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 Post subject: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2015 11:43 pm 
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Hey, PPK, I'm just wondering, what would you say is:

-one book you think everyone should read

-one movie you think everyone should see

-one album you think everyone should listen to

You can give reasons if you want, or not! I'm just super bored and curious.


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 12:41 am 
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Okay, this is way too hard. But I'll try.

It's a classic, but Great Gatsby is my favorite book of all time. It just says so much about humans, and the people we can be, and the people we should be. If anyone has managed to arrive at adulthood without reading it, I think they need to, stat.

Dead Poets Society. Ditto the above.

This is hard...I can't remember the last time I really listened to music in album form (thank you Spotify) I do love Krishna Das's Pilgrim Heart. It can lift my mood in a way that nothing else can at certain times.

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 12:59 am 
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1. A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry. Its an amazing epic history of India as reflected in the lives of 4 ordinary people. so it manages to be intimate as well as huge and sweeping. Its an incredible story about the violence that we are capable of inflicting on one another and the wonderful things we can do when we connect.

2. L'Argent de Poche by Truffaut, which just embodies childhood for me.

3. Bach Cello Suite Number 1 in G Major, because it makes my heard expand and sing.

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 2:33 am 
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Chip Strong
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raspberrycomplaint wrote:
Hey, PPK, I'm just wondering, what would you say is:

-one book you think everyone should read

An Interrupted Life: The Diaries and Letters of Etty Hillesum 1941-43

-one movie you think everyone should see

On Borrowed Time (1939)

-one album you think everyone should listen to

Nick Drake - Five Leaves Left https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=llNpigCSAZE



You can give reasons if you want, or not! I'm just super bored and curious.

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 11:23 am 
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Book - A Prayer for Owen Meany - brilliant writing and storytelling about friendship, love, sacrifice. Heartbreaking and uplifting

Movie - The Sting - also brilliant writing and storytelling. Add amazing acting and you get a masterpiece about friendship, trust, truth, race, poverty, corruption

Album - The Figgs Anthology 1000 People Grinning - This may change for me over time but right now this is it for me . Not only is this band absolute master craftsmen of how to compose the perfect pop/rock n roll song, their energy and love of music and each other (they have been in a band together and friends for 30 years) comes through on every song. And the bassist has my most favorite singing voice of all time. Everyone needs to know The Figgs.


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 1:01 pm 
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Book: dantes inferno just because it's so beautiful
Movie: Dr. No. So it's not great art, but I think it's pretty perfect and I'm a rabid 007 fan.
Music: Callas as Medea but Norma a close second.

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 2:07 pm 
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Book: The Way of Kings - Sanderson. I wish I had something more meaningful/deeper to recommend, but this is my favorite book.
Movie: Fight Club
Music: Seawolf - Old World Romance. Possibly the best album you've never heard.


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 3:31 pm 
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Book: Matterhorn by Karl Marlantes. I'm not normally one for war novels, but it just had such an effect on me.

Movie: Bin Jip (3 Iron). I love several of Kim Ki Duk's movies, but Bin Jip is just this funny, quirky love story that takes place with almost no words in the whole movie. I think it's just brilliant.

Album: Ooh. That's tough because I think there's been such a decline in real 'albums' over the last couple decades! I'm a big fan of old school rock opera albums, and then there are even older albums where it was just a dozen or so solid hits, but it's more of a challenge to pick out a consistently good album in more recent memory (not that recent was specified). Maybe Jurassic Park's Power in Numbers?

I can't think about any of these more because my answers will probably change!


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 3:36 pm 
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Book: 1984. It becomes more relevant as time goes on.

Movie: Viy (the 1960s version). It was the first horror film made in the USSR and the special effects are great.

Album: Ether Song by Turin Brakes, if only for the hidden bonus track. Heartbreakingly beautiful.


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 4:12 pm 
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Book: A Prayer for Owen Meany (for all the reasons Hoodwinked said)

Film: Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid (still makes me cry, every time)

Album: Blood on the Tracks, Bob Dylan (difficult to choose a favourite Bob, but this is the one I listen to the most)

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 6:09 pm 
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Book: Ugh. So hard. In my current frame of mind, I might actually say We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves because of the strong AR message. Maybe if the world were different I would recommend something else.

Film: Ghostbusters - seriously. It has mass appeal without pandering to the lowest common denominator and launched an entire genre in film (comedy horror). It's also hilarious and smart.

Album: The Cure, Disintegration because

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 11:38 pm 
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Book: A Clockwork Orange

Movie: Nightmare Before Christmas

Music: Empiricism by Borknagar


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 12:58 am 
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This is a great thread. I'm waffling on the book, film I think I'm settled on (or maybe not), but I'm going to have to seriously contemplate albums before I post mine. I am also eager to check out the books, movies, and music that others consider essential.

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 1:24 am 
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Book - Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami

Movie - West Side Story

Album - Perfect From Now On by Built To Spill

The album was a hard choice, I sort of hate my first few ideas were actually 'best-of's' or 'essentials'. But! As a start-to-finish, listen in proper order kind of thing, this one always gets me.

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 1:29 am 
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AAAAH! I love Wind-Up Bird Chronicle! Like A Fine Balance, I cried SO hard when reading that book. I was so affected by the idea that you can never really know even the people you love most. Great pick Mars! And Prayer for Owen Meany was so good - it was my favorite book at one point as well.

I love reading other people''s recommendations! Definitely excited for more reading!

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 6:23 am 
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Book: We Have Always Lived In The Castle - Shirley Jackson

When I read the book for the first time a few years ago I thought "Oh my god, this is so amazing, this genre is my new favourite genre, I need to read more of the same" and then figured out it's not actually a genre. Its the author being a genius. Because this is described as horror, mystery, gothic... But really it walks the fine line of dark magical realism (with.. little explicit magic) and a simply drama classic. It's so unique, so well-written and I wish I could just ripoff her style!

(A close second is "marabou stork nightmares" but I understand why one would not read it. I am very sensitive to a lot of things and am triggered easily as a rape victim but I still found this an incredibly strong book about the mentality of a sociopath).

Movie: I feel strange naming a Lars von Trier Movie, but it's probably "Dogville". My boyfriend hated it so much and thought it was like a theatre play that is trying so hard to teach you something, but I think that's why I found it so strong. It's another kick-in-the-stomach one. I liked what he said the movie was about - "evil can arise anywhere, as long as the situation is right".

Album: This one is the hardest. Probably The Verve's "A Storm In Heaven" or Ride's "Nowhere". Both are just like magic to me. Every time I listen to either of them I want to go and write the greatest novel out there, I'm not sure what this means except that they're extremely inspirational and sound so fresh and new to me after all these years.

Although if I wanted to tell someone how I really really felt during my worst depression I'd give them Malcolm Middleton's "5:14 Fluoxytine Seagull Alcohol John Nicotine"

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 8:24 am 
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This is soooooo hard and I'll probably regret my choices later!

Book: I think it's because I read it pretty recently and it's still fresh in my mind, but I'm going with The Truth About Stories by Thomas King. When thinking about books, there isn't one book that I think absolutely everyone who reads it will find it good or interest them or speak to their experiences. But The Truth About Stories probably comes close, it is about how stories define us, and he tells a lot of stories, Native mythology, personal stories from his life, historical stories, etc. He talks about sexism, racism, classism, he talks about identity, and other heavy topics. But it isn't an academic book or hard to read; it's pretty easy to read, like you're having coffee with him and he's telling you this stuff. And it's the first book where I wish I had a highlighter to highlight quotes I love and want to steal. It was just really powerful and changed the way I think about the stories we tell each other.

Movie: I'm going to go with The Princess Bride, I have yet to meet a soul who doesn't like it and if I ever do, I'd probably suspect they are a replicant.

Album: Janelle Monae's The Electric Lady. Fun and important.



VeganinBerlin wrote:
Book: We Have Always Lived In The Castle - Shirley Jackson

When I read the book for the first time a few years ago I thought "Oh my god, this is so amazing, this genre is my new favourite genre, I need to read more of the same" and then figured out it's not actually a genre. Its the author being a genius. Because this is described as horror, mystery, gothic... But really it walks the fine line of dark magical realism (with.. little explicit magic) and a simply drama classic. It's so unique, so well-written and I wish I could just ripoff her style!


I feel the same way about Shirley Jackson! The only thing I haven't read yet is her short stories, and that's because once I do I'll have ready everything she published and I'll be sad and wanting for more.

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 9:10 am 
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I have thought about this so hard and it is so hard to separate my favorites from books I would recommend.

Book- Strange Pilgrims (Garcia Marquez)- everyone seems to feel at least one story resonate strongly with them.

Movie- Blade Runner. Even though I pretty much know every line, I still discover new things every time. I was so disappointed to read "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep" again recently, and find it had to little in common with the book- maybe the first time ever I have liked a film better than the written original.

And music, I don't say this as something that i love desperately, but something that pleasantly surprised me - Appalachian Spring by Aaron Copland. There is something delightful about it.

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 9:50 am 
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Mars wrote:
Book - Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami

Movie - West Side Story

Album - Perfect From Now On by Built To Spill

The album was a hard choice, I sort of hate my first few ideas were actually 'best-of's' or 'essentials'. But! As a start-to-finish, listen in proper order kind of thing, this one always gets me.


+1 for Wind Up Bird Chronicle! (I loaned it to someone who became an ex while it was in his possession and I never got it back, though.)

I'm more of a Keep it Like a Secret gal, but I love Perfect From Now On!

(I love reading this thread! Good one.)


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 11:01 am 
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Ohh...I love these type of threads! None of these are necessarily favorites-of-all-time of mine but just stuff that left a mark and was kind of epiphanal or mind-changing or soul-shifting type thing that might have the same effect on someone else if they delve in...

Book - Staying Alive: Real Poems for Unreal Times Edited by Neil Astley - The only people who seem to read poems are poets and I wish poetry engaged a wider audience. This is a rich, varied anthology that runs the gamut of human emotions in verse--something for everyone to relate to type deal. Mostly selections from twentieth-century poets. Just a good intro to mostly modern poetry, methinks. There are more volumes in this anthology series and this is the first and I also own the second but any volume of this series is probably good. It's really impossible for me to pick one perfect book and this isn't a perfect book but I can see someone falling in love with poetry through it. I was already in love with poetry when I read it but, you know, I recognize there's good stuff in here that'd hook someone else: insightful, heart tweaking, teary, joyful stanza-stylins'. A great anthology to start with if you wanna get a sampling of some moving modern poetry.

Movie - The Heiress 1949. This is not necessarily my all-time favorite movie (although it's one of my favorites) but it's such a good movie and so well done in every detail. I've only watched it once or twice but as a movie I remember the experience and it's got it all: performances, story, cinematography, staging, direction. Just a great, classic movie to watch some time on a rainy afternoon, methinks. I remember after watching it the first time, thinking to myself in a film-studenty way: "I'd give this a 10/10."

Album - Beastie Boys Anthology - The Sounds of Science 1999 - I'd only remembered BBs from back in their "Fight for Your Right to Party" mid-80s fratbrat days and dismissed their music as stoopit and sophomoric back then and forgot about them, but then I read an excellent review of this anthology in the local paper circa 1999, picked the album up to see for myself and just loved their music so much. (And was so prepared to loathe.) I don't love EVERY song - but that's the beauty of the BBs--they're pretty experimental and always original, forever mixing it up and when they hit it, they HIT IT and it's worth plowing through all the songs to find the gems you love because if you're me, there are many great songs here to loop-listen to.

Also, something about this album opened my mind to different music than I'd ever known before and made me aware that there was a whole original artistic audio world out there that I was missing and I remember this album as being an experience in my life that went beyond listening and putting it back in its CD case--it was like a discovery, a revelation, a tectonic shift that opened a new gateway to a greater open-mindedness in my own personal tastes in music.

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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 11:59 am 
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book: ham on rye by charles bukowski

movie: the wizard of oz

album: the pod (ween)


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 12:50 pm 
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Book: Amusing Ourselves To Death by Neil Postman. "people will come to love their oppression, to adore the technologies that undo their capacities to think."

Movie: Dr. Strangelove only for George C Scott in a comedy.

Album: can't think of any one piece.


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 2:38 pm 
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Shy Mox wrote:
This is soooooo hard and I'll probably regret my choices later!

Book: I think it's because I read it pretty recently and it's still fresh in my mind, but I'm going with The Truth About Stories by Thomas King. When thinking about books, there isn't one book that I think absolutely everyone who reads it will find it good or interest them or speak to their experiences. But The Truth About Stories probably comes close, it is about how stories define us, and he tells a lot of stories, Native mythology, personal stories from his life, historical stories, etc. He talks about sexism, racism, classism, he talks about identity, and other heavy topics. But it isn't an academic book or hard to read; it's pretty easy to read, like you're having coffee with him and he's telling you this stuff. And it's the first book where I wish I had a highlighter to highlight quotes I love and want to steal. It was just really powerful and changed the way I think about the stories we tell each other.


Good to see a Thomas King fan! I have you read The Inconvenient Indian: A Curious Account of Native People in North America? I also love, love LOVED Green Grass, Running Water so magical and beautiful.


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 3:19 pm 
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Book: Mountains Beyond Mountains by Tracy Kidder. The most inspiring, social justice-oriented book I've ever read. It's the book I still go back to when I need to be reminded that working for justice and the like is worth it.

Movie: O Brother Where Art Thou? Because who knew the Odyssey needed a Bluegrass soundtrack?

Album: I don't know. Albums we're sadly not a big factor in my collecting of music. Maybe Song from Under the Sink by Mischief Brew? It's fun in a sort of folksy punk anarchist kind of way.


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 Post subject: Re: If you could only recommend one...
PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 3:41 pm 
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mints wrote:
Movie: O Brother Where Art Thou? Because who knew the Odyssey needed a Bluegrass soundtrack?

this was my runner up!

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