General reading/book thread for 2020

For some reason I liked The Corrections/Freedom but found Purity unbearable, I’m not even sure there’s much difference between them!

Yoko Ogawa (contemporary literature, bit chilly and gothic)

Ryunosuke Akutagawa (short story writer from the late 19th / early 20th century, wrote the story Rashomon is based on)

Taichi Yamada (contemporary (ish - 90s) writer, known for the ghost story Strangers)

Ryu Murakami (thriller / horror author who writes some genuinely nasty stuff. His novels Audition and Piercing were both made into films, but In The Miso Soup is better than either)

Hiromi Kawakami (offbeat modern fiction)

sure I’ll think of some others in a bit

EDIT: Junichiro Tanizaki! One of the greats of post war Japanese literature - The Makioka Sisters is a must read


big fan of Sanshiro by Soseki

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Fantastic! Thank you.

As you mentioned it, saw Rashomon for the first recently at the cinema pre-second lockdown. My god, what a film!


since eric doesn’t seem to be around, it’d be remiss for someone not to mention kobo abe. only read a couple, woman in the dunes and secret rendezvous were both great

read a few banana yoshimoto books that were good (maybe a bit slight), nice kind of sad, kind of funny, atmostpheric magical realism, if you like that. enjoyed asleep a lot


I was the same… Not sure why but didn’t even finish purity. I also really hate Freedom and the corrections retrospectively now even though I liked them at the time.

@Zygotic - he’s my recommendation too. The story ‘Horse Legs’ is great.

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anyone read this?

Everyone I know who has read it says it is very good. I will probably read it eventually.

I’m quite amused by the fact that in the most diverse Booker list ever, a white man won.

My mate just pointed me to this album where each song is inspired by a Stephen King book

Possibly of interest to @Scott_Chegg - not sure who else on here is into Stephen King particularly. Maybe @Avery and @Gnometorious?

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I am! I will check this out

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#2 done. Jfc those first two are long. So good though. The third one is mercifully short though so looks like I’ll fly though it.

They’ve really fucked my reading challenge on Goodreads.

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I think it’s meant to be horrifically bleak though.

Oh no

thanks for whoever told me to push on with The Expanse books, I have Caliban’s War waiting for me at home.
Subsequently, I have a free copy of Leviathan’s Wake if anyone’s interested (posted in the classifieds too)

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Just finished Blindness. My first and probably last book by Saramago

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His other books aren’t quite as bleak as that one, but his writing style is the same though.
I’m a big fan, but have to be in the mood for his writing/walls of text.


Pretty much finished House of Leaves. For a big book I’ve flown through it (considering the last three big books I’ve read I haven’t actually finished!). Really compulsive reading but the Johnny Truant stuff derailed it quite a lot I think, although I did eventually get into it after thinking it was quite absurd at the beginning (only to then find it pretty unnecessary after the end of the Navidson Record stuff). Surprisingly lovely overall, and amazing what he got out of it, considering what it revolves around. You do really get drawn in to the conceit.