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Author: Mike

Episode 25: The Old Man and the Sea

Episode 25: The Old Man and the Sea

In Episode 25 of the Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast, the Drunk Guys discuss The Old Man and The Sea by Ernest Hemingway.  What does the sea stand for?  Why do schools assign this book?  Why does anyone like Hemingway?  During this episode the Drunk Guys drink far too many nautical themed beers, including Fishtale Vicious Circle, Whale’s Tail Pale Ale, Harbor Ale, Jaguar Shark and three flavors of Ballast Point Sculpin.

Next Week: Animal Farm by George Orwell

Join the Drunk Guys Book Club 2018 Reading Challenge

The Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast can be found on on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and where ever fine podcasts can be found.  If you’re drunk enough to enjoy the Podcast, please give us a rating.  Also, please follow us on twitter and pinterest.

 

How to Read 100 Books This Year – The 2018 Reading Challenge

How to Read 100 Books This Year – The 2018 Reading Challenge

Do you want to read more books?  Of course, everyone does.  Don’t be one of the 40% of people (and 100% of current US Presidents) who doesn’t read a single book after high school or college.  One of the best ways to motivate yourself to read is to give yourself a goal.  Make it your New Year’s Resolution.  You can lose weight next year.

Every year, each of us at the Drunk Guys Book Club challenge ourselves to read 100 books a year. And we’re drunk.  If we can do it, you can do it.  We’re here to help you.

Gold = 100 books (2 books per week)

Silver = 75 books (1.5 books per week)

Bronze = 50 books (1 book per week)

Stone = 25 books (1 book every 2 weeks)

Wood = 10 Books (a little under 1 book per month)

Paper = 5 Books (a little under 1 book every 2 months)

Trump = 0 books (0 books per lifetime)

Step 1:  Make a Reading Challenge on Goodreads

Join Goodreads, make a 2018 Reading Challenge for yourself, and add drunkguysbookclub as a friend.  The Goodreads reading challenge will keep track of the books you’re reading and tell you if you’re on track, ahead, or behind schedule.  This makes your reading challenge a SMART goal (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-focused, and Time-bound).  Tell us about your 2018 Reading Challenge goal on Goodreads, @drunkguysbc (twitter) or send an email to drunkguysbookclub@gmail.com.

Step 2: Find Books

It’s not just the size or your reading goal that matters, but also how you use it.

  1. Don’t JUST read the classics or serious books.  These are often dense and difficult, and you should read them, but space them out with easy/fun/short books.  You’ll find you will get a lot more read this way.
  2. Plan some time in your weekly schedule for when you’re going to read.  The Drunk Guys get a lot of their reading done on the subway to and from work. Maybe plan to read before bed every night.  Or make the most out of your time on the throne.
  3. Listen to Audiobooks as well as reading.  Audiobooks are great if you’re driving, at the gym, doing chores, or otherwise need your eyes for something else.  Not all books work as audiobooks, but most do.  Drunk Guy Mike thinks listening to audiobooks is cheating, but he’s drunk.  So fuck him.
  4. If you start a book but aren’t into it, put it down and start something else.  You can always go back to it later.  Drunk Guy Mike disagrees on this, too.  See above.
  5. Reward yourself with a beer every time you finish a book. Or a chapter.  Or page.  Or word.
  6. Spice up the variety in your reading with a genre checklist.  Its a great way to make yourself look for authors/genres you wouldn’t normally read.   We all have our preferences in genre and tend to stick to them pretty strongly. But there are plenty of entertaining books that you’ll miss out on if you slavishly stick to the styles and authors you know.

The Drunk Guys Book Club Reading Challenge Genre Checklist

Read AT LEAST ONE from each of the following categories:

Category A Few Recommendations
Literary Fiction The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay Michael Chabon

Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao Junot Daiz

Science Fiction The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy Douglas Adams

Ender’s Game Orson Scott Card

Fantasy  American Gods Neil Gaiman

The Once and Future King TH White

Historical Fiction  The Alienist Caleb Carr

The Underground Railroad Colson Whitehead

Mystery/Thriller  The Snowman Jo Nesbo
Dystopia 1984 George Orwell

The Handmaid’s Tale Margaret Atwood

Young Adult (YA) Ready Player One Ernest Cline

The Fault in our Stars John Green

Comedy  Fool Christopher Moore
Pulitzer Winner  The Sympathizer Viet Thanh Nguyen

All the Light we Cannot See Anthony Doerr

A Confederacy of Dunces John Kennedy Toole

Booker Winner  The Sellout Paul Beatty
A Book You Should Have Read in High School, But Didn’t The Catcher in the Rye JD Salinger

To Kill a Mockingbird Harper Lee

Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen

History Devil in the White City Erik Larson
Biography Unbroken Laura Hillenbrand

Hamilton Ron Chernow

Science Packing for Mars Mary Roach

What If? Randall Monroe

New Release  The Winds of Winter (hopefully) hurry the fuck up, George RR Martin
Graphic Novel Watchmen by Alan Moore
19th Century Novel A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens
18th Century Novel Gulliver’s Travels Jonathan Swift
Series Oryx and Crake Margaret Atwood

 Step 3: Hit Amazon or Your Local Library

Step 4: Listen to the Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast

New episodes every Tuesday on  iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and where ever fine podcasts can be found.  If you’re drunk enough to enjoy the Podcast, please give us a rating.

Also, please follow us on twitter and pinterest.

 

Science Fiction Book Club: Discussion Questions and SF Book Recommendations

Science Fiction Book Club: Discussion Questions and SF Book Recommendations

Science Fiction Book Club Discussion Questions and SF Book Recommendations

Sci-fi books are awesome for book clubs.  They’re exciting, thought provoking, and some of the most important books of our time.  One key to a fun book club is alcohol, but the other is to get good discussion going.  Good discussion takes a little planning.  Luckily, the Drunk Guys Book Club is here to help you come up with questions.  The pan-galactic gargle blasters are your own responsibility.

The key to good discussions are questions that don’t have just one right answer.  Let people build on each other’s ideas, make connections, or even disagree and debate.

Here are some general questions that would work for most any sci-fi book:

  • What does this book say about science and technology and its effects on today’s society or the future?
  • What issues does this book raise or what predictions does this book make?
  • Is there anything the author definitely got right or definitely got wrong?  Like what?
  • How did this book influence today’s society or pop culture?  (Or was the book influenced by today’s pop culture?)
  • Is the purpose of the book to be optimistic about the future or to serve as a warning?
  • Would you make this book required reading?  Why or why not?

Questions for “classic” science fiction:

(Fahrenheit 451, anything by Asimov, Clarke, Heinlein, Philip K. Dick, etc)

  • Why is this book considered a classic?  Does it deserve to be?
  • Has the book aged well?  What elements hold up and which don’t?
  • Why is this book important or what is its most important idea?
  • What earlier books influenced this one?
  • How did this book influence later books?

Questions for dystopian sci-fi:

(1984, Brave New World, The Handmaid’s Tale, etc.)

  • What makes this world a dystopia?  What went wrong?
  • What real or hypothetical historical events might have been the inspiration for this book?  (The Nazi 3rd Reich, Stalin’s Soviet Union, etc.)
  • How possible is it that something like the dystopian world in the book could happen in real life?  What can/should be done to stop it?

Great thought-provoking books for a Science Fiction Book Club:

  • Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  • 1984 by George Orwell
  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
  • Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
  • The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
  • Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
  • Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
  • Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card
  • Dune by Frank Herbert
  • Neuromancer by Williams Gibson
  • Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein
  • The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin
  • A Canticle for Leibowitz  by Walter M Miller

You can listen to us drunkenly discuss some of these questions and more on the podcast here: The Handmaid’s Tale (Episode 2), Fahrenheit 451 (Episode 3), 1984 (Episode 14), A Clockwork Orange (Episode 22 ), Ready Player One (Episode 9), Hitchhiker’s Guide (Episode 24)

Check out new episodes about books of all genres on the Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast every Tuesday on iTunes, Googleplay, and Stitcher.

Episode 23: A Christmas Carol

Episode 23: A Christmas Carol

In Episosde 23 of the Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast, we celebrate the Christmas season by reading Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol.  To get in the spirit, we merrily drink an inadvisable number of beers, including: Schlafly Christmas Ale, Avery Old Jubilation Ale, Ghost by 3 Stars, Three Knocks by Beau’s, Troegs Mad Elf, 8 Maids a Milking by the Bruery (yes, that’s spelled correctly), and the former champion world’s strongest beer Samichlaus by Eggenberg. We talk about why this book made Christmas what it is, how Mike asked his wife to marry him, and a lot about Matt Lauer.

Next week: The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

The Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast can be found on on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and where ever fine podcasts can be found.  If you’re drunk enough to enjoy the Podcast, please give us a rating.  Also, please follow us on twitter and pinterest.

 

Episode 17: Packing for Mars

Episode 17: Packing for Mars

This week the Drunk Guys journey to the final frontier with Mary Roach’s Packing for Mars.  While drinking Red Thunder from Victory Brewing and Southern Tier’s Unearthly Imperial IPA, we discuss the the hard science of traveling to Mars, dropping deuces in space, and the general awesomeness of being an astronaut.  Oh, and we find out some new uses for borscht.

 

The Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast can be found on on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and where ever fine podcasts can be found.

 

 

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Episode 14: 1984 by George Orwell

Episode 14: 1984 by George Orwell

In this week’s extra long Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast, we deep dive into George Orwell’s iconic 1984.  While drinking three different Rebel IPAs from Sam Adams and Founders Brewing’s Dissenter 2014, we discuss the legacy of the novel, how much Orwell predicted correctly, Norway (for barely explicable reasons), surveillance, and perhaps not surprisingly a certain world leader who is very active on social media.  All these thought crimes, and more!

The Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast can be found on on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and more!

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Episode 12: The Da Vinci Code

Episode 12: The Da Vinci Code

This week we go gonads deep on Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code.  While drinking yet another Flying Dog Beer, this time The Truth, and Black Sheep Brewery’s Monty Python’s Holy Grail Ale, we talk conspiracy theories, Dan Brown’s plot format and the noble science of symbology.  Weird.  That comes up as a typo – conspiracy?!  Find out all that and more!

 

The Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast can be found on on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and more!

Episode 11: The Snowman

Episode 11: The Snowman

For Episode 11 of the Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast we prepare for the cold, snowy Norwegian winter with Jo Nesbø’s The Snowman while drinking Dirty Little Freak by Duclaw Brewing and Bad Seed Cider.  Who’s the Killer?  Do you need to read books 1-6 first? (spoiler, no) Did Adam Sandler make the film?  Find out our answers to these questions and more.

The Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast can be found on on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and more!

Episode 9: Ready Player One

Episode 9: Ready Player One

For episode 9 of The Drunk Guys Book Club, we talk about Ernest Cline’s Ready Player One.  We go deep on nostalgia, being nerds, Led Zeppelin, and the probability of an OASIS-like existence.  These topics and more, all while drinking Pipeworks’ Close Encounter and Boulevard Brewing’s The Calling.

The Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast is also available on iTunes and Google Play, and Stitcher!

Episode 8: Outliers

Episode 8: Outliers

For episode 8 of The Drunk Guys Book Club Podcast, the Drunk Guys discuss their first nonfiction book: Malcom Gladwell’s Outliers.  While drinking Lagunitas Little Sumpin Sumpin Ale and Little Sumpin Sumpin Extra! Ale, we discuss what talent may or may not be and the 10,000 hour rule along with frequent diversions regarding the World’s Strongest Man competition and The Beatles, and other issues we had with the book.