible online for free!

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My guilty pleasure is reading Pretty Little Liars, lol. Don’t judge me. :blushing:


My guilty pleasure was watching it, so no judging :stuck_out_tongue:

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Oh god, don’t remind me of that horrible finale :sweat:

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I have difficulty mentioning individual books so I think I might mention some authors that I really love.

  1. Haruki Murukami: a magical realism modern writer whose works are catching and bizarre. He’s got this way of writing that’s almost entrancing it’s so difficult to describe. Almost as difficult to describe as the plots of his novels which are all twists and turns and convoluted but it’s more about the sensation than the plot. Books of his I especially recommend: Kafka on the Shore, the story of a boy destined to kill his father and marry his mother who runs away from home so he doesn’t become Odeipus and ends up working in a library; Sputnick Sweetheart, a love story between two women as told through the point of view of someone in love with one of them; The Wind Up Bird Chronicle, which is about a cat and a marriage I can’t really say any more than that.

  2. Agatha Christie. You guys probably know all about her. I probably don’t have to go into details about why she’s amazing or what she’s done for the mystery genre or how good of a writer she is. Books of hers I especially recommend: And The There Were None, ten strangers are invited to an island and start to mysteriously die according to a poem; Witness for the Prosecution, a short story about a man accused of murder who’s wife testifies for the prosecution; The ABC Murders, a mysterious killer starts to kill people with a first and last name starting with A and continuing down the alphabet.

  3. William Faulkner: a southern writer with a disjointed writing style who writes about family. He has a tendency to work with multiple and flawed points of view and deals with some pretty intense layers of emotions in all of his writing. None of his stories are exactly happy and his writing is very much about what it’s like to live in the southern United States but it you can get past these points he’s pretty fantastic. Books I especially recommend: The Sound and the Fury, the story of the Compton siblings and their maid told through each of their points of views with their differing perceptions of life and their situations, As I Lay Dying, a family’s reaction to the death of their mother and the very weird things that happened to them afterward.

  4. Ellen Raskin: my personal favorite children’s book writer and the person who introduced me to mystery novels. I may have a shield of nostalgia over my eyes for her work, but I can’t imagine anyone not enjoying her work. Writes “romantic mysteries” for children. Books I especially recommend: The Westing Game, a rich man dies and sends his will to the residents of an appartment building, telling them whoever finds out who kills him gets his entire fortune; Figgs and Phantoms, a surreal story about a family and a town.

  5. Nella Larsen: a Harlem Renessainse writer who wrote realistic fiction focusing on point of view, race, and sexuality. A bit like Faulker, very focused on the place and context of where she was writing but it only makes her better. Only wrote two novels that I’m aware of but they’re both amazing: Passing, the story of a mixed race woman who meets an old friend who she realizes is trying to pass as white; Quicksand, the story of a woman who tries to travel the world to find a family.

Several other authors I love a lot: Kurt Vonnegut, especially: Slaughterhouse Five; Vladamir Novokov, especially: Lolita; Gabirel Garcia Marquez, especially: News of a Kidnapping and Chronicle of a Death Foretold; Italo Calvino, especially: Invisible Cities; and Aimee Bender, especially: The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cakes.

I love all these authors and I could probably think of some more but for now, these are all novels that I can wholeheartedly recommend.


I loved his 1Q84 novel. That my introduction to him, and it is one I get excited when I find people who I think would also enjoy it. It has 2 POV protaginists who’s stories slowly start to overlap. I thought the charactiziation in that one was intriguing and watching the seemingly very seperate story lines start to converge was really interesting. Also, the goat.

I then read his Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage which was…fine. That one follows a strange tale of man who goes to find the answers as to why his group of friends seemingly abandoned him years ago. I think the characterization in this one was a lot weaker, and while parts of it were very interesting, I think the complete picture of the story at the end was much more lacking in any kind of impact.

I had been thinking the next book from him I would pick up would be The Wind Up Bird Chronicle, but I must say now Kafka on the Shore has my eye.


Kafka on the Shore is /very/ good and I’d recommend it over Wind Up Bird Chronicles if I had to pick between them. It doesn’t write women…great? but I think that’s a general failing of Murakami’s in general with a few exceptions (like Sputnik Sweetheart). I only bring that up because it’s one of the few things that deters from my enjoyment of the novel. Overall it’s a pretty fantastic experience and I super recommend it.


I’m thinking of reading the Cormoran Strike series. Anyone here read that one?

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I have! I have read all three and plan to read anymore that come out. The third book was really tense and felt more like a drama/thriller then a mystery to me, but it was still very good and worked with the character development of the two leads. The best mystery was the second book . The series has some graphic crime scenes but I imagine most people in 07th Expansion forum wont balk at that much. Definitely worth reading, especially if you already had your eye on them.


Currently reading Rendezvous With Rama. It’s only decent, but I’d gotten it as an ebook for $2 a long while ago so I’m satisfied. Nothing Clarke has written comes close to 2001 or 2010 for me. Only two real problems so far: One, I really don’t fully understand the description of Rama’s structure. Two, one of the chapters starts with a 100-word riff by a character about how some women are better off not allowed on spaceships since their boobs are too distracting in zero gravity. …Yeah.

Also, I also support Murakami and especially Kafka On The Shore. It’s one of my favorite books. I wouldn’t be able to tell you why exactly, myself. I love Murakami’s style though, there’s something special about the way he starts his novels with beautifully simple characters and slowly slides down into surrealism. I love his motifs as well: Cats, mysterious women, even more mysterious dreams, jazz, bars, kooky sex, and a pervasive sense of loneliness and isolation accompanied by the surreal. I especially like that the confusing elements in his novels are not there to hint at some meaningful depth or room for analysis- they’re just there, and all the incomprehensible things are presented so simply that I never feel like I don’t understand. Kafka was simply my first experience, and I read it in May (2015)- loaned from my school library. As a person who feels the happiest when at home (or at least, in the city), Murakami’s settings are one of the few places in novels where I immediately feel familiar with the setting. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle and 1Q84 are two of my other favorites. The former’s just Murakami at the peak of his style, and the latter’s basically the largest scale at which his style could work in my opinion (although I admit much of Book III felt either like denouement at best and outright redundant at worst). The Manchuria flashback in the Chronicle is prize-worthy, and one of my favorite passages in all literature (alongside 1984’s last page and the introduction to Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy). Murakami is probably my favorite contemporary author- few other novels set in contemporary cities feel as timeless, if any.