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2014-02-12 18:31 GMT+01:00 Roger Mills <[log in to unmask]>:
> Leonardo: "This reminds me that someone has cited Ursula Le Guin as the best science fiction writer..."
>
> That may have been me; I admire her greatly and some of her work has influenced my conlanging....(Though whether she's THE best may be debatable; but certainly _one of the_ best....)
>
> "... and I have promised myself that I would read a
> book of hers, but I always put a non-fiction must-read book ahead of
> it."
>
> Why? As for reading books in French, you'll gain some vocabulary, but little speaking fluency. Unless you read fiction with lots of dialogue.
>
> As for Le Guin-- get a copy of her "Left Hand of Darkness"

OK. I just got the e-book for the KoboŽ app in my newly purchased
Franco-Chinese WikoŽ smartphone. I have started reading it, but I must
also read the remaining 20% of Jim Holt's "Why Does The World Exist?".

>  in English, French or your own Portuguese. It's a fascinating and beautifully written story.

It was originally written in English, isn't it. I usually prefer
reading the original versions when I can. There are enough books
originally written in French... ;)

> "The Dispossessed" is interesting too, but quite long. "The Wind's Twelve Quarters" is a nice collection of stories, many of which are sort-of background to both LHOD and The Diss.
>
> I'm sort of at the same level as Jeff Daniel, I think-- can read Spanish almost as easily as English, but that's after years of studying and using the language....and maybe a certain in-born linguistic ability :-)))) But it's been some time since I read a Spanish/Lat.Amer. novel etc.-- maybe I ought to pull one off the bookshelf and see how it goes these days..... I remember in college we had to read Cela's "La Colmena" (The Hive), and all the slang really defeated me.

Me I thought I could read English well until I started reading Bloom's
"The Western Canon".