Author Topic: How and when do books change for you?  (Read 6723 times)

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Morrigan

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #30 on: December 28, 2012, 11:08:26 AM »
Piers Anthony and Anne Rice got a lot worse when I was no longer a teenager.

And Laurell K Hamilton.  Although the last might just be because her writing went downhill as I grew older.

Is she the one whose characters can't actually cover any physical distance because they keep stopping every 20 feet to have sex? Or is that Anita Blake?

Anita Blake is the name of the character in one of Laurell Hamilton's series.  And yes, nothing happens because the characters are having sex all the time.  Her last one was a bit better on this score so I am hoping that she has worked her way out of that rut.  Yes, I still read them but long for the earlier stories and plots.  You know, the books where something happens.

I stopped reading them at Cerulean Sins.  Thankfully.  I tried to read a couple of the later ones, and just couldn't.  Which makes me sad, since I was in love with Jean-Claude.  But she's just mutilated the series.

Back on topic, I enjoyed Kelley Armstrong and Kim Harrison's series (Women of the Otherworld and Rachel Morgan series, respectively).  Now that I'm older, I love them.  They're much more interesting now that I'm actually an adult (I started reading them as a teen, when just a couple books were published in each series) and are everything I like in a good paranormal book.

Winterlight

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #31 on: December 29, 2012, 12:14:09 PM »
Barbara Michael's Ammie, Come Home. I read it in grad school and loved it, and was recently rereading it when I hit the line, "There are women you seduce, and women you rape..." And stopped cold and said, "WHAT!!!" That really jarred me. I'm surprised that I missed it the first time around, but yeah. That wasn't a fun moment. 
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violinp

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #32 on: December 29, 2012, 12:21:46 PM »
Wuthering Heights - loved it when I first read it at age 16. I didn't think I was a moody and emo teenager, but I stand corrected at this evidence.

I reread it at age 22 - so only 6 years later!!! - and absolutely hated it. I wanted to take Cathy and Heathcliff and smack their heads together.

I hated Wuthering Heights from the first time I read the book at 18. Unfortunately, it was for school, and I had to argue about why it was not a sweet romance.  ::)
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violinp

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #33 on: December 29, 2012, 12:31:49 PM »
One of my favorite books, How Green Was My Valley. I didn't realize two characters had played scrabble until I was a grown woman...and I'd been reading it for 5 years, and was reading on the level of a senior in high school when I started reading it.  ::) at myself. Also, I now appreciate more the narrator having somewhat misogynist ideas and getting knocked down a peg or two by a woman.
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VorFemme

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #34 on: December 29, 2012, 01:40:01 PM »
Piers Anthony and Anne Rice got a lot worse when I was no longer a teenager.

And Laurell K Hamilton.  Although the last might just be because her writing went downhill as I grew older.

She's probably a "read once" - possibly with a glass of wine and a chocolate or two...but rereading them (especially the later ones) is not going to be the best idea.  I suppose you could have two glasses of wine the second time around and three the third time - but it seems a way to to destroy your liver and your mind quite rapidly.

Jean Auell's Earth's Children series is somewhat the same - except the first two or three books you'd only need a glass or two of wine (very thick books - one glass wouldn't last unless you were a page at a glance reader).  Once you get to The Plains of Passage and The Shelters of Stone, you need a bottle of wine AND chocolates.  Plus notes on where to skip the "extraneous s3x & violence"...I figured that they did "it" pretty much the same way that "we" do, only on furs & piles of duff instead of mattresses with cotton sheets.  It's not like any new body parts have evolved since then...

(Thanks to another eHellion for the reminder of where the extraneous bits take over the plot development!)
« Last Edit: December 29, 2012, 08:41:17 PM by VorFemme »
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Winterlight

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #35 on: December 29, 2012, 01:53:11 PM »
I liked the first three when I read them in HS, but haven't reread them in years. I tried Plains of Passage and got bored, and from what I've heard, the other two are even worse.
If wisdom’s ways you wisely seek,
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To whom you speak,
Of whom you speak,
And how, and when, and where.
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magicdomino

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #36 on: December 29, 2012, 02:56:33 PM »
I suspect Jean Auel lost interest herself, thus the long gap between Shelters of Stone and the previous books.  The last two were written only by popular (and possibly publisher) demand.  This is true of many other authors of popular characters that they are screaming sick of.

snowflake

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #37 on: December 29, 2012, 04:38:04 PM »
I'll agree with nearly every author I "grew out of." 

Though I just re-read something I hadn't seen for nearly 30 years.  Walsh's Fireweed

That is one beautiful book.  When I was a tween it was about dropping the parents, dodging bombs and having romance and adventure at the same time. 

Now I realize it's about two children who are in that awkward teen part of life (and dealing with problematic family circumstances.)   They take advantage of the chaos of war to try and take control of their lives just like most teens want to.  They have to come to grips with the fact that no one is really in control - no matter what you expect at that age.  Absolutely BEAUTIFUL.

Lynn2000

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #38 on: December 29, 2012, 04:55:54 PM »
Great thread! It made me think of the Little House on the Prairie books also. I loved them when I was a little kid, like in elementary school; I loved all the detailed descriptions of how things were done back in the olden days--making cheese, gathering provisions for winter, that kind of thing. I reread them again when I was about 20 and realized how terribly hard their lives were, and how young kids were doing such dangerous things, because everyone had to help out or you wouldn't survive. All the close calls they had--like when Pa was stranded in the snow trying to get home from town, and Ma finally latches the door shut for the night, resigning herself to the fact that he isn't coming home (at least that night). That could have been the end of their pioneer days, right then.

And now, honestly, a lot of "pioneer" stories that I loved as a kid for the adventure just make me angry, parents dragging their kids off into the wilderness seemingly on a lark and without much preparation. It seems so irresponsible to me now.
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scansons

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #39 on: December 29, 2012, 05:14:50 PM »
All of Vonnegut.  Thought he was fantastic.  Then after college, he just got depressing and needlessly crude. 

BB-VA

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #40 on: December 29, 2012, 05:46:33 PM »
"On the Beach" by Nevil Shute changed for me over the years.  When I was a teenager, I felt terrible that Dwight went out to sea at the end, leaving Moira to die alone.  (If you haven't read the book, EVERYBODY dies at the end, and the last chapter or two are about how each character chooses to end his/her life - they were dying of radiation sickness due to nuclear war.) But reading it as an adult, I realized that he was being true to himself and the "not for self, but for country" that he had lived his life by.

I changed so much that when the miniseries was done and Dwight DOES return before the end, I was furious.

"The Universe puts us in places where we can learn. They are never easy places, but they are right. Wherever we are, it's the right place and the right time. Pain that sometimes comes is part of the process of constantly being born."
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scansons

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #41 on: December 29, 2012, 06:09:42 PM »
"On the Beach" by Nevil Shute changed for me over the years.  When I was a teenager, I felt terrible that Dwight went out to sea at the end, leaving Moira to die alone.  (If you haven't read the book, EVERYBODY dies at the end, and the last chapter or two are about how each character chooses to end his/her life - they were dying of radiation sickness due to nuclear war.) But reading it as an adult, I realized that he was being true to himself and the "not for self, but for country" that he had lived his life by.

I changed so much that when the miniseries was done and Dwight DOES return before the end, I was furious.

I love that book.  "A Town Like Alice" too.  What a great writer.  But I can see how you were upset.  I was too as a teenager.  I should really reread that one. 

BB-VA

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #42 on: December 29, 2012, 08:26:56 PM »
One thing about books written in the past is that they should be judged by the period in which they were written. 

"Little House", "GWTW", "Huckleberry Finn" and "To Kill a Mockingbird" - these have been decried as racist and someone has even rewritten "Huckleberry Finn", taking out all of the N words.  But is that fair?  Each should be read with the realization that the authors did live in different times with different attitudes.  Many schools have banned "Mockingbird" because it is racist, but I believe it should be taught with an emphasis on the time it was set in and that we do NOT want these times back.  The people who decry it as racist, IMO, are missing the point.  The point is that the law should apply to all, fairly and justly.  If we do not remember the racism and injustice of those times, doesn't that increase the possibility that they could return?  We need to remember injustices and not let them happen again. 

 I have NEVER understood the parts in Louisa May Alcott's books where characters are supposedly disgraced because they work for a living.  Did people in her world all live off of inheritances or trust funds or something?

"The Universe puts us in places where we can learn. They are never easy places, but they are right. Wherever we are, it's the right place and the right time. Pain that sometimes comes is part of the process of constantly being born."
- Delenn to Sheridan: "Babylon 5 - Distant Star"

Winterlight

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #43 on: December 29, 2012, 08:43:38 PM »
I'm not going to scream that they were all racist, but it's good to point out what today would be problematic so kids understand both what has changed and why.

I have NEVER understood the parts in Louisa May Alcott's books where characters are supposedly disgraced because they work for a living.  Did people in her world all live off of inheritances or trust funds or something?

Because in her time period (pre-Civil War-1882) and place ladies either didn't work, or they they had very genteel jobs as dressmakers or something else low-paying. If you were "in trade" by which I mean any kind of merchant, that was considered dirty work. Being a lawyer or a doctor was considered a better class of job. However, you needed to be able to study for either of those professions, which meant money. You had a better chance of getting somewhere if you were poor as a merchant.

Ideally, you'd be a gentleman/lady of leisure. OTOH, when you look at those characters in her books, she tends to be harder on them.

Alcott herself earned her living, both as a writer and a seamstress/governess.
If wisdom’s ways you wisely seek,
Five things observe with care,
To whom you speak,
Of whom you speak,
And how, and when, and where.
Caroline Lake Ingalls

VorFemme

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Re: How and when do books change for you?
« Reply #44 on: December 29, 2012, 08:44:02 PM »
I suspect Jean Auel lost interest herself, thus the long gap between Shelters of Stone and the previous books.  The last two were written only by popular (and possibly publisher) demand.  This is true of many other authors of popular characters that they are screaming sick of.

I heard that an ex-DH wanted "his share" of the money since the book was written while they were married and it took a while to get THAT worked out - I have no idea if he co-wrote, edited, or just "inspired" her.  But she did seem to have lost something over the long delay - skill? Inspiration?  Pacing?  Writing something besides "Ayla & Jondalar" either fighting or making up?
Let sleeping dragons be.......morning breath......need I say more?