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Old 05-02-2017, 08:26 PM   #26
ishtat
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For most of his books, you have to be prepared for his disparaging almost everything he encounters. The humor with which he does it gives a chuckle as long as it's not your ox being gored. I thought Sunburned Country, which I read while I was visiting Australia, was great. The Australians might not think it's so, but I didn't notice the disparaging aspect all that much in it. I enjoyed Walk in the Woods, but it's more happenstance built on stupidity than a primer in hiking the Appalachian trail. The Lost Continent that I'm now reading is pretty testy and he's gotten some of his geographical positions of this and that wrong. Like maybe he didn't take detailed notes and didn't do proper research later. If you like his humor and have a thick skin on your own places and time, he's enjoyable. With that caveat, I read his books. I'm seeing a lot of small town American now, so the book fits the travel.
As an Englishman I found his 'Notes from a small Island' brilliant, similarly, as an Australian 'Sunburnt Country.' The Brits don't seem to mind his acerbity, but having taken UK citizen ship and even become the President of the Society for the Preservation of Rural England, they have pretty much adopted him.

I never really connected with a 'Walk in the Woods,' - ignorance of the area on my part probably the root of the problem. Enjoyed his lightweight Shakespeare but not his 'Bryson's Dictionary,' not sufficiently well informed to support his patronising tone? But his 'History' was much better researched. The 'Road to Little Dribbling' was poor. Overall Bryson has a good 'batting average' to make up for his weaker books.

I am re-reading "The closing of the Western mind" by Charles Freeman. Very well researched and written - sub titled "The rise of Faith and the fall of Reason."
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Old 05-02-2017, 09:57 PM   #27
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You're right, I haven't read it, but reading it probably wouldn't change my opinion. I don't defend de Sade's views. My sense from reading what I've read is that he probably wasn't entirely right in the head. There's a lot of philosophizing in Justine. I don't agree with any of it.

My point is that as a fiction reader I don't care. I can appreciate the works of authors who have created universes with whose moral or scientific or aesthetic premises I totally disagree. And above all I support the right of authors to write their fantasies, however objectionable they may be to someone else.

What were the works you read that you liked on Lit?
Hey Simon. I hope my earlier message didnt sound rude...sometimes I read things back and they sound so cryptic. That wasnt my intent. My point is the same as yours...the guy was out there and it really shows in 120 Days. And, I agree also that reading someone who we don't totally agree with is a good thing as well. I live by the motto 'We can agree to disagree and still get along'. LOL

To answer your Lit author question, the one posted is a two Lit page sci-fi romance by Notwise. Not being a big sci-fi fan, it far exceeded my expectations. (But then, look at the source. Notwise usually does that.) I think it posted just in the past day or so.

The second has not posted and will be a while before it does, I'm sure. It is quite a tale, a retelling of an ancient tale and one with which we are all familiar. To say more than that would not be my place at this time. I feel very privileged to have been given the opportunity to read it in segments as it is being written.

I can say this about it, I have never seen anything more masterfully written, more eloquently expressed anywhere on Lit. In my opinion, the author has outdone himself with undertaking this task. I anticipate that it will cause a few jaws to drop.

I am constantly reminded of the fact that there are so many wonderful writers on Lit. I try to learn from them and I do see some improvement in my technical skills, but I dont have nearly the creativity some of our Lit authors have. Now, I am off to go read some of YOUR stories. LOL (hoping you are posted under this name) If you have any recommendations from your list, please feel free to PM me. Wishing you a nice evening, Simon.
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Old 05-02-2017, 10:34 PM   #28
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As an Englishman I found his 'Notes from a small Island' brilliant, similarly, as an Australian 'Sunburnt Country.'
I read "In a Sunburned Country" when we went ti Australia last year and I loved it. I wasn't there long (one week in Adelaide) but it really seemed to reflect Australia and Australians to my eyes at least.



Which reminded me of another book I found in a used book shop in New Zealand while we were there (that was week 2 of what was sadly only a 2 week trip). This one is absolutely hilarious. I read it on the flight back from Auckland to the US and I was just having fits of giggles the whole time and I just pulled it out to re-read tonight.

It's a collection of short stories abut the author's experiences as a professional deer shooter (they were shot as pests coz there were no natural predators to keep the numbers down) in New Zealand in the 1960's. The book's all about the people rather than the deer shooting and if New Zealander's are anything like this, I'm going back for another visit. The humor is unbelievably dry. Loved it.

The book's "A Good Keen Man" by a New Zealand author called Barry Crump and its apparantly a New Zealand classic, which I believe coz it's soooo funny.

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Old 05-02-2017, 11:07 PM   #29
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You obviously have not read de Sade's 120 days of Sodom. LC was being kind. The writing itself is chaotic, nothing like any of his other works. There's no cohesion, simply manic thoughts scribbled to paper. The more he writes, the worse it gets. The violence puts today's severely psychotic serial killers in a class of "maybe he wasn't such a bad guy after all." Honestly, none of de Sade's works were pieces of brilliance.
You have to remember that 120 Days in Sodom was written while de Sade was incarcerated - I'm pretty sure this is the work infamously written on one incredibly long continuous roll of paper and then thrown out the window of his cell. So it's the raving fantasies of a man cut off from the real world with nothing else to do but write. Chaotic is right, madness more like.
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Old 05-02-2017, 11:11 PM   #30
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The 'Road to Little Dribbling' was poor.
I agree with that one.

Wasn't he appointed as chancellor of the university in York too? Not bad for a guy from Iowa.
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Old 05-03-2017, 12:11 AM   #31
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I agree with that one.

Wasn't he appointed as chancellor of the university in York too? Not bad for a guy from Iowa.
Pretty close 70 miles - he was chancellor of Durham University but he lived near York for almost 10 years
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Old 05-03-2017, 12:34 AM   #32
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Hey Simon. I hope my earlier message didnt sound rude...sometimes I read things back and they sound so cryptic. That wasnt my intent. My point is the same as yours...the guy was out there and it really shows in 120 Days. And, I agree also that reading someone who we don't totally agree with is a good thing as well. I live by the motto 'We can agree to disagree and still get along'. LOL

To answer your Lit author question, the one posted is a two Lit page sci-fi romance by Notwise. Not being a big sci-fi fan, it far exceeded my expectations. (But then, look at the source. Notwise usually does that.) I think it posted just in the past day or so.

The second has not posted and will be a while before it does, I'm sure. It is quite a tale, a retelling of an ancient tale and one with which we are all familiar. To say more than that would not be my place at this time. I feel very privileged to have been given the opportunity to read it in segments as it is being written.

I can say this about it, I have never seen anything more masterfully written, more eloquently expressed anywhere on Lit. In my opinion, the author has outdone himself with undertaking this task. I anticipate that it will cause a few jaws to drop.

I am constantly reminded of the fact that there are so many wonderful writers on Lit. I try to learn from them and I do see some improvement in my technical skills, but I dont have nearly the creativity some of our Lit authors have. Now, I am off to go read some of YOUR stories. LOL (hoping you are posted under this name) If you have any recommendations from your list, please feel free to PM me. Wishing you a nice evening, Simon.
Thanks for your thoughtful post. No, I didn't think you were rude. I'm a big believer in the idea that people can disagree with civility and grace, if they choose to. You seem to agree with that, and that's to your credit. So, thanks!

I'm tickled that you are interested in checking out my stories. If you have to choose one I would recommend either my first (and highest rated, though least-viewed) In The Hallway, or chapter 1 of my more recent series Hotel Exhibitionist.
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Old 05-03-2017, 01:03 AM   #33
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Thanks for your thoughtful post. No, I didn't think you were rude. I'm a big believer in the idea that people can disagree with civility and grace, if they choose to. You seem to agree with that, and that's to your credit. So, thanks!

I'm tickled that you are interested in checking out my stories. If you have to choose one I would recommend either my first (and highest rated, though least-viewed) In The Hallway, or chapter 1 of my more recent series Hotel Exhibitionist.
Well, I've covered five on your list thus far this evening. Nice writing, very enjoyable. However, I was unable to move your numbers up any as you have so many readers! I did give it try though.

I'll finish reading your list over the next couple of days, I'm sure. That in itself is a compliment to your skills and style. (Ironically, none of the ones I read were the ones you recommended...so, now I'm honor bound to go back and finish the list since you were kind enough to make the suggestions.) LOL So thanks for a nice evening of reading. I enjoyed it.
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Old 05-03-2017, 08:47 PM   #34
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Reading a collection of detective novels set in Thailand written by John Burdette. Got totally engrossed in these and now I'm working my way thru the series, which our local library has, bless them

Bangkok 8 is ... A thriller with attitude to spare, Bangkok 8 is a sexy, razor-edged, often darkly hilarious novel set in one of the world’s most exotic cities. Witnessed by a throng of gaping spectators, a charismatic Marine sergeant is murdered under a Bangkok bridge inside a bolted-shut Mercedes Benz. Among the witnesses are the only two cops in the city not on the take, but within moments one is murdered and his partner, Sonchai Jitpleecheep—a devout Buddhist and the son of a Thai bar girl and a long-gone Vietnam War G.I.—is hell-bent on wreaking revenge. On a vigilante mission to capture his partner’s murderer, Sonchai is begrudgingly paired with a beautiful FBI agent named Jones and captures her heart in the process. In a city fueled by illicit drugs and infinite corruption, prostitution and priceless art, Sonchai’s quest for vengeance takes him into a world much more sinister than he could have ever imagined.

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Old 05-03-2017, 08:47 PM   #35
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Which reminded me of another book I found in a used book shop in New Zealand while we were there . I read it on the flight back from Auckland to the US and I was just having fits of giggles the whole time and I just pulled it out to re-read tonight.


The book's "A Good Keen Man" by a New Zealand author called Barry Crump and its apparantly a New Zealand classic, which I believe coz it's soooo funny.
Chloe, you really need to read Footrot Flats, the adventures of Wal Footrot and Dog by Murray Ball. It is the great classic of NZ literature.
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Old 05-03-2017, 11:52 PM   #36
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Chloe, you really need to read Footrot Flats, the adventures of Wal Footrot and Dog by Murray Ball. It is the great classic of NZ literature.
Ah, happy memories. I only recently learned that the late great John Clarke voiced Wal for the movie.
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Old 05-04-2017, 11:29 AM   #37
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Well, I've covered five on your list thus far this evening. Nice writing, very enjoyable. However, I was unable to move your numbers up any as you have so many readers! I did give it try though.

I'll finish reading your list over the next couple of days, I'm sure. That in itself is a compliment to your skills and style. (Ironically, none of the ones I read were the ones you recommended...so, now I'm honor bound to go back and finish the list since you were kind enough to make the suggestions.) LOL So thanks for a nice evening of reading. I enjoyed it.
Thank you for the kind words. I'm glad you liked them!
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Old 05-04-2017, 05:55 PM   #38
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I have a few old Weird Tales magazines, That "The Devil's Bride" story looks a classic

Wow Chloe, you actually have original Weird Tales copies? I'm so jealous. From its glory days when HPL and REH were contributing, I'm wondering.

I know back in the day Seabury Quinn was one of the most popular writers with his Jules deGrandin series but he fell into obscurity later on though in more recent times some of his stuff was reprinted.
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Old 05-04-2017, 09:10 PM   #39
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I'm not reading, I'm writing [i]Second Chance: King of The South/I], the 21st novel in the series.
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Old 05-04-2017, 09:16 PM   #40
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Wow Chloe, you actually have original Weird Tales copies? I'm so jealous. From its glory days when HPL and REH were contributing, I'm wondering.

I know back in the day Seabury Quinn was one of the most popular writers with his Jules deGrandin series but he fell into obscurity later on though in more recent times some of his stuff was reprinted.
I have a few. They're in rough shape. There's a used bookstore in Providence, Cellar Stories they have a huge selection of pulps from affordable to take out a loan.
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Old 05-04-2017, 09:19 PM   #41
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So many good stories, Its hard to choose.
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Old 05-04-2017, 10:05 PM   #42
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Wow Chloe, you actually have original Weird Tales copies? I'm so jealous. From its glory days when HPL and REH were contributing, I'm wondering.

I know back in the day Seabury Quinn was one of the most popular writers with his Jules deGrandin series but he fell into obscurity later on though in more recent times some of his stuff was reprinted.
Not very many. About half a dozen Weird Tales but about 60 old Analog SF Magazines from the 1970's - I picked up a box at a garage sale for $5 and I was in heaven. I love SF and Fantasy and there were these Weird Tales, Analog and a few others whose names I forget.

Just went and looked. Galaxy. Supernatural Stories. Amazing Science Fiction. Fantasy and Science Fiction. Worlds of If. New Worlds SF. Amazing Stories. Mostly Analog and Galaxy tho. It was just one of those things. Saw it was sf and just bought the box right then and there without looking. Some of them are 1960s now that I'm looking. Some great stories.
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Coming soon for the 2018 Literotica Valentine's Day competition,
- "Screw Your Roses, Asshole" (a girl, a band and a boyfriend ... what can possibly be screwed), and ...
- "Fields of Gold" (a romantic tearjerking tale of a guy, a girl and an AH64 Apache...)

Winner - 2017 Literotica April Fools Competition: "Fingerprints on my Heart"

All of Chloe Tzang's stories can be found here
Chloe supports our Veterans by drinking Black Rifle Coffee
Aaaaand... Chloe's first actual published short story ("Blood Sacrifice") now available on Amazon as part of the Sex and Sorcery 4 anthology

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Old 05-06-2017, 08:21 AM   #43
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Well, last night I decided to get a few hot romances out of the library coz I haven't had my romance fix for a few days. I read one really quickly, ended up skimming thru it coz it was just so awfully bad.

It was "Guilty Pleasure" by Lora Leigh and the god, is she's a best selling author, all I can say is, there's hope for me yet.

Marty Mathews had always known about the secret, forbidden pleasures that the women she had grown up with enjoyed. Women whose husbands or lovers were members of the exclusive "Club," where they took a selected "third" into their beds. And there is one man—a dangerous, forbidden man—who is part of this world and who has haunted Marty's dreams for years. But she had been the FBI agent assigned to shadow him, making him completely off limits. . .That is until Khalid is cleared and Marty is released from her assignment. Now, all bets are off. . .

The beautiful, fierce Marty Mathews is the one woman Khalid hungers for like no other and is the one woman he dare not let himself have. His past dogs his every step and danger lurks around every corner. If he wants to keep her safe, he must stay away from her. But the power of their desire is something they cannot deny—and once Marty is his, Khalid will do whatever it takes to keep her in his bed and in his arms.


And honestly, this book typifies the sheer awfulness of so many "Hot Romances" that got me started writing coz I thought I could do better. The plot is about as unrealistic as they get, the characters are just caricatures, the sex is written at the "pulsating pussy" level, the whole thing just had my giggling my way thru or shaking my head and just groaning "no frigging way". And the author writes romances about Navy SEALs and Elite Ops. I'm going to have to take them out next just to see how bad you can be and get published.

There's a lesson for me here in this book somewhere I think, which is "don't be such a perfectionist." And don't over-estimate your readers. Honestly, if someone posted this on LIT, it would be hacked to pieces, but then most LIT readers don't read women's romances and vice versa I guess.

Anyhow, it was fun reading something so awful ..... and unlike Ghormenghast, I didn't go to sleep. Mind you, I didn't finish with a pulsating pussy either. More of a pulsating nose coz I was snorting my coffee with every pulsating and throbbing page of turgid prose ....

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- "Screw Your Roses, Asshole" (a girl, a band and a boyfriend ... what can possibly be screwed), and ...
- "Fields of Gold" (a romantic tearjerking tale of a guy, a girl and an AH64 Apache...)

Winner - 2017 Literotica April Fools Competition: "Fingerprints on my Heart"

All of Chloe Tzang's stories can be found here
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Aaaaand... Chloe's first actual published short story ("Blood Sacrifice") now available on Amazon as part of the Sex and Sorcery 4 anthology
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Old 05-07-2017, 04:36 PM   #44
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And today it's "Trading in Danger" by Elizabeth Moon. I just had to pick this up and skim back thru it again after I reminded myself of it. My problem is I read far to fast. 700 wpm, which means I zoom thru these things

Light science fiction, nothing too deep and meaningful, just good SF action/adventure with a strong female lead.

Kylara Vatta is the only daughter in a family full of sons, and her father’s only child to buck tradition by choosing a military career instead of joining the family business. For Ky, it’s no contest: Even running the prestigious Vatta Transport Ltd. shipping concern can’t hold a candle to shipping out as an officer aboard an interstellar cruiser. It’s adventure, not commerce, that stirs her soul. And despite her family’s misgivings, there can be no doubt that a Vatta in the service will prove a valuable asset. But with a single error in judgment, it all comes crumbling down.

Expelled from the Academy in disgrace–and returning home to her humiliated family, a storm of high-profile media coverage, and the gaping void of her own future–Ky is ready to face the inevitable onslaught of anger, disappointment, even pity. But soon after opportunity’s door slams shut, Ky finds herself with a ticket to ride– and a shot at redemption–as captain of a Vatta Transport ship.

It’s a simple assignment: escorting one of the Vatta fleet’s oldest ships on its final voyage . . . to the scrapyard. But keeping it simple has never been Ky’s style. And even though her father has provided a crew of seasoned veterans to baby-sit the fledgling captain on her maiden milk run, they can’t stop Ky from turning the routine mission into a risky venture–in the name of turning a profit for Vatta Transport, of course.

By snapping up a lucrative delivery contract defaulted on by a rival company, and using part of the proceeds to upgrade her condemned vehicle, Ky aims to prove she’s got more going for her than just her family’s famous name. But business will soon have to take a backseat to bravery, when Ky’s change of plans sails her and the crew straight into the middle of a colonial war. For all her commercial savvy, it’s her military training and born-soldier’s instincts that Ky will need to call on in the face of deadly combat, dangerous mercenaries, and violent mutiny. . . .
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- "Screw Your Roses, Asshole" (a girl, a band and a boyfriend ... what can possibly be screwed), and ...
- "Fields of Gold" (a romantic tearjerking tale of a guy, a girl and an AH64 Apache...)

Winner - 2017 Literotica April Fools Competition: "Fingerprints on my Heart"

All of Chloe Tzang's stories can be found here
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Old 05-07-2017, 06:09 PM   #45
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Tossed THE DETECTIVE by Roderick Thorp, its navel gazing at its best.

Tossed HOT PURSUIT by Roderick Thorp, even his editor says it needs work.

Started 58 MINUTES by Walter Wager. Its DIE HARD 2.

TRANSLATION: Needs work means its boring.
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Old 05-07-2017, 07:40 PM   #46
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Lately I've been in the mood to sequentially work through authors. Have recentlyish done Lee Childs, John Sandford, Michael Connelly (waiting on the most recent), Bernard Cornwall, Patrick O'Brian (the most pitch perfect word choices out there), and am now filling in gaps in Nelson DeMille.

Interesting to do it this way instead of willy hilly to better see the character arcs.
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Old 05-10-2017, 05:10 PM   #47
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Right now I'm reading "Dark of the Sun" by Wilbur Smith. It's a second reading for me. I read it in the late sixties, it was a real page turner and I stayed up all night to finish it. The movie came out soon after and I loved that as well.

I'm not that in love with it now. I saw the film again a few months ago, on the TV, and it didn't seem as good as I remembered. The book is also not as good as I remembered.

I'm not talking about well it was written, or how well the film was made and acted, but the story just doesn't cut it with me anymore. I can still say they are 'good', but just not great anymore.

Odd how tastes change.
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Old 05-10-2017, 05:12 PM   #48
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What am i reading?

Get in Trouble,
Short Stories.

Very odd, trip
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Old 05-10-2017, 11:20 PM   #49
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Jesus, Buddha, Krishna & Lao Tzu: The Parallel Sayings, by Richard Hooper

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Old 05-11-2017, 05:03 AM   #50
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FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE by Ian Fleming.

As a rule I don't care for James Bond, but this one is a pot of gold.
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