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LindaY

Not impressed with either list, although would love to read some of the bios: Roosevelt, Washington, and another that just slipped my mind, also OPERATION MINCEMEAT and the Charlie Chan book. The latter sounds fascinating.

M (@notarevolution)

Definitely read North & South by Gaskell! It's a great book and the adaptation with Richard Armitage and Daniela Denby-Ashe is skillfully done. I love everything about the adaptation (the music, the cinematography, etc.) but yes, Armitage is very easy on the eyes too! ;)

sakura

I agree, you must watch the adaptation of North & South. Swoon! For science fiction, I recommend Ian M. Banks' culture series. It's really incredible.

Katrina

I read Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep years ago and seem to remember I enjoyed it. I haven't read a lot of science fiction but I like Ursula Le Guin, Robert Silverberg, Kurt Vonnegut and you might like Ian McDonald.

iliana

Sounds like you've had a wonderful reading week Danielle! I've watched a few episodes of MI-5, the first season and thought it was good. I need to see more though to see if it'll really hook me.

Ok, I'll go check the reading lists but I'm sure I'll have hardly read any of the books mentioned! haha...

Danielle

Linda--I'd not even heard of some of the books on the list! Where have I been all year? :) I guess I really do read a lot of older novels or mysteries which are not likely to make the best of lists like these (although Steig Larsson was there I see). I love biographies but I am such a slow NF reader I don't read as many of them as I'd like.
M--It's in my pile of books to read, I might have to pull it out and take a look at it. I like reading books before seeing the movie, but maybe I'll make an exception in this case. I'd heard it was a good movie only never seem to get around to the book--I think that'll change now! :)
Sakura--RM is much more handsome in the flesh (so to speak) than just a photo of him. I'd wondered what all the excitement was about (I've heard more than one person talk about him) until I saw him on MI-5. I will check out M. Banks--Thanks!
Katrina--Did you see the movie they made from the book? I've only seen bits and pieces, but have mostly forgotten those, so the book seems very 'new' to me. Although I've never read either (will have to remedy that), I'm a little familiar with Kurt Vonnegut and Ursula Le Guin, but the other two are new to me--I'm off to check them out at Amazon--thanks.
Iliana--Why do vacations go so fast? Another month and I'll have another week off (a whole week next time), so I have something to look forward to. I saw the first season of MI-5 ages ago when it was on TV, but one of the episodes (involving an agent and a vat of boiling oil) put me off the show. Later I decided to give it another try as spy stories appeal to me much more now than before, and I was totally hooked. I thought I might have read a book or two from the lists, but not a single one! Oh well, there were loads of books published this past year--impossible to know them all. Now I have a few new books to discover.

Lyn

Dani, we've just started series 8 of Spooks (your MI-5) here & I've been addicted from episode 1. I love Harry. If he ever leaves or is killed off, that's it. Even gorgeous Richard Armitage couldn't keep me interested without Peter Firth! I can't watch it last thing at night though because I just can't sleep after it, the adrenaline is pumping & I need to calm down. When it was on TV at 9.30 I would have to tape it & watch it at an earlier time. This series is at 8.30 so that's fine. Enjoy the intrigue!

Caroline

I havent watched MI-5 but discovered Whitechapel the other day. A mini series with Rupert Penry-Jones. One of the best crime series I've ever seen. I still need to read North and South as well.I will have to have a closer look at the Metropolis case. I used to sing opera but not Wagner (Mozart, Schubert. I have Ann Patchett's Bel Canto on my TBR list. I think it is quite the book for opera lovers. I am curious to read your review of Dick's book. I got it but like you I don't read much SF. I think I should try Ursula K. Le Guin though.

Ellen

Oh do see the 'North and South' adaptation ASAP. You WILL swoon, I promise you. My sister and I watch is every Christmas vacation.

litlove

I see we share a taste for eye candy! I would happily watch the gentlemen you mention in any tv series (and have just ordered North And South as a Christmas present for a friend - might have to ask for it myself!). Very glad to hear that you have been having a lovely rest. I am behind on my correspondance but will catch up today or tomorrow.

Eva

I gave up after the second season of MI-5 (the finale just seemed so silly to me), but seeing that Richard Armitage & Rupert Henry-Jones are in it, I might have to start watching again! lol

The North and South adaptation is incredible, but I wish I'd read the book first...I think my love for the adaptation made me enjoy the book less. So your plan is a good one!

Smithereens

I loved North and South the book and the BBC adaptation. I don't know about MI5, but yes, Armitage is quite romantic in Victorian garb and he makes the dark, intent stare to perfection!

Heather

Oh, I love MI-5, although I stopped watching after the third season. I couldn't get the next season's dvds from the library and just kind of let it go. I'm happy to hear that the series has stayed as great as I remember.

Margaret Powling

MI-5, the TV series, is calle Spooks here in the UK. Husband and I love it, although there were some pretty grisly scenes in the last series which ended just a couple of weeks' ago. But as someone has said, even with Richard Armitage, it wouldn't be the programme it is without Peter Firth as Harry. I think we're currently on series 6 or 7, I've lost count, so there are still plenty to go for those still on the early series ...

Jan Smith

Like you, I am not a fan of science fiction. It always seems as if the writer just makes up the rules & it doesn't have to follow a format like other fiction. But, having said that, I really love Ray Bradbury - the novels, the short stories. There are still many of his writings that I've yet to read, but nothing so far has disappointed.

Stefanie

Your break sounds like it has been wonderful and I am supremely jealous! all my reading for school :( But this will be the last Thanksgiving I will have to spend working on a final project. Yay! As for scifi, I highly recommend Octavia E. Butler and Ursula LeGuin.

Danielle

Lyn--Harry has definitely grown on me--he's the only character who has remained consistent throughout the entire run of the show, so I agree without him there would be no Spooks/MI-5! I have to save the shows for the weekend as they really are too intense. I'm going to try and ration myself now--just a couple of shows each weekend and then I'll have to wait until the end of Jan to see the next season!
Caroline--I had to look, but Whitechapel is not available here in the US! :( It does sound good, so maybe it will be on PBS sometime later. I'm looking forward to the Metropolis Case--even though I don't know much about opera--the only one I've seen was Carmen years ago. How cool that you have sung opera--I'm a terrible singer. I did read Bel Canto and recall liking it very much, but it was some years ago now.
Ellen--Maybe I should buy it for my mom (and then I can watch it, too). She loves dramas like this. I am quite tempted now! My Christmas movie is Pride and Prejudice--the Colin Firth version. I can add more to my viewing repertoire, though.
Litlove--I did have a nice break--didn't catch up on my online stuff, but it's probably a good thing to take a break from the computer, too. I think I might have to add North and South to my wishlist. :)
Eva--It's been so long now since I saw the first few seasons I've forgotten the actual plotlines! I do think the show improves over time, if that helps. And yes, it can all be very dramatic, but I sort of like the escapism. And it doesn't hurt that RA and RPJ star in it either! ;) I think I will definitely read North and South first...must dig it out of my reading pile.
Smithereens--It's funny as I've seen the cover of the DVD for MI5 and North and South and though Richard Armitage was handsome enough, but wasn't compelled to see him in the flesh, but now having done so....he has quite a presence. I think he must make a very good Victorian gentleman indeed!
Heather--I watched the first season and then didn't watch anymore for quite some time, but then decided to start over again from the beginning. Now I'm hooked. I'm lucky as my public library has all the seasons and Netflix has them as well. If you come across them again, they are definitely worth borrowing.
Margaret--There was a very grisly scene in the first season--let's just say a vat of boiling oil was involved and it put me off watching the show. I didn't think I would watch it again, but then I started over and fast forwarded through that scene and it's been fine, but there is a good amount of violence. I know it's not real, but when you really get involved in the story it's hard to put those things from your mind! I'm catching up now with the seasons that have been released here in the US, so I'll have to wait to see more unfortunately. And I agree that Peter Firth really does make the show!
Jan--Sci Fi is definitely outside my comfort zone, but I think I might like some of it. In any case I do like the Philip Dick novel so far. I also like Ray Bradbury, though I've read very little of his work. I was thinking he would be a perfect person to add to my list!
Stefanie--I'm sorry you had to spend so much of your break on school work. You are getting so close, though. When you're finally finished you're going to deserve an extended vacation filled with books you've been dying to read! I've been very lazy, but in a good way. Now I will have to set my alarm and get up at the crack of dawn once again. Still, I shouldn't complain, so I will do so cheerfully. I definitely want to read Ursula Le Guin and have heard good things about Octavia Butler--am adding her to my list, too, thanks.

Danielle

Lyn--Harry has definitely grown on me--he's the only character who has remained consistent throughout the entire run of the show, so I agree without him there would be no Spooks/MI-5! I have to save the shows for the weekend as they really are too intense. I'm going to try and ration myself now--just a couple of shows each weekend and then I'll have to wait until the end of Jan to see the next season!
Caroline--I had to look, but Whitechapel is not available here in the US! :( It does sound good, so maybe it will be on PBS sometime later. I'm looking forward to the Metropolis Case--even though I don't know much about opera--the only one I've seen was Carmen years ago. How cool that you have sung opera--I'm a terrible singer. I did read Bel Canto and recall liking it very much, but it was some years ago now.
Ellen--Maybe I should buy it for my mom (and then I can watch it, too). She loves dramas like this. I am quite tempted now! My Christmas movie is Pride and Prejudice--the Colin Firth version. I can add more to my viewing repertoire, though.
Litlove--I did have a nice break--didn't catch up on my online stuff, but it's probably a good thing to take a break from the computer, too. I think I might have to add North and South to my wishlist. :)
Eva--It's been so long now since I saw the first few seasons I've forgotten the actual plotlines! I do think the show improves over time, if that helps. And yes, it can all be very dramatic, but I sort of like the escapism. And it doesn't hurt that RA and RPJ star in it either! ;) I think I will definitely read North and South first...must dig it out of my reading pile.
Smithereens--It's funny as I've seen the cover of the DVD for MI5 and North and South and though Richard Armitage was handsome enough, but wasn't compelled to see him in the flesh, but now having done so....he has quite a presence. I think he must make a very good Victorian gentleman indeed!
Heather--I watched the first season and then didn't watch anymore for quite some time, but then decided to start over again from the beginning. Now I'm hooked. I'm lucky as my public library has all the seasons and Netflix has them as well. If you come across them again, they are definitely worth borrowing.
Margaret--There was a very grisly scene in the first season--let's just say a vat of boiling oil was involved and it put me off watching the show. I didn't think I would watch it again, but then I started over and fast forwarded through that scene and it's been fine, but there is a good amount of violence. I know it's not real, but when you really get involved in the story it's hard to put those things from your mind! I'm catching up now with the seasons that have been released here in the US, so I'll have to wait to see more unfortunately. And I agree that Peter Firth really does make the show!
Jan--Sci Fi is definitely outside my comfort zone, but I think I might like some of it. In any case I do like the Philip Dick novel so far. I also like Ray Bradbury, though I've read very little of his work. I was thinking he would be a perfect person to add to my list!
Stefanie--I'm sorry you had to spend so much of your break on school work. You are getting so close, though. When you're finally finished you're going to deserve an extended vacation filled with books you've been dying to read! I've been very lazy, but in a good way. Now I will have to set my alarm and get up at the crack of dawn once again. Still, I shouldn't complain, so I will do so cheerfully. I definitely want to read Ursula Le Guin and have heard good things about Octavia Butler--am adding her to my list, too, thanks.

Heather

We are hooked on MI-5 right now too (in the middle of season 5). I think it is amazing at how tense and gripping the show can become so quickly. Also, we enjoy how non-formulaic the plots feel compared to Law & Order or CSI.

Dorothy W.

I second Stefanie's recommendation of Ursula LeGuin. I hardly read any science fiction, but I read her book The Left Hand of Darkness and loved it. I want to read more of her work when I can.

Danielle

Heather--Funny you mention Law & Order and CSI as I watched those shows for a number of seasons as well, but then always turned to something different. I've been glued to MI-5 and will watch it through to the end. Maybe this is why so many characters pass through the show--to keep it all fresh and new! They do get very intense, I agree, but I think that is why I like them so much.
Dorothy--I will look for that book. I have one of her novels somewhere--I need to dig it out. She's someone I've wanted to read, but never seem quite in the mood for--at least am not often in the mood for sci fi, but maybe reading the Philip Dick book will start a new trend!

Zoya

Danielle,

Thanks a lot for sharing the best books lists. I have a book to suggest to your reading list - The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets by Eva Rice. Not sure if you'd read this. Its a story set after WW II in Britain and highlights the cultural revolution sweeping Britain and its youth.

Another book that I came across which is quiet fascinating is Empress Orchid by Anchee Min.

Jodie

Isn't Lucas lussssshhhhh! There are surprises in store...eep. Did I tell you about BBC Robin Hood? He is Guy of Gisbourne, so it's all leather and stubble and rage (the program is kind of silly, but it is full of eye candy and a kickass Marion). Shall we soon together?;) Oh and I agree Spooks really ramped it up in recent series, which I suspect may have something to do with all the classy, twisty thriller dramas coming out of the US (24 for one).

Um suggestions for like Philip K Dick - the best I can give you is Brian K Slattery's 'Spaceman Blues'. I'd say read Douglas Adams if you haven't and fancy a bit of humour with your sci-fi. Or China Melville's The City and the City has the same kind of PI in space vibe going on.

Danielle

Jodie--Yes, he is indeed a series hottie. I've heard in one of my online reading groups that something awful happens to him--I could only respond--nooooooo, I've only just met him. But that is many episodes away, so I will enjoy him while I can. Strangely, I (ahem) have the first episode of Robin Hood. I don't mind a little silliness if there is swashbuckling fun or sword fights or something good. TV for me is usually meant as a diversion, so it's all good. I've yet to watch it--I hope this weekend. Do you know I've never seen 24--I don't watch much TV at all, but now I might have to check 24 out since you mention it. I sort of like that kind of adrenaline-ride thrill. I will check out your suggestions--I'm enjoying the Dick book--this may open up a new genre for me. I know loads of people who have read Douglas Adams--not sure why I've not tried him--I'll have to remedy that. And ditto for China Mieville--I've been very curious about him for a while but uncertain about his books. More to add to my list for next year!

Danielle

Zoya--Hi, thanks for your comment--I just noticed it so sorry about the delay in responding. I Loved Eva Rice's book--The Art of Keeping Lost Secrets. I thought it was wonderful and keep hoping she'll publish something new! I've read Anchee Min, but not that particular book, so I will add it to my list as well. I think those Best Of lists are going to be all over the place pretty soon.

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