.H.

Bakker LIII - Sranc and File

384 posts in this topic

***Contains spoilers from THE UNHOLY CONSULT****

__-----_

This is the perpetual thread devoted to the works of R. Scott Bakker, primarily the books in The Second Apocalypse series, the first novel is The Darkness that Comes Before, the seventh novel was published on July 4, 2017 and is The Unholy Consult.  It is currently available for purchase.

This thread is for the series through The Unholy Consult and contains spoilers through that novel.

The series is called The Second Apocalypse and is currently comprised of two sub-series, a trilogy and a quartet. Potentially, there will be a third series, although the author has stated that the quartet completes his original vision for the story. 

The first trilogy of books is subtitled The Prince of Nothing these three books are:

  1. The Darkness that Comes Before
  2. The Warrior Prophet
  3. The Thousandfold Thought

The second quartet of books is subtitled The Aspect Emperor, these four books are:

  1. The Judging Eye
  2. The White-Luck Warrior
  3. The Great Ordeal
  4. The Unholy Consult 

There is a third set of books presumably planned subtitled The No God.

The Unholy Consult also includes an expanded Appendix/Encyclopedic Glossary. The original Glossary exists currently only at the end of the third book, The Thousandfold Thought. 

Additionally, Bakker has published three short stories, The False Sun and The Four Revelations of Cinial'jin on Bakker's Blog Three Pound Brain(and now also as appendices in The Unholy Consult) and The Knife of Many Hands, which is available for purchase. There is also another short story, The Carathayan, available for purchase in this anthology (along with a introduction by Bakker)This thread contains spoilers for these publications. The False Sun is the most discussed work of these three shorts.

Since Bakker's writing uses layers of revelation, newcomers are strongly advised to finish the books before coming here; otherwise the spoilers will rot your soul. Eternally.

Of potential interest, Bakker did stop by the board shortly after the release of The Great Ordeal and did answer several questions.  That discussion can be found here.

Most denizens of this thread have also read Bakker's non-fantasy novels Neuropath and Disciple of the Dog, but the spoiler policy is unclear. You are advised to hide crucial plot points in those novels.

Thanks to Happy Ent for the intro to the thread.

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Having reached the proscribed former topic length, I made a new one.  Obvious placeholder title is obvious.  Throw out some crafty suggestions for a good one.

Not sure what we are talking about, perhaps Blood Meridian still?

Edited by .H.

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I like Sranc and File

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Agreed, thread title is metagnostic!

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10 hours ago, .H. said:

Throw out some crafty suggestions for a good one.

Better than fucking a radioactive skull? Wait...this isn't Something Awful though.

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So anyone know what the odds are on getting that third series? I feel like Bakker could self publish if he's having issues getting a contract for round three. 

While the AMA took a lot of wind out of my sails, I'm still trying to largely ignore it and hope the final series will offer the answers that I thought we would have gotten in TUC. Despite all the issues I had with it, at its peak, and with what the series hinted at being, there's really nothing that comes close to it for me. 

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I dunno, there was talk about self publishing a few threads ago but it was said it was unlikely, but I don't remember why. Kind of a moot poitn I think til the book nears completion.

Also I keep looking at the thread title and thinking Lil Baker.

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36 minutes ago, IllusiveMan said:

So anyone know what the odds are on getting that third series? I feel like Bakker could self publish if he's having issues getting a contract for round three. 

While the AMA took a lot of wind out of my sails, I'm still trying to largely ignore it and hope the final series will offer the answers that I thought we would have gotten in TUC. Despite all the issues I had with it, at its peak, and with what the series hinted at being, there's really nothing that comes close to it for me. 

From what I've heard, he's been working on the third trilogy for quite some time. The question is how it will end up published. He claims that the first book will focus on the Boy. TBH, I don't know if I will bother. 

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1 minute ago, Dora Vee said:

From what I've heard, he's been working on the third trilogy for quite some time. The question is how it will end up published. He claims that the first book will focus on the Boy. TBH, I don't know if I will bother. 

Wait, he has? I am confused.

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Yea. He has writings with characters, outlines and has been working on it since the spring, I think. I don't know how much has been done though. 

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Ah see, you're definition of quite some time is radically different then mine, probably cause authors I read will work on things for years and years.

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Yikes. That would be longer than "quite some time", imo.

At any rate, my concern would be WHEN they get published. 

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Has anyone here read Homo Deus? I recall Bakker mentioning it on his blog as a way for people to dig deeper into the philosophical side of his writings. If anyone has, is it worth reading and what light does it shed on The Second Apocalypse?

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On 1/11/2018 at 8:27 PM, IllusiveMan said:

So anyone know what the odds are on getting that third series? I feel like Bakker could self publish if he's having issues getting a contract for round three. 

In one of the previous threads, I speculated that he could self-publish and maybe release it chapter-by-chapter while doing a Patreon. It doesn't sound like he's interested in doing something like that, or maybe he still has hopes that a publisher will pick up the third trilogy. 

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7 hours ago, Ghjhero said:

Has anyone here read Homo Deus? I recall Bakker mentioning it on his blog as a way for people to dig deeper into the philosophical side of his writings. If anyone has, is it worth reading and what light does it shed on The Second Apocalypse?

I read it.  Not sure if I am just not smart enough or what, but I don't know that I gained much insight into anything from tSA.  It is however, a good, "more practical" view of what Bakker is usually talking about with the "Semantic Apocalypse."  I'd recommend, if you really are interested in Homo Deus, to read his first book, Sapiens, which is definitely a good introduction to his general premise.

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I cant see him scaling the hights of the first trilogy. I dont know if I am down for a third tbh. The Unholy Consult hurt me.

I loved bits of the preceiding books as well.

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9 hours ago, .H. said:

I read it.  Not sure if I am just not smart enough or what, but I don't know that I gained much insight into anything from tSA.  It is however, a good, "more practical" view of what Bakker is usually talking about with the "Semantic Apocalypse."  I'd recommend, if you really are interested in Homo Deus, to read his first book, Sapiens, which is definitely a good introduction to his general premise.

What is the Semantic Apocalypse? I’ve heard Homo Deus is about humanity’s future so I assume Sapiens is about our past?

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6 minutes ago, Ghjhero said:

What is the Semantic Apocalypse? I’ve heard Homo Deus is about humanity’s future so I assume Sapiens is about our past?

Essentially - depending who you ask and when you ask Bakker - it is about the idea that the central concept of meaning - truth, values, points of view - will be so subjectivized that no one will be able to 'know' anything, or even understand any context of anyone else besides your own ingroup. Everything will be so partisan, so required to have specific cachet, that people will break into non-communicating clades and tribes. And those tribes will be able to justify anything - any crime, any issue - because there will be no particular moral framework that anyone agrees on. 

Here's Bakker's blog post on it back in 2011, though I suspect he's changed this a lot since then.

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No one agreeing on what is moral is pretty much what already happened in the dark ages and before.

It's neuro modification that's more the issue - probably predicated on people having a magical sense of spirit/consciousness that somehow remains as is, even as they get their brain modified for whatever. For some reason people think consciousness transfer is a thing - probably for thinking consciousness is a thing to begin with, rather than a very complicated process occurring. So they don't imagine neuro modification is kind of partial suicide. It sounds so bad to refer to suicide, how could it be that bad, eh?

Anyway peoples brains are at default and on average, pretty much very similar. Yet we still argue a lot on what is moral or what shit people have to put up with for a particular status quo. Sometimes to the point of potential nuclear violence, ala North Korea. Or actual nuclear violence, ala Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Gotta save them troops. Now throw in modified brains, who baseline are not similar - and the arguments they'll give. No doubt hinging on 'But I'm human, you have to respect my (insert behavior here)!'. Even as people messing with their brain are arguably discarding that claim (but hey, they probably still have the capacity to claim a right even as they abandon their responsibility to that right, as default humans are wont to do)

So we have a fairly shakey baseline for morality due to our brains pretty much being the same on average.

And yet we're primed for some article about some grinning, probably bespectacled guy guy talking about how he didn't just get a card reader inserted under his skin so he didn't have to pull a card out of his wallet (oh god, so hard to do!), but he's had his brain modified so he can do math like a savant. And the media and current culture will lap this up. Because we have no sense of this being poison.

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