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Richard Dawkins on five of his favorite books - Comments

maton100's Avatar Comment 1 by maton100

Hey, where's Milan Kundera?

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 10:40:00 UTC | #125518

Rational Thinking's Avatar Comment 2 by Rational Thinking

I heard this live this afternoon - great programme. One thing somewhat puzzled me, and I wondered about the "Self-proclaimed Biological Guru" :-) I thought it was rather amusing.

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 10:56:00 UTC | #125522

Geoff's Avatar Comment 3 by Geoff

I wish people would stop adding to my reading list! I cant' keep up!

Only read Hoyle out of those 5, and that must have been 40 years ago.

Oh well, amazon, here I go again...

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 11:23:00 UTC | #125531

moopet's Avatar Comment 4 by moopet

I actually thought I was the only person to have ever read the first two! They're a very interesting selection, one I wouldn't have guessed.

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 11:30:00 UTC | #125533

pulsar1z's Avatar Comment 5 by pulsar1z

My Goodness Richard you are so multifaceted

I enjoy your insights

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 11:36:00 UTC | #125537

The Soilworker's Avatar Comment 6 by The Soilworker

I would have bet money that some Douglas Adams would've graced the list....

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 11:44:00 UTC | #125539

Jiten's Avatar Comment 7 by Jiten

Of those 5 I've only read The Lion Children.I tried to read Red Strangers but just couldn't get into it.It wasn't easy to get hold of a copy either!

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 12:22:00 UTC | #125549

APPlet's Avatar Comment 8 by APPlet

Ah, five more books to add to my contiually growing stack. A stack that is growing faster than it can be consumed. Having said that I would like to risk further becoming hopelessly behind. I visit this site daily and have learned much from the people posting. I wonder what fiction books each of you would consider to be in your top five.
Without giving it a lot of thought I will offer (without apology), mine:

1984 - George Orwell
River God - Wilbur Smith
Aztec - Gary Jennings
Salems Lot - Stephen King (I know, I know)
The Old Man and the Sea - Papa Hemingway

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 12:23:00 UTC | #125550

Steve Zara's Avatar Comment 9 by Steve Zara

I must get around to reading "The Black Cloud"!

I'll join in:

Godel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid - Douglas Hofstadter
Eon - Greg Bear
The City and the Stars (the long version) - Arthur C Clarke
The Player of Games - Iain M Banks
Changing Places - David Lodge

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 12:27:00 UTC | #125552

mikejswalker's Avatar Comment 10 by mikejswalker

fave books.
The Bible.
another Bible.
a big bible.
Pole dancing in Ruskin country.
How to really really really.

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 12:33:00 UTC | #125557

jdb's Avatar Comment 11 by jdb

I've heard Richard say several times that he'd like to write fiction, or has at least mentioned some good ideas. The question is... WHEN?!

I "found" Carl Sagan by reading Contact, his only work of fiction, at the age of 14. Of course this led me to the rest of his work, which I love.

How much larger of an audience would Richard draw with a work of fiction?

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 12:38:00 UTC | #125563

Eamonn Shute's Avatar Comment 12 by Eamonn Shute

I have also read The Black Cloud, it is one of my favourite SF novels, with a very unusual alien, and calculus! I am a little surprised that several others have read it, it seems to be unavailable new and was first published in 1957. I have it in Penguin, price two shillings and sixpence in 1960.

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 12:41:00 UTC | #125565

Jiten's Avatar Comment 13 by Jiten

My 5 best:
A Fine Balance- Rohinton Mistry
Creation:Life and how to make it- Steve Grand
Demon Haunted World- Carl Sagan
Language Instinct- Steven Pinker
Fabric of Reality- David Deutsch

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 12:42:00 UTC | #125566

APPlet's Avatar Comment 14 by APPlet

Jiten: Demon Haunted World was a life changing book for me, it is a great read for any sensible human being and a MUST read for any non-sensible human being. I also happen to be a big fan of Steven Pinker as well. I was looking for fiction though even if it is Stephen King. :)
Cheers!

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 12:48:00 UTC | #125568

AllanW's Avatar Comment 15 by AllanW

Top 5 fiction;

Cyteen - C.J.Cherryh
LOTR - J.R.R.Tolkien
One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich - Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
Behold the Man - Michael Moorcock
Foundation trilogy - Isaac Asimov

Bugger! I couldn't fit any Pratchett in! Or Orwell :((

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 12:58:00 UTC | #125571

Cook@Tahiti's Avatar Comment 16 by Cook@Tahiti

1. Guns, Germs & Steel - Jared Diamond
2. The Blank Slate - Steven Pinker
3. Understanding Power - Noam Chomsky
4. Demon Haunted World - Carl Sagan
5. Ancestors Tales - Richard Dawkins

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 13:09:00 UTC | #125578

elfstoned's Avatar Comment 17 by elfstoned

Jiten,I have 3/5 of your list, so I suppose I have to get the other two!! (Sagan and Mistry). Actually, the Fabric of Reality was the book where I first heard about Dawkins :)

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 13:25:00 UTC | #125584

GBart's Avatar Comment 18 by GBart

Why can't British people pronounce "controversey" GAWD

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 14:30:00 UTC | #125629

Ilovelucy's Avatar Comment 19 by Ilovelucy

Why can't yanks spell "favourite"?

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 14:34:00 UTC | #125632

alexlg's Avatar Comment 20 by alexlg

1. TGD (natch)
2. The Master and Margarita - Bulgakov
3. Chapaev and Void (or The Clay Machine Gun) - Pelevin
4. A People's Tragedy - Figes
5. A Clockwork Orange - Burgess
6. The Trial - Kafka

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 14:59:00 UTC | #125645

Fire1974's Avatar Comment 21 by Fire1974

Just sticking to fiction fav-OR-ites:
The Inheritors-William Golding
The Great Gatsby-F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Sun Also Rises-Ernest Hemingway
A Clockwork Orange-Anthony Burgess
Middlesex- Jeffery Eugenides

APPlet: I can't believe I'm not the only one here to have read Aztec. I loved it, but it just couldn't mingle with the above company.

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 15:15:00 UTC | #125656

Cartomancer's Avatar Comment 22 by Cartomancer

Given that all my favourite books are cheap fantasy novels that nobody has ever heard of I shall refrain from following suit here...

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 15:16:00 UTC | #125658

Fire1974's Avatar Comment 23 by Fire1974

I'd be remiss if I didn't strongly recommend The Inheritors to everyone here.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Inheritors_(William_Golding)

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 15:35:00 UTC | #125667

Geoff's Avatar Comment 24 by Geoff

1. LOTR
2. The Mote in God's Eye; Larry Niven
3. Rendezvous with Rama: Clarke
4. Stranger in a Strange Land; Heinlein
5. Flowers for Algernon; Daniel Keyes

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 15:50:00 UTC | #125679

rejohnsonil's Avatar Comment 25 by rejohnsonil

aw, i wonder if the hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy was #6? :)

i miss douglas adams still and wish i could read a new dna book...

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 15:54:00 UTC | #125684

CK76's Avatar Comment 26 by CK76

I enjoy Solzhenitsyn's prose in The Gulag Archipelago and would suggest it. Good bit is "Live with a steady superiority over life - don't be afraid of misfortune, and do not yearn after happiness; it is, after all, all the same: the bitter doesn't last forever, and the sweet never fills the cup to overflowing."

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 17:56:00 UTC | #125724

robotaholic's Avatar Comment 27 by robotaholic

1. H.P.Lovecraft (has some of the most fabulous sentences I have ever read)
2. Varner Vinge (inventor of the idea of the technological singularity)
3. Robert A. Heinlein (just a kick ass scifi writer)
4. Richard Dawkins -TGD (the audiobook is amazing)
5. Steven Pollock - quantum lectures (i actually can understand some of this lol)

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 18:23:00 UTC | #125742

Rational Thinking's Avatar Comment 28 by Rational Thinking

Five favourite fiction books, thus far :-)

Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy (all of it) by Douglas Adams
Bridget Jones' Diary and Edge of Reason (counts as 1:-))
Five Red Herrings by Dorothy L Sayers
Gerald Durrell's My Family and Other Animals

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 18:37:00 UTC | #125750

LorienRyan's Avatar Comment 29 by LorienRyan

Oh well, here goes...

To Kill a Mocking Bird, Harper Lee
Philosophy and Philosophers, John Shand
What is this thing called Science?, A.C. Chalmers
The Gospel of Buddha, Paul Carus
The Demon-Haunted World, Carl Sagan

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 19:39:00 UTC | #125778

chuckg's Avatar Comment 30 by chuckg

Matt Ridley - The Red Queen
Carl Sagan - Contact
Frank Herbert - The Dune Trilogy
Sir Arthur C. Clarke - Childhood's End
J. R. R. Tolkien - The Lord of the Rings Trilogy

Richard, Please, Please give us at least one novel, before you die. Carl did it. Do it for us; do it for Carl.

Sun, 24 Feb 2008 19:46:00 UTC | #125780