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RedEyedGhost

October Reading 2016 - Something Spooky?

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9 hours ago, Peadar said:

Peed Pants? Peed Piper? Whoever he is, I'm sure he's moooost grateful :)

Thanks :)

B&N here had it out in a thrillers for teens display! I was going to take a picture but um I forgot to take the picture.

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I am half through Paladin of Souls by Bujold and I think it is better than Chalion.  I know many are not that fond of the Sharing Knife series but not sure I can quit on Bujold at this point. 

I also started Red Sister by Mark Lawrence.  And I had no idea it was so far out when I started it; very surprised they have released proofs this early.

My non-fiction reading at night has gone to shit.  American Sphinx isn't catching my attention and I may be forced to leave my founding fathers kick and try something different.

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49 minutes ago, SkynJay said:

I am half through Paladin of Souls by Bujold and I think it is better than Chalion.  I know many are not that fond of the Sharing Knife series but not sure I can quit on Bujold at this point. 

I'm looking forward to hearing what you think about those, because I've been unwilling to take the plunge.

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I finished Ian McDonald's King of Morning, Queen of Day. I thought it was a good book overall, but it did have some flaws and I'd say it was some way short of McDonald's best (I've tended to find his early work isn't quite as good as his 21st Century work). It's got an interesting mix of Celtic fantasy and urban fantasy - I'm not sure urban fantasy was really a trend back in 1990 but the last section's heroine being a katana wielding cycle courier hunting mythological creatures are the backstreets of Dublin would definitely fit into the genre. I felt the first section in the pre-WW1 setting was a bit dry at times (most of it being told via letters or diary entries), the second section in 1930s Dublin was more interesting and the final section was perhaps the best despite being unnecessarily confusing at times due to the non-linear narrative that kept jumping about in time.

11 hours ago, SkynJay said:

I am half through Paladin of Souls by Bujold and I think it is better than Chalion.  I know many are not that fond of the Sharing Knife series but not sure I can quit on Bujold at this point.

Out of Bujold's other fantasy stories, I liked her historical fantasy The Spirit Ring, it's not one of her best works but still worth reading. I haven't read the Sharing Knife books, it seems to mostly get bad reviews even from Bujold fans.

 

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Finished off The Exorcist. Seems the film was reasonably faithful, at least so far as I remember, though the book doesn't have "the power of Christ compels you".

So that means my completed reads for October:

  1. The Werewolf of Paris, by Guy Endore
  2. The Turn of the Screw, by Henry James
  3. Carmilla, by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
  4. The Exorcist, by William Peter Blatty

Next up is Harbour, by John Ajvide Lindqvist.

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13 hours ago, Darth Richard II said:

B&N here had it out in a thrillers for teens display! I was going to take a picture but um I forgot to take the picture.

Don't worry! I'm using my imagination to picture it and it's fantastic ;)

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On 10/7/2016 at 10:17 PM, SkynJay said:

I am half through Paladin of Souls by Bujold and I think it is better than Chalion.  I know many are not that fond of the Sharing Knife series but not sure I can quit on Bujold at this point. 

I also started Red Sister by Mark Lawrence.  And I had no idea it was so far out when I started it; very surprised they have released proofs this early.

My non-fiction reading at night has gone to shit.  American Sphinx isn't catching my attention and I may be forced to leave my founding fathers kick and try something different.

Apperently Mr Lawrence had already written all three novels in the trilogy. O.o

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So I finished my reread of The Gathering of the Lost by Helen Lowe, and it was much better than the first book. I thought this one actually lived up to the previous 4-star review I gave it in 2013. I also had totally forgotten everything, including some very major twists/reveals, which made me feel pretty silly. I then immediately picked up the new one, Daughter of Blood, that I hadn't read yet. I realized about 50% in that this couldn't possibly be the final book, and so I checked and sure enough there is a book 4 in the works. Gah! Oh well. I really enjoyed it. High fantasy in a traditional mold but well done.

Both of these two were much longer than the first, but it's a 3-day weekend, so yay for spending all day reading!

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read Under Heaven by GG Kay after recommendations from UnJon and williamjm - really enjoyed it, it's my first Kay novel and I'm a fan of the style so I reckon i'll buy the sequel and maybe some of his other work.

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I finally finished Bakker's Prince of Nothing trilogy and I have to say I was underwhelmed.

I enjoyed the first book, The Darkness That Comes Before particularly the first half.  I enjoyed the character introductions and the intrigue with Conphas and the emperor.  Kellhus really turned me off so the second half was not so good.  I did like the flashbacks to his Dunyain training and I missed them in subsequent books.  I particularly liked Achamian and Esmenet's story lines.

For me the second book Warrior Prophet was the least enjoyable.  I almost stopped there.  I could not relate to anyone.  All the characters I kind of liked in book 1 really turned me off.  At one point I hoped that the second Apocalypse would come just to get rid of all these people.  After a while I thought that maybe Proyas was not such a bad guy (arrogant and intolerant, sure but at least had a consistent philosophy) and maybe he could be the one survivor to repopulate the human species.  (but then he'd have to have one of the women survive so maybe he should just live out his life as a hermit)

The third book was OK mostly I think because it was constant action so at least it was interesting.  It was interesting to

Spoiler

finally see the confrontation between Kellhus and Moenghus.  Didn't really like that Cnaiur flipped at the end like that, I guess he was supposed to be crazy, but still.

But I think it suffered from the same problem that there was no major character who I felt like rooting for.  Too bad Bakker didn't make the whole thing about the First Apocolypse because Seswatha seemed like maybe a pretty cool dude.  Certainly less whiny than Akka!

Am I missing something on Bakker here?  He seems to be well liked generally on this board.

It's easy for me to compare these books to Abercrombie's First Law trilogy which had dark characters and settings but many I think with some redeeming humanity that made them relatable in many ways.  I don't think I'll be continuing with my Bakker experiment.  Maybe it's time for me to read more Abercrombie.  I have read the First Law trilogy and the first of the YA shattered sea novels.  Any suggestions on what to read next?

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Well, short answer: people like all the philosophy and metaphysics wank that goes on.  I don't think anyone(anyone sane anyway) reads them cause they like the characters.  Longer answer would just get me in trouble. :P

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I am reading through Adventures in Celestial Mechanics by Victor G. Szebehely. Still not sure what my next novel will be. 

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5 hours ago, mushroomshirt said:

 

  Reveal hidden contents

finally see the confrontation between Kellhus and Moenghus.  Didn't really like that Cnaiur flipped at the end like that, I guess he was supposed to be crazy, but still.

Am I missing something on Bakker here?  He seems to be well liked generally on this board.

It's easy for me to compare these books to Abercrombie's First Law trilogy which had dark characters and settings but many I think with some redeeming humanity that made them relatable in many ways.  I don't think I'll be continuing with my Bakker experiment.  Maybe it's time for me to read more Abercrombie.  I have read the First Law trilogy and the first of the YA shattered sea novels.  Any suggestions on what to read next?

I think Abercrombie and Bakker are very different. The Abercrombie world is sketchy and generic (IMO First Law more so than Shattered Sea) but he manages to make a traumatized torturer and a possessed killing machine sympathetic. Bakker's world is "deep", elaborate and some people like the "philosophy" (it really needs scare quotes...) but hardly any character is sympathetic (if they are not skin spies anyway)...

As for Abercrombie, I'd continue with the stand-alone First Law books: Best Served Cold, Heroes and Red Country. I think the last one is the weakest by some margin and BSC is for me too much 1990s action movies (Mission impossible meets Kill Bill) but well beloved by many readers.

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Abercrombie and Bakker are both blatantly doing their own take on Tolkien. The big distinguishing factor is that Abercrombie's work, at least with regards to the trilogy, is as much satire as it is a tribute. He's basically the Quentin Tarantino of epic fantasy.  As for what to read next @mushroomshirt, ditto what Jo598 said, read the stand alones. Best Served Cold was my favorite of the three, but all of them were significantly better than the trilogy. After that there is also the short story collection, Sharp Ends.

Speaking of Bakker...

Just finished The Warrior Prophet.

God damn, that ending... was not ready for that. I don't remember who I was having the "most grimdarky fantasy series ever" argument with a while back, but I still say Berserk is worse. Of course, I've still got another four books to read...

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1 hour ago, Let's Get Kraken said:

Abercrombie and Bakker are both blatantly doing their own take on Tolkien. The big distinguishing factor is that Abercrombie's work, at least with regards to the trilogy, is as much satire as it is a tribute. He's basically the Quentin Tarantino of epic fantasy. 

 


I think that only Bakker is doing Tolkien directly. Abercrombie is more about the whole post-Tolkienite shebang and I find there's far more riffing on things from the likes of Eddings (in particular), Feist and the like (as well as heavy hints of Gemmell) than LotR/Tolkien himself.

 

Me, I'm just reading the Unholy Consult (after a Mieville-thread-caused distraction - I'd promised myself I was going to set aside The Scar for a couple of years, come to it again in a few see how it is, but what do you know, I was looking up a couple of scenes and did my yearly re-read by accident). Some really awesome stuff in there.

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I found the satirical/trope-flipping aspect of Abercrombie's work too overpowering.  Bakker's consistently serious take and willingness to embrace the genre is more my style.  Speaking of which, I'm on The Thousandfold Thought now. 

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i just finished the dragon's path by daniel abraham...completely unputdownable.  in most books of its type, there is always a POV or two that fail to grab me or breaks my groove...not the case here.  i particularly enjoyed how flawed the characters are...geder and cithrin are quite well realized.  i've perused a large portion of abraham's work and have yet to be disappointed.  i heartily recommend this book. :cheers:

not really sure where to go next because i just can't binge a series...it gives me burnout.  i've started a long way to a small, angry planet (i think that's the title) and i'm liking it, to be sure, but it feels as if i could read it in one sitting.  again, not a bad thing but i will be right back in this boat very, very soon.

has anyone read the MLN hanover stuff?  i've the first book in my "to be read" pile but for some reason i haven't pulled the trigger.

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2 hours ago, Let's Get Kraken said:

Abercrombie and Bakker are both blatantly doing their own take on Tolkien. The big distinguishing factor is that Abercrombie's work, at least with regards to the trilogy, is as much satire as it is a tribute. He's basically the Quentin Tarantino of epic fantasy.  As for what to read next @mushroomshirt, ditto what Jo598 said, read the stand alones. Best Served Cold was my favorite of the three, but all of them were significantly better than the trilogy. After that there is also the short story collection, Sharp Ends.

Speaking of Bakker...

Just finished The Warrior Prophet.

God damn, that ending... was not ready for that. I don't remember who I was having the "most grimdarky fantasy series ever" argument with a while back, but I still say Berserk is worse. Of course, I've still got another four books to read...

Well, I argue that Bakker isn't grimdark mainly because I think it lacks the kind of dark humor I feel grimdark has, but yes, on the just plain dark scale it's up there. 

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I finished The Gradual.  A much more linear and straightforward story than one normally gets with Priest, at least compared to his recent works.  This one is about a composer and is another set in the author's Dream Archipelago world.  Priest has some freaky stuff with time, but ultimately it felt like he didn't do all that much with it.  It's Priest so of course it's good, it just won't be my favorite of his books. 

Now reading The Wall of Storms by Ken Liu. 

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On 10/11/2016 at 3:30 PM, D_P said:

i just finished the dragon's path by daniel abraham...completely unputdownable. 

D_P - If you liked the first book I think it's very likely you'll enjoy the series.  A lot of folks feel that the first book is the weakest.

I finished John Le Carre's A Most Wanted Man which I'd just snagged at the library wanting to try the author.  Thought it was OK not great but would certainly try the author again.

Now I confess I'm giving Dan Brown a chance for the first time in over a decade with Inferno.

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