Nexus Book Club

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Nexus Book Club

A group for those of us who like reading and books. Fiction, non-fiction, drama, poetry... everything goes.

Members: 812
Latest Activity: 10 hours ago

Welcome to the Nexus Book Club!

Hello to all our new (and old) members! We'd love to hear from you; please take the time to introduce yourself either on the forum or the wall.

Feel free to discuss the books you're reading at the moment, your favorite authors or works, and so on. I'm sure everyone has a book they think others here might find interesting!

Also, don't forget to check out the page Books by A|N Members Who are Published Authors, located just under the members section on your right.


Books of Interest to Atheists and Skeptics
Breaking The Spell by Daniel Dennett
A Devil's Chaplain, by Richard Dawkins
The End of Faith, by Sam Harris
The God Delusion, by Richard Dawkins
God is Not Great, by Christopher Hitchens
Godless, by Dan Barker
Letter to a Christian Nation, by Sam Harris
Why I am not a Christian, by Bertrand Russell

Sites for Bibliotaphs
Audible.com
BookCrossing.com
BookMooch.com
The Internet Archive
LibraryThing.com
LibriVox.org
Project Gutenburg
Shelfari.com

Discussion Forum

Kindle Unlimited Dirty Dealing

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Loam Gnome Aug 28. 6 Replies

Question about The Dresden Files.

Started by Joseph P Oct 11, 2016. 0 Replies

The Last Blade of Grass

Started by Robert Brown May 7, 2015. 0 Replies

Top 5 Books on Atheism

Started by Steph S.. Last reply by Gerald Payne Apr 30, 2015. 5 Replies

Why do they all have "happy endings"

Started by Cory D Wells. Last reply by sk8eycat Jan 22, 2015. 5 Replies

New books on the secular life

Started by Nick Bottom. Last reply by Randall Smith Oct 23, 2014. 1 Reply

POLLY AND THE ONE AND ONLY WORLD

Started by Don. Last reply by Don Sep 13, 2014. 1 Reply

Haruki Murakami

Started by Nick Bottom. Last reply by Michael Mann Sep 7, 2014. 1 Reply

"Cli-fi"

Started by Don. Last reply by Don Aug 31, 2014. 4 Replies

top 10

Started by Jeffrey. Last reply by Nick Bottom Aug 23, 2014. 17 Replies

book recommendations?

Started by Fester75. Last reply by Joseph P Jan 11, 2014. 5 Replies

Robert Jordan "Wheel of Time" fans?

Started by Jenn Wiffen. Last reply by Joseph P Sep 10, 2012. 1 Reply

Comment Wall

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Comment by Bertold Brautigan on August 28, 2018 at 11:08am

Interesting that Dan Brown's book should make the worst books list, given its vast popular success. I just bit the bullet and picked up "Origin" at Costco and started plowing through. It has some nice barbs about belief, but overall it's formulaic and not very well-written.

One of his characters opines,

"The term "atheist" should not even exist. No one ever has to identify himself as a "nonastrologer" ar a "nonalchemist." We do not have words for people who believe that Elvis is still alive., or for people who doubt that aliens traverse the galaxy only to molest cattle . Atheism is nothing more than the noises reasonable people make in the presence of unjustified religious beliefs."

And a bit further, the same character says,

"My friends, I am not saying I know for a fact that there is no God. All I am saying is that if there is a divine force behind the universe, it is lauging hysterically at the religions we've created in an attempt to define it."

Still, overall, I'd give it a not really worth reading rating. It's more of a sugary confection than a solid meal of a read

Comment by Randall Smith on August 28, 2018 at 7:35am

Interesting, but my question is, why would you want to read "worst books"? I guess for, as you said, "hilarity"?  I'll buy that.

Comment by Loam Gnome on August 27, 2018 at 3:45pm

Rather entertaining, and the good part is it's free.  I discovered this book while reading the Washiongon Post book reviews, with this book being described as the "Worst book ever written".  An aside - wikipedia also includes this in its list of worst books ever written but also includes Mein Kampf, Atlas Shrugged, The DaVinci Code, and others. 

Irene Iddesleigh by Mrs. Amanda M'Kittrick Ros.

Link is to gutenberg site, but also free on Kindle.

The book is way past the copyright.. This is the start of Chapter 2.   I think it's hilarious.  "Rouse the seeming deadly creature to that standard of joy and gladness which should mark his noble path! Endow him with the dewdrops of affection; cast from him the pangs of the dull past, and stamp them for ever beneath the waves of troubled waters; brighten his life as thou wouldst that of a faded flower; and when the hottest ray of that heavenly orb shall shoot its cheerful charge against the window panes of Dunfern Mansion, the worthy owner can receive it with true and profound thankfulness. "

Having looked at the list, I also want to read "Naked Came The Stranger", written as a hoax but became a best seller in the 1960s.    But first I want to finish "Irene".

Comment by Loam Gnome on July 25, 2018 at 1:24pm

This book was given to me as an "assignment", regarding relationship communication in an open relationship.  It might be generally interesting to anyone who wonders how people do it, if they are not in a monogamous situation. 

More than Two.

I actually am not as overwhelmingly positive about it as most of reviewers.  I thought it was too much "this is wonderful", kind of selling the idea.  I also think it takes a particular personality style and temperament, to live in a polyamorous way and really thrive - almost a libertarianism of the emotion and heart.  And the authors are clear, this is not for everyone.   Also, it's 100% anecdotal, and those anecdotes are about people who are happy with a polyamorous life.  No data. So to some extent, the material needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

That said, there is a lot about communicating with one's partner, and overcoming miscommunication in a relationship, whether polyamorous or not, that really hit home and I have learned a lot by reading it.  I have benefited greatly by reading it, and so has my partner.  So I recommend reading it, for anyone interested, but maybe skipping any part that is too much.  I read some of the communication sections several times.

Comment by Loam Gnome on July 23, 2018 at 8:29pm

This is what I'm reading now, Kafka at the Shore, by Haruki Mirakami.  I cant describe the book, there are two main stories.  One is a 15 year old runaway named Kafka Tamura, and the other involves a group of children who fall unconscious while hunting mushrooms.  Mirakami is an acclaimed Japanese author who reminds me, just a little, of Thomas Pynchon crossed with Philip A Dick crossed with, I don't know.  It's very unusual and fun reading.

Kafka at the Shore

Comment by Loam Gnome on July 21, 2018 at 8:35pm

BB that sounds great!  But a little deep for me these days.  Is there a twitter version, 144 characters or less?

Comment by Ruth Anthony-Gardner on July 21, 2018 at 8:23pm

Interesting recommendation, Bertold. McLuhan influenced my world view. Just read the NPR excerpt. I'd like to see all of that research. But that last 5 books I bought are still mostly unread, <sigh> My eyes aren't what they used to be for the printed page.

Comment by Bertold Brautigan on July 21, 2018 at 6:07pm
I'm starting an interesting book titled "The Shallows - What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains" by Nicholas Carr. From the prologue:

"'The effects of technology do not occur at the level of opinions or concepts,' wrote McLuhan. Rather, they alter 'patterns of perception steadily and without any resistance.' The showman exaggerates to make his point, but the point stands. Media work their magic, or their mischief, on the nervous system itself."

It was a finalist for the Pulitzer. One reviewer considered it "a 'Silent Spring' for the literary mind."
Comment by Loam Gnome on July 19, 2018 at 11:31am

Lately I've been reading the crime novels of New Zealand author Paul Cleave.  I started with "Trust No One", about a crime novel author who writes about serial killers, and has Alzheimers, or is he the serial killer?  It's not clear through most of the novel.  Then I read "A Killer Harvest", about a blind teenager who receives the eyes of both a police officer, and a criminal, in an accident prior to his eye transplant surgery.  It turns out there is cellular memory, and he sees some things that only the donors could have seen.  Now reading "The Blood Men", about the son of a serial killer who becomes transformed by family tragedies.  These are dark tales of the human psyche, and make me never want to go to New Zealand.

I also read "The Orphanmaster's son", by Adam Johnson, set in dystopic North Korea, the protagonist is a puppet of the North Korean government and victim of the dystopic culture.  Similar in some ways to 1984 or Brave New World.  After that, I read "A River in Darkness" and autobiographical memoir by Risa Kobayashi, born in Japan of Korean and Japanese parents, emigrated to N Korea as part of a plan to "repatriate" people of Korean ancestry to their "homeland".  That memoir is almost as depressing as the novel, even though he ultimately escapes to China, then Japan, as an adult.  Sobering, but interesting reading.

Comment by Randall Smith on June 20, 2018 at 7:00am

Just finished Steven Pinker's book Enlightenment NOWThe Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Promise. 

In a world filled with despair and foreboding--at least according to what I see on the news--Pinker says things are much better than they appear. His book sets out to prove it.

And, for atheists like us, our "movement" is on the rise. After reading the book, I feel somewhat more optimistic about where we're all headed. It's really a pretty good time to be alive.

Thumbs up recommended reading.

 

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