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delirium happy

Just keep on trying till you run out of cake

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Book recommendations
pungent elephant with sidecar
Yes, it's entry r out of a series of n in the "help rho figure out what to do over the summer" series!

I'm looking for book recommendations. Specificly, I'm looking for recommendations for books that I wouldn't normally read; the sort of books that are outside of my field and outside of my genre of choice. I already know plenty of good books about physics, and plenty of SF&F type books. What I don't know is what the best books to read for 18th century history are. Or what the world's best detective novels are. Or anything like that.

Since I'm looking to read outside of my normal range, what I'm really looking for are the very best books of their type. The really best examples of a genre, the books that best explain a certain subject, if possible, the books that you never tire of reading and the books that change your whole perspective on life. The sort of thing that's likely to get me enthused about a subject or genre and make me want to go and read more, and generally branch out.

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Thomas More's Utopia is fascinating and fairly easy reading if you choose a recent translation (from the Latin) that exploits the wordplay and satire of the work. It's especially important and interesting to SF&F readers because, along with Plato's Republic (which I do intend to read - some day), it's the basis for most utopia/dystopia fiction, e.g. Brave New World, 1984, Fahrenheit 451.

Sir Thomas himself is also an interesting, contradictory, and perplexing historical figure who acts as a nice gateway into learning about Renaissance history and thought.

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