AncalagonTheBlack

The Richard Morgan Thread III

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I wasn't a fan of his fantasy books, and yet a HUGE fan of his sci fi.  Am I the only one who liked one and not the other?

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I've never read any but from what I gather a lot of the sci fi fans did not like the fantasy and vice versa.

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2 hours ago, Mandy said:

I wasn't a fan of his fantasy books, and yet a HUGE fan of his sci fi.  Am I the only one who liked one and not the other?

I know Stego didn't seem to enjoy the fantasy either. I remember him getting into discussions about how it was a nice experiment, but that Morgan should return to what he does best. I didn't hate his fantasy, but I was definitely luke warm. Love his sci fi. 

Edited by Quijote Light

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17 hours ago, Mandy said:

I wasn't a fan of his fantasy books, and yet a HUGE fan of his sci fi.  Am I the only one who liked one and not the other?

I think it's fairly common. I think my favourites are part of his SF range but it's not a simple case of his SF work is always better. I often wonder with these kinds of thing that it's my personal tastes that are changing and not so much the author's approach. It's been 7 years since I've read a Morgan SF so it'll be interesting to see what I think of his forthcoming SF book. I guess I could re-read Altered Carbon as a test too but will probably hold off especially as the TV show is on its way.

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58 minutes ago, red snow said:

I think it's fairly common. I think my favourites are part of his SF range but it's not a simple case of his SF work is always better. I often wonder with these kinds of thing that it's my personal tastes that are changing and not so much the author's approach. It's been 7 years since I've read a Morgan SF so it'll be interesting to see what I think of his forthcoming SF book. I guess I could re-read Altered Carbon as a test too but will probably hold off especially as the TV show is on its way.

For sure.  I often wonder if I would be a fan of ASOIAF if I'd read it today instead of a decade or so ago.  The good thing is, changing is positive, means we aren't stagnant :)

Edited by Mandy

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On 5/19/2016 at 2:37 PM, C.T. Phipps said:

I just finished reading The Steel Remains and have decided I'm a fan of Richard K. Morgan[....]'m about halfway through The Cold Commands and am loving it. I'm also eager to purchase/read the Kovacs novels.

You, sir, are a man with fine taste. :-)

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I just finished The Cold Commands today.

 

Overall, I've got to say this is the best kind of sequel as it manages to pick up a story which was largely satisfactory resolved in the previous volume and continue it while also working in different directions. The biggest praise I can give it is the fact it's actually every bit as good a standalone novel as it is part of a trilogy. You could easily read The Cold Commands as your first book in the series and not at all be lost.

I really love the character development of the Power Trio and how they've all sought to find some new place for themselves in the world after the first book's events, only to remain exactly as unsatisfied and unhappy as they were before. I loved Ringel's role as the John Brown and Spartacus of the setting even as he can't quite muster any popular support for his ideals. The "punishment" he inflicts for his cousin's sexual assaults is also beyond the pale but also perfectly understandable given the environment and horrors done.

It's also interesting to see Egar as close to being in love as he's capable of managing, even as he screws that up as well. I also think it's a delightful parody of Conan-esque plots, at least that's what I think it was supposed to be, where Egar breaks into a "evil" temple to rescue the "virgin" sacrifice only for it to have absolutely none of the romance and all of the stupidity.

Archeth remains somewhat stuck and it's interesting to note even this has its own developments. I bitterly regret we didn't get more scenes between her and Hanesh Galet but given her utter contempt for anything Citadel related, there was no chance of them ever having a civilized conversation.

Indeed, the handling of the Citadel was very interesting this time around and it's interesting to separate the characters as well as their view of it from the organization. It reminds me a bit of Martin's handling of the Sparrows as I tend to think they're probably right about a large amount of what they're saying. Emperor Jhiral is a monster and probably worse than a society ruled by them but our heroes are those who would be directly effected by the Citadel's evil decrees and it's going to get worse rather than better thanks to the Dwenda's influence.

Hamesh might have been the Thomas Aquinas of his era but that's never going to happen here. It's more Taliban than High Catholic Middle Ages.

I'm disappointed with the character of Ishgrim because in a story which breaks every stereotype of "dude-bro" fantasy fiction by making a badass sexualized gay male lead character and a largely nonsexualized woman of color lesbian, the slavegirl remains almost completely flat. We have no knowledge if, when, or why she believes anything she does. I hope this will change in The Dark Defiles but at present she comes off as a female character from a 1930s Pulp. Existing as a reflection on Archeth.

Richard K. Morgan remains one of the most evocative authors I've ever read and I've got to say this continues to be the case throughout this story. I owe Grimdark Magazine for posting the except they did of TDD which got me interested in his writing.

Great book.

 

Edited by C.T. Phipps

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I really don't see why people would object to some integrated sex and violence in his work. I mean, ASOIAF is full of it.

 

 

But then again, I haven't read any of his stuff.

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2 hours ago, Writhen said:

I really don't see why people would object to some integrated sex and violence in his work. I mean, ASOIAF is full of it.

 

 

But then again, I haven't read any of his stuff.

I imagine that the dude on dude nature of the sex might turn some people off. Didn't bother me, but Ringel really loves sucking cock.

Great series though. I thought the third book was the best one too. 

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From hat I've been told the sex on his SciFI books is very very very over the top/graphic. Way more than AsoiaF.

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54 minutes ago, mgambino said:

I imagine that the dude on dude nature of the sex might turn some people off. Didn't bother me, but Ringel really loves sucking cock.

Great series though. I thought the third book was the best one too. 

The fact it was gay sex didn't bother me personally, it was just the fact that some scenes seemed to go on far longer than they really needed too (the first one between Ringil and that alien thingy, it's been a year or so since I read it), and this in a book where I already felt the plot wasn't particularly engaging (The Steel Remains). I'm not fussy about including sex scenes, but would rather they didn't come at the expense of the narrative

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14 minutes ago, Darth Richard II said:

From hat I've been told the sex on his SciFI books is very very very over the top/graphic. Way more than AsoiaF.

Honestly, I think this is exaggerated. Then again, I've read my wife's preferred books (which tend to contain this sort of thing) as part of our marriage and am less bothered by it than some fans. I just basically skim the gay on gay on sex scenes and move on. Then again, I'm not a big fan of male-on-female lit sex scenes either. The sex scenes are important emotional and storytelling moments either way and it's the rare author who really makes sex scenes necessary in their work.

Edited by C.T. Phipps

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Well I don't think the SciFI books are male on male but I'm just saying what other people have told me. Not that it bothers me, I've read some horror books that are way more fucked up(probably).

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13 minutes ago, Darth Richard II said:

Well I don't think the SciFI books are male on male but I'm just saying what other people have told me. Not that it bothers me, I've read some horror books that are way more fucked up(probably).

Well, I've read the first two ALFFH books and am reading Altered Carbon and so far far, AC's protagonist is straight while ALFFH's Ringil is gay as well Archeth (who is a lesbian). Basically, it works one sex scene per book for Ringil and some reminisces as well as flashbacks. We see Ringil waking up beside lovers, a terrible moment from his past, and past lovers. The only major sex scene is a pivotal plot point.

So there's less "on camera" than some might think but it's made clear Ringil is a sexually active gay man the way you'd be with Bond or so.

Edited by C.T. Phipps

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2 hours ago, Darth Richard II said:

He used to post here on an off, but I haven't seen him pop around in a while.

Didn't he react like a dick (pun intentional) when RBPL offered something other than glowing praise for his books?

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Maybe? I just remember arguing with him about The Road and then something about Tolkien.

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He's always been around periodically. I suspect he'll show up in this thread eventually, maybe when the next book drops.

He's never been shy to get arsey in defence of his opinions, but hey, lots of us do that.

Edited by polishgenius

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On 5/22/2016 at 0:02 AM, HelenaExMachina said:

Didn't he react like a dick (pun intentional) when RBPL offered something other than glowing praise for his books?

I've read the second thread where all this went down and it seemed the problems started with:

"I'm uncomfortable with all the gay stuff."
"Maybe you have some latent homophobia."
"That's a serious accusation to throw around. Maybe you just suck."

And everyone else weighed in.

It's a pity as I really like when authors show up to discuss their books.

Edited by C.T. Phipps

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