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Macadangdang Jr.

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  1. Macadangdang Jr.

    Guy Gavriel Kay

    (I know this post is like 3 months old but I thought I'd chime in anyway). I think The Last Light of the Sun actually is the first time he incorporated that tense-shift into his writing. I'm not entirely sure how I feel about it either. Present-tense is also used in Under Heaven and actually feels even more discordant... The usage in Last Light at least made sense to convey that a certain character perceived the world differently, but otherwise it feels somewhat incongruous to me. It's not intolerable or anything (GGK remains my favourite author) but it's... odd.
  2. Macadangdang Jr.

    Lev Grossman: 'Magicians' trilogy, Post-Camelot Novel 'The Bright Sword'

    On the Hogwarts/Narnia criticism: The Magicians is fantasy’s The Catcher in the Rye; if it doesn’t strike the right person at the precise right moment in their life, it’s a laughable mess. To those it does reach at that kairos, though, it’s a rare find. The Magicians is written for the children who grew up alone or without direction. The ones lost in fantasy, those who convinced themselves, “My life would be perfect, if only… if only that Hogwarts letter had arrived… if only that wardrobe had opened. Then I could be happy.” But that child wouldn’t be happy. And in The Magicians, that child is Quentin. He gets the magic school, the girl, the crown. Every fantasy those children lusted after. And one by one, he throws them away, hunting his next “if only…" Just as they would have. As I wrote elsewhere: It's a delusion held by so many young men and women that their unhappiness is an artifact of circumstance rather than outlook. Whether they dream of Hogwarts or (as I imagine it was in the case of young Lev) Narnia, they're wrong. And that's the message behind the first novel of The Magicians Trilogy. Criticizing Grossman for sending Quentin to Corrupted Hogwarts/Narnia is a bit like denouncing Abercrombie for dispatching his Corrupted Fellowship on their quest in The First Law; a deconstruction takes the coin and shows us its other face. Grossman must send Quentin to Hogwarts to prove his thesis; happiness isn’t something that arrives in your mailbox. Post-script: there are just so many places one could legitimately criticize Grossman (e.g. Elliot's horrid first POV in TML, the rushed ending of TML, the rape you mentioned) that to submit Brakebills/Fillory as examples of his inadequacy is... odd, in my opinion. Let me add the disclaimer that I generally very much enjoy reading your reviews, Werthead.
  3. Macadangdang Jr.

    Amazing Book Deals V.2

    Interestingly, A Wizard of Earthsea was what Le Guin wrote after she was asked by a publisher to write a fantasy novel for a YA audience specifically. Le Guin discusses this a bit in the afterword for my copy of A Wizard of Earthsea. If you haven't read them, the afterwords for Wizard and The Tombs of Atuan are both well worth it, in my opinion (haven't read The Farthest Shore yet). I've been reading through the series this year and enjoying it as an adult, but it is indeed YA.