Autarch_Kade t1_jeflqv9 wrote

To rephrase your question, would you like to allow this person to keep defrauding customers and stealing an author's hard work?

Yes, report them, and feel good you're helping protect other buyers and the authors.


Autarch_Kade t1_jef4y5i wrote

Honestly, I've read a lot of other people's suggestions here. None of them come close to Gene Wolfe. The Book of the New Sun ruined other authors for me for years.

Nowadays I can enjoy something like The Expanse, or Children of Time, or Ancillary Justice... but they're not in the same league.

It honestly seems like people are recommending their favorites, or popular titles, but they certainly wouldn't be making the same comments if they've read Gene Wolfe.

I think we're in the same boat - nothing really comes close.


Autarch_Kade t1_je06t70 wrote

The Stars are Legion wasn't a horror book. But oh man, was there a lot of body horror in there. Deeply uncomfortable descriptions, ways people use or share their bodies, locations in the ships they lived on... really stuck with me for years. I really enjoyed that book.

I feel like a generation ship could be a good horror setting. Can't escape, mandatory breeding, could introduce mutations that amplify over the generations, etc. That's what I'd want to read if there was a good on out there.


Autarch_Kade t1_jdvt49k wrote

Self-help books are usually out there to make money, rather than to inform. Textbooks or published research would have more up-to-date and accepted knowledge.

I'd caution trying to get super knowledgeable about something you don't need to as well. Some things, like eating healthy, are actually quite simple and would take a few sentences to explain about counting calories, and hitting macros. What use would more information be after that? You follow the basics, you're healthy. Unless you're trying to apply this in a professional setting where it's part of your job to stay up to date on the most recent research, you might be using these books as a way to feel like you're making progress on a goal.

Similar for fitness, there's really some basic advice you can get from a place like the CDC or WHO on exercise.

Psychology really can be a minefield - you aren't out there getting your doctorate, you aren't going to be practicing, so what are you trying to learn? How to make friends?

So yeah, while research and textbooks will provide up to date, or comprehensive knowledge, be aware you might not even need that much. And if you do need that much, well, you should already have those resources available from your university or employer. Other than that, self-help is helping their self to your money with repackaged basic info you can find online.


Autarch_Kade t1_jdalt3y wrote

Book 1 is amazing. Book 2 is 90% boring investigation that leads nowhere, followed by 10 pages of crazy action and interesting sci-fi when it abruptly ends unresolved. Book 3 is weird but almost a rehash of how book 3 was laid out, and you still won't be satisfied if you wanted to learn a lot about what's happening.


Autarch_Kade t1_ja7sn9c wrote

I'm sure that's happened for a few people. But there's a reason it's the same couple names referenced over and over again for unfinished series - they're the exceptional cases, not the rule. I wouldn't worry about it too much.

When series are ongoing, they're unfinished for everyone - even if the new book is coming out the next day. People find other things to read in the meantime. Some "meantimes" are longer than others. As long as you can jump around, you can read a partial series and still find enjoyment.


Autarch_Kade t1_ja63aek wrote

Reading a physical book is something you're actively doing. Listening to an audiobook is more like something that's happening around you.

It's a lot easier in the latter situation to just... tune it out.

I don't do audiobooks because some books straight up don't work with the format. Sometimes the medium of print itself is part of the story.

Honestly the main advantage of audiobooks is the same as its main disadvantage - you can focus on something else while they're playing. I prefer to give books my all


Autarch_Kade t1_j8oo0pq wrote

A guy next to me on an airplane finished the book he was reading - Consider Phlebas. He didn't say a word to me, just put on some headphones. I didn't know what to do other than to start reading.

Now I've read a bunch of Iain Banks books. Someday I hope to do the same thing that guy did - finish a book and just hand it to some stranger.


Autarch_Kade t1_j6gt8aw wrote

Yeah, it's really a matter of when, not if. And the rate of advancement (and investment) into AI has been explosive in the last few years.

AI poetry has been done well enough to fool people. Longer forms of writing like essays have been done. A novel isn't so far off I'd say.

If a machine can do someone's job, then there won't be as many people needed for that job. Take making clothes, for example. We have massive amounts of machines that take the raw materials, convert to fabric, sew into clothes. But there is still room for bespoke goods that command a much higher price.

So yeah, a lot of authors won't be able to sell their books. Their ideas won't be as interesting, as well written, or have as much mass appeal. But some will still be successful.

The people who should be the most worried are the people most replaceable, the bottom rung.

Capital goods have that effect. But overall, it's a good thing. More people will have access to more books, for cheaper. You could tell an AI what kind of book you want to read, and get it within minutes, maybe seconds.

Truth is, authors are successful when people want to read their stories. AI can't stop that from happening. If they want to write, they can. If they produce work worse than billions of other books, well, blaming a machine won't solve anything.

I wonder how many artists or authors complaining about this are willing to stop using alarm clocks in favor of paying someone to come beat on the outside of their windows to wake them up heh


Autarch_Kade t1_j62l5tx wrote

Yeah, it's pretty bad. The stakes should be the same. If the killer has the chance, they should intend to actually kill the main character.

Any kind of "close calls" should involve inconvenient locations (like they were in public at the time), or the killer themselves being severely wounded, or police currently close enough to hear sirens and see lights (not enough time).

We know the main character is likely to survive as the story wouldn't be following them otherwise, but it shouldn't be so silly about how it accomplishes that.


Autarch_Kade t1_j2elbla wrote

Isn't using a website like this avoiding that "character" the local bookstore has?

If you're not going in, then why's it matter what that in-store experience is to you at that point?

And further, why does a bookstore deserve money due to the arbitrary coincidence of its zip code matching your own? Why shouldn't a business halfway across the country deserve to survive just as much? I've never really understood this mentality that a business deserves to survive because it hasn't found much success and grown yet, but if it did grow then it'd no longer be worth spending money at


Autarch_Kade t1_j1exy26 wrote

Funny reading through a lot of the comments and realizing so many of these techniques are all present in a book I recommend here pretty often.

XX by Rian Hughes has multiple character perspectives that meet up, stories within stories, directly references the reader themselves or the page they're reading, uses the white space and text layout to indicate what's happening in the story as well as crazy fonts, hell even uses emails in the text like one person mentioned.

It's an absolutely bizarre book that I can't get out of my head