r/books Feb 21 '23

The /r/books Book Club Selection + AMA for March is "A Thousand Ships" by Natalie Haynes


If you are looking for the announcement thread for the previous month, it may be found here.

Hello, all. During the month of March, the sub book club will be reading A Thousand Ships by Natalie Haynes! Each week, there will be a discussion thread and when we are done, Natalie herself will be joining us for an AMA.

From Goodreads (feel free to skip if you prefer to know nothing going into the book as the description contains minor spoilers):

This was never the story of one woman, or two. It was the story of them all . . .

In the middle of the night, a woman wakes to find her beloved city engulfed in flames. Ten seemingly endless years of conflict between the Greeks and the Trojans are over. Troy has fallen.

From the Trojan women whose fates now lie in the hands of the Greeks, to the Amazon princess who fought Achilles on their behalf, to Penelope awaiting the return of Odysseus, to the three goddesses whose feud started it all, these are the stories of the women whose lives, loves, and rivalries were forever altered by this long and tragic war.

A woman’s epic, powerfully imbued with new life, A Thousand Ships puts the women, girls and goddesses at the center of the Western world’s great tale ever told.

You may find the dates of, and links to, the discussion threads below in the sticky comment on this post. You are welcome to read at your own pace. Usually it is pretty easy to catch up and you are always welcome to join the discussions a little later. If you would like to view potential content warnings for the book, a reader-created list may be found here.

For those of you that are viewing reddit on the redesigned desktop version you will see an option on this post to 'follow'. If you 'follow' the book club post you will receive a notification when a new post, a discussion thread for book club, is added to the collection.

r/books 1h ago

WeeklyThread Weekly Recommendation Thread: March 24, 2023


Welcome to our weekly recommendation thread! A few years ago now the mod team decided to condense the many "suggest some books" threads into one big mega-thread, in order to consolidate the subreddit and diversify the front page a little. Since then, we have removed suggestion threads and directed their posters to this thread instead. This tradition continues, so let's jump right in!

The Rules

  • Every comment in reply to this self-post must be a request for suggestions.

  • All suggestions made in this thread must be direct replies to other people's requests. Do not post suggestions in reply to this self-post.

  • All unrelated comments will be deleted in the interest of cleanliness.

How to get the best recommendations

The most successful recommendation requests include a description of the kind of book being sought. This might be a particular kind of protagonist, setting, plot, atmosphere, theme, or subject matter. You may be looking for something similar to another book (or film, TV show, game, etc), and examples are great! Just be sure to explain what you liked about them too. Other helpful things to think about are genre, length and reading level.

All Weekly Recommendation Threads are linked below the header throughout the week to guarantee that this thread remains active day-to-day. For those bursting with books that you are hungry to suggest, we've set the suggested sort to new; you may need to set this manually if your app or settings ignores suggested sort.

If this thread has not slaked your desire for tasty book suggestions, we propose that you head on over to the aptly named subreddit /r/suggestmeabook.

  • The Management

r/books 23h ago

Book Publishers Won’t Stop Until Libraries Are Dead


r/books 12h ago

City of Thieves is amazing!


Once I started reading, I couldn’t put it down. It’s on the shorter side (258 pages) but it sucked me in from page one and left me transfixed until the end. It takes place during WW2 focusing on the Siege of Leningrad and follows an unsuspecting duo of two strangers who meet in a Soviet prison after being slapped with bogus charges, and sent on a seemingly impossible mission in order to obtain their freedom. This book is such a great blend of dramatic moments interspersed with comedic banter. I laughed. I cried. And after I finished the last page, I set it down but still couldn’t stop thinking about it, so I wrote this post. City of Thieves! Read it! I highly recommend.

r/books 12h ago

Why you should read at least one book by Cormac McCarthy


I’ve always dabbled in writing. In 2008 I borrowed a copy of The Road (McCarthy’s Pulitzer Prize winning post apocalyptic western published in 2006) from the library. I’d never heard of McCarthy, and I just picked it up and read the first page and thought it sounded interesting, and took it home with me. I could not put it down. It’s not a long book, but I’m a slow reader, and I finished it in 3 days (I had two jobs and two toddlers at the time, so that was quite a feat for me). I was blown away. - Then, I told my reader buddies at work about it, and they both picked up copies, and also could not put it down. We all finished it in 3 days or less, then we spent the next week talking about how we were ruined for other fiction. We all became instant fans of McCarthy, and I kept in touch with those guys for a while, and we would let eachother know when we were reading other McCarthy books. I’ve read Blood Meridian 3 times now, and it’s all marked up, me outlining all the parts that inspire me. No Country for Old Men is one of my favorite movies (it’s as good as the book), and on and on.

My wife loved it too. “Why can’t other writers do this?” she asked me. I don’t know.

I’m about to start reading The Passenger/Stella Maris (McCarthy’s latest, and likely his last), and I feel excitement I haven't felt about a fiction book since my hair was black and my kids were small. I ordered the UK edition because the American cover is butt ugly.

McCarthy showed me I could write however I want. He told me to stop worrying about what anyone else thought of my writing, and just write it. He (and DFW) gave me permission.

Here’s a slice:
“Once there were brook trout in the streams in the mountains. You could see them standing in the amber current where the white edges of their fins wimpled softly in the flow. They smelled of moss in your hand. Polished and muscular and torsional. On their backs were vermiculate patterns that were maps of the world in its becoming. Maps and mazes. Of a thing which could not be put back. Not be made right again. In the deep glens where they lived all things were older than man and they hummed of mystery.”

Go. Read. Tell your buddies. Maybe you’ll like it, maybe you won’t. But it’s worth a try. ;)

r/books 5h ago

Automatic update of kindle causes text changes in Agatha Christie novel


I posted this over in r/agathachristie, and someone suggested it might be of interest here!

Basically, an automatic update on my kindle resulted in a text change to the novel Death on the Nile. This change was to a sentence that could initially have been considered offensive (specifically, the original sentence used the word "Latin" to refer to a Southern European person - see link for full quote)


There was no notice that the text had been updated anywhere, and I only noticed the change because I'm a huge Christie fan and know this novel very very well!

I realize there's room for discussion on whether offensive terminology should be changed within books - and, as I note in the other post, there are certainly changes I agree with! But changing the text of a novel without informing you about the change seems beyond the pale. I'm also not sure how many other changes to the text were made - perhaps this is just the only one that I noticed!

This is the first time I've noticed something like this on a kindle, and I'm quite upset about it (and worried about similar changes occurring in the future!). I'd be especially curious to hear if anyone else has noticed anything like this!

r/books 25m ago

Illinois House passes bill prohibiting book bans


r/books 6h ago

Record book ban attempts reported last year


r/books 12h ago

Do libraries benefit from a lot of people checking out books digitally and online?


As someone who loves to read, I've noticed that many libraries are now offering digital books through apps like Libby, OverDrive, and Kindle. I'm curious to know whether libraries benefit from a lot of people checking out books digitally and online.

Does anyone know what libraries do with statistics of people checking out books digitally, both audio and on Kindle through Libby and such apps? Are these statistics used to improve the library's collection or to inform purchasing decisions?

Additionally, I'm curious to hear from librarians or library staff on how digital checkouts compare to physical ones. Are there any advantages or disadvantages to offering digital books?

r/books 2h ago

How to Be a Stoic by Massimo Pigliucci


This book seemed an introduction to be a stoic.

What I learned:

choose whom to interact: “If you must, though, be careful not to sink to their level that I truly pay attention to whom I spend my time with and why” “we want to be with friends who are better than ourselves, so that we can learn from them”

how to deal with insults: respond to them with humor, and speak less. however, if the insults are from whom you are look up to, the author said it is more likely that they are offering advice.

“say only what is necessary, and be brief about it”.

stay away from talking about gossip and judgments of people

“Remind yourself of the impermanence of things.”

when getting impression of sth, ask yourself “is it in my control?” then if so, be ready with the reaction, if not, it’s none of my concern.

how to deal with obstacles like disability: 1. changing perspective 2. use adversity as a training ground of life 3. focus on abilities 4. choose and make an environment that assists dissability

“people don’t do “evil” on purpose, they do it out of “ignorance.”

“The Stoics made a eudaimonic life a reachable goal for everyone, regardless of social status, financial resources, physical health, or degree of attractiveness”

That’s it! Thanks for reading!!

r/books 1d ago Take My Energy

What I like best about book Jurassic Park and villain John Hammond is that all of his wounds are self-inflicted and can directly be traced back to him trying to save a penny


Just reread the book for the first time in years, and it really struck me how everything is basically John Hammond’s own fault for trying to save a penny. I’m not talking about his God-complex or inability to recognize that anything bad could possibly happen (although both are major contributors to JP’s downfall). I’m specifically talking about his cost-cutting. The line “We spared no expense” is so iconic that it appears in both the book and the movie, and yet everything that happens at the park is a direct result of John Hammond “sparing the expense.”

1 - It’s mentioned that the staff on the island wanted to install a new dock that would have offered ships greater protection from storms. When a storm comes, the ship is forced to leave early before all their supplies are offloaded because John didn’t want to pay for the more expensive weather-proof dock.

2 - Scientist Henry Wu is nervous because the dinosaurs are too real (too fast, too deadly, etc) and wants to scrap them all in favor of slower, “safer” dinosaurs more in line with visitors expectations. John rejects this out of hand, citing both authenticity and cost.

3 - Game Warden Robert Muldoon warns repeatedly that they need more / heavier arms against the dinosaurs. John refuses and only reluctantly agrees to keep one launcher. When the dinosaurs escape, they are left defenseless due to the only launcher on the island being lost. In the same vein, they only have two gas-powered vehicles on the island and are left without transportation with Nedry taking one and the other already out in the field.

4 - The entire reason the phones are jammed is because of John. John had refused Dennis Nedry’s request of allowing his associates on-site so Nedry was forced to transfer the data back to the mainland via the phone lines. John also denied Nedry’s request of more personnel on the mainland, meaning the lines were down for an even longer period of time.

5 - Speaking of Nedry. The entire reason Dodgson chose him as his inside man was because of how dissatisfied Nedry was with John Hammond. John had Nedry working longer hours than agreed upon, refused his requests for additional resources, and then stuffed him on the overtime. This resulted in a disgruntled employee ripe for exploitation.

Just step by step, John Hammond’s penny pinching directly led to every major negative event that happened at Jurassic Park.

r/books 11h ago

The Chill by Scott Carson is one of the best books I've ever read


I'm not the most avid reader, I only get through about 10 books a year, but I absolutely loved this one. Without mentioning any spoilers I'll just say this; if you enjoy spooky, paranormal, or horror novels this is one fantastic read. Along with the story being told, the author cleverly weaves in bits & pieces of history and niche knowledge about geotechnical engineering. The world-building is very elaborate and you get to know the characters so well that when something happens it hits you right in the feels.

I could easily see myself reading this again later if my local library can manage to keep it on the shelf.

r/books 7h ago

I'm looking for some book recommendations on folklore/mythology/fairy tales.


I've always enjoyed fairytales and myths. I don't really have a specific culture I'm interested in. I like the story of Orpheus and Eurydice in Greek mythology. I used to have a copy of The Mabinogi, but I lost it when I moved (my first name is Welsh, so I wanted to read some of the stories). I like learning about the contrasts between the original Brothers Grimm tales and the more PG adaptations. I like the Thor movies.

I guess I'm looking for a good place to get my feet wet before I go all in on a particular type of mythology. Any recommendations?

r/books 13h ago

As a newbie to sci-fi, reading complicated sci-fi is making my brain hurt, but it's also really enjoyable.


I'm reading a sci-fi series that has many different complex types of time travel and time manipulation, with history being re-written many times and people using a mix of science and their abilities to reach their goals.

And let me tell you, my brain's getting a workout. During the parts that go into detail about altering time and the things it'll change, it can feel like I'm trying to figure out a math equation. But I'm not complaining. It's actually a pleasant change to read a fiction book that makes me have to dust off the ole' brain cells and make them work a little more than usual, lol.

Are you familiar with any complicated sci-fi? What did/do you think of it? Are there any other fictional genres that have squeezed your brain like this?

r/books 13m ago

Quo Vadis - amazing novel (Nobel Prize winner) that looks at what early Christians did to change the world for the better


r/books 5h ago

What are some self-help books that ACTUALLY helped you in life and you would insist on others reading it?


Title basically.

I’ve read a couple of these in my life, and they felt terribly generic, and I couldn’t learn anything from them to the point that I can’t recommend them to anyone; plus, I feel like it was a waste of time. So I wanted to ask and see if others had read some that were actually impactful in their lives.

I’m not sure if this post is allowed here or not, so please delete it if necessary, mods.

Edit: so the reason I’ve made this post is, as mentioned above, the two self-help books I’d read previously were not good and I could never recommend them to anyone. But most recently, I finished reading a book on narcissistic relationships. And by god I resonated so much with it on so many levels, it’s actually helped me improve my life for the better.

The book: The Object of My Affection Is in My Reflection: Coping with Narcissists by Rokelle Lerner. What a fantastic book.

Anyone bogged down in a narcissistic relationship (whether it be a romantic partner, a parent, a child, or a workplace colleague) could read this and learn so much about their situation and how they could improve it.

r/books 1h ago

How do I get over a sad ending?


I just read this book with a really sad ending and it’s really fucked me up. I spent about 20 minutes in the bathroom ugly crying. I’m so angry and I can’t stop thinking about it. I went into this book having no clue how dark it would be and how heartbreaking the ending would be. I tried to get my mind off of it by watching something funny or trying to read one of my favorite comfort books. But nothing is working. Everything reminds me of this damn book. It’s ruining my life.

How do you deal with a sad ending? How do you move on or get over it? And how long does it take for you to stop feeling depressed about it?

r/books 3h ago

Mistake in the Library of Mount Char


Didn't know where else to post this and I'll keep it vague to avoid spoilers.

On page 155, a character gives another character a gun. This is the gun reveal:

"She bent over and unzipped the duffel bag. There was a holstered pistol inside. “You might need this.”"

However, three pages later, the character who received the gun notes:

"Among other things, he’d never carried a gun before. Carolyn hadn’t thought to provide a holster, but twenty minutes or so in Mrs. McGillicutty’s garage took care of that."

Is this a mistake or am I missing something else?

r/books 6h ago

How to remember a book you read?


I’m not a big reader but when I do find a book that I find interesting, I get pretty consistent with it. However, I do ocassionally go for months without reading a single book.

Anyways, I seem to have this issue where I would be super into a book then few months or years after I finish I it, I barely remember any content from the book.

What can I do to better remember the books I’ve read?

seem to have this issue where

r/books 1d ago

How do you rate your books on Goodreads?


I’ve been thinking about this a lot since a good friend and I have started tracking our reads in Goodreads. When I rate my books, I go roughly by:

5 stars - absolutely loved it, wonderfully written, will likely reread in the future, would definitely recommend to others

4 stars - very enjoyable, well written, probably wouldn’t read it again, would recommend to others if I thought it was their kind of book

3 stars - an okay book, somewhat engaging, possible minor formatting/grammatical/factual errors, definitely wouldn’t read again, might recommend it to people but with the caveat that it wasn’t my favourite book

2 stars - I finished it and I was glad. Tolerable as I finished it. Likely many errors.

1 star - Hasn’t happened yet. I wonder what would rank here.

My friend is much more likely to rate lower than me- she rates purely on how much she enjoyed it. I don’t do this because I recognise that not all books are to my taste and that isn’t the books fault. How do you guys rate books?

r/books 18h ago

Have you ever 'lost' a book?


Let me give my example so you understand the type of lost I mean.

I was recently watching a TV show with ghosts and there are a group of them that died from Cholera.

And it brought back the memory of a book I read years ago about disease and how it spread. I went into the book because I enjoy the topic but mainly I was bored as the book was nonfiction and looked more history based than I usually go for. However by the end of it it was easily one of the best nonfiction books I'd ever read.

Except I can't remember it.

I THINK it was cholera but might have been just that family of disease in general. I can't remember if it was Europe or America. It was very detailed in that it would say things like 'as this was all happening on Main Street, a 20 minute walk over to 7th Street saw things even worse as 7th Street was against the river.' I remember it talking a lot about water pumps. And it followed peoples stories around but the only one I remember was a man who I believe was a doctor. I don't remember the author nor title nor cover.

In other words I feel like I 'lost,' the book because what I do remember is so vague I don't think I can find it and don't expect anyone else to know what I'm talking about.

So I am curious if others have ever forgotten enough about a boom they 'lost,' it?

r/books 20h ago

Why Kids Aren’t Falling in Love With Reading


r/books 5h ago

Recommendations for first person books similar to the Dresden files and project Hail Mary


I’m not sure if this type of post is allowed here, but I thought I would go ahead and attempt it anyways. I absolutely loved the Dresden files books, and I actually just finished all of them today including all of the side stories. I am now eagerly awaiting the next one in the series but it’s going to be a good while probably even a year until I get the next book, so I have quite a bit of time to read through other books I may enjoy.

I think there are some big similarities between the Dresden files and project Hail Mary, it seems like both writers enjoy a first person narrative with some comedy elements thrown in, and are both very good at making a scene very intense and cinematic feeling. I’m curious if there’s any other books that you guys know of that I may enjoy that are similar? I also don’t typically enjoy overly complicated writing pros, but with that being said I did still very much enjoy the Stormlight archives as well.

r/books 54m ago

Should I continue to kill a mockingbird?


I started listening to the audiobook yesterday and I'm 1/4 of the way through. I didn't read the synopsis, all I knew about it is that it was about a white lawyer defending a black man, that many people read in schools and that it's a masterpiece. I was very surprised it's not in the pov of the lawyer or the accused man (it took 3.5 hours for his name to even come up?) So far it's just been kids being kids in the south and I've been bored waiting for the plot to happen.

Should I just push through? Are my expectations just getting in the way of me enjoying it?

r/books 1d ago

I'm reading We by Yevgeny Zamyatin, but I'm having a bit of trouble understanding it. Is this just me? Or is this just how the book was written?


I am reading Gregory Zilboorg's translation. I'm liking the book, but I feel like it's a little hard to understand. Some of the wording just, doesn't make sense. Or feels like rambling a bit.

I'm using Gregory Zilboorg's translation because it was public domain and I could download it. Would other translations maybe be a bit more clear? And if so, what translations would be good to read?

I like the book, I just feel a bit lost at some parts. Is this just me? Is this something with the translation? Or is this just how the book was written? Also, I'm not too far into it. I started reading it last night.

r/books 23h ago

A book judged by its cover


Someone saw me reading Angie Thomas' "The Hate U Give" and said that I should not be reading it because it seemed "scary". It was the first time I witnessed someone dismissing a book based on its cover. I tried to explain that it was about police brutality and systemic racism, but the person didn't seem to care.